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THIS IS NOT A TEST - Books, music, movies, art, culture and truth with Los Angeles author and musician Michael Phillips.

THIS IS NOT A TEST - Books, music, movies, art, culture and truth with Los Angeles author and musician Michael Phillips.
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Los Angeles, CA


THIS IS NOT A TEST - Books, music, movies, art, culture and truth with Los Angeles author and musician Michael Phillips.






You Know, That Stuff Will Kill You

What is it about beer, or any alcohol, really, that makes us so...I don't know, wonderful? Okay, it doesn't make all of us wonderful, I'll give you that. Some people shouldn't be allowed to drink. I certainly shouldn't have been allowed to drink when I was a young man, but no one stopped me, so some things happened, as they will. Here is the story of one (or two) of those things. Also, don't forget to vote! I'm supposed to say that, right?


My Bike Trip Across America

Join me, won't you, on an action-packed cross country bicycle trip that I undertook a few short decades ago, in the America of the late 1980s. Weren't those glorious times? What with the Cold War, the Reagan presidency gracefully pirouetting into the Bush presidency, Iran-Contra, Oliver North, revered statesman Dan Quayle, precious baby Jessica falling into that darn well, the "War on Drugs," Exxon Valdez, Lyle and Erik Menendez, that kooky Berlin Wall. We'll talk about none of that, but...


Fear and Loathing Beneath a Tranquil Malibu Sunset

And a one and a two and a here we go, off into the wild blue yonder of the Malibu coastline, with wine, exes, freeway traffic, sophistication, $10 couches, real money, dog catchers, Thomas Brothers maps, helicopters, Elizabeth Shue in a leather skirt, bacterial infections, hard boiled eggs, sweat, darkness, garbage, shrubbery, pregnancy, hospitality, Cheech and Chong, George Carlin, Bill Cosby, pop life, and a friendly admonition to keep on truckin'.


Festering Pools Of Indignation And Blurry Righteousness

Okay, this one is all over the place, but that has its own charm, doesn't it? I mean, don't you want to talk about dogs, crushing heat, megastorms, science (and the ignorance thereof), Gwyneth Paltrow, Jesus, geniuses, the home schooled, Lil Wayne, AA meetings, limp escapism, rock stars, resistance, complacency, Sam Kinnison, Roseanne, Woody Allen, Ariana Grande and GG Allin, marching, Anubis, Siddhartha, John Updike, James Baldwin, Frank Herbert, printing presses and Walmart? Sure you do.


Interview with artist and writer Carol Es

Tune in to our interview with artist and author Carol Es and hear what she has to say about her recently completed memoir, "Shrapnel in the San Fernando Valley," and turn on to a strongbox full of gold, Yahweh Ben Yahweh, the Kardashians, hyphens and en dashes, the evils of Scientology, bad luck and stupid mistakes, survival, triumph and getting the first slice of the pie.


Love is at the root of our resistance

What the hell, let's take a chainsaw to royalty, the desert, aliens with oversized heads, crazy glue, usenet, Airstream trailers, diplomas, fat and lazy cover bands, crushing and demoralizing your enemy, pig flesh, pigskin, loving it or leaving it, Amnesty International, smokescreens and the rise of the machines. We'll talk about 14 of those 15 things, see if you can guess which ones.


Let us rave today, about things that are raveworthy

Here, how about some Jade Bird, some signs of life, some Bob Dylan, music? No. Some Shakespeare, Jimmy Fallon, Arrow de Wilde, cesspools, how art and culture are really life itself, Stephen Hines' "the late season" book, undercurrents and undercutting, Jackson Pollock, Prince, 5 Hour Energy Drink, Western society, Victorian days, Leaving Las Vegas, Oxycodone and Fentanyl lollipops, the devil and the lord, Joe Strummer, male groupies, reminiscing, and sky cars.


How to hypnotize a lizard

In which and wherein I proceed to speak on subjects as confounding and diverse as particles, time, unemployment, maximizing one's potential, training chickens, meaning and purpose, milk trucks, the pervasive mystery of Atlassian Confluence, rhythm, mojo, management philosophies, buying and selling, Joe Strummer, Lake Woebegone and the End of the Road in Homer Alaska, Craigslist, fear and loathing in the grocery store, yard sales, Ronald Reagan, Mikhail Gorbachev, the dark apocalypse,...


What could possibly go wrong?

This one may sound a little weird because it's the first episode recorded in the new studio (a.k.a. the spare bedroom of the house we just moved in to). Try to ignore the echo and instead just revel in the hilarity of bronchitis, 768 Kbps Internet, rain on cardboard boxes, hustlers and con artists, Sylvester Stallone and Ariana Grande, landlines, landlords, lunatics, putting an 'i' or an 'e' in front of every name or service in the 90s, Pringles, silence, power outages, gorillas, roller...


You can make a statement, but keep it brief

Oh Canada, the San Gabriel Valley, LSD, white bread, the Oscar race (pretty sure he's white - har har), the wonderful and marvelous (and now dead) Joe Frank, the proximity effect, Craigslist again because apparently I'm a masochist, and last but not least on this abbreviated episode for an abbreviated month: how I became a Bitcoin millionaire!


Walk through Paisley Park, and keep on movin'

This episode is two days late for reasons which may reveal themselves when you listen. And who wouldn't want to listen to a scintillating discussion about deviled ham, touring Prince's home and recording studio Paisley Park - a cotton candy Barbie dream condo if ever there was one, landlords, looking for a new job, minimalism, money, security as a trap, pots and pans and music, and remaining civilized.


A Trip to Bukowski’s House

Over the river and through the woods, to Bukowski's house we go. This is just me talking about what it was like there, and how I wound up there. It's a brief tale that I thought you'd like to hear. But don't let it inspire you to go to Bukowski's house uninvited. That wouldn't be cool. Don't be that person. In California you can shoot someone through your front door and never see the inside of a police station for doing it, keep that in mind as you go about your day. It's probably a good...


A restless wind inside a letter box

Getting an email from Gene Simmons, why young boys must rock, spending fifty thousand dollars on a collection of outtakes, getting onto a cruise ship with really old rock stars, spending $250 on a collection that is basically The Beatles dicking around for 80 hours while being filmed, Ektachrome 500, the miracle of HAP (again), metadata, When The Saints Go Marching In, tediously listing things like some kind of idiot, Beatle harmonies, the Wailers, little record stores in little lake towns,...


If I had a hammer

I come fully prepared to talk about supper clubs, The Hat Pack, the futility of it all, professional locksmiths, unprofessional landlords, professional "contractors," ladders, distinctive tape measures, flashlights and sticky fingers, flying buttresses, Appalachia, apes painting window trim, you and your stereo and how great you are, whether or not it's socially acceptable to call someone a mental case, red plastic shopping bags, what a $250,000 house in Los Angeles looks like, shoes...


Everywhere is war

We may as well talk about modern day lynch mobs and public shaming, that Nazi rally in Charlottesville, Twitter, getting "good PR" by piggybacking on a tragedy, censorship, Godwin's law, Trump bulldozing people into mass graves, remembering the days of the free exchange of ideas with no governing body, Nazis having trouble finding online homes, riding in shopping carts, the price of freedom, the fact that Scientology is a dangerous and toxic mind control cult, Xenu and body thetans, cute...


Memoirs, overturned food carts and new stereo gear

Amble down the path with me, if you will, toward finishing the writing of books, promoting and getting reviewers to read said books, plastic and metal, pushing birds out of nests, motors with moxie, selling window fans, oral histories, Roger Steffens and Bob Marley, faulty and fragile memories, tipping over a street vendor's cart because you're an asshole, Slash, doxing, lynching and the Sony HAP S1/B as lord and savior.


Twin Peaks and David Lynch, Non-album B-sides, Orange Is the New Black and Kathy Griffin

I have the best of intentions when I record these, but sometimes things just get away from me. So I'm not sure what this one is "about," but aside from what's listed in the title you'll also hear about PJ Harvey again (including never-before heard audio from an interview I did with her 10 years ago), discographies, demo versions of songs, why the last song on the side of an LP sounds worse than the first, obsession, Eraserhead, why everyone n the Internet is an asshole, I'll say "the N-word"...


A hot night with PJ Harvey

I caught PJ Harvey's "The Hope Six Demolition Project" tour at the Greek Theater here in Los Angeles. Allow me to tell you about that, and about psychic space, outdoor music shows, croaking for dollars, staying relevant in the face of increasing waves of nostalgia, First Aid Kit and Fiona Apple, retiring from live shows, people putting on a groovy act, jalapeno nachos and spinach wraps, the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus, cannibalism, Cirque du Soleil, voicemails and chirping of...


TV extravaganza: 46 reviews in 50 minutes!

46 reviews in 50 minutes? How is that even possible, you may be asking. No wonder they call it an extravaganza! Well, that's what this is. Maybe not an extravaganza, but 46 reviews in 50 minutes, as advertised. Though, honestly, it may be more of an opportunity for me to complain about what I don't like about TV. There's a lot to like these days, don't get me wrong, but you know how it goes.


I live here in Kill City, where the Snapchat meets the sea

This episode is ostensibly about Snapchat taking over all the buildings in Venice, but it's really just an excuse for me to tell stories about living in Venice - where the debris meets the sea - a long time ago. You know , that and mucus, khakis, "Silicon Beach," wombats, sticky carpets, sleeping bags, Sanford and Son, empty beer cans and pizza crusts, pagodas, driving stick, failing to stay out of Los Angeles County Jail, heroin, radio knobs, Bentleys and Maseratis, Boyle Heights, Leimert...