In this supplementary mini-mutation, I decided that it was worth presenting some of Wobbly’s music without any of my mixing and editing. It was nice to hear the interview with Jon, and I hope you have already listened to the primary show (which you can find here). But we did talk a lot about his music, and didn’t really present any of it for you to sample.
So, consider this a bite-sized sample, more or less covering the kind of work that he does as an artist. It’s pretty rockin’, it’s nice and loose, and if you stay tuned to the end, you can get a small sample of the new record he’s working on, which is not yet out (and probably won’t be until next year).
Raw Wobbly (#79a)
01.) 2 Pinna (9L) * Moebius Story Leidecker * Familiar * Bureau B Records (2016)
02.) Fertile * People Like Us & Wobbly * Music for the Fire * Illegal Art (2010)
03.) Live Performance * NegativWobblyLand * 27 August 2011 @ Zool in Oakland * Previously Unreleased (2011)
04.) The Booper Symphony [Excerpt] * Negativland * 23 September 2012 * Previously Unreleased (2012)
05.) Closest Living Relations * Sagan * Unseen Forces * Vague Terrain (2004)
06.) Excerpt * Wobbly * Monitress * Unreleased (2018)
07.) Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas * No-L * A Mutated Christmas * Illegal Art (2001)
It is really hard to have it sink in that December is here, and that this year is winding down. And since we were having such a good time last month, we decided to annex a day so that Negativland November could continue for one more week.
And this week, we interview another incredible artist who also happens to be in the band: Wobbly. (Jon Leidecker.) In this frank and wide-ranging conversation, we discuss his new work (and work yet to come), his role in Negativland and Over The Edge Radio, and pretty much everything else that came to mind as we bantered. As a long-time fan, it was a pleasure to chat, and I think anyone who is a fan of this show will enjoy this conversation, which gets at some of the philosophical impulses behind why we do what we do, and how there is always still a fight to be fought, somewhere.
For this program, MKUltramegaphone are in studio, and we had a blast stretching our audio legs again. horridus joins the show at around the 24 minute mark, and we jam it out all the way to the bitter end. There’s about six minutes of us “unwinding” that was podcast-only this week, and while it’s not essential to the interview part of the show, it does sort of put a cap on the show, for us, and is a fun “come down” period, too.
It has been so much fun to get to talk with all these artists who have left such a big mark on me, personally and creatively. Hopefully some of that excitement – when it does come through – is not not too distracting from the subjects of these chats.
And, more importantly, I hope you like them. I’m quite fond of how it all tuned out.
This show is most certainly to be part of the larger arc happening with my interviews with The Weatherman and Mark Hosler. But don’t let that fool you! We have more Negativ-fun on the program coming next year. Tim Maloney is going to talk about his role as a video artist for the group, and we will also have part two of my conversation with Mark. For those who want to follow all of my Negativland shows, this link may be incredibly useful to you: midvalleymutations.com/category/negativland/
The fun’s not over, and the holiday season is underway! Stay tuned for more excitement in the weeks to come.
04.) Interview Part 3 * Wobbly * 9 November 2017 * Mid-Valley Mutations (2017)
More solo vs collaborations, playing recordings of other people as art, expressing a culture’s voice in the art we make, joining Negativland and working with them, honing your own creative voice.
Part IV: “15 year olds are growing up with the understanding that you don’t own your own self expression.”
05.) Interview Part 4 * Wobbly * 9 November 2017 * Mid-Valley Mutations (2017)
Going to Negativland camp, Variations Radio Program and the culture wars, Kenny G (ubu.com), artist’s rights and the ownership of culture, the concept of the author, self expression through social media and the evaporation of owning our own expressions and data, the changing politics of culture jamming, post-vaporwave data profiles dictating our reality, artistic merit slipping away as time moves on, generational sea-changes, culture tacking to the libertarian center, It’s All In Your Head.
Part V: “They’re inherently unpredictable!”
06.) Interview Part 5 * Wobbly * 9 November 2017 * Mid-Valley Mutations (2017)
The changing technology and gear, 100% iPad album, his residency at the S1 Synth Library in Portland, the ergonomics of devices (for the audience), a Don way of doing things, more history about the original booper from 1974, The Booper Symphony, the live Negativland Experience.
Part VI: “Keep discovering mistakes.”
07.) Interview Part 6 * Wobbly * 9 November 2017 * Mid-Valley Mutations (2017)
Over The Edge with Wobbly & KROB, Puzzling Evidence, Don as teacher, doing radio with him, making art and remaining open, how to stay confused, listening as a creative tool, a live performance every time you press play, making a “mix” show on live radio and why that’s difficult, radio and music reporting killing the mix show, KPFA supporting mix radio, approaches to sampling, discovering sample sources, natural record shopping habits.
Part VII: “Continuity.”
08.) Interview Part 7 * Wobbly * 9 November 2017 * Mid-Valley Mutations (2017)
Finding music under your own power, our varying radio styles, Over The Edge stories, archive.org’s collection, more episodes being uncovered, Tim Maloney’s role behind the scenes, Don’s vision for the show, KROB’s role behind the scenes, Wobbly’s new record Monitress, the surveillance state, a Zeena Parkins record of duos, Sagan’s second album in 2018, Cosmos, Who Speaks For Earth?, pseudo-obscurity, the impulse behind these interviews, working on the new Negativland Record this month.
01.) Austin FM Theme * Paco Jones * Austin FM Theme * Self-Released (2016)
Part II: “I guess it’s more of a soundscape thing.”
03.) Interview Part 1 * Mark Hosler * 25 October 2017 * Mid-Valley Mutations (2017)
04.) Live Performance * Mark Hosler * 17 February 2016 * Self-Released (2016)
05.) Interview Part 2 * Mark Hosler * 25 October 2017 * Mid-Valley Mutations (2017)
Part III: “A golden age for crazy sound and noise-making.”
[horridus of devilsclub calls in between 24:50 and 39:30 to play along with the show.]
06.) Interview Part 3 * Mark Hosler * 25 October 2017 * Mid-Valley Mutations (2017)
Gear talk, the Booper, learning how to play live, the change in technology, Mark taking on the ashes of past members Ian Allen, Don Joyce & Richard Lyons (plus his brother & parents), coping with and processing death, Richard’s sense of humor, Dayle Embree photo.
Part IV: “It’s existentially weird.”
[Pat of Uneasy Chars calls in between 56:45 and 1:07:50 to play along with the show.]
07.) Interview Part 4 * Mark Hosler * 25 October 2017 * Mid-Valley Mutations (2017)
08.) I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For (Edited Special Edit Radio Mix) * Negativland * These Guys Are From England And Who Gives A Shit * Seelard Records (2001)
09.) Interview Part 4 * Mark Hosler * 25 October 2017 * Mid-Valley Mutations (2017)
16.) Interview Part 9 * Mark Hosler * 25 October 2017 * Mid-Valley Mutations (2017)
17.) Aluminum or Glass: The Memo * Negativland * Dispepsi * Seeland Records (1997)
18.) Interview Part 10 * Mark Hosler * 25 October 2017 * Mid-Valley Mutations (2017)
It is with no small amount of fanfare and excitement that I am able to bring none other than The Weatherman of Negativland fame to Mid-Valley Mutations. If you have been a long-time listener, or know anything about the kind of radio and music that I do, you’ll probably be saying something like, “Don’t you just try to imitate them with your work anyway?” And to that I would say: yes, poorly!
To say that Negativland has influenced me is a bit of an understatement, but their impact on this show is only one reason why it is interesting that I have The Weatherman on. This year, he has taken to social media, and for the reclusive (and often counter-cultural) artist that he is, this action took the Inter-Web-A-Tron by storm. His live feeds (full of Booper jams, mixes of radio and TV with whatever is on his VCR, and other odds and sods) are incredible, fascinating, and according to various, “terms and service agreements,” entirely illegal in the same way that sampling and collage art was deemed so in the first place. So, in many ways, he has not changed a bit.
The Weatherman and I talked for quite some time, about his current performances online, his history with Negativland, CBs and Jamming Culture, the legendary U2 single and how he found himself singing those well-known copywritten words, his relationship with Richard Lyons and Don Joyce (two band members who have both passed recently), and as if that weren’t enough, he performs The Booper, LIVE and reads The Weather!
Personally, this was a dream come true. This band and their radio show have been a focal point for the kind of work I want to create, and has guided my attitudes toward culture and art for my entire adult life. To find out that, not only are the members of this group extremely friendly and approachable, but game to go along with my nonsense too, is a very cool experience, for sure.
If you listened to the live broadcast, this podcast version has about seven minutes of bonus material, available only to the podcast listeners of the show. Scan to the end; we pick up the conversation exactly where you feel like we stopped. I would also urge you to tune in on 24 November for an interview with Mark Hosler, and on 1 December for an interview with Wobbly, completing Negativland November! It’s been a pleasure to talk to them all; now, hear what they had to say.
So, open up a fresh Club Soda, tune in KMUZ with your home-brewed radio console, and enjoy this frank and enlightening conversation with one of my favorite artists: The Weatherman.
01.) Austin FM Theme * Paco Jones * Austin FM Theme * Self-Released (2016)
02.) Interview Part 1 * The Weatherman * 2 October 2017 * Mid-Valley Mutations (2017)
03.) Theme From ‘A Big 10-8 Place’ * Negativland * A Big 10-8 Place * Seeland Records (1983)
Part II: “You’re scholarly!”
04.) Interview Part 2 * The Weatherman * 2 October 2017 * Mid-Valley Mutations (2017)
Part V: “I’m not a musician, I just experiment with sound.”
10.) Interview Part 6 * The Weatherman * 2 October 2017 * Mid-Valley Mutations (2017)
Don gets added to the group, Night Sky Music, digitizing analog work properly, The Weatherman’s creative process, nonsense words and phrases, image 1image 2 & image 3, the act of selection, Night Flight‘s influence.
11.) Happy The Harmonica * Negativland * Free * Seeland Records (1993)
Part VI: “This Is The Weatherman.”
12.) Interview Part 7 * The Weatherman * 2 October 2017 * Mid-Valley Mutations (2017)
Media memories, strange noises from the sky, voice to skull transmissions andother conspiracies, performing live online, Over The Edge, and more Firesign Theater,
Part VII: “I never leave this house, pretty much.”
13.) Interview Part 8 * The Weatherman * 2 October 2017 * Mid-Valley Mutations (2017)
In the last year I’ve written quite a bit about Don Joyce, who was not only my favorite DJ, but hosted the incredible Over The Edge program for 34 years, until he passed at exactly one year ago, today. Over The Edge was not only near and dear to my heart, and a weekly part of my life for a large chunk of it, but was the exact influence that showed me what my radio programs could be like, and how they could take shape. The story that won me over as a fan is the one that appears on the program today, and is an excellent entry point into the weird world of his kind of experimental radio.
“The Time Zones Exchange Project” is a story edited from several OTE Broadcasts that were on KPFA Radio from 1989 – 1992. The story is… complicated, but immediately converted me into a fan. But it took the CD Release for me to hear it in the most easily accessible form; the narrative played out over weeks and years, and became some of the mythology of OTE as it developed over the last 20 or so years.
To have lost Don was to loose an inspiration and a friend, one that I never met and never spoke with, save for a brief e-mail exchange in 2008. It was the first time I cried over a celebrity death since High School, and not only showed me how much he was an influence, but how the loss of a radio personality that I became familiar with as I grew into an adult seemed far too symbolic, especially during the weekend where I had turned 40 and celebrated a bachelor party.
Don was 71, when he passed, and spent almost 50 years of his life in the service of making radio. A single hour of my program cannot begin to do justice to this singular radio voice. But, hopefully, it can serve as a place to start for people who never got to know how great he was.
The Time Zones Exchange Project: A Tribute To Don Joyce
Part I: “This Is The Piddle Diddle Report”
01.) The Time Zones Exchange Project Part I * Don Joyce (Edited by Austin Rich) * Over The Edge Vol. 7: Time Zones Exchange Project * Seeland Records (1994)
02.) Arbory Hill [Excerpt] * Negativland * Deathsentences of the Polished And Structurally Weak * Seeland Records (2002)
Part II: “This Fabled Island”
03.)  [Excerpt] * Negativland * Negativland * Seeland Records (1980)
04.) The Time Zones Exchange Project Part II * Don Joyce (Edited by Austin Rich) * Over The Edge Vol. 7: Time Zones Exchange Project * Seeland Records (1994)
Part III: “Eaten By A Black Hole”
05.) Don’t Fool Me [Excerpt] * Negativland * Deathsentences of the Polished And Structurally Weak * Seeland Records (2002)
06.) The Time Zones Exchange Project Part I * Don Joyce (Edited by Austin Rich) * Over The Edge Vol. 7: Time Zones Exchange Project * Seeland Records (1994)
07.) Soapbox Cutter * Porest * Modern Journal of Popular Savagery * Nashazphone (2016)