Monday, February 27, 2006


Podbop - We podcast bands coming to your town

(thanks, livemusicblog for the heads up! LINK)

This nifty little website is a really simple idea that has such great possibility. I know that I use the services of Jambase; I have since its inception. If I'm going anywhere in the country (hell, anywhere in North America) I make sure to check the site to see if there are any good shows going on.

Now what if there was a web site that was similar to Jambase. Except that instead of just providing a calendar with the bands coming to town, the site actually provided a podcast full of songs by the bands that were playing!

How sweet is that?

Now I said that the site had possibility, and it definitely has a ways to go. First of all, there are a limited number of bands in the database, so only those bands show up if you search for a city. For instance, I searched for Fort Lauderdale, FL and Sunrise, FL just to see if any of the bands playing at Langerado next week (hell yeah, next week!) would pop up.

Unfortunately, none did. It seems that the way the site works is that record labels and promoters need to give the site administrators their info before they will link to the songs.

So if you are a promoter (hint, hint) or a band or a record label head honcho, head on over to the site, feed in your info, and get your groups some free promotion. That'll make Podbop that much better.

Everyone else just check it out because it is a good idea.

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

(VIDEO!!) L.E.D. Throwies from the Graffiti Research Lab

L.E.D. Throwies from the Graffiti Research Lab

(thanks to adamgreeves on the TIP for the heads up!)

As means of introduction, this photo is of a bunch of L.E.D. Throwies.

This video is rather perplexing to me. It seems like a new type of glowing/flashing/light-up toy for intoxicated people to play with at concerts or dance parties, or while wandering the streets of their favorite metropolis aimlessly.

Nothing too interesting about that, right?

But check the video, which I believe is a promotional spot for a "Coming Soon" website. It is a beautiful and haunting little piece of performance art where people fling these L.E.D. Throwies at the outside wall of a building, slowly covering the entire surface. The soundtrack is a little acoustic ditty--I have no idea who sings it, but if any readers do, please let me know--that I just really like.

(EDIT 2/27/06) - Thanks to madpercolator, who informed me that the song is by a Sweedish singer named Jose Gonzalez. For more information, take click here.

I guess this video could be a commercial for the actual L.E.D. Throwies, but I remember seeing a web page with instructions on how to make them yourself. The directions are a little too technical for me, but if anyone out there makes some of these little do-hickeys, please let me know, I'd love to play with one.

Monday, February 20, 2006

New Orleans Public Library Seeking Book Donations

New Orleans Public Library Seeking Book Donations

(thanks Boing Boing for the heads up! LINK)

I have a lot of book. Until I recently had to move out of the townhouse I shared with my now ex-girlfriend, the walls in my office were completed covered in bookshelves that we had specially put in to store my collection. Before we moved into the townhouse, I gave a ton of books away. It was actually harder than you would think to give the books away. I tried to sell them, and no one wanted them. I tried to give them to the library, and they refused.

Do you know who eventually took them?

The Broward County Jail.

However, I could not give them any cookbooks (inmates don't have access to stoves or gourmet ingredients) or anything about crime (they teach correspondence classes, but not any that are based on Stephen King or Dean R. Koontz or John D. MacDonald novels).

So I drove up to the jail and parked at the front gate and waited for a women from the Community Outreach program, who thanked me profusely for my donation of unwanted paperbacks. A few weeks later I received a thank you letter for the local sheriff. It made me feel a little warm and fuzzy inside, and since they were going to be thrown away anyway, it really didn't matter to me if an inmate actually read the books at all.

I recently moved into a new apartment, a smaller apartment with way fewer bookshelves. To tell you the truth, all of my more favorite books are sitting in the trunk of my car because I have no place to put them in the apartment.

(Don't even ask me about the multiple Hefty bags overstuffed with books sitting in the trunk of car, or what I would do if I had to get something out of the bottom of my trunk. Something like, oh, I don't know, my spare tire and jack because I have a gigantic tear in my rear passenger-side tire that looks like someone gouged it with a screwdriver.)

Picture of my tire taken with my cameraphone this morning.

I have to make some serious decisions as to what books I am going to keep. I've already packed and taken the obvious choices: my collection of music books, some of my classical literary works and a few of my guilty pleasure popular fiction. But I left a ton of stuff on the shelves, and however much I want to keep every book, I know it is not going to be possible.

But, once I make the decision as to what I keep and what I don't, I know where the castoffs will be sent: the New Orleans Public Library. From a post on the New York Foundation for the Arts (NYFA) website:
Seeking Book Donations
The New Orleans Public Library
(New Orleans LA)
The New Orleans Public Library is asking for any and all hardcover and paperback books for people of all ages in an effort to restock the shelves after Katrina. The staff will assess which titles will be designated for its collections. The rest will be distributed to destitute families or sold for library fundraising. Please send your books to:

Rica A. Trigs, Public Relations
New Orleans Public Library
219 Loyola Avenue
New Orleans, LA 70112

If you tell the post office that they are for the library in New Orleans, they will give you the library rate which is slightly less than the book rate.
I can't think of a better way to get rid of unwanted (though not unloved) reading material than to send it to a place that recently lost close to everything. If you have some books that are collecting dust in your attic or garage, you should consider throwing them in a box and heading to the post office to send them to the above address.

You'll be happy you did.

And so will the little boy or girl who is able to check out one of the books you sent.

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

Rare Hunter S. Thompson Photo to Be Released

Thompson's widow offers photo to fans

from the Associated Press (thanks to justin on the TIP for the heads up!)

February 20, 2006 will mark one year since the late great Hunter S. Thompson decided that it was time to leave this planet, placing a shotgun in his mouth and pulling the trigger while sitting in the kitchen of his Woody Creek, CO home.

When I saw that one of my literary heroes had committed suicide, ending his "weird" existence, it hit me hard. Reading "Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas" for the first caused the same rebellious instinct to rise within me that reading Kerouac's "On the Road" did. (Thanks to my Uncle Vinnie for turning me on to both of these deliciously anti-establishment works of art; without your guidance I would never have become the man I am today!)

Both books made me want to get up and go, to explore the unknown (both in my mind and on the terrestrial plane) and to basically freak out those who don't get it.

Above, Thompson's famous Gonzo logo: a clenched fist with two thumbs serving as the hilt to a dagger. This one is signed by him and contains a line contributed to Thompson (It never got weird enough for me) that seems to be a take on his famous "When the going gets weird, the weird goes pro" line.

When I read about Thompson's final act, I was affected in a way I hadn't been since the death of another one of my mythical hero's: Jerry Garcia. I will always remember exactly where I was and what I was doing when I learned of both of their deaths, the same way the generation before me will never forget the day JFK was murdered.

Hunter's widow has decided to make available to his fans a photo of him that has never been seen before (except by Ralph Steadman, Thompson's illustrator and longtime friend who actually owns it). Anyone and everyone will be able to download the photo from the relatively new Gonzo Store.

Her description of the photo:

“He has a special look in his eye that he had once in while when he was up to something but was totally at peace,” [Anita Thompson] said. “I’ve taken thousands of pictures of him, but this one is my favorite. And nobody has seen it.”

I for one will definitely be downloading this photo. Hell, I'd even buy it if it was for sale (though I am pretty broke, so I'm glad Anita is being so kind in this regard).

Whether you love him or hate him, few people will argue that Hunter S. Thompson is one of the few people who can be considered a "Great American" as well a genuine counter-culture icon.

Hunter Stockton Thompson

July 18, 1937 - February 20, 2005

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

(VIDEO!!) Scratch n Spin

Scratch n Spin

(thanks Boing Boing for the heads up. LINK)

This video is a promotional piece for a piece of hardware called the "EB Pro X Fade", a high quality piece of DJ equipment.

I don't know if the company had any other reason to produce the video except for the fact that it was really cool.

And I don't care.

I'm glad it exists, because frankly it is cool. I find it a little bit strange that some of the most groundbreaking effects and cinematography/videography to be released the last few years has come from commercials, advertisements and other media that are not paid for by the consumer, but by the producer.

Oh well.

(VIDEO!!) The Disco Biscuits 12/29/02 - > techno I-Man

(thanks, tuchus(?) for posting this! LINK)

Y'all already know that I'm a huge fan of the Disco Biscuits.

They Nasty, But They Good.

Click the thumbnail below for a taste. In video!! It is short but sweet, but extremely well-edited, and hopefully the foreshadowing of a DVD to come.

Video: The Disco Biscuits12/29/02- >I-Man
by tucchus

Chances are that hey're going to be coming to a city near you, as they're playing more shows in the next three months than they've played in the last three years.

Go see them. If you like rock 'n' roll and you like dance music, chances are that you'll dig their trancefusion sound.

the Super Mario Brothers Super-Synthesizer

the Super Mario Brothers Super-Synthesizer

(thanks, Boing Boing for the heads up. LINK)

Do you like video games?

Not the super-high tech bullshit of today that is so complicated only pre-pubescent boys and complete and total social rejects are able to master the $70 games on $300 systems (after waiting in line for hours for the chance to plunk down their money, of course).

I'm talking old school. So old school, it is pre-school.

I though so.

Now, do you like synthesizers, and making music with only the touch of a button?

My little brother and I used to play with a drum synth for hours, just making loops of beats that drove my mother crazy.

Anyway, I found this link on one of my favorite blogs (see above), and I had to put it up. I've only wasted a couple of hours playing with it.

Today, that is.

Langerado Schedule Released

Langerado Schedule Released - Many Personal Conflicts Arise

Last night I received the long-awaited e-mail announcing the schedule for the Langerado Music Festival, held in (pretty much) my hometown. I've been talking this festival up since before it existed, as it is has been promoted by my good buddy Ethan (a.k.a. South Florida Jams), the man (almost) single-handedly responsible for the explosion of national touring acts visiting us here in South Florida.

Seeing as how we're pretty good friends, I knew for a few weeks that there would be at least one major conflict for me at the festival. Sets from the Disco Biscuits and the Flaming Lips were going to overlap, and there was nothing I, or anyone else, could do about it. I had resigned myself to acceptance. I was going to see the Biscuits twice in two days before the festival, so if I missed part of their set, I wouldn't cry about it. I've never seen the Lips, and have heard nothing but praise for their live show, so I made the decision to spend the early evening on Saturday, March 11 with Wayne and the furry-freaky stage show that accompanies the Oklahoma-based group.

And then I see the lineup. And the freakin' Meters are playing at the same exact time as the Flaming Lips. Complete and total overlap!


Two bands that I've never seen before playing at the same time...what is a music loving freak to do? Needless to say, I'm completely undecided, and will probably make a last-minute, game time decision.

And that is only the conflict with major acts...I have a ton more with the smaller groups:

The Brazilian Girls vs. Umphrey's McGee

The New Mastersounds vs. Brothers Past

Mofro vs. Steel Pulse vs. Kid Koala

Antibalas Afrobeat Orchestra vs. Clap Your Hands Say Yeah!

Wilco vs. Keller Williams

Secret Machines vs. the Black Crowes

It looks like the entire day Sunday is gonna be full of tough decisions for me. I guess I'm gonna make those decisions based upon which bands I've never seen before, as I tend to find hidden gems at festivals.

Not since the first Bonnaroo have I had this problem. I guess it is a testament to the strength of the lineup to have such overlap between good acts. If most of the bands at the festival sucked, I wouldn't have this problem.
So I guess it isn't really much of a problem at all.

Monday, February 06, 2006

Thanks, Madpercolator!!

Madpercolator - Blog Archive - Behold!

My friend Danielle gives a shout out!