Just For Fun Concerts EP 2016-37 (Episode 41)

Hep Cats and Cool Daddies! It’s time for another episode of your favorite podcast Tales From the Dropbox. As always, new tunes abound in Episode 41. On a somewhat sad note, tomorrow is Vin Scully’s last game as the announcer for the Dodgers. I will miss both Vin’s game calls, which are unequaled in the history of sports announcing, and the class he brought to the game of baseball presenting for the listener the best side of baseball despite its often difficult challenges. Vin is Dodger baseball.

I also thought that now would be a good time to start to deal with the record number of propositions that Californians will have to decide in the November election. No time like the present, eh? In addition to voting for U.S. President and Vice President, 154 congressional and state legislative contests will be voted on this November. The offices on the November 8 ballot include:

  • one member of the U.S. Senate,
  • 53 members of the U.S. House of Representatives,
  • the 20 odd-numbered State Senate district members, and
  • the 80 State Assembly members.

Californian’s will vote on 17 propositions including some that complex and deceptive to voters trying to determine whether to vote in favor of a particular proposition. As I indicated in the show notes to an earlier episode of Tales From The Dropbox, There is a general rule for assessing whether to vote for a particular proposition is this:

If you don’t know about a particular piece of legislation for whatever reason, or if you are unsure of the consequences of voting in favor of a particular piece of legislation – then always vote NO.

However, there are a number of specific rules for assessing the validity of a particular piece of legislation. Here are my 6 specific rules, all subject to the general rule:

If the government can’t predict the economic impact of the proposed legislation – vote no.

If the proposed legislation is worded in such a manner so as to disguise its true objective (e.g. Prop 60 – the condom law) – vote no.

If the proposed legislation is morally objectionable to you or you believe it will have a significant negative economic impact that will impact you personally – vote no.

If the proposed legislation will accomplish the elimination of a specific societal ill that you personally find ethically/morally objectionable, and will not impose a significant cost on you personally, or you are willing to bear that economic cost – vote yes.

If the proposed legislation will bring about positive change for a particular group of individuals, have no or little financial impact on your life, and is not ethically/morally objectionable to you – vote yes.

If the legislation will bring about a positive change and the financial impact is one you, personally, are willing to bear – vote yes.

Simple reminder about the general rule: if you do not have enough information to make an informed decision for whatever reason – vote no. If a particular measure is critical, it will appear on the ballot again and hopefully the proponent will do a better job of selling it to the voters.

As to not overload you, I’m going to break the analysis of the proposed propositions on the November 8 ballot into a couple of parts over the next couple of episodes of this podcast because you should always listen to music while doing some heavy reading. For your convenience, I have also provided links to each of the described propositions to the California Legislative Analyst Office (a nonpartisan fiscal and policy advisor) analysis of each proposition so if you are interested you can read the full analysis. Finally, I’ve thrown in my two cents using the rules described above. I am also willing to tell you how I’m voting in case you are curious.

Proposition 60

Adult Films. Condoms. Health Requirements. Initiative Statute. Requires performers in adult films to use condoms during filming of sexual intercourse. Requires producers of adult films to pay for performer vaccinations, testing, and medical examinations related to sexually transmitted infections. Requires producers to obtain state health license at beginning of filming and to post condom requirement at film sites. Imposes liability on producers for violations, on certain distributors, on performers if they have a financial interest in the violating film, and on talent agents who knowingly refer performers to noncomplying producers. Permits state, performers, or any state resident to enforce violations. Summary of estimate by Legislative Analyst and Director of Finance of fiscal impact on state and local government: Potentially reduced state and local tax revenue of millions or tens of millions of dollars per year. Likely state costs of a few million dollars annually to administer the law. Possible ongoing net costs or savings for state and local health and human services programs. (15-0004.) 

As I covered this one in detail a number of episodes back – Vote NO on this one. It is bad for the economy and a disguised anti-porn initiative that impacts a significant workforce in the state of California. Whatever your feelings are about porn, the measure will impact jobs in California and if implemented will cause those jobs, many of them legitimate, to move from California hurting our local economy. Remember, always vote NO when the true objective is disguised. However, if you find porn morally objectionable, then follow the specific rule above, and vote YES because you know the true objective is to eliminate porn production in California and have the productions move elsewhere.  I’m voting NO.

Proposition 61

State Prescription Drug Purchases. Pricing Standards. Initiative Statute. Prohibits state agencies from paying more for a prescription drug than the lowest price paid for the same drug by the United States Department of Veterans Affairs. Applies to any program where the state is the ultimate payer for a drug, even if the state does not purchase the drug directly. Exempts certain purchases of prescription drugs funded through Medi-Cal. Fiscal impact: It is the opinion of the Legislative Analyst and Director of Finance that the measure, if adopted, may result in a substantial net change in state or local finances. (15-0009.)

This proposition’s problem is not the idea – lowering prescription drug prices is always good, but as should be obvious by now – no one actually knows what is going to happen to the price of prescription drugs, or the economic impact on individuals who may be priced out of the market. This is particularly true for drugs that the VA does not pay for, such as new and experimental drugs not approved by the VA which have no ceiling. A CAL matters analysis of state spending on prescription drug prices found that in some cases, the government is responding to rising costs by making it harder for people to get medication. Not covered by the measure are those who have private insurance, public school and school district employees or retirees, or the 10.4 million covered by Medi-Cal. Always vote NO when even the government can’t figure out the financial impact. I’m Voting NO.

Proposition 62

Death Penalty. Initiative Statute. Repeals death penalty as maximum punishment for persons found guilty of murder and replaces it with life imprisonment without possibility of parole. Applies retroactively to persons already sentenced to death. States that persons found guilty of murder and sentenced to life without possibility of parole must work while in prison as prescribed by the Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation. Increases to 60% the portion of wages earned by persons sentenced to life without the possibility of parole that may be applied to any victim restitution fines or orders against them. Summary of estimate by Legislative Analyst and Director of Finance of fiscal impact on state and local government: Net reduction in state and local government costs of potentially around $150 million annually within a few years due to the elimination of the death penalty. (15-0066.)

One of two death penalty propositions on the ballot, a YES vote on this measure means: No offenders could be sentenced to death by the state for first degree murder. The most serious penalty available would be a prison term of life without the possibility of parole. Offenders who are currently under a sentence of death would be resentenced to life without the possibility of parole. A NO vote on this measure means: Certain offenders convicted for first degree murder could continue to be sentenced to death. There would be no change for offenders currently under a sentence of death.

So what are we talking about here? Since the current death penalty law was enacted in California in 1978, 930 individuals have received a death sentence. In recent years, an average of about 20 individuals annually have received death sentences. The state currently spends about $55 million annually on the legal challenges that follow death sentences. As of April 2016,of the 930 individuals who received a death sentence since 1978, 15 have been executed, 103have died prior to being executed, 64have had their sentences reduced by the courts, and748 are in state prison with death sentences. The state uses lethal injection to execute condemned inmates. Because of legal issues surrounding the state’s lethal injection procedures, executions have not taken place since 2006.

The real issue for many people is likely that we don’t kill people fast enough after they have been sentenced by a jury of their peers to death. Since that objective has only been carried out 15 times since 1978, the state can save $55 million per year and free up courts to deal with other matters. I’d say vote your conscience on this one. Effectively California does not have a death penalty, and unless and until the Supreme Court decides that those sentenced to die don’t have automatic appeals, California will not have an effective death penalty. If this proposition is passed then at least Californian’s will save some money. I’m voting YES.

Proposition 63

Firearms. Ammunition Sales. Initiative Statute. Prohibits possession of large-capacity ammunition magazines, and requires their disposal by sale to dealer, destruction, or removal from state. Requires most individuals to pass background check and obtain Department of Justice authorization to purchase ammunition. Requires most ammunition sales be made through licensed ammunition vendors and reported to Department of Justice. Requires lost or stolen firearms and ammunition be reported to law enforcement. Prohibits persons convicted of stealing a firearm from possessing firearms. Establishes new procedures for enforcing laws prohibiting firearm possession by felons and violent criminals. Requires Department of Justice to provide information about prohibited persons to federal National Instant Criminal Background Check System. Summary of estimate by Legislative Analyst and Director of Finance of fiscal impact on state and local government: Increased state costs in the tens of millions of dollars annually related to regulating ammunition sales, likely offset by various regulatory fees authorized by the measure. Increase in court and law enforcement costs, not likely to exceed the tens of millions of dollars annually, related to removing firearms from prohibited persons as part of court sentencing proceedings. These costs could be offset to some extent by fees authorized by the measure. Potential increase in state and local correctional costs, not likely to exceed the low millions of dollars annually, related to new and increased penalties. (15-0098.)

Here is an example of an attempt to regulate the possession of weapons but at a potentially significant economic cost as it develops essentially a new court system to deal with a growing social concern. (NOTE: It does not take guns out of the hands of the police who commit firearms offenses). A YES vote on this measure means: A new court process would be created for the removal of firearms from individuals upon conviction of certain crimes. New requirements related to the selling or purchasing of ammunition would be implemented. A NO vote on this measure means: No new firearm-or ammunition-related requirements would be implemented.

So, the proposed legislation would not impact gun sales, attempt to regulate sales of ammunition, and have little direct fiscal impact unless you are a hunter as the enforcement costs are going to be likely added to the cost of ammo. It would however, put in place a system that will enforce court orders that persons convicted of certain felonies do not possess firearms. This is a good idea in theory and on balance the economic risk appears to be worth the reward. I’m voting YES.

Proposition 64

Marijuana Legalization. Initiative Statute. Legalizes marijuana and hemp under state law. Designates state agencies to license and regulate marijuana industry. Imposes state excise tax on retail sales of marijuana equal to 15% of sales price, and state cultivation taxes on marijuana of $9.25 per ounce of flowers and $2.75 per ounce of leaves. Exempts medical marijuana from some taxation. Establishes packaging, labeling, advertising, and marketing standards and restrictions for marijuana products. Allows local regulation and taxation of marijuana. Prohibits marketing and advertising marijuana to minors. Authorizes re-sentencing and destruction of records for prior marijuana convictions. Summary of estimate by Legislative Analyst and Director of Finance of fiscal impact on state and local government: Net reduced costs ranging from tens of millions of dollars to potentially exceeding $100 million annually to state and local governments related to enforcing certain marijuana-related offenses, handling the related criminal cases in the court system, and incarcerating and supervising certain marijuana offenders. Net additional state and local tax revenues potentially ranging from the high hundreds of millions of dollars to over $1 billion annually related to the production and sale of marijuana. Most of these funds would be required to be spent for specific purposes such as substance use disorder education, prevention, and treatment. (15-0103.)

A YES vote on this measure means: Adults 21 years of age or older could legally grow, possess, and use marijuana for non-medical purposes, with certain restrictions. The state would regulate non-medical marijuana businesses and tax the growing and selling of medical and non-medical marijuana. Most of the revenue from such taxes would support youth programs, environmental protection, and law enforcement. A NO vote on this measure means: Growing, possessing, or using marijuana for non-medical purposes would remain illegal. It would still be legal to grow, possess, or use marijuana for medical purposes.

This measure is complicated. There is the potential that the increase in ease of availability of marijuana will lead to increase availability for minors. However, minors who choose to use, are doing so already regardless of the fact that marijuana is illegal. Evidence from other states that have passed similar legislation – Washington and Colorado – suggests that the state coffers are dramatically and positively impacted. The legislative analyst office suggests that the tax revenue derived from the measure could exceed $1 Billion annually most of which would be utilized for enforcement and youth programs. The State would save money jailing users for marijuana offenses.

This measure is also a complicated because, like alcohol and tobacco, there are potentially adverse health consequences from the use of marijuana and increased legal recreational use will likely lead to more DWI accidents. See Marijuana-related fatal car accidents surge in Washington state after legalization; Fatal road crashes involving marijuana double after state legalizes drug. Similar findings are true in Colorado: The Legalization of Marijuana in Colorado: The Impact, Vol. 4, September 2016.

For me, the decision as to how to vote on this proposition is truly not that complicated. Why?  There is strong evidence that people are just plain stupid. I have no religious or moral objection to the legal use of marijuana and would likely vote in favor of the legalization of marijuana for recreational purposes if I had any faith in the goodness and decision-making ability of people. I don’t. If I truly believed that people would not die as a consequence of legalizing marijuana for recreational use, then I am in. I strongly believe that people should have the ability to choose their “poison” so long as their choice does not adversely impact others. The available evidence strongly suggests that people who use marijuana get in their cars, boats, and other vehicles and drive impaired. Therefore, because I believe that people will not put the lives of others ahead of their own desire to get high – I vote NO. Simply put, the potential negative impact of recreational marijuana use – death of another human – significantly outweighs the fiscal incentives for permitting the recreational use of another drug that impairs the ability to think. Vote No on this measure. I’m voting NO.

So there you have it – analysis of 5 propositions of the 17 on the ballot that will impact your life depending on how you vote. Here is my scorecard:

  • Proposition 60: NO
  • Proposition 61: NO
  • Proposition 62: YES
  • Proposition 63: YES
  • Proposition 64: NO

The last day to register to vote in the November 8 General Election is October 24. Californians can register to vote online at: http://registertovote.ca.gov/

Here is what you’ll find in Episode #41:

  1. Martha – “11-45, Legless in Brandon” (Blisters In The Pit of My Heart)
  2. Butch Walker – “Stay Gold” (Stay Gold)
  3. Hellfreaks – “Burn The Horizon” (Astoria)
  4. Death of A Party  “Hellraiser” (Rage Millennial)
  5. Pop. 1280 – “Pulse” (Pulse)
  6. Chris Farren – “Human Being” (Can’t Die)
  7. D.A.R.K. – “Loosen The Noose” (Science Agrees)
  8. The Hunna – “Rock My Way” (100)
  9. Someone Else – “Hymn For The Underdog” (Power Chord Poetry)
  10. Belle Noire – “Everything” (What It Means To Be)
  11. Work Drugs – “American Fool” (Method Acting)
  12. Nots – “Cosmetic” (Cosmetic)
  13. Cymbals Eat Guitars – “Well” (Pretty Years)
  14. Bad Sports – “Done To Death” (Living With Secrets)
  15. Deap Valley – “Little Baby Beauty Queen” (Femejism)

Well I’m so damn bored I could cut myself only four more hours to kill…. If I could be around you all the time, I’d be content to just stay in every night.


Just For Fun Concerts EP 2016-36 (Episode 40)

Tales From the Dropbox Episode 40 is a good one! Okay, I think they all are. However, I truly do believe the past several episodes are close to the vision I had for these podcasts from their inception: to present for your listening pleasure a mix of interesting and diverse new music from a wide-ranging group of artists all of whom are highly unlikely to receive any attention on commercial radio. Why is this universe of music not played anywhere on the commercial monopoly that passes for radio? Why do current radio programmers have no room on their playlists for the likes of Ex-Cult, Beach Slang, or the Rifles?


But this lack of radio airplay turns out to be  great for all of us that traverse the alternative universe. (Oh …my …God! I just figured out what alternative means in the current day and age…It means an alternative to the crap played on KROQ or _________ (fill in your own local clear channel controlled FM station)). Why? Because you can always find truly terrific music here!

Speaking of vision, I couldn’t help noticing (only because I am old) that Donald Trump has shared his vision of America at a speech in Philadelphia on September 9. As Trump put it:

“We Will Be One People, Under One God, Saluting One American Flag.”

Apparently, the Donald shares the same vision as another infamous leader who came up with this slogan for his political party:

“Ein volk, Ein reich, Ein Fuhrer!” (“One people, one empire, one leader!”).

I, unfortunately, am not too surprised that the Donald would paraphrase Hitler as he seeks the Presidency of the United States of America. As Trump posited in the same speech:

Starting in 2017, we will be one American nation. It’s time to break our ties with the bitter failures of the past and to embrace a new American future. Have to do it. Together we will make America believe again. We will make America united again. And we will make America great again.”

In fairness, Trump is not Hitler. However, Trump’s obvious and vocal appeal to the extreme right – a fear of immigrants, of other religions, of the banning of Muslims etc. – is a parallel to the same rhetoric that launched the Nazi party into power. Not that I’m the only one to notice the parallels. The internet is filled with such comparisons, some from well-known publications (e.g. Who said it: Donald Trump or Adolf Hitler? The theory of political leadership that Donald Trump shares with Adolf Hitler) but the most interesting view is not the similarity of Trumps rhetoric and vision, but rather that the race for the Presidency is apparently a dead heat. Really, has ½ of America gone insane or are we really a nation where the fear of a [black, yellow, brown, immigrant, poor] planet is so great that people are willing to take a chance on Trump?

This is progress?

Here is what you’ll find in Episode #40:

  1. Barb Wire Dolls – “Blind To Your Misery” (Desperate)
  2. Many Things – “Dear One” (Burn Together)
  3. Dirtbombs – “Indivisible” (We Have You Surrounded)
  4. Ex-Cult – “Mr. Investigator” (Negative Growth)
  5. Beach Slang – “Spin the Dial” (A Loud Bash of Teenage Feelings)
  6. Malibu Cannibals – “Shine” (Beautiful)
  7. The Rifles – “Motorway” (Big Life)
  8. Puddle Splasher – “I’m Hurting Me” (Separate States)
  9. Gap Dream – “Rock and Roll” (This is Gap Dream)
  10. The Wytches – “Cough-Cool” (Home Recordings EP)
  11. Avers – “Holding On” (Omega-Whatever)
  12. La Femme – “Mycose” (Mystere)
  13. Frenzal Rhomb – “We’re Going Out Tonight” (We Lived Like Kings (We Did Anything We Wanted))
  14. Stiff Little Fingers – “Johnny Was” (Inflammable Material)
  15. Blowout – “If-Else-If” (No Beer, No Dad)

This street we walk upon this corner full of piss and fear this street won’t bear it long
it slants, it tilts, it’s brought outside alive . . . Woman hold her head and cry, cause her son had been shot down in the street and died from a stray bullet.


Just For Fun Concerts EP 2016-35 (Episode 39)

Tales From the Dropbox Episode 39 is about musical diversity – on this day – the 15th anniversary of September 11. As for this episode’s read-a-long, the theme is rather simple: Remembrance. This show is being released on September 11, 2016 – the 15th anniversary of the coordinated terrorist attacks on the United States of America, on Americans. The date, 9/11 is significant, and marks a moment in our history we should never forget. However, two questions concerning 9/11 will certainly arise (if not now but certainly at some point in the near future, from a generation too young to have witnessed let alone understand 9/11’s significance), why do we care and why should we remember?

What follows is my meager attempt to capture the significance of this tragic day – a day that 15 years later I still remember unfolding and still recall the aftermath of that day’s events. Like many memories the edges of those memories are a little blurry. The “significant” details from my viewpoint are still sharp but the details are not. I have not experienced 9/11 fatigue – the feeling that I cannot watch another retelling of the events of that day, the stories of the heroes, the victims, the senselessness of the attacks. The answer to why I am still interested in the “details” of 9/11 lies, I believe, lies in the answer to the two questions posed above: why do we care and why should we remember?

We must care about the events of 9/11 because one of the several significant lessons of this tragic day is that that America, for all of its strength and weaknesses, is a symbol that generates a number of powerful emotions in those who are not Americans. The power of that symbol is so great that there are those who will give up their lives to attack our symbols and our citizens. This is the other side of the coin of patriotism. Just as there are those who will fight and give up their lives for our freedom, there are those who will give up their lives to destroy our freedom, to attack our values, and undermine our way of life.  There are those governments and individuals who see only the aspects of our nation that they want to see – both real and imagined i.e. our economic, social, and foreign policies – and then extrapolate those aspects to form their view of America as a nation. One particular view of America held by, apparently, a large group of individuals and foreign nations is that America is the land of infidels that should be destroyed. (See America’s Global Image.) Defending against this particular viewpoint is why we should care about 9/11.  We must care about the events of 9/11 because those events have shaped our domestic and foreign policy for the past 15 years and should be a daily reminder to Americans that America must be vigilant and united in defeating those who wish to tear apart the foundations our nation and threaten both our unity and freedom. The cost of that freedom is significant. The cost is measured by the lives of those who lost in the tragedies that have unfolded beginning that day.

We must remember the victims and events of 9/11 because as the years have passed, this date, like many others in recent history, (such as April 15, April 16, April 20, May 23, June 12, June 17, July 20, September 16, October 1, December 2, December 14), is in danger of fading from our memories and the consequences of failing to remember will have a significant consequence in the future. These dates all should be reminders of the cost of our freedom, of the rights guaranteed under the constitution, of the strength of our nation to repel attacks upon our core ideals and values, and the significance of each life lost, of each name – of each mother, father, son, daughter, brother, sister, child – significant each and every one – because they represent each of us. We should remember the victims of these unspeakable tragedies because they serve as reminders of the seriousness that the concept of “freedom” serves to anchor our nation and represents our progress as a society, as a nation.

Progress, far from consisting in change, depends on retentiveness. When change is absolute there remains no being to improve and no direction is set for possible improvement: and when experience is not retained, as among savages, infancy is perpetual. Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.

George Santayana, The Life of Reason, Volume 1, 1905

We must remember. In order for us to continue to progress as a nation, as a society, we must retain the knowledge of the victims of 9/11, because such remembrance gives us a direction forward – progress –  distinguishing us from the barbarians – “in which instinct has learned nothing from experience.” (Id.)

So, on this 9/11 take a moment to care and to remember.


10 things you may have forgotten about 9/11

Here is what you’ll find in Episode #39:

  1. Marta Ren and the Groovelvets – “It’s Today” (Stop Look Listen)
  2. Dreamers – “Little New Moon” (This Album Does Not Exist)
  3. Toy – “I’m Still Believing” (Clear Shot)
  4. Lost Animals – “Liverpool” (Fantastic Forrest EP)
  5. Purses – “Hitchhiker” (Obsess Much)
  6. Tiger Army – “Train to Eternity” (V *** -)
  7. Lydia Loveless – “Longer” (Real)
  8. Bouncing Souls – “Hey Aliens” (Simplicity)
  9. Glam Skanks – “Teenage Drag Queens” (Glitter City)
  10. Snowglobe – “Sid” (Snowglobe)
  11. The Few – “Exterminate” (Sleep Tight, When You Wake Up We’ll Be Gone)
  12. Rival Tides – “Bleed Me Out” (New Rituals EP)
  13. Ivan & the Parazol – “Cry” (The All Right Nows)
  14. Subhumans – “Dead at Birth” (Incorrect Thoughts)
  15. Jay Som – “Next to Me” (Turn Into)

People get on and they get off, sometimes we become friends but they cannot stay, for in the end our destinations aren’t the same . . . give me just a little bit longer to get over you


Just For Fun Concerts EP 2016-34 (Episode 38)

Another installment of Tales From the Dropbox! Episode 38 brings you my latest selection new(ish) type music that I am listening to as I toil away at the daily grind.  I suspect that some of you will find this episode a little quieter than the usual mix of tunes likely to be found in these podcasts, but I was feeling a little pensive, and perhaps a little sad, at the time I compiled the songs for this episode.No explanation really, life is good, and I am still as excited as ever about the state of music – as art. The music industry is a complete shit show but there is a glimmer of hope as vinyl continues to remain stable.

Perhaps it was the whole Colin Kaepernick side show that inundated almost every sports channel I viewed this week that has put me in the mood I am in. Perhaps it is the social issue that lies at the heart of this unfortunate situation that still remains unresolved that has finally gotten to me.

These notes attempt to articulate the important social issue raised in this “freedom of expression” moment. I believe that the social issue of import is not the one being discussed. I would be remiss if I did not acknowledge the issue raised by Colin Kaepernick’s seated protest. However, as usual, my view is a little sideways. Many commentators, including me, could easily identify the logical flaws in San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick’s decision not to stand during the playing of the National Anthem as a protest against a country that “that oppresses black people and people of color … There are bodies in the street and people getting paid leave and getting away with murder.”

I do acknowledge that Kaepernick truly believes that the flag is a symbol of a country that he does not respect because it oppresses black people (his words, not mine). This statement of an issue that may actually be factual is a difficult proposition for Kaepernick to sell because he – the carrier of this message – is simply not credible. Why? Because the bi-racial Kaepernick is going to make, as a backup quarterback, $11.9 million this year as an oppressed person of color.

Many commentators have and will continue to point out the obviously misguided method by which Kaepernick choose to call attention to an important social issue. But, what will not be discussed is the really and truly important issue that Kaepernick’s action and comments as to why he was protesting highlight:

the perception held by a significant number of persons that America (the land of the free and the home of the brave) oppresses minorities and prevents them from becoming successful because of their skin color.

It is easy for news commentators and pundits (and really everyone else who is likely to comment on the issue) to dwell on the reality that people of color are subject to a widespread and prevailing negative cultural bias resulting in racial inequality which influences and impacts every aspect of their social interaction and ability to gain affluence (See, for example, Contemporary American Society Chapter 14). However, this focus is tired and lazy. We can continue to point out that racism exists, but what the F$&&##!! are we doing about it?  Kaepernick’s “protest” as it is portrayed in the media will fail to address the power and role that the psychology of victimization holds in Kaepernick’s perception of oppression. The consequences of that psychology create and sustain the very perception we are discussing – that America is a racist and minorities will never be equal.

This psychology of victimization, a product of generations of minorities being taught that the “(white) man is going to keep you down,” is perhaps the key to breaking the hold that the perception has over the rational discussion of racism. Eliminating this victim mentality may also be the key to breaking the “power” of that perception in Americans, particularly when the perception that we are a racist society has become the reality. This is not to ignore actual racism exists and that people should rightly be pissed off and respond when they encounter actual incidents of racist attitudes and behavior. However, if we can eliminate the “false positives” then we can really target the elimination of the issue and focus our attention and action on those degenerates who continue to live in the stench of ignorance and intolerance.

Keep reading …the payoff is worth it. It’s not just psychobabble I’m positing. I’ve got the solution to the problem of racism in America.

The belief that people of color are oppressed in America is so powerful that examples of non-oppression (Kaepernick himself is an arguably successful wealthy bi-racial athlete) are ignored because they do not fit the perception. That is, perceptions of racial discrimination constitute significant risks to the psychological adjustment of minorities. Colloquially, we know this powerful psychological construct as “selling the myth” until it becomes the reality. As a consequence of racially biased perceptions, the successes of millions of persons of color are diminished. And not only are those successes diminished but those successful individuals are abused because of their success. Significantly, when a person of color is successful they are often, in turn, victimized by persons of their own color as being “too white” or not “fill-in-color” enough.

This is the central issue in the psychology of race – the perception of racial oppression is an expressed manifestation of the “crab in the bucket syndrome” i.e. a metaphor used to describe the mentality and behaviors of individuals belonging to or identifying with a particular community or culture, who ‘hold each other back’ from various opportunities for advancement and achievement despite incentives and expectations for collaboration. (See Miller, Carliss D., “A Phenomenological Analysis of the Crabs in the Barrel Syndrome”, Academy of Management Proceedings, Academy of Management (January 2015)).

This observation is not new. As noted in a 1994 story on how young people are unable to escape their circumstances this metaphor predominates as the student’s inability to be “successful” is correlated to their social circumstances – like crabs in a bucket – because their social influences hold them back. (Shanker, Albert, “Where We Stand: The Crab Bucket Syndrome”, The New York Times, June 19, 1994)). The psychology of victimization is powerful and when fanned in the flames of discontent, e.g. #BlackLivesMatter – the impact on young people of color is powerful and continues the self-victimization cycle preventing reasoned discourse and action aimed towards ending racial bias. Why? Because these movements falsely imply that they are oppressed by the “masses” when they are not.

To that end, the practical consequence of this “crabs in the bucket” phenomenon is two-fold: the oppressed perpetuate their thinking that they are oppressed and the oppressors blame the oppressed for being oppressed. There are a large number of studies that suggest that this blaming the victim occurs by way of ‘racial micro aggressions’ – i.e. racism that is so subtle that neither victim nor perpetrator may entirely understand what is going on—which may be especially toxic for people of color. (See DeAngelis, Tori “Unmasking ‘racial micro aggressions’,” Monitor on Psychology, Vol. 40 No. 2 February 2009.); See also, Sue, Bucerri et al., “Racial Microaggressions and the Asian American Experience,” Cultural Diversity and Ethnic Minority Psychology, Vol. 13, No. 1, 72–81 (2007)).

So, back to Kaepernick. Yes, racism exists. However, it does not mean that African Americans are oppressed in America, or by Americans, or even by white people. Nor does it mean that Kaepernick’s perception that America is a racially oppressive country is entirely inaccurate. What this latest discussion of race issues should engender in the aftermath of Kaepernick’s misguided effort is the acknowledgment that the issue is complex psychologically, that eliminating racism in America is worth discussing and taking action, and that all persons – all Americans – have a role to play in ending race based discrimination.

If we are going to end the cycle of self-victimization and re-victimization that fuels the fire of Kaepernick’s viewpoint – then stop talking about the speech issue or identifying that racism is bad ( really are we that freakin stupid?) and focus on making things better by taking the appropriate action. Nothing will ever be accomplished by merely sitting on your ass. (See Colin Kaepernick, supra.)

Change always starts in the same place – with each of us deciding that race is not going to play a role in the actions we voluntarily choose to make i.e. to treat each other with love and respect. Stop blaming. Stop looking at every obstacle to success as an obstacle created to F__ you over because of your skin color. Stop being racist.

It really is simple – be a good human. Put that plan in action. It will eventually be all right.

P.S. Bet you thought I was going to write about the 1st Amendment, eh? I have got you covered…check out track 14 by the Dead Kennedys. Talk about freedom.

Here is what you’ll find in Episode #38:

  1. Field Mouse – “Over and Out” (Episodic)
  2. Cotton Mather – “Never Be It” (Death of Cool)
  3. The Orange – “Such a Drag” (Sharing Vitamins)
  4. AJJ –“American Garbage” (The Bible 2)
  5. Dead Ships – “Big Quiet” (Citycide)
  6. Porch Lights – “Nothing Means Nothing” (Street Gaze)
  7. Ricochet Rabbit – “Blow” (I’ve Been Here Before)
  8. Preoccupations – “Anxiety” (Preoccupations)
  9. Asylums – “Missing Persons” (Killer Brain Waves)
  10. Blossoms – “Misery” (At Most A Kiss)
  11. Angel Olson – “Shut Up Kiss Me” (My Woman)
  12. The Rifles – “Time in Hand” (Big Life)
  13. Hockey Dad – “Hunny Bunny” (Boronia)
  14. Dead Kennedys – “Halloween” (Plastic Surgery Disasters)
  15. Dollyrots – “Because I’m Awesome (Acoustic)” (Pledge Music B-Sides)

If I were one of the things, I’d be American garbage a most beautiful thing … But what’s in between where are your ideas you sit around and dream for next Halloween


Just For Fun Concerts EP 2016-33 (Episode 37)

Happy Birthday Caitlin!

Tales From the Dropbox Episode 37 confronts an issue I have spent some time thinking about but I have had some difficulty formulating the issue itself. However, I think I now have resolved that problem and am willing to attempt a few statements of the issue:

What is the minimal type of wrongful act committed by a person that is beyond redemption? That is, when does a person’s wrongful act so color their legacy that any positive acts in their lives should be dismissed because their wrongful act is so outrageous?

We are reminded (at least in the law) that injury to one’s reputation caused by false statements causes irreparable harm and in certain specific instances damages are presumed to occur and are awarded by the court without proof of the amount. However, what are the consequences when the injury to one’s reputation is through their own acts?

This question is not as clear cut as it seems. I was reminded recently of Woodrow Wilson (after listening to Malcolm Gladwell’s excellent podcast Revisionist History and the episode entitled Generous Orthodoxy (Thanks Nate!) and then dug up this story in the New York Times in the aftermath of the student protests at Princeton requesting removal of his name from the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs. The balancing of good deeds vs evil deeds boils down to whether “Woodrow Wilson a key founder of modern liberalism, a visionary whose belief in an activist presidency laid the groundwork for the New Deal and the civil rights legislation of the 1960s” should be venerated for his good works or “was he a virulent and unrepentant racist, a man who not only segregated the federal work force but nationalized the Southern view of politics, turning the federal government itself into an instrument of white supremacy for decades to come” and therefore should his name be wiped from our memory?

There are numerous modern examples of this conundrum, such as Bill Cosby, Kobe Bryant, Tiger Woods, Ryan Lochte, etc. (Literally there are thousands of individuals some famous, some not so famous, but whose character like mine, has flaws). These are persons who have either committed or are accused of committing acts of varying degrees of reprehensibility which tarnish, perhaps irreparably, their reputations but who have performed at various times acts of charity, goodwill, or are athletes who have performed at the highest levels of excellence. The issue is a variant of last episode’s pondering on negative bias. If we are predisposed to have a negative bias, then does a single bad act wipe away a life of good? Some acts are so egregious – such a murder (O.J. Simpson – take that!) or child molestation (Steven Collins, actor on 7th Heaven, Ian Watkins, former front man for the Welsh rock band, Lostprophets) that reputation rehabilitation is unlikely…okay impossible. But how do some individuals who are alleged to have egregious acts, such as Kobe Bryant (Rape), Michael Jackson (Child molestation) but whose reputations have not, in the long term suffered much harm. I am not concerned with the motivation of the person or labeling the person as “good” or “bad” (See Summa Theologiae by Thomas Aquinas). Rather the relevant inquiry is this: Does the alleged act prevent the person from being considered good?

Given the examples above, it appears (at least in the celebrity context) that a person who is famous has a greater possibility of reputation rehabilitation relative to the public perception of them as being the “greatest” at their chosen profession. Even when that reputation is tarnished, there are certain individuals that are immune to the long term fallout of their bad acts (or in some cases perceived bad acts).

Thankfully, we have a measure of the reputation harm from a bad act. The Q Score is a measurement of the familiarity and appeal of a brand, celebrity, company, or entertainment product (e.g., television show) used in the United States. The higher the Q Score, the more highly regarded the item or person is among the group familiar with them. Q Scores and other variants are primarily used by the advertising, marketing, media, and public relations industries. (How are Q Scores Calculated?) In 1992, “according to a New York Times story Jaleel White – yep, Steve Urkel – was the day’s top dog when it came to Q Score, narrowly edging out incumbent champ Bill Cosby. While only 53 percent of all respondents were familiar with White, 26 percent of all respondents listed White as one of their favorite performers, which racked up a stout Q Score of 49.” (Id.) Back in the heyday of The Cosby Show in the late ’80s . . . Cosby once recorded the highest Q Score ever, with more than 70 percent of Americans saying Cosby was one of their favorite celebrities. (Who Is America’s Most Disliked Celebrity? An Explainer.) My how the public’s perception of Bill has changed. Cosby’s negative Q Score in 2013 was 9, meaning 9 percent of adults had given him a negative rating. That number has since risen by 43 points, to 52 percent in 2015. (Id.) I suspect it is higher now. The highest negative Q Score belongs to Kim Kardashian at 71. (Id.)

So, what does this all mean? At the beginning of these show notes I postulated these questions:

What is the minimal type of wrongful act committed by a person that is beyond redemption?

It seems the answer to this question is that being perceived as an idiot ( even if you are not) may cause irreparable harm. The converse is also true. Some people’s reputations apparently can survive egregious behavior up to an including torture and mass murder. (Indonesia Debates Possibility of Honor For Suharto)

When does a person’s wrongful act so color their legacy that any positive acts in their lives should be dismissed because their wrongful act is so outrageous?

This question is more challenging because its answer lies more in timing of their bad act related to their status as an important person rather than the nature of the bad act itself. That is, a person can screw up their reputation rehabilitation by saying or doing something stupid that reminds us that they previously performed a bad act and therefore we judge them negatively. For example, all we will need to be reminded that Tiger Woods may not be the best guy (because he is a serial cheater) is another hooker to come out and say that she was sleeping with him while he was dating Lindsay Vonn… oh wait that actually happened!

So what can we really conclude? It appears that there is almost no act that can be committed by an individual by which their reputation cannot be rehabilitated. Even murderers can be forgiven – at least in the public perception of that individual. However, the converse is also true. There are some individuals who so irritate the public that even the smallest negative act cannot be forgiven – ever. So, Justin Bieber watch out. Your haters will likely outlive you.

Here is what you’ll find in Episode #37:

  1. Manic Pixi – “Iron Heart” (Iron Heart)
  2. Who Killed Bruce Lee – “Young Love” (Distant Rendezvous)
  3. Psychic Ills – “Confusion (I’m Alright)” (Inner Journey Out)
  4. Descendents – “Fighting Myself” (Hypercaffium Spazzinate)
  5. Indian Askin – “Really Wanna Tell You” (Sea of Ethanol)
  6. Horror My Friend – “Same Minds” (Stay In, Do Nothing)
  7. Radkey – “Romance Dawn” (Dark Blake Makeup)
  8. Arkells – “My Heart’s Always Yours” (Morning Report)
  9. Starflyer 59 – “Told Me So” (Slow)
  10. Connections – “Oh Lisa” (Midnight Run)
  11. Elephant Gun Riot – “Tonight” (Elephant Gun Riot)
  12. Worth Taking – “I Can’t Believe” (Hangman)
  13. Future Generations – “Stars” (Future Generations)
  14. Gun Club – “Sex Beat” (Fire of Love)
  15. Blues Pills – “Rejection” (Lady in Gold)

I really wanna tell you, got to let it out  . . . I heard you singing in the shower … time is what it takes . . . I’ll be here I’ll be waiting for you . . . my heart’s always yours. ..



Dropbox Notes August 16, 2016

I missed publishing the July list of awesome record releases so as a bonus offering you get not only this month’s new list of records of interest but, in addition, I have also included the missing July 11th list. I think you’ll be very pleased with the latest offerings!

As usual, don’t delay – you never know when I might get the urge to release another batch of excellent listening opportunities for your eager ears. Stay tuned, eh?

If you want a preview, check out the podcasts!

Here is the August list:

  1. Bad Sports – Living With Secrets [2016]
  2. Thee Oh Sees – A Weird Exits [2016]
  3. Titus Andronicus – S+@dium Rock ; Five Nights at the Opera [2016]
  4. Preoccupations – Preoccupations [2016]
  5. Lush – Origami [2016]
  6. Billy Talent – Afraid Of Heights (Deluxe Edition) [2016]
  7. Bosco Rogers – Post Exotic [2016]
  8. Dinosaur Jr – Give a Glimpse of What Yer Not [2016]
  9. Cheena – Spend the Night With… [2016]
  10. Moose Blood – Blush [2016]
  11. JPNSGRLS – Divorce [2016]
  12. Bayside – Vacancy [2016]
  13. Angel Olsen – My Woman [2016]
  14. Blossoms – Blossoms [2016]
  15. Blossoms – At Most A Kiss [2016]
  16. Teenage Fanclub – Here [2016]
  17. Viola Beach – Viola Beach [2016]
  18. Masked Intruder – Love and Other Crimes [2016]
  19. Kid Canaveral – Faulty Inner Dialogue [2016]
  20. Orbs – Past Life Regression [2016]
  21. Relient K – Air for Free [2016]
  22. Spencer – We Built This Mountain Just To See The Sunrise [2016]
  23. Hockey Dad – Boronia [2016]
  24. Malibu Cannibals – Beautiful [2016]
  25. Big Deal – Say Yes [2016]
  26. Cake – Blue Powder [2016]
  27. Adolescents – Manifest Density [2016]
  28. Barb Wire Dolls – Desperate [2016]
  29. Big Business – Command Your Weather [2016]
  30. Descendants – Hypercaffium Spazzinate [2016]
  31. Russian Circles – Guidance [2016]
  32. Smithereens – Stages [2016]
  33. Dead Ships – Citycide [2016]
  34. Grindhouse – Crazy Pussy [2016]
  35. of Montreal – Innocence Reaches [2016]
  36. Pfarmers – Our Puram [2016]
  37. See No Evils – Inner Voices [2016]
  38. Blind Pilot – And Then Like Lions [2016]
  39. Arkells – Morning Report [2016]
  40. Cotton Mather – Death of the Cool [2016]
  41. Radkey – Dark Black Makeup [2016]
  42. Amsterdam Station – The River. The Sound. The Wake [2016]
  43. Elephant Gun Riot – Elephant Gun Riot [2016]
  44. New Volume – Envy [2016]
  45. Black Market Karma – Animal Jive [2016]
  46. Drug – Infinite Statement [2016]
  47. In School – Cement Fucker EP [2016]
  48. Young the Giant – Home of the Strange [2016]
  49. Blowout – No Beer No Dad [2016]
  50. Richie Ramone – Cellophane [2016]

Here is the July list:

  1. Nice As Fuck – Nice As Fuck [2016]
  2. Shift – If [2016]
  3. Thee Oh Sees – Live in San Francisco [2016]
  4. Black Black Black – Altered States of Death & Grace [2016]
  5. Case-Lang-Veirs – Case-Lang-Veirs [2016]
  6. Strokes – Future Present Past EP [2016]
  7. Boxer Rebellion – Ocean By Ocean [2016]
  8. Metz and Swami John Reis – Let it Rust [2016]
  9. Metz – Mission Of Burma – Split [2016]
  10. Speedy Ortiz – Foiled Again EP [2016]
  11. She Drew The Gun – Memories Of The Future [2016]
  12. Toys That Kill – Sentimental Ward [2016]
  13. Imaginary Hockey League – We’ll Get Better One Day. I Promise [2016]
  14. White Lies – Take It Out On Me [2016]
  15. Spray Paint – Feel The Clamps [2016]
  16. Pretty Lights – Euclid Records Tapes [2016]
  17. Her – Revolution [2016]
  18. John The Ghost – Sincerely, John The Ghost [2016]
  19. Look Mexico – Uniola [2016]
  20. Purson – Desire’s Magic Theatre [2016]
  21. Don’t – Fever Dreams [2016]
  22. GØGGS – GØGGS [2016]
  23. Alice Bag – Alice Bag [2016]
  24. Blink-182 – California [2016]
  25. Palaye Royale – Boom Boom Room (Side A) [2016]
  26. Direct Hit! – Wasted Mind [2016]
  27. Meiko – Moving Day [2016]
  28. Avett Brothers – True Sadness [2016]
  29. Drowners – On Desire [2016]
  30. Mikey Erg – Tentative Decisions [2016]
  31. Paws – No Grace [2016]
  32. Misfits – Friday the 13th [2016]
  33. Waxahatchee – Early Recordings [2016]
  34. Kingbees – The Big Rock (Remastered) [2016]
  35. Hot Hot Heat – Hot Hot Heat [2016]
  36. Deerhoof – The Magic [2016]
  37. Sherwood – Some Things Never Leave You [2016]
  38. Let’s Eat Grandma – I, Gemini [2016]
  39. Jake Bugg – On My One [2016]
  40. Starflyer 59 – Slow [2016]
  41. Mountains and Rainbows – Particles [2016]
  42. D.O.A. – Fucked Up Donald (Single) [2016]
  43. Causes – Under Bridges That You Built for Me [2016]
  44. GoToBeds – Blood_Sugar_Secs_Traffic[2016]
  45. Death Valley Girls – Glow In The Dark [2016]
  46. Shelters – The Shelters [2016]
  47. Augustines – This Is Your Life [2016]
  48. Bat For Lashes – The Bride (Bonus Track Version) [2016]
  49. Lees Of Memory – Unnecessary Evil [2016]
  50. Julie Ruin – Hit Reset [2016]

Gabba Gabba Hey!


Just For Fun Concerts EP 2016-32 (Episode 36)

Tales From the Dropbox Episode 36 drops into your inbox with 15 new (ish) slabs of sonic gooeyness in the form of tunes that you are highly unlikely to find on your radio. 15 songs in about an hour. Drop by, tune in, drop out. It is all good.

And speaking of good, as I looked at the daily news filled with stories of bad news (really bad…just google “news” and you will see a page filled with a litany of stories on murder, mayhem, tragedy, greed, avarice, and other indicators that the world is degenerating into chaos – if we are not already there) the thought arose maybe humans are wired for negativity as some type of survival mechanism.

That is, does a negativity bias distort our perception of the world in such a manner that we are not interested in positive experiences to the same extent as we focus on the negative?  Is this negativity bias reflected not only in our news (and the writer’s propensity to offer negative stories as “capturing the reader”) but also in our approach to life with negative interactions becoming more meaningful than positive interactions in our decision making?

Contrary to the intent of this podcast which is focused on good music from my limited perspective and bias, perhaps the reason I have so few listeners is that I played a song that they believed was bad and thereafter inferred that all future music would also be just as bad. Perhaps I would be more effective as a podcast host if I just told you that all of the music I was going to play for you was terrible (much like commercial radio who don’t say it but instead bludgeon you into submission by playing the same shitty songs endlessly hoping that you will eventually like them) and then have you argue with me that the music is really good. i.e. a reverse psychology approach to music selection.   Perhaps my complete and absolute loathing of any station that plays the Red Hot Chili Peppers (KROQ – I am referring to you here, you dumb asses) has negatively influenced my perspective of the entire playlist of that station.  Now it no longer matters as I rarely listen to anything except a few college radio stations. However, I digress like usual.

Negative bias is real. Paul Rozin and Edward B. Royzman postulate that negative bias is a general bias, based on both innate predispositions and experience, to give greater weight to negative entities (e.g., events, objects, personal traits). This negative bias manifested in 4 ways: (a) negative potency (negative entities are stronger than the equivalent positive entities), (b) steeper negative gradients (the negativity of negative events grows more rapidly with approach to them in space or time than does the positivity of positive events, (c) negativity dominance (combinations of negative and positive entities yield evaluations that are more negative than the algebraic sum of individual subjective valences would predict), and (d) negative differentiation (negative entities are more varied, yield more complex conceptual representations, and engage a wider response repertoire). See Rozin, P and Royzman, E, “Negativity Bias, Negativity Dominance, and Contagion” (2001)

What does this all mean? We are F&^!!!ed. ( Ironically, the previous statement is a pure expression of negative bias.) We are essentially wired for negative and those negative events and experiences have more impact on us than numerous positive events and experiences. We subconsciously look for negative experiences and are drawn to those negative experiences like a moth to a flame because we learn from those negative experiences.  At a very basic psychological level, evidence from learning research indicates a powerful negativity bias: negative reinforcement, as opposed to comparable positive reinforcement, leads to faster learning that is more resistant to extinction in both human adults and in animals (e.g., Garcia, Hankins, & Rusiniak, 1974; Logue, Ophir, & Strauss, 1981; Öhman & Mineka, 2001, for a review). As we age, this negativity bias becomes ingrained and distorts our perception because we spend more time looking at negative than at positive stimuli, perceive negative stimuli to be more complex than positive ones, and form more complex cognitive representations of negative than of positive stimuli (e.g., Ducette & Soucar, 1974; Fiske, 1980; H. Miller & Bieri, 1965).

Consequently, (how do you like that $500.00 transition word?), we are hardwired to process negative information as a means of survival. While this explains much of the reason why we focus on all the negative $hXX, it does not explain why we also have to be negative in response to a negative stimulus. Like most of our “biases” i.e. our natural tendencies necessary for our survival, we must recognize those tendencies and balance them out. The ratio to counteract for negative bias tends to be 5:1. Gottman, J “A Theory of Marital Dissolution and Stability” (Journal of Family Psychology, June 1993 Vol. 7, No. 1, 57-75). That is, we need at least 5 positive experiences for every negative experience in order to balance out the negative experience. So, when you have a negative interaction, thought, experience etc. you must take action to not let that experience alter your perception of all similar interactions so that you incorrectly let that perception influence future outcomes. For example, if you have a single negative encounter with a person determine the entire relationship you might be missing out on a truly positive, dynamic, and life altering relationship with that person. So, when you approach a woman in a bar and ask her to dance don’t let her initial response – “F#@$@! off you creep, I’d never go out with someone like you” define the future outcomes. Look at the positive, maybe next time she won’t be some freakin’ negative. Her reaction is likely due to one previous very negative encounter negatively biasing all future approaches by creeps like you. And you in turn won’t approach her again because she is just a miserable stuck up self-important/involved ass. Thus, begins the negative cycle that destroys any possible future relationship. And it happened all because you only wanted to dance! Much like seeing a cockroach in your food turns you off from visiting that same restaurant again in the future. Maybe it’s just her…and not you. She is obviously going to be missing out on all that makes you special. For those who will perceive the prior hypothetical as a sexist in view, I could easily flip the script and have the woman make the approach with the same result, but I am male and uncomfortable faking a female perspective. Believe me, I have little to none as far as understanding the female mind/ perspective. Ask my wife.

So, the takeaway from the research is this: find ways to make  positive connections  – find the ties that bind and do so to balance out the negativity. More importantly, don’t let a single negative interaction prevent you from engaging and repeating an experience in the future. Ask another person out.

Tales From the Dropbox offers you 15 positive musical experiences to balance out the negative experiences of your week. Don’t look at the news…just listen.

Here is what you’ll find in Episode #36:

  1. Kid Canaveral – “Callous Parting Gift” (Faulty Inner Dialogues)
  2. The Interrupters – “Good Things” (Say It Out Loud)
  3. Titus Andronicus – “Fatal Flaw” (S+@dium Rock – Five Nights at The Opera)
  4. The See No Evils – “Hanging Around” (Inner Voices)
  5. New Volume – “Turn Off The Light (Envy)
  6. Look Mexico – “Well Kansas Ain’t What It Used To Be” (Uniola)
  7. JPNGRLS – “2009” (Divorce)
  8. Moose Blood – “Glow” (Blush)
  9. Star Parks – “Loose Ends” (Don’t Dwell)
  10. Amsterdam Station – “Jaime Newmar” (The River. The Sound. The Wake.)
  11. Spencer – “Saturday Shoes” (We Built This Mountain Just To See The Sunrise)
  12. Society – “The Fear The Hate) (All That We’ve Become)
  13. Biffy Clyro – “Don’t, Won’t, Can’t” (Ellipsis)
  14. Guadalcanal Diary – “Trail of Tears” (Walking In The Shadow Of The Big Man)
  15. Xylaroo – “Track a’ Lackin” (Sweetooth)

I woke up this morning coughing and choking . . . I got loose ends … two girls wait by the railroad track for their soldiers to come back knowing this will be their last . . . one wore blue and one wore black