Saturday, October 29, 2016

A Week Of Halloween: Mummies!

(Original image here.)

Self Help Radio's Week Of Halloween continues!  Here is a repeat of a Self Help Radio Halloween show from 2014, which was about MUMMIES!  Ooo!  Those not-quite-zombie-like undead who come from disturbed burial tombs, especially pyramids!  With lots of evil powers that only a hero like Brendan Fraser can defeat.

That's a good movie.  The first one.  I remember enjoying it very much.

You can listen to the show directly by clicking these links: part one & part two.  When it prompts you for a username, enter SHR.  When it prompts you for a password, enter selfhelp.  & you're ready to go!

There are guests on this show: a panel of experts talking about mummies & also plus my spiritual mentor the Rev. Dr. Howard Gently talking about mummies.  & lots of the songs listed below!

Happy Halloween weekend!

(part one)

"The Mummy" Bob McFadden & Dor _Songs Our Mummy Taught Us_
"The Mummy" Marshmallow Overcoat _The Very Best Of Marshmallow Overcoat_
"The Mummy's Bracelet" Lee Ross _Bomp In The Night_
"The Mummy" Uncle Vin _Boo_

"The Mummy" The Naturals _The Mummy_
"Homemade Mummy" Aesop Rock _Skelethon_
"The Mummy's Ball" The Verdicts _These Ghoulish Things: Horror Hits For Halloween_
"When I See Mommy I Feel Like A Mummy" Captain Beefheart & The Magic Band _Shiny Beast (Bat Chain Puller)_

"Me & My Mummy" Bobby 'Boris' Pickett & The Crypt Kickers _The Original Monster Mash_
"Mummy Beach" Hot Lava _Lavalogy_
"My Mummy" Mel Calvin & The Kokonuts _My Mummy_
"My Daddy Is A Mummy" Richard Thompson _RT: The Life & Music Of Richard Thompson_
"The Mummy" Benji Hughes _A Love Extreme_

"The Mummy Piece" William S. Burroughs _Best Of William S. Burroughs: From Giorno Poetry Systems_
"Sarcophagus" Telephone Company _The King's Surprise?_

(part two)

"Mummies" Toyah _The Blue Meaning_
"The Mummy" Jad & David Fair _26 Monster Songs For Children (A-Z)_
"Mummy Walk" Bo Diddley _Hey! Bo Diddley_
"The Mummy's Monkey" The Eastsiders _Halloween Oldies But Goodies Of The '50s & '60s_

"The Mummy" The Slackers _The Question_
"The Way Out Mummy" Bob Ridgely _Lost Treasures! Rarities From The Vaults Of Del-Fi_
"The Mummy" Black Time _Midnight World_
"Mummy's Curse" Luna Vegas _Second Shot_

"The Mummy" 4Corners Crew _Show Me The Lighta EP_
"Bad News" Spooklight _Spooklight_
"Mummified" Future Clouds & Radar _Peoria_

"King Tut" Steve Martin _A Wild & Crazy Guy_
"Tutankhamun" Dynasty _The Electric Asylum, Vol. 3_
"The Mummy's Revenge" Wade Denning & Frank Daniels _Monster Mash (Sounds Of Terror!)_

Friday, October 28, 2016

A Week Of Halloween: Clowns!

(Original image here.)

Welcome to Self Help Radio's Week Of Halloween!  This week was the annual Halloween show, which was about DEATH, & I thought, since there are several SHR Halloween shows still on the website, I'd share a different old show until the day of Halloween.  Today it's CLOWNS!

Last year's show was strangely prescient.  Who knew 2016 would be the year of the scary clown?  Self Help Radio did, damn it!  We warned you!

You can listen to the show in two parts: part one | part two.  It will ask you for a username & password.  The username is SHR, the password is selfhelp.

In addition to the scary clown songs, I talk to my psychologist, Dr. David Fruchter, about my fear of clowns, & I talk to my spiritual advisor, the Rev. Dr. Howard Gently, about how clowns affect your spiritual life (spoiler alert: they hurt it!).  Also I interview a former clown who is now against clowning. It's an informative scarefest & it's perfect for keeping children from coming to your house so you get all the candy.

Happy Halloween!  The songs I played are below.

(part one)

"Be A Clown" Judy Garland & Gene Kelly _De-Lovely Cole Porter_
"Bravo Pour Le Clown" Edith Piaf _The Essential Collection_
"The Clown" Roy Orbison _Orbison 1955-1965_

"No One Really Loves A Clown" Johnny Crawford _The Complete Del-Fi_
"Everybody Loves The Clown" Nirvana _All Of Us_
"Everybody's Clown" Johnny Dynamite _Southern Soul Showcase_
"Space Clown" Jobraith _Jobraith_
"Space Klown" Sissybar _Songs For Peeps_

"Killer Klowns" The Dickies _Killer Klowns From Outer Space_
"Clowny Clown Clown" Crispin Hellion Glover _The Big Problem ≠ The Solution. The Solution = Let It Be._
"Clown" Ric Menck _The Ballad Of Ric Menck_
"The Clown" Chuck Wilder _Eccentric Soul: The Tragar & Note Labels_

"The Clowns Are In Town" The Go-Betweens _G Stands For Go-Betweens: The Go-Betweens Anthology Volume 1_
"Clown Strike" Elvis Costello _Brutal Youth_

(part two)

"Clown Town" Steve Clayton _Clown Town_
"Jumper Clown" The Wedding Present _It's A Gas_
"Chromium Clown" Gary Wilson _Alone With Gary Wilson_

"Don't Send In The Clowns" Zorak _Space Ghost's Musical Bar-B-Que_
"Tears Of A Clown" The Beat _What Is Beat?_
"Don't Kill The Clowns" Soda Fountain Rag _Sometimes I Wonder If You Have A Heart_
"Death Of A Clown" The Kinks _Something Else By The Kinks_

"Eiderdown Clown" The Scots Of St. James _Circus Days: UK Pop-Sike Obscurities, 1966-1970_
"Pantomime Clown" Damien Youth _Strangest Hits, Vol. 1_
"Cabaret Clown" Marc Almond _Varieté_
"Clown Town" Laughing Clowns _Throne Of Blood, Reign Of Terror_

"The Clown Prince" The Triffids _The Black Swan_
"The Way Of A Clown" Teddy Randazzo _The Way Of A Clown_

Thursday, October 27, 2016

Self Help Radio 161026: Halloween 2016 - Death!

(Original image here.)

Halloween came early this year to Self Help Radio!  (It could've been worse - my show could still be on Tuesdays!)  This year we explored the Great Beyond, where the Grim Reaper rules, "the undiscovered country, from whose bourn no traveller returns."  We cross the river Styx, we follow the valkyries to Valhalla, we shuffle off our mortal coil & join the choir invisible.  (I know, I know, you want to scream This is an ex-parrot!  I should have played that!)

But it was all in good, scary, Halloween fun.  Wasn't it?  Did I talk to someone who studies death about what happens after death?  Did I talk to a crazy person who brings people to the edge of death so they can get a glimpse of the afterlife?  Did I talk to my own spiritual advisor about what death really means?  Did a Lexington songbird breathe life into a Jacques Brel song about death?  Yes, yes, yes, & yes.  Among many other things!

The show is available now at the Self Help Radio website crypt.  Find the secret password on the page!  Look at the songs below to see what death was like on the radio!  & have a happy Halloween!

(part one)

"The First Five Minutes After Death" Coil _Horse Rotorvator_
"Don't Fear The Reaper" The Beautiful South _Golddiggas, Headnodders, & Pholk Songs_

"Oh, Death" Ralph Stanley & The Clinch Mountain Boys _Clinch Mountain Gospel_
"Rest In Peace" Beasts Of Bourbon _Dead & Gone # 2: Totenlieder - Songs Of Death_
"Euphemisms For Death" George Carlin _When Will Jesus Bring The Pork Chops?_
"The Dead Only Quickly" The Gothic Archies _Looming In The Gloom_
"After You Die" Tom Waits _Bad As Me_

"Ah Pook Is The Mayan God Of Death" William S. Burroughs _Best Of William S. Burroughs: From Giorno Poetry Systems_
"Song Of The Death Machine" Bruce Haack _The Electric Lucifer_
"Angel Of Death" Tom Greenhalgh _The Executioner's Last Songs, Vol. 3_
"When People Are Dead" The Go-Betweens _Tallulah_

"My Death" Jenny Adkins _My Death_

(part two)

"Whistle Past The Graveyard" Jeffrey Lewis & The Junkyard _Em Are I_
"Death Calls" The Lemon Drops _Second Album!_
"Death Rehearsal" Toy Love _Cuts_

"We Got To Meet Death One Day" Blind Willie McTell _Complete Recorded Works, Vol. 3 (1933-35)_
"Knockin' On Heaven's Door" Bob Dylan _Pat Garrett & Billy The Kid_
"Dying & Wendy's" Mike Birbiglia _Dog Years_
"Somebody Got Murdered" The Clash _Sandanista_
"Death Don't Have No Mercy" Young People _Young People_

"Death Opened A Boutique" Future Bible Heroes _Memories Of Love_
"Death À La Carte" Would-Be-Goods _The Camera Loves Me_
"Death Trip" Lida Husik _Fly Stereophonic_
"Death Is Hanging Over Me" Nikki Sudden & The Jacobites _Doing It For The Kids_

"What Will Death Be Like?" Momus _Monsters Of Love: Singles 1985-90_

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Whither Death?

(Original image here.)

Halloween comes early for you (unless you're already dressed up, you weirdo) because this is the last Self Help Radio before the holiday, so tonight is the annual Halloween show, the theme this year of which is DEATH!

If you look at the show's previous Halloween themes, you'll see it's pretty much covered your basic Halloween topics: ghosts, witches, vampires, etc.  Because I don't like to repeat themes, I've struggled over the past few years in finding show topics that fit Halloween thematically but aren't terribly obvious.  Which is why the show recently has covered haunted houses, graveyards, nightmares, & even (kinda prophetically) clowns.  (Note: many of the previous shows can still be listened to on the website, if you're throwing a Halloween party & want people to leave early.)

Death (as a theme) came to me early this year, both as a fertile subject for radio, & also as a particularly scary Halloween motif.  People dress up as the Grim Reaper, you know.  So that's what Self Help Radio is dressing up as this year.  & besides deathly music, there'll be interviews & a wonderful Lexington artist contributed a song.  It'll probably be more fun than spooky, & isn't that how Halloween should be?

Listen, then, from 9-11pm (8-10pm Central time) on 93.9 fm WLXU in Lexington & online everywhere at Lexington Community Radio dot org.  I tried to be more treat than trick, but some listeners are pretty sensitive, so who knows?

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Preface To Halloween 2016: Just One Day Without Death, Please

Too many songs about death.  Seriously I have listened to so many songs for this damn show that I have, at times, felt like I was just going to die.

There's a possibility, he says, hedging his bets, that your favorite song about death (you weirdo) will not be on the show.  Part of it is because the show is only two hours long.  Apologies in advance?

On today's dogwalk, I was complaining to my wife about broad themes.  Like, once someone requested I do an episode of Self Help Radio about cars.  Cars!  I'd be listening to songs for years!

Is that the reason why some Self Help Radio shows seem weirdly specific?  Or do they?  Look, there are only so many hours in the day, & there are lots of songs.  I have lots of songs.  I like to listen to music.

& boy I wish that I could have spent the day not listening to music about death.  I couldn't.  The show is tomorrow!  Down to the wire!  Procrastination!

One thing, though, is that I've decided next year's Halloween show will be about black cats.  I've started collecting songs.  It'll take that long to find two hours worth of good songs about that subject.

Monday, October 24, 2016

A Lifetime Of Death?

Once upon a time, I wanted to be a writer, & I wrote a story called "Death" at the ripe age of what, 20?  22?  I don't remember it exactly, but the first line went something like, I don't know a lot of people who died.  Which at the time was true.  & strangely enough, it's still somewhat true.  Since the show this week is about death, I thought I'd take an inventory of people close to me who've died.

The short story mentioned a fictionalize version of my mother's boyfriend when I was growing up, a man named Ed.  I don't think I've talked about him around here much, but he was around from the time I was in third grade until I went off to college.  He died some time in my second year of school, although at that time, my mother & he were not seeing each other.  I wasn't what you'd call close to me, but I did spend a great deal of time with him when I was a teenager.  It's a long story.

In 1991, my father died, but we weren't close.  In the previous decade, I had lost my grandparents on my mother's side (my father's mother died when he was young; his father died the year I was born), but they lived in Germany & I saw them maybe twice in my life.  In this century, my mother lost her two siblings, my uncle & aunt, & although I saw them more than my grandparents, age & language separated us.  My aunt, though, was super cool, & I think the brief time I spent with her I liked her more than my mother.

As I wrote here, the big deaths in my life have been animals.  I lost my first cat Blue Boy to feline leukemia in 1999.  I lost Buster - who was raised by Blue Boy - in 2008, & wrote about him here.  George, the world's best beagle, died in 2012, & because I continue to surround myself with animals - there are eight in all now, not counting my wife & myself - I know there's more death & heartbreak in the future.

The hardest death recently, of course, was my oldest sister, who died last year from cancer.  I wrote about that here.  Coming back to Texas was hard because she is no longer here.  I would be spending lots of time with her if she were.

& that's it.  It may be that I'm not close to many people.  It might be that I'm not sure if someone I was once close to is alive or dead at this moment.  Or it may be that I have been exceedingly fortunate that death has so far spared me most of its future misery.

Sunday, October 23, 2016

Busy Buzzy Busy

Oy this weekend has been exhausting.  I have had to sneak & steal moments just to work on my damn show!

Yesterday, the lovely wife & I went to Dallas to spent way too much time & money at the 2016 Texas Veggie Fair.  Both of us are vegan, hopefully not insufferably so, & we enjoyed the food & the presentations & the booths of like-minded folks.  Seriously, we ate so much good food.  This is something that perhaps veggie-friendly carnivores & omnivores don't understand: if there's a barbecue or some other meat-based event, people who choose (for whatever reason) not to eat animal products are ultimately left out.  I was watching a presentation at yesterday's fair at which the presenter asked, "How many of you are veggie-curious?"  About a third of the attendees raised their hands.

There's a difficulty in explaining my veganism to people that's encapsulated in that anecdote: vegan events are open to everyone; meat-based events are only open to people who eat meat.

I remember an old interview from the 1950s with Carl Sandburg in which he was asked what was the word in the English language he disliked most, & he said, "Exclusive."  He repeated it, "Exclusive."  He elaborated, "Because when you say, 'exclusive,' you leave out a whole swath of humanity."

(The quotes of course are from my memory, & probably not entirely verbatim.)

The wife & I had a wonderful time.  We love to be reminded that there are like-minded folks in the world, & not all people worship at the greasy altar of McDonald's Chik Filet of Taco Bell.

Tonight we're going to see the wonderful comedian & cultural critic Hari Kondabolu.  His most recent CD Mainstream American Comic is very funny & insightful.  I thrilled to the fact that he was coming to town, so I nabbed tickets right away.

Not to belabor a point, but we hope to get vegan food in Dallas when we see him.

& oh god I hope I have time to work on my show later tonight!  After the show!  Or tomorrow!  Oh god oh god oh god oh god oh god!*

*Any god will do.  Greek, Norse, Egyptian, Hindu, Maya.  Please aid me in my hour of need.  I can burn incense or something.  You like incense, yes?  Cool.  Cool.