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Monday, June 18, 2018

Favorite Albums of 2018 Thus Far

It's difficult to believe, but we've reached the halfway point of 2018. With that in mind, I think now would be an appropriate time to reflect on some of the new music that has been released this year that I've really digging thus far.

1. Ry Cooder: The Prodigal Son

As of right now, Ry Cooder's The Prodigal Son is my favorite album of 2018. The sound, the lyrics, they are so full of hope and soul. Absolutely incredible.

2. Lord Huron: Vide Noir

Another excellent album from Lord Huron. Not as "folkies" as Lonesome Dreams, but just as good.

3. We Are Scientists: Megaplex

An absolutely perfect indie-pop album. My favorite We Are Scientists album since 2008's "Brain Thrust Mastery". 

4. Moby: Everything Was Beautiful and Nothing Hurt

Moby is a machine. Three albums in three years. This one really reminds me of his 1996 album "Animal Rights". 

5. I'm With Her: See You Around

I'm with Her really reminds me of the Punch Brothers, which is a good thing. A really good alt-country/folk album.

6. Andrew W.K.: You're Not Alone

It's an Andrew W.K. album. Enough said.

7. Middle Western: When Your Demons are Underground, and You've Got to Dig Them Up

No YouTube videos are available. The best way I can explain them is, William Elliott Whitmore with a band. (Because that's what it is...)

8. Mastersystem: Dance Music

Sadly, this is Scott Hutchinson's final album released in his lifetime. It's totally different from Frightened Rabbit, but still features Hutchinson's powerful lyrics. 

Friday, June 8, 2018

The Return

I am in the final week of my online class to become a certified online instructor, and I cannot be more excited. Once this course is completed, I'll have more time to read, work on my podcast, and write on this very blog.

Sometime this month, I need to write about my favorite albums of 2018...thus far.

Tuesday, May 29, 2018

I've Gotten Lazy

Today was my first day back to work after a ten day vacation. It was a lovely vacation, but it made me very lazy. I haven't worked on my podcast. I waited till today to work on my online teaching certification homework. I just really liked doing nothing. Really cleared my head. Makes me think I should take another vacation in the near future.

Sunday, May 20, 2018

On Vacation This Week

On on vacation all week, and I aim to begin work on a few projects.

1. I really want to begin writing and recording audio essays. My first topic will focus on how I am reading Harry Potter for the first time at the age of 34, and whether or not my view of the character will be different from those whom grew up along side the character.

2. Production will begin in earnest on my ghost story's podcast. I think I'm going to make it a two parter. The first part will focus on just the stories. Part two could focus on the social impact ghost stories have on us as a society.

3. I took out two books from the Chicago Public Library. (Girl Waits with Gun and Harry Potter.) I think I may have bitten off more than I could chew. I typically only read a book at a time. I felt ambitious for some reason this week. Maybe it is the vacation talking.

Tuesday, May 8, 2018

The 5.8.18 Listomania Edition

1. This week I began an online course to become a certified online professor.  The course is six weeks long, and I have homework to complete. I don't know if I'm feeling homework. I am so used to coming home and doing whatever I want. Homework at 34....

2. I'm two listens away from 50 total listens for the Analog Experience. I'm pretty pleased with that, although I always wish that it could get a few more. Maybe triple digits... However its just a reflection that need to do better when comes promoting my work. I've never really been good at self promotion, and I'm always afraid of being that one guy who annoys their friends by always promoting one thing or another.

3. Speaking of promoting, I just finished an Agatha Christie novel entitled: "The Mystery of the Blue Train". It was a super fun read. Christie's Hercule Poirot is on par with Sherlock Holmes in my humble opinion.

4. I found a new musician who I am enjoying very much. His name is Ry Cooder, and his latest record is called "The Prodigal Son". Its very blues/folky/roots music. There's also a very strong spirituality to the music which I am rather enjoying. He's preaching, but not in an overbearing way. Below is a live version of my favorite song of the new record called "Straight Street"

Sunday, April 29, 2018

Random Thoughts for 4.29.18

Earlier today I found out that my old grade school is suspending operations after this school year. Funding is the issue. I'm not sure how I feel about it. I don't have any real "sentimental" connection to the school. In fact, grade school wasn't the happiest period of my life. Nevertheless it does feel like a massive chapter of my life is closing. It's a somber reminder that nothing is forever, and life is always full of change.

Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Podcasts You Listen To

Earlier today my cousin Matt sent me an email about how he was migrating all of his podcasts subscriptions from iTunes to DownCast. While conducting this transitions, he pared down the number of podcasts he's subscribed to from 185 to 39. Additionally, he created a spreadsheet to organize his most listened to shows into particular categories. I love that he did this, and without knowing he did this, he has motivated me to organize some of my podcasts. Specifically my episodes of WireTap. I've always wanted to organize them into some sort of chronological order. But doing so will be a very large task, and that frightens me. 

Anyways, I love podcasts. The democratization of the media through the digital revolution is amazing, and allows independent audio producers, such as myself, the ability to publish our stories independently, develop an audience, and in some cases make some money. It truly is a game changer. But you know what I think would be cool addition to the podcast phenomenon? Distributing them on either a cassette tape, vinyl record, or CD. 

We all love the ease of podcasts. We subscribe to a particular shows RSS feed, and then we are guaranteed new episodes whenever one is published. But what would it be like to create almost a mix tape of podcasts that follow a common theme, topic, and guest? I think it could add an interesting element to it. Plus with the resurgence of analog technologies, it may create a cool marketing gimmick for a new program. 

Also, how cool would it be to get a podcast....on vinyl? I would spend money on that.