Friday, December 31, 2021

End Of The Year Accounting

(image from here)

It's that time of year when I look at the numbers & find out how busy I was on the radio.  Might I share it with you?

In 2021, I was responsible for (& take responsibility for) 111 radio shows.  That's one-hundred & eleven.

Of those shows, fifty-three (53) were episodes of The Dickenbock Report on Freeform Portland.

Fifty (50) were episodes of Self Help Radio on KBOO.

That only adds up to 103; the other eight were sub shows, seven (7) on KBOO, & one (1) on XRAY.

Here's information you probably don't need nor care about:

There were 53 episodes of The Dickenbock Report because in the spring, the show's timeslot moved from Mondays to Thursdays, & the week it moved, I made two shows.  The show was recorded the entire year.

The reason there were a mere 50 episodes of Self Help Radio was because of two reasons: the first was a failure in a live broadcast from home, as detailed here.  I began to do the show live at KBOO in the late summer, but missed a show in November because we had to take our oldest dog to the emergency room, as mentioned here.  Otherwise there would've been 52 episodes of Self Help Radio this year.

& speaking of Self Help Radio:
Forty-one (41) original themes were explored this year, including original themes for repeated holiday shows on Valentine's Day & Halloween.
Three (3) themes were repeated, one for the show's anniversary (as is usual), one by request (subways), & the last one because one show wasn't enough (for 1985).
There were three (3) installments of the Indiepop A To Z series, as is normal.
& my three (3) end-of-the-year shows, which have all new content, but which are not new thematically, bring us to fifty (50).  Those are my birthday show for my beloved wife, my year-end favorites show, & my Christmas show.

Not only that, I managed to do two in-depth interviews this year, one with Adam from the Mommyheads & one with Amelia & Rob of the Catenary Wires.  Both were great fun & I want to do more of those please!

With Omicron coming to Portland, I don't imagine there'll be more opportunities for in-station subbing, but I hope I can continue to do Self Help Radio live at KBOO in 2022.  So hopefully next year there'll be at least 52 (fifty-two) episodes each of Self Help Radio & the Dickenbock Report.

Please accept my apologies for all the radio I made this year & in advance for next year.

Happy happy new year!!

Tuesday, December 28, 2021

Self Help Radio 122821: Indiepop A To Z # 67

(Most images found at Discogs.  A couple found at Bandcamp.)

The last Self Help Radio of 2021 continues the Indiepop A To Z series.  We went over the course of three hours from the Pizazz to Poprace.  Does this mean we'll finish the letter P next time?  Don't put that kind of pressure on me!  I just hope you enjoy the delightful indiepop tunes - & the couple of tunes I felt were influential so I included them.

You can listen now & anytime at both the show's page on KBOO & at the Self Help Radio website.  The latter will require the username SHR & the password selfhelp.  The show is mostly music with my occasional interruption to tell you what you just heard & to ask you to help out KBOO during our end of the year drive.  But really, mostly music.  It's listed below.

Happy new year!  Thanks for listening to Self Help Radio!  We'll continue next year!

Self Help Radio Indiepop A To Z # 67
"Heartaches & Heart Attacks" The Pizazz _Get Out Of My House_
"Playboy Playgirl" Pizzicato Five _The International Playboy & Playgirl Record_
"Forever" Plain Cream Puff Spray _Jingu Volume 1 (A Japanese Pop Compilation)_

"Ça Plane Pour Moi" Plastic Bertrand _King Of The Divan_
"Peppermint" Plastic Operator _Different Places_
"Goes Out" Play People _Goes Out_
"World Without Love" Playing At Trains _World Without Love_
"Shut Up" Pleasure _19 Goldene Hits_

"Treasure" The Pleasure Heads _Hard To Swallow_
"Breathe" Pleasurehouse _Marseille_
"In My Dandelion Field" The Pleasures Pale _The Pleasures Pale_
"Everything I Need" Plume _The Sound Of Leamington Spa Volume 6_
"I Love You When You're Walkin' Away" Plumtree _Moshi Moshi (Pop International Style)_

"Please Don't Let Me Go" Plush _Please_
"Your Shout" Po! _Horse Blanket Weather_
"Here" Poastal _Here_
"Outside" Pocket Rockets _2002 Teenbeat Sampler_
"Cross The Line" Pocketbooks _Flight Paths_

"October" The Poconos _Days Are Getting Shorter_
"Can't We Start Again" Les Poissons Solubles _Split 7" with Snowbirds_
"He's Blood Happy" Poke It With A Stick _Something's Burning In Paradise Again_
"Drown" Policecat _Drown_
"Extraordinary" Politburo _Return Of The Digital Ghosts_

"Hug The Harbour" Emma Pollock _The Law Of Large Numbers_
"Rhodes Ave." Pololeo _Our Town_
"One Hundred Reasons To Love Birds" PolyABC _One Hundred Reasons To Love Birds_
"Furry" The Pomeranians _Shreds Volume 3: American Underground '95_
"Paper Kisses" Pomme Cannelle _The Family Twee_

"Who Was That Dog?" The Pooches _Smoochin' With The Pooches_
"On Tape" The Pooh Sticks _CD86: 48 Tracks From The Birth Of Indie Pop_
"Gonna Make Him Mine (Tonight)" Pookie & The Poodlez _Young Adult_
"What Was Her Name?" The Pool Whales _The Pool Whales_
"Strawberry Kool-Aid Smile" Poole _Alaska Days_

"Lust For Life" Iggy Pop _Lust For Life_
"Light Blue Pictures" Pop Art _Snap, Crackle, Pop Art_
"Seaside" Pop City Arizona _With Friends Like Us Who Needs The NME?_
"Winona, I'll Be Up My Nan's" Pop Parker _Winona, I'll Be Up My Nan's_
"The Black Country Chainstore Massacreee" Pop Will Eat Itself _Rough Trade Shops (Indiepop 1)_

"Someone You Love" The Popguns _Another Year Another Address: The Best Of The Midnight Years_
"Vote Elvis" The Popinjays _Vote Elvis_
"Cremation Town" The Poppyheads _Cremation Town_
"All I Wanted" Poprace _Clear EP_

Monday, December 27, 2021

Whither Indiepop A To Z # 67

(The hits of Sisyphus.  Image from here.)

Is there any explanation necessary at this point?  Yes, because no one reads this blog!

About every four months I return to a series I call "Indiepop A To Z."  In alphabetical order I play indiepop bands & artist, plus some bands or musicians I think are influential to the genre.  For example, tonight I'm in the letter P - I'll start with a band called the Pizazz - & I suspect I will get to bands that have "Pop" in their name.  Might I play Iggy Pop?  He isn't indiepop at all!  But has he influenced indiepop?  He's influenced so many people!  So I'll ask again: might I play Iggy Pop?*

There's nothing fancy, just the bands & their music.  Three hours' worth.  I doubt I'll finish the letter P tonight but one never knows.

The series began in Austin, Texas, & as you can see, we're on the 67th installment.  You can listen to previous installments on the Self Help Radio website.  You can find links to the shows (some of them you can even listen to) somewhere near here.  I keep promising to make a stand-alone page for the series.  Maybe this week I will.

So if I'm able to make it to KBOO tonight, you'll hear nothing but indiepop from midnight to 3am.  That'll be on 90.7fm & online of course at KBOO dot fm.  Guaranteed to please!  Or maybe not.  What the hell do I know?

* Yes, I'll play Iggy Pop!

Sunday, December 26, 2021

Preface To Indiepop A To Z # 67: Why Do You Keep Doing This?

The image above is the first image that came up with I googlied "Why Do You Keep Doing This?"  It's from here.  I have no idea what show it's from.

A while ago, a person who I was texting with during one of my indiepop a to z shows asked me if I would ever get finished.  "Probably not," I responded.  He then texted, "Why do you keep doing this?"

Gee, I can't remember if I had a response, but I guess I do have a couple now.  They are:

1) The music is great.  It's fun to share this kind of music.  &
2) It satisfies a kind of OCD need to organize & list-make I have.

The truth is, I enjoy the process of gathering the music, listening to it (some of it I haven't really listened to in years!), deciding if it fits in the "indiepop" genre.  I hope I'll get to finish it - I hope I have that many years left doing radio - but even if I don't, I've enjoyed the process.

A long time ago, I started collecting bands that I missed (you know, like Allo Darlin' showed up way past the time I was doing the letter A) & thought how I'd add them the next time around.

The next time around!  Boy was I thinking differently then!

(I still collect bands I missed though.)

Saturday, December 25, 2021

Happy Christmas!

Happy Christmas from Self Help Radio!  Thanks for listening, thanks for reading, thanks for everything!  I hope you have a lovely day, whether with friends & family, or alone if you prefer. I tend toward the latter myself.

Merry holidaze!

Friday, December 24, 2021

Christmas Movies?

(The fabled Stockwell Stocking Stuffer.*)

For this week's Very Self Help Radio Christmas, I challenged our resident cinephile Chuck to tell me  movies he considered Christmas movies but others didn't, & he had to defend his choices.  He remembered a Christmas television offer from the early 2000s featuring a set of Dean Stockwell films: "Stuff Your Stocking With Stacks Of Stockwell: The Stockwell Stocking Stuffer."  Chuck wasn't sure if he dreamed it, but I found the actual set on the internets - pictured above.  It was selling on eBay for seven hundred thousand dollars!  So I don't know if they made many of them!

Follow Chuck on Twitter, where he talks about the movies he's watching.

See his YouTube playlist of possible Christmas films.

Read his Letterboxd reviews of the films he watched for the Christmas show.

Here's a list of films available to be streamed for free in places other than YouTube.

& for the completist, Chuck made a list of films with the keyword Christmas for you to peruse.

Do you want to see his playlist from last year?  It's here!

Get away from the family & watch movies on Christmas courtesy of Chuck!

Have a happy holiday!

*I found most of the VHS box images on eBay.  The original box set image is from here.

Tuesday, December 21, 2021

Self Help Radio 122121: A Very Self Help Radio Christmas 2021

& here it is!  This year's Christmas show!  It was fun to make but kinda hard - I had six interviews! But since this is really the only thing I do for Christmas, it's nice it was so involving.

You can listen now & anytime at both the Self Help Radio KBOO page & also at the Self Help Radio website.  If you go to you'll need a username & password to access the show - that's SHR & selfhelp.  Everything that happens on the show is detailed below.

Happy Christmas!

A Very Self Help Radio Christmas 2021
"It's Christmas Time (Blizzard Version)" The Happy Somethings _It's Christmas Time (We're As Miserable As Sin) E.P._
"Santa! Bring My Girlfriend Back!" The High Plains Drifters _Santa! Bring My Girlfriend Back!_
"Sentimental Christmastime" The Birthday Kiss _Festivus_


"Señor Santa" Y La Bamba _Holidays Rule_
"I've Heard They Called Off Christmas" The Catherines _I've Heard They Called Off Christmas_
"Merry Xmas Everybody" Manitoba Rock n Rolla _Come On Christmas_
"Christmas Will Really Be Christmas" Black Pumas _Christmas Will Really Be Christmas_
"Christmas Time Is Here" Hiatus Kaiyote _Christmas Time Is Here_

our resident cinephile Chuck stops by to talk about Christmas movies

"Merry Christmas Darling" Sugar World _A Sugar Christmas_
"Sally Sweet Tooth" Bad Bad Hats _Sally Sweet Tooth_
"I Hope There's No Snow" The BV's _I Hope There's No Snow_
"The Christmas Game" The Popcorn Rebellion _The Christmas Game_
"The Night After Christmas" Homer & Jethro _Volume 3_

interview with Hollywood movie producer Denver Smith

"Gone For Christmas (feat. The McCrary Sisters)" Amanda Shires _For Christmas_
"Surviving Christmas" Kool Moe Dee _Hip-Hop R&B Christmas Gold_
"Xmas Wrapping" The Aquadolls _Xmas Wrapping_
"We Won't Come Home At Christmas Time" The Reds, Pinks, & Purples _We Won't Come Home At Christmas Time_
"Mr. & Mrs. Santa Claus" Laura Cantrell & Michael Shelley _Mr. & Mrs. Santa Claus_

interview with Christmas entertainment mogul Paul Disney

"Under The Tree" Corvair _Under The Tree_
"Everyday's A Holiday" Office Romance _Holiday Of Love_
"Holiday" Confidence Man _Holiday_
"Coldcut's Christmas Break" Coldcut _Coldcut's Christmas Break_
"Twelve Switched-On Days Of Christmas" Kenneth Williams _In Season_

interview with live elf on a shelf Dom Shakespeare

"Happy Christmas To Me" Swansea Sound _Happy Christmas To Me_
"Frozen Santa" Death Hags _Frozen Santa_
"Feliz Navidad" Alice Bag _Feliz Navidad_
"I'll Be Home For Xmas" Modesty Blaise _I'll Be Home For Xmas_
"Skiing In The Snow" The Beach Girls _She Rides With Me: Warner Surfin' & Hot Rod Nuggets_

our favorite librarian Carole drops by to talk about Christmas books

"It Came Upon A Midnight Clear" Swell Tides _Another Helluva Holiday Compilation_
"Is It Too Soon For Christmas?" Jane & John _Is It Too Soon For Christmas?_
"It Must Be Christmas" Math & Physics Club _The Matinee Holiday Soiree_
"This Christmas" Cliff Beach _Merry Christmas, Happy New Year_
"You're A Mean One, Mr. Grinch" Art Of Time Ensemble _You're A Mean One, Mr. Grinch_

interview with Portland Christmas specialist Ronald Sawyer
+ goodbye!

"Winter Tragedy" David Newton & Thee Mighty Angels _Winter Tragedy_
"Under The Mistletoe" Cinéma Lumière featuring Megumi Acorda _Comfort & Joy: A Shiny Happy Christmas Compilation_
"The First Noel" Deep Sea Diver _It's Christmas Time EP_
"Christmas Day" Babitha _Christmas Day_

Monday, December 20, 2021

Whither A Very Self Help Radio Christmas 2021?

Tonight! On 90.7fm KBOO! Online at! From midnight to 3am!

Self Help Radio has tons of Christmas & holiday music including lots of new stuff!  Plus!  Lots of guests!  Like, too many guests!  It's going to be a big show.  A BIG SHOW!

Tune in!  & help KBOO out as well!

Sunday, December 19, 2021

Preface To A Very Self Help Radio Christmas 2021: It's Beginning To Look A Lot Like

Well, it snowed this morning in Portland, anyway.

Working on the show!  Lots of guests!  Lots of new music!  Can't talk right now!

Saturday, December 18, 2021

Vultures Of Fort Worth, Texas

This is quite a coincidence.  I took this picture right outside our home in Fort Worth, Texas, on this day in 2017:

It's a gruesome shot to be sure, but it wasn't an uncommon one - carrion birds were always at the ready when there was roadkill.  Fort Worth to the west was increasingly rural, & doubtless those birds lived in the more unpopulated areas.

A year later, on this day in 2018, I took this picture:

It's another vulture, or perhaps the same one from the year before, it has been sitting on the pole looking for (or rather smelling for, as they hunt by scent) newly killed urban wildlife.  I happened to take the picture as it was leaving.

You don't see many of these sorts of carrion birds around Portland, although perhaps it's because the ubiquitous crows double as carrion birds hereabouts.

Lest you think I'm a bit morbid, thinking about vultures, let me point you to this site here. It tells me these are turkey vultures, it's how I knew about their scent hunting, & it's got more gruesome pictures than I took.

Friday, December 17, 2021

Forget Me Not

The image above is from the French graphic novel, "Forget Me Not" ("Ne M'Oublie Pas") by Alix Garin, a sweet & sad tale about dealing with one's grandparent succumbing to Alzheimer's.  You can find out more about it here, but I am here to announce my own delightful self-control in not posting this out of context & subtitling it, "Listening to Self Help Radio."

Truly it's a marvelous comic, though.  A remind that the form can be used for something other than superheroes & sci-fi & fantasy - & in my opinion, should be.

Oh no! Bla bla bla bla bla bla.

Tuesday, December 14, 2021

Self Help Radio 121421: Gary's Favorite Music Of 2021

(Most of these covers are from Discogs, but a couple are from Bandcamp.)

Do I need to write a lot about this?  I played a bunch of songs from records I really liked this year.  I probably could've gone for four hours.  Maybe even five.  If only there were enough time.  Perhaps there'll be something you like, should you listen.

The show is at the Self Help Radio website as well as the KBOO website.  The one at the Self Help Radio website will require a username, which is SHR, & a password, which is selfhelp.  What I play is below, & it's really mostly music with occasional irritating interruptions from me telling you what I played & asking you to help KBOO out during our End Of The Year Membership Drive.

& that's it!  Enjoy.

Self Help Radio Favorites Of 2021
"Right" Khruangbin _Modern Love_
"If You Leave" Angel Olsen _Aisles EP_
"(Keep Feeling) Fascination" The Catenary Wires _Mirrorball_

"Chaise Longue" Wet Leg _Chaise Longue_
"Your Fandango" Todd Rundgren & Sparks _Your Fandango_
"Change" Anika _Change_
"Francoise" Momus _Athenian_
"Upsidedown" The Mighty Project _Total Football_

"More Big Birds" Dry Cleaning _New Long Leg_
"Holy Hope" J.R.C.G. _Ajo Sunshine_
"Cut That Fishernet" Mouse On Mars _AAI_
"Sequitur" Negativland _No Brain_
"All Eyes On Me" Bo Burnham _Inside (The Songs)_

"I'm Starting To Think You Don't Even Want To Go To Space" Fightmilk _Contender_
"You're Not The Only Failure Here" The Big However _Las Vegas Amusements_
"Lockdown To Liverpool" The Hepburns feat. Estella Rosa _Architecture Of The Ages_
"Dual Lives" The Lodger _Cul-De-Sac Of Love_
"Juno" Spud Cannon _Good Kids Make Bad Apples_

"No Action (feat. Nina Diaz)" Elvis Costello & The Attractions _Spanish Model_
"Age Of Isolation" The Mommyheads _Age Of Isolation_
"Til Dawn" The Goon Sax _Mirror II_
"Bundunyabba Blue" Spearmint _Holland Park_
"Leaves Fall Again" Shannon & The Clams _Year Of The Spider_

"Monde Moderne" Pierre Didy Tchakounte Et Les Tulipes Noires _Cameroon Garage Funk 1964-1979_
"Ma'a Ibnat" Ouiness _Habibi Funk: An Eclectic Selection Of Music From The Arab World, Part 2_
"The Indian Dance" Pinky-Ann-Rihal _Naya Beat Volume 1: South Asian Dance & Electronic Music 1983-1992_
"Mujer Jaguar" Combo Chimbita _Mujer Jaguar_
"I Woke Up With An Open Heart (feat. The Hempolics)" Lost Horizons _In Quiet Moments_

"She Buys Herself Flowers" The Umbrellas _The Umbrellas_
"Sullen Leering Hope" Ducks Ltd. _Modern Fiction_
"Agitate" Kit Sebastian _Melodi_
"We Do It But Never Know Why" The Go! Team _Get Up Sequences Part One_
"Time Is On The Run" Monnone Alone _Stay Foggy_
"Rock N Roll Void" Swansea Sound _Live At The Rum Puncheon_

"Emotional Rent Control" Cheekface _Emphatically No._
"Nashville Wedding" Kiwi Jr. _Cooler Returns_
"Fake" Onetwothree _Onetwothree_
"Goodbye To All That" Would-Be-Goods _Saturn's Child_

Monday, December 13, 2021

Whither Gary's Favorite Music 2021?

(Original image here.)

In case you've never heard me talk about this before, I despise "best of" lists.  They are the height of arrogance & insecurity, & it's breathtaking how many people cede their own opinions to whatever authority they deem reliable & trustworthy.  It makes sense - you want to believe that what you like is the "best" - why else would you like it?  When there's something you like that one of those authorities doesn't like but you enjoy, you call it a "guilty pleasure."  But the truth is, there is no objective "best" when it comes to things like an opinion.  If you enjoy it, it's good, by definition.  If you like it best, it's the best.  But somehow imagining that that imparts on it a universal quality is foolish at best & pathetic at worst.

So too these "best of" lists come across as pretentious at best & ludicrous at worst.  Imagine thinking that in any given year, with everything that is created, you can decide what's "best" when you may not enjoy a particular genre of music or when you cannot possibly have listened to more than a fraction of what's been released.  Even if it's a magazine or website that has its own genre critics, & the list is somehow made democratically (because opinion is democratic?), the result is a mishmash that the contributors themselves don't really agree on.

Just tell us your favorites.  Don't pretend you know what's best.  You don't.  You know what you consider the best.  That doesn't make it the best for me.  Or even for the majority of people.

On Twitter recently, after Peter Jackson's Let It Be remake came out, there were thousands if not millions of posters who gave their unsolicited opinions (it's Twitter after all) about the Beatles, especially the ones who desperately needed whoever scrolled past to know that they hated the band.  One person wrote with a sniff, "Let me know when there's a seven hour documentary about the Monkees."  This person did not like the band that a majority - a vast majority - of music critics would call the greatest band in the world.  The best band in the history of rock & roll.  To me, the fact that just one person dislikes something automatically means it's not the best.  How can it be?  You have to start qualifying it - "best among top critics" or "best among fans" - but it just proves my point: it's just a popular opinion.  I find it odious that one needs to pretend it's universal & objective.

Which is my way of telling you, tonight on Self Help Radio, there's no "best of" 2021.  There's just lots of music I liked this year.  & I probably listened to a lot more new music than the average person did in 2021, but I also didn't listen to a lot of music in genres I don't really care for.  I would imagine those people would be very irritated if I called my list "best" & what they liked best didn't make it.

This has gone on too long but I also want to say that my list is far from comprehensive.  I still have several dozen albums I really need to listen to.  There's a good chance that many of those would make this list of mine.  My apologies.  Especially to me.  Apologies to myself!  I am totally missing out.

Tonight on 90.7 fm KBOO Portland, also on, from midnight to 3am, some - most? - of my favorite music of 2021.  I wish you had a radio show so you could share what you liked best.  As long as you didn't lie to the world & tell us it was the "best of the year."

Sunday, December 12, 2021

Preface To Gary's Favorite Music 2021: What A Year It Was

(You wanna ask Rate Your Music?)

This was a very busy year for me.  I made lots of radio shows - usually two a week.  I made music mixes for XRAY FM.  I subbed a few shows for KBOO.  I'll have a count at the end of the month, but it was a lot.  & while I eventually got to do Self Help Radio live at KBOO, I continue to make the Dickenbock Report from home.  It's one thing to gather material for a show, then go to a radio station & do that show, it's another thing entirely to record & edit your airbreaks & then assemble the show in an audio editing program.  I'm sure I've complained about this on the blog before, but suffice it to say, it takes way more time than you might imagine.

If it sounds like there's some complaining going on, there is.  & maybe I'm trying to make an excuse or two.  I felt like I was so busy listening to music for the radio & for my shows that I didn't spend as much time listening to music for me.  & as such, I'm not sure how representative the music I'll play tomorrow is of "my favorite music."  In many cases, it's the music I listened to most, which sort of defines "favorite" for me.  But in some important cases, it was something I only got to listen to once or twice but I really, really liked it, & hoped to make time for it later on.  It's now too late to make that time.  So I'll call it a favorite & hope it stands the test.

This is an admonition, then.  A caveat.  A disclaimer.  & I suppose I'll continue it tomorrow.

Saturday, December 11, 2021

Adoption Day

We've been calling today "Adoption Day" because on this day in 2012, we adopted our beloved Pauline.  She was very smol when we adopted her, barely two months old, but the picture above was taken in our Fort Worth backyard on this day in 2016, when she was just four years old.  She was a bit scrawnier in those days!

We adopted her the day after our beloved George died.  He was our first dog to die - & my wife's dog before she & I met - so the hours after his death were painful & oppressive.  I drank half a bottle of whiskey & didn't get drunk.  I suggested to my wife - who cried more that day than any time I had ever seen - that we might get another dog, a puppy, by & by.  She surprised me by finding Pauline the very next day.

Pauline saved us from all that grief.  We still missed George terribly, but she was young, she needed attention, she loved to play, & we just had to focus on her.  She probably doesn't know that she did all that.  I spent some time today snuggling with her on the sofa.  I love her terribly, more than I thought I could nine years later.

Friday, December 10, 2021

Echoes Of Movies

(image from the IMDb)

On this week's show, our resident Cinephile Chuck showed up to talk about movies featuring echoes - & also caves, which sometimes feature echoes.  Certainly you can listen to the show at both the KBOO website & at the Self Help Radio website, but perhaps these links will help you find movies about echoes & caves should you need them in your life.

Chuck talks about some of the films he's watching on his Twitter account.

Here is Chuck's Youtube playlist with trailers & full films to watch.

Chuck reviews the films he has seen here.

You can find a list of films about echoes or caves where you can stream in places other than Youtune on this IMDb list.

Chuck uses the IMDb for keyword searches: here's the one for echo & here's the one for cave.

Almost certainly there is something for you to watch & enjoy.  Please do so!

Tuesday, December 07, 2021

Self Help Radio 120721: Echoes

(Original image here.)*

Stop me if you think you've heard this one before.  Ha ha!  Start out with a joke!  A joke about echoes!  You get it?  An echo is a sound you've heard before!  It's a copy of a sound!  & when someone wants to pretend to tell an original joke, they'll say, "Stop me if you think you've heard this one before"!

It's important to get the cleverness out of the way before one gets down to the business of talking about a radio show.  A radio show about echoes.  Which was what this week's Self Help Radio was about.  Lots of songs about echoes plus discussions about echos - in music, in biology, in psychology.  & there were a few echo puns.  How could there not be?

You can listen to the show now or anytime really - it might be fun to play it loud against a wall & hear its echo! - at both the KBOO website & at the Self Help Radio website.  If you chose the latter, remember you'll need a username (SHR) & a password (selfhelp) to listen.  All the stuff that happened on the show - music & interviews - is listed below.

There was something else I was going to say about echoes but I can't remember...  Oh well, it'll come back to me.  I'm sorry!  I'm sorry!

Self Help Radio Echoes Show
"Little Sir Echo" Bebe Daniels & Ben Lyon (With The Three Ginx) _Songs The Bonzo Dog Band Taught Us: A Pre-History Of The Bonzos_
"Good Morning, Mr. Echo" Margaret Whiting _There Goes That Song Again! The Songbook & The Legacy_
"I Talk To My Echo" The Beltones _Spotlite On Hull Records, Volume 1_

introduction & definitions - featuring the Definition-O-Tron 3000

"Echo" The Mekons _The Mekons Rock 'N' Roll_
"Echo" Mecca Normal _Jarred Up_
"Echo" Kristin Hersh _Echo_
"Echo" Jessica Boudreaux _No Fury_
"Echo (feat. Dum Dum Girls)" Merchandise _Red Sun_

interview with biologist & echolocation specialist Dr. Chad Heron

"Echoes Of My Mind" The New Birth _Comin' From All Ends_
"Echoes" Lord & The Flies _Mindrocker_
"Echoes Round The Sun" Paul Weller _22 Dreams_
"Echoes Of Songs (For Trish Keenan)" Simian Ghost _The Veil_
"The Echoes Fade" Poeme Electronique _The Echoes Fade_

interview with psychologist & echolalia specialist Dr. Bernard Cave

"Echolalia" Dead Can Dance _The Serpent's Egg_
"Echolalia" The Crookes _Soapbox_
"Echo Sonata for Two Unfriendly Groups Of Instruments" PDQ Bach _Report From Hoople: P.D.Q. Bach On The Air_
"Echo Or Encore" Eleanor Friedberger _Personal Record_
"Echoing Days" Monnone Alone _Together At Last_

interview with musician & producer Rodney "Kid Echo" Spitz

"Echo Park" The Brooklyn Bridge _The Second Brooklyn Bridge_
"Echo Beach" Martha & The Muffins _Metro Music_
"Echo Bay" Ohbijou _Metal Meets_
"Constellations Echo Lanes" The Clientele _Music For The Age Of Miracles_
"The Echoing Green" Erland & The Carnival _Erland & The Carnival_

the show's resident cinephile Chuck stops by to talk about films featuring echoes

"Echo In My Heart" The Stereos _Pittsburgh's Greatest Hits Volume XII_
"I Hear An Echo" The Challengers _The Spinners – Their Early Years_
"We Three (My Echo, My Shadow, & Me)" Ella Fitzgerald _Jukebox Ella: The Complete Verve Singles Vol. 1_
"The Echo" The Epsilons _The Complete Stax/Volt Soul Singles, Vol. 2: 1968-1971_
"Echo" Bruce Haack _The Electronic Album For Children_
"Echo In Your Mind" Susan Christie _Paint A Lady_

End Of The Year Membership Drive pitching & pledge drive horror stories

"Echoplay" Sad Lovers & Giants _Epic Garden Music_
"Echoes To You" Dead Moon _Dead Moon Night_
"Echo Poem" The Firesign Theatre _Dear Friends_
"Echo's Answer" Broadcast _The Noise Made By People_
"Echo Of Love" CSS _La Liberación_
"Echoing My Name" Hinds _I Don't Run_

conclusion & goodbye

"Diagonally Talking Echo" Dustin Wong _Dreams Say, View, Create, Shadow Leads_
"Little Miss Echo" Raymond Scott _Soothing Sounds For Baby, Vol. 3_

Monday, December 06, 2021

Whither Echoes?

(I found this image somewhere on Tumblr a while ago. Sorry I can't remember where!)

This week's show features songs about echoes although I can't promise it features songs that prominently use echo.  I thought about that - I thought it might be fun - until I discovered that there were so many frickin' songs about echoes.  But it makes sense, right?  Music echoes, voices echo, sounds echo.  We hear & remember echoes.  Echoes are good metaphorical fodder for the usual subject matter of songs.

This is a case where I woefully underestimated the amount of songs that a subject might have.  At some point the idea occurred to me, & I think I thought it might be a bit of a challenge finding songs about echoes versus finding songs with echoes.  A couple hundred songs later, I have to admit I was wrong.  Luckily I believe I found some pretty good tunes!

The show is tonight.  Lots of songs & lots of guests!  Midnight to 3am on 90.7fm KBOO in Portland & online at  & give me props for not trying to use dumb phony echo effects in my writing here.  It took all my strength to resist doing so.

Sunday, December 05, 2021

Preface To Echoes: Yodeling

(Go here to learn to yodel.)

It occurred to me too late in the planning of this week's Self Help Radio, which will have the theme "echoes," that I might have spent a little time featuring the vocal style called "yodeling," which the dictionary defines as "practicing a form of singing or calling marked by rapid alternation between the normal voice & falsetto."

Now, I know nothing about the origin of yodeling & this is something of a guess, but it seems to me that it's somewhat imitative of an echo, & of course you associate it with wide-open spaces, like the Alps or the plains (where cowboys might be singing), places where echoes are natural.  Again, I have done little research - well, absolutely none - so this is all a guess.  But it does mean there'll be no yodeling on the show tomorrow night.  Sorry.  There were lots of echo songs to get through!

It does give me the opportunity to tell my favorite knock knock joke though:

Knock knock!
Who's there?
Little old lady!
Little old lady who?
Say! I didn't know you could yodel!

Saturday, December 04, 2021

Birthday Books

(all images from Goodreads)

On this past week's episode of Self Help Radio, which was a birthday show full of birthday songs - it's something I do annually for my wife, whose birthday was this week, but she doesn't mind sharing it with anyone who has had or will have a birthday this year - we had a visit from our librarian friend Carole, who shared with us three birthday books.  Here's what they were & how to find them:

She talked about Lulu & The Brontosaurus by Judith Viorst.

& she talked about Keep An Eye On Ivy by Barroux.

& she talked about Scaredy Squirrel Has A Birthday Party by Mélanie Watt.

What did she say about these books?  Well, friend, you're just going to have to listen.  You'll find the show at both the Self Help Radio website & also at its page on the KBOO website.  Hers is the first interview.  Go listen!  & then read a book or two!

Friday, December 03, 2021

Just A Post About Popcorn

(image from here.)

Currently I have two radio shows, one which this blog is ostensibly about, & the other is a very similar show called "The Dickenbock Report," which is on Freeform Portland.  This week's show was about popcorn because it was on a "national day" called The Business Of Popping Corn Day.  This almost certainly is not really a thing, since there are only a couple of places online that mention it, & the hashtag was not readily available on Twitter.  But since I had previously done an episode about popcorn on Self Help Radio, I figured I could recycle some of the content & make it easy on myself.

(The playlist for the earlier show is here.  That show aired in 2007 on KOOP.  I haven't posted this week's show on the Self Help Radio website but you can see the playlist at the Dickenbock Report link above.  There are lots of similarities.  But I did play some different tunes.)

One of the things I did was subject the poor listener to many different versions of the song "Popcorn" made famous by the band Hot Butter in 1972 & written by Gershon Kingsley.  Once you hear the song it sticks in your head for the rest of the day.  It's been in my head for seven days now.  I had about a dozen versions of it & did not try to find any more.  But the song has its own website,  It's made me think there's enough space on the world wide web for websites about every song.  Not that I have the time to make such web pages.  But visit the site, you'll dig its "oh yeah web pages used to look like that" vibe.  & marvel at all the different versions of the song.  I hope it made Gershon Kingsley very rich.

This was a case (in my opinion) where I think I liked re-making a show, although I have never actually listened to the 2007 show.  & I don't really want to.  But I record the Dickenbock shows on the weekend & listen to them on Thursdays so I can live tweet them & I think I enjoyed my popcorn mix (not so much my airbreaks) more than I've enjoyed some of my recent shows.  & to be fair, I don't really enjoy my shows.  I like making them more than listening to them.  If that makes any sense.

It's probably perverse to talk about the show before I have put it on my website.  I'll do it next week.  I just had popcorn on my mind tonight.

Tuesday, November 30, 2021

Self Help Radio 113021: Magda's Birthday Show 2021

(Original image here.*)

Well.  Here it is.  The eighteenth (18th) birthday show I have made for the woman I love.  We've been together for twenty years - & married for thirteen (!) of those - & somehow I've managed to find enough birthday songs - recordings I have not previously played - to fill many hours of radio.  Every year it seems like I just won't be able to do it - writing birthday songs is not an industry like Christmas songs - but this year was not my Waterloo.  I will live to have another birthday show.

That being said, except for the awful in-studio version of the Beatles' "Birthday," I think it went all right.  I will remind you that it's the End Of The Year Membership Drive at KBOO so your support would be greatly appreciated - donate here!  But my wife would rather you get her a birthday present.  I will not however share her outrageous wish list with you.  No one needs that many fancy ladders.

You can listen to the show now, or on your birthday, or on anyone's birthday, at both the KBOO website or at the Self Help Radio website.  Should you choose the latter, make sure you remember the username (SHR) & the password (selfhelp) or you won't be able to listen.  So much happens during the show!  What is played & what happens is detailed below.

Happy Birthday!

Self Help Radio Magda's Birthday Show 2021
"Opening Presents" Rosemary Rice _Songs & Games For A Happy Birthday Party_
"Happy Happy Birthday Baby (Acappella)" The Derbys _Music City Vocal Groups (Greasy Love Songs Of Teenage Romance, Regret, Hope, & Despair)_
"Birthday Morning" The Association _Birthday_

introduction & explanations

"Surprise Birthday Party" Vernon Oxford _Keeper Of The Flame_
"Last Night I Dreamed My Birthday" Luke Winslow-King _Everlasting Arms_
"Pin The Tail On The Donkey" Rosemary Rice _Songs & Games For A Happy Birthday Party_
"Birthday Cake" Green Hands _Random Things, Purple Rings_
"Birthday" Ben & Amy _Science_

our librarian friend Carole stops by to talk about birthday books

"The Birthday Present II" Loudon Wainwright III _Little Ship_
"Birthday Card" Kate Sikora _Just Enough Space_
"The Gossip Game" Rosemary Rice _Songs & Games For A Happy Birthday Party_
"Birthday Night" Black _Wonderful Life_
"Everybody's Birthday" Hana Vu _Public Storage_

interview with columnist Hank Doherty about his favorite birthday party

"My Birthday" The Cucumbers _Total Vegitility_
"The Birthday Game" The Centimeters _The Lifetime Achievement Awards_
"Ice Cream & Cake" Rosemary Rice _Songs & Games For A Happy Birthday Party_
"Birthday" The Chloes _Vanish_
"Birthday" Nectar _Knocking At The Door_

interview with Jim Scott, author of A Birthday Every Day Of The Year

"Birthday @ The Mall" Snog _Lullabies For The Lithium Age_
"Best Friend's Birthday" Wolfgang Flür _Eloquence: The Complete Works_
"Cat & Mouse" Rosemary Rice _Songs & Games For A Happy Birthday Party_
"Happy Birthday, Baby" Elbow Bones & The Racketeers _New York At Dawn_
"Birthdays" MF Robots _Break The Wall_

Captain McCheese & Ned Dry perform "Birthday" live in the studio

"Happy Birthday" The Rebeatles Project _Get Back_
"Birthday Song" Prabir Trio _Haanji_
"Birthday" Luby Sparks _Birthday_
"Simon Says" Rosemary Rice _Songs & Games For A Happy Birthday Party_
"Birthday" Pom Poko _Birthday_
"Birthday" Deaf Wish _Lithium Zion_

A few words about Giving Tuesday & the End Of The Year Membership Drive

"Birthday" Kay There House Builder _Insanely Ugly & Incredibly Untalented_
"Birthday Cake" Slothrust _The Pact_
"Birthday" Violent Mae _Kid_
"My Day" Rosemary Rice _Songs & Games For A Happy Birthday Party_
"Birthday Card" Mini Golf _I Need This To Make Sense_
"Birthday" My Idea _That's My Idea_

conclusion & goodbye

"21st Birthday" The Von Bondies _We Are Kamikazes Aiming Straight For Your Heart_
"19 Birthdays" Quinn Walker _Lion Land_
"Birthdays" Sarah Tolley _3 AM On The Bathroom Floor_
"Birthdays" Yani Martinelli _Astral_

*"Teddy-Bear-Birthday-Cake-Severed-Head" by eevblog is licensed under CC BY 2.0

Monday, November 29, 2021

Whither Magda's Birthday Show 2021?

(image found on this blog)

Here's the deal: every year around December 1, which is my wife's birthday, I make a radio show in which I play birthday songs & talk to guests about birthday matters.  One time she picked all the songs, but I realized that if I let her do that every year, she'd pick the same songs.  So I strive to find new birthday songs because, although I will play different versions of a song (like the Beatles' "Birthday"), I will only play particular recordings once.  This has made it increasingly difficult to find birthday tunes.

Also I won't play birthday songs I don't like.  As I've mentioned before, it would be far easier to program these shows if I just played songs about the theme that were easiest to find.  There are almost as many birthday songs as there are Christmas songs.  But just as I don't like most Christmas songs, I have rejected many Christmas songs.  When you get a radio show, you can play the music you like.  I have a radio show so I can play the music I like.

What happens next?  Listen to KBOO tonight from midnight to 3am!  Three hours of birthday songs, three interviews, a possible in-studio performance, & maybe more?  It'll be on 90.7 fm & online at!  & as I always say & will doubtless say this evening:

This show is for you if it's your birthday, if you had a birthday this year, or if you will have a birthday this year.  & if you know someone who's had a birthday or will have a birthday this year - or if today's their birthday! - let them know!  There's a radio show for their birthday tonight!

Sunday, November 28, 2021

Preface To Magda's Birthday Show 2021: What Haven't I Already Said About Birthdays?

Me & the Birthday Girl, Nine Years Ago

For almost as long as I've done Self Help Radio, I've dedicated a birthday show to the love of my life around the time of her birthday.  This will be my seventeenth installment.  Every year I complain about how it's becoming increasingly hard to find new birthday songs.  It's still true, but I won't complain this year.  I mean, usually I have like two hours; for the first show, it was one hour, & for a few years, it was ninety minutes.  But this year, like last year, I have three freakin' hours.  That's just awful!

Ahem.  Sorry.  There'll be enough songs.  She acts as if she's not really incredibly pleased by it all.  Hours & hours of birthday songs, just for her?

I mean, I'll still need to get her something else.  But despite how unbelievably hard it gets to find birthday songs I like every damn year, it's still fun to do.  & probably works in my favor in our lopsided relationship.

Saturday, November 27, 2021

On The Way To 183

Sometime in 2014 I started taking digital pictures with a digital camera that my wife had.  We'd used it before, on vacations or special occasions, like animals' birthdays or whatever, but since we went on dog walks daily, & there were things that amused me, I started taking pictures & then sharing them, first on Facebook, then on Tumblr.  I don't do Instagram, I can't imagine having one more social media platform to worry about.  & yes, I know Instagram is all about the pictures & Tumblr is played out.  It turns out I'm a creature of habit.

The pictures I take show what a creature of habit I am.  This image is from Fort Worth, taken on this day three years ago.  At the time, I didn't know it would be my last fall in Texas.  It was a Tuesday, which was probably the day I did the shopping.  It was also the day I did my show on KNON, so I was on the road a lot that day.  But that was living in Texas.  In a car two hours a day.  No matter what.

Anyway, I took this picture thinking it might be interesting (it's not, not in the way I thought it might be) but it's only really interesting to me.  It's the way I drove home from Costco.  I went that way because the way I had done previously became a clusterfuck thanks to road maintenance.  Also a constant with living in Texas.  Everyone's on the road so the roads have to be widened, repaired, etc.

The picture is looking west so I'm driving north, to a frontage road, which will take me to the road I was avoiding near the Costco.  The highways are part of the reason it was a clusterfuck.  Many Texas drivers wait until the last possible moment to get into the lane that's the onramp to the highway.  & many Texas drivers drive huge-ass SUVs that will crush my little Prius without a second thought.

The point I wanted to make is that this uninteresting picture serves as a sort of page from my photo diary.  I haven't thought about that trip, that weekly trip I made, in many months.  It seems longer ago than just three years.  But they say a picture is worth a thousand words.  Microsoft word tells me this is under four hundred.

Friday, November 26, 2021

Films At The Airport

(image from the IMDb)

On this week's show (listen here or here), our resident cinephile Chuck stopped by to talk about films featuring airports.  He had a very long list to choose from, but managed to chat about his favorites.

You can follow what he watched on his Twitter feed, @robotmonkeycat.  You can read what he thought about some of the movies over at Letterboxd.

He made a Youtube playlist for you to peruse, & he also provided a list of films you can stream elsewhere for free.

All that work & he hasn't been on a plane in over twenty years!  In any event, we hope there's a film about airports you find that you enjoy at least as much as you enjoy being in an airport.  Wait.

Tuesday, November 23, 2021

Self Help Radio 112321: Airports

As a poor person, I spent way more time in my twenties in bus stations than airports.  I kind of preferred the selection of humanity on display there as opposed to the obviously more affluent people you see in airports.  I made an observation about a recent trip (in May), where some guy, forced to wear a mask at the D/FW Airport, chose one that said, in big white letters on black, "Thanks, China."  I told my wife, "In a bus station, I wouldn't have to deal with that kind of person - I'd just be forced to sit next to someone actually suffering from Covid."

But of course buses take even longer than driving oneself; & there are no train routes of note in Texas, where I lived most of my life.  So planes have been exceedingly helpful.  I've traveled to Australia & to Europe - I'm not sure I'd have enjoyed the bus rides there.  (Or, you know, the long journeys by ship.)

& yet, airports are not the sort of place people enjoy being at, are they.  Luckily they're the sort of place artists & musicians like to make songs about, & comedians like to complain about.  Their works make up the bulk of the show, with silly interviews & a discussion about movies sprinkled throughout.  If it's not the blistering exposé of airport culture you hoped for, perhaps it's diverting enough the spend some time listening.

The show is both at the KBOO website & at the Self Help Radio website.  Going to the show's website means you'll need a username & a password, which are SHR & selfhelp.  All the things that happen on the show are mentioned below.

Flight delayed?!?  Guess I'll go hang out at the airport bar.


Self Help Radio Airports Show
"Airport Blues" Walter Roberts _Yet More Mellow Cats 'N' Kittens (Hot R&B & Cool Blues 1945-1951)_
"L.A. International Airport" Susan Raye _The Best Of Susan Raye_
"All The Time In Airports" The Handsome Family _Last Days Of Wonder_

introduction & definitions - featuring the Definition-O-Tron 3000!

"Airport" Pataphysics _My Phone's About To Die_
"The Echoing Airports" The One AM Radio _This Too Will Pass_
"Airport Security" George Carlin _You Are All Diseased_
"Airport People" Mindbenders _With Woman In Mind_
"She Lives In An Airport" Guided By Voices _The Bears For Lunch_

interview with TSA Agent Earl Warren

"Meet Me At The Airport" Baader Meinhof _Baader Meinhof_
"All The Nations Airports" Archers Of Loaf _All The Nations Airports_
"Airport Hell (Part One)" Henry Rollins _Think Tank_
"Airport" Wet Willie _Wet Willie II_
"Airport Song" Magna Carta _Seasons_

interview with airport vendor Harry Levitt

"Hammered In An Airport" Spray _Ambiguous Poems About Death_
"To Live & Die In The Airport Lounge" My Teenage Stride _Ears Like Golden Bats_
"Airport Hell (Part Two)" Henry Rollins _Think Tank_
"Airport Bar" Martin Courtney _Many Moons_
"Airport Bars" Landlines _Problems 24/7_

Chuck stops by to talk about movies featuring airports

"Airport" Rosie Tucker _Sucker Supreme_
"Airport" The Motors _Approved By The Motors_
"Airport" Scott & Charlene's Wedding _Delivered EP_
"Airport Security (Part 1)" Lewis Black _The End Of The Universe_
"The Biggest Airport In The World" Moe Bandy _Hank Williams, You Wrote My Life_

interview with sociologist Harvey Clutchinterview with marine biologist Herbert Schmecken

"Gabriel In The Airport" The French _Local Information_
"Michael & Heather At The Baggage Claim" Fountains Of Wayne _Traffic & Weather_
"Airport Security (Part 2)" Lewis Black _The End Of The Universe_
"Her Ocean Airport" California Snow Story _Some Other Places_
"The Great Airport Mystery" Joey Paige _Voyages Into... Pop-Psych (Vol. 2)_

a brief history of airports

"Heathrow Or Deathrow" The Dears _Orchestral Pop Noir Romantique_
"Aeroplanes (Herdla Int. Airport)" Professor Pez _Hordaland_
"Tokio Airport (feat. China)" Metal Boys _Tokio Airport_
"Airport Fishing Rod: The Dawn Of Airline Safety" Coyle & Sharpe _Audio Visionaries_
"Orly" Jacques Brel _Infiniment_

conclusion & goodbye

"Afterglow" Momus _Voyager_
"Airport's Air" Analog 2nd Camera _Shining Sun_
"The City, The Airport" Loney Dear _Sologne_
"Airport Love" Betty Please _Airport Love 7"_

Monday, November 22, 2021

Whither Airports?

Tonight's Self Help Radio is about airports.  Because everyone loves the airport, right?  No, that's can't be it...

It may be about airports because this is the beginning of the season when everyone's at an airport some time or another.  But wait, Self Help Radio is hardly ever that topical.  So maybe not.

Could it be that Self Help Radio has magical memories of airports?  Almost certainly not!

Here's what's true: Self Help Radio really, really likes the song "Hammered In An Airport" by Spray & thought airports would be a good theme after listening to it a few times.  Yep.  That tracks.

Tune in to KBOO tonight at 90.7fm in Portland or online at everywhere to hear three hours of songs about airports, interviews with airport denizens, & some comedians complaining about airports.

Dude, it can't be worse than spending time in an actual airport!