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Who's Watching Them? by Geo Thelen


Platform Bias, Disinformation, Twitter & Other Buzz

Growing Calls in US for Algorithmic Transparency Following the Passage of EU Digital Service Act

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🍀 The Italian Leprechaun 🎶 🎹 Vince Guaraldi — In Person - LIVE at the Trident, Sausalito, California Celebrating 60 Years In Person : 1963 - 2023 

🍀 The Italian Leprechaun 🎶
🎹 Vince Guaraldi — In Person - LIVE at the Trident, Sausalito, California
Celebrating 60 Years In Person : 1963 - 2023

by Geo Thelen 

    Somewhat lost in the crowded list of albums recorded in Marin County, California over the decades, is the 1963 Fantasy Records release of Vince Guaraldi — In Person, a live album recorded at the Trident lounge located at 558 Bridgeway in Sausalito. The venue (formally known as the Yacht Dock) was purchased by Bay Area folk group Kingston Trio in 1960 and hosted live jazz music nearly every night of the week for fifteen years. The Trident is the location of numerous live jazz recordings during the 1960s, including albums by Bill Evans, Jon Hendricks, Denny Zeitlin, The Don Scaletta Piano Trio, and Vince Guaraldi in December of 1962.

   "What Vince has got in his playing is feeling. This is a quality that money can't buy, practice cannot make perfect and technique tends to defeat rather than enhance." 
- Ralph J. Gleason, San Francisco Chronicle Jazz Critic, 1963

   Following a two-week run (ending in November 1962) billing with the Ramsey Lewis Trio at the famed Blackhawk jazz club in San Francisco, Vince Guaraldi and his group began a yearend run of performances across the Golden Gate Bridge at The Trident club in Sausalito. Six months earlier, Guaraldi's breakthrough album Jazz Impressions of Black Orpheus and its' somewhat surprising hit, "Cast Your Fate to the Wind," had been released on San Francisco-based Fantasy Records. By December 1st, "Cast Your Fate…" had entered Billboard magazine charts at #127 and was climbing. Looking to take full advantage of Guaraldi's budding commercial popularity, Fantasy Records set up recording equipment at the waterfront club on December 4th, 1962, to capture Guaraldi in his element.

   Vince Guaraldi considered the Trident in Sausalito home turf, having played there since it was known as the Yacht Dock Jazz Club. After the Kingston Trio purchased the venue, more high-profile patrons and artists began calling the Trident home. Guaraldi would ultimately perform at the club for over a dozen years. Soon after the location was rebranded from the Yacht Dock to Trident in 1961, Guaraldi said, "This is one place a jazz musician won't have to work pianissimo to keep from breaking the customers' glasses. The only place we couldn't get complete acoustical control is on the speakers outside, on the yacht deck. On foggy nights we'll have to compete with the Alcatraz fog horn. I feel bad about it. The seagulls really dig us."

     On Tuesday, December 4th, 1962, the material for what would become Vince Guaraldi - In Person was taped live at the Trident. Guaraldi’s quintet featured himself on the piano, Colin Bailey on drums, Fred Marshall playing bass, Eddie Duran on guitar, and Guaraldi's former Cal Tjader bandmate, Bayardo "Benny" Velarde, on scratcher. The group recorded several songs that night and ultimately settled on nine for the album, with only one Guaraldi original included; Side Two, track 3: "Freeway." The album captures a unique time and place while hinting at things to come (think of the yet-to-have-been-written "Skating" from Charlie Brown Christmas when listening to "Jitterbug Waltz"). On some tracks, such as Side 1, Track 3: "Miserlou," you can hear the Trident patrons talking and milling about the club that evening. Longtime San Francisco Music Journalist Ralph Gleason commented in the album's liner notes: "Vince looks forward to… trying to be a good musician and making the best album he can, every time. That's what you hear in Vince Guaraldi "in person." He's in there, trying every minute."

    The minutes started to move much faster for Guaraldi after that December 1962 evening at the Trident. In Person was released on June 10th, 1963, a month after Guaraldi won his first Grammy Award for "Cast Your Fate to the Wind" -which had held its' own on the Billboard charts all spring long. "Zelao" and "Jitterbug Waltz" were released as singles during the summer, and within 24 months, millions of children would be introduced to jazz music for the first time, thanks to his association with the Charlie Brown and Peanuts Gang franchise.

    Guaraldi's future creative output is stylistically revealed in the pianists' interpretations of the compositions captured on In Person. And while live albums recorded at the Trident, Sausalito have not captured as much acclaim or notoriety as albums recorded at the club's San Francisco counterparts El Matador, hungry i, or Blackhawk, In Person is the only one to capture a slice of West Coast Jazz History before it was Joe Cool.

“Vince Guaraldi — In Person”
1963, Fantasy Records
Recorded Live at The Trident, Sausalito, California
December 4th, 1962
Vince Guaraldi - piano
Fred Marshall - bass
Benny Velarde - scratcher
Eddie Duran - guitar
Colin Bailey - drums
Cover Photo - Chas Weckler (credited Jim Weckler)

“Anatomy of a Hit; 1; The Serendipity Groove.” 1964. NET. Library of Congress, American Archive of Public Broadcasting         
Gleason, Ralph. Vince Guaraldi In Person, Liner Notes, Fantasy Records LP 8352, 1963
Bang, Derrick. Vince Guaraldi at the Piano, McFarland & Company, Inc., Publishers. North Carolina, London. 2012

#StPatricksDay #Italian #Leprechaun
#VinceGuaraldi #InPerson #LiveAlbum #Jazz #Vintage
#VintageFilm #Music #Documentary #MusicDocumentary #Peanuts #CharlieBrown
#Trident #MusicLandmarks #FamousPlaces #Sausalito #California #RalphGleason 
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#fantasyrecords #craftrecordings #BlackOrpheus #vinylrecords #recordcollection 
#GrammyAwardWinner #BestJazzAlbum 
#fantasyrecords #craftrecordings #trident #BillboardMagazine

#CharlieBrownChristmas #peanuts #charliebrown #VinceGuaraldiTrio 
#Sausalito #California #MarinCounty #NovatoHistory #MusicHistory #GraceCathedral #Trident #WestCoast #Jazz

Sly's Last Epic Album 

     Thelen Creative reached out to three Grammy-nominated recording artists who worked on the last Sly & The Family Stone album with Epic Records, Heard Ya Missed Me, Well I'm Back, (1976) to get their thoughts on making a record with the funk legend during one of the most tumultuous periods of his life.

FULL ARTICLE Available here  SLY'S LAST EPIC ALBUM by Geo Thelen

#MusicHistory #GrammyAwards #SlyStone


Upcoming #SlyStone #doc #TBA look 4 it

“Oscar-winning filmmaker Ahmir ‘Questlove’ Thompson directs his sophomore feature documentary follow-up to ‘Summer of Soul,’ examining the life and legacy of Sly and the Family Stone, the groundbreaking band led by the charismatic and enigmatic Sly Stone. This film tells the story behind the rise, reign and fadeout of one of pop music’s most influential artists and, in doing so, tells a very human story about the cost of genius.”

#MusicHistory #recordplant #heardyamissedme #slyandthefamilystone #sausalitorecordfactory #documentary #film #Questlove #hulu #musicdoc #summerofsoul #funkmusic #woodstock #everydaypeople #musicnews

#HeadSpace - Not all humans are #sentient  

Not All Humans are #Sentient

"Human is a biological term. It is not a human, and it knows it's not a human."
- Blake Lemoine, Google #AI Engineer

Does the Google LaMDA AI system (language model w/ 137b parameters and 1.56t words of public dialog of web text) deserve its own consent rights & protections.

CAn yOu fEel mE? Take the #TuringTest

#chatbot #CDS #propietaryProperty #AIEthics
Responsible Technology Development
Human Input = AIBias


#Stranger is the new #Nomaler 

#Stranger is the new #Nomaler
... favorite song ?

A case study in how music SYNC placement can drive sales & streams. #KateBush

#StrangerThings #AVClub #DigitalArt #contentcreator #shortform #hawkins #darkwizard

Season 4 Vol. 2 July 1, 2022

#Follow Thelen Creative on the 'gram @ instatoblast 

3 Trending Blockchain Issues - June 2022 

3 Trending Blockchain Issues - June 2022 
… if you follow the world of content creation on the ‘chain. 

1.) Time warp? Continued Solana blockchain “time disparity” & network consensus outages. 
2.) Unplanned Forks: Beacon (ETH) Chain merge delays due to “block reorganization events.” 
3.) Unstable v Stable: New Luna 2.0 Genesis Chain stabilization efforts under Do Kwon. 

Cool terms: “Epoch” “Ninja Code” “LUNAtic” 

#Crypto #Blockchain #web3 #Metaverse #NFTs 
#Consensus - Festival for the Decentralized World (June 9-12 Austin, TX) 

#EconomicHurricane #ShadowForks #Testnets #Bridges #SideChain #ProofofStake 

#Bitcoin #defi #digitalcurrency 

#lofi #retro #vintage #videogame #animation 
#original #indieartist #audio #visual #avart 
#digitalart #nft #nftart #cryptoart 
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in your #metaverse #blockchain #defi #digtialart #music #WORLD

"Who's Watching Them?" Platform Bias, Disinformation, Twitter & Other Buzz 

Growing Calls in US for Algorithmic Transparency Following the Passage of EU Digital Service Act.

By Geo Thelen (I) 
     New research questioning the algorithm practices of some of the United States' largest tech companies is prompting a call to action for social media algorithmic transparency. 
     Department of Computer Science researchers at North Carolina State University provided data in March from a study looking at potential platform bias in Google's Gmail email service as it relates to political funding. The NC State team used more than 100 Gmail, Yahoo and Outlook accounts to obtain more than 300,000 emails from May through November 2020. What they found was that Google's free product (the nation's most popular email provider) was "substantially more likely" to mark Republican fundraising emails as spam during the height of the 2020 campaign than Democratic solicitations. Republican-leaning emails ended up in a targets spam box half the time, while Democratic-leaning emails ending up in a targets primary inbox nearly 80% of the time, according to their report. A separate study done by The Mark Up .org in 2020, showed groups with the highest percentage of fundraiser emails ending up in a targets primary inbox (as opposed to spam) included the American Enterprise Institute (99%), Democratic Socialists of America (75%), and Democratic presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg (63%). Although some disparities result from user behavior (based on your mark as spam & similar actions), the NC State study noted, “the percentage of emails marked by Gmail as spam from the right-wing candidates grew steadily as the election date approached while the percentage of emails marked as spam from the left-wing candidates remained about the same.” Researchers concluded, "Fairness of spam filtering algorithms is an important problem that needs dedicated attention from email service providers."

   The release of the Gmail data comes at a time when Elon Musk's purchase of Twitter and the European Union's passage of the Digital Services Act are sparking conversations regarding platform bias, manipulative algorithm system practices, and the overall issue of algorithmic transparency.

    The night before the Twitter deal with Musk was announced on Monday, April 25; many public figure accounts began seeing dramatic swings in the number of their followers. "Organic" fluctuations, according to Twitter's official statement. But accusations of "secretly" suppressing certain accounts to make them less popular -known as shadow banning, have been leveled at both Twitter and Facebook. Sudden loses in followers could point to an algorithmic "cleanup" within Twitter after the deal was eminent eliminating bot generated follows and fake accounts (something many Twitter users have been calling for). Wild gains in followers could be a sign of algorithmic restrictions on particular accounts being lifted or widened allowing new eyeballs to see more organically, based on user engagement algorithms and not some closed source third-party basement bro code.

     According to an analysis compiled during the week of the Twitter deal by USA Today, congressional Twitter accounts recording the most significant loss of followers included; Adam Schiff, Nancy Pelosi, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Maxine Waters, Bernie Sanders, and Chuck Schumer. Specific numbers provided by social media analytics tracker SocialBlade showed AOC losing more than 10,000 followers in the first 24 hours after the deal was announced, while Speaker Pelosi lost 13,000+, Elizabeth Warren 14,000+, and Bernie Sanders nearly 19,000 in 48 hours from Sunday, April 25 to Tuesday, April 27. Over the same period, Republican politicians saw the most considerable increase in followers, with Florida rep Matt Gaetz gaining almost 25,000 followers, 50,000+ for Georgia Congresswoman Marjorie Taylor Greene, and over 53,000 new followers for Ted Cruz of Texas. Georgia Congresswoman, Taylor Greene had an increase of 41,000+ followers in the first 24 hours, while her personal account remained suspended by Twitter.

     The issues of content safety and legality as well as inherent platform bias being tackled by the passage of the Digital Services Act in the EU reflects concern for the larger impact an employee's personal bias can have over the programming and operations of a particular content platform. Perhaps a correlation can be observed from the data provided by Open Secrets showing tech company employee political donations as they were during the 2020 election cycle. The (public) donation data for employees of six California-based media companies were compiled, revealing that 80%+ of the donations at five of the six companies went to Democratic causes. 98% of Twitter employee political donations went to the Democratic party, and Facebook / Meta employees gave more than 80% of their declared financial support to Democratic causes. (Netflix had the most, with over 99% of its employee political contributions going to Democratic causes). Did these employees' internal personnel biases play into engineering, programming, and curation choices? Or vetting of information? Or fact-checking? Or cancelling, Dave Chappelle? 

Why does any of this matter?   

     Because when you lose trust, you are left with distrust. When you lose integrity, you no longer have integrity. People are losing trust and belief in the integrity of their government and media institutions. Suppose Gmail, Facebook and Twitter are proven to have been algorithmically manipulated in some manner with a bias towards one party over the other. In that case, your feelings of overall distrust are validated (even if you don't identify with either major party). Followed are questions over the validity of all other digital content, security & financials. Will we ever hear chants in the streets of "more constants, less variables" and "free open-source algorithms?" Probably not. But while the technical aspects and achievability of "algorithmic transparency" may be hard to see, consumers are starting to see through what they are NOT seeing. Until that transparency comes, expect more.  

Geo Thelen (I) of Thelen Creative is a digital content creator. Observer / Participant 

Follow @ instatoblast on the ‘gram 

North Carolina State University, Department of Computer Science “A Peek Into The Political Biases in Email Spam Filtering Algorithms During US Election 2020” / USA Today / The Mark Up .org / Thelen Creative / SocialBlade, Social Media Analytics / The Digital Services Act & Digital Markets Act, EU, 2022

#ToTheMoon - Into the #Crypto #Metaverse (As Seen From Earth) 

#ToTheMoon by George Thelen

“I admit it’s fatally dangerous, but I’d get to fly around like Iron Man.” 
― Mark Watney, ‘The Martian’. 

Dear Mr. Watney, 
    I saw your #crypto commercial the other day. What’s it like in the #metaverse? I bet everyone there is nice. Seems so big and confusing to a simple #paperhands like myself. Does it still exist if the power goes out? Because it looks like a giant unregulated Ponzi scheme where people recklessly (and often unknowingly; i.e., check the permissions you give your crypto wallet) put personal and financial information into the hands of unknown code creators in a #rugpull friendly power dependent environment. I would like to go #ToTheMoon someday, but a digital financial world with no fiduciary responsibly or oversight defiantly favors the brave. Happy flying though, mate. 



In the current #NFT craze > #SmartContract does not = #copyright 

> Google the “HitPiece” story to see how your music (or any part of your digital existence; medical records, photos, posts, legal documents, etc.) maybe used / stolen in the wild wild west of the meta verse. 

#vet #fiduciary #responsibility  

#buyerbeware of #badapples 

#superbowl #supersketch   
#crypto #mattdamon #superbowlcommercial 
#syncmusic #musicforsync #grammys #indieartist #digitalart 

Non ;) NFT #Audio & #Lofi #Animation #Video by @instatoblast on the 'gram

minting @opensea NOW ~ #ToTheMoon

Recent Writing Project Acknowledgements: 

Citizen Journalist Award Winner - Writer / Prod. (TV Doc - PBS SF) 
FINALIST Best Mini Music Film - California Music Video & Film Awards - 2021 
SEMI-FINALIST Best Documentary Music Video - Munich Music Video Awards - 2021 
FINALIST Best Inspirational Video - California Music Video Awards - 2021 
FINALIST Best Doc Music Video - International Music Video Awards, London - 2021 
WINNER BEST MUSIC DOC OF THE MONTH - Tracks Music Awards, Los Angeles - 2021 
WINNER BEST SHORT MUSIC DOC - International Music Video Underground Paris - 2021 
FINALIST Best Micro Film / Best Editing - Oregon Documentary Film Festival, Portland - 2020 
HONORABLE MENTION Best Short Doc - Marin (CA) 2014 Int’l Short Film & Video Fest - 2014 
2x Cal. Council for Promotion of History Innovation Winner 
2x Broadcast EMMY-Award Winning Program Host

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