Saturday, May 1, 2010

stop using those words together (semi-cross-posted from OOS)

Uh, so I did some guest blogging over at Meredith Purvis’ website – click here to read my extremely important opinions about Wallace Stevens. Oh, and I also write a monthly column for the Gettysburg Times. Here’s me waxing historic about Tax Day.

Also, I'm having more fun with my podcasting efforts. Orphans of Silence is becoming a pretty awesome project, and I've even kicked the Brasserie (my punk rock/garage/outsider music thing) back into gear. Finding audio clips for the former and music for the latter has been immensely entertaining, and I can feel the creative part of my brain being warped into all sorts of crazy shapes. Archive.org has been very helpful - a lot of bizarre cassette culture/lo-fi/noise music gets uploaded there, and it's worth panning through tons of shitty bands to find the nuggets of purestrain weird among them, the guys and girls who make crude-but-brilliant music because it welled up inside them and they needed to release it somewhere permanent. Even the stuff I don't like is valuable, in that it's leveling. I may get up my own ass sometimes and think that I'm an edgy guy, but holy shit am I not even close. To paraphrase Patton Oswalt, some of these people build cottages on The Edge and live there year-round.

Oh, and I went to a JHU reading this afternoon. More on that when it's not 3am, but I'm very glad I chose UB to pursue an MFA, that's for sure.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

the capitalist materialism bling-bling

Okay fine, no more distracting you people with fancy graphics. Time for actual content. I'm currently watching Nerdcore Rising, a documentary following MC Frontalot and his geeklord friends around on tour. Frontalot and MC Chris are pretty much the only two nerdcore rappers worth a shit, so at least they're ghosting picked someone decent, and it's unique in that the guys aren't self-destructive idiots sleeping on living room floors and banging groupies left and right. They are on, so far, the most white-bread Richie Cunningham tour in history.

But Frontalot, who isn't the most socially graceful person on Earth, is still a guy who has promoted his niche art well enough to go out on tour and try to make a living at it, and I find this inspiring. As I've probably established before, I am not a people person and the marketing stuff discussed last Thursday left me feeling like I was staring up the side of Mt. Everest. I don't have much stamina for it. On the other hand, I have four fingers and a thumb.

No seriously, on the other hand I've seen how inhospitable the art world can be to people who aren't driven self-promoters, regardless of the quality of their work. So I have a vested interest in overcoming my own myriad social phobias and getting my work out so people other than my friends can see it. Seeing other people who aren't smooth social operators doing the same thing for an art form even less appealing to regular Americans (rapping about being white and smart and never going outside) than mine (shit about robots in top hats) has proven to be, as I said, inspirational.