Last night was absolutely amazing. We went to a winter party at the house of a local musician couple. There was much accordion and Balkan music. There were a number of complex string instruments that I did not recognize, although I was able to recognize the guitar, violins, and mandolin. The guy who owns the drum store on Hawthorne was there as well as a number of other conical drum players. Several times, there were battles between percussion and strings, which got pretty heated, but were quite entertaining and fun. I am not sure I have heard speed-violin before. Also, I got to hear that song from the beginning of Pulp Fiction in its original version–not as surf guitar music.
One thing I did learn last night is that Absinthe is quite tasty, like Pastis but much, much better. They had some locally-made stuff, which really did contain the requisite amount of wormwood. While the bottle and label looked professionally produced (and humorous: “the state of Oregon had determined that this can kill you (with a skull and crossbones picture),” “180 proof. We think.”), I am not entirely sure it is available for [legal] purchase around here. There were a number of other less professional looking bottles there, too–for things like locally made wines.