Episode 52: Intrusions/Poems

Jameson Bayles has lived in Pittsburgh for less than 24 hours, and I thank him for taking time to join us on the podcast during his first Pittsburgh day.  During our talk, he reads some of his poems, we talk about the connection between poetry and place in these troubled times, intimacy in the age of tinder, and I play the roll of freshman orientation leader.

Those who want to hear more, can find Jameson reading at the Hemingway’s Summer Poetry Series Finale on Tuesday, July 25, 2017, and at the White Whale Bookstore on August 4, 2017.  His book Legends of Doe Hoe came out in early 2017 on the Spartan Press.

I can’t not swear.

Episode 51: Pigment on a Surface

Gene Marsh is an artist, educator, and all around nice guy. Unfortunately, Gene had a slight set back with his creative endeavors due to a fire at his studio.  In this podcast we discuss the importance of art and the creative process through looking at his own work.  Along the way we discuss “the hell stage” of creativity, why it takes 20 years to get good sometimes, and Red.

Check out Gene’s Facebook Page for updates on his work and efforts to rebuild his studio space.  Anyone wishing to contribute can go to the Panza Gallery at 6 PM on July 22, 2017 for the Art and Afterparty Fundraiser, or if you are not feeling social, feel free to mail a check to the Millvale Community Development Corporation with “Millvale Studios” in the memo section to MCDC 501 Lincoln Ave. Millvale, PA 15201.

I say the S-word once.

Episode 50: Fumbles Revelations

Four time guest Jason Baldinger is here to promote his new book Fumbles Revelations on Grackle and Crow Press which is affiliated with the Lilliput Review.  Jason is also the co-coordinator of The Bridge Series, a monthly reading series at The Brillobox at 4104 Penn Ave. in Pittsburgh that brings together people from the literary and activist communities on the last Wednesday of every month.  Jason is also author of the excellent books The Lady Pittsburgh, The Studs Terkel Blues, The Whisky Rebellion (with Jerome Crooks), and The Lower Forty-Eight.  Some of these books can be found around Pittsburgh’s fine book shops, but can also be purchased if you email Jason at underwaterculprit@hotmail.com.

The Fumbles Revelations book launch party is Friday, June 30, 2017 at Nine Stories Pittsburgh at 5400 Butler St.

Of course we talk about many other things, and I cannot help but swear.

Episode 49: Muskrat Friday Dinner

Scott Silsbe stops by to talk about his fantastic new collection of poems entitled Muskrat Friday Dinner, and yes, the title really does refer to the act of eating muskrats on Friday for dinner.

Now that’s out of the way, I am also happy to say that we also have a very in depth conversation about the writing and publishing process and Scott proves that he is a great reader of his own poems several times over.

Muskrat Friday Dinner will be available on Amazon.com (I’ll edit in the link when it’s a go), or you could get it from his publisher White Gorilla Press, or better yet, you should buy it at the official book launch party at the Brillobox at 4104 Penn Ave. on Saturday May 27th at 8 PM.  Accompanying Scott’s reading will be his band Pond Hockey, a mummy surf rock outfit called Mummula, and writers Lori Jakiela and Dave Newman will be reading too!

I swear, because of course I do.

Episode 48: It’s Been Recorded

John Charney is an accomplished guitarist and music director.  We are both passionate about our music fandom, but the venn diagram of our musical tastes has very little overlap.  In this podcast (recorded on location in St. Michael’s Cemetery in Loretto, Pennsylvania on a perfect spring afternoon) we have a very civil dialog about what we love about music, what we listen for in music, and what a difference a few years difference in birth year makes.   I also tell the origin story of our friendship, which involves an A-ha song that is not “Take on Me”, and we bond over a mutual disdain of Bruce Springsteen.

I swear, because of course I do.

Episode 47: Let’s Get Physical (Media)

For this episode The One and Only Matt Miller stops by to talk about his forthcoming cassette release for his band Small Pollen entitled El Cortisone La Corazon.  For this cassette, he’s going to insert dried, pressed flowers into all 150 cassettes (for real).  Also, joining us is Derek Zanetti of (and also who is) The Homeless Gospel Choir.

During our conversation we talk about unique recording methods, the value of physical media, intimacy in music, and we do The Bottom 5 Family Feud style.

You an find Matt’s stuff on the Small Pollen Bandcamp page, and Derek’s stuff can be found at The Homeless Gospel Choir’s page with the Big Cartel.

There is swearing as usual.

Episode 46: Salmon with Earworms

For this episode, I got to sit down with the excellent folk rock group Pairdown in their practice space.  Pairdown performs exquisite songs full of hooks, immaculate playing, and harmony.  Their new album Reach to Ring is out on April 14, 2017, and the Pairdown Reach to Ring LP release show is April 18, 2017 at Club Cafe in Pittsburgh.  During our conversation I get to indulge my geek love for the band, we discuss why folk rock is or isn’t really what they do, and a surprisingly frisky debate breaks out over which one is worse, hydro-fracking or mp3s.

I don’t remember swearing, but you know how it is.

Episode 45: The Human Canvas

Lori Howsare performs under the moniker The Mad Muse, and part of her madness is to explore the fringes of what is acceptable, which in these times means such crazy ideas as unconditional love.  This exploration includes spoken word, grand guignol theatre, and writing things on naked people.

We talk about all of these things, plus the value of risk and empathy in art.  We also become grumpy old people before your ears.

To keep up with The Mad Muse, check out The Mad Muse Official Facebook Page, The Made Muse website, and become her Patreon.

As always, we swear.

Episode 44: Bridges of Poetry

The extremely talented Jason Baldinger and Kristofer Collins stop by to discuss The Bridge Series, a series of poetry readings and public gatherings to raise money for, and spread the word about, organizations that are helping people in the Trump era.

The first of the series is occurring Wednesday, February 22nd 2017 at 8 PM at the Brillobox at 4104 Penn Ave. in Pittsburgh, and it will benefit Be Well Pittsburgh, an organization dedicated to helping folks without healthcare get access to healthcare.

You can find more out about this particular reading (featuring Tony Norman, Jan Beatty, and Adriana Ramirez) from The Bridge Series event on Facebook.  Further readings (until at least November 2017) will occur at the Brillobox on the last Wednesday of the month.  You can stay up to date by following The Bridge Series on Facebook.

Also, Jason and Kristofer read us some of their fantastic poetry. Jason gets unapologetically radical, and we discuss the meaning of poetry in the age of Trump.

Jason Baldinger is the author of several books, and you can hear him read more at Jason’s Bandcamp page.  Kristofer Collins is the editor of Low Ghost Press when he is not writing his own fantastic books of poems.

As always we swear.  Jason swears a lot and says many other things not for the faint of heart.


Episode 43: Breakup Songs, With Horns

Breakup Songs, With Horns is the new EP from Brooklyn-based via Detroit musical wunderkind Brook Pridemore. In this episode, we discuss the ephemeral nature of pop music, why it’s okay to like Insane Clown Posse, Brook’s roadie Justin loses his coffee in my office, and Brook confesses that there are no actual horns on the album.  We also get to hear his song “For the Worst of it.”

You can buy this new EP and other music at Brook Pridemore’s Bandcamp Page.  You should follow Brook Pridemore on Twitter, and he writes regularly for The Sympathizer.

I believe Brook was on his best behavior, but as usual I swear.