Ted Nugent Is A Sweetheart

I know because I’ve met him. He was kind, cool, gentle, generous and awesome. I’ve known and am related to others who have met him and they feel the same. Maybe it’s because we’re all from Michigan. People are just nicer and more laid back there.

Also, as I’ve been reminded the last couple days while listening to some records I haven’t played in a long, long time — how much he rocks like nobody’s business when he’s on his game.

In honor of his upcoming August 20 show here in the Tampa Bay area, here are some stats from my little web app. I have one set of PHP scripts that daily and weekly grab data from the Spotify WebAPI. I track popularity scores for artists, albums, and tracks as well as followers for artists. Followers for artists is 99% boring because they just continue upward so that line chart on the left side of Figure 01 represents what most of them look like. Boring. I have another set of scripts written in Python that grab data from Last.fm using the MBIDs from MusicBrainz.org.

Last.fm can only grab one thing at a time which sucks hardcore. With Spotify, sometimes you’re limited to 20 or 50 things at a time but at least you can get 20-50 things at a time! The Python scripts take for-ev-er. All of that data then goes into various tables in a MySQL database.

The app’s … can I call it an app if it’s a web app? Or is it just a regular old site albeit a data-driven site? I call it PopRock because it started tracking only popularity on Spotify. The home page is a list of the artists I track — a total of 326 as of this moment.

Many were chosen because they were either nominated for induction to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, possibly inducted to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, or there are countless articles about the fact that they are continually snubbed or overlooked by the Rock Hall. I was curious about whether their popularity was affected by such announcements.

nearPlaycount.png
Figure 00: PopRock’s home page with artists sorted by Last.fm playcount. The default order is A-Z but users can sort by Popularity, Followers, Listeners, and Playcount. You’d be surprised how different the table appears when you change it.

Others were chosen because I’m interested in them, there is or was a movie coming out about them, or they might die soon and I am so pissed that I didn’t have David Bowie or Prince in when they died. I can’t believe I didn’t already have them in given how much I love each of them–especially Bowie.

All of the artists in Figure 00 are in Spotify and some also get data from Last.fm. I really mean only some — it’s just pure luck or coincidence that sorting the table by playcount to see which artists are “near” Ted Nugent brought nothing but artists for which I get data from both places. Originally, I was just going to screen grab five above and five below Nugent but I stretched it since going another 1 or 2 brought in both Joan Jett and her one-time bandmates, Evil Stig.

There is a growing list of artists with data only from Last.fm and I am in the process of making a page just for them. Integrating both data sets into every “feature” has proven not only sometimes difficult but it tends to break stuff for days — the damage sometimes compounded because I may have missed it and kept coding before I noticed it.

Writing the AJAX for the sorting was challenging enough without … changing what data is displayed and then changing my mind again.

nugent_artistChart.png
Figure 01: The main or home page for this artist. A work in progress.

Here are some closeups. Neither of the Spotify-based line graphs give any real, useful information, but they were great for learning Javascript, jQuery, and D3 as well as PHP and Python. There’s still a lot of work to do as I want to make almost everything on the site interactive which will increase it’s usefulness a ton as well as the “fun factor.”

nugentSummary.png
Figure 02: I really don’t like those default “pill boxes” in Bootstrap.

Artist and album cover art images come mostly from Spotify. For the few that are Last.fm-only come from some art archive something or other that rarely works so if I have an album from MB/LastFM that isn’t also in Spotify, I just hunt it down with a Google Image search because life is too short.

Nugent began with The Amboy Dukes, a band that was equally cool yet sounded nothing like his eventual solo work. Here are their stats.

amboyDukesSummary.png
Figure 03: And I need to do something about that dynamic title, don’t I?

Normally, the Spotify Followers graphs all look like Nugent’s below, no matter what the range is in the Y axis so I was surprised to see that jump for the Amboy Dukes in mid-April. Also, odd jumps like that usually happen Spotify-wide so I find this one particularly interesting because it didn’t appear anywhere else. What could possibly influence the Amboy Dukes?

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Figure 04: Spotify Followers for Ted Nugent (left) and the Amboy Dukes (right) made with D3.js

I still haven’t quite decided on a solution for messes like this next one.

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Figure 05: Spotify popularity for many of Nugent’s albums. Also made with D3.js

My greed for data is never satisfied so I grab data for every edition of every album. So, for artists with relatively few albums it gets far too wide — especially if I ever decide I want to make this mobile-friendly. If you look closely, you can see the last album is cut off — and I have the SVG width at something ridiculous like 2400px. I am considering the following (no pun intended):

  • Putting the SVG in a “scrollable” DIV
  • Making the chart vertical
  • Just purging many of the “duplicate” albums from my database
  • Hmm … just thought of this one … starting with a few and making the rest optional. The user can drag thumbnails from outside the graph and then it’s their problem if it get’s too wide.

Gosh. Darn. His music is so awesome. “Workin’ Hard, Playin’ Hard” is on now. I’m listening to my Wholesome, Calming Ted Nugent Mix playlist on Spotify.

Wholesome Calming Ted Nugent Mix playlist on Spotify
Figure 06: Click here or search for this playlist on Spotify

Speaking of songs, here are his most played albums according to Last.fm and his most “popular” albums according to Spotify.

nugeAlbumsSpotAndLastFM.jpg
Figure 07: Even little things like comparing these two charts are what I love about data.

I love finding out what’s the same and what’s different … whether it’s people, cultures, music charts, whatever. I wish the above two sources had an Insights blog like PornHub. Sex is great and all, but PornHub’s data blog — that’s what really turns me on.

Ted’s charts don’t contain any surprises for the most part. Of course the eponymous debut is #1 on both because it has Stranglehold, followed closely by Cat Scratch Fever (because it’s a masterpiece) then Free-for-All because, I mean, damn … he got a local (then) singer named Meat Loaf for, like, $2 when he was struggling at Motown Records. You’ve got “greatest hits” compilations through both. Hunt Music and Spirit of the Wild stay up there for one reason and one reason alone — the ethereal, magical, amazing, spiritual, ass-kicking, galaxy-rocking song that is “Fred Bear“. I doubt I am alone in being only able to name that one song from either album. Intensities In 10 Cities is a good album and all but it’s probably only there because of Wayne’s World.

Ooh, hold on … “You Make Me Feel Right At Home” is on … How is it that Frank Zappa and Ted Nugent are the only two rockers who use … I don’t know if it’s a xylophone or a marimba … but it’s just perfect.

I’ve never understood the love for his debut solo album. There. I’ve said it. I’m sorry.

I want to say I’m surprised that Love Grenade and Craveman are so close to the top but I can’t speak with any authority because I’ve never bothered to listen to either of them. You know what, I’ll bet they’re high up because people listen to them on streaming … nope, nope … they’re on the LastFM chart … which means it’s more likely those albums were paid for, right?

And now, as I promised earlier … the songs … okay, now, check this out …

tracksSpot_nuge.png
Figure 08: Most popular Ted Nugent songs on Spotify

Normally, on a Spotify list, there are lots of duplicates because you have true music-lovers listening to actual albums but also a lot of people listening to whatever single they’ve heard from some compilation. Figure 08, however, looks like an actual ranking while the Last.fm chart looks like what I’d expect from Spotify.

tracksLastFM_nuge.png
Figure 09: Most played Ted Nugent songs according to Last.fm

All of that is just … whatever … you may, like me, be more curious about the Amboy Dukes. I won’t bother showing their album rankings because a) they didn’t have many and b) you know full well what #1 is as well as #2 and why. In that spirit, I’ve taken the liberty of crossing out the obvious tracks so we can look at the other, more exciting players on the chart.

tracksSpot_Dukes.jpg
Figure 10: Most popular Amboy Dukes tracks on Spotify

How is “Missionary Mary” so low? And where the heck is “Saint Philip’s Friend”? Where, I ask! It turns up here, as I’d expect (see above) on the Last.fm list.

insta_tracksLastFM_Dukes.jpg
Figure 11: Most played Amboy Dukes songs according to Last.fm

If you ever get the chance to talk to Mr. Nugent, conversation with him is more likely to sound like “Why a Carrot is More Orange Than an Orange” than “Wang Dang Sweet Poontang.” Seriously. He’s great.

Ted Nugent was my second concert. Bon Jovi was supposed to open for him but didn’t show.

1984.jpg
Figure 12: Me wearing my Ted Nugent concert t-shirt from the Penetrator tour. I find it interesting that the album cover didn’t use the traditional logo but the shirt did. Wait a second … the album used the same logo as the Free-for-All album — I never noticed!

Until recently (then recently, not now recently) my hair was down to my shoulders. The burnout princess I went to the concert with was less than thrilled about my haircut. Truth be told, so was I. I took the Peter Criss solo album to the barber and said I wanted my hair to look like that. It didn’t.

Here is a playlist of his setlist for that night:

Spotify playlist based on Ted Nugent Setlist from April 27, 1984 in Detroit
Figure 13: Click here or search for this playlist on Spotify

 

I saw him again for the 1990/1991 Whiplash Bash. The Damn Yankees were in high rotation so it was a Ted Nugent/Damn Yankees concert which is the closest I’ve ever been to a Styx concert.

One of the few memories I have of my father is him buying me Nugent by Ted Nugent at … Kmart or something … and listening to it in his car. It was one of those depressing … visits at one of his depressing apartments after my parents divorced.

I think I’ll go see him in August. That, I think, would rock.

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Motley Crue and Javascript D3

A few months ago, I posted a line graph showing the drastic increase in popularity of Queen and their song “Bohemian Rhapsody on Spotify. Well, Motley Crue has a movie out, too.

crueCurrentPopEtc.png
Figure 01: The Dirt was released on Netflix March 22

That’s just their Spotify Popularity score which, under most circumstances, is pretty useless. When the popularity score makes a significant change outside of the normal Spotify popularity ebb and flow (more on that later), it can make graphs that rock like the one above.

Before we get to their Spotify Followers and some techie stuff, here’s how the movie affected their albums’ popularity.

albumsMonth.png
Figure 02: Between March 17 and April 17, their albums also jumped up quite a bit.

The above was made with a little help from Photoshop. I don’t yet know how to make split columns like that with D3.js but the data is just as real.

crueFormattedFollowers.png
Figure 03: I started tracking Motley Crue‘s followers March 17, five days before Dirt‘s release.

Creating the above graph for Spotify Followers was more of a pain in the butt than I thought it would be. I thought all I’d have to do was replace my pop variable with followers. They’re even in the same table now, so … you know, right? I wanted to have multiple artists represented with multiple lines showing just how drastic that steep line is. But the range of popularity and followers for the artists I track in my database is HUGE so, even after narrowing down the artists, the Y-Axis went from  1 million to 30 million and the lines were all flat — or, at least, that’s how they looked unless I were to make the graph ten feet tall like this quickly made column graph showing Followers for this year’s Rock and Roll Hall of Fame nominees that’s ugly for all kinds of reasons. I totally thought I was doing something wrong.

friends.png
Figure 04: Lame, lame, lame.

Even just sorting the followers column and grabbing the artists above and below Motley Crue didn’t really help.

phpMyAdminPopFollow.png
Figure 05: I wanted to include artists in recent news as a point of reference but Queen and the Stones (let alone Eminem) blow the curve.

I have to say I fell in love with this little query just now:

SELECT p.pop, p.followers, a.artistName
FROM popArtists p
JOIN artists a ON a.artistID = p.artistID
WHERE date = '2019-04-17'
ORDER BY followers DESC

It was so much easier to write than the query I wrote while relatively inexperienced to get the most recent data. Anyway, my array of artists got so small and still looked so lame I gave up on that idea but I still had this problem to solve:

crueUnformattedFollowers.png
Figure 06: You’re looking to the left at the Y-Axis, that’s what’s different.

At first, I thought that would be easy. Just like I thought the whole thing would be. The “Motley Crue and Friends” multi-line chart was based on a more recent project. I learned how to make multi-line charts a while after I made the single-line version and, by that time, I’d also learned to stop doing this:

const w = 1100;
const h = 400;
const padding = 40;

and start doing this:

var w = 1000;
var h = 400;
padding = {
top: 50,
right: 30,
bottom: 350,
left: 100
};

The latter chunk of code makes everything delightful. Specifically, I could add some padding to just the left side, easily making room for those huge numbers in the tens of millions for “Motley Crue and Friends” because that file used a padding object with four properties instead of a single padding variable. When I increased the padding for what I guess I’ll call “Motley Crue All by themselves” it squished the graph from every direction making it even more hideous than it is up there if you can imagine that. Don’t. Really, don’t imagine that.

Originally, I had this humble bit o’ code:

const yAxis = d3.axisLeft()
.scale(yScale);

… which was fine for a simple 0-100 scale. To go from the horrifying Y-Axis in Figure 06 to the downright sexy Y-Axis in Figure 03, I learned to do this:

formatMillions = d3.format(".3s");
const yAxis = d3.axisLeft ()
.scale (yScale)
.tickFormat (function(d) { return formatMillions(d) } );

First, I looked through the epic-length documentation for D3-format (from a link I found in StackOverflow) which was not easy reading let me just tell you. It boils down to this:

  1. Make a function using format which is a … library? … but I didn’t have to import it or anything. I think that’s because I link to the D3cdn? … at d3js.org. I like naming my variables and functions something descriptive like “formatMillions.”
  2. Then, use that function on your data inside a tickFormat function after the yScale you already have.

That was easily the worst job I have ever done explaining anything.

There seemed to be an endless list of other, far more complicated ways to do this but I found “.2s” (the winning answer at SO) to be pretty simple. It rounds your millions down to one decimal and adds an “M” to the end. I didn’t want one decimal place, I wanted two — because otherwise all my ticks look like they have the same value! Whoever asked the question followed up with “How do I get two decimal places?” but nobody answered. Several places on SO and elsewhere all mentioned “.2s” and gave other complicated ways to get two decimal places with things I didn’t want like the symbol for euros and emojis and whatnot. I kept looking in this pit of documentation and despair for a while before I finally just tried “.3s” and it worked.

Spotify and LastFM Data for Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Class of 2019

The ongoing project I’m usually busiest with is PopRock — a web app that tracks statistics and creates data visualizations using data from the Spotify Web API and the Last.fm API.

From Spotify, I grab artist Popularity and Followers (daily) as well as Popularity for albums and tracks (weekly). That is

  • 327 artists
  • Their 5,742 albums
  • The 75,283 tracks from those albums

If you’ve never heard of Last.fm, it gathers data via “scrobbles” from all participants who have a “scrobbling” app installed. When you, the music lover, listen to a song using iTunes, Spotify, etc. the app sends that bit of information as a “scrobble” to Last.fm. As often as I remember to, I run a Python script that gathers the Listeners and Playcount for each artist, their albums and tracks. At the moment, this task is so cumbersome, I keep the list relatively short — 32 artists.

What brings joy to my nerdy little heart is when there’s an event that creates an anomaly or jump in my data. For example, a movie about Queen causes a spike in popularity — especially for a particular song (“Bohemian Rhapsody”) or a movie about Motley Crue causes a spike in their popularity.

What brings sadness to my heart is how little influence the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame has on my little data exercises. For the most part, neither inductions nor nominations cause much of a change. Having said that, I look forward to the announcement of nominations every year as well as to the broadcast of the induction ceremony. The ceremony was held last week and the ceremony will air on HBO April 27. To celebrate that, I’m going to share some data and charts for this year’s nominees and inductees.

Below (Figure 01) is the Spotify popularity for the Class of 2019.

compareBars.png
Figure 01: L-to-R Def Leppard, Janet Jackson, Radiohead, Roxy Music, Stevie Nicks, the Cure, the Zombies

I’ve already written about how Spotify calculates their popularity score numerous times and every article about the RRHoF repeats their rules and controversy so forgive me if I don’t regurgitate all of that here.

Induction Process and Eligibility Requirements, etc.

compareLines_Inductees.png
Figure 02: A line starts on the day (or day after) I add an artist to my database.

As you can see, all artists flow together for the most part — because Spotify’s popularity scores are relative. That’s what caused all of them to go down together in late June, climb back up and fall again together in February. Given that, the lines, in a vacuum, would be pretty straight. Knowing that, the nominations announced in December 2018 seem to have no effect.

Speaking of nominations, here are those who were nominated last year but not inducted.

compareBars_Noms.png
Figure 03: L-to-R: Devo, John Prine, Kraftwerk, LL Cool J, MC5, Rage Against the Machine, Rufus featuring Chaka Khan, Todd Rundgren

Like many people, I find it extremely difficult to keep my thoughts about this to myself. At least three of those artists deserve to be in more than at least three of the inductees. But, of course, if the RRHoF used reason and logic, people wouldn’t write motherloads of articles and blog posts about them twice a year.

compareLines_Noms.png
Figure 04: Yes, I know I need to tweak a couple things. It’s a work in progress.

The only artist I would say was really affected by their nomination is the MC5. I would expect all of them would bump up because the public was reminded of these artists and listened to them like, “Oh, yeah, I haven’t listened to LL Cool J in forever” but, in the case of the MC5, I think it’s more like, “Who are the MC5?” and I am just fine with a new generation being exposed to them by any means necessary. Very similar to another highly-influential Detroit band, The Stooges (inducted 2010). I’m still waiting for Ted Nugent to get selected for consideration to be put on the ballot. Once.

Because popularity is relative, you might be thinking the line charts are pretty useless and you’d be right. If I look at each artist individually, however,  and change the Y-axis from a 0-to-100 scale to a lowest-to-highest scale, they become (a little) more useful. Sometimes. This begins a series of posts about each inductee that do exactly that with some more useful statistics and data visualizations.

Before we go on, however, here’s something more useful — a graph using each artist’s followers on Spotify.

followerColumnsX.png
Figure 05: L-to-R: Def Leppard, Kraftwerk, Janet JacksonJohn Prine, DevoLL Cool J, MC5, RadioheadRage Against the Machine, Roxy MusicRufus featuring Chaka Khan, Stevie Nicks, The Cure, The ZombiesTodd Rundgren

Day-um! Radiohead has some fans, yo!

That wide range between, for example, The Zombies (who deserve better, by the way) and Radiohead makes for what could be considered a clunky chart.

In other charts, the ratio for popularity (which is, conveniently, on a scale of 0-100) is 1:2. One popularity point gets represented by two pixels so I can fight against the opposite problem of a chart that’s too small. The ratio in the above chart is 5000:1. 5000 followers to one pixel.

Chrome’s dev tools were invaluable in troubleshooting that.

I love how “good” I’m getting at math now that it’s always in a real, practical context. For the labels on top of the columns I first checked to see whether the number was above or below one million.

  • If it was below, I divided by 1000 and used Javascript‘s toFixed(0) method to strip away the decimal places — which super conveniently converts the integer to a string which I concatenated with a “k”.
  • If it was above, I divided by one million, used toFixed(1) and added the “M”.

Curiosity Is Killing Me Over Trends In Spotify Data

A couple days ago, I noticed a downward trend in two random artists’ popularity. I instantly wondered if it was everybody (except the Latin artists) so, today, I ran some “tests.”

compareTimeFeb21.png

Yep, it’s definitely happening to everybody. Just to make sure, I did several groups.

allRappers.png
Note all the Christian rappers clustered down at the bottom.  Sad. They deserve better.

Seriously, isn’t that weird?

detroit.png

Doesn’t that bother you and gnaw at your brain?

classicElders.png

It’s just ridiculous. Most of the data from Spotify is worthless unless you look at Queen vis a vis the Bohemian Rhapsody film.

xianPunk.png
From September to present, Christian punk and christian alternative are … something.

I really need to make the text wrap in those legend items.

And I definitely want to go back to some of those and check out which artists have the more interesting … “lines” … there’s gotta be an actual term I should be using.

So I definitely need to create some buttons and menus so I don’t have to keep going into the files and manually typing which arrays I want the D3 to use.

As I predicted, the Latin artists weren’t affected at all.

latin.png

It vexes me. I’m very vexed.

Some individual artists have what I consider pretty interesting line-things. Those artists who, apart from the overall similarity of all the artists as shown in the preceding graphs sometimes jump around on their own (like in the preceding graphs — those that are doing their own thing that I’ll investigate further … later).

So, ignoring the universal (except for Alternativo and Rock en Espanol) late-July/early-August dip and the late-February dip …

rainbow.png

Rainbow keeps wanting to go up but goes back down almost immediately. Speaking of, I found a really great Rainbow concert on YouTube. Here is a playlist of above average videos of most of the concert and “Catch the Rainbow Part 1” which isn’t in the playlist. You’re welcome. I coded a bunch of the Python & LastFM stuff while watching it.

King’s X fans also can’t seem to make up their mind.

kingsX.png

And, lastly, Deep Purple

deepPurple.png

If you’re trying to compare those, be aware of the X-Axis — they show different spans of time. When looking at an individual artist’s page, the graph begins and ends with whenever I added them to my database (begins) and ends with present day so you could be looking at a span of just a few weeks or a span of well over one year.

Celebrating Rock en Español

First, I need to say that I need to start documenting how I create and fix things. Recruiters and hiring peeps aren’t going to be impressed by my music nerdiness. So, while I’m thinking about it, I want to point out things I notice that catch my attention and need fixing or tweaking.

EspanolLines.jpg
LatinX, a new Latin Alternative & Indie show is starting on WMNF in Tampa in a few days!
  • The first thing I noticed is my rockers en español have longer names than, say, my thrashers and black metalheads. Good timing for me to notice that as I am working on making text labels fit into my treemap leaves (aka tiles aka rects) so that won’t be too difficult to fix (he says, jinxing it). Actually, perhaps I should just give any español charts more room in the legend. Fewer per row. And write a post about it.
  • Then I noticed many of their lines stopped in mid-to-late December. This happens once in a while. Primary theory is human error when copying and pasting, but I thought … ugh … it’s a pain in the butt to find where I made the mistake but … *sigh* … anyway … another easy enough thing to fix.

Last thing I noticed (no bullet because this isn’t a “fix”) is how consistent or “straight” their lines are. Let’s compare this group to an updated Thrash & Black Metal chart.

thrash2019.png
Grr … it looks like many of these guys stopped getting tracked in mid-to-late Dec, too!

See that relatively big drop around July 1, 2018 followed by a gradual rise that’s still happening, albeit slowing a little? That exact same trend appeared with my Rock and Roll Hall of Fame artists …

2019-nominees

Both nominees and inductees.

2019-inductees

What also find interesting is how differently that “event” affected the Thrash & Black Metal artists. Not a lot but enough that it makes me curious. Nowhere near as curious as I’m made by how unaffected any of the español artists are!

Another thing I notice and, despite my irritation, I keep putting off is that extra space on the right side … the SVG (or the chart width inside it) stops too far (or soon) before the edge of the Bootstrap panel thingy. I really need to tame some stuff in Bootstrap but, honestly, it’s low on my priority list for many reasons, not the least of which is I know it’ll be about as much fun as editing WordPress themes and styles.

latinColumnsCropped.jpg
L-to-R: Aterciopelados, Belanova, Fangoria, Heroes Del Silencio, Hombres G, Julieta Venegas, La Oreja de Van Gogh, Los Prisioneros, Moderatto, Molotov, Plastilina Mosh, Zoe

The very respectable popularity scores surprised me as much as their consistency over time. The reason for my surprise is that most of the music I like tends to get relatively (and extremely) low scores. I was particularly surprised by the high scores of some older artists — maybe, in that sense, “classic” Rock en Español is still as popular as American classic rock.

The Real Goal: Combining Related Artists

This goal is, let’s say, 90% achieved. A long-time goal with this app was to display albums by artists related by … a member. For example, if I want to see all of Steve Taylor‘s albums:

Screen Shot 2018-12-22 at 1.27.34 PM.png

The above graph includes albums by

  • Steve Taylor (with Squint! Associated now with the correct Steve Taylor!)
  • Chagall Guevara
  • Steve Taylor and the Perfect Foil
  • Steve Taylor and the Danielson Foil

Isn’t it beautiful to see all of that in Spotify? God answers prayer, yo.

Or, if I want to see all of Joan Jett’s discography:

Screen Shot 2018-12-22 at 1.34.33 PM.png

The above includes:

  • The Runaways (of course)
  • Joan Jett and the Blackhearts (finally, all of them!)
  • Evil Stig

Not only is it cool Evil Stig is on Spotify but I’m looking forward to Joan formally replacing Kurt Cobain in Nirvana — best thing since Axle Rose replacing Brian Johnson in AC/DC and Adam Lambert replacing Freddie Mercury in Queen.

But, really, my favorite of all is this … which makes me so happy …

Screen Shot 2018-12-22 at 1.33.21 PM.png

  • Life Savers
  • L.S.U.
  • L.S.U. (Lifesavers Underground)
  • Mike Knott
  • Michael Knott
  • Aunt Bettys

In real life, those albums have even more artist names such as L.S. Underground. I don’t know why he’s made a career out of making his music so freaking hard to find. He must have some real self-loathing or fear-of-success issues.

There are other Mike Knott and Michael Knott albums out there that are still neither on Spotify nor easy to find.

Next step is to figure out a way to automate making similar charts of, for example Ronnie James Dio music … I can’t include Black Sabbath in an array because it will pull in Ozzy albums that I don’t want in a Dio chart and Dio/Sabbath albums into an Ozzy/Sabbath chart. I’m pretty sure Rainbow continued on after Dio left … oh, NOTE TO SELF: see if Elf is in Spotify and needs to be added.

Christian Metal Bar Graph

My latest “feature” is a bar graph to compare artists’ popularity. Right now, I have separate arrays based on genres and do this manually. I want the user to be able to choose a genre which, at this point, would change the array used by the MySQL query in PHP. I’m having trouble with that, however.

The final goal would be to have a grid of artist images and the user drags and drops them onto the chart area to add them — either in the line chart shown in a previous post or like the one below.

In real life, you can hover over the artist’s image to see the artist’s name. Since you can’t see that in this screenshot, the list of artists (L-R) is beneath the screenshot. I changed it to a numbered list from a bulleted list for easy counting.

Screen Shot 2018-12-22 at 11.58.41 AM.png
What’s especially harsh for Christian artists is so many of them have incomplete discographies on Spotify. Not Spotify’s fault — Christian record companies that released good music during the 80s and 90s disappeared almost as quickly as they started. Metal fares much better than, say, rap.

Sorry — I don’t know why WordPress is so inconsistent about whether it lets you click images to see them full size and/or allows me to place them in such a way that it does that. What you’re able to do when creating and editing posts seems to change with each browser and operating system and I can’t keep track.

  1. Barren Cross
  2. Believer
  3. Bloodgood
  4. Bride
  5. Deliverance
  6. Gold, Frankincense, & Myrrh
  7. Jerusalem
  8. King’s X
  9. Living Sacrifice
  10. Mortification
  11. P.O.D.
  12. Resurrection Band
  13. Saint
  14. Seventh Angel
  15. Stryper
  16. Tourniquet
  17. Trytan
  18. Vengeance Rising
  19. Veni Domine
  20. Whitecross
  21. XL and Death Before Dishonor

For mobile users, I need to make the artists display vertically so the bars go horizontally. These rows of columns (does that make sense?) get really wide really quick which you can see when viewing albums for artists with huge discographies as shown in the screenshot below.

Screen Shot 2018-12-22 at 12.14.27 PM.png

Even with my default width now set to 2400px, David Bowie runs out of room as do artists like the Rolling Stones.