Archive for December, 2009

2009 Music Year in Review

So here’s a little secret: this was actually posted on December 29, 2010. Here’s the thing: I totally meant to finish this in 2009 and continue the yearly streak of music year-in-reviews, but I kinda’ never finished. Thus, this list is mostly without commentary, but I wanted to get it posted before I posted 2010’s.

(See also: 2008 and 2007.)

Everything’s sorted in alphabetical order.

The Best of 2009

  • Ancient Astronauts: We Are To Answer – Bad assness from German production duo.
  • Bad Luck: Bad Luck – Neil Welch’s latest.
  • Del and Tame One: Parallel Uni-verses – Two of the nicest join forces for one of the year’s nicest.
  • Dollabin: Styles You Can’t Afford
  • Fire!: You Liked Me Five Minutes Ago – EP of Swedish Psych-jazz.
  • JS-1: Ground Original 2
  • Erin McKeown: Hundreds of Lions – Album of the year? Possibly.
  • MF Woolly: Chrome and Ivory
  • OSTR: O.C.B.
  • Ras Luta: Jesli Slyszysz – Positive (I assume), upbeat reggae. Ras Luta sounds like a Polish Jr. Gong.
  • Souls of Mischief: Montezuma’s Revenge
  • Spinach Prince: Spinach Prince – Live instruments treated like samplers.
  • Sunny Tuff: Tuff Luff (EP) – My mellow my man!
  • Tame One: Acid Tab Vocab
  • The Unknown and DJ Ragz: DC Airways – Beats made on battery power in airports and on planes.
  • Wszystkie Wschody Slonca: Japonski Rezyser – Polish reggae/dub
  • Wu-Tang remixes/covers (El Michels, vs King Tubby) – Favorite: “Money Rules Everything Around Me” (CREAM & Horace Andy)
  • Various Artists: Kind of Bloop – 8-bit covers of Kind of Blue
  • Various Artists: Polska Rootz – “Future folk” is an apt description.

The Best of Stuff from 2008 that I Discovered Late, in 2009

The Almost Best of 2009

(alphabetical; and this is where I get lazy about linking)

  • Brother Ali: Us (love that combatting homophobia in hip-hop is becoming the thing to do)
  • Brownbird Rudy Relic/Orb Mellon: The Juke Shall Rise Again EP
  • Chip-Fu: Jungle Rock Jr. Stop Playing mixtape
  • DMV hip-hop from yU (Before Taxes), dumhi (3!), Diamond District, Oddisee (x2)
  • Elzhi: Leftovers mixtape
  • Kam Moye: Splitting Image (Best verse of the year: final verse on “Stars”)
  • Matisyahu: Light
  • Mos Def: The Ecstatic
  • Q-Tip: Kamaal The Abstract (rec. 2001, rel. 2009)
  • Sadat X: Brand New Bein’
  • ST/MiC: Honest Music
  • Aly Tadros: Things Worth Keeping (really liked “Linger”)

Other stuff worthy of mention, crammed into a small space.

Aarophat & Illastrate As Black Noise,
Blu: Open,
Built By Snow: Mega,
Chris Read’s stuff (The Little Brother Show, The Diary volume 1.5),
Common Market: The Winter’s End EP,
Thaione Davis: Still Hear,
Deeskee: Audiobiograffiti,
Esoteric: Serve or Suffer,
Fashawn: Boy Meets World,
Avram Fefer Trio: Ritual,
Finale: Pipe Dream and a Promise,
Mr. Lif: I Heard It Today,
N.A.S.A.: The Spirit of Apollo,
Sage Francis: Sick of Wasting…,
Sleep: Hesitation Wounds,
DJ Spooky: The Secret Song

2009: My Year-in-Review

Being that I wrote barely any real entries in the blog this year, how about I sneak a year-in-review one in at the last second?

Here was my 2009 in a nutshell, certainly leaving out an awful lot. Thanks to twitter, Google Calendar, Flickr, and this blog for helping remind me what the heck I did this year.


  • A new president is sworn in. Didn’t go downtown, but did watch streaming video at work during lunch.


  • Went to see the new Friday the 13th with my sister. First time we saw a movie in the theater together since we were kids.
  • Took Rasine bowling for the first time.


  • One Sentence won the 2009 Bloggie for “Best Microblog.”
  • Stayed with my mom in a hotel in Philly during the worst snowstorm in years (to that point) as my Dad had surgery.
  • Race #1 of the year: Stupid Little 5k (24:26)
  • Demi Moore tweeted about One Sentence


With Ricky


  • Race #2: 5k for Kailee (25:08 mine, 25:21 official)
  • Race #3: Poplar Spring Run for the Animals (5k) (24:50 mine, 24:58 official)
  • Had my first neti pot experience.
  • Spoke at a Board of Supervisors meeting in support of some local farms (along with 50 other people). If you look hard enough, you can find video online.
  • Closed up shop on ADDreviews after almost eight years.


  • Jesus, did nothing interesting happen in June?


  • An armed robber takes a family hostage a mile or so from where we live. Huyen sees the helicopters searching for him. He’s caught later that night.
  • Newsweek tweets about One Sentence.
  • Brad Warner big ups Rasine.
  • Started the refinancing process, which would (when completed) save us $500 a month.
  • Took Rasine to a carnival.


  • Went to a Half Pint show at Merriweather Post Pavillion. Hung back stage and watched Bob Marley’s grandchildren play ping pong with Squidly Cole (the son of the man credited with recording the first reggae song), saw Snoop Dogg play basketball, and got dissed by Stephen Marley.
  • Launched a long-in-the-works redesign of Half Pint’s site.
  • Had my bottom two wisdom teeth removed. The pain lingered for weeks.
  • A block away from our house, a dog mauled and killed another dog and a man in his home.
  • Went to a long-time friend’s wedding and met a guy that was in the original Sleepaway Camp.
  • Got bootleg Golden Palace DVDs in the mail.
  • Started our vacation in Northampton, Massachussetts. Ate great food, sat with a local sangha, met the authors of the amazing The Story of Tea, and enjoyed the city where almost no one accepts credit cards.
  • Continued the vacation in Boston for college friend John’s wedding. Met up with Eric Prescott just weeks before he opened Peace O’ Pie.
  • Then we made our way to New York City for non-stop fun. Ran twice in Central Park, including a 7-mile loop that included “Heartbreak Hill.” We ate absurd amounts of food, including a burrito the size of Rasine’s head and a huge variety of vegan sushi with master bluesman Brownbird Rudy Relic. Our time in NYC this year was so much fun, it’ll probably turn into an annual event.

With Pint


Last Subway Ride


  • Five years vegan.
  • 34 years alive.
  • Finally finished the mortgage refinancing process.
  • Took Rasine to her first (high school) football game. She dug it, especially high-fiving the mascot.

Daddy with his Daughters


  • Worked election day.
  • Helped an older woman break into her house.


  • First new haircut style in entirely too long.
  • Talked to my best friend from 5th grade today for the first time in 20+ years.
  • 15 years of web publishing.
  • Killed Urban Ambiance (the site and the LLC). Launched Laze Makes Things.
  • Actually wrote a post on twist of fait.

New hair!

Books I Finished Reading This Year

Not a single work of fiction finished this year, though I did read a little.

  • Mortified: Real Words. Real People. Real Pathetic. by David Nadelberg
  • Zen Wrapped in Karma Dipped in Chocolate: A Trip Through Death, Sex, Divorce, and Spiritual Celebrity in Search of the True Dharma by Brad Warner
  • Mortified: Love Is a Battlefield by David Nadelberg
  • The Story of Tea: A Cultural History and Drinking Guide by Mary Ellen and Robert J. Heiss
  • WrestleCrap: The Very Worst of Pro Wrestling by R.D. Reynolds
  • Say Everything: How Blogging Began, What It’s Becoming, and Why It Matters by Scott Rosenberg
  • Raising Freethinkers: A Practical Guide for Parenting Beyond Belief by Dale McGowan
  • Street Gang: The Complete History of Sesame Street by Michael Davis
  • Against the Stream: A Buddhist Manual for Spiritual Revolutionaries by Noah Levine
  • The Empty Mirror by Jan Van De Wetering
  • The Vegan Monologues by Ben Shaberman
  • What I Talk About When I Talk About Running by Haruki Murakami
  • It Sucked and Then I Cried: How I Had a Baby, a Breakdown, and a Much Needed Margarita by Heather Armstrong
  • Cheap: The High Cost of Discount Culture by Ellen Ruppel Shell
  • Don’t Get Too Comfortable: The Indignities of Coach Class, The Torments of Low Thread Count, The Never-Ending Quest for Artisanal Olive Oil, and Other First World Problems by David Rakoff (my sole audiobook of the year)

Deaths I Tweeted

Other notes

  • I delved way deeper into tea than I ever have before. This was the year I discovered the beauty of Japanese greens after having dismissed them for so long and the amazingness that is Tung Ting oolong. Bought an insane amount of great tea from trips to NYC and MA and have loved almost all of it.
  • Launched/re-launched a total of four sites this year.
  • Dealt a lot more with depression this year than previous years. Working on the root causes.
  • I am working on another Music Year in Review post. This weekend, maybe?
  • Though I didn’t run a ton this year, I did hit the pavement for more miles than any previous year. That’s something, right?
  • Was sick this year more than usual.
  • Finished up the year on some positive and hopeful notes. 2010: big tings a gwaan!

links for 2009-12-30

links for 2009-12-29

links for 2009-12-15

links for 2009-12-10

links for 2009-12-08

links for 2009-12-04

Black World

The “special music issue” of Black World from November 1973. It includes an article by Marion Brown and a great interview with Archie Shepp:

(If the above embed is borked, go here.)

links for 2009-12-02