Thursday, December 30, 2010

I Can Post This Now

I read this pre-Christmas but rather insult so many who love the holiday (my favorite by the way but not for the religious implications of it) - I held this until today. If you are curious, I claim to be agnostic myself but several of my friends are atheists and understand their point. I just think there are things bigger than us at play in the world.

However, I love this quote from Ani Difranco in 2000 during this interview:

"Well, I'm not a religious person myself. I'm an atheist. I think religion serves a lot of different purposes in people's lives, and I can recognize the value of that, you know, the value of ceremony, the value of community, or even just having a forum to get together and talk about ideas, about morals — that's a cool concept. But then, of course, institutional religions are so problematic."

Amen :)

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Maggie and I

So my sister and I have been doing these movie review for about a year plus now ... I thought it would be neat to post all of them we've done so far on here:

Night at the Museum II

Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince


A Christmas Carol

Toy Story 3

And finally....our latest ... Harry Potter and the Deathly Hollows Part 1

Hope you enjoy a few of these ... my sis and I have fun making them!

Monday, November 8, 2010

Back To My Roots

There has always been deep love for female singer song-writers in my life. It was put there by my mother who played Edie Brickell, Tracy Chapman, 10,000 Manics and others in the house while I was growing up. While my tastes expanded as I got older to include several male oriented genres, I still come back to the music of my childhood quite often.

Being exposed to those powerful female artists early in life planted the seed for my obsession with acts like Ani Difranco, who has been a staple in my life since I was 18. I've seen Ani over 15 times in several different states, most recently this past spring in Des Moines and Omaha on back to back nights.

The connection to female singer/songwriter music is obvious as my mother raised me by herself and the lyrics of those artists speak to the trials and tribulations of women in today's society. My mother's strength empowered me to become the independent thinker that I am today and I owe everything to the sacrifices my mother made to get me where I am today.

Whenever I find a new female musical talent that reminds of my childhood, or any new act for that matter - I love to share the find with as many people as possible. It's why I wanted to go into music radio at first.

Brit Laura Marling is simple amazing and comes from the same group of singer/songwriters that has produced Mumford and Sons and Andrew Bird. While still young at 21, she is extremely talented and her EP and two albums that have followed are FANTASTIC. Highly recommend her music.

Here are a few live tracks showing off her amazing voice.

Not live but this is my favorite song by her

Friday, October 22, 2010

"Alt-Country" Becomes the Music of this Fall

What can I say….I love writing about music and I’ve found a new sound that I needed to share with anyone who is looking for some new music.

As some of you know, my love for Brit music started with bands like Oasis and Travis during my high school days and has been a constant in my musical listening life over the past 15 years. It led me to bands like Lily Allen, Kate Nash, Florence and the Machine and many others.

I will never forget buying Keane’s first album Hopes and Dreams while living in Alabama in 2001 and falling head over heals in love with the band. (No kidding right? Just look at this blog). This past summer was basically devoted to listening to them.

Moving around the South and Midwest for my radio career opened me up to country music in ways that I never, ever imagined. In high school, when people used to ask me what kind of music I liked, my standard answer was “everything but country”.

 I wasn’t alone in that opinion growing up in Boston as historically, country music never got much attention except when you stumbled onto the Country Music Awards on CBS after a Patriots game ended and you quickly laughed at the ridiculous twang of the performers.

 Ironically for me, while living in Alabama, it was a girl from Boston who exposed me to country music in a way that made me actually listen to songs and lyrics and find an appreciation for the art. Bands like Rascal Flatts, Tim McGraw, Faith Hill, Dixie Chicks, Miranda Lambert, Brad Paisley, Josh Turner, and Sugarland started to get placed on my IPod and have stayed ever since. I’ve even been to several country music concerts including seeing Rascal Flatts three times.

But then came Bluegrass and that’s how my love of Brit music and country ended up headed on a collision course.

Alison Krauss and Union Station perform some of the most amazing songs I’ve ever heard. Most people know her work from the soundtrack to the George Clooney movie O Brother Where Art Tho. Her solo work also has won her more Grammy’s than any other female country artist and she quickly became one of my favorites. Alison and her band currently sits at Number 2 on my list of bands I must see before I die (R.E.M. is number 1).

One more stop before I get where I’m going this and that was my finding of the band Old Crow Medicine Show – a southern bluegrass band that expanded my musical horizons and made me search out more bands with similar sounds. I just caught the fever of the music.

It all came together when I discovered the band Mumford and Sons, and suddenly, my love of Brit music crashed into Bluegrass and country. I literally haven’t been able to stop listening to their 2009 album Sigh No More. Dust Bowl Dance shook me the first time I heard it and their perfection of the crescendo is masterful.

It all came full circle this past week when Keane writer Tim Rice-Oxley’s spin off group Mt. Desolation, released their self-titled first album. If you haven’t heard the song State of our Affairs yet, please take the time to below and hear how haunting of a song it is. It will stick with you in a very good way.

So what to call this new sound? When I first heard the label “Alt-Country”, I wasn’t sure I liked it but then I started to hear why it works. On the Mt. album, you will hear the influence of Bruce Springsteen, James Taylor, Neil Young, and Linda Ronstadt. You will hear some Union Station and Old Crow inside the music of Sigh No More as well. It's an amazing redux on a great American sound.

From a love of Brit music, to country, to Bluegrass to Alt-country from Brit musicians – my music journey continues to be a passion of mine and I love where it is taking me.

And just for fun...I play this song every time I go into my favorite bar in Omaha

Just Because.....

Favorite song I heard this summer and since I was at this show and met the band right after this song....and since I haven't written on here in a while...KEANE!!

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Goodbye Summer of 2010.

For a lonely soul, you're having such a nice time
For a lonely soul, you're having such a nice time
For a lonely soul, it seems to me that you're having such a nice time
You're having such a nice time. - Keane "Nothing in my way" (see below for song) 

Met Keane in MN
When you are single at 33, there is a lot of quiet time late at night which allows for massive amounts of self-reflection and introspection. I blame my uncle for introducing me to this world of single life where the greatest question invented lives on steroids: "Why?". He is well over the age of 45, single, no kids and challenged me early in my life to pursue the road less taken and to follow my heart.  

I was reminded this summer that I'm really fortunate to have the kind of life that I always wanted. Sometimes, in the rush of living, I think I forget to stop and look around at what is good in my life and the opportunities that are provided to me because of the choices I've made. That doesn't mean I don't have issues because my life can be lonely at times.  The solemn existence is caused by a piercing desire to pursue a career that forces me to move around the country to places where I never thought I would live.

Radio is who I am and without it, I don't know what I would do with myself. I have my uncle to thank for my career. This summer was quite possibly the greatest of my life, yet I spent the majority of it alone or with just one or two people along for the experiences. It causes me to wonder - have I spent too much time alone these past few years that I'm now forever destined to live solo? My poor mother is wondering if her oldest son will ever grow up and settle down but it sure doesn't look like it at the rate I'm going. I am 33 for god-sakes.

I'm now even asking myself if I will ever give up this bachelorhood? I don't think I want to but don't I have to if I want to do the wife and white picket fence life kinda thing? Debating that is my new late-night struggle.

I've written of my childhood before, explaining how we never traveled anywhere beyond New York City. It was like the world stopped at tip of lower Manhattan. This bubble was allowed to remain intact because everything you focused on was in Boston or New York. Movies, art, TV news, baseball, football, it was all about Boston and New York.

But then radio came along and this Pandora's Box of experiences was opened up for me and I was never the same. I call it "the ride" and it's been filled with so much selfish fun.

I'm not going to bore you with every detail of what I did this summer but the highlights are pretty wild and gives some background to why I'm still single. Yes, I did go home to Boston to see the family for five days but the real fun started afterwards.

Keane performing in Vegas
Everyone should spend the 4th of July in Los Angeles just once, especially if you are from the East Coast. I don't want to say that people in Cali aren't patriotic because they are, but the 4th there feels like a played-out family tradition rather than a celebration of our country's history. I also learned a big lesson in California this summer - growing up means you have to learn to keep your mouth shut and let your friends make their own mistakes with love. Even when you want to scream at them, you have to just accept their decisions because saying what you think can be devastating. I lost a connection with a close friend in July and I hope one day, we are able to re-build our friendship. He was my best friend for many years before a woman entered the picture one night in Vegas.

Speaking of Vegas, my annual July trip this year was highlighted by staying at the Green Valley Ranch Resort and getting a ton of stuff comp'd due to a connection I had at the hotel. If you are looking for a place off the strip that is really chill and very nice - that's the place to stay. The 21+ pool rocks too. I walked out up $250 from the casino, so that was a nice treat as I left the desert. It was different without my friend around though who had been a major part of my last three trips to Sin City. 

But Vegas 2010 will be remembered for seeing the band Keane for the first time at the House of Blues (pic above). I don't know if I'm normal or weird that I can go to concerts alone but I've always been this way and it further fuels my thoughts that I won't ever settle down. My first concert ever was seeing Cracker by myself at the Avalon club in Boston when I was 16. My favorite thing in the world to do is go to concerts but since many of my bands aren't popular with a lot of people, finding friends who want to go see those bands can be tough sometimes. I couldn't care less about going by myself to shows.

I'm happy to report that I finally made it to Chicago to cross off another bucket list item. In fact, after not going there for 33 years, I made two visits to the Windy City this summer. I first went for a couple of AAU tournaments for my website and then I went for Big 10 Football Media Days. While in Chi-town for the second time, a connection got my co-host and I great seats so I could see Wrigley Field - home of the Cubs for the first time.  

Chicago feels a lot like Boston with its history and quaint neighborhoods. I also made it up to Minneapolis in August and found out that their downtown is simply awesome. So much going on but so easy to get in and out of and so clean!

After going 7 years without seeing Keane, I got to see them twice during a 3 week period. The second time was in the Twin Cities at the famous First Avenue Club. That's where Prince made his name so it was pretty cool to be in there but not nearly as cool as meeting the entire band and having them sign something for me (see pic above) after the show. My friend Kat (she works in the music industry) set the whole thing up and I owe her a huge debt. It was the highlight of my summer as the band could not have been cooler to talk to for the 10 minutes I spent in their dressing room. 

But again, while Kat was hanging out with her work friends, I roamed the club by myself, dancing along to the music. It just felt right I guess.

I went to other places like Dallas for Big 12 Football Media Days, which was very routine in nature and we didn't do much fun stuff except go to a Rangers game to see Cliff Lee pitch. Kansas City was where I flew to Las Vegas from but went to a big AAU tournament first, so I spent a couple days there.

Yet, I keep coming back to a larger debate with myself when thinking about this summer: how long can you keep doing this and remain happy?

Marriage, relationships, and family have always been part of how I saw my life unfolding. I'm a family oriented guy living the most non-family friendly lifestyle. What girl wants to be around this madness?! It's a catch-22 for me.

Most of my relationships recently have been of the one to two month variety which has been perfectly OK. I date very differently than I used to. In the past, I would go years with the same girl and never walk away soon enough. Now, I get bored of them or they get sick of my behavior. There is no way that I could have gone to Boston, LA, Chicago twice, Las Vegas, Kansas City, Minneapolis and Dallas during a 8 week period if I were married - but that's exactly what I did this summer and loved every minute of it. I know it's the quintessential single guy life that leads many to get hitched - coming home to your cat and empty loft of silence after days of partying, but how many unhappy married guys would take my life in two seconds?

All I know is, I had a blast this summer and most of it was spent by myself on planes, in cars, at shows, in hotels or at work. What does that say about me....I don't know exactly yet but I'm still loving my career, loving my freedom and loving my next chance to ask that great question:


Set List from Minneapolis Show for Keane

Hear the Encore in Minny below!

Monday, July 12, 2010

A Quick Thought On Golf

The thing I have always loved about the game of golf is that its principles extend way beyond the course or the country club.

America took the game and made it “exclusive” by creating the country club atmosphere, the polo brand, and high priced courseside houses, but I think the game has always been about learning life’s lessons. There is nothing exclusive about that at all. We all can learn something from the game.

It’s the only contest where you get to police yourself. Nobody to argue with, in or out, it’s your call. People say you play golf the way you live your life and I think that’s pretty accurate.

For me, I play golf with a love for the competition but have to fight the urge to cut corners and stay focused on each individual shot. When I get caught up in the bigger picture, like my score, I struggle and normally implode. I can be easily distracted and make mistakes if I start to play too quickly. 

My behavior in life is very similar.

So when I had surgery on my shoulder and I thought my golf career was over, I suddenly felt like I had lost something that had been a part of me since I was 11 years old.

I taught myself how to play the game by sneaking onto the Andover Country Club course at dusk on summer nights when nobody was out playing it. My friend Mike and I would get 3 or 4 holes in and then we’d putt until we couldn’t see our hands in front of our faces.

As the summer grew on, we would get braver and braver as to how early we’d go out to play. By the end of the season, we would be nuts enough to sneak between groups and play nearly a full 9 holes. Needless to say, we got chased off the course more than once.

Golf has taught me another life lesson just recently however, as I’m back to playing the game again. 18 months removed from surgery, I simply cannot swing the club as hard as I used to be able to and it’s difficult to accept that fact. I was the guy who could step up to the tee and drive the ball 300 yards straight down the middle.

I thought about this new lesson as I drove from the course this morning after shooting a 41 on a Par 35 for nine holes.

Driving the ball is a guy’s ego in full affect, a dick-measuring contest that we don’t really talk about much but it’s the reason why Drivers are $300 and a putter is $100. I’m a decent golfer but the one thing I could do was hit the ball a long ways. It was fun to see the reaction of people when I hit a drive. I’m not that big of a guy but I could really get into a golf ball. 

Not anymore.

Surgery has robbed me of the ability to swing hard and go after the ball with the force I used to uncork. I was angry for a while until I learned to accept my limitations and play within myself. I have to hit a 4 iron from 190 yards now.

Smooth swing. Slow back, controlled on impact. Proper finish.

The result – I’m probably a better golfer now than I was before the surgery and I’m not as wild off the tee as I was before. I’m not swinging “for the fences” if you will and instead just trying to put the ball where it needs to be put.

The lesson – learn what you can do well and do it to the best of your ability. Don’t worry about the showmanship and ego side of things, as all they will do is get you hurt. Be smart about yourself and know what you are capable of doing.  

It’s not the beginning that matters, it’s the end result. Golf, once again, teaching tools that can help you in life. 

Friday, June 25, 2010

Who Do You Want To Be?


Is anybody out there?
It feels like I’m talking to myself
No one seems to know my struggle
And everything I’ve come from
Can anybody hear me?
I guess I keep talking to myself
It feels like I’m going insane
Am I the one who’s crazy?

-Eminem “Talking To Myself featuring Kobe

And with that moving chorus, Eminem’s new album Recovery explains the running theme of his latest album that hit stores this week and now has my mind spinning about this journey I’ve been on for past 11 years since I left home.  

I’ve often wondered why white kids like myself have fallen for the rapper from Detroit's talents and have bought his albums for years. There are other artists who put out similar sounding tracks without us paying them any mind. In my opinion, I think it’s because Em has the ability to connect with something most white males have inside of them - a desire to have our feelings of struggle understood by someone without the warm and fuzzy feminizing of the emotion.

Em said it is “cause he looks like us”, which is probably very true, but his lyrics are different than most rappers. His storytelling allows fans to see a deeper meaning and draws from experiences that many of us white bread suburban kids can easily relate to because of our own childhood memories. 

I just came back from a five-day stay in Boston with my family, which probably should be called my second family. My first family was as dysfunctional as any rap song that Em could put out. More on that in a second, but I grew up with a crystal clear understanding of the burden that my existence put on my parents. That caused a lot of anger in me growing up in the upper middle class, white town of Andover, MA.

Mercedes in my hometown are as common as Nissans in others but I lived in nothing but apartments well into my teenage years. My mom’s second family started while I was in middle school and turned into a happy marriage of nearly 20 years with three great kids who are 17, 15, and 10 and a house at the end of a cull de sac. My story has had a very happy ending.

And that’s where artists like Eminem bond with people like me. After the storm, you want to reflect on what the hell happened to you before you knew who you were.  

It’s amazing how your first 12 years of life can be such a source of pain and anger for your adult years. Like a blistering sunburn on my memory, my youth taught me a lot about how tough life can be if you make poor choices early on. I’ve vowed to be different and smarter than the people who gave me the chance to exist.

My parents knew each other for a grand total of 6 weeks before they got pregnant with me in the summer of 1976. I’ve lived with that knowledge my whole childhood. There was no courting or falling in love story to tell at the dinner table and I used to think it was something to be kinda proud of.


I guess the reason was because my mother’s best friend got pregnant at the same time and had an abortion. My mom had me. I have no idea what my father wanted to do but I’ve always suspected that he wanted my mother to do what her friend did and relieve him of the 18-year commitment that he would never fully take responsibility for (even though he did have a second child with my mom – my 30-year-old brother). My father required that my brother and I call my mom and dad by their given names – Mark and Donna. It screws with a kid’s mind I can tell you that.

I’m not writing this on a blog to make people feel bad for me but I feel like there are a lot of kids out there (one of my brothers) that are going through some tough issues and need to know that they can do whatever they want to do in the world. A lot of the kids that buy Eminem records have a dream of being more than the names your dad used to call you at the dinner table while drunk.

So let me say this; you are alive and since you are alive, why not carve out a slice of life for yourself the world will remember you for?

There are many sad stories I could tell about my father and mother during those first 12 years of my life. Plates being thrown like Frisbees at my mom’s head, cops dragging my father down flights of steps leaving a trail of blood all the way to backseat of the cruiser, drunken fights between my body and his fists, or as I later learned, illegal acts that should have put my father in jail for what he did to us.

I can’t rap about what happened but I can share my experiences with others to tell them that they aren’t alone if they are struggling to get through the dark tunnel. I’m evidence that there is a light at the end if you are willing to push through.

The black clouds of those times have been a part of me as much as the hair on my head and I will admit that I was looking for a way out of it all when I walked into WMUA’s studios on the campus of UMass in 2000. I needed to find a way to experience the world in my own way and radio provided that for me. I never traveled as a child. No family vacations or trips to see colleges. We were luckly to be able to keep the car running and pay the rent.

I wanted a lot more out of my life and I was determined to get it for myself.  

If you believe that everything happens for a reason than you will see a clear line from my job in Virginia falling apart after little over a year to getting hired in Alabama in 2002 a few months later.

Moving to the Deep South felt like I was as far away from Andover as I could get but it was the equivalent of enrolling in radio boot camp. The same man who educated Sean Hannity taught me the talk game everyday in a variety of confusing ways. It was like being on Dagobah with Yoda for 4 years with the lessons and riddles he challenged me with every morning before sun came up. It gave me the tools to go forward in this business and the belief that I was born to do this. Some don’t understand how much I study talk radio but it’s the most important thing in my life outside of my family and friends.

I was born to be a talk show host and I learned that while in Alabama, working for a man I never thought I would ever get along with, let alone owe my career to.  

So if you are going to pick up Eminem’s new CD and a song like “Not Afraid” speaks to you – do something with that feeling. Dream. Ask the best question ever invented – why? Why am I here? What can I do while I have air in my lungs? And who do I want to be before they throw dirt on me? Who can I help? Where should I be?  What was I born to do?

Don’t be afraid to do something unconventional. Don’t be afraid to listen to your heart and follow it, no matter where it leads you. There is no wrong answer in life if you listen to your heart. It’s what you were meant to be and people who really love you will understand that fact.  

Like Em said during the song “Lose Yourself”:

“Look, if you had, one shot, one opportunity, to seize everything you ever wanted, would you capture it? Or just let it slip?

You only get one shot. Do not miss your chance to blow. This opportunity only comes once in a lifetime. You better lose yourself in the moment”

There is no better time than today to get after it.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Year 1 in Des Moines

What a first year.

I think you are officially considered an adult when you begin to talk about your life in terms of years. 

I'm now 33 but I don't like to admit that I'm a grown up. 

Remember in high school, when you were dating someone for three months, that was a long time. In college, if you had two semesters of school left, you thought that was forever.

Now, I say things like “this year I want to” and “for the last year”. 

On April 30, 2009, I moved my career to Des Moines, Iowa adding another stop on this crazy train ride (to go with Nashua, Charlottesville, Huntsville, and Omaha). Just another town that I never thought I would call home when I graduated high school in 1995. 

However, I feel like I've found a perfect spot here in Iowa.

I can honestly say that moving here has been the most amazing, perfect, and fortunate break of my career. I’ve been interviewing and applying for large market jobs for the better part of 8 years but little did I know that the break of my career would come after being let go from a job that I truly loved.

In February of 2009, I was nearly positive that I was moving to Seattle. One of my bosses at Big Sports 590 was helping in the hiring process and all but told me that I was going to be hired in the Emerald City. It was big because I had been told that my contract was not going to be renewed due to budget cuts in December of 2008. 

I have been close for numerous large market jobs over the years, but that one stung for a while because of how the courtship ended.

The morning before I was supposed to fly to Seattle to meet the executives to close the deal in all likelihood…. it fell through. They were hiring another early 30’s, Boston born talk show host from within their affiliation group.  

It crushed me.

My contract was over at the end of March in Omaha and my plan was to move to back to Boston. That’s when Ken Miller called to ask me if I would ever consider coming to KXnO to be his co-host.

I didn’t know at the time that it would be the most important phone call of my career so far.

In some ways, I can now relate to Greg McDermott’s run at Iowa State. You need a support system around you to be successful in anything in life, radio included. Sometimes, it’s not the right fit and sometimes you are the victim of bad breaks. 

The KXnO interview process was easy but I still can’t believe that I was up for a job against Trev Alberts in talk radio. He eventually took the job as Athletic Director of UNO, a smart move considering he is making around $100K more than he would have in Des Moines as a talk show host.

His decision allowed me to move two hours east and into an awesome opportunity.

Everything happens for a reason right? I think KXnO did for me because I’ve grown so much since I moved here.  

Sure, the first year has been bumpy at times, getting used to a new audience, new teams, new show but for the most part, I think it’s been a successful transition. 

I finally work for a “real” radio station who values talent. 

In just the first year of “Matt and Miller”, we’ve covered Media days, Bowl games, NCAA tournament runs, the NFL draft, and the Kentucky Derby. Tell me another sports radio station outside the top 75 markets that can claim that?

And I’m learning more and more about sports careers and how fluid sports can be at every turn.  

Dana Altman leaving for Oregon was a sad moment for me. I found out via text from Jeff Goodman of Fox Sports while I was on a train from New York to Boston. Brian Fish, one of his assistant coaches, was someone I considered a friend beyond the basketball court. 

But I understood why he was going. It was his shot and his time to take it.  

And maybe one day, I’ll get my big shot….but until then, I could not be happier with how my career has turned out so far. 

I’m now running a website that has completely changed the way I look at sports media coverage. I work for a General Manager who I can sit and talk radio with for hours. And I’m learning more and more every day and get up with thirst for becoming a better host. 

What else could a guy who is in love with talk radio ask for? I'm pretty lucky.  

Monday, April 19, 2010

Ani DiFranco - Omaha April 18, 2010 The Slowdown

If you were to draw up THE set list that most Ani DiFranco fans would kill to hear, I think Omaha's stop on this current tour would be pretty darn close to what it would look like.

The night before in Des Moines, the show was sleepy and very current as the theatre audience allowed Ani to play slower tracks that honestly were difficult to digest on a Saturday night.

The next night however, Ani ripped into her version of what could be called a "greatest hits show" if she ever wanted to do one.

Talk about a different show from one night to the next!

Classic songs exploded into my ears from the first Ani album I ever bought - Dilate which shot me back to walking the UMass campus with Untouchable Face blaring on my headphones. Amazing tracks from Little Plastic Castle including Swan Dive (my favorite DiFranco song and a huge source of inspiration for my radio career) and Red Letter Year's incredibly political Alla This filled the 90 minute set list.

She played Grey32 Flavors, Fuel, and Napoleon!

The show was so good that I actually reverted back to being 19 again and asked for the set list from the sound old trick that I used to pull out for only the biggest of shows.

It was simply an amazing night. If you love Ani DiFranco, that set list should make you just say "WOW!"

2 Shows in 2 nights that could not have been more different but so much fun. Just another reason why Ani DiFranco is my favorite female artist ever.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Ani DiFranco - Des Moines April 17, 2010 Hoyt Sherman Theatre

I'm not a concert reviewer and I'm completely biased when it comes to Ani so don't read this if you want me to get all critical on you.

The song Swan Dive has been used by me as inspiration for my career and the things that I've done over the past 12 years and I believe I owe a lot of determination to her story.

So when I sit down to talk about a show that I saw last night in Des Moines, I will instead just tell you what I thought about it, give you the set list and look forward to seeing Ani in Omaha tonight!

Ani, over the past 5 years or so, has become a 90 minute act nearly to the minute. Her concerts are shockingly punctual which is understandable given that she has been on tour for nearly 2 decades now.

At 9 pm - you will see Ani hit the stage and 90 minutes and 2 encore songs later - she will depart. Die-hard fans understand this and have grown accustomed to it but some feel like for an artist with nearly 300 songs recorded, she should play longer.

I don't really care either way - I just want to see her play.

Last night, I sat with two of my friends who were seeing Ani for the first and second time. I felt a little bad for them because the set list last night was not for the casual fan and it looks like that has been the case over the past few shows. DiFranco is playing very current songs - mostly off her Reprieve, Knuckle Down, and Red Letter Year albums. She did go back and play a few of her popular older stuff but this set this was very political and very current.

Maybe it was because she was in Des Moines for the first time in a while and wanted to talk more about the issues of the day surrounding the election of Obama, the Tea-baggers of the 15th, or her new found love of parenting, but it was one of the most unique Ani shows I've ever seen.

I'm not saying, as the lyric goes, "They taught me different was wrong" however. I've seen Ani since 1995 play live, so many times that I've lost count (somewhere around 15 or so) but last night was one that I will remember for sure because of how different it was .

Set List (Best of my memory, sorry if I get something wrong):
78% H2O
Lag Time
Red Letter Year
November 5, 2008
Which Side Are You On
***Didn't know it*** Left to say?
The Atom
Both Hands


Monday, April 12, 2010

It's Ani Week!!!

Ani Difranco is coming to Des Moines on Saturday and Omaha on Sunday. She is, by far, my favorite female artist. I've seen her more times than I can count - around 15. I was 18 when I first came across her music....14 years and every CD later....I can't wait to see her in the city I'm living in!!

To get you ready, here's an NPR Ani Show:

Sunday, April 4, 2010

A Song For Turning 33...

Today's my birthday. As my mother told me today when she called me this Easter Sunday - the day we remember the resurrection of Christ, that Jesus died when he turned 33. Today, I turned 33 on Easter. I have no idea what she was getting at with that but she thought it was interesting. 

I heard this song today and thought it reminded of my life. Death Cab For Cutie's I Was Once a Loyal Lover

WIll I have learned so very little
When these bones are old and brittle?
I wait to talk when I should listen
And cloud mistakes with false revisions

All my friends are forward-thinking
Getting hitched and quitting drinking
And I can feel them pulling away
As I'm resigned to stay the same

And you can't even begin to know
How many times I've told myself "I told you so"

I was once a loyal lover
Whose lips did never seek another's
But now each love's more like a match
A blinding spark that burns out fast

And they all conclude with the same sentence:
"I've never met someone more self-centered
Who thinks that life with a nice girl's like
Waiting for a bus to work"

And you can't even begin to know
How many times I've told myself "I told you so"
And you can't even begin to believe
There's so many bridges engulfed in flames behind me

If you deem it so
Just cut the cord and go
You'll be fine
There's plenty of hills to climb

You can't even begin to know
How many times I've told myself "I told you so"
And you can't even begin to believe
There's so many bridges engulfed in flames behind me

Friday, March 12, 2010

Since 1999....

This quotes sums up my life since I left my mother holding my 1 month old sister in her arms on the front lawn in Andover, Ma. as I drove out of site:

"They take pictures of mountain climbers at the top of the mountain.  
They are smiling, ecstatic, triumphant. They don’t take pictures along the way cause who wants to remember the rest of it? We push ourselves because we have to, not because we like it. The relentless climb. The pain and anguish of taking it to the next level. 
Nobody takes pictures of that. Nobody wants to remember. You just wanna to remember the view from the top. The breathtaking moment at the end of the world. That’s what keeps us climbing. And it’s worth the pain – that’s the crazy part. It's worth anything " - Grey's  

I'm hard wired for Radio. Don't know why....but I am.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

If I Picked the Best Picture Oscar....

Out of the gate, I have to admit that I only saw 8 of the 10 nominations for best picture this year but seriously - 10 different movies? That's ridiculous. Still, here is how I would have ranked the 8 movies that were nominated this year for Best Picture.

This excluding "Precious" and "A Serious Man" and I apologize to you if you loved those films. I can't see that many movies! :)

8. District 9 - I saw this movie most recently and was impressed by Peter Jackson's political spin on an alien movie. It was really wild to see the special effects and an interesting look into human behavior. I don't like horror flicks and this isn't one. This is major-league Sci-Fi.

7. Inglourious Bastards - If this movie was a true story, I would have liked it much better. I couldn't help but remember that it wasn't a true story while I was watching it and thus, I was pulled out of the fictional world. Brad Pitt was ok in this - not his best role. It got a little nutty at times. Not Quentin's best work but worth seeing.

6. Avatar - This was a visual explosion of color. The 3-D film is the highest grossing movie ever for a reason. It was a wild, wild ride. However, the story line wasn't amazing and the acting was ok. It was a good movie but not an amazing movie. Must see in 3-D however...but you probably did.

5. The Blind Side - I read the book so I was really excited to see the film. I have to say, Sandra Bullock was AMAZING. She deserved the best actress award. She is from Alabama so I think she was the perfect fit for the role of the southern belle mom. Hell, that's her!

4. UP - This movie was just so sweet and deep at the same time. I took my 10-year old sister to see it and I thought it was such a wonderful message about never being too old to go on an adventure. One of my favorite Pixar movies of all time. Great family film. Buy this movie, seriously.

3. Up In The Air - George Clooney was outstanding in this film. At times I felt like I was watching a movie that was based on the places I've lived! Des Moines, Omaha, Alabama, Wichita, etc...all played a big part in this "flying" movie. I related this to movie's theme of movement and asking larger life questions as you get older.

2. The Hurt Locker - I know this movie won the Oscar and I have no problem with it. It was a gritty, real, and moving film. Visually amazing and wonderfully directed. It deserved all the awards that it won...but I have it as number 2. War movies are cool but I'm never huge into them.

1. An Education - I'm probably in the minority here but I fell for this tale of love, lies, and dreaming in England. It was really, really well done and the perfect length. The acting was wonderful (best overall), the accents which were really fun (great retro outfits too) and the trip back to a time that we all remember as teenagers did what a movie is suppose to do - make you think. This movie was my favorite of the year.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Greatest QB of All Time

I caused a stir on my radio show on 1460 KXnO in Des Moines the day after the Super Bowl by saying that I didn’t think Peyton Manning was a Top 5 QB all time.  And I still don’t.

During the show, I mentioned that I didn’t have the list set in my head but I had Manning in the Top 10 All Time but I didn’t get how in the world people thought that Manning, with a career playoff record of 9-9, was on his way to being the best to ever play the position.

Now, Manning does a ton for his team and has more freedom than any other QB in the league but that doesn’t make him the best ever when you break it down.

Jason Whitlock wrote about this today and he doesn’t have Manning in the Top 5 either.

So here’s my Top 10 after thinking about this for a few days. My criteria are based on these factors:

  1. Championships. This why we play and it should carry the most weight.
  2. Records and Numbers: What did you accomplish while playing
  3. Come from behind wins in big moments: did you have a “moment”? What did you do when all the chips were down and you had the ball in your hands. 
  4. Surrounding Cast – who was around you when you won.
  5. If you had 1 game to win, who would you pick to be your QB?
 10. Troy Aikman: 61.5% completions. Nearly 33,000 passing yards. 6x Pro Bowler. 3x Super Bowl Champion. Pro Football and College Football Hall of Famer. Super Bowl 28 MVP.

Aikman was surrounded by OUTSTANDING talent in Dallas. The Cowboys were built to be dominant and they were while Aikman was their QB. Facts are facts for me though - the guy won. 

9.   Peyton Manning: 64.8% completions. 50,128 passing yards. 10x Pro Bowler. 1 Super Bowl Championship. 4x NFL MVP.  

For all the records and numbers that Manning has, he is just 9-9 in the playoffs and threw a costly interception that was returned for a TD in Super Bowl 44 that led to another playoff defeat - this time in the biggest game. That playoff record is huge for me. Manning is great, there is no question, but there are others who are better in the playoffs. He is tied for 2nd with 34 come from behind 4th Qtr regular season wins which puts him above Aikman.    

8.   Dan Marino: 59.4% completions. 61,381 passing yards. 9x Pro Bowler. 1984 MVP. Pro and College Football Hall of Famer.

Marino is hurt big time by the one lacking thing on his resume – Championships. He only played in 1 Super Bowl – a loss. To me that’s huge but he goes on the list because of outstanding numbers and he’s number 1 with 36 4th Qtr come from behind wins.

7.   Brett Favre: 62% completions. 69,329 passing yards. 11x Pro Bowler. 3x NFL MVP. 1 Super Bowl Championship.

Favre has played in a record 309 consecutive games. He is the toughest player ever to play the position. Favre is the only quarterback to have led a team to victory over all thirty-two teams in the league since the NFL first expanded to 32 franchises in 2002. If the game is on the line, Brett Favre can win it or lose for you with one throw but you want the ball in his hands regardless.

6.   Steve Young: Highest QB rating ever for a career of 96.8. 7x Pro Bowler. 2x NFL MVP. 43 rushing TDs. 3x Super Bowl Champion. Pro and College Football Hall of Famer. Super Bowl 29 MVP

I need to thank Jason Whitlock for pointing out Steve Young’s career because I really forget it all the time. Young was the first QB that showed you could run and throw at the position and win a Championship doing it. He lost some years due to the USFL and waiting his turn in San Fran but he was awesome once he got his chance.

5.  Terry Bradshaw: 27,989 Passing Yards. 3x Pro Bowler. 4x Super Bowl Champion. 1978 NFL MVP. Pro and College Football Hall of Famer. 2x Super Bowl MVP.  

Bradshaw won. Period. That’s the reason he’s this high to me and it wasn’t just cause of the running game and defense. He also had a stellar career passing the football.  

4.  Johnny Unitas: 54.6% Completion 40,239 passing yards. 1970 Super Bowl Champion. 2x NFL Champion. 10x Pro Bowl Selection. 3x NFL MVP. Pro Football Hall of Famer

I’m too young to say I’ve seen Johnny U play but he revolutionized the position. He showed coaches you could throw the ball down the field to win football games. His record of throwing a touchdown pass in 47 consecutive games (between 1956-1960) remains unsurpassed. Unitas is tied for 2nd with 34 come from behind wins in the 4th Qtr.  

3.  Tom Brady: 93.3 QB rating, 30,844 passing yards. 5x Pro Bowler. 2007 NFL MVP. 3x Super Bowl Champion. 2x Super Bowl MVP. 2009 Comeback Player of Year.

Brady goes this high to me because of the 2 things I want from my QB – I want a winner and I want someone who can lead me to a victory on a final drive of game. Brady did this against St. Louis and Carolina in the Super Bowl and against Oakland in the playoffs. When the game is on the line, you don’t want Brady to have one more shot at you. Brady has a 3-1 record in the Super Bowl. The only loss coming after his defense let him down following a great drive to put his team ahead late against the Giants. I have said this before – Brady is one SB win away for him to have a serious shot at the No.1 spot to me.

2. John Elway: 51,475 passing yards. 9x Pro Bowler. 1987 MVP. Super Bowl 33 MVP. 33 Rushing TDs. Pro Football Hall of Famer.

Elway led Denver to 34 comeback wins in the 4th quarter and overtime.  “The Drive” against Cleveland was incredibly influential on my life as a sports fan. A 15 play, 98 yard drive during the AFC Championship game to send the game to OT where Denver won will be remembered as an EPIC moment for me. Elway is No. 2 because of his 2-3 record in the Super Bowl.  Canon arm and great escapability - he could hurt in so many ways.

1. Joe Montana: 40, 551 passing yards. 8x Pro Bowler. 4x Super Bowl Champion. 3x Super Bowl MVP. 2x NFL MVP. 1986 Comeback Player of Year.   

“The Catch” against the Cowboys in 1982 and the game winning drive against the Bengals in Super Bowl 23 are just some of the amazing moments of Montana’s career. Joe threw 45 post seasons TD’s – the most ever. In the Super Bowl, Montana threw 11 Tds to 0 interceptions and never lost. Only player to be MVP of the Super Bowl 3x.  


Monday, February 8, 2010

Why Do Some Like Their Leaders Average?

Something has been eating at me for the past few years and I’m angry enough to write about it publicly tonight.

As a sports talk show host – what the hell do I know about politics right? Well, I take them quite seriously as my father has been involved in them for my whole life. I debate for a living so politics are a natural for me.

I should thank Sarah Palin for the crystallization of my thoughts on this topic cause I now know what I want to ask of my country…..and I’m serious here but:

Why do some people want to elect leaders that they think are exactly the same as them?

Maybe a better way to ask it is why are some so insecure in this country that they can not stand to think that someone else is smarter, better prepared, or better suited to lead our country? The “average” person in this country is a wonderful thing, but I don’t want “average” running the greatest nation on earth. I want "elite". 

I watched a large part of Sarah Palin’s speech at the “Tea Party” convention in Nashville this weekend and was astounded at the boorish nature of her accusations.  Her wanna-be folky talk was insulting at best, dishonest at worst. All anger and bashing, no recommendations on how to fix our country.

Speaking to people who paid $600 to listen to her speak so she could get a $100k speaking fee which she says will be put back into the “Tea Party” isn’t exactly going on 60 Minutes. No tough questions coming.

Palin's other outlet for nonsense speak is Fox News - the now media wing for radical conservatives like Palin, Beck, and Hannity.  It’s time for us "liberal elites" to start name-calling back. These "American" people are "radicals" who hide behind the American flag because they think they are more “American” than me. American by their own definition of course. If I'm a "liberal" - Fox followers are "radicals" who enjoyed watching the last 8 horrendous years cause we had someone to go blow up. 

These "radicals" love the label of “elite” too. It always seems to get a round of applause with a certain segment of middle aged, white Americans who they recruit. You know who I’m talking about - the ones who elected George W. Bush to two terms because they felt like he was going to lead our country into a time warp so Ronald Reagan could climb out of the grave to read us all bedtime stories.

Then after 911, these same white Americans felt like the “Cowboy” was the safer pick for our highest office cause they felt like they could have a beer with him. Don't get me started on 2000 but 2004 was just as bad in my book.  

And now we have Sarah Palin.

A former governor of a tiny population state who quit before the ethics scandal exploded in her face. The women who said she wanted to sell the state plane on EBay but actually used it to fly her daughter around the country on the taxpayer dime. It gets better now as the Governor’s husband was involved in major state decisions as well according to released emails.   

I was very scared when George W. Bush was elected for another term in 2004. I vividly remember thinking that in 2008, we were all going to look back and ask, “How the F did we let that happen?”

And we did and still wonder it today in 2010. Look how much damage we are still cleaning up. I’m not going to argue about Obama here, he’s made plenty of mistakes in year one – but the guy really was handed a bag of crap from day 1.    

But back to the point of this - when someone as dim as Sarah Palin said that Obama is like a law professor lecturing the country, all I could think of was: So what!? That makes him a bad President or leader? Because he wants to educate the public on an argument by using facts rather than scaring people with inaccurate threats?

Girlfriend - you had to write NOTES ON YOUR HAND and you are saying that the President can’t talk without a telepromter? Did you miss the two live Q and A sessions he did with lawmakers? At least he didn’t know what questions were coming like you do in your “interviews”.

Are some so insecure in this nation that we can’t listen to someone who might be smarter than us? Excuse me, but I want my President to be smarter than me. I want my President to know more than me. I want my President to more stable than me in the face of the crazy world.  

I truly believe that Obama is one of the top minds in our nation at the moment. The guy is so calm, so cool under fire that I think people are afraid of him because of it. They are afraid of a guy, who happens to be black, who appears so confident. They think it’s fake.

So they fall for a true fake like Sarah Palin. Someone who claims “What do you read?” is a “Gotcha” question from the media. Someone who writes down talking points on her hand like a fifth grader cheating on a math test. Someone who hides behind Facebook to control her message and is only concerned for “her brand”.

Sarah Palin is not very bright. She’s cunning and maniacal, motivated by her own personal gain rather than this country. She can’t even keep her arguments straight when she draws a line in the sand like she did with the “F’ing Retard” controversy. 

I’m a successful, middle class white male. I’m the demo that Obama has struggled with recently but I have always been 100% behind him from the first time I heard him speak about his ideas. But that’s me…. what scares me are the people that think Sarah Palin should or even could be President.

If someone can tell me one thing that she has done that has looked “presidential” in her time since she was plucked from obscurity – please share. John McCain chose her because she was in the right place at the right time, not because she was the right pick for our country.  We should always remember that. We would never have heard of her without that monumental mistake.

Obama was a Senator and CHOSE to run for the highest office. He was vetted. This Right Wing creation - she is a nightmare of epic incompetence. 

I really hope one day I figure out why people want their leaders to be on the same level as they are but then again – this is America. We haven’t always been right in the way we do business.

According to the Fox News "radicals" - that statement means I'm a traitor. 

Top 5 Sports Montage Songs

So I wanted to link sports and music for my next entry on here.

Every week, I come into the office and go to a website that lists all of the play-by-play calls from the weekend past. Fox Sports produces them which allows me to quickly go through all the best moments – the buzzer beaters, the upset specials, the great screams from the press box - to find the calls that people will remember.

It’s a lot of fun and let's me be creative with my two passions mixed together. It takes about 2 hours to do it but luckily, I have the time in the day before the show to get it done. 

The key is though, to find the right music to match the calls that came out of the past 2 days. I've got over 6,000 songs in my IPod but you have to look for the one that captures the moment. You can't put any song on there because this is how "Matt and Miller" open the show.

A bad song can start us off on the wrong foot.

Sometimes, it’s really easy like using this song for baseball season for a Cub win.

or for a Super Bowl win by the Saints

Here are my favorite 5 songs to use for sports montages.

5.  Eye Of The Tiger: I still remember running with my walkman on growing up to this song. It was easily the best pump up song of my childhood. All I needed was a meat locker to punch things in the freezing cold and I'd would have had the Rocky run down pat.  Amazing how this song has lasted.

4. Centerfield: Any baseball summer time montage works great with this track. It's a classic

3. Sandstorm: Most, including me, have never heard of the band Darude but this song has been played in arenas for several years. It's great for basketball opens that happen throughout the winter.

2. Sirius:  To be always known as the song that Michael Jordan and the Bulls came out to - Allan Parson's song is easily one of the most used songs ever but still so good.

1.  Requiem For A Tower: This one allows me to link all 3 of my favorite things - Music, Movies, and Sports. Requiem for a Dream was simply a brillant movie by director Darren Aronofsky. Jennifer Connelly's character was haunting and memorable but the music of Clint Mansell moved me. It later would be a large part of the Lord of Rings movies - that's probably why you know it but for dramatic affect and building anticipation, this song does it the best.

What do you think? Agree?

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Finding An Old Album New

Thirty-three years go by
And not once do you come home
To find a man sitting in your bedroom
That is
A man you don't know
Who came a long way to deliver one very specific message:
Lock your back door, you idiot
However invincible you imagine yourself to be
You are wrong - Ani Difranco Parameters 
My musical tastes are quite funny to me. I still don't understand them even after 2 decades of obsession and my behavior is not predictable at all. Often times, the albums that sit un-listened to by my favorite artists because my ear turned against them become, later in life, incredibly important.

Maybe it's cause Ani Difranco is coming to the area in the coming weeks or maybe I'm just ready to hear this particular album but Knuckle Down is now on constant rotation on my IPod after sitting cold for five years. 2005 is when I bought the album....played it three times and buried it away. For the 2000's, the only Ani release that got played consistently was the double album Revelling/Reckoning that came out in 2001.

Now, though....this album finally grabbed me.  

It's the exact same thing that happened with Achtung Baby by U2 when I was in High School. I literally hated the album for a year before I was ready to "hear" it. It was so different and such a change from what I was used to hearing from my favorite band that I rejected it. Now, it's one of the most important albums in my collection.

I don't know why Knuckle Down hits me now. Maybe it's because Ani was 33 when she put it out and I am about to turn that in April or maybe it's because I've listened to her since I was 18 and I feel a connection to her dream of achieving something bigger than just a house, 2 kids, and Christmas card.

But as the poem reads above, maybe it's because I realized now that I'm not invisible. That life is fragile and fleeting and all the waiting and wondering you do in your 20's can lead to a moment where a decision is necessary to be made about the rest of your life.

Strange place to be but Ani was always like that for me. Walking just slightly ahead of me, pointing out the scenery along the side of the road.

Here's the poem in full:

Monday, February 1, 2010

I don't know but....

This song has been in my head all day....Ani in DSM and Omaha in April!

Come home and my guitar
Has nothin to say to me
I recoil from all my friends
And then I'm in misery
Been so long since I've been held
Really since I was his
Probably just need to be held
That's probably all it is

Course, then I think of my dad
Who time travels mostly now
Back to when he was free
And holding out hope somehow
Who sits all day in a line
Of wheelchairs against a wall
Inventing ways to play out time
Like us all
Like us all

To all the people out there tonight
Who are comforting themselves
If you should happen to see my light
You can stop and ring my bell
I'm just sittin here in this sty
Strewn with half written songs
Taking one breath at a time
Nothin much going on
Nothin much going on

Little flashing zero
On my answering machine
Rats scratching at my brain
Brain shuffling its feet
Yes I have my father's heart
It may or may not keep on trying
Can't really tell you what it is
Keeps me this side of that dark line

But I'm not there to take care of him
And I'm not here to take care of me
I'm going outside to watch the house burn down
Across the street
I'm going outside to watch the house burn down
Across the street

To all the people out there tonight
Who are comforting themselves
If you should happen to see my light
You can stop and ring my bell
I'm just sitting here in this sty
Strewn with half written songs
Taking one breath at a time
Nothin much going on
Nothin much going on

Sunday, January 31, 2010

For Grammy Night

Just a track that everyone should hear. I met Sara a few years ago....she is going to be huge in the coming years. Extremely talented....I'll have more to say after the show tomorrow.

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Weekend Tunes: George Winston

I'm going to start a series of musical selections every weekend off this blog.

Music has meant so much to me but one of the things I love to do with music is to share the artists that I truly love. The first - pianist George Winston.  Here's a quick description of his talents.

His melodic impressionistic style comprises much of his recorded output, choosing to record albums with specific themes and it is this genre, a cross between the range of traditional American folk music and the instrumental pop/R&B that he grew up with, that he calls rural folk piano. George also plays in two other styles that he has studied for many years, the earlier-mentioned stride and rhythm and blues piano.

If you want to know more about George, here is his Wikipedia Page.

I came across Winston when I was 11 years old. My mother was about to get remarried and she was looking for wedding songs to walk down the aisle to.  My step dad brought home an album called "December" and put on a song called Variations on the Kanon by Pachelbel. They loved the song and chose it for their wedding the next summer.

It was in late fall/early winter when his notes first awoke something inside of me. It moved me. I remember that I took the tape of the album as soon as it was lying around, slapped it in my walkman, and listened to it for hours. I had never heard piano music played with such emotion. I literally have cried listening to that album for years since. It was the only lyric-less music that I enjoyed as a teenager.

Over the years, I've lost the album either in moves or people borrowing it and not returning it. I can honestly say I've purchased "December" on either tape of CD around 10 times. Thank god for IPods now and MP3s. Won't have to worry about that anymore.

If you haven't heard Variations it is:

Christmas and George Winston are synonymous for me. Every year, I drive around, in what ever town I'm living in, listening to the entire album to check out the lights and festivities. "December" is one of the 10 most influential albums in my life. There are just so many memories attached to it.

It wasn't until I was in my mid 20's that I was informed that Variations was not unique to my mother and step-father's wedding. I was laughed at for believing that they were unique in that song's selection. Turns out, it's a rather popular track for weddings. It was good for a laugh for many days afterwards at my expense. It's ok though, it's still special to me and my family.

However, it didn't decrease my attachment to George's music once I learned of the popularity of the track. I've seen over 500 concerts in my life but I've never seen Winston perform. I really hope one day I get to see him play in person before he hangs it up. My Brother and Sister-in-Law bought me his box set this year for Christmas which is simply amazing.

Once again, Winston is associated with December 25th for me.  I'm now addicted to the album "Plains". Not surprising, that's where I currently live.

So here's another track that I love by George. I hope you find him as wonderful as I do.

Friday, January 29, 2010

Obama Is On Fii-YAAAAhhh

On the same day that President Obama went on live TV to take question from Republicans for the first time in history, the sports world learned that the President might do something about the most unfair crowning of a sports championship in our country as well.

Now before you roll your eyes and tell me that it’s not the governments job to get involved with the NCAA and college football, read the following from this article that came out tonight. The Fiesta Bowl might have been the last straw for certain members of Congress:

In the letter to Sen. Orrin Hatch, obtained by The Associated Press, Assistant Attorney General Ronald Weich wrote that the Justice Department is reviewing Hatch's request and other materials to determine whether to open an investigation into whether the BCS violates antitrust laws.

"Importantly, and in addition, the administration also is exploring other options that might be available to address concerns with the college football postseason," Weich wrote, including asking the Federal Trade Commission to review the legality of the BCS under consumer protection laws.

Consumers aka the sports fan is getting ripped off by the BCS, in my opinion. It's not fair that the money is kept for just the big boys and the teams are not equally allowed to get into the fight for a championship. They are robbing us, as fans, and we know it's wrong. 

It’s like steroids in baseball. Looking back on it – we all knew it was going on but we just went along for the ride until we were given the chance to stop the madness.

It's time to stop the madness with the way we crown a champion in college football!

Why do we accept that the most profitable collegiate sporting contest is run in a way unlike any other in the entire world? No one uses computers and sports writers to decide who gets to play for a champion. It’s stupid and we know it.

I love the angle to go after the BCS. Instead of saying it’s unfair, say it’s illegal. Find laws that it breaks and use that to make the change. When Al Capone went down, it was for tax evasion, not murder. Everyone knew he was a killer, but he went to the slammer for what they could prove. 

If government can prove the BCS is illegal – I’m 100% behind it and I'm behind the investigation.  However we kill the BCS, I’m on board.