1. People of Rogers Park. A guy who lives in my neighborhood photographs and interviews random other residents he meets on the street. He posts the results here, and it’s one of my favorite zines ever. Probably because I love this neighborhood and its people so much, and seems like this interviewer/photographer does too, and because the interviews often get into random real insights and observations, e.g.: “But I believe in literature. I truly do. I think stories are incredibly important. I think books save lives. There’s a quote from Alan Bennett, the English playwright, from The History Boys…one of the teachers in it is talking about how sometimes when you’re reading—and you might be reading something from somebody long dead and gone—but suddenly, they’re saying what you feel. And he says—and it’s as if a hand has reached out and taken yours. That just so, so, so resonates with me.” “When’s the last time a hand reached out and took yours?,asks the interviewer, and it goes on from there.

  2. All 131 Van Halen Songs, Ranked From Worst To Best by Chuck Klosterman. Can’t help it (though I skipped at least half of this particular text, especially almost every single word written about anything after 5150), I always enjoy reading Chuck Klosterman. I mean, he’s from North Dakota and I’m from Nebraska, we’re both white guys with glasses and beards, we were born two years apart, we both love Van Halen, psychographically we’re the exact same person.

  3. Are Prisons Obsolete? by Angela Y. Davis

  4. Can you Believe Michael Jordan Did All this in 1 Game Playing 30min? (1991.03.28) | Quick Highlights. I try to keep sports out of here for the most part. I do believe sports at their best are physical and poetic excellence, presented in an unscripted format, and that in itself is thrilling. But sports also present competitive excellence, which is still thrilling, but where it gets problematic: the hierarchical power structuring, the regionalism, the jingoistic herd-mentality fandom. I want to watch the game without being a fan. Either way, when it comes to physical and poetic excellence, thank god for Michael Jordan and for YouTubes like this one. Of course the NBA is more physically talented than ever in 2020, but I can’t help but think the poetic talent has in fact decreased. I’ll give you Steph Curry, and the dynasty Warriors in general, but that’s the most poetic the contemporary NBA gets. Lebron has flashes of poetry, but his game is still more muscle, as physically talented as MJ, probably more so, but still not as poetically talented as MJ, as watching this highlight video from an average regular-season game during his 1991 prime will show you.

  5. Sir Plastic Crimewave Omens of Descent. Sir Steven “Plastic Crimewave” Krakow of Chicago lays down a recent (July 2020) completely solo electric psych guitar/keys album. It smokes!

  6. The Unraveling of America by Wade Davis. Topical political commentary.

  7. Oops, more sports… when I was a kid growing up on the vast plains in between Omaha and Kansas City, the Kansas City Royals were my favorite baseball team (as was their farm team the Omaha Royals), and one of my favorite of all Royals was shortstop U L Washington. (Please note: “The U and L are not initials, but rather are his given legal name.”)

  8. Thirty-Five Moments That Brought Chicago Music To The World. It was written by “the Arts & Business Council of Chicago,” which sounds a little stuffy, but I love this appropriately wide-ranging list of musical achievements that happened in this city, as early as 1921, and all the way up to 2017. Chicago is a truly great music city in many ways.

  9. What are the 16 Habits of Mind? What is this new age hogwash that I love and find useful?

  10. Maggot Brain Free Summer 2020 Issue, no number, PDF-only. Mark this link and mark it well, because it seems kind of hard to locate without the link, my favorite current and ongoing print music magazine, doing a huge digital-only Covid-era issue. (Note: this is not Maggot Brain #3; that is coming soon in a print edition like the first two.) Hilarious that a work of this magnitude (the PDF is 203 pages long, with tons of high-resolution color imagery) is window #48 out of a total of 76 windows that have all been open simultaneously on my phone for 6 months. No wonder my phone performance is decreasing. Now it keeps suddenly dying when it still as well over 10% of its battery charge, usually while I’m driving my car, trying to search last-minute directions while briefly stopped at a red light. (Dear computer people, is a large PDF file open for 6 months straight as one of 76 concurrent Safari windows a drag on performance? Or is the file backgrounded so much that it doesn’t take up RAM unless you’re reloading it, and so isn’t a drag on performance? I seriously don’t know, although my feeling is that it would be a drag on performance regardless.) Anyway, this issue features a definitive digital presentation of editor Mike McGonigal’s 1997 interview with SF author/legend Octavia Butler (there was an extensive-but-somewhat-abridged paper version in Mike’s previous publication Yeti, issue #4, 2006); an interview between Tara Jane O’Neil and Owen Ashworth that makes me want to listen to music by both; an interview with rapper Linqua Franca who has a fantastic funky look, a freaky political/poetic flow, and is an elected county commissioner in Athens, Georgia; a Luc Sante piece that I might actually like (his work does not go down smooth for me, and I don’t know why, and that may not be a slight but a compliment; anyway, this one at the very least has really nice scans from his collection of 45RPM singles).

  11. Linqua Franca is “At The Heart of Hip Hop And Politics.”

  12. Topical material: this guy Bob Rauner from Partnership for a Healthy Lincoln (as in the capital of Nebraska) has a YouTube channel with some reasonable talk about CoronaVirus, which is hard to come by in a Republican stronghold like Nebraska. But helpful specifics about the virus aside, the thing that struck me the most about this particular episode from June 24th is his emphasis on “communicating WHY,” and his reference to a Harvard Business Review article, “Good Leadership Is About Communicating ‘Why,’” by Nancy Duarte. As he says in the middle of the episode: “People don’t follow recommendations just because they’re told to, but if they understand why, they’re much more likely to respond.” Being a good leader means you’re always communicating “why,” in a way that people can comprehend and understand. It’s not easy to do. Sorry, I’m thinking about all of this in the context of my day job. It doesn’t really apply to my spiritual/musical/poetic side that this zine is all about. But then good leadership is important in all areas and ways of being, because do we not lead our own self? Shouldn’t we always know why we are leading ourselves where we’re leading ourselves?

  13. White Heaven Out. Still have my trusty 90s Maxell dub of this record (with Dead C’s DR503 on the other side!) but this Bandcamp page is cool too, as is the vinyl reissue on the Black Editions label.

  14. Deerhoof & Wadada Leo Smith To Be Surrounded By Beautiful, Curious, Breathing, Laughing Flesh Is Enough. 5 of the 11 tracks of this digital album, released in July 2020, are Deerhoof in collaboration with the trumpet-playing Chicago avant-jazz great Wadada Leo Smith.

  15. Culxr House (North Omaha, NE). Nebraska again, my old stomping grounds. Excellent things happening here, even if they’re closed to the public until further notice.

  16. Diversions: Hausu Mountain. Gotta peep whatever day-glo breakfast-cereal synthesizer music and/or 1990s VHS-only releases by Jerry Garcia Band side projects this Chirazy Chicago Chicrew is recommending this time…

  17. Liz Durette Delight is one thing they actually did recommend, which is why it’s the next window open after that Aquarium Drunkard Hausu joint, and because I also have and enjoy a previous LP by her, Four Improvisations on Electric Piano from 2017.

  18. Good Ol’ Persons I Can’t Stand to Ramble. The always reliable Justin Farrar recommended this San Francisco bluegrass vocal group’s very nice 1983 version of “You Don’t Miss Your Water” on social media somewhere. The Good Ol’ Persons formed in 1975 as an all-women bluegrass trio, one of the first such bluegrass groups at the time (though by the time of this album they had a mixed-gender lineup). Bandleader Kathy Kallick grew up in Chicago, where her mother Dodi Kallick helped establish the still-running Old Town School of Folk Music, and was also the first performer at the locally legendary No Exit Cafe when it opened in 1958, its last location just a short walk away from where I’m typing these words right now (currently a rather elegant live jazz bar called Le Piano, though all of this is currently shut down of course).

  19. Blackbandcamp.info A crowd-sourced list of Black artists on Bandcamp.

  20. “Hey Nineteen lyrics.” To this day, an area of curiosity.

  21. “Three Questions For Kramer” by Rick Moody. Oh my goodness, what a truly fantastic piece this was for The Believer. I hope Kramer and Moody are already working on a book version (and I hope it’s more like 53 questions).

  22. The Story of Feminist Punk in 33 Songs. I don’t link to Pitchfork very much because I figure they don’t need extra attention, but I’m not above linking to piece as good as this one, as compiled by Jenn Pelly, Jes Skolnik, and many more. I’ve only skipped around through about half of it, and it’s already been great; even shed a tear or two just now, while reading Jillian Mapes writing about Hole’s Live Through This.

  23. The Best Dad Jokes on Reddit.

  24. I TRULY BELIEVED: an in-depth conversation with Vicki Pollack of the San Francisco Diggers. Need to stress again what incredible work Jay Babcock is doing interviewing members of the original countercultural group in San Francisco, as documented on his Diggers Docs blog.

  25. The Check-In: Octavia Butler and Apocalyptic Storytelling.

  26. Get Hustle: “This is Circumstancial Evidence” DVD Video Footage. Extremely heavy live footage for me, because it’s very similar to my own very heavy experience seeing Get Hustle, live at a house show in Chicago, back in 2003.

  27. Turned Out a Punk, Episode 244: Mike Watt. File under “podcasts that update practically every week and already have 217 episodes, 30 of which I’d really like to listen to, wonder when I’ll find the time to do that.” I mean, in the time since this Watt podcast, Turned Out a Punk posted an interview with Bubba Dupree of Void!!

  28. A Magic Whistle Vision Magic Voyage. New project from Neon Hunk people?

  29. I already mentioned the Tone Glow Substack back there on window #11. Some other Substacks of interest that I also have open… Deep Voices by Matthew Schnipper and

  30. Viking’s Choice by Lars Gotrich, of NPR Radio and before that the Thor’s Rubber Hammer label, which seems like an eternity ago, and was indeed well over a decade. Lars also recommends a bunch of other Substacks (including this one here Blastitude, thanks LG), for example

  31. So It Goes by the Allmusic guy Stephen Thomas Erlewine, which I ended up reading a bunch of because he’s such a chill informative pro.

  32. The Sunwatchers Oh Yeah?. Trouble in Mind (and The Sunwatchers) strike(s) again.

  33. Alan Licht’s Minimalism Top 10 III no longer lives at volcanictongue.com because nothing lives at volcanictongue.com (I’m starting to regret/respect that all of that voluminous music writing is no longer up there), but was rescued here as a Discogs list. (And by the way I’ve never noticed Discogs’ Lists feature before. Talk about rabbit holes!)

  34. Bridget Hayden Pure Touch Only From Now On, They Said So. Checking this out after rereading the cover feature interview in Dynamite Hemorrhage #7.

  35. “You’ll Know When You Get There” by Herbie Hancock was sampled in 11 songs.”

  36. Maximum Rock’n’Roll Radio. Always have this open because it’s always good.

  37. So many Distant Duos! Trying to keep up!

  38. Damn, a Bill Evans mix CDR made for a friend by filmmaker Chris Marker, this is gold…

BONUS WINDOW I JUST OPENED: “The Point of Departure is Not to Return” by Burning Star Core, a heavy track from the halcyon ‘new noise underground’ days of 2003…