Monday, March 7, 2011


   I love music. It's my favorite form of entertainment, and artistic expression. I have a pretty varied taste in music ranging from rock, blues and jazz, to classical, flamenco, even a little (very little) hip-hop and just about anything in-between. Today I want to cover some of my favorite songwriters. This list, like all my other lists, is in no particular order.

   Bob Dylan. You can't have a credible songwriter list without putting Dylan on it. He is the best songwriter of our time period, and quite possibly any time period. You would be hard pressed to find any musician or band who wasn't influenced by Bob Dylan, either directly or indirectly.

   Bradley Nowell. Nowell is one of the most underrated songwriters ever. He is a rarity in which nearly every song he wrote was fantastic, with very few, if any, bad songs. I understand that not everyone is into Sublime and their type of music, but if you can look at it from an unbiased, open-minded perspective, I'm sure you would agree with me.

    Jeff Buckley. Not many people even know that this guy ever existed, which is kind of astonishing to me. It may be due to the fact that he only recorded one studio album, Grace. Almost everyone has heard his remake of Hallelujah, in various films and television shows, although they may not even know it. Even though he only produced one album it was ranked by NME as the 23rd greatest album ever.

   Jimi Hendrix. Of course I put Hendrix on this list, he's my favorite guy ever. To refrain from rambling on about Hendrix for too long, I will just say that he is probably the most innovative force in rock music. If you don't believe me then go listen to Machine Gun.

   Neil Young. Another folk/rock musician. From Buffalo Springfield, to Crazy Horse, To CSNY, and his solo work. Neil Young consistently puts out excellent music, not only lyrically, but musically as well. He was even dubbed the "Godfather of Grunge".

   Roger Waters. Waters is the Mad Scientist of rock music. He was the driving force behind the post-Barrett Pink Floyd, with albums like Dark Side of the Moon, and The Wall, and so forth. He draws from his darkness within to create these thematic masterpieces. It's even become a "cool thing" to wear Pink Floyd shirts, even if you know next to nothing about the band. By the way, it's not cool. If you do this, then you are a douche bag.

  Johann Sebastian Bach. Not to be confused with that asshole from that shitty 80's buttrock band. While Bach probably wouldn't be considered innovative. He built upon the pre existing musical structure, and paved the way for a lot of artist to come after him.

   Bob Marley. Marley is usually know (often ignorantly) for his marijuana use. Which is a shame, because he was an amazing songwriter. Marley liked to write songs about peace and love. But he also wrote political songs, and songs about internal conflict and struggle. I find it disturbing that so many people think Eric Clapton wrote "I Shot the Sheriff". He didn't, it was Marley damnit!

   Ok, that's most of the ones that I could think of off the top of my head. I left a lot of great ones out, mainly because some were more "group efforts" rather than individual efforts, Led Zeppelin for example. Please refrain from leaving "hey you forgot _____" posts. Instead please let me know some of your own favorite songwriters, group, individual, or otherwise.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Cartoon Characters

   I may be 22 years old, but I still love to watch cartoons. Cartoons tend to run longer than live action shows. One of the reason is because no one changes unless the writers want them too. Babies stay babies, old people don't get older, everyone stays the same age. A good example is Maggie from The Simpson who has been a baby for 21 years. Anyway, I'm going to talk about five of my favorite characters, I'm only going  to pick one per show.

   Bender from Futurama. Everyone loves Bender, but not as much as he loves himself. Bender is an "alcoholic, whore-mongering, chain-smoking gambler". He was built in Mexico as a girder bending unit, but you rarely see him doing any kind of work, outside of drinking booze and partying Bender-style. "Bender is the greatest!" -Bender.

   Goku from the Dragon Ball meta series. A lot of people would argue that Goku is an "Anime" character, but lets be honest anime=cartoon, anime is a sub-genre, Japanese style cartoon. Anyway, Goku is the ultimate hero. He is completely selfless, and only fights to protect those he loves and cares about. He doesn't have much depth, and is fairly two-sided. He is either pissed off and kicking ass, or he is happy and having fun and shoveling food down his throat, there is really no in-between with this guy.  "It would be meaningless to fight with you now. You're too scared and ashamed. Live with the shock. Keep it bottled up inside you. Silently." -Goku

   Butters from South Park. Butters is just hilarious, he is a nerd who always catches the shitty end of the stick, but it never brings down his indomitable spirit. Other characters in the show are always trying to get Butters to do the leg-work in their schemes, which he usually does. He is in constant fear of being grounded by his over-bearing parents, for often trivial things.  "Well, thanks for inviting me into your clique, but I'd rather be a crying little pussy than some faggy Goth kid" -Butters

   Dale Gribble from King of the Hill. Dale is a chain smoking, gun toting, paranoid exterminator/bounty hunter. He spends most of his time drinking in the alley, exterminating bugs, hanging out at the gun club, or locked in his basement mulling over multiple conspiracy theories. He's a fairly naive guy who has been tricked into raising a son who is not his. "I killed eight gophers last year and a purebred Tennesse walking horse that was looking at me funny." -Dale Gribble

   SpongeBob SquarePants from SpongeBob SquarePants. SpongeBob is a naive, innocent, happy-go-lucky guy. He lives in a pineapple beside his best friend Patrick, and Squidward. He finds joy and excitement from the most mundane things, like his job at the Krusty Krab. He rarely has a negative thought about anything or anyone, and it sometimes gets him into trouble. "It was his hat, Mr. Krabs! He was #1!" -SpongeBob

   Ok, that's five characters for you, I may do more in the future but probably not. Feel free to leave a comment on some of  your own favorites.

Friday, March 4, 2011

Nintendo 64 In High Resolution.

   Recently I've discovered the wonderful world of high resolution texture packs for N64 emulation programs. Basically what they do is replace the old crusty texture files with new shiny ones. While I love the crusty old textures, it's nice to see some of my old favorites with a new look. And after talking about some of these games I really want to go back and play through them again and this is a great way to inspire me to do that. While only a handful of games have a decent texture pack, the ones that do look great. Here are some photos to give you an idea of what they look like.

Both Zelda games have been re-textured, but these are all OOT. 

  Here is Mario Kart. The characters themselves haven't been re-textured because of the sicking amount of images for each one.

  Mario 64

   A different more classic looking Mario.

  Paper Mario.


And probably my favorite looking one Perfect Dark. This one looks fantastic.

   With games that look this fancy, I have to play with my pinky extended. If this is something you would be interested in here is a link to an excellent forum post with a definitive list of each game with each pack. Please don't ask me for installation instructions, that's what Google is for.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Louis C.K.

   Today I'm going to talk about some more stand up comedy. Awhile back I talked about Dave Chappelle, and today I want to talk about another one of my favorites. Louis C.K. has a bitter, broken down, and honest presence, which makes for great comedy. Some of the topics he likes to talk about are, marriages and divorces, children, flawed elements of society and human nature. A lot of great comedians are known for their brutal honesty, and Louis is no exception.

  Video is NSFW.

 I recently started watching his show Louie, which aires on FX, and am really enjoying it so far. He also had a show on HBO called Lucky Louie which I haven't been able to check out yet. If you're a fan of stand up comedy, like I am, and haven't watched Louis' stand up, I highly recommend it.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011


  After covering some of my favorite Nintendo 64 games, I thought I would mix it up and do some NES games. Just like the other posts, this is not a best of list, only some of my favorites that I played as a kid, and in no particular order.

   Ice Hockey.  This is the first sports game I ever played, and it was great. It's surprisingly fun and incredibly frustrating. You pick your country, and then choose your team from, fat guys, medium guys, and skinny guys. skinny guys are faster than the others, but fat guys mow down anyone in their path. You can even fight in this game.

   Excitebike. I covered the 64 version already, but this is the superior game, in my opinion. You race on tracks solo, or with other riders, trying to get the fastest time. You have to avoid objects and oil spills, hit ramps and turbo boosters. There is also a track editor where you can design your own tracks.

   Contra. Everyone knows Contra. It's a side scrolling shooter game which changes to a third person view during some parts of the game. The best part about the game was that it had co-op. It's the first co-op game I ever played and still one of the best. The game is so big, even the cheat code is famous.

   The Legend of Zelda. There isn't much I can say about this game that hasn't been said already. It's our introduction into one of the largest game franchises of all time Zelda. You play as Link trying to rescue the princess Zelda, if you haven't played this game and you're a fan of Zelda I recommend giving it a try.

   Metroid. Another shooter game. Metroid is just awesome, you run around in this large environment collecting upgrades for your weapons and your power suit. So that you can defeat the Mother Brain. This game is huge for a NES game, I've spent so much time trying to figure out where I was or where I was supposed to be going.

   Ok thats five NES games, I'm going to try to cover more in the future. Leave me a comment of some of your favorite NES games, and I'll try to put them on the list, or try it out if I haven't played it before.