RiYL podcast 044: music booker and Israeli baseball player Shlomo Lipetz

Recommended if You Like is Boing Boing's weekly podcast of Brian Heater's cafe conversations with musicians, cartoonists, writers, and other creative types.

I met Shlomo last week at New York's City Winery, just before settling into another RiYL interview. The 6'4 mustachioed Israeli was making sure everything was all right with the the Old 97s' Rhett Miller, ahead of his show that night. Fascinated by meeting my first real life Shlomo (surprising, perhaps, given my own ethnic makeup), I Googled the venue's booker the following day, stumbling upon a Wall Street Journal story from 2012 about Israeli baseball -- a subject which I, admittedly, know nothing about. At the top was an image of the booker, full-beard, in a pre-pitch lineup. Down below, the paper described Lipetz as, "Israel's biggest baseball star." A day later, we sat down during a Bob Mould soundcheck to discuss how one earns such a title. Lipetz is characteristically modest, pointing out that he's the best at something in a country that seemingly barely knows it exists. According to the Journal story, some 1,000 of Israel's population of eight million play the sport. Still, how many of us can say we're the best at anything?

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RiYL podcast 043: musician Doug Gillard

Breaking In Two 7" by Doug Gillard

Recommended if You Like is Boing Boing's weekly podcast of Brian Heater's cafe conversations with musicians, cartoonists, writers, and other creative types.

From Guided By Voices to Nada Surf, if you can think of a seminal indie rock band from the past 20 years, there's a pretty decent chance Doug Gillard's put in time among their ranks at some point or other. The journeyman guitar player also has a accomplished solo career, with his latest, Parade On, due April 8. Gillard joins us over some green tea and bourbon to discuss the Beatles, Ohio and playing with some of the best rock and roll bands going.

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RiYL podcast 042: Hospitality's Amber Papini and Nathan Michel

Recommended if You Like is Boing Boing's weekly podcast of Brian Heater's cafe conversations with musicians, cartoonists, writers, and other creative types.

Come spend 45 minutes in the Red Hook living room shared by Hospitality's singer and percussionist a day after the launch of their sophomore record. The expectations are elevated this time out, after the healthy amount of buzz generated by the band's self-titled indie-pop debut. You wouldn't know it from outward appearances, however. All is calm in the Brooklyn band's apartment. Dinner is on the stove and Michel is halfway through Psychotic Reactions and Carburetor Dung. The tour, after all, is still a few months away.

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The Best of Wonder Wart-Hog

That Gilbert Shelton’s name isn’t immediately recognized by everyone who reads these words is a shame, one Knockabout Comics has spent the past half-dozen years working hard to correct. In 2008, the UK-based publisher issued The Fabulous Furry Freak Brothers Omnibus, followed a year later by a collection of the delightful spinoff series, Fat Freddy’s Cat. The company took a couple of years off from the Shelton racket, issuing books by, among others, the cartoonist’s better known peer and fellow French transplant, Robert Crumb.

Late last year, however, the company returned with the final piece in Shelton’s puzzle: Wonder Wart-Hog. Like Shelton himself, the bestial hero is mostly forgotten outside of sequential art faithfuls and those who followed his skewed super heroics in sporadically issued comics collections throughout the 60s. Read the rest

RiYL podcast 041: Colin Spoelman, moonshine maker

Recommended if You Like is Boing Boing's weekly podcast of Brian Heater's cafe conversations with musicians, cartoonists, writers, and other creative types.

Colin Spoelman quite literally wrote the book on home whiskey distillation. It's a subject he knows a thing or two about, having transformed the output of a single internet-purchased pot still into a major microdistillery -- New York City's longest running, no less, at the ripe old age of four. It's a terrific book, though it did firmly crush any fantasies I had of running my own apartment-based distillery. Thankfully, however, there are more terrific whiskies in the world than ever before, thanks to a recent explosion in craft distilleries. The list certainly includes Spoelman's King's County, maker of some fine bourbon and the smoothest moonshine I've ever tasted.

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RiYL podcast 040: Rodney Anonymous of The Dead Milkmen

Recommended if You Like is Boing Boing's weekly podcast of Brian Heater's cafe conversations with musicians, cartoonists, writers, and other creative types.

Over the past 30 years, Rodney Anonymous has become a sort of Philadelphia landmark like Ben Franklin's house or that big cracked bell. If you get a chance to visit him during your time in the city, it's the sort of thing you won't soon forget. I met the once and future Dead Milkmen frontman at Philly's top goth/industry record store, at which point we adjourned to a nearby tea shop, so at not to interrupt the employee's Magic: The Gathering tournament in the rear of the store. Three decades after forming punk's most hilarious band, Anonymous hasn't slowed down (save for the occasional slipped-disc of old age), nor have his opinions dulled a bit.

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RiYL podcast 039: Generation Hex author Jason Louv

Recommended if You Like is Boing Boing's weekly podcast of Brian Heater's cafe conversations with musicians, cartoonists, writers, and other creative types.

When the next generation finds itself knee-deep in an occult revival, who better to call that Jason Louv. My two-time former roommate swung by New York City a while back to teach the kids in Bushwick a thing or two about magic. Louv has written a number books on the subject, including 2005's Generation Hex for Disinfo. His most recent volume, Monsanto vs. the World: The Monsanto Protection Act, GMOs and Our Genetically Modified Future, explores his newfound fascination with the genetically modified organisms of Monsanto.

This episode of RiYL is brought to you by:

Squarespace: the all-in-one platform that makes it fast and easy to create your own professional website or online portfolio. For a free trial and 10% off go to Squarespace.com and use the offer code RIYL.

Shari's Berries: Get giant freshly dipped strawberries starting at $19.99 (over a 40% savings), or double the berries for just $10 more. Use the code “like” when you order.

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RiYL podcast 038: Columbia librarian Karen Green

Recommended if You Like is Boing Boing's weekly podcast of Brian Heater's cafe conversations with musicians, cartoonists, writers, and other creative types.

Strange to think, more than twenty years after Maus became the first graphic novel to win a Pulitzer, the concept of comics as academic pursuit still seems foreign. Standing in front of Columbia's collection of bound sequential art, however, the day when comics are widely regarded as some of the finest literature and art available doesn't seem too far off after all. When Ancient and Medieval Collections librarian Karen Green started work at the university, Columbia's comics collection was a scant three titles. Now, thanks to her work, it's an impressive thing to behold.

In December, Columbia University’s Rare Book & Manuscript Library acquired the archive of Kitchen Sink Press, which includes over 50,000 letters with cartoonists and "200 linear feet of material including editorial and business files, original art, handwritten letters and drawings."

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RiYL podcast 037: Adult Swim's Joe Garden

Recommended if You Like is Boing Boing's weekly podcast of Brian Heater's cafe conversations with musicians, cartoonists, writers, and other creative types.

In this episode, former The Onion features editor and current Adult Swim employee Joe Garden explains why he purchased Firehose records on eBay after a dream told him to do so.

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Comics Rack: January's best comic books

Philadelphia’s surely got more comic shops than a city of that size requires — and book and record stores for that matter. And of course I love the city of brotherly love for it. I stumbled upon this fact by accident, traveling there for week between jobs a few years ago and cataloging a massive walking trek to all corners of the city, focused on each and every comic place I could find in between. I liked the sentiment enough to repeat it last week before starting my new gig at Yahoo — though a nasty post-CES flu abridged the trip length significantly — and the number of comic shops visited as well. Read the rest

RiYL podcast 035: David Cope

Recommended if You Like is Boing Boing's weekly podcast of Brian Heater's cafe conversations with musicians, cartoonists, writers, and other creative types.

This episode of RiYL is brought to you by Squarespace, the all-in-one platform that makes it fast and easy to create you own professional website or online portfolio. For a free trial and ten percent off go to Squarespace.com and use the offer code RIYL.

David Cope is a professor emeritus at the University of California and a pioneer in the world of computer created music, having worked to perfect classical compositions on machines since the days of punch cards. He's also exactly the sort of person you'd like to sit down with for an hour to discuss the rules governing music, math, art and the universe.

This episode of RiYL is brought to you by Squarespace, the all-in-one platform that makes it fast and easy to create you own professional website or online portfolio. For a free trial and ten percent off go to Squarespace.com and use the offer code RIYL.

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RiYL podcast 034: Mark Frauenfelder

Recommended if You Like is Boing Boing's weekly podcast of Brian Heater's cafe conversations with musicians, cartoonists, writers, and other creative types.

The Boing Boing / Make Magazine / Cool Tools editor and I found the quietest corner we could at the recent Engadget Expand event in New York to discuss the importance of curation in the digital age, the lost art of print media, podcasting and the magic of Art Bell.

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Comics Rack: December's best comic books

You didn't get everything you wanted for Christmas? Good. Go out and buy Fantagraphics’ new Peanuts Every Sunday collection. It’s big and it’s beautiful and it’s great. The first volume spans ’52 to 55, so you get all the wonderful charm of those early Peanuts collections from a few years back (baby Linus! Baby Schroeder! A Snoopy that looks like an actual dog! Glorious, glorious Shermy!), only in full color.

In seasonal depression news, the terrific Brooklyn-based indie art book and comic book publisher Picturebox is ceasing publication come the new year. There is a silver lining for you, the consumer, however: enter the coupon code “sale” and you can get half of their entire stock. I bought three books the other week, like the vulture I am: one on Sun Ra, one written by Michel Gondry on the topic of filmmaking and a Brandon Graham book I’ve been eyeing for some time. Also recommended from the new pile is Matthew Thurber’s Infomaniacs, a surrealist science fiction story about an over-connected, absurdist world. Read the rest

RiYL podcast 033: comic book writer and editor Marie Javins

Recommended if You Like is Boing Boing's weekly podcast of Brian Heater's cafe conversations with musicians, cartoonists, writers, and other creative types. - Mark

Marie Javins is known for hating houseguests. She's also known for writing, editing, and coloring comic books. She started as a (paid!) intern at Marvel comics in the late 1980s and has gone on to color over 2,000 pages. In this interview, she discusses living in Australia, Barcelona, Uganda, Namibia, New Jersey, Kuwait, and Cairo, and how the comics business has changed over the years.

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RiYL podcast 032: Robert Newsome of The Atomic Elbow

Recommended if You Like is Boing Boing's weekly podcast of conversations with musicians, cartoonists, writers, and other creative types.

The Atomic Elbow is a professional wrestling fanzine published by Robert Newsome with a circulation of 100 copies [same as the first issue of bOING bOING! - Mark]. I interviewed Robert at Java Joe's in Athens, GA. If you aren't a fan of professional wrestling, you will probably become one after listening to Robert's insightful remarks.

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RiYL podcast 030 and 031: comedian Dave Hill

Recommended if You Like is Boing Boing's weekly podcast of conversations with musicians, cartoonists, writers, and other creative types.

For this special two-part extended episode we invite you to kick back and enjoy some light jazz trumpet at a Greenwich Village coffee shop with musician, actor, and comedian Dave Hill, a frequent on-air correspondent on HBO and Cinemax, and a contributor to This American Life. The Tasteful Nudes author discusses his upcoming WFMU radio show, gentlemen's suits, cable talk shows, and piloting a pedicab through the streets of New York.

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RiYL podcast 029: Will Cullen Hart of The Olivia Tremor Control and Circulatory System

Recommended if You Like is Boing Boing's weekly podcast of conversations with musicians, cartoonists, writers, and other creative types. In this episode, I speak with Will Cullen Hart of the rock bands The Olivia Tremor Control and Circulatory System, and founder of the label Cloud Recordings. We sat down in his cat-infested back yard in Athens, Georgia to discuss his two upcoming records, and the recent loss of his lifelong friend and songwriting partner Bill Doss. In 2008, Will revealed that he had been diagnosed with multiple sclerosis. We spoke about how his life has been changed by this autoimmmune disease.

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