22. Horror is a Comfort to Me. [Adam Clarke.]

You might know Adam Clarke as one of the hosts of It’s Just a Show, a podcast deep dive into Mystery Science Theatre 3000. He’s also cohost of A Part of Our Scare-itage, a new podcast about Canadian horror films. Adam grew up in Newfoundland, but he’ll often claim that he was raised by a VCR. He has been a successful film critic, standup comic, actor, playwright, and short story author.

Adam and Michael talk about film scores, the contract horror films make with their viewers, the devolution of humanity, moving beyond sloganeering, and finding the joy of independence.

[Content warning: Sections two and five of this episode contain some strong discussion of physical violence. There are warnings beforehand, and if your podcast app supports chapter markers you can skip ahead to avoid any graphic descriptions.]

Adam’s Five Songs.

Godzilla to Tokyo Bay by Akira Ifukube [from the Godzilla soundtrack].
Halloween Theme by John Carpenter [from the Halloween soundtrack].
Peek-a-boo by Devo.
Ping Pong by Stereolab.
Tenebre by Goblin.

Show Notes.

Adam and Sarah’s new podcast about Canadian horror films, A Part of Our Scare-itage.

Adam and Beth’s deep dive into Mystery Science Theatre 3000, It's Just a Show.

Adam, Beth, and Chris discuss the original Godzilla film on fellow Megaphonic podcast The Scene of the Scene.

Adam’s storytelling podcast, And Thereby Hangs a Tale, where each episode he asks a guest to share the most interesting thing that's happened to them.

Late-breaking podcast synchronicity! Song Exploder released a discussion with John Carpenter about the Halloween theme today.

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21. It Doesn’t Make Any Sense At All (And I Love That). [John Allison.]

John Allison is the creator of comic series including Giant Days, Bad Machinery and Scary Go Round. He studied journalism and worked as a designer for five years before becoming a professional cartoonist in 2003. John lives in Letchworth Garden City, halfway between Cambridge and London in the UK.

John and Michael talk about independent-minded children, seizing the means of production, the nature of creativity, the beauty of All-Music Guide, and shady business practices during the dot-com bubble.

John’s Five Songs.

Oh Patti (Don’t Feel Sorry for Loverboy) by Scritti Politti.
Say Anything by Aimee Mann.
All I Wanna Do by The Beach Boys.
The Moon by The Microphones.
The Garden of Secrecy by Tenement.

Show Notes.

The John Allison Cinematic Universe is sprawling, and it can be difficult to find a place to start if you’re new to it. I might suggest the first volume of Bad Machinery (available digitally at Comixology and in pulped wood format from Topatoco) as one possibility. It’s about a group of school-age friends who solve mysteries (often with a supernatural element).

In addition to books, John has many prints, t-shirts, etc. for sale. This print of Lady Gaga drawn in the style of Audrey Beardsley is a favourite, and to my mind captures some of the essence of what’s delightful about John’s style and sensibility.

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20. A Kind Sea Witch. [Catherine.]

Michael’s good friend Catherine would like to one day be described as a kind sea witch. She enjoys continually learning new things and delights over her two happy pets. She plays a few musical instruments and sings, and finds that she is primarily drawn to beautiful and haunting sounds rather than any sort of lyric. Michael and Catherine both grew up learning classical piano in Newfoundland, but their experiences were different in a few key ways.

Catherine and Michael talk about unexpected lullabies, musical education, loving classic rock in high school, the private joy of music that's just for you, and being a powerful feminist witch.

Catherine’s Five Songs.

Enjoy the Silence by Depeche Mode.
Waltz Opus 64, No. 2 by Frédéric Chopin.
Purple Haze by Jimi Hendrix.
If I Had a Heart by Fever Ray.
Megafauna by The Night Terrors.

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19. More Than I Have Words For. [Peter Coviello.]

Peter Coviello is Professor of English at the University of Illinois–Chicago, where he specializes in American literature and queer studies. He’s the author of several books, including Tomorrow’s Parties: Sex and the Untimely in Nineteenth-Century America (2013), which was a finalist for a Lambda Award in LGBT Studies. His most recent book is Long Players: A Love Story in Eighteen Songs, out now from Penguin. He has written about queer childhood, Mormon polygamy, the history of sexuality, stepparenthood, Justin Bieber, Walt Whitman, and, whenever he’s had occasion to, Prince. He lives in Chicago.

Peter and Michael talk about building love with rituals, songs as archives for feelings, the difficulty of grief and consolation, the nature of prayer, and punk music as the place where rage can transmute into joy.

Peter’s Five Songs.

ABC by the Jackson 5.
Twin Human Highway Flares by the Mountain Goats.
I’m So Glad (That Trouble Don't Last Always) by Sam Cooke.
We Are Beautiful, We Are Doomed by Los Campesinos!
The Glow by Sylvan Esso.

Show Notes.

Peter’s website, where you can find more information about him and his writing, including playlists taken from his recent book, Long Players: A Love Story in Eighteen Songs.

This is Your Playlist! Every song we’ve featured on every episode, in order (...if they’re on Spotify).

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18. The Nobility of Failure. [Angelo Muredda.]

Angelo Muredda is a Toronto-based teacher and film critic who has written for outlets like Cinema Scope, The Walrus, Film Freak Central, and Now Magazine. He is completing his PhD in English at the University of Toronto. You can find him on Twitter, listen to his Star Trek podcast Highly Logical (co-hosted with Nicole Partyka), and catch his screening series No Future at The Royal Cinema.

Angelo and Michael talk about radical kindness, sad weird kids, impermanence, life in the shadow of sudden trauma, and the comforting thought that the place you’re in is the place you’re meant to be.

Angelo's Five Songs.

Dreams by The Cranberries.
Planet Telex by Radiohead.
Sadie by Joanna Newsom.
Motorway to Roswell by Pixies.
This Must Be The Place (Naive Melody) by Talking Heads.

Show Notes.

Angelo’s Twitter

His Star Trek podcast Highly Logical.

His film series No Future will soon be showing Firestarter at The Royal Cinema.

This is Your Playlist! Every song we’ve featured on every episode, in order (...if they’re on Spotify).

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17. Euchre for the Leathery Crowd. [David Demchuk.]

David Demchuk has been writing for performance, print and digital media for nearly 40 years. He’s got a special interest in queerness and monstrosity. His debut novel, The Bone Mother, was shortlisted and nominated for a number of awards, and was the first horror novel to ever be nominated for the prestigious Giller Prize, in 2017. David grew up in Winnipeg, where he first came out, and moved to Toronto in his early 20s. 

David and Michael talk about monsters, gay Winnipeg in the 70s, AIDS, the relentless task of mourning, and playing euchre with leather daddies while the Hells Angels keep you safe.

David’s Five Songs

Superstar by The Carpenters.
Don't Leave Me This Way by Thelma Houston.
Song to the Siren by This Mortal Coil.
Everything Must Change by Nina Simone.
Howl by Florence and the Machine.

Show Notes.

David’s personal website. His book’s site, and its publisher’s.

David’s professional and personal Twitter accounts.

Tim Buckley’s version of Song to the Siren.

A piece about Toronto’s steps.

Friend of the show Anthony Oliveira writes about the Bruce McArthur case.

This is Your Playlist! Every song we’ve featured on every episode, in order (...if they’re on Spotify).

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16. I’m Not Allowed to Be Mad. [Mikaela Dyke.]

Mikaela Dyke is an actor and writer from St. John’s currently working as an artistic producer with Circlesnake Productions, a Toronto indie theatre company known for their experimental genre shows. Her solo shows, Dying Hard and Epic Pitch, have toured all across North America to critical and audience acclaim. You can see her online in the webseries Couchsleeps dot com (Folkstar Productions) coming soon.

Mikaela and Michael talk about love songs, road trips, performance, systemic oppression, and how anger is necessary yet futile.

Mikaela’s Five Songs.

Hit the Road Jack by Ray Charles.
Pour que tu m’aimes encore by Céline Dion.
Breed by Nirvana.
Surf Wax America by Weezer.
Mad by Solange.

Show Notes.

Find Mikaela on Twitter and Instagram.

The teaser for Couchsleeps dot com, a forthcoming webseries featuring Mikaela.

Céline Dion becoming emotional about the crisis following Hurricane Katrina.

The trailer for Closet Monster (2016), which Mikaela believes to contain the most true-to-life depiction of the St John’s scene she grew up with.

This is Your Playlist! Every song we’ve featured on every episode, in order (...if they’re on Spotify).

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15. My Love Is Better Than Your Love. [Anthony Oliveira (@meakoopa).]

Anthony Oliveira is a writer, cultural commentator, and trash raccoon with a PhD. He can be found on Twitter at @meakoopa, where he tweets (incessantly) about the arts, politics, and LGBTQ culture, or on his podcast, The Devil’s Party, where he's giving Milton’s Paradise Lost the queer reading it has long been wanting.

Anthony and Michael discuss the ideology of the Muppets, liking ‘girl music’, Catholic school, the superiority of queer love, and the value of kindness.

Anthony’s Five Songs.

I Don't Want to Live on the Moon by Jim Henson [as Ernie].
Total Eclipse of the Heart by Bonnie Tyler.
Lost Cause by Beck.
The Origin of Love from Hedwig and the Angry Inch.
Stronger Than You by Estelle [as Garnet].

Show Notes.

Anthony’s website, including links to his writing, and his must-follow @meakoopa twitter account.

Anthony’s essay “Death in the Village”, about the serial killer who targeted gay men over the past decade in Toronto's Church and Wellesley Village.

Failed Mystics”, episode 114 of The Sewers of Paris podcast, on which gay men talk about the culture that shaped them. Anthony talks about Buffy the Vampire Slayer, X-Men, He-Man, and Lwaxana Troi.

This is Your Playlist! Every song we’ve featured on every episode, in order (...if they’re on Spotify).

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14. Jane Goodall and a Marshmallow. [Vivian Kotila.]

Vivian Kotila is short, round, lives in Toronto, and loves her trash. She’s basically a raccoon that's not as proficient at opening jars. Her two main vices are decaf coffee with too much cream and antique cookbooks. She owns a fighting fish named Cato the Elder.

Vivian and Michael discuss discovering your identity, the joy of bad movies, dealing with grief, what makes humanity redeemable, and the fun side of nuclear holocaust.

Vivian’s Five Songs.

Under the Bridge by Red Hot Chili Peppers.
Spoonful by Howlin’ Wolf.
A Little Bit of Everything by Dawes.
People and People II (The Reckoning) by Andrew Jackson Jihad.
We Will All Go Together When We Go by Tom Lehrer.

Show Notes.

Tom Lehrer’s Full 1959 Copenhagen Concert.

This is Your Playlist! Every song we’ve featured on every episode, in order (...if they’re on Spotify).

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13. Queen of the Dandom. [Libby Cudmore.]

Libby Cudmore is the author of the novel The Big Rewind (William Morrow), a murder mystery where a mixtape is the key to unlocking whodunnit. She has written for Paste, Albumism, Vinyl Me Please, the Captain’s Blog at YachtRock.com, and Inspirer magazine. Her short fiction, essays and poetry have been published in PANK, The Stoneslide Corrective, The Big Click and the anthologies Welcome Home, Mixed Up, and Hanzai Japan. She hosts the weekly #RecordSaturday live-tweet on her Twitter, @libbycudmore.

Libby and Michael discuss Star Wars, being a goth before Hot Topic, discovering crime fiction, friend breakups, and vinyl addiction.

Libby’s Five Songs.

I Can See It in Your Eyes by Men At Work.
The Queen Is Dead by the Smiths.
New Coat of Paint by Tom Waits.
Searching for a Heart by Warren Zevon.
The Second Arrangement by Steely Dan.

Show Notes.

This is Your Playlist! Every song we’ve featured on every episode, in order (...if they’re on Spotify).

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12. A Really Happy Time. [Austin Wong.]

Austin Wong is a lifelong pop culture junkie. His mom once lamented how much knowledge he could have in his head if he stopped filling up his brain with song lyrics and movie trivia. Now that he works as an entertainment lawyer, and as a producer, writer and director, those skills are now coming in handy. He’s married with a baby girl, but it doesn’t stop him from going to every diva concert that blows through town. He can’t wait until his daughter is old enough to join him—unless she turns out to be into metal, in which case he’ll try to send his husband.

Austin and Michael discuss gay conversion therapy, being friends with football jocks and art nerds at the same time, the career trajectories of Gaga and Madonna, falling in love, and dancing until you hurt yourself.

Austin’s Five Songs.

Grease by Frankie Valli.
Bizarre Love Triangle by New Order.
Don’t Look Back in Anger by Oasis.
Just Dance by Lady Gaga.
Vogue by Madonna.

Show Notes.

This is Your Playlist! Every song we’ve featured on every episode, in order (...if they’re on Spotify).

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11. Spacey Polyrhythms. [Alison Dennis.]

Alison Dennis grew up in various cities and towns in Oregon, Ohio, and Pennsylvania. Her involvement in music started at a young age as she participated in church choirs and school band.  She received a literature degree and some a cappella choir experience from Oberlin College in Ohio before moving to Portland, Oregon, where she has lived, with the exception of a short stint in New Orleans, for over a decade. Currently she writes, records and performs music under the name Dr. Something, performs keyboards, sax, and vocals in the psych rock band All I Feel Is Yes, creates visual art, and works a mundane office job to pay the bills. Alison and Michael talk about learning music in church, being a spacey kid, rebuilding New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina, artificial intelligence as metaphor for queer liberation, and losing control over being a control freak.

Alison’s Five Songs.

Up on the Roof by the Drifters.
Quem Vidistis Pastores by Francis Poulenc.
Starting Five by dios (malos).
Mushrooms and Roses by Janelle Monáe.
Control Freak by Counterfeit Madison.

Show Notes.

Dr. Something. Listen to and support Alison's music.

This is Your Playlist! Every song we’ve featured on every episode, in order (...if they’re on Spotify).

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10. The Romantic from the Cove. [Juanita Critch.]

Juanita Critch grew up in a rural Newfoundland community of fewer than 50 people. After attending Memorial University, where she graduated with a BA in religious studies and folklore, she settled in St. John’s, Newfoundland, with her husband Brian. By day, Juanita writes steamy contemporary romance for Harlequin/Mills & Boon, but by night she drinks margaritas and dreams of living on a tropical beach. Juanita and Michael talk about one-room school houses where your mom is the teacher, good teens who like angry music, religious studies, the publishing industry, and missing important phone calls.

Juanita’s Five Songs.

Aunt Martha's Sheep by Dick Nolan.
Faith by Limp Bizkit.
This River Is Wild by the Killers.
One Particular Harbor by Jimmy Buffett.
Spaceship by Kanye West.

Show Notes.

Juanita's official website. She’s also on Twitter and Instagram.

This Is Your Playlist! A Spotify playlist of every song from every episode of This Is Your Mixtape [if it is on Spotify].

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9. I Am Still Here. [Kari Bentley-Quinn.]

Kari Bentley-Quinn is a playwright based in New York City. She grew up in Connecticut, but adopted New York as home just in time to witness the September 11th attacks.  Kari's plays have been produced and presented in New York, Chicago and Dallas. She's a co-founder of Mission to (dit)Mars, a theater company based in the beautiful borough of Queens, championing new play development. Kari has an MFA in Playwriting from Hunter College. She's won the Rita and Burton Goldberg Award, and was a nominee for the Doric Wilson Playwriting Award. Kari and Michael discuss childhood optimism, musical improvisation, suicide, terrorism, polyrhythms, having a calling, why immigration is awesome, and making friends in your thirties.

Kari’s Five Songs.

I’m a Believer by the Monkees.
Marianne by Tori Amos.
Toxic by Britney Spears.
Sawdust and Diamonds by Joanna Newsom.
New York by St. Vincent.

Show Notes.

Youth Dew. Kari's personal essay about the sudden passing of her grandmother.

Song Exploder 114: St. Vincent. St. Vincent goes in depth on the writing and recording of “New York.”

Kari on Twitter, Instagram, and the web.

This Is Your Playlist! A Spotify playlist of every song from every episode of This Is Your Mixtape [if it is on Spotify].

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8. The Precarity is the World. [Beth Martin.]

Beth Martin grew up in rural Ontario, in a farming community near Lake Huron—the kind of place you'd recognize from the fiction of Alice Munro. Music was a tool Beth used to establish a cohesive identity, and later to probe her relationship with the outside world. She recently completed a PhD in English Literature, and is one of the co-founders of the Megaphonic podcast network, where she co-hosts It’s Just a Show, a deep-dive into 90’s cult classic show Mystery Science Theatre 3000. Beth and Michael discuss escapism, futurism, modernity's terrifying velocity, and raising a child in a world that sometimes feels doomed.

And hey: MEGAPHONIC PARTY! We'll be celebrating at The Bastille, 16 Walmer Ave, Toronto, Ontario, Canada, on Saturday, March 24th, 7-11pm. Join us! Free drinks and snacks! Me, Beth, and all the other Megaphonic crew will be there to meet and greet.

Beth’s Five Songs.

Book of Days (Gaelic Version) by Enya.
Army of Me by Björk.
Winter's Love by Animal Collective.
Vessels by Philip Glass.
4 Degrees by Anohni.

Show Notes.

It’s Just a Show. Beth's Mystery Science Theatre 3000 podcast.

The Pruitt-Igoe Myth. An episode of 99% Invisible about the failed housing project Beth discusses in the context of Philip Glass's Vessels.

This Is Your Playlist! A Spotify playlist of every song from every episode of This Is Your Mixtape [if it is on Spotify].

Subscribe to This Is Your Mixtape via Apple Podcasts | Overcast | Google Podcasts | Spotify | RSS.

7. Music is Sublimated Desire. [Drew Brown.]

Drew Brown is a freelance writer living in St. John's, Newfoundland. He grew up in Grand Falls-Windsor, a small town in Central Newfoundland. Once upon a time he was a PhD candidate in political science, writing a dissertation about affect theory and the Canadian museum of history. He has since quit grad school to write for money. He and Michael discuss growing up in a small-scale apocalypse, angry teen boys who fall for Ayn Rand, epiphanies on public transport, quitting PhD programs, and whether there is cause to hope for the future (probably there is).

Drew’s Five Songs.

Peter Street by the Irish Descendants.
Anthem by Rush.
Oxford Comma by Vampire Weekend.
The Beast by Austra.
Call to Arms by Sturgill Simpson.

Show Notes.

Drew's work at Vice.

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6. Not Like Me. [Ned Raggett.]

Ned Raggett writes about music for a variety of locations around the world and on the web. He's been doing it for 25 years now and he doesn’t want to stop—or perhaps, he tells me, he’s lazy and used to routine. He lives and works as a library assistant for the University of California in San Francisco.

We discuss the Muppets, exile in Siberia, the necessary lie of genre, listening to music from various perspectives, and not “fitting in” like people expect you to.

Ned’s Five Songs.

Rainbow Connection from The Muppet Movie.
Live to Tell by Madonna.
You Take the World by The Veldt.
Always and Everywhere (I Will Follow You) by Marc Almond.
Queen by Tracey Thorn.

Show Notes.

Ned’s Bonus Beats. The previous podcast appearance that Ned mentions.

50 Best Shoegaze Albums of All Time. Pitchfork album where Ned insisted on The Veldt’s inclusion.

Vazim Kodim. Wikipedia article on famous gay Russian singer who originally popularized Always and Everywhere (I Will Follow You).

Ned’s tumblr.

This is Your Playlist! Every song we've featured on every episode, in order (...if they're on Spotify).

Subscribe to This Is Your Mixtape via Apple Podcasts | Overcast | Google Podcasts | Spotify | RSS.

5. Queer Curation. [Michael Lee Richardson.]

Michael Lee Richardson is an award-winning writer whose short film, My Loneliness is Killing Me, about loneliness in the gay community, begins production in January 2018. He's also a passionate advocate for Scotland's LGBTQ youth. Michael lives in Glasgow, but he grew up in an isolated region of England's north. You can find him on most social media as @HRFMichael (Her Royal Flyness), but he's most frequently on Twitter, where he describes himself as a “general pain in the arts”.

We discuss queerness, drag, Geri Halliwell, cult followings, sad disco, empowerment anthems, gay men and black women, is Kate Bush a Tory?, the curatorial impulse—and loads more.

Michael’s Five Songs.

Part of Your World from The Little Mermaid.
Viva Forever by the Spice Girls.
The Magic Position by Patrick Wolf.
The Loving Kind by Girls Aloud.
Flawless (Remix) by Beyoncé ft. Nicki Minaj.

Show Notes.

This Is Your Playlist! All the songs featured on This Is Your Mixtape [if they're on Spotify].

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4. Mustachioed Persona. [Paul Fowler.]

Paul Fowler reads lewd material for a living. He’s long been involved in the publishing industry, and he’s participated in many literary endeavours. Paul grew up in a small and isolated town on the coast of Labrador, but he has lived in Toronto for more than six years, and he assures us they’re actually not all that different.

Paul’s Five Songs.

Seven Spanish Angels by Willie Nelson ft. Ray Charles.
Santa Monica by Savage Garden.
Call of Ktulu by Metallica.
Her Eyes Are a Blue Million Miles by Captain Beefheart and the Magic Band.
What Happens When You Turn the Devil Down by The Mystery Lights.

Show Notes.

My Mama Said by Aqua. Late 90s Danish bubblegum Barbie Girl band’s more recent, surprisingly dark and haunting material.

Resurrection by Moist. Canadian 90’s alt-rock that’s really quite poppy. Paul’s co-first album, along with Savage Garden.

Satellite view of L’anse au Loup, Labrador.

Paul and Paul’s Warhammer work on Instagram.

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3. Lush, Vivid, and Strange. [Anna Wilson.]

Anna Wilson recently completed a PhD at the University of Toronto. She’ll be starting at Harvard as an assistant professor next year. But erase all thoughts of a dry tweedy scholar from your mind. Anna is one of those scholars whose work and whose life intertwine—bringing together medieval mystics, queer theory, and fanfiction.

Anna’s Five Songs.

Graceland by Paul Simon.
The End by The Doors.
To Be Alone with You by Sufjan Stevens.
On the Radio by Regina Spektor.
Wait for It from Hamilton.

Show Notes.

The fanvid discussed is “This is How It Works” by Lim.

Anna’s article “Full-body Reading” at Aeon.

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