March 30th, 2012
This is a short clip of our booth models rapping at the Mid America Truck Show 2012. They got paid to do this.
We had an absolute blast in Louisville, KY. It is a really active city with plenty of night life to keep us busy. Unfortunately, we didn’t get to see the Louisville Slugger Bat Factory. I’d heard from more than one person it was absolutely worth the $5. We were also minutes away from Churchill Downs but couldn’t find the time to swing by and lose our shirts on a longshot.
This was our first year exhibiting at the show and I’m pretty confident we knocked it out of the park (I’m sticking with baseball references for this article.) We were at capacity from open to close and were able to distribute almost all of our promotional hats, calenders and catalogs. There wasn’t a soul in that convention center that didn’t know who we were by Saturday afternoon. Our success was bittersweet though because it resulted in an expense sheet so long that would give Santa’s naughty or nice list a run for its money.
I’m sure there will be plenty more footage to be shared as the months pass. We’ve obtained a large amount of recording equipment, cameras, mics, editing software and audio mixers and are just about ready to go into the production business. We will be working completely in house, at least initially, until we can find anyone foolish enough to let us do their advertising for them. Hopefully we don’t strike out.
February 7th, 2012
This is the best comedy event you don’t know about. 1982 Bar on University ave in Gainesville has been hosting weekly comedy shows for the past two years and they almost always deliver. Some of the comics are traveling professionals stopping in to refine new material. Others are newbies trying to get their chops up. It has been a springboard for a large group of creative people in this city and I don’t see it stopping anytime soon. There will be a show tonight, the seventh, and another show in a few weeks. Make sure to come out and support local comedy!
The 1982 show is the best way to get started in comedy if you’ve ever been interested. The crowd is receptive to new material, all of the comics will help out, and if you bomb the stage is really close to the door. If you are a student, you can join the UF group USUCC, and even if you aren’t, you can show up to get feedback. They will tell you if you are ready for the stage or need to write some more material first.
I should have a working calender up on the site soon that will let you check in on show times and who is performing. If you’d like to leave a suggestion of a good way to do this it would be much appreciated. I can work most HTML and PHP plugins for WordPress, but I’m open to creative third party solutions. The goal is to have a clickable and comment enabled calender unique to each person with a specific set of dates that I can set from the back end. That way people can mark the events they would like to attend and receive email reminders. Also, we can have comics “check in” if they are performing.
January 31st, 2012
Where is the edge?
I heard Popular, Nada Surf’s first hit from their debut album in 1996, for the first time in high school and it immediately struck me with a teen anthem, woe is me, kind of vibe. Popular was scathing and cynical of teen culture with an addictive hook to boot. After that though, with exception to a single on the OC (don’t judge me), I haven’t heard much about the band. So I was excited when I saw that they had released a new album. Time to step into the musical time machine and rekindle some of that teen angst that Wheatus had left behind!
Nope. Just found some gentle surf rock.
Now I’m not going to say the album sucked. It was smooth and atmospheric, flowing gently from track to track. To put it in perspective, it was a Real Estate album with a faster tempo or a Surfer Blood album with less reverb and distortion. It started like the begging of a summertime road-trip to the beach. The gentle guitars are strumming as we put the surfboards on the roof and stuff some lawn chairs in the trunk. We then get ten minutes down the road and one of my asshole friends changes the song to a flavor of the month radio jam and everyone starts to dance, ironically. And we never get back to the album because it is just that forgettable. I had trouble writing this review even though I had listened to the album a couple of times just the day before. I found myself not paying attention to the lyrics for much of the album and didn’t connect to any of what they had to say. This could be a byproduct of the fact that most of the band’s members are over forty and might not really give a shit anymore or, heaven forbid, are happy now. There was definitely nothing Facebook status worthy. I’m pretty sure this is the music you hear playing in the background at a Pacsun or Hollister.
I was pleased to find out I wasn’t crazy for thinking I’d heard this all before. They have been sneaking tracks into How I Met Your Mother over the span of multiple seasons. Damn it Ted! Can you stop finding new ways to bore me while I wait for more Marshal or Barney episodes?
Summary: Sets the mood nicely but doesn’t deliver the goods at any point. I can see this making its way into a summertime playlist here or there, but the album was mostly forgettable.
January 29th, 2012
Get ready for another show this February 1st at the the Double Down Live. The show starts at 9:00 pm but feel free to show up and early and start drinking. Comedy is always more fun when you are inebriated, it makes it so we have to work at lot less hard. The show will be hosted by Andy Martone and feature a slew of other Gainesville comics. Trust me there is nothing better to do on a Wednesday for $3. If you are interested in getting into standup comedy, make sure to stay after the show and chat with the comics. They are always happy to give advice and can direct you to the next weekly comedy workshop. The best advice I can give to anyone getting started is to keep notes in your phone for any ideas you might come up with. I’m particularly absentminded so it is very important I right new ideas down right away.
One of the comedians, Pablo Moms, has recently had one of his videos featured on wimp, reddit and a few other major video sites. You can check it out below. Make sure to subscribe to both youtube.com/chakcomedy and youtube.com/magicalmysterygang. Content is constantly being published and it always is great to get feedback for the audience.
January 27th, 2012
I caught wind of this album while listening to 100.5 the Buzz, a local Gainesville rock station. The Buzz has a weekly program called The Independent where they play music from up and coming artists on labels such as Sub Pop and Carpark Records. It is only from 7-9pm on Sundays and boy do I savor those two hours because they lead me to bands like this. Cloud Nothings is a three man lo-fi band out of Cleveland, Ohio. The album in review is their third studio album. The single I heard was “Stay Useless” and it is definitely the most catchy and approachable song on the album. It is hook driven and has your typical shout-a-long chorus. Don’t be fooled though, the second track of the album, “Wasted Days” is a nine minute driving psychedelic punk experience. I’m not going to claim this is a heavily drug influenced album, but I’m pretty sure it is. I will give them the benefit of the doubt and assume that by “Wasted Days” they meant they couldn’t find anything product to do. The album cools off in intensity through the rest of the album but not in quality. It is just track after track of catchy anthems you can shout at your car dash.
As far as influences go, these guys are taking up right where Jay Reatard left off (I’m pretty sure this includes lifestyle choices to boot). It is noisy and rough but still manages to feel clean and catchy. How can one sentence be so contradictory? Have a listen and you’ll (hopefully) level with me. You can also hear plenty of the Strokes, Pavement, and Built to Spill as well as some younger bands like Japandroids and Cymbals Eat Guitars. They craft a unique sounds and what I enjoyed most about the album was how they will fearless jam, vocals be damned! There are essentially two instrumental songs on a punk album. That doesn’t happen everyday. They are labeled as lo-fi but I can’t shake the feeling they want to create a bit more of a refined image. Their previous albums have been significantly rougher (yeah I listened to their discography, for all you continuity Nazis out there) so it seems they are stepping in a direction that gives them a few more musical liberties.
Summary: Amazing album from a band with a very bright future. I suggest listening to their first album, “Turning On” just so you can see how far they’ve come in two years.
January 25th, 2012
In the world of the internet, content is king. People want something new every day, every minute delivered right to their smart phones. So I ask myself: What do I have to offer to the internet? What half-baked idea can I put out there that might garner some views and traffic. The first thing that pops into my mind is to share every video I’ve ever made where I tell jokes. This is a major mistake because most of these videos are bad, some of which are so bad I’d threaten my chances of ever getting booked.
My second thought is to explain how I’ve had success with eCommerce. The problem with that is I’d be showing all of my cards to prospective competitors. I hate those guys, and to be honest, I’m not even sure I’m doing it right. I have a “throw it against the wall and see what sticks” approach to business. It isn’t efficient but damnit, we sell a lot of truck parts.
So what now? I’ve taken steps to organize my life better. I’ve built this abominable site. Now I’m going to fill it with enough lame videos of myself and my friends that people won’t be able to leave without feeling better about their own accomplishments. I’m thinking of starting a new section called “Reasons I feel better today” and just putting pictures of people falling down stairs and babies hitting people in the nuts with wiffle bats. I’ve got ideas folks.
I leave you with a video. Make sure to subscribe to the Magical Myster Gang after you view it:
The Day I Met Dave