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:: 7.22.2008 ::

(listening to: Modest Mouse: "Cowboy Day (Live)")

It's been about a month and I've been really flakey on the MP3 of the week. I still want to keep doing it, but I did throw down with a 13 songs post on pizza.saur.us that includes a lot of stuff I've been into recently. Check it out, there are a lot of great pop songs in there and I'm still really into the new CSS record and am patiently awaiting for the new Annie to come out.

However, this is a project that is a decade in the making and something I've always wanted to do.

From 1994 until about 1998 I recorded every live show I went to. I didn't want to make money, but as a historian I wanted to document what I did and the music that happened all around me. I went to so many shows, mostly around the SF Bay Area and I feel like I got a lot of good stuff from venues around the bay area including a lot of good indie stuff from The Bottom Of The Hill's heyday. A lot of these recordings I traded for other tapes through the pages of Maximum Rock N' Roll magazine and the internet in its infancy, but some of the tapes I've recorded I know don't exist anywhere else.

I've decided to digitize a lot of these tapes and release them into the world. I assume I'll get better at breaking up the tracks and whatnot, but for now these are entire live shows available as an MP3. I was really good at dating all my tapes and I am entirely certain about their date and location. I used a small, good quality tape recorder initially and always wore a blue work jacket that I had altered to be able to wear a stereo condenser microphone in the center. I used good Maxell tapes and kept a great list to keep track of all my recordings (although over the years I've actually lost my list and hope to remake it someday).

I'm going to start with the first Modest Mouse show I ever went to. It was April, 1997 and they played at Mod Lang records in Berkeley (an institution that now finds a home in El Cerrito, a few miles north from Berkeley) the same night they opened for Built To Spill at Slim's in San Francisco (I have that show too). I was an avid, almost obsessive Modest Mouse fan ever since I heard This Is A Long Drive For Someone With Nothing To Think About and probably recorded upwards of 20 shows from San Francisco to Washington State before they hit the big time with "Float On." I still like the band, but I have new favorites and new groups to listen to and go see live.

I listened to these tapes a lot back in the day. I used to work as a medical courier and would spend my entire day in the car, before iPods, avoiding the radio and listening to music as I cruised Northern California. These tapes and the others I traded for provided most of what I heard in those days.

I am so happy to share these, and if you have any tips regarding recording these digitally please let me know. Until then, enjoy.

"You get creative when ordering your drinks, and yours stinks. Mine stinks."

Click to play:

Modest Mouse
Mod Lang Records
Berkeley, CA
April 27, 1997

1. Neverending Math Equation
2. Cowboy Dan
3. Whenever I Breathe Out You Breathe In (Positive Negative)
4. Tundra/Desert

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