Category Archives: lists

2014. In cities.

Happy New Year! So, in keeping with my annual new year tradition, I’m recounting the last year, by listing out all of the cities that I’ve spent at least one night in.

2014 was another good travel year, although most of my destinations were reached by car this year, instead of plane, as evidenced by me missing out on my United Silver status this year. By six days. So close!

Anyway. It was a good year. Patrolling in Tahoe. Backpacking in Tahoe with Shooey. A cross country roadtrip with Jablow. And a few weddings in Healdsburg, Hawaii and Seattle. Fun fun fun.

Here’s my list..

Dennis’ 2014 Year in Cities. Asterisks mean multiple trips.

  • San Francisco, CA*
  • Rubicon Bay, CA*
  • Jackson Hole, WY
  • Dillon Beach, CA
  • Kenwood, CA*
  • Austin, TX
  • Palm Springs, CA
  • Hillsborough, CA
  • Healdsburg, CA (Congrats Meredith & Adam!)
  • Destination Wilderness, CA
  • Steep Ravine, CA
  • Las Vegas, NV
  • Dalhart, TX
  • Overland Park, KS
  • Lawrenceburg, KY
  • Alexandria, VA
  • Kailua, HI (Congrats Lester & Karen!)
  • Seattle, WA (Congrats Alex & Kerry!)
  • Somewhere over the Pacific Ocean
  • Taipei, Taiwan (Happy birthday grandma!)

And with that.. Happy New Year!!

2013, in Cities. And 2012's too.

Happy New Year all!!

In keeping with a tradition that I started back in 2005, here’s a list of all of the places that I’ve stayed over the course of the past year. And, of course, I just now found out that Dopplr shut down last year — I suppose the fact that I never noticed is indicative of why they did.

In any case.. 2013 was a great travel year, as it started off with a bang in Taipei, underneath the fireworks at 101. Then, Chris & Jerry’s wedding in Redondo, Front Sight Training, a big trip to Basel & Provence with my parents, Hersh & Alexis’ wedding in Napa, a Montreal Dude Trip, and Big Sur Backpacking with Niki. Thanks to diligent FourSquare checkins, I’m able to remember some of the exact places that I stayed.

Anyway.. here’s the list, in rough chronological order (multiple stays indicated by an asterisk):

  • Taipei, Taiwan
  • Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam
  • Nah Trang, Vietnam
  • *San Francisco, CA
  • Las Vegas, NV (Chris’ Bachelor Party)
  • *Rubicon Bay, CA
  • *Los Angeles, CA
  • Redondo Beach, CA (Chris & Jerry’s Wedding)
  • *Kenwood, CA
  • Pahrump, CA (Front Sight Training)
  • Basel, Switzerland (ArtBasel)
  • Apt, France
  • Gargas, France
  • American Canyon, CA (Hersh & Alexis’ Wedding)
  • Chicago, IL
  • Montreal, Canada
  • Felton, CA
  • Monterey, CA
  • Big Sur, CA (Niki’s Birthday!)
  • Carmel, CA
  • Beachwood, OH (OHS Reunion)
  • Agonda, India
  • Anjuna, India

Wow.. that’s a lot of places last year. And so many amazing memories!

And… I just realized that I forgot to do this for 2012.. oops! No better time than now to do it.. so here we go:

  • Vail, CO
  • *San Francisco, CA
  • *Kenwood, CA
  • Coalinga, CA (Pheasant Hunting!)
  • *Rubicon Bay, CA
  • Los Angeles, CA
  • Phoenix, AZ (Spring Training)
  • Las Cruces, NM
  • Marfa, TX
  • Austin, TX (SXSW)
  • *Chicago, IL
  • Hillsborough, CA
  • New York, NY
  • Ithaca, NY (Cornell Reunion)
  • Rochester, NY
  • Basel, Switzerland (ArtBasel)
  • Pescadero, CA (Ed & Zoey’s Wedding)
  • Hunter, NY (Audris & Dennis’ Wedding)
  • Seoul, Korea
  • Taipei, Taiwan

Phew!! That was fun. Here’s to a great 2014! Happy New Year Everyone!

2011, in cities..

Well.. we’re well into 2012 already, and this post is a bit late, but 2012 has already been an insanely busy year. In a good way. But, since the chinese new year JUST passed like a few days ago, I feel like I’m still within the statute of limitations for this post. And, it’s MY year (of the dragon) anyway, so yah..

Anyway — this is a tradition that I’ve been doing for quite some time now (2010, 2009, 2008, 2007, 2006, and 2005), so I am continuing it again for 2011. I feel like my dopplr account should be able to generate this post for me automagically; I tried to be diligent with keeping that one updated, but I’ll have to dig through my calendar to make sure that I didn’t miss anything…

Working for Infochimps, 2011 was marked with a ton of travel to Austin, where they are based — I basically went almost every month for a week, so that was pretty awesome. Austin is a wonderful place to have to go and visit, and I highly recommend it. I definitely think that I got to spend some quality time there, enough such that I felt like I was starting to get to know it as a local even. I think that since Austin Dennis has now lived there for over 3 months, I can kind of say that I’ve “lived” in Austin before now, no? Thanks to Alex & Carlo, whose place I stayed in whenever I was there — it was definitely a great home away from home.

Anyway.. enough chatter, here’s the list of places that I spent a night in (or more) for 2011 (places with multiple stays are marked with an asterisk).

In roughly, chronological order:

  • San Francisco, CA*
  • Rubicon Bay, CA*
  • Hillsborough, CA*
  • Austin, TX*
  • Sonoma, CA
  • Felton, CA
  • Honolulu, HI
  • Steep Ravine, CA
  • Washington DC
  • San Diego, CA
  • Vienna, MD
  • Easton, MD
  • Santa Rosa, CA
  • Nashville, TN
  • Avon, CO
  • Vail, CO

Wow.. not nearly as many locations as years past — but, with Austin taking up 10 trips this year, I suppose I still racked up a good amount of miles. Perhaps the craziest trip I took this year would be my Austin-DC-San Diego trip — I did those three cities in a little under 3 days. I was exhausted, but being out in DC lobbying congress was an experience that I didn’t even realize was on my bucket list. Lobbying members of congress? Check.

Anyway — 2012 started off well, ringing in the new year in Colorado. I already have trips planned for Austin for SXSW, and then Basel for Art Basel, so that’ll be good… I do need to get to NYC — I seemed to have missed that one last year. Oops.

Anyway.. happy new year all! Happy traveling!

My Favorite Tracks of 2010

As 2010 draws to a close, it’s fun to reflect on all of the awesome music that I discovered this year.. 2010 was a banner year for me, musically — my work life and music life merged for a bit with two awesome music conferences, kicking off with MIDEM in Cannes and then SXSW in Austin. My XM Radio went on the fritz about halfway through the year, so while XMU 43 was a great source of new music finds in the beginning of the year, I challenged myself to discover music in other ways for the latter part of 2010.

What I found was that while there’s definitely a lot of great online music discovery tools out there (Hype Machine, 8tracks, and thesixtyone are my favorites), there’s nothing that I found that I could just trust passive music discovery to, like I did with XMU. Pandora has potential, but so far, I find the suggestions that it makes to be kind of meh… It’s ok, when you’re in the mood to hear a particular style of stuff, but as far as pushing the envelope of what you’ve heard before, it, by design, is bad at that.

Ok, enough rambling… on to the music.

According to last.fm, my top 10 artists for 2010 are:

  1. Fanfarlo
  2. Das Racist
  3. Aziz Ansari
  4. Sia
  5. Lily Allen
  6. Ratatat
  7. RJD2
  8. She & Him
  9. Sleigh Bells
  10. The Melodians

Hmm.. Interesting. Fanfarlo was a clear favorite, with their show at SXSW being one of my top 3 there. Clearly, I listened to Aziz Ansari’s new album a lot. And that’s kind of neat to see The Melodians sneak in there at #10 — a sign that I still listen to ska once in awhile.

Ok.. on to my favorite tracks for 2010… To be clear, this is music that *I’ve* added to my library in 2010 — so, there may be a few tunes in here that weren’t technically released in 2010, but I don’t care, since, they were new to me. 2010 was a great music year. Out of the 1,042 tracks I added to my library this year, these are my favorite 22.

For this year’s list, I’m trying out something a little different… as usual, I’m posting it on 8tracks:

But also, I’ve made a list on YouTube as well, from what I can find:

There are three key differences between the 8tracks and YouTube versions.. First off, I replaced Sleigh Bells’ “Crown On The Ground” with “Infinity Guitars” because CotG doesn’t yet have a video, and with that in mind, having the actual video means that IG wins out slightly. For track #17, my favorite track is Doctor Rosen Rosen’s remix of Natalia Kills’ Mirrors, but that track isn’t on YouTube yet, so I just used the Natalia Kills original track, which has a nice video. And.. the third main difference is that for many of the “official” videos, you’ll be blessed with some ads. Wonderful.

Hope you had a great 2010 too! Here’s to a great 2011!

2010, in cities..

Yet another year has passed… and, in keeping with my annual tradition (2009, 2008, 2007, 2006, and 2005) of recounting the cities in which I’ve spent a night… here we go..

2010 was an awesome travel year, with conferences like MIDEM and SXSW sending me off to Cannes and Austin, respectively. Paul & Korby did our camping tour in the summer. Hometown vacation with Angie in Minnesota. The Seattle-to-Portland bike ride. Burning man. Korby’s bachelor party in Nashville and wedding in NYC. And, of course, I took a little travel break in the fall to visit my parents in Basel and then tour around Europe for a bit.

So, here we go.. here’s the list of cities that I spent a night (multiple trips indicated by a *) in, for 2010:

San Francisco, CA*
Somewhere over the Atlantic, on a plane*
Cannes, France
Rubicon Bay, CA*
Austin, TX*
Steep Ravine, CA*
Las Vegas, NV
Bryce Canyon, UT
Glen Canyon, UT
Moab, UT
Minneapolis, MN
Rochester, MN
Henry Coe SP, CA
Mercer Island, WA
Centralia, WA
Portland, OR
Basel, Switzerland*
Moltrasio, Italy
Ljubljana, Slovenia
Zagreb, Croatia
Split, Croatia
Pergia, Italy
Siena, Italy
Lucca, Italy
Annecy, France
Nürburg, Germany
Black Rock City, NV
Angel Island, CA
Nashville, TN
New York, NY
Lausanne, Switzerland

Phew.. 2010 was a great year, travel-wise. According to Dopplr, my trips this year account for 15,231kg of C02 (as compared to 5,136kg last year). Oops. I suppose I should go plant some trees now or something.

Anyway… I’m not sure if 2011 can top 2010, travel-wise, there’s going to be a lot of Austin-SF travel, and hopefully Basel in June for Art Basel, but it’ll be hard to beat 2010.

Happy travels everyone!

my life.. in music.. thus far.

So, someone recently asked me to recount my life.. musically.. It was an interesting task, and a fun one at that, so I looked back… and put together a little mix that represented my musical tastes thus far…

I’m trying something new.. a YouTube playlist of these songs — I’m actually quite impressed that YouTube has ALL of these songs. Wow.



(80s Phase)
Ok.. so I dont actually have any tracks in my iTunes from this phase — it was the 80s, and all of my music is either on LP or Cassette tape, and therefore, not in my iTunes… Anyway.. it WAS the 80s when I was listening to this stuff, so it wasn’t called “80s music” back then.. Back then, it was just “pop” and I remember listening to a lot of it on 107.9, aka POWER 108.

Thriller – Michael Jackson
Let’s Hear It For The Boy – Deniece Williams
Straight Up – Paula Abdul
Piano Man – Billy Joel (my first live concert)

(Classic Rock Phase)
So, In high school, I was big into classic rock.. You know, Zeppelin, Clapton, Pink Floyd, and the Beatles. I listened mostly to 100.7 WMMS (aka the buzzard with the wig). Then, I got my first CD player, a Sony Discman D-4, by saving up for like 13 years, I think. My First CDs were.. Pink Floyd’s Delicate Sound of Thunder and the Beatles’ Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band.

Wish You Were Here – Pink Floyd
A Day In The Life – Beatles

(Folky/Classical Phase)
I was a huge fan of Northern Exposure, and this track was in the last episode of that show:

Our Town – Iris Dement

All throughout my childhood, I played violin, so yah, I had an appreciation for classical music.. My favorite classical track of all time is:

The Moldau – Smetana

(Ska Phase)
I’m not sure how I found ska in college, but I did. All throughout college, I pretty much listened to like 80% ska music. I did the whole deal, I had the flight jacket, a porkpie hat, oxblood doc martens, and skanked. Ya, I even had a Vespa (and still do).

007 (Shanty Town) – Desmond Dekker
Message To You Rudy – The Specials
He Wants Me Back – Dance Hall Crashers
Tell You Why – Pietasters
Come Back Baby – The Slackers

(Punk Phase)
The ska thing kind of developed into a punk fascination — I mean, OpIV is ska-punk, so it seemed like a natural evolution.

Sound System – Operation Ivy
Life Size Mirror – No Use For A Name

(Japanese Phase)
I had a brief fascination with Japanese music. Yah.

Baby Love Child – Pizzicato Five
Sugar Water – Cibo Matto

(Electronica Phase)
And then.. I moved to San Francisco. And in SF, electronica kind of found me. I probably spent like 6 months listening ONLY to trance, and on this one trip up to Tahoe, I ONLY had trance CDs in my car.. about 2 hours into the drive, I was so desperate for ANYTHING NON-TRANCE that I almost tore my ears out until I (thankfully) found a cassette tape from high school (classic rock) that I listened to for the rest of the weekend. I have a theory that you can only listen to so much trance in your lifetime, after which you’re just, like, done with it. So yah, even though I remember really, really liking this PVD track. Now, I can’t even be bothered to sit through it. Ugh.

Out There & Back – Paul van Dyk

So, from trance, I moved on to breaks, which I think is a natural progression. I probably spent the most time DJ’ing breaks, and my vinyl collection is primarly breaks. That said, for some reason, I don’t really like listening to breaks on my iPod. Maybe that’s cuz I don’t really like listening to breaks — I prefer dancing to it.

Collect – Emit

(Folky Phase.. Reprise)
I think as a backlash to my years of electronic/trance-ness, I rekindled my interest in folky stuff. These two tracks are my favorites:

The Blower’s Daughter – Damien Rice
Lonestar – Norah Jones

(Hip Hop, Turntabilist Phase)
For like a brief time, I really wanted to be a good scratch DJ/Turntablist, and it was during that time that I found a lot of hip hop that was pretty rad.

From 93 till Infinity – Souls of Mischief
Ghostwriter – RJD2
Point to B – Prefuse 73
Swing Set – Jurassic 5

(Indie Electronic Phase)
I think the pendulum swung back kind of crooked — and since everything merges anyway, I found myself in indie-land, with a bit of an electronic influence.

Hide & Seek – Imogen Heap
Needy Girl – Chromeo

(I LOVE Xmas music)
So, for the past 6 years, I’ve compiled a CD of Christmas music. I heart christmas music, and this is my favorite holiday tune:

Baby It’s Cold Outside – Elf Soundtrack

(Indie Phase)
Ok.. and now we’re kind of in my latest phase, which is just the “Indie Phase” — that said, “Indie” is kind of a wide spectrum of things, and pretty much, for the past few years, I’ve been putting together mixtapes like every quarter. So, here’s just a sampling from those mixtapes of tracks that I find to have a particularly high level of awesomeness.

First Breath After Coma – Explosions In The Sky
To Be Loved – Joan As Police Woman
Falcon Jab – Ratatat
Blood Bank – Bon Iver
Lisztomania – Phoenix
Comets – Fanfarlo

And.. that’s it, I think.. 34 biographically representative songs from my 34 years..

my favorite songs of 2009

Happy New Year everyone.. 2010 is well on its way, so I’ve put together a little mix to get it started… 2009 was an amazing year for new music. Whoever said that the digital age is killing music obviously isn’t actually out there listening to the stuff.

The year opened for me with a whole lotta Bon Iver, whose Blood Bank EP was an awesomely haunting way to open the new year. Then, pretty much most of my 2009 was spent listening to Phoenix’s Wolfgang Amadeus Phoenix.. man, that entire album is insanely awesome. And then, just as 2009 was about to close, the xx stormed the scene.

2009 was also the year of the remix for me, aided with the hype machine, remixes (good AND bad) are flooding out more than ever. Yes, it takes time to sort through the crap to find the gems, but once you do, it’s quite rewarding. Also, if you haven’t heard the brazilian remixing duo, The Twelves, yet.. I highly suggest you go and check them out. Now.

Anyway, I’m rambling.. so, without further adieu, here’s my picks for best songs of 2009.

Enjoy.

As long as I have your attention, I might as well also list out the live shows that I saw for 2009:

  • The Bird & The Bee @ The Independent
  • rjd2 @ 103 Harriet and Vessel
  • Toshio Hirano @ The Rite Spot
  • Ratatat @ The Fillmore
  • Band Of Horses @ The Fox
  • Jason Reeves, Brendan James, Amber Rubarth @ Cafe du Nord
  • Emilie Simon @ Le Poisson (NYC)
  • Bon Iver @ The Fox
  • Dawes (opening for Langhorne Slim, but I left after seeing Dawes) @ The Independent
  • Joan As Policewoman @ Knitting Factory (Brooklyn)
  • Friendly Fires & The xx @ The Independent

Not a bad take for this year, I suppose.. I got to see 2 of my top 3 acts of 2009 — Phoenix actually played the Warfield, but I refuse to go to that venue cuz I hate it.. yuck. Clearly, The Independent is my favorite place to go see shows this year (and I’ll be back there for Miike Snow soon). Strangely though, no shows at the Greek for 2009.. Weird.

Anyway — hats off to a super awesome musical 2009.

Happy New Year all.

2007, in cities…

Happy New Year! Ok, this is becoming somewhat of a tradition — I did it for 2005 and 2006.. Here’s a little list of the cities that I’ve spent at least one night in… This year had my Thailand trip, so that bumped up my city count a bit…

As per the previous lists, this is in somewhat chronological order of the first stay and *s indicate multiple stays…

West Hollywood, CA
San Francisco, CA*
Las Vegas, NV
Truckee, CA
New York, NY*
Ithaca, NY
South Lake Tahoe, CA
North Hollywood, CA*
Bangkok, Thailand*
On an Overnight Train, Thailand
Krabi, Thailand
Ko Phi Phi, Thailand
Phuket, Thailand
Pigeon Point, CA
Hillsborough, CA*
Princeville, HI
San Diego, CA

Wooo.. that’s a nice little list… and it’s awesome to go back through the year and remember everywhere I’ve been… and shudder at just how quickly it all flew by.

Happy trails, everyone.

my top 11 tracks of 2007…

This was a good year for me musically, me thinks… I took a look at my Last.fm chart, as well as my iTunes to gather some data.. here are my top 11 tracks of 2007..

  1. Your Hand in Mine – Explosions in the Sky
  2. The Way I Am – Ingrid Michaelson
  3. My Favourite Book – Stars
  4. I Defy – Joan as Policewoman
  5. Foundations – Kate Nash
  6. Your Red Dress – Alaska in Winter
  7. Sky Blue Sky – Wilco
  8. My Eyes – Travis
  9. New Young Pony Club – Ice Cream
  10. To Build A Home – The Cinematic Orchestra
  11. The Salmon Dance (feat Fatlip) – The Chemical Brothers

Well, I guess these were not necessarily all released in 2007, but, these tracks came to my attention in the past year…

Here they all are, in a Seeqpod player, for your listening enjoyment:

good potential band names

Hmmm.. not that Mongolian Candidate needs a new name, but since we haven’t played together in like a year, maybe, just maybe I’ll join up with a new band someday.

And if I do, maybe it will be named:

Astronaut Cowboy
Donkeytail Spurge
Rhymes With Desk
Black Squirrel
Burping Otter
The Melikes
Surely Shirley
Benadryl Bailey
Lazy Jane

Any other good names? (thanks stepha for a lot of these)