Archive for July, 2008

2008 Nerdtacular Report!

Oh mah Gawd, Nerdtacular was friggin’ COOL!

So I arrive Friday night in Salt Lake City, Utah, after my first flight ever, by the way. I get a shuttle ride to the hotel, and meet Jeff (aka Bronco from the myextralife.com forums) and we hit up Ruby Tuesday for lunch. Friggin’ tasty. Jeff, by the way, is a friggin’ HOSS. This dude rode his motorcycle from Toronto all the way out to Salt Lake City. Seriously.

That’s Jeff. This was taken from Saturday morning in the actual Theatre

So anyway, after that, Josh and Reggie show up. These guys, I know pretty well from our World of Warcraft guild. They’re good dudes, for the most part. They roadtripped it from Colorado in Josh’s Prius (wooo fellow Prius owner!) and were a ball to hang out with.

Josh is the one kinda on the side, and Reggie front and center.

We all hung out and waited for the last member of the Out of town brigade, Samantha Jane. SJ has been around the Extralife community forever, and everyone loves her, cause she’s an awesome girl. Well lo and behold, the whole crew was keepin’ a secret from me. Arriving with SJ in his rental car was none other than cohost of the Instance podcast and my fellow Texan, Austin’s own Randy Jordan, aka Randy Deluxe!

I totally didn’t know he was coming, apparently everyone else did though.

Anyways, so friday night we all go out to the Red Rock Brewery for some good food and for some people, some good beer. After that, Scott himself (along with his awesome wife, Kim) met us at the hotel to actually meet Randy face-to-face for the first time, as well as the rest of us. But Randy and Scott have cohosted the Instance for a long time together, and it was pretty cool to see them meet for the first time. We all had a blast hangin’ out in Randy’s room, catching up, hearing what was gonna go down at the Nerdtacular itself, and just getting to know each other.

So Saturday morning rolls around, and the Nerdtacular proper happens. I could tell you what all happened there, but this video covers it all so much better. Watch and enjoy the festivities

Suffice to say, we had a phenomenal time and The Dark Knight is seriously one of the best films in modern movie history. Even if you’re NOT a comic book fan, you WILL enjoy this movie, I promise. It’s that good.

After the movie ended, we headed out to a nearby park, where Scott had aranged for catering to feed us all. Got to meet a bunch more cool people from the Extralife forums, eat some good chicken, pet a few puppies, and cake. Yes there was CAKE. The lady who made the cakes, Rachel I think was her name, is really good. I’ll have some photos linked later on, but her cakes were awesome looking. I felt bad eating them. But not that bad. Mmmm.

After that, the Nerdtacular is technically over for most. But not for the out of town folks! Oh no, not at all. For us, Scott did something extra which was INCREDIBLY cool.

He invited us into his home. Kim fed us Jambalaya. And Pie. And Scott and Randy did a live episode of the Instance podcast from his backyard, with the rest of us as his studio audience! Too freaking awesome. You can download that particular episode here….or you can watch this awesome video of the whole thing!

Broadcasting Live with Ustream.TV

What happens typically is that Scott records the podcast from his office, and Randy joins him over Skype from Austin. Scott also usually broadcasts the recording over Ustream.tv, which you can go to and watch it live, as well as chat with other people watching it live. Scott just happened to record the broadcast as well.

Now typically, after the show’s over, Scott cuts the feed, goes and edits the show. But this time, he decided to continue broadcasting as we go in to eat the delicious pie. So the laptop gets set on the counter in his kitchen…and myself and Samantha Jane decide we’re gonna talk to the people in the chat room, with other people joining us when they feel like it! We did this for about 25 minutes, and it all got captured in the below video.

Near the beginning the video does freeze for a bit, but the audio will keep going. Don’t panic, that’s just ustream lagging, nothing you can do. It will right itself in a few minutes. Also, the audio does clip pretty bad sometimes, but it’s mostly pretty good. Enjoy!

Streaming .TV shows by Ustream

You can click here to view all the photos I assembled on Facebook. This post on www.myextralife.com also has links to a BUNCH more photos and stuff from the event. Go there and enjoy the madness.

All in all, it was truly a great experience, and I’m definitely going to do it again next year if I can. I’ll be adding more photos to Facebook as more people make theirs available to me (including Samantha Jane and Randy) so keep an eye out there.

Love ya’ll and see ya soon

Like a Champion – or as much of it as I can tell you right now, anyway

Greetings my friends.

As you’re all probably aware, I recently came home from my second trip to New Mexico to record a worship album. You’re probably familiar with the first one: This is Love.

If you’re not, This is Love is/was/however you like to look at it/ an experimental worship project. It was spun out of my ska band, Monkeywrench. Specifically, our song, Strength for Stephanie.

Strength for Stephanie was a song asking God to be with Stephanie Maddox, a friend of all of ours who was in China, serving the Lord. The Bridge of the song consisted of a horn composition, driven primarily by Sam Shannon on the saxophone. During this part, David read the first part of Psalm 139, specifically verses 1-12. It was a particularly powerful little section.

Two years after that song’s release (as a part of Monkeywrench’s second CD, Album the Two: Now We’re Getting Somewhere), four members of Monkeywrench took a trip during the summer of 2005 into the mountains of New Mexico: David Butler, Truett Butler, Robert Peugh, and myself. Our purpose was to get away from the city, into God’s natural creation, and record an album called “This is Love”. You might recognize the title, it’s the first part of 1 John 4: 10.

“This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins.”

The overall theme of the album is just that. The album takes you from creation, to the fall, to the prophecy of the Messiah, to his death, his resurrection, and our Joy and Hope.

It was a great experience, and the album, of everything I’ve done, is easily my favorite one that I’ve ever been a part of.

If you haven’t heard it, let me know. I’ve got a few copies left, and I believe my brother Josh Henry has the full album on his computer. A few other people left in Waco may still have copies as well. I think Chris and Kelley might. If you have the chance to listen to it, I hope you enjoy it and that God speaks to you through it somehow. That’s really the whole point of it after all.

So, onto this past week. We went back. This time, we took another. David’s wife, Holland. She, as it turns out, is a musician herself.

This particular album returned to the original roots: The Psalms. They were, after all, songs to God themselves. We explored the many themes present in the Psalms, including….well, I don’t think I can tell you that. I’ll let you hear it for yourself once the album is done!

What I can say is this: With this album, we have explored some very different music. After hearing what we laid down, even roughly mixed as it was, I have never, ever heard anything like it. I’m truly amazed at what God put together with us. I really think you will be too.

The album, as you doubtless all know, is titled “Like a Champion”. It’s from Psalm 19, specifically verse 5, though I encourage you to read the whole Psalm as well.

I’ll keep you updated with the status of the project as I know it. But right now, David has the final tasks to perform: the arduous process of mixing and mastering the album to it’s final polished state. It’s not quite over yet. Be in prayer for him, if you think about it.

I’ll see you all on the flipside. We did take a lot of pictures, and I’ll show them to you all here and on Facebook as I get them.

That’s it for me. Night.

Twenty Five.

I’m almost too late on doing this, but I must continue the tradition…

Twenty-five years old.

David would kill me if I forgot to do that.

Yes, I know, you all want to know about Like a Champion, I’ll post an update about it tomorrow.

I have a new Logitech G15 keyboard and a new Spyder paintball gun!

Also I’m going to bed now.