So, as I mentioned before, I'm have moved downtown. I was looking forward to moving, but didn't really know what to expect. I've been here now for almost a month so I'm officially qualified to write about it.
Let's cut to the chase: living downtown is sweet. The best part, that I hadn't fully considered, is that it's now convenient for everyone to come visit me. When I lived in my house 20 minutes North of town, I had a visitor maybe once or twice a week. Usually we'd meet at a restaurant or something closer to downtown, so I always had to drive. Now I live in such a convenient location that everyone comes to visit me. Often they're doing something else a block away, so it's really easy to come say hi.
Another cool side effect of this is that different social circles I'm in are starting to mingle because they often stop by at the same time. I don't think I've gone 24 hours without someone visiting.
The second greatest thing about living downtown is that I'm close to Whole Foods. Now any time from morning until 10pm I can get exactly what I want to eat and it's only a short walk away. Or if I don't feel like walking, I can ... SKATEBOARD!
I'm going to write a whole article about it, but I bought some electric skateboards. They're way better than bikes, feet, or even cars. They deserve their own article or maybe three part mini series. That's how great they are. In fact, I'm about to go ride 2 miles on one to get some food.
I also work really close to work now, so it's easy for me to drop by on the weekends or at weird hours to check on things - or vice versa. Sometimes I'll be at work and I'll think of something I forgot at home. I can just skateboard or walk back and get it and be back within 20 minutes.
I also don't use my car anymore, really. The only time I use it, ironically, is to go back to my old house to get some stuff. Since it has crappy gas mileage, I'm saving a couple hundred bucks a month by not driving.
I think you should move downtown too. If I had known how great it was, I would have moved earlier. Sure it's a bit more expensive, but there are deals to be had, and having a roommate is ok too. For example, in Austin you can get a place at the Railyard for $249k that has three bedrooms and is right in the middle of downtown. That's cheap enough that there's no excuse not to move.
What benefits are there to living far away from downtown? I can't think of any. I guess you might save money, but when you factor in the extra driving and value of your time, that may or may not be true. Some people want "peace and quiet". I live in a building that has clubs right next to it and it's not to loud at all unless you're out on the balcony.
you forgot one of the biggest positive points of living down town, is very easy to bounce girls home from the bars around town next to where you live :)
I've always said if I moved back to the ATX I would get a condo downtown... If you're young and single it's a no brainer.
Unrelated, but if you haven't seen this yet...
Kevin Federline has seen fit to defecate yet again upon the wonderful world of music. This time he's actually RAPPING. And he did it in public, too. What say ye? Is it war?
"I also work really close to work now, so itÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s easy for me to drop by on the weekends or at weird hours to check on things - or vice versa."
live really close to work
work really close to home
Just listen to the music of the traffic in the city.
Linger on the sidewalk where the neon signs are pretty.
How can you lose?
The lights are much brighter there.
You can forget all your troubles, forget all your cares and go
Downtown, things'll be great when you're Downtown, no finer place for sure, Downtown, everything's waiting for you.
I've been trying to post for a few days, but my site hasn't been working. Luckily the computer gnomes magically fixed it tonight. Anyway, one of the reasons that I've been so busy lately is because I am moving!
I've been wanting to post about this for a while, but I've been waiting to make sure it's a sure thing. Between offers going back and forth and inspections, you never know what will happen in the end.
Anyway, a friend and I bought a condo right in downtown Austin. It's right next to one of my favorite clubs, The Foundation, and only a couple blocks away from some of my other favorite places like Halcyon, Alamo Drafthouse, Whole Foods (YES!), and even my work.
Music, as a manmade phenomena, goes back at least thousands and thousands of years to when we've found artifacts of the first flutes and drums. Music has always been a community affair–something done in groups to help bring people together. Funny that now I've been working on music alone in my apartment the last few weeks. (NOTE: I'm a composer and musician myself, and it seems more and more the life of a composer looks more and more like the life of a hermit. But I also have this connection to the group aspect of music. I'm a drummer, and nothing gets me going more than playing drums with others. It's a blast.)
The last hundred years or so has changed almost everything about human society. Music could be recorded and enjoyed at any convenient time in any convenient location–not just the concert hall, the bar or the living room around the family piano. To hear great music you didn't have to be a great musician or have one in the family. This accessibility raised the overall level of “quality” and “musicianship” all over the civilized globe–students had access to better resources and tools and themselves became better musicians than those that came before. This cycle continues to this day where kids using a sequencer can make professional-quality sounds that would've taken weeks to create in a high-end studio twenty years ago. I mean, yeah, the sounds won't necessarily be as “warm” or “mature” sounding, but kids today (me included) are easily making lots of sounds that producers struggled to make (or didn't even dream of making) in the 80s and 90s.
As a product of this wave of technological accessibility, I am of course in favor of all these developments. It's a good thing that great music can be accessed so easily and so cheaply using services like Spotify, rdio, Pandora, iTunes (and BitTorrent). It's a great thing that people with no musical training or background can pick up iPads and start jamming together using scale-locked touchpad interfaces. It encourages people to learn and experiment with music, advancing sounds forward and making music a more easily enjoyable part of life. It's how I discovered the fun and joy that comes from listening to and creating music as I was growing up.
On the flip side, now that I'm joining this force of professional music-makers, I have my well-being to worry about. I want to make music for a living, but how can I make a living doing something I believe should be intrinsically free and open? Should I do gigs for free and sell advertising space to put in the lulls between songs? Should I preface each new track I make with announcements like, “this track was made using Spectrasonics software?”