This post is written as part of our series The Chalkboard Remembers, where we're taking time to reflect on some of our favorite episodes in the history of The Chalkboard Podcast. This post is about Glory Days, an interview episode we did with Mark of 96.5 The Buzz.
Emo music was such an impactful part of my high school experience. I never wore eyeliner, but the music of bands like Jimmy Eat World, Matchbook Romance, and Taking Back Sunday comprised the soundtrack of my teen years.
Emo was a time, man. I had a Xanga where I reflected, usually, on unrequited love, and there was an option to choose and display what you were listening to that was inspiring your post. Most of the time it was Jack’s Mannequin or Copeland or Dashboard Confessional. Those songs were subliminal messages, the original subtweet to my online audience and hopefully, I always wished, the girl I liked.
When we learned about Mark’s “Taking Back Sunday” Emo Hour at 7pm on Sunday nights on 96.5 The Buzz, we knew we wanted to have him on to talk about the genre/movement/cultural phenomenon of emo and how he felt (cuz it’s all about feelings) toward emo music. Since I found out about Mark’s show, I’ve spent many a Sunday night driving along I-435 or sitting on my porch listening to the Emo tunes he selects each week. Most weeks the show is like skimming back through the pages of an old yearbook, except instead of seeing pictures, I’m transported to experiences. He’ll play a Brand New song and I’ll remember a friend I hadn’t thought about in years who gave me a mix CD with “Jude Law and a Semester Abroad” on it, and that time we camped/trespassed on land owned by a coach at our high school. He’ll play some Acceptance on and I’ll recall the time a girl broke up with me and played “So Contagious” in the background, an added cruelty to our relationship’s demise.
Nostalgia is a great power of Emo music, and we got to talk about that with Mark on the episode. However cheesy and skinny-jeaned Emo music was, and in spite of its unfortunate evolution into weird pop-punk, it was a genre that facilitated introspective and retrospective feelings, things this world needs more of.
Mining Mark’s experiences and expertise on Emo music and hearing about the inspiration for his radio show was a delight. I’m glad we got the opportunity to learn more about and promote Taking Back Sunday with Mark on 96.5 The Buzz. More than that, it was a treasure to have a conversation with a likeminded soul, a stranger who listened to the same songs from The Places You Have Come to Fear The Most as we did, and, probably, felt some of the same things too.