Archive for the ‘Nowtro’ Category


Hugh Hopper 1945 – 2009

June 8, 2009

Hugh Colin Hopper (born 29 April 1945, Whitstable, Kent, England, grown up in Canterbury; died 7 June 2009) was a progressive rock / (fusion) jazz bass guitarist and composer. He has been a prominent member of the Canterbury scene.

Hopper’s role with Soft Machine was initially as the group’s road manager, but he already composed for their first album The Soft Machine and played bass on one of its tracks. In 1969 he was recruited to be the group’s bassist for their second album, Volume Two and, with Mike Ratledge and Robert Wyatt, he took part in a recording session for a solo album of Syd Barrett’s (formerly of Pink Floyd, with whom the early Soft Machine had regularly gigged [2]). Hopper continued with the Softs, playing bass and contributing numerous compositions, until 1973. During his tenure the group evolved from a psychedelic pop group to an instrumental jazz-rock fusion band. In 1972, shortly before leaving Soft Machine, he recorded the first record under his own name, 1984 (named after George Orwell’s novel). This was a decidedly non-commercial record featuring lengthy solo pieces using tape loops as well as shorter pieces with a group.

Read more.


SNL on Madonna/Jolie’s Babymania

April 7, 2009

I appreciate that The Huffington Post has been posting the video for the Weekend Update segment and political parodies from Saturday Night Live. Honestly, I can’t take much more than 15 minutes of SNL these days and its sub-Mad TV, go-nowhere skits and annoying, cloying cast members (but then, I’m over 40). There’s no way in hell I would brave the mine-field of flaming dogshit that passes for a comedy variety program to catch the relatively few jewels of comedy that appear to be written by adults.

Here’s a link to one of the funniest takes on the creepy, international baby festival of Madonna (the queen of mediocrity) and Angelina Jolie (a cosmetic surgery floor model).

By the way, it just occurred to me that Madonna, Jolie and Octomom should all get together and form on gigantic, 3-way baby-dropping-snatching, somatic narcissist triumvirate.


Music Down the Tubes

March 24, 2009
As Rights Clash on YouTube, Some Music Vanishes
In early December, Juliet Weybret, a high school sophomore and aspiring rock star from Lodi, Calif., recorded a video of herself playing the piano and singing “Winter Wonderland,” and she posted it on YouTube.
Weeks later, she received an e-mail message from YouTube: her video was being removed “as a result of a third-party notification by the Warner Music Group,” which owns the copyright to the Christmas carol.
Hers is not an isolated case.. Countless other amateurs have been ensnared in a dispute between Warner Music and YouTube, which is owned by Google.
The conflict centers on how much Warner should be paid for the use of its copyrighted works — its music videos — but has grown to include other material produced by amateurs that may also run afoul of copyright law.
“Thousands of videos disappeared,” said Fred von Lohmann, staff lawyer for the Electronic Frontier Foundation, an Internet civil liberties group that asked affected YouTube users to contact it.
“Either they turned off the audio, or they pulled the video.”

A spokesman for Warner Music said that YouTube’s system for identifying copyrighted material does not distinguish between professionally made music videos and amateur material that may include
copyrighted works.

Read while article



March 21, 2009

Like a bad horror movie franchise, the saga of my undying iPod chugs along…

…Turns out a new hard drive was relatively cheap and I had the patience and means to do it myself.

So now, I am randomly shuffling weird music on the go again. It’s nice too, as the selections on it before the final meltdown were getting somewhat stagnant.

Nice to have it back, even though not having it forced me to explore my physical music library in a deeper manner than I had been lately.


WSU Vancouver’s The KOUG is on the air

March 4, 2009

Sort of. It’s streaming over the internet, which is a start:

KOUG Radio: We are as random as you are.

We are the student radio station of Washington State University in Vancouver. We broadcast 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year via online streaming audio. You can listen to our live stream by clicking here.

To listen to KOUG, you will need to install RealPlayer or VLC media player. Both are free.

I listened to a good chunk of it yesterday and it was pretty entertaining.
Heck, the DJ even took my requests via chat!
Check them out!


Happy 2009, Folks – and Goodbye to 2008

December 31, 2008

I’m looking back at 2008 and – as the older I get the faster time flies – am experiencing little of the emotional doppler effect we call nostalgia…
But, to be sure, 2008 has been a year of personal highlights for me. The biggest is that I have been in the process of fulfilling a 20-plus year dream in that I am doing my own radio show. In 2008 I:

  • Had my baptism by fire with my seven hour Bill Laswell marathon (March 21st/Link)
  • In October, I hosted a three hour special on the band Laibach (October 10th/Link) and was fortunate to interview member Ivan Novak on the eve of their Portland show. I later got to meet him at the show and chatted briefly with him. I have been a long-time Laibach fan, so it was thrilling for me.
  • I also created many collage shows as part of the rotating lineup that was Randomonium (sadly, now retired). I learned a lot about producing complex shows, as their variable quality can attest. I am happy to report that I am now producing radio at the college level (joke). Many of them are available on my blog.
  • Also in October, I did a Halloween program with my son William, who is now becoming involved with KBOO as well. We had a good time and got to play some fun tunes (Oct. 24th/Link)
  • On Thanksgiving evening, Devin (host of Radio Under the Influence) and I did a late-night Turkey Night show featuring Turkish psychedelic rock of the 60’s and 70’s. In the studio also was my brother Andy and son William. (Nov. 28th/Link)
  • In December, I did a simucast of sorts with founding Negativland member and muse David “The Weatherman” Wills. It was a lot of fun. Negativland’s been a long-time favorite of mine and The Weatherman was too kind for allowing us into his home – so to speak- for an audio link-up.

Here’s hoping for many more in 2009.
I want to thank everyone that’s supported and encouraged me in all this. Thanks to my wife for not only being supportive and understanding, but for also giving me the inspiration to pursue my dreams. Thanks also to all at KBOO who continue to encourage people like me (didn’t your parents tell you not to do that kind of thing?). KBOO’s been my antidote for my work week, as everyone there is incredibly supportive and fun to work with. Thanks especially to our trusty, late-night train engineer Daniel Flessas for taking me under his wing and showing me the ropes (mind the ropes!) and making me aware of being in tune with The Radio Gods (there are no accidents in late night radio). I’m also grateful for the listeners who have given me feedback and encouragement.

I continue to do my volunteer gig at KBOO, too. I have been producing the Weekend Community Calendar for about 18 months now. It’s a good production gig that sharpens my voice-work skills, as well as writing for the air and editing audio. I have told myself that I will always try to do some kind of volunteer work for KBOO, even if I eventually land a full time show. KBOO has given so much to me over the decades.

I’m also thinking of abandoning the handle Kill Ugly Radio and come up with something new. I’m tired of it. It’s also misleading and/or negative sounding.  I have an idea or two about a new show format and will be trying it out (next show, January 9th!) and will be demo’ing it to programming. So keep your fingers crossed for me.

I am also so gratified that somehow our country pulled together and made our broken – and far from perfect – Democratic process work and we said goodbye to one fascist chapter in our history. I am somewhat more skeptical than most about what President Obama will do for the American people, but it’s a change in the right direction, to be sure. I feel like we’re coming out of an 8-year emotional sinkhole and things can only get better. I also feel that an Obama administration is going to be more receptive to public opinion and change than the Bush regime or than a McCain administration would have been.

So, have a happy New Year and here’s hoping 2009 is brighter and better!

Cheers, all!



So Much Holiday Radio For All Us Snowed-in Folks

December 24, 2008

There’s so many great terrestrial and internet radio going on between now and Christmas that you now have an excuse to hook your computer to your stereo and let some talented folks spin some holiday cheer for you well into New Years.

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