44 episodes

Emil Amos charts the birth and development of the classic archetype 'The Outsider', telling disturbing and often humiliating stories about growing up in a small town in the 90’s. Every other episode digs into the archaeology of lesser-known music to illuminate the same themes from a more objective, historical perspective.

Emil Amos' Drifter's Sympathy itunesu_sunset

    • Music
    • 4.9 • 321 Ratings

Emil Amos charts the birth and development of the classic archetype 'The Outsider', telling disturbing and often humiliating stories about growing up in a small town in the 90’s. Every other episode digs into the archaeology of lesser-known music to illuminate the same themes from a more objective, historical perspective.

    I WANT TO LIVE A PEACEFUL LIFE

    I WANT TO LIVE A PEACEFUL LIFE

    We've reached the Final Hour of this season... for now...
     Emil went out to his mother's farm and recorded the finale of these 6 episodes in the middle of the night while drinking a significant amount of moonshine. He enters a strange and dazed state of mind, temporarily entering a flashback of the 'religious episode' he experienced in 1998. After several years of being held captive inside an extreme and crippling depression, he had a dream where God came to him and said that it was finally time to experience what actual happiness is.
      This cast is about the epic struggle to appreciate life itself, and how, if we are lucky enough to achieve any kind of peak experience of what enlightenment is, we have no idea how long that insight will stay before releasing us back into the world as it is generally seen. The cast ends in 1999 with Emil moving up to Portland where his artistic life began all over again. Because of the eerie quiet and meditative quality of this cast, its best listened to while alone, late at night.
      
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    • 56 min
    RARE SOUNDTRACKS III

    RARE SOUNDTRACKS III

    Emil and Alex recently got off a massive Grails tour that took them to places as disparate as Poland, Turkey, Estonia and Lithuania, ending up in Copenhagen where they recorded this cast at Alex's apartment.  It begins with the two reflecting on how traveling as a band can reach heavy emotional impasses that require a kind of comedic release and Grails have established a dense list of guilty pleasures that've eased their morning hangovers after touring Europe for over 15 years. The conversation eventually moves into their love of British and Italian library music and ends with record shopping in Greece underneath the Parthenon.  Because this season has been consistently thematically 'heavy', "Rare Soundtracks III" serves as a necessarily lighthearted entry for this run of 6 episodes. The next episode will return to Emil's breakdown, gradual breakthrough and eventual move up to Portland, Oregon to begin the next chapter of his life. 
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    • 1 hr 6 min
    LOST DECADE

    LOST DECADE

    This episode dives completely into the field of extreme, paralyzing alienation and the hovering spectre of the failure of your childhood dreams. It also features a tribute to the healing power of the music of Daniel Johnston... a singer that has the power to build a profound bridge out to you when you are in the most debilitating pain. 
     Although this cast unrelentingly focuses on the sensation of floating in the space of a certain kind of loneliness, it posits a central wager that if you follow that Alone-ness ALL the way through to its logical conclusion, being alone can eventually transform into a kind of superpower... and point the way towards a crucial kind of inner redemption and spiritual understanding.
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    • 1 hr 2 min
    THE RENAISSANCE OF HOME RECORDING

    THE RENAISSANCE OF HOME RECORDING

     This episode brings the Drifter's documentary-style series on the history of Home Recording to a close for now...🍏  The sheer amount of info in this one could've easily gone into a 300 page book, given that the 'lo-fi'-era has barely been acknowledged as existing as a legitimate form of expression at all. As home-recording has historically only been seen as a stepping stone towards more traditional forms of music industry careerism, Emil tries to re-frame the impulse and phenomenon as its own real and beautiful sub-world of vital documentation in itself.
     Whereas the previous episode "The Dawn of Home Recording" examines the impulse of Les Paul's initial invention of the overdub, this cast investigates what happens when you hand that technology over to tomorrow's freaks to make their own private, warped fantasies undeniably real.
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    • 1 hr 11 min
    THE ODYSSEY

    THE ODYSSEY

     Emil has a nervous breakdown in New York, packs everything into his car and starts driving south. He takes a sabbatical in his childhood home in North Carolina thinking it will offer some perspective, but it only brings on a full mid-life crisis which he realizes he's been needing and fully embraces. While cleaning his mom's old house and looking at baby pictures, he has a revelation about what truly carves a person into their eventual individuality. On a lark, he begins to fantasize about reconnecting with his very first guru Ron... the gay deadhead who initially got him into LSD 25 years beforehand. Luckily, Ron is quickly located and ends up being exactly as forthcoming, sweet and helpful as he always was.
     This episode features special spots on two other Chapel Hill gurus Dexter Romweber and Mac McCaughan, ...thank you for inspiring younger kids like Emil in their small towns to try and think bigger than their regular programming. And apologies to Link Wray, Max Roach and many more for not remembering that you were from North Carolina... ALSO... WTF!! 💥 >.....WE F*****G FOUND RON!! 🍻  
     
     [for timeline clarification, this episode jumps out of the lineage of previous episodes about the 90's into our current time and looks back on our development & our earliest decisions...]
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    • 59 min
    THE DAWN OF HOME RECORDING

    THE DAWN OF HOME RECORDING

     Season 4 opens with a historical dig into the culture of home recording, beginning with Les Paul's initial invention of the overdub and then down the winding path of loner practitioners who seized his technology to exorcise their demons.
      Les Paul couldn't get electronic companies to listen to his ideas on multi-tracking for a couple decades so out of pure frustration, he assembled the ability to overdub in his garage using his father's old car parts and two lathe-cutting machines. After scoring 7 number one hits from his garage using the power of the overdub, he innovated a new way to add extra heads to mono-recorders and forced the Ampex Tape Machine company to accept that a new era had arrived. This changed music production forever and eventually put the power of recording entire records and exploring one's own imagination into the hands of the lone individual. 
     The focus and frustration that pushes someone towards invention parallels the same dynamic we experience when pushed to a breakthrough during spiritual struggle, which this season's odd-numbered story episodes will discuss. The advent of home recording opened up new channels and possibilities in private expression while inadvertently creating an 'underground' in-itself. This episode explores the beauty of this new free, independent world with R. Stevie Moore as its core underdog hero, someone who exemplifies the ceaseless searching and private alchemy of the home recorder. 
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    • 52 min

Customer Reviews

4.9 out of 5
321 Ratings

321 Ratings

HazelNoon ,

for anyone digging their way out

non "inspirational" comforting but candid companion for anyone digging their way out, you don't need to know music to feel this. listened while in recovery from a near-death accident that interrupted an internal crisis. this was home in the hospital and the weeks after. still my favorite

cubichotwing ,

Hoping another season appears

The best podcast I’ve found

T. Leonardo ,

beautiful weaving of so much to discover

will forever be my favorite podcast find. It should be turned into a book or something visual too

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