Tag Archives: Spectrum Culture

Notes on Pickathon 2017


By Hollister Dixon

“Your favorite band two years from now is playing two sets this weekend at Pickathon.”

-Peter Shaver, Sound Advice

Pickathon is the festival that I want to be, but as a person – sonically omnivorous, ceaselessly welcoming, and full to bursting with life and love.

It’s hard to know just where to begin with a festival like Pickathon. I’m still a newbie to the festival (this is only year two for me, and my first year camping [or, at least, attempting to]), but I could talk for hours about everything the festival does perfectly right. There’s a willingness to grant concertgoers the ability to truly experiment and see bands they never knew they needed to see, and for those who get the chance to see those sets, it gives them the ability to tell all their friends, “Go see them again with me tomorrow.” It’s a festival that breaks down what it means to even be a festival in 2017, shrugging off corporate sponsorship and mass appeal for something much, much more interesting: the spirit of curation, and the thrill of discovery.

It’s also hard to really explain Pickathon in some ways, because it’s so unlike other festivals. There’s a magic in walking up a hill in the woods and hearing the steadily growing sound of “Freak Scene” by Dinosaur Jr. being played by Dinosaur Jr., or wandering down a random path and discovering a band playing a tiny set in the middle of nowhere.

I saw bands that shook me hard enough that I started pre-apologizing to people for how much of an insufferable fanboy I knew I’d become, and on one occasion I did so directly to the band. I got to see bands I’ve loved for years play sets that felt almost too good to be true, in places I never expected to get to watch them.

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Episode 124: “What If?”

Thanks to Dave Harris and Josh Kennedy for joining us this week! You can listen above, or download it right here.


  • “What if…?”


  • Death Grips – “Pss Pss”
  • Joan Osborne – “What If God Was One Of Us?”
  • !!! – “Myth Takes”
  • Osibisa – “Fire”

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Episode 108: Diminishing Returns

Davids 111

Thanks to David Greenwald and Dave Harris (represented here by Liz Phair) for joining us on this week’s show! You can listen above, or download the episode right here.


  • Diminishing returns: is inspiration finite?
  • Which formerly great artists lost their creative spark over time? Why does it happen?
  • Which artists that lost their muse returned to greatness later on?
  • Do we perceive the drop-off in quality differently because of former greatness? Would albums that are the result of “diminishing returns” be perceived differently if made by other bands?


  • Simon & Garfunkel – “Mrs. Robinson”
  • Weezer – “Beverly Hills”
  • Horse Feathers – “Violently Wild”
  • Faith No More – “Motherfucker”

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Episode 94: Magazines

Thanks to David Harris and Matthew Sweeney for joining us this week! You can listen to this episode above, or download it right here.


  • Music magazines (and the future of music journalism)
  • Who are some of the biggest names in this field?
  • Are music magazines still relevant?
  • Is digital media the way of the future? Or is a physical item still better?
  • What is the role of the music critic today?
  • Do music writers still have the same power they used to?


  • A tribute to Robin Williams: clips from Good Morning Vietnam and Dead Poets Society
  • Dr. Hook – “Cover of the Rolling Stone”
  • Bob Dylan – “My Back Pages”
  • Robin Williams in Aladdin – “A Friend Like Me”

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