Frantic Friday : The Al went and hung Edition.... (NSFW)

Every once in awhile something so friggin' spectacular happens here on our Blogger :

that you tend to lean back at first and say, that must have been an :

I mean I've sat at The Pub with him and watched him play and I've sat at a few dozen virtual tables with him, and together we've played a little :

that way too. I honestly just never really expected anything this :

to come of his play. Hell, this is actually about as close to :

as we're going to see in our little community here!

From the first time I sat down with Al at The Pub, to the time that those two :

were trying to pick us up, I've really become a stout Alcanthang :

The guy does so much for us with very little praise, that every once in awhile you just want something really good to happen to or for him. A lot of bloggers would consider Al making it into the Tournament of Champions for this little BBT4 thing he puts on for us, as being a good thing. Well guess what? It's finally become a :

The frickin' Hippie went and did it! If you've been under a Blogger rock and haven't heard the news as of yet, Alcanthang went and won the Cadillac of weekly Blogger Poker get togethers. Believe it or not, Al is a MOOKIE Champion!

Now that he's accomplished that feat of great donkery and skill, here's hoping he can get himself safely back to the land of :

and focus on more appropriate goals in life. Like perhaps what degenerate deeds he may conger up for the next hot :

that happens across his SoCo enduced path.

But that's just about enough of the kiddie pics here. This is ALCANTHANG Championship territory kids! I should salute the man in a far more appropriate way.

So here's a few pics just for the man himself. A little something more befitting of his Championship status, and what I know to be his taste in such things of debauchery.

Salute Champ !

Well that's all Al. I hope as a friend that you find what it is that you are really looking for now. Hopefully you'll run across a little bit of :

or maybe even the perfect women :

in your new Champion status journies. But as always, there is one piece of advise I would like to offer you.

Always remember to clearly distinguish the difference between :

Congrats Al...... and thanks for all the things that you do for us.

Have a great weekend everyone!

My sincerest thanks for dropping by....


Poker needs to imitate life....

Where Poker may imitate life....

I sat down and took a really good look at my on-line Bam-Bam, NLHE bankroll and came to several obvious conclusions. The one table 9 player games are a real strength for me and I should be capable of slowly building up a decent bankroll by playing them. Secondly, if I insist on getting involved in the MTT games, I slay the 6-max games and have shown signs of struggle in the other formats. Again, if I insist on keeping on, keeping on with my love for MTT's, six-max should always be considered first.

So I sat and devised a plan and totally re-organized my bankroll accordingly. As always I have a budget for experimentational play and one for just plain getting down to business. What I noticed was missing however, was the disposable income factor. I had no budget for frivolity! I am always looking for a little fun and occasionally, it is great to just sit down and donk it up a bit. I have been doing that of course, but I was appropriating funds from two budgets that can ill afford the hits!

In order to really measure my success or failure as I go, I need a third budget. I also need to support this budget with my getting down to business account. I need to earn the right to play with my money, even though it's really my money in the first place. If I want disposable income to play with, I'd better take a good hard look at my financial situation, and then devise a plan to build up the funds required to consider it disposable dammit!

Funny enough, Peb's and I did just that in real life too! With some long hard looks into our needs and wants and with one short meeting with our financial support group, we literally just created the single greatest lifestyle change we could. (that we can control of course!)

All around us, economies and businesses are collapsing. Bail-outs abound and no one but the poor souls at the bottom, know where the cash is going and of course, we all know where it's coming from now, don't we!

We just made a decision to bail our own azzes out! We have just taken advantage of some incredible Government rebates, both Federal and Provincial. We're taking advantage of an incredibly low mortgage rate and will again, should it make another substantial move in the downwards direction. And last but not least, we came up with a plan from all of this where we not only reduced any payments necessary, but we also reduced our over all debt to the bank at the same time! Thus handing us something we have not seen an awful lot of since Peb's was removed from her position here in Corporate Bedrock......

Using the system, we created disposable income!

And I'll be damned if the system didn't actually go ahead and work one time, just for the good guys!

Now if I can just garner the same type of focus with my Poker bankroll!

My sincerest thanks for dropping by...


The 10 best pure Drummers.... Part II....

Now we are into the best of the best. Artist's who in one way or another, have dramatically impacted their band, the music or just reset the bar for how the Drums need to be played in order to get noticed.

Spot #5 on my list, goes to someone that really didn't get as much recognition for his talent, but has always been thought of as the glue that kept the band and their music together. Ian Paice often amazed wanna-be Drummers by the complexity of his play. With nothing more than 1 Bass, 1 Snare, 3 Tom-Toms and a couple of symbols, songs like Highway Star, Space Truckin' and Hush brought to light Ian's greatest talent as mentioned earlier. These were songs that could tear the band up during live performances, were it not for the driving leadership of Ian himself. As Gene and Buddy lead large orchestras with their abilities, Ian lead several variations of Deep Purple to some of the tightest live performances and most incredible studio tracks ever recorded. Ian Paice is something that every Drummer no matter what genre you happen to fit into wants to be. Ian is a Drummers Drummer. I've seen seven of these 10 plus minute sessions of his live and I can still only wonder in amazement, at his ability to keep it all together and maintain what he's always been known for. Simple perfection.

You'll have to go HERE to be amazed. They've disabled embedding for some reason.

Number 4 on my little list, is a Drummer that went far too un-recognized for his contributions to our art. The creator of incorporating rolls and stop and chop drumming, did not come about these talents easily. Bill Ward came about them out of necessity. The creative juices inspiring the writing for Black Sabbath, took no mercy on the percussion sections of any song. Young Mr. Ward would just have to figure it out on his own. And figure it out he did! Making his Drums an integral and very alive part of the band that Black Sabbath would soon become. Bill was one of the pioneers of following the bass guitar riffs to get the percussion sounds he was looking for. A method copied by just about every Drummer that played any kind of grunge'esque type music, from the 90's through to today.

And now we take things to an entirely new level kiddies. These three Drummers are so incredible at what they do and how they play, they deserve every detail of attention for their skill, commitment and development of each of their styles that I can give them.

Numero tres is a modern Cuban and the new Ricky Ricardo. What's that? Oh! Okay for the younger crowd out there, this is Ricky Ricardo.

Taking the art of percussion to new hieghts, new sounds and without a shadow of a doubt at all, certainly to new speeds! Slayer's Dave Lombardo sets the bar pretty high for anyone wanting to follow in his footsteps. He has always had the fastest feet and hands of just about any Drummer out there playing today, but on the album Christ Illusion, even Dave surprised himself. Where we have Ignatious, The Drummer World has Dave. " the godfather of double bass." His creativity and innovation in style of play is unique only to him. Oh there of course have been immitators, but faint images of Dave at best. All using gimmicks of some kind to detract from there short comings as real Drummers in the brotherhood. Until I see otherwise, Dave will always be his own one of a kind Drummer to me!

Now for the least popular decision on the list, by far I'm sure!

Here's where I can address STB's concerns about me "bashing" Tommy Lee of Motley Crew. You see Tommy Lee and number two on my list, are absolute polar opposites. Tommy is a legend built far more on myth and character, than on his actual drumming abilities. NOT to say that he is not good! Tommy Lee is one of the best Drummers to come out of the 80's for certain, just not good enough to be on any top 10 list of Drummers. In fact in my humble opinion, he would have to be placed below Peter Criss of Kiss, the Drummer he takes the vast majority of his inspiration from when he plays. Tommy Lee built his legend, on the wings of the "rock and roll" lifestyle. Motley Crew was hugely successful and rightfully deserve any and all praise that they receive, just not because of the way that Tommy Lee played the Drums. He was good, the band as a whole was just better. But Tommy Lee's popularity and mythical or real life persona, make him one of the single most popular known Drummers in the World.

Number two on my list is also a bit legendary, but not for too many good reasons. If Drumming can be considered the soul to any good music, playing for the artistic style of James Hetfield and Metallica must be like throwing a dozen razor sharp knives into the air, just to sit there and hope that they all happen to miss you when they come down. Lars Ulrich has managed to dodge those knives repeatedly, all while maintaining a beat that is totally unique in style and sound.

Unlike Tommy Lee, Lars is pretty well known for being an asshole. There are so many reasons for this that no one could list them all I don't think. Most notably the "sell out" that was Bob Rock and the album Metallica, was largely thought to be a decision made by Lars alone. That sent the die-hard thrashers away in droves and helped make Lars the bad guy that ruined Metallica. I don't know the man, so I neither like or hate anything to do with him personally. I do hate the personna that he displays at almost any time the lights are on him however so, I'll go with what he shows the World to be himself, is pretty much the asshole that he has become so well known for around that World.

But he does have my full respect and admiration for his skill at the seat of a Drum kit! I will give him that. Considering how much input Lars has with song directions and sounds while writing, it's astonishing that he continues to challenge the Drums and what he can do on them in any given song! His image and his skill, are a large part of why Death Magnetic is not as popular as it should be. Old fans are not ready to return to a Metallica, that has such a predominant Lars Ulrich sound and feel.

I could offer up the Enter Sandman intro as a sample of this man's total domination and understanding of a set of Drums and how they support the song, but I think All Nightmare Long may just be the ultimate example of how much of a total package Lars Ulrich really is. Stop and chop, thrash it out and softly support the rythm like he always does. Like him or hate him, no real Drummer will tell you that Lars can't play.

And so we come down to #1.

Based on all the criteria that each of the previous Drummers have been judged by, there is only one Drummer that the words absolute perfection can be associated with. They that judge such Drummers also use words such as "best technical, most stamina, simply genius" and also, "the one and only" to describe Drummer Neil Peart. Simply put, "Neil Peart is the most popular Drummer today. When it comes to voting in Modern Drummer or Drummerworld - Neil Peart is always the No. 1."

He is that for a reason. Neil Peart is the new standard that any Drummer shall ever be judged by. Consider that he wrote this song and then had to figure out what he was going to do to fit the Drums into it. His creative genius has no boundries because of his ability to play.

When I say that Neil Peart is the new standard, I mean no disrespect to Gene and Buddy. When Cathy Rich, Buddy's daughter wanted someone to play with Buddy's former band members at a charity gala, the entire Drum World told her one name. See how you think he did....

In the typical Neil Peart quest for perfection Neil wrote this afterwards.

"And yet...I still had a nagging feeling that when I played in that style, I was just imitating it, not really feeling it properly. As the old Duke Ellington standard goes, 'It don’t mean a thing, if it ain’t got that swing', and I didn’t think I did."

I guess when you deserve and have no real critics, you have to be pretty damn hard on yourself about everything!

So there you have it! The official Bam-Bam Top 10 best pure Drummers ever list. I hope you enjoyed it, as much as I enjoyed putting it all together.

My sincerest thanks for dropping by....

The 10 best pure Drummers....Part I ....

A very good friend and excellent musician in his own right, said he was challenged to come up with a list of the top 10 Drummers, Guitarists, Bassists, Keyboardists etc... by a fellow musician that he jams with. Apparently this was a topic of discussion between them for over four weeks. I was appalled at nine of the ten Drummers they had on the list!

I will never confess to knowing enough about any of the other instruments and the styles utilized to maximize performances from them, to ever consider being a judge of good or bad. I merely know what "I" like when it comes to them.

But then there's the Drums.

I have a little over 27 years of beating and banging experience, all to my own Drummer of course but experience none the less. I've played in several bands and even managed to make it onto a record or two. The best Drummer in the World, I'll never be. But I do know enough to recognize absolute pure talent in the position when I hear it.

So here is Bam-Bam's top 10 Drummers ever!

No list of Drummers is worth a lick, without Gene and Buddy! They quite frankly, were the beginning of anything you now know as the Drums. Yes others took what they did and created a different sound of their own. But it still remains true and always will, that Gene Krupa & Buddy Rich are the Fathers of modern Drumming as we will always know it. I will place them on any countdown list of best Drummers ever made, even if it's just the best two! But this is my top 10 list, so I say the boy's share spot #10.

At spot #9, a Drummer that gets more respect from his peers than anyone else in the World. Simply put, Danny Carey is one of the most sought after studio musicians out there. His creativity knows no boundaries and his ability to play the soft stroke or bash the thrash, can both be found in one of a Tool followers favorite songs. Listen to Danny Carey control everything needed, to enhance this song. A true talent!

Terry Bozzio deserves to be in the #8 spot for so many reasons, but there's only one that's really needed. Frank Zappa and The Black Page. Simply one of the best on beat performances of one of the most difficult to perform songs there is for a Drummer. Take note of how his audition for Frank Zappa actually went.

"After his audition for Zappa, all the drummers behind him in the line left."

#7 on my list gets some credit for his Drumming abilities, but typically for all the wrong reasons. The most frequent comment about Vinnie Paul has to be his flying feet on the twin 24" Bass drums. He is often credited for introducing that twin cylinder thump called "The Harley" into the world of Metal and Drums. I'm not too sure if that's correct or not, so I'll leave it be. But Vinnies real talent lies in what you can barely hear when he plays. Vinnie is a master at back-beats, 6/4, 8/4 and an astonishing 12/4 timing for double beats to accentuate his performance in the song. Creativity is certainly one of Vinnies most amazing attributes. If you know of him from Pantera and didn't know he was also in Hellyeah, you really need to check out his work with them.

Encyclopedia Britannica said it best when bringing up #6 on my list John Bonham, they said he was, "the perfect model for all hard rock drummers that have followed him." Never has a Drummer done so much, with so very little. Zeppelin was always about the Guitars and Voice, but true beatniks such as myself could always hear the magic that John was rocking out to any tune. He was an off-tempo genius.

Like they say, too much of a good thing... or too many cooks!

We'll be back tomorrow with my Top 5 Drummers ever.

I will leave you with one that didn't make my top 10 list though. He surely deserves an honourable mention in my books. DON'T TRY THIS AT HOME KIDS!

A-N-I-M-A-L !!!

My sincerest thanks for dropping by....


In Poker and Life, creativity abounds....

In Poker as in Life, using creativity to your advantage can make the single largest difference in your success or failure as you go. In Poker the ability to generate the action required and change your status quo, can take a great deal of imagination and preparation during the set up of a hand or two. With full commitment to utilizing a little creativity, your table image can be set for the hand, the session or in some players minds, even for the life of your Poker game.

When you've done everything just right, shifting your actions in and out of that image, should net you far more pots along the way.


The danger of falling into the trap that is entitlement however, can be found within oneself after a particularly good winning session using maximum creativity to your benefit. It's at these moments that the Poker player needs to recognize the difference between reckless play full of enraged entitlement, and actual creativity being used to tell your opponent the story you want them to believe.

I had a particularly good session turn really fugly on me this weekend.

Strike that! It's total Bullshit!

I turned a really good session pretty bad this weekend, by believing that the story I had been telling the folks at the table, had been done well enough that they should all bow down to my superior abilities. And of course as always comes with the disgusting surge of entitlement, my holdings mean nothing to the actual play! It's me dammit! After everything you've seen along the way, give me your chips and lay down good hands because..... I'm in the pot!

I share this story with you now, for two reasons.

Firstly, I was pulled out of this sewer of emotion spiralling deeper and deeper into my on-line bankroll, by my beautiful Not-So-Mini-Peb's of all things. You see, she's taking part in her very first art showing this up-coming weekend. She's entered a couple of contests and if I haven't told you before, she won the first one and took second AND third in the last that she took part in. (can you sense the proud Daddy grin from there? :) ) This is the first time she'll be throwing her work and her soul out there for sale, so she's been a bit of a wreck. My words of consolation were about how wonderful her work is and how people would be crazy not to buy it and such. I just wanted to say all of the right things as any Father would, to make her feel better about herself going into this thing. Her response to my offerings was typical of everything I've ever tried to teach her along the way.

"Dad. I'm trying to tell a story with my work. People buying my art is not the be all to end all this weekend. It's far more important that they tell me which direction to go next. Because if I really want to be successful down the road, I can't ever stop telling my story. You know yourself Dad, if I expect to make great gobs of money this weekend, I'm only setting myself up for failure! I have no right to that kind of entitlement right now and unless I keep trying to tell a good and dedicated story, maybe I never will!"

When you're just plain stubborn and stupid enough to fall into the trap that you've tried to teach your child to avoid, I think it's only fitting that the child is the one to teach you the errors of your ways. I'm just glad I'm not too far gone to have really listened to her words! Hopefully I'll be able to keep that up for the rest of my lifetime. Not-So-Mini-Peb's is actually pretty clever! I think she may be able to teach me an awful lot of things I've forgotten, if I just let her tell a good story!

****EDIT as per The Doc****

Here are a few sample shots from our starving artist!

And of course, the starving artist herself.

I love you kid!

The second item of creativity I wanted to share today, is just a simple video offering. This one got to me however, for the creativity of not only the artists themselves who are truly, truly amazing, but the creative genius behind putting the whole thing together. If you've got five minutes or so, I think it's well worth your time.

My sincerest thanks for dropping by....