Beatles on January 27, 1969 Podcast

If you have been following this podcast series, you know that all month The Beatles have been having trouble agreeing on where to hold a live performance.  A decision has been reached, at least for today.  Listen to the podcast and you will find out the current plan.  The podcast will end with a really fun version of “I’ve Got A Feeling.”

Click on the grey bar to listen.

Lemmy said it was OK

As I mentioned early last week, I had a chance to ask Lemmy if it was OK to use his name on my blog.

Motorhead were signing autographs at a CD store called The Sound Garden in Baltimore.  Rock Dad gets VIP access so I was able to walk right by the true metalheads who had been lined up all day. 

If you’ve ever been at one of these things, you know that you get about 15 seconds to say “hey man, I really did your stuff” before you are hustled away.  You’re lucky if you get a handshake.  (I did.)  I had to explain the Lemmy-based rating system twice but Lemmy said it was OK.

I’ll give Lemmy six Lemmys for being a good sport.

I’m going to meet Lemmy

I’m going to see Motorhead Thursday.  They are going to sign autographs at a cool little CD store called The Sound Garden in Baltimore.  Hopefully I’ll get a chance to find out what they think about the Lemmy-based ratings system.

No 5-Lemmy ratings yet

They will be very rare. I might not even cover them because news of them will be everywhere. You heard about fire, right? Electricity? The wheel? The humbucking pickup?

No 1- or 2-Lemmy ratings yet

That’s good. It would be kind of a waste for me to write and for you to read about something pointless.

Gotta love AdSense

Update 7/22/08: This is a post from my old blog, which contained Google ads.

I’ve got to take a quick detour to show this off. Followers of my blog might have enjoyed watching Google AdSense try to figure out what “context relevant” ads to display. I just looked back at my last post to remember where I left off and got a big kick out of the ads on display. Check this out:


It’s really just what I wanted. They have ads for online metal radio and PCR arrays. You need them to sequence DNA. The ancestry test is relevant too.

Man, they are good.

How science is like rock & roll

Here is a tip for aspiring bloggers. When you can’t find a real topic, make a list. Today’s post was going to follow up on Testament’s recent comments on the vaccine safety non-controversy. I’m going to delay my comments on Testament’s comments until they actually make them.

Today’s list-in-place-of-a-topic is

How science is like rock & roll

  1. Uniforms are required. You might mistake a college professor for a wine shop owner or a social worker for a church secretary but you wouldn’t ask Ol‘ Dirty Bastard or Slash to refinance your mortgage. You might wonder whether a tuxedoed man is a funeral director or a conductor but you would not confuse Carl Sagan with the kid who mows your lawn.
  2. Babe magnets. Good science relies on observation. Let’s ignore that and go right to anecdotal evidence. I used to work at a research lab that was affiliated with a snooty medical school. The guy who stocked the supply room wore a tie beneath his lab coat, KWIM? Single women under 30 outnumbered men under 30 at least 3:1. Most were intelligent, and friendly, quite a few were really attractive and here’s the kicker: they were NORMAL. Pearl Jam was more popular than Star Trek. They drank. They followed my band. The lab was a great place to meet cool women.
  3. Parents. The only thing that will piss off your parents more than saying you are quitting school to become a roadie for Insane Clown Posse would be to give them 17 logical reasons why it’s a good idea.
  4. You can’t get something for nothing. Perpetual motion, lead into gold, Milli Vanilli, Paris Hilton… same deal.
  5. Experiments lead somewhere. Scientific knowledge builds and builds and eventually useful technology arises. The same thing happens in rock. Hendrix did things nobody else could do. People kind of figured it out. Then Eddie Van Halen blew everyone away until thousands of teenagers who studied guitar mags in their bedrooms could play every note. The current metal guitar players like DragonForce are insane. Skip ahead to 3:23 in this video.

  6. Let’s take a moment to remember that Hendrix is still the best. DragonForce is sick, though.

  7. They help us understand the world Understanding is one of the primary goals of science. I learned more important things about the Civil War from The Band’s “The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down” than in high school.
  8. People can participate on different levels. Whether you work in the field, teach, are a fan, or try to ignore them, the culture of music and science are all around you. Early 2007 brought Amy Winehouse and Comet C/2006 P1, the brightest comet in 40 years. You didn’t need any special knowledge to enjoy them. A deeper appreciation of soul music or knowledge of the composition of comets provides additional pleasure. Professionals may have wondered how to duplicate Winehouse’s success or how Comet C/2006 P1 reduced the speed of the solar wind out past Mars’ orbit.
  9. There is a hierarchy of involvement with science and rock:
  10. Popularizers – professionals who get other people excited about their field: Carl Sagan or The Beatles
    Avantgarde – those who push the field forward: Robert McNaught (discoverer of Comet C/2006 P1) or composer Elliot Schwartz (both rely on universities for their funding as well.)
    Supporters: National Geographic or the folks who brought us Record Store Day.
    Enthusiasts: weekend fossil hunters or garage bands
    Everyone else: people who like clean water or music fans
    Buzzkills: Ben Stein or Tipper Gore