By Eric Gingerich

 Instead of the standard article, we would like to give the stage to Vince Bauters, editor of this year’s Analecta. He recently organized an open mic night on campus to provide student writers a platform for their art and to give them the opportunity to submit their work. This is Vince on the creative writing scene at IU South Bend, and the future of the creative arts in the South Bend area.

E.G.: From your perspective, what is the current state of the creative writing scene at IU South Bend?

V.B.: It’s exploding, but with intelligence. Exploding implies a certain degree of chaos or randomness, the creative writing scene certainly has the impulse and the magnitude of an explosion, but it’s not out of control. I see writers communicating, and that’s by far the best thing. They are all in touch with each other, rooting for one another, encouraging and editing their creative work. It’s really becoming a family. It has the dynamics of a family, concern and pride. And that’s really quite a beautiful thing.

E.G.: What can be done to increase the visibility of the creative writing scene?

V.B.: I think events like the open mic are an excellent start. You have to allow people to show their interest. You have to believe that people care about creative writing. When people come to read poetry, then that concern has been acknowledged and fostered. But I think the English Dept. is on the right track. By inviting authors to come to campus and read their writing, you allow for a creative environment to exist. You fuel creativity. I think you need a mix of open mics, or ways for students to get involved, and then opportunities for students to see or hear other successful writers. At the same time, there has to be more creative writing courses. I think we’re doing better with that (having more classes). But you need the classes, because that’s what gives focus to writers’ inspiration.

E.G.: Is there a fundamental problem on this campus and/or in this community that would suggest the lack of involvement in creative arts? Or is there a lack of involvement to begin with?

V.B.: Some people might feel this way. But the truth is that people are meeting and getting together, sharing thoughts and ideas. The fact that we can have an open mic shows that there are people willing to be involved. You have to ask yourself how much involvement do you want. How many people do you want involved until you feel content? Half the campus population? Everyone? And you also need to keep in mind, that creative writing is kind of an after thought to many people. It’s something to do when you have the free time. But for the true creative writers, its something you do. A lifestyle. Not a hobby. I don’t think it’s a fundamental problem. I think its human nature. It’s survival. Many people don’t think we need poetry to survive. We need to show that we do. Not to make them all become poets. But to believe in the power of creative arts. And maybe to make them believe in themselves.

E.G.: What can you say about the work of the writers who read during the open mic?

V.B.: Incredible quality. I loved the range of style. From very Oscar Wilde-esque fiction, with writing that pays critical attention to color and lines and light and space and people, to poems that were almost like odes to the American Midwest, with characters trying to find happiness in baseball or liquor. The open mic was a testament to the creative prowess of our students. These people are pushing their writing to the boundary. They are utilizing everything around them to make what they’re saying as powerful and concentrated as possible. You can tell that these are very reflective and observant writers. They are very aware of themselves and the world they live in. And, above all, they seem to believe in the beauty of this world. There is always a saving grace found in these creative works. There is always a chance for hope. And I think that’s important. The chance for beauty is important. Not because we’re all fools and think everything will always be okay. But because we believe in the world. And we know it’s not ending any time soon.

E.G.: Can you make a guess as to the future of the Analecta or to the “South Bend creative writers”—those people who live locally and are actively writing / pursuing their art? Put another way, what would you like to see happen to the creative writing scene on campus and in the South Bend area?

V.B.: Well, they’re not going away. I think we’re all apart of this place, for better or for worse. I think more people are curious and interested in writing, or at least being apart of something that is bigger than themselves. These writers are giving fulfillment to their audience through their writing. They are doing something special and magical, and I think that kind of magic catches on. People are a little lost, because of technology. We want something human, something organic. And maybe now more than, say, in the last 20 years. Some of the thrill of technology has scared us away. People want to be around other people. They want to talk about their feelings. And they want to be brought back to the real world. So, with that said, the South Bend writers are only going to keep gaining momentum. I don’t think we have an objective or hidden priority. We are just writing, and because of that sincerity, people will join us. I’d like to see people fight off being content. I’d like to see us believe in ourselves and the world. I’d like to see this sort of amity and passion survive.

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Letter from the Editors

February 27, 2008

Welcome, readers, to a new semester and a new Preface. We are undergoing several changes and wanted to make you aware of them.

First, as far as management, we no longer have an Editor-in-Chief and Assistant Editor. In place of these positions are three co-editors, Brandi Miller, Jason Overholt, and myself. This should give us broader coverage of all duties, including editorial and administrative, as well as allowing each of us to work with writers individually and more closely.

Second, we are building our staff and progressing towards a larger paper. We already have several new writers, who you will meet via their articles, and are currently interviewing for others as well. For some time your paper has consisted of eight pages, but with more writers writing more stories we hope to increase to 12 pages, giving you a wider slice of campus and community news and entertainment.

 

Third, Ken Klimek’s Indepth Reporting class does a project each spring semester whose topic is determined by the Preface editors. This spring semester we have chosen student housing and many of the aspects surrounding it, such as security, availability, demographics and expected changes to campus life. Watch for a two or three part series coming soon.

 

We are also planning to include an upcoming events calendar, and are looking into expanding our online presence to a larger hosting site. We will begin including weekly editorials, as well as an opinion feature. We have also decided to replace our Garrick cartoon with a new comic, and bring back headshots with your thoughts and ideas on topics we are writing about. Lastly, we will hold office hours, to be announced in our next issue, and will welcome anyone who wants to stop in for a visit.

 

We encourage feedback from you on any or all of the above changes, and will keep a suggestions box outside of our office so that you can stop by and drop off any thoughts you might have even if we are not there. We also want to encourage you to voice your opinion about the newspaper, issues on campus, or anything important to you that might be important to others as well. In the end, with all of the changes, we hope to facilitate stronger communication between everyone at IU South Bend.

 

Eric Gingerich

Co-editor

IU South Bend Preface

Jason Overholt
Staff Writer

I was having a conversation with a friend over lunch the other day when he started bad-mouthing Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie. Among other things, he told me he was getting sick of hearing about their humanitarian work.

As I was stabbing him in the face with my salad fork I thought about all the celebrity bashing I’ve been hearing lately. When will people understand? They’re celebrities! If they’re famous enough to be seen on TV and in grocery store checkout lanes, then they’re obviously qualified to show us how to live our lives.

That’s why I voted for a Democrat (and thanks to Diddy’s warning, thereby escaped death), became a Big Brother, regularly check my breasts for lumps, donate 75% of my yearly income to charities in Africa, carry a small dog in my man-purse, checked into rehab because I got drunk at a party once, and wear sunglasses all the time (even if I’m in the presence of important people like the Pope, just like my boy Bono).

If it wasn’t for the wisdom of famous people (or, as I like to call them, “our betters”) I would completely fail to function as a human being. So, that said, why do you people still insist on blaspheming the holy unit that is Brangelina? The best couple ever! Haven’t they suffered through enough?

Like the time that awful member of the paparazzi interfered with their privacy, and was righteously punished by their body guard. I mean, how stupid could a person be? Didn’t he see Mr. and Mrs. Smith? They can kick ass IN A MINIVAN, and still spout witty banter! It’s only by the grace and mercy of Brangelina that he doesn’t have a machine breathing for him right now.

Or how about Madonna the copycat? Now don’t get me wrong, I used to love Madonna just as much if not more than most celebrities. If it wasn’t for her I wouldn’t have gotten into that whole Kabala thing for those couple of months, or got the inspiration to wear my “boy toy” belt for all those years in grade school. However, in the fall of 2006 Madonna used her wealth to abuse the system and fast-track the adoption of a Malawian child. Of course the kid’s father didn’t fully understand what was going on when Madonna ripped the child from his arms.

“Gee Al, I don’t understand it. Why haven’t I leapt yet?”

“Well Madonna, Ziggy says there’s a 98.7% chance that it’s because you’re an attention seeking whore.”
Come on people, Brangelina is saving the world one child at a time. They’re better than you.

Eric A. Gingerich
Staff Writer

Chinese children play soccer inside a small, gated court yard, and the day exudes warmth and springtime perfection. We want to join the game. We want to take a photograph. But we are adults on the sidewalk and my camera was left at home uncharged. We watch for a few minutes—just long enough for the moment to reveal the kind of beauty only found in small, quiet places away from the loud clanking of busy adults. Then we continue on our way.

The day quickly escapes from our grasp—as though we could hold it down in the first place. The week disappears, and we return to our everyday lives. Distance and obligation once again permit only minimal communication. And I think of my friends as the kind of people who sometimes wonder what propels us forward and makes us thrive.

One friend, whom distance has no bearing on, thrives on people who see him for who he is, and has shielded away those who wish to see him fail. Instead of doing only the bare minimum and reaping only minor results, he now dives full force into his problems, knowing he will come out strong. He does it for himself and to show the doubtful that he can.

I think of that spring day and of other friends just as determined: one lies in a waterless fountain, the one provides me with a place to stay, and one meets me for the first time. They have their own responsibilities, as I do, but I imagine we are all torn between playing soccer with children and fulfilling those responsibilities. I imagine, too, we have systems for finding a balance between the two.

Perhaps we try to think on the weekends and do during the week, as the friend lying in the fountain does. Maybe we let obstacles, great or small, appear as a series of small, simple problems sewn together, and instead of feeling intimidated, we feel challenged. This is his personal method, as he said it, and I imagine it’s put into practice everyday.

I imagine my friends end up doing quite well for themselves.

Letting life become simple is another way. I think again of that lackadaisical spring day.

Chinese children play duck, duck, goose inside the small, gated court yard, and the day glows with warmth and anticipation. We want to join the game, and I wish I had my camera. Yet we are content with only looking in. One black-haired girl plays so well and moves with such speed we name her HaZaah!, Queen of Duck-Duck-Goose. We take in the simplicity and grace of the moment. We watch and laugh as the same quiet beauty reveals itself.

Later, we meet our friend in a park. Children run loose and ride bicycles with training wheels. The fountain in the center sits dry—broken bits of green glass reflect among twigs, leaves and displaced pieces of concrete. Our friend lies here, his grown-up bike lying beside him. We sneak up on him, and I leap over him like a wild bear. He perks up slowly and groggy like coming out of a midday dream. The three of us converse; it’s been too long. Soon I get a phone call. I don’t know the person calling—that is, I know of her, but mystery resides over us. We plan a meeting anyway Afterward, my friends and I settle into a groove that denies the pressures of adulthood.

Time disappears yet again. I ready our shield against the loud, clanking adult world we are sure to encounter later, and we continue on our separate ways.

Roots of the Preface stem from political unrest

Peggy Trytko
Staff Writer

When the Preface debuted on March, 27, 1969, there were four student newspapers.

“It must be noted that the Preface sprung from a politically active hotbed which was prevalent among the left throughout the nation, especially on college campuses,” said Alice Marie Beard, Preface editor from Dec. 1972 to May 1974, in a paper titled “Analysis of the Political Aspects of the Preface, Student Newspaper of IUSB,” written in August 1975.

Richard Nixon succeeded Lyndon Johnson as president. The assassins of Robert F. Kennedy and Martin Luther King, Jr. went on trial.

An oil rig off the coast of Santa Barbara blew out and spilled 200,000 gallons of crude oil marring 35 miles of coastline.

A furious battle known as Hamburger Hill, then the My Lai massacre took place the year before in Viet Nam. The first draft lottery since World War II began.

The Beatles gave their last performance and Led Zeppelin released their first album.

And Wal-Mart became Wal-Mart, Inc.

In another year, National Guardsmen would shoot and kill four student protestors at Ohio State University. At Jackson State College, police would kill two more student protesters.

“War protests were at their height,” Beard notes.

The first issue of the Preface, four typewritten, mimeographed pages, had no specific editors. It was not financed by the university or student government and cost $40 per week to publish.

A group of students “who feel that the purpose of a student paper is to offer relevant information to the student body,” created it, according to the first article in the first issue of the Preface. That purpose was not being met by The IUSB Student, begun in Jan. 1968 and published for three semesters, the Recourse or the Future, both of which appeared in the spring of 1969.

The Preface asked for student contributions, which could be placed in a mailbox “behind the switchboard.” One column contained upcoming events, such as art exhibits in the community. It advertised space for classified ads: three lines for 25 cents, six lines for 50 cents. It also published the dean’s list.

Margaret E. Grounds was among those on the dean’s list. She helped co-found the Preface with James Hildebrand. The staff, listed in the fifth issue included Mike Hauser, Richard Borton, Emily J. Kochanowski, LaRita Killian and Patrick R. Slater.

The second issue, which appeared about one week later, included much of the same, as well as letters to the editor. It reported that tuition would increase to $20 per credit hour from $15 per credit hour for the 1969-1970 school year. Also, a short article questioned the new construction of Riverside Hall to house what is now the Dental Education program. The space was originally needed for other departments.

The second issue sold out, so by the third issue, “we [increased] the number of copies we produce to 500,” the April 15, 1969 issue reported.

The name of the paper written across the top of the front page was hand drawn, as were the few pictures in the first five issues, including one of the parking lot behind Greenlawn Hall, showing faculty parking off limits to students.

The last issue in the spring of 1969 urged students to vote in the upcoming student government elections, and endorsed Margaret E. Grounds for president.

Douglas Ream, editor of the Future, also ran for president and won. As a result, the Future ceased to exist.

The Student Publications Board named Grounds as editor of the student government-funded newspaper, which caused the demise of The IUSB Student, and the Preface became the official newspaper of IUSB. The Recourse also ceased publication.

“Essentially, [Grounds] had put out a competing product against the previous editor [of the student-government funded newspaper], and she had won,” Beard wrote in 1975. “She had shown in the spring that she could put together a fairly newsy, coherent and honest newspaper.”

Nancy Sulok, who writes a column for the South Bend Tribune, started writing for the Preface from the very beginning. Sulok also serves as advisor to the Preface, and has read every issue in its 38 years.

She is related to James Hildebrand, who ran into her in the hall at IUSB in the spring of 1969 and asked if she would like to write for a student newspaper.

“It’s interesting to see how it has evolved,” she said, “It has its ups and downs.”

In the fall semester of the 1969-70 school year, the Preface appeared in the format it is today.

The first official year of the Preface year reflected a country mired in controversy: protests against the Viet Nam war, new classes added to reflect the changes brought about by the Civil Rights movement, IUSB growing as a campus, and the effects of pollution on the planet.

Many of the issues are relevant today. Again, the nation is at war. IUSB has expanded its enrollment, programs and on-campus buildings. And pollution has not only not gone away, but presents problems requiring new solutions.

It is the goal of the Preface to explore in upcoming editions what the campus was like then and what it is like now.

“Its important that the newspaper appeals to a cross-section of students on campus and not become single-issue oriented,” Sulok said. There were times when the Preface didn’t cover campus issues.

“We’re improving on that,” Sulok said. “We’re going back to the original goal of being a campus newspaper.”

Next issue: Students and faculty react to war.


Terrie Phillips

Student Life Editor

First he leased the Toll Road, now he wants to lease the Hoosier Lottery. But at what point do we stop selling off our assets? 

I personally was against it in the beginning, but when I began to do research, I decided this might not be such a bad thing.  The more I researched the more I saw the amount of money it would bring into Indiana and how they plan to divide it up. Now, it actually seems like a good plan. 
 
First, I looked at how much the Hoosier Lottery is currently making.  Since its conception, the Hoosier Lottery has had a total sales revenue of $10.5 billion, total prizes paid $6.1 billion, total retailer commissions $698.7 billion, and total transfers to the state of $2.9 billion.  Annually, the Treasurer of the State deposits $30,000,000 to the Indiana Teachers’ Retirement Fund, and $30,000,000 to the Police and Fire Pension Relief Fund, (www.in.gov/hoosierlottery/where_money_goes/profitdistribution.asp). 
     
Governor Mitch Daniels plans to lease the Hoosier Lottery for an undetermined amount of money, Daniels is hoping for $1 billion. The person who leases the Lottery will pay $200 million yearly, plus they will need an operator’s license, and at 5% will bring revenue of about $700 million, (www.in.gov/apps/utils/calender/presscal?PF=gov2&clist=196&Elist=87845).
 
Daniels plans to take 60% of the upfront proceeds and put it in a permanent endowment. They would then take the interest and put it towards scholarships for qualified high school graduates. 
    
According to www.in.gov/apps/utils/calender/presscal?PF=gov2&clist=196&Elist=87845, the qualifications for the scholarships are as follows:

• The students attending four-year institutions could receive a total of $20,000 for tuition, fees, books and other expenses; those attending two-year institutions could receive a total of $5,000, with opportunity to automatically be eligible for two additional years of funding at a four-year institution.

• The awards would take the form of a forgivable loan that would not have to be repaid if the student stays in Indiana to work for work for three years after completing studies.

• Scholarships would be based on merit.  Scores on the SAT or ACT exam, cumulative grade point average (GPA) and class rank would be key criteria. Once awarded, students would be required to maintain a 3.0 GPA and complete studies in the time specified by their degree program, to continue to receive awards each year.

The remaining 40% of the up front proceedings would go to World Class Scholar Fund.  This fund would provide money for Indiana public universities to increase the amount of qualified faculty.  They would continue to put the same amount of money in the teacher’s and the police and firefighters funds as the Hoosier Lottery. 

The lease of the Hoosier Lottery is not as bad as people may think it is.  There are gray areas, and when it comes to the people that already work for the Lottery, it does not say what will happen to them.  There is no guarantee Daniels will get $1 billion for an up-front payment. 
 
The money is mainly going to be used to combat the ‘brain drain.’  The brain drain is the name given to the amount of people leaving Indiana after college.  Some of the money from the lease would go to Indiana University Indiana Life Science Initiative, a program designed to bring over 500 new life science jobs, and increase jobs throughout Indiana as well. 
 
By bringing in the best in life sciences, this is supposed to help boost the economy.  The lease of the Lottery is an opportunity for Indiana to wisely invest our assets; we are not simply selling them or leasing them. They are still ours, but we are letting someone else handle the grunt work.  By allowing the Hoosier Lottery to be leased, we are allowing the state to grow, for our children, grandchildren and so on. 
 
If we deny this opportunity it may never come again.  As of now, the Indiana University Indiana Life Science Initiative would give Indiana a head start in the area of life science.  As of now, we are a struggling state. We have issues, this is true, but when it comes to the future of our state and the future of our families, this should be a no brainier.  Give up your stubborn pride; Daniels isn’t the best leader, but he is getting the job done. 

Eric A. Gingerich
Staff Writer

There must be a fine line between being too ballsy and just ballsy enough. Of course the word itself, meaning bold, confident, feisty or determined, implies you’re either ballsy or not. After all, bold is bold and feisty is feisty; presumably there can’t be middle ground. You’re not a little bit determined. You are determined full force with all your heart. Otherwise, what’s point?

Obviously, this word, ballsy, is slang–vulgar slang at that, perhaps of British origins, and, as far as I can tell, it originated sometime during the 1950s and ‘60s. I imagine a cocky, beat-up young rapscallion wrestling the word balls to the ground and pinning the suffix –y to it. Clearly, you can see its stereotypical masculine roots. Yet, in my opinion, it transcends all this brutish nonsense and is a quality we should strive to be regularly.

I’m not completely sure what happened but I’ve been feeling more and more ballsy everyday. In a smallish way I recently stormed Random House’s intimidating and prestigious building on Broadway in New York. While there, I met a girl who shattered this very image of the unapproachable and self-important city. A day later, back in New Jersey, I approached a young lad of probably 18 years (he had braces!) for his phone number. I had no intention of getting his number; I simply felt courageous.

I never pictured myself doing these things, not until recently anyway. And now, because I have experienced them, it seems I possess a strange power to do more or less anything. Sure, I might not have tangible proof my newfound courage—I don’t have the job; this girl, well, you just never know; and the young lad, he was for humor and practice. Material things eventually vanish anyway. Instead, we keep essences. In the end, those ethereal qualities like courage are what matter.
     
And when these qualities enter your system, they are hard to shake. You feel ballsy. You are feisty. You get ideas, big ones, ones that would have scared you a year ago, ones you would have certainly ignored way back when. But now, you cannot rid them. They are stuck until further notice; until you can unleash them into the world. These ideas cultivate that strange power, and it builds and builds until you feel like a tiger.
     
But you are not a cruel-hearted killer tiger; you simply have that fierce tiger appeal about you. Of course, maintaining this vigor in our overwhelming world seems difficult. Things are intimidating. Beauty is threatening. Prestige is daunting. At every turn, someone or something will break your spirit. The trick is to become positive, upbeat, friendly. The trick is to have a quiet confidence—the kind that rejects the smug appearance and material gloss a loud confidence holds firm. But the real trick is simple: Refuse discouragement despite all else.

Scott Schroeder
Staff Writer

Growing up, music was a big interest of mine at an early age. As I got older, my tastes jumped back and forth between punk and grunge, and everything in between. So here is a list of five albums that have had an impact on me.

Minor Threat – Complete Discography
I think I might have been about 13 when I first heard some songs off this album. All of the songs were very fast and just full of all this angst, and when it ended I was stunned. The songs tended to promote thinking or a positive attitude, getting the message across with this raw and aggressive power.

Green Day – Dookie
Though I don’t like this album as much as Insomniac and Kerplunk!, it was one of the first CDs I ever bought, so it definitely had an impact on me. This CD has a lot of great songs on it as well, which helped make it the huge album that it was.

Rancid – Let’s Go!
This was the first Rancid album that featured Lars Frederickson on second guitar and vocals. This is album is full of a lot of catchy songs that just got stuck in my head. The addition of Lars gave the band the fuller, more polished and melodic sound.

Nirvana – Bleach
This is an album that has a very raw and somewhat abrasive sound to it, unlike its follow-up, Nevermind. The songs tend to vary, too; you’ll have somewhat of a poppy song like “About a Girl” to something aggressive like “Negative Creep.”

Misfits – Walk Among Us
Growing up, I was always a fan of old horror movies. The Misfits sang about old horror movies and other cult things very similar. I was already into punk music at the time and the lyrics just seemed to click with me. Catchy, too. I’d say this is one of their best recordings.

Eric A. Gingerich
Staff Writer

Waiting kills me. Waiting for a callback, waiting to get time off—it doesn’t matter. I prefer things—whatever they are—to happen. So I tend to forget that waiting doesn’t necessarily mean stagnation; it simply means you must be patient.

The bank was a pleasant detour on my way to the airport. All the nervous glancing at the teller finally amounted to something: small talk. Afterward, a pop song played on the radio as I drove to work, and I sang along. I sang along because of progression.

A month ago I stumbled on the perfect job in New York. Designed for students graduating this spring and made for individuals with a desire to learn, I became determined to write the best resume and cover letter. Don’t be fooled; this is no simple task. Like anything else, start early and don’t fear critical feedback.

In my patience, here is what I’ve learned: Days that start badly can slowly get better. My mind can do more harm than good, creating worst-case scenarios. Yet like bad days becoming good, reality reveals itself, and it is not what you expect. Finally, if life is taken in stride and your eyes are in front of you, you forget you’re waiting and start to actually plan your future as you see it.

I’m on a flight to Philadelphia and Thursday I’ll be in New York City. The plane rushes forward; my body presses into the seat. Everything comes together one way or another. There is movement, and it’s inevitable. So let us move.

Andy Hostetter
Staff Writer

Elvis Costello – This Year’s Model
The songs on This Year’s Model aren’t as good as Elvis Costello’s first album My Aim is True. But, the songs on This Year’s Model sound so much better because he used the Attractions as his backing band. Pete Thomas’ drums and Steve Nieve’s keyboards are amazing. The Attractions were the perfect band to produce Costello’s songs. The opening track, “No Action,” is the greatest opening track on any album, no contest. “Chelsea” and “Pump It Up” are two examples of Costello’s finest work. “Lipstick Vogue” is one of my favorites; it’s the one I think gets the least credit compared to the other songs on the album. It is an absolute pop punk gem. “Radio Radio” is the first Costello song I ever heard. It has so much history behind it, and lyrically it has all of the punk ingredients, but it is so much more sophisticated. That’s what I like most about this album; it’s a sophisticated punk record.

Stew – Naked Dutch Painter
Stew is the king of the LA pop underground. He’s been in several different groups (Negro Problem, Lullabies, etc) and is known for his innovative lyrics that range from philosophical to humorous. On the live disk of Naked Dutch Painter he is playing with all the musicians of the LA pop underground that have made it what it is today. Stew puts so many different types of pop sounds together on this album, ranging from 60s psychedelic to cool jazz and afro pop. That is why I love it so much because it puts everything that I love about pop music into one piece of music. Stew’s lyrics, again, are just amazing. I love an artist that doesn’t take things to seriously. He touches upon such important issues as an overly drugged girl who is also his love obsession (Gissele) and aloof naked Dutch painters (Naked Dutch Painter).

Cheap Trick – Cheap Trick
Cheap Trick is my all-time favorite band. They’ve had plenty of ups and downs, commercially and creatively, but they’ve still managed to make it 30 plus years in the music business. I began listening to Cheap Trick some time early in high school. I didn’t really get into them until I heard there first album; the self-titled Cheap Trick. This is the only album that showcases the bands true sound and lyrical material. It came out in 1977, the year of punk, and it fits in perfectly. “He’s a Whore” and “Elo Kiddes” are pure seventies punk. The lyrical content on the album ranges from drugs, suicide, hookers, and some real gritty subject. If Cheap Trick would have continued to make albums the way they wanted to make them, they would easily have been the Beatles of the 80s.

The Who – Who’s Next
I had to kind of hide the fact that I preferred to listen to the Who’s Who’s Next album more than anything I had ever heard by Led Zeppelin. In high school it was cool to like Led Zeppelin; it wasn’t popular to like the Who. This album was so much more fulfilling to me. Pete Townshed is my favorite guitar player. He isn’t concerned with twelve minute guitar solos; he’s interested in making great songs. This album has both rock standards like “Baba O’Rily” and “Won’t Get Fooled Again,” and it also has great ballads like “This Song is Over.” It’s not necessarily my favorite Who album, but it definitely began my obsession with them.

Beach Boys – Pet Sounds
My mom drove me to the mall when I was around 13 so I could buy Pet Sounds. The first time I listened to it, it became my favorite album. When I first began listening to the album I just loved the songs. I didn’t look to deep into them at the time; I just thought that the songs on the album were really great. As I began to get older I began to appreciate the great production and arrangement work on it. I would pick out something new every time I listened to it. That’s what I love about the album; to this day every time I listen to it I hear something new. The songs are all beautifully layered, and ever since I was very young I’ve been a sucker for the Beach Boys harmonies. “God Only Knows” and “I Just Wasn’t Made For These Times,” are without a doubt two of the greatest ballads ever written. It has been nearly ten years since I began listening to the album, but I still have the same mono recording that I first bought when I was 13 and I still listen to it to this day.