Mon, 29 February 2016
In the fourth episode of the Constant Conversation podcast, Mike Joseph talks to Bill Bodkin, the founder and editor of Pop-break.com. Topics of their discussion include the struggle to write as a career, Bill's life as a husband and new father, attempting to stay healthy as a diabetic, and the changing tides of pop culture.
Bill's work can be found at pop-break.com.
He's on Twitter at @bodkinwrites.
Sat, 13 February 2016
Ladies & gentlemen of the listening public! It's time for a new episode of the Blerd Radio podcast! In episode 4, the team of Big Money, Michael Parr and The Packet Man (Dr. Z is sitting this one out) discuss the upcoming Grammy Awards and offer up our picks in several key categories (Best Alternative Album, Best Rock Album, Best Urban Contemporary Album, Best R&B Album, Best Pop Album, Best Rap Album, Best New Artist, Song Of The Year, Album Of The Year and Record Of The Year).
Here's a brief rundown of the topics discussed in this episode:
-NO MORE DEAD PEOPLE: A rush of celebrity passings have left the panel in a state of exhausting!
-BUT...we're (maybe) hiring an intern (maybe!) We list the qualifications, and wonder if anyone is willing to take the job. This leads into a discussion about overwhelming record collections, and it appears that The Packet Man might need an intervention.
-Inevitably, the chat detours into a few words about Kanye. Keep in mind that this conversation took place before February 12th came and went without a release, and back when the album was still called "Waves".
-The big nominee-and the guy we hope wins everything-is Kendrick Lamar.
-We start, however, with the Best Rock Album category-and wonder who the hell these nominees are. This confusion recurs several times over the course of the podcast. We never said we were prepared.
-There's a historical discussion of the infamous Soy Bomb Grammy incident, for the children.
-The panel contemplates the difference between R&B and Adult Contemporary, compares Lianne La Havas to Corinne Bailey Rae, and explores the sexiness of Grammy front-runner Miguel.
-Drake: like or dislike? (another ongoing topic of discussion in the Blerd Radio podcast.)
-How did James Taylor end up in the Best Pop Album category when no other nominee is even half his age?
-Taylor Swift and Kendrick are considered the front runners for AOTY, but can Alabama Shakes or Chris Stapleton sneak in from behind?
All that in more in the latest episode of Blerd Radio.
Wed, 10 February 2016
The latest installment of the Constant Conversations podcast features Mike Joseph talking to John Hill, founder of the music blog Pop Music Notes. This particular discussion strays far from the confines of music and ventures into everything from sexuality to football (this episode was recorded prior to Super Bowl 50.)
Among the topics discussed:
John's nomadic existence, which has taken him everywhere from New York State to Miami to his current (and maybe forever?) home in Colorado.
Life as a newlywed, and getting married in the shadow of the DOMA.
The coming out process, and how younger queer men and women generally have a much easier adjustment than we "older folk" did, particularly in the shadow of the AIDS crisis.
The parallels between hip-hop and country music.
John's current side gig as a rodeo scorekeeper and how he ended up becoming a part of that culture.
Free-form radio, and how it was used as a tool to expose listeners to different types of music in its heyday.
The episode is concluded with a (not really) bold Super Bowl prediction.
Mon, 1 February 2016
We may have said in Episode 2 that cover versions would be our next topic attacked on a Blerd Radio podcast. In between that proclamation and the night we marked to record Episode 3, a musical icon passed away. With that in mind, we (the team of Big Money, Dr. Z, Michael Parr and the returning Michael Cunningham) decided to devote a podcast to the music and the legend of David Bowie.
(For some reason, the introductions got cut off...so if you don't know who we are, look in the previous paragraph!)
The task of discussing Bowie's impact proved a bit difficult to do within the framework of a single podcast episode, but we managed to cram a lot into 90 minutes, including:
-The return of Michael Cunningham after a lengthy break, which is appropriate as he is the biggest Bowie fan on the panel (and arguably the biggest Bowie fan of anyone any of us knows.)
-How did we each discover Bowie? And where were we when we heard the news of his passing?
-Is Bowie's decade-long run of "classic" albums the longest in music history? It certainly deserves to be mentioned alongside similar runs by artists like Stevie Wonder and Prince (and the Bowie/Prince comparison pops up numerous times over the course of the episode.)
-After three years plus of doing Blerd Radio, it finally comes out that Dr. Z was in a band? Who knew?
-Bowie acknowledging his own mortality on the Blackstar album and how that's nearly unprecedented on an album by a major artist (David's buddy Freddie Mercury notwithstanding).
-Bowie's enduring legacy as one of the few artists to age in the pop culture spotlight without trading heavily on nostalgia.
-Blackstar's status as Bowie's first #1 album.
-Bowie-oke: Dr. Z and Cunningham task one another with Bowie covers for karaoke!