Category Archives: Branobag

A playlist for a group of colleagues eating fish le mercredi soir

This was a playlist which I proposed via email to colleagues of the LoNNe Network at the end of our management committee meeting in Toulouse, France. Among other parts of the story I remember: having a very bad cold on the last day, thus cancelling the “BMP interview” with one of the project members; street musicians which I recorded on video, proposing a place with live music for dinner in the first evening.

On this first-evening dinner…the place was a kind of tex-mex restaurant serving huge portions, and extremely noisy. The recommendation for the restaurant came from the receptionist of a hotel next to where I was staying. I recall walking with the workshop participants at least twenty minutes out of the city centre, and that when we reached the place some folks decided not to have dinner there. (TO BE EXPANDED..if you would like more details now, please write to

The second evening there was another social dinner, which was in a fine place and was a fish restaurant. I recall either not being able to reach the place since during day 2 of the workshop I had a rapidly worsening cold, or having to leave before the end…the day after I sent to the colleagues who were there an email with some musical recommendations, inspired by the dinner conversations (so I must have been there for some time):

  1. Alan Sorrenti, Figli delle stelle (Star children), Italy 1978
  2. Daniele Silvestri, Salirò (I will rise), Italy 2002
  3. The Who, The Seeker: a tune about research. UK, 1971
  4. The Guess Who, American Woman: Live in Winnipeg full version (14’…if you are familiar with the Lenny Kravitz cover, you will recognize this from minute 6. Please see also the real thing in Canada 1970.
  5. Last but not least, another song about “uprising”…Ana Carolina, TÔ SAINDO. In addition to an amount of energy which exceeds the sum of all the songs above, this has a peculiar mix (or today we would say “mashup”) with the chorus from Help by the Beatles (Help – I need somebody becomes Help – Eu preciso sambar… I need to do samba). Brasil 1999

Lithobag #1: Rock and a Hard Place

In the Participatory Lithology project we are opening the sixth season of our branobag blog series. Given the context of the project, the articles will be issued as “lithobags”. If you don’t know what a branobag is, you can easily find out from this page.

There will be two important differences with respect to previous branobag series. The first one is that on this round we will make an effort to publish also the English version of these articles (most of the site is maintained in Italian and English, but due to their daily frequency and length of some articles, in the past we preferred not to translate the original Italian versions). The second one is that for the lithobag series the playlist has been created in one week from the launch of the project, as a brainstorming exercise by various folks with the base quartet of the Metalliferous Hills Jug Band. In the past the each track was selected “on the spot” by pibinko, day by day.

On this round we had the response of various musicians and music experts from Sassari (Sardinia), going North. They responded to the call of the Participatory Lithology project to play as “entertainers”, suggesting tunes which are related to rocks, stones, minerals, etc. These tunes will help to give the other characters in the project (we have collectors, classifiers, and sponsors, and please see the project presentation to review what these roles should do). As the project unfolds, we will be introducing to you our DJs, and we will relate them to one or more elements of the project (one of the samples in the process of being classified, some other character, etc.).

Take for example the header image, where you can see sample Z012. This comes from Guido and Valeria’s collection in Tatti. At the time of writing we don’t know what it is, but it reminds me of a bird’s eye view of the town portrayed in Dark City.

How long will the lithobag series last? This will all depend by suggestions we receive. At present we can run the show for about a month.

Without further ado: let us hear the track which inspired the motto for Participatory Lithology (“between a rock and a hard phase“).

…and we start with “them”, as Gabriele from Sassari calls the Rolling Stones. HE and his family are so incredibly into the Stones that they don’t even need to name them…and to refer to Keith Richards they just call him “him”. Below you will also find the Italian translation of the lyrics, made on-the-fly by Mauro Tirannosauro. In addition to being a participatory lithology expert, Mauro also has an excellent command of English, since he spent several years in the UK when he was a kid. Enjoy our lithomusic, and talk to you tomorrow.

The fields of Eden | I campi dell’Eden
Are full of trash | sono pieni di mondezza
And if we beg and we borrow and steal | e anche se preghiamo, prendiamo in prestito o rubiamo
We’ll never get it back | non ce li ridaranno mai
People are hungry | la gente ha fame
They crowd around | si raggruppano qua e là
And the city gets bigger as the country comes begging to town | e la città cresce mano a mano che la campagna viene a elemosinare in città
We’re stuck between a rock | siamo fra l’incudine
And a hard place | e il martello
Between a rock and a hard place
This talk of freedom | Queste chiacchiere di libertà
And human rights | e diritti umani
Means bullying and private wars and chucking all the dust into our eyes | voglio dire maltrattare i più deboli, guerre private e tirarci un sacco di terra in faccia
And peasant people | e i contadini
Poorer than dirt | più poveri della terra
Who are caught in the crossfire with nothing to lose but their shirts | stanno in mezzo al fuoco incrociato, con niente da perdere se non le loro camice
Stuck between a rock | presi tra l’incudine
And a hard place | e il martello
Between a rock and a hard place
You’d better stop put on a kind face | meglio che tu ti fermi, fai un’espressione gentile
Between a rock and a hard place
We’re in the same boat | siamo sulla stessa barca
On the same sea | sullo stesso mare
And we’re sailing south | e viaggiamo verso sud
On the same breeze | con la stessa brezza
Guiding dream churches | guidando chiese da sogno
With silver spires | con spire argentate
And our rogue children | mente i nostri bimbi molesti
Are playing loaded dice | giocano coi dadi truccati
Give me truth now | ora dammi la verità
Don’t want no sham | non voglio finzioni
I’d be hung drawn and quartered for a sheep just as well as a lamb | mi farebbero impiccare, sventrare e squartare comunque
Stuck between a rock
And a hard place
Between a rock and a hard place
You’d better stop
Put on a kind face
Can’t you see what you’ve done to me | non riesci a vedere quello che mi hai fatto