Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Radio Free Hipster Ep. 18: Listen & Learn

Generally speaking, the target audience for a given episode of Radio Free Hipster is people who are my age and are me. Whenever I play something and people actually like it I am pleasantly surprised. So I imagine that this edition in particular may seem a slap in the face to those of you who listen regularly in spite of my fickle nature.

I'm not trying to be difficult, really I'm not, but I got an idea to theme this episode around the concept of educational songs, and I simply couldn't not do it.

I blame the OCD.

A chunk of the tracks I included this time around are resplendent with nostalgia; you could go so far as to say it even has a 1970's public television vibe in places. This just sort of happened. I was, in a very literal sense, raised by television, and sometimes a man misses his mother.

Still, I hope the content of this ep. doesn't frighten away those of you under 25… or those of you who'd prefer not to hear songs about books. Mostly, I hope at least a couple of y'all can get down with this decidedly educational selection of songs.

Download Radio Free Hipster 18: Listen & Learn [mirror provided by Antisocial] Size: 43.5 MB Running Time: 47:36
Show Notes
Intro: Baddd Spellah (feat. Beefy) – “Radio Free Hipster Theme”
Every time I hear this song, I learn a lesson in awesome!
Track 1: MC Paul Barman and The Science Gang – “Learning 101”
Paul is sort of the Iggy Pop of nerdcore hip hop; he is both a creature apart and an early ancestor.
Z's 1 st interlude: “We spend a lot of time watching these vaguely educational shows.”
Okay, so maybe it's not a lot of time, but it sure as hell feels like it.

Track 2: Shel Silverstein – “Homework Machine”
Uncle Shel wrote both children's classic “A Light in the Attic” and the raunchy “Freakin' at the Freakers' Ball.” I dream of one day having that much range!

Track 3: Tom Lehrer – “New Math”
Church suggested I include Tom Lehrer. He actually helps out a lot like that, hipping me to new events and helping me plan things out. One day that fellow is gonna launch his own blog/podcast and blow me out of the water!
Track 4: Sesame Street – “Ladybug's Picnic”
My mom (the real one, not television) and I used to sing this song when I was a kid. Wikipedia tells me this short was animated by Bud Luckey.
Track 5: Braces Tower – “Eleven Twelve
Braces Tower opened the last ep., and triumphantly returns with this track.

Track 6: Shael Riley - “A Song About Measurement
Whenever I hear this song I imagine Shael's dad as some sort of strange suburban version of Apache Chief who can change his height at will. I'm just sayin'.

Track 7: Prof. Walter Smith & Marian McKenzie – “The Love Song of the Electric Field
Sung to the tune of "Loch Lomond.”

Track 8: MC Hawking – “Entropy”
You have no idea how long I've been waiting to play this song!

Track 9: Tom Glazer & Dottie Evans - “Why Does the Sun Shine
I played this track to set up the next track.

Track 10: They Might Be Giants – “Mammal”
And I played this track for Denika over at Vagrant Aesthetic . I hope she finds it to her liking! :)

Track 11: Former Fat Boys – “Roundworms (Nemertea)
Created to help a fan study for a bio midterm. I shit you not.

Z's 2 nd interlude: “Subjects near and dear to my heart.”
I have a staggering array of literarily-themed songs in my collection. The latter part of this set contains just a few of my favorites.

Track 12: Ray Charles – “ABCs”
You can find tons of Sesame Street clips here .

Track 13: Lynn Ahrens - “A Noun is a Person, Place, or Thing”
Lynn also wrote and performed my favorite Schoolhouse Rock song ever (and, embarrassingly, one of my favorite songs period) “Interplant Janet.”

Track 14: MC Lars – “Ahab”
My preferred MC Lars tracks always have some element of educational value. “Hurricane Fresh,” for example, helps the listener distinguish between what is and is not fresh .

Track 15: The Darkest of the Hillside Thickets – “Yig Snake Daddy”
My adoration of The Thickets (and H.P. Lovecraft ) should already be known to most listeners.

Track 16: Bloodhag – “Iain M. Banks
I agree with the sentiment that there's simply not enough punk and metal that promotes literacy.

Track 17: Harry & The Potters – “The Godfather: Part 2”
I believe that this was the first Wizard Rock track to make it into my collection way back when. I still enjoy it.

Track 18: Draco & The Malfoys – “99 Death Eaters (live)”
Church found this exemplary live set by DatM over at archive.org. The entire show is excellent and of surprisingly good quality. Take a listen.

Z's final interlude: “Radio Free Hipster Ep. 19 will be my all-rock extravaganza (though I use the term loosely.)”
That's right, folk, next time I bite the hand that feeds me and exclude nerdcore for an entire episode! Can I do it? Probably not.
Track 19: MC Frontalot – “Untitled track from Elmo's Potty Time
This is actually a lot more fun with the accompanying video, but this ain't no vidcast.
Special Dedication: To the memory of the late Fred Rogers.
I started putting this podcast together on the fourth anniversary of the death of Mr. Rogers. Coincidence? Sure, but poignant nonetheless.

Dedicating a podcast to Mr. Rogers may not've been the most suave and savvy way to go, but, considering the simple fact that I both blog and podcast about nerdy music, I figured I had nothing to lose. Say what you want about his creepy inflection and surreal demeanor, Fred dedicated his life to doing what he loved, and I think we can all learn a little something from that.

Again, I hope this podcast doesn't alienate anyone. I just felt lead to go in a bit of a different direction. Whether you dig it or hate it, let me know, and don't hesitate to hit me up with song and theme suggestions. As previously evidenced, I'm pretty flexible. ;)


Denika said...

Sweet fancy Moses! Thank you for your life saving stuff. I really needed that cast just about now.

N E ways, great picks as usual. Speaking of TMBG; have you picked up any of their kids stuff for little X? I bought my baby cousin Bed, Bed, Bed when she was about 2 and it was a blast introducing her to them.

ChurchHatesTucker said...

I got a shoutout in the 'cast. w00t!

Nice set. I'm floored to find out that "Why does the sun shine" was a cover.

Z. said...

Glad the podcast came at the right time for you, Denika! No, I haven’t gotten X. any TMBG yet, but that’s a damn fine idea.

Just givin’ credit where it’s due, Church. :)

matt s said...

I'm having a wonderful time, but I'd rather be whistling in the dark.

I'd apologies, but its all Z's fault anyways.

Everything is Z's fault.

Except the beautiful day outside, that's my fault.

Steve said...

hahahaa!!! Still, I hope the content of this ep. doesn't frighten away those of you under 25…

Anonymous said...

I used to sing ladybug picnic too :)


Z. said...

You’re right, Matt; everything’s on me save the weather! ;)

Don’t laugh, funk, I’m sure I’ve got, like, one listener who isn’t an old fart like you and me. :D

Ah, the simple joys of childhood. Always good to hear from you, Paige! I hope you dug the show.

Nikki said...

holy crap on a cracker....you have your own theme song!!!! That's got to be the shiznit for realsies!
It was great to see you and yours, we need to do that more often punkinpants!

Z. said...

Yeah, Nik, Baddd Spellah and Beefy were nice enough to make a theme for RFH! Ain’t it grand?

And me and Em and the little man’ll have to try to make it up your way again soon. It was great seeing y’all!