Posts Tagged ‘newbiewoot’

Neil deGrasse Tyson is an astrophysicist, science communicator, and director of the Hayden Planitarium. He’s also the host of NOVA ScienceNOW on PBS and will also be hosting a new sequal to Carl Sagan’s Cosmos: A Personal Voyage. He’s also one of the people responsible for the reclassification of the planet Pluto, now classified as a dwarf planet.

Neil is one of the latest people to really impact my life. There’s many great people in the feild of astrophysics, theoretical physics, and astronomy that I look up to- Carl Sagan, Lawrence Krauss, and Michio Kaku to name a few, but it’s how Neil approaches the public sphere and how he conveys his message that’s both brilliant and inspiring.

Neil Degrasse Tyson likes to channel the minds of adults. Kids are natural born scientist and we tend to lose that as we get older and stop kids from exploring that part of their mind. If a child decides to pull out the pans from the kitchen cabnet and beat on them, adults are usually quick to stopping them. Unknowingly, they stopped a kid from exploring acoustics. He also talks about science literacy. A great quote of his, “If you’re scientifically literate, the world looks very different, and that understanding empowers you.” is one I hold close to me. Informed people make informed desicions.

Neil brings a level of sophistication and elegance to his views and science that is very approachable to the average person. That’s something you don’t see everyday. I truly feel that the only reason science isn’t commonly talked about, is because science is usually conveyed to people in a way that many people don’t get.

I now live to spark curiosity in the minds of people, to think a little more deeply about the world they live in. I thank Neil for that. It’s beautiful when you look at what makes the universe go ’round. Neil is the first person I’ve seen doing this in public and media. His view of the world should not go unnoticed. Not only is he an intellectual, he’s an excellent communicator and someone I look up to.

Thank you Neil

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Victor Lemonte Wooten is a bass player, composer, and author. He’s won five Grammy awards for his work with Bela Fleck and the Flecktones and solo work. He is the youngest of five brothers, all musicians themselves, and his experience and journey with music started at the age of two. He is a true “virtuoso” in the art of music.

I have to give a small back story to why how Victor made an impression on me. I went to West Chester University in 2004. I met some great people and made life-long friendships. One of my closest friends, Abon, is a guitar player. He had been playing since he was about 7 and he had two guitars and a bass in his dorm. One night we were invited by another great friend, Matt, to a small live show. It was on the second floor of a lounge. It was pretty cool. There were multiple bands performing, one after another. I had never watched a band play live before then. One band, whose name I forget, stole the shw for me. The solo the lead guitar player played left me in awe. That night I decided I wanted to learn how to play the guitar.

I would grab Abon’s electric guitar, plug it in, and go to town on it; not playing a single note. That’s how I started my journey in music. Abon tried his best to teach me, but I had a hard time keeping my fingers on one string. My fingers and hands were kinda big and Abon took notice to that. He recommended I play the bass. Up to that point, I had no idea bass guitars existed! I knew of stand up basses, but I didn’t know anything about bass guitars. So I tried it. It was a much better feel to me. But it wasn’t til Matt showed me a video of this guy that I really took off. He showed me a video of Victor Wooten playing Amazing Grace. It was absolutely beautiful. I didn’t think an instrument like the bass could be played in such a way. It was then that I had someone to emulate.

I’m a self taught musician. It took years for me to hone my skills and develop the type of playing I do today. I’ve been playing bass for eight years now, and Victor Wooten has been there all the way. His approach to music and life is something everyone should take a look at. To Victor, as well myself, music is a language. A very beautiful one at that. For about the first four years I tried to immitate what he and other great bass players played while learning how to play. It’s a good road to take for a self taught musician but there comes a point where you have to find your own voice. He showed me that and I have my own voice today. He was the first to show me that my expression of the arts is unique to me, so no matter how I play, how I express, no one can call it their own. That’s an important lesson that all artists should learn. He taught me to just groove.

Thank U Vic!

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