Winter 2013 Mix Tape…

So, I’m debating the ethics right now of offering this “tape” (1) for download.

2013-02-01 14.04.32

What seems most intuitive to me is to contact each band in some fashion and ask for permission.  Anything else seems presumptuous in a way that I am just uncomfortable with, personally.  That’s not to say others are wrong in saying, “please contact me if you want anything taken down” and offering downloads till that point.  I know I have most certainly discovered music that was downloaded off of an internet site where I didn’t do the due diligence to make sure that the artist had given permission, but then went out after being blown away and bought some vinyl direct from the artist.  But personally, I feel the most comfortable on my own site with insuring consent every step of the way.

tl;dr?  I think I’m just going to offer a track listing and hopefully inspire you to go out and track down these gems yourself.  Of course, if I’m feeling particularly ambitious & find myself with some of the most scarce resource known to humanity: free time, then I may actually send out some e-mails and see what I can do.  However, this setlist just feels so damn perfect for this winter, that I submit it to you here, this strange vision of a winter’s day in hopes you will grab these songs yourself.

Of course, I find it impossible *not* to offer my pretentious-but-heartfelt quasi-poetic annotations. The story that this imagined day is; the story in between the songs, because of the songs, yet having nothing really to do with the songs..

Due to A) my utter ridiculousness & B) my Joycean infatuation, I submit this to you with suggested drink pairings (I warned you it’d be pretentious!), and time of day where each song falls in my imagination (plus some occasional anachrony where one is reflecting back on a time past or in the future.)

Here’s the drink pairing list and letter code:

C = Coava Coffee Roaster’s Girasoles from Costa Rica (a pleasantly intricate yet easy-to-drink & buttery cup to wake up with!)

L = Homemade Lemonade with Meyer lemons (all sweet, no sour, sorta like the pop songs they go along with) and Pomegranate juice to add a bit of winter into that traditional summer potable.

T = Foxfire Earl Grey with honey and some milk instead of cream, as the Irish take it (dreamy and comforting, yet agitates ever-so-slightly, like a lovers’ arms waking you up as they squeeze you tighter in their sleep; waking you up but making you feel safe all over at the same time.)

B = Blanton’s single-barrel bourbon (vanilla sweetness giving way to late rye spice; bite with sophistication. Rowdy and civilized all at the same time.)

E = Stumptown’s Guatemalan Finca El Injerto Bourbon espresso, balancing chocolate with citrusy brightness and a hint of sweet spice as a finish.  (A great middle of the day pick-me-up: sorta like these corresponding songs)

-Drink Pairing
#Track Number
“Song Name”
^Song Duration 
+Time of Day 
Band Name

-C #01: “Springtime” ^2:53 +7:06 AM The Torn ACLs
Waking up with hope in your heart, knowing that if you keep doing the right thing, that good things are gonna happen. Ready for work, but shaking off the drudgery; looking for the little bit of daylight to catch on your fingertip before the inevitable rains begin anew, and loving them both.

-C #02: “My Heart Is A Drummer” ^3:17 +9:23AM Allo Darlin’
As the day continues to move from a slow but bright-eyed start into that full and real feeling of being awake, thoughts are turning to love & that sense of being both giddy with excitement, yet strong and secure, absent-mindedly toying with a phone cord, giving yourself over to love, but never forgetting or losing yourself…I never liked Graceland, but I *love* the metaphoric Graceland & actually want to go out and get the album just for what it represents. There’s a Graceland inside us all, in that place where the things that you love make you happiest: in that place where your heart is a drummer…(and we’re talking Keith Moon, here)

-C #03: “Please Do Not Lie” ^4:30 +10:03 AM Boa Constrictor vs. Honeydrips
The day has really begun in earnest. You’re aware of where you are raw and where you are polished. You are unafraid and ready to go. Handclaps could be cheering choruses for the lilt in your heart. Things aren’t perfect, but they are good, and this makes them real and sustainable; it makes them great.

-L #04: “Summertime” ^3:13 +11:24 Pocketbooks
It’s the dead of winter, but this song is the memory of a summer breeze in the midst of a sweltering August, without romanticization.  Enjoying the warmth of your cardigan, remembering laughs and the sweet smoke from corn stalks on the BBQ as you all stood on the grass somewhere unforgettable.

-L #05: “Your Way, Mr. Leary” ^1:55 +12:17 PM The Rainyard
Lunch is lively conversation with old friends and some new ones, too. There is talk of the night’s forthcoming adventures.  A catchy hook falls into your ear, whispered like an infectious secret, but then is gone just as quickly.

-C #06: “Philadelphia” ^3:36 +12:31 PM Standard Fare
Some seemingly innocuous glimpse of something unrelated brings your mind back to your beloved and the temporary distance between you. You’ll see that person after work, today…why is work taking *forever*? It bloody well feels like a year!

-L #07: “Fine Day For Sailing” ^2:26 +12:49 PM Go Sailor
That’s it, you’ve decided to cast off the hardships of the day with a breezy smile. Laugh it off with a dance somewhere inside of yourself.  Forgive everything ever done to you with a laugh, but never forget, all the while staying too busy dancing to worry about a damn thing else. Or maybe you’re not there yet, but that’s where you want to be.

-L #08: “This Love Is Not Wrong” ^3:22 +1:05 PM The Field Mice
Let the crowd say whatever they want about you. This feeling you have in your heart, this furnace you carry with you, keeping you warm and causing you to look up with a smile when everyone else is looking down with a bothered sneer, it is a love that is shared, a silent bond that will never ask for nor need the approval of anyone else.

-B #09: “Original Arrogance” ^1:37 +9:40 PM Comet Gain
Finding yourself someplace where you were left, realizing that somehow you’ve gotten over everything that used to hold you back, and burning all those bad memories with the fire of urgency. Onward brazenly to this next new phase with all of the self-assurance you’ve ever needed to do anything you want to do. You’re ready to create, and in big strokes with fast movement. Thinking forward into the night, and that moment where the hope for it meets with what it really is. Some threshold has been crossed, but you’re not yet sure what.

-B #10: “I’m So Unclean” ^2:18 +3:15 PM Evans The Death
Urgency gives way to reverie. You pine for your beloved as you enter your last big push to finish work for the day, having endured and conquered being beset by the (after)noontime demon: Ennui.

-T #11: “Green Eyed” ^2:54 +8:02 PM September Girls
Thinking on the night beginning in earnest and thoughts that echo in your head: moments of cherished time alone, thoughts of being lost in a crowd, thoughts of being alone with your beloved. The future and where that turns from ideal form into what it really is. Pleasant surprises and otherwise. Again, returning to the echo of your thoughts. The night is young, and still, so are you…there is hope in the silent spaces between the noise.

-B #12: “Rip” ^2:27 +7:30 PM Ringo Deathstarr
Somehow, and you’re not sure how or why, things have taken a turn for the strange.  You retreat into comforting thoughts.  You’re not sure if you are lucid dreaming or if reality has taken on a strange shimmer.  You are not worried, but things are not as they were.  You’re not sure if they ever will be again.  Your simple and quietly beautiful life of work and home is transformed into something you don’t recognize…you stride forward into it anyway, casting not a backwards glance.

-B #13: “Do You Think It’ll Snow Tonight?” ^1:28 +6:39 PM The Cat’s Miaow
A quiet wish, noisily uttered? A noise-y wish, quietly uttered? From the flurry inside to the possible one out…maybe tonight is best spent by the fireplace.

-E #14: “You Make Two Weeks Two Days” ^2:47 +5:30 PM Baffin Island
Thinking forward to the commute home. Warm thoughts of returning to your beloved. How can time escape so quickly when life is so glorious now? How did it trudge along like an ancient horse on a tenderfoot’s trail-ride when times were sour? The comfort of the company is enough to sustain the irrevocable velocity of wonderful moments rendered perfect by their second glance. Toiling in the diamond mine of memory never works up a sweat.

-E #15: “Your New Boyfriend” ^1:49 +4:43 PM Rocketship
Back to where you are. The darkest times are rendered manageable by the sonic-honey rimming the medicine cup of hardship’s medicine. Yesterday’s scars give today’s hugs meaning and perspective.  You love like you used to.  You love like new.

-E #16: “Folded In Half” ^3:36 +5:15 PM The Bank Holidays
Harmony steps into your life as you put your day away and prepare for what comes next. Your thoughts escape up the spiral staircase until you are on top of the bus, watching the world from a newly-caught perspective. On your way home, only to leave it again, only to return. Love is the anchor that still lets the boat keep moving, but never too far from what matters.

-L #17: “Infatuation Street” ^3:17 +2:45 PM Sweater Girls
Loveletters written on paper folded and burned as a floating wish into the sky, hoping only to be forgotten as they turn to ash.  The weather on your face as the leaves have turned, the comforting scratch of wool against your skin.

-L #18: “Sea Horses” ^2:55 +5:01 PM Blueboy
Life is more beautiful and more complicated than anyone had imagined.

-B #19: “Your Doubting Heart” ^3:15 +10:15 PM The Hobbes Fanclub
You want to cry. Your beloved is lost.  You know not where or how. Your memories are all dreams; your dreams are all memories. Jonas had an easier go of it than this sudden nightmare you have woken into. Everything has changed. Only Lethe notes register in your unbelieving ears.  The music pulls you forward when you find your will lacking.

-B #20: “You Can Hide Your Love Forever” ^3:43 +10:15 AM Comet Gain
Back to the morning; those burned wishes are not forgotten; they mature into these feelings that are as mundane yet comforting as your morning Orange Juice. Your desires will carry you when nothing else will. Dreams of a France or Scotland you’ve never seen, the friends in literature you’ve made, those words that have never been said that you always wanted…the home in that person’s eyes. You can find the song when you can’t find the words.

-B #21: “English Cities” ^2:04 +10:44 PM Brilliant Colors
Pushing over smokestacks, past thoughtlessly brilliant interactions to the place where everyone is gathered. Stumbling through, you would rue your current state, wide awake fearing all is lost, were it not for the chaos of noise you have somehow scrolled above, to where you can see the pattern from a distance. You know not where your beloved is, but you enter the room where all your new friends are. Nightmares are raindrops that fall off of your slicker into puddles in the street you do not stop to consider.

-B #22: “You’re Beautiful” ^1:06 +11:09 PM The Faintest Ideas
Running up the flights of stairs into the room where they all are; you throw open the door, boldly declaring what you know, the beauty that’s pushing its way out of your chest, effortlessly, as if from someone else, but it is *you*, it is the essence of you, but you don’t wait for a reaction, you’ve turned around and are bounding out the door, down the steps before anyone’s had a word.  You don’t care what they think; that’s for them to decide.  You wanted only for them to know.

-B #23: “For Ex-Lovers Only” ^2:35 +12:58 AM Black Tambourine
Wandering rocks. The reaction that could have been, instead of the Scylla & Charybdis you have chosen . The fear at the end of the night. The wrong “what if” suddenly become real for a moment. A nightmare Baudelaire prose poem. A Berlioz vision of paregoric delusion. Your beloved warps before you, turning into a manifestation of all of one’s own insecurities, pointing a silent accusatory finger, questioning your own capacity to be loved. You slam the door on the fears, letting everyone else be who they are.  Let anyone walk away without a second thought, even if it does cost a tear.

-T #24: “Poor Students Dream of Marx” ^3:12 +7:01 PM Cats on Fire
The world shudders awake with the slam of that door. You are in your own skin, seeing the world as it really is.  The myths flee from your mind like smoke from a chimney.  Seemingly impoverished by materialism, you’ve actually made the grade. You are alone, having put all of those insecurities to bed. Others show up, ask you questions. You glibly dismiss them.  You will not be distracted again.

-T #25: “You Can Have What You Want” ^2:52 +1:10 AM Papercuts
From tears, alone, you’ve found something in yourself again. You’ve discovered everything you need, and have chased the real and fake images that have hounded you. You are alone.  You wouldn’t mind some company, but you are fine and happy by yourself. There is nothing bittersweet about this peace, but there is contemplation.

-T #26: “Rats Blossom Into Boys” ^3:52 +1:33 AM Kookooo Kitchen
You walk into the last room of the night. Things are happening for others.  Talk.  Drinks.  Other things you don’t want to look too closely at. You have no desire now for any of the former pastimes that once beguiled you.  You’ve made it somehow to the other end of the night.  You’re not yet sure what you have learned but you are certain of what to do. Leave

-T #27: “The City Limit” ^5:53 +2:31 AM The Radio Dept.
Streetlights cast their long rays, glimmering in the brisk dark night, pulsating rhythmically as you move past them, your bed calling to you. Feeling that familiar sense of being alone, you find yourself longing again, wistful, but not needing. Mildly happy with who you are and where you are, but wanting more. The shadows in the car give way to the streetlight drumbeat, like a strobe light in slow motion, to reveal your beloved nearly asleep in the passenger seat. How? Why has this all happened? Your loved one tells you that you have grown as you’ve needed to.  You’ve dream-lived your fears and fantasies, and have come to the other side.  Safe. While you were preoccupied, they had done the same. Paths have separated, crossed, split and then reunited in one giant thoroughfare, leading home; leading to a place that stands still as it runs and anchors only when it changes. Your hand is warm in your beloved’s hand. A sigh, on the verge of sleep. Where it’s at is where you are now; where you will always be as long as you desire it.


1:In a typically Fecked-up state of affairs, I call my mixes “tapes”, which I burn onto CDs made to look like vinyl records, which are usually burned to mp3s and played on ipods/iphones.  I think the only thing that would make the circle complete is if the iphone had an 8-track case

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