I wish I had something more witty to lead with here, but in looking back at the year that’s about to end, for some reason, it feels more important to chronicle the work I produced than it has in past years — and to share some notes about a few of those items. With five webinars I hosted mixed in with my writing efforts, it certainly has a bit more of a 2020 flavor.
Without further ado, here are links to my 23 published pieces, as well as five webinars I moderated in 2020.
Results Magazine April Cover Feature on Election Media Spending: When I wrote this piece in mid-late February for Results, the PDMI’s quarterly digital magazine, we had no idea what the pandemic had in store for us. I felt fortunate that we had a half-dozen media experts at the ready to discuss what we thought would be the big crossover story of the year — that is, real news affecting the performance marketing industry. Even with all that changed, we were able to close the loop on this story with a pair of episodes of our Take 20 webinar series (Sept. 22 and Nov. 18) — updating and then looking back on how the eventual $8 billion spent in election 2020 media affected the business.
BostonMan Magazine May Feature Story: Boston Celtics’ Enes Kanter and Tacko Fall: Another piece that started prior to mid-March’s pandemic stay-at-home orders — the photo shoot for the story, originally set for March 16 in Boston, had to be scrapped — I really enjoyed putting together this piece for Matt Ribaudo’s magazine about two of the Celtics’ big men (one of whom has sinced moved on) and the international flair they helped bring to Boston.
BostonMan Magazine August Cover Feature: New England Patriots’ Devin and Jason McCourty: Easily my personal favorite piece from this year. The opportunity to spend more than an hour on a conference call with the McCourty twins came at just the right time for me. Their passion, wisdom, and commitment to their beliefs — plus the willingness to put their good fortune to work to better the world — makes their incredible on-field success as NFL players pale in comparison. It was an honor to be entrusted with telling this story.
BostonMan Magazine August Feature Story: Dropkick Murphys’ Ken Casey: Nothing I wrote above should minimize what a joy it was to work on this piece at the same time as I was working on the McCourty feature. Casey, who is an absolute rock star in Boston, was the farthest thing from anyone’s negative connotation of that term when we conducted the Zoom interview for this feature. Great guy, great band,
BostonMan Magazine November Feature Story: Journalist/Author Dave Wedge: My final 2020 piece for BostonMan presented a pair of rare challenges: interviewing another journalist AND writing about another writer. Wedge made it easy — both gracious and open, he made the interview simple, which in turn made the story easier than it should have been. (And, thanks Dave, for signing the Lennon books for my dad and me.)
WEBINAR — PDMI Fall Seminar Series December: Fearless Predictions for 2021. Taking part in the final feature-length webinar on the 2020 calendar, seven members of the PDMI’s Workshop Council made my job as moderator easy in this 60-minute roundtable. Though each works in a different facet of the performance marketing world, the group took disparate viewpoints about the coming year and wove them into a thought-provoking look ahead. Also, they ably teed up our Results December cover feature (link below) on the same topic.
USCFootball.com December 11: USC vs. UCLA Preview: While my 20th year providing game previews for Ryan Abraham’s website wasn’t what I’d hoped, in retrospect, the final regular season preview of the abbreviated Trojan football season was my best effort. As I wrote in advance of USC’s five-point victory, secured on a touchdown pass with just 16 seconds to play, “Both teams will make big plays, and both will make big mistakes. Which team will make one more big play – or one less mistake?”
Here’s the Lyric-of-the-Day project recap from May 2014.
As a refresher, each day from Jan. 1, 2013 through Dec. 31, 2014, I posted a lyric on my Twitter feed. At the end of each month, I created a Spotify playlist of the songs featured, and throughout much of 2013-14 here on the blog. But, thanks to work and life, I’m still trying to get these last few playlists and links live!
Here’s May’s #LOTD2014 playlist (find the Spotify playlist I’ve created from these lyrics linked at the end of the post or on the clickable image at right), with some brief explanations (in italics) for a number of the lyrics.
“A chick walks by/You wish you could sex her/But you’re standing on the wall/Like you was Poindexter” #YoungMC “Bust A Move” #LOTD2014 5/1 (Young MC performed at Response Expo’s closing night party, atop the third-base dugout roof at Petco Park.)
“My heart’s wood, she’s a carpenter/She’s an angel in the night, what she does is alright” #BruceSpringsteen “Thundercrack” #LOTD2014 5/11
“You said you were foolish but I saw the genius/In pulling the stitches apart” #Kasabian “Let’s Roll Like We Used To” #LOTD2014 5/12
I take this verse to heart so very much. “Take this mouth/So quick to criticize/Take this mouth/Give it a kiss” #U2 “Yahweh” #LOTD2014 5/13
“I could dream ahead before my world turn blue/And the light inside would only shine for you” #TheBlackKeys “Turn Blue” #LOTD2014 5/14
“For the ones who had a notion/A notion deep inside/That it ain’t no sin to be glad you’re alive” #BruceSpringsteen “Badlands” #LOTD2014 5/15 (For my birthday, one of the best lines from one of my absolute favorite songs.)
“Were you born to resist or be abused/I swear I’ll never give in/I refuse” #FooFighters “Best Of You” #LOTD2014 5/16 #Game7#GoKingsGo(The Kings annihilated the Ducks in Anaheim to win the Western Conference Semifinals.)
“Nobody f-ing with my bro from Morningside/Go by Bubba/Hit that dance like thunder” #CaliSwagDistrict “Teach Me How To Dougie” #LOTD2014 5/17
“Cause the free wind is blowin’ through your hair/And the days surround your daylight there” #America “Ventura Highway” #LOTD2014 5/18 (Gorgeous drive home down the coast from Santa Barbara after our latest wedding prep weekend.)
“Dreams, they complicate my life/Dreams, they complement my life/This time, no escape, I wake up” #REM “Get Up” #LOTD2014 5/19
“He said that thing in California is kind of compromised/Someone must’ve said something” #TheHoldSteady “Runner’s High” #LOTD2014 5/20
“Take her down to the river/Split her right up the middle/Now there’s gonna be trouble” #JennyLewis “The Next Messiah” #LOTD2014 5/21 (One of my favorite Jenny Lewis songs, performed live at The Observatory in Santa Ana tonight.)
“Come on in/I’ve gotta tell you what a state I’m in/I’ve gotta tell you in my loudest tones” #Coldplay “Warning Sign” #LOTD2014 5/22
“And after all the violence and double talk/There’s just a song in the trouble and the strife” #DireStraits “Walk Of Life” #LOTD2014 5/23
“Maybe I’ll put a hole in your head/You know, just for the f*ck of it/I can reduce you if I want” #NIN “Big Man With A Gun” #LOTD2014 5/24 (The UC Santa Barbara shooting left seven dead. Asshole.)
“Oh baby come on out to the sea/Come on take a walk down Sunset with me” #CountingCrows “Los Angeles” #LOTD2014 5/25
“Chased our pleasures here/Dug our treasures there/But can you still recall/The time we cried” #TheDoors “Break On Through” #LOTD2014 5/26
Still playing catchup to the end! Here’s the latest way-overdue Lyric-of-the-Day project recap from 2013-2014 from April 2014.
As a refresher, each day from Jan. 1, 2013 through Dec. 31, 2014, I posted a lyric on my Twitter feed. At the end of each month, I created a Spotify playlist of the songs featured, and throughout much of 2013-14 here on the blog.
Here’s April’s #LOTD2014 playlist (find the Spotify playlist I’ve created from these lyrics linked at the end of the post or on the clickable image at right), with some brief explanations (in italics) for a number of the lyrics.
“And the warmth of your smile starts a-burnin’/And the thrill of your touch gives me fright” #LedZeppelin “Fool In The Rain” #LOTD2014 4/1
“The days went by like paper in the wind/Everything changed then changed again/It’s hard …” “To Find A Friend” #TomPetty#LOTD2014 4/2
“Lord of lyrics, duke of discussion/Ruler of rock, your king at cold-crushin” #RunDMC “Raising Hell” #LOTD2014 4/3
“They put you down, they say I’m wrong/You tacky thing, you put them on” #DavidBowie “Rebel Rebel” #LOTD2014 4/4
“I don’t need your authority/Down with the moral majority/’Cause I want to be the minority” #GreenDay “Minority” #LOTD2014 4/6
“Yes, I’m jumping like a jumping jack/Dancing, screaming, itching, squealing, fevered” #TheCure “Hot Hot Hot” #LOTD2014 4/7 (Nothing like an early spring heatwave in L.A.)
“He headed west ’cause he felt a change would do him good/See some old friends good for the soul” #BobSeger “Hollywood Nights” #LOTD2014 4/8
“Come on and get your overdose/Collect it at the borderline/And they want to get up in your head” #BrokenBells “The High Road” #LOTD2014 4/9
“There’s a part of me that still believes/My soul will soar above the trees” #WhiteLies “To Lose My Life” #LOTD2014 4/10
“Exchangin good lucks face to face/Checkin his stash by the trash at St. Marks Place” #Replacements “Alex Chilton” #LOTD2014 4/11 #Coachella(Night 1 of Coachella 2014 brought a great show from The Replacements)
“I’m so happy ’cause today/I’ve found my friends/They’re in my head” #Nirvana “Lithium” Great #Muse cover at #Coachella#LOTD2014 4/12 (The highlight of Muse’s set was this cover played to remember Cobain’s suicide, 20 years later.)
“Let the desert wind/Cool your aching head/Let the weight of the world/Drift away instead” #Beck “The Golden Age” #LOTD2014 4/13 #Coachella (One of my favorite Beck songs, perfect on the closing night of the weekend.)
“As it breaks, the summer will warm/But the winter will crave what is gone” #FutureIslands “Seasons (Waiting On You)” #LOTD2014 4/14
“Let me tell you how it will be/There’s one for you, nineteen for me” #TheBeatles “Taxman” #LOTD2014 4/15 (Tax day. Duh.)
“You wasted my time/Like to see you try & give it back/I’m working/But not working for you” #Superchunk “Slack Motherfu*ker” #LOTD2014 4/16
“Finally relax my weary limbs/Just lay still/The ceiling undulates/The fault of some strange pill” #DumDumGirls “Bedroom Eyes” #LOTD2014 4/17
“And Saturday’s no good I got a show/So it’s got to be Good Friday/Then it’s so long” #BlackCrowes “Good Friday” #LOTD2014 4/18 (Good Friday. Yep.)
“Divide the time it takes to look inside/And realize that real guys go for real down to Mars girls” #Outkast “Roses” #LOTD2014 4/19
“M.Y.T.H. is belief in the game/Controls that keep us in a box of fear/We never listen” #PearlJam “Faithfull” #LOTD2014 4/20 (My own personal tribute to the Easter holiday.)
“When you say/Now we got Hell to pay/Don’t worry, baby, that’s okay/I know the boss” #AfghanWhigs “Going To Town” #LOTD2014 4/21
“No reason to run and hide/You’re looking through a cracked mirror/No one knows the reason why” #SocialDistortion “Bad Luck” #LOTD2014 4/22
“My love I’m an owl on the sill in the evening/But morning finds you/Still warm & breathing” #NekoCase “This Tornado Loves You” #LOTD2014 4/23
“I don’t understand how the last card is played/But somehow the vital connection is made” #Elastica “Connection” #LOTD2014 4/29 (A salute to the beginning of Response Expo and all of its networking glory.)
“Brick or stone cannot hurt me/Madmen around the city go/They attack I’ll bring them down” #JanesAddiction “Superhero” #LOTD2014 4/30