Ten Songs You Should Listen To This Week ~ TSYSLTTW

 (Christopher Rolinson)

This week’s playlist is influenced by the WNYU day time radio shows, the CMJ charts for this week and some suggestions from fans.
Featured this week is a song by Psychic TV about the death of Brian Jones of the Rolling Stones. This is a classic from 1985, but the story about Brian Jones’ death is complex and is the source of several conspiracy theories. It over simplifies the tragic death and picks a side but stops short of blaming the members of the Rolling Stones for his death. It is worth checking out the video for Godstar here. There are several old news clips of the Rolling Stones shot at the time of Jones’ death.

A Sunny Day in Glasgow, despite the name, has roots in Philadelphia. This song uses a cross fader to effect the chorus vocals. It feels like a mistake or an error listening the first time through but it’s rhythmic and on the mark and is an added feature once you understand what the artist is doing.

The sleeper song on this list is definitely Air by Waxahatchee. The chorus vocals are lively and full. This is the only down tempo song on the list and that works out a-o-k.


The hardest working man in show business, James Brown and the Flames line in Paris November 25, 1967. Papa’s Got A Brand New Bag. This could be the best 14 minutes of your life.

Thanks for listening with me this week.

polaroid ~ things that cannot be seen clearly

Instant Polaroid negative scans. (© StartPoint Media, Inc.)

The perception of freedom in America is strong. Freedom only exists in the mind. The symbols of freedom are everywhere. It is marketed to you constantly. The flags, the bikes, the space, the wind, tree and life itself (which is only free for the very young). This image series warps and blurs the idea of freedom and makes its meaning less clear, less defined and blended. The process is not at all liberating. It is long. It is manic. Failure is an endemic, but you must continue to make work and move forward. You must do good for others and yourself. Just like with freedom you must work hard to to attain it. Hopefully this resonates.

The process is a bleached Polaroid negative image scanned and outputted as a digital fine art print. You can see the rest of the exhibit here.

Something New ~ Ten Songs You Should Listen To This Week ~ TSYSLTTW

The Hold Steady play during a concert sponsored by Levi's at the Braddock Carnegie Library Music Hall in Braddock, Pa. (Christopher Rolinson)

Photography has been great to me and it is an honor to help others achieve their visual goals. However, the foundation for much of what I do is music. It is the pulse that has driven my vision for decades. It can be a common ground for understanding and relating with creative individuals.

As a teenager in the 1980’s I explore new music at local record stores, Eides Music in Pittsburgh in particular. There I shared albums and tapes with friend who did not find musical connections with the music on commercial radio.

After high school, when I left for the army I carried mix tapes of my favorite alternative music, like New Order and Joy Division, and listened to them relentlessly when I could to get me through. During my enlistment, I spent countless weekend hours in Atlanta, Georgia exploring record shops in Little Five Points. I soaked up the culture, listening to WRAS and the deejays spinning in Buckhead. What I heard in Atlanta changed my musical life. After the army, I was determined to have a new music radio show in college.

I submitted an application to the radio station the day I arrived on campus. Not only did I have a show or ten, I was exposed to great people who also liked new music. Together, we chose the playlist for the WRSK Radio rotation, we simultaneously held the keys to music culture on our campus.

Almost weekly since then I have kept up with new music and share it with a few friends. I’ve had to get creative with my sources, like the Free Music Archive, WRAS Atlanta, The CMJ College Music Charts to name a few, my students and a handy little app for my phone called SoundHound.

I never really stopped playlisting music for myself but I very much miss the experience of curating music for listeners. I hope to provide a list every few weeks of the new music I’m listening to. The music may be new, like it came out this week. Or it may be very old and may be something I heard 20, 30 or 40 years ago and forgot about. Either way, the music will be cool and what I think it is worth listening to this week. Perhaps you like all of it. Maybe you find one or two new songs to add to your rotation. The point is there is so much music out there, much more than ever. There is so much of it that you and I have never heard before. Hopefully, this list inspires you to discover something that truly suits your music style. Together, we can listen to music.

You’ll need a free account to listen. The latest playlist can be found on SPOTIFY here:

Bo Diddley’s Look at Grandma featured on the Netflix series Master of None.


For Your Health #1 8 x 10 $110 (Christopher Rolinson)
For Your Health #1 8 x 10 $110 (Christopher Rolinson)

#LunchHourPGH is an uninfluenced visual record of the right now. The people in the images, who could be you or I, are cultural participants and consumers at the same time.

The images are made anonymously though close attention is paid to framing and timing. The subjects are caught completely unaware and are even somewhat oblivious to the presence of the photographer among them. Because of the anonymity, the viewer can see that there is a sense of discontent, disconnection and voyeurism linking the body of work.

Sixteen #LunchHourPGH images were printed on stretched canvas and were previously exhibited May 2015, River Gallery, Rocky River, Ohio. These one-of-a-kind exhibited images are available for purchase.

Nick Gozik: Eddie Slovik Has Died

Nick Gozik: Eddie Slovik Has Died from Veteran Voices of Pittsburgh on Vimeo.

US Army Veteran Nick Guzik passed away this week, he was 95. He was a witness to the execution of Private Eddie Slovik during World War II. Slovik was the only US service person to be put to death for desertion since the Civil War. Guzik vividly retells his experience in Sainte-Marie-aux-Mines, France to a 2011 gathering of the Pittsburgh based The Veterans Breakfast Club. This is the only known recording of Guzik’s story of the last day of January 1945. Sixty-six years later he still questions the morality of the killing and considers Slovik to have died bravely.

Preserving stories are at the heart of The Veterans Breakfast Club and the Veteran Voices of Pittsburgh Oral History Initiative. I am privileged to have heard and preserved his first hand account of history. Thank you, Nick.

Documentary Videography: Christopher Rolinson
Editing: Kevin Farkas, Veteran Voices of Pittsburgh

Screen Shot 2015-10-21 at 10.28.02 PM

The Monkey in the Room

Sue Buck from christopher rolinson on Vimeo.

A few weeks ago I had the opportunity to participate in Allegheny College’s annual photojournalism workshop. The topic for this year was focused on the women of the Meadville community. I acted as a mentor/collaborator with a student from Ohio University. We had the opportunity to visit retired Allegheny College professor Sue Buck.

Prof. Buck is an artist who works with textiles and drawing. She has committed her life in retirement to drawing to raise money and awareness for The Center for Great Apes.

Coraopolis Train Station Project

Coraopolis Train Station Project from christopher rolinson on Vimeo.

This video was created for a crowd sourcing campaign to help renovate the Coraopolis Train Station in Coraopolis, PA. The station, when renovated, will be the junction of the Montour and Ohio River bike trails. From here you can ride continuously to Washington DC.

The campaign is ongoing and will run through May 2015. The goal is to raise $75,000.

You can check out the Indiegogo campaign here:


this earth belongs to them

this earth belongs to them from christopher rolinson on Vimeo.

This is a creative personal project I created with my children. They are at the age where they love to make films with me. I am grateful that they enjoy spending the time with me. I hope these films make great memories for their lifetime. We have more adventures planned for the summer of 2015. Stay tuned!

andrew rolinson
maxwell rolinson

writing and production
christopher rolinson

gathering storm/il pleut à mourir [+Clatters Like Worry]
by Godspeed You! Black Emperor

©2015 startpointmedia, inc.