(Like it? Buy it)

Hello All,

Today I present a song that I’m sure the majority of you are familiar with in one form or another. I say that with confidence because as hip hop and other sample-based electronic music came prominently onto the scene over a decade after this track’s initial release, this extended vamp by James Brown and the JB Orchestra has gone on to be one of (if not) the most-sampled recordings in history.

However, if you’ve never actually listened to “Funky Drummer” in its entirety you certainly should, as it is a rhythmic expression of pure joy, and an exceptional one at that!

Recorded on November 20th, 1969 at King Studios in Cincinnati, Ohio, “Funky Drummer” was originally released as a two-part 45 in March of 1970. In the period between 1965 and 1975, Brown had 65 songs in the R&B top 40, and 44 of them reached up into the top 10. Over on the pop charts for those same years, Brown had 37 top 40 hits, 6 in the top 10 (Sisario, 2011). As “Funky Drummer” only reached No. 20 On the R&B charts, it was somewhat of a forgotten tune before being revived with its aforementioned prevalence as a sample. With this revival came its first album release, in its 9:13 full-on funk form with the 1986 compilation record, In the Jungle Groove.

In The Jungle Groove

James Brown introduced the world to his “funk-bag” when, incorporating second line feel and “The One Beat” into his R&B sensibilities, he “subordinated harmonic development and traditional pop song form to the increasingly dense rhythmic fabric of the groove” (Doleac, 2013). And groove it does!

(photo by Dan Quest Studio, 1969)

Every now and then a clear harmonic cry gave new suggestions

of a tune that would someday be the only tune in the world and

would raise men’s souls to joy.”

–      Jack Kerouac, On the Road, Part 3, Ch. 10

Can you not feel that joy?— as the band—flowing along with the little forward hops of “Sweet” Charles Sherrell’s bass and the ring-a-ding-licks of Jimmy Nolen’s guitar revolving within the slow-pour carnival of Brown’s organ while the intervals of Maceo Parker’s tenor saxophone sway out from the interlocked click-clack-grace of Stubblefield’s drums and the reliable swagger of the other horns (Eldee Williams, Fred Wesley, Joseph Davis, Richard Griffith)—all together perform a nimble side-step out from the gyral patterns of rhythm and finally succumb to James Brown’s insistence that they:

Turn Over

Turn Over

Turn Over

Soulful Rover

Take me in the change

Take me in the change

Take me in the change


They land right back in that loop, but it’s different. They make a deft somersault in place (nothing too flashy); one that surreptitiously takes the ground beneath their feet with them so that even though the whole world has turned, you might have missed it if it weren’t for that sudden swell of elation. James Brown once said of himself…although he wasn’t truly talking about himself at all:

“JAMES BROWN is a concept, a vibration, a dance. It’s not me, the man. JAMES BROWN is a freedom I created for humanity.”

JB drummer “Jabo” Starks has said, “So many things that were done weren’t written, because you just couldn’t. You couldn’t write that feel. Many, many times we’d just play off each other, until James would say, ‘That’s it!’” (Weinger & White, 1991). J.B.’s’ trombonist Fred Wesley would later say “The first rule when you went to work for James Brown: watch James Brown” (Weinger & White, 1991). This rule is demonstrated by the song’s most celebrated moment, which arrives roughly four and a half minutes into the recording and which supplies the tune with its namesake. James Brown tells the band: “Fellas, one more time I want to give the drummer some of this funky soul we got going here.” Brown then turns his attention to eighteen-year-old drummer Clyde Stubblefield, who modern drummer extraordinaire  Ahmir “Questlove” Thompson has called “the most effective drummer that James Brown has ever utilized” (Sisario, 2011). Ever in charge, always directing traffic, James Brown soulfully suggests: “You don’t have to do no soloing, brother, just keep what you got… Don’t turn it loose, ’cause it’s a mother.” And with that, break beat history will be made!

There is nothing demanding about this tune, there is no challenge put before you. You get the sense that they could do it all day and never get bored; somewhere, after the fade-out, the group is still vamping along. It’s easy. It’s all simply an invitation for you to strut your stuff, feel good and go for a stroll—and if this doesn’t help you stroll on over to the other-side of this frost-coated mid-week hump, then I don’t know what will.

As a bonus—for those interested in learning a bit more on how a 7th grade drop-out raised in a whorehouse in Augusta, Georgia went on to become Mr. Dynamite, then Soul Brother No. 1, before eventually being hailed as The Godfather of Soul—here’s Jeremy Marre’s excellent 2003 documentary for PBS’s American Masters series: James Brown: Soul Survivor.


                            –ENJOY YOURSELF–

———————BOBBY CALERO——————–


Brown, J. (1969). Funky Drummer, On In the Jungle Groove [CD]. Polydor/Umgd.

Kerouac, J. (1957). On The Road. New York: Penguin Books.

Mare, J. (Director). (2003). James Brown: Soul Survivor [Documentary]. United States:

Sisario, B. (2011, March 29). Questlove on Clyde Stubblefield. Crimes Against Music. Retrieved from http://charmicarmicat.blogspot.com/2011/03/questlove-on-clyde-stubblefield.html

Weinger, H. & White, C. (1991). James Brown: Are You Ready for Star Time?!?. Retrieved from http://www.jamesbrown.com/bio/default.aspx?aid=94

Doleac, B. (2013). Strictly Second Line: Funk, Jazz, and the New Orleans Beat. Ethnomusicology Review.Volume 18. Retirved from:http://ethnomusicologyreview.ucla.edu/journal/volume/18/piece/699


————            -                ——————- –  – -

Just some “Funky Drummer” samples:


“It’s a Demo” by Kool G Rap and DJ Polo

“Fool’s Gold” by The Stone Roses

“Rebel Without a Pause” by Public Enemy

“Bring the Noise” by Public Enemy

“South Bronx” by Boogie Down Productions

“The Magnificent Jazzy Jeff” by DJ Jazzy Jeff & the Fresh Prince

“Fuck tha Police” (1988) by N.W.A[6]

“Run’s House” by Run-DMC

“Lyrics of Fury” by Eric B. & Rakim

“Sally” by Stetsasonic

“Self Destruction” by Stop the Violence Movement

“Fight the Power” by Public Enemy

“Spring Again” by Biz Markie

“The Rhythm” by Kwamé

“The Devil Made Me Do It” by Paris

“Mama Said Knock You Out” (1990) by LL Cool J

“Back by Dope Demand” by King Bee

“Jackin’ for Beats” by Ice Cube

“The Boomin’ System” by LL Cool J

“Let Your Backbone Slide” by Maestro Fresh Wes

“Untouchable” by Above the Law

“Murder Rap” by Above the Law

“The Originators” by Jaz

“Deep, Deep Trouble” by The Simpsons

“Funhouse” by Kid ‘N Play

“Psyko Funk” by Boo-Yaa T.R.I.B.E.

“Endangered Species (Tales from the Darkside) (Remix)” by Ice Cube

“O.G. Original Gangster” by Ice-T

“Sobb Story” by Leaders of the New School

“Let Me Ride” by Dr. Dre

“Trespass” by Ice-T and Ice Cube

“Hip Hop Hooray” by Naughty by Nature

“Where I’m From” by Digable Planets

“I Ain’t New Ta This” by Ice-T

“Neva Faded” by Lords of the Underground

“Extra, Extra!!” by Paula Perry

“Three MC’s and One DJ” by Beastie Boys

“The Next Movement” by The Roots

“1-9-9-9″ by Common

“Scarlet Begonias” by Sublime

“Living Proof” (2011) by Bad Meets Evil[7][8]

“I am stretched on your grave” by Sinéad O’Connor

“Instrumental No. 2″ by My Bloody Valentine[9]

“Everybody to the Limit” by Strong Bad[10]

“Radio Song (Tower of Luv Bug Mix)” by R.E.M. and KRS-One

“Get Down” by Nas

“The Morning” by Raekwon, Pusha T, Common, 2 Chainz, Cyhi Da Prynce, Kid Cudi, D’banj and Kanye West

“Premier’s X-Ecution” by The X-Ecutioners and DJ Premier

“Mathematics” by Mos Def

“Save Me” by Nicki Minaj

“2000 Beyond” by Slum Village and J Dilla

“The Cool” by Lupe Fiasco

“Heaven” by Emeli Sandé

“Popcorn” by Aphex Twin

The Powerpuff Girls theme by James L. Venable

“Rather Unique” by AZ

“She’s the One (Funky Drummer Remix)” by James Brown

“Tea Thyme” by Damu the Fudgemunk

“Lesson 4″ by DJ Shadow

“The Battle” by DJ Skribble featuring DJ Slynke, Kenny Muhammad, and Rahzel

“Give the Drummer Some” by Ultramagnetic MCs

“Express Yourself” by Labrinth

“It’s My Beat” by Sweet Tee and DJ Jazzy Joyce

“Jump (Super Cat Mix)” by Kris Kross featuring Super Cat

“She Looks All Types A’ Good” by James Brown

“Fastest Man Alive” by Grandmaster Flash

“The Magic Number” by De La Soul

“Baby, You Nasty” by Lord Finesse and DJ Mike Smooth

“Kick the P.A.” by Korn and Dust Brothers

“Master Mix Medley” by DJ Jazzy Jeff

“Two Miles an Hour” by Ludacris

“It’s a Demo” by Kool G Rap and DJ Polo

“Beats to the Rhyme” by Run-D.M.C.

“Shouts” by J Dilla

“Go With the Flow” by Pete Rock & CL Smooth

“The Funky Drummer/Another Day” by A Skillz featuring Real Elements

“Officer” by The Pharcyde

“Killin’ Time Rhyme” by Damu the Fudgemunk

“Jump (Extended Dance Mix)” by Kris Kross

“Oodles of O’s” by De La Soul

“The Classy M.C.’s” by MC Quick Quintin and MC Mello J.

“Mortal Combat” by Big Daddy Kane

“Go Hard” by Lethal Bizzle featuring Donae’o

“Freedom! ’90″ by George Michael

“Peaceful Journey” by Heavy D

“My Joy (Slow Slide Mix)” by Depeche Mode

“Piggy (Nothing Can Stop Me Now)” by Nine Inch Nails

“She Watch Channel Zero?!” by Public Enemy

“Do the James…” by Super Lover Cee and Casanova Rud

“Someday (New 12″ Jackswing)” by Mariah Carey

“G-Bop” by Kenny G

“What Cha Cha Prove” by Above the Law

“Separate/Together” by A Tribe Called Quest

“Carly’s Song” by Enigma

“Soul Flower” by Brand New Heavies featuring The Pharcyde

“Broken Record” by Katy B

“Get It” by Fort Minor featuring DJ Green Lantern and Styles of Beyond

“Baby Love Child” by Pizzicato Five



Hello All,

Well I’ve got another triptych treat for you here today!

A friend recently asked me to create roughly four hours worth of appropriate tunes for an event she was helping to plan and present. Unfortunately, at the last minute she couldn’t use them. However–despite being put together on some short-notice and the fact that the majority of my albums are still packed up in boxes from a recent move–what I got left holding are what I consider to be some real dope MixTapes with a nice and easy forward groove going for them.

And that’s exactly what I’d like to share with you all.

Hopefully they’ll help you bend your knees, bop your head, and swivel your hips a bit on through this whole supposed “…in like a lion and out like a lamb…showers/flowers…” business we’ve been going through.


On The Good Blood


A Mouthful Of Pennies Presents: 

On The Good Blood (vol. 1)———-(CLICK TO LISTEN & DOWNLOAD)

On The Good Blood (vol. 2)———-(CLICK TO LISTEN & DOWNLOAD)

On The Good Blood (vol. 3)———-(CLICK TO LISTEN & DOWNLOAD)


On The Good Blood VOL 1


A Mouthful Of Pennies Presents: On The Good Blood (vol. 1)


  •       Real Life Dreams On – Bernie Worrell
  •       I Can’t Get Next To You – Al Green
  •       Flute Thing – The Blues Project
  •       Love Having You Around – Stevie Wonder
  •       Brand New Orleans – Prince
  •       Corinne Corrina – Joe Turner
  •       Swegbe and Pako – Fela Kuti
  •       Going Down On Love (demo) – John Lennon
  •       Going Down Slow – Aretha Franklin
  •       Do Your Duty – Candi Staton
  •       It’s Your Thing – Lou Donaldson
  •       River Deep Mountain High – Bobby Doyle
  •       For You – Prince
  •       Listen – Imani Coppola
  •       Mama Get Yourself Together – Baby Huey and the Babysitters
  •       I’m In Love With You – Christopher Ellis (Cojie of Mighty Crown remix)
  •       Village Soul – Lennie Hibbert (Cojie of Mighty Crown remix remix)
  •       Warning Of Dub – Lee “Scratch” Perry
  •       Don’t Brag, Don’t Boast – Clancy Eccles
  •       Do Unto Others – Pee Wee Crayton
  •       Chops And Thangs – Beat Konducta [Madlib]


On The Good Blood VOL 2


A Mouthful Of Pennies Presents: On The Good Blood (vol. 2)


  •       Norwegian Wood – Count Basie
  •       Sir Greendown – Janelle Monáe
  •       Root Down – Jimmy Smith
  •       Behind the Scenes: Jazz – J.Period & Q-Tip
  •       “Let’s Do It” – Billie Holiday
  •       Bags’ Groove – Milt Jackson
  •       Sittin’ On The Dock Of The Bay – Peggy Lee
  •       I’m Shakin’ – Jack White
  •       Get Out Of My Life, Woman – Joe Williams
  •       Mixed-Up, Shook-Up Girl – Patty & the Emblems
  •       Hit Or Miss – Bo Diddley
  •       Mystic Brew – Ronnie Foster
  •       Medley: Golden Slumbers/Carry That Weight/The End/Here Comes The Sun/Come Together – Booker T. & The MG’s
  •       A Light In The Attic - Shel Silverstein
  •       Shakara – Fela Kuti
  •       Priority – Mos Def
  •       Viceroy’s Row – Elvis Costello & The Roots
  •       Armagideon Time (A.M.O.P. remix) – Willie Williams
  •       Lock Down – Cypress Hill



On The Good Blood VOL. 3


A Mouthful Of Pennies Presents: On The Good Blood (vol. 3)


  •       Treat – Santana
  •       Suite V Electric Overture – Janelle Monáe
  •       Every Now and Then – The Shotgun Wedding Quintet
  •       You and Your Folks, Me and My Folks – Funkadelic
  •       In Time – Sly & The Family Stone
  •       Watching The Detectives – Elvis Costello
  •       Come The Meantimes – Elvis Costello & The Roots
  •       Jah Jah Me No Born Yah – Cornell Campbell
  •       Everything Is Everything – Booker T. Jones
  •       I Am the Walrus – Bud Shank
  •       Groovin – Willie Mitchell
  •       Fred Berry – Baby Elephant (Bernie Worrell, Prince Paul, Newkirk)
  •       Spinning Wheel – Peggy Lee
  •       Compared To What – John Legend & The Roots
  •       Security Of The First World – Public Enemy
  •       That’s The Way Love Is – Marvin Gaye
  •       Let Me Roll It – Paul McCartney & Wings
  •       You Gotta Move – Sam Cooke
  •       Born To Love You – Rose Royce
  •       “Broaden Our Minds” – The Joker (Jack Nicholson)
  •       Soulful Dress – Sugar Pie DeSanto
  •       Maggie’s Farm – Linda Gayle
  •       Medley: Because / You Never Give Me Your Money – Booker T. & The MG’s
  •       Call On Me (A.M.O.P. edit) – Big Brother And The Holding Company (feat. Janis Joplin)

—————————ROLL CALL————————  —   — –    -      -

Bernie Worrell

Al Green

The Blues Project

Stevie Wonder


Joe Turner

Fela Kuti

John Lennon

Aretha Franklin

Candi Staton

Lou Donaldson

Bobby Doyle

Imani Coppola

Baby Huey and the Babysitters

Christopher Ellis

Cojie of Mighty Crown

Lennie Hibbert

Lee “Scratch” Perry

Clancy Eccles

Pee Wee Crayton

Beat Konducta [Madlib]

Count Basie

Janelle Monáe

Jimmy Smith

J. Period

Billie Holiday (with Mister Downbeat)

Milt Jackson

Peggy Lee

Jack White

Joe Williams

Patty and the Emblems

Bo Diddley

Ronnie Foster

Booker T. & The MG’s

Shel Silverstein

Mos Def (aka Yasiin Bey)

Elvis Costello & The Roots

Willie Williams

Cypress Hill (B-Real, Sen Dog, DJ Muggs)


The Shotgun Wedding Quintet


Sly & The Family Stone

Elvis Costello

Cornell Campbell

Booker T. Jones (w/ Ahmir “Questlove” Thompson, Kirk Douglass, & Owen Biddle)

Bud Shank

Willie Mitchell

Baby Elephant (Bernie Worrell, Prince Paul, Newkirk)

John Legend & The Roots

Public Enemy

Marvin Gaye

Paul McCartney & Wings

Sam Cooke

Rose Royce

The Joker (Jack Nicholson)

Bob Dylan

Sugar Pie DeSanto

Linda Gayle

Big Brother And The Holding Company (feat. Janis Joplin)


—————————–BOBBY CALERO———————————–   – —   –   –   –  -     -



Nirvana (photo by Youri Lenquette, Paris, FR. 02/14/94).


I had a brief, almost instantaneous glimpse of the real way the world worked and of tunnels criss-crossing under the universe and a sense of infinitely deep abysses folding in upon themselves, I felt my glass slip from my hand, though I no longer quite knew what a glass or a hand were, I could see nothing – rather I saw a lattice-work of silvery metallic threads crossing over and under, over and under one another and filling my whole field of vision. I swayed on my feet, but somebody, probably Paul, caught me by the shoulder. Then the centre of the metallic lattice-work started to thin and break apart and I thought that I glimpsed tall black shapes wavering in a submarine cavern. But this soon resolved itself into a large room filled with pictures and people, although I recognized nobody and nothing. Then I recognized some of the people, but I did not know what they were doing in that place. Finally, I came fully to myself. I was facing Paul and Caroline and I felt as though my brain had just been opened and given a good scrubbing with a wire brush before being closed up again.

ROBERT IRWIN: Exquisite Corpse


In Utero


–God, a band all about sonic possibilities; Man, Damn…–

Kurt Cobain (February 20, 1967 – April 5, 1994) [photo by Jesse Frohman, 11/93).

Nirvana (1987–1994) [photo by Jesse Frohman, 11/93].



—————————————-BOBBY CALERO————————-


—————————————————————————————–                                                                                                     ———————————————

Music can take a man along the Path. Music is the image and the foreshadowing of the harmony that pervades the world and organizes its secret hierarchies. The motions of the spheres in the heavens are in conformity to harmony and proportion, so that, though their passage is made in perfect silence, that passage is musical. The Adept who seeks to make his life a work of art will comport himself in conformity with the harmony that is in all things. Even today’s debased popular ditties, redolent as they are of vaudeville shows and dance halls, speak of higher truths. As Sir Thomas Browne put it, music “is a Hieroglyphical and shadowed lesson of the whole World.”

—Dr. Felton in Satan Wants Me by ROBERT IRWIN (1999)

———————————————————————————————————    —-   –     —— –  -   —   ——     -



I’ve got quite a treat for you today! Emanating from and expanding upon the last mix—A Prayer For The New Year of The Tender HorseI present the triptych: Tulpa Honey. Bouncing upon that liminal spot where what-could-be and what-should-be converge with what-is, these three mixtapes also address a whole lot of what I’ve had rolling around in my head lately.

Be sure to snatch up all three for the full thought-form experience!

——–ENJOY YOURSELF!—–  –       -






———————————————————————————————————    —-   –     —— –  -   —   ——     -

[Cover Art: The Music of Gounod - a Thought Form from Thought-Forms, by Annie Besant & C.W. Leadbeater (1901).]



  • Nightmare—Dispute & violence – Ravi Shankar & George Harrison
  • Volunteered Slavery/Bern’s Blues – Bernie Worrell
  • Drinkin’ Again [Interlude]/? – Outkast
  • I Don’t Wanna Be Called Yo Niga [edit] – Public Enemy
  • Don’t Call Me Nigger, Whitey – Sly & The Family Stone
  • If You Don’t Like The Effects, Don’t Produce The Cause – Funkadelic
  • “I’m Not Happy Here” – Alicia Keys (2Pac/DJ Vlad)
  • Down And Out In New York City – James Brown
  • The Pledge Of Resistance/Break Dance—Electric Boogie [A.M.O.P. remix] – Saul Williams/West Street Mob (A.M.O.P. remix)
  • Liberation – Outkast feat. Big Rube, Cee-Lo, and Erykah Badu
  • Bliss: The Eternal Now/Meditation [edit] – Carlos Santana & Bill Laswell
  • So Soon/For What It’s Worth – Staple Singers
  • All You Fascists Bound To Lose – Woody Guthrie
  • The War In Vietnam – The Five Blind Boys Of Alabama
  • “The News” – Bill Hicks
  • Vietnow – Rage Against The Machine
  • What’s The Ugliest Part Of Your Body? (A.M.O.P. reprise) – Frank Zappa
  • FCK THE BELIEFS – Saul Williams
  • Right On/ Wholy Holy [edit] – Marvin Gaye
  • Rock Star/Malcolm X/Roots Of A Tree/Come Together (feat. Zion I) – The Roots & J. Period
  • Come Together [edit] – Count Basie Orchestra
  • Every Grain Of Sand (demo) – Bob Dylan
  • Dawn—Peace & hope [edit] – Ravi Shankar & George Harrison


  • “Do Not Be Stuck In Your Ignorance”/Greasy Legs – Charles Manson/George Harrison
  • Tomorrow Never Knows – Junior Parker
  • Maggot Brain – Funkadelic
  • What’s The Ugliest Part Of Your Body? – Frank Zappa
  • Let Your Lovelight Shine – Buddy Miles Express
  • Get Up, Get Into It, Get Involved – James Brown
  • “Dance With The Devil?” – The Joker (Jack Nicholson)
  • Infernal Dance of King Kastchei – Igor Stravinsky
  • “No Slack At All” – Charles Manson
  • Yaphet [edit] – Miles Davis
  • Revolution – Tupac ft. Busta Rhymes (DJ Green Lantern)
  • The Revolution (Brother–Gil) – Cinematic Orchestra ft. Gil Scott-Heron
  • “Same Old Monkey” – Charles Manson
  • Yaphet [edit] – Miles Davis
  • Have You Ever Seen The Blues – Yaphet Kotto
  • “Fighting For Peace” – Charles Manson
  • WTF! – Saul Williams
  • Illumination – Jonathan Wilson
  • Mala/Won’t You Come Home/Taurobolium – Devendra Banhart
  • In His Cell – Philip Glass & Kronos Quartet
  • His Holy Modal Majesty – Super Session (Al Kooper, Mike Bloomfield, Harvey Brooks, Eddie Hoh)
  • “A Reflection Of Somebody Else’s Mind” – Charles Manson
  • Shambala – Beastie Boys
  • Amazing Grace – Elvis Presley  


  • Coniferae/Sonday/Point-Event – Mike Patton/Robert Calero
  • On The Bed – George Harrison
  • Amazing Grace Fragment – Bob Dylan
  • Amazing Grace – The Five Blind Boys Of Alabama
  • Mind Games (Demo) – John Lennon
  • Better Git It In Your Soul – Charles Mingus
  • Summer Trip – Bill Hicks
  • Something’s Got To Give – Beastie Boys
  • Hector – The Village Callers
  • Gimme (A.M.O.P. Extended Mix) – Beck
  • “Only Just Begun” – Bill Hicks
  • Season Of The Witch – Super Session (Al Kooper, Stephen Stills, Harvey Brooks, Eddie Hoh)
  • A Change Is Going To Come – Baby Huey and the Babysitters
  • Pedagogue Of Young Gods/No One Ever Does – Saul Williams
  • “Unhappy Stranger – Matt Dillon (Kerouac)
  • If There’s Hell Below (Don’t Worry) – Curtis Mayfield
  • “Who Will Survive In America – Gil Scott-Heron
  • “Final-Point” – Bill Hicks
  • Lighten Up – Beastie Boys

———————————-  —- —    -

———————————————BOBBY CALERO———————————————-


Hello All,

It’s been a minute or two and so I wanted to drop a line, a new mixtape, wish you all a Happy New Year, and remind you (as well as myself) that Yes Is The Answer.

All the best to you and yours

—enjoy yourself—

—————Bobby Calero—————

A Prayer For The New Year Of The Tender Horse

——————(CLICK TO LISTEN & DOWNLOAD)——— —— -

A Mouthful of Pennies Presents:

A Prayer For The New Year of The Tender Horse 

1)   “Now Is The Time” – MLK

2)   Choir [snippet] – James Newton

3)   Mystical Man – Young-Holt Unlimited

4)   A Love Supreme/Illuminations [snippet] – Carlos Santana & Bill Laswell

5)   Mind Games - George Clinton

6)   Cleanup Time (Stripped version) – John Lennon

7)   Poornamadah – Ravi Shankar

8)   New Year’s Prayer – Jeff Buckley

9)   Vandanaa Trayee – Ravi Shankar

10)   Matangi [snippet]/Y.A.L.A. [snippet] – M.I.A.

11)   While I’m Still Here/Black Noise – Nine Inch Nails

12)  Water No Get Enemy – Fela Kuti

13)  Party Seacombe – George Harrison

14)  “I Have A Dream – MLK

15)   Wade in the Water – The Soulful Strings

16)   Are You Ready – Fairfield Four

17)   Wake Up And Live – Bob Marley & The Wailers

18)   A Degree Of Murder – Brian Jones

19)  Love Me Tender/Save The Whole World – The Doors

20)  Love Me Tender – James Brown

21) Where Could I Go But to the Lord – Elvis Presley

22) My Sweet Lord/Gat Kirwani – George Harrison

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Here’s a present I slapped together at the last minute for you all:



  • Cosmic Christmas – The Rolling Stones
  • Oh Come All Ye Faithful – Johnny Cash
  • Merry Christmas Baby – Ike and Tina Turner
  • Jingle Bells – Jackson Chorale
  • Merry Christmas Baby – Soulful Strings
  • Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas – Scott Weiland
  • Silent Night – Elvis Presley
  • Silent Night – Huey Piano Smith & The Clowns
  • Funky Little Drummer Boy – Bobby Holloway
  • Little Drummer boy – Bing Crosby & David Bowie
  • Little Drummer boy – The Dandy Warhols
  • Santa Claus Go Straight To the Ghetto – James Brown
  • Frosty The Snowman – The Jackson 5
  • I Wish It Was Christmas Today – Julian Casablancas
  • Christmas Party (feat. Nicole Sheahan) – The Walkmen
  • Let It Snow! – Julian Koster
  • Merry Christmas Baby – Charles Brown
  • Jesus Is – 2nd Chapter of Acts
  • Last Christmas – The Puppini Sisters
  • Santa Claus – The Sonics
  • O Little Town of Bethlehem – Elvis Presley
  • I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus – The Jackson 5
  • Santa Bring My Baby Back (To Me) – Elvis Presley
  • Santa Bring My Baby Back – The Reverend Horton Heat
  • White Christmas – Beck
  • Christmas Time Will Soon Be Over – Jack White


——————–BOBBY CALERO—————–


Hello All,

If you’re anything like me then you like to let music marinate in your guts for a bit before finding a place for it on the shelf. So, even though I feel that this might be a bit premature on my part but with the year of 2013 rapidly approaching its conclusion, I’d like to present a MixTape that collects many of my favorite tunes from 2012.

Oh, and I’m sure that it might seem like an oversight on my part but this mix does not include the trackAbove My Ground” by Landlady, even though I stated before that it was just about the best new song I heard that year. Seeing as it has already been featured in its very own post I figured I’d give some other choice tunes a chance to shine here on this mixtape.

However, here’s the video for what is still my favorite song of 2012:

I must say, however, that I believe my top 3 albums for that year are:

Fear Fun by Father John Misty

Tempest by Bob Dylan

The Idler Wheel Is Wiser Than the Driver of the Screw and Whipping Cords Will Serve You More Than Ropes Will Ever Do by Fiona Apple

—Enjoy Yourself

2012 AMOP


A Mouthful Of Pennies Presents: 2 01 2

  • Daredevil – Fiona Apple
  • Reel to Reel – Damien Jurado (feat. Richard Swift)
  • No One Ever Sleeps - The Walkmen
  • I Guess I Should Go To Sleep – Jack White
  • I Just Started Hating Some People Today – Beck (Feat. Jack White)
  • Well They’re Gone - The Dandy Warhols
  • Walking Up To Hand Grenades – The Brian Jonestown Massacre
  • Who’s Gonna Lite It Up – Cornershop (feat. Izzy Lindqwister)
  • I’m Writing A Novel – Father John Misty
  • Early Roman Kings – Bob Dylan
  • Eleggua – Dr. John
  • Dirt, Money & Friends – BLKHRTS
  • Feedin’ Birds – Gonjasufi
  • Slo-Mo-Tion/Overneath The Path Of Misery [snippet]- Marilyn Manson
  • Express Yourself – Diplo (feat. Nicky Da B)
  • Default – Atoms for Peace
  • Terrifying [Starlight & Wonder Version] – Pop Levi
  • A Queens Story – Nas
  • Montauk – Rufus Wainwright
  • I Am What I Am – Spiritualized
  • I Only Have Eyes For You [snippet] – Beck

———————————–  –        —–  –       -  -        -       ———-

Daredevil – Fiona Apple

Reel to Reel – Damien Jurado (feat. Richard Swift)

No One Ever Sleeps – The Walkmen

I Guess I Should Go To Sleep – Jack White

I Just Started Hating Some People Today – Beck (feat. Jack White)

Well They’re Gone – The Dandy Warhols

Walking Up To Hand Grenades – The Brian Jonestown Massacre

Who’s Gonna Lite It Up – Cornershop (feat. Izzy Lindqwister)

I’m Writing A Novel – Father John Misty

Early Roman Kings – Bob Dylan

Eleggua – Dr. John

Dirt, Money & Friends – BLKHRTS

Feedin’ Birds – Gonjasufi

Slo-Mo-Tion/Overneath The Path Of Misery [snippet]- Marilyn Manson

Express Yourself – Diplo (feat. Nicky Da B)

Default – Atoms for Peace

Terrifying [Starlight & Wonder Version] – Pop Levi

A Queens Story – Nas

Montauk – Rufus Wainwright

I Am What I Am – Spiritualized

I Only Have Eyes For You [snippet] – Beck

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“There’s a bit of magic in everything, and then some loss to even things out/Pass through the fire to the light.”  —Lou Reed, R.I.P. (1942-2013)

– — – -

It seems an unaccountable pleasure, which the spectators

of a well-written tragedy receive from sorrow, terror, anxiety,

and other passions, that are in themselves disagreeable and

uneasy. The more they are touched and affected, the more are

they delighted with the spectacle; and as soon as the uneasy

passions cease to operate, the piece is at an end. One scene of

full joy and contentment and security is the utmost, that any

composition of this kind can bear; and it is sure always to be

the concluding one. If, in the texture of the piece, there be

interwoven any scenes of satisfaction, they afford only faint

gleams of pleasure, which are thrown in by way of variety, and

in order to plunge the actors into deeper distress, by means of

that contrast and disappointment. The whole art of the poet is

employed, in rouzing and supporting the compassion and

indignation, the anxiety and resentment of his audience. They

are pleased in proportion as they are afflicted, and never are so

happy as when they employ tears, sobs, and cries to give vent

to their sorrow, and relieve their heart, swoln with the tenderest

sympathy and compassion.

                                                                          —DAVID HUME: Of Tragedy


When I was roughly 14 or 15 years old, either by accident or by providence an open and unmarked package was left on my mother’s welcome mat. Upon flipping back the cardboard tabs I discovered that it was filled with box sets for various recording artists: Merle Haggard: down every road (1962-1994); King Of The Road: The Genius Of Roy Miller; Eddy Arnold Then And Now: Last of The Love Song Singers; Chris LeDoux: American Cowboy; and one titled  Between Thought and Expression: The Lou Reed Anthology. At the time I was obsessed with Nirvana’s In Utero, which served as a brilliant, sonic astringent in the open head-wound a great deal of my generation felt after Cobain’s suicide. As I had read of The Velvet Underground’s influence on Nirvana’s craft (and as I was also fairly regularly watching re-runs of the Eddie Murphy era of Saturday Night Live and felt that the rough looking little man dressed in leather, denim, and gazing blankly up and beyond from behind dark sunglasses was the spitting image of Joe Piscopo) it was Lou Reed’s box set that I opened first. Also, considering the other sets were all country, a genre I had yet to appreciate, my selection was inevitable. I was forever after altered.

Covering Lou Reed’s solo recording career from the years of 1972 to 1988, this generous three CD set sent my teenage mind reeling. Whether a precision driven mutation of Spector or Doc Pomus pop; a doo-wop ramble from a loose and smeared lipstick sneer atop glam hand-claps; a swallow of feedback loops; a two-chord boogie around the bend of a soaring  guitar-solo; a wet cough from a dry bed (or vice versa); a caustic blast from blistered veins and popped pupils; a repetitive drone and jangle; a bitter lament; a sweet elegy; a shrug of regret or derision; an ache; fucked-up tales of creatures of habit and their escape attempts, either through just some Good-Time Charlie out for a little fun or through one of the most radical forms of self-discovery—pure reinvention; fucked-up tales where morals still matter but luck either good or bad reigns as the highest law of the land; manic-depressive ballads; the stomp and circumstance of disco and chemical jazz; a show-tune shuffle; Broadway hustle; or a swoop-swoop–rock-rock;  a sound from another room…a curse? No, laughter…they’re having a good time in there; a bottle-bloated crack-up now a dried up convalescent attempting to appreciate a simple, perfect day with his girl in a rooftop garden; a grind of electric current that converts all literature into mercury; a muttered dismissal of “I don’t give a shit, I’m just trying to make the rent” (Halle, 2000); or just a sole tender voice telling someone, “hey, I get it, I understand;”—whether any of these things and certainly a whole lot more, it all sounded like someone who had gained a little wisdom from playing in the dirt; it all sounded like someone doing what they wanted and wanting to do it as best they could; it all sounded like someone searching; whether anyone wanted to admit it or not, it all sounded like someone’s world: –it all sounded like poetry…and oh what a sound it was.

The following Christmas, at my request, I received a copy of The Best of The Velvet Underground: Words and Music of Lou Reed.

Whether bacteria or art—it was culture. Yes, it was art, music, sex, drugs, friendship, fiends, and, even if it was ugly at times, it was romantic. It was sorry without apology; it was sometimes idiots getting second-chances down dead ends…sometimes not; it was beauty with a wicked sense of humor—it was America, or what I knew of it (say, for example his mention in “Kill Your Sons” of a childhood stay at Creedmoor, a mental hospital within walking distance from my house). It was America, and all I wanted to know of it at the time: the 5 boroughs of New York City.

Transformerer (Animated GIF by Doc Popular).

Lou Reed Live album advert, 1975.

To address the epigraph that begins this piece, Reed’s work can undoubtedly be a thrilling spectacle, but it remains one with more depth than mere titillation. His songs are ones where “The whole art of the poet is employed.” Furthermore, It does not matter whether his subject is the depraved or lost suffering beneath the heel of The Statue of Bigotry, a kiss-off comic or cold, a fun rocker, a vague one of kindness and affection, or about the body and all it requires in this world: Lou Reed had an exceptional gift for creating an urgent sense of intimacy within his music. No matter what, you were always assured that you belong there listening to that song at that moment. For certain, It is this intimacy that grants any “uneasy passions” its power to affect the audience, the listener, you.

“Coney Island Baby” in 1976 (photo by Mick Rock).

January 1, 1970

Although, admittedly, it might have been another decade before I could truly appreciate the full emotional resonance of some of the songs, and I’m quite sure others have yet to reveal their full essence to me. Take for example, “Pale Blue Eyes,” a song which I always loved but did not get, not until it was too late or right on time; when I was living with it:

Pale Blue Eyes

Sometimes I feel so happy,

Sometimes I feel so sad.

Sometimes I feel so happy,

But mostly you just make me mad.

Baby, you just make me mad.

Linger on, your pale blue eyes.

Linger on, your pale blue eyes.

Thought of you as my mountain top,

Thought of you as my peak.

Thought of you as everything,

I’ve had but couldn’t keep.

I’ve had but couldn’t keep.

Linger on, your pale blue eyes.

Linger on, your pale blue eyes.

If I could make the world as pure and strange as what I see,

I’d put you in the mirror,

I put in front of me.

I put in front of me.

Linger on, your pale blue eyes.

Linger on, your pale blue eyes.

Skip a life completely.

Stuff it in a cup.

She said, “Money is like us in time,

It lies, but can’t stand up.”

Down for you is up.

Linger on, your pale blue eyes.

Linger on, your pale blue eyes.

It was good what we did yesterday.

And I’d do it once again.

The fact that you are married,

Only proves, you’re my best friend.

But it’s truly, truly a sin.

Linger on, your pale blue eyes.

Linger on, your pale blue eyes.



I have spent the intervening years attempting (when funds permitted and the mood struck) to collect all that Lou Reed has created, and his art has certainly served as a boon for my own more than once. No, it never lured me to say to myself “hey, let’s try to have fun with heroin,” and it did not persuade me to any perversion that was not true to my self: Lou never led me astray. If anything, my admiration for this artist has only aided me in discovering my self, and perhaps to understand human nature as a whole a little bit better. Personally, at that age I had just begun to experiment with the creative act of writing, and here by chance landing on my doorstep was a body of work that further proved you were permitted to do what you want; you could have your own point of view and express it too. You are allowed to pursue your muse with all sincerity and discipline wherever she might lead. You can tell it from the man who has to hike the streets, who has to take his dogs out on the sidewalks, occasionally dodging the nightmare of traffic. You were permitted to tell it from the man who knew love was awkward, and all the more glorious and real for being so. –No, to be more precise, you did not need permission at all; you only had to do it, but you damn sure should endeavor to do it well.

As you all are likely well aware of, Lou Reed died on a Sunday morning this past October 27, 2013 at the age of 71. By all accounts, he may have been more than a little acerbic (which is what you call an artist when he acts like a prick; on several occasions my cousin had delivered packages to his door and Reed would rarely acknowledge that there was another human present and always refuse to sign for the parcel), but he also seemed rather sincere, particularly where it perhaps mattered most to him—in his imagination, with his art.

New York, 1977

Concerning the creative act, in July of this year Reed wrote:

 […] I have never thought of music as a challenge —

you always figure, the audience is at least as smart as you are.

You do this because you like it, you think what you’re making

is beautiful. And if you think it’s beautiful, maybe they’ll think

it’s beautiful. You make stuff because it’s what you do and you

love it.

Prior, during his keynote address at the 2008 South by Southwest festival, before he went on to mock the belief that a songwriter needed any “qualifications for lyrics,” Reed touched upon on the same topic of writing and was quoted as saying:

I don’t know how it works or why it works or what it has to

do with anything. The thing I’ve got going for me is instinct.

I can feel it; I try not to think. Thinking won’t get me where I

want to go (Pareles).

In 1987, concerning his own great and still growing body of work, Lou Reed told Rolling Stone:

All through this, I’ve always thought that if you thought of all

of it as a book then you have the Great American Novel, every

record as a chapter, They’re all in chronological order. You take

the whole thing, stack it and listen to it in order, there’s my Great American Novel (Dolan, 2013).

So, It is in the spirit of presenting an abridged version of that “Great American Novel”—a teaser if you will—that I come to you today. This is also my attempt to repay that generous gift that landed on my doorstep back in 1995, so that others too may be taught what was learned from one man playing in the dirt. In her article for NPR, What Lou Reed Taught Me, I believe Ann Powers might have put it best when she described Reed’s core message as “[…] opening up your being—to sex or drugs or just to feeling—is inevitable, dangerous and the main purpose of life.”

Here is a multi-volume (and yet still all-too-brief to complete the picture) MixTape of this artist’s work through the years. I highly recommend you take a day and let his tell-tale heart roll through. More so, as I do not consider this a best of, or greatest hits package, nor are these necessarily my favorite songs but only an attempt to intimate the breadth of the man’s work, I truly implore you to pick up any and all of the works these tracks were collected from, as they do work their magic best when within their original context—or within their particular chapter of Reed’s “Great American Novel.”

Hopefully you too will be forever after altered.

—————- —-      —       -


Reed’s wife,  Laurie Anderson, wrote this moving tribute to her late husband, which appeared in the obituary column for the October 31st. edition of The East Hampton Star:


To our neighbors:

What a beautiful fall! Everything shimmering and golden and all that incredible soft light. Water surrounding us.

Lou and I have spent a lot of time here in the past few years, and even though we’re city people this is our spiritual home.

Last week I promised Lou to get him out of the hospital and come home to Springs. And we made it!

Lou was a tai chi master and spent his last days here being happy and dazzled by the beauty and power and softness of nature. He died on Sunday morning looking at the trees and doing the famous 21 form of tai chi with just his musician hands moving through the air.

Lou was a prince and a fighter and I know his songs of the pain and beauty in the world will fill many people with the incredible joy he felt for life. Long live the beauty that comes down and through and onto all of us.

— Laurie Anderson
his loving wife and eternal friend


—Enjoy yourself.

Lou Reed: Playing In The Dirt (Vol. 1, 1967-1972)

Lou Reed: Playing In The Dirt (Vol. 1, 1967-1972)

—————(CLICK TO LISTEN)————

———————————————————————————————————  —-    -    -

Lou Reed: Playing In The Dirt (Vol. 2, 1973-1976)

Lou Reed: Playing In The Dirt (Vol. 2, 1973-1976)

—————(CLICK TO LISTEN)————

———————————————————————————————– —       –     -       -

Lou Reed: Playing In The Dirt (Vol. 3, 1977-1987)

Lou Reed: Playing In The Dirt (Vol. 3, 1977-1987)

—————(CLICK TO LISTEN)————

———————————————————————————— ——   -    – –      -

Lou Reed: Playing In The Dirt (Vol. 4, 1989-2003)

Lou Reed: Playing In The Dirt (Vol. 4, 1989-2003)

—————(CLICK TO LISTEN)————

—————————————————————————  —-  -      —    -

Lou Reed: Playing In The Dirt (Vol. 5, 2003-2011)

Lou Reed: Playing In The Dirt (Vol. 5, 2003-2011)

—————(CLICK TO LISTEN)————

————————————————————————— -    -   ——-     – –

All cover layouts & designs by Keri Kroboth-Calero

—————–                              ——–  —      -  -  —-


A Mouthful Of Pennies Presents

Lou Reed: Playing In The Dirt (Vol. 1, 1967-1972)

  • “We’re Coming Out.” (radio promo)
  • I’m Waiting For The Man
  • The Black Angel’s Death Song

[from The Velvet Underground & Nico by The Velvet Underground (1967)]

  • Here She Comes Now (Demo)

(White Light/White Heat Demo, featured on Peel Slowly & See [Box set])

  • Here She Comes Now
  • White Light/White Heat

[from White Light/White Heat by The Velvet Underground (1968)]

  • Hey Mr. Rain
  • Stephanie Says

[Studio outtakes by The Velvet Underground (1968), featured on Peel Slowly & See [Box Set])

  • Candy Says
  • Pale Blue Eyes
  • That’s The Story Of My Life

[from The Velvet Underground by The Velvet Underground (1969)]

  • Who Loves The Sun
  • I Found A Reason
  • Cool It Down
  • Oh! Sweet Nuthin’

[from Loaded by The Velvet Underground (1970)]

  • So In Love

[Lou Reed solo acoustic demo, Autumn 1970]

  • I Can’t Stand It
  • Lisa Says
  • Ocean

[from Lou Reed by Lou Reed (1972)]

  • Vicious
  • Andy’s Chest
  • Walk On The Wild Side
  • Satellite Of Love

[from Transformer by Lou Reed (1972)]


A Mouthful Of Pennies Presents

Lou Reed: Playing In The Dirt (Vol. 2, 1973-1976)

  • Berlin
  • Caroline Says I
  • How Do You Think It Feels
  • Oh Jim
  • Caroline Says II

[from Berlin by Lou Reed (1973)]

  • Intro / Sweet Jane/ Rock ‘N’ Roll

[from Rock N Roll Animal, recorded Live, Dec. 21, 1973, Howard Stein’s Academy of Music in New York]

  • Baby Face
  • Kill Your Sons
  • Sally Can’t Dance

[from Sally Can’t Dance by Lou Reed (1974)]

  • Metal Machine Music (edit)

[from Metal Machine Music by Lou Reed (1975)]

  • Downtown Dirt

[Coney Island Baby Outtake, recorded January 3 & 4, 1975 at Electric Lady Studios, NYC]

  • Nobody’s Business
  • Coney Island Baby

[from Coney Island Baby by Lou Reed (1975)]

  • A Sheltered Life
  • Follow The Leader
  • Vicious Circle
  • Temporary Thing

[from Rock And Roll Heart by Lou Reed (1976)]


A Mouthful Of Pennies Presents

Lou Reed: Playing In The Dirt (Vol. 3, 1977-1987)

  • Street Hassle

   A. Waltzing Matilda

   B. Street Hassle

   C. Slipaway

  • I Wanna Be Black

[from Street Hassle by Lou Reed (1978)]

  • Disco Mystic
  • City Lights
  • The Bells

[from The Bells by Lou Reed (1979)]

  • America (Star Spangled Banner)

[Growing Up In Public Outtake (1980)]

  • Teach The Gifted Children
  • The Power Of Positive Drinking

[from Growing Up In Public (1980)]


  • Underneath The Bottle
  • The Gun
  • Waves Of Fear

[from The Blue Mask by Lou Reed (1982)]

  • Little Sister

[from Get Crazy soundtrack, recorded Nov.-Dec. 1982]

  • Turn Out The Light
  • The Last Shot

[from Legendary Hearts by Lou Reed (1983)]

  • Turn To Me
  • What Becomes A Legend Most (snippet)
  • High In The City

[from New Sensations by Lou Reed (1984)]

  • Video Violence

[from Mistrial by Lou Reed (1986)]

  • Voices Of Freedom

[recorded live March 1987 at the London Palladium for The Secret Policeman’s Third Ball, featuring  featuring Jackson Browne, Peter Gabriel, Youssou N'Dour]


A Mouthful Of Pennies Presents

Lou Reed: Playing In The Dirt (Vol. 4, 1989-2003)

  • Beginning Of A Great Adventure
  • Halloween Parade
  • Sick Of You
  • Hold On

[from New York by Lou Reed (1989)]

  • Busload Of Faith (Acoustic Live Version)

[New York b-side (1989)]

  • Nobody But You
  • Hello It’s Me

[from Songs for Drella by Lou Reed & John Cale (1990)]

  • Power and Glory
  • Cremation
  • Harry’s Circumcision

[from Magic and Loss by Lou Reed (1992)]

  • Venus In Furs [live]

[from Live MCMXCIII by The Velvet Underground (1993)]

  • This Magic Moment

[from Till the Night Is Gone: Tribute to Doc Pomus (1995)]

  • Egg Cream
  • Sex with Your Parents (motherfucker)

[from Set the Twilight Reeling by Lou Reed (1996)]

  • Turning Time Around
  • Rouge
  • Rock Minuet

[from Ecstasy by Lou Reed (2000)]

  • Broadway Song
  • A Thousand Departed Friends (edit)
  • Call On Me (feat. Laurie Anderson) (snippet)
  • I Wanna Know (The Pit And The Pendulum) (feat. The Blind Boys of Alabama)

[from The Raven by Lou Reed (2003)]


A Mouthful Of Pennies Presents

Lou Reed: Playing In The Dirt (Vol. 5, 2003-2011)

  • Men Of Good Fortune [live]
  • All Tomorrow’s Parties [live]
  • Set The Twilight Reeling [live] (feat. Antony Hegarty)

[from Animal Serenade by Lou Reed, (recorded June 24, 2003, released 2004)]

  • Sad Song [live]

[from Berlin: Live at St. Ann’s Warehouse (recorded December 15–16, 2006, released 2008)]

  • Hudson River Wind (Blend the Ambiance)

[from Hudson River Wind Meditations (2007)]

  • See That My Grave Is Kept Clean [live]

[from The Harry Smith Project Live, recorded 1999, released 2006)]

  • Some Kind Of Nature

[from Plastic Beach by Gorillaz (2010)]

  • The Bronx

[from The Road From Memphis by Booker T. Jones (2011)]

  • Peggy Sue

[from Rave On Buddy Holly (2011)]

  • Little Dog
  • Iced Honey
  • Junior Dad

[from Lulu by Lou Reed & Metallica (2011)]


–Thank You

————Bobby Calero————


Dolan, J. (2013, October 27). Lou Reed, Velvet Underground Leader and Rock Pioneer, Dead at 71. Rolling Stone. Retrieved from http://www.rollingstone.com/music/news/lou-reed-velvet-underground-leader-and-rock-pioneer-dead-at-71-20131027

Halle, H. (2000, March 30). Reed, between the lines. Time Out New York. Retrieved from http://www.timeout.com/newyork/music/reed-between-the-lines

Pareles, J. (2008, March 14). SXSW: Lou Reed, No Fan of MP3s. The New York Times. Retrieved from http://artsbeat.blogs.nytimes.com/2008/03/14/sxsw-lou-reed-no-fan-of-mp3s/?_r=1

Powers, A. (2013, October 27). What Lou Reed Taught Me. NPR. Retrieved from http://www.npr.org/blogs/therecord/2013/10/27/240841092/what-lou-reed-taught-me

Reed, L. (2013, July 2). Lou Reed><Kanye West [Review of the album Yeezus]. The TalkHouse. Retrieved from http://thetalkhouse.com/reviews/view/lou-reed

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Hello All,

I’ve got a few treats here for you today to help you creep into the Halloween spirit!

  • First up, there’s quite a MixTape—October Creep—mostly pulled together from various soundtracks and other odds & ends. Now, it’s certainly not the type of mix your going to bump on regular rotation but give it a whirl and I’m sure it’ll give you the appropriate amount of heebie-jeebies this month demands. Oh, and I highly recommend watching the flicks these songs were featured in! They are definitely some of the best films of the horror genre.
  • Up next is both the “book trailer” my friend Rich Stambolian and I put together, and the review I wrote for Rick Yancey’s The Monstrumologist. This novel and the subsequent ones in the series truly are some of the greatest and smartest horror stories I have read in quite some time. So be sure to check it out.
  • And to conclude, I present a short story—All’s Hollow—which I wrote last Halloween for my own amusement. I hope you enjoy, so scroll on down to the end, and as always,

—Enjoy yourself!

Happy Halloween!

October Creep


A Mouthful Of Pennies Presents:


• “The Horror, The Horror” - Colonel Kurtz (Marlon Brando)

Ghosts 11Nine Inch Nails

Zombi (The Living Dead’s Voices!) – Goblin

“As You Walk In Forever” – Charles Manson

Halloween II Theme – John Carpenter & Alan Howarth

Guest Room – Priestbird

Horrorscope – Ralph Lundsten And The Andromeda All Stars

Suspiria – Goblin

The Lords Theme – John 5 & Griffin Boice

A Suite For Strings – Bernard Herrmann

The Purpose Of Existence Is? – Ray Manzarek

Walk Me Home – Memory Tapes

Hellraiser – Christopher Young

“The Man in the Black Coat Had…” (The Graveyard Book) – Neil Gaiman

•   Baby – Damaged Tape

• “Look Out There’s A Monster Coming” – The Bonzo Dog Doo-Dah Band

The Pink Room – David Lynch & Fox Bat Strategy

Poltergeist Theme Song-Carol Anne – Jerry Goldsmith

Ai Margini Della Follia – Goblin

•  “…They’re All Messed Up” – Night of The Living Dead

“The House of Pain” – The Island of Doctor Moreau

Cherchez La Ghost – El Michels Affair

The Isle of Blood: chapt. 7 (The Monstrumologist #3) – Rick Yancey

The Curse of Margaret Morgan – John 5 & Griffin Boice

Cannibal Hunt – Damaged Tape

“Every Time I Met Him He Was Somebody Else” – Charles Manson (portrait by Joe Colemen, 1988).

Man That You Fear – Marilyn Manson

—————————————– —- –   -      – - – -     -     -      -  ——————— -   ————————–

Yancey, Rick. The Monstrumologist. Simon & Schuster Children’s Publishing, 2009. 448 p. $17.99. 978-1-4169-8448-1

“Of Wolves & Worms: a review of Rick Yancey’s The Monstrumologist”

Tiger, tiger, burning bright

In the forests of the night,

What immortal hand or eye

Dare frame thy fearful symmetry?

While never explicitly stated, the sentiments behind the above quotation from the concluding stanza of William Blake’s 1794 Poem “The Tyger” run central to the elements of true terror in Rick Yancey’s The Monstrumologist. This “young adult” novel seamlessly knits the ominous tones of American gothic authors such as H. P. Lovecraft and Flannery O’Connor with the grotesque visuals of modern horror cinema. Despite the fact that graphic descriptions of the blood-and-guts variety are featured prominently throughout this book, these details are not given for the purpose of mere sensationalism. Through his apparent dexterity of craft when concerning the English language and narrative forms, Yancey has written a carefully constructed story of intellectual horror.

“These are the secrets I have kept. This is the trust I never betrayed. But he is dead now and has been for more than forty years, the one who gave me his trust, the one for whom I kept these secrets. The one who saved me…and the one who cursed me.”

These opening statements of protagonist Will Henry’s memoir sets a macabre mood that is subsequently maintained by the horrific events that occur throughout the novel. The details concerning a fire serves as a tragic, if subtle mystery in regards to the reader’s grasp upon the two main characters’ histories and the dynamic of their relationship; this fire has left young Will Henry an orphan now in the care of Dr. Pellinore Warthrop, under who he toils as an assistant. Dr. Warthrop, whose vocation provides the novel with its title, is an exacting man who is fanatically dedicated to his scientific pursuits, although, these investigations tend to be a bit more esoteric than those commonly associated with the average scientist. His discipline is in monstrumology: a supposed turn of the century field of study that today would likely be labeled cryptozoology.

This tale is set in 1888 within a New England city (where, as anyone who has visited Massachusetts, or Maine knows that a story of horror such as this must take place) called New Jerusalem. This is a city whose hours seem to perpetually alternate between dusk and the dead of night. In fact it is late one night that the adventure begins as a withered grave robber arrives at the Doctor’s door with a horrific discovery he has made while performing the duties of his ghoulish profession. The recently buried corpse of a young woman is hauled into Dr. Warthrop’s basement laboratory. Dead, but still clutching this cadaver with barbed fingernails is a monstrous creature with no head, a black lidless eye upon each muscular shoulder, and row upon row of sharp teeth set within a rictus that gapes open at its abdomen. This creature is Anthropophagi: a man-eater.

The awful unearthing of this beast is made worse by evidence that it was in the process of breeding as it choked to death upon a pearl necklace that adorned the young woman’s body as he devoured her flesh. These monsters are granted a certain depth through the author’s use of both literary and historical references to their existence by presenting quotations from Shakespeare, Herodotus, and Sir Walter Raleigh. It soon becomes apparent that New Jerusalem is to endure an infestation of these monstrous carnivores.

Yancey’s settings create as much tension as his monsters do. One particularly disturbing scene takes place within the oppressive confines of a mental institution, where Warthrop and his assistant investigate how the Anthropophagi—indigenous to West Africa—have come to arrive on the shores of the New World. The account of their journey reads like a thrilling novella of all its own, and is reminiscent to Bram Stoker’s portrayal of Dracula’s voyage by ship from the Carpathian Mountains to the coast of England; although, in terms of language, Yancey accomplishes this with a bit more brute force. The Novel’s climax situated within New Jerusalem’s cemetery is equally powerful and unsettling.

The author’s narrative techniques are a sophisticated element that ultimately keeps the reader tethered to these pages until their conclusion. Through the eyes of a modern writer (which, I assume to be Yancey himself) we are reading the memoirs of a man who purportedly died at one hundred and thirty-one years old, who is recounting his life at the age of twelve. These narrative layers add a texture to the work that serves to lure in the reader, just as Joseph Conrad had accomplished with Heart of Darkness.

The Science of monstrumology is presented along with other methods of critical thinking and scientific disciplines that were emerging around the turn of the century, such as the works of Nietzche and the study of eugenics. The callous outlooks often associated with these theories are presented through Dr. John Kearns, the monster-hunter who declares: “The only truth is the truth of the now;” “There is nothing either good or bad, but thinking makes it so;” and “There is no morality […] but the morality of the moment.”  In fact, it is this scientific approach to the villains that makes this a truly engaging book. Dr. Warthrop and his colleague Kearns consider these man-eaters to be just as monstrous as wolves and worms. They are simply part of the natural order of things. In terms of the predator/prey dynamic Homo sapiens just happen to fall under the rubric of the latter when concerning the Anthropophagi. Mature in its conceits, this book becomes all the more terrifying when the reader comprehends just how plausible these “monsters” truly are. As Kearns states, “ We do work ourselves into a tizzy about creatures like the Anthropophagi, but the world is chock-full of things that want to eat us.”

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The downpour had gone on for hours. As the afternoon lumbered on into evening and then further on into night, however, the storm had dwindled down to a steady drizzle, which served as a relentlessly irritating and tactile traveling companion to the bitter cold front that had suddenly swept through the city. That morning—after three pleasant weeks of abnormally warm weather—the temperature had abruptly plummeted. Terrence and Martin had both been waiting an inordinate amount of time for the bus—stepping side-to-side with the other damp commuters trying to get home but trapped by circumstance in the long line, moaning under tongue or sighing through the nostrils, periodically peering over their shoulders through wet, frizzy hair, down the long block in frustrated anticipation. More minutes passed. More minutes passed. More minutes passed. Each exhale was visible as a condensed mist, which made the curbside line resemble some human locomotive coming to rest at a train yard.

More minutes passed.

        When the bus finally arrived with an asthmatic whistle and dusty whine of the brakes, everyone shuffled forward and boarded one-by-one. Terrence could feel the itch of violence in his brain as the diminutive Guyanese woman in front of him paid the fare with a methodical toss of individual nickels and dimes fished out from the deep pockets of her blue raincoat. The diamond stud of her nose-ring glistened as she watched the final two coins slowly roll from her palm into the slot. Terrence and Martin squeezed their way to the back, past the obstacle course tangle of jagged umbrellas, obnoxiously large bags, and sodden people who would not move. The bus was redolent of wet, longhaired dogs and steamed broccoli-infused flatulence. They took the only two vacant seats, which faced each other.

Once it seemed that the bus was full and ready to go, they sat idling at the curbside. The driver emerged from the crowd at the back of the bus and inserted a key into the panel that operates the lift designed for wheelchair access. Many of the passengers permitted a plaintive “Shit! You gotta be kiddin’ me?” to resound within the polite confines of their minds, but not Terrence. He said it aloud. Other than a chuckle from Martin, no one reacted.

The hydraulic lift delivered an obese woman in her mid-forties. She had sweat and rainwater dripping as one solution from her short, sandy hair, rolling past her temples and down the curve of her ballooned cheeks. Dark stains where sweat had saturated the salmon colored fabric of her blouse adumbrated her fat breasts. Dragging her aluminum walker over to the three—now vacant—priority seats left her gasping for oxygen. The blue, plastic seats gave a creak of complaint beneath her girth. With a look of slack-jawed bewilderment and disdain Terrence turned to Martin, who was preoccupied with rearranging the sideswipe of his black bangs.

“Y’know Marty, this fuckin’ city…all it takes to totally ruin public transportation is a little bit of rain and fuckin’ fat people.”

Martin sucked his lips inward and raised his eyebrows, glancing over at the subject matter. She did not seem to notice.

        “Can you imagine,” Terrence continued with a grin, “what a man could do with an army of the obese?” He envisioned himself astride a black stallion with the cruel posture of some conquering Hannibal. Before the hooves of his steed, whip-driven hordes of corpulent soldiers with identical down-syndrome faces and imperial Roman armor waddled forward through a burning landscape.

Terrence laughed to himself as Martin said, “The entire campaign would have to be fueled on the promise of more sausages. A nitrate war!”

“Yeah, isn’t there some saying about how more important than any general in the army is the cook?”

Martin giggled out, “Isn’t that from a Steven Seagal flick?”

With a sudden jerk the bus lurched into traffic. The subject changed and they spoke idly of what programs they had watched on television the evening prior.

“…and then that pituitary retard goes back out with her…”

“…no idea why I still watch it. It’s like the eighth season and it’s terrible…”

“…she’s pregnant with a monster, so the black guy with the hammer…”

“…then he says, ‘I just work here, now let’s warm those bones of yours…”


Eventually they arrived at Terrence’s stop where they said goodbye with a finger-snapping pound.

“Aight, see you tomorrow,” Martin said as he fished through his bookbag for a magazine that detailed the newest releases in electronic entertainment.

        Terrence maneuvered awkwardly through the crowd to the stiff air-assisted doors. They slapped closed behind him as he hopped to the curb. Tightening the collar of his jacket against his nape in a futile attempt to ward off the cold and slow-descending haze, Terrence walked off through the wet, empty streets. They were hedged in on either side by brick row houses and community drives; the vapor overhead alternately lit by the red, green, yellow of traffic lights changing within their set routine—locked in an obstinate cycle of transformation which paid no regard to the uselessness of their own color-coded symbols along this desolate avenue.

After several blocks Terrence decided that he should stop to pick up a boil bag of ramen noodles to eat for dinner, as he knew that—other than an assortment of condiments, a wilted bag of lettuce, and an outpost for a burgeoning mold colony—the shelves of his refrigerator were bare. He turned left at the next corner and walked uphill. After turning down two more blocks he arrived at a bodega that was cattycornered off the street in an old stone building that seemed as if it had once been a bank or perhaps a movie theater, but now had been sectioned off and sold to comprise this corner store deli, a locksmith, a Korean nail salon, and a business whose primary means of income was creating t-shirts for children’s sports teams.

As Terrence pushed the door a small bell tinkled to announce his arrival. He dragged his feet across the mat and ran his fingernails along his scalp, through the wet kinks of his short blonde hair. He stepped forward into the seemingly empty store, and that little urgent voice that inhabits our nerve endings and pulls strings within our intestines, vertebrae, and the muscles of our jaws screamed for Terrence to get out, turn around, run! It was not that Terrence did not notice. However, as there was no reason, this shiver of instinct was not allowed to register. The modern world had reduced that voice—which once ruled us like  lightning—into a polite if uneasy guest attempting to get a word in to a busy host.

There was no one behind the counter, atop which sat a solitary pack of Newport cigarettes and a white book of matches. He walked down the aisle where he knew he could find the plastic packages of dehydrated sodium he planned on having for dinner. There was a whisper, followed by a whimper. At this point (with little intellectual recognition but a flicker of the hypothalamus and an ensuing spasm and squeeze of his sympathetic nervous system and adrenal-cortical system) Terrence turned on his heels and began to walk swiftly back down the aisle, past the pale and wilted vegetables, towards the exit.

“…fuck you goin’, muthafucka?”

        With nervous civility, Terrence turned to ask, “Excuse me?” He was staring down the barrel of a shotgun. It was a 12 gauge from Mossberg’s 500 series. Terrence did not know this. Nor did he truly observe the figure pointing it his way: other than the caramel complexion around the wide eyes, the facial features were obscured below a black hood and a paisley patterned blue bandana; the tall frame rendered somewhat shapeless by a dark-grey trench coat stained with ash, mud, and rain; black, leather gloves gripped the shotgun. All Terrence did know was that a big gun was aimed at his face.

Slowly, Terrence stepped backwards—inch-by-inch. His palms raised, the mechanisms of his jaw worked with determined, but imbecilic repetition: open, close, open, and close. No words were formed: only a low and broken yammering. Coming around the corner of the aisle, from behind soft blue and green packages of sanitary pads, a small man stepped up to Terrence and abruptly slapped him across the face. Terrence was nothing more than a rigid doll when this assailant gripped the two halves of his open collar and yanked him towards his partner with the shotgun.

“Getch yer ass over there, whiteboy!” Although the small man’s grey complexion was certainly much paler than his own, Terrence could not at that moment find any humor in this irony, nor a point worth investigating dialectically. With a voice that was muffled beneath the bandana, the man with the shotgun ordered the other to “go get more duct tape.” Before the small man disappeared down the aisle he slammed a knife flat on the counter alongside the pack of Newports. The blade was a dull slate-grey. Terrence’s face stung and there was a red welt swelling over his pale, freckled cheek.

“Let’s go, Barney Rubble.” Palming Terrence’s nape with his free hand, the man with the shotgun marched him towards the rear of the store. Urged forward, Terrence focused on each clomp-clomp of the man’s brown Timberland boots against the uneven linoleum tiles. The bandana about this man’s mouth had grown moist from breath, and he appeared rather uncomfortable as he wiped sweat from his eye with the back of his glove.

At the rear wall, someone was slumped in the corner between a red plastic rack containing various greeting cards and a glass-front fridge stocked with forty ounce bottles of malt liquor. Terrence recognized the slim, huddled figure as the Bangladeshi man who worked there. He looked up from under his blue turban with sodden eyes, his crooked, nicotine stained teeth jutting outwards as he gasped with anxiety. He appeared to have been beaten somewhat, as there was a trace film of blood and snot about a nostril as well as speckled on the black, curled whiskers of his thick beard and his teal polo shirt. Bound at the wrists with grey duct tape, he pressed his balled hands against his own ribs and sobbed, “please.”

Terrence averted his eyes and focused in on one of the greeting cards. It featured a cartoon bear in blue, denim overalls clutching a tangle of colorful balloons. The word bubble above its round, fluffy head read “I’m sorry that you’re not feeling well right now.” Just as the small man announced his return with the sharp, rupture sound of tape being peeled from the roll, Terrence was shoved to the floor alongside the employee. To others, Terrence had always referred to this man—or, for that matter, anyone who happened to be manning the store at any particular time—as his mugabi-guy; as in, “I went to my mugabi-guy for a cup of coffee this morning.” Under the menacing eyes of the man with the shotgun, the small man bent low and wound the tape violently about Terrence’s wrists and forearms. Terrence noticed that this small man’s limbs and fingers had a slight twitch to their movements, reminiscent of an insect’s. This likeness was particularly so when he occasionally swiped with a crooked index finger at the thin, disparate hairs of his moustache, which did little to conceal the scar that formed after enduring corrective surgery on a harelip.

“Aight,” the taller man spoke in his muffled tone, “let’s put these niggas in the basement, finish up ‘n’ get the fuck up outta here!”

        At this, the employee began to bellow and plead, “Please, no! No, please! Don’t put me in the basement! Don’t lock me in there! Please!” This plea’s rapid delivery, compounded by spittle and the odd angles his dense accent imposed upon the syllables, made one pause briefly before comprehension. He was panicked and attempted to scramble to his feet. For this he received the small man’s shell-toe between his ribs. He coughed, doubled over, and wheezed for breath. He continued with his entreaty, however, but now with only a shudder and a rolling whimper. Duct tape was placed over the employee’s mouth before the man with the shotgun hauled him up by the elbow while barking “Get up! Le’s go Papa Smurf!”

The small man opened the thick metal door that led to the basement and with a spastic wave of his hand motioned for Terrence to go down the steps. Terrence obliged, his head hung low and slick with perspiration. Behind him, the employee had to be dragged. He was flailing wildly and pawing desperately with sweaty palms at the wooden banister. Despite his mouth being sealed over, you still knew what his stifled, rough guttural moans concerned.

As he wiggled desperately under his captor’s grip, they both slipped. The man with the shotgun’s heel skidded and bounced off the edge of two steps before they both bowled forward and landed in a heap on the solid floor. Terrence slid down and remained still, pressing his back against the cold, cement wall of the basement.

It was dark down there; too dark to even begin to guess the room’s dimensions. The only light was that which descended from the open door above, and that served to illuminate the narrow steps and the desperate scene being enacted at their bottom and no more. Terrence was aware of the small man’s silhouette above as he shouted, “Yo D, you aight?” However, Terrence could not look away from the two men crouched before him at the cast light’s edge, where its periphery dissipated into the black: one, pleading with his hands raised, tears and saliva beginning to undo the adhesive gag; the other, rising, the bandana pulled free to reveal high cheekbones chiseled down to a scowling mouth, thick lips twisted with anger.

Sweeping his hands blindly along the floor, “D” retrieved his shotgun, raised the barrel high and slammed the thick butt into the forehead of the mewling supplicant at his knees. The employee’s neck and torso twisted hard before he slumped back with a wet smack to the floor. D paused, glancing over his shoulder into the palpable expanse of negative space. In an instant he whirled back to repeatedly batter the shotgun’s butt down against the prostrate employee’s skull. Each thrust was accompanied with a heaving grunt as viscous fluids splattered along the shotgun’s stock and across the cold ground.

Terrence could hear the moment when something solid cracked, splintered, and went wet. Even though that moment had come and gone, the grunts and thrusts continued. Eventually, with a final lunge and cracked growl, D stopped and allowed his arms to fall slack at his sides as his breath collapsed into a pant.

“Yo, D!”

The gunman turned his back to Terrence and appeared to be watching something in the opaque distance.


No. He was listening to something.

“D! C’mon nigga!”

        D turned around and calmly walked past Terrence and up the steps with the measured stride of a somnambulist. His eyes did not once flit in Terrence’s direction; nor did they seem to even notice the broken mess sprawled at the bottom of the stairs, spilling out within the shadows. Above, the door slammed, followed by the abrupt, metallic click of the lock.

Abandoned in the dark, Terrence sighed with a spasm to the muscles of his abdomen. His lungs felt constricted by his ribcage. Attempting to swallow the lump in his throat, he tasted the salt of his own tears, which rolled liberally from his blind eyes. Unaccompanied by the typical theatrics of weeping, Terrence was crying without making a sound, without moving a muscle. He felt cold.

Terrence heard something in the distance. A whisper? There was a clatter, as if a block of wood had been rolled along the floor at some far end of the room. Another whisper. Hushed and distorted through cracked static…a reply. Pointlessly, Terrence pressed his spine harder to the wall, as if there were a way through—a place safe.

He heard the clomp-clomp of heavy boots approaching, but they ceased inexplicably. No; they didn’t so much stop as they faded. Something lightly fingered at his ankle; or to be more precise, nothing lightly fingered at his ankle, for when he swatted down his bound limbs made contact only with the chilled slab of a concrete floor. Faint voices broken by a hiss. A nauseating gurgle, like a large cat gagging on a broken television. Inside, he felt cold; inside, he felt hollow.

With the brief, sharp jangle of a bell, the two thieves stepped to the sidewalk and began to walk briskly up the block. Although the drizzle still fell as an aimless haze, the cool, night air was welcomed. The small man swung a black, thirty-gallon trash bag over his shoulder as his little legs jerked forward towards their parked car—orange rust creeping up from around the wheel wells.  The bag was entirely too big for the little that it held.

As he pulled the keys from the pocket of his loose, wrinkled jeans, the small man noticed a young couple passing across the street. The woman was dressed as a slutty Little Red Riding Hood: her red-checked skirt ending abruptly to reveal the pink of thick, goose-pimpled thighs; knees peeking out from white nylons, which descended into little black shoes; her breasts ludicrously pressed up towards her chin. From her gait you could tell both that she had more than a few drinks and that her feet hurt. The man beside her was draped in a loose-fitting approximation of a foppish pirate. His oversized tri-cornered hat, warped with rainwater, sagged over the black patch that covered his right eye. Huddled within each other’s arms, they continued down the street engaged in drunken flirtation.

It took the police two weeks to tie the missing person’s report with the young man seen being accosted on the bodega’s security camera. However, as the footage obtained was of poor-quality and set at a limited angle, it provided little in the way of clues as to what had occurred. The body of Zubayer Rahman was discovered the morning of November 1st. His face had been reduced to an unrecognizable, pulpy mass, and there were numerous scratches of various length and depth all along his torso. The whereabouts of Terrence Hughes remain unknown.


————–(BOBBY CALERO)————

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Janis Joplin (January 19, 1943 – October 4, 1970)





You sing

You make my heart wet

and the polyps

In my ventricles


As the whiskey-gravel rolls through their dulcet maneuvers,

A tumble from your guts,

I only wish

To gather your colored cloth, feral hair,

pockmarked corpulent flesh,

and your sorrow—sodden from the womb—

In my arms

and cradle—

    But, Mama, you are dead


When the chemical hit a critical level

of toxicity

You seized up

So violent

You smashed your face

against the bedside table

of the Landmark Motor Hotel


Your psilocybin Porsche still idle in the parking lot


(photo by Richard Avedon, NYC, 8/28/69)

Hello All,

Today being the 43rd anniversary of Janis Joplin’s death, I chose to celebrate the life of this extraordinary talent by putting together a mixtape of some of my favorite tracks by her.

By all common standards considered a homely girl, and certainly rough looking—when this woman from Port Arthur, Texas sang she could transform into the most beautiful thing in the world. Up there all radiant with sweat and emotion, she’d take a tune at full-tilt and hold nothing back—she was a rarity—she was sincere.

—Enjoy yourself!

A Mouthful of Pennies Presents: Janis Joplin (As The Whiskey-Gravel Rolls Through Their Dulcet Maneuvers) 

————————(CLICK TO LISTEN & DOWNLOAD)————————- – –   -   -

A Mouthful of Pennies Presents

Janis Joplin (As The Whiskey-Gravel Rolls Through Their Dulcet Maneuvers)

By A Mouthful of Pennies (Bobby Calero)

Cover art by  A Mouthful of Pennies (Bobby Calero)

Janis Tracklist


——————(BOBBY CALERO)——————–  — –   -    -    -      -

(Janis Joplin blotter art by R. Crumb)

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