Saturday, November 29, 2008

Land of the Lost - November Playlist

Land of the Lost Playlist
November 28, 2008


The B-52's / Planet Claire
The English Beat / Twist & Crawl
Robert Palmer / Looking For Clues
UB40 / Zero Zero Seven Charlie
Blue Rondo A La Turk / Change
Bow Wow Wow / Aphrodisiac
Danielle Dax / Cat House
Eurythmics / I Love To Listen To Beethoven
Sparks / All You Ever Think About Is Sex
A Flock Of Seagulls / The More You Live, The More You Love
B-Movie / Nowhere Girl 12"
OMD / We Love You 12"
Joe Jackson / Got The Time


REM / Sitting Still
Human Sexual Response / What Does Sex Mean To Me
Jonathan Richman & The Modern Lovers / Ice Cream Man
Lene Lovich / New Toy
The Pool / Where Did We Go Wrong
XTC / Scissor Man
Dave Ball / In Strict Tempo
The Smiths / Cemetery Gates
Suburban Lawns / Janitor
Tuxedomoon / Incubus (Blue Suit)
Ultravox / Accent On Youth
John Foxx / No One Driving
Midge Ure / That Certain Smile
SSQ / Playback
Little Girls / Earthquake Song


Transvision Vamp
/ Tell That Girl To Shut Up
Julian Cope / Shot Down
Big Audio Dynamite / C'Mon Every Beatbox
Minimal Compact / Next One Is Real
Pete Shelley / Many A Time 12"
Head Cheese / Teenage Idol
Head Cheese / Non Melodic
PIL / Rise
Yello / Bostich
Joy Division / Atmosphere
Laurie Anderson / Born, Never Asked
Gary Numan / Down In The Park
The Cars / Al Mixed Up


Spandau Ballet
/ To Cut A Long Story Short 12"
Tin Tin / Kiss Me 12"
Klaus Nomi / Total Eclipse
Klaus Nomi / Lightning Strikes
Klaus Nomi / Ding Dong
The Fire Engines / Everything Roses
The Quick / Pretty Please
The Dickies / You Drive Me Ape, You Big Gorilla
The Rezillos / My Baby Does Good Sculptures
20/20 / Yellow Pills
Blue Angel / Maybe He'll Know
Tracey Ullman / They Don't Know About Us
Fashion / Love Shadow
OMD / Her Body In My Soul

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving

This has truly been a year to be thankful; first and foremost that I made it another year!

I am thankful for my friends, my career, my health (even with the bumps and bruises along the way... there are those way far worse than I) - - but mostly, I am thankful for John.

John has taught me to love. To love another and to finally love myself. John has allowed me to fully understand and experience what it is like to have a balanced life. I spent decades alone with my friends and my professional world, and - although I made the best of it, there was always something missing. I felt as if I was avoiding someone ... and that someone was me.

John helped me find myself this past year and for that I am not only thankful ...

I am grateful.

So, no matter how many things aren't quite right in your world this season, realize that you're alive. You're still here and you're still breathing. And, the future still awaits.

Make the most of the day. Take a moment to look in a mirror and say to yourself;

"I am thankful to be here."


Friday, November 21, 2008

Philly Complaint Choir

For those unaware, the Complaint Choir is a worldwide phenomenon - but has yet to blossom in Philadelphia - ironic, yes? Well, have no fear - it's arrived - and with a passion that only Philly can deliver!

Here's the gist - everyday citizens jot down complaints they have -- and then all these complaints are gathered and tossed together to create a song, which is then performed by an all-volunteer choir made up of many who submitted their own complaints!

You can find out more at their site (link below) - but first check out this wonderful video shot underground at Suburban Station (a central train station near City Hall for those not from Philly).

To get the full effect, you really need to turn on the close captioning. Just hover your cursor over the lower right corner (up arrow menu) and then select "CC". If that doesn't work, you may have to click through and do the same on the non-embedded YouTube page.

The Philadelphia Complaint Choir

Tuesday, November 18, 2008


Rest In Peace, Little Mikey.

Gone way too soon, man. You will be missed by many. I wasn't sure which pic to post, but I decided to go with the one that reminds me most of you - and that crazy cool smile.

I, for one, will miss your energy.

You might have been known as Little Mikey - but the void you have left is anything but.


Besides being a great musician who played in several local bands; a wonderful barfly friend and an all around fixture in the underground scene in Philly, Mike Brosnan was best known by many as the founder of STALAG 13 - an all-age venue known worldwide for its incredible punk showcases. Mikey was killed by a drunk driver, while crossing the street this weekend.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Welcome To Kid Hop

As producer of Kids Corner on WXPN for the past 20 years, I've discovered some incredible music for all ages - and sadly, ten times that in true crappy kids music.

In 1988 - the year Kids Corner started, the other debut was the not-yet-infamous BARNEY the purple dinosaur. That creature set quality family music back a decade! If it wasn't for Disney soundtracks, the late 80s and early 90s would have been even more painful than they were in the family music genre.

Then finally quality rock musicians started having kids and realizing there was an audience for both kids AND those that drive them everywhere. The beginnings of what is now 'family music' began; a mix of family-friendly folk and some traditional rock riffs.

Over time it has grown to a multi-million dollar industry - but one thing has always been limited; quality hip-hop ... until now !

Earlier this year a debut disc came across my desk from an artist named Secret Agent 23 Skidoo ... this disc is DOPE!

When North Carolina rapper Secret Agent 23 Skidoo became a dad, he set his sights toward creating hip-hop he and his daughter could enjoy equally. By combining the world of infectious beats and rhymes that he grew up on with the magical realm of childhood, he aims to introduce kids to hip hop without compromising either one.

His debut album, “Easy”, mixes traditional funk, bluegrass, reggae and blues with classic golden age hip hop beats. Then, he tops it off with positive, party rocking rhymes, and a slew of exciting characters from the last dragon left on earth to the bluegrasshopper.

This disc is a great listen - even if there are no kids miles around! This is easily one of my highlight discs for 2008 - as well as (hopefully) an influential release in the world of Family Music - fingers crossed that others listen to this Secret Agent and learn.

Check out this video clip of one of my favorite tracks from the disc "Gotta Be Me"

Find out more,

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Selling Myself

Today I get to stand in front of strangers and sell myself.

I've been nominated to serve on the South Street Headhouse District Board of Directors - and was asked to attend their monthly meeting in a little over an hour from now, to introduce myself to those that will be voting. Seems they have more nominations than positions.

That's a good thing.

I figured I'd flush out my thoughts here - and kill two stones with one bird ;)

As friends and longtime readers of this blog know, I've been a resident of the South Street corridor for a quarter-century, with exception to a handful of years when I escaped to NE Philly. Who knew that once there, I would spend every moment trying to escape FROM NE Philly!

But I digress.

Since 1981, I've seen the South Street area transform itself from a collective gathering of indie art-driven spaces to a stripmall of corporate logos. Over the past couple years, many of those corporate giants have fallen and faded away; Tower Records, McDonalds, KFC to name a few.

What is unique about South Street is its passion and creativity. Sadly, that's what has been missing when it comes to its creative output in regards to outreach and events. Sure, the events are traditions now - but they lack the cutting edge that South Street always had.

I was asked to put my name in the hat because of my ability to produce unique nightlife events in Philadelphia. It was suggested by a member that they not only want to jump start their current crop of annual events (Easter Parade, Halloween, etc) but also develop outreach that truly represents the heart of South Street.

Naturally, as someone who has produced the annual Philly Zombie Crawl down South Street for the past three years, as well as Sex Dwarf the past 5 years off South Street, I suppose I do represent a bit more 'left-of-center' mentality when it comes to creating sensational experiences!

So - this morning I will introduce myself - explain who I am and what I can bring to the table and let the chips fall where they may.

One thing: I promise here and now NOT to bring Sarah Palin into my election campaign ;)

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Thursday, November 06, 2008

The Stars Align

I read this this morning and got a chill! Obama will become the president of the United States of America just days before the 200th anniversary of Abraham Lincoln's birth. I've always been a sucker for numerology and love anniversaries - and this one is double important, as Obama has announced the theme for his inauguration, one that will reflect the timing: "A New Birth Of Freedom," a phrase from the Gettysburg Address.

How powerful that the first black man elected president of the United States of America will build his inauguration around the words of Lincoln - and, if one could, imagine how Lincoln would feel to see his words live on, on such a truly historic day for our country.

From Lincoln's speech:

The brave men, living and dead, who struggled here, have consecrated it, far above our poor power to add or detract. The world will little note, nor long remember what we say here, but it can never forget what they did here. It is for us the living, rather, to be dedicated here to the unfinished work which they who fought here have thus far so nobly advanced. It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us -- that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last full measure of devotion -- that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain -- that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom -- and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

'Tis The Season

Hi folks -

Well, even though the season of goblins has just ended, I'm already knee-deep in planning mode for my 15th annual edition of The Night Before on XPN; 24 nonstop hours of eclectic sounds of the season on December 24th; from midnight to midnight.

That's right; me - live - nonstop - for 24 hours!

Two things:

First, I want to put out a call to those of you who might have some non-obvious, off-the-beaten-path seasonal songs that you want to share for my annual broadcast - - grant it, I can't guarantee that I'll spin everything, but if you feel the desire to put together a mix CD for consideration, I'd be happy to give it a listen and possibly toss tracks into the mix! I know that many of you have quite the unique collection of music at home - so if you have some unusual songs with either an holiday or winter theme and want to burn them to disc and mail them off to me - I'd love it!

Send the discs to:

Robert Drake
3025 Walnut Street

Philadelphia PA 19104-3402

Second - I am creating some new features to plop into my 24-hour live marathon; one is called The 60-minute Shopping Spree; one hour of 'gift' songs - basically songs that are about items that would make cool gifts. That's where you come in; feel free to comment to this post with any songs that you think would work for this hour - just follow these rules:

1. they do NOT have to be holiday songs
2. they must have the gift item in the title of the song

That's it - start the brainstorming and advance thanks - - and I hope you can join me for my 15th annual marathon show, starting at midnight on Wednesday, December 24th 2008!

Remember, you can listen worldwide at or tune in at:

88.5fm WXPN-Philadelphia, PA
88.7fm WXPN-York/Lancaster, PA
99.7fm WXPN-Harrisburg, PA
104.9fm WXPN-Lehigh Valley, PA
90.5fm WKHS-Worton/Baltimore, MD

The Moment

While sitting quietly in John's house watching history in the making last night at 11pm EST - seeing the hundreds of thousands of faces; beaming, crying and smiling - I realized that we truly are witnessing something more than another election.

Although I had invitations to join friends at social events and election night parties, to me - this night was personal. I wanted to have control of my environment as well as the remote; so I could flip around with ease.

I found (as usual) the best coverage was on C-SPAN with its peaceful void of bells and whistles. MSNBC followed, mostly because of Keith and Rachel. The oddest coverage was found over at CNN, where the tech crew have gotten a memo to 'kick it up a notch' - in addition to their Magic Wall (which was originally military technology), last night saw the debut of a 3-D floating Capitol building as well as the 'beaming in' of a reporter in Chicago - who then chatted with Wolf as a hologram. I guess all those extra dollars CNN made from political ads was invested wisely!


Anyway - back to 11pm. Once Keith Olberman made the announcement at 11pm, I sat there and watched a live feed from Grant Park in Chicago; the most amazing thing was the silence from the pundits on the set back in NYC. I wasn't sure if it was because they wanted to allow the historical moment to stand alone - or perhaps they themselves were just as choked up as we all were.

I sat there and, with each minute passing, filled with more emotion, finally finding its way out via my tear ducts. I cried a steady stream of blessed tears for a good 10 minutes while witnessing the psychological transfer of our country's direction from the old guard to a new generation of citizens.

As I was taking all this in - one song came to mind. I always felt this song to be powerful; be it the original version or covered by the likes of Patti, Luther or such. The words are haunting and it so fits this moment in time.

It Has Begun.

Monday, November 03, 2008

Being Serious

I posted this earlier this fall - but its important enough to me, that I post it again - the day before Election Day 2008.

OK -

The last time I wrote something like this was exactly four years ago - but I decided to write this again.

I rarely impose politics on people; it's a personal decision and that is that - and that belief goes all the way towards politicians and how they impose their personal beliefs on citizens as blanket laws, 'for the good of the country'.

Government should govern. Government should NOT become tangled in personal decisions; be they matters of the heart or matters of life and death.

I'm for government that works to support its citizens grow and prosper, especially those that aren't at the top of the food chain. I'm for a government that understands the value of science and research; from the minutia of stem-cell to the expansive reaches of outer space.

I'm not for a government that feels the need to steer the country back to the 'good old days' when minorities, be they ethnic or sexual orientation, knew their place and simply accepted it. I'm not for a government that governs by the rule of a God and believes that the 'good book' is more powerful than the United States Constitution.

Four years ago I wrote to my 'friends list' on My Space and told them that it was important that those within my network support me; both as a human being and equal citizen of this great country. By voting for four more years of George W. Bush, they were helping to take this country down the wrong road; not only in battle but in cultural wars and extremism beliefs. They were moving this country a step closer to outlawing millions of citizens some of their basic rights and securities; me being one of those millions.

The 2004 Republican ticket was not supportive of the LGBT community in any way. It begrudgingly agreed to accept us, as long as we stopped whining for more. It was not a step forward for acceptance and understanding - something that has historically made this melting pot society of America but sadly has fallen to the wayside over the past decade.

Sadly, Bush won again and we see where we are today.

There is no sincere, clear-headed way someone can convince me that John McCain is nothing more than more of the same - but this time with a extreme religious twist, thanks to his party's choice of Palin as their Vice-President.

The Republican Party leading this country would not be good for America.

So - before we get into the final heat of the presidential battle - if you're planning to vote Republican, do me a favor - delete me from your 'friends' list because, quite frankly, a vote for McCain is a vote against me.

Yes, it really is that personal for me.