Archive for September 17th, 2004

Why polls don’t matter in this election.

Sep 17, 2004 in Current Events

For those of us hoping for a Kerry victory in November, the latest polls aren’t so encouraging. Ever since the Republican convention, most polls have shown Bush ahead of Kerry; that is, when they’re not in a statistical dead heat.

Then again, you might feel better once you realize that the polls are bullshit, especially in this election. First of all, the different pollsters can’t even agree on who’s in the lead. Considering how close the election is, this wouldn’t be a problem if not for the fact that each poll declares a different winner, sometimes by a significant margin.

Secondly, their methodology is flawed. Significant portions of the population, namely young people and other first-time voters, are not being accounted for. This is very significant, especially in an election with many first-time voters and people who haven’t voted in years. The people who are most likely to vote for Kerry, namely first-time voters, young people, and long-inactive voters who are voting to put Bush out of office, are not being counted in the polls.

So, in other words, disregard the pollster behind the curtain. We won’t know who wins until the votes are counted on Nov. 4.

Be a songwriter! Write today for details.

Sep 17, 2004 in Music

Chances are, at one time or another you’ve seen an ad in the back of a magazine requesting “song poems” or lyrics for recording. The ads tempt the reader with a glamorous career in songwriting; an opportunity to have their own songs recorded and (allegedly) marketed. An entire shadowy industry has existed on swindling poor hapless suckers to pay good money to get their lyrics set to canned, fomulaic music. Oftentimes, the aspiring songwriter pays to get their songs recorded, only to end up with a stack of records that no one wants. No one, that is, except for ironic hipsters who hunt down and collect rare “song poem” recordings.

Song poem collecting has become so cool that a considerable amount of effort has gone into documenting this shadowy underbelly of the music industry. The American Song Poem Music Archives (ASPMA) is the go-to resource on the song poem industry. A PBS documentary, Off the Charts, was also produced last year on the song poem phenomenon. Several anthologies have been released in recent years, and mp3s can also be found if you look hard enough (ASPMA’s mp3 section currently appears to be down.)