Sunday, December 21, 2008

obscure classics at heathers saturday night!!!

2008 has only one more Saturday night left.
We've got to make this one count!!!
This Saturday at the East Village mainstay Heathers, fill your ears with some carefully selected classics from in and around the 80's.  Post punk, new wave and indie rock.  Obscure favorites and underplayed classics with a healthy dose of old standby's.
 Come early for a free mix CD, limited supply...
See you there!

Monday, December 15, 2008

new order confusion video

this 1983 hit for new order was co-written and co-produced by arthur baker [the long haired guy in the video] who became famous for his work on afrika bambaataa's soul sonic force hit, 'planet rock'. blondie and the clash had already done the crossover bit, but these pastey boys from manchester's moody existential legacy peaking at number 5 in the US dance club chart is kind of a milestone. a slightly different flavor of crossover, subtle but definitely unique. and the video is a nice little slice [no pun intended] of new york nightlife at the time. [thank you ross, for recommending this and giving me a little history lesson!]

sunday afternoon mini mix

the sound ~ new dark age
simple minds ~ boys from brazil
a flock of seagulls ~ nightmares
midnight oil ~ power and the passion
tears for fears ~ mothers talk
electronic ~ tighten up

i was going to make this mix longer, but i decided short and sweet was the way. plus i had somewhere to go : ) all about BIG drums and orchestra hits, enjoy!

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

wednesday night at my place

10,000 maniacs ~ pit viper
eyeless in gaza ~ two
r.e.m. ~ 9 - 9
echo & the bunnymen ~ a promise
u2 ~ the electric co.
the names ~ floating world
the passions ~ runaway
the psychedelic furs ~ highwire days
sad lovers & giants ~ alice {isn't playing}
crispy ambulance ~ a sense of reason {session}
the dance society ~ these frayed edges
gary numan ~ tracks

here's some of the stuff i've been listening to lately, and more particularly, tonight. some lesser known songs by better known artists in there, plus some more obscure artists.
i've been digging into my old 10,000 maniacs collection lately. i forgot how much i like it. for a while it was a bit of a guilty pleasure i'd only play every now and then. i think because the band became famous for their later stuff, and they had this pop folk stigma. just not my scene. their early 80's material [like pit viper] was much edgier, and natalie merchant's lyrics weren't so club-you-over-the-head-obvious-what-the song-is-about. her early lyrics were sometimes on the cryptic side, more poetic in my opinion. i actually like when i can't tell what the song is about. i like to make my own interpretation. the same can be said for r.e.m.'s early stuff [like 9-9 which is off of murmur], who knows what michael stipe was singing about. in interviews, he says that a lot of it was just made up off the top of his head because it sounded nice.
speaking of singers, my latest obsession is eyeless in gaza. martyn bates' spastic vocal style is the cats pajamas... to me. best slept-on band i've heard in a while. not all hits, but i've been finding some gems in their collection... okay, enough opinions.
here's a couple facts:

1. my friends' new band is pretty rad. their called hunters and they are playing at a new york indie showcase with a lot of other rad bands this friday at 8pm sharp. info and songs here.

2. i have another DJ gig coming up very soon, so stay tuned!

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

about last night

ps - there really was absinthe! [and i had some] a thousand thankyou's to everyone who came last night, i had fun! hope you enjoyed it.

i tried to play mostly old gems that were kind of off the radar back in the day [circa 80's], and just a dash of classic standby's for good measure.

hearing all classics is tiring, to me, like being on a hamster wheel, not that i've done that, but i can sympathize. feels like your not getting anywhere, not breaking new ground. too much nostalgia is annoying that way.

on the other hand, hearing all obscure tracks can be tiring as well, more like treading water in the middle of an ocean. nothing to hold on to. you may hear something you like, but it gets lost among all the other songs you've never heard before.

but when you hear something like "once in a lifetime" by talking heads followed by a post punk band like orange juice instead of the van halen song that usually followed it on the radio, it makes sense. it sounds fresh now, because its in its natural habitat, free to roam blah blah blah...
anyways thats my little snippet of dj theory for the day.

some requests that i missed last night [its always the one thing i didn't bring] : old magnetic fields, oingo boingo, and i flaked again on the gary numan/pleasure principle... next time, i promise.
stay tuned...

Monday, November 17, 2008

synths and absinthe at heathers tuesday night

another installment of obscure classics!
fave new wave, classic post punk & indie rock circa the 80's
at heathers bar
this tuesday nov.18th
9pm - 2am
506 E. 13th st.
between A & B

add 3john as a friend at

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Coat Drive at Heathers Bar tonight

From 8-10 tonight I'll be mixing some classic 80's post punk and new wave at Heathers for the Annual Coat Drive. Come before 8 for free drinks! Bring a coat and I'll give you a mix CD! See you there!

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

new wave mixtape volume I side II

side II

yaz - ode to boy
gary numan - i sing rain
pet shop boys - west end girls
prefab sprout - when love breaks down
thompson twins - if you were here
omd - souvenir
modern english - hands across the sea
the passions - i'm in love with a german film star

Monday, October 20, 2008

punk movie series at BAM

i'm psyched i just found out about this.
all kinds of punk rock related movies are playing at the brooklyn academy of music in november. 24 hour party people, the joy division documentary, the joe strummer one, rough cut & ready dubbed [really, really want to see this one], depeche mode 101 and a bunch more... let's go!

details here:

pre-synth madonna

so, madonna had a brief stint in a rock band before her career took off. the daily beast just released an exclusive recording that has a few clips of her earliest work. one of them is the first song she wrote. its kinda refreshing to hear her voice in a different format. it would be sooo cool to hear finished versions of these songs. but it goes without saying that she made the right move when she switched to the new wave sound.

read the full story here.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

new wave mixtape volume I side I

new wave's been sounding nice lately. that and concise little mini mixes...

heaven 17 - let me go
depeche mode - lie to me
icehouse - hey little girl
japan - quiet life
the comsat angels - not a word
modern english - chapter 12
new order - the perfect kiss

Friday, October 3, 2008

new wave soundtrack

a little selection of some of the more theatrical or "soundtracky" new wave songs in my collection. i tried to compile this mix in such a way that tells a story, that is, it has a beginning, middle, and end. that doesn't really account for the lyrical content - i don't know what this story would be about exactly. but i'm sure you can dream up something. enjoy...

omd - messages [peel session]
the human league - dreams of leaving
simple minds - fear of gods
gary numan - stormtrooper in drag
romeo void - going to neon
depeche mode - waiting for the night
wang chung - dancing
thomas newman - st. marks place
tears for fears - the working hour
wang chung - don't let go
b movie - nowhere girl
real life - exploding bullet
ultravox - vienna

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Echo & the Bunnymen at Radio City

Echo & the Bunnymen played Radio City Music Hall last night and of course i had to go. all in all, i was satisfied. i was feeling full of doubts during the first half. they played a sampling of songs from different albums and some covers, like "people are strange" by the doors and "a walk on the wild side" by lou reed. i wasn't so thrilled about the covers as some of the crowd. but there were some classics that i was pleased to hear live, like "dancing horses" and "cutter".

it was a little odd sitting down while they played what i feel is one of their most rambunctious {and best} songs "all that jazz". my friend commented that it made her feel geriatric to sit while this upbeat danceable music was playing. which brings me to another point, the crowd was surprisingly older than i imagined, and button-down, literally. the dress code for men [way more men to women ratio than i imagined as well] was close cropped hair, light colored oxford shirts and khakis. very few people were under 30. there were pockets of the crowd that looked like happy hour in the financial district. no offense, its just surprising is all. but i thought there would be more savvy young ones. it could have been the price, 60 clams after ticketmaster's filthy fingers take their 10 dollar "got you by the short and curlies" fee from your wallet, eh-hem... sorry, money is a sensitive spot these days, no pun intended.

okay, what made the show worthwhile and then some was the second half. this is where they did the 11 piece orchestra Ocean Rain album thing. the orchestra began and the band rowed out in a little boat just like on the cover of the album! actually the boat part didn't happen. the set was impressive though, the songs "nocturnal me" and "ocean rain" sounded amazing with the lush arrangements they...arranged. and were particularly and comfortably stuck in my head on the way home. the sitting-down aspect started to make sense, it was more than a rock show. the second half made the first half seem like they were just messing around, warming up or waiting for the orchestra to arrive. even so, and even without an encore [yep, crazy right?], it was still worth it for me.

the moral of the story is; i don't know when they're playing around here again, but if they have the orchestra with them, you should go see them before they are completely absorbed into music history.

Saturday, September 27, 2008

heartbeat city radio

hello, hello again
another mix for you. unlike the non-live mixes i've posted so far, this one is completely spontaneous. so it might ramble off in different directions. all in all, its a bit more like a live set, or no, like a radio program, or a podcast. no, a radio program. i'm calling it heartbeat city radio, named after the epic album and song by the cars. if there was a real place named heartbeat city, i would move there, probably. anyways i'm going to try to post these types of sets more often.

my hope, as always, is that it might introduce you to a few new[old] songs by artists you know already... or even some new artists. enjoy!

martha and the muffins - echo beach
wake - talk about the past
the chameleons - looking inwardly
the the - this is the day
wake - favour
the cure - primary
echo & the bunnymen - my white devil
U2 - a day without me
the psychedelic furs - president gas
modern english - someones calling
talking heads - artists only
pixies - is she weird
the cramps - green fuzz
young marble giants - choci loni
the db's - amplifier
the times - i helped patrick mcgoohan escape
the freshies - i'm in love with the girl on a certain...
the golden dawn - george hamilton's dead
the primitives - stop killing me
the sea urchins - day into day
saint christopher - all of a tremble
my bloody valentine - cigarettes in your bed
henry's dress - "A" is for cribbage
unrest - teenage suicide
thr wedding present - my favourite dress
ultra vivid scene - lynn marie #2
the breeders - no aloha

chapterhouse - summer chill
the sugarcubes - regina
the cars - heartbeat city
love & rockets - i feel speed
suicide - cheree

Monday, July 21, 2008

new old favorites

been a while, i know!
hope you're enjoying the warm months as much as i am.
i haven't been mixing so much lately, but i've been digging into
and outside of my collection, seeking new old
favorites and obscure classics nonetheless. i mixed up a few of them here for
y'all to listen to:

the jam - start! - 1980
television personalities - world of pauline lewis - 1981
vic godard & the subway sect - split up the money - 1980
the smiths - death at one's elbow - 1987
orange juice - poor old soul (part 1) - 1981
dexys midnight runners - geno - 1980
elvis costello - the beat - 1978
the boomtown rats - rat trap - 1978
cuddly toys - join the girls - 1980
david bowie - the jean genie - 1972
pretenders - up the neck - 1980
the saints - know your product - 1978

if you're interested in getting this mix on to your mp3 player, read this. keep in touch, leave a comment. until next time, enjoy your summer!

Sunday, June 15, 2008

live recording from June 4th

a recording of my set at Heathers is available at

here's the set list so you can read along at home:

the lines - cool snap
suburban lawns - baby
polyrock - #7
devo - praying hands
the b-52's - there's a moon in the sky [called the moon]
the cars - getting through
the vapors - prisoners
the clash - train in vain
the db's - spy in the house of love
talking heads - once in a lifetime
xtc - earn enough for us
elvis costello - whisper to a scream
the smiths - panic
the police - fall out
suburban lawns - boyfriend
buzzcocks - fiction romance
adam & the ants - car trouble, pts. 1 & 2
warsaw - the drawback
ramones - rock'n'roll highschool
r.e.m. - radio free europe
the patti smith group - so you wanna be
nikki sudden - channel steamer
the dancing cigarettes - pop doormat
the b-52's - devil in my car
tones on tail - go
thompson twins - could be her, could be you
tom tom club - genius of love
the human league - love action
depeche mode - new life
omd - bunker soldiers [peel session]
yaz - state farm
madonna - think of me
squeeze - annie get your gun
our daughters wedding - lawnchairs
sigue sigue sputnik - love missile f1-11
sparks - angst in my pants
the human league - sound of the crowd
mathematiques modernes - disco rough
devo - girl u want
casino music - viol af dis
elton motello - queen
echo & the bunnymen - no dark things
delta 5 - triangle
gang of four - not for great men
glaxo babies - who killed bruce lee?
esg - moody
the clash - the magnificent seven
the flying lizards - sex machine
the waitresses - bread and butter
the b-52's - 52 girls
ramones - slug
the misfits - hybrid moments
blondie - xoffender
the cramps - goo goo muck
the revillos - rev up
hoodoo gurus - i want you back
pretenders - mystery achievement

if you have any questions about any of the songs i play, please leave a comment!
i'm no music snob. this blog isn't just for people who already know about all of this music. i'm still discovering a lot of it myself. so raise your hand if you have something to say. now put that hand down, onto your computer mouse, and click the comments button below.


Tuesday, June 10, 2008

drive-in saturday

This is a mix of punk and pop from the 70’s and 80’s influenced by doo wop music.

Doo wop’s vocal harmonies had a big influence on 1950’s rock’n’roll like Buddy Holly, and later 1960’s girl groups like The Ronettes. It's easy to see how it could influence pop music, but punk? Pretty much all of the elements found their way into punk at some point. The simple lullaby melodies, the “shoo be doo”s, the "oooh wah oooh"s, the "sha la la"s, the saxophone solos, the call and response, the dramatic spoken-word intros... Slow it down to half speed and replace the electric guitar with a crooning bass vocalist and you've got doo wop.
I've been compiling and distilling this for a while now and I think I've got most of the major players covered, obvious ones like the Ramones, and not so obvious ones like Richard Hell. In my opinion, this is one of the most fun forms of music.
"its a crash course for the ravers..."

Blondie ~ Denise

-a cover of a doo wop song by Randy and the Rainbows [you gotta love the names of doo wop groups! Which is another way doo wop influenced punk, almost all doo wop groups had names that began with “The”. ] from the album Plastic Letters.

The Cars ~ Slipaway

-Ric Ocasek wrote this and gave it to Ian Lloyd. I like The Cars’ version better, which wasn’t an official release, but can be found on Just What I Needed: The Cars Anthology.

Buzzcocks ~ Everybody’s Happy Nowadays

-always been my fav Buzzcocks track. From Singles Going Steady

Ramones ~ Do You Wanna Dance?

-originally written by Bobby Freeman in 1958, The Beach Boys version was probably the most popular, but its been covered by T. Rex, John Lennon, and The Mamas & The Papas too.

Plastic Bertrand ~ Le Petit Tortillard

-a little known classic by the guy who became famous for “Ca Plane Pour Moi”, more about him in a minute...

David Bowie ~ Hang On To Yourself

-from The Rise And Fall Of Ziggy Stardust And The Spiders From Mars. Bowie originally wrote this song even before Hunky Dory and gave it to a band called Arnold Corns, who released it on a single with Moonage Daydream [another Bowie song]. The single was a failure. Bowie was testing some of his material and concepts out on Arnold Corns, but when the Ziggy character started to gel, this song fit in nicely on the album and he reclaimed it. Rise and Fall wasn’t the complete concept album that everyone thought it was. Some of it was written before the Ziggy character existed. [paraphrased from Strange Fascination by David Buckley]

Marshall Crenshaw ~ Rockin’ Around In NYC

-I think of Crenshaw as the Buddy Holly of the 80’s. Holly was definitely one of his influences. Not to de-emphasize his originality - Crenshaw was an extremely talented songwriter. Check out his album Field Day, kind of a lost gem. This song is from a compilation of early stuff called The 9 Volt Years.

Ramones ~ Let’s Dance

-the Ramones can’t seem to go wrong with the cover songs. This one was a huge hit for Chris Montez in the early 60’s. The Beatles covered it and The Silicon Teens gave it the new wave treatment in the early 80’s. It’s on the Ramones first, self titled album.

The Misfits ~ Hybrid Moments

-as a kid I always thought the Misfits were straight-forward hardcore punk, and at a glance they are. But if you go back to their earlier recordings, theres more stuff like this song. [Go even further back and they had a synthesizer!] Turns out Danzig was a huge Marilyn Monroe fan and named the band after her last movie. Fifties nostalgia and hardcore punk don’t sound like they would mix well, but the Misfits pull it off.

Nikki Sudden ~ Channel Steamer

-Sudden was originally in the post punk outfit Swell Maps. This is the single from his first solo record in 1982.

Joan Jett ~ You Don’t Know What You’ve Got

-this is from her self titled solo debut album. That’s the one that had Bad Reputation and Do You Wanna Touch Me on it

Ramones ~ Slug

-one of my favorite Ramones songs. Not sure what the lyrics are about really. [A girl who turns into a slug?] I would imagine Joey got the idea from some horror movie he saw. If anyone knows please leave a comment.

Suburban Lawns ~ Anything

-my favorite obscure 80’s band. Sounds like if Olive Oil [Popeye’s girlfriend] started a punk band. Their most recognizable song is called “janitor”. This one is SO doo wop! This is the song I had in mind when I said slow it down and take out the electric guitar…

Elvis Costello ~ Welcome To The Working Week

-from My Aim Is True, his 1st album. Brief and to the point, catchy and clever, a perfect Costello moment.

Richard Hell & The Voidoids ~ The Kid With The Replaceable Head

-lately this is my fav Hell song. It was featured in Susan Seidelman’s first film called Smithereens. Richard Hell himself plays a character in the film. There are some other great songs in it too. If you’re young and rebellious and moving to the big city [or ever have been] you should see this. Seidelman later directed Desperately Seeking Susan.

Misfits ~ Last Caress

-doo wop horror punk, amazing.

Elton Motello ~ Sha La La La Lee

-originally by The Small Faces, Plastic Bertrand also covered this song.

Plastic Bertrand ~ Ca Plane Pour Moi

-Roger Jouret, aka Plastic Bertrand, played drums in Elton Motello for a bit, which explains why Bertrand and Motello played many of the same songs. This one has the same exact backing track as Motello’s infamous “Jet Boy Jet Girl”. Its rare that 2 bands will share the same recording, each with different lyrics. It’s like the bizarro opposite of a cover song, where two songs share the same lyrics and the backing tracks differ. The title of this one means “this life’s for me” and the lyrics are interesting to say the least. Many [Americans] of my generation [including me] first heard this song in National Lampoon’s European Vacation.

Le Volume √Čtait Au Maximum ~ Nian!

-Le Volume is from Quebec and fronted by a guy called Johnny Love. This one is a wild card, as it’s not from the 70’s or 80’s, but I am invoking my creative license here. It plays so well with Plastic Bertrand! Yes, I could have told you that these guys hung out with Bertrand and Motello as well and you probably would have believed me. But I’m not shiesty like that :)

Blondie ~ XOffender

-apparently, this one is about a prostitute who falls in love with a cop. But how do you ask a cop on a date when you’re a prostitute? Tricky situation. This song will walk you through it.

The Nerves ~ Hanging On The Telephone

-I was surprised the first time I heard this. I always thought Blondie’s version was the original, but The Nerves wrote it. The Nerves only released one EP [ever] in 1976 and this song was on it. The other songs are good too, shame they broke up.

Marshall Crenshaw ~ Run Back To You

-also from The 9 Volt Years compilation. Love the chord progression in this one.

Pretenders ~ Kid

-one of their first singles to hit the charts. Released in 1979 before their first [self titled] album.

David Bowie ~ Drive-In Saturday

-this is another song that Bowie gave to another band before taking it back and putting it on his own album. He gave this one to Mott the Hoople, but they never released it. Its tells of a dystopian future where people have forgotten how to make love and resort to watching vintage “video-films” for guidance.

Friday, June 6, 2008

wednesday and the lines

thanks everyone who came out wednesday! i had fun, i hope you did too. good crowds make for good sets. i don't plan my sets. i just sort of divine them from the room and, well, i can't wait to hear the recording on the Heathers Podcast when it gets posted. hope to see you folks next time.

the first song i played [which got partially trimmed due to a technical difficulty] was "cool snap" by The Lines, a brilliant post punk band that somehow never got off the ground. they had a lot of potential. check out some of their music here. there are recordings on the right of the page, i'm partial to the "radiobass" tapes, which are unfortunately not released, yet. Bass solos with minimal drum machine beats, pretty badass.

lets see, what else... i'm working on a new mix for you. i'm psyched about this one. sort of a punk rock tribute to doo wop music. putting the finishing touches on it.


Monday, June 2, 2008

this Wedneday at Heathers Bar

Wednesday, June 4th 9pm - 1ish

506 e. 13th street

btwn Ave A & B

Thursday, May 29, 2008

heathers bar live recording

a recording of my May 14th live set at Heathers Bar is up,
listen to it here.

the replacements - within your reach
the call - the walls came down
ultra vivid scene - special one
talking heads - warning sign
the b-52's - dirty backroads
fun boy three - our lips are sealed
the the - giant
new order - thieves like us
wide boy awake - slang teacher
china crisis - seven sports for all
ric ocasek - true to you
the go go's - you can't walk in your sleep
the divinyls - ring me up
hoodoo gurus - come anytime
marshall crenshaw - run back to you
ramones - slug
suburban lawns - anything
blondie - Xoffender
joan jett - you don't know what you've got
pretenders - kid
the patti smith group - ask the angels
nick lowe - cruel to be kind
elvis costello - welcome to the working week
squeeze - pulling mussels [from the shell]
the cars - you can't hold on too long
tones on tail - instrumental
ultra vivid scene - lynn-marie #1
wake - favour
echo & the bunnymen - all i want
warsaw - no love lost
the cure - grinding halt
the psychedelic furs - pulse
the jesus & mary chain - i love rock & roll
the sound - acceleration group
sad lovers & giants - things we never did
romeo void - ventilation
the waitresses - bread and butter
delta 5 - triangle
josef k - heaven sent
the fall - fiery jack
polyrock - go west
the ex - watchdogs
buzzcocks - moving away from the pulsebeat
richard hell & the voidoids - down at the rock & roll club
sonic youth - panty lies
the cramps - sunglasses after dark
the misfits - hollywood babylon
pixies - dead
the vaselines - son of a gun
talking heads - and she was
the b-52's - legal tender
the vapors - jimmy jones
lene lovich - lucky number
xtc - earn enough for us
the english beat - best friend
the specials - little bitch
r.e.m. - exhuming mcCarthy
the jam - town called malice
the replacements - left of the dial
the wedding present - everyone thinks he looks daft
unrest - cath carroll

the recording is a bit low, but it is a live recording, think of it as a bootleg.
you really had to be there. the part with
fleetwood mac's tusk, in its entirety, was unfortunately cut out.
more to come soon...

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

bring a sweater

click here to listen:
the jesus & mary chain ~ halfway to crazy
black tambourine ~ throw aggi off the bridge
my bloody valentine ~ never say goodbye
pixies - trompe le monde
talulah gosh ~ talulah gosh
the sea urchins ~ pristine christine
the smiths ~ rusholme ruffians
the wedding present ~ i'm not always so stupid
the bodines ~ therese
the field mice ~ sensitive
r.e.m. ~ stumble
the feelies ~ original love
lowlife ~ reflections of I
the servants ~ loggerheads
wire ~ map ref 41 degrees n 93 degrees w
josef k ~ endless soul
mixed by john the third

Thursday, May 15, 2008

upcoming recordings

Thanks to everyone who stopped by last night. I'm crossing my fingers hoping my recording came out okay. The little recording device at the bar is somewhat cryptic. I felt like the ape from 2001: A Space Odyssey trying to figure it out. Hopefully, those of you who missed out can at least hear my set soon. Honestly, I don't blame you for not coming, it was frickin cold out! For mid-May? Yeah. What is this the mountains? It was like 75 degrees in the afternoon and 50 at night. Anyways I'm not sincerely complaining about the weather, I'm attempting a segway here.
My latest "official" recording is no doubt inspired by the crisp weather we've been having here in New York. Which is why I named it "Bring a Sweater". I actually like spring when the mornings are a little chilly. I get on the heel-toe with my hoodie up and my headphones on. I find myself listening to a lot of music with jangley guitars and extra fuzzy distortion. So it's a selection of tracks from the indie, C86, shoegazer and related flavors of the late 80's and early 90's.
I'll be posting that as soon as my modem issue at home is resolved. My modem is fried so I'm posting from elsewhere. I recently realized that it has been on for about 3 years now, of course it's fried. Why they build modems without an on/off switch or auto-shutdown is beyond me...Way beyond me. Again, makes me feel like the space ape [see also: frustrating devices without interfaces], which is a nice dovetail for me to end this rambling post.

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Heathers May 14th

may 14th
9pm - 1am
506 E. 13th street
between A & B
i've been hard at work steadily building my collection deeper into
the 80's decade. i've got a new Mute Records retrospective
i just started sinking my fangs into. i never know
exactly what i'm going to play, but some bands that have
been on heavy headphone rotation lately are
The Cramps, The B-52's, Young Marble Giants,
Suburban Lawns, Polyrock, Orange Juice, and Glaxo Babies.
so i'll probably be playing a few selections from those and a
whole lot more. i've got 4 hours and i'm bringing about
6000 songs with me!
see you there

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

stay tuned...

I'm playing a live set next week. More info soon.

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

john the third on your iPod

if you're as, um, not-tech-savvy as me, you've been wondering how a person could get mixes from the blog on to their iPod. me too. good news people, i figured it out!
here's how:
1. click on the subscribe link on the right side of this page
2. click "subscribe with iTunes" {make sure iTunes is running on your computer box}
3. obscure classics will start downloading, when its finished, you can find it in "podcasts"
4. drag it to your iPod aaaaaaand... your done.
5. new mixes will somehow magically appear in iTunes when i post them!

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

under the april skies

april's got me in a spring-feverish daydreamstate. my playlist looks something like this:

the jesus & mary chain – something’s wrong

new order – ceremony

lowlife – big fat funky whale

modern english - machines

the psychedelic furs – heartbreak beat

the the – uncertain smile

the cure – inbetween days

new order – dreams never end

clan of xymox – no words

crispy ambulance – concorde square [radio session]

wire – the 15th

ultra vivid scene – lightning

the jesus & mary chain - april skies

listen here:

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

something to keep you busy

while i work on my next mix for you.
i'm not usually into music videos, i like to dream up my own visuals. but this one... i like this one. this is what i imagined they looked like before i ever saw them

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Happy Hour set, Saturday, April 12th

Bartender Jamie hosts the Saturday happy hour at Heathers
2 for 1 drinks
Come out for a sip and a listen before dinner, or stay until 8 and we can hit the town!

Saturday, April 5, 2008

Live Set at Heathers March 25th 2008

A recording of my first live set is available here.

Heathers is my fav bar in Manhattan. The scene is low key and no-nonsense, but still has genuine character, and the music is always excellent. So I'm psyched to be featured among the other DJs recorded there. Special thanks to everyone who came out for some music and a drink, and of course to Heather.

Here is the setlist, I played endurance style, no breaks!, from 9:30 - 1:30:

The Primitives – Spacehead
The B-52’s – 52 Girls
The Waitresses – No Guilt
The Police – Man in a Suitcase
Elvis Costello – [I Don’t Want to Go to] Chelsea
Robyn Hitchcock – Madonna of the Wasps
The Jam – Man in the Corner Shop
The Replacements – I Will Dare
The Smiths – Vicar in a Tutu
Josef K – Sorry for Laughing
Unrest – Makeout Club
The Primitives – Crash
The Hooters – And We Danced
The Plimsouls – Million Miles Away
The Smithereens – Behind the Wall of Sleep
The Cars – Nightspots
The Passions – Small Stones
The Feelies – The Boy with the Perpetual Nervousness
Violent Femmes – Gone Daddy Gone
Echo & the Bunnymen – My White Devil [Alternate Version]
New Order – Age of Consent
Simple Minds – Speed Your Love to Me
The Sound – Acceleration Group
The Jesus & Mary Chain – Tumbledown
The Cure – The Exploding Boy
The Sound – Hothouse
The Chameleons – Up the Down Escalator
The Jesus & Mary Chain – Almost Gold
Ultra Vivid Scene – Kind of a Drag
Big Audio Dynamite II – Kool-Aid
Modern English – The Planet
Pretenders – Message of Love
Blondie – Denise
The Real Kids – Better Be Good
The Cars – Slipaway
Buzzcocks – Everybody’s Happy Nowadays
Ramones – Do You Wanna Dance?
Plastic Bertrand – Ca Plane Pour Moi
David Bowie – Hang on to Yourself
Marshall Crenshaw – Rockin’ Around in NYC
Richard Hell & the Voidoids – The Kid with the Replaceable Head
Romeo Void – Confrontation
Squeeze – Cool for Cats
Edwyn Collins/Orange Juice – Rip It Up
The The – Uncertain Smile
Wake – Favour
Echo & the Bunnymen – The Back of Love
Joy Division – Colony
Crispy Ambulance – Come On [Session]
New Order – Dreams Never End
Colin Newman – Don’t Bring Reminders
Magazine – Song from Under the Floorboards
R.E.M. – Radio Free Europe
Robyn Hitchcock – Meat
Huey Lewis & the News – Change of Heart
Hoodoo Gurus – Come Anytime
Bruce Springsteen – Out in the Street
John Mellencamp – Lonely Ol’ Night
Marshall Crenshaw – Not For Me
Apb – So Many Broken Hearts
The Jam – Town Called Malice
Dexys Midnight Runners – Show Me
Elvis Costello – Strict Time
Pretenders – Louie Louie
Joe Jackson – I’m the Man
The Police – Truth Hits Everybody
The Replacements – Alex Chilton
Pat Benatar – All Fired Up
Wang Chung – Fire in the Twilight
Simple Minds – Love Song
The Jesus & Mary Chain – Stardust Remedy
Apb – Kritik
Blondie – Scenery
The Nerves – Hanging on the Telephone
Elvis Costello – Pretty Words

photo: monica mikulak

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

darklands volume I

This is my first official recording. Darklands is a mix inspired by a romanticized vision of angst-ridden American youth boiled down from my own childhood and all of the movies I grew up with in the 80s. Several of the songs come from 80s movie soundtracks. [I like songs that are “soundtracky”] The cover is a screen capture from a movie called Dream a Little Dream. It's as corny as it sounds, it featured the two Cory's, Feldman and Haim. But in my opinion it's one of the most underrated films of the 1980s PG-13 variety. Out of context, the characters in the image seem to inhabit the same Darklands that The Jesus and Mary Chain describe in their song/album of the same name. That’s roughly the concept behind it, but its open for interpretation. I hope you enjoy it in your own context, your own soundtrack.

track listing:
the replacements - can't hardly wait
the sound - iron years
the psychedelic furs - flowers
the jesus & mary chain - rollercoaster
echo & the bunnymen - with a hip
sad lovers & giants - 50/50
romeo void - just too easy
elvis costello & the attractions - pump it up
the cars - maybe baby
eddie & the cruisers - on the dark side
inxs - don't change
modern english - i'll melt with you
the replacements - alex chilton
julian cope - world shut your mouth
hoodoo gurus - what's my scene
tom petty & the heartbreakers - american girl
elvis costello & the attractions - from a whisper to a scream
pretenders - don't get me wrong

Tuesday, April 1, 2008


i'm john the third. i'm a dj. this is my blog. i play primarily music from the 1980s; post punk, new wave, alt rock...obscure bands like wire, or suburban lawns, seminal bands like orange juice, talking heads, or the jesus & mary chain, and classics like the cars, or the b-52's, i've been collecting it for several years now and i'm just beginning to play at local bars in new york. i've always been drawn to the little known classics. that band that everyone refers to as a "one hit wonder" actually made quite a few decent songs, some arguably better than that "one hit". that's pretty much my starting point. from there, i'll explore some better known favorites, 70's punk and early 90's stuff, if it mixes well... here you will find some of my mixes, playlists, info about upcoming gigs, musings about past gigs, and other randomness... enjoy!