The Eternal Return

It’s been a while since I touched this blog, I’ll admit. Sometimes we make ambitious commitments that end up falling short of expectations. In this case, work travel and a trip down to Indio for a long weekend in April pushed this project to the wayside.

That said – we’re back.  Maybe a weekly post is too much commitment. Maybe I’ll just post whenever the mood strikes right from now now. Maybe these are signs of more deep-seeded flaws in your humble author. Regardless! I’m glad to be back.

Where to begin? In the past few weeks I’ve been without a music story to tell. This article will touch on a few things – a festival trip, creative pursuits, and how being true to our passions keeps us happy.

Firstly, yes I went to Coachella. Yes, I know it’s cliché. It’s seemingly become more of a cultural icon than a music and arts festival. I’m sure lots of people go for the gram rather than for the music. Maybe a little bit of both?

Despite it’s (perhaps ill-gotten) hype, I had to experience it for myself at least once, and I can honestly say that it was worth it 100%. I had my doubts going in, but it was fantastic in so many ways – the company, the food, the art and artists, even the very grounds we walked on. After adjusting to the punishing 100 degree heat, dust, and abundance of Chads, I had an amazing time. Could be the difference between Weekend 2 and Weekend 1, but I have only my own experience to draw upon.

  • Worth the price of admission:  Tame Impala, Polo & Pan, Childish Gambino, Weezer,  RÜFÜS DU SOL, Blood Orange, Bob Moses, Gesaffelstein, Dillon Francis, Aphex Twin
  • Wish I saw more: Anderson .Paak & The Free Nationals, Nora En Pure, Diplo, Cirez D, Ariana Grande, Kacey Musgraves, The 1975, Four Tet, Bassnectar, Juice WRLD, Kid Cudi, Unknown Mortal Orchestra, Khalid, Hot Since 82, Parcels
  • Bucket list – Content with not seeing again: Jauz, FISHER, BENZI, Zedd, NGHTMRE
  • Favorite Special Guests (and who brought them out): A$AP Rocky (Tame Impala), DMX (Murda Beatz), Chance the Rapper (Sunday Service), Ellie Goulding (Diplo)

Special shouts out to Polo & Pan for being my new obsession, and to RÜFÜS DU SOL for their borderline religious set under the full moon.

As you might notice, the “Wish I saw more” list is unfortunately the longest. Such is the true price of festival admission – the promise of all your favorite acts minus the reality of conflicting set times, distance between stages, and human obstacles like hunger, thirst, exhaustion, inebriation. Bummer.

Yet, overall it was a magical experience, and I will certainly be going again. The weekend overall was a good lesson for me in not letting the hype or popularity of something dissuade me from going and having a great time. I’m over the hipster wont that believes in the inverse relationship between popularity and artistic value or worthiness.

Rekindling Passions, For Our Own Sake

As we live in business (pronounced busy-ness, but also business. Double entendre.), it’s easy to lose sight of passion projects. After all, they often aren’t profitable. For so many, art and other hobbies don’t put food on the table. This is a sad reality, because it’s often those things that make us feel more alive than the very sustenance they’re unable to afford. As I neglected this blog and my own musical pursuits, I found the days a little emptier and more boring than they should have been. Not melancholic necessarily, but vacuous, like the difference between living and merely existing.

Thus the return to my old habits is ever so sweet. I found time to record one of my annual mixtapes as well – the “Spring Mix” as it’s called, no relation to bagged leafy greens. This is the third installment, and the theme always aims to be a soundtrack for the year’s progression out of the dark and cold, into the light and the warmth. I always include a variety of genres, new and old, skits and ad-libs, and make sure to highlight some of my favorite tracks from the last year or two. I really hope you enjoy it:

I’m very glad to be back at it all, and hope you find some joy in my return as well. Thank you for your patience, and you’ll be hearing again from me quite soon.

With love,

Max

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