Season 3, Issue 1: Whale, Hello There!

We hope you like albums. And whales!

Dear friends, we have not been good at writing this newsletter regularly. But writing is hard work, and there’s only so much time we have, and there was the winter break and Shawn kept getting sick—we have many excuses, how much time do you have?

Gosh, since July of last year? Well that’s embarrassing. And why are we in Season 3? We’re not telling. —SL

1. Do you like whales? We hope you like whales.

We’ve launched another free website last December (at some point we will try to make something that’s worth your money, don’t you worry). It’s called Album Whale. What is it? It’s for you to (easily) make (beautiful) lists of albums (and share with the world).

Have you ever tried to make a list of albums? In the olden days before Album Whale, I had to open up Sublime Text, find the HTML file, open up Safari to find the album on Bandcamp, copy the preview code, and paste into the HTML file and then type in all that markup and album name etc etc. PAIN IN THE ASS, I tell ya.

Whale, Hello There!
Why do whales jump out of the water? Are they in pain?

There are some free website that lets you make lists of albums, but they’re filled with annoying ads and we have too much self-respect to put our lists on those sites. So, Album Whale: easy, free, and no ads! Wow, we’re good at this stuff. —SL

2. Patrick and Matthew!

Let the record show that the first version of Album Whale (spotted in late November) was mostly built by Barry Hess and our friend Patrick Filler. They did all the heavy lifting while I (Shawn Liu) wrote some amateurish CSS (more on this below). I didn’t even draw anything for Album Whale. Come to think of it, I’m not even sure what I did while Barry and Patrick were busy hecking.

Patrick and Matthew
My bestest work this week. You’re welcome everyone!

What I learned during those two months of Whale building was that I really don’t enjoy coding! Wow! And I did not enjoy doing all the nitty gritty UI design either. What good am I? That’s a fair question. The point is that my little brain started to turn and I thought, I really need a designer and front-end person to help right my wrongs.

In January I cautiously approached an old colleague, Matthew Lettini, and I was like, heyyyyy, what you doing, do you want to do a little work with Barry and I? And he agreed––and that dude did more in his first week than I’ve done in those two months of building Album Whale. What can I say? Some people are just more talented, and you know what? I’m ok with that. —SL

3. Hot Lists

Barry and Lettini spent the past couple of weeks making a beautiful Discover page. Just look at this beauty:

Album Whale Discover

My favorite discovery this week is an electronic album, titled Stockholm Marathon. and the curator garo has this to say about it: "This is some good sh!t. ⭐️” I concur! —SL

4. Lettini Screeni

Now that I work here, they’re letting me contribute to their newsletters. Their loss, your gain––I’m mostly going to suggest amazing and ridiculous movies. This time around it’s Innerspace, starring Martin Short, Meg Ryan, and Dennis Quaid.

Innerspace (1987)
Innerspace (1987)

With a story straight out of the Magic School Bus, this is a wacky comedy where cocky pilot Tuck Pendleton is miniaturized and mistakenly injected into hypochondriac Jack Putter. Antics ensue. It’s a movie that allows Martin Short to be his particular over-the-top self, and I’m unsure why it’s not a cult classic hit in every household.

Enjoy! —ML