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Friday, September 27, 2013

A Few Random Thoughts For A Friday Evening

Saturday (September 28th) is going to be a pretty exciting day for me. I am attending my first IBS radio conference. This conference is being held at Columbia College, and it will feature a key note address from WXRT legend Teri Hemmert. I'm debating about whether I should ask her any questions about the Beatles?

The sessions the conference is offering promise to be engaging and thought provoking. Some of the topics include: how to be a "21st century dj", how to critique demos, running a successful pledge drive, and why radio needs new ideas. One session I am particular interested in is "How to create your very own radio theater". Maybe I'll be able to achieve one of my more elusive goals of writing and producing my own radio drama.

If that wasn't enough to have me be excited, there's more. I have been invited to be a panelist at one of the sessions. I will be speaking at the fundraising and pledge drive panel. I'm very intrigued to see how this will all take place.

My Favorite Podcast
Additional I heard a fantastic episode of WireTap this week. The topic was about being invisible to others, and in the episode there is a short story featured that I actually read on another website,, which I absolutely loved. It's entitled Missed Connection and it is about these two people who do not have the courage to speak to each other and end up staying on a subway train together for 60 years. It is really captivating and I finally know who the author is. Here's his blog.

As I reach my conclusion, I would just like to say, check out Moby's new album Innocents. It's pretty outstanding, and I wrote this blog while writing the album. You can stream the album off of NPR here. A Case for Shame and Almost Home are my favorites thus far. Be sure to check out my interview with Moby on College Radio Day, Tuesday Oct. 1st, on

Monday, September 23, 2013

Moby's Thoughts on Photography

Over the past three weeks, I have been incredibly lucky. Not only have I been able to interview The Man, The Myth, The Legend. The Andrew W.K. (Take that bucket list!!) But I was also able to interview a musical artist that I've only just begun to really appreciate over the last few years. And that would be Moby.

In an exclusive interview that will air on College Radio Day, I always have to do a plug when possible, Moby and I discuss a wide range of topics. We talk about his new album Innocents, which comes out on Oct 1st, his love of college radio, and his favorite song of all time. Moby is incredibly articulate and makes some really fascinating points. The interview is about 20mins long, and I'll be sure to post it on this blog after College Radio Day.

However when the subject turns to photography, things really got interesting. Two of my cousins and my uncle are photographers, and I always enjoy picking their brains about art and photography. So I thought it would be fun to share Moby's take on photography too. It is only about 2 mins long.

Moby on Photgraphy

Monday, September 16, 2013

Interviewing Andrew W.K.

Last week I was able to interview an artist that has been on my bucket list of dream interviews since 2003. It was the man, the myth, the legend, the Andrew W.K. When I first heard his debut album "I Get Wet", I was immediately sucked into the headbanging, party nature of the album. The album sort of became the unofficial party album for my friends and I. You can rock out anytime you wanted to, and not have to apologize about it. That's the genius of Andrew W.K. He writes party anthems that are accessible to everyone.

Surprisingly I was not nervous for the interview. I'm usually a little nervous before every interview, but I was cool. calm, and collective for W.K. As soon as we started talking, I felt liked this was the 15th or 16th time I had talked to him. He was super cool, and relaxed. I've included the interview below. I hope you enjoy it.

And party hard!!!!

Andrew W.K. Interview

Saturday, September 7, 2013

Batman Returns...The Underrated Batman Film

So one of the great benefits of not having a working computer for a month, was the ability to catch up on my TV and movie watching. And boy, did I catch up. I was captivated by the first season of Ripper Street. (Great show, which is well worth your time.) I watched a little Superman The Animated Series, and revisited the original Batman movie franchise. The film I really wanted to re-watch was Batman Returns.

When it was first released, it got a pretty big mixed reaction from critics and the general public. This was mainly due to the film's overall dark narrative. Let's face it, The Penguin's grand plan was to kill all of Gotham City's children.  You can't get much darker than that!

But I was curious to see how well this film has aged. Generally most superhero films do not age well for various reasons. Some of the reasons include: the special effects/CGI that were used look incredibly dated and terrible. A film's tone/overall direction, or even the actors and actresses who were cast. Prime examples of such films include Batman Forever, Superman 3, and even the first Spiderman. These movies for the previous reason haven't aged particularly well. All of the above was playing in my mind when I popped Batman Returns into my DVD player.

After I was done watching it, I must say, I was very surprised with how well it has aged. Though the storyline was dark for 1992, it now fits very well into 2013 storytelling. With shows like Breaking Bad, Game of Thrones, and Dexter dominating the medium, Batman Returns is almost tame in comparison. What follows are the three things that really stood out for me that make Batman Returns the most underrated live action Batman film ever:

1. Michael Keaton delivers another stellar performance as Batman.  What can I say that hasn't already been said about Michael Keaton as Batman. In my opinion, he is still the best film Batman period. He has the right balance of shadowy figure, kick ass ninja, and loved struck millionaire that makes him believable as Batman. With the Batman character being so out there, we the audience need to be able to justify in our mind what he does. Let's face it, Batman is a vigilante, using his own moral code to determine who is good and who is bad. In our world today, we would not stand for this. So it is beyond important that we suspend our disbelief and rout for this individual. Luckily, Michael Keaton pulls it off!
2. Christopher Walken as Max Schreck. Batman Returns pulls off an amazing feat. This film has three villians. And Max Schreck is the by far the best and most underrated. This individual is responsible for not only creating Catwoman, but letting the Penguin loose on Gotham City. He is conniving, self-center, and willingly to do anything to avoid his comeuppance. In wrestling terms, he is the chicken sh*t heel, and you always want to see the chicken sh*t heel get their comeuppance.

3. The overall look of the film. I loved the Chris Nolan Dark Knight Trilogy, but one part of the trilogy I was never a big fan of, was the way Gotham City looks. It never really felt like Gotham City in those films. And Batman feels "out of place" in that world. But in Batman Returns, there is no doubt about it. You are in Gotham City. It feels like Gotham City. It looks like Gotham City. And Batman belongs in it.

For me, these three elements make Batman Returns a truly great Batman movie. It has a solid story, an awesome cast, and the feel of a comic book movie. Next time you are looking for a Batman film to watch, why not give Batman Returns a second look. It is well worth you time. I've included the film's trailer below.