Saturday, July 19, 2008

If I Were A Richman

Welcome to a brand new (geddit?) playlist featuring nothing but Jonathan Richman.

The beauty of this is twofold:

1. If you don't like Jonathan Richman then you don't need to bother with this and you can go straight on to the next (probably far more interesting) post from someone like ejaydee, nilpferd or steenbeck (par exemple) and...
2. If you do like Jonathan or you're willing to give him a chance then you're in for a treat!

I really hope the technology works - both Podbean and Deezer failed me tonight so I'm joining the Boxstr club and feel like I'm flying by the seat of my pants.

I'll spare you the lengthy introductions this week - Jonathan tends to speak for himself. So, here we go: six tracks - one genius - how can you possibly go wrong?

Well after an unbelievable amount of frustration and an enormous amount of help from my wonderful fellow 'Spillers - I gave up and went back to Podbean which now seems to be working. God I hope this is worth it...


Shoegazer said...

Here is a copy of Blinpy's original insructions:

1. Let's assume you have set up your boxstr account at and are logged in.
2. Click on the upload tab in the top bar
3. Click the "choose file" button
4. Select the track you want from your computer, in this case I've gone for "Rush Hour" by Jane Weidlin. Repeat step 4 if you want to select multiple tracks. To help, I've also chosen "The Teaser" by Kool Keith and Karen O.
5. Click the "upload selected files" button - a "processing upload, please wait" screen will appear for quite a little while.
6. Once they've uploaded, a new screen will appear that has 'linking codes' in it in a box.
7. Click the "just the direct URLs" blue highlighted bit - the links in the box will change accordingly. These new links are ready for the yahoo media player.
8. To get the code for the yahoo media player that I use, bookmark this page:
and open it up in a new window.
9. Now open up your blog post in the blogger editor, and wherever you want the mp3s to sit in the post, click over to the "edit html" window. At this point I have 3 web browser windows open; blogger, boxster, and yahoo media player.
10. On the yahoo page, copy and paste the code in box A. I've only copied the first two lines, as I have only two mp3s to post.
11. Paste this code into the edit html window.
12. Go over to boxstr, and copy and paste the code for the link for the first mp3. Then paste this address over the bit that says, so that it's inbetween the inverted commas and then type a nice descriptive name instead of the part that says 'first link'.
Repeat step 12 for each mp3.
13. Now, to add the actual player, copy and paste the code in box B from the yahoo page to the edit html box on blogger. It's best to do this at the end of your post, even though it won't be visible when you go back over to the compose window. The play buttons won't be visible til you publish either.
14. That should be it, now once the blog entry is published you should get the play button next to each mp3, and if folks want to download them direct to their computers, they can click the underlined track description.
15. Having followed my own instructions, there should now be some tasty mp3s just below where i'm typing this just now (fingers crossed!!)

saneshane said...

The thing that helped me was Blimpys 'How to' but I printed it out and stuck it on my wall!
he described putting 'the teaser' Kool Kieth and Karen O...but I can't find it here in the spill!
Blimpy Help.

I really want to listen to this..keep trying.
this is the link for the little player bit..sorry I'm crap help!

ToffeeBoy said...

@ saneshane - thanks a million - I'm going to try it now!

goneforeign said...

Is there some advantage in going to Boxstr? Everybody seems to be using it, I'm not sure why. It seems to be the choice of all podcasters, is there a reason?

saneshane said...

But lucky for me shoegazer knows where it is! I'll keep the thanks tho. good luck.

@GF for me it'll up load all the tracks you chose at once fairly quickly so you can do something more interesting while that happens.
podbean uploads one at a time as far as I can tell.

ToffeeBoy said...

@ saneshane - I'm now even more frustrated than I was before! The problem is that I've already uploaded the files to my Boxstr account and I'm past stage 6 & 7 - so I don't have a page with 'linking codes' in it and there's no "just the direct URLs" blue highlighted bit to click.

And then - AND THEN!!!! - the link for the Yahoo media player works fine and there's lots of useful tips and guidance on how to use it but when you click on the 'Media Player' icon at the top of the page you get redirected to a page that says 'Sorry, the page you requested was not found'.

I may have to kill someone ... or I suppose I could just try Podbean again...

saneshane said...

go back to your boxstr files tick each song you want and above it you have
'select file actions'
look in that for 'get linking codes'.
then copy those to between the " and " in the yahoo player.
does that help?

Shoegazer said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

ToffeeBoy, Sourpus here. Keep at it son! If only for me.. Im bursting to know what you chose from such a sparkling list of potential. My own favorites (although not all of them are the officially released versions) are as follows:

1) Someone I care about
2) Walter Johnson
3) Now is better than before
4) The Beach
5) Affection
6) Summer morning
7) Angels watching over me
8) This kind of music
9) When im walking
10) Astral Plain
11) The Tag Game
12) Stop this car
13) When I Dance
14) Shirin and Fahrad
15) When Harpo played his harp
16) A Plea for Tenderness
17) Velvet Underground
18) Fender Stratocaster
19) That Summer Feeling
20) Nineteen in Naples

Actually, ask me tomorrow and i'll tell you 'Dancing Late at Night' is my all time favorite! In fact... take every album between 1983 and 1998 as read and include every track from the first album and from 'Rock n Roll with...'

saneshane said...

Shoegazer please keep helping..just put 3 songs up to make sure its okay and they play so..keep going..Toffeeboy..i'm rubbish at tech stuff so hope for all I guess.
got to sleep ..
I do want to listen to some of these tracks passed to sourpus then!

ejaydee said...

I'm very much looking forward to this. The way I do it is a bit different. See, that yahoo media player thing never worked for me, so at 7) I select the HTML code, and stick that in my blogger post.

ToffeeBoy said...

Thanks for all you help and suggestions - as you'll have seen, I gave up and went back to Podbean. I may revisit Boxstr sometime in the future but I may also stick red hot pokers up my ... look, I'm tired and need some sleep!

ToffeeBoy said...

@ shoegazer - apologies for not specifically thanking you for your assistance last night. In my state of utter frustration and despair I failed to notice that the original post was yours! Sorry old chap - much appreciated.

@ sourpus - fantastic Jojo list there. 20 absolute classics many of which I would include in my own top twenty - but I would have Morning Of Our Lives at number one, and Fenway, Lydia, Fly Into The Mystery and Abu Jamal in there somewhere. The particular point of my current playlist is that they are all about brands or at least contain a passing mention of a brand. The first two (My Jeans and Rockin' Shopping Center) speak for themselves - Rockin' Shopping Center (what a title!) even contains the line "the different labels and the different brands". Fender Stratocaster and Dodge Veg-O-Matic are similarly explicit about their brand endorsement.

I can't completely justify the inclusion of Fly Into The Mystery but it does include the line about the now-departed Boston department store, Filene's. And of course Roadrunner namechecks the Stop'n'Shop.

Blimpy said...

hi guys,

sorry my instructions aren't very good.

if I could post up html code on the blog then i would, as it'd make things easier

@gf - the reason boxstr appealed to me initially is that you can hot-link to mp3s. Nearly all free file hosting services don't offer this.

Blimpy said...

shane - i've emailed you the karen o and kool keith track!

saneshane said...

1 thanks blimpy love it.

2 worth the wait, I went straight back to podbean to start with too, but when it works (boxstr) it's much quicker.

3 been back a few days now and between catching up on work I've found you lot have been mighty busy..two more casts to go through ..and nearly 400 e-mails!
This along with 100 tracks I got in Turkey and the piles of CDs waiting for me when I returned...sit back press play this is what Sunday afternoons are made for.

4 Hope Steens not being driven crazy by manic 6 year olds..enjoy your party Malcolm. (got a track called Malcolm by Merz but its not bouncy enough for a party!)

ToffeeBoy said...

In response to tincanman's challenge over on the mothership, here's my recommended Jonathan Richman top twenty:

1. The Morning Of Our Lives
2. Fly Into The Mystery
3. Hospital
4. The Neighbours
5. The Fenway
6. Abu Jamal
7. Now Is Better Than Before
8. My Love Is A Flower (Just Beginning To Bloom)
9. Abdul & Cleopatra
10.Dignified & Old
13.Walter Johnson
14.New England
16.Monologue About Bermuda
17.Man Walks Among Us
18.Corner Store
20.Give Paris One More Chance

As sourpus said though, you could pick just about any twenty from the Jojo ouevre and come up with a damn fine list.

steenbeck said...

Thanks for implying that my posts are ever interesting. I always feel like they're total nonsense and then eventually someone replies with a mercy-comment.
ANd I think THIS is a very interesting post. I had a good friend in college who thought Jojo, as he called him, was god, and he made me a mixed tape (yes an actual cassette) which I loved at the time but have since lost. So I'm very looking forward to hearing this list, once I've figured out how to make a dragonfly out of two ten inch rounds of cake. I think I've got it...

As for boxstr, I gave up on podbean after I'd completely filled 2 accounts. ANd I like the fact that podbean lets you upload a bunch at once, and then the songs become downloadable. It is a bit of a hassle, but it's worth figuring out, I think.

steenbeck said...

Oh and thanks for the party wishes Saneshane. It hasn't started yet, but I'm actually looking forward to it. My biggest worry is that it's 96 degrees and we don't have air conditioning. Don't know what that is in non-farenheit, but it's HOT!!
On a funny Malcolm note, he's been saying lately, "I want to be from France, I want to be French" and I say, okay, you can be french. DOn't know where he got that from, unless he's channelling Goneforeign. He also said he wants us to call him Malcolmzap. Also okay with me.

ToffeeBoy said...

@ blimpy - your instructions were perfectly clear - I was just utterly unable to focus on anything last night. I have to admit, I lost it - just a wee bit...

Proudfoot said...

It's all about the humidity steenbeck.
Teah, toffee it was worth it. There are quite a few JR songs on your list I haven't heard yet. For me he's an artist like the Fall. I listen, I go away for a bit, I come back. JR is still the same but always different. The times we connect are our favourite JR albums but we don't listen in a continuous line and we miss bits. Not sure I really want ALL his albums, just the ones that fall into my life from time to time. Does any of that make sense?

Anonymous said...

Proudfoot, in my opinion that's exactly how to take Jonathan Richman records - as and when they come. I wont say he rarely nails the songs, because that wouldn't be true, but there are albums that get much closer to cutting the 'mootard' (especially in terms of the magic that he is capable of creating) than others, and anyway, like his performances, you have to catch a few before you really understand what he's all about anyway and the difference between a good night and an everyday one.

These tracks ToffeeBoy has chosen are among his very best recorded works - all, for me, quite different and uniquely affecting - but I dont listen to Jojo from day to day. In fact, here in Budapest, I dont even have any of his stuff with me. Its all boxed up somewhere til I settle and get my turntable planted somewhere I really wanna live. Jojo never played here (although he's been to neighbouring Croatia and Serbia) and if he did and I saw him enjoying it, I would seriously have to rethink the place. That's how much I have learned to trust his judgement.

If I had to have just three of his albums with me on a desert island somewhere, I think they would be:

- Rock n Roll with..
- Rockin and Romance
- Its time for...

Whatever I took with me though, I know I would eventually burn to hear the rest again.


Proudfoot said...

@sourpus. I can see how people wouldn't 'get' JR live sometimes. I saw him in a tent at a festival where he insisted the mixer turned the sound down so far that everyone had to strain to hear. There were mutterings from some people who went off to find something louder, but it's a trick I've used teaching many a time since. If you have to make an effort to listen you might appreciate it more...
The first gig I saw had dreadful sound and I was told the band had tried to soundcheck earlier but that JR had wandered off to the local 'recreation ground' and played footie with the local urchins, all of whom were completely unaware of who he was I'm sure. I wonder if he was any good at football?

ejaydee said...

So I've finally got round to listening to all the songs, thanks TBoy. Everytime I see him nominated on RR, I get more curious about him. I only knew Roadrunner, That Smmer Feeling and Egyptian Reggae, as well as another one (something about the moment of our lives), and I like all of these. I'd like to hear more, but I think that overall, I prefer him when there's a bit more drums and bass.

ToffeeBoy said...

@ ejaydee

The track you're thinking of is The Morning Of Our Lives which is number one on my Jojo list! I know what you mean about the drums and bass but if you ever get to see him live, you'll appreciate how well the stripped-down-to-the-absolute-basics approach works so well for him.