Calculate your chances...negative...negative...negative!

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

This Was My House A Few Nights Ago.



(I don't mean that literally, just the same scenario.)

Monday, April 21, 2008

Brilliant Site!

I have a hunch I'm the last to know about this, but check out Trailers From Hell. Directors of a mostly cultish nature, giving commentary over trailers of Psychotronic films that influenced them. On the negative side, there's a lot of Eli Roth. However, there's alot of Joe Dante, so it all balances out. (To be fair, the Roth stuff I've watched is actually pretty good.)

Be cautious though, there's loads of spoilers in the commentaries, though you can just watch the trailers as they are.

Here's a good one, where the director of Shaun of the Dead discusses Danger: Diabolik (aka the source for the Beastie Boys' "Body Movin'" video.)



Joe Dante nails From Hell It Came:



PS: dunno if it's just me or my connection, but the trailers really stutter on the streaming.

Saturday, April 19, 2008

Music To Assemble Ikea Furniture By

The last couple of nights I've been putting together a bunch of Ikea furniture so I loaded up the CD player with some Mosaic sets I've been meaning to spend some time with. If you don't know, Mosaic is a small jazz specialist label who do primarily high end box sets centered around a complete segment of an artist's work.

Their big boxes are pretty neat. They have a consistent look and bring together a lot of hard to find material. They're also highly collectible so the sting of the cost of admission is tempered by the fact that everything they've put out has gone up in value, if you care about such things. I've been real lucky that I've found most of mine really cheap. I've only paid collector's price once and managed to buy another on sale.

Of course, when they started out, the music was much harder to get than it is now. A growing criticism about Mosaic is that much of the music in their sets gets reissued by the licensing labels once the Mosaic set goes out of print. For instance, I'm pretty sure almost everything in the Jackie McLean Complete Blue Note 1964-66 Sessions set (which was the second Mosaic I bought) is available through Blue Note at a much cheaper cost. But, people still like the Mosaic sets as they generally have great liner notes and lots of cool pictures.

Recently Mosaic has created a second line of smaller sets called Mosaic Select and this was what I started with. Specifically, it was the Duke Pearson set. The Select series has been a bit controversial as the stuff contained in these sets hasn't been as hard to find. The Pearson set is a good example of this as I think one could assemble this set with a combination of domestic and Japanese Blue Note discs, but if you don't want to import, this is a cheaper alternative.



Anyway, Duke Pearson was a pianist who ended up as an A&R, house arranger and kind of all round go to guy at Blue Note in the 60s. This set focused on his last batch of sessions for the label in the late 60s. If you know anything about Blue Note, you know this was a transitional period for the label (and jazz itself.) These recordings have a commercial bend, to be sure, but I think there's some gems in there.

Specifically, the first session which came out on LP as "The Phantom" is a keeper. It's also been recently reissued domestically on Water Records. Bobby Hutcherson, who is maybe my favorite vibe player, adds a lot to these soulful bossa nova tunes. Duke must have been really feeling the Latin vibe as pretty much all the stuff on the first two discs continues in this groove. As a comparison, it's kind of like a stripped down version of some of what CTI was doing at the same time. It's maybe a little lightweight, but I dug it.

However, the third disc tripped me up. It ends with "Merry Old Soul" a Christmas album. This actually sounded kind of cool, but I'm just not ready for Christmas music yet. But, prior to that, is a session with a chorus that is straight up old school dentist office music. I really wanted to find something to like on this stuff, but it was way too easy listening for me to dig.

My recomendation would be for someone to get the reissue of "The Phantom" and pass on the whole set unless you can hear some samples first. This is not going to be everyone's bag and while I'm glad to have it in the collection, it's pretty non-essential stuff.



The bulk of my furnature building was done to the Classic Argo, Emarcy and Verve Small Group Buddy Rich Sessions. This was the one I actually bought new. Most of this stuff is hard to come by as little of it has been released on CD domestically. Plus, there's an entire unreleased session of about an album's worth of material.

This stuff is really interesting to me. It's squarely between two big band periods for Rich. During this time, Buddy was kind of in flux, even giving up drums to become a song and dance man for a while. What's really interesting about this set is hearing how good an accompanist he could be when he wanted to. As he was trying to downplay the drumming, there's not a ton of fireworks here. Just Buddy grooving behind some great musicians. (Not to worry though, he does whip out a solo often enough that you don't ever forget whose name is on the label.)

For my money, the best stuff in this set is on the last four discs when Buddy has a working group going with vibe man Mike Mainieri. What possessed Rich to put together a front line with vibes and flute, I'll never know, but it works. And you'd think it would be all lightweight west coast stuff, but there's some fire here.

I also really like the live set that kicks off disc four. Flip Phillips is a player I'm not terribly familiar with, but he really steals the show there. The first three discs are quality as well. Lots of Basie alumni and lots of Basie tunes. Nothing wrong with it at all, but I just think the later stuff with Buddy's working group, as opposed to the people thrown together for the session, is more interesting.

To be sure, for someone who only listens to Buddy Rich for the drum solos, I'd say avoid this and stick with the 60s and 70s big band stuff. If you dig the 50s Verve stuff and mainstream early 60s jazz, I'd say this is a good set to pick up. Plus, if you're the kind of person who thinks Buddy overplays, I think you'll be surprised.

Speaking of overplaying, I batted cleanup with the Stan Kenton Complete Holman/Russo Charts. This set holds the distinction of being the one I paid the least for. (And I mean a ridiculously low amount, less than the cost of a single CD.) It's also the one that I don't think I'm ever going to really get into.

See, I can appreciate arrangers. I can appreciate the idea of arranger's bands. I dig Gil Evans, for instance. I think I just don't like the Kenton style. It's too loud, to brassy, not swinging enough for me. Frankly, a lot of this set sounded like mediocre soundtrack material. Then there were some vocal sides that were just corny.

So, anyway, if you like the idea of jazz played by a marching band, maybe you should seek this one out. I don't think I'll be putting this one back in the player any time soon, if ever.

And, in case you were wondering, I got a new computer desk and a dresser that is going to be perfect for CD storage. I like Ikea stuff, but their store freaks me out.

Friday, April 11, 2008

You Shoulda Been Here...

because you would have heard all this while I was fixing the computer:

Eric Dolphy - The Complete Prestige Recordings (Discs 1 & 2) I bought this set when it came out. It was pretty expensive and I was still a neophyte on the jazz tip. What possessed me to take a $120 (I think) leap of faith, I'll never know. But glad I did.

And the crazy thing is, I bought this sucker at Best Buy! Try finding ANY jazz at Best Buy today that isn't Miles' Greatest Hits, A Love Supreme or whatever Kenny G. poops out, let alone a nine CD comprehensive set from a bass clarinet avant playing cult figure.

But I digress...

One and Two cover Dolphy's "Outward Bound," Oliver Nelson's "Screamin' the Blues" and Ken McIntyre's "Looking Ahead." If you know anything about early 60s jazz, those titles should tell you everything you need to know about the contents. If you don't, well, the first and third are more "modern" with what was then pretty avant guard stuff while the second is more downhomey, Saturday night BBQ.

When I first got this set, the Nelson sides (and there's two albums worth here) didn't impress me as much as the more "out" stuff. Now I've really come to appreciate just the soulful bluesy stuff. Of the listening, this was probably what hit me closest to right the other day, though it's all pretty good. Of course, the Five Spot set with Booker Little is the crown jewel of this box, but really it's all good.

Sonny Rollins - The Complete Prestige Recordings (Discs 5, 6 & 7) Oh man, Now here is some classic, classic stuff. You want state of the art mid-50s small group jazz? It doesn't get much better than this batch of recordings.

Disc five starts off with "Sonny Rollins Plus Four" which is the legendary Clifford Brown/Max Roach group in all but name. You simply can not argue with that group of players at that time. I went through a period where I bought any Brown/Roach album I could find and I was never disappointed.

Then we move to "Tenor Madness." Stupid title, but you get Sonny with Miles' rhythm section of the time and a guest shot from Coltrane. It's easy to argue that this album is a bit overrated. It gets reissued every couple of years based on the combination of Sonny and Trane playing together. Alright, sure, but you can't deny it's still good stuff. Maybe not Sonny's best, but so what?

Speaking of, here comes "Saxophone Colossus," another dumb title, but probably Rollins' first masterpiece. If I had to pick one album out of this box to have and to hold forever and ever amen, it'd probably be this one. Everything just comes together here. And as much as "Blue 7" has been mythologized, it's still an impressive bit of improvisation. Plus, I'll always dig "St. Thomas," even if this version is a bit stiffer rhythmically than later versions.

Then there's "Rollins Plays for Bird" and "Tour de Force." I have to admit, listening to these two after "Colossus" is a bit of a let down. Don't get me wrong, there's some great stuff and I have a budding appreciation for Kenny Dorham, so hearing him on the Bird stuff is always cool. But it's just that "Colossus" was so strong, so inspired, that most anything following directly is going to pale a bit.

And that's kind of the problem with a set like this. You can't really sit down and listen to all of it, or even a large chunk like I did, at once because the amazing moments tend to wash out the merely fantastic. But, when you're babysitting a bunch of installs, you've got the time and that's just what happens.

So tonight it was:

Booker Ervin - Texbook Tenor I have to confess, this one was just background for me tonight. I love Booker and I'm sure when I get a chance to really dig into this, I'll dig it too. Dig?

Larry Young - Lawrence of Newark Wow. Outsville, baby. This ain't no backgound music here. I've been wanting this one for ages and didn't even know it was on CD until I saw it at Dusty Groove earlier this week. Really, it was all I expected and then some.

I loved Lifetime. (Tony Williams' Lifetime I mean, I think there's some emo band out there using the name, so let's be clear.) And as much as I loved Young's Blue Note stuff, the Lifetime records just blew my mind. This is an extension of that. The best way I can describe it would be if Pharaoh Sanders had been in Lifetime, this might have been the album. It's got that rock bottom fusion stuff, but with some free/spiritual stuff on top. Kooky, crazy stuff. I love it. Three hundred stars.

Big John Patton - Blue John Gadzooks, I hadn't listened to this one in forever. After the Lou Donaldson platter the other night, I was in the mood to hear more Grant Green/Ben Dixon and Big John.

So, yeah, good stuff. Kind of a legendary session in so far as the album cover showed up on the back of other Blue Note LPs, but it was ever released. Oops.

Now, the one thing about this that I'm still not sure about is George Braith. When I first heard him, I was not impressed at all. It's too easy to write him off as a Roland Kirk imitator doing the two horns at once bit. But, I've heard a lot of his stuff since then and getting back to this album, well, let's just say he doesn't mess things up. Still, I think there's probably a half dozen other sax players I would have liked to hear here(including Kirk himself!), but still , he does bring something different to the album.

Charles Kynard - The Soul Brotherhood From Larry Young's spacey freak outs, to Kynard's funky soul. Have definitely been in a Hammond mood as of late.

So this is a two albums on one disc set. I'm not going to lie to you, the first part was enjoyable enough, but didn't really grab me as too much different than a million other soul jazz sets I've heard (most of which feature Grant Green on guitar, as does this one.) I'll need to give it another spin because I've heard there's some really hot playing from Mr. Green here. I just didn't hear it in the first pass.

The second album here, is something a little more special, IMVHO. Right away, the rhythm section grabbed me and refused to let go. Kind of odd to have a bass player on an organ jazz record, but it's Carole Kay! And you got Paul Humphreys on drums (sounding a ton like Pretty Purdie, not that that's a bad thing.) Then you got Wilton Felder from the Crusaders on tenor and Joe Pass (!) on guitar. It's like a weird left coast session jam.

And believe you me, this record smokes! Seriously, I didn't know what to expect here because, on paper, this really looks like a straight session gig where everyone plays like worker bees. But dang dang DANG. I don't know what got into everyone, but this is some sweaty, greasy, funky stuff going on here. B3 sets come a dime a dozen and, as much as I like them, they do tend to sound similar after a while. But this, man, this is good stuff.

Goodbye Vista

If I had to make a list of the worst decisions I've made computing, installing Vista would be near the top. At the time, it made sense. I was in IT and Vista had been out early to us. I was using it on my machine at work, as were my co-workers. No one had really come across any issues. The future looked bright.

Since I was putting new dives in my machine anyway, I figured I'd go ahead and make the jump. It seemed like everything was headed that was, so I could do it now with a clean install that I was going to make anyway or wait a while and do it later. I've never had any luck going the upgrade route with Microsoft, so it seemed logical to do it then rather than wipe and do the whole bit at that time.

Well, that was a few months before Vista hit the streets. For a while, everything was fine. Then the crashes started. And the performance dragged. And dragged. And dragged.

To be fair, I have an older machine. But everything I'd checked with, including Microsoft's own upgrade adviser, led me to believe I would be able to run Vista fine on my machine. Yeah, I could use a new video card, but still, the specs were above the minimum and comfortably in the recommended area.

What went wrong? I really don't know. I leave my machine on all the time and with XP it was never a problem. Vista would crash at least once a week, usually more, with absolutely no reason why. The closest I ever came to an answer was a nebulous driver issue. Rigorous checking and double checking of drivers, pulling hardware, etc., never uncovered the culprit.

Additionally, I had to remove all the graphical candy and run what looked like a stripped down XP anyway to make little things like opening folders or switching between applications less of a "start process and go make a cup of coffee" affair.

I waited out for SP1 and found it to be no better. No help. Nothing changed. If anything, I was crashing more and moving slower.

So, that's it. I'm done with Vista. As painful as starting over on XP has been (three days later and I'm only now to the point where I can start installing software,) I'm up. It's working. It starts up fast. I can switch between programs and not have time to read War and Peace while waiting.

However, there were some causalities along the way. Somehow my older Western Digital My Book got hosed. I mean, it's completely toast. As it was just my redundant backup, I'm not too worried about that, but I am a little irritated that I lost a drive that was less than two years old and old used for backups. If you can't trust the backup drive, what can you trust?

Also, I'm irritated that I had to buy floppy discs. Really irritated. All because this SATA card drivers came on CDROM and, for some reason, I couldn't ever coax the XP installer to read the disc. Once I got the floppy, all was well. However, I now have nine other floppy discs I bet I'll never use (to say nothing of the fact that I'd just thrown out a dozen of the damned thing in the last couple of months.)

The upside to the floppy situation is what I found along the way. See, my clever wife suggested I hit the Goodwill for some floppy loving. Clever and sensible, though they turned out not to have any. I did find an original copy of the infamous Sensational Dan & Dale Batman album which is actually Sun Ra and the Blues Image in disguise. Yeah, it's a bit beat, but it had the original inner sleeve and I now have a copy and you don't so there!

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Connecting Two Totally Unconnected Thoughts About Music in 1993-4

For some reason, I've had the music of my high school years (that would be 90'-'93, went to a three year high school) on my mind lately. Specifically, the music from "Nevermind" to about the time Kurt Cobain snuffed himself, because that was the time I shifted away from listening to hip-hop and back to rock, alt-rock, grunge, whatever you wanna call it.

It was never as absolute as that. I discovered the Cows and Black Flag while I was a huge Public Enemy fan and likewise was heavy into the Roots while I was buying the first Shellac 7"s. But, for the most part, once I heard "Smells Like Teen Spirit," I got interested in rock again and that was where my money went.

Of course, it didn't help that hip-hop was moving towards the pop-gansta kind of stuff that dominates today. Yeah, I dug "The Chronic" and "Doggystyle" but I didn't need endless clones and I missed hip-hop what wasn't just about partying or fighting.

Needless to say, I missed some classics. Probably the biggest one, and an album I'm embarrassed to say I hadn't even heard until last year, was Nas' "Illmatic." And it's a shame that it took me so long because at the time this came out, I would have been burning out on my punk phase and trying to find some indie rock that didn't bore the hell out of me. This album probably would have convinced me there was still life left in rap.

What's so good about "Illmatic"? For starters, we have intelligent lyrics delivered expertly over classic beats. That right there is pretty much everything I look for in a hip-hop album. While Nas addresses street life, he never blows himself up to a Blaxsploitation stereotype. Nas is a good storyteller, and the stories he tells are worth listening to.

"Illmatic" is also lean and mean. There's not a wasted track on here and while the trend in the 90s was towards longer and longer albums, padded with stupid skits* and pointless posse cuts, "Illmatic" was just shy of 40 minutes. I'd rather have 40 minutes of quality than have to dig through 70 minutes to find them.

On the flip side of things, in the alt-rock world, was Stone Temple Pilots, who Steve Hyden at the Onion AV Club thinks are ripe for a reevaluation.

If you were about my age then and semi-connected to any cool music, I'm sure you remember how STP was pretty much the poster band for corporate grunge/alt-rock. Everyone slagged these guys. They sold a gazillion albums, yet I don't remember ever meeting anyone who would cop to buying one. (Kind of like Nickleback now. Who is buying their crap anyway?)

Well, I'll confess. I had "Core." Got it as a freebie through the BMG CD Club. Basically, I got it just to see if they were really as bad as we all thought. I mean, it was hard to ignore the singles being shoved down your throat a million times a day. But, maybe, just maybe, there was some redemption on the album proper.

No. There wasn't.

Luckily for me, this was the brief period of time when a used CD store would actually take a copy of "Core," so I'm sure I marched that down to Discount Den and came back with Mercury Rev or something like that. Never looked back and, as much as I normally like the writing at the Onion AV Club, I don't plan on it now.

Sure, I still ended up hearing all the singles after "Core," so people can spare me the "well, you just need to hear ______." You couldn't help but hear them and you can still hear them on local radio without trying too hard. And they just don't impress me.

I know there's a tendency to get nostalgic as one ages. Critics especially tend to get nostalgic and what was once trash becomes undiscovered treasure. Strangely, I'm finding myself judging the music of my high school years even harsher as time goes on.

For instance, in a used CD store yesterday, they were blasting "Nevermind," which I haven't heard in years. Some tracks (like "Territorial Pissing") actually made me wince. To be fair, there were still highlights. But as a whole, I found a lot more wrong with that album than I did the first time around.

Getting back to STP, it doesn't surprise me that some critics are changing their opinion on the band. However, that doesn't make it right. And hearing Nirvana yesterday only brought home to me that even many of the critic approved from the beginning bands of that period weren't always as good as people thing.

But, even as I have to chuckle over seeing my youth becoming enshrined in the amber of nostalgia, it's always pretty cool to find a true, new to me, gem from that period like "Illmatic." I'm just hoping that twenty years from now we can still agree that the Spin Doctors did indeed suck.

* if you are not Prince Paul, Dr. Dre or Wu Tang, you have no need to be doing skits on you record. Thank you.

Move Backwards Stopped by Obsolete Technology

Dang.

This weekend was it. I finally decided enough was enough. I am tired of the bottlenecks, tired of the crashing, tired of the piss poor performance. I am finally ditching Vista and going back to XP.

I've tried before and just couldn't pull the trigger. Plus, my computer wasn't making things easy. I've done a million XP installs, and for some reason my machine was flat out refusing to boot from the disc.

Long story short, finally got past that. Finally got on the right track. Worked up the nerve to do it. After a whole day of backing up the data on the drive I was going to wipe, I was ready.

Then the XP installer couldn't find a disc. Ok, well, it must need a third party driver for the SATA card I have in there. Alright found the CD, cool.

What? You want that on a floppy? Umm...ok. Now let's see...

oh, yeah...

I JUST GOT RID OF ALL MY FLOPPIES ABOUT THREE MONTHS AGO!!!

Oh man, I need to break something.

----------------
Now playing: Mel Rhyne - Yesterdays
via FoxyTunes

Tuesday, April 08, 2008

A Fist Full of Reviews

Hey! You! Wanna pretend like you were chilling with me in the Manlair tonight, slapping wax on the Rega? Arrite, here we go...



Jimmy Castor Bunch - It's Just Begun: OK, Mr. Castor really isn't an album artist, per se, but this thing hangs together really well. The title track is a killer, I mean one of the heaviest funk tracks ever. The rest of the album leans more to Castor's "Mr. Everything" philosophy, but it never dips into the schmaltz like some of his later records. Very enjoyable. Dull sounding Scorpio reissue on red wax (and why in the heck is an OG copy of this so hard to find? I've never seen one, and I've been looking.)



Joe Chambers/Larry Young - Double Exposure: Impulse purchase. One of those things I didn't know existed. Duet album between underrated drummer and one of my fave organists. But hold on! I didn't realize Chambers also played piano. First side is piano and organ duets. After Chambers doing a solo "After the Rain," he finished out the second side on drums. Sounds a little like Lifetime without guitar. Sadly, Young was dead about four months after this session. Sadly, this record left me really wanting more from these two. Both sides give you just a taste and leave you wanting a lot more. Sadly, this is a typical Scorpio reissue and side two is slightly off center.



Lou Donaldson - Musty Rusty: Oh snap! This album is smoking. Prime Lou with Grant Green and Ben Dixon (who is quickly becoming a new favorite drummer.) Billy Gardner is no Big John Patton, but he still keeps things going on the B3. This is house party jazz, stuff you can dance to, though it's not out and out funky like Lou would get about three years later. This music makes you glad to be alive and it's a damn shame Universal keeps this stuff locked up in the vaults, though there is a Spanish bootleg CD out there. And I'm convinced that Chess, like Motown, used the cheapest vinyl possible as this record looks beautiful but plays like Snap, Crackle and Pop made an uncredited cameo.



Marva Whitney with Osaka Monaurail - I Am What I Am: Finally, damn! First off, the Monaurail have NAILED the classic JB's sound. I mean, close your eyes and you'd swear you were listening to some unreleased track with Fred Wesley. And these dudes are Japanese! So, when they hook up with Marva, perhaps the most underrated of all James Brown's ladies, you know it's going to be good. And it is...mostly. There are a couple of songs on here that make me go "meh." I suppose that's keeping authentic to the 1969 vibe they have going on here, though I don't think it's intentional, that's just my taste. Still, I like this album a lot, maybe not as much as Osaka Monaurail's own Reality for the People, but when this hits, it hits hard. The big question for anyone who is not me will be is this worth the import price? The vinyl was $20. I've seen the CD as much as $15 more.

Monday, April 07, 2008

Johnny Sokko on Hulu



It strikes me as very odd that you can't (legally) buy a DVD of Johnny Sokko here in the US, but you can watch it for free at Hulu. There's 10 episodes up, pretty rad. I'd stayed away from the site as I assumed it was not Apple friendly, but the video is Flash based, so there's no compatability problems.

Anyway, enjoy. This is a killer show. Maybe someday we'll get it on DVD restored and all that.

Thursday, April 03, 2008

Sirius is just alright with me.

I've had Sirius in the ride for a few months now and with the big Sirius/XM merger passing hurdles and on it's way to happening, I figured this would be kind of a good time to take a look at what this music obsessive who used to dabble in a little radio thinks of the service.

Well, on the surface, it has a lot going for it. There's a ton of commercial free music channels. There's a bunch of talk. The reception is better than terrestrial radio plus, if you're on the road, Sirrus stays with you so you don't have to scan around for stations each city you hit.

On the other hand, there may be a lot of music stations, but there's a definite skewing towards boomer rock. Off the top of my head, I can think of about half a dozen stations that would fall into this category, with a lot of crossover between their playlists.

If, like me, you're into jazz, you have one station. Wait, maybe there's a fuzak station as well. Popular genre like hip-hop only has a couple of choices, the main one, Eminem's vanity station, the "blazin' hip-hop and r&b hits" station and Backspin, the oldies.

Which brings me to the next thing. I listen to Backspin from time to time and I'll be damn if any time I tune in it's not Das Efx, Arrested Development or MC Lyte "Shut the Eff Up!" I could give other examples on some of the other music stations I check out, but the point is, for all Sirius portrays itself as better than terrestrial radio, their programing shares a lot of the same problems. It seems like the play lists are fairly shallow with a good amount of repetition, just like any Clear Channel owned station.

Still, I could overlook that, to an extent, and I'd be willing to listen to more music if the sound quality wasn't so poor. Remember the first mp3 you ever heard? Remember how cymbals sounded wooshy and vocals sounded slightly metallic? Yeah, that's pretty much what Sirius sounds like, even in the car with all kinds of road noise. They advertise CD quality, but they're pretty far from it.

Because of all that, I end up listening to a bunch of talk. While the music stations maybe commercial free, the talk stations most certainly are not. There are so many commercials on the talk stations (NPR excepted, though they have their station breaks with ads for other Sirius channels) that it feels like close to a 1:1 ratio of programming to advertising. It's enough to really drive a person crazy.

So, if you get the impression I'm not terribly impressed with Sirius, you're right. If the merger with XM goes through, which I'm guessing it will, I don't see any of these things improving. However, I'm not sure it matters.

I think satellite radio was an interesting idea, but I think it's time is starting to pass. For one thing, it's too easy to carry an iPod if you really want to listen to music. Most new cars have some type of dock or aux input making connecting an iPod very easy business.

For another thing, there's competition from HD radio and internet radio. I'm not sure how much competition these two mediums will be as HD radio is starting to feel like a non-starter to me and internet radio isn't quite ready for breaking free of its computer tether.

But, in my mind, it goes back to the iPod factor. It's just too easy to create and carry your own radio station wherever you are. These two titans may merge, but I don't think it's going to matter that much in a market that may have already peaked.

My New Favortie Drummer.

Tuesday, April 01, 2008

Politics is ugly business.



What I find most interesting about this is, there's no way of knowing (yet) if this is for real or not. My first inclination is to say, this has to be a parody. However, ther lead singer posted a short, salty, explicative laden follow-up video that has me thinking that this may be the real deal.

Plus, the story behind it makes me think this may be authentic. Apparently this sat on YouTube a little while until someone on Huffington Post discovered it. That still doesn't prove anything, but I'd think if this was an opposition party trick, it would have gotten more press before that.

The thing of it is, it doesn't really matter if it's authentic or not. It's out there and it's been spreading. Most people are likely to think about it whatever they want, so the issue of whether it's real or fake is almost irrelevant.

That's what I think is interesting about the time we are living it. It's practically a post-irony world. There's so much more information easily accessible than ever before but, at the same time, it's so much harder to separate the fact from fiction. And fiction still has a way of traveling faster than the truth.

Of course, it's also a commentary on the time we are living in that something like this even has the ability to be come known outside of a handful of people. The theory behind the internet's democratization of the means of distribution is that the cream will rise. Time and time again, it's the truly awful that become "internet phenomenon." I think there's something inherent in human nature that we must enjoy laughing at others. That's about the only way to describe 90% of what's popular on YouTube as well as "reality" TV and so many other things.

Either way, this video is pretty amazing. Though it wouldn't surprise me to find out a Hillary or Obama supporter is behind it, I just think the McCain Girls are a little too authentic to not be real.