Global Skywatch

Ted’s essays

Bears in the air

BEARS Bitterroot Emergency Amateur Radio Services —————————– When normal communications systems – phone lines, cell phones, internet, 911-call-centers, broadcast TV & radio – are unavailable or overtaxed, amateur radio can provide flexible communications resources. MISSION Provide our neighborhoods and communities with a pool of trained radio operators, technicians and resources to deliver essential communications during emergencies. ———————————————————- BEARS is an organization dedicated to preparing, practicing for, and being able to provide radio communications via amateur radio whenever requested , whether for emergencies or planned events throughout and beyond the Bitterroot whenever radio is superior, or other means of communication are compromised We are eager, able and willing to work with related organizations and other emergency service providers, but retain […]

putting the FUN into making music

The two girls came to their first Bitterroot Blues Band jam finding me unprepared for them. Here they are playing an unfamiliar tune, sight reading AND transposing from treble cleff into B-flat and E-flat respectively. It was about this time that I realized we needed a bass. So I began faking it with my trombone. I intend to gear up better for that option later. Meanwhile, we all had fun. I assembled a fresh batch of charts for next Saturday’s meeting. We will continue to grow together. Summertime 1st time from Ted Dunlap on Vimeo.

Bitterroot Blues Band primary charts

Every Saturday evening from late January into June we are meeting in the Darby High School music room for music making. I arrive, open up and warm up around 4:30pm. Downbeat (we start) at 5:00pm and quit officially at 6, but rarely quit on time. Do not count on me to bring your music printouts. There are just too many variables. I cannot anticipate how many of which flavor might be needed. Bring your instrument, your music and your happy face. This page is actually called a “POST” at this website. Posts move on down as new ones come along. The headings on the left column are this sites “PAGES”. They stay there as primary or subordinate reference material. At […]

Bitterroot Blues Band charts

The Bitterroot Blues Band is a Spring 2018 Darby Adult Education class. This one is open to 16-18-year-old musicians at no cost, as long as they fit in with the rest of the musicians. I encourage young, old and in-between to join us, or at least come by to see if you might want to. We meet in the Darby High School music room on Saturday evenings. I open the doors at 4:30. Downbeat is at 5:00. Class ends officially at 6:00. We usually stay a bit late. We are scheduled every Saturday to June 30th. Class fees are $48 regular, $24 for 60-and-above, free for students under 18. Download the tunes I have digitized below. down_by_the_riverside_G_bass clef down_by_the_riverside_G_ guitar […]

community music

I have been thinking a lot about our first meeting, and how that compared to what I had hoped for. That led me to this philosophical ruminating. You may or may not be curious about what motivated me to try creating this band. If you wonder, here is what I think I am trying to do. I have long thought the ideal musical developmental ground would be a community band where beginners sat among intermediates and experts. It doesn’t take great thinking for the newbies to figure playing ON TIME is your first priority, THE RIGHT NOTES is an important second, then tone quality, volume, articulation and other factors follow. Sitting among supportive musicians more advanced than you provides […]

Bitterroot Blues Band

Saturday evenings from now to June will mean playing in the band for me … and a dozen +/- fellow musicians. Everyone I talk with about this is ENTHUSIASTIC. The support from the Darby Schools and Adult Ed staff is phenominal. I was hopefully optimistic when I launched the idea. Now I am EXCITED. My dream gig, what I really want to do musically is play 3rd trombone in a blues, jazz, swing or big band. All that has been available to me in Montana is playing upright bass in a weekly bluegrass jam. This idea to use the marketing, support and facilities of the Darby Schools Adult Ed program to share with potential fellow blues musicians has taken on […]

Bitterroot Blues Band

Blues begat country. Rock came from blues. Swing, Dixieland and jazz also evolved from the blues. Blues is a familiar form of music to most of us, even if we don’t know it. The best part of music is making it; playing your own instrument. That is what we will be doing Saturday evenings this semester thanks to the Darby Adult Education program. Our foundation will be the blues, but we will drift into one or more of its offspring depending on desires of the participating musicians. Community? > ?Adult Ed? > Course Calendar We are excited to announce our Course Calendar! Please read below for course descriptions. You can register online TODAY. Course Registration Deadline is Friday, January 26th. […]

Darby Dog Derby

The Bitterroot Mushers are running their 11th annual sled dog races January 13th & 14th, 2018 at Lost Trail Pass at Gibbons Pass Road. That is mile marker ZERO. It is as close to you as whatever your nearest Highway 93 mile marker indicates. That is to say, sled dog racing has practically come to you so you don’t have to go to it. This is the fourth time I will be spearheading radio communications throughout the course for this event. We all learn from experience, and we have had several teaching moments for the comms team in gear, setup, deployment and use. We have also become a highly prized part of their race organization. Other partners include the Bitterroot […]