Just For Fun Concerts EP 2017-45 (Episode 99)

Tales From the Drop Box Episode #99!  We are approaching 100 episodes of this podcast in just two years and, looking back, I note that this podcast has covered a tremendous amount of musical ground.  I am truly looking forward to Episode 100 because it feels like I have reached an important milestone in bringing to you the music I love – really love. Unlike morning radio where the DJ has no interest or clue about the music being played, I personally select every track. I personally do the research for every podcast. I am learning and then sharing. Clerks at record stores used to provide this function i.e. the sharing of secret information about cool music. The late 1970’s and early 1980’s was magic time because record stores were everywhere. This was a time when you could go down to your local store just to hangout and whomever was working would just say – hey – have you heard the K-Tel’s record? How about the Modernettes or Pointed Sticks? Let me play them….. . I had several stores to choose from in Vancouver B.C. and I shopped in them all – Quintessance, Friends, Zulu, Kelly’s, Collectors R.P.M., A&B Sound, and my favorite – Track Records.  I must give a special shout out here to Phil S who was the owner of Track Records. I spent literally thousands of hours in his store when I was in college. Thousands of hours.  While Phil may not have enjoyed them all, he was the best example of someone who actually cared about the music, was willing to spend time talking about all kinds of music, and who introduced me to numerous bands that I still love today.

As for this podcast, this is my effort to recreate that experience. I would love to actually have a discussion, but in the absence of a personal connection, this is my naive effort to do precisely what Phil did for me a long time ago – introduce you to a variety of new music and some old tunes so you can share with the people you know and care about. If you go way back in this blog, I used to write reviews for my friends of records I was listening to so they could also check them out. As technology progressed, so did I. Writing reviews is time consuming, and this podcast is my shorthand effort to say to my friends, and to you – hey, have you heard….?

Doing anything 100 times and enjoying each moment of the process just feels good. As Episode 100 is going to be one of those special episode dedicated to one artist, and in this case, dedicated to my favorite band of all time, I figured these notes would be a good time to reflect on the previous episodes of this podcast and where we have traveled in the past two years. Politically, there has been an evolution of the podcast notes that really caught me off guard. I never thought that I would be so overtly political as normally, I have little interest in politics. It has always been music. Not because I am not willing to give an opinion, but rather I never thought that I would be compelled to publicly add my voice to those who protest the treatment of fellow Americans by a president that has no moral compass. I think I have documented the sea-change in the political discord and discourse.

As I look back on the sheer number of unique artists that are represented in these podcasts that are not played on commercial radio in the U.S. (FM or Satellite) and are from around the world, I am most proud of the diversity encompassed by the more than 1450 different artists I have played on these podcasts over the 100 Episodes. While I haven’t gone back and added them up by number of artists per country,  a scan of the track lists reveals that the majority are from the U.S. but there are healthy slices from the UK, Australia and Canada. Not to be left out, I have also featured a number of bands from the rest of the EU and multiple artists from Germany, France, Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Poland, Belgium, and Finland. There have been a couple of artists from Japan, and one from China. Every episode of this podcast has featured a female fronted band or artist at the beginning and end of the show and a number of them sprinkled in the middle – except 1 (which was truly an accidental omission. I thought the vocalist was female, turns out I was wrong. Darn Yawpers!).

I hope the massive variety of bands, many of which release albums and tracks on vinyl and through Bandcamp, are not only interesting to the listener, but such interest also compels you to seek out and find these records and then support these artists. I believe these podcasts provide ample evidence that there is a tremendous amount of exceptional music produced by amazing artists that is not only available but is worthwhile to purchase.

Finally, as it is Thanksgiving this week, I am very thankful for my supportive and caring family, my staff (at my day job!) and the tremendous people in my life. I am truly blessed to be surrounded by so many kind, caring, and loving individuals, who give me much more than they receive and I am humbled by these relationships.

Happy Thanksgiving to all of you!

Here is what you’ll find in Episode #99:

  1. Nail Art – “ Barbara Goldin” (Nail Art)
  2. Gold Class – “Bully” (Drum)
  3. Gun – “She Knows” (Favorite Pleasures)
  4. Crooked Colours – “Flow” (Vera)
  5. Quiet Hollers – “Broken Guitars” (Amen Breaks)
  6. The Loranes – “Get Free” (2nd)
  7. Mando Diao – “Good Times” (Good Times)
  8. Gang of Youths – “The Heart Is A Muscle” (Go Farther In Lightness)
  9. Les Tigres – “Coral Blue” (Who Called?)
  10. Single Mothers – “High Speed” (Our Pleasure)
  11. Tracy Bryant – “Parachute” ( Parachute b/w Protect Your Head 7”)
  12. The Shyness of Strangers – “Didn’t Mind” (Time)
  13. Prawn – “Cricket In The Yard” (Run)
  14. Gang of Four – “Damaged Goods” (Damaged Goods b/w Armalite Rifle/ Love Like Anthrax 7”)
  15. Whitehorse – “Nighthawks” (Panther In The Doll House)

She’s like look at this pollution man it’s turning us to plastic we won’t even have to wait for AI isn’t that fantastic . . . I wrote a song on a broken guitar and I played it for them they told me it was out of touch but I thought I had my finger on the pulse of the nation’s youth, of a girl like you, of a few home truths I thought you already knew


Just For Fun Concerts EP 2017-44 (Episode 98)

Oddball episode today. A little all over the map, but it kind of all works in my biased opinion.  Tales From the Drop Box Episode #98 is yet another excellent opportunity to hear some music that you likely have missed over the past several months. Short show notes today, as well. Not because I’ve run out of topics, but rather it is taking a little more effort to keep up with the various political investigations. I am currently highly interested in the Paradise Papers. ( Google it – there is a ton of information about the papers now). Fascinating how many rich people hide their money in the same way. Who would have guessed that the Queen of England was on the list! Here are two perspectives on the import of the massive data breach one from Canada and one from the ICIJ – the worldwide journalist cooperative that coordinated the effort.

Also, sad to hear of the death of Fred Cole. A Portland legend and best known for his work with Dead Moon and Pierced Arrows he will be truly missed.

Here is what you’ll find in Episode #98:

  1. Kraków Loves Adana – Call Yourself New
  2. Anti-Flag – “American Attraction” (American Fall)
  3. Ty Segall – “ Is It Real” (Fried Shallots)
  4. OCS – “Cadaver Dog” (Orc)
  5. Part Time Friends – “Don’t Give Up” (Fingers Crossed)
  6. Kooks  “Junk Of The Heart (Happy)” (The Best of …So Far)
  7. Linecutters – “Mademoiselle” (Anthill)
  8. Prosecution – Forlorn” (The Unfollowing)
  9. Capitalist Kids – “Decent Proposal” (Brand Damage)
  10. Porn Bloopers – “Laser Beam” (Blooper Reel)
  11. Flowers of Evil – “Police Dog” (City of Fear)
  12. Daylight Robbery – “Shadows On The Snow” (Accumulated Error)
  13. Guide Dog – “Guillotine” (Lovely Domestic Bliss)
  14. Shrapnel – “Go Cruisin’ ” (Go Cruisin’ b/w Way Out World)
  15. Blank Spell – “Larval” (Misama)

We go cruisin’ every night,we don’t need to read or write I just wanna rock and roll . . . There’s no escaping the American attraction a bait and switch that’s gonna thrill you with distraction


Just For Fun Concerts EP 2017-43 (Episode 97)

Tales From the Drop Box Episode #97 arrives this week in the aftermath of yet another tragedy. It seems last episode I was learning about the tragedy in New York and this week I’m reflecting on the tragedy at the First Baptist Church in Sutherland Spring, Texas. It is weird putting out these podcasts in a time of turmoil. My purpose with these podcasts was to bring joy with a selection of new or fairly new music not heard on commercial radio. However, I also live in the world, and it is difficult to ignore the obvious chaos in the world around me and the eruption of evil in the world. I knew that evil was always present as it is inherent in man, but good was winning. I am not so sure now. It is inconceivable to me the amount of senseless  cruelty and suffering that assholes such as the Texas shooter can inflict.

I have written extensively about gun control on this blog. However, on the theory that people gain understanding with repetition, what follows below, for those inclined, is a straight forward call to action. For those not into the “politics” of evil, enjoy this episode of Tales From the Drop Box.

So where do we begin our fight against evil?

We must not underestimate the power of evil and fight against those individuals and groups who would normalize the actions of these assholes i.e. the politicians who refuse to tackle the issue and bring sanity to a growing and lethal problem. To be clear – we, as a nation, must confront the growing mental illness problem and remove the ability of anyone to engage in mass killing. I get it. Guns don’t kill people, people kill people. But we don’t have to give these evil monsters access to weapons of destruction. Given that there are an overwhelming number of legal and illegal weapons in the possession of so many people, perhaps eliminating the most lethal of these weapons would be a start. Really, what is the hunting purpose of an AR-15?

For a list of other lies that distort the gun control debate check out: Ten Lies Distort The Gun Control Debate.

There is much written about so called “sensible gun control.” This is a freaking myth. There will never be sensible gun control so we should all stop wasting time discussing what that would look like. Either we have gun control or we don’t. Gun control won’t likely occur in this political climate, because we are saddled with a populist as President who is as gutless as he is stupid.

There is lots of evidence of this stupidity, but even today we have this inciteful statement from Trump:

Donald Trump ‘tells Japanese emperor mass shootings can happen anywhere’ — in country with no mass shootings.

So, apart from the fact that Trump is in charge of our country’s gun policy, gun control cannot happen because, in all honesty, each State would have to significantly change the way that it does business. Guns are money. If there is one thing that Trump understands is this fundamental truth: don’t f_____ with guns because that’s what his fans want. Trump’s fans want the right to possess as much firepower as possible. Trump doesn’t have a “base.” He has fans are watching the shit show he is producing and gun control would lessen his impact with his fans. Therefore, not one single effort will be made by Trump to eliminate gun violence because Trump absolutely and positively does not give a single shit about anyone other than himself. His self-interest and ego govern policy decisions.  This lack of character apparently makes for compelling television but also for lousy government. It is not helpful that Trump is also a liar.

So where do we go from here?  The chronic gun violence problem is a consequence of a political system that is perhaps irreparably broken. What kind of democratic society permits mass killings? Why do politicians refuse to tackle the underlying causes of violence – mental illness, homelessness, drug addiction, gang violence, etc?

Continued gun violence is the consequence of failed gun policy and a failure to take action – some action to reduce the supply of guns in commerce.

The approach to violence, gun or otherwise, must be holistic and synergetic. It is not simply about taking away guns from citizens. However, taking away guns that are capable of killing many people rapidly is a terrific start.

Write your legislators – your Senators and Congress persons – and tell them to get off their fat asses and work together to begin solving these issues.

Here is what you’ll find in Episode #97:

  1. Ruelle – “Dead of Night” (Rival)
  2. Weirds – “Past Life” (Swarmculture)
  3. Gary Numan – “Me, I Disconnect From You (Live)” (Live at Hammersmith Odeon 1989)
  4. The Jade Shader – “Secret Truths” (Sea Stacks and Sleestaks)
  5. Together Pangea – “Peach Mirror” (Bulls and Roosters)
  6. Barns Courtney – “Never Let You Down” (The Attractions of Youth)
  7. Lillingtons – “Until The Sun Shines” (Project 313)
  8. TV Haze – “Under The Couch” (Scrap Museum)
  9. The Districts – “Salt” (Popular Manipulations)
  10. Nightmen – “Last Time” (C’est La Vie EP)
  11. Teen Vice – “Anti-Privilege” (Saddest Summer)
  12. Junior Astronomers – “Body Language Pt 2” (Body Language)
  13. Theo Verney  “Mind Fire” (One Small Piece)
  14. X – “Soul Kitchen” (Los Angeles)
  15. The Yawpers – “Linen For The Orphan” (Boy In A Well)

I think something might be wrong ’cause it’s been dark out far too long … In a pitch black world, anything goes, no telling where the wind will blow.


Just For Fun Concerts EP 2017-42 (Episode 96)

So, here we are again, with Tales From the Drop Box Episode #96 hitting your in box with some new tunes to explore. This one is a little sweet – more pop oriented indie rock confection than punk rock, but the Bronx tune should give you some punky enjoyment. Another completely accidental pattern is also evident in this episode – several of these tracks are by solo artists who are essentially one man bands, producing and playing every track on their albums by themselves and in the process creating some huge sounding records.

Thought today would be a more pleasant day, being Halloween. However, my thoughts and prayers go out to those affected by the tragedy in New York today. Another tragedy in a long line of tragic events throughout the world these past couple of years. We live in a world that has gone absolutely mad.

Here is what you’ll find in Episode #96:

  1. Shilpa Ray – Rockaway Blues” (Door Girl)
  2. The Pure Conjecture – “Knock Four Times” (No Ghosts)
  3. Waters – “Secret Weapon” (Something More!)
  4. Braggarts – “Exploring New Stars” (Exploring New Stars)
  5. We Are Monroe  “White Lights” (White Lights)
  6. Lovely Bad Things – “Teenage Grown Ups” (Teenage Grown Ups)
  7. Undo – “No Sense To Call” (Undo)
  8. Mating Ritual – “I Wear Glasses” (How You Gonna Stop It?)
  9. Las Cobras – “Our Love Will Grow” (Temporal)
  10. Knox Fortune – “I Don’t Wanna Talk About It” (Paradise)
  11. The Sick Leaves – “ Six Inch Valley (A.K.A. Cancer) (Travels With Charlie)
  12. The Bronx – “Channel Islands” (V)
  13. Double Denim – “Overwhelmed” (Overwhelmed/A Bad Feeling)
  14. The Ruts – “In A Rut” (In A Rut b/w H-Eyes)
  15. One-Eyed Doll – “Fish Knife” (Something Wicked)

I can’t concentrate, I’m in a state I don’t feel straight, I can’t love or hate . . . everything can change in the blink of an eye son one day you’re killing time and the next day you’re dying…