How To Be A Christian DJ Series : Tales From The B-Side
People expect you to only like "hit" music; music that is played over and over again on the radio. The songs that everybody knows. But that's putting me in a box and I have no desire to be inside of a box -- under any circumstances. No disrespect to the former slave who mailed himself to freedom ... (look it up).
I'm a B-side man. B-side of a 45, B-side of a cassette single, B-side of a CD single, B-side of whatever the next wave of technology brings. But then, I don't buy singles anymore. That's a thing of my past. Back when I walked from 30th and King Drive to 35th Street on my lunch break in high school to buy music at the record store. That was many, many moons ago; many risings and settings of the suns ago even. Soon I learned to love the whole enchilada and not just the beans.
Moving from albums to cassettes wasn't so hard. But moving from cassettes to CDs was nearly traumatic. I fought it with a passion ... I fought it, I tell you. Like Rocky vs Clubber Lang . But all it really took was a record label sending me a CD to review for my website. And once I encouraged my girlfriend to buy me a CD player for my birthday, it was on and poppin like Jiffy pop - popcorn.
All of a sudden I was on the hunt. The hunt to find everything I ever had on cassette. Now it had to be on CD. After all, CDs had bonus songs on it. Making a 9 song album into a 12 song album. Who cares if the extra songs were cheesy like KRAFT's macaroni. It was a new journey; a new frontier to explore. Yes, I was now a caramel covered WILLIAM SHATNER, boldly going and all of that. But there was more to discover wasn't there?
Don't you just hate riding on a school bus on your way to Navy Pier for a field trip ... And every time you hit a pothole, your handheld CD player keeps skipping your CD. Don't just really hate when that happens? That was my incentive for moving to a MP3 player. But I'm jumping ahead a bit.
In 2006, my friendly neighborhood mechanic introduced me to this wonderful downloading program called, WINMX .... may it rest in peace. But dig it, this was a program out of Canada, where you could put in the title of a song and -- get this -- it would be available to download in a matter of a hundred hours or so. But hey, I was up to the challenge; getting on at 3:30pm and staying on until 6am, even though I had to be at work at 8am.
I learned to rarely purchase a CD. And if I do, its something I once owned and am trying to replace and can't find on the internet. Something so rare and hard to find that I'm getting heart murmurs and will pay nearly any price for.
For the B-side afficienado, there is a special satisfaction that comes from making your own compilations; mixing Pop tracks with Smooth Jazz and Alternate Rock, with a dash of 80s Rap ... TruSoulRadio is what I call it.
Which is funny, since I actually wroke in radio for a year -- sands in the hourglass ago. But I was a lowly board operator who had to sneak music on the air, due to our General Manager's addiction to paid broadcasts and info-mercials. So when I had the opportunity to play tunes -- even in a 30 minute slot --- I'd literally lose my mind.
After all, I was on from 6pm-12am on weeknights/12am-8am on Saturdays. This was when management wasn't around -- though I did get in trouble a couple of times when I didn't know that the boss was working late. But 99.9% of the time, I got away with it.
Though these moments were few and far between, I enjoyed them so. Especially when the phone lines would light up and listeners would ask me about what I'd just played. Because I wasn't trained to talk on the air; only to run the station. so no one knew my name, but they felt my presence and were blessed by my usually slept on gift of playing the right songs in the right order.
Yeah ... Technically I was breaking the rules. I was supposed to go strictly by the program log. But that would have been putting me in a box. And who wants to be put inside of a box?
TruSoulDJ is a self proclaimed expert on all things trivial to the Mainstream. He is an avid classic comic book reader, non popular music lover and tv-show-on-dvd binge watcher who shops the clearance racks near and far to find the best deals. He would like to think he knows everything important within the realm of Pop culture. But in actuality, he only knows about 99.9 percent of what he thinks he knows.