david bazan: 2-25-2010

February 28th, 2010

warning to parents: you can probably tune this one out…

musically speaking, i’ve had 2 experiences that fundamentally changed my life (once again, musically speaking). the 2nd was sitting in melissa garriott’s car. she told me she had an album that i just HAD to hear. i can’t tell you the number of times that i’ve heard that only to be met with some crap that i knew i would soon forget. she threw in fevers and mirrors by bright eyes. after getting over the shock of just how good this music was, i remember thinking, ‘oh man, this changes everything.’ and it did. for a while, at least, until bright eyes (and conor oberst) went to crap.

the first experience occurred about 12 or so years ago. a fairly new found friend of mine, ethan smith, introduced me to pedro the lion. well, he told me about pedro the lion. i never actually heard them. but he swore that i would like it. ethan seemed to have some musical creditability so based on his suggestion i bought their debut album, it’s hard to find a friend. once again, after a couple of listenings i was hooked in a BIG way. i knew that this album was going to be in my personal rotation for years to come. the band continued to release albums (and i’ve loved each one) but recently disbanded. the singer, david bazan, continued to release solo material. this wasn’t a big deal as bazan wrote all of the music for the band (which was just a constant rotation of his friends) anyway.

i’ve been heavily into his newest release, curse your branches. thematically, it’s pretty heavy as it’s about bazan becoming disenfranchised with modern Christianity and questioning all that he was brought up to believe. that having been said, it’s a GREAT album. in support of the album he’s been touring, but in between tours he’s been playing these small house shows. they sell a max of 40 tickets and it’s usually in a large living room or some other very intimate setting. well, i saw that one of his upcoming house shows was in renton, wa, our town. i knew i couldn’t resist seeing him on home turf so i bought tickets for jana and i. apparently not a lot of people like to make the trip to renton as we were among about 14 other people that were there at the show. i set up a camera (Canon 5D Mark II) and shot another angle with a hand held camera (Canon T1i) and managed to catch the whole show. i’m really happy with how it turned out. i’m posting it here for your enjoyment (or curiosity).

videos, words

The Loose and Sir Jackson and the Long Ride

February 22nd, 2010

so, to those unaware, i was in a band called sir jackson and the long ride for a while. we were incredible. below are several videos (10 in total) from a house party that we played.

this is the band that we played with at that party called the loose. these guys are AMAZING.


any of my bachelor peeps out there?

February 10th, 2010

just sing it and feel it. you know you want to…

not sure if this is an official music video or not, but it should be. i’m sure it’s not, but i want to give props to whoever did this and the fact that they chose the perfect font for this video.

music of the week, videos

new song: sir jackson and the long ride – death word

February 7th, 2010

i used to be in this band, sir jackson and the long ride, and while i’m not trying to boast, we were pretty good. if you click here and then click on “Music” at the top of the page you can download all 5 glorious tracks of our E.P., “from now on, you answer to me”. sir jackson was one of those bands that, not unlike buddy holly or richie valens, was extinguished much too young. to this day nate and i will call each other up with a new sir jackson tune that the world needs to hear. alas, it can never happen. well, a couple months ago, nate called me up with a tune that he wrote called “death word”. we both agreed that it needed to be recorded so that the masses could once again hear the fury that was sir jackson and the long ride. so, over the last couple months, here in the heller studios (or, lucky laboratories, as i call them) i’ve been putting nate’s vision to digital “tape” as it were. and with his ear on board, we’ve created another tune that we’re proud to add to the sir jackson and the long ride catalogue. enjoy the tune below.

p.s. – for those of you unfamiliar with sir jackson, i should tell you that our sound was what i like to call garage/surf rock (though we were definitely moving more towards a garage/surf/metal sound). everything was instrumental. no vocals minus the occasional screams (i can take credit for those) and between song banter/rock talk at live shows. so, if you’re waiting for the lyrics to kick in, you’ll be waiting a while. we didn’t just forget them.

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download here.

p.p.s. – bonus points if you can tell me what song i sampled that opening bell from.

music of the week, steven's side project

surf hair and lipstick

January 23rd, 2010

asher’s always been a curious boy. if he sees something that he deems interesting, he’s quick to dive in. not really a “look before you leap” kind of kid. the other day i was home alone with him while jana was out with lily and jack. he was watching a show while i was on the computer. he quietly snuck upstairs. i (incorrectly) assumed that he was just playing in his room. turns out, he was playing in our bathroom with some hair stuff. surf hair, if you’re curious. i walked in on him trying to wipe it all off with a towel. it was pretty awesome. then this morning, the kids were playing downstairs while we were still in bed. asher found some lipstick (i still have no clue where he got it as jana doesn’t really wear lipstick) and tried to make like a clown. check it all out:



January 15th, 2010

so, i’ve known for quite some time now that i need to start working out (holiday lbs, desk job lbs, etc…). because of some recent changes in my schedule, i now have the time and desire (read: jana’s subtle encouragement) to get the job done. i’ve decided to do P90X. for those of you unfamiliar with P90X, it’s pretty much the system that really kicks your a**. there’s no shortcuts or tricks. you just do the system the best that you can for 90 days and reap the rewards. i’ve also decided that for me to really be successful with this thing, i need to blog about it so that everyone will know about it and help hold me accountable. i will be posting an accounting of my week every friday with a short, day-by-day report of how the week went. so, without further ado…

monday, jan, 11th – day 01 – core synergistics – this workout is supposed to work your core. it did. i hurt. and if i hurt now, i can’t imagine what it will feel like tomorrow. P.S. – opening weight before starting the program: 215.5 lbs. ughhhhhhh.

tuesday, jan, 12th – day 02 – cardio x –i’m sweating bad. or good. i guess it depends on your perspective.

wednesday, jan, 13th – day 03 – shoulders & arms – this one felt good. typing this is difficult right now as my arms feel like jelly, but it hurts good.

thursday, jan, 14th – day 04 – yoga x –by far, the hardest workout so far. unfortunately, it was a lot longer than i had anticipated (90 minutes!) and i had to cut it short since i had work to do. i’m not sure i could have finished it anyway.

friday, jan, 15th – day 05 – legs & back –this one was a fun one. it hurt, but i didn’t feel totally wasted at the end. don’t get me wrong, i was sore in all the right places but, once again, it hurt good.

so, there we have it. my first week with P90X. well, i still have to workout tomorrow, but i’ll include that in next week’s report. wish me luck!


Want 2 gig of online storage free (for life)?

January 3rd, 2010

so, i’ve been a pretty devout user of dropbox for quite sometime now and felt like i wanted to write about it since it’s quite easily one of the best services i’ve used in a LONG time. dropbox is an online storage solution that lets you store your data in the cloud. but the really cool feature i9s it’s ability tro sync with multiple machines. if you have 2 machines and they’re both running dropbox, you can easily set it up so that folderts between the 2 stay in sync. so if you put a file in your dropbox folder in machine 1, it will immediately show up on machine 2, and vice versa. there’s also a public folder. you can drop files in the public folder and if you want to send them to anybody, just right-click on the flder and choose “copy public link”. you will now have a link that you can email to somebody and they can just click on it to download the file from the dropbox server. this makes it SO much easier to send files to people. no more annoying email attachments.

the dropbox account is free and gives you 2 gig of space to use for your personal storage. check it out by clicking in the link below. plus, yoiu can always upgrade to more space if you want for a small fee. alos, you get an extra 250meg of space for every person that you refer. so, when you click on the link below, you’re also helping me grow a little bit. in all sincerity, i’ve been using it for a long time and have found it invaluable.



the cedars – first official release(s)!

December 25th, 2009

as some of you may know, jana and i have been working on recording a bunch of songs for an upcoming E.P. well, in preparation of that, we’ve decided to release two, 2-track “micro e.p.’s” available for free download. i wanted to hand out all the relevant download information to all of you, first, the points of contact:

facebook: http://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Cedars/284695565553

myspace: http://www.myspace.com/thecedars

twitter: http://www.twitter.com/wearethecedars

last.fm: http://www.last.fm/music/%28We+Are%29+The+Cedars

And now, the music. I’ll post it here as individual mp3’s that you can both stream and download, as well as 2 zipped files for both the micro e.p.’s.

micro e.p. #1 – download here as .zip file

i hope you’re home tonight – download

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the best lover she never knew she had or the clock as my best friend/worst enemy – download

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micro e.p. #2 – download here as .zip file

go to sleep – download

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tiptoe through the tulips – download

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thanks for listening!

the cedars

a song for the mormons

December 16th, 2009

conan o’brien had a “song for the mormons” on the tonight show. check it out, it’s pretty funny. be warned, you may have to watch an ad beforehand. also, keep an eye out for the mormon “tapper-nacal” choir. via @jaydmcferson.


this is me

December 12th, 2009
(lame pic of me but it is the most recent one i have)

so my friend carrie did this on her blog a while ago and i was inspired to do the same and started this narrative (poem) but couldn't finish it until tonight. maybe it was the glow of the christmas tree that got me going i'm not sure but here it is:

1 of 2
shy yet full of life
daycare, grandma's, family vacations
disneyland and hawaii
new york
hard working
i'm a caller
i like to stay in touch
even though i'm far away
i like to feel
like i'm part of it all
i will do anything for you
music moves me
but my children drive me
to be a better person
to try harder in life
to be a better wife
i'm a debator
but only if i feel you won't judge me
many an arguement
won and lost
at no cost
that's why
i love my husband
quick to prove a point
but also to say sorry
never go to bed mad
always wake
with a sleepy smile
even through trials
books devour me
or more like my time
i try to write
not books but songs
i'm forever indebt
to my Father
for pointing the way
to forever
thank you for blessing my life
with strife
with love
with family
with friends
because this is me
and i'm grateful

random and long i know but that is who i am i guess.

jana's journal