Tag Archives: poetry

The Blarg No. 40: Clottee Hammons

Where does anyone find the time to do everything? Really, if anyone has any tips, I’d love to hear them. My plate is overflowing, and while I can’t discuss all the projects heaped up on it, nor would you want to hear it all, there are a lot of irons, and they’re all in the fire—including that annoying metaphor-mixing iron. Between the regular work week grind, the show, Four Chambers, writing, these other projects I’m trying to get off the ground, I feel like I haven’t had time to sit down and catch my breath, to relax for even a brief amount of time. Last night, I had a mild anxiety attack. I freaked the fuck out. Everything’s fine, don’t worry about it.

Normally, I can cope by taking a few moments to sit down and play guitar. For me, playing allows the stress to fall away—rather than looming deadlines, meetings, a never-ending to-do list, I’m concentrating on chord progressions, notes, my mind weaving in and out of the melody. I haven’t allowed myself enough time for that. I need to get back to it. I’m working on creating exclusive audio content for supporters of our Patreon account, and coming up with riffs to open/close those programs is easily the best part for me. The healing powers of music, etc…

On this week’s show, our 40th (another milestone!), I talk to artist, writer, activist, community organizer, and all around amazing person, Clottee Hammons. Clottee is the founder and director of Emancipation Arts, which “provides educational information and discussions relevant to American Chattel Slavery through collaboration and arts programs.” The 20th Annual Emancipation Marathon will take place on June 24th from 10 am to 5 pm at the Phoenix Changing Hands location, and prior to that, there is a meet and greet on June 18th at Copper Star Coffee from 10 am to 1 pm. Go to the Emancipation Arts Facebook page for details.

Best,

Jared

Listen to LE 40 – Clottee Hammons

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The Blarg No. 38: Second Anniversary Bash!

We just got back from Phoenix Comic Con. I want to say I’ve been going for the last four years—it might be five, but I am pretty sure it’s four, so let’s go with that, shall we? Anyway, where was I? Aw, yes, I’ve been going to Phoenix Comic Con for the last four years, and I think I’m finally starting to get the hang of it. I’ll let you know if I’ve actually got it next year. I will also let you know my thoughts on THIS year’s experience in an upcoming edition of the show. I had a great little chat with the panelists/judges of this year’s Nerd Slam—perhaps the most unique show from a recording perspective that I’ve ever done—and I’ll post that sometime soon. The whole reason I am even bringing it up right now is because one of the panelists, Ernesto Moncada, is part of a really cool show that will have finished its run before I post the interview, and I want to be sure to plug it. The show is a musical adaptation of the beloved film Labyrinth called The Goblin King’s City, and it has two remaining performances, June 3rd and 9th at Unexpected Gallery on 734 W Polk St. Please go and support your local artists.

The only other thing I’ll say about Phoenix Comic Con in this week’s Blarg is that I may have developed a little man-crush on the author Sam Sykes. I’m not sure yet. I have to read one of his books, and if I like it, then I’ll know. He’s a wise-cracking smart-ass, and I want to grab a beer with him. For some reason he reminds me of Wilco’s Jeff Tweedy—both physically and personality-wise. Hopefully I can convince him to be on the podcast. Again, I have to read one of his books first.

This week’s show is our second anniversary bash. Two years. TWO YEARS! For the 2nd anniversary, I asked Four Chambers Press founder and editor-in-chief Jake Friedman to interview me about the show, and the book we released covering every episode of the first two year, The ‘Arg’ in Blarg, which he sort of did. Really, Jake did a bang up job…of making me feel uncomfortable. Which means he did an all around bang up job. Thanks, Jake!

Listen to this week’s show: LE 38 – The Second Anniversary Show

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The Blarg No. 37: Andrea Scarpino

Well, it’s done. The Arg in Blarg, which covers the first two years of Limited Engagement, is now available. As of now, the only place to buy the book is in the shop on ltdengagementpod.com. I’m looking to get into some local bookstores and other retail establishments, and do some additional events to promote it, and of course I’ll let everyone know as things get confirmed. The book looks great—I couldn’t be happier with how it turned out. Janell’s design was amazing as always, and the folks over at Biltmore Pro Print did a bang up job putting it together.

Friday was the launch for the book as well as the second anniversary of the show. It was great. I was pretty nervous about being the interviewee, but Jake Friedman did an excellent job, and we had a great conversation. With that one in the can, the live show is effectively on hiatus until the fall, but we will continue to post a new show every week, so please keep coming back.

This week’s show is a conversation I had with poet Andrea Scarpino just prior to the launch of her new collection, Once Upon Wing Lake. It’s a beautiful collection, and I highly recommend that you pick up a copy. We had a deep and open conversation about family, perception, and writing artfully about painful personal experience.

Listen to the show here: LE 37 – Andrea Scarpino

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This Week: Jia Oak Baker! Plus, Ready to Launch!

I have been talking about this book a lot, and I am probably not going to be able to stop any time soon. The Arg in Blarg is a collection celebrating our first two years’ worth of conversations with local writers, artists, musicians, arts and culture titans, and Robyn Hitchcock. Our second anniversary show, kicking off our third year, will take place at HUB Modern Cooperative (either back on the patio or inside the C-Mod building, it depends on the weather) on this coming Friday, May 19th at 7 pm, and that is where we are launching the book. If you can’t make it to the live event, you can purchase a copy through our newly redesigned website (thanks to Janell), or if you are feeling more generous, you can visit our Patreon page and become a patron.

Limited Engagement is the most satisfying, fulfilling project I’ve ever done, and I’ve come to the conclusion that it’s worth something. We spend a lot of time and a decent amount of money on this show, and I think it’s an important platform for creatives in Phoenix, as well as a great resource for aspiring creatives. I would think this if someone else were doing this show as well, but they’re not—at least as far as I know. Anyway, if you feel similarly, I hope you’ll consider supporting the show either through purchasing the book and other items that will find their way into the shop, or becoming a patron.

This week, I talk to poet and photographer Jia Oak Baker. Jia’s chapbooks Crash Landing in the Plaza of an Unknown City (Dancing Girl, 2015) and Well Enough to Travel (Five Oaks, 2015) are both fantastic, and she’s been published in many journals. Jia was one of the first guests I talked to, and it’s the only conversation I didn’t manage to record, so I’m thrilled she was willing to stop by the house and do it again. It was a great conversation. Probably even better than the first one.

Listen to LE 36 – Jia Oak Baker

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