It is pretty fitting that Sam of dimestone saints and I have varying accounts about how we even met each other. And they reveal a bit about our personalities but mostly they differ because we have different ideas of the moment we regarded the other person as notable. Since mine is actually correct, I'll share mine first. I was introduced to Sam inadvertently on Twitter when he was retweeted into my timeline by Kyle of Cemeteries for being one of the vocal few to actually be talking about the new Cemeteries record Barrow. Considering the only person I talked to about the new Cemeteries record had pretty much been the man who made the record, I took immediate notice and gingerly tapped the follow button. Instead of talking about the record that made me take notice of him in the first place, I merely interjected on occasion about seemingly random things Sam was talking about at the time. The very modern model of a casual friendship developed much like two students might chat about nothing in particular until class starts on the first day of school.
I am not the most trusting in other's taste but Sam was able to win me over in a surprisingly short amount of time. Not due to our tastes aligning on anything in particular - though our mutual appreciation of Cemeteries and Daughter certainly did help. But what ultimately convinced me that Sam was the real deal was just his rather impressive work ethic. dimestore saints updates pretty consistently and the bands and artists Sam elects to talk about aren't the same ones everyone's eating up on Pitchfork and Stereogum. That in and of itself was winsome to me as so many bloggers in an effort to make a name for themselves or attract page views and the like, often write about more well known artists. Many of the artists Sam writes about are relatively unknown to me before he writes about them and the more "popular" artists he writes about he does so with passion and care. Ultimately what I like about Sam is that we approach music writing from similar mentalities.
So when rounding up a group of passionate music lovers to help ring in another year of All Around Sound for its annual mix swap, Sam's inclusion was a given. The friendship was newer and the waters relatively untested but our similarities connected us.
Sam's side of the story:
Dante is presently my favorite Twitter curmudgeon, one of the few people I know who might actually rival me in outwardly grumpiness. One of our first conversations on the platform concerned classical music, though; Dante's background as a violinist, paired with a seemingly insatiable appetite for discovering and dissecting music, yielded a handful of recommendations that steered me back towards a familiar genre with a new frame of mind for consumption.
I suppose that classical music theme runs through this birthday mix a bit, but not intentionally. Lately, we've been trading thoughts on effects pedals (he's quick to extoll the virtues of equalizers, while I'll go to bat for multiple delays on the same pedalboard), but our common ground falls on loopers. I started stockpiling this mix with songs that were either constructed around loops or retain that quality, and fleshed it out with impressionable tracks often on heavy rotation in the early evening, when a majority of our correspondence seems to take place.
So I guess this mix is a combination of topics and times I associate with Dante. Maybe he'll tell me it's complete garbage, but I'm banking on at least a 60% approval rating, based on his inclined tastes. Six years is an eternity to run a website and not get burnt out; kudos to Dante and All Around Sound for weathering the storm. Here's to six more.
Thanks to Sam for contributing this year and for the good he does over at dimestore saints.