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Murmur 97 : Ian MacKaye "Some Kind of Dinosaur"

SUBJECT : THE RECORD What do we leave behind? Everything. All we said and did, touched and felt, saw and heard. Our wake in our wake. Our record. Ian MacKaye (Fugazi, Minor Threat) has been recording for decades; authoring, observing, writing, screaming, and riding the record as it ever spins. We want that name back! Records. Why waste an idea that covers it all? Ian sets his straight, or not.

Murmur 96 : Angie Dickinson “An Itch In Time”

SUBJECT : THE PAST A look back — a peek, not a stare — is the rudiment of progress. If we acknowledge humanity, art, culture, history, sex, athletics, politics et al are all in motion, so it stands that we develop as we develop; a greatest (and less-so) hits of the times we contain. Angie Dickinson - iconic actress, and purveyor of all the great film “feels”- befriends time in pairs; in clarity and in ignorance. Her past teaches her present — a present that capitulates seamlessly to Now,...


Murmur 95 : James Carville "We're Also Out Of Coffee"

SUBJECT : CRISIS Crying-wolf is all the rage; the danger being, lightening bugs have nothing in common with lightening. When strum and drang is our ring-tone, we need to revisit what deserves action and what deserves a cable cut. Strategist/Consultant/Teacher James Carville's historic pole position has enabled a career of avoiding cracks and deflecting crisis both for-and-of all five estates. He’s also student to and author of an inside vernacular that’s served both colleagues and causes...


Murmur 94 : Brandon Boyd "The Top Of The Sandbox"

SUBJECT : CURIOSITY You'll like this, it's pass/fail; or, rather, fail/pass. You either have this or you don't. You either are this or y'aren't. Yes, it can be transferred; but, it's best when encouraged or environments allow for it. You can't fake it, and it's far different than either intellect (though they couple well) or boredom (though this is easily mistaken.) You'll feel a certain "itch" at first then you'll need to set forth. Age is often both its confederate and its proof it's never...

Murmur 93 : Stephen Mangan "Bob's Your Content"

SUBJECT : CONTENT AND CULTURE There are limitless roads one many follow to pre-divine a culture - political, educational, infrastructural, even culinary. Amongst paths we've employed, one standard, hypnotic, vexing version is to simply open our eyes; particularly when we travel, specifically as lingual outsiders. Mercifully actor/creator Stephen Mangan tour-guides us through the triumphs and trapdoors of UK artistic content and what it's smallest forms - at the very least - intone about his...

Murmur 92 : Serj Tankian "Danger, Incorporated"

SUBJECT : RISK Our boldest actions lie in the eye of the beholder. Seldom do the doers of hazardous-deeds self identify - such is the case with risk and its takers. Let's prove our case to Serj Tankian (System of a Down) defier of stop signs he's blind to. Be it personal, political, cultural, artistic, vocational or the myriad forms of vocal, Serj moves forward; success or loss notwithstanding. His measure is always on his terms and we're thankful he knows no better. Perhaps ignorance is...


Murmur 91 : Jonathan Coulton "Band of Insiders"

SUBJECT : COMMUNITY Arguably no word nor concept sounds more above inspection than Community. So, of course, let's go. Creator/Musician/Writer Jonathan Coulton has sought out, been part of, builds, and guides his very "own" Community. Sounds great. It is; but there are privileges that can lead to advantages and onward towards exclusions, as every donut has a hole. Groups and groupings are under siege and their diverse whereabouts scream out for dialogue; but fear not — Jonathan helps fill in...


Murmur 90 : Johnny Marr "The Rowboat Meets The Road"

SUBJECT : COLLABORATION Our most-requested subject/topic/tool/albatross present in everything we do, do all the time. Some humans readily concede this premise, others are sluggish studies. One artist who might prefer to be remembered as a collaborator-above-all is legendary band leader and member Johnny Marr. Professor Marr embodies as pure a study - and as reliable an authority - on working with others, as the history of art can conjure. His story IS history, and it's found him in groups,...

Murmur 89 : Neko Case "That Cuckoo Clock Feeling"

SUBJECT : HARMONY When sounds come together and form sound, the ear is intrigued. On-alert for no good reason other than its encounter with sonic perfection. Harmony is that perfection. Harmony is hermetic - lacking either panic or uncertainty - as there is usually safety in number. Neko Case knows her gangs and, as a practice, her harmonies. Not only a siren of modern myth and neo-story, Professor Case is proof of harmony's power to nourish and redeem; even if humans aren't always getting...

Murmur 88 : Alexis Krauss "Just Fucking Teach"

SUBJECT : LEARNING TO TEACH We've concluded that teaching is no more than exploring a series of opposites: Talking/Listening, Acting/Reacting, Planning/Improvising, Translating/Declaring, Progressing/Remaining, Global/Local, Inside/Outside, Human/Inhumane, Art/Science. Have we covered it all? Not a chance. So, let's ask Alexis Krauss, whose groundbreaking work as a teacher not only draw-drops her legions of (Sleigh Bells) fans and mountainsides of students past and present; but, inspires...

Murmur 87 : Tyler Bates "Demolished, By Design"

SUBJECT : THE INVISIBLE COMPOSER As competition for our visual receptors is at an all-time-high, are we forgetting to hear the score? Be it large or small screen. Or are we simply unable to locate it? In either case, forgive us as there is currently a run on cerebral noise in our moving imagery: oversized cinematic "heroes", stories where humanity (itself) hangs in the very balance, larger resumes in tighter spaces, and small-screen writing that is as hypnotic as ever. Fear not, true...


Murmur 86 : Andy Bell of Erasure "Who Is It? It's Us."

SUBJECT : ANTHEMS Sounds and songs can inspire us to be a part of something larger; to understand a context for our lives, our trials, our travails, our triumphs. For over 30 years - as the "voice" of the seminal sonic duo Erasure - Andy Bell has proved more advocate than icon; more a delivery system for change, than intentional anthemic engineer. And millions of fans across the world continue to hear him loud and clear; showing-up en masse, as does Andy, with pride. Yet, though true anthems...

Murmur 85 : Tom Scharpling "Full Battle Prattle"

SUBJECT : WHEN CONVERSATION IS ART In an age where rhetoric is mistaken for communication, let's spare a thought for times we've spoken, been heard, then returned such favor with our own. Now, take a moment and count how many of those moments you've had, recently. Finished counting, already? Us, too. Iconic creator Tom Scharpling ("The Best Show") has made communication art & craft his life's work; an unending series of conversations both true and false; hilarious, yet deceptively...


Murmur 84 : John Darnielle "My Own Private Iowa"

SUBJECT : HOMETOWN ART & ARTISTS Let's explore the fuel, fate, and fascination of the artist who lives and creates outside of "traditional" centers of art, such as New York, London, Los Angeles, Paris, Tokyo and elsewhere. Do artists who defy these hubs of creative traffic do themselves a vocational disservice, or have they discovered the 21st Century's worst-kept-secret? To wit, we've established that an artist needs an audience, but how large a one? And are artists even entitled to that...

Murmur 83 : Mike Patton "Forever '22"

WORLD PREMIERE : MIKE PATTON We are honored to both present the World Premiere of a track from Mike's unforgettable score to the film "1922" -- a script adapted from the novella by Stephen King -- and to talk cinephilia with one of the great living polymathic plumbers. To be able to visit Movie Dorkdom with Mike is as humbling as it is rare. Yet, though Dorkdum certainly has its privileges, can you love something too much be able to make it your vocation? Mike is living and scoring proof to...

Murmur 82 : Pete Tong "Club Darwin"

SUBJECT : THE DJ Certain figures, certain forms, certain words survive in time because they were simply great from the jump. The DJ has gone from "great idea" to "transcendental figure" in no time. And, as the age of curation only strengthens, so shall the spell this hybrid artist (half-lover/half-craftsperson) casts. Cue: pioneering DJ, Pete Tong! There is an underbelly, however; as the DJ-life is, ironically, not for the romantic. Long nights short rests, and expectations to mix for the...


Murmur 81 : of Montreal's Kevin Barnes "The Secret To Cement"

SUBJECT : IDENTITY The classic ideal of identity is a detriment. The Stoics should have been more clear -- yes, "Know Thyself"; however, know that you are the sum total of multiple compounds, not merely a carrier identity. Kevin Barnes knows this. His many faces, styles, curiosities, sounds, stories, genres, personae...are all one. Oh, and by the way, he's also a huge Cleveland sports fan who loves a meditative baseball game at the Jake. Surprised? Here's your chance to not be.

Murmur 80 : Frankie Poullain of The Darkness "Better Than Francis"

SUBJECT : THE ROCKSTAR Certain ideas need to be revisited; surprisingly, this is one. It is our p.c. culture that's taken it from us? Is it our long-overdue examination of what allowances artistic professionals are granted? Or, is it that everyone now is called a "Rockstar" except Rockstars? Only one occupant of interplanetary craft can untie this knot - Frankie Poullain of The Darkness - offering-up his own definition of the word; who's "in", who's "out", and who should be scared.


Murmur 79 : Catherine Breillat "The Anatomy of Mud"

Turning to Artists for Answers. Gatekeepers are a curious lot as they offend defend as readily as the upkeep their terrain. If, as Paul Robeson was claimed, "artists are the gatekeepers of truth", then what is artist's responsibility to speaking their truth to power, to upheaval, and in the service of answering open cultural questions that extend far beyond the borderlines of their art. In our age of #metoo and #balancetonporc filmmaker Catherine Breillat's work finds a renewed vigor in...

Murmur 78 : U-GOD of Wu-Tang Clan "Put The Flag In My Hand"

SUBJECT : LEGACY A maddening topic, typically deflected. Perhaps, as with cats, there are far too many variables to manage; rather, as with Rashomon, no two people see their legacies, let alone those of others, similarly. To make matters more vexing, when one's legacy is connected to nine other Killa Beez (aka The Wu) straight from the slums of Shaolin, why even bother? We trouble U-GOD with our complexes; he, in turn, picks-up the flag and holds it high and, as always, raw.