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America sucks.

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Billboard tells no lies:

TW RK Artist Title TW Sales % CHG LW Sales RTD Sales
13 NICKELBACK ALL THE RIGHT REASONS 54,727 -3 56,511 3,592,511

That's 3.5 x platinum. For NICKELBACK. IN 2006.

Aaron's friend learns to walk.

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Listener Aaron claims that his friend Arielle literally could not walk before she heard about The Sound of Young America.

I am willing to bet that this is a lie.

It is, however, an admirable one.


Have you entered the tell-a-friend contest yet? It's easy to do. Just tell a friend about The Sound. You can do it in real life and take a picture, you can put us in the top 8 on myspace and send a link, you can link us on your blog, post about us on your blog, whatever. Just email the evidence to contest at maximumfun.org. And remember that multiple entries are most certainly allowed.

The Tell-a-Friend Contest

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My prize stash is piled high, so it's time for a contest! I'm giving away sweet prizes to folks who tell somebody about The Sound.

WHAT ARE THE PRIZES?

I've got DVD copies of the two shows which preceded Monty Python, Do Not Adjust Your Set and At Last the 1948 Show. I'll give them out as a set.


Just before I moved, this Arrested Development Season 2 box set that I gave away in the long-ago listener survey contest came back to me as undeliverable. That person's loss could be your gain, because I'm giving it away again!

We also have (courtest of Shout! Factory) a DVD set of the first season of The Bill Cosby Show.


Not to mention our "Lefty Pack": a paperback copy of The Sinner's Guide to the Evangelical Right by Robert Lanham and a DVD copy of "The Best of the Awful Truth."

All that, plus every winner will get a few Sound of Young America stickers.

HOW DO I ENTER?

This is the "tell-a-friend" contest, so you have to tell a friend. I'm going to list some different stuff you can do to enter the contest -- do more than one, and you'll have more than one entry in the random drawing. Two entries = double your chances, three = triple and so on.

Ways to Tell A Friend (in all cases, you can certainly mention the contest if you feel it's appropriate, no need to trick anyone):

* Send an email to 3 or more friends telling them about the show. Can be about a particular program they might like, or about the show in general, or about how you don't need an ipod to listen to The Sound (I'm getting sick of explaining that myself), or whatever you'd like. CC or BCC contest@maximumfun.org. There's an entry.

* Add a link to The Sound of Young America to your blog. Email your URL to contest@maximumfun.org. (by the way, if you have a link, it should point to maximumfun.org, because if I ever get my shit together, maximumfun.org will remain and blogspot will dissapear).

* Make a post about The Sound of Young America on your blog, LiveJournal, Myspace Blog, whatever. Email the URL to contest@maximumfun dot org

* Here's a good one that makes a big difference: post about The Sound of Young America
in an online forum or message group that's appropriate and on-topic (please don't just spam any boards). It can be about a particular show (I got a lot of hits on the Brendon Small show from a couple metal forums, for example). Send the URL to contest @maximumfun.org

* Put The Sound of Young America in your MySpace top 8 or send a bulletin about the show to your MySpace pals.

* Play the podcast promo on your podcast. (Thanks Sam)

* Tell a friend about The Sound of Young America in person, and take a picture of yourself doing so. Email the picture to contest@maximumfun dot org.

Let me emphasize here that anything you do in public should be tasteful and on-topic. I don't want people signing up for some motorcycle racing forum and posting "OMG ROTFL@TSOYA" in the Motocross section. Everybody hates that s**t. That said, I think you probably like the show, and people will believe you that it's good much more than they'll believe me, since I invented it. So it's nice to have that coming from you.

Oh, and if you've already done one of these things, feel free to send it in, but consider doing something else as well. And if you just want to enter without doing any of these things, well, go ahead, I'm not gonna stop you.

ISN'T THIS BRIBERY?

Basically, yes. But it's for a good cause, right? I mean, I think it is.

ARE YOU USING ME FOR YOUR OWN FINANCIAL GAIN?

I hope, one day, to achieve financial gain. To this point, I am a total failure in that regard. In the meantime, I will settle for a cult following.

WHEN DOES THIS AMAZING OPPORTUNITY END?

You until the end of September... GO!

WAIT, IS THAT IT? ISN'T THERE ANOTHER, CRAZIER CONTEST AS WELL?

Absolutely not! Absolutely! I will also accept any other crazy idea you can think of (bake a cake with our URL on it and send it to your grandma, paint it on your drag car, whatever). Put Crazy Idea in the subject of your email, and I will send a TSOYA FUN PACK to whoever does the awesomest thing. This pack will include a TSOYA T-SHIRT and an AUTOGRAPHED copy of the new edition of John Hodgman's Area's of My Expertise and maybe some other stuff I haven't even thought of yet.

READY STEADY GO!

How ya like me now?

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Huuuuuuge news update.

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For those of you who don't get our emails... huge news update today.

And if you don't get the emails... c'mon. Sign up already.

Today's Wall Street Journal

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Great little blurb on The Sound of Young America in the new "Blog Watch" feature in The Wall Street Journal. Here's a scan:

Thanks to Keith Huang for the great mention!

The Sound of Young America in Time Magazine!

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This week's Time Magazine features The Sound of Young America!

Link

New site layout... your thoughts?

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I've been spending the last couple days moving around the pieces of The Sound of Young America website. Some things are still in rough draft mode, some things are pretty close do "done."

Hopefully one day I'll do a real overhaul of the site (which was designed like five years ago), but in the meantime, how is this? Any thoughts?

"Y'all know the steelo of that n***a Beanie Sigel"

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Beanie Sigel "Feel It In The Air" (recorded shortly before he was incarcerated)

Over the past couple years, Beanie Sigel's become one of my favorite rappers. Every verse Mac Mittens spits is drenched in sincerity and passion. Even his party records are heartfelt. I don't always agree with him -- if I had been shot, for example, I would co-operate with police -- but it's amazing to hear someone pour themselves out on a track as he does. Perhaps his commitment to "realness" has had negative consequences for his life -- besides being shot earlier this year, he did almost a year in prison shortly after the video above was recorded, and his step-father was shot late last year. His music is often a potent mixture of resignation and defiance that can only be compared to all-time greats like Scarface.

In fact, in this great interview for The Fader, he describes the direction his music is headed in and cites Face specifically:

"[I'm making] Real music. If you listen to any of my albums, I always gave you that real music that soulful music, even when it’s hard. Right now, to me, the standard of hip-hop and the music today is no integrity and nothing, like as far as production, everything sounds the same. Quote me on this: I will never put out a song—everybody putting out songs that got dances to it, like that’s the hit. You either gotta lean with it, you gotta lean back, you gotta rock with it, make your shoulder do this and you gotta do that and that’s the stuff that’s winning and its like, Where the integrity at in the music? Where the thought process at? Where the real lyrics at?

Right now hip-hop is bubblegum and the standard is so low. I went back because I can’t even listen to rap music today. I gotta go back and go grab the best of Scarface and Cuban Linx. Right now I’m riding around to The Fix. Scarface, The Fix. That’s what’s in my tape deck. He got a joint on it—I think it’s number ten. That song should be re-released right now to be playing on the airwaves 24 hours. Number ten where he exposing people in the rap game for prostituting themselves trying to make hits. And he tell you right in the joint, “If real niggas respect it, then the squares gonna rep it.” So when you got real niggas respecting dumb shit, the squares gonna rep it. They gonna be like, “Alright, such and such—he roll like that, so then I’m gonna do it too.” If you wear your hat a certain way and you looked at as a real nigga, then the squares gonna wear their hat a certain way and it’s gonna spread because it’s more squares out there than it is real niggas."

Here's his newest track (and my new favorite) "Why Wouldn't I."

Here's what he says about it in the interview:
"I mean that’s just me giving people something that they missing right now. I just threw it out there. A situation happened—I got shot in my shoulder. It was allegedly—I gotta word this right because I’m still on federal parole, and when I get off federal parole then I’ll be able to elaborate on it a little bit better and people will understand how real I am. Allegedly I was supposed to have been shot and robbed or something. So me being who I am—and I was allegedly robbed in my neighborhood. The day that I allegedly got shot and robbed, I went in the studio that very night and I did that song. The same night, as soon as I got out of the hospital I went in the studio that night and I recorded that song and I MP3-ed it to every DJ in the country. And like, “Put that out there ASAP.” So it was in rotation the very next day. I got a good nine months, twelve months and people will know about the story behind the alleged incidents, but not right now."

That's Beans for you.

PS: Listen for my favorite part of "Why Wouldn't I," the lyric "Whatchall BABIES gon' do? Where y'all diapers?"

BEARIES AND CREAM CHALLENGE

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MS-Paint version, By Dan Ball!

Ultra-realistic version, by Mike Powell

IS COMPLETE!

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