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It's been a long time since I put my fingers to the board for a good old-fashioned rant!  I've been (far) too busy trekkin' 'round th' globe...

...left Washington in January last year for Iraq & spent 6 long months in the smokin' hot deserts of that terrible tragedy; then, it was back to Washington for (about) 4 weeks, & off to work in Pennsylvania (the state I grew up in), at Fort Indiantown Gap... next trek was in April of this year, from Pennsylvania back to Washington to help my family begin the (somewhat painful) move to the beautiful islands of Hawaii... when I first took the job, it was understood that I was supposed to deploy again, but fate (or was it Falwell) stepped in & moved me to a (non-deployable) position at Fort Shafter. 

    3 1/2 months after arriving, I received news that my mother had passed away, & had to hie on back to Columbus, Ohio, to pay my respects; while it was an unhappy occasion, we were all comforted by the fact that she had gone (relatively) quickly, and hadn't had to "linger" too long.

    Through all these travels, I've missed being able to listen to the music(s) I love, so being back in a place where I can (at least temporarily) "settle" a bit is pure joy for me... I want to offer up some really STRONG kudos to all the promoters & individual artists who have sent material to us for review... I mean, I put out the call in mid-August, & sit here already with the review bins (literally) overflowing with great CD's... & it's all due to folks who have high energy for the language that music speaks in... matters not a whit what they play... blues, jazz, straight-up R&R, folk - even more modern chamber music makes it's way to us!

    As many of you know, I am viewing this issue (#77) as a sort of "rebirth", or "reincarnation" issue... the 'zine has been (essentially) "down" for nearly 2 years... I won't go into all the reasons why, simply suffice it to say that it was a lot of things... the moves around the world were the least of reasons for my hiatus; other, more personal, reasons were all a part of my decisions to let th' 'zine "rest" for a while.  BUT - I'm exceedingly happy to be back "in the saddle", so to speak.  I've always enjoyed telling folks what I think about high-energy & creative music (as well as making my own efforts at interpreting what the muse says to me)... and getting such a quick response to my requests for review material made the energy even MORE exciting!

   I've no doubt that the next few years will offer even more exciting times for me (along with challenges, trials & tribulations).  I want to thank you all for joining me in helping to "revive" "Improvijazzation Nation"!

Till next time...,



Rotcod Zzaj


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