Category Archives: News

Why I Switched From Ubuntu To Elementary OS Juno

Please consider making a contribution to The Brady Campaign https://demonicsweaters.com/2019/08/f… This is an updated and better version of my video on Elementary OS. I recently switched both of my laptops to this wonderful OS, and I go through the reasons why, plus offer some tips and tricks for the system.

Fight the NRA and Donate To The Brady Campaign Today!

I’m basically creating this post just to have a link that YouTube will let me post on my videos to donate to the Brady Campaign. Since they are the only ones seemingly trying to take action against the sick gun lobby in the USA, I highly recommend donating to them. Please click the image below to go to the donation page.

The Internet in 2019 is boring and predictable, but it doesn’t have to be

Have you been surfing the internet lately and thought to yourself, ‘this is soooooo boring’? I have too, but I think I know why.

The internet is not really the internet anymore, it’s like 3 or 4 websites, Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, and maybe Instagram, or TikTok, if you’re spending more time on your phone than the computer. And then a few ….. (ahem)…. more mature themed sites.

All everyone does now is open up one of the sites listed above, and scroll. Gone is the variety of the early days of the internet, when surfing the net, really meant you didn’t know what kind of stuff you’d find. People made their own personal websites filled with personal stories, ¬†animated gifs, vacation pictures, low resolution videos, repeated tile backgrounds or whatever else they wanted to put up. Things were not dictated by giant evil corporations like Facebook.

Social media and tube sties have taken the soul of the internet, homogenized it, prefabricated it, removed all of it’s unique features, and turned it what at best could be described as a formulaic and stale predicable landscape of click-bait, filled with ads that track your behavior to sell you more crap. Then at worst it could be described as a cesspool of propaganda, outrage mobs, AI generated algorithm-based content that makes you feel lonely, angry then finally apathetic.

I’m not sure if anyone else has noticed this, but search engines don’t even really work anymore. Google is the #1 search engine in the world, but it actually quite sucks at finding things online that don’t fit into any of the above descriptions. For example, I tried finding a website about low-res photography. I’m into these weird early digital cameras and toy cameras that take crappy photos, and I am more than 100% sure that websites exist specializing in this content. (I know because I run one myself). But if you search in google, site about low res photography, all of the results are….. well….. see below, it’s pretty sad.

This is the first page, but I went about 10 pages deep and still there was absolutely no result anything close to what I was looking for. There’s nothing but these “how to” results. Nearly all of the how-tos will also just link to a blog post with an embedded YouTube video, once again leading you back to the same place you’re trying to get away from.

There used to be a site called Stumbleupon, that actually was pretty neat and basically took you to random lesser-known sites on the internet. Sadly they now too has transformed into a crappy pinterest type site called Mix.

So how can you make the Internet interesting again?

For one, delete all of your social media accounts. Facebook especially. Delete it.. do it. It is horrible for all living things. Twitter too, delete it. I’m actually deleting mine this weekend. I deleted Facebook 2 years ago, Reddit a few months ago, still have YouTube (since I’m a YouTuber) but for each social media account I delete, the better I feel and the more time I have to explore things like 404pagefound.com which is an index of some of the oldest websites on the internet.

Then go to your email, look at your address book, and just start emailing people. Email them for fun. Say, hi. Ask how they are doing. Attach a few photos. Tell them what you’ve been up to.

Then go find some new websites, something you haven’t seen. Go to somebody’s personal blog and read a few stories. Build your own site and do it the way YOU want to do it. Make one for your pictures, one for your music, one for your writing, or combine them all to one. But don’t do it with a service like Facebook, Twitter, Or any of those, register your own domain name and create something unique.

Do you already have something like that? Send me a link in the comments. I’ll check it out. If it sounds like something you want to do, send me a link after you finish. Lets start making the internet fun again!

Some of the pages I’ve made that you can look at for fun are my Mavica FD7 Blog https://mavicafd7.blogspot.com/ and my internet radio station http://radio.demonicsweaters.com

The internet in 2019 could be fun and exciting again if people want it to be.

Happy Surfing!

Who Is Generation X, and Why Don’t People Talk About Them?

Generation X is actually my Generation. I was born in 1975. If anything, I am the perfect example of a Gen X person. I’m a non-conformist, cynical, musician, computer nerd who never really grew up. My parents were never around, and I basically raised myself. I’m damn proud of my generation and we deserve to be recognized. Boomers and Millennials get all the attention, but it’s all pretty bad, so maybe it’s good we’re the forgotten ones.

A lot of people don’t really realize that it was the punk band, “Generation X” who were fronted by a very young Billy Idol (who is actually part of the Boomer generation) were basically the ones responsible for this title. I loved these guys as a kid (still do). Plus Idol was a pretty damn hot sweaty twink in his day, haha.

 

The Struggles of Being an Experimental Freelance Musician

 

That’s me a couple days ago when I was thinking about all the struggles of being a freelance experimental musician (I know, boo hoo, right?) haha. Anyway, this post isn’t for you to feel sorry for me, but rather to reach out to those of you that are in a similar boat as me.

I’ve been making music since I was 10 years old, and started producing my own music when I was 20 when I got my first cassette 4 track recorder back in the 90s. Since then I’ve created my own record label called Anthill Recordings and self-produced over 20 albums. As far as sales, some have done okay, some have had literally no attention at all, but absolutely none of them have done extremely well. At this point it doesn’t bother me that much, but there was a time when it did.

When you pour your heart and soul into something you think is unique, passionate, and extremely well done, and others do not respond to it at all, it can be a disheartening experience. At the same time when you observe others seemingly churning out the same old thoughtless dribble and getting praised for it, can be even more maddening. The problem is with our society is it rewards conformity and punishes uniqueness. This is something we all learned well in grade school. All of the most popular kids were doing whatever was cool. Football, cheerleaders, jocks, whatever music is on TV or the radio they liked, they wore all the same name brand clothes. They’re all good little sheep.

So it really should come as no surprise to me when I craft something as unique as my album Turn of The Scroct that has a measly 4 bandcamp supporters, while vaporwave artists are simply re-releasing slowed down previously released pop music and are getting thousands of downloads. Here we are again, people just following what other people are doing. There’s literally hundreds of thousands of releases like this, none of which have any originality whatsoever. Contrary to what I just wrote, I don’t hate vaporwave, and have dabbled in it myself, but took it as inspiration. I didn’t merely copy what everyone else was already doing and slap some statues in front of a Windows 95 screenshot and call it a day.

I spent time making my music, thought about it, tried to make it different, tried to make it unique. I took time to perfect my playing, as a drummer, and with all the other instruments I put on my recordings. Am I rewarded with sales? No. No I’m not. To me it’s not desirable to fit neatly into a specific genre of music. This is a huge problem with today’s music and marketing. If it doesn’t neatly adhere to a specific hashtag, nobody cares about it. Because hashtags seem to define people’s identities these days.

However, I am rewarded with my own love of creation. When I listen back to what I made, I think about how good it felt to finally be able to play the drum part I struggled with, how I was able to achieve such a strong sounding mix, how I was able to press a vinyl record after playing every single instrument on it, recording it, mixing it, mastering the vinyl, all by myself. And the few that have reached out to me thanking me for my efforts have done so in a very heartfelt manor. One listener even called me on the phone after I released my album “In The Park” and wanted to personally thank me for making it. This was really nice.

But again, this isn’t why I do it. I do it because I love the process of creation. Making something that I am proud of, that my own thoughts, ideas, focus and energy went into. Knowing it came out exactly the way I wanted it, and maybe one day people will find it and enjoy it as much as I do. But even if they don’t I don’t care. In a way, I’m glad I’ve freed myself from needing other’s approval of my music. Now I create for me. But what I do wish I was getting more of is….. money.

Yes that’s right, I said money. I work hard and I would like to be rewarded financially for my work. I don’t care if people are calling me a genius, or if my music becomes the next trendy thing, I want money, lots of it. So over time I’ve found little ways to make a bit… not lots, but I keep trying to learn new ways to make more. Some of which are making gear reviews on YouTube with my music, creating exclusive content for music licensing, as well as offering my mixing and mastering services to others. Do I make as much money as the amount of work I do? No, not at this point, but I’m going to keep trying. To me this is the ultimate struggle, but I will never give up.

-Justin