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Monday, November 28, 2016

A Fun Radio Show Theme

Have you ever heard of: "The Black Album"? No I am not referring to the albums created by Metallica in the early 1990s or by Jay-Z in early 2000s. I'm referring to the incredibly mix cd collection that Ethan Hawk's character in the movie Boyhood gives to his son as a birthday present. First off, I'm a sucker for mix cds. The creativity that is put into making them is limitless. It really is one of the most thoughtful gifts that can be given to any hardcore music fan. Add to that The Beatles, and you've hooked me.

So my co-host on my radio show that airs on WXAV came up with an idea for us to do a "Black Album" themed show. She will be showcasing the hidden gems of John Lennon and Ringo Starr's solo catalogs, while I will feature Paul McCartney and George Harrison. I LOVE this idea. Anytime I get a reason to listen to any type of Beatles music is a good thing, but to showcase their hidden gems from their solo catalogs is a real treat.

I've made some ground rules for myself as I've begun preparing for this program.
1. No songs featured on any of their "classic solo records". So that means I will not be playing any music from such records such as: "All Things Must Pass, Band on the Run, Ram, Living in the Material World, McCartney, Traveling Wilbury's Vol. 1, etc.

2. Pick 5 lesser known albums from each, and listen to each of them in their entitreity leading up to the show. Find the underappreciated hidden gems from those records and then showcase them. It's very easy to always go back to All Things Must Pass because it is an amazing record, but how many of us truly appreciate the greatness that is 33 & 1/3?

3. Research the recording of each, and get as much information as possible. What's the stories behind each of these records? What was happening in George's life during the recording of Dark Horse? Why is Paul's Run Devil Run record so important? Each of these albums has a fascinating history, that should be explored more.

After careful consideration, I've made my five selections, which you can see below. If you want to hear these albums hidden gems, the stories behind their makings, and why I've selected these particular albums tune into 88.3FM if you on the south side of Chicago or on Thursday December 1st from 8pm-10pmCST to hear all about it.

Paul McCartney
Press Play
Give My Regards to Broadway
Off the Ground
Run Devil Run
Memory Almost Full

George Harrison
33 & 1/3
George Harrison
Dark Horse
Wonderwall Music

Monday, November 21, 2016

I Started Watching The Office

So for years I've been told to watch The Office. And I've listened to that advice, and have begun to do so. I must say, I've been enjoying it very much. But Michael Scott. I'm not sure if I am a fan of the character.

There are times that you feel an emotional connection to his character. Then there are other times you want to shake him for doing something completely idiotic. Maybe that's the appeal of the character.

Sunday, November 20, 2016

Radio Dramas Making a Comeback?

It appears that radio dramas are making a little bit of a comeback. Gimlet Media has produced a new series entitled: "Homecoming". Below is the description of the new series:

A new psychological thriller from Gimlet Media, starring Catherine Keener, Oscar Isaac, and David Schwimmer."

That's some pretty big names. I mean, Oscar Isaac has appeared in Star Wars: The Force Awakens, X-Men: Apocalypse, and Inside Llewyn Davis. David Schwimmer is of course one of the stars of Friends, and Catherine Keener is from Capote and Inside John Malkovich.

I'm excited about this. In my opinion the podcasting side of the media is the must exciting branch today. It's taking chances and trying new things. This could help introduce a whole new generation to the theater of the mind. Who knows, maybe we will see a resurgence of the old shows such as: Suspense, X Minus One, or even any of the other countless classic radio dramas.

If you want to check out Homecoming, episode 1 is embedded below.

Saturday, November 12, 2016

Assembling My Favorite Albums of 2016 List

We are nearing the end of 2016, and it has been a year to remember to say the least. Some very good. Some very bad. But as my tradition goes, I'm beginning to put together my favorite records of the year list. I'm looking for my 10 favorites out a list of 25. What will make the list....

Esperanza Spalding: Emily's D+ Evolution 
Radiohead: A Pool Shaped Moon
Green Day: Revolution Radio
David Bowie: Blackstar
Norah Jones: Day Breaks
Bloc Party: Hymns
Rogue Wave: Delusions of Grand Fur
Moby and the Void Pacific Choir: These Systems are Failing 
Frightened Rabbit: Painting of a Panic Attack
The Claypool Lennon Delirium: Monolith of Phobos
Elton John: Wonderful Crazy Night
Kayne West: The Life of Pablo
Iggy Pop: Post Pop Depression
Bob Mould: Patch the Sky
The Last Shadow Puppets: Everything You've Come to Expect
Yeasayer: Amen & Goodbye
The Lumineers: Cleopatra
Modern Baseball: Holy Ghost
Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds: Skeleton Tree
Regina Spektor: Remember Us To Life
Jimmy Eat World: Integrity Blues
Leonard Cohen: You Want it Darker
Tegan and Sara: Love You to Death
Weezer: Weezer
Bon Iver: 22, A Million

It dawned on my during the week that I left out two very important records from this list. So I am adding them now.

Moon Hooch: Red Sky
We/or/Me: Everything Behind Us is a Dream
Sarah Neufeld: The Ridge

The challenge of narrowing this list of albums down to ten has just become even more daunting.

Friday, November 11, 2016


I've found it difficult to be creative over the past few weeks. I need to work to resolve this issue.