October 2022 media
How to Write One Song: A book about creativity by Wilco frontman Jeff Tweedy, which I read after hearing Kirk Hamilton recommend it on the Strong Songs episode about Wilco’s “Jesus, Etc.” If you’ve read other books on creativity much of its advice will probably feel familiar—habits are important, you need to become comfortable with writing “bad” songs, and so forth—but there are also some valuable lateral-thinking-esque exercises specifically for generating lyrics and melodies. After reading it I felt both like I could get more out of Wilco’s music and that I could probably write something better myself.
Thrilling Tales of Old Video Games: A blog by Drew Mackie that provides exactly what it says on the tin, at least for people like me who consider obsessively researched video game marginalia “thrilling.” How did all of the characters in Street Fighter II get their names? How did Popeye influence video games? Why are the character names in Golden Axe’s attract mode appear to use equals signs instead of spaces? If you’re like me you’ll immediately middle-click every post in the archive and give yourself a browser window full of new reading material.
Ichiko Aoba’s first North American tour: I went to four of the twelve shows on this tour, fully a third of the entire thing, following her around the Northeast like a Deadhead. They were some of my favorite concerts I’ve ever seen. I was never sure if Aoba would ever make it to America, and even after the dates were announced I worried that COVID might scupper them, so I’m glad it worked out in the end. And now the seal has been broken: she’ll be back in the States next year for Big Ears in Knoxville.