Fun Stuff: Let's Link It Up With Some Tuneage

Let's start with a little music. This is probably my all-time favorite holiday CD.

Elton John's Christmas Party is a compilation CD of his favorite holiday tunes, and the man picked a seriously sweet selection. My top picks from the CD (videos not the actual CD versions, in some cases):

Outkast - Player's Ball (Official Music Video). Watch more top selected videos about: OutKast

 

I might have a slight addiction to the holiday tunes, and this year I finally downloaded A Colbert Christmas: The Greatest Gift of All!, which is from 2008. My top pick has to be Colbert's duet with Jon Stewart, "Can I Interest You In Hanunukah?"

Happy Hump Day, kids. Go find some mistletoe.

 

 

 

 

Y'all Need To Shake Your Ass Today: George Watsky

Who's Been Loving You by George Watsky.

Get his new album on iTunes. Just do it. It's makes life better.

Or don't. What do I care if you want to sit stationary in your swivel chair in cubicle hell?

If you need me, I'll be shakin' it to my boy, Watsky.

Read More

What do polka dots sound like? Not Webvan or iguanas.

This one time at band camp…woops! Wrong story! My bad. Let me try that again.

Friday, the family went on a little field trip to The Tech Museum, which I reviewed in full-color detail here. It was most awesome. I do so love it there.

One of the most fabuloso stoner toys educational interactive music exhibits they have is a wall of musical buttons they call Wikisonic. The purpose of the exhibit is to “demonstrate the fundamentals of harmonics and chord structure by allowing visitors to experiment with note intervals in familiar musical melodies.”

Or, if you’re my daughter, it’s to find out what polka dots sound like. Because who hasn’t pondered that question, hello?

Oh, and her brother threw a couple things together, too.

Keep in mind, we are many things in this family, but musically trained we ain’t, (unless you count the hours we’ve put into Rock Band).

Here’s his first piece:

And here’s his second composition:

Again, same genetic material. I swear. No milk man involved. Although we did get Webvan deliveries. Oh, how I miss Webvan, but not for the sex, only for the deliveries. Not the baby deliveries, the food deliveries. God, you guys are disturbed. Those green and yellow bins, with their perfectly interlocking flaps. I still have some stashed away in the attic. Now that I think about it, I’m pretty sure they’re filled with outgrown baby clothes. Weird.

Oh, hey. Good news. First submissions have come in for the poster child/adult/pet/rodent/animal for FACE of the HUMORLESS. Soon we’ll be able to find a CURE. I just know it. So, when I say submissions, what I mean is a bunch of submissions from one entrant. Rather than subject you to all that humorlessness (it would shut the internet down, y’all), I’m gonna wait for some more submissions to come in and then post them for a vote. So, get those pics in. My email is available under the Contact header at the top of the page.

Remember, reptiles are eligible, too. I have seen some downright dour iguanas. And you’ll never catch one in a comedy club, unless he’s the janitor.

Read More

Mitch Hedberg is Educational

Although it probably wouldn’t work because I’m already married and eMusic is website. I don’t think Bob will give me a divorce just so I can marry eMusic. Can I marry a website? Because right now, I totally want to marry eMusic.

When The Artist Formerly Known As Chemo Boy (whom I now have a symbol for, check it out):

TheArtistFormerlyKnownAsChemoBoy

(although, I made it myself. So, I’m not sure if it means No More Chemo or No More Toxic Waste Dumps.)

anyway, when he got The Cancer, and I thought it would be a nice way to celebrate by dropping our external hard drive (with all of our backup data) on the floor, killing it dead, I never got around to re-downloading all of my tunes from eMusic. In fact, I put my account on hold (because they are so nice they actually let you do that) and just plain forgot about the whole damn thing until this week when I got an email from those lovely folks at eMusic reminding me that they were reactivating my account.

I’m sure it’s because they sensed my need for music, not because they wanted to go back to collecting my monthly fee. They strike me as a generous people. A generous people with good taste.

In addition to downloading the bazillion trillion million (An official number. I know because I was gifted for a brief period in early elementary school before I became too dumb and they kicked me out.) songs I had lost in the hard drive floor drop of ‘09, I also discovered some New To Me tunes.

If you’ll all just quiet the fuck down, I’ll tell you what I got. I said shush up. I’m still waiting. Hey, I’ve got all the time in the world over here. As soon as Johnny pipes down…well, alrighty then.

The DodosVisiter

The Dodos – 3 Individual Tracks from Time to Die: Longform, Troll Nacht, Acorn Factory

Mitch HedbergMitch Alltogether

Now, I’d never even heard of The Dodos prior to today. I know, some hipster just dropped his can of PBR. My deepest apologies. But, my Mitch download should compensate for any hipster offenses.

Truthfully, Mitch should have already been in my downloaded music. He should have been spending his nights spooning Stephen Lynch in the comedy section of my iTunes library. Alas, he was not. Poor Stephen’s been lying there bare-assed and cold. (I reverse-alphabetize the comedy section for spooning purposes.)

To do penance, I’ll spend the evening listening to Mitch with my son. I’m sure it’s totally age-appropriate. Hell, we’re homeschoolers. It’ll be an interdisciplinary course – history of comedy and drug education. Throw in some Salvadoran takeout for dinner, and we can make it a multicultural event. Don’t judge until you’ve walked to the minivan in my flip flops.

Great. Now I’m craving pupusas, and it’s all your fault for making me turn this into a learning experience for my kid. The things I do for you people.


Read More

Summer of '69: Charles Manson and Big Bird

Aldrin stands next to the Passive Seismic Expe...

Image via Wikipedia

Growing up, I thought it was cool that I was born in the summer of ‘69. Shit, they wrote songs about it. They did not write songs about the summer of ‘78 or the winter of ‘43. Hell no.

They named a sexual position after the year I was born, and a fairly enjoyable one, at that. It’s not like I was born in the year of the missionary position or the year of the doggie style. That would have sucked butt. Almost literally.

And, as this year carries on, I am reminded of all the cool and historically noteworthy stuff that happened in 1969. I like to claim that much of it was done in honor of my arrival, like the landing on the moon by Apollo 11 on July 20th. I mean, they may have had that scheduled already, but I doubt it. I think they held out until they knew I was safely on the planet and propped up in front of the TV.

Another debut of awesomeness in the summer of ‘69 was that little concert they held in upstate New York. They were going to call it Joe’s Folk Fest, but I convinced them that simply naming it after the town, Woodstock, would make it easier for people to remember after they’d smoked the mondo doobage. Unfortunately, my parents wouldn’t let me attend. They claimed I was too young to be hanging out with all those hippies. So fucking judgmental. It’s not like my hair was long. I didn’t even have hair.

The next most awesome thing about 1969 was The Street with its big yellow bird, his imaginary friend, and an angry dude in a can. Sesame Street debuted in 1969. By the time I could speak, I could tell you how to get there and which one of these things was not like the other. Sesame Street was my early childhood Xanax. And a bowl of oatmeal plus Sesame Street bought my mom another hour of sleep, making her an instant fan.

The summer of '69 also had it’s share of freaky history being made. I didn’t find out about it until I was older and we were no longer living in Los Angeles, which is a good thing given my tendency toward law-defying insomnia. I came home from school sometime in late elementary/early middle school and caught a little after-school special called Helter Skelter. It’s chilling tale about a scrot bag by the name of Charles Manson. My ass was staple-gunned to that TV.

It didn’t take me long to do the math, and the geography, and realize we had been living and breathing in the midst of this nutjob's insanity during my infancy. When my mom got home, I had some FUCKING QUESTIONS. She had this nonchalant answer, “I didn’t really know any of that was going on.”

HOLY MOTHER OF CHRIST ON A FLOATILLA. She didn’t know it was going on? Didn’t know? Didn’t get the memo? Was living under a rock? Missed the evening news?

No. Not exactly. She was busy taking care of me. Her firstborn child. The kid who didn’t sleep. Ever. Night. Day. Ever. Not an unhappy baby. Just not sleeping. Also, sick. Me. With the mystery illness, at that point. And her, with no Twitter. No Facebook. No 24-Hour news channels. No cable TV. No VCR. Not even a remote control for the BLACK & WHITE TV.

My God how did she survive?

She survived by not knowing that CHARLES FUCKING MANSON WAS ON THE LOOSE. Because, quite frankly, do you realize how much Xanax would be required in L.A. if everyone had really been in the know? Judy Garland Trail Mix would have been flying off the shelves. Flying. And, I don’t think Judy wanted to share.

Summer of ‘69.

I was there.

Fillin’ up my diapers.

My mom was changing 'em.

But. I. Was. There.

Awesome year. Some cool shit went down. And some weird shit. Might explain a few things about me. One or two.

Reblog this post [with Zemanta]
Read More

PSA: Musical Minds on NOVA

NEW YORK - JUNE 3:  Neurologist Dr. Oliver Sac...

Image by Getty Images via Daylife

The national Tourette Syndrome Association, Inc. would like to inform you about an upcoming episode of "NOVA," entitled "Musical Minds" which will air on Tuesday, June 30 at 8:00 pm EST. Please check your local PBS listings for exact stations and times.

In this program, Dr. Oliver Sacks, world-renowned neurologist and author, explores how the power of music can make the brain come alive, how music affects the brain and how it can impact some neurological disorders. 

New York State percussionist Matt Giordano, and his mother, Kathy, appear in the show.  Matt, who has Tourette Syndrome, talks about the impact of music on his life.  This documentary was filmed in 2008 and originally aired on the BBC in the UK last year.

Dr. Oliver Sacks' long list of books include Awakenings (the film version starred Robin Williams as Dr. Sacks), The Man Who Mistook his Wife for a Hat, Oaxaca Journal and An Anthropologist on Mars. His most recent is Muiscophilia Tales of Music and the Brain. features Matt Giordano, Tobias Picker and other individuals with Tourette Syndrome.

Read More

Fame Online

I love finding out my favorite authors, musicians, or other 'celebrities' have an online presence, especially when it's in their own voice. It's rare, but so enjoyable when you can develop a social connection to people whose work you admire. It's also nice to find out they're human. I mean, you know they are, but it's nice just the same.

Twitter has been one place I've enjoyed finding some of my favorite celebs. I'm not going to give out their @names because it feels a little stalkerish, even more so than me stalking them twitter, but I will totally tell you that Dave Matthews, Lance Armstrong, John Hodgman, and Adam Savage are the real deal.

On Facebook, I even found John Elder Robison, Augusten Burroughs' brother, and the author of "Look Me In The Eye," a must read for anyone who's dealing with Asperger's. He also has a personal blog, which is fabulous, and totally him.

By putting themselves 'out there' with the rest of us, using social media like the rest of us, not just as a publicity tool, it lets me know what kind of people they are.

Real.

And I like that.

Read More