Saturday, February 28, 2009

Nothing But Crickets

I realize that I haven't been updating this blog nearly as much as I had planned when I first started it eons ago (Actually it's only been two and half years, but who's counting, right)? But, seriously folks, there has been nothing but crickets on here for the past six months. The only post that really generated any excitement was the one on Barack Obama, but the comments mainly came fron right-winged conservatives looking to rain on my parade. Well, it wasn't really my parade, but you probably get the gist of what I'm saying here.

Right now, it's a ghost town around here, people! I can hear the whistling through the tumbleweeds and it's not music to my ears. I hope you guys realize that running a blog is hard work. It takes a lot of time and effort to create a site that provides its readers with something interesting and creative, enough so, that it encourages them to come back periodically.

These podcasts I've been doing lately are very time consuming and they require me to be in a particular headspace. So, they don't always come to fruition as quickly as I would like them to. Nevertheless, I put countless hours of work into making sure that the flow is seamless, so you have a more pleasurable listening experience. Also, I take the time to write thoughtful and engaging posts about the music and artists that I am interested in, but I'm not getting any feedback from you: the readers and listeners.

I have to wonder if the heyday of Eclectic Grooves has come to pass. I wonder if it's because I haven't been posting many full albums lately, or because there are just too many blogs and too little time to comment. I feel that my blog is not your average, run-of-the-mill sharity blog that just posts every album in their collection. I would like to think that I have something special here: a place where you can find well-written descriptive reviews on artists and music that you won't find on the radio anytime soon. But maybe I'm just living in a dream-world.
If there is anybody out there who is still listening, please give me a shout. Let me know what you're listening to lately and what you like and dislike about the format of Eclectic Grooves. Let's get the conversation started!

I Hear a New World- Podcast #9

The ninth episode of I Hear a New World is available to be downloaded at:

This is the second installment of the Excursions in Space trilogy. With this episode, I have compiled an eclectic cross-section of artists including Bruce Haack, Sun Ra, Legendary Pink Dots, Ferrante and Teicher and Jimi Hendrix. I have posted the entire tracklist below so any mysteries of the unexplained can be, well, explained. This was originally supposed to be the second hour of a two-hour podcast, but it ended up being the middle section of a mix focusing on music associated with martians, astral voyages, UFO's and all other elements related to space.

One glance at the tracklist is all it will take to reveal the complexity of this podcast. The selection of music includes ambient electronic, wacky psychedelic rock, experimental noise and 50's novelty rock. Essentially, I have taken pieces of classic sci-fi films and restructured them within the context of this podcast to ensure seamless segueways between tracks. I hope you enjoy this episode of I Hear a New World.

I Hear a New World- Podcast #9- Excursions In Space Part 2

1) Prologue
2) Jimi Hendrix- EXP
3) The Legendary Pink Dots- The Saucers Are Coming
4) Free Pop Electronic Concept- Cosmos Rhythms
5) Sam Space and the Cadettes- Take Me To Your Leader Cha Cha Cha
6) Don Sebesky- The Martian Storm
7) Little Green Man
8) Dick Robinson- The Boppin’ Martian
9) Ferrante and Teicher- Man From Mars
10) The Ran-Dells- The Martian Hop
11) Interlude-187 Languages- Language Computer- Dialect
12) Bruce Haack- Ok Robot
13) Mollie Thompson- Cockeyed Ballad
14) The Legendary Stardust Cowboy- Rock-it to Stardom
15) Franco Battiato- Anafase
16) Jefferson Airplane- Saga of Sydney Spacepig
17) Sun Ra- Space Probe (excerpt)
18) Frank Strange- Transparent at Will
19) Cassini Saturn’s Bow Shock- 6-27-04
20) Pierre Henry and Michel Colombier- Psyche Rock
21) Kim Cascone- Zephirium Scan
22) Epilogue
23) Tom Dissevelt- Zanzi

Thursday, February 19, 2009

I Hear a New World- Podcast #8

The eighth episode of I Hear a New World is available to be downloaded at:

This is the first part of three parts related to the theme of space including snippets from rare sci-fi movies, rare recordings of UFO mythology, authentic recordings of sounds from space and a myriad of sounds that evoke the experience of exploring space.

I suppose you may be wondering what ever happened to that music fanatic who runs Eclectic Grooves. You may say to yourself "Did he fall off the face of the earth? " Well, actually that's not too far from the truth. I've been mining through hours and hours of songs that could fit into the context of a space theme. By space theme, I mean the whirring sound of rockets heading out to another dimension in time, the abstract experimental sounds of electronics emulating the sounds of space and everything in between.

Since this was originally supposed to be one two hour podcast, the introduction on the first part will be kind of confusing. I had to work through technical issues with Audacity which caused the podcast to be broken up into three parts, so not every part has an introduction or ending. I hope that this does not take away from your enjoyment of the podcast.

I have refrained from talking in between songs to keep the natural flow of the mix intact. There were almost sixty songs discarded from the final mix which were great in their own right. In fact, I cringed when I had to remove tracks towards the end, because there were lots of great songs that deserved to be on here that didn't make the cut. Honestly, I could have easily extended this podcast into five parts, but I thought that would be overkill.

There were many different sources of inspiration for this podcast that I would like to list here:

The Growing Bin - for giving me the idea of creating a space-themed mix, even though it morphed into something completely different than my original plan

The University of Iowa Space Audio website- for various space sounds that I featured at several intervals of the podcast

UFO Mystic website- for many rare space-themed gems such as Scotty MacGregor's Rollicking Man From Mars and Sam Space and the Cadette's- Take Me to Your Leader Cha Cha Cha

Space music Wikipedia page

The Deuce Project: Science Fiction Radio- for endless playlists filled with space themed-songs that fueled my desire to add more and more songs to my playlist.

Space Pop a Go-Go - for an extensive list of space-age bachelor pad, exotica and electronic albums that fit the space theme perfectly, along with insightful descriptions of the music contained on the records.

Space Age Music and the Moog article by Susi O'Neill (found on the Hypnotique website)- for an in-depth history of space-themed music containing the sounds of futuristic instruments like the theremin and the moog.

Destination Out- (Wire magazine article from July of 2003) inspired me to search out the fantastic recording of Howard Menger entitled From Outer Space To You as well as other aural delights such as Frank Comstock's Project Comstock, Russ Garcia's Fantastica and the Ames Brothers Destination Moon.

Compiling this podcast was truly a labor of love that I enjoyed immensely despite the technical difficulties I experienced throughout the past couple weeks. This is the first part in a series of three parts that I will unveil one week at a time over the next three weeks. I invite you to share your thoughts about this podcast in the comments.

I Hear a New World Podcast #8- Excursions In Space Part 1

1) Introduction w/ Harry Breuer & Jean-Jacques Perrey- Re-Entry to the Moon
2) Howard Menger- Narration from Authentic Music From Another Planet
3) Walter Schumann and Paul Frees- Preparation and Blastoff
4) Ken Nordine-Sound In Space
5) Excerpt from The Day the Earth Stood Still- Departure
6) Excerpt from Plan Nine From Outer Space- Recordings
7) Silver Apples- Oscillations
8) Billy Mure- Guitars from Space
9) Scotty MacGregor- Rollicking Man from Mars
10) Flying Saucers Are Real
11) Buchanan Brothers- When You See Those Flying Saucers
12) Jimmie Haskell- Hydrazine
13) Man Or Astroman- Space Alphabet
14) Interlude- One Giant Leap w/ Earth Proton Whistlers
15) Dr. Octagon- Aliens
16) Heliocentrics- The American Empire
17) Pink Floyd- A Saucerful of Secrets (Excerpt)
18) Interlude- The Five Tones
19) Frank Comstock- On the Dark Side of the Moon
20) Nervous Norvus- The Fang
21) Interlude- Did You See That Thing
22) Leonard Nimoy- Alien
23) Broadcast- Distorsion
24) Plasma Waves Associated With Bow Shock of Jupiter
25) Russ Garcia- Monsters of Jupiter
26) Proyecto-A Jupiter
27) Henry Jacobs Vortex-Logos
28) Interlude-Celestial Ship
29) Walter Schumann and Paul Frees- The Heavens