Monday, October 24, 2016



Thanks again to everyone that attended Grind-Fu Cinema this past Saturday!  I feel like we need to lavish more praise on Amber for the spectacular Black Phillip cake she made to tie in with The Witch.  It was a total and complete masterpiece.

I was fortunate enough to spend last Friday afternoon filming Amber as she assembled the cake, and I put together a short film showing the whole process from start to finish.  Her focus and attention to detail is amazing, and it's a revelation to see how these things come together.



The KMSU Fall Pledge Drive kicks off THIS WEDNESDAY and we are incredibly excited to share with you the premiums that we have available for it. If you are not sure how this works or you are new to KMSU, essentially we have a number of fantastic items that we give to you as a "thank you" gift when you pledge your money to KMSU. Different gifts are available at different levels.  Call, donate, choose.  It's just that simple. So here is the list - and it's a big one. If you have any questions please don't hesitate to drop us an email at

$25  Premium Pledge - FINDERS KEEPERS 14: BATSONGS CD

Mr. Specific strikes again with a colossal collection of Bat-strumentals that flew straight from the cave!  This collection needs a good home, and you look just intelligent and attractive enough to provide that home.  CALL NOW!

$25  Premium Pledge - KMSU mug

Over-sized, bright, and a welcome addition to any kitchen table or desktop, the KMSU mug is back once again. The yellow screams "GOOD MORNING!" and its contents will scream whatever the heck your drink screams. Maybe your previous mug was chipped or broken and you are hoping to replace it? Now is your chance - get one (or two, or three or more) while you can!

$50 Premium Pledge - The KMSU Baseball Cap

Sure, a t-shirt is nice, but sometimes you want to draw attention AWAY from your torso.  That's where these super cool caps come in.  The KMSU cap can crown your dome at the $50 level.  Make people stare at the top of the very head that was smart enough to pledge to KMSU!

$50 - Johnny Frierson - Have You Been Good To Yourself?

If you listen to Jameson on Variety Pack (Thursdays @ three on KMSU) you know that he digs deep and find the amazing tracks that have been waiting to be discovered.  In 2012 he discovered an album so good and so rare that Light In The Attic Records decided they needed to reissue it.

Jameson found THE ONLY COPY of Johnnie Frierson's Have You Been Good To Yourself cassette in a thrift store in Memphis and immediately knew he had something.  The intimate recordings capture Frierson (former Stax session man and brother of Hi Records artist Wendy Rene) alone with his guitar singing songs that dwell on his personal faith and struggles.  They capture the voice of a man that has experienced a profound spiritual awakening who is also dealing with the impact of his experiences in Vietnam.  Regardless of your background with religion, it's impossible to not be moved by what Frierson shared with the world.

Light In The Attic only issued 1000 copies of of Have You Been Good To Yourself on vinyl, and Jameson has 12 copies that he's made available to KMSU for the pledge drive.  The hosts at the station have fallen in love with this record, and you will too.

$60 - Live At the World Cafe CD Volume 40

The latest edition of this listener favorite edition of the popular World Cafe compilations. Seventeen amazing artists performing live in the WXPN studios exclusively for World Cafe listeners.  World Cafe is one of the syndicated programs  that we pay for, and we’re thrilled to have them on the KMSU schedule.  If you value hearing World Cafe in the afternoons, then please pledge your support
to KMSU!

$100 Premium Pledge - Howlin' Wolf: The Complete RPM and Chess Singles

In the history of the blues, there has never been anyone quite like Howlin' Wolf.  Six foot three and close to 300 pounds in his salad days, the Wolf was the primal force of the music spun out to its ultimate conclusion.  He was primal, ferocious blues belter with a roster of classics rivaling anyone else, and a sandpaper growl of a voice that has been widely imitated.  No one could match him for the singular ability to rock the house down to the foundation while simultaneously scaring its patrons out of its wits.

THE COMPLETE RPM & CHESS SINGLES collection compiles 80 essential Howlin’ Wolf A & B sides from the first 11 years of Wolf’s career.  These songs represent some of the most important and
influential recordings in Blues history, and they can become an important part of your music collection when you pledge at the $100 level during the KMSU Fall Pledge Drive!

This is essential stuff right here.  Don't deny yourself this genius.

$100 Premium Pledge - Jerry Garcia Band live at Sophie's, Palo Alto, California, 1976

This is the latest in the popular Garcia Live series.  Volume seven captures Jerry and company at Sophie’s in Palo Alto, California.  This previously uncirculated recording was recently discovered by Jerry Garcia Band vocalist Donna Jean Godchaux.  The band played over 70 shows during 1976, and by the time they peformed this show they were extremely tight.  Volume Seven presents the entire performance that November night at Sophie’s.  

Fans of Jerry Garcia and The Grateful Dead will want to add this incredible recording to their collection, and they can do that by pledging $100 to KMSU during the Fall Pledge Drive!

$100 - The Beatifics -  How I Learned To Stop Worrying 20th anniversary reissue, with exclusive companion 10" EP

the Beatifics' 1996 debut album How I Learned To Stop Worrying was received with reviews verging on rapturous, but brisk sales were hampered by problematic distribution, leaving the band on tour with no product to sell.  It wouldn't be long before the line-up began to splinter, and it would be six years before the band released a follow up album.  Eventually How I Learned To Stop Worrying went out of print, and it has been unavailable for years.

In January 2015, Shyboy Tim from Shuffle Function decided to contact Chris Dorn from The Beatifics to see if he would be interested in doing the first ever vinyl issue of the album to mark the 20th anniversary of its release.  Dorn was thrilled by the idea, and the two of them have been working for nearly two years to put together this package.  Finally, Shyboy Tim's favorite album of all time is back in print, and a new generation of Power Pop fans can discover the album noted music critic John Borack calls "a damn near flawless disc of pop delights... and an album that has more than stood the test of time."

The 20th anniversary edition of How I Learned To Stop Worrying features tweaks done for vinyl by band leader Chris Dorn, as well as new liner notes by Dorn and John Borack, and a download featuring the album with demos, alternate takes, and live versions.  Exclusive to this pledge drive is a vinyl companion 10" EP with the only live recordings of the original band line-up.  The EP features a cover of Paul McCartney & Wings' Junior's Farm that is only on the vinyl version, which will not be sold in stores.

$100  Premium Pledge  - Program Director For The Day on Shuffle Function

Have you ever wanted to play radio? Here's your chance! Join Shyboy Tim and Shelley on the Shuffle Function morning radio show and dictate the playlist for the day. You choose the songs from your own collection and you get to hang out with us on the air for two hours as well. You will also receive a KMSU hat, a Finders Keepers 14 CD and a CD copy of your show to play over and over again for your friends who couldn't wake up early.

We enjoy offering this premium so much because it allows us the opportunity to meet our listeners and get a chance to find out what music they are into. It is also the biggest bang for your buck in Shuffle Function land!

Seriously, this is a lot of fun, and we only offer a limited number of these, so don't miss out!  Join us on the show!

$100  Premium Pledge  - KMSU Day Sponsorship

Maybe you are shy and don't want to personally be on the air, or maybe you would like us to mark a special birthday, anniversary or artist, then this is the premium for you. Tell us what you would like us to play and add in a personal message and we will design the day for you on the air. It is a chance for you to get very creative while at the same time supporting  KMSU and community radio. If you have some ideas for a day sponsorship, but would like to run them by us first, please son't hesitate to contact us at

$200 Premium Pledge - KMSU Record Expedition

For the third year in a row, KMSU will be embarking on an expedition to some of the best record stores in the Twin Cities, and we want you to join us!  An army of KMSU DJ’s and listeners will be hopping on a bus and and scouring some legendary record stores for the stuff that vinyl dreams are made of.  Want lists will be checked off, and collecting itches will be scratched.

The week after the Record Expedition we’ll all get the opportunity to justify our hardcore record binging by taking over the airwaves of KMSU and playing all the amazing new finds on the radio!  YOU GET TO PLAY RADIO ON YOUR FAVORITE RADIO STATION!  BUT WAIT! THERE’S MORE!  You’ll also get one of the super sweet KMSU hats to make all your friends jealous.

The KMSU Record Expedition is a blast, and we hope you’ll join us!  Pledge $200 to KMSU and hop on the bus to vinyl nirvana. Here are some photos from expeditions past to get you in the mood to pledge!

All of these premiums would make fantastic Holiday gifts, so keep that in mind when you make a pledge. Maybe you have a music geek in the family  that would love to play DJ for a day, or maybe you want to pick up the Howlin' Wolf collection to give to your best friend.  The fact is you simply cannot go wrong with this swag. As a bonus, your gift will help support community radio and KMSU too!

Once again, the KMSU Fall Pledge Drive starts THIS WEDNESDAY and runs through November 4th. Gully set the station's goal at $30,000, so please keep that in mind when you are mulling over your pledge amounts.

The phone numbers at the station are:
389 - 5678
1 - 800 - 456 - 7810

Sunday, October 23, 2016


I didn't get much of a chance to photograph this year's epic Grind-Fu Cinema cake made by Amber Rahe, but I know that Shyboy Tim did. So soon you should be seeing some incredible pictures and videos about the creation of the Black Phillip cake. But I think you might all be wondering what it looked like, especially if you were unable to be in attendance.  We had a big crowd last night, but I know that some of you weren't able to attend. So here is a little eye candy for you.

The second we decided on our double bill of The Witch and The Blair Witch Project, we knew the cake had to be Black Phillip, the utterly evil goat featured in the film The Witch. This cake ended up being the largest that Amber had ever tackled. There were some scares about making the long trek from Hilltop Hy-Vee to the Weicking with the cake, but he arrived safe and sound and wowed the Grind-Fu crowd.

We also had a subtle homage to The Blair Witch Project at the theater last night. Perhaps you may have noticed a few of them?

Saturday, October 22, 2016


Grind-Fu Cinema presents




 Saturday, October 22nd @ 7:00 pm
Wiecking 220 Auditorium
Minnesota State University, Mankato


7:00 - The Witch
9:00 - The Blair Witch Project

The 2016 Grind-Fu season has really flown by.  It was another schedule filled with bucket list double features, and we're once again grateful for Minnesota Arts & Cultural Heritage Grants that helped fund our schedule.  Thanks!

The final Grind-Fu of the year happens TONIGHT, and we've lined up some extremely terrifying movies for it.  The Grind-Fu crew feels confident that this year's October double bill is going to scare the crap out of you, and there's the very real possibility that it will result in sleepless nights.

Here's what we have in store for you...

The Witch (2015)
Directed by Robert Eggers

The Witch is a dark and brooding film, with slow tension that builds as an unknown force methodically torments a family.  It tells the story of a puritanical family in the 1600s that is forced to leave their community because of a conflict over how the New Testament is interpreted.  They relocate to a farm on the edge of a large forest far from their former community and try to build a new life, but almost immediately they're overtaken by tragedy and misfortune, all of which is drenched with sinister overtones.

Critics responded enthusiastically to The Witch, and it received a 91% fresh rating on Rotten Tomatoes.

Colvin Covert of the Minneapolis Star Tribune gave it 3 1/2 out of 4 starts, and said "Is The Witch a parable on fundamentalist hysteria or a devout warning against abandoning faith? It hardly matters. The dissonant musical soundtrack by composer Mark Korven and its gloomy natural lighting make each sequence electrify the imagination while maintaining an atmosphere of mystery. In whatever direction, it will scare the bejeezus out of you."

Justin Chang of Variety said "If The Witch is ultimately a cautionary tale of Christian belief run amok, it also seeks to give the Devil his due - to illuminate a collective paranoid nightmare by blurring the line where grim reality ends and dark fantasy beings."

Devin Faraci of Birth.Movies.Death wrote "The Witch is like someone adapted a 16th century woodcut of a witch's sabbath; it is intoxicatingly detailed and deeply unsettling... I have not seen a movie so real in a long time, and that realness is what makes all of the genre elements - all the genre elements that are so uniquely stirring - work so well."

The Witch is creepy as hell.  When Shyboy Tim saw it in the theater there were people that literally RAN from their seats.  that's a pretty good response for a horror film.

After Grind-Fu screens The Witch there will be an intermission, at which time cake will be served.  Bear in mind that this won't be your run of the mill sheet cake.  No sir.  The cake that is served at Grind-Fu Cinema is gruesome.  It's grotesque.  It crosses the line of good taste, and yet it's so amazingly delicious.  THIS IS A CAKE.  Each year our cake artist Amber comes up with a new and horrifying creation that wows the crowd, and what she has in mind for this year is gonna knock your socks off.

To give you an idea of what we're talking about, here are some of the cakes she's come up with in the past.  We told you she's an artist!

EWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWW... and yet so delicious!  Once your stomach is full of grotesque cake, we'll be showing...

The Blair Witch Project (1999)
Directed by Daniel Myrick and Eduardo Sanchez

After nearly 20 years of feeble found footage movies that all follow the same formula, it might be hard to remember just how revolutionary The Blair Witch Project was when it was released.  This is the movie that all the lesser movies copied, and to their detriment.  What was so effectively terrifying in this film was rendered lifeless when mimicked by others.  This is the movie that laid the foundation for an entire genre, and they made it for next to nothing.  It went on to become one of the most successful independent films of all time.

The entire cast and crew of Blair Witch was the three principal actors.  They did all the filming with handheld video and 16mm cameras, resulting a naturalistic "shaky cam" style.  The actors were sent into the woods with a basic story, but all the direction came from clues the actors would find using a GPS, and then the scenes would be improvised.  As a result, virtually everything in the film was as much a surprise to the cast as it was to the people that saw the final film.  This same surprise created a very real fear for the actors.  At one point one of them was so frightened that they wouldn't stop running in terror, and they had to be restrained by the production team.

The other part of the Blair Witch Project that was so innovative was that it was the first film to really use the internet to build hype and a mythology for the film.  The filmmakers created the website themselves, and they shot and photographed "evidence" that created the impression that what you would see on the screen was based on reality.  In fact, a large percentage of viewers truly believed that the actors weren't really actors at all, and that they died while researching the REAL Blair Witch.  That's how effective every aspect of the film was.

The original website is preserved on, and it's worth nosing around in to get a feel for how the filmmakers messed with people's minds.  If you use the original domain name now you'll just end up with a bunch of stuff for the weak new Blair Witch movie, so don't do that.  GO HERE to experience the original website.

Roger Ebert gave The Blair Witch Project four out of four stars, stating "At a time when digital techniques can show us almost anything, The Blair Witch Project is a reminder that what really scares us is the stuff we can't see.  The noise in the dark is almost always scarier than what makes the noise in the dark.  Any kid can tell you that.  Not that he believes it at the time."  He also said that the movie is one of the ten most influential movies of all time.

Colin Covert from the Minneapolis Star Tribune wrote that "Blair Witch is the most dangerous film in captivity.  It's a no-excuses horror show, with an emotional wallop like falling headlong into a bear trap."

Janet Maslin wrote in the New York Times that "The Blair Witch Project, a most inventive departure from standard horror fare, is frightening only insofar as its characters' panic seems real.  Everything else is left to the imagination.  And the imagination works overtime watching the acuity of these talented filmmakers, and wondering what bright idea they'll have next."

It's interesting to note that both of the films being show for Grind-Fu Cinema in October rate very high with critics and at about 50% with the audience on Rotten Tomatoes.  They seem to be movies that people either love or hate.  The gang at Grind-Fu Cinema LOVES both of these movies, and we think this is going to be a Halloween Grind-Fu for the ages.

By the way, this amazing and terrifying Grind-Fu double feature is FREE!  Bring your friends, bring some snacks, WEAR A COSTUME, and a willingness to be scared, and you will be in for a great evening of cinema.

Again, thanks to the Minnesota Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund for helping us put on these screenings.

I'm the new boy in town! Where can I go?