Thing a Week 11 – Podsafe Christmas Song

November 30th, 2005

Yes, I know, it’s two days early. That’s how restful my week off was – I am now twice as productive! Actually, I’m off for a mid-Atlantic tour with John Hodgman tomorrow, and I don’t know when I’ll have a chance to post this if I don’t do it today. This week’s thing came from a suggestion made by a few podcasters: Len and Nora from Jawbone Radio, Big Mike and Just Sue from Extra Super Action Show, and C.C. Chapman from Accident Hash. They wanted a podsafe Christmas song (for those of you not on the podcasting tip, “podsafe” just means that the copyright holder authorizes its use on podcasts). The subject matter’s a bit inside, but the inspiration should be immediately clear if you’ve ever heard a Chipmunks song. I poke a little fun at Adam Curry, self-annointed “podfather,” because he has all the money and all the power. I kid because I love, and also because I want to curry favor. Ha! I said “Curry” favor!

Technical note: you have no idea how slow and awful the vocals sound at regular speed.

Anyway, enjoy! Play it on your podcasts, tip me if you like it, Merry Xmas, sorry for all the exclamation points!

Podsafe Christmas Song

I’m Back

November 28th, 2005

I totally went underground there for a few days, no email, no work, no nothing. Just sat around enjoying leftovers and recharging the batteries. Felt pretty good. But now I am back “at work” and will have something to post on Friday.

Some news: the reason my link to that Eagles/Kelly Clarkson mashup no longer works (as commenter Michael pointed out), is that the RIAA is cracking down on mashups. Mashuptown has been warned, and they’ve taken everything down. So gather ye rosebuds while ye may because it’s going to get harder and harder to find mashups until this lunacy stops, if it ever does. As Cory points out in his BoingBoing post, the idea that a mashup harms the artists or labels involved is just silly. He says:

Mashups are a really dumb target for the RIAA. There’s just no universe in which someone who downloads a mashup of Prince’s 1999 and the Benny Goodman orchestra performing “In the Mood” thinks, Well, now I’ve heard that, I have no need to buy the CDs those songs originated on.

Preach it!


November 23rd, 2005

My man, So-Jo. Here’s an article about the king himself (um, in which he talks about my song about him! Awesome!): Soterios Johnson in Columbia College Today

Week Off

November 22nd, 2005

Much as I hate to break the perfect record, I need to face facts. It’s Thanksgiving this week and I’m hosting a bunch of family. The house is going to be full and I will spend much of the week boiling and mashing various root vegetables, so I just don’t think I’m going to have the time (or the quiet) to put anything together. I feel bad doing this (how weird is that?), but I remind myself that I quit the day job in order to be my own boss. As my boss, I insist that I take the week off. Consider me officially on vacation.

But as a follow up to my mashup attempt last week, I present to you something that I found in the delicious mp3 links list. This is what they call a “good” mashup (The Eagles: One of These Nights and Kelly Clarkson: Since You’ve Been Gone) from a now sadly defunct site called Mashuptown. It’s called Spending One of These Nights with Kelly.

Thing a Week 10 – When I’m 25 or 64

November 18th, 2005

This is my first ever mashup. I’m on the road so my recording capabilities are limited, plus I’m so angry about this whole Sony rootkit thing that I felt like a little illegality was called for. I’m too old to smash things, so this copyright violation will have to do. I did actually purchase these songs from the iTunes music store, but then in order to get them into a workable form I had to circumvent the DRM by recording the audio out from my iPod. Hear that?! I circumvented the DRM in a blatant violation of federal laws! And I’d do it again!

Like many mashups, this really starts and ends with the title – a blend of Chicago’s “25 or 6 to 4” and the Beatles song “When I’m 64.” I’m all about the numbers you see. It’s not quite as successful as I’d hoped (turns out it’s pretty hard to do this well). There are times when they work well together, but I can’t escape the feeling that I’m just listening to two songs at once, not a new coherent musical thing. If you don’t understand what makes McCartney melodies so great, you should try taking one out of its original musical context – they have deep roots.

Here is the song: When I’m 25 or 64