The Monday Graveyard at 100 - The Best Episodes

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The Monday Graveyard has hit episode 100. Listen to the show here. This is part of a series of posts about the show in celebration of the 100 episode milestone.

There have been 100 episodes and Fragile X picked out some of his favourites over here on his wonderful blog post about the show. I decided it might be interesting for me to detail what I consider the “best” episodes, so here they are.

Episode 1 (02/12/2013)

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That’s right – what better place to start that to listen to what is still the most listened to episode of the show – episode 1 is the starting point, and it features all the hallmarks of someone not really nowing what the show will become, but also the excitement I had. When it first aired, Connie and I drove across the city to the southside and sat in the car, drinking hot chocolate and coffee, as the show played out over FM radio for the first time. This fulfilled a life long dream, to have an FM radio show – a real radio show. I think back to do doing those live shows with fondness, but it was tiring work. Staying up to 1am every Monday night was fine when I was not a dad (we had found out we were pregnant shortly before I was given the slot).

Episode 11 (10/02/2014)

This is the first Monday Graveyard “Backyard” show that focuses entirely on Scottish music. I enjoyed doing this show a lot. It was the attempt to fulfil part of the brief of the show, to find new talent in Scotland. I later would remove this restriction, spreading the work across all the shows in the run.

Epsiode 16 (24/02/2014)

This was one of my most “experimental” shows, and I called it the “LAPD Episode”. I would later return to the idea with the “NYPD Episode”, but the first one feels like it was better and held together better. But the implementation of the Police Scanner was an intriguing idea, and I think it worked really well.

Episode 22 (05/05/2014)

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The first time I opened the doors of the studio up to a guest and it was one of the godfather’s of the show – Echolalia Radio’s Chris Nelms came on and dished out some wonderful music and chat, as well as a wee bit of the Echolalia charm.

Episode 25 (25/05/2014)

Second live studio guest – Fragile X came in and we chatted about music and his inspiration, also taking exclusive tracks off his new album Haptics.

Episode 77 and 78 – The Bandcamp Specials

I put a lot of effort into making sure that these two shows made it out live on Pulse giving them the biggest audience, and they are powerful stuff.

The Artist Series

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I took a punt on this. I wanted some of my favourite pals from the show to work on Mixes for me, so I got Fragile X, Very Very Small Inclusions, Pheonix York and How Hot Is Your Cloud? to create special shows for the Artist Series. It was an absolute pleasure. Check them out here.

Episode 82 (20/07/2015)

I knew the show was leaving Pulse by this point, so I forced my hand and got Craig from VVSI into the studio to trade music back and forth and see who liked the music the best. We decided that we’d just keep going after the recording reached 58 minutes leading to the bumper 1 hour 23 minute extended episode. Check it out.

The Gameyard Vol 1 and Vol 2

Two episodes of just video game music – one the advantages of doing a show online. Got away with it – look out for Volume III in the coming months.

Episode 83 (27/07/2015)

All good things must end, and so with my 82 episode I finished my run on Pulse 98.4. Bittersweet, it was to be my last time on FM radio (for the time being).

Fragile X – Cult Zeroes Volume 16 – The Monday Graveyard

Strictly not a show, I returned the favour for Fragile X and his own series, and produced a 60 minute mix with my own changes and slight remixes. I enjoyed this experience a lot.

The Monday Graveyard at 100 - The Backstory

The Monday Graveyard has hit episode 100. Listen to the show here. This is part of a series of posts about the show in celebration of the 100 episode milestone.

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The backstory to the show begins a way back in the early mists of time, back in the wonderful world of my childhood. It might not surprise you to find out that my sister and I used to pretend to do radio shows, using the pernickety double tape deck of my hi-fi and the headphones plugged into the microphone port to do radio shows, doing links and making up pretend callers and the like. I wonder if, somewhere, those tapes are still available (they are mostly likely not) but it is fun to think that now, having done this for over two years, there might be a record of me doing it as a child for fun.

The Monday Graveyard has its genesis in two places – the Wednesday Graveyard, which was a podcast series I started off my own back, and my sister giving me the heads up about Pulse 98.4.

The Wednesday Graveyard is a playlist series that I started originally when Spotify first appear back in 2008. It was weekly, where I’d change 12 or so tracks that I’d been listening too, and other people could follow the playlist and get the new music directly into the music player each Wednesday. You can listen to the behemoth every track ever play list on the Wednesday Graveyard Almanac here

 This later spiralled into the Wednesday Graveyard: “Live”, a podcast-style radio show that I started doing on Mixcloud, following the success of seeing some friends do something similar. I pluged it to friends and family and got a healthy amount of plays, but it was a general podcast of music with no focus. Mostly based on what I wanted to play it was a bit all over the place, and certainly did’t benefit from great sound, being recorded on my Macbook’s microphone.

There were two series of shows – four episodes in series 1 and six in series 2, with a third series aborted after two episodes for various reasons. It was a shame, as I really enjoyed it. At the same time as this my sister started doing her own radio shows, firstly on Strathclyde’s Fusion station, and later doing a raft of shows and production duties at Pulse 98.4. We had had several discussions about me doing a real radio show, so when she left she pointed out that Neil Wilson (owner and host of Scottish Fiction), the commissioner and controller then for evenings on the show, had a load of slots free, so I emailed a pitch for the Monday Graveyard that went something like this…

“I have a large and addictive interest in electronic music and specifically ambient, neoclassical, drone, and further electronic types. Artists like Loscil, Tim Hecker, Talvihorros, Anenon, Stars of the Lid, Nathan Fake, Isnaj Dui and many others, including post rock acts that also fit the bill. That would be my plan for my proposed show, with a mixture of other electronic music like Tycho, Boards of Canada and many other “IDM” artists, and with a focus on local and Scottish electronic talent”

Neil emailed me back but it went to my junk folder, so there was a short period where I didn’t even know he was interested. I met with Neil on windy Saturday night at Pulse and got a tour, and we chatted at length about the show, my wishes for the show, and his expectations. After that, I had to come up with a name and a brand. I originally came up with “Long Drawn Out Soul” as the name for the show, but once the slot of 11pm on Monday was given to me, there was only one name for the show – the spiritual successor to the Wednesday Graveyard was born then and there – the Monday Graveyard. 

There was a pilot series of sorts, a few pre-recorded shows, before I was given a on-air tour of the station by Echolalia Radio’s Chris Nelms, who steered me through my first live broadcast in the studio. I went live for the first time on episode 7 and finished my run with episode 82 on Pulse, before rebirthing the MG as a podcast.

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The artwork is a long enjoyed part of the show, and it all was adapted from the third series of the Wednesday Graveyard series, as you might now realise. Every single piece of art is original, 100%, all created by me. It is certainly true that the MG is a cottage industry, with hours spent each week trying to perfect each show.

There is one thing I have mentioned a lot in the shows leading up the show leaving Pulse and it was the Archive. I built a huge database of all the artists and songs player d on the show and it was meant to become a way of finding all the original shows that these artists had been in. I developed a lot of it and it is still there waiting to be finished, but time and effort has gotten in the way. It is not dead, but it is just a little further away than I had originally intended, as I had hoped I'd launch it with this episode. 

 In the coming days, a few more posts will shed light on the show’s other aspects.