Category Archives: 2011


Yes, indeed! I can’t say it enough: Happy Christmakwanzaakkah!

This post is a little late for that, but here’s what I like about late greetings for things like Christmas, Kwanzaa, Hanukkah, birthdays, the 4th of July, Martin Luther King Day, etc: it means you can extend the celebration. So by all means, extend Christmakwanzaakkah into the new year by listening to this special holiday show!

You can even celebrate with rubber bands…
and R2D2…
and C-3PO…

I know you’re aware that Bob Dylan sings Christmas songs from time to time. But did you know that Jimi Hendrix made a Christmas album? You do now. Also, it is no secret that one of my favorite things about this time of year is that I get to play the Destiny’s Child Christmas album on the radio. If the gods are a-listening, hear my plea! Revive Destiny’s Child! They are queens of the musical world.

(1 hour)
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December 14

ooo, I found a box full of soul/blues/R&B 7″ records, and that’s how the show begins. Well, really it begins with James Brown (a new live album of a 1962 show at the Apollo!), just to set the mood.

I became preoccupied with some musicians’ nicknames…I suppose you can’t really choose your own nickname, unless you’re Marcel the Shell. Like Lynda Barry sez, you can only hope that you don’t get stuck with something like “The Smell”.

(1 hour)
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December 7

I don’t intend for the following statement to be a deterrent to listening to this show, but: the first half of this latest installment consists of a failed experiment.

For a while now, I’ve been trying to accumulate the acumen and screw up the courage to fill an entire hour’s worth of air time solely with sound effects. I put together enough of em for today to occupy about 30 minutes. I built something like a narrative, which culminates in a rather creepy ambiance. And then, simply due to momentum, I keep the creep for a little while after the sound effects have done their business. My mood might have something to do with staying up all night and heading in to the station, buzzed and nearly hallucinogenic.

In any case, I think a new tactic is in order when it comes to utilizing sound. I really like an element of surprise, which often happens when someone follows a musical track with a straight-up sound. I’d like to apply that effect to a whole show’s worth of soundy sounds. This project is a work in progress.

Curious? Here ya go.

(1 hour)
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November 30: ALL CAPPELLA #3

It’s what you’ve been waiting for! The latest installment of ALL CAPPELLA! All a cappella alla the time, or at least for a full hour.

I got some fantastic requests for vocal musics, and I even got to play a handful of them.

There’s a great series of backcountry vocalizations near the top of the show, which includes hollerin’, whooping, eephing, and ringing the pig. Not only that, but I opine that this hour spans the spectrum of styles–traditional, quirky, classical, religious, frivolous, and moving. It’s more than worth a listen; this stuff requires that you pay attention.

(1 hour)
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hey, and check out All Cappellas one, two, and four while you’re at it.

November 23: Thanksgivingish

The day before Thanksgiving! cluck.

I finally had a chance to play the seminal Miles Davis album, Kind of Blue.

Also here is an Ann-Arbor-native-turned-Snoop-Dogg-collaborator-in-California, Mayer Hawthorne. I discuss his sartorial proclivities herein.

You’re intrigued, aren’t you? Well, click on the little triangle.

(1 hour)
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November 16

You know what’s great about radio?

It allows you to simultaneously have one ear in the tropical rain forest and one ear in the temperate forest.

old and good = Kimya Dawson

new and good = Feist

always good = Rob Crow

I pulled a big stack of new vinyl off the shelf, much of which was culled from the WFMU record fair last month by our music directors (an event they attended with other DJs representing WCBN, which you can read about here and here). Many of these new records were described by their reviewer as “new-wave synth” or something like that. Many were re-releases which first came out in the ’80s.

(1 hour)
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November 9

After a one-week hiatus from Break Your Radio, The Liz returns with the good stuff.

This particular show centers around the recordings of a guy named David Greenberger. I’ll just transcribe a WCBN DJ reviewer’s description of one of the Greenberger CDs here: “In 1979, David Greenberger started writing a zine called ‘Duplex Planet’ in which he interviews residents of the nursing home at which he works, getting strange philosophical musings from them in a way that is very amusing but not at all exploitative. This is one of several CD releases on which he reads monologues based on these interviews, with musical backing.”

True enough, the Greenberger tracks are at times amusing, humorous, devastating, thoughtful, bizarre, relatable, and a bla and the bla and gabla. Which means, don’t take it from me. You really have to hear this guy artfully interpret the touching stories of a bunch of old people.

(1 hour)
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October 26

eh, this one’s a little weird. some parts (like the beginning) are a little good. some parts (like a cameo from our friend Neil Hamburger) are a little uncomfortable. in any case, this one’s a lotta freeform.

(1 hour)
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October 19

in which I accidentally reveal my belief that New York City is overrated.

My Brightest Diamond AND Björk have new albums. Joy abounds.

Stick with it to get meditative with birdsong.
and a special amphibious guest animal thrown in there for good measure.
You know one thing that I like about the autumn, when the trees defoliate? You get to see all the birds’ nests that were hidden in the leaves.

(1 hour)
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On a totally unrelated note, the rest of my morning was a beautiful thing. I had to return some books to the library, and I stopped in the kids’ section to say hi to the fish. I noticed that a crowd of children had congregated in the corner and realized that it was STORY TIME! That librarian hooked me and those chillums with her songs and her hand puppets and her Filipino folk tales. The crying baby crocodile puppet with the snapping wooden mouth scared some of the kids so much that they had to be carried away, crying. Did you ever become overwhelmingly frightened by something that wasn’t real? Do you still?



and our other October birthday Libra babies!

This show is chock-full of birthday tuneage. Seriously. Like, the whole show is one birthday song after another for an entire hour. How is that possible? The songs get a bit more upbeat about halfway through. It really confused some people when the WCBN DJ answered their phone call by wishing them a happy birthday.

(1 hour)
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But even after an hour, there remained excess birthday tuneage! DJ Double A was a gem and played another one for me during his show:

(3 1/2 minutes)
(not to be interpreted as 3 half-minutes, i.e., 1.5 minutes)
(rather, 3.5 minutes)