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Living in Chicago, by way of Dayton, OH and Havertown, PA. Contact me at atozpod@gmail.com.



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Friday, March 27, 2009

Vegas Time

Away in Vegas with the boys. Be back next week.

In the meantime, if you're a Barenaked Ladies fan, check out their first show as a 4-person band. I'd be lying if I didn't say it's rough, but I like the fact that they put it out there for us to hear.

You can download the concert
here. It's available until March 27th.

If you have a moment, send some good gambling karma my way. It'd sure be nice to come home with a slightly heavier wallet than I left with (for a reason other than packing my wallet with a bunch of hooker cards I picked up on the strip.)

Thursday, March 19, 2009

from Jackass to James Lundeen...

Day 995, Session 158:
Monday March 16th & Wednesday March 18th - Running.
First song: Jackass by Green Day
Last full song: James Lundeen's Christmas by Garrison Keillor
Progress: 3547-3563 of 8507
Total Songs Heard: 2043

Observant readers among you may have noticed that the song total jumped over 1000 songs. I added a whole shit ton of music through from acts playing at SXSW 2009. If I were a really cool music blogger I'd be at SXSW 2009, but it's debatable if I'm
actually a music blogger at all (I'm going with not really, although I was invited to a SXSW party this year.)

Smart readers may ask, "Why the hell would you add 1000+ songs when you just determined that you won't be finishing this project for 5 more years?" That is a fine question. So here's the thing... this project is never going to make me famous, and it's highly doubtful that it will ever make me a good writer, but the important thing is: this project gives me something to do. So 1000 more songs = 75 m
ore entries or so. I just hope that I can come up with 75 some more entries to write about.

Now on to today. Well today and Monday and Tuesday.

The last few days it suddenly got nice in Chicago. The first nice weather of the year always make me itchy. I'm not a practicing manic depressive, but the first nice springy days of the year always leave me feeling manic. We had one nice day a few weeks ago and I went for a 40 minute walk. This time we strung three nice days and I took it a little farther.

Monday I took a staggering 15-minute run. I say staggering because I had been sick a lot of the weekend and fasted most of Sunday and Monday in an attempt to find some sort of equilibrium. Running when you're out of shape is hard enough, running when you've only eaten half a can of chicken
noodle soup in the previous 36 hours is a recipe for disaster. Basically I ran for 5 minutes, felt like shit, walked for 5 minutes and then ran 5 more until I felt like I was going to die. Good times. That's why I don't have a separate entry for Monday, I only heard* 4 songs before giving up and packing it in.

Tuesday was a good day. I've lived in Chicago for 8 years now, and I've never gone down to Lake Michigan by myself. What can I say? I'm not a big fan of lakes. Tuesday was different though. It was so nice, that I just had to get out there. I also had to get out there because my cousin sent me Flat Stanley. Flat Stanley came with a letter requesting that we take pictures of Stanley around Chicago. Never one to let the children down, I took advantage of the 70 degree day to get some shots of Stanley around Chicago. Here's what I came up with...

Stanley at the Lake:

Stanley and the skyline:
Stanley at the zoo, which was closed :(
Stanley at Wrigley:
I figure doing a good job on this Stanley thing is one more indication that I'm ready to do thing for kids and therefore totally prepared for fatherhood... you know, except for the being totally unprepared part.

I didn't actually listen to any music on Tuesday because I was on my bike the whole time and iPod listening while biking just isn't safe. All in all I spent about 2 hours biking around (and another hour shooting and taking in the beautiful day.) By the end the legs... they were sore. So sore at the knees that I had trouble sleeping last night. I will overcome.

Wednesday should have been a day of rest, but I've been at rest for way too long. The kid is now 3 months out, and part of the reason I've been out running/biking around the last 2 days is because the kid is coming. When this project is done in 5 years, I don't want to be so out of shape that I'm unable to keep up with the perpetual motion machine that is a little kid. The ass groove on my couch is deep enough that I figure it'll take me 5 years to get into good enough shape to keep up with a kid, so instead of resting on Wednesday, I went out again for a run. This one was much less disastrous. I was able to run the entire 25 minutes. If I keep at it, I may just be able to keep up with this life yet.

*'heard' may be an overstatement, mostly I heard my heart pounding in my ears.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

from It's Time They Knew to Jack Hinks

Day 982, Session 157:
Thursday March 5th - Grocery run.
First song: It's Time They Knew by The Swimmers
Last full song: Jack Hinks (Live) by Great Big Sea
Progress: 2959-2982 of 7175
Total Songs Heard: 2026

It Ain't Love by House of Lords, please show yourself out. It's funny how hard they tried with this particular metal ballad. There's a fair amount of guitar riffing, an 'emotional' male solo voice, a shouting chorus helping on the refrain, and of course a wailing mid-song guitar solo and yet none of those pieces seem to fit together particularly well. Deleted, but saved here in case you've really been looking for this tune to complete you House of Lords collection.

It Ain't Love - House of Lords

The other event for the day was moving out of the 'I's (last song Ixtapa by Rodridgo y Gabriela) and into the 'J's (first song J Smith by Travis).

Since I recently passed 2000 and have hit an alphabet transition, it's time to look at some stats.

2026 songs in 982 days = 2.06 songs per day
7175-2026 = 5149 tracks to go
Of 2982 tracks so far, 956 (2982-2026) have been
skipped/podcasts/added later/whatever = 32.1% skipped but this number is way high owing to the large increase in songs thanks to the library grift. So let's lower this to 20%.
5149-(5149*20%) = approximately 4119 songs to go accounting for skipped tracks
4119 songs/2.06 songs a day = 2000 days to go (5.5 years)
Estimated date of project completion = September 2014

Holy crap, my kid will be 5. Perhaps doing stats was a bad idea.

Friday, March 06, 2009

from 1001-2000: Mix Tape 2k.2

To send you into the weekend, please enjoy the second disc of the 1001-2000 mix cd.

Mix 2k.2 - Hurt to Into The Mystic

Hurt - Johnny Cash
I'd Run Away - The Jayhawks
I'm A Believer - The Monkees
I've Gotta Get a Message to You - Moxy Früvous
I Feel Fantastic - Jonathan Coulton
I Hope That I Don't Fall In Love With You - Tom Waits
I Need More Love - Robert Randolph & The Family Band
I Need You Back - Ben Kweller
If I Had $1000000 - Barenaked Ladies
If It's The Beaches - The Avett Brothers
If She Wants Me - Belle & Sebastian
If The Creeks Don't Rise Sunparlour Players
Ikea - Jonathan Coulton
In Between Days - Ben Folds
In The Aeroplane Over The Sea - Neutral Milk Hotel
In the Curve (Bonus) - The Avett Brothers
Inflatable Amy - the Argument
Into The Mystic - Glen Hansard & Markéta Irglová

Grab the file here and have a great weekend.

Thursday, March 05, 2009

from It's Coming Down to It's The End Of The World...

Day 974, Session 156:
Wednesday February 25th - Grocery run.
First song: It's Coming Down by Cake
Last full song: It's The End Of The World As We Know It by R.E.M.
Progress: 2925-2936 of 7114
Total Songs Heard: 2026

Which is worse: a group goes on hiatus with no real intention ever to return (Fruvous) or a group member leaves by "mutual agreement" but the rest of the group stays together (BNL)?

Although it happened over a week ago now, I'm still confounded by the whole Steven Page has left Barenaked Ladies thing. As far as I can tell, this leaves BNL about 50% down on songs they can perform live without Steve. Sure, maybe I traditionally have like "Ed songs" better, but still, what kind of BNL show will it be knowing you have no chance of hearing Break Your Heart, or Old Apartment, or Brian Wilson? Oh yeah and how the hell are they going to do If I Had $1000000? That one is a duet. Actually, I think Kaylor and I should now join the group specifically to do that song.

I suppose it's not really a surprising. They've been together for 20 years, and Steve wants to try new things. Nothing wrong with that. I just hope that's all it is. Last year was a very difficult one with Steve's arrest and Ed's plane crash. I hope it really is a move that Steve wanted to make and not a move that the band felt like they had to make. Hopefully VH1 will not have to refilm the ending of the Barenaked Ladies' Behind the Music (they still make those right?) to tell the story of Steve's downward spiral or the group's move to Vegas to open for the all new Celine Dion Canadian Rock Spectacle.

My guess? Both parties will come out of this ok. BNL will continue to make good music even with a noticably different sound. Steve Page will find success in his new ventures, and in a few years, we'll all be able to by tickets to a BNL/Steve summer reunion tour to celebrate 25 years of music. Even if that's not how it works out, they had a heck of a run.

(Side note for obsessive BNL fans like me: Has anyone else noticed the prescient titles of the two new songs from their greatest hits CD? Thanks That Was Fun and It's Only Me (which is sung by Steve.) We all should have seen this coming back in 2001.)

It's Only Me (The Wizard of Magicland - Live) - Barenaked Ladies
It's Only Me - Barenaked Ladies