The Paul Sanwald Quartet

My brother-in-law Paul Sanwald is an amazing musician and composer. His new album, The Paul Sanwald Quartet, has a great jazz vibe that’s equal parts melodic and rhythmic. Give it a listen below. If you like it, buy it as a download or on Vinyl. And if you’re in San Francisco, pick up a copy of the LP at Noise Records!

Also, if you’re curious about Paul’s writing process and his influences, give this interview a listen:


New Song: Never Talk Back

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So the mistake I made the last time around was asking you to listen to an entire album. What was I thinking? That it was 1972? Ridiculous! You’re a busy person. I’m a busy person. Busy-ish, anyway. And, really, who among us has forty-some odd minutes to listen to a bunch of songs loosely arranged around the idea that a customer-service robot has learned to play the flute? Not me, and certainly not you. That’s why I’m only asking you to listen to one song this time around. It’s four minutes long, and I guarantee that there are no robots in this one! Just a prostitute who gets killed when she doesn’t earn any money. In other words, it’s wholesome fun for the entire family!

By now, you’re probably wondering, “How can I get my hands on a copy of this song?” Well, the sad fact is that you can’t because, as I hinted earlier, it’s not 1972 anymore. It isn’t even 1992 or even 2012. It’s 2018, and though some artists are still putting songs out on CD and Vinyl (and, yes, even on cassette!), I’m not one of them, so there’s no physical recording of this track that you can actually get your hands on. The best you can do is download or stream it from you favorite music service.

And maybe you just got through that last paragraph and thought, “Wow, that poor schmuck is extremely literal-minded! I obviously didn’t mean that I actually wanted to wrap my hands around the song! Maybe there’s something I can do to help him out.” If that — or something even remotely like it — is the case, here’s how you can help:

  • Buy the song on iTunes. Buy it as a gift for other people on iTunes. Tell people you know to buy the song on iTunes. Tell people you don’t know to buy the song on iTunes. Go on social media and write things like, “Wow! Have you heard ‘Never Talk Back’ by Zapatero? I can’t believe it’s only ninety-nine cents (or at most $1.29) on iTunes! That song’s worth at least $1.75!”
  • Play the song on Spotify. If you’re on Spotify, find the song and put it on constant repeat, then hide your music player in a closet for a month or so. Artists make about $0.006 per play on Spotify, so if you play it 100 times in a row, I’ll make sixty cents! And don’t think for a second that I’ll let all that money go to my head or change the way I record music. I’ll keep making low-fidelity tracks in my basement even if I make a whole six dollars on this song. If there’s one thing I hate, it’s a sellout!
  • Go to ReverbNation and play the song there. And while you’re at it, share a link to the song via social media or embed it in a blog post. If enough people do that, I might even break the top ten for recording artists in Havertown, PA. And you know what they say about cracking the Havertown market!
  • If you have a music blog and you’re so inclined, write a review of the song. Or ask me for an interview. I’ll answer any questions you have like “What?,” “Why?,” and “What’s up with that creepy baby?”

Of course, there are probably other things you can do to help me out and I’m just not thinking of them at the moment. But if you think of any, please let me know, and I’ll add them to the list!

Thanks, and I hope you enjoy the song!

Tired of California

Just a quick post to say that I’ve published a new book. It’s called Tired of California: The Beach Boys’ Holland Revisited. Its main focus is a somewhat obscure Beach Boys album called Holland, which was recorded in the Netherlands. The book examines the band’s attempts at re-branding itself as hip, funky, and socially-conscious in the early 1970s while simultaneously trying to recapture the glory of their 1960s heyday.

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