For Your Ears: The Milky Way and Vintage Rolexes

If you ever find yourself driving in Southern California during the hours of, say, 7 AM to 7 AM, you’re going to be spending a lot of time in the car and the only thing you can do to ease the dull pain of moving two feet every 30 minutes is to listen to your entire library of music or listen to potentially mind-numbing podcasts. This is something I do every single day on my way to work. An hour there, an hour back. It can get pretty dry. Prior to my weekday expeditions, I find myself looking for new podcasts to tickle my cerebral cortex or new musicians I can obsess over. It requires a decent amount of mundane research but don’t worry, I’m going to do all of that for you. Every Wednesday, I’m going to post about a couple of things I have been extremely excited about; a podcast, a band, a rapper. Whatever it is, I just want to share it with you guys because I know I love getting recommendations for stuff like this. So, without further ado, here are my favorites for this week!

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For the most part, I hate the automatic radio station Spotify puts together after you finish an album, however, this was the one time I was grateful I didn’t stop it. I had just finished listening to J. Cole’s new album, KOD, and the first song on the self-initiated radio station was a little number called Tribe by Bas, featuring (who else?) J. Cole. I was elated: the guitar opening up the song, setting up a beat that is sure to put a smile on your face, and the flow. of. Bas. and. J. Cole. (See here) It really makes me wonder why it took me a month to get to the whole album but I can tell you the delayed gratification was worth it. Bas came through and I cannot stress how much I love this album. This project progresses with such fluidity that it’s hard to believe you’ve reached the end. From the slow start of Icarus, to the wonderfully fun flows of Tribe and Boca Raton, to the introspective cuts like Barack Obama Special, and dancehall inspired tracks like Sanufa and Spaceships + Rockets, Bas has an incredible intuition and awareness for every song. Please. Stop reading this and go listen.

My Picks: Boca Raton with A$AP Ferg was by far one of the biggest surprises on the album and Ferg sounds right at home on this track; so. damn. good. On Purge, Bas flexes this ability to flow on a clean, smooth beat and was a quick favorite. I absolutely need to add Tribe just because.

Hodinkee Radio

Yes, you did pronounce that correctly. Founded by Ben Clymer, a former investment banker at UBS, this e-commerce site focuses on one thing and one thing only: watches. You read that right; watches. Believe it or not, Hodinkee got it’s start because Clymer, surprisingly, didn’t lose his job following the 2008 financial crisis, however, there was zero work to be done. People either lost all their money or they had no intention of handing it to the same people that destroyed the world economy. Still, Clymer had a nine-to-five (if you’re in investment banking, you know those hours don’t exist) with no work to do, so he turned to the Internet. Like at most companies, every site that was considered remotely fun was blocked, except for, you guessed it, websites about watches. This led him down a rabbit hole into the watch industry. One thing led to another, like getting flown to St. Tropez on Patek Philippe’s dime to ride on the world’s fastest yacht and hand selecting a watch for Jay-Z’s Carnegie Hall show, and Hodinkee was born. Since then, they have been the leading source for all things luxury watches and started the Hodinkee Radio podcast. I stumbled upon this show through my recent obsession with watches and I must say, I’ve enjoyed every moment of it. They have guests that range from premier watchmakers in Switzerland to famous actors to startup gurus to professional golfers. Each episode inevitably includes conversations about watches, but what drew me in and sold me on the show was that each guest had a unique outlook on life that was somehow represented in their passion for collecting watches. I was able to learn more about watch industry and community while listening to intelligent guests speak candidly about how they got to where they are today. It really feels like you’re right there in the room. If you have some time (you can delete me from your life now), I would wholeheartedly recommend you give it a listen.

My Picks: There are three episodes I’ve thoroughly enjoyed: Ben Clymer, Todd Snyder, and Jason Fried.