James R. Tramontana

The Subtle Art of Songwriting and Breaking Things

Posted 04 Jul 2018

We start out again by saying we have no agenda for the episode. Imagine that! Us not being prepared!

But then we decide to play all the new songs we’ve been working on.

After playing one song, we start talking about Couch Guitar Straps, Audio Technica headphones, and IKEA chairs and meatballs. Then we offend everyone in Scandinavia and all music stores, everywhere -- except Sweetwater, whom we love!

We also love Parts Express.

And, no, none of these companies are sponsors. Although we would love them to be. Shamelessly sponsor us, please.

We have a series of have serious technical problems that cause us to get completely slap happy. Shit keeps breaking and then the episode ends in a dramatic finish.

PS: Computers suck.

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How a Song Goes from Idea to Reality: Back To The Woodshed

Posted 27 Jun 2018

We go back to the woodshed and start working on a brand ass new song. This is a good example of taking different parts and slapping them together, seeing what works, what doesn’t, changing tempos, keys, etc. to make something out of nothing.

After a false start, we land on something that starts to sound like a song. And, for some reason, we decide to call the song, “Booyah.” We’re sure that name will not stick. In fact, spoiler alert, it does not. It changes by the middle of the episode to “The Most Dangerous Song.”

Then, of course, we get waaaay off track and start talking about semi-inappropriate stuff. Somehow, Doug is the one that brings us back on track. It’s a goshdarn Christmas miracle!

A framed picture falls off the wall and glass goes everywhere. We practice in a very, very dangerous place, hence the name of the new song. Jim has a meltdown about Andris’s notation techniques and the fact that there’s glass everywhere.

By the end of the episode, we have a complete arrangement for the brand new song, “The Most Dangerous Song.” Of course, we play it terribly. But you know what? This is practice. It will get better. And guess what, it does. Stay tuned.

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How To Be a Master of DIY Music Making: Interview with ANDREW WK!

Posted 20 Jun 2018

Jim starts the episode by talking about how much he hates computers.

Doug talks about his new Audio-Technica headphones and his abnormally shaped head.
For some reason, we talk at length about the (toilet) state of Indiana and how to make Doug happy.
We play some music and then, we talk to the King of Partying, Andrew W.K.!
Andrew talks about the mystery and majesty of songwriting. Philosophical musings abound! Andrew lays down some ways to cope with writer's block and means to accept and appreciate the process itself (and being open to experimenting with new ways of doing things).
We talk about Andrew's new album, You're Not Alone, a powerhouse of life-affirming party rock anthems. Andrew played almost the entire thing himself! Holy shit! Indeed he is The One Man Party Machine! He is the epitome of DIYing music. A true master.
Then, of course, we ask Andrew about his favorite place to get a slice of pizza in NYC!

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The Importance of Flow: Interview with Reggae Super Star, SNOW!

Posted 13 Jun 2018

This is definitely one of the wildest episodes we've recorded to date. We had the extreme pleasure to talk to Snow, you know, the Informer guy. He's super amazing and has an INCREDIBLE story.

Snow is a Guinness Book World Record Holder, a former prison inmate (twice!), a Kiss fan, and a gifted musician. Our conversation covers all of these points and many many more.

Due to a MAJOR computer meltdown, we lost the first half of the interview but fear not! the second half is even better. Also, Andris Rebellion (awkwardly) gives us a recount of the info we lost to get everyone up to speed.

The big takeaway is: let go, and let it flow!

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