Tag Archives: college

We’re Together Again… (First Day of Classes!)

17 Jan

Oh homework, how much I missed our toxic relationship; day one of classes and I’m already sick of you.

The most miraculous thing about the first day of school last semester was the fact that my legs stopped wobbling enough throughout the day so I was able to physically make it to my classes. It had been a while, and the thought of it all was the most fearsome element. Well, it was until I listened to my theme song of the day.

On the train ride down to the campus in late August, my dad gave me a piece of paper with a song and artist on it and a dollar to buy said song. He said that I should play it while I walked to my first class on my first day to pump me up and put a little strut in my step. Music is my medicine, and “Hold Your Head Up” by Argent definitely did the trick. While walking to places in the morning I usually go for The Beach Boys, but I made an exception this one time. I didn’t let myself listen to the song before my walk so I’d be surprised and extra excited. 8:15AM, out my door, down three flights of stairs, on to the quad, press play. Drum drum drum drummmmmm, drum drum drum powwwwwwww! After the first note I was hooked, and my head was definitely held high! It’s amazing how great an effect a song can have on a mood, and this one energized me and totally took my mind away from my worries.

So, even though I’m a seasoned one semester veteran now, I dug that song up from my iTunes catalog and jammed out to it on my ridiculously early walk today. And the only bonus about my class being on the second floor of the farthest building on campus? I got to listen to the song twice!


December Radio Shows…

14 Jan

12/7/2011 Playlist

I had to cut this last show of the semester short as I had to run to the Pocket Vinyl concert afterwards, but this was what I got in!

1. Bad Ritual by Timber Timbre
2. The Season by Matt Costa
3. Reality Check by Schneider TM
4. Second Bird of Paradise by The Rosebuds
5. Buildings and Mountains by The Republic Tigers
6. Sleepytime in the Western World by Blitzen Trapper
7. Mother Nature’s Rump by The Beastles
8. Postcards From Italy by Beirut
(I really want to learn to play this song on the ukulele, but the hammering F note in the beginning of the song is the current bane of my existence!)
9. My Heart Is Calling by Cataldo
10. Don’t Forget To Dance by The Kinks
11. The Charming Man by The Smiths

November Radio Shows…

14 Jan

11/2/2011 Playlist

1. Grey Gardens by Rufus Wainwright
2. Frankly My Shankly by The Smiths
(For about a week straight, this record was all I listened to around this time)
3. Spent On Rainy Days by Bright Eyes
4. Bonnie And Clyde by Serge Gainsbourg featuring Brigitte Bardot
5. Colour Me In by Broadcast
6. Barlights by fun.
7. Phonetics by Reptar
8. Buildings & Mountains by The Republic Tigers
9. This Time Tomorrow by The Kinks
10. Heartlight by Neil Diamond
(I love this song for the line “home is the most excellent place”… Oh Neil, haha)
11. Creep On Creepin On by Timber Timbre


11/9/2011 Playlist

1. Heading for the Light by Traveling Wilburys
2. Cemetry Gates by The Smiths

3. Foux Du Fafa by Flight of the Conchords
4. Kaptein (Span Die Seile) by Kurt Darren
5. Firecracker by Ryan Adams
6. El Salvador by Athlete
7. Everybody Knows It’s Gonna Happen by The Go Find
8. Beautiful Gas Mask by the Mountain Goats
9. Civil War (Daytrotter Session Version) by Bill Baird
10. I Want to Ride My Bicycle by Queen
11. Coney Island by Good Old War
12. Down By The Water by The Drums
13. Don’t Lose That Feeling by Cataldo
14. Flowers Grow Out Of My Grave by Dead Man’s Bones
15. Forest Green, Oh Forest Green by Holly Miranda
16. The Opposite of Hallelujah by Jens Lekman
(I was also on quite the Jens Lekman kick this semester)


11/9/2011 Playlist

1. Crazy In Love by Pattern Is Movement

2. Twins In The Attic by Mr Little Jeans Vs. Twin Shadow
3. Visions of Tokyo by This Is Ivy League
4. I Don’t Think I by Devin Therriault
5. I’m Your Puppet by The End of the World
6. I Can’t Go For That (No Can Do) by Hall & Oates
7. White Corolla by Casiotone for The Painfully Alone
8. Strictly Game by Harlem Shakes
9. Mr. Understanding by Pete and the Pirates
10. Golden Sand by The Republic Tigers
11. Mykonos by Fleet Foxes
12. You and Onions by Meiko
13. Opportunities (Let’s Make Lots Of Money) by Petshop Boys
14. To Repel Ghosts by Darby Cicci
(The keyboardist of The Antler’s solo album is haunting and almost as lush as his locks. Actually, scratch that. This song is good, but his hair is on a heavenly level so it’s just not fair to compare anything to it)
15. Ladies Of The World by Flight Of The Conchords
16. The Beach by Dr. Dog
(When I saw them perform last year, their whole performance had me grinning from ear to ear, but this song was particularly memorable)
17. A Space Boy Dream by Belle & Sebastian
(Ok, I’ll admit it, my original draw to this song was the fact that it’s a spoken word tune and the singer’s Glaswegian accent is highlighted. You got me!)


11/9/2011 Playlist

1. Top Of The Pops by The Kinks

2. Brace Yourself by Les Savy Fav
3. Parentheses by The Antlers
4. Don’t Let Me Down by The Beatles
5. Pumpkins and Paisley by The Spinto Band
6. I Don’t Want To Die (In A Hospital) by Conor Oberst
7. Life Without a Brain by The Rentals
8. Gold Wars by Gulls
(This is a little band from Cape Cod or Nantucket or something like that, they sent a demo into the record label I interned at over the summer and they stood out before I even listened to a note of their music because their album cover featured three seagulls- one with a beard, one with a beauty mark, and one with blue eyes, haha. See if you can catch all the band name references in this song!)
9. Up Up Up by GIVERS
10. Sailing On The 7 Seas by OMD
11. Let Your Love Grow Tall by Passion Pit
12. Maple Leaves by Jens Lekman
13. Popular Mechanics For Lovers by Beulah
14. That’s How People Grow Up by Morrissey

October Radio Shows…

14 Jan

10/4/2011 Playlist

1. The Sound by Human Highway
(I first heard this song as a part of some indie music mix, and until recently it was the only song I’d heard by this group. I looked up their other songs and albums, and kind of wish I hadn’t. The instrumentals are so cool in this tune and I had hoped that they’d carry over to the group’s other songs but was sadly let down)
2. The Weight by The Band

3. No One Does It Like You by Department of Eagles
4. World at Large by Modest Mouse
5. Sprawl Of Glass (Arcade Fire vs. Blondie) by The Hood Internet
6. Tell Me Lies by Fleetwood Mac
7. Heart It Races by Dr. Dog
(My favorite cover EVER)
8. We Don’t Want Your Body by Stars
(Right around this radio show, Stars released the music video to this song and they came back onto my radar)
9. Evil Lives by Bosco Delrey
10. Armagideon Time (Live) by The Clash
11. Happiness Runs by Donovan
12. Measuring Cups by Andrew Bird
13. Wild World by Cat Stevens
14. Andy’s Chest by The Velvet Underground
15. When I Said Goodbye by Mayer Hawthorne & The County


10/12/2011 Playlist

1. Lay Down In The Tall Grass by Timber Timbre

2. Nausea by Cut Off Your Hands
3. Houseboat Babies by Reptar
4. Boyfriend by Best Coast
5. Work by 1,2,3
6. I Like You by Morrissey
7. I Can See The Pines Are Dancing (Daytrotter Session Version) by AA Bondy
8. Can’t Seem To Make You Mine by The Seeds
(The Seeds are my oh-you-like-music-question-mark-well-I’m-going-to-introduce-you-to-this-rad-band-who-you-and-every-human-should-know-and-worship-but-don’t-parenthesis-yet-end-parenthesis)
9. Black River Killer by Blitzen Trapper
10. Paranoia Key Of E by Lou Reed
11. Goth In The Disco by Just Jack
(This song had to be cut short due to a frowned upon word that popped up… Oops!)
12. Thieves In The Night by Hot Chip
13. All Die Young by Smith Westerns
14. Little Girl By Robert Francis

10/19/2011 Playlist

1. Organ Donor by Jeremy Messersmith

2. Pretty Purple Top Hat by Matthew and the Arrogant Sea
(I don’t know why, but I always pair these first two songs together in my head)
3. Permanent Vacation by Matt Costa
4. I Saw The Light by Spoon
5. Walk the Dinosaur by Was (Not Was)
6. Cruelty To Animals by Pernice Brothers
7. Field Day by Pocket Vinyl
(I’ve blogged about these guys before, but Pocket Vinyl is the duo I met at the Bright Eyes concert in Vermont over the summer and at the time of this show, I was in talks with them trying to set up a concert for my school, which, by looking at a previous post, you can see came to fruition!)
8. Zebra by Beach House
9. The Art Teacher by Rufus Wainwright
10. Casimir Pulaski Day by Sufjan Stevens
11. Hold Back The Rain by Duran Duran
12. Catch Me Now I’m Falling by The Kinks
13. Re: Stacks by Bon Iver
14. A Case of You by James Blake

10/26/2011 Playlist

1. It Don’t Come Easy by Ringo Starr

2. Tripper Trouble by The Beastles
(I don’t even remember how I came across these mash-ups, but I LOVE the DJ that created The Beastles, two (so far) albums of Beatles and Beastie Boys mash-ups. They’re glorious)
3. Sukie In The Graveyard by Belle & Sebastian
4. Sci-Fi Kid by Blitzen Trapper
5. Written In Reverse by Spoon
6. Dancing Madly Backwards by The Flirts
7. This Charming Man by The Smiths
(A friend of mine posted a status on Facebook quoting this song, talking about the struggles of being a handsome and charming man, which made me laugh and brought this great tune back into my mind)
8. Einstein A Go-Go by Landscape
9. Scientist by The Dandy Warhols
10. I Eat Cannibals (Extended Version) by Total Coelo
11. Pinky Blue by Altered Images
12. (Wish I Could Fly Like) Superman by The Kinks
13. Dog On The Sidewalk by Deerhoof
14. Icarus by White Hinterland
15. Walkie Talkie Man by Steriogram
16. It Gets Your Body Movin by Suckers
17. Waves by Blancmange

September Radio Shows…

14 Jan

One thing that I had really wanted to do last semester was keep a record of the playlists I played on my radio show, but after the first week I severely slacked. Luckily, I did write them down elsewhere and now that the mood is striking me, I’m bringing them home. So, I apologize for the inundation posts that are coming up, but I will not apologize for my rad mixes and excellent taste in tuneage! :)

9/21/2011 Playlist

1. My Heart Is Calling by Cataldo
2. She Blinded Me With Science by Thomas Dolby
3. The Ark by Dr. Dog
4. Pa Pa Power by Dead Man’s Bones
5. Enola Gay by Orchestral Maneuvers in the Dark
6. The Richest Kids by This Is Ivy League
(Cobra Starship came to play a concert at my school the following Saturday, so I plugged the event after this song, as two of the members of Cobra make up this indie band)
7. Twin Peaks by Surfer Blood
(This semester I took a class called Intro to Film and Media Studies, and the graded portion of the class consisted of three essays and a presentation, all analyzing and focusing on a single movie or TV episode of our choosing. So I’d have an excuse to watch the series over and over and be able to call it “studying,” I chose the pilot episode of “Twin Peaks”)
8. Sneaky Times by Birds & Batteries
9. Evident Utensil by Chairlift
10. Puttin’ On The Ritz by Taco
11. Lolita by Throw Me The Statue
12. Do You Wanna Dance (Early Take) by The Beach Boys
13. Marathon by Tennis
14. Bury Us Alive by Starfucker
15. Cosmic Dancer by T. Rex
16. All Yr Songs by Diamond Rings
17. Experimental Film by They Might Be Giants


9/28/2011 Playlist

 1. I’m The Greatest by Ringo Starr
(I heard “You’re Sixteen” on the radio a couple months ago, and ever since then Ringo’s been a frequent member of my playlists)
2. The Rescue Blues by Ryan Adams
(I was walking in town, talking about this song with a friend when someone leaning up against a building turned his head and said “Ryan Adams? Yeah!!” which made me laugh, and proud that someone knew the difference between Bryan Adams and Ryan Adams)
3. Moan (Trentemoller Vocal Remix featuring Ane Trolle) by Trentemoller
4. Run by Air
(I first heard Air in a “Veronica Mars” episode, and when it ended I immediately looked up everything by them. Didn’t love everything else of theirs as it got a little repetitive after a while, but I did really like “Talkie Walkie,” the album that this song and “Cherry Blossom Girl” are on)
5. I Think We’re Alone Now by Crotty Chops
6. Stay Loose by Belle & Sebastian
7. Doctor Worm by They Might Be Giants
(A must for any solid playlist, hehe)
8. Furr by Blitzen Trapper
9. Sweet Pea by Amos Lee
10. The Geeks Get the Girls by American Hi-Fi
11. Af en Af by Kurt Darren
(When I was in South Africa, Kurt Darren was a favorite to dance to and was the person who taught me the most Afrikaans through his singing, haha)
12. One Life Stand by Hot Chip
13. Lost in the Supermarket by The Clash
14. There Is A Light That Never Goes Out by The Smiths
15. I’ll Be Your Friend by Bright Eyes

Do You Remember? (Pocket Vinyl Concert At My School on 12/7/11!)

11 Jan

So this concert review is about a month late, but I was just letting it marinade. But now? Get it while it’s hot!

Remember that rad band I met at the Bright Eyes concert in Vermont last summer, Pocket Vinyl? Those newlyweds who were two of the nicest people I’d ever had the pleasure of swapping stories with? Eric? Elizabeth? Yeah, those guys! Remember how awesome their live shows sounded, how I hoped to see experiences one one day, but knew that concert promises ne’er come to fruition? Well, have I got a story for you.

After the concert, Pocket Vinyl and I swapped contact info so that we might cross paths along the tour they were soon to be embarking on. Time goes by, I migrate south for the semester for school, and Chinese ink painting and linguistics take over my life. One day while coming up for air between classes and checking my email, I see a message from a certain band inquiring about setting up a certain concert. The ghosts from summers past turned out to be not so much ghosts as two artists alive and kicking and looking to play a concert in town!

Living in Amish Country, I have come to terms with the fact that I do not reside in a music mecca, a nightlife hotspot. Well, “come to terms” might not be entirely accurate- I know that this is the rep that my town currently has, but when by four years at school are through I’d like to see that stigma laid to rest, and a concert on campus seemed like the perfect way to get the ball rolling.

There’s a local club that serves as the venue for most lost musicians who find themselves wandering through town, but unfortunately they were booked for the day Pocket Vinyl was slotted to make their entrance. Fear not, I did, and I looked to other options. Just a week before, the Arts House, an off campus house for students to reside in, hosted an open mic night and a seed had been planted in the back of my mind. Is there a more perfect venue for an indie band than the intimate basement of a house of art? Answer: no.

After emails exchanged with the people in charge of the house, the gig was set for December 7th. A lovely date with the added bonus of doubling as the night before not one but TWO of my finals (don’t worry, I aced ’em both).

Days rolled by and the semester drew to an close, and before I knew it the 7th became known as “today.” Excellent weather for ducks, it poured all day and made me worry that I should have reserved a fleet of canoes for concertgoers to travel across campus. As evening approached I armed my person with galoshes, a feeble umbrella, and a pocket full of mint Hershey’s kisses and walked over to the radio station for my last show of the semester. With my usual flare for eclectic playlists and witty banter, I ended my show on a high note and went on my way to the Arts House to help set up.

Letting myself in the front door, I walked through the hallway and into the kitchen where I found two familiar yet strange faces- Eric and Elizabeth! They existed outside of Concert Land and the interwebz! We caught up on life and got to do the thing we’d most wanted to do since vowing to have this reunion so many months ago- tell the unlikely story of how this concert came to be to everyone around who’d listen.

Soon enough it was time to proceed into the depths of the basement and let the show begin. We were lucky enough to have two opening acts who set the stage for a great show, and made me all the more proud to study among such talented people.

But enough build up, time for the main event! Elizabeth set up her canvas and went to town dressing it with swirling greys while Eric pounded on his keyboard and belted out Pocket Vinyl’s discography. I can now say that they were as charming, as wonderful, as heart pounding, as perfect as I so hoped they would be. Eric was great with the between song banter which is such an important part of performing, and I was continually amazed at how Elizabeth painted away so calmly and boldly, adding a fun contrast to Eric’s eccentric movements (which made the concert one of those things you literally had to there to understand their brilliance!).

Time passed, and people steadily came in and out. I knew that holding a concert on a Wednesday night was a bold move, and had told my friends that I’d appreciate their attendance even for just a few minutes. I can honestly say that my heart when I saw so many of the people who promised me they’d be there actually show up. I mean, anyone in their right mind would go to a free concert with amazing talent, but we all know that few people maintain their right minds as finals approach. A chuck of us just wouldn’t budge, so Pocket Vinyl kept playing into the night, till past 11!

When the music stopped the good times did no such thing, and we had some nice chats and a heated auction for Elizabeth’s painting of birds in branches (we ended up splitting the piece and giving it to the Arts House).

As snow started falling, I made my exit with a smile on my face, music in my heart, and happy knowledge that sometimes, things just work out.

…And the best part? They’re coming back on January 20th!

Magic Transistor Radio… (I Have A Radio Show!)

14 Sep

When I arrived at college about three weeks ago, I thought Collegetown, PA was going to be my home. A traditional way of marking one’s location with a traditional address, a traditional Google-Map-able pinpoint, a traditional place where parents can send care packages of food and variou$ thing$… ;)

As of tonight (Wednesday) at 6-7PM EST, it’s clear that that’s not the case. The airwaves are my domain, the DJ booth my pad. Before even setting foot on campus as a metriculated student, I knew I wanted a radio show. I’m not overly keen on public speaking and don’t have a buttery smooth voice, but time slot, wanted I. Got one, I did, so for the rest of the semester an hour of my hump day is going to be spent in a tiny booth- just me, my music, and about 50 buttons that can lead to nuclear destruction if pressed wrong.

Promising 100-watt smiles and eternal thanks, I roped a friend into coming with me for the first bit to make sure I got into the swing of things alright (and preferably didn’t set off any of the aforementioned nuclear devices…). And thank goodness for that! Shows are broadcast on a local station, but also on the internet and they have to be managed separately. The internet broadcast went off without a hitch, but for the local stream I didn’t know to turn up the volume on my computer so there was dead air for a few minutes… yikes! Funnily enough when I got it working, a song by The Kinks was playing and I made a joke about kinks in production and the band name- not ten minutes into DJing and I already got to impose my bad humor on innocent listeners! ;)

I plan to let the music do most of the talking while I act as the invisible man pushing the buttons and choosing the choice tunes. I did make sure to say the names of the songs every so often, because it’s one of my biggest pet peeves that many mainstream stations don’t to that anymore! The only thing more frustrating than listening to bad music is listening to a good song, not catching the title or artist, and losing it forever.

I publicized my show on the internet and to my friends here at school (the station is broadcast in the dining hall, so I told them that on Wednesdays they’re eating dinner at 6 hehe), and I was so flattered by how many people actually tuned in and gave me positive feedback! Encore, encore! Ok, I’ll be back next week. :)

Playlist for Radio Show on 9/14

1. Step Into My Office, Baby by Belle & Sebastian
2. Pomegranate by Anders Ponders
3. Apeman by The Kinks
4. El Capitan by The Steelwells
5. I Ran (So Far Away) by A Flock of Seagulls
6. Handle With Care by Traveling Wilburys
7. Politics In Space by Kate Miller-Heidke
(this song had one of the no-no words for radio, so I got to bleep my first curse by turning down the audio dial right when it was sung… somebody’s not getting sued today!)
8. August by Neighbors
9. Golden Lights by The Smiths
10. Banana Splits by The Dickies
11. Second Bird of Paradise by The Rosebuds
12. Lose Your Soul by Dead Man’s Bones
13. Kids Aflame by ARMS
14. Rich Girl by Hall & Oates
15. Is There Anyone Out There by Duran Duran
16. Cabbage Town by Conor Oberst and The Mystic Valley Band
17. Pigs That Ran Straightaway Into The Water, Triumph Of by the Mountain Goats