LOL after nearly three decades of hearing my name mangled every which way (my favorite being that Chicago Tower Records header card that read “David Bryck”) the bit that starts at 37:00 means an awful lot to me.
Welcome to the all-new Theme Artist Podcast, where we’ll feature honest-to-god record releases from fellow Theme People! This episode is about Futureman Records release If It Feels Good Do It – A Sloan Tribute and the many Themesters contained therein!
King Radio: The Definite Article Frank Padellaro: guitar and lead vocal, Paul Pelis: drums, Rob Cook: bass, Lee Flier: lead guitar, Dan Bryk: organ and piano, Brandi Ediss: backing vocal and vocal arrangements, Diana Chadwell Brown: backing vocal, Matt Brown: backing vocal, Bob Fenster: backing vocal, Lee Wiggins: tambourine.
I love you, man. I love what you represent. I admire your directness and dissatisfaction with the status quo. I respect you for financing your campaign without superpac/soft/dark money.
However, six or seven straight days of begging fundraising emails is enough. If you have something new and interesting to say, let me know. But please don’t fill my inbox with one-paragraph, content-free, bullshit “updates” — likely composed by some mid-level apparatchik but signed with your name — followed by three fundraising paragraphs.
That, dear friend I’ve never met, is called American politics as usual.
It pains me to remind you that we, the people — your supporters — are NOT an ATM to be withdrawn from at will. I imagine the demands of campaigning can make even the best-intentioned candidate forget this. But I will assure you a weekly fundraising email will deplete my political spending budget quite nicely, thank you.
I almost forgot about taking part in Durham’s delightfully eclectic Pop Up Chorus a few years back, gleefully conducted by my old peep (and Pop Psychology hornsmith) Seamus Kenney. I never actually make it on camera (look for my striped blue short sleeve shirt from behind) but you can definitely hear me in there. It was a great time, but the next morning I got a brutal kidney stone. Damn you, salty delicious barbecue.
“She’s An Angel” by They Might Be Giants, recorded on Monday, April 28, 2014, at Motorco in Durham, North Carolina. PopUp Chorus is held on Monday nights at Motorco in Durham, NC, and is brought to you by Community Chorus Project, founded by Lauren Bromley Hodge.
First, the search engine is awful. For example, I woke up singing Eddy Grant’s “I Don’t Wanna Dance” and thought “Gee, I’d like to hear that. And I wouldn’t mind playing Henry Electric Avenue or Give Me Hope Johanna either.”
So I searched for “Eddy Grant” and started off with this page of gobbledygook:
5% of which appear to be “original artist” albums (none of which resemble the original album covers), followed by 45% cheap-looking soundalike records (sure, the Caribbean and especially Jamaica are famous for their scale of bootlegging, but doesn’t famously fastidious and litigious Apple have ANY quality control over their content? If not, at least over ranking?) The remainder appear to be single tracks on multiple-artist compilations, yet interspersed between those are Eddy Grant or Equals (his original group) releases of potential interest. Trust me, it goes on for another page.
The best part, though, is noting Anal C*nt‘s “Everyone Should Be Killed” smack dab in the middle of the ranking. Turns out AC has a song called “Eddy Grant” (which loosely resembles “Electric Avenue” yet is nowhere near as funny as “I’m Not Allowed to Like AC anymore since they signed to Earache” or “Song Titles Are F**king Stupid.”) Apple’s search engine isn’t even sophisticated enough to exclude it from my ALBUM search.
So while I am sure ICE (Grant’s original label) and Sony (North American licensee) are probably more to blame for Apple Music’s lack of decent releases than Apple is, it does lead one to question — couldn’t Apple have at least one person on staff to browse through the notable artists and make sure they have at least one legitimate, half-decent catalogue best-of? And if not, present the label(s) with a laundry list. If Apple Music is being sold as a best-of-class product, it needs quality catalogue.
I already feel guilty enough for likely reducing the short-term income streams of the artists I like (though I still reflexively buy/download records by the ones I LOVE — it certainly helps when I know they are their own label or work with fair, equitable partners) so why add all this UX friction to the mix?
And could Apple PLEASE poach a few people from Google Search to improve their search engine? (There’s no excuse for how weak iOS App search is, either.)
Governor Rick Snyder’s actions have caused irrepairable harm to the families of Flint, Michigan. Gov. Snyder needs to be indicted for criminal negligence in the matter of the poisoning of the city water of Flint, Michigan, and if found responsible he needs to be charged.
Has it really been a year since my last post? As some of you may already know, Erin and I had a little boy last January. Henry just turned 11 months old yesterday. All the cliches about time flying by apply… it seems like just yesterday he showed up and now he’s not far from walking, which will be interesting in a smallish NYC apartment. (If you’re curious, I think there are a few public pictures over at facebook.com/danbryk)
Having a kid definitely shifts your priorities. I went on sort of an unofficial gig hiatus getting ready for his arrival, but I had planned to get an EP out before the pregnancy. Boom! there he was, and that deadline passed. Once Erin went back to work, it made sense for me to say home with Henry. I scored a little indie film and the director was thankfully tolerant of new daddy missing a deadline or two. I thought I might have had time to write a song or two in between the child care. Not quite… although the half-completed songs seem pretty good so far. I think they might even bear some evidence of fatherhood. Not “Father and Son” or “Gracie” capital F fatherhood songs, but something more elliptical (and probably insecure.)
I’ve also had a nifty deluxe reissue of Lovers Leap (which hit twelve years old itself) almost done for over a year now, as well as the first installment of If I Were You… all of which remain “almost done.” But sooner or later they will make it out there. In the meantime I have a job to do, and boy is it full time!
I’m at the age where many of my musician peers have started families and put on suits and gotten “real jobs” and basically hung up their dreams. When I run into people I’ve known for a long time, eventually they ask the question: “So, are you still making music?” What a question! Yeah, I’m still here, still despairing the state of the universe, still making music. Just not chasing that elusive ring so much.
Sorry I’m so sappy. Blame it on those new daddy hormones. I shaved off my beard, just like Matisyahu. Now I’m sporting a Michael Stivic stache, just couldn’t bring myself to shave it off after Movember ended.
Have a happy holiday and a wonderful new year!
P.S. Here’s a little something for your stocking. It’s an attempt at a viral video of my Christmas Ballad, except I only finished it now, a week before Christmas. If you know the song, you’ll know it’s NSFW, so keep your finger on the mute button in case the boss walks by:
Still writing, slowly but surely. I have a firm lineup of songs for the next album, definitely writing “inside of the box” with a “strategy” and a “game plan” this time, just struggling with finishing this specific batch of songs to the best of my limited ability. I even have a working title, but I’m sure you’d prefer fewer promises (and perhaps even some surprises) this time.
It’s tonally and rhythmically all over the map, but there’s kind of an overall theme (I would say “concept” but look how well that did for PP) tying it all together. Best songs I’ve ever written blah blah blah. You’ll like the song titles at the very least: my favourite so far is “Nestle Waters of America” which is sort of “People Get Ready” crossed with “Sail Away” crossed with this.
Hang in there, cause if I ever do get this album finished it will make the flowers bloom, the heavens part, and (most importantly) make Pop Psych sound like the ridiculous pity party it is.
I’m playing “An Evening of Song” at Kenny’s Castaways on Nov 12th, with George Usher (an NYC legend with a long history including Beat Rodeo and “Little Apocalypse”-era Schramms) and Kevin Montgomery, who has assigned himself the herculean task of playing 50 shows in 50 states… in 50 days. I’m on last at 10pm so get there early: details
Work progresses slowly on a new mini-album, sort of a companion record to PP. It will feature a couple of my best unreleased songs, and my intention is to have it out in 2009. If that means Dec. 31st, so be it, I’m putting my foot down on this one. I’ve also been setting up an as-yet-unnamed new analog/digital recording studio out in NJ, which will be a really cool place to get some of my own work done too. The owner is a serious synth dude and has a real treasure trove of classics including a gorgeous-sounding ARP Solina that I hope will make an appearance on the new record.
I’m not usually into licensing my songs for advertising, but I made an exception for Flip and Tumble. Their reusable shopping bags are not only cool-looking, but they fold down so well they really are easy to keep in a jacket pocket when you’re heading to the, um, discount store…