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Instrumental Invasion, 9/21/22 September 22, 2022

Posted by Mike C. in Airchecks, Animation, Audio, Comedy, Film, Game Shows, Internet, Jazz, Media, Music, News, Personal, Radio, TV, Video, Western.
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The September 21 Instrumental Invasion on WCWP was recorded on July 24 (third and first segments) and 25 (all the rest) with a pickup on the 26th.

The playlist was created simultaneously with last week’s show on July 17. Annotations followed on the 19th and the talk break script was drafted on the 22nd. I didn’t realize I had put so many blank-and/n-blank songs in the playlist until drafting the script.

I made another cartoon reference this week – to Freakazoid! – while talking up “Primal Scream” by Maynard Ferguson. The “Candle Jack” segment of episode 2 starts with Joe Leahy announcing that the cartoon would be “presented in SCREAM-O-VISION.” The excerpt leading into “Primal Scream” had Jeff Bennett as the prompter – “scream” in deadpan – and Tress MacNeille as the screamer. The day after I recorded that segment, I learned that David Warner, voice of The Lobe, had died of cancer. Paul Rugg – writer, producer, creator, and voice of Freakazoid – reminded his social media followers of The Lobe’s musical turn in episode 14, “Dexter’s Date.” In the spirit of “Hello, Dolly!,” Lobe, Freakazoid (as Louis Armstrong), and ancillary characters (including Jeff Bennett) sang “Bonjour, Lobey“:

Regarding the Dancing with the Stars tangent I went on in the third segment, a premiere date for season 31 hadn’t been announced when this week’s show was recorded. That date ended up being earlier this week – Monday, September 19. It’s their first season on Disney+, and that platform’s first live show. As noted last night, there are two hosts again, but the dynamic has shifted. Tyra Banks remains in the lead host role originally held by Tom Bergeron with Alfonso Ribeiro (season 19 champion) in the secondary role last held by Erin Andrews. Jessy J had a tenor sax solo during one of the dances!

In a similar vein, playing “Treasure Hunt” by Dan Siegel allowed me to refer to the two iterations of the game show Treasure Hunt. The New Treasure Hunt had a great closing theme: a jazzy rendition of Elmer Bernstein‘s “Main Title” piece for True Grit.

For the second week in a row, songs made their return appearance:

In between the two songs, I played “Don’t Stop” by Paul Brown, leading to my early Mike Chimeri Show anecdote. Go to the 2:13 mark in “anecdote” for my “wouldn’t you know it, they stopped” quip. Jay Mirabile also brought it up at the WCWP Hall of Fame Ceremony in June.

Click here to download this week’s scoped aircheck or listen below:

For airchecking, I scheduled timer records in Audacity on my computer and the one in the guest room. The loopback recording on my computer was flawless, so I deleted the alternate guest room recording, loaded what I kept into Adobe Audition, and went through the usual post-production process.

Instrumental Invasion, 9/14/22 September 15, 2022

Posted by Mike C. in Airchecks, Animation, Audio, Audiobooks, Books, Comedy, Computer, Internet, Jazz, Media, Music, Personal, Radio, Technology, TV.
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The September 14 Instrumental Invasion on WCWP was recorded from July 22 to 24. The fourth segment was recorded on the 22nd because I rightly anticipated it would be the longest. That was followed on the 23rd by all but the last segment, which was recorded on the 24th along with pickups. I started recorded next week’s show later that day.

An additional pickup was recorded on August 26, the day after the untimely death of organist Joey DeFrancesco, who appeared on Lee Ritenour‘s “78th and 3rd” with drummer (and future collaborator) Byron “Wookie” Landham.

The playlist was created simultaneously with next week’s show on July 17 with annotations on the 18th and 19th. The talk break script was drafted on the 20th and 21st.

Three songs made their second appearance, one of which I’ll elaborate on in the next paragraph (two weeks in a row with a false memory):

I played “Angela” in order to correct my January 19 mistake, a mistake I also made in my pre-recorded 2019 Homecoming Weekend show. Listening to Jimmy Burrows‘s memoir on Audible, Directed by James Burrows, set me straight about the “Blind Date” episode of Taxi, featuring the titular character Angela Matusa (Suzanne Kent). (Oh, Suzanne was an original member The Groundlings! No wonder she did Pee-wee’s Playhouse!) Angela wasn’t literally blind; just gruff and cynical, the opposite of her answering service persona. I don’t know where the false memory originated, but I regret the twice-told error.

Nowhere else will you get a reference to SpongeBob SquarePants after playing “Secret Sauce” by Paul Brown (adjacent to the Krabby Patty secret formula that Plankton tries to steal) or to Phineas and Ferb after playing “Candice Dance” by Richard Elliot and a song featuring guitar solos by Perry Hughes (hence, the Perry the Playtpus reference). As noted on the air, Candace Flynn spelled her name differently.

After recording last week’s aircheck on my new PC, I noticed that audio levels were bumped up when certain songs faded out or on vocal pauses in liners and talk breaks. Those bump-ups were replaced with audio from an alternate aircheck on the Dell PC in the guest room. I chalked it up to an audio enhancement setting and thought to have that enhancement off this week. Sadly, the problem was still there this week. I wasted nearly three hours figuring out how to stop that from happening. I now assume it’s related to the motherboard’s “Audio Boost 5” feature.

Finally, at around 2:45 this morning, I came across this webpage. The solution was option 2:

Don’t have a Stereo Mix option? No problem. Audacity has a useful feature that can record the audio coming out of your computer – even without Stereo Mix. In fact, Audacity’s feature may be even better than Stereo Mix, assuming you’re willing to use Audacity to record the audio. This method takes advantage of a feature that Microsoft added in Windows Vista named the Windows Audio Session API (WASAPI) [link added by me]. The feature also functions in Windows 7, 8, and 10, and helps make up for the lack of a Stereo Mix option on modern Windows PCs.

In Audacity, choose the “Windows WASAPI” audio host, and then choose an appropriate loopback device, such as “Speakers (loopback)” or “Headphones (loopback).”

Click the Record button to start recording the audio in Audacity, and then click Stop when you’re done. Because you’re using Audacity, you can easily trim and edit the sound file when you’re done.

How to Record the Sound Coming From Your PC (Even Without Stereo Mix)

It’s ironic that the solution came via free software while a program I paid for years ago – Easy MP3 Recorder 2.0 – and one I pay for monthly – Adobe Audition – are no longer useful on the new build for recording system audio.

The angst caused by the problem is the reason this post wasn’t published until afternoon. I still needed to add these paragraphs and then scope the aircheck.

Click here to download that scoped aircheck or listen below:

Instrumental Invasion, 8/3/22 August 4, 2022

Posted by Mike C. in Airchecks, Animation, Audio, Internet, Jazz, Media, Music, Personal, Radio, TV.
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The August 3 Instrumental Invasion on WCWP was recorded over two days: four segments on June 8 and two on June 9. Pickups were recorded on June 12 and 15.

The playlist was created alongside next week’s show on June 5 and 6. I worked on each show’s first hour and middle of their second hour on the 5th, and the 2017-present segments on the 6th. Annotations for this week’s show began on the 6th and carried into the 7th. Each show’s talk break script was drafted on the 8th. I hoped to start recording that day, but was preoccupied with setting up my new iPhone 13 Pro.

I tried to get as many segments as possible recorded before the WCWP Hall of Fame Ceremony on June 11 because I knew I’d be busy with post-production afterward. I was right. While I recorded nine segments combined in two days, it took four days to record next week’s second hour.

Picking up on an idea from last week, I purposely allowed myself to go under 18 minutes in a given segment to allow for more time in one that runs long. I only had three seconds of extra time going into the last segment, but they came in handy.

The “you latched onto Instrumental Invasion with Mike Chimeri” line coming out of the Dan Ingram liner referenced the gasser promo for WABC in 1964. (More WABC promos can be heard here.) Be sure to listen on September 7 as I pay tribute to Big Dan by playing songs that start with letters in his radio station call letters.

The quip coming out of “Take That” by Julian Vaughn – “where do you want me to take it?” – was a nod to Mark Evanier‘s great line for Binky the Clown in the “Binky Goes Bad” episode of Garfield and Friends:

Judge: Take the stand.

(Binky takes a chair and presents it)

Binky: Where do you want me to take it, huh?

Early in the show, I noted that “The Jive Samba” by The Cannonball Adderley Sextet (on Jazz Workshop Revisited) incorporated the Minsky Pickup, one of many things I’ve learned from TV Tropes.

Click here to download this week’s aircheck MP3 or listen below:

Instrumental Invasion, 7/13/22 July 14, 2022

Posted by Mike C. in Airchecks, Animation, Audio, Internet, Jazz, Media, Music, Personal, Radio, TV, Video.
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The July 13 Instrumental Invasion on WCWP was the third straight show with the 1-3-2 recording configuration: one segment on May 20, three on the 21st, and two (and a pickup) on the 22nd.

The playlist took three days to create: May 15 (the segments with singles), 17, and 18 followed by annotations. The talk break script was drafted entirely on the 20th before recording the first segment.

The show led off with “Is It James or Charlie?”, a cue from A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving found on the second Lost Cues CD. Until reading the linked Wikipedia entry earlier this year, I naively thought most incorrect track listings were correct. This is the page I referenced on the air, cited in the entry.

Five songs made their second appearance, two of them singles on the smooth jazz radio charts at the time of recording, which is why I worked on those segments first. In order of appearance, the songs are:

If that wasn’t enough, I played both of Nelson Rangell‘s studio recordings of “Sonora” by Hampton Hawes in honor of his latest live whistling and piccolo rendition at Smooth Jazz for Scholars in April. Watch the performance here:

Marion Meadows also performed “Marcosinho” that night.

This was the first show with instances where the second song of the set will start, and is faded down for a liner before going back to full volume. I did that at the start of “Fantasy in D” and “Throw Yo’ Hands (In the Air)” by Gerald Albright.

Click here to download the aircheck MP3 or listen below:

Instrumental Invasion, 7/6/22 July 7, 2022

Posted by Mike C. in Airchecks, Animation, Audio, Internet, Jazz, Media, Music, Personal, Radio, TV, Video, Video Games.
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The July 6 Instrumental Invasion on WCWP was the second consecutive show with the 1-3-2 recording configuration: one segment on May 17, three on the 18th, and two on the 19th.

The playlist was created on May 15 and annotated on the 16th. I drafted the talk break script for the first segment before recording on the morning of the 17th and completed the draft in the afternoon.

For the first time, I recorded segments out of sequence as I was eager to get the last segment out of the way. The talk-up for “Hello Beautiful” by Blair Bryant included this moment from The Simpsons episode “The Principal and the Pauper“:

I initially used the audio from this video, but didn’t like the skip on “we’ll see about that,” so I replaced it with audio recorded from my ninth season DVD set.

My voice was comprised on May 18, though less so on the 19th, after screaming in a moment of frustration about two hours after the one segment on the 17th. I was satisfied with the two segments I recorded on the afternoon of the 18th, but redid two of the last segment’s talk breaks on the morning of the 23rd. (A pickup was required on the 29th.) My pacing was better, which meant I could play the Final Fantasy IV Pixel Remaster arrangement of “The Red Wings” in its entirety rather than fade down early. All talk breaks in the fourth segment (first of hour 2) had to be speed compressed, 95% of original speed.

I didn’t have time to mention, but GTV Japan has a great video on Final Fantasy IV, posted around the time of its 30th anniversary a year ago next week:

And while working on this show, StrafeFox posted a Splash Wave video on the Wonder Boy and Monster World games:

I’d occasionally thought about playing “Frankenstein” by the Edgar Winter Group, and finally committed to it this week.

I eventually learned that Gerald Albright wrote “G-Wiggle” (from G-Stream 2) for his grandson Gavin’s blueberry dance, but adding that fun fact to the talk break would make the segment go over a few seconds.

This year’s Smooth Jazz for Scholars once again influenced the playlist as the third segment included two songs from the first night and one from the second. One first night song was “Treasures” by Marion Meadows:

Amore” by Julian Vaughn was first heard last May 26, replayed as one of four current singles, three that were charting at the time of production. This time, I played up the references to “That’s Amore” and Dean Martin (“pally”). I had two more singles I wanted to include, but couldn’t, so I got a head start on next week’s playlist.

Before then, click here to download this week’s aircheck MP3 or listen below:

A community calendar spot I voiced runs at the 8:14 mark.

Instrumental Invasion, 6/1/22 June 2, 2022

Posted by Mike C. in Airchecks, Animation, Audio, Internet, Jazz, Media, Music, Personal, Radio, TV, Video.
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The June 1 Instrumental Invasion on WCWP was the third of three shows produced in eleven days. Recording took place from April 4 to 6 in the same 2-3-1 configuration as the May 18 show: two segments on April 4, three on the 5th, and the last segment and pickups on the 6th. An additional pickup was recorded on April 18.

The playlist was created on April 2 after recording the first hour of last week’s show and annotated on the 3rd before recording its second hour. The talk break script was drafted on the 4th before recording the first two segments for this week.

June 1 was the first day after Dan Cox’s retirement as Director of Broadcasting. Long Island University is going to make that position part-time upon hiring his replacement. At Dan’s request, I continue to work on shows even if some of them don’t air, assuming the worst case scenario: where the university terminates WCWP after 57 years on 88.1 FM and 61 years since its carrier current launch. This is the only time I’m acknowledging the station’s uncertainty unless the worst comes true. (6/9 UPDATE: Pete Bellotti became the new director on June 6 and stated that the current FM lineup will continue through at least Labor Day.)

Getting back to this week’s show, in my back-sell of “Vinyl” by Euge Groove, I referenced an (original) Animaniacs segment called “Please Please Please Get a Life Foundation” (from episode 73):

Online pedantry goes back farther than you think.

I’ve since watched the first two seasons of the reboot, which I enjoyed.

This show’s second segment was the hardest to record, compounded by my new habit of zooming in the waveform to see mouth clicks I can edit out. If every song fades out and you’re light on information, the last resort is to do the talk breaks at a slow pace. I recorded the third talk break slow, but there was still too much left, so I had to redo the second. The third segments of each hour required careful editing of their second talk breaks to avoid running over. It was in the last segment that I realized it makes more sense looking for mouth clicks in a talk break after editing out flubs, but I’ve since reverted to the old way.

It marked the second time I paired songs by Wes Montgomery and Earl Klugh, coincidentally recorded the week of the show with the first time. The inclusion of “Midnight Madness” by Skinny Hightower after “Midnight Sun (Extended Version)” by Darren Rahn was serendipity. The first segment of hour two needed a song around 3:45 and I came across “Midnight Madness.” Then, I noticed it had vinyl record crackling just like “Vinyl”; two callbacks in one.

Click here to download the aircheck MP3 or listen below:

Instrumental Invasion, 5/25/22 May 26, 2022

Posted by Mike C. in Airchecks, Animation, Audio, Drama, Game Shows, Internet, Jazz, Media, Music, Radio, TV, Video.
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The May 25 Instrumental Invasion on WCWP was recorded one hour per day on April 2 and 3. A pickup was recorded on May 2.

The playlist was created on March 31 and annotated on April 1. The talk break script was drafted before recording the first hour on the 2nd. This was the third time the playlist did not include David Benoit. The other two times were the 40th birthday special last November 17 and the 100th show on March 2.

After finishing last week’s show, it occurred to me that I hadn’t played many live recordings on Instrumental Invasion: ten songs in 111 shows. Five of those were Pat Metheny; one with his Group, two versions of “Better Days Ahead.” This week alone had five live recordings in it, four of them long. Spyro Gyra‘s Access All Areas version of “Heliopolis” was part of Extended Cuts Week on the original The Instrumental Invasion on WGBB. That show aired January 27, 2005, 17 years and four months ago tomorrow (May 27). The phrase “almost live” was part of The Gong Show announcer’s intro spiel: “From Hollywood, almost live, it’s The Gong Show!” (I’d link to video of the intro, but all the videos on YouTube are poor quality.)

I ended my talk-up of “Seventh Heaven” by Jeff Lorber with the line “the seventh heaven is, of course, the best,” an homage to a bit in the Technology Connections video on touch lamps. I’ve clipped the bit here, but the full video is worth watching:

I was going to reference the bit after playing “Tenth Victim” by the Jeff Lorber Fusion last week, but realized that would be in bad taste, even if I added “at least in positive situations.”

Incidentally, the inclusion of “Seventh Heaven” plus “Supernatural” by Brian Simpson made for two songs sharing their name with a WB/CW drama. 7th Heaven was family-oriented while Supernatural was dark fantasy.

As for last night’s show, click here to download the aircheck MP3 or listen below:

I had Homer Simpson in mind when I used the word “dealies” at the end of the first segment.

Instrumental Invasion, 5/11/22 May 12, 2022

Posted by Mike C. in Airchecks, Animation, Audio, Comedy, Internet, Jazz, Media, Music, Personal, Radio, Travel, TV, Video.
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The May 11 Instrumental Invasion on WCWP was recorded over three days: the first hour on March 21, the first segment of the second hour on the 22nd, and the last two on the 23rd. Pickups were recorded on April 22 and May 2, the latter of which incorporated a new liner by WCWP/LIU Post alumnus Travis Demers.

The playlist was created on March 20 with annotations and the talk break script draft on the 21st.

For the second time in three weeks, speed compression was involved. The last talk break was sped up to 98% (except for the pickup) to keep the segment as close to 18 minutes as possible. This was after removing extemporaneous tidbits, which I also had to do for the last talk break of the first hour.

One tidbit I removed was about the music video for “Mornin’” by Al Jarreau, billed only as Jarreau:

In the show’s last talk break, while back-selling “Shandling” by Ken Navarro, I referenced “This is the Theme to Garry’s Show,” the theme song for It’s Garry Shandling’s Show:

My talk-up for the short “Funky Song (SC-55)” by Anders Enger Jensen ended in rhyme: “This is Anders Enger Jensen with ‘Funky Song.’ It isn’t very long.” That was a reference to this moment on Drew Carey’s Improv-A-Ganza:

I swapped out the 1984 and earlier segment for an extra 2017 to present, something I haven’t done since December 29, as four new albums came my way before working on this show.

Guitarist Wayne Bruce’s appearance on “95 North” by Kim Waters allowed me to make up for my oversight last June 23. Coincidentally, tomorrow’s blog post has photos taken on I-95 north in New York and Connecticut. (5/26 UPDATE: Here’s the post.) Kim had the Maryland portion of the interstate highway in mind for “95 North.”

I didn’t mention on-air that May 11 marked 28 years since my first “radio show” with my cousin Chris. He held a Talkboy cassette voice recorder and I held a Panasonic microcassette voice recorder. 11 years after that – May 11, 2005The Mike Chimeri Show returned to WebRadio WCWP, six days after ending the original The Instrumental Invasion on WGBB. He’ll be introducing me at the 2020-21 WCWP Hall of Fame Ceremony exactly one month from last night, on June 11.

Click here to download the May 11, 2022, aircheck MP3 or listen below:

Audiobooking 7 March 26, 2022

Posted by Mike C. in Animation, Audio, Audiobooks, Baseball, Books, Comedy, Commentary, Drama, Film, Football, Health, History, Internet, Media, Music, News, Personal, Politics, Radio, Rock, Sports, TV, Video, War, Wrestling.
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Another year of audiobook listening is in the books. I’m still an Audible member and use each month’s credit on a new book, but throughout my membership, there will come a time where I pay $35.88 to buy three extra credits. I listened while exercising, running (or walking) errands, doing household tasks, and at bedtime.

I even listened to one book on YouTube rather than Audible. Find out which one as I list the audiobooks I listened to since last year’s Audiobooking post:

  • Apropos of Nothing by Woody Allen – It’s sad that the abundance of Woody haters made him feel compelled to passionately, and rightly, defend his character through most of the book.
  • Talking to GOATs: The Moments You Remember and the Stories You Never Heard by Jim Gray (with guest voices including Bob Costas, Vin Scully, Tom Brady, and Snoop Dogg) – GOAT is an acronym for “greatest of all time.” – Vin was recorded over the phone while Bob and Tom were on Zoom via their webcam or phone. You can tell by the audio quality. – I remembered where I was during the moments Jim recounted, especially the Pete Rose interview. Jim didn’t deserve the grief he got. I’m glad he and Pete are on good terms these days
  • Killing the Mob: The Fight Against Organized Crime in America by Bill O’Reilly and Martin Dugard (read entirely by Robert Petkoff) – This was certainly enlightening. I had no idea the mob’s tentacles ran so deep, or that they had a boss in Tampa, of all places.
  • On the House: A Washington Memoir by John Boehner (“bainer”) – This was one of three books I returned. – The early stages of Speaker Boehner’s book were more of, apropos of the previous book I listened to, hits on his enemies. I mean verbal ad hominem attacks, not murders.
  • Slobberknocker: My Life in Wrestling by Jim Ross with Paul O’Brien (read by Jim; Vince McMahon’s foreword and “Stone Cold” Steve Austin’s afterword read by R.C. Bray) – I bought this with my On the House return credit. – Both Slobberknocker and Under the Black Hat have an instance of “at the end of the day.” I had yet to encounter that in Black Hat when I published last year’s post. – I watched many WWE documentaries on Peacock in my first two months as a subscriber (before “at the end of the day” fatigue made me quit watching what was left). I now realize that for all WWE-sanctioned media, you are required to say “-E” instead of “-F,” even when referring to the WWF days. Only clips can show the old logos and utterances of “-F” or “Federation.” Slobberknocker didn’t have that requirement, but Black Hat did. – I met Jim and Jerry Lawler at New York Comic Con in October.
  • How Y’all Doing?: Misadventures and Mischief from a Life Well Lived by Leslie Jordan (or should I say Leslie Alan Jordan?) – How can you not love Leslie? – I saw little of him on Will & Grace, but enjoyed him on The Cool Kids and enjoy him on Call Me Kat. – He’s worth following on Instagram.
  • Just When I Thought I’d Heard Everything!: Humorous Observations on Life in America by Charles Grodin (1934-2021) – Compilation of radio commentaries, but newly read (in 2013) for the book. – Wow, was this poorly edited. So many flubs were left in. I don’t know how I made it to the end
  • Sunshine Girl: An Unexpected Life by Julianna Marguiles (“margh-u-leez”) – I have seen little of Julianna’s work outside of the 1997 live episode of ER, but I enjoyed learning about her. – I was watching Friends on HBO Max at the time I heard her book, and it was neat seeing her older sister Alexandra (referenced in the book) recur on that show.
  • Mayor Kane: My Life in Wrestling and Politics by Glenn Jacobs (a.k.a. Kane) – Like Talking to GOATs, I remembered where I was at the time of some of the events Glenn recounted from the period when I was a wrestling fan. – “-E” instead of “-F” – In pro wrestling terms, I was a mark early in my fandom and Isaac Yankem, Glenn’s first WWE character, genuinely scared me. So, I was surprised that he hated the character – The Fake Diesel angle began on Monday Night Raw on September 23, 1996, two days before my sister’s bat mitzvah. – Early Kane scared me, too. – Glenn’s position as mayor of Knox County, Tennessee, would be known as county executive in most other regions. I was unaware of county executives going by mayor until I heard a public address announcement by the “mayor of Broward County” in Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport on March 5, 2019, while waiting in the JetBlue terminal for a flight back to JFK. (See photos from my trip here.) – I didn’t enjoy Glenn’s libertarian commentary toward the end, but at least it’s on my side of the political aisle, and he didn’t attack anyone like Boehner did.
  • Five Minutes, Mr. Byner: A Lifetime of Laughter by John Byner with Douglas Wellman (read by John) – I had better luck with John Byner than with John Boehner. – Long Island represent! Byner grew up all over Long Island, including Bohemia and Merrick. (Since Bill O’Reilly’s book, and Brian Kilmeade’s later, aren’t memoirs, I didn’t/don’t acknowledge they are also from Long Island. Bill’s from Levittown and Brian’s from Massapequa.) – I forgot John’s last name at birth was Biener. Unlike the Biener Audi folks, the phonetic spelling John legally adopted is how his family said it; like my last name, people kept mispronouncing his, calling him “Beaner” or “Beans.” – I don’t remember if he brought up playing Gurgi (and Doli) in The Black Cauldron, but I watched it on Disney+ a few weeks ago, as I work my way through (most of) Disney’s theatrical animated releases in chronological order. – Just as I prepared to published this post, I learned of The Super Bob Einstein Movie documentary on HBO Max. Bob created Super Dave Osborne for The John Byner Comedy Hour and would later appear on John’s Bizarre series and his own show, Super Dave.
  • Past Imperfect: The Autobiography by Joan Collins – Originally published in 1978, revised in the mid ’80s to include her Dynasty work, recorded in 2021. – Maxwell Reed was her husband, but I came to hate him just as much after listening. – I thought back to Slobberknocker as Joan referenced Bill Watts, obviously not related to Cowboy Bill.
  • Tropical Attire Encouraged (and Other Phrases That Scare Me) by Alison Rosen – Free with my Audible membership – Each chapter ended with an impromptu commentary by Alison and after finishing the book, there’s podcast-esque commentary by Alison and her husband Daniel Quartz. – I became a fan of Alison during her days as a guest on Red Eye with Greg Gutfeld, proudly supporting the original livestream (UStream) incarnation of Alison Rosen is Your New Best Friend. It was an honor to be the Fan Phone Call one Sunday evening in 2010; I listened to some episodes of the podcast version that continues to this day, but haven’t heard an episode in quite a while. – I’ve since gravitated toward podcasts by Gilbert Gottfried (with Frank Santopadre) and Ken Levine. – Listening to this book made me nostalgic for the halcyon days before politics drove a wedge into everything.
  • My Inappropriate Life: Some Material Not Suitable for Small Children, Nuns, or Mature Adults by Heather McDonald – Written and read in the days of Chelsea Lately, which again, I didn’t see much of, but I knew of the regular panelists and staff, including Heather.
  • The Long Slide: Thirty Years in American Journalism by Tucker Carlson – I can’t stomach his Tucker Carlson Tonight commentaries anymore (too dour, goes after right-wingers I like), but I was willing to buy The Long Slide. – After an introduction lamenting the way things were at the time of publication (summer 2021), the rest of the book is made up of past columns with present-day prologues. To that end, it was edited better than Charles Grodin’s audiobook.
  • You Look So Much Better in Person: True Stories of Absurdity and Success by Al Roker – I’ve been a fan of Al’s since his days at News 4 New York (WNBC), and thoroughly enjoyed his journey. – “You look so much better in person” was a well-meaning, unintentionally backhanded compliment someone gave him in Rockefeller Plaza one time on Today. Don’t ever tell anyone that.
  • Parenting for the Digital Age: The Truth behind Media’s Effect on Children and What to Do About It by Bill Ratner – There are occasional references to Bill’s career, but it’s mostly parental help, as the title indicates.
  • Oh, Nothing…: An Audio Collection of Stories and Memories from Alan Sues by Alan Sues (“sooz”) (1926-2011) – Since the book’s price was $9.79, I bought it that way rather with a credit that costs an additional $1.17 if bought with three ($11.96 x 3) or $5.16 with the monthly credit ($14.95). – Again I say as the title indicates, this is less of a book and more of an interview or one-on-one conversation. – There was so much more to Alan than his days on Laugh-In.
  • The Beauty of Living Twice by Sharon Stone – I felt deep empathy for Sharon as she recounted all that she’s endured. – Left-wing politics comes up throughout, but I made it to the end.
  • Mixed Plate: Chronicles of an All-American Combo by Jo Koy – “Josep!” – Jo’s brother reminded me of my late uncle Carmen, who also suffered from paranoid schizophrenia.
  • After Mixed Plate, I encountered the second book that I had to disappointingly return for left-wing political reasons. I prefer not to name it or its author (and co-author), but I will say that they were also born and raised on Long Island.
  • Windswept & Interesting: My Autobiography by Billy Connolly – I started listening just after I had finished watching Billy in the final season of Head of the Class on HBO Max, and earlier this week, I heard him in Pocahontas on Disney+. – Like Jimmy Johnson, these days, Billy lives with his wife in the Florida Keys.
  • Bad Republican by Meghan McCain – Double entendre: “bad” because she’s not conservative enough and she and her family hate [the 45th president], and “bad” merely as a Republican. The latter “bad” is how her former co-hosts of The View perceived her. – Three audio clips are used: two of her father Senator John McCain and one of her impassioned eulogy at his memorial. – One “at the end of the day”
  • God Bless This Mess: Learning to Live and Love Through Life’s Best (and Worst) Moments by Hannah Brown – Vocal fry galore! – Felt nothing when she won her season of Dancing with the Stars and didn’t get along with her dance partner Alan Bersten (only referred to by his first name) – That admission, with about an hour left in the book, let me to make my third return of the year. I was so distraught, having wasted my time supporting her (even though I thought she didn’t deserve to win that season!), I couldn’t finish my workout on the morning I heard that part.
  • Dear Hartley: Thoughts on Character, Kindness, and Building a Brighter World by Jedediah Bila – Speaking of former hosts of The View, Jedediah’s Dear Hartley is a series of hopeful letters (chapters) to her currently-toddler son. – Each “letter” ends with “I love you more than life, Mama.”
  • Kind is the New Classy by Candace Cameron Bure – One “at the end of the day” – Hey, three The View ex-pats in one year! – While Candace spoke positively of her co-hosts in the book, since she was still on it in 2018, she has since admitted her experience was as bad as Meghan’s.
  • Based on a True Story: A Memoir by Norm Macdonald (1959-2021) – Yes, the first “d” is lowercase. – This is not a nonfiction memoir, but a fictional novel “based on a true story.” – It’s the story of egomaniacal Norm and his timid sidekick Adam Eget (“e-ghit”), intertwined with confessions from the supposed ghostwriter of the book, voiced “splendidly!” by Tim O’Halloran.
  • Wishful Drinking by Carrie Fisher (1956-2016) – Before my animated theatrical journey began on Disney+, I watched all nine episodes of Star Wars (the Skywalker Saga) in episodic order. After finishing the original trilogy, I watched Bright Lights: Starring Carrie Fisher and Debbie Reynolds, a documentary produced by Carrie’s brother/Debbie’s son Todd, on HBO Max. Then, I decided to buy this audiobook and three of the next four below. – Left-wing politics, but through a 2008 lens
  • Shockaholic by Carrie Fisher (1956-2016) – A chronicle of Carrie’s experience with ECT (electroconvulsive therapy) treatments – It includes another hater-facilitated defense, this time of Michael Jackson. Good.
  • The Princess Diarist by Carrie Fisher – She talks about her experience making the original Star Wars trilogy and shares diary entries written during filming of the first one (Episode IV). – The diary entries are read by her daughter Billie Lourd. – Ends with modern-day dramatizations of fan encounters at conventions, which Carrie referred to as “celebrity lap dance(s),” a term she also used in Bright Lights.
  • The Boys: A Memoir of Hollywood and Family by Ron and Clint Howard (foreword written and read by actress Bryce Dallas Howard, Ron’s daughter) – This is a real memoir about Ron and Clint’s youth and the lives of their parents Rance and Jean Speegle Howard. (I thought it was “Spiegel” as I listened since I have a friend with that last name.) – I’ve since heard Clint in The Jungle Book and two Winnie the Pooh shorts, via The Many Adventures of…, on Disney+. – This was temporarily the longest audiobook I’ve ever listened to, surpassing I’ll Be Back Right After This by Pat O’Brien.
  • My Girls: A Lifetime with Carrie and Debbie by Todd Fisher – Todd’s memoir and point of view of the events chronicled in Carrie and Debbie’s books, which are occasionally excerpted – Todd says “two thousand and” for 2001 and beyond, even for 2010 and beyond. – He kept saying “in the end,” but I’ll take a million of those over one “at the end of the day.” Bravo, Todd. – Only five minutes shorter than The Boys
  • The Masked Man: A Memoir and Fantasy of Hollywood by Tom Wilson – This is the book I listened to on YouTube. Tom posted chapters to his channel daily over three weeks in January. – Like Norm’s book, there’s a fictional aspect (“and fantasy of”). You don’t really think Clayton Moore followed him around like a shadow, do you? – I made a playlist of all the chapters, but you may buy on Audible if it’ll clear your conscience.
  • The President and the Freedom Fighter: Abraham Lincoln, Frederick Douglass, and Their Battle to Save America’s Soul by Brian Kilmeade – A book about the lives of Abraham Lincoln and Frederick Douglass
  • But Enough About Me: A Memoir by Burt Reynolds (1936-2018) with Jon Winokur (read by Burt) – Burt lists many of the people that helped shape his life. – I don’t know if it was the frailty of age, but Burt’s delivery was mostly whispered. – I’m thankful to Burt for reminding me of Sally Field’s verbatim acceptance speech when she won the Academy Award for Best Actress, her second, for her role in Places in the Heart, and how it alluded to her previous win for Norma Rae. Read about that in her Wikipedia entry.
  • I Shouldn’t Even Be Doing This!: and Other Things That Strike Me as Funny by Bob Newhart (abridged) – The book is from 2002, so Bob’s speech was still clear and his voice wasn’t high. – Bob’s signature routines are sprinkled throughout. – I’ve since seen Bob in The Rescuers and The Rescuers Down Under on…guess where?
  • Coreyography by Corey Feldman – Empathy strikes again as my heart ached for what he and Corey Haim endured as children. – I have a hunch I’ve heard his father Bob Feldman on some David Benoit albums, but maybe it was a different Bob Feldman. – Corey, too, set the record straight on Michael Jackson. – Yeah, he was in one of those animated theatrical films I saw on Disney+ (that’s where): The Fox and the Hound.
  • Who I Am by Pete Townshend (“town’s end”) – Even longer than The Boys: 17 hours and 56 minutes. I still have around four hours left, but it’s quite an adventure. – The title is a play on his song “Who Are You?” for The Who.

As I crafted this post, adding one book at a time, I had no idea how many books I had listened to: 34, plus three that I returned! That far exceeds the amount of books in earlier posts.

Until next year’s “Audiobooking” post, happy listening.

Guest reading at my old elementary school: Year 6 March 4, 2022

Posted by Mike C. in Airchecks, Animation, Audio, Books, Education, Internet, Jazz, Media, Music, Personal, Photography, Radio, TV, Video.
1 comment so far

Other guest reading posts: 20152016, 2017, 2018, 2020

I returned to Leo F. Giblyn School in Freeport on Wednesday for Guest Reader Day, what they call National Read Across America Day. It was my sixth appearance as a guest reader (and photographer) and my first time inside Giblyn in exactly two years, a week and a half before the COVID-19 pandemic shut down anything and everything, taking education virtual. I had an opportunity to read virtually last year, a hybrid learning year (half a classroom’s students in person, half online), but I couldn’t get the pass code to log in.

It was so great to be back, and the faculty and students were glad I was back. This was the first year with Amy Lederer as principal, moving up from assistant principal following Amanda Muldowney’s retirement.

After photographing one guest reader, Ms. Lederer had me photograph the Freeport High School students who read to classrooms before I arrived at 11AM. I then mingled with my mother Lisa, a teaching assistant at Giblyn since I was in 4th grade there, and other faculty. Before photographing three more readers, Stephanie Huggard informed me which classrooms I would be reading to and when: 1:00, 1:55, and 3:00. I ended up reading to one more class after the third. The books I read were (teachers in parentheses):

Mrs. Connelly prompted me to tell Mrs. Souffront’s class about my WCWP radio show, which led me to promote that night’s 100th Instrumental Invasion, to share that I will be inducted into the WCWP Hall of Fame on June 11 in the Great Hall at LIU Post, and to view my website and YouTube channel. We listened to part of the aircheck from last Wednesday’s show and watched some of the video of my live Homecoming Weekend show in 2019. It was a lot of fun, especially using the large touchscreen monitor to scroll up or push buttons. I felt like a weatherman.

Reading Horton to Mrs. Carney’s class was quite a workout, as I did the voices from the 1970 TV special while reading. My radio show and accomplishments came up again, and we talked about animation and voice-overs. The kids in all classes loved my performances and had many questions that I was happily answered. It was challenging to read the non-Dr. Seuss books cold (site unseen), but still fun. Before I read to Mrs. Nicholas’s class, I stopped in Mrs. Jonza’s room, and we agreed I’d read to her kindergartners when I was finished upstairs. The only class where we didn’t visit my website and listen to last Wednesday’s aircheck was in Mrs. Carney’s. Mrs. Jonza’s students loved the sound of “Feel It Comin’” by Grover Washington, Jr. when I played part of last Wednesday’s full aircheck. (Unedited airchecks for every week of Instrumental Invasion are available for download here.)

As I was talking to Mrs. Carney’s students about myself, Lori Downing came in to read Clovis Keeps His Cool by Katelyn Aronson. Mrs. Downing was a reading teacher at Giblyn until her retirement in 2020. I was pleasantly surprised to learn earlier in the day that she would be a guest reader, but this was the only room I was able to watch her read in.

Thank you, again, to everyone I interacted with on Wednesday. Special thanks to Anita Stevenson. Mrs. Stevenson has been highly supportive me through the years and yesterday was no exception. My photo with her is included in this year’s collage of select photos from the classes I read to:

I don’t want to limit our photo to the collage. Here it is in full:

Anita Stevenson, Mike Chimeri

Thanks again.