Saturday, December 10, 2016

10 YEARS: December 4th, 2006 - December 4th, 2016 FAQ/INTERVIEW PART 1 

A self-composed and conducted:

Question and Answer or aka Frequently Asked Questions:

So I've been working on this entry for awhile, and naturally its taken me more time than I probably intended and so I've decided to make into multiple parts.

This is Part 1.

I've never done something like this, at least to this detail and specifically. I don't give much in the "About" and Info section of this blog, per I kind of just want to actual content to speak for me.

But, its been 10 years, and so I figure why not?

And 10 years, jeez, it both flew by, but also things have changed a fair amount since late in 2006. Social Media and blogging alone. And myself, my relationship status, my living status, and my taste even to a point.

And even how I blog to an extent.

I was 30 years old then, and I'm 40 now. A lot of things happen in your 30's, as this blog is evidence of. This FAQ interview does illustrate that.



When did this blog start?
December 4th, 2006 by the original only-owner. The link above is a reference to how it started.

Were you the one who created/started it?
No I was not, but the owner I think like other blogs, wanted to start something that was active and thought it could help to have more than one writer.

Why did you write in the blog?
It really was a timing thing as I have written my own commentary on forums, message boards and email lists for years. And I kept a more personal livejournal for many years as well, I recall starting in 2001 or 2002. [add more]

What was your background in writing prior to starting this blog? aka "I don't often get people." That was a livejournal which acted more as a venting spot for me. It was not intended to give news or even post albums of the year really. As many know, around the turn of the century, a lot of the social activities were different online.

Email Lists, Message Boards/Forums, Chatrooms and Instant Messaging were all the rage. And online journals, as opposed to on-paper or on hard-drive journals/diaries, etc.

Some of my friends through forums and whatnot used livejournal, deadjournal, diaryland and others. Livejournal or "LJ" seemed to be the most popular, and it has/had little groups and lists, much like on email lists.

But my livejournal served as a great place to escape and empty my thoughts. A lot of it reads as whiny, sure, a lot of relationship/dating highlights and frustrations, etc. Job stuff, apartment living, and even just passive aggressive stuff socially.

Did I write about music? certainly, but it wasn't so much about announcements of new albums or news, as just non-chalantly name-dropping.

I dunno, I both find it weird reading it now, yet the nostalgia has its appeal at times. I worry if LJ ever got taken down, it would all vanish (the same can be said about blogger of course), which makes me want to archive it somewhere offline at some point. It may not actually require that much time.

Prior to using LJ, I never wrote a ton other than in school. Keeping a journal in Junior High and a brief time writing in my school newspaper.

I guess 1 thing which is pretty obvious is, I write like I talk/speak. Which English and Journalism people kind of look down upon. But frankly, it's

a) the best and really the only way I know how to write

b) think their process is actually worse in a lot of ways. Communication is my focus, even if it requires a lot of words or is wordy.

I suppose the last part to add is, I do have a creative side, and have/had an idea for a novel based on some Scifi stuff and the Soundscape album "Discovery," and I wrote some parts of it around the turn of the Century. But after seeing a short film in the Scifi Channel show "Exposure" around 2000 or 2001 that more or less used a lot of my ideas, I kind of gave up on it.

That being said, I would like to write creative fiction some day again, but I have often felt my best chance of doing that is being inspired, rather than just sitting down and trying to come up with something.

Why the David Hasselhoff Avatar?

Well, I of course did not choose it. The original blog creator did. I figured it was his choice, why change it? I find it kind of funny and somewhat uncommon, so I think it allows me and this blog to be non-cliched.

Why haven't I ever changed it? again, kind of because it was unusual, and I find it funny. Am I a Hoff fan? sure. I grew up with Knight Rider and actually Bay(babe) watch. The Hoff might be sort of a guilty pleasure in a lot of ways.

I dunno, maybe I'll change it when I reach another milestone.

Why has the name remained the same?

Again, for distinction. Plus there was at 1 point a website titled at 1 point, although I think it went down, not too long after this 1 was setup. Pure coincidence I think.

It also is/was a general title, that would find a lot of hits as I came to learn.

Plus, maybe most importantly, it was intended to cover not just music but "All" forms of "Media" or arts/entertainment I suppose. Mostly Movie and Television I guess. Sports, Graphic Novels, maybe even food.

But after 4 or 5 years doing a lot of music and less movies and television, I decided to just to focus 100% on music. And of course I then created which I have only sparingly had the time to post in. I would like to more, but it was also around that time, I started a relationship, so my free time was reduced, per why.

I do include stuff not related to music on twitter and facebook sometimes though. But ultimately, I would like to focus more on stuff like movies and tv. Even just on the YouTube channel.

Time should tell if that happens.

Why did this blog change to all-music?
See previous question

What is your background in music? Favorite Bands, Albums?
It's documented well and repeated many times. And the KFAI Wave Project covered most of it. But simply put, I grew up in the 80's listening to mostly pop music from that time, other than The Beatles. I did listen to the oldies sometimes though, which was 50's and some 60's back then.

Then I was introduced to Led Zeppelin and Classic Rock in High School which opened a lot of doors.

Then Rush, Pink Floyd

Then Dream Theater, along with Marillion, King's X and Fates Warning.\

Then a lot of the classic progressive rock, Genesis, Yes. Jethro Tull.

Then jazz-rock/fusion.

Then Kevin Gilbert and Jellyfish

Then the stuff I call College Prog, led by the likes of The Mars Volta, dredg and Ours. 

The Dear Hunter and along with many others, extreme Metal.

Post Rock, Power-Pop, etc. 

The last 10 years have more or less had a ton of that.

Favorite band: Marillion
Favorite Album: Brave
Favorite Concert: Pain of Salvation at ProgPower USA 2001
Favorite Artist/Songwriter: Kevin Gilbert 

What is your background with Movies? Favorite Movies/Cinema?
Like music, I've been fascinated and captivated by the Cinema. I grew up in the 80's, so naturally stuff like Star Wars and 80's Comedies were among my favorites movies. Fletch, Caddyshack, Trading Places, and even cult favorite of mine called Moving Violations.

And Horror movies. The Slasher series: Halloween, Friday the 13th, A Nightmare on Elm Street, etc. And VAMPIRES. I'll confess to having a fascination for them. Largely motivated by the women in them, etc. The HAMMER SERIES with Christopher Lee and Peter Cushing namely, became some of my favorites, even if they at times were a little cheesy. Almost feeling like guilty pleasures.

I guess it was around the same time my music taste or just knowledge/experience expanded, in the mid-late 90's especially, I also started to gravitate towards other kinds of movies. The Independent type largely. I had an appreciation and somewhat of an addiction to renting them or watching the Independent Film Channel.

I guess having even 1 of the lower Cable packages, I'd get enough different movie channels incl IFC, but Sundance, and some others. Namely the Encore channels which were like 6 or 7 different channels. And I would often find stuff on those, especially late at night. I would stumble upon a really moving film. Often Independent/low budget.

That whole habit along with then getting free movie passes, often advanced screenings at the Landmark Theaters in Minneapolis, that had me discover a lot of favorites. Some names: Funny Haha, The Jacket, The Science of Sleep, Wrong Side Up, Waydowntown, Buffalo'66, Palookaville, The Sound of Noise, Untitled, The Machinist, Synechdoche, NY

And then Ghost World of course. along with The Wizard of Oz, is my favorite movie of all-time. Funny as hell, and I see myself in much of it. My perception of pop-culture, etc. I've seen it probably 50 times, and could probably watch it another 500 times and I would enjoy it.

What is your background with Television? Favorite shows?
Like movies, I also was a huge television addict as a kid. Watching sports especially, but also a ton of the 80's tv. Cheers was more or less my favorite show, caught in reruns on the local NBC affiliate everynight at 10:35. I lived on Cheers. And it holds up still today. 11 Seasons, and it really never tailed off dramatically, despite cast changes and character developments.

I put along with, Beavis and Butthead and Star Trek Deep Space 9 and my other all-time favorites.
DS9 was therapy tv for me, a wonderful story, that was a perfect escape like Marillion's Brave, when I was dealing with a lot of social and psych challenges.

Babylon 5 also along with the Scifi I was getting into in the late 90's and 2000's.

In the 2000's tho Gilmore Girls and then Psych kind of became my favorites. Clever writing with tons of funny pop-cultures references made them addictive shows among other things.

The Big Bang Theory, How I Met Your Mother, Lost, Battlestar Galactica..the Bryan Fuller shows, Veronica Mars,. Freaks and Geeks, Party Down.

Breaking Bad and now Better Call Saul

And maybe The Goldbergs now are among my favorites.

Did you ever want to pursue this blog or a career writing in it? Why or Why Not?
As much as I have an imagination, I am a realist. I shadowed a Sports writer 1 day when I was in High School and the impression that journalism is often grunt work and work that isn't always enjoyable.

And like most fields, you have to start out at the bottom and work your way to the top, if you manage to stick with it. Or by some chance have a connection.

My cousin's written 30 or 40 books about Sports, and he told me how it's not about what you know, or where you are, but WHO you know. And you have to really have a friend or something.

That being said, I only went to College for 2 years, 1 year I took English, and actually did pretty well in it. But I dropped out at that point just to start working full-time.

At that point I realized in order to pay my bills, writing, especially about entertainment, wasn't all that good a field to pursue. Even with radio as well which I pursued briefly too.

So unlike some other folks in this day and age, I just concluded, my best bet was to use my spare time telling people about all the bands I discover, and also get a full-time job where I can listen to music all day. So while I wasn't paid to listen to music, I got to get paid while I listened to music I liked and then tried to promote later, even on a small but respectable level.

Please name some favorite entries:

God Damnit Nevada!
Porcupine Tree on Hiatus
Music Stores in Minnesota
Live Music Venues in Minnesota 

(Mostly for traffic levels, lol)
Opeth - Watershed
The Mars Volta - TBA (2012)

Please include advantages and disadvantages of this blog, and blogging. 

The advantages being it's an outlet to post news and opinions on music. This blog covers music that it seems barely or if any other blogs do. It covers a lot of obscure and underground music. Progressive rock namely. Without it, many artists would not receive much if any content about them.

And ever since the age of Twitter the social media game has directed it to be a source for new release info, trailers, etc. 

It won't always happen, but a decent chance if something is relatively popular among progressive rock circles, this is a very good source for info on it. Links, album titles and track lists, etc.

I mean sure there are popular bands in the progressive rock fan bases that are not talked about (Haken, Riverside, Leprous, Devin Townsend, Beardfish, Big Big Train, Ayreon, Neal Morse etc) but that is mostly due to very little interest I have in them. 

If you had your druthers, what would you change with this blog and your experience using it and Media?

I would try and expand on it vastly, with a more extensive YouTube Channel and/or a Radio Show. Make appearances, be promoted in magazines. And in fact print an actual periodical magazine. Or maybe a Book.

I would have a lot more interviews (which may happen).

Do guest columns on other websites and blogs, along with in newspapers and national magazines.

Name a few of the biggest frustrations about blogging and this blog.
The way "Social Media" and the game it is about being 1st to the punch and getting hits, likes, shares, etc, it kind of differs from more time-consuming with media and news.

It seemed like a year or 2 after Twitter was launched, blogs sort of became part of "Social Media" and SM became a term and thing.

I didn't start writing in this blog to break news and try to be the 1st, but I'll fully admit that I fell into that trap just out of habit.

I guess one frustrating thing is the fact this blog has been around for as long as it has, and yet it's rarely if ever referenced. Whereas some people will start a twitter account or blog and within months have more traffic, etc. Although I suspect they had to go out of their way to force-feed it to people.

I find it frustrating when certain media sources promote things and may or may not have received their info from another site or blog like my own. I believe it has happened on many occasions, but I don't have much direct evidence.

And related to that, just promoting a new artist. The examples I've given countless times are Warpaint and Local Natives. Kimbra to a point as well. There are a few others like Bend Sinister on a smaller level. I guess I almost have come to anticipate it, and when it may not happen, I'm almost more frustrated.

Having to Self-promote, shamelessly plug.

Time of course a huge one, for any blogger who doesn't try and make a living. This shit takes time to do. Why I came to using the "Edit" posts and bumping entries with updates.

What is the future of this blog?
Of course this is something I ponder probably way too frequently. The immediate future is to continue on into 2017 much like I have in recent years. This 10-year anniversary milestone is 1 of 2 milestones I wanted to reach. 

The other is a hit count (okay, I'll mention it), which based on my projection may not be reached until 2018 or possibly even 2019. But at the point that does come, I guess that hit count number probably won't mean a lot anymore to me.

At that point I may try and re-assess my activity in here. Maybe devote more time to YouTube, or maybe try a podcast again. Or maybe try and get back to blogging about movies and television.

Or maybe focus on the projects that I have yet to finish. I'm not sure.

I imagine there will come a time where I just say fuck it and stop, or change to another url or site like tumblr.

Or just take a break, possibly even for a year.

Why “Reviews” and do you like writing them? Why don’t you write more?

There's 2 parts to this (at least). One is about actual "Reviews." I honestly HATE writing them. Trying to come up with details about songs and albums. Clever adjectives and more specific things about the music. Talking or writing about music or an album shouldn't be something you have to rack your brain to sound like you are cultured or highly educated. It should just be saying what you like and maybe why you like it.

Now time is a big factor writing blurbs or even long winded details even of favorite albums.

But the "Reviews" part sort became limited once the approach to gaining traffic for "what have you done for me lately." This blog became more about passing news or videos, embeds along, rather than writing more original content I guess, which is kind of sad, but from a time standpoint and what crosses my mind, it seemed at the time and still is what I guess I want to document.

I'd like to write more reviews, but I don't know if that will happen without more time. Concert reviews as well. I suppose the name of the blog is a bit of false advertising, but I just never found I cared so much to change it to reflect the majority of the content now. Maybe at some point I will.

end of Part 1....