It’s hard to believe but it’s been over two years since HCK!’s first offering. We’ve come a long way, the growth is apparent, looking back at those first posts is a rad experience realizing just how tangible of a difference between then and now there is and how many people have helped to make this one of the best decisions I’ve ever made. This also marks the 100th post for HCK! making today’s mix all that more important for me to get right. Continue reading →
“So this is my life, and I want you to know that I am both happy and sad, and I’m still trying to figure out how that can be“
Three important aspects of my life are music, books, and movies. Very rarely do I not end up at the movie theater less than twice a week . I also have the privilege of working at a job where I spend thirty percent of my time at work reading which equates out to about three books a week.
I only give you that seemingly unnecessary information as a segue into this statement. Perks Of Being A Wallflower is my All-Time Favorite book. I’ve never related to a character more in my life than Charlie, even as an adult, it’s as if my thoughts have been written by someone else. “It’s strange because sometimes, I read a book, and I think I am the people in the book”. And yes Catcher In The Rye is also one of my all-time favorites, sure they feel similar but so does Bob Dylan and Neil Young (Neil Young is great Bob Dylan is the greatest that’s the difference, although J.D. Salinger was a much better writer Chbosky’s story is more personal, more real).
So Steven Chbosky has made what could be the best (or worst) move imaginable by electing to direct the Perks Of Being A Wallflower movie himself. The casting seems off but could work. I’m simply afraid that he cast it the same way summit did with Twilight where they elected to go for what aesthetically made sense when hoping to draw in a pre-existing teen market, I think this is always a terrible move but I’m sure it fiscally makes sense because twelve year olds will line up to see their new trend-crush star in a movie.
Prozac Nation had the same vibe as Perks and the casting of that movie was what set it apart, get someone who can act but feels the need to prove themselves; which could very possibly be the attraction of having EmmaWatson play as Sam and since I already am in love with her I’ll give her a chance, but Logan Lerman and especially Nina Dobrev seem like awful choices for Charlie and his sister. I always imagined Charlie to be, I don’t know, like Conor Oberst (the way I imagined him when listening to lifted not the strung out drunk passing out on stage Conor from 2004-2009 or the enlightened/mature (but still drunk) recent reincarnation of Oberst). I can’t imagine a better fit for Bill than Paul Rudd who is the exact image I had when reading the book so there’s a chance they’ll all be a solid fit. We’ll see.
The one concern I have is the debate I’ve heard abouttime-period. No I DO NOT think the movie should be set in the nineties and I DO NOT think the songs from the book should be used in the movie other than The Smiths “Asleep“. First off the nineties sucked, I was there, I lived it, they were terrible; Fashion was garbage, the music luke-warm with mediocrity, nobody pushed anything, it was all status-quo and “Cool,” it took something like Emo to shake things up enough to get music moving in a creative direction. Yes I know that Emo was borderline garbage thanks to it coinciding with the creation of auto-tune and the first time that home studios were affordable so every kid with an acoustic guitar and well-off parents was able to fill purevolume and myspace with carbon copy after carbon copy of a shitty model (there were some really great bands though) but it took that to get where we are now so I’m thankful for it. Disco was garbage but look at how thirty years later it has developed into Electronic- Pop which is downright good music.
Anyways if there were one movie I could create a soundtrack for it would be Perks Of Being A Wallflower. It’s a dream job of mine to do soundtracks in general (and I really have no idea how to go about doing it) but one in-particular I have daydreams of doing is Perks. Here is how it would go:
*I loaned my copy out so all of this is from memory (I already had the quotes lined up for this) so a few aspects may be slightly out of order or combined*
“And I thought about how many people have loved those songs. And how many people got through a lot of bad times because of those songs. And how many people enjoyed good times with those songs. And how much those songs really mean. I think it would be great to have written one of those songs. I bet if I wrote one of them, I would be very proud. I hope the people who wrote those songs are happy. I hope they feel it’s enough. I really do because they’ve made me happy. And I’m only one person.”
“Patrick actually used to be popular before Sam bought him some good music.”
“Do you always think this much, Charlie?” “Is that bad?” I just wanted someone to tell me the truth. “Not necessarily. It’s just that sometimes people use thought to not participate in life.” “Is that bad?” “Yes.”
“I remembered this one time that I never told anyone about. The time we were walking. Just the three of us. And I was in the middle. I don’t remember where and I don’t remember when. I don’t even remember the season. I just remember walking between them and feeling for the first time that I belonged somewhere.”
“I have since bought the record, and I would tell you what it was, but truthfully, it’s not the same unless you’re driving to your first real party, and you’re sitting in the middle seat of a pickup with two nice people when it starts to rain.”
“Five minutes of a lifetime were truly spent, and we felt young in a good way.”
“There’s something about that tunnel that leads to downtown. It’s glorious at night. Just glorious. You start on one side of the mountain, and it’s dark, and the radio is loud. As you enter the tunnel, the wind gets sucked away, and you squint from the lights overhead. When you adjust to the lights, you can see the other side in the distance just as the sound of the radio fades because the waves just can’t reach. Then, you’re in the middle of the tunnel, and everything becomes a calm dream. As you see the opening get closer, you just can’t get there fast enough. And finally, just when you think you’ll never get there, you see the opening right in front of you. And the radio comes back even louder than you remember it. And the wind is waiting. And you fly out of the tunnel onto the bridge. And there it is. The city. A million lights and buildings and everything seems as exciting as the first time you saw it. It really is a grand entrance.”
“Sam screamed the fun scream, and there it was. Downtown lights on buildings and everything that makes you wonder. Sam sat down and started laughing. Patrick started laughing. I started laughing. and in that moment, I swear we were infinite.”
“I just think it’s bad when a boy looks at a girl and thinks that the way he sees her is better than she actually is. And I think it’s bad when the most honest way a boy can look at a girl is through a camera.”
“I don’t know how much longer I can keep going without a friend. I used to be able to do it very easily, but that was before I knew what having a friend was like. It’s much easier not to know things sometimes.”
“Everything can’t be low self-esteem, can it?”
“I just wish that God or my parents or Sam or my sister or someone would just tell me what’s wrong with me. Just tell me how to be different in a way that makes sense. To make this all go away. And disappear. I know that’s wrong because it’s my responsibility, and I know that things get worse before they get better because that’s what my psychiatrist says, but this is a worse that feels too big.”
And Sam looked at the paper and then she looked at me. “Charlie. . . Have you ever kissed a girl?” I shook my head no. It was so quiet. “Not even when you were little?” I shook my head no again. And she looked very sad. She told me about the first time she was kissed. She told me that it was with one of her dad’s friends. She was seven. And she told nobody except Mary Elizabeth and then Patrick a year ago. And she started to cry. And she said something that I won’t forget. Ever. “I know that you know that I like Craig. And I know that I told you not to think of me that way. And I know that we can’t be together like that. But I want to forget all those things for a minute. Okay?” “Okay” “I want to make sure that the first person you kiss loves you. Okay?” “Okay” She was crying harder now. And I was, too, because when I hear something like that I just can’t help it. “I just want to make sure of that. Okay?” “Okay” And she kissed me. And it was the kind of kiss that I could never tell my friends about out loud. It was the kind of kiss that made me know that I was never so happy in my whole life.
“I laid down on his old bed, and I looked through the window at this tree that was probably a lot shorter when my dad looked at it. And I could feel what he felt on the night when he realized that if he didn’t leave, it would never be his life. It would be theirs. At least that’s how he’s put it.”
“Sometimes, I look outside, and I think that a lot of other people have seen this snow before. Just like I think that a lot of other people have read those books before. And listened to those songs. I wonder how they feel tonight.”
“So I guess we are who we are for a lot of reasons. And maybe we’ll never know most of them. But even if we don’t have the power to choose where we come from, we can still choose where we go from there. We can still do things. And we can try to feel okay about them.”
“Maybe it’s good to put things in perspective. Sometimes, I think that the only perspective is to really be there.”
“It’s great that you can listen and be a shoulder to someone, but what about when someone doesn’t need a shoulder? What if they need the arms or something like that? You can’t just sit there and put everybody’s lives ahead of yours and think that counts as love. You just can’t. You have to do things.”
“So, if this does end up being my last letter, please believe that things are good with me, and even when they’re not, they will be soon enough. And I will believe the same about you.“
So that's along the lines of how I hope the music sounds when the movie finally comes out.
The Poem Charlie Reads (someone referenced it as E.E. Cummings but I’m not sure if that is true or not)
Once on a yellow peice of paper with green lines
he wrote a poem
and he called it “chops”
because that was the name of his dog
and thats what it was all about
his teacher gave him an A
and a gold star
and his mother hung it on the kitchen door
and read it to his aunts.
that was the year Father Tracy
took all the kids to the zoo
and he let them sing on the bus
and his little sister was born
with tiny nails and no hair
and his mother and father kissed alot
and the girl around the corner sent him a
Valentine signed with a row of X’s
and he had to ask his father what the X’s meant
and his father always tucked him in bed at night
and was always there to do it
once on a piece of white paper with blue lines
he wrote a poem
he called it “Autumn”
because that was the name of the season
and that’s what it was all about
and his teacher gave him an A
and asked him to write more clearly
and his mother never hung it on the kithcen door
beause of the new paint
and the kids told him
that Father Tracy smoked cigars
and left butts on the pews
and sometime they would burn holes
that was the year his sister got glasses
with thick lenses and black frames
and the girl around the corner laughed
when he asked her to go see santa claus
and the kids told him why
his mother and father kissed alot
and his father never tucked him in bed at night
and his father got mad
when he cried for him to do it
once on a paper torn from his notebook
he wrote a poem
and he called it “Innocence: A Question”
because that was the question about his girl
and thats what it was all about
and his professor gave him an A
and a strange steady look
and his mother never hung it on the kitchen door
because he never showed her
that was the year Father Tracy died
and he forgot how the end
of the Apostles’s Creed went
and he caught his sister
making out on the back porch
and his mother and father never kissed
or even talked
and the girl around the corner
wore too much make up
that made him cough when he kissed her
but he kissed her anyway
becuase it was the thing to do
and at 3 am he tucked himself into bed
his father snoring soundly
that’s why on the back of a brown paper bag
he tried another poem
and he called it “Absolutely Nothing”
because that’s what it was really all about
and he gave himself an A
and a slash on each damned wrist
and he hung it on the bathroom door
because this time he didnt think
he could reach the kitchen—-
All songs on this page are for promotion purposes only. If you like a song make sure to let the band know by purchasing their album and/or checking them out when they come through your town. If you or a band you represent would like content removed from the page send me a message and I'll get it taken down.
Time for night drives, passionate crushes, longing breakups, and all-night conversations with the best of friends. Fall is finally here and I can’t help but feel that life just gets better the second i get to zip up a hoody.
I grew up in an exceptionally small town between the edge of suburbia and the middle of nowhere. As far as my memories go when i look back it seems my group of friends will always remain in my memory on endless drives through Podunk (it’s a real town) with the leaves changing and the air cooling off.
If I could go back to one point in time it would be on one of those drives, feeling complete but at the same time fighting back an unspoken worry that with morning would come change, that we would reach the moment called “grown up” and would all say goodbye. Those drives had an undercurrent that whatever we were going to do we had to do it immediately because change was coming, so we drove until the last breathe of night holding on to the moment with the firmest grips and the quietest of hearts.
Never ending conversations with crushes, falling in love through nothing more than words and and the electricity of being so close and talking so quiet, both truly listening. Those first kisses that lit my life on fire, those heartbreaks that destroyed me, and those quiet nights when I’d drive alone and reminisce about it all.
Sitting on the hood of my car next to a close friend, in intense conversations about “what does it all mean,” “is this all that there is to life” and coming to our own conclusions about God and the way everything is broken and pulling apart and yet it all makes sense, it all forms a whole, and how we’re all drawn together by some secret that we couldn’t even begin to understand. How many cigarettes did we smoke in succession on nights like that? How much of anything did we smoke on those nights?
That’s the place I’m at when it comes to making up this playlist. I plan it out all year so that by the time Fall hits and I’m heading down to see my brother in Bloomington or heading back to my hometown to visit family I can pull these songs up on my ipod and feel that fullness once again.
I’m still making memories, I’m growing up but not yet grown up and the friends I have now feel that as well, we’re perpetually in a moment where things are about to change. This fall as with all the ones I’ve known before reminds me to embrace what we have because soon it will be gone, so in a way i guess some things will forever remain the same.
The idea of this playlist is to capture all of that, if there’s one mix other than a solid break-up mix where lyrics carry the entire thing this is it. I really hope you find something on here that makes life better or helps you get through the worse or at the least gives you a friend that understands.
Send me a message or comment with your own playlists I’m interested to see what yours would look like.
“We think of those days while we’re living these ones.
Through highway signs and telephone lines we try and keep in touch.
And I hope you’re in a good place yeah I hope you’re having fun
like so many years ago”
“there’s only three weeks until we reach the great lakes city
when I got the news that that you were with somebody else
and apparently this was going on since before the night I left for you
kissing me wishing me safely”
“Call me a safe bet, I’m betting I’m not
I’m glad that you can forgive, only hoping as time goes, you can forget
It’s cold as a tomb, and it’s dark in your room
When I sneak to your bed to pour salt in your wounds”
“I once heard the worse thing
A man can do is draw a hungry crowd.
Tell everyone his name in pride an confidence
But leaving out his doubt.
I’m not sure I bought those words
When I was young I knew most everything.
These words have never meant as much to anyone
As they now mean to me.”
“Last night I saw the flashing lights I quickly ran outside
neighbor lady told me that Jackie’s youngest boy had died
and I was surprised to see the cops had Jackie handcuffed in the car
until this mornings paper told me that jackie’d gone to far
and now they’re saying Jackie, he aint the only one to blame
because battered children they almost always grow up to do the same
oh you think you know somebody…”
“Well I told him I too had been traveling around
living out of my van from town to town
playing for tips and whatever records I could move
I said I don’t ‘reckin I’ll be making in big
you know it’s hard to get rich off a tour of coffeehouse gigs
he said ‘but yeah ain’t it a blessin’ to do what you want to do’
…andI said I don’t know what I’ve been looking for, maybe me”
“Mother remember the night that that dog had her pups in the pantry
blood on the wall fleas on their paws and you cried til the morning
so may the sunrise bring hope where it once was forgotten
songs are like birds flying always over the mountain”
I realize how ridiculously long this post ended up being. I’d debated breaking it up as i had with the “Trapped In Time, Surrounded By Evil, Low On Gas” playlist but that one was easy to breakdown. Although you may only download one or two tracks in my mind it’ll get listened to as a whole (I may have just truly realized why bands hate downloads instead of listening to an entire album). Either way I hope you can look past the length and enjoy.
As usual all songs are for promotional purposes only. If you or a band you represent would like some content removed leave a comment or send me an email (the address can be found in thesection).
Now for the third and finally aspect of a great night cruise mix. This is the part i love the most. These are the songs i basically have planned out a year in advance. The songs for the quite ride home. When you’ve decided it’s time to head back in and call it a night. Any conversations at this point will have meaning and depth…real. Never underestimate the importance of songs that you internalize immediately (see big red marbles’ “make that call” from my This playlist is better than most relationships i\’ve been in post i put up back in march). There’s a reason for late night mixes and this is one of them. Most times mixes miss the mark at this part only from a conscious effort to avoid sad songs or to attempt to not hit touchy subjects ( ie cheating girlfriends/boyfriends, bad relationships, the feeling of being trapped in some no name town in the sorrowful midwest for the rest of your life etc…). This is not the time to avoid feelings! This is one of the few chances to embrace them as a collective. It amazes me how many songs have made it onto nearly every night mix i’ve ever made (konstantine, seven years, and on your porch) and which songs will most likely never be on another playlist that once meant everything to me (Fly By Night- This Cold Can’t Last and good charlotte’s emotionless are two good examples) sure some songs could be compared to wine but then again some age like cigarrettes. That being said…
The head and the heart are by far my favorite band to come around in the last few years so you know i’m excited to see them at the vogue next week. I’ve been hearing them come up on our satellite radio channel at work so it may not be long until they are nolonger just my band any more (sad). If your in town make sure to check them opening for Iron and Wine.
i just found Dave Armstrong randomly on bandcamp last week and so far i have really enjoyed what i’ve listened to. This song oddly reminds me of a mixture between glen hansard and the dracula song from forgetting sarah marshall (just me?) and that’s to be taken as a compliment.
Despite what anyone might think konstantine remains to this day my favorite song of all time. I listened to this song at least once a day for three years straight. One day i listened to it on repeat for an entire day just to try and get sick of it and couldn’t. Everytime it comes on i take a completely different meaning from it. It always seems relevant to my life and my own personal experiences. Ten minutes of perfection. And the odd thing is that i one-hundred percent understand what those friends of mine are saying when they tell me how much they do not like this song, I don’t expect them to get it and i’m kind of glad they don’t.
I’m really interested to know which songs you would put on a mix like this instead of these songs…..