About five months ago I met Sebastian Prooth, an American living in the U.K. Although we’ve never met face to face, as we got to know each other online, I gained more respect for his knowledge, ideas, talent and relentless ambition. When I listened to a couple of his podcasts and read a few of his blog entries I knew he was on the cutting edge of the new media and communications frontier!

In the course of Sebastian building a blog for me I discovered he was also a video producer and director. When he heard a demo of a song I was promoting, Alan O’Day’s brilliant updated version of his number one hit by the Righteous Brothers, “Rock and Roll Heaven”( O’Day/ Stevenson )

Sebastian urged me to let him produce a music video of it. Although doing a video of a “demo” is unheard of, after seeing one of his student films on the environment, Alan O’Day and I gave him our blessing!

Since the video was released on the internet about a month ago it’s been getting about 2000 views a week. The video, however, is not without controversy. In addition to images of Rock and Roll Icons who have passed away, he includes footage of American Idol winner Kelly Clarkson who have left some of her fans wondering if she is still with us!

SP- (laughs) I’m happy to say that , the reports of miss Clarkson’s demise has been greatly exaggerated!

AW- I assumed she was in your video because she represented the birth of a new Rock and Roll spirit!

SP- No…she was in there because at that point in the song the lyric is: there’s a spotlight waiting no matter who you are, and I knew when I was designing and pitching the video that I was going to use symbols of American Idol at that point.

AW- Are you surprised at the response the video is getting!

SP- I’m very pleased it affects so many people on such an emotional level. We all remember at least one of the people featured in Alan O’Day’s song. This video serves to remind us of not only the artists remembered in pictures, but also the ones that we remember personally. I hope it will be enjoyed and appreciated for years to come.

AW- I know you’re still going to school…How do you manage to keep focused on so many things at the same time?

SP- I only try to work on things that I am passionate about. Generally when I blog I write something that I know is going to impact my readers. Sometimes I write articles to inform them about a new hot website or review. For example I wrote an article which pitted Open Source Word Processing Application, Open Office Writer, against the heavily used Microsoft Word.

AW- I don’t know what the hell you’re talking about…but I do know that you’re working on something new as we speak!

SP- Yes I have been working with the evaluation version of Windows Vista (for those who don’t know, the next version of Microsoft Windows.) I will be writing about some of its features in a blog entry soon.

AW- As a new blogger myself you’ve given me the courage to bring to light things that have caught my attention like the C.I.A. TV recruitment ad I saw on “Dancing With The Stars”!

SP- And see…no one’s tried to shoot you…yet (laughs)

AW- Is there a profile of what a blogger does or should do?

SP- I think the general consensus is a blogger is what a blogger does. I can qualify that a little by saying that whatever somebody is interested in, if they blog about it in an interesting and informative way they will build an audience for their site! Personally, I write about tech and life, and interview those who help make it happen. I was having a conversation with a really good friend of mine VIA Skype.. Joe Klein of PodcastVoiceGuys and I were having a normal skype-phone call when he received another call. When he came back he told me that it was a telemarketer, speaking spanish! I was shocked, having not heard about telemarking on Skype at that point, realized that it was something of headline blogger’s news. We wrote something for my blog up together and it became big news overnight. Digg among other sites were carrying the story on their front page!

AW- To continue in English please press one.

SP- (laughs)

AW- Okay enough frivolity… Is there a book on being a blogger and certain things that are expected of bloggers?

SP–It’s funny that you should mention that Artie because there is a blog I read a short while ago. A guy called Seth Godin, he is in the top 100 on Technorai and a very popular and well-read blogger and technology writer. He talked about the top one hundred ways he could think of to increase traffic and or readership of your blog.

AW-I know that you are doing quite a bit of interviewing for your site.

SP- Yes. Bloggers, Podcasters, Editors, whoever has something to say really. My first blog interview was with a gentleman by the name of Dennis Madalone. He is a singer and writer and what compelled me to contact him was that he was the stunt co-coordinator on Star Trek. He was also the patriot behind the great song America We Stand as One.

AW- I remember when you turned me onto that video, it was one of the most inspiring things I had ever seen. Then you took that and added stuff to it – a visual remix that I remember running on my website.

I know you were interviewed recently by Liz Strauss, can you tell me a little about that?

SP–I’d noticed that Liz Strauss was doing some interviews with people who had been named SOB (Successful Outstanding Bloggers) – I did an interview with her and she was kind enough to give me a two-parter. She really made me feel like an influential part of the blogosphere by naming me a SOB but then going as far as to actually interview me that was just tremendous.

AW- You’ve also been in touch with Robert Scoble, one of the internets foremost bloggers / vloggers in the world.

SP – Yeah, Robert and I have been talking about doing some things together.

AW- Wow, well that sounds great. Before you go, I want to wish you a Happy Birthday thank you Sebastian, for spending your last few hours as a teenager with Artie Wayne on the web!

SP-Thank you, Mr. Web , It’s been a pleasure.

To visit Sebastian’s Blog

To watch Rock and Roll Heaven

For Artie Wayne

For the PodcastVoiceGuys

For Alan O’Day’s Website

For Seth Godins’s Blog

For Robert Scoble’s Blog 

For the Interview with Liz Strauss and Sucessful Bloggers:

When I first saw the “America We Stand As One” video, of a song written and performed by Dennis Madalone, I was deeply touched. It made me feel proud to be an American again! When my friend, podcaster and blogger, Sebastian Prooth, did a new Visual Re-mix of the most downloaded music video on the internet, he added yet another dimension.

It doesn’t matter which side you’re on…the left…the right… or the middle, it’s gonna take everyone of us of to keep our flag waving proudly! Just click onto  the video is below the bio about Sebastian at the bottom of the page.

whoppy and streaker

I wonder how many people on Earth woke up this morning and realized that the World had changed overnight? It has become a little smaller, and a lot more dangerous than it was before! I celebrated my 39th birthday, this year, for the 25th time, and wonder if I’ll be around next year to tell that stupid joke again? I remember the fall of the Nazis and the victory over Japan, as a little boy, the rise of the Cold War as a young man, and the threat of a nuclear holocaust for most of my adult life. I woke up in the middle of the night and started writing, hoping that hundreds of thousands of bloggers would write what’s in their hearts about the world situation. “If we had Millions Of Hearts with a single thought, Millions Of Hearts with a single dream, Millions Of Hearts with a single prayer, there’s no tellin’what we can do!”

I wrote that song 40 years ago with my late songwriting partner, Ben Raleigh, [“Wonderful, Wonderful”,”Tell Laura I Love Her”] and still believe that today. A few days ago [july 14, 2006] , I wrote out a new lyric on my blog, “You Can’t Push A Bullet Back Into A Gun”. From the overwhelming response, I knew I wasn’t alone in my thinking.

I wanted to turn on the TV and find out how close the California wildfires are, which nearly caused me and my cats, Whoppy and Streaker, to evacuate a few nights ago. After I found out what I needed to know, I quickly turned the TV off. I’m tired of seeing a barrage of disturbing images and breaking news stories, that I can’t do anything about! I went to my friend, Sebastian Prooth’s, blog and read his piece on Mr.Rogers, and watched a six minute video on his childhood TV hero. I wasn’t part of the Mister Rogers generation when I grew up, so I didn’t know much about the man or what he stood for. I didn’t expect to be as touched as I was, when I saw him gently and eloquently ask for government funding of children’s television. Like the stone faced congressman he was addressing, I melted when I heard Mr. Rogers passionate plea.

Then I scrolled down to watch the video, Sebastian, turned me onto a few days ago, by singer and songwriter, Dennis Madalone, “America, We Stand as One”. I’ve never been political, but I’ve always been patriotic! I’m not embarrassed to say that once again, I was brought to tears! Initially I was against Bush sending troops to Iraq, but now I’m glad we have a strong presence there! Thank you, Sebastian Prooth,, Dennis Madelone, and people like you, for giving the rest of us hope!

* “Millions Of Hearts” by Ben Raleigh and Artie Wayne

Copyright 1963/ 2006- Ben Raleigh music and Wayne Art music

Supermantra Obsolete?

July 14, 2006

I’ve been avoiding going to the latest Superman movie after seeing a trailer in which, Frank Langella, as Perry White, editor of the Daily Planet, says something about;

“Truth, Justice and all that other stuff.” Wait a second, I grew up believing in the spirit of, Superman. I still believe in and his fight for, “Truth , Justice, and the American way.”

I have never been political, however I’ve always been patriotic. I find the subversion of, Superman’s code, offensive and a ploy just to sell movie tickets, to Bush “wackers” and America haters, around the world! Initially I was against President Bush, sending our troops into Iraq. At this point, I’m glad that we have a strong presence in the Middle-East! If you haven’t noticed, we’re on the brink of World War III, with several countries ready to take us out as soon as they have nuclear capability!

As I’m writing this, I’ve decided not to see a film that might enrage me. I’d rather go back to watch a video that inspired me! Yesterday, I checked out my friend, Sebastian Prooth’s, blog and saw “America, We Stand As One“, by Dennis Madalone. The singer and songwriter, created a heartfelt masterpiece. I hope you feel as strongly about it as i do.