Friday, May 28, 2010

The Revelation

Well... it has become apparent to me that the popularity of this site has been decreasing considerably over the last several months. My hits have been dwindling since February, and they keep going down at about the rate of 1000 hits a month.

I figure that there are many reasons for this shift in popularity:

1) Sporadic posting (Once or twice a month isn't cutting it)
2) Fewer full-album posts
3) Many of the blogs who once linked to me are either gone or have removed my blog from their links, which tells me that they have decided that my blog isn't worthy of space on their site
4) The design of my blog is archaic compared to the Flash and You-tube filled sites that are flooding the internet, which is evident by the amount of visitors who spend two seconds on the site and then move on
5) The blog is cluttered with too many gadgets, players and links to other sites.
6) I haven't featured very much experimental or free jazz music on the site lately, which is the style of music that seemes to garner the most praise from the readers
7) Oh, I suppose I could go on and on, but you get the point

What I plan on doing in the next several weeks is to work on the design and the organization of the blog so that it catches the eye of the readers. I have kept the current design for over three years now, and I think it's time to work on making the design of Eclectic Grooves more visually appealing. Unfortunately, my knowledge about HTML is fairly limited, and I doubt that I'm going to become an expert overnight. So, I welcome suggestions from everyone, especially those of you who know a little bit about HTML, or who have graphic design experience.

With the current state of blogging, it's next to impossible to keep people interested by featuring only podcasts and single mp3's. Therefore, I plan on featuring out-of-print albums on here more regularly. I feel that this will bring some attention from the types of people who don't get enough from a single song or mix of songs from different albums.

Last, I would like to hear thoughts, suggestions and constructive criticism from the readers. Tell me what you like about the site? What works for you and what doesn't? What artists and genres would you like to see me post about more often? As I said before, your comments, requests, and suggestions are always appreciated, so please don't hesitate to speak your mind.

With that being said, I would like to reveal the answer to last week's Plain Brown Wrappers. While there were two of the usual suspects in the comments section, I have to say that this edition was the least popular of any of the Plain Brown Wrappers. I guess I should feel glad that I turned a couple people on to some new music, but I can't help but feel underwhelmed by the overall response to this one.

Anyway, the answer to last week's mystery disc is Toto Blanke Electric Circus. Those of you who are familiar with the the German-Dutch avant-jazz fusion band Association PC will most likely be familiar with the recordings of Toto Blanke. His mastery of the guitar is evident on this record, as complex guitar lines are interweaved with ambient electronics and metronomic grooves. There is a little something for everyone on this record, so don't hesitate to download this stellar recording.

Until next time...

Monday, May 17, 2010

Plain Brown Wrappers #8- Electric Sunbursts of Sound

Even though I tweaked my back out while exercising this morning, I decided that I didn't want to postpone the listening party any longer. Since I am icing my back as we speak, I plan on keeping this short today.

This episode of Plain Brown Wrappers is brought to you from that corner of my brain that revels in bringing you the most twisted, innovative and head-spinning music that I can possibly muster. It is being transmitted from the overactive brainwaves of a creative genius who just might have you humming these tunes while you sip your morning latte in the back of a crowded Starbucks. Of course you will have to be locked away in your own soundworld, with a pair of headphones that allow you to explore the full spectrum of sound that this album demands. You can't put it on while you carry out the mundane activities of the day such as washing the car or cleaning the house.

Give this one some time to sink in as each song slowly unfolds into an intricate web of styles that combines all of the best elements of jazz, prog, funk and electronic.

With that, I present to you the 8th installment of the Plain Brown Wrappers series.

Make sure that you listen with care, and don't say that I didn't warn you!

I would love it if you take the time to venture a guess, and tune in next week for the answer.

Plain Brown Wrappers #8

Monday, May 03, 2010

I Hear a New World- Podcast #19- Stacks of Wax Vol.5

The 19th episode of I Hear a New World is available for download at

This week's episode of I Hear a New World featured a couple songs on media other than vinyl, as I wanted to take a little break from the norm. Artists featured on this week's episode include Volcano the Bear, Grass Widow, Sharon Jones and the Dap Kings and John Fahey.

At just under an hour, it is the perfect mix to upload to your I-pod for the morning commute to work.

I would love to hear what you all think of this week's episode, so please drop me a line. As always, please let me know if any of you want a trackslist for this week's show.

I apologize for not posting very much lately, but I hope to post a new Plain Brown Wrappers soon as well as a few full album posts.

Keep your ear tuned to Eclectic Grooves for the latest and greatest sounds coming out of my stereo.