Music from Bloomington, Indiana, Circa 1997: Java and Chive

Recently, I happened across a link to some music that I haven’t heard in a long, long while. While I was an undergraduate at Indiana University in Bloomington, Indiana… my friend Kevin Seal played a lot of music. Two bands he was involved with were Java and Chive.

I’m not 100% clear on when I first heard these songs, or when I first got my hands on their cassette. But I recall listening to a lot of it, over and over again. In looking over some of the notes, I apparently got one of 200 cassettes that had songs by both Java and Chive.

Of course, these songs are from a long while back – 10 years, to be exact. And my friend Kevin continues to be heavily involved with music. He now lives out west, works for Pandora, hosts the Pandora podcast, and plays in a band called Griddle.

Eight years ago, when I was first starting to play around with Flash, I ended up animating one of Kevin’s songs and made a visualization of “Head in Hands.” That song is probably one of the first songs I became fixated on, and listened to over and over and over again.

If you like the style Head in Hands, you may like Your Day of Consequence, another song where Kevin also plays keyboard and sings.

Songs like Amsterdam still impress me, on listening to it today. I think the key changes (jumping between major and minor and back again) are incredibly slick and refreshing. I’ve been listening to a few of these songs on my way home from work, and I find myself humming along.

Irish Scotch remains silly, and still makes me smile.

There’s something about music that helps transport you to a very specific place and time. As I’m listening to these songs, part of me is sitting in my first apartment in Chicago, playing around with Flash 4 and motion tweens. Another part of me is in Bloomington, Indiana – living in a house with four other guys, and flipping a cassette tape over and over and over again.

Griddle: San Francisco Bay Area Independent Rock
Poetry at Pandora
Bachelor Party, Part 1: A Song 12 Years in the Making
Kevin Visits Chicago: Pandora Video Shoot at Buddy Guy’s Legends
Old Trees, Old Friends
Pandora Podcast: The Basics of Vocal Harmony

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