As many of you have likely surmised by now — and as referenced in my recent post on All Songs Considered — the time has come for me to officially conclude my blog.
Instead, I will focus on three projects that take up nearly all of my time: One is Portlandia, a sketch comedy show that I developed and wrote with Fred Armisen (Saturday Night Live) for the IFC Channel. The second is a book I've been working on for more than a year called The Sound of Where You Are, to be published by Ecco/HarperCollins, if I could ever finish that damn thing. Finally, I have a new band called WILD FLAG.
If you're wondering what else I do, well, I hang out with my dog, watch Mad Men, try in vain to find a sofa, and drive my car to and from the mechanic. Also, I have friends. Oh, and Robin Hilton just popped into my head (he does that all the time; it's disturbing) and wanted me to say that I listen to NPR on member station OPB and that I read NPR Music. I'll also contribute periodically to the All Songs Considered blog, and hope to appear on the show from time to time. In the meantime, there's also the best of Monitor Mix for you to browse.
Truth be told, I will greatly miss Monitor Mix and being a part of the larger NPR Music family. Music has always been my constant, my salvation. It's cliché to write that, but it's true. From dancing around to Michael Jackson and Madonna as a kid to having my mind blown by the first sounds of punk and indie rock, to getting to play my own songs and have people listen, music is what got me through. Over the years, music put a weapon in my hand and words in my mouth it backed me up and shielded me, it shook me and scared me and showed me the way; music opened me up to living and being and feeling. Writing for Monitor Mix was part of that musical continuum, particularly the ways in which I was able to connect with other music fans. If nothing else — if someone was trying to figure me out, who am I, what exactly I do — well, that's it. I'm a fan.
So, thank you to NPR Music — the readers, arguers, commenters, agreers and disagreers. Writing Monitor Mix was a very edifying and inspiring few years. I learned a lot from you, I had fun, and it was the least lonely of times.
Something to remember as we go forward: Don't be afraid.