Last stop on the turning 30 train….
March 14th, 2010

Yes, March 13th marks another year gone by for yours truly here. In case you weren’t aware, I was born on a Friday the 13th, at 13:13 Military Time. 13 was my father’s lucky number, so he was ecstatic. I have to say I really appreciate having such a close connection to such an excellent number. It also helped seal the deal when I going think13 back in December of 2007, just a month after moving out here.

But today is not about 13 (exactly), today is about 29! The last stop before the big three – oh, I am looking forward to rocking this year hard. With the (eventuall) launch of this website, and the SEVERE BASS band being on the verge of being formed, this is promising to be quite the important year for “taking that next step”.

I sort of thought that 2009 was going to be the year myself and all my friends took over the world – I’m pretty sure that 2009 was just some bullshit we all needed to get through to actualize our dreams. And what better time then?

How ya doing 29? I think we’re ready to party now.
29

Adam the King Snake
March 8th, 2010


Note that the snake is actually caught underneath the guitar strings, thus needing to work himself out of the soundhole the long way.

Owning the Internet can be FRUSTRATING!
February 26th, 2010

This page doesn’t look like I want it to just yet.  In fact, I am feeling a little of that “one step forward, two steps back” thing going on with ye ol website.  I’ll eventually get around to writing an intro that will include this general synopsis, but I am pretty much doing this on my own. That doesn’t mean I don’t have amazingly gifted friends who are ready and willing to offer advice and feedback at their earliest convenience (b/c I do – and in droves. I think part of the reason I feel so compelled to have this website is because of how many close personal friends of mine are absolutely brilliant at how they use the internet – and they love me and encourage me as often as possible, so I am truly grateful for all that). What it means, is, as mentioned previously, I’m kind of fucking clueless, which I wasn’t expecting.

How so? Let me just map out the last couple weeks. This isn’t a bitch session at all – instead I am hoping to think out the problems I have had so I can better understand them. Actually, what would be amazing is if one day, these writings actually helped someone else with creating and navigating their own web presence without making the mistakes I am. But for now, this is probably just for me.

Starting a few weeks ago, I finally started hosting severebass.com. I went w. Site5 on the recommendation of a friend, eventually deciding on them because their customer service was highly praised, their website interface looked more navigable then the main competition, and I found a coupon to save some money on my purchase. I don’t regret that decision at all.

However, my first confusion was with making sure the domain name, purchased dirt cheap through Active Domain actually transferred through to site5 (which it did). Then came logging into Site5 iteself – not too bad. Site5 also made it easy to point severebass to my current wordpress blog – nice. Things got tricky however when I tried to get a similar domain (severemusick.com – which is on my business cards) to go to severebass (and eventually the wordpress blog – for now). I thought I set up the dns servers correctly, but the controls over at Domain Panel suggested things would be more straight forward. I sent a couple emails to their Tech Support, getting the most basic reponse – eventually they told me my dns servers were set up correctly (note: on more then one occasion I did a search for what the fuck dns servers actually did and how to use them and didn’t find much that made sense to me – meh). Finally, after mentioning this to my little brother (a very smart guy and electronic engineer), he took on the task himself. He set up the parked domain (which I completely missed), and then when things didn’t work that way, emailed site5 on my behalf, and they made sure things were working correctly.

Sweet! Now I needed to tackle my FTP access. I used ftp explorer first as I already had a download of it in my folders somewhere, but while I could view the _incoming folder, and it seemed like I Could upload to it, nothing showed up. So I gave FileZilla a shot (At the recommendation of site5), and got similar, if not worse results. I figured I was missing something basic (as my little bro had put up a quick html page) and sent him screenshots. It turned out that even though site5 had a place for me to CREATE ftp accounts, what I really needed was my generic log-in in order to access the real files. Easy enough, I made the change. ONE STEP CLOSER!

Or so I thought. That evening I met w. my consultant, who after I plied w. half a carafe of sangria, started to look at what I was trying to do – specifically and overall. I spent the first half of the meal explaining myself and the last bit showing my consultant my strategies – things like my own personal workplan, a line-item-list of the columns and subcolumns I want in this site, as well as some of the basic functionality.

At least three times I heard: migrate your wordpress blog into site5. I was told this was quite easy, that using a 3rd party option known as Fantastico, this would all make sense. Which I did – I started a new blog at severebass.com/blog (which you are now reading). I had been under the impression that this would just mean linking my pre-existing wordpress blog into my site5 account – with more fancy-schmance options coming. Instead I found out I had created a separate blog, within severebass.com (currently directing immediately to severebass.wordpress.com). When I went back to my consultant making sure this was correct, I was assured that yes, I just need to now import my existing wordpress blog into the one I had just created.

This wasn’t too strange to me – I’d already tried this when I FIRST created severebass.wordpress.com. I’d done as much when I first tried to import my old blogspot. I realized I couldn’t choose the posts – so EVERYTHING came flooding through. It took me several sessions to delete all the old tags. But what I WASN’T aware of is that the attachments were still there – which ones? I don’t know. But instead of 4 or 5 posts, I imported over 140 items to the blog – and I don’t know what they are.

What I want to do with the blogspot is to store it all – separately – in it’s own /blog/archive folder. If I can get the tags to work JUST in that space, that would be sweet. If not – fuck the tags. Most of them are me messing around anyway.

This isn’t all so bad – I can navigate it. The biggest pisser (of the moment at least) is that the theme I was using in severebass.wordpress cannot be found now that I’ve migrated. The theme wasn’t perfect – but I liked it. It was black and red, with a customizable header, and called “Neo-Sapien” by Small_Potato. It, nor anything quite the same, is nowhere to be found now that I’ve moved. I can get around this as well, but it’s just a BIT FRUSTRATING.

It seems my next steps here are:

  • find a theme I can work with for now
  • from that theme, create the page wrapper I want to use and figure out how to apply it
  • start setting up my pages up non-publicly while I start to pull things together
  • figure out the best way to start upping severebass.com as the #1 google hit
  • learn more about this “categories” stuff I hear about and how it works
  • find out where to add my gravatar now that I’m signed in this way!! (answer – themes/widgets)

I’m sure I have more things I need to do, but I’ll start with these. It will be totally sweet when I one day look back at this blog and am amused by how little I understood things…:)

P.S. In case my tone isn’t clear here, all my friends who give me free advice are all complete professionals (and in the case of my consultant – probably a genius) for whom I have the utmost respect and appreciation for. My own frustrations lie in my wishing that I the internet will not read my brain, so I’ve spiced the post with plenty of hyperbole for effect. XO – Severe

P.P.S. Let this be the last blog post i publish before thoroughly proofreading.

Why I need help doing this
February 20th, 2010

I’d like my site to look like this please:

awesome drawing of my site #1

this picture is better then nothing i guess

(except, you know, AWESOME).

At least I’m thinking about it, right?

Patience in the Face of Ambition
February 12th, 2010

I’m trying to do this website thing on my own as much as possible. While that sounds GREAT in theory, there’s just one problem:

I DON’T KNOW A SINGLE THING ABOUT HOW TO DO THAT!

Well, that’s not entirely true. I do know a little something about websites. In the early 2000’s I was the administrator for a now-mostly-defunct online community (this was in the days of Friendster folks – cutting edge stuff). I didn’t actually program or design a damn thing, but I did get used to the behind-the-scenes tools that we had to use to flex our Admin-muscles. And I also got to sit in on a lot of brainstorming between two people who could have done this for a living (and sort of did for a while).

In addition to that, I like computers. I work with them. In my job, I’ve been forced (not exactly against my will) to learn html. I know, hmtl is some archaic bullshit and I’m 5 years behind after just starting, but it’s something. I update some how-to guides using old-school systems. I also check emails that go out to thousands of people for technical and logistical errors and then fix them. My job isn’t sexy, but I do take some pride in it and sometimes get to be close to some pretty cool stuff.

I consider myself a pretty smart dude – this is working against me at the moment. Because I consider myself a pretty smart dude, I kind of expected to pick up this whole “running a personal/professional website” thing pretty quickly. I figured once I made some basic decisions & spent some money I would be controlling my online presence. Big surprise (really it shouldn’t have been) that I am finding things are not quite as simple as I would hope.

Part of this is because I want to do it all – NOW! You hear me? I want a site already set up for me to update w. all my music available for download and some videos and a way to pay me if you like what you get. I want my blog up and running and followed so I can start connecting with people across the country/world/universe and collaborating. I want to have complete control over the sites that have severebass in them across all the social networking platforms – and now. NOW! (or at least you know, like by the weekend, right?)

Instead, I’m reading the beginner how-to guides while I talk to myself. “Where is that?” I say. “What do you mean?” I question the writer of the guide I’m reading. “That’s not how it looks!” I insist to a similar writer. “I don’t understand” I complain to the tech support departments of the places I host and bought my domains from. “Why doesn’t my screen do that?” I plead w the words on a screen.

Some of the programs I’m working on utilizing include:
GIMP
WordPress (recommended by everyone and their dog)
FileZilla (recommended by my hosting provider)
Open Office
Virtual Box (and then linux – recommended by my brother after I broke my laptop w. a dual-boot install of ubuntu)

Perhaps it would be easier if I just picked one and stuck with it? NO! That is not the kind of thinking I’m promoting here. My theory is that it’s all connected – while it’s intimidating as all hell (did I mention I recently bought a laptop too?) at the moment, I have to keep plugging along. Learning a bit here and there is probably the only technique that will work right now. I don’t have the flow or the influence (or even the product) to be able to justify someone sinking free-time into a project like this, and I don’t exactly want to. Yes, I’d rather have a designer put together a kickass logo for me to put up everywhere, and then have a web person set up the back-end of a site for me that I can use their pre-installed and tweaked version of wordpress to kick ass with. But in the end, I’m going to be at their mercy. In the long run, I want to be able to do MOST of this myself. It will only be after I’ve learned that I can really decide where it is what I do is good enough, where I need to learn more, and when to just call in the professionals.

The good news with this is that I KNOW some professionals already….so if/when I get to that, the answer is easy. But for now, it’s time for tough answers I learned the hard way – then re-learned – and then finally start applying. Who needs to go back to grad school if I can find ways to frustrate myself w. my lack of knowledge ALL BY MYSELF?

The more I think about what I want severebass.com to look/feel/sound/smell like this time next year, the more intimidated, scared, swamped and EXCITED I get. I have great ideas – please make sure to check them out once I get them out of my head.

Hello First Time Visitors!
January 31st, 2010

Heya! How do you know me? What got you linked here? That kind of thing is fascinating to me!

My deal is that I’m an electric bassist with a couple bands (and working on one of my own), who also does tech support/database management for an environmental non profit during the day. Any mutual interests yet?

This site is the beginning of the next step – whatever that means. I am Anthony – aka SEVERE. I like to call things SEVERE from time to time – especially BASS. A dumb saying I have for now is “Without SEVERE….it’s just Bass”. Why not play along?

Trust me, this site will only get better so please stay tuned…..

If you feel so inclined, you can Send me positive feedback! (or, you know, whatever kind of feeback you want. I’m not famous, nor do I like to discriminate).

I approach this same situation in a different way here: Who is this Severe Bass guy, anyway?

  • Tha OBAR!




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