march's mixtape will be up a little late - check back late tuesday or early wednesday.
  • Noah And The Whale - Jocasta
  • Ben Sollee - It's Not Impossible
  • Born Ruffians - Hedonistic Me
  • Delta Spirit - Trashcan
  • French Kicks - Abandon
  • Noah And The Whale - Rocks And Daggers
  • Cloud Cult - Transistor Radio
  • These United States - First Sight
  • Beirut - Postcards From Italy
  • Architecture In Helsinki - What's in Store?

JULYor, happy belated birthday!

hi, mom! i made you a mixtape. and also a website. this is your birthday present! i know it's three months late - i hope you can forgive me, i've been working on this for a while.

i actually had the idea for this thing way back in mid-february. i was trying to get to sleep, somewhere around two in the morning, and this idea popped into my head: why don't you make your mom some sort of inter-net thing where you give her some music every once in a while? it was weird, the idea came into my mind basically fully-formed, name and all (although to be fair, i suppose it is not the sort of name that would take much imagination and creative energy to generate). so, i got up and wrote it down in my little notebook, and sort of sat on the idea for a while, because i was sort of busy.

but, i pulled out the notebook again in mid-march and spent an entire evening sketching out designs for the thing. it took a few pages and versions before i started to get into it, but after sketch five it basically fell into place - how many segments there would be to the site; how each would be a layer, like layers of rock in a cliffside; how each month there would be a new "issue" made up of a mixtape, a post, and some links; how the tape would follow you as you scrolled, no matter how wordy the post got (although hopefully most of them won't be as long as this one).

but, then i had to make the thing, and that took a while. a few false starts, some elbow grease, trying to do the thing as a rails project before i realized it's really tricky (and also just a horrendous idea in general) to mix rails and php, which i would've had to do since opentape (which i've borrowed and expanded upon in order to power the tape to your right [which you can start by clicking on the top song, by the way]) is written in php. so, now i know some php. but anyway: it's mostly done! i've got a few more things to do to it before it'll be completely done, which will hopefully make it a little prettier and run a little bit more cleverly, but i've been sitting on this thing long enough and need to release it. and now i will talk about the tape i made, because that's what this part of the page is usually going to be for.

so: when i was halfway through putting together the tracklist for this tape, i stopped and wrote myself a little post-it that said "hopeful." and i guess that's what ended up happening with this thing - "jocasta" might be a bit bleak at times, but when you put all of these songs by all of these different people together, it's like they're all telling different parts of the same story, and it feels... warm. hopeful. like it's all going to be okay?

of course, friends of mine who've been subjected to my music for any appreciable period of time will pretty quickly notice that this theme's a little bit out of character as far as my usual music taste goes. which is true - i didn't even put in a single instrumental song! i guess i'm starting us off easy. as we go forward, some of the tapes might not be as sunny as this one, and not every song will have words, but i'll try really hard to make them enjoyable, and hopefully you'll find some new music you like along the way. so: happy belated birthday, and i hope you enjoy the music!


every month, i'll put up a new mixtape on the right side of this inter net site, and some words having to do with that mixtape will run down the left side. some tapes will have more or fewer songs than others, and sometimes tapes will have themes. i hope that the one thing that they will all have in common will be that they are all made of good music, and that my mom and anyone else who cares to listen to them will find new music that they like by listening to these things.

which reminds me: this site is a birthday present for my mom. because, in the words of a wise otter, my mom should always get presents because she is my mom. for the technically inclined: this site is powered by php, duct tape, sheer force of concentration, and a modified version of opentape.

my name is jrheard.