The MaxFun Blog

Maximum Fun is your home on the internet for things that are awesome. Our blog will guide you and our family of podcasts will entertain and inform you. About

Fugazi - "Waiting Room"

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I'm preparing to interview Ian MacKaye, and this clip jumped out at me. Fantastic.

Rik Cordero Interview Live at WNYC: The Sound of Young America

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Show: 
Bullseye
Guests: 
Rik Cordero

Rik Cordero's gritty, guerrila-style videos have revolutionized the way hip-hop records are promoted. He's directed clips for Jay-Z, Nas, The Roots and Busta Rhymes among many others. He's also a feature director; his film "Inside A Change" recently won Best Film at the HBO New York International Latino Film Festival.

New stations!

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Welcome "Radio K," KUOM-AM in Minneapolis into the TSOYA family. They'll be broadcasting the show Saturdays at 9AM. They're in the middle of a pledge drive so give up some dough, Minnesota.

We're also now heard on WNYC-AM in New York in addition to our broadcasts on the FM side. Saturdays at 1PM, 820 on your AM dial.

Hurray!

Ep. 113: Hall of Presidents with Sarah Vowell: Jordan, Jesse, Go!

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Guests: 
Sarah Vowell

Sarah Vowell joins Jesse and Jordan to talk about moving, animatronic presidents and more. Her most recent book, The Wordy Shipmates, was just released in paperback.

"Donald & Sons Hardware" from Liam Lynch

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I meant to post this once, and I'm too lazy to go back and search if I actually did get around to posting it. NO MATTER. It's JUST THAT FUNNY.

Incommunicado...

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Sorry I haven't been blogging, gang. Moved last week, and was rear-ended the night before, so I've been sans car, internet or phone besides my cell. We'll get things rolling again soon, but in the meantime, shop at the MaxFunStore, register for MaxFunCon and if you're in DC, get out to our show on Saturday, if you're in LA come out to our sweet launch party for Put This On on the 30th, and, uhm... think good thoughts for my pained lower back.

Scott Adsit of 30 Rock: Interview on the Sound of Young America

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Show: 
Bullseye
Guests: 
Scott Adsit

Scott Adsit is a comedy writer and performer who plays producer Pete on "30 Rock." He was a writer/producer on "Moral Orel" and is a veteran of The Second City. This podcast was recorded as part of our live show at WNYC's Jerome L. Greene Performance Space in New York City.

Podthoughts by Colin Marshall: "Airborne Event Dronecast"

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Field recordings are the new ambient. Or at least that's what your Podthinker once read on some obscure British blog. Whether listening to sounds collected straight from the world and curated has truly replaced listening to music designed to be, as genre inventor Brian Eno once said, "as ignorable as it is interesting" remains up for debate, but earnest podcast listeners looking to gather some evidence could do much worse than the Airborne Event Dronecast [iTunes] [XML].

Offered up by the all-powerful WFMU, the show is the podcast companion to its host Dan Bodah's broadcast program Airborne Event, which offers "musical delirium induced by sounds from electronic noise to free jazz, drone rock to a capella African song." Bodah's Dronecast serves a different, stricter meal, one consisting purely of field recordings, played, repeated, layered and looped. One episode might give you 31 minutes of Mexican guys mowing lawns [MP3], 23 minutes on a bus with creaky struts or 23 minutes of the New Jersey State Fair [MP3]. Bodah collects sounds around his hometown of New York City and uses other field recordists' submitted sounds as well, laying them out, slicing them up and arranging them just so to achieve the finest, droniest experience possible.

The most elegant, sensible definition of music your Podthinker has ever heard comes down to just two words: "organized sound." By that premise, then, the Dronecast is a music podcast: it's simply a bit heavier on the sound and a bit lighter on the organization (but not, significantly, without it). The listening turns out to be surprisingly musical — any field recording, heard enough times, begins to feel like music — and this stuff's actually more versatile than music as music is popularly understood. Whether they're drawn from machines, locations, weather phenomena or things totally unidentifiable, these are sounds you can read to, write to, exercise to, drive to, ride public transportation to — try listening to that bus recording while riding another bus — and, especially, sleep to. Prepare, in other words, to give that bedside Brookstone white-noise machine the heave-ho.

Another fascinating aspect of these sounds comes out of their decontextualization. Hearing a lawnmower when you're mowing the lawn is one thing, but hearing it piped in directly through a pair of headphones while you wash the dishes is quite another. These sonic events, originally products of such everyday entities as generators, creeks and loudmouthed fairgoers in search of corn dogs, become fascinating and alien through the quadruple prisms of reproduction, disconnection, proximity and repetition. It's highly unlikely indeed thay anyone who isn't already into field recordings could give a handful of episodes of the Dronecast a listen and not come away believing that the world is a much more sonically fascinating place than they'd ever realized.

Vital stats:
Format: field recordings, field recordings and more field recordings
Duration: 20m-90m
Frequency: semi-erratic weekly
Archive available on iTunes: last 12

[Questions, comments, ideas, suggestions or threats for Podthinker Colin Marshall? colinjmarshall at gmail.]

Heather B. Armstrong: Creator of dooce.com

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Heather B. Armstrong is the creator of Dooce and is considered a pioneer of the “mommy blog” movement. She is the author of three books, including the most recent It Sucked and Then I Cried. Armstrong has faced more than a few challenges in her past including battling a sever bout of postpartum depression and denouncing Mormonism. The popularity of Dooce over the years has allowed Armstrong to turn a one-time hobby into a full-time career. Armstrong spoke with me about, blogging boundaries, the perks of running her own business, and turning hate into charity.

Chris Bowman: I watched the Today Show interview from last year featuring “Mom Bloggers”. One of the questions addressed the notion that what’s said on the blogs will live on forever. The response was that one needs to be comfortable with whatever it is they’re writing at the time, and to be sure they’ll be comfortable reading in five or ten years. Do you agree with that?

Heather Armstrong: I do. It’s a really layered answer to this question. My critics bring up this question all the time, saying that I’m violating my daughter’s privacy, saying that I’m giving all of her potential enemies this fuel to use against her in the future. First of all I think that privacy and the notion of privacy and information on the Internet is rapidly changing, especially this generation and next generation. And mommy blogging is becoming, much more mainstream than it used to be. A lot of us are writing about our children and the thing is, people have been writing about their children for years and years and have been using their family and children as material for books and comedy routines for many many years and I wonder if they’ve faced the same questions. I mean, their books will live on for eternity, the same as whatever is put online.

To find out more from Heather B. Armstrong click Read More.

The MaxFunStore is here!

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For years, people have been bothering me to make and sell merchandise. I've pretty much always demurred, because as anyone who listened to my interview with Achewood creator Chris Onstad, it's a lot of work. I'd rather spend my time making shows and blogging and making off-color jokes on twitter, not packaging t-shirts.

Then I heard from the folks at Topatoco. These kind people offered to do all the work for me, and give me the same cut I'd have made if I was doing it all myself (market efficiencies, etc etc). They're extraordinarily nice, and do merch for folks like our pal Brandon Bird, so I said, "sure," and set about rallying a variety of volunteer designers around putting together some awesome products.

Here's the new MaxFunStore.

My rule for this was that if we did it, we would do it CLASSY ALL THE WAY. That means we're using all Alternative Apparel blanks, which are the best t-shirts I could find. When we printed our JJGo shirts on them last year, people couldn't believe how soft and well-cut they were. I agree a thousand times over.

Here's the store link again.

We've got Sound of Young America t-shirts, of course... but we also have beautiful hoodies, Kasper Hauser shirts, Mustache TVs, posters, and perhaps my favorite item is our new polo shirts, which are absolutely beautiful. Better than Lacoste or Polo, I promise.

So: go forth and buy. http://www.topatoco.com/maxfun

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