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Instrumental Invasion, 1/18/23 January 19, 2023

Posted by Mike C. in Airchecks, Audio, Biking, Film, Food, History, Internet, Jazz, Media, Music, Personal, Radio, Sports, TV, Video.
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The January 18 Instrumental Invasion on WCWP was recorded from December 1 to 3, 2022: the first segment on the 1st, the next three on the 2nd, and last two on the 3rd along with remixing and pickups.

The playlist was created on November 27 with annotations on 29th and 30th. The talk break script was drafted November 30 and December 1.

This week, the extra 2017-present segment was swapped for an extra 1985-95 segment. The last four segments only had two talk breaks each. The first two of hour 2 were made up of three songs in a row (a triple shot).

Off the Top” by Kim Scott was originally played last April 6.

Since I brought it up after playing Wes Montgomery’s cover of “Windy,” I would have liked to attend the Dancing with the Stars Live tour stop at the Tilles Center last Tuesday, but the show was sold out when I looked for tickets and they were only available marked up through resellers on Ticketmaster. Oh, well. By the way, my “everyone knows it’s Instrumental Invasion” line going into “Windy” referenced a lyric in the song.

I included “Automat” by Yellowjackets after having seen a documentary on the titular fast food restaurants popularized by Horn & Hardart.

Here is a composite of CBS Sports’ coverage of the 1988 Tour de France, complete with John Tesh‘s music:

While skimming through the video, I thought John himself covered parts of the race, but the voice I heard (and face I saw) was Tim Brant.

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

1:50 PM UPDATE: This is another of those shows where I don’t notice mistakes or oversights until after the show airs. Bob Mintzer played tenor and soprano sax on “Automat.” The phrase trumpeter Igmar Thomas borrowed on “Blues Vagabond” by Lisa Hilton was from “Killer Joe,” which Quincy Jones covered on Walking in Space. The song was originally written and performed by Benny Golson for The Jazztet‘s Meet the Jazztet record. “Chicken Joe” was by pianist Joe McBride.

I also missed a community calendar spot I recorded on Monday that ran during the last break:

The music bed is “Working Girl March #2 (Film Cue)” by Dave Grusin from the Tootsie soundtrack.

4:05 PM UPDATE: Oh, and this is the PAMS jingle I referenced going into “Wherever You Go” by Brian Simpson:

I clipped from part 2 of Jon Wolfert’s The History of the Musicradio WABC Jingles.

Instrumental Invasion, 1/4/23 January 4, 2023

Posted by Mike C. in Airchecks, Audio, DVD, History, Internet, Jazz, Laserdisc, Media, Music, New Age, New Year, Personal, Radio, TV, VHS, Video, Video Games, Weather.
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The January 4 edition of Instrumental Invasion on WCWP was the first show of 2023 and the second show in the last three to be recorded and mixed in one day. Fittingly, that one day was the 23rd of November, 2022, and thankfully, recording talk breaks wasn’t as physically taxing as the Christmas show.

The playlist was created on November 20, with annotations starting on the 21st and continuing into the 22nd, followed by the talk break script draft. As you can see, I went way over with the first segment and spent the rest of the show compensating. Ironically, I had to make that first segment even longer due to a surplus after principal recording.

Just Like That” by Dan Siegel was first played on October 14, 2020, but I included it again as a prelude to Ken Navarro‘s “Just Like That.”

The video version of True North was on LaserDisc and VHS, then reissued on DVD in 1998. I bought a DVD copy for posterity, but haven’t watched it yet. “Whispers of Light” by James Reynolds was the latest in a long line of Weather Channel local forecast staples, as demonstrated here.

Not only did I play Mario Kart 64 back in the day, but I received the official soundtrack on CD for free through my Nintendo Power magazine subscription. I led off the January 25, 2002, edition of The Mike Chimeri Show with the game’s title screen cue, proclaiming I was back for another semester.

Norman Caruso, The Gaming Historian, chronicled the story of Super Mario Kart, the N64 game’s predecessor, in a video last month:

I ended the show with “Kukuc (koo-kooch) 2020″ the first track on drummer John Favicchia‘s new compilation CD Tangible. It coincided with the debut of a liner I had Fav record for the show. I neglected to tell him how to pronounce my last name, so I took the “sh” sound from Tom Schuman‘s liner and slowed down the “im” part. Here’s the end result:

And here are recaps of the last nine Dharma gigs I attended:

July 24, 2008

September 7, 2008 (preceded by Alan Bates)

June 4, 2009

July 30, 2009

April 8, 2010

August 19, 2010

September 14, 2011

January 16, 2015

June 24, 2016

Next week’s show recap will have photos from the first gig I attended on July 13, 2005.

For now, click here to download this week’s scoped aircheck or listen below:

Bonus: the “Kukuc 2020” video:

Festival of Games 2022 recap December 16, 2022

Posted by Mike C. in Animation, Aviation, Christmas, Game Shows, History, Internet, Media, Military, Personal, Photography, Travel, TV, Video, Video Games, Weather.
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Last year’s Festival of Games (the first)

Last Saturday, the second annual Festival of Games was held at the Cradle of Aviation Museum along Museum Row in East Garden City. The so-far one-day spinoff of Long Island Retro Gaming Expo (read about the 2022 LI Retro here) was my latest chance to walk and snap photos in as many sections as possible. Then, back to the vendor halls to add video games to my multi-console, multi-generation collection.

Thanks to my past recaps, I have made friends with the organizers, volunteers, and a week before this Festival of Games, the museum’s director of marketing and community relations, Jerelyn Zontini. I’m honored to know them and to promote special events like this.

I did not think to check the Festival of Games website for this year’s schedule, so I missed out on the panels in the main stage (planetarium) and classes in the classroom, but I saw everything else on offer, and was surprised to meet legendary collector, YouTuber, and streamer Pete Dorr at his vending table. More on that later.

To photograph the event, I brought my Canon EOS R7 with RF-S 18-150mm lens and Speedlite 430EX III-RT. When writing about my initial experience with the mirrorless camera, I did not lower the resolution on test photos. Considering the camera’s higher native max resolution (6984×4660) with the same 3:2 aspect ratio as my previous camera, it made sense while editing Saturday’s photos to increase my default blog post/social media resolution. Thus, going forward, photos will be no lower than 2000 pixels vertically, stepping up from my max horizontal resolution of 2600 pixels.

Again planning on a two-hour stay, my mother dropped me off at 12:43 PM:

Once inside (and having my bag searched), I presented my e-ticket printout to a box office attendant who stamped my left hand.

A promotional banner for the first leg in what’s now my annual triple crown: Cradle-Con:

I bought my weekend pass for Cradle-Con Monday afternoon. No more New York Comic Con for me. I was already disenchanted with them last year, but went anyway and had a good time. The uncertainty and last-minute additions this year were my tipping point, as noted in the third paragraph of my Dutchess County trip post. I’m optimistic that I’ll have a much better time at Cradle-Con.

Each section I walked through at Festival of Games has a dedicated photo gallery. We start with the vendor hall gallery:

The board game section:

In all the years I’ve been inside the Cradle of Aviation Museum, I never observed its exhibits. I rectified that after passing the board games section.

MY ANSWER: Most of them, thanks to my proximity to John F. Kennedy International Airport. The planes are either on final approach or just took off. I also see general aviation aircraft coming to or from Republic Airport in Farmingdale, which is even closer to my house.

Back to video games in the free play area:

Tournaments:

On to the second floor:

Of course, most of the arcade games were housed on the Air & Space hall sky walk:

I chose not to play any of the arcade games or free play console games. I just wanted to buy games, and where better to start than at Pete Dorr’s table? I didn’t introduce myself to him right away, but he approached me after a few minutes of rummaging. That’s when I complimented him on his work. I ended up buying five Sega Genesis games from Pete’s table, which he gave me a great discount on. Then, we posed for a photo:

An hour of vendor-hopping yielded 42 games in all, including seven imports! Four games were for the Family Computer (Famicom) and three were for the Super Famicom. Final Fantasy V was a timely get as GTV Japan posted a retrospective the day before (last Friday).

Satisfied, I proceeded to the parking lot for my mom to pick me up.

Back at home, I spent nearly two hours photographing my pickups, removing price stickers, and cataloging the games.

Now, photos of all pickups by console, starting with Family Computer (Famicom):

Super Famicom:

Nintendo Entertainment System:

Yes, I passed on Deadly Towers again.

Super Nintendo:

I didn’t notice a crack on the upper left of Tecmo Super NBA Basketball until cataloging later. I bought a better condition cart on eBay Tuesday night and put in an offer for another Looney Tunes game, Speedy Gonzales: Los Gatos Bandidos. I bought that on Wednesday when my offer was accepted.

Sega Master System:

Now, I have the original Zillion to go along with the sequel I bought last year.

Sega Genesis (Mega Drive outside North America):

And one Nintendo Wii game: The Price is Right: 2010 Edition:

That last pickup was the culmination of all the time that I spent this year watching various winning pricing games and showcases from the Bob Barker era of The Price is Right, and with my resulting renewed obsession with Barker era music cues, many of which can be found on this YouTube channel.

It was another successful and enjoyable Festival of Games. Thank you to Pete Dorr and all the vendors I bought from, to the LI Retro staff including George Portugal (who I saw on Saturday), and to Jerelyn Zontini. It was great to meet her in person after she connected with me on LinkedIn a few weeks ago.

Until Cradle-Con.

Instrumental Invasion, 11/2/22 November 3, 2022

Posted by Mike C. in Airchecks, Animation, Audio, Film, History, Internet, Jazz, Media, Music, Personal, Politics, Radio, Sci-Fi, TV, Video.
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I replaced my thumbnail/show banner photo with a selfie taken with my new camera. You can read all about that tomorrow. (11/10 UPDATE: Read here.)

The November 2 Instrumental Invasion on WCWP was recorded and mixed entirely on September 19, the first one-day record/mix since June 27 when I worked on all of the August 17 show and the first segment of August 24. I made a timing error when remixing the third segment, which I didn’t notice until September 20. An extra liner and a pickup were required to add five seconds so that “+:13” on the playlist below was true. Additional pickups were recorded on October 10 (after returning from Dutchess County) to correct a factual error about bassist Harvie S‘s “Pyramid” composition, and then to react to a shorter replacement liner.

The playlist was created on September 10 (a day after last week’s show) and annotated on the 14th (after completing last week’s annotations). The talk break script draft began on the 16th, but didn’t resume until the 18th once production was completed on the prior show.

Incumbent Waltz” is the seventh Vince Guaraldi-composed music cue for a Peanuts special that I’ve played, and a timely one with the midterm elections next Tuesday. Here’s where you can buy those Glenn Cronkhite Custom Cases I referenced in the backsell.

Two songs that aired previously are listed below with the first air date (in parentheses) and the reason for playing again:

I originally had the 2011 version of “Altair and Vega” by Bob James and Keiko Matsui in mind last July 14, but a different timing error – miscalculating the song’s duration – required a replacement. I made up for that this week, complete with the story of Tanabata/Hoshimatsuri, a festival centered around the two titular stars. You can read the Wikipedia entry in the previous sentence, but I also recommend this short video by GTV Japan:

Coincidentally, the show last July had a Star Trek reference leading into the first song. This week’s first song, complete with my paraphrase of the opening spiel, was Maynard Ferguson’s cover of the “Theme from Star Trek.” I had no idea Larry King adopted it as his radio show theme.

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

Instrumental Invasion, 9/7/22: Dan Ingram Tribute September 8, 2022

Posted by Mike C. in Airchecks, Audio, Game Shows, History, Internet, Jazz, Media, Music, Personal, Pop, Radio, Rock, TV.
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The September 7 Instrumental Invasion on WCWP was a tribute to the late New York radio personality Dan Ingram on what would have been his 88th birthday. The tribute came 18 years after I played my re-creation of his closing theme edit of “Tri-Fi Drums” by Billy May and His Orchestra (from Wild Stereo Drums) to close The Instrumental Invasion that aired on Dan’s 70th. This tribute covered most of the show. The theme was songs that start with a letter in any of the call letters of stations Dan worked for. Talk breaks were supplemented by edits of jingles, led by my mashup of a WCWP jingle with the bell at the end of the WABC Chime Time jingle:

As I said on the air, thanks to Allan Sniffen and Jon Wolfert for their inspiration. I absorbed Big Dan’s lore from repeatedly listening to archives of The Life and Times of Dan Ingram: In His Own Words that Allan produced for Rewound Radio, and Jon’s The History of Musicradio WABC Jingles, also for Rewound Radio.

The show playlist was created on July 5 and annotated on the 6th, followed by the talk break script draft that carried into the 7th.

Unlike previous weeks, the show was mostly recorded sequentially, two segments per day from July 8 to 10. I recorded the last segment before recording the fifth because I anticipated going over or cutting it close. Instead, I was 14 seconds short, increasing my surplus to 22 seconds. The fifth segment dropped the surplus to 12 seconds. In the process of recording pickups on the 10th, with 12 seconds left to make up, I remixed the second and fourth segments that I painstakingly tweaked to run exactly 18 minutes during initial recording. The third talk break of the second segment was originally speed compressed and I cut my quip about most Love Connection contestants going home solo (a false memory, as the linked entry reminds me) – playing off the name of Julian Vaughn‘s album with “Love Connection” on it. I redid the entire talk break at regular speed with the quip included. Thus, that segment went 8 seconds over and the fourth went 4 over, completing the 18-minute average I strive for.

Speaking of “love,” “jeg elsker deg” (pronounced “yale skaday”) means “I love you” in Norwegian and the “I love you” vocal in Nick Colionne‘s cover of “Hurry Up This Way Again” (on Arrival) allowed me to reference Dan Ingram’s on-air affirmation while married to Norway native Anita Strand.

Enough talk. Click here to download the (tele)scoped aircheck MP3 or listen below:

This was my first aircheck (mostly) recorded from a new computer. More about that in an upcoming post.

Bonus material:

2022 Long Island Retro Gaming Expo recap August 21, 2022

Posted by Mike C. in Audio, Aviation, Books, Education, History, Internet, Media, Music, Personal, Photography, Podcast, Travel, TV, Video, Video Games, Weather.
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Previous LI Retro recaps: 2017 (Sunday), 2018, 2019
Spinoff recaps: UPLINK (2020), Festival of Games (2021)

Part 1: Introduction

The Long Island Retro Gaming Expo‘s long-awaited return came on Friday, August 12, after a three-year COVID-caused absence. Yes, the expo was expanded to three days starting this year, running from Friday afternoon to Sunday evening. The venue was the same as always: the Cradle of Aviation Museum, situated along Museum Row in East Garden City on the former site of Mitchel Air Force Base.

The purported 2020 edition of LI Retro was announced in February of that year. I immediately bought a weekend pass (still just two days). Little did anyone know that the faraway disease then referred to as the Coronavirus would reach the United States a few weeks later. As COVID-19 spread and a pandemic grew, venues shut down and events were either canceled or postponed. LI Retro’s postponement came that May. 2020 tickets would be honored in ’21. UPLINK, a virtual expo, was scheduled in its place on August 8 and 9. Of course, I attended and wrote a recap.

Even as vaccines were rolled out going into 2021, the organizers felt it was too soon to resume. Thus, they postponed again to ’22; and again, tickets for the postponed years would be honored. Another edition of UPLINK was held virtually in February. I attended, but was overwhelmed by the amount of transcribing and note-taking I’d have to do for the panels I planned on watching. So, I abandoned the recap in favor of continued radio show production.

Last December, LI Retro held its first annual one-day Festival of Games. I was in and out within two hours after a photographic walking tour (similar to the one you’ll see later in this post), arcade game sampling, and buying games from vendors. There was a recap for that.

As August drew closer, a third day of LI Retro was introduced. I considered attending, but opted to stick to the weekend.

With a week to go, I feared I’d compulsively take too many photos, a habit that’s gotten out of hand (i.e. Memorial Day boat ride, June 18 Mets game). I only took 353 photos at another Mets game on August 10, but sure enough, I went overboard at LI Retro. To that end, this is the first post with photo galleries.

The bulk of my photos were shot with my DSLR, but I took supplemental photos with my iPhone.

I arrived at the Cradle of Aviation Museum at 10:06 AM on Saturday:

Within 15 minutes, I was inside. I walked to the box office and handed my ticket to the attendant in exchange for a badge. “Finally,” I told her, “after 2 1/2 years, I get to use this [ticket].” She handed me my badge and my adventure began.

Part 2: Panels

My first panel – after meeting and greeting, and photographing the vendor rooms, was by Brett Weiss. “I Survived the Video Game Crash of 1983” began at 11AM in Panel Room 2. I joined it in progress, grabbing a front row seat, but oddly holding back on photos.

Brett talked about his experiences with arcade games and home video game consoles from the second generation into the third, and how the rise of home computers played a role in the 1983 crash.

During the Q&A session at the end, I relayed (but didn’t ask, so I apologized) my video game experience growing up. I was a home (and school) computer guy, fluent with Apple II, and my sister and I received an NES (Nintendo Entertainment System) in February 1990, as the third home video game console generation gave way to the fourth.

The book in the last photo is the one I bought from Brett afterward.

After snacking on a protein bar, I entered the Main Theatre for Pat Contri and Ian Ferguson’s 12:30 PM panel. I spoke to Pat and Ian during my meet and greet session two hours earlier, reminding them that I met them in 2019 and immersed myself in content from Pat’s YouTube channel after buying (at their merchandise table) the four DVD sets of Pat the NES Punk and the book Ultimate Nintendo: Guide to the NES Library. I subsequently bought the SNES guide. I wrote reviews of each – NES, SNES. (And you can buy the DVDs and books here.) This year, I bought two stickers and a CU Podcast (Completely Unnecessary Podcast) t-shirt. It was the last large size they had. I said I’d probably get along swimmingly with Frank, Pat’s older friend from New Jersey who settled in San Diego before Pat and Ian made their respective moves there.

Pat and Ian’s panel was a live portion of their next episode of the CU Podcast. Before it started, and while I settled into my front row seat, the volunteer assigned to the theater asked them to “say something into the microphone” as a mic check. Ian jokingly parroted the request: “say something into the microphone.” I amusingly replied, “I knew you were gonna say that.”

Continuing from prior episodes, Pat and Ian criticzed Tommy Tallarico and his vaporware console that would have been (or could still be?) the Intellivision Amico. On display above them was the console’s leaked “fact book.” There will be audio and video, but first, the photos:

You can hear the panel-turned-podcast-episode here. My portion of the Q&A starts at 1:57:08, but I’ve clipped it here:

The word I used to describe Frank was “luddite.” Yes, I stumbled on the title Ancient Aliens, coming out as “ancient alenins.”

And this is a video excerpt from the panel – shot with the iPhone on the table – that was posted to Pat’s YouTube channel:

I was the voice at 16:44 saying that Sean Astin narrated a video game documentary. I was thinking of Video Games: The Movie, but a comment to the video said the fact sheet was referencing the later docuseries called Playing with Power: The Nintendo Story.

I liked Ian’s quaint pronunciation of wanton, “wonton” instead of “wantin’.”

Video of the Q&A portion:

My questions start at 18:26, “Tommy” starts at 25:13.

Theater guests had to exit on the third floor, so I bode my time by taking photos of the few console freeplay tables there. Then, I snapped pics for most of the second floor exhibits prior to the Axinn Air and Space Museum Hall entrance. I saved that for after the 2PM panel back in the theater.

In that 2PM panel, John Blue Riggs performed a live ROM hack of Super Mario Bros. for the NES, the first game I played in February 1990 via the Duck Hunt combo cart. With the right software, John imported tiles from whatever NES game ROMs the audience requested, and he altered the SMB code to altered the colors and text. Let the editing begin!

I spoke to John during the meet and greet, letting him know that like his son, I am on the autism spectrum, specifically with what used to be called Asperger Syndrome. While at his table, I bought a Sega Genesis ROM hack that put Scott Pilgrim from his titular video game in Streets of Rage 2. We posed for a photo, but when I got home, I was dismayed to find that my DSLR’s lens didn’t focus on us when his tablemate Dave took our photo. They graciously allowed a do-over with my iPhone Sunday morning.

Here is John’s aforementioned vlog of his LI Retro experience:

I’m in the vlog at 13:30, going through my DSLR camera roll before John’s panel. At 19:56, he and Dave ate at Friendly’s in nearby East Meadow. I ate there with my girlfriend Kelly during her visit in April.

After the panel, I photographed what I believed to be nearly every other nook and cranny of the freeplay and tournament areas. John saw much more than I did.

The last item on my Saturday agenda was to buy games from vendors. (See the end of part 4.)

The combination of excitement from earlier in the day and a loud block party somewhere south of my house kept me from relaxing and easing into sleep. I probably slept two to four hours, at best.

I arrived at day three of the Long Island Retro Gaming Expo at around 10:30 AM. I met Justin, Marshall, and Kieran from Cinemassacre/Screenwave Media (and bought Angry Video Game Nerd: The Movie), got the second chance photo with Riggs, and hung out at Leonard Herman‘s table. I’ve known Lenny (to his friends and family) since meeting him at the 2018 LI Retro and then reviewing his video game history book, Phoenix IV. In 2019, I met his associate Jeff, and this year, I was honored to meet Patrick Wong and Mark W. Baer, the middle child of Dena and Ralph H. Baer, the inventor of videogames (one word). They’re all nice and friendly, and it was my pleasure buying Ralph’s book Videogames in the Beginning, and Kate Hannigan‘s biographical children’s book, Blips on a Screen. I will definitely read that to Leo F. Giblyn School students next March, another annual tradition of mine.

Lenny and Mark’s panel was at 11:30 AM in Panel Room 2. Again, I sat in the front row. Lenny grew to be like a surrogate son to Ralph, and the brotherly love between he and Mark was on display throughout the panel, especially in the first two pics.

I linked to it in the gallery, but here again is Ralph and Bill Harrison’s 1969 Brown Box demo:

Part 3: Meet and greet photos

Lenny Herman and Mark Baer:

Patrick Wong:

Jeff, in his Pac-Man suit:

Brett Weiss:

Pat Contri and Ian Ferguson:

John Riggs:

The Cinemassacre/Screenwave Media crew, Justin and Marshall:

…and I met Kieran while browsing a vendor’s games:

You’ll see merchandise and games in the pickups portion of this recap.

Part 4: Touring the expo

Musical performance: 88bit (a.k.a. Rob Kovacs):

88bit was featured in John Riggs’s vlog.

The other performers were ConSoul, Retro & Chill, and Super Thrash Bros. (also in John’s vlog).

The line ahead of the cosplay contest, held Saturday at 3:30 PM in the Main Theatre:

High score challenges:

Galaga:

Just Dance 4 (to “Never Gonna Give You Up” by Rick Astley):

Tournaments:

Game Boy Selfie Station with the Game Boy Camera and Printer:

Console freeplay:

Indie and homebrew games:

Arcade freeplay:

PC freeplay:

Before I left for home on Sunday, I tried out some console and arcade freeplay games, but not PC games. Maybe next year. The console games I played were Joust (Atari 7800), Sonic CD (Sega CD), Donkey Kong Country (Super Nintendo), and Virtua Tennis (Sega Dreamcast). The arcade games I attempted were Space Invaders, Arkanoid, NARC, VS. Hogan’s Alley, Ms. Pac-Man, and Mortal Kombat.

I even gave LJN Video Art a try. It was just as finicky as The Angry Video Game Nerd (James Rolfe) made it out to be.

I was pleasantly surprised to see a TV running the WeatherStar 4000 simulator, a tribute to The Weather Channel local forecasts/Local on the 8s in the 1990s (check TWC Classics for examples):

Vendor Room:

Vendor Room annex (“More Vendors”), also home to meet and greets (and the food court):

When I was finished taking photos on Saturday, I began making the rounds in the vendor room to pickup video games. I vowed not to spend more than $25 on a game, and with one exception, I honored my vow. I successfully haggled when necessary, paying $15 for $17 worth of games, $20 for $23 worth, and $30 for $33 worth. Otherwise, one vendor discounted $7 from my $132 total and another had a two for $10 deal if you bought two $6 games. The only game I bought priced above $25 was the Xbox port of The Simpsons: Hit & Run, which was $35. It was my last purchase before leaving on Saturday. My last two purchases on Sunday were Legacy of the Wizard and Rolling Thunder, both for NES.

I was satisfied with my pickups, which brings us to…

Part 5: Pickups

Saturday pickups:

Merchandise:

Non-merchandise in the photo: Leonard Herman and Brett Weiss business cards, Schiffer Publishing and Classic Home Video Games bookmarks

NES (Nintendo Entertainment System):

Sega Master System:

Super NES (Super Nintendo Entertainment System):

Nintendo 64:

Nintendo GameCube:

Microsoft Xbox:

Nintendo Wii:

I’d wanted The Simpsons: Hit & Run ever since it was lauded in the Game Sack video on Simpsons games. (Click here to start at the relevant portion.) Epic Mickey was on my mind after seeing it on Friday in a 2017 Cygnus Destroyer video on his Top 10 Disney Games. I didn’t think to check the condition of the discs before buying, and was disappointed to see their scuffed appearance on Saturday night. You’ll see below that Epic Mickey 2 was one of my Sunday pickups from a vendor that also had the original game. All discs at his booth were in pristine condition. I lamented my mistake from the day before, chalking it up to a lesson learned. This Nintendo link taught me a positive lesson on Sunday night: how to clean discs. Monday night, I took dampened part of a washcloth and wiped Epic Mickey from left to right, line by line, then did the same with a dry part of the washcloth. The game played flawlessly in my Wii U. Tuesday morning, I did the same to Hit & Run and had the same positive result in my Xbox 360. Hit & Run was more fun and intuitive to play than Epic Mickey.

Sunday pickups:

Merchandise:

Non-merchandise in the photo: signed copy of The Angry Video Game Nerd I & II Deluxe (Nintendo Switch) signed by Justin (brought from home after seeing their booth on Saturday), Ralph Baer commemorative coins (one shown from the front, one from the back), my Game Boy Camera print from the Selfie Station, my weekend badge with Jovia lanyard

I watched the AVGN movie in 2019 on Amazon Prime Video, but it was later delisted. Now, I own a Blu-ray copy. They can’t take that away from me.

NES:

Xbox:

Wii:

It may be a while before I get a Super Scope, but the Saturday after LI Retro, I bought a Wii Balance Board, Wii Fit U, and a Wii Fit U Fit Meter. Now, I can play all the Wii Fit games and track my steps.

Just as AVGN made Ikari Warriors infamous (outtakes), Wii Music’s bad reputation stems from the crazy demo at E3 2008. I almost bought still another infamous NES game, Deadly Towers, on the Saturday of the expo, but relented.

Part 6: Conclusion

All good things must come to an end, and my time at the 2022 Long Island Retro Gaming Expo ended at 2:05 PM on Sunday, August 14. I took two parting shots with my iPhone before riding home:

Thank you for making it to the end of my recap. I know there was a lot to process, and it was a labor of love to draft the post. Patience was required often as WordPress struggled to display the text I typed, presumably because of all the photos and captions.

Thank you to all the guests I met and reacquainted with, to the vendors I bought from, and my fellow attendees, like budding game designer Brandon.

Special thanks to the LI Retro organizers and volunteers, especially Ryan Shapiro. You were all friendly and highly accommodating. I greatly appreciate that.

Until next year, so long.

Instrumental Invasion, 3/30/22 March 31, 2022

Posted by Mike C. in Airchecks, Audio, Game Shows, History, Internet, Jazz, Media, Music, Personal, Photography, Radio, TV, Video.
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The March 30 Instrumental Invasion on WCWP marked two years since my Wednesday night premiere. The show was recorded one hour per day on February 5 and 6 with a pickup on the 7th.

The playlist was created on February 3 and annotated on the 4th. The script was drafted on the morning of the 5th.

As on the first anniversary show last year, the first hour format was 1984 and earlier, with songs released between 1963 and 1980, and the second hour format was 1985 to ’95, with songs running the gamut.

The talk breaks for the first two segments were wordy enough that I resorted to short liners and had to hurry the third talk break of the second segment, removing tidbits about Wes Montgomery‘s Goin’ Out of My Head album. The other four segments required padding with extra liners, starting songs after a talk break, or fading them up (not out) early.

Feels So Good” by Chuck Mangione finally aired in its entirety after getting cut off by automation in the first show.

Give It One” by Maynard Ferguson led off the show, as I had bought a compilation CD of Maynard’s three M.F. Horn studio albums days before recording. I’ve been aware of the song since I downloaded an MP3 in the mid 2000s upon learning it was used as the theme to the 1974 pilot episodes of Wheel of Fortune. I incorrectly thought it was made for the show. The first part of the song reminds me an interchange on I-95 in Miami because I was looking at a photo of it while listening. When my travels took me past what’s known as the Midtown Interchange in March 2019, I took a photo of my own:

Thanks to a video slideshow I made for my family of the trip, including my cousin’s wedding, the new photo also makes me think of “Gods of Brazil” by Alison Brown. And speaking of Brazil, I was glad to talk about Iguazu Falls after playing the misspelled “Iguassu Falls” by Jeff Lorber.

Getting back to “Give It One,” trumpeter Eric Miyashiro, once part of Maynard’s big band, posted a great arrangement on YouTube back in October, featuring a solo by fellow Maynard alum Wayne Bergeron, then by him. Enjoy:

5/12 UPDATE: I learned in thanks to this interview with Eric that Maynard’s name was pronounced as it looks, not “may-nerd.”

As for the second anniversary edition of Instrumental Invasion, click here to download the 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 wi