My Favorite Tracks & Albums of 2015

Columbus Ohio's All Dogs.
Columbus Ohio’s All Dogs.

One of my favorite things about discovering new bands is figuring out who their influences are. When I figure that out, it takes me back to the time when I was listening to those particular bands. These four bands had me mesmerized this year. I hope you appreciate them as much as I did.

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An Interview with Radiator Hospital’s Sam Cook-Parrott

(Left to right) Cynthia Schemmer, Jeff Bolt, Jon Rybicki, and Sam Cook-Parrott

Philadelphia’s music scene is one of the most vibrant in the country. Underneath the more higher profile acts War on Drugs and Kurt Vile in a scene in the truest sense of the word. Radiator Hospital play short low-fi power pop songs that run around two minutes. I spoke with frontman Sam Cook-Parrott about his influences, the Philly scene, and his views on the current state of the music industry.

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Breakdown of the 2015-16 NBA National TV Schedule

Anthony Davis

America — meet Anthony Davis. With 11 more nationally televised games than last season, Brow has single-handedly propelled the New Orleans Pelicans to a total of 21 games (five on TNT, eight on ESPN, and another eight on NBA TV).

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My Favorite Albums of 2014 Include a lot of Philly Bands

Little Big League at Shea Stadium in November of last year.

I never felt I listened to enough new albums in a year to justify putting a best albums of the year list. It seems everyone writes one, including two my friends Eric and Kevin — both lists of which I’ve discovered a lot of new bands. I wasn’t a fan of either of theirs this year, and I let them know — so here’s my response, in no particular order.

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PrimeTime Shootout Preview (NJ High School Basketball Tournament)

Kentucky freshman Karl-Anthony Towns while a senior at St. Joseph High School.

Going to a Nets game in Brooklyn is not as easy as going to East Rutherford or Newark while living Hoboken. In their third year in Brooklyn, I’ve attended one Nets game, where I used to go to a dozen in the swamp.

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The NBA Should Poach Top College Coaches for the D-League

"I coach a minor league NBA team anyway, I might as well go to the D-League."

The minimum age requirement to play in the NBA is 19. For the top high school basketball players in the country, this means being a one-and-done player, where Kentucky’s John Calipari has mastered the art of coaching players who only stay for their freshman year, specifically for the pros.

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An Interview with Storyteller Adam Wade

Photo credit: Steve Antonelli

Adam Wade tells stories on NPR and on stage with The Moth. He is a 20 time winner of the MOTH Storyslam. He’s been featured in The New York Times, Time Out New York, the Village Voice. and spoke at a Ted Talk.

We had Adam over for dinner and my wife made him Moroccan lemon-olive chicken, which probably didn’t compete with his landlady’s meatballs.

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An Interview with Laarks Lead Singer and Keyboardist Ian Jacoby

Ian Jacoby of Laarks.

Laarks is a four-piece indie rock band from Eau Claire, Wisconsin, most musically famous for Justin Vernon of Bon Iver. They’re influenced by The Walkmen, Ben Folds, and Broken Social Scene, amongst many others bands.

They released An Exaltation of Laarks in 2009 with Absolutely Kosher, and Fiat Lux independently in 2013. Ian Jacoby is the songwriter, lead vocalist and keyboardist.

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To My Fellow Dads, on the First Day of Kindergarten Cop

Kindergarten cop teacher.

Dear New Kindergarten Cop Dad,

This morning, I pressed the eject button on the VCR that contained a well-worn copy of Terminator 2. My son will be starting Kindergarten Cop next week, where he will be mentored by the Kindergarten Cop.

My best friend texted me a picture of his own 5-year old a few minutes later, standing next to a full-sized model exoskeleton. “How did we get here?!” I texted back. It was yesterday that we were going through the Conan the Barbarian trilogy together. “How did we get here?!”

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