(Artwork by Craig Robinson)
Once upon a time, somewhere around the turn of the century, when the internet was still pretty new and my email address ended in @aol.com, I would sometimes find myself writing a college term paper in the wee hours of the night. Even back then I knew the great procastinatory powers of the interwebs and would propel myself into a black hole of web surfing at the sight of a looming deadline. It was on such a night that I stumbled upon a brand new digital art form, Minipops: supertiny, pixelated drawings of famous personalities and musicians. Yes please! The creator was Craig Robinson (not to be confused with this Craig Robinson) and the website was www.flipflopflyin.com. I marveled at the tiny virtual kingdoms that loomed within its pages; these were the days that art on the internet was still taking shape and the idea of a browser window as your own personal stage was still pretty new. Mini animations, Cheap ABCs, and my personal favorite, Pete & Bob were early example of digital art in the brand new 21st century and I really dug it. Fast forward to 2005 where Craig and his Minipops get some major exposure by landing an ad campaign with internet giant, Yahoo! and I start following Craig's new blog. Not too long after that, I think to myself "Hey, this looks fun, I wanna do it too!" and start my own music blog. I decide to reach out to my favorite blog writers and see if they'd be interested in adding my site to their 'Links' pages. Craig was one of them and in 2006 I sent him this email:
On 25 Oct 2006, at 13:06, Marnie wrote:
Hi there Craig,
My name is Marnie and I'm a big fan of your creations. Cheers to that! More recently though, I just stumbled upon your blog and really enjoy it, particularly your monthly mixes. After listening to them I thought I'd send you the link to my own blog/weekly music podcasts; I figured since I really enjoyed listening to your mixes, perhaps you'll enjoy listening to mine (if you got nothing else to do, that is.) Its just such a huge, dizzying world we live in and it always blows my mind when I find people out there doing the same thing as me, for the same reasons. Well, I say 'huzzah' to that.
Anyways, I know this is a completely random email and who knows if it'll even get to you. Just thought I'd throw a little note out there and say 'Hi! Somewhere on the other side of the globe, someone enjoys reading your blog and listening to your mixes. And just cuz of that, the world got a little smaller.'
Wow, 2006 Marnie was so wide-eyed (the weight of the future world had yet to weigh her down..). I really wasn't expecting the maker of Minipops to write me back, but he did. And he added my blog link to his page to boot. And that, my friends, is the story of how I came to become internet friends with illustrator, designer and writer of fun books Craig Robinson. And now he will provide you all with a most rockin'est soundtrack that will make you bop in your seat. You may even find yourself suddenly inspired to see the world in tiny one-inch squares. And to that I say what 2006 Marnie once said: "Huzzah to that!"
A note from Craig:
In the middle of this mix there's a song called "A Part of Being With You" by the Professionals. I've not known this song very long. I was on vacation in Punta Gorda in the south of Belize in the summer, staying at a beautiful place in the jungle called Hickatee Cottages. I know the people who run the place, and there was one night when there were no other guests, so we had a few beers and a good old chat. Ian put on a compilation CD of Belizean music from the Sixties and Seventies called "Belize City Boil-Up." Maybe it was the Belikin beer, the jungle heat, or being with people whose company I was enjoying, but at that moment, that CD sounded like the best thing in the world. And that's how this mix started. From the days of making tapes for people in my teenage years, mixes have always begun with the desire to put one specific song in the centre of that mix. Everything on this mix arrived here because it felt like it could either lead up to or follow "A Part of Being With You." I hope you enjoy the mix.
1. She Was Happy Till She Met You: Jimmie Rodgers
2. Hear the Air: Mo-Ho-Bish-O-Pi
3. Race: Tiger
4. White Lightening: The Fall
5. Selective Walking: Andrew Weatherall
6. Living Room (Kevin Shields Remix): David Holmes
7. The Things That Dreams Are Made Of: Human League
8. A Part of Being With You: The Professionals
9. Lights Out (Peaking Lights Remix): Wooden Shjips
10. I Got A Woman: Elvis Presley
11. England Sandwich: Earl Brutus
12. LC1: Orbital
13. Face Up: New Order
14. Borderline: Madonna