This post goes live on Popdose on my birthday, yay! So I decided to have some fun.
I wanted to take a break from the themed shows, so I
started to look at old cassettes in my collection, with the plan to digitize
them. I found a running mix that I made for my sister-in-law Betsi sometime in
2003 – I put Franka Potente from “Run Lola Run” on the cover and everything –
and thought, “That’s the one.”
Over two thirds of the songs here came out between 1998
and 2003, though the overall track listing ranges between 1990 and 2005. This
might be the ultimate Medsker mix, in that it’s slightly alternative (Chemical
Brothers, Underworld), a lot poppy (Simply Red, Madonna), and embarrassingly
trendy (Fatboy Slim, The Wiseguys). To quote “The Greatest Showman,” this is
And it’s true: I actually remixed the Madonna track, as
part of an ACID-sponsored contest. I sent it to a musician in an attempt to
persuade him to let me remix one of his songs, and he said, “You are soooo
Arthur Baker,” which to this day is still one of the greatest compliments I’ve
ever received. He didn’t let me remix his song, though.
New World Man takes his New Girl Now, dolled up in a New
Dress, for a ride in a Brand New Cadillac. Aaaaaand that’s the show, simple as
that. Songs or artists with the word ‘New’ in the title. I’m not deep.
Most of these shows are pretty easy to put together. This
one was like herding cats. A couple song blocks put themselves together, but
the others? Chaos. Did I really put the ‘90s ska band next to The Only Band
That Matters? Yes. Yes, I did.
There were 10 other songs that were in the mix at some point, and later jettisoned. Like I said, this was an unruly show, but ultimately I think it turned out all right. Individual results, though, may vary.
There are seven artists making their debut this week, but I
kinda don’t want to tell you who they are. It would spoil the fun in a big, big
Fans of classic alternative will (hopefully) find lots to love here, though I do play a couple of songs from the last decade, so this isn’t purely a First Wave lovefest. It’s close, but nothing like Show #57 was.
Honestly, this was one of those show ideas where I just stopped writing song ideas down because I already had so many. I even left out Bowie. BOWIE, PEOPLE.
The artists making their Dizzy Heights debuts in this show, frankly. Shock me. How on earth have I not played Elastica, or Sweet, or Los Straitjackets, The Pixies (THE PIXIES, PEOPLE), The Blow Monkeys, Don Dixon, Glass Tiger, The Polecats, The Bird and the Bee, or Tame Impala before now? The mind boggles.
Next up: a New show. And yes, the capital N is a clue.
There are few, if any, franchises that have ridden off
into the sunset quite like the “Toy Story” films did. “Toy Story 3” has a
pitch-perfect, if gut-wrenching, ending, and the characters were the frequent
subject of Pixar’s short films, which seemed like an ideal post script. Why
would any studio risk, um, sullying that? The cynical response is money (it’s
always money), but it’s hard to dismiss Pixar founding father Andrew Stanton’s
rationale: “Toy Story 3” was a perfect ending for the audience, but for the
toys that Bonnie inherited from Andy, their story was starting all over again,
and it is through that lens that Pixar would like us to view “Toy Story 4.” That’s
nice, but it’s of small comfort when the feeling of familiarity (toy in
distress, Woody to the rescue) quickly consumes everything. This is basically
“Toy Story 2” in reverse, with more moving parts.
Think. Stay. Go. Change. Why bother with two syllables
when one will do just fine?
Credit goes to Scraps, Popdose’s former Name That Tune
host, as he came up with this idea over a decade ago.
There is some hot classic alternative action going on
here. In fact, this is the only show I’ve ever done that stays in one lane. It
is all modern, or modern-adjacent, from start to finish. This will probably
never happen again.
Artists making their Dizzy Heights debuts this week: Godley
& Crème, The Apples in Stereo, The Sugarcubes, Tones on Tail, Age of
Chance, My Bloody Valentine, Squirrel Nut Zippers, and (checks notes) Gary
“Men in Black: International” makes so much sense from a marketing standpoint that it’s tempting to dismiss the film as the cynical global box office cash grab that, let’s face it, it probably is. The previous three films took place almost exclusively in or immediately outside of New York City, and that, um, ‘America first’ approach just doesn’t fly in an era where overseas box office is usually two-thirds to three-fourths of the overall box office. It makes perfect sense that there would be MIB field offices all over the world, and considering the fact that Chris Hemsworth and Tessa Thompson’s dance cards have opened up considerably since the end of shooting Phase 3 of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, in addition to showcasing great on-screen chemistry in “Thor: Ragnarok,” casting them as the leads is a no-brainer on a number of levels.
Sorry for the extended absence. It was a whirlwind couple
of weeks (kids finish school, vacation, totally first world problems), but here
is the overdue, Tears for Fears-inspired follow-up to the show about the sun
and the moon. I actually had to export this show about six times to get all of
the tracks to appear (thanks, network drive), but I think, THINK, that
everything turned out okay.
When Disney announced that it would be releasing live action
remakes of three of the studio’s most loved animated films, all within the span
of four months, that seemed, well, foolish. It’s one thing to release three
films that take place in the Marvel Cinematic Universe in one year; there’s a
thread tying those stories together. There is nothing tying “Dumbo,” “Aladdin,”
and “The Lion King” together.
I called an audible. Originally, the plan was to do a show about kids and children, after hearing a great show by Mixclouder The Show About… on the same subject, but one that left enough room for me to do a similar show without copying too much off of his paper.
Then he did a show about stars, and that reminded me of another idea that I had been flirting with for a while. This month, the sun and the moon. The Seeds of Love-era Tears for Fears fans know what the next show will be. Assuming I have enough material, that is.
Bands/artists making their Dizzy Heights debut: Aqualung, The Beloved, Matthew Sweet, Paul McCartney (solo), The Waterboys, Eggstone, The Merrymakers, Love & Rockets, Len, and somehow, I’m just now playing The Police for the first time.
It was my great privilege to interview Howard Jones. Even better, it was great to discover that he is every bit the kind, thoughtful, stand-up guy that he appeared to be. One of my favorite interviews that I’ve ever done, for reasons that won’t leap off the page. He was just so upbeat and happy! My wife will attest: I was positively flying for the rest of the day.