inspired by andythelemon and mfullcircles pirate!au art

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I. the blood of cuchulainn / II. i’m shipping up to boston / III. the blarney stone / IV. yo ho (a pirates life for me) / V. the mariner’s revenge / VI. cruel mistress / VII. the dance of the young professionals / VIII. blood red roses / IX. the derelict / X. from my own true love (lost at sea) / XI. over the sea / XII. salty dog / XIII. in all my dreams i drown


Private Maritime Security Contractors

The number of companies who have jumped into the deep blue sea to offer armed guards and other private security services for commercial shippers who fear pirate attacks has risen sharply the past few years. Many new companies have been formed in this area since 2008 and many existing PSCs have refocused on maritime security. Land based private security has vacillated between being called private military companies (PMC’s) or private security companies (PSC’s). All have been faced with media scrutiny, controversy and varying degrees of helpful and unhelpful legislation. Although the provision of lethal force by private services rather than government services neither new or even unexpected on land it seems to be more complicated on the ocean and in international waters.

Maritime security has existed to protect slow moving oil drilling equipment, private luxury yachts and even undersea cable laying projects. The industry was word of mouth, providers were known by their past clients and there was little demand by traditional shipping companies. The spike in attacks in 2008 forced ship owners and charterers to find ways to reduce risk and rapidly increasing “exception” insurance premiums for routes like the Gulf of Aden and a rapidly expanding piracy zone in the Indian Ocean.

The former military who provide security to ships in dangerous waters are called Privately Contracted Armed Security Personnel or PCASP. Many of these men are veterans of the contractor circuit in Iraq and Afghanistan. Somalia Report’s 2011 first-hand report provides a glimpse into this world of tedium interrupted by a few minutes of intense action. Somalia Report was the first news service to leak a State Dept document showing the pragmatic evolution of Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s anti-contractor to pro-contractor stance as well as see first hand how this emerging sector actually works in Yemen and Somalia. It is clear that the industry is not only here to stay but will demand proper recognition of of PCASP’s role in keeping ship, crew and cargo safe.



Cap’n jazz - Oh Messy Life by djaimz
I don’t expect many of you reading this to dig this band but I needed to put a post up about Cap’n Jazz regardless. These guys were one of my favorites in high school even though they were broken up before I had a chance to see them play live. They were influential to a lot of the bands I listened to and were looked up to as a band that had a unique sound that broke some boundaries. After they broke up in 1995 members went on to form bands like The Promise Ring, American Football, Joan Of Arc, Owen, and Meritime. Luckily Jade Tree Records put out a compilation of all their songs on a double disc CD called Analphabetapolothology. They had a really cool cover of Take On Me that was one of my favorites due to it being so sloppy and rough. The video was taken during a reunion tour they had last year. The other video was too but at a different venue. I would have posted a video or two of their older stuff but the quality wasn’t that great.

I really wish I could have seen them play. I would pay big bucks to see them or Christie Front Drive play a show. Luckily for me I was able to see Texas Is The Reason play in NYC for their reunion show but I’ll talk about that in another post. (It was the highlight of my musical life) no joke.

I was lucky enough to have some older friends that had good taste in music back in the late 90’s who showed me some “off the beaten path aka not on the radio type of music.”