Twitter Print TAGStommy emmanuel Email Advertisement Facebook WhatsApp Previous articleLimerick Judge to consider sentence for knifepoint robberyNext articleEight year sentences for Limerick Collopy brothers Eric Fitzgeraldhttp://www.limerickpost.ieEric writes for the Entertainment Pages of Limerick Post Newspaper and edits the music blog www.musiclimerick.com where you can watch and listen to music happening in the city and beyond. News30 million hits so far for virtuoso Tommy EmmanuelBy Eric Fitzgerald – July 20, 2016 718 Guitarist Tommy Emmanuel plays Lime Tree Theatre this Sunday July 24Tommy Emmanuel, Australia’s legendary guitarist, has a professional career that spans almost five decades. His virtuoso playing has earned him two Grammy award nominations. Tommy plays more than 300 concerts a year, gathering hundreds of thousands of fans worldwide, bringing him from international jazz festivals to shows with the Sydney Philharmonic, Nashville’s Grand Ole Opry to performances for the Masai people in remote areas of Kenya.Emmanuel has been voted Favorite Acoustic Guitarist in both Guitar Player Magazine and Acoustic Guitar Magazine’s reader polls.Sign up for the weekly Limerick Post newsletter Sign Up The YouTube sensation has more than 30,000,000 views and you can witness the master in person in full flight at the Lime Tree Theatre this Sunday July 24.Tommy answered Limerick Post’s questions this week.After 30 million views … Has YouTube and your videos had a positive impact and revolutionised the amount of fans worldwide that are now aware of your music?Youtube and the Internet have had an amazing effect on many artists’ careers. Personally, I have been amazed by the coverage that I get from social media. My career in Europe really took off because of Youtube and then China, Russia and other Asian countries followed.I’ve enjoyed working with creative people making videos and capturing live performances in the hope of reaching into people’s lives and surprising them.Since the ’50s the guitar has been at the forefront of mainstream music evolution. A look at the singles charts today revealed no guitar sounds in the top 10. Will the guitar sound lead the way again in mainstream popular music culture?I think the guitar is still the coolest instrument on the planet. I also think there are more players than ever out there. Perhaps pop music is not as riff-driven as it used to be but there is still a lot of great players taking their music all over the world. We are all thankful that people still love to come and see live music being performed by passionate artists.Lookin’ forward to at the Lime Tree Theatre this Sunday July 24?I haven’t played in Limerick for quite a few years and I’m looking forward to the concert on Sunday. I have a lot of fond memories of playing my first shows in Ireland to really enthusiastic music lovers. Ireland is one of the birth-places of great music.Tommy Emmanuel performs at Lime Tree Theatre this Sunday July 24. Linkedin
At the festival, Flores spoke with a game streamer for AbleGamers, a charity that provides people with disabilities accessible gaming setups. The streamer prompted Flores to think about ways to make the game accessible to those who would only be able to play with one hand. Moving forward, now in contact with the AbleGamers community, Flores and Robinson said they want to continue improving the accessibility of Detour Bus. One way they plan to do this is by creating a gameplay option that allows for a controller with two buttons, rather than two controllers with one button each, to accommodate players who can only play with one hand. The Flowers family will also make an appearance in the cutscenes between game levels. Robinson said that cutscenes, or noninteractive narrative clips in video games, are generally seen as taboo by the gaming community because they are unplayable. To combat this, the duo plans to film live actors in a renovated bus for the 360-degree virtual reality cutscenes, which will add more interaction with the cutscenes. “The video component … and the continual voices of the family is a really important part of [making the game feel personal] so that this feels like a human experience, not an abstract construction experience,” Robinson said. “It’s not really about building roads, even though that’s the main mechanic — it’s about guiding this family through their journey as they’re trying to reconnect with each other.” The cast of characters includes Daddy Flowers, a payroll accountant who wishes to relive the ‘70s and does so by restoring his Volkswagen; Mama Flowers, a workaholic struggling to keep her professional and personal lives separate; Junior, a snarky advocate for communism in America; and Goldy Flowers, the bored 7-year-old sister who loves to stir up trouble by making the road trip as hard as possible for her family. Flores, a junior majoring in computer science (games), and Robinson, a junior majoring in cinematic arts, film and television production, started developing the game in Fall 2019 as part of their “Intermediate Game Design and Development” class. In the class, which was taught by Cinematic Arts professors Peter Brinson and Jesse Vigil, students work in teams and conceptualize innovative design goals by creating their own video game. “The real goal is to inspire the same sense of wonder that a kid has building a giant Hot Wheels track or those wooden train sets … and capture that in a way that can happen in real life,” Robinson said. If the game is not approved, Flores and Robinson will still continue working on the project. They are applying to grants and competitions and have found faculty interested in helping them. Flores is waiting to hear back from a virtual reality grant, and last weekend, the duo attended DreamHack Anaheim, a gaming festival where they networked, demoed their game and earned an honorable mention for their game pitch. Zach Flores (left) and Ezra Robinson (right) created their virtual reality game Detour Bus as a part of a class they took in Fall 2019 titled “Intermediate Game Design and Development.” (Angie Orellana Hernandez | Daily Trojan) Robinson said the Flowers family, both in the voiceovers and the virtual reality cutscenes filmed from within the bus, makes the game feel more personal. They created these characters to reflect the general American experience and comment on the errors in the fictitious vision of the country, Robinson said. Using a VR headset and two controllers, players face challenges and reach different destinations by arranging pieces of the road together, Flores said. Through body movements and controllers, players fit sections of the road together, ultimately taking the Volkswagen microbus twisting and turning on a forward and upside down ride. “People have nostalgia for the ‘70s, but [‘70s video games] don’t remind us of the ‘70s otherwise … because they were so primitive and simple,” Brinson said. “[Detour Bus] does a good job of simulating nostalgia for something that never happened.” When a player opens the Detour Bus video game, they enter an alternate reality, founders Zachary Flores and Ezra Robinson said. With goggles on, they are launched into an imaginary American landscape, packed with defining elements of the 1970s: flowers, a hippie van and hot lava are just the beginning. Flores and Robinson created Detour Bus, a video game where the player navigates a yellow Volkswagen bus on a family road trip across America, and simultaneously build a road by placing 3D blocks on the floor through virtual reality. The duo hopes to be approved for USC’s Advanced Games Project, which would provide them with a team of students and greater access to faculty assistance and resources. They said that while most AGP games are 20 to 30 minutes long and are released for free, their ultimate goal is to go commercial, selling up to two hours of professional content for about $15. Throughout the game, the family provides commentary in the form of jokes and complaints from inside the bus. Flores and Robinson are also working on implementing voiceover that responds to the player’s actions in the game. They said one of their next steps will be to find voice actors for their team. From the microbus to the groovy flower-themed special effects, the game is infused with a 1970s feel. Robinson said that after Brinson played an incomplete demo of Detour Bus and called it a “real stoner game,” Robinson and Flores knew they had successfully communicated their theme. Flores and Robinson aimed to create a VR game for adults and children alike that captures the child-like excitement of playing with toys. “Zach and Ezra figured out a really unusual and joyful puzzle game to make VR worth it,” Brinson said. “This game wouldn’t work without VR. It needs VR, but VR also needs it in a sense because we’re still waiting for there to be a lot of really wonderful VR games.” “Part of making the traditional American nuclear family is based on this idea of … idolizing what the ideal American experience should be,” Robinson said. “There is an attempt being made to engage with these American ideals critically and kind of use the perspectives of the kids to point out the flaws in this ideal vision of America.” Flores said accessibility is essential for Detour Bus because they want it to be playable for people from all backgrounds. “One of the important things about the Detour Bus … was having something more casual for people who are just starting VR for the first time,” Flores said. “There’s more and more people who don’t come from like a traditional gaming background … But, it’s also a choice for people who want to do VR but need something a little bit more accessible.” By the time they graduate, Flores and Robinson hope to expand their creative team to no more than 10 members and have eight 10-minute-long levels.
A properly prepped President of the Ghana Football Association, Kwesi Nyantakyi, Tuesday held many spellbound with an exceptionally eloquent testimony before the World Cup Commission.He was accused variously of infractions and misjudgments which culminated in a woeful World Cup campaign by the senior national team, the Black Stars, in Brazil.He has consistently pleaded innocence and when he appeared before a Presidential Commission set to inquire into Ghana’s disgraceful World Cup outing, Mr. Nyantakyi took full advantage of the much-anticipated appearance at the Presidential Commission to clear public misconceptions about football and also answer his critics.Serious looking and speaking in a matter-of-factly, the GFA President called for greater government funding for football as the best branding and marketing strategy for football, insisting, Ghana’s international games against the USA in 2006 got more attention only superseded by the election of America’s first black president Barack Obama.GFA fundingThe lawyer-turned-football-administrator narrated the struggles the GFA goes through to fund national teams in answer to claims by his critics who say he is not doing enough. He explained that 82% of funds raised by the GFA go into managing the national football teams both men and women, with the senior national team the Black Stars consuming a whopping 74% while the junior teams bite off 17%.He pointed out that since 2006, the FA has spent over Ghâ‚µ 36 million on national teams after struggling to raise Ghâ‚µ 34million in sponsorship.“The GFA has spent over Ghc 36million on the national teams; not a single tax payer’s money is in that. So you can see that we are even using monies outside sponsorship to take care of national teams. Our other sources of funding are gate proceeds, 5% from international player transfers, fines imposed on clubs and players”.“It is no wonder clubs are suffering” Nyantakyi said in answer to his critics who point accusing fingers at the FA for the falling standards of Ghana’s local league.Needing to be restrained by Justice Dzamefe, the fired-up President lamented that government was not doing enough to help Ghana football. “I think we [the state] are not putting in much. But the overriding consideration is that we [Ghana] are poor,” he conceded.Unpaid coachesHe confirmed that the GFA was struggling to pay coaches because despite a verbal agreement with the Ministry of Sports to foot the bill of coaches and other technical staff, government very often has not honoured its promises.Responding to suggestions that getting a proper written agreement would make it binding on government to pay coaches, he pointed out that government is even struggling to pay statutory funds let alone find money to honour a written agreement.This state of affairs has forced the GFA to hire coaches and technical staff on a part-time basis which he acknowledged, is not in the best interest of Ghana football. He said state funding covers only camping expanses which does not exceed two months, feeding, per diem and other recurrent expenditures.Expenses incurred during longer stay in camp by the female national teams, he said, were shouldered by the GFA.“We give them monies every week. It doesn’t come from the state. There is a caterer [at Prampram] who cooks food for all the national teams. She is crying for her money that is due her. And if you don’t give her the money, the team will pack off and if the team packs off from the [Prampram] camp it will be no excuse for GFA to say we haven’t received monies from government that’s why. We have to look for money wherever it is,” he soldiered on.“Is that it?” Commission Chairman, Justice Dzamefe asked, looking baffled. “Yes My Lord, that it” Nyantakyi supplied to a loud laughter from the attentive audience.“You look very aggressive, cool down” Justice Dzamefe told the GFA president. “So from your expose everything is okay? The appeal court judge asked.“Everything is not okay, Nyantakyi responded, I was just trying to show the burden that the FA has taken on”.Hypnotizing the CommissionAfter the lead counsel for the Commission run out of questions for the day, Kwesi Nyantakyi owned the floor as he rapped the commission on the importance of sponsorship and government funding for football.“If you go to South Africa, the state does not put money in football because they have a strong economy and they are able to attract sponsors. The South African FA has over 20 sponsors…it is in excess of 100million dollars… we have just $2million,” he said. But unlike South Africa, in sub-Saharan Africa, governments have to spend on football because despite having weak economies, football brings great benefits to the nations, he explained.Arguing for more government funding, he said football in West Africa is “the passion of the people. It brings national unity and cohesion. It is a tool for international relations and diplomacy, it is an income generation avenue.” “Take your time”, Justice Dzamefe stopped him in his tracks, breaking the packed audience into spontaneous laughter.He insisted football has the power to brand the nation better than what many government agencies such as the Ghana Investment Promotion Centre Ghana Tourist Board, and Brand Ghana office.“In 2006 when Ghana played United States [in Germany], the internet hits for Ghana was the highest in history of the internet business until the election of Barack Obama in 2008. It is a fact”, he stressed. “Really?”, a shocked Justice Dzamefe asked while the audience applauded.“Football gives us that publicity without any extra investment. If we pay more attention to football, it will help the country”, he lectured.Charged up and buoyed, the GFA President told the Commission he is ready to testify till 6 pm and asked the commission to give him some time to finish his testimony before they go for a break.He said Germany invested over 500 million Euros to rebuild its national football after a poor 2002 European competition.“All premier clubs have academies. They invested in the coaching development centres, they employed technical directors for all the academies. We know that is the best way to go but we don’t have the resources to do that”, he said.“I am not saying that we should close down factories, close down schools and invest in football”, he emphasised.But “we must cut our coat according to our cloth.”He said expressed regret at how football administrators are unjustifiably maligned branded thieves in the country and declared guilty until proven innocent and acknowledged the good work of the commission in clearing the very serious misconceptions.“I wish I could stay up to 6 pm. I am here because of you. I am very happy to be here. And my presence here will clear more misconceptions. When you are in football, they think you are a thief, you are a criminal”“My lord, let’s do one more of the controversial issues then we can break”, he requested, ripping up the audience in another round of laughter.“I have overruled that” Justice Dzamefe ruled and adjourned proceedings to Wednesday at 10 o’clockThe Justice Dzamefe Commission is investigating circumstances surrounding Ghana’s poor showing at the 2014 FIFA World Cup last June.The three-man commission has so far invited several football administrators, a number of coaches, caterers who travelled to cook for football fans and other officials, former Black Stars players and some national icons branded as Brazil World Cup ambassadors.