Quarter Life Crisis
I'm gonna catch some serious heat for this, but on some level I agree with with a judges decision to keep a 5'1" guy out of prison for his own safety
. Granted, the dude was a child molester so don't go jump the gun and think that I'm condoning his actions or that I'm saying he doesn't deserve a severe punishment. He does indeed deserve a severe punishment and certainly something more severe than the 10 year probation that he was given. But as a relatively small guy (5'6", 158 lbs.) I can tell you I wouldn't last a week in a maximum security state or federal prison. I'd be the "bitch of the week" for the first days I was there, and probably end up dead within a month. Imagine someone like myself getting busted for growing some weed or something and then essentially being sentenced to "death by inmates". Hardly seems fair to me. Let me state again, this guy is a piece of shit; but I'm not convinced that he deserves to be sentenced to an almost certain death.
Lots of New Music
Wow! I just dropped about a hundred bucks on new Cd's last night. Combine that with the 60 bones I spent a week or two ago and I'm looking at many enjoyable hours of new music. Here's what I got last night:
Tool - 10,000 Days
Angels & Airwaves - We Don't Need to Whisper
Snow Patrol - Eyes Open
Red Hot Chili Peppers - Stadium Arcadium
The Raconteurs - Broken Boy Soldiers
Pearl Jam - Pearl Jam
Here's what I got two weeks ago:
The Flaming Lips - At War With the Mystics
Built to Spill - You in Reverse
Bril - Airless Alarm
The Secret Machines - Ten Silver Drops
So far, daddy likey.
J.R. Richards Goes Solo
For those of you who don't know, I'm a huge Dishwalla fan. Yes, yes, that band that wrote that "tell me all your thoughts on God" song 10 years ago. Well since then they've put out some of the best "power pop" rock in the history of music. I'm not kidding. It boggles my mind why these guys aren't selling 10 million copies of every album they release. If you are into popular alternative rock with great melodies, soaring vocals, and some sweet sounds, please do yourself a favor and check 'em out.
At any rate, I learned today through Alternative Addiction
that JR Richards
, the lead singer, is going to put out a solo record. This worries me. Although it's exciting in one sense to hear what type of direction his music will go and that we have the promise of new material from the heart and soul of the band, I'm worried about the future of the "Dish". He swears that the band isn't breaking up but just on hiatus. These however, are famous last words. I can't tell you how many times I've heard this only to never see the band re-unite. Please, please JR, stick to your words, put out a great solo album, and then get back in the studio with the rest of the boys and put out the greatest pop rock album ever recorded.
Thinking About Another Vacation
As I ready myself to take a week long vacation to Mexico
, (weeeee) I began pondering other vacation ideas for later this summer.
The first one that popped into my head was the Austin City Limits Music Festival
(Ziller Park, Sept 15 - 17), which I've been wanting to attend for the past several years now. Check out the website to see the whole lineup
if you so desire, but if not here's a sample anyway:
Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers, Wille Nelson, John Mayer, The Ranconteurs (Jack White's new band), The Flaming Lips, The Secret Machines, Massive Attack, Ben Harper, Van Morrison, The Shins, Ween, G. Love & Special Sauce, Ben Kweller, Damien Rice, Nickel Creek, Damian Marley (yes, Bob's son), The New Pornographers, Son Volt, Guster, String Cheese Incident, Sparklehorse, Wolf Parade, BoDeans....
... OK, I guess that's enough. So, if anyone is interested please let me know soon as tickets are going faster than Carl Lewis on PCP.
Music Listener Program
I just joined a pretty cool new music listener program called "Inside Track
" sponsored by Sony/BMG. Supposedly by joining the program you'll help actually affect what new artists and albums will be released. I'm not sure how much my opinion really matters to the record executives but I thought I'd give it a shot. Most of you (those who's email addresses I have) will receive an email from the same program in case you are interested in signing up.
Here's my "personal music profile" that they sent me after I did all the surveys:
You're a "deep" music listener. Music for you is something to be experienced, not just played in the background. You like to think about the music you listen to — and to feel it. Your favorite songs and artists are the ones that have been able to touch both your heart and your mind. You hold your friends to similar standards. You surround yourself with a small group of trusted friends, all of whom respect your quiet confidence. While you are not one to push your own musical tastes onto someone else, when you do make a recommendation, people listen to it. People seek you out for musical advice when they're looking for that perfect song to match their state-of-mind. You believe that the music you love is a window into a part of who you are.
Fuckin' A. Sounds like me.
A Few Changes
Just a few items of note...
1.) I took away the Cardinals Opening day clock. I figured everyone was well aware of that by now.
2.) I fixed the link to Cassandra's blog.
3.) I added Cathy K's blog to the link list.
4.) I now have an Atom XLM newsreader feed.
Whlie I'm On the Subject...
...of Led Zeppelin, here's a few interesting LZ items I've run across recently.
The first is a clip of a dutch performance artist (and possibly a very distant relative of Nick
) named Jeroen Offerman
singing "Stairway to Heaven". This clip needs a bit of explanation though. It seems as though Jeroen learned how to phonetically sing the entire song backwards, over the backwards music. So he videotaped himself singing it backwards over the backwards music, and then reversed it (see the clip here
). Not only did he have to learn the pronunciation of the words backwards, but the timing of the lyrics, the notes, the syncopation of the lyrics, etc. The outcome is a really neat version of the song that makes perfect sense lyrically and phonetically. Only a few minor barely noticeable mistakes are made. You can see the original backwards singing of the song here
. Apparently he's touring the performance
at certain colleges where he will actually perform the song live backwards while it is being recorded in the sound booth. The booth then replays the audio right back to the audience. Pretty damned cool. A serious tip of the hat to Caron
on that one.
Since we're on the subject of "Stairway" backwards. I thought I'd point out a really good site to hear the backwards masking in the song
. For me the backwards lyrics are clearly there, the question is whether it is a phonetic coincidence or an intentional ode to <church-lady voice> SSSSAAATTAN..ATAN..ATAN...ATAN </church-lady voice>. Backwards masking is definitely fairly easily accomplished as I've seen it done personally in some of my audio classes. It's up to you to decide whether they did it purposefully. Here's another good site with some backwards masking in other songs
Oh, and here's a horrifying band called the Screeching Weasels
and their masterpiece-of-shit "I Hate Led Zeppelin
" (scroll down and click the link to listen if you dare). Then, enjoy your bleeding ears.
My Favorite Zeppelin Shirt
Most of you know that the mighty LZ is my favorite band of all time. I've got several of their T-shirts that I bought back in high school, of all sorts, some of which I'll never wear again. My favorite of all my Zep shirts is a black Tee with Stonehenge on the front (tried to find a picture but no dice). The shadows of the stones spell out Led Zeppelin in the grass, and each band member has his own symbol subtly placed on a random stone. I've worn it hundreds of times and now it's nice and broken in, very soft and comfy.
I now have a new favorite LZ shirt. Problem is I don't own it. Nor can I find it anywhere. Nor do think I'll ever be able too.
You see I first saw it in the video for the Collective Soul song, "Why Pt 2"
(you'll actually have to click the "Watch Video" link yourself). The lead singer is wearing it. I've searched for it ever since online but to no avail. I'm guessing it was probably purchased at a boutique in Hollywood somewhere or is a couture shirt designed specifically for him. At any rate, I want it. So here's a plea to anyone that reads this. If you come across it anywhere at any time, buy it for me. I'll pay you double what you pay for it. Unless it's like a grand or something.
All Things Mario Brothers
As the generation that grew up with Super Mario Brothers (that's us folks) ages into adulthood, the pop culture effects of the game become even more apparent now than when we were wee lads (and lasses).
What follows are just a few samples of new media that display just how popular the game was and is...Super Mario Brothers Live
. (The first level of SMB performed live at a college talent show)The Theme From Super Mario Brother w/ Sound Effects on Electric Guitar
. (Most of you have seen this one. I saw it a long time ago but thought it was worth posting again. The sound efx are fucking perfect. Crazy asian kids!)Mario Themes on the Marimba
. (Looks like another talent show thing, or possibly a high school band concert.)Mario (and other NES themes) Accapella
. (A college vocal group doing some experimental stuff. Hat tips to the L-Train
.)Mario Themes on the Piano
. (This dude is pretty good. He plays the original Mario Theme blindfolded and then continues with the themes from SMB 2, 3, and the SNES version. Another crazy asian kid!)Super Mario Fast.
(Then of course there's the video of the kids beating the whole game in 5 minutes.)Mario the Commie
. (Here's one with hat tips to Fro:Boy
that parallels the similarities of Mario to communismGroup X: Mario Twins
. (Pseudo-Arabian rap group pays tribute to SMB.)
That's a good sampling of some decent Mario Bros related stuff. If anyone knows of anything else, link to it in the comments.