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MUSIC, VIDEO (permalink) 02.17.2017
an email i received from bella:
This girl is like a grown grace vanderwaal in a way (very very unique song writing style, they're funny and beautiful at the same time, she's also very quirky herself) check out these original songs by her:

Your favorite daughter,

and in case you missed the grace wanderwaal experience, here is where it began

LIFE, MUSIC (permalink) 03.30.2016
work it hard like it's your profession
the art of time and life management has been my main hobby and interest for nearly twenty years now. in this time i've read works from just about all of the acknowledged greats and notables. james allen. marcus aurelius. tal ben-shahar. les brown. david burns. dale carnegie. jim collins. stephen covey. mihaly csikszentmihalyi. wayne dyer. epictetus. victor frankl. benjamin franklin. albert gray. marie kondo. staffan linder. matthieu ricard. tony robbins. martin seligman. seneca. hyrum smith. eric thomas. george e. valliant. and the modern-day master zig ziggler. if the topic has been how to bleed, intentionally, more out of this brief experience, i've probably studied it to some degree. and having consumed most of the usual suspects i always have an eye out for new treatments on the subject.

my latest self-help discovery comes from an unlikely place: britney spears. on our recent family road-trip to utah, during one of our highway dance parties, bella played a song she and marty sometimes "rocked-out" to on their way to or from school. the song's catchy bass-line immediately caught my ear and had my fingers drumming on the steering wheel. it wasn't until later though when i gave the song another listen that the depth and structure of the lyrics struck me. deconstructed, the song can be shown to deliver some top-flight, no-nonsense advice to those with aspirations, and does so in an undeniably intelligent manner. further, the message may be applauded for its pointedness and uncut honesty--i mean things don't get much more direct than the song's title 'work bitch' now do they? there are no quick fixes. there are no short cuts. there are no sugar-coated solutions. it is a truth that has held for thousands of years--work and effort get it done. end. of. story.
excerpted lyrics form Work Bitch

you wanna
you wanna
you wanna hot body
you wanna bugati
you wanna mazarati
you better work bitch

you wanna lamborghini
sippin' martinis
look hot in a buh-kini
you better work bitch

you wanna live fancy
live in a big mansion
party in france
you better work bitch

you better work bitch [3x]

NOW get to work bitch!
so that is how the song starts, by defining some visions. this is a long-held and common approach/belief of many self-help gurus. you gotta have vision of what you want. in this case you may mentally replace her choices with your own. perhaps her bugati is your promotion. or her partying in france is you being more connected with your family or friends. granted, her buh-kini is your bikini and mine because we all share that one. the short of it is though, you have to clearly put what you want out in front of you. and you have to keep it there front and center so you remember why it is you are working. and then the important part, the honest part, the part that most separates the doers from the dreamers--the actual work. everyone has wants but not everyone is willing to put in the work to attain those wants. so nothing like a little slap on the cheek and a barked name to get your attention.

then, with an equal intelligence, the latter part of the song addresses the magnitude of things by emphasizing the effortful (and inevitable) part of the process where your willpower will subside and you feel beat down (defeated even) and no one, possibly including yourself, believes it is possible, and when that happens you just have to "work it out" and stay with it.
Hold your head high
Fingers to the sky
They gon' try to try ya
But they can't deny ya
Keep it building higher and higher

So hold your head high
Fingers to the sky
Now they don't believe ya
But they gonna need ya
Keep it building higher and higher and higher

Work work (Work!) [7x]

Work it out [14x]
the technique at the end with the twenty-one repeated "Works" followed by a litany of "work it out"s gets to the amount of work and trial you are in for. this could be likened to the literary technique used in moby dick where the text is excruciatingly long and dull at times, but then so was life on a whaling ship. striving for goals involves a merciless amount of work. it also involves working though a seemingly bottomless well of challenges, doubt, resistance, lack of willpower, bad days. these drawn out refrains at the end imply what you're in for.

coming in at under four minutes, britney spears Work Bitch may be, word for word, minute for minute, one of the most efficient and effective self-help instruments ever devised. yes, ever. i'd place it in the top ten, if not the top five for potential to influence. as jason kottke recently said of mrs. spears, "Britney has always had something but damned if I know what it is." the mystery that is her brand, portfolio, and ongoing success continues.

but enough talk. time to get to work bitch!

VIDEO, MUSIC (permalink) 07.03.2015
new favorite
here's my new favorite all-time, acapella song.

when i first played it for bella, i blindfolded her and sat her in my office chair facing my stereo speakers and then blasted the song irresponsibly loud. something about that focused listening enriches the experience.

VIDEO, MUSIC (permalink) 06.12.2015
great, right down to the album title: Same Trailer Different Park
bella turned me onto this girl awhile back. at first i expected just another wispy dove-voiced girl who looked and moved right. but in each of the three videos my daughter sent me of the girl's work, i was repeatedly struck by her lyrics and storytelling. i'm not sure if she writes her own stuff or not but if so she's got a real talent for observation and bending it to fit her need. if it's someone else, she's got a good songwriter backing her up. i for one loved the days where songs more consistently made storytelling part of the craft (e.g. johnny b good, american pie).

MUSIC, VIDEO (permalink) 04.24.2015
proof that the mind is infitintely trainable
i don't know if this leaves me motivated or dispirited. whatever the feeling is, i couldn't help but force myself to experience it multiple times. sheesh.

and in case you thought it was a fluke, there's more.

MUSIC, VIDEO (permalink) 11.15.2013
what i would put in a time capsule shot into space.

MUSIC, VIDEO (permalink) 08.16.2013
he took me gourmet, we hit that olive garden, my little ita-lay.
while we were away, musical group karmin took a giant step forward. in case you're not familiar with their story karmin is a musical duo that met in college at an arts school. she studied singing and he studied the trombone. after school they started writing original music and posting it to youtube hoping to get noticed. they gained, as you might expect, exactly no traction with the galactic population so they, in a thoughtful and well executed move, chose to sing covers of songs. the thoughtful part of the move was the female of the duo had a penchant for singing rap songs in the shower so the dude suggested they cover one of those songs she typically only crooned in private. the execution was the other brilliant and more pivotal cocktail ingredient and by nailing the production brought their initial acclaim as the 84 million views at the time of this writing will attest. i'm assuming we can all agree, had they botched this execution/production they might at this very moment be cutting hair, waiting tables and dreaming about how close they were to doing what they loved.

this newfound attention allowed them to return to making original music, something they've done with respectable success. over the summer though they took it to a whole new level with a song that like it or hate it, you'd have to admit is right in the wheelhouse of the general population's taste and consumption needs.

and, if you put them up against the business advice from last week, i think they'd score well. granted we don't know if they'd buy a horse from an amish guy or a hotel from a pakistani, but i'd wager they know themselves well enough to know either of those pursuits would be a rookie move.

exhibit 1 - break-out moment from their small apartment.

exhibit 2 - and after several years of stayin' after it.

exhibit 3 - and lastly, a demonstration that acoustic versions of anything are awesome AND that they are still the two people back in that apartment and can still do a good bit of damage with not much more than a keyboard (this time using an acoustic guitar and wooden box).

MUSIC, VIDEO (permalink) 04.19.2013
last time i was in steamboat the music repeatedly playing in my earbuds was greatful dead's American Beauty. the final episode of freaks and geeks, which i watched shortly before my trip, made mention of this album as being one of the best ever (per the speaker's sense at least). this time while gliding down the same runs, katzenjammer's (a band i recently linked to) songs played on repeat all week. i came to learn of them through a colleague who sent me a link saying "these guys remind me of secret cajun band"--definitely not a sentiment one hears everyday nor one that would fail to garner my attention.

i've been in a state of mourning since the SCB crated their horns for the last time and i had essentially given up hope in finding someone with the a like stage presence and quirkiness. after giving the initial song a listen i had to concur, fully. not only was the sound reminiscent but the energy as well. intrigued, i continued listening and must say the catalog only improved the deeper i dove. rich and diverse stuff.

so i've prepared a modest katzenjammer concert for your end of week enjoyment. i think the below videos do a fair job at showing these young women's breadth of talent and range of personality. i'd recommend both of their albums (a kiss before you go & le pop) as plenty of head-bobbing and finger-drumming goodness exist in each. in no real order.

while there are better produced versions of this song (official video, studio version, solo version), i like the simplicity of this acoustic version which seems to have been done essentially in someone's driveway.

and anyone who knows me would know i'd be smitten with a song containing the following message for the lyrics alone.
everything you want, everything you do, everything and anything is up to you
every single day starts with a riddle, you can go left or right down the middle
so take a little trip down a road and see what you're gonna find who you want to be
but you might have to pick between these three

which one is it, it's your decision
and no matter what you choose, you're going to live it
shepard's song

i will dance

demon kitty rag

play my darling play

land of confusion

to the sea

MUSIC, VIDEO (permalink) 03.29.2013
guess again pal.
for any who might have thought i was serious about wishing to be don johnson, worry not, i outgrew that desire in 1985. my more mature answer would be ben franklin (less 50 pounds) or the blonde trumpeter in the below video.

MUSIC (permalink) 11.02.2012
this should not be humanly possible

MUSIC (permalink) 10.19.2012
and yes, of course the pink floyd shorts made an appearance
last night the south african band die antwoord was in my neighborhood and i went to see them. i posted their breakout video a few years back. a young guy i work with planned on going and offered to get me a ticket. in that i find this small group to have a phenomenally singular and alluring style, i signed up. anyone i told i of my plans said the same thing, "you're going to see them? why?". then they'd say they were weird or strange or odd. i'd say yes they are all of those things which is exactly why i wanted to see what they'd do onstage. in short, it was the most energetic and charged music show i've seen since the secret cajun band were in their heyday. what made the show so special was that you got the sense these guys were thrilled to be performing and immensely grateful for the large show of support. it is my experience that not all performers possess such gratitude towards their craft and/or success. sad and sucky.

i snapped the below image towards the end of the show. what you unfortunately don't see in the photo is the pulsing of the crowd which ninja and yolandi had worked up to a crazed frenzy. really cool to see. in fact, through the show people were throwing things on stage, things like shirts and hats and bracelets. during the peaking crescendo some dude threw his wallet on stage. or perhaps what happened was some guys wallet that fell out of his pants got thrown on stage by someone else. hard to say. either way it is a marked show of support.

KIDS, QUOTES, MUSIC (permalink) 10.25.2011
not exactly how you hear the disney djs calling it

this is the last album she made before she hit the wall of puberty.

bella commenting on a miley cyrus disc she slid into the car stereo.

FRIENDS, MUSIC (permalink) 06.23.2011
always my answer to what kind of music do you like.
in the early 90's a former high-school classmate of marty's invited marty and i to a concert. the friend's name was ligaya and her brother's band was performing in a local venue. as for me, i never met this ligaya NOR did i know anything about this band AND i had recently sworn off loud and smoky bar scenes so was highly unenthused about event. marty wanted to see her friend but didn't want to go alone so asked, kindly, if i would take one for the team and go with her. i relented.

upon seeing us arrive, ligaya waved us to some seats she had near the stage of an intimate local venue (the duck room of blueberry hill). ligaya proved to be a charismatic and engaging young woman. she and i quickly discovered a shared fondness for latin american literature and began exchanging thoughts on books and authors. while ligaya and i lost ourselves in our impromptu book chat, marty caught up with other old friends also at the table. so compelling was the ligaya time, (coupled with the fact i was facing away from the stage) i lost track of time and my surroundings for while ligaya and i were deep into borges, the band had taken their places on the stage, donned their equipment and were primed to play. so it was without warning that the sentence i was in the middle of was interrupted by the distinct clap of drumsticks as the drummer called out one-two-three-four in unison with the clicks. hearing this call, i turned towards the stage. i found i was sitting less than three feet in front of the horn section of a six-piece band. before i could blink twice to adjust my eyes to the stage lights, the horns let me have it. if my hair was the kind of hair that moved, it would have moved. before the first song was over, i had become the most ardent fan this group would ever know.

their name was the secret cajun band and they were a lively ska band comprised of young men that were every bit as lively and interesting as the songs they wrote and performed. their act was indescribable. it was a constant sea of unpredictable motion and antics. you'd constantly marvel at their ability to play an instrument while skipping merrily across the stage or balancing one-footed on a speaker or running, vigorously, in place. halfway through the show they were soaked through with sweat but the fans were even moreso as they were also driven to motion and excitement through the raw energy that emanated from the stage.

after that first night where those horns transformed me, i never missed a local show. their cassette (it was in the early nineties, mind you) was the only tape my car stereo played for more than two years. i, and at times marty, became a mainstay at a scb concerts. i'd help them carry equipment in or out, i'd watch the merchandise table, i even once was called up on stage to help sing big house with skip and skank with miguel. through my constant and doting presence, i came to know the band members. as for them, they grew up together and had a camaraderie and comfort i'd think all young men, lacking such pals, covet and i was surely no exception. they were such a colorful and quirky lot my relationship with each proved unique. some were easy and light, a few strained and awkward, a couple grew mature in time.

one of the relationships, the one i want to speak of today, was with the lead singer, erik, referred to as Skip by his bandmates. erik was a charming and handsome young man with lots of quiet charisma. add to this a soulful ability on the sax and top it all off with a distinct and strong singing voice. to an awkward musically incompetent fanboy like me, erik was just about everything a young introvert could hope for. in time, erik, marty and i became friendly. after shows we would sometimes sit for twenty minutes and after praising the night's production would talk about any and all topics. on a few occasions we went out to eat after a show. these would inevitably be at some all night diner where we'd continue our talks over soggy burgers and even soggier pancakes. on these more involved outings a common conversation point was relationships. in hindsight i got the sense that erik admired the straight and simple relationship marty and i shared just like i admired the exotic and famous lifestyle i imagined he lived. i still remember those late night conversations in those overly bright diners (extra-accented given where we just came from) like they happened five days ago and not fifteen years back.

the reason i bring this up is that erik rogers died yesterday. those of you who knew him, or his family, may have been keeping up on this, but a few weeks ago erik fell off a ladder while working in his backyard and was gravely injured in the fall. at the time of this accident, he was long past the music scene and was a working man and the father of two young girls. while it's obviously hard to see any young person unexpectedly pass, especially a father of young children, it is extra hard to loose those that were so bright with life and promise. completely heartbreaking.

i leave you with some of my favorite erik-sung cajun band songs from their big house album:

MUSIC (permalink) 05.13.2011

MUSIC (permalink) 03.01.2011
four out of five dentist agree, lady gaga has your best interest in mind
bella's recent ipod purchase has sent me into the depraved world of modern, popular music. lady gaga has been the latest talking point. having heard her name but not knowing anything about her, i bought a few of her albums. after pushing them to my ipod and listening to them while coding, i found what the rest of the free world had discovered months and years before me - her stuff is catchy, charged and kewl. if there's a burn it is that several of her songs are overly suggestive but, at bella's age, we're entering a period where it's hard to parentally ignore or deny such pervasive elements ... even when you don't have a tv.

that said, there is one song in her catalog that gave me great pause. it's called Teeth. yet, Teeth doesn't seem to be so much about teeth, in the academic sense at least. i've tried to make sense of the message but fear i'm a decade or two out of the conversant demographic. i assume hope it goes beyond her just having a tooth-thing like marty has a tooth thing (and dislikes chipped teeth in her suitors and offspring) and i hope it is figurative and she's trying to figure out what to make of an interested party and asking him/her to display their fierce and passionate edge. but which is the case is not abundantly clear and to date i've been the one expected to explain such matters to my children.

then one night while in the midst of struggling with this heady morsel and brushing anfer's teeth, he held his hand up in the middle of the job to pause me.

open your mouth dad.


i think you have a golden tooth.

TROY (opening mouth and mumbling)
i do. which one?

ANFER (in seeing all of my fillings)
OH! i think all of them! all of them are gold.

oh. that doesn't sound good.

when you were a boy, you ate candy too long.

and at that moment it occurred to me, perhaps this was gaga's angle. maybe she just wants to make sure her men or women didn't eat candy "too long" when they were little. in which case i not only feel ok about my daughter listening to her but am inclined to recommend her for your own daughters. of course, i'll leave it to you to interpret what is specifically meant in the same song by, "Take a bite of my bad girl meat". i'm hoping anthony will say something to me in the coming weeks that helps give meaning to that riddle as well. but aside from that lyrical gem, gaga is as good for your kids as fluoride itself.

MUSIC, VIDEO (permalink) 01.28.2011
with 108 million views, i doubt there is anyone left who hasn't seen it.
that said, i find this to be one of the most mesmerizing and impressive videos, ever. and not just for the obvious reasons. i won't bore you with my reasons, just know that i have reasons, again, beyond the obvious ones.

MUSIC, VIDEO (permalink) 01.21.2011
proof that every man has a sportin' chance

VIDEO, MUSIC (permalink) 01.14.2011
in the event you haven't been one of the 2.6 million views

MUSIC, VIDEO (permalink) 01.07.2011
a friday toe-tap

a great a cappella rendition of the king's rock with you

and the groovy original

and one of his most super, smooth bits of work back closer to his prime

VIDEO, MUSIC (permalink) 10.01.2010
if songs were graded by their first lyric, this one would do well
my boss was harassing me about my inconsistent use of serial commas, sometimes referred to as oxford commas, to which a student in our suite, overhearing the jocular ribbing, quietly emailed me the following video which stands as one of the most entertaining music videos i recall seeing.

please note there are some naughty words in there so if you're easily put-off by such offenses, i'd suggest this old room-pleaser instead.

VIDEO, MUSIC (permalink) 09.17.2010
feel good friday
the one you may have heard

the spirited original

and in case that didn't put a grin on your face and some tap in your foot.

MUSIC, VIDEO (permalink) 08.20.2010
get ready to tap a foot, drum a finger and hum a song all day.
in the crazed event you haven't been keeping up with pomplamoose, they have new stuff to enjoy (videos below).

and believe it or not i can appreciate more than the completely hypnotic nataly.

in fact, i use jack as an example in a class i teach of the good sorts of things that can happen when you live your life through your passions. he is every bit as inspirational to me as any high-brow, often touted personality.

MUSIC, VIDEO (permalink) 02.05.2010
i got some serious, like, gansta skill, ya know, on the mark
what follows is an unusual type of content for this site but someone sent it to me and it stands as one of the most surreal and mesmerizing things i've seen in some time. if i had to liken it to something i would call it a mashup of the castle, an american movie, multiple david lynch films sprinkled with various other movie and music influences too numerous to name.

caution: there are some naughty words and stamping visuals so if such things vex you, may i suggest some old parker lewis clips instead.

and there's definitely more humor at their website including a more ambitiously produced ninja video.

MUSIC, VIDEO (permalink) 01.22.2010
in the event you haven't yet seen this
i'm mystified on multiple levels by this.

MUSIC (permalink) 10.16.2009
imagine how beautiful the world would be if everyone loved what they did

MUSIC, WEB (permalink) 08.20.2009
i need a noun for "useless shower of ..."
it began with a video. the one below. i saw it referenced on a site i frequent and shared it with some colleagues. several weeks later, one of those colleagues directed me to an article about the viral manner in which the song, illegally used in this video, put the band on the map and caused their itunes portfolio to skyrocket. in the article, pissed-off musicians talk about their feelings regarding their record labels and how they, the record people, seem to be completely void of ideas or creative avenues to get their, the musician people, music heard. given the article is about several irate and youthful musicians, it is not for the verbally squeamish. but people who enjoy the unique combining of words, some bluer than the water in the featured video, should ought to enjoy it just fine.

and in case it needs to be said, a video such as this should be watched full screen and without interruption.

Kuroshio Sea - 2nd largest aquarium tank in the world
song is Please don't go by Barcelona

from Jon Rawlinson

QUOTES, MUSIC (permalink) 05.19.2009
how i've been feeling lately
if i'm so happy, i've got everything to lose
excerpt from i want to hear what you've got to say by the subways

MUSIC (permalink) 01.23.2009
dancing has always been one of the most peculiar human behaviors to me.

MUSIC, WEB (permalink) 12.04.2008
i just love this stuff

WEB, MUSIC, VIDEO (permalink) 10.08.2008
i'm handsome either way
here's something to appease/entertain you while i continue to recover from my everyman binge. in explanation, this is a re-version of this all-time great video (my opinion) that changes the lyrics to match what is actually happening in the video. super-neat.

and man do i wish i could draw like that.

MUSIC (permalink) 09.11.2008
two very soulful, yet disparate, samples of music

kottke is to thank for stevie's sesame street superstition and darkman gets the kudo for pulling some spiritual ska out of the cyber-well.

MUSIC (permalink) 12.19.2007
for you christmas listening pleasure(s).

image Twelve Days of Christmas
1.8 mb
performed by : truman state's True Men (site)
album : Christmas 2005
(site looks woefully outdated, but the christmas album is quite good/fun)

WEB, MUSIC, KIDS (permalink) 10.03.2007
this guy manages to convey in four minutes what i, in a embarrassingly curcuitious manner, have been trying to say for over five years. not only do i applaud this man's effort, i would like to offer to make for him some built-in bookshelves in his music room. and that isn't a joke. if you are this guy and you live in the continental united states, contact me. i'll be over. we'll share. we'll laugh. we'll bond.

thanks to all who forwarded it to me. i love it.

and for those who may have already seen the above, here's another, older pachabel treatment that clip reminded me of.

and, for any who don't have kids or a sense of humor, here's one for you

MUSIC (permalink) 06.06.2007
get your sing on
someone recently asked me what kind of music i'm into. like most i usually say "oh i don't know. all kinds i guess." i decided i was tired of this uninspired answer so i actually spent ten minutes thinking on it in that deserted island kind of way. my conclusion: i like a cappella and acoustic versions of music. i can track the a cappella back to my friend e-love who was the first to seriously introduce me to the genre and the acoustic roots probably connect to my father who for a time was a professional bluegrass musician and for as far back as i can remember our house was perpetually alive with the vibrant and natural sounds of his practicing and the ever-happening "pickin' parties" (although i admittedly didn't have a positive sentiment about it back in the day).

in example, below is a song i've been very much enjoying as of late. i knew a couple of the fellas in this university of rochester group and picked up a few of their albums as result. the simplicity and purity of this song in particular puts me in a smoother place without fail. as for the subject matter itself, i don't think i currently know anyone with green eyes (remember, i'm a calf man) but my third kid is somehow becoming blonder than a bleached eminem so that might count for something. and, as a last embarrassing testament to how tone-deaf and music-illiterate i am, i for sure listened to this song 50 times before it dawned on me that it was my friend who was the soloist. so, so sad. enjoy and if you like it, there's a lot of great stuff on their albums.

image Green Eyes
3.6 mb
performed by : u of rochester's midnight ramblers (site)
album : transistor radio (full catalog)
original artist : coldplay

VIDEO, MUSIC (permalink) 01.31.2007
if i could do this, i'd never leave my kitchen table
if you found the videos from yesterday's post at all compelling, this one will topple you. one thing to know before watching ... the slow-mo deal about mid-way through is not the camera, it is the guy.

Reggie Watts: Out of Control
click to jump

VIDEO, MUSIC (permalink) 01.30.2007
i could watch this guy all day long ... and sometimes do

click to jump

and if you liked that, here is another one by the same guy.

click to jump

VIDEO, MUSIC (permalink) 10.06.2006
the rave party in this only child's head
this video portrays how i think my life would have been different if i had a sibling ...

and could dance ...

and looked good in a red thong ...

MUSIC (permalink) 09.20.2006
whiter than sour cream
weird al's latest, hits terribly close to home for the likes of me.

PERSONAL, KIDS, MUSIC (permalink) 12.14.2005
rain, sleet nor vomit could keep me from an e-love affair
last night e-love's acapella group had its first concert of the season. the whole family was slated to attend until alex puked, or as bella would say, choked-up, all over the arm of his coat an hour after waking up. later, while walking bella home from school, i explained that alex was sick and i would stay home with him so she and mom could go to the concert. she turned to me and pleadingly exclaimed ...

but father, e-love is your best friend! you MUST go to his concert!

she's a smart girl and alex is a fake choke-upper because we collectively got green-lit for the show by our medical staff. a few songs into the performance bella got my attention and over the applauding audience screamed in my direction ...

father! thank you for inviting us to your show. i'm having so much fun i'm about to fall asleep!

and, that was not facetious. bella doesn't yet know how to be facetious. it was a four year old girl's unadulterated and delirious gratitude towards a father who snuck her into a concert under the hem of his coat.

and, wondering how one climbs the ranks of troy-peeps to hold the number one slot? a sure-fire way is to not only get a gaggle of guys to sing my all-time favorite christmas song but also to dedicate it to me every time you sing it at your christmas concerts. and i imagine e-love wouldn't mind my sharing it with you all. i hope you enjoy it, but not to bella-like levels because that would mean seventeen otherwise productive people would be sprawled back in their padded work chairs in blissful, flatulent slumber on the clock and how could the world's economy possibly hope to ever again right itself?

carol of the bells
performed by amen

MUSIC, FRIENDS (permalink) 08.04.2005
just some woman's hunk of eye candy
these days, as we all know, i live in saint louis, which in the month of august means i live on the face of the sun. in saint louis, we have an outdoor theatre called the muny. Thin When Tan Girl and her man treated marty and i to West Side Story last night. at the show's intermission when the lights came up i looked around and thought to myself how stinking uncomfortably hot all these people looked. when i turned to my theater-mates, they looked quite startled and exclaimed 'wow. troy. you look ... awfully ... shiny.'

is it my fault i have rich, moist skin?

speaking of rich, moist skin, West Side Story is my all-time favorite musical. it holds this esteemed position for two reasons. firstly, one of the two mormon girls i was hopelessly in love with in high school played a pivotal part in my school's senior year production of it. and secondly, this same girl would sing the musical's songs to me after school when we drove around in her family's car that smelled like vomit. (this mixture of sensory input caused a real schism in some of my brain's memory pathways later in life. fortunately for me, i have rich, moist skin so i'm not expected to be all that together, mentally at least.)

WEB, PERSONAL, MUSIC (permalink) 04.01.2005
bella has put me on a 30 day time-out
it's that time of year again, that time when your host checks out for a month. actually i'm a month early but this is one of the beautiful things about being your own boss.

i'll be back monday, may 2nd.

meanwhile enjoy this and this and this and this.

and this.

UPDATE : check back on monday. i may have something to keep you entertained throughout the month. well, occupied for 3 minutes a day at least.

AND ... lucky for you, michaelcosm is stepping up and coming out of hibernation for a month to regale us with five new michaelpellas.

tune in every friday.

we all know the boy does not dissapoint.

p.s. michael ... i love your rap month logo! too awesome!

QUOTES, MUSIC (permalink) 01.20.2005
four more years of this charlatan? damn.
Come you masters of war
You that build the big guns
You that build the death planes
You that build all the bombs
You that hide behind walls
You that hide behind desks
I just want you to know
I can see through your masks

You that never done nothin'
But build to destroy
You play with my world
Like it's your little toy
You put a gun in my hand
And you hide from my eyes
And you turn and run farther
When the fast bullets fly

Like Judas of old
You lie and deceive
A world war can be won
You want me to believe
But I see through your eyes
And I see through your brain
Like I see through the water
That runs down my drain

You fasten the triggers
For the others to fire
Then you set back and watch
While the death count gets higher
You hide in your mansion
As young people's blood
Flows out of their bodies
And is buried in the mud

You've thrown the worst fear
That can ever be hurled
Fear to bring children
Into the world
For threatening my baby
Unborn and unnamed
You ain't worth the blood
That runs in your veins

How much do I know
To talk out of turn
You might say that I'm young
You might say I'm unlearned
But there's one thing I know
Though I'm younger than you
Even Jesus would never
Forgive what you do

Let me ask you one question
Is your money that good
Will it buy you forgiveness
Do you think that it could
I think you will find
When your death takes its toll
All the money you made
Will never buy back your soul

And I hope that you die
And your death'll come soon
I will follow your casket
In the pale afternoon
And I'll watch while you're lowered
Down to your deathbed
And I'll stand o'er your grave
'Til I'm sure that you're dead

bob dylan's masters of war

while you may believe this song was written in the last 5 years, it was actually penned over 40 years ago. i don't know what's more evil, that it was divined then or that it still applies today.

MUSIC (permalink) 01.04.2005
you had your chance, now i'll take mine
the worst thing about being an adult is that christmas is not as special as when you were a kid. please refer to The Polar Express for evidence, the book, not that hollywood dollar-whore garbage.

the best thing about being an adult is that after all the mangled wrapping paper is on the curb, you're free to go buy whatever wasn't under the tree on the big day. my own indulgence came in the form of a 40gb ipod this year.

and i'm one purchase closer to my journey towards completion.

QUOTES, MUSIC (permalink) 08.20.2004
my favorite song lyric ever
shake it.
sh-shake it.
shake it.
sh-shake it.
shake it.
sh-shake it.
shake it.
sh-shake it.
shake it.
sh-shake it.
shake it like a polaroid picture.


(repeat again)

(and repeat one last time)

from the chorus of Hey Ya! by Outkast

when i was telling marty about this, she thought for a moment before replying "well, those polaroids were a pretty neat technology".

COMPUTER, MUSIC, FRIENDS (permalink) 07.28.2004
hate the eLove and his sucky ePod
so not even 10 minutes after making yesterday's post about how i'm sick and it's because i haven't got my iPod yet, my FORMER friend e-love sends me the following email and picture.

So when Carrie's in town and buys an iBook, guess what $200 off promotion she decided to let her brother-in-law participate in? I'm so happy. :)

i was clear on the FORMER friend bit, right? and the sister-in-law ain't so high in my book either. granted, i'm five months delinquent in responding to an email from her, but still!

COMPUTER, MUSIC, PERSONAL (permalink) 07.27.2004
cough, hack, phlegm, fart and moan
i'm sick. i'm certain it's because i haven't been able to buy my new ipod yet. i told marty that my health will continue to slide until this need has been sated. you know what she said?

"you've got thirty two dollars in your savings account. if that's how much a shiny new ipod cost, then knock yourself out." (she said the words 'shiny new ipod' while flitting her hands around in the air mockingly)

you know what i said...
"why do YOU know how much money I have in MY checking account?"

you see this is what i call getting to the point while confusing the subject. but she's good, as can be seen in her response...
"cuz i'm smart"

i wasn't expecting that. now reeling, i have no choice but to revel in the suck that is my financial situation...
"thirty two dollars. that ain't very much!"

while having my loving wife rub my nose in the sad state of things...
"no it ain't."

looks like we may be seeing a new ipod fund on the horizon. and i got that one without selling blood or semen which means this time around should be a snap because if this latest illness has taught me anything, it's taught me that i'm all about the bodily fluid. just ask marty.

MUSIC, COMPUTER (permalink) 07.20.2004
talk about a punch in the mouth
i almost bought one of these today which means if i don't own one by friday, i've been kidnapped and locked in a basement to serve as someone's gimp or hit by a cellphone talking motorist. and for those who have never met me, we're talking about the 40gb variety, not the child-size 20.

and, the sweetest part of this whole announcement is that it comes on the heels of sony's media player challenge to apple. even before apple released these new models it took me all of two seconds to see that what sony came to play with had no kind of prayer. sony seems to think people buy the ipod solely for disk space, size and the whatnot. how can the makers of the vaio be that clueless about the design and innovation factors behind apple's player. regardless, with a sexier, cheaper ipod up to bat, sony may as well cut their losses and donate the units they've produced to retirement communities or the like cuz theys about to get a very solid ass-whoopin.

and, let us not forget sony's last contribution to the computer-based music scene. not exactly who i want in charge of my digital media.

for any potential buyers of my first generation ipod, i think marty's got eyes for it.

and in closing, sony please bite me ... yet again.

QUOTES, MUSIC (permalink) 01.13.2004
good art speaks to the past, present and future
i feel hot and red and wired
i feel burned out like i've expired
freaky dreams and you are there
with glowing eyes and burning hair
and i am even dreaming violent

every nerve and every cell
they've got to fight to stay alive and well
i'm in a world of chronic discontent
screaming metal and burning rubber
always shoving and raping and cursing each other
exploding into violence

try some, buy some, wheeling dealing
buy it or steal it if it makes you feel it.
we want it intense, we want our violence.
get ready to take it all the way
the things they do, the words they say
it's all so ready to get violent

wedding bells are pink and white.
chocalates and candlelight.
you and me and we make three.
like a comedy that never played quite right.
it's seems so easy and it looks so clean
all the shiny happy people in the magazines
but nothing seems to mean what it meant.

a flood of blood and a burning pain
broken hearts and throbbing brains
a message has been sent and it's violent

concrete blonde's violent from their group therapy album

MUSIC, WEB (permalink) 09.26.2003
so this thing has been going on on the net now for some time

while my influence on things in this world may be a tad on the lean side, i like to think that where i do guide events, they are events of consequence and import. i have to feel this way because there is really only one thing i've ever helped along and by every estimation it is one of the coolest institutions in the modern and connected world.

you may have popped in, stumbled upon it by accident or heard about it in the chat rooms but if it is not part of each and every friday you exist, you're making a grave error. so since today is friday and you're here reading this, it means you're not there enjoying that, so get over to the division of michaelcosm, michaelpella and be enthralled, entranced and bettered for it is something you should not go without.

MUSIC, WEB, FRIENDS (permalink) 03.14.2003
i wonder if it will be coming out on dvd
he's at it again.

WEB, PERSONAL, MUSIC (permalink) 02.21.2003
he won't be doing that again
our mailman smokes or rather chews a cigar while walking his route. he is a very affable guy and when we moved in he made it a point to come up and introduce himself. we religiously receive a christmas card from him, chat regularly, basically we're friendly.

sometimes if we have more stuff than will fit through the door's mail slot and the door is unlocked he will come in, go to the kitchen and set our mail on the counter and then leave as discreetly as he entered. i like this. it's a little bit of mayberry right here in the big city.

the other day he was bringing one such bundle in when he caught me home from work, heating a plate of leftovers in the oven and singing michaelpella-style to the stevie nicks melody Edge of Seventeen. ok, so getting caught doing the whole singing thing, pretty bad, but it was what i was doing while singing that proved the real burn. i have this condition where hearing stevie nicks makes me want to move and groove as she did in those long 70's flowing, tasseled dresses. unfortunately, in my homage, something doesn't properly translate. perhaps it's the undersized khakis, my awkward grinding motions or even the contorted faces i make when singing. bottom-line is it may look a tad off.

steve the mailman got a little more than he bargained for on this day.

on the positive side, at least it lessens the embarrassment of all the brown wrapper magazine and vhs sized parcels he delivers to my address.

note: it didn't occur to me until writing this up that i always thought the lyrics of this song said just like a one-winged dove instead of the more accurate and flight-worthy white-winged dove.

and for my lackadaisical postings this week, i'm givin' love with the above and this and this.

MUSIC (permalink) 08.08.2002
i laughed, i cried, i shook my booty
the new musical Mama Mia has one very significant thing going for it; it is not Cats. and even with this on their side, they were not dissuaded from abba-lutely blowing everyone in the forum out of their chairs by night?s end. this show rawks! between the charged music, frenzied choreography and striking set this production is one of the most entertaining i?ve seen in some time. and as if the above points weren?t enough, thin when tan girl had to hold her nose to prevent her patented nasal-snorting laughter from overtaking the auditorium ... and thus creating a twenty seat chasm between us and the next closest patron.

should mama mia wend its way through your hamlet, buy! buy! buy!

MUSIC, WEB (permalink) 08.02.2002
embarrassed by that? it?s not even in my top 10.
if you wandered into the what i'm hearing section, you may have noticed it has a new look. in spending the last few days hacking on that, i devoted many cycles on listening to music, thinking about music, organizing my music and even laying hands on some new music. in fact, this month's offering comes from bookguy. now this unemployed bloke jet sets all over the planet and the one dirge he returns with has a total of nine unique words in it, and they're not even in english. sheesh. and, of what little spanish i know, these scant words don't even seem right. i asked bookguy about this and he replied:

me gustas tu - indirect object pronouns precede the verb. in this case the literal translation is 'you are pleasing to me', idiomatically it means i like you.

what can i say, bookguy's smart. bookguy also doesn't question native speakers on matters of their own tongue. like i said, smart. once satisfied with its grammatical correctness i listened to this nine-word, four-minute song on repeat for one hour. i'm smart too.

well, anyway, back to these random thoughts on music. one thing i recalled dealt with how my mother never knocked before coming into my room. any women reading this, please just accept that you should not walk straight into teenage boys rooms without some sort of fanfare or ceremony announcing the visit. you'll will hear things going on behind the door before it opens. this is good. you want this to be happening. ultimately i'm just trying to save you the embarrassment my mother suffered when she burst into my room and found me standing in front of a full length mirror singing and dancing to the Grease soundtrack. i was all over every move from the Greased Lightning bit, using my bed as the car. regrettably, i had the music up so loud i didn't hear her enter and continued the mini-production until her laughter overwhelmed my Optimus speaker 'system'. and, yes i had the whole arm pointing and hip bucking thing all worked out too. i don't play when i'm getting my greased lightning going.

amazingly given this trauma, somehow, years later, i was able to overcome the shame of my mother's invasion enough to ask a girl to move around funny with me on the dance floor at a junior high, all-stag affair. jenna something conceded (astoundingly) and we weaved our way through the crowd to the beginnings of hipsway's honeythief. we settled on a spot and marked it as ours by stopping, facing one another and then moving about in a seizing manner. my mother wasn't around so my body was quick to do what it does. falling into the zone, i drifted somewhere else, my head rolling back looking upwards at the tile ceiling and the random streamers coming down as my body fought an invisible enemy. i was really starting to let go, opening it up some might say, but who couldn't, this is hipsway we're talking about. but again, regrettably, my introduction to dance with other humans was cut short when my thrusting hand accidentally struck my partner in the ribcage leaving her slightly bent, holding her side and breathing irregularly. as people stopped to look and a smallish circle formed i could tell that some people may have been embarrassed by this development but those people would not have spent a moment of their life standing in their underwear, soaked with sweat, a musical playing behind them and shouting at their mother to stop laughing, get out of their room and to try knocking next time.

MUSIC (permalink) 06.12.2002
i heard crispin glover was the editor
did you know that david lynch started making stage productions? did you know that he started using crystal meth, heroin and ectasy while working? if you did not know these things and would like evidence, i suggest you catch cats.

MUSIC (permalink) 06.04.2002
stop it, you're killing me
sorry, you?ll have to forgive me because i know it?s old news but it happened while i was away and i must speak to the sony music protection debacle (which i was moaning about back on 04.16.02). let me just take a moment to say HAAAA HAAAA AAAAHHH HAAAA HAAAAA (gasp for breath) BAAAA HAAAA AAAAHHH HAAAA HAAAAA.

keep up your ground-breaking and bullet-proof innovations sony because you WILL win. we all know it.

WEB, FRIENDS, MUSIC (permalink) 04.29.2002
coming to a town near you
ever wonder what happens when bookpimp and buddy james are left alone, bored and online over the weekend? allow them to put your whirling mind to rest with their recent creation.

after reviewing our touring schedule, i?m releived i didn?t throw my terry cloth thong out after all. especially since the stain is only visible when i?m not wearing it.

NEWS, MUSIC (permalink) 04.16.2002
we castrate on the second offense.
have you heard the latest? in attempt to quell the music sharing revolution, music companies are now selling cd's that not only won't play on a computer but will, by design, actually crash the computer if attempted ... like halting a computer mid-processing is some innocuous and meaningless matter.

before today i kept my napster, limewire, morpheus and other music sharing avenues to a moderate minimum before, out of respect of the abuse factor. it is now my intention to download every song sony music has ever produced and make it easily and readily available for any and all who may be so inclined to do the same. and if those dollar whores at sony and the other record companies think that the geeks on this planet will not break, crack, destroy and annihilate any safeguards they may take, they are thicker than the prophylactic measures they employ.

crash _my_ computer in the name of your profit margin. yeah, right. bite me sony.

MUSIC (permalink) 03.26.2002
ipod redux
sorry bookpimp but it?s really not my fault.

two weeks after buying my first ipod, I purchased my second ipod at the apple store in st paul?s atrocity of america. this would be because 9 days after buying my first ipod, apple released a newer and bigger ipod for a mere $100 more and as I like to say when dealing in such matters, they?re giving them away. So now instead of 5gb I have 10gb of space and instead of having 1000 songs I have 2000.

the first thing marty asked was where i planned on getting the extra 100 bucks. i was happy to report that my wedding ring already drew an impressive $135 on ebay.

COMPUTER, MUSIC (permalink) 03.14.2002
let me just hit pause here long enough to say ...
i certainly hope i have demonstrated that when i see something i want, need, crave and covet i can whore up with the best of them. grail like in its majesty the shiny bauble now rests in my recently washed and thoroughly exfoliated hand. we've been unduly and unjustly kept from one another, but not again, never again, will i abandon you my sweet. i will carry you in your protective sheath near my heart, clipped at the waist or tucked in the man-purse but you will be on my person at all times. my living will is being adjusted as we speak and as of this moment i will never share my bed with another.

ok bookpimp, i'm done. i'm finally and exhaustively done.

COMPUTER, MUSIC (permalink) 03.13.2002
you'll have to excuse me for a moment


MUSIC (permalink) 01.17.2002
i'm going to need a minute
still mourning the whole gwen thing.

who next, penelope cruz?

MUSIC (permalink) 01.15.2002
she could have been the one, another one at least
gwen is getting married.


MUSIC, QUOTES (permalink) 12.13.2001
happy holidays
i told the preist don't count on any second coming
god got his ass kicked the first time he came down here slumming
he had the balls to come, the gall to die and then forgive us
no i don't wonder why, i wonder what he thought it would get us
excerpt from Concrete Blonde's 'Tomorrow Wendy'
off the Bloodletting album

MUSIC, WEB (permalink) 11.21.2001
do you have any kaja-googoo
We've got film, literature and tales of self-deprecation. How's bout we add some melodic stylings to the mix. Please swing by and visit the newly added What I'm Hearing section of the dearmitt playhouse.

WEB, MUSIC (permalink) 11.14.2001
the secret cajun band site went public yesterday. while the site is not quite baked, i guess it's more baked than the previous site. I simply got the order to put it up so up it went. it is still missing some content (i.e. photos, tour dates, order form) but guess most people will be able to figure it out.

if you are looking to burn a couple of minutes, i'd recommend visiting the quotes page. nothing, other than their actual music, will give you a better flavor for the palatial characters that made this musical entourage up. The below picture, from the inside sleeve of the liquid monkey cd, also goes a long way in defining these fellows. The guy on the left is the trumpet player, swamp daddy, and the dancing girl is the guitar player's sister, gaya. Had this picture been entered in the everyman contest, it would have had more than a sporting chance on going home with honors.

MUSIC (permalink) 10.31.2001
and by the way
yesterday's entry about the best name for a ska band dislodged an ancient hunk to debris from my mind today that's about 7 years old. i recalled hearing about a band that i feel is truly the best musical moniker ever, be it ska, jazz, or rockabilly...Too Fat to Skate. just try and tell me you wouldn't love to hear the croonings of the minds that invented that.

and, spooky halloween to you all.

MUSIC (permalink) 10.30.2001
coming to a town near you
miguel was over during the weekend putting the finishing touches on the secret cajun band site. i had commented that i thought the same people who name ska bands (alcoskalics, skatalites, skarlatines, alaska and so on) were the same people who named pornographic films (tool of the nile, for your thighs only, forrest hump, romancing the bone and so on). he said the band would on occassion try to come up with the quintessential ska band name. it was dogger in the end who coined what would be considered by all to be the alpha option. all i know is that i'd stand in line in the rain, on a work night and deathly ill to obtain a ticket to see a band named Malcom Skamal Warner.

MUSIC (permalink) 07.26.2001
i can see your religion
David Copperfield hasn?t got a thing on this girl.

Editorial Note: I hate that I and the rest of the free world knows this hacks name. ?Watch and be astounded while I make the planet and every living thing disappear live on network television.? No, Davey, you sit and watch while I amass the contempt of a thousand planets in your direction. Consider it my show of gratitude for turning the fascinating art of sleight of hand into nothing more than commercialized sleight of mind.

MUSIC (permalink) 07.13.2001
we'd like 50 wallet-size please
the older i get, the less i can explain.

PERSONAL, WEB, FILM, MUSIC (permalink) 06.01.2001
Godspeed 2001
Tonight Marty and I will be attending the graduation ceremony at the high school she teaches at. Each year at this time we watch as a fresh crop of students jet off for the exciting and frightening unknown that is independence, responsibility and free form decisions. While I am hopeful of the experiences they will enjoy, the selfish lobe in my mind desires them to remain, For me, the therapeutic benefits of my interactions with many of them is marked.

David Lienemann possesses a quiet and refined maturity rarely seen in a person of his age. I regularly marvel at his view and interpretation of the society around us. With gifts in the form of photography, music, business, and human nature, it's more than hard to remember he cannot legally drink. One of my first conversations with him involved this website and he told me it seemed pretty good but that it needed more pictures. I asked if he was suggesting I put up more of my pictures or publish some of his. "Yes", he replied and days later supplied me with a block of photos from a recent trip he had taken. That was many months ago and I have just recently completed the feature and invite you to visit California in Reason to see the work of a future photo great.

Jessica Campbell, known by many as the gay sister in Election and/or the hermaphrodite in Freaks and Geeks, will be departing to hone her skills on the big screen. I don't really know Jessica but regularly saw her at various school functions and events. These encounters always weirded me out given how much I enjoyed and remembered election and freaks. I have spoken with Jessica a few times (Stalker! Stalker!) and she is an intelligent, lovely and spookily centered young woman who is traveling in the first class section of the success concord. She has already filmed her next picture, The Safety of Objects, starring Glenn Close, which should be coming out this summer.

The Amen boys, the departing ones at least, represent my most selfish loss. These gifted acapella entertainers have provided me with more hours of enjoyment than they can conceive. Whether tapping a toe to Elliot's remarkable rendition of the Streets of Philadelphia (philidelphia.mp3 - 4,387kb), slapping a thigh during Roundy's energetic Basketcase (basketcase.mp3 - 4,100kb) or getting dizzy watching the Pennington twins lead the always randy Instanbul (instanbul.mp3 - 3,154kb), these guys will be sorely missed and prove to me that life is in fact not fair given the unreasonable amounts of natural charisma and talent dealt out to each one of these young men.

My social microcosm will certainly feel the loss of these and other students but humans across the country will have the benefits of making their acquaintance. Treat them honestly and well because they make me smile. And for those of you who do not have access to our exceptional youth allow me to confirm that while the bad ones are getting worse (ala columbine), rest assured that the good ones are absolutely getting better.

MUSIC (permalink) 04.04.2001
the 150 song compilation CD ... get yours now
The greatest caveat to ill-fortune is that you are bound for things to pick up around the corner. Such is the case with my car stereo. If one gets swiped, a replacement gets bought. In my case the stand-in serves as a significant upgrade at half the cost. I made it my mission to locate an MP3 capable in dash CD player. At the time of this writing, unearthing such a unit was no small task. If you have not done similar research, prepare to be dumbfounded.

One could say that the car stereo industry does not have their finger on the pulse of the people, but that would be a grotesque understatement. All the major players have absolutely neglected the current phenomenon known as MP3 and Napster. For the few that did try to get their arms around it, only one did it right. They also happen to be the first to market. Aiwa produced the first and almost exclusive head unit that possesses the basic functionality anyone with an internet connection and cd burner would seek. The others are now scrambling to meet the demand but are all eons away from actually putting product in the hands of the consumer. Given this, I would direct anyone with a similar thirst to AIWA's CDC-MP3.

MUSIC (permalink) 02.16.2001
what did you d/l just before napster died?
so last night i do a google search on MIAMI VICE MUSIC and the first hit leads me here. Now while i could poke fun at that fact that this site exists, i feel unable to for three reasons:

1. i actually conducted a search for the information.
2. it is exactly what i was looking for and is pure gold.
3. it is 500% more useful than my own site.

for those of you thinking i'm dating myself with this crocket and tubbs reference , realize that i was literally dating myself in the mid 80's given that this show ran at 9pm on fridays (MOM! I WAS TAPING THAT!).

MUSIC (permalink) 08.10.2000
Whatcha listening to?
find yourself tapping your toe to the latest eminem offering and pissed off that you are tapping your toe to the latest eminem offering. don't sweat it. a lot of people are suffering from the same affliction, finding themselves unable to resist this verbal pied piper.

historically, rap has utilized the pedestrian format of rhyming the last word of every two lines. accepting this postulate, we have all dabbled in modern rap via our adolescent poetry written for a Mrs. Frink or whoever your junior high english teacher may have been. granted, some more abitious rappers embraced an elizabethan or victorian approach, integrating modest forms of iambic pentameter and other like designs into their prose.

but, emimem introduces us to a technique he has created, mastered and popularized. this dopplar modification to the static norm presents a technique he terms the 'inline rhyme'. DEFINED: rhyme as many words as possible on every line. RESULT: a whole lot of people pissed off that they are tapping their toe to the music.

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