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My Musical Blame Game

31 Aug

Those who know me, know my deep love affair with music. I have written about it on multiple occasions  and have declared my obsession in all the ways I can think of. Hell, my children should thank their lucky stars I didn’t actually name them something crazy like “Treble Clef” or “Turntable”. I mean, could you image their first day of kindergarten?

“Timothy?” the teacher rings out.

“Here!” Timothy replies.

“Talia?” she calls out once again.

“Present!” Talia replies.

“Treble, um, Treble Clef? Is there a Treble Clef present?”

“I’m right here, BITCH!” My son snarkily screams.

Yeah, as awesome as that scenario sounds, I am willing to bet my little Treble Clef would have one hell of a fucked up childhood. Therapy for the win!

Anyway, as we digress into the wild inner workings of my dark and twisted mind, the revelation that sparked the hamster on the wheel that lives inside my cranium the other day was quite profound. Okay, maybe that is a little bit of a stretch. Profound may be way too big of a word for me to comprehend anyway. So let’s just say that my teeny tiny brain figured out something new. Something new, that quite possibly, I have known all along.

Music can lead you to many, many avenues of creativity.

Now, think about that for a minute. We all know that music can present all kinds of muses in an infinite amount of forms. By merely hearing a melody, greatness can occur. Be it an orchestra, an idea for a screenplay, or even the latest design for that fresh pair of kicks you want to sport on that first date.

But alas, I am not talking about muses here. I am not talking about that inspiration brought on by the melodic sounds that grace your eardrum and tickle the neurons in your brain. No, this is actually less deep than that. It’s really quite simple actually.

As I plugged my iPhone into my auxiliary car jack the other day and hit random, I was transported to my usual state of euphoria when I cranked my stereo up past eleven. But then, seemingly out of nowhere, my brain started to think. And as we all know, for me, thinking is usually quite dangerous.

The very first song to spark the subwoofer was Kanye West’s “Blame Game”. As I listened to the lyrics, I mean ACTUALLY LISTENED to the lyrics, something sparked my interest like no other.

“Things used to be, now they not
anything but us is who we are
disguising ourselves as secret lovers
we’ve become public enemies
we walk away like strangers in the street
gon for eternity
we erased one another
so far from where we came
with so much of everything, how do we leave with nothing
lack of visual empathy equates the meaning of L-O-V-E
hatred and attitude tear us entirely”

And as he finished his verse, he did something totally unexpected. He actually cited the author of the words from whom he borrowed. Underneath his breath he muttered the name “Chloe Mitchell“.

Kind of taken back, I was instantly intrigued with who this woman could be. So, as soon as I pulled into work and sat down at my computer, my fingers pounded my keyboard in search of Chloe Mitchell. And what I found was so hauntingly and most definitely the most beautifully harsh love poem I have ever read.

*****

Your Bitter Is My Sweet/Blame Game

Things used to be. Now they’re not. Anything but us is who we are. Disguising ourselves as secret lovers, we’ve become public enemies. We walk away like strangers in the street. Gone for eternity, we erase one another. No phone calls. No sweet text messages. We are mere specs of particles, floating, unknown to our partners’ existence. So far from where we came. With so much of everything, how do we leave with nothing? Lack of visual empathy equates to the meaning of L.O.V.E. Hatred and attitude tear us entirely. We meet at opposite poles and no longer can we bond like love birds to a song or flowers to a Daisy. The air smells of rotten love and burned hearts. We have trashed our over cooked love that now accompanies the bin of deceit. Don’t turn around. Continue walking away. Disappear into that darkness that rests upon your gritty shoulders. Let that dark cloud follow you wherever you go. So long ex-lover. Farewell.

-Chloe Mitchell

Wow. I mean, WOW. I was just astonished by what I had read. Her words struck a chord so deep I actually had goosebumps. If you have ever had a breakup in your life, I am sure you could relate on some level. If not, you’re a lucky one and I pity your delicate soul.

So, without warning, music let me to discover something I never knew existed. It did not inspire me. It did not give me that creative muse like it has done a multitude of times before. No, this time it was different. This time music allowed me to discover someone else’s pain, someone else’s creativity. And I, for one, am so glad it did.

A Techno Kind Of Night

19 Apr

This last weekend, I had the privilege of hanging out with some of the finest DJs the Midwest has to offer. The crews over at PhulPhunk and Kansas City Techno got together and put on one hell of a free show for the internets. Come and take a look at just a few of the snapshots I took that night.

Click HERE for Facebook

Click HERE for Flickr

Phul Phunk Magic

3 Aug

Okay, I’ve pimped out my friend Mitchel’s music before. It’s not a secret, he’s a kick ass electronica/techno/break/house/whateverthefuckyouwanttohear mix master. So why I am bringing this up again? He just released one of his best mixes yet. Even if you aren’t a huge fan of electronica or house music, I am willing to bet you will like this. So, what are you waiting for? Get your ass over to http://www.phulphunk.com and download this FREE awesomeness now. If you like what you hear, pass it on. It’s called social networking people!

Are you too lazy to type in the address to the site? Perfect! I have a link just for you!

DJ Wizzo: Bang.In.The.Disco

Thank You, Daryl Hall and John Oates

21 May

It’s no secret I have been in a total shit funk the last couple of months. I have not exactly been myself or even a tolerable human being for the most part. Waking up on the daily, feeling like a bag of mashed assholes does something particularly detrimental to one’s soul.  This week, however, things are slowly starting to change. I actually have a sense of hope again. Numerous times this week, I have begun to laugh and let a little bit of sunshine filter through the dark spaces in my mind. Today, during my outright mundane commute to my so-called day job, I was reminded of just how beautiful life can be. Now, I am not going to get all philosophical on you or try to pretend to be all roses and no thorns here, but what occurred this otherwise ordinary morning is on the same level as unicorns and leprechauns. Yes, you guessed it. Purely magical.

As I shuffled my heavy feet through the garage to my rental car, I noticed a shiny disc on the ground amongst the heap of toys, bicycles, and Power Wheels. Almost immediately, my curiosity got the best of me. Thanks to my extra long shower, I was already late to work. So, stopping to rummage through my garage wasn’t exactly on my to do list. Still, I couldn’t shake this tiny, little object that seemed to be glowing to get my attention. (Let’s face it, we all know how I am easily distracted by shiny things.) After damn near tripping over a foam covered baseball bat and sidewalk chalk, I finally made my way to the shiny thing. And there it was. At first, I almost dismissed it. After all, I was nothing but a plain old burned CD-R disc. “Probably just a stupid mix-tape”, I mumbled to myself. But as my eyes focused on the unknown prize, I realized just what I had in my hands. There, etched in black Sharpie pen, were just a few words. “The Daryl Hall and John Oates Ultimate Collection, Volume One”, it read. A couple of words and two full names that, at that moment, I didn’t know would instantly become the soundtrack and credo of my day.

At this point in my life, I have totally given up on Kansas City’s radio stations. They all sound the same and have nothing to offer me unless I want to listen to Beyoncé or Brittany Spears on a constant loop. So, my typical morning drive is usually filled with nothing more than sports talk radio. The witty banter and rage fueled arguments with multiple callers is enough to put my brain at ease for the 19 mile trek. Today, however, was a different day. As I put the Camry in reverse, I popped my newly discovered surprise into the handy-dandy CD player. I didn’t even make it to the end of my sub-division without cranking up the volume to a deafening level. She’s Gone, When The Morning Comes, and You Make My Dreams filled the cabin with a feeling of calm and happiness. Without warning, my mind instantly concentrated on all the small and inornate things that ultimately make me happy. Some of these things I hadn’t thought about in a long time. Some of these things are right in my face on a daily basis, but in typical fashion, I had failed to be smart enough to clue in on them and let them help me through my self-imposed darkness. My wife’s beautiful eyes and the touch of her skin. The smell of fresh-cut grass on a rainy day. The little things that get swept under the proverbial rug when you think nothing is going to be great in your world again. It’s amazing how vocals, rhythm, and a little bit of  musical soul can transform you. Today, I feel like a new person. A new-found optimism props up my smile. So, thank you, Mr. Daryl Hall. I salute you, John Oates. I needed a smack in the face and you were there to give it to me.

New Music Wednesday: Mike Posner Edition

17 Mar

Every once in a while, I run into something that I think the regular Joes and the ordinary Marys of the world need to insert into their daily musical repertoire. While searching the internets this morning, I ran into a snippet on perezhilton.com about this little musical gem, Mr. Mike Posner. In the five whole minutes I spent researching and listening to the tracks available, I can inform you of these nifty details…

1) Once upon a time, Mike Posner was just a lowly college kid.

2) One day, he decided to make some music for shits and grins.

3) Suddenly and without warning, his mixtapes exploded and infested the interwebs.

4) Just like the scene in Wayne’s World, his music was beamed to SATCOM 2, bounced to transmitter 137, and eventually ended up getting sucked into the satellite dish on the back of Mr. Big’s limo.

5) Behold! He now has a major recording contract and is now birthing out funky tracks like two bunnies in love.

So, be nice to your ears. Log on and listen to the soothing sounds of Mr. Mike Posner.

(Personal favorites: Drug Dealer Girl and Cooler Than Me)

Mike Posner (Official Website)

Mike Posner (myspace)

Bringing the Phunk

8 Mar

Do you like music? Do you like glowsticks? Do you like your music mixed with glowsticks? Then I have just the website for you! My good friend, Mitchel (AKA DJ Wizzo) has just launched a brand spanking new blog/website devoted to the best house, hardhouse, dubstep, breakbeats and everything in-between. It’s loaded with free mixes from local, regional, and national DJ’s. So, do yourself and your ears a huge favor. Log on, click away, and enjoy some truly great beats.

http://phulphunk.com/

Now Let the Music Play, Sinners.

2 Oct

church_lady

Well, it’s Friday morning and my brain is officially fried. In all actuality, I have nothing of substance left to offer you or society today. So, I am going to make things easy on all of our squirrel sized cerebellums. Today folks, we are going to concentrate on what makes us all happy. Something that we all want, need, and crave. I am not talking about shopping, chocolate, or an exquisite burrito from Chipotle. No, no, that would be too easy. I am talking about something much deeper. Something that is imprinted deep, deep down in our DNA. Something so very crucial and vital, our whole species depends on it. Yes folks, I am talking about the need, the want, the desire to make sexy time. In fact, I am going to make it easier for you to go out this weekend and find yourself some action. No, I am not going to buy any prostitutes. I am way too broke for that. We are in a recession remember? Today people, I am going to go above and beyond. Behold, the Mixtape! Yes, that’s right. The single most effective way to get your virginal self laid down upon a bed a roses. You don’t even have to do any of the work like we used to have to do back in the day. No holding down the pause button on your boombox until the next song came on the radio. No holding one boombox up to another to record something because you were too broke to get one of those fancy dual cassette tape decks. After many, many years of research, (and by research I mean me sitting in a dark room by myself with nothing but a radio and my tears) I have compiled a master list. Now, go out and use this list for some goody, goody and some sweet, sweet evil.  I mean, we owe it to humanity, right?

1) Let’s Get it On- Marvin Gaye

2) Glycerine- Bush

3) All I Wanna Do- Jamie Lidell

4) Nobody- Keith Sweat

5) Turn Me On- Norah Jones

6)It Seems Like You’re Ready- R.Kelly

7) Possession- Sarah McLaughlin

8) No One- Alicia Keys

9) That’s the Way Love Goes- Janet Jackson

10) Closer- Nine Inch Nails

11) That’s What It’s Made For- Usher

12) Before I Let You Go- Blackstreet

13) Red Light Special- TLC

14) Wicked Game- Chris Isaak

15) Sexual Healing- Marvin Gaye

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