Friday, December 31, 2010

Thursday, December 30, 2010

The Good, The Bad, and The Geeky Podcast

One of our songs, Ms. Nutcraker-Sweet, is featured on The Good, The Bad, and The Geeky's annual "Extreme Christmas Extravaganza" podcast. Tons of songs, laughs, and holiday extravagoodness!

Some of the other musical guests include: our buddy JT Shea (on uke of course!) and 2 Drunks & A Guitar. There's also a fun rendition of Jonathan Coulton's Chiron Beta Prime.

Check out the podcast here!

Happy Holidays!

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Quick "Beer Beer Beer" Video

Just discovered this video. Nice camera work, editing, and soundtrack! The song, "Beer Beer Beer" is from our album "Sham Rock" available at CDBaby and Amazon.

Monday, November 22, 2010

More Radio Plays!

Our album Sham Rock has been picked up by two more radio stations! The radio station at Whitman College (KWCW) in Washington state has songs from the album playing regularly on its Global Gumbo show. The show is a multi-genre collection of world music from all corners of the globe. Also, Sham Rock is on medium rotation at the University of Pittsburgh (WPTS) for the next eight weeks! A big thanks to the music directors at these stations for their dedication to playing independent music! 

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Dude, Get Your Free Pizza! ("Pizza: The Rock Opera")

Man, was it 3 years ago already when we wrote, recorded and released our 10-minute opus, "Pizza: The Rock Opera" as part of our project???

Wow. 3 years. Time is ticking away. You know, ticking away the moments that make up a dull day. Next thing you know you'll find 10 years have got behind you, you missed the starting gun, there was some new brick in the wall, and all that stuff...

Like all our music at, we released our song under a Creative Commons license. But few realize that we also bundled up the song, the lyrics, and the album cover into a zip file for anyone to download. It's been buried at our SOTD site for awhile. I think it's time to rectify that.

So, here's the free song, linked below for your enjoyment. Better later than never, I think!

Pizza: The Rock Opera (2007) - FREE!

"It's like all of in one song!"
Pizza: The Rock Opera is Beatnik Turtle's 10 minute opus chronicling one man's struggle to order pizza. We've all been there...except this time it's put to music.Written in one song-writing session in summer of 2007, it debuted at on November 2007 after a few overdubs were added. And, it's now available FREE for download.
You get:
  • "Pizza: The Rock Opera" in MP3 at 256Kbps (that's like really high quality!)
  • Lyrics & Information Sheet
  • Album Cover
  • No DRM crap - issued under a Creative Commons Music Sharing License (Attribution-NoDerivatives-NonCommercial)
  • Some extra toppings, er...bonus stuff just for being cool

All we ask in return is help us spread the word about Beatnik Turtle, our music, and
Share the song with your friends, add it to your online players, blog about it or our little band, and help spread the word about Beatnik Turtle, our podcast, and our music.

Hey, enjoy the free pizza!

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Sham Rockin' The Radio

That's right! Songs from our album Sham Rock are being played on the radio. WVVS, the station for Valdosta State University in Georgia has added "Beer, Beer, Beer" to its rotation for the next few months. And the Proud To Be Irish show on WVCR based out of New York played "Holy Ground" on a recent episode. Then near the end of October, the Celtic Show on WRFG Radio Free Georgia in Atlanta also played "Holy Ground" on an episode.

Also, the hilarious site HoboTrashcan played "Well Fuck" on their Hobo Radio podcast, episode 152: Where in the world is Lars?. This episode features extensive food discussion (purple potatoes!), reminiscing about first cars, and movie talk. Check out the episode here! Big thanks to Joel for playing us.

As always, you can get your own copy of these songs and support Beatnik Turtle!

Well Fuck (iTunes, Amazon)
Sham Rock album (CDBaby, Amazon)

All of our songs are podsafe, so contact us if you are a podcaster who would like to play any of our music.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

What Music Were You Listening To When You Met Your Spouse?

Chip, Beatnik Turtle's trombonist, recently got quoted in the local press here in Chicago. The article was about "what music were you listening to when you met your spouse"?

Chip answered Beatnik Turtle, of course. Check it out here.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Our Junk On The Evil Genius Chronicles!

One of our songs, Drunk Man's Junk, appears on the latest episode of the Evil Genius Chronicles Podcast! This very classy song was co-written by the podcast host Dave Slusher, who is in fact an evil genius. The song is also based on a true story about a kilt-wearing drinker who picked the wrong day to go commando.

This episode also features a song from our friend George Hrab. Check out the podcast episode here.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Inbox Infinity. Used up 61% of my Gmail Allotment

"You are currently using 4565 MB (61%) of your 7479 MB."

I'm not one of these Inbox Zero guys. I have no problem receiving tons of emails, reading them, and letting them just sit there in my inbox. I rarely tag or organize them into folders (unlike what I have to do at my job in order to make Outlook work right). I've used Gmail's search function way too much to know I can rely on it. Plus, I don't delete because I've learned from experience I have no idea which email is important in the future.

I receive a ton of email thanks to the two books I co-wrote, the Electronic Musician column (we told you we're writing for Electronic Musician Magazine right? Er...), the site, and Beatnik Turtle alone. That doesn't count all all the bacn -- notifications I subscribe to --  from Facebook, LinkedIn, YouTube, and various indie musician services, financial services, and newsletters. And then there's all the family, friend, and general correspondence stuff. It's all adding up. 61% so far.

Anyone out there who uses Gmail close to 100%? Maybe you've gone past it? I'm curious as to whether you sat down one weekend and deleted all the needless stuff to bring it back down a bit or just said, screw it, my time's valuable and reached for your wallet to pay the great Goog? If you've got any suggestions, please email me -- er, just comment at this blog.

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Redesigned the Site!

We've been silent for awhile, but that's because we've been working hard behind the scenes re-designing our site here and also working on our forthcoming albums (When I Was Your Age and The Best Of It also didn't help that two of us moved to Ireland in the meantime!

We still have a bit to go on the website (we're currently fixing the plumbing of so it points here), but until that time, please enjoy our Beatnik Turtle Radio. Since we've got hundreds of songs, we designed it so each hour the playlist changes. It's been updated with even more songs. And, like a real radio station, the DJ is powerless and the computer figures out what to play!

Launch BT radio now.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

BT on the Geek Pop Podcast!

This week the Geek Pop podcast played our song Bunsen Burner on their July episode. This online music festival features artists who are inspired by science! After Bunsen Burner you can hear all about their upcoming geeky science song contest!  Click here to listen to the episode.

You can get your own copy of Bunsen Burner and support us by purchasing it from iTunes, Amazon, or CDBaby.
To any podcasters looking for music to play, all of our songs are podsafe and free to use on your show. Please contact us if you’d like any songs or info.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

BT on the Rock And Roll Geek Show!

Last month our song Mason Rocket (Spy Extraordinaire) was played on the Rock and Roll Geek Show! The host, Michael Butler, played the song as part of his "Listening With Butler" segment and said some very kind words. You can hear Mason Rocket on Episode 398: Laughlin River Run 2010 Recap. We are really glad to be part of a long-running 'cast that showcases indie artists.

As always, you can grab your own copies of
Mason Rocket (Spy Extraordinaire) on iTunes, Amazon, or CDBaby and support the band!

And for all of the podcasters out there, our songs are podsafe and can be played on your show or used as theme songs. If you are a podcaster looking for music, contact us for songs and info.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

BT on Insomnia Radio Chicago!

This past weekend our song Mason Rocket (Spy Extraordinaire) was played on Insomnia Radio Chicago.  Episode 3: A Country Mile features rock bands from all over the Chicago area. Insomnia Radio has seven podcasts, each one playing music from specific cities or regions. We are very excited to be representing Chicago on one of the show's first episodes. Click here to listen to the 'cast!

You can get your own copy of Mason Rocket (Spy Extraordinaire) and can support our music by purchasing it from iTunes, Amazon, or CDBaby.
All of our songs are podsafe and can be played on shows, used as theme songs, and more. If you are a podcaster looking for music, feel free to contact us for songs and info.

Monday, May 17, 2010

BT Featured on The Stone Zone Show!

Our music was featured on the finale of the tenth season of The Stone Zone Show! The hosts Big D and Dr. Dubious played three of our songs: Well Fuck, Speaking of Beer, and The Bong Song. If you couldn't tell by their song choices, this show is about hilarious happenings while under the influence. Click here to check out the episode.

You can support the band and purchase these songs here:

Well Fuck (iTunes, Amazon)
Speaking of Beer (iTunes, Amazon)
The Bong Song (iTunes, Amazon)

Also, for all the podcasters out there, remember that all of our songs are podsafe and free to use on your show. Feel free to contact us if you’d like any songs or information.

Monday, May 10, 2010

BT on The Justin Wayne Show

Last week the podcast The Justin Wayne Show played the BT song Coffee on Episode 90: Bingo!. Justin dedicated the song to a member of the show who is a huge coffee fan (then again, who isn't?). Each episode of this show is jam packed with great tracks all by independent artists. We are glad to be a part of it! Click here to listen to the episode.

You can get your own copy of Coffee and can support our music by purchasing it from iTunes, Amazon, or CDBaby.
Also, if you are a podcaster looking for some music to play, remember that all of our songs are podsafe and free to use on your show. Feel free to contact us if you'd like any songs or info.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Monday, April 5, 2010

Exploring Ireland: Guys, Where Are We?

So, two of us --Tom and me -- are over here in Ireland and over the weekend we visited the town of Bray which is just south of Dublin. When we got there we quickly discovered one of the island town's secrets...

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Ventless Condenser Dryers Are Useless

We have this combination washer-dryer in our Dublin apartment. It sounded like a great idea, but the damn thing wouldn't be able to dry out an overcooked thanksgiving turkey. Here's what they look like - like a regular front load washer but it has a "dryer" cycle on it:
Euro Dryer

Now, after about 10 hours on the so-called dryer cycle, this is what you end up with in your living room:

Euro Dryer Result

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Freaks, Geeks, Cry Babies, and Whiskey

Recently, the folks behind the video blog Geeks Money used our remake of the Irish drinking song Whiskey Yer The Devil in a really fun video about all of our favorite people from grade school. Awesome! Check out their post and the video is below:

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Beatnik Turtle is Splitting Up

Yep, you heard right. Beatnik Turtle is officially splitting up.

But, not in the way you might think. That is, we're not breaking up as a band. There's no Yoko Ono, hotel room trashing, band member back-stabbing going on.

But, we are splitting up. About 3600 miles apart, actually.

What, you say?

Well, come Saturday, me (um, Jason, who uh, founded the band) and Tom (who plays all the complicated guitar parts) are moving overseas to Dublin, Ireland. It's a very long story involving our dayjobs, but we'll be over there for a few years while the rest of the band stays here in Chicago. (Hey, someone's gotta watch the place.)

So, after 13 years, Beatnik Turtle will now enter a new chapter and it'll be interesting to see where it leads.

It's a bit sad in that we had big plans to return to the stage and play live. In fact, we did a super double-secret show to an audience of friends a while back to test out some of the (tons) of new material we created during The show went over well for something thrown together very, very quickly and got us excited about playing live again. But, then well, the Ireland thing soon became a reality and so we had to scrap our any touring plans.

But it's not all sad. It's actually a pretty cool opportunity in that if there's one thing our band has down pat, it's writing music and recording virtually. Just check out and you'll know what we mean. We couldn't have pulled all that off it it wasn't for technology helping a bit.

And now technology will just have to help a bit more.

As a band, we've already worked out how we'll continue forward -- how we'll continue to work together while two of us are across the ocean (email, Skype, Google Docs, etc.), how we'll record overseas in Dublin (Tom and I will be rebuilding our studios over there), and how we'll continue to record the rest of the band here in Chicago (thanks to our good friend, John who's got a state-of-the-art studio just blocks away from our TurtleShell Studios...which is now all boxed up.

So, Beatnik Turtle will be even more virtual than ever before. It's yet another challenge for us, but then it's totally up our alley. We're the "Indie Band Survival Guide" and guys as you know. The stuff we learn in collaborating and working remotely across two continents and 6 time zones will definitely find it's way in our writing and the tons of How To's over at

And just so you know what we have planned, we're busy putting the final touches on 3 new albums, all of which should be coming out over the next year:

(1) a reissue and second printing (!) of "Sham Rock";
(2) "When I Was Your Age" (our album from last year's RPMChallenge); and
(3) "The Best Of" (which looks to be a double disc).

And then there's the latest album -- "So Much To Rock About" -- which we just completed in February**. Our plans are to use this album as a test to see how we work together virtually using the interweb. We have plans to record additional songs and material for that album so it's ready for release sometime in 2011.

So, there it is. We're splitting up. But not breaking up!

And so, if you're in Dublin or know people in Dublin, please give Tom and me a shout! We'll be looking for some open mic nights to play...!

**By the way, starting this Monday we'll be posting the songs from "So Much To Rock About" at So, get ready for 11 weeks of fresh, new music!

Monday, March 1, 2010

We Did It! 4th RPM Album Done in 28 Days!

We did it!

Despite two of the band members uprooting their lives to move to Dublin, Ireland in a week (me and Tom), we managed to write and record 11 new songs and mail it to "RPM Headquarters". Over 2000 indie musicians participated this year. Not sure how many managed to finish, but then it's really not a contest (and it doesn't matter: it's an exercise in creativity and motivation).

The album we mailed in is entitled "So Much To Rock About" based on a line in the song, "Hello Guitar (We've Got So Much To Rock About"). It seemed fitting, especially since this will become our 21st album when it officially gets released next year.

As with RPM albums we've done in years past, we'll be posting all the songs up at in the next week or so. Also, while we finished the album for RPM purposes, we'll do our usual and write some more songs and work on the album over the year. We still need to get last year's album out -- "When I Was Your Age" -- and the ever-forthcoming "The Best Of" (which is a double album, so, you know, it's twice the work).

So, there's a lot more music coming from Beatnik Turtle...even if two of us guys are relocating to Dublin for the time-being.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Beatnik Turtle's Music Video Played On SpikeTV

Last May our video for "Star Wars (A Film Like No Other)" was played on SpikeTV. For months the videotape we had of its airing sat on my shelf above the TV. My brother thankfully recorded it, handed me the videotape, and said something about seeing the video and how it was actually "pretty good" which was the biggest compliment he's ever given us. Anyway, I went to watch it, but then realized I didn't have a VCR anymore and so there it sat, on the shelf.

Well, I finally borrowed a VCR and digitized it.

How'd it get on SpikeTV?

Well, it's a long story but basically Tom and I made a video mashup for the song using the great tools at the year before. It got something like 15,000 views and was one of the top videos at the time. That led to asking to post  it at their site where we became a Fan Movie Challenge Finalist. Then, a few months later, SpikeTV called and asked to play it to help celebrate the 32nd anniversary and promote the Fan Movie Challenge.

It's how things happen nowadays.

Enjoy the video and I'll pass on my thanks to my brother for you.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Working Hard on Our Next Album (RPM 2010!)

In a whirlwind recording session not seen since we did, we managed to record the basic tracks  to 11 songs.  While that may seem impressive, it's really just drums, bass, and scratch guitars/vocals (which get recorded over). ***

All 11 the songs revolve around music, being in a band, and of course making an album (RPM!).

Working titles to the songs are:

"Earworm" -- about that song you can't get out of your head.

"Dude From Indiana" -- about a guy who's "Rockin' Real Hard To Carlos Santana"

"Hello Guitar" -- about getting back into songwriting and playing after a long time away.

"All The Pretty Girls" -- about girls of course -- the best type of groupies!

"Yesterday's New Today (Get Me Movin')" -- we wrote this song kind of as an anthem for musicians. It's all about how you don't want to work, you'd rather play all day.

"Never Be The Front Man" --  this one's pretty obvious, it's about being second to the front man (think: Oates of Hall & Oates, the poor guy).

"We're Getting The Band Back Together" -- since our album's about music, there was no way in hell we weren't going to write a song based on the classic Blues Brothers line!

"11" -- and speaking of famous movie lines, we realized pretty quickly we needed to have a nod to Spinal Tap.

"Jump The Shark" -- we decided to tempt fate and write about you know, jumping the shark -- the exact moment when you were really good, but now you went downhill.

"Don't Quit Your Day Job" -- now, how could we NOT write this one given what the album's all about?!?

The eleventh song is a different rendition of "Don't Quit Your Day Job". So, that's all we have so far, but we've been known to come up with something at the spur of the moment, so we'll see what develops and what doesn't...

Oh and we're still trying to come up with a name for the album since it's about music. We were thinking "Don't Quit Your Day Job" but that's been done to death.

Other ideas so far include:

"So Much To Rock About"

"Rock and/or Roll"

But, um...that's all we got. If you have any ideas for an album title that fits the theme, we're all ears! Leave a comment, tweet us, email us,'ll get to us!

***Our record recording session as a band is 14 songs tracked out in one day -- one of which was Pizza: The Rock Opera, so it's actually more than 14, since that song is our 10 minute opus to ordering, waiting, and receiving a pizza. (BTW, you can download Pizza: The Rock Opera here or stream it here at

Um, and the record for our drummer -- just recording drums to tracks -- is 36. Yep. John's pretty amazing!

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Gearing up to Make a New Album this February - RPMChallenge 2010!

It's that time of the year again.

Our band is gearing up for our 4th RPMChallenge. That's where we make up and record an entire new album of original material in 28 days.

This is our 4th one, so we're excited as ever. But the pre-challenge to the challenge for us is coming up with a theme for the album. Something that can guide all the individual songwriters in the band and help us focus on a coherent whole.

As many of you know, our 3 prior RPM albums have been based on:

- Writing an album looking back to when we were kids which produced songs like My Cereal (which features friends, fans, and many other RPMers on the "Coco Chorus" )!

Updating traditional Irish pub songs and cranking them to "11" which produced songs like Tell Me Ma which was featured on NPR's All Songs Considered Second Stage.

- Writing an album about work and technology which produced songs like Mason Rocket (Spy Extraordinaire).

Now the question becomes, what will we end up creating this year?

We're working on it!

Now, if you're a musician that follows us because of and our books The Indie Band Survival Guide, and/or The DIY Music Manual, then we strongly encourage you to sign up at RPMChallenge and give it a shot.

RPM is not a contest. There's no prizes. It's completely a motivational thing. 1000s of musicians worldwide signup. Many make it to the end. But the community is amazing throughout the process as everyone works to complete their album. It's a great reason to get the creative juices flowing, make an album of new material, and get some helpful feedback along the way by other musicians.

And honestly, what would you be doing in February anyways? It's a crappy month. The weather least it does here in Chicago.