by Stone Semyorka
Dayton, Ohio, sometimes called the Gem City after a well-known racehorse, is itself famous for its Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, largest in the world. And the LexisNexis online archive of print media and legal documents used by lawyers, journalists, and academics, also largest in the world. And the annual Dayton Hamvention, also largest in the world.
Not so famous is the tiny western Ohio community of Centerville, near the big city of Dayton. It’s home to just 23,024 souls in some 10,000 households.
Poster for Rich Desoto’s Nowhereville concert series. I wonder if the title should be pronounced as “now here ville” or “nowhere ville?” Those are two quite different statements.
To be fair, I should point out that Centerville is sort of famous for one thing: the largest collection of early stone houses in the state of Ohio. Many are listed in the National Register of Historic Places.
The biggest thing that happens in Centerville is the Fourth of July parade — the Americana Festival — which draws thousands of people each year.
There are some relatively famous people from there: actor Gordon Jump, comic actor Pat Kilbane, Green Bay Packers linebacker A. J. Hawk, New York Jets place-kicker Mike Nugent, ESPN College Gameday analyst Kirk Herbstreit, who was the 1988 Gatorade National High School Player of the Year, and Philadelphia Eagles star and All-Madden Team Member Andy Harmon.
The Centerville town seal and the Ohio state flag.
You get the idea. Football is big in the Buckeye State.
Music is big, too, and therein lies my tale
Like an Easter egg hidden in the rough, singer-songwriter Rich Palmer is tucked away comfortably in little old Centerville.
Most importantly, Palmer is best known to us as Rich Desoto with a home in our Los Arboles region of SL (198, 88, 25).
In RL, Rich Palmer performs with the bands The Fries and Knight Blaze. He’s finishing an important new CD with new acoustic driven pop and folk/rock sounds.
In SL, Rich is singer-songwriter Rich Desoto performing for in-world audiences at Crazy Sharks, Rocky Shores, The Hummingbird Cafe, Los Arboles, Blarney Stone Pub, SoHo and Wheelies.
Aerial view of the Wheelies nightclub.
I was intrigued by Rich while writing my blog entry Empowering the physically challenged.
“I have been a musician since childhood,” Rich explains on his website. “I have found that music can be used to not only entertain, but to educate.”
The two Rich men together — Rich Palmer, left, and Rich Desoto, right — in a promotional poster displayed on his websites.
In college, Palmer studied music theory and related subjects. He was trained in orchestra, choir and jazz ensemble.
“I write for both kids and adults,” he notes. “My children’s CD uses my professional safety education training to help kids be more safe.”
Through music, Palmer delivers messages that can be learned and sung by his students.
“You can use these same songs and messages to reach the children in your life,” he says.
In his musical works, Palmer plays guitar, bass, keyboard and synthesizer, and does the vocals.
“My pop-oriented music helps people of all ages feel good,” he says.
At Wheelies nightclub
Palmer performed a Second Life show at the Wheelies nightclub owned by Simon Walsh.
“This was a grand re-opening event,” he recalls. “Simon and his crew had recently rebuilt and re-opened the sim to the public.”
“I had a great time at this performance and was pleased to provide the service for their event,” he says.
As luck would have it, the Newsweek reporter Jessica Bennett was at the event as her SL character JB Vella. Her video later featured Rich doing two of his songs Avatar Girl and I Used to Sleep.
Check it out
I was moved by his Avatar Girl.
“This song was written after I began to observe the many relationships that easily form in Second Life,” Palmer says. “People have grown to love this song in SL and it has become my trademark tune.”
“Come to a Second Life show and I’ll sing it for you,” he offers. “Don’t forget to sing along, Do n do do n do do do do,” he reminds.
The message really hit home for me, reminding me of times well spent in SL.
My SL friend Sable Sands says she is nuts over it as well as I Used To Sleep. The latter is an acoustic performance of another song inspired by Second Life.
“Relationships continue and this song could be talking about how people stay up to talk, socialize, or become intimate with others,” Rich explains. “It can also mean that people are stimulated enough by the social networking of SL that they don’t go to bed when they should!”
What inspired him?
Rich says he was influenced earlier by The Beatles especially George Harrison, John Lennon and Paul McCartney, Crosby Stills and Nash, Jeff Lynne, America, Widespread Panic, Phish, Electric Light Orchestra, The Eagles, Gin Blossoms, Toad the Wet Sprocket, and Steely Dan.
The cruxy.com website describes Rich’s sound as like John Lennon, George Harrison, James Taylor, Warren Zevon and Jimmy Buffet.
I wonder what you think?