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Hi, This is Wayne. This is my site, my stuff, my blog, blahblahblah. The site itself is powered by WordPress and the Scary Little theme. I thought it was cool, and I still do.

There are a ton of people doing this meme, and I’m not one to do memes very often, but I actually kind of like this one.

Think of 20 albums, CDs, LPs (if you’re over 40), that had such a profound effect on you they changed your life. Dug into your soul. Music that brought you to life when you heard it. Royally affected you, kicked you in the wazoo, literally socked you in the gut, is what I mean. Then when you finish, tag 15 others, including me, make a donation to Any Blogger Can, sit back and drink a brewski, watch your favorite DITL. Make sure you copy and paste this part so they know the drill.

Here are mine. Except I did 22 albums.

And I’ll warn you ahead of time that I seriously doubt the existence of any human being out there with even five of the same albums as me. Shoot, I bet there isn’t anybody with even THREE of these on their list. What can I say? I’m very weird awesome in my own way.

Beatles – Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band

There are people who say they like this album, or were “changed” by it, and then there are the rest of us who really were. You know who you are – the kind of fan that lists an album because it’s cool to list an album. If you can’t sing every lyric, every studio-added sound effect or murmur and can’t sing out the rooster parts or actually played the end of the album in the infinite loop, you don’t count.

Yes – Tales from Topographic Oceans

We start the eclectic. This is a double-album with only four (4) songs total. Yes, one song per album side. I told you I was weird awesome.

Mannheim Steamroller – Fresh Aire II

I could list several of the Fresh Aire series because I immersed myself in all of them at one point or another, but I’d have to say Fresh Aire II was my first and most potent.

Mannheim Steamroller – Fresh Aire III

There was this one song, Mere Image, that I played dozens of times per week. Yes, it was that fetching. I still do sometimes. I even dreamed up my own music video to the song and still want to make it come true. It has a wistful nostalgic energetic make-you-cry-after-dancing feel.

Olivia Newton-John and ELO – Xanadu soundtrack

I made my own homemade version from the DVD because the many of the songs had versions on the actual published soundtrack that were different from the movie and that devastated me to no end. I hate it when movie soundtracks do that!

Steve Vai – Passion and Warfare

There’s a song on there that kind of feel like dueling electric guitars and I frequently would daydream about my brother and I performing this on stage. Alas, he is the guitar player and I’m the guitar hero.

Michael Jackson – Off The Wall

So shoot me. Wait, I already shot myself for this one.

The Moody Blues – On The Threshold of a Dream

This is one of many tastes I picked up from my dad, who had this and the next album on vinyl. I would put it on and be amazed. When I discovered headphones it sent me to the next level. This is one of those albums that you put on, close your eyes, and let the sounds take you over. In fact, a lot of my picks are sensual albums – you don’t just put them on in the background or flick on the radio to listen. They are to be enjoyed specifically, not as the soundtrack to your daily life.

The Moody Blues – In Search of the Lost Chord


Tracks 7 through 12 are the ones to get lost in.

Steely Dan – Citizen

I had to put in the “Everything” compilation album because once I discovered the ‘Dan, I consumed every song they had and played this collection on repeat for about a year.

Metallica – Master of Puppets

It was hard to choose between this and Ride the Lightning but I listed to Master of Puppets a tad bit more. Plus, it has Orion on it.

The Statler Brothers – Old Testament and New Testament

I had the double-album set. I can still list all the disciples because of this album.

Simon & Garfunkel – Bridge Over Troubled Water.

My first CD, ever. I got it for my 15th birthday.

Yes – Going For The One

This is another one of those that will be unique to me, and guess what? Awaken? intense 15-minute long song.

Celtic Woman (custom rip)

This is another one where the released soundtrack differed from the video release (DVD) so I ended up ripping my own MP3’s off of the video so that it would match. I’m linking you to the DVD instead of the CD since it’s the one with the music I love. The CD actually took off a couple of tracks!

Rush – Hemispheres

It’s hard to choose just one because of Grace Under Pressure and Signals and Power Windows and AFTK and 2112 and… and… and… But this is the one I sank into deeply and didn’t come up for air for weeks.

Jon Anderson – Olias of Sunhillow

I don’t expect anyone to understand this one. But, man oh man. I love this album. It’s like the Lord of the Rings put to music but without J R R Tolkein.

Jonathan Coulton – Thing A Week series

Can’t list one of the TaW albums since I got the whole collection and put it on repeat. Definitely changed my view of self-published music in a very positive way. This guy is my hero.

Led Zeppelin – Led Zeppelin II

Again, this is an artist that has so much to choose from, it’s hard to pick just one album. I choose it because my dad had it on vinyl and it was my first Zep album. I wore that puppy out once I heard What Is And What Should Never Be. This is the first time I actually made a tape that was just entirely one song repeated over and over from the album. I did this to save on battery life on my knock-off Sony Walkman because rewinding took up too much battery.

Don Harriss – Elevations

As a senior in high school, I’d sometimes put this CD in, lay back, close my eyes and simply float. Especially on track #2. I seriously think I floated a few times while wearing headphones. Too bad they weren’t wireless back then. I think it was the wire that stopped me from hitting the ceiling.

Ozzy Osbourne – The Ultimate Sin

I remember freshman year in High School – as a band geek *and* a computer geek, I wasn’t all that popular, but that was fine with me. In fact, instead of being popular I was more of a target. But there was this one time when my walkman and collection of tapes was “confiscated” by The Current Cool Guy in the gym along with the “let’s see what Dork-Man is listening to, shall we?” verbal introduction to a humiliation assault. As he went through picking out The Ultimate Sin, Black Sabbath’s We Sold Our Souls for Rock and Roll, Van Halen’s 1984, Motley Crue’s Theatre Of Pain, Led Zeppelin and Rush, he said aloud “wow, for a nerd, you listen to some really cool music” and handed me back my stuff and went on to the next nerd. Later that week he borrowed The Ultimate Sin from me and I was left alone the rest of the year.

BONUS ENTRY! The Simpsons – Songs in the Key Of Springfield

Let’s go crazy, Broadway style!

Whew. This was harder than I expected, but I stayed true to the meme.

So.  Did anyone have even more than one that they shared with this list?

Yeah. Didn’t think so.

(Bonus topic: I spent more than an hour on this post.  It meant a lot to me.  However, I anticipate a very low comment turnout.  I’m finding that the more important (ie, personal) a blog post is to me, the less other people will care about it.  Sometimes the stupidest shortest post generates the most interest.  There seems to be a direct inversely proportional relationship between the amount of effort I put into a post and how interesting it is.  However, I will post it anyway because I’m one of those “this blog is about ME” people.  At least for now I am.)

Update on 4/24: There’s a review posted online, pretty good review. 

Tonight is the RUSH Concert here in Austin!

rush snakes and arrows album cover

I blogged before about one of my all-time favorite artists coming to town and the awesome tickets he got for us (don’t forget, I’m Uber Awesome, in front of the “Nearly Cool” section, and envied by the “Sucks to be me” sections), but I have some more news.

First, that same friend happened to see Alex Lifeson playing pool last night down at the Four Seasons, where visiting acts usually stay when in Austin.  I haven’t heard word from him yet this morning, so I can only assume he approached Alex, said he admired his work, asked not to be pushed down the stairs and Alex laughed so hard they immediately hit it off and have stayed up all night jamming and showing him the “tricks” of playing awesomelike.  As far as I know, they jetted to Mexico and are on their way back.

Secondly, while I haven’t heard from my friend yet, Geddy and Neil did contact me early this morning about my recent progress in the Guitar Hero III game.  Evidently they are HUGE fans of the game, but can’t quite get all the notes all the time.  They saw my online ranking going up and up and figured they’d ask me for some tips.  I can’t say as I blame them, because look – I’ve doubled my ranking in a week or so, and I still have dozens of songs to play and submit online.

guitarhero.com stats graph as of 4-23-2008

Geddy was all, “I really respect your diligence and effort towards perfection, eh.  I also see that you’ve only logged half of the game so far and have many songs still yet to register on the site, so we’re ignoring your 14,489th place, eh, knowing that you will achieve in the top 100 once all the scores are registered.  I like playing Bass, of course, so will you Co-op with me, eh?”  I mumbled something about needing to sleep or something, so he quickly added “Wayne, eh, I have Neil with me and we can play Rock Band together, eh?” 

Then there was a pause and Neil came on.  He started on with “Hello, Wayne, eh.  You know how Rock Band is 4 members? Well, Rush, as you know, eh, is only 3 members, so we need someone to fill in with vocals and guitar/bass, whichever you’d prefer to do, eh.”  I still hemmed and hawed a bit so they offered me a signed copy of the Rush comic book.  I said I already had one.  Then they offered up seats in the first five or six rows, and I said I already had 3rd row.  Then they said they’d put on the next album “brought to you by the letter Wayne” and they actually got my attention.

Seeing as how they were asking so nicely, I couldn’t turn them down.   We ended up jamming in their hotel suite, and once their agent woke up from his stupor and shook the scantily clad women off of him and saw what we were doing, he decided to create this new LOLhero tour, with me and Rush headlining.  We came up with the name WHRUSH, The Great American LOLhero

whrush, great american lolhero

If this is what happens the day OF a concert, I can’t wait for what could happen the NIGHT OF!

First, don’t forget to go leave a comment on Wednesday’s post Guess the Movie and Pay It Forward to win a book!  You don’t have to guess the movies – any comment will be eligible.  You need to post by tonight (Friday, Feb 8th) midnight central.

Now, for today’s post.  RUSH

Recently, I got some great news — Rush, one of my all-time favorite bands, extended their Snakes and Arrows tour!  This is awesome, because I missed them the first time around.


Then, I got even better news!  Rush is actually coming to Austin!  Although the Metro Austin Area is not too small population-wise (over a million), we hardly ever get my favorite acts.  They usually hit Dallas, Houston or San Antonio because those cities are so much bigger and I guess the bands figure Austinites can carpool over or ride their bike or hitchhike.  I’m also sure venue size has something to do with it – we don’t really have places like Reliant Stadium or Verizon Wireless Stadium to host huge acts.

rush tour 2008

You’d think I’d be a pretty happy camper.  I was.  I was indeed.  That is, I was until a good friend of mine said “oh and by the way, I got us tickets during the presale.”

Señior, you had me at el “oh”.

So how happy do you think I was when he said he scored Row 3 in section 1?  We both were like “oh, so does Frank Erwin center have those demon AA rows or “1A” section where you THINK you’re sitting in a great place but they end up catering to someone else in an even “better” section than 1?” and “pinch me so I know it’s real” and “dude, stop pinching me, I’m not that good of a friend”

Take a look at the arena (updated to correct seating chart – thanx Dave for finding):

old (wrong) seating chart for rush in Austin at Frank Erwin center

Correct seating chart for rush in austin at frank erwin center

Here’s what I’m thinking.  I’m thinking this person and I… we’re pretty good friends, known each other a long time, godfathers of each others kids, etc.   I’d probably not only help him move if he needed me, but I’d probably help him move a body.  I always thought we were pretty close.

But after I saw that he got these for face value and they’re selling like crazy, now I know we’re close.   How close?  Just look how close:

rush tickets on sale

The guy could make a clean $400 per ticket if he wanted to.  (Now that I think about it, maybe he doesn’t know… hmm, probably safer if I don’t tell him until AFTER the tickets come in.) 

If anyone tells me again that the economy is bad, I’m gonna shove this JPEG right up their nose.  There are PLENTY of jobs and money to go around if the market can bear this kind of cash for Rush.  Some of the tickets are $1000!  We’re not talking Hanna Montana, Nickelback, Metallica or a band who has uber multigenerational draw – we’re talking about Rush.    Rush draws geeks, nerds, engineers, and musicians.  Rush has smart people listen to them.  Smart people don’t overpay for tickets.

What band would YOU see for $500?

7:15 am
Post Meta :

There are many reasons I strive to be like this guy and I show everyone this video.

  1. Someone knows how to do useful, cool video effects.  Every guitar hero video should be this cool – it shows the portion of the screen you need to see, AND you get to see the fingers, strumming and mechanics.
  2. He’s really really good at the best song on Guitar Hero II (YYZ by Rush)
  3. There’s not an extreme lack of humor. 
  4. This reminds me of how I would introduce myself to The Internets if I was that good on the game.
  5. The ending is something you HAVE to stick around to watch.
  6. I needed a good excuse to try out my new video plugin on WordPress.


10:07 am
Post Meta :

Fresh off of rush.com


It’s entitled “Snakes & Arrows” and you can go to the website to hear a taste of the new single “Far Cry”.

I need me some more Rush, so I’m glad they’re willing to feed me.  I got on a Rush kick recently and have just been playing nothing but Rush – all albums – all songs – on random.  Maybe I cosmically sensed something was coming, because the new album was news to me until this morning.


tsk tsk

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