Sitting round at home

Kind of a grey and rainy day here in Wilmington today.

Had a nice lunch with Kelly at Bertucci's.

We got seated in a booth next to some old bat who was talking WAY too loud, so we asked the waitress if we could move, claiming we wanted to watch a college football game on TV.

After that, everything was O.K.

I've been trying to listen to records and groups that I hadn't ever gotten around to listening to. Been digging Joy Division's "Unknown Pleasures" (36-year-old just now discovering his goth tendencies) and The Fall's "50,000 Fall Fans Can't be Wrong," which comps up a greatest-hits style overview of the band's output.

Listening to Dogs Die in Hot Cars right now. Why bands like this, Hot Hot Heat and Futureheads are rehashing what XTC did so perfectly 20 years ago is beyond me. It is making me wanna listen to "English Settlement" again though.

Really though the new Blues Explosion album, "Damage," was surprisingly good. Usually I don't care for their stuff, but this one was pretty swank I thought. Queued up for spins are Kings of Leon, Ed Harcourt, The Czars and Stina Nordenstam. I picked up the Starlight Desperation's "Violate a Sundae" a while ago and need to listen more.

I watched another episode of "Family Bonds." That is a pretty good show about the life of a bail bondsman and his wacky New York family. The main guy in it resembles Morton Downey Jr. but isn't as obnoxious. Actually seems like a good dude whose clients are total scum.
Oxes in the Netherlands!

The excellent site VPRO has audio of Baltimore's best, Oxes, playing in the Netherlands.

Listen: Oxes, October 27, 2004, Club 3Voor12

Can't wait for a new record by Oxes. They are one of my favorite bands of all time.
John Peel RIP

John Peel was, perhaps, the most influential, exciting and important DJ in the history of broadcasting.

Read my new columm, John Peel RIP, at
The day after

Spent most of yesterday listening to Radio One and their tributes to John Peel.

It's hard for most to understand how important a part of many people's life John Peel and his radio show were.

John Peel was to new and adventurous music, what Howard Stern is to schock radio, what Kurt Cobain was to generations of punkers.

In other words, the guy was huge.

Over the past year, I relied heavily on radio shows to get me through early hours and crazy weekend shifts when no one in their right mind would be awake.

DJs such as Peel, WFMU's Mike Lupica and Terre T and all their other DJs, are just some of the people who played music that really kept me going.

Probably the most poignant post on the BBC bulletin boards said, "John Peel is dead, now what do we do?"


So, I have today off. Pretty nice. Walked up to the post office and watched the first episode of Taken, which seems to be equal parts traditional epic mini-series, X-Files and romantic love story all wrapped up into one.

I have some episodes of season two of Dead Like Me to get through. This is one of my new fave shows. Just really good writing, concept and characters cloaked in sublime and occasionally biting darkness.

Also on my list of things to view is The Power of Nightmares, which explores the culture of fear generated by the war on terror.

Haven't watched any episodes of Arrested Development lately, but will do so soon. I picked up the 1st episode of Greg the Bunny, but haven't watched yet. Both of these shows came out on DVD recently.

I finally got my copy of On the Road with the Ramones by Monte Mellnick. I've only read a few pages, but it looks like it will be a great read.
McG on the passing of John Peel

With the advent of Internet radio, people like myself in the United States recently became able to hear what Britains and musicians had known for decades.

John Peel was one of the most influential and important DJs in the history of broadcasting.

And his show was enormously fun to listen to.

Perhaps most important about Peel and his love of music was his willingness to embrace new music of all sorts including reggae, heavy metal, folk, vocals, pop, punk and more.

No genre of music was off-limits when it came to the John Peel show. One could often hear an old song from the 1930s followed by a song by a band called Selfish Cunt.

If it were interesting, groundbreaking or unusual, chances were Peel would give it a spin. The ultimate factor in deciding what music was played on the John Peel show was that it be good.

That's how he became the ultimate tastemaker of musicians old and new alike. His "Peel Sessions," in-studio performances recorded specifically for his program, were the stuff legends are made of.

These sessions often saw the light of day via bootlegs and more recently, through file-sharing and official release.

In the end, it can be said John Peel championed music because he loved it. And that love was clearly present during his broadcasts.

In recent months, Peel recounted how he had been working on his auto-biography. Regrettably, he won't be able to finish it, but certainly it will be released and will be just one of many reminders of how John Peel became and will remain a part of music history.

I feel fortunate to be able to call myself a regular listener of John Peel's radio show for the last year.

I've learned about several new bands and went back and did my homework about bands that I had only heard of, but never listened to. All thanks to John Peel.

All music fans owe a huge thanks and debt of gratitude to John Peel for being there for the past 40+ years ... and letting us listen in.
Legendary BBC radio DJ John Peel dies

Veteran BBC broadcaster John Peel has died at the age of 65, while on holiday in Peru. Peel, whose radio career spanned 40 years, was on a working holiday in the city of Cuzco with his wife Sheila when he suffered a heart attack.

BBC News: John Peel obituary
BBC: John Peel passes away (with links to message boards, tributes)
Listen: Tribute to Bomp Records' Greg Shaw on WFMU

Kudos to Evan "Funk" Davies who recently did a terrific three-hour radio show on WFMU devoted solely to the music and life of Bomp Records proprietor, Greg Shaw.

WFMU: October 25, 2004: HE put the Bomp: RIP Greg Shaw
Siouxsie Sioux fills in for John Peel

Listen to Siouxsie as she fills on for the legendary BBC DJ.

Siouxsie Sioux on the John Peel Show, Wednesday Oct. 20
(Note: This show will be archived for one week only)
Bangbus is one ride you don't want to take

Don't make the same mistake Lori did.

At 22, she was broke, unwed and pregnant. And her relationship with the father was rocky.

To make some quick cash, she took a ride on bangbus, and has regretted her decision ever since.

Read Lori's sad story and the evil empire of bangbus
(Note: SFW, but contains content for mature audiences only)
Good dude, Three Stooges superfan passes away

I've had the same P.O. box at Rodney Square in Wilmington, Delaware for 12+ years.

One of the things I like about this particular post office are all the people who work there.

They're all very friendly and willing to put up with my incessant mailings and yellow slips indicating "parcel to large to fit in box."

Anyway, one of the good people who worked at the P.O., Dennis Badger, passed away over the weekend.

Dennis was always cool to me, and we'd often share stories about music, football and dealing with everyday life.

On Saturdays Dennis would bring in videotapes and play football games that he taped. He was also a huge Three Stooges fan and would play them as well.

It was always cool to go mail stuff on a Saturday and see Dennis in the post office and see Shemp, Larry and Moe carrying on in the background.

Dennis was a good dude to me and it was a sad day when I went to the post office and Miss Theresa told me he had died.

These Stooges clips are for you Dennis:

Wav: Curly: Woowoowoowoo
Wav: Curly: Tryin' to think, but nothin's happening
MP3: Bush the Genius

Here's a funny montage of clips featuring our commander-in-chief in a series of verbal screw ups.

MP3: Bush the genius (file permanently offline)

Thanks to Howard for playing this earlier this month.
Love it when I find stuff like this

I was reading one of my fave music sites, Something I Learned Today.

I found a link to a site I hadn't seen before, Agony Shorthand.

Zinesters who toiled in obscurity in the '90s will recognize Agony Shorthand's editor as none other than Jay Hinman, who used to put out Superdope zine.

This little find made my morning.

Lame site linking

Man, I just found a site that I really like is linking to an MP3 I posted on my server (via

I have no problem with people linking to my content, but I do have a problem when people link to the content without giving proper credit or even allowing a way for people to visit my site.

I would prefer it if people linked to the original posting that has the MP3 links, instead of just linking to the MP3 itself.

Maybe it's just me, but I think that is common courtesy.
Registered to vote ... again

I went down to the Dept. of Elections to register to vote. Today is the deadline in Delaware.

I registered to vote by mail months ago, but never got any information back saying I was registered. That's usually an indication that you may not be registered.

You can't check online to confirm your voting registration status in Delaware.

I was surprised that when you register in person, that your information is taken down by hand and a form filled out for each voter.

You don't even get any paperwork that indicates you are registered. All I got was a sticker saying, "I registered to vote today."

Why isn't this stuff computerized and in a tamper-proof database?

You can file your State and Federal taxes online and even check your filing status online. The IRS is clearly up to speed with their technology.

Why can't Delaware and the other 49 states do a better job of managing and processing all voter registration information?!
MP3: Black Flag - Live 7" #1 bootleg

Here's a nice find from alt.binaries.punk, a five-song, live 7" bootleg by Black Flag.

Soundboard recording circa '82 or '83 with Hank on vocals.

MP3: 1. Black Flag - Spray Paint the Walls
MP3: 2. Black Flag - Room 13
MP3: 3. Black Flag - Rise Above
MP3: 4. Black Flag - Six Pack
MP3: 5. Black Flag - Life of Pain

Flex discography review of Black Flag - Live 7" #1 bootleg
'Mean Girls' sucks out loud

Oh, so I promised I would tell you how that flick "Mean Girls" was. I think there was one laugh throughout the entire flick. Don't even waste your time.

As my grandfather once said, "I wouldn't walk across the street to see those bums," (referring to the Rolling Stones concert in Philadelphia in 1981.)

I guess what I'm trying to say is, I wouldn't walk across the street to rent this movie (but in fact, I regrettably did drive to the video store), even if Lindsay Lohan would personally check out my copy.

If you're looking for a dumb and mindless, yet funny teen flick, try "The Girl Next Door," which was retarded in all the right ways.

It gets my personal "Dude-who-is-35-but-still-watches-shitty-teen-movies seal of approval."

I really dug the flick "Open Water," which will be out on DVD soon and I had countless laugh-out-loud chuckles and snorts while watching, "Shaun of the Dead."

So, my new favorite TV show is "Dead Like Me." The pilot of that show is amazing and draws you in completely. Really well done stuff.

I still don't have Tivo (yet) and Comcast (sucks) still hasn't installed their DVR which they called me about two months ago and said it was available in my area.

I've been catching up on the TV phenomenon that is "Arrested Development." Like my pal Dave said, "Who knew Jason Bateman and Portia De Rossi could be so funny?"

Good question indeed. I was able to snag the entire first season online at a site like this.

Which brings me to a small rant.

Is downloading the TV show "Arrested Development" from the Internet wrong?

In my case, I would say no.

Simply because I already paid to have this content delivered into my home via cable.
True, I wasn't watching when it was broadcast nor did I tape it on my vcr for personal use. Instead I downloaded the shows which were already delivered into my house via a paid service. I just accessed them through a different medium.

Still OK?

Why not. I'm essentially using the Internet to download the shows as an alternative to the VCR in a way. It's as if a pal taped it for me and lent me his copy to watch.

If Tivo has told us anything, its that people want to watch TV on their own terms. And with the success of Comcast's On-Demand, people want the ability to watch shows when they want.

Like I said, I already paid for the content ... so what if I rely on the Internet instead of my VCR to watch a recorded copy of the show.

Low self-esteem kicks in ...

Blah. I know you don't care about any of this. That's fine.

I just like hearing my own voice shouting into the endless galaxy of blogs.