RAVEN MACK is a mystic poet-philosopher-artist of the Greater Appalachian unorthodox tradition. He does have an amazing PATREON, but also *normal* ARTIST WEBSITE too.

Tuesday, January 31

SONG OF THE DAY: Wanted Dead or Alive (kudzu'd)

Slowing music is like frying foods where you make something disgusting okay. Thus, kudzu’d Bon Jovi is like fried okra… just barely tolerable, and even then, only occasionally.

PR4CT1C3 1LL3G1T1M4T3...

practice illegitimate 
arts constantly, outsider 
attempts to beautify life 

Monday, January 30

SONG OF THE DAY: Slip 'N' Slide

Perhaps the most loungin’ musical instrument that has ever existed (other than maybe a theremin) is the Hammond B-3 organ. It’s got a unique sound that just pulls the Power of Lounge from the blessed twisted souls who are called to master it. Delvon Lamarr is perhaps the sickest of active practitioners of the Hammondite sect. Sadly, Lamarr is not yet included on the Wikipedia page for notable players of Hammond organs. It takes time for normal mainstream society to catch up to those moving the actual spirit of existence forward though.


born to rust, full of potential 
which never got tapped into 
entirely, lost in margins 

Saturday, January 28


embezzling back as many 
minutes from another day 
in debt as a dirtgod can 

Friday, January 27

SONG OF THE DAY: The Devil Gives Me Everything

Sometimes a lifelong artist who constantly indulges in their creative outlets catches the universal magnetics and accidentally composes a piece of creation that attains near perfection for a human being. This is such a song. Willie West is a living legend of funk, and has enjoyed a resurrected career in recent years. But this track just captures it all – reality, the fucked nature of human existence, feeling good despite being brought down all the damn time. This is a motherfuckin’ jam (and perfect to blend with William DeVaughn’s “Be Thankful For What You’ve Got”).


less consumed by minutiae’s 
frustrations as I panned out 
to infinite perspective 


cocksure in my country pen, 
but unsure in larger world, 
I still crow my constant shit 

Wednesday, January 25

SONG OF THE DAY: Come Go With Me

I am a natural born Aquarius, and in fact perhaps the most possible Aquarian of all Aquarii because I was born on Valentines Day. But I have a shameful admission to make, despite all those blessings upon my born day. I have never once slept in, much less owned, a heart shaped waterbed. It feels embarrassing to even admit. A man like myself should've been well into his third, maybe fourth heart shaped waterbed by now, having outgrown a smaller version, and blossomed into a full larger than king-sized one by now. But nope, just sleeping on a regular ass mattress like a Virgo or some shit.

1 C0M3 FR0M 4 L0NG L1N3 0F...

I come from a long line of 
drunkards, shit talkers, natural 
born don’t give half a fuckers 

Tuesday, January 24

SONG OF THE DAY: The Other Woman (kudzu'd)

An example of the beauty of cheatin' ass songs, made about creeping around on your primary relationship. I guess on one hand it's good we've progress to more open relationships, allowing for everyone to better express their desires. But on the other hand, I don't think it'd be as great if Ray Parker Jr. was just singing about someone in the polycule bugging him about washing dishes more often. Although maybe he'd still be creeping on the polycule with another couple down in Asheville... who knows? Human beings gonna be human.

D0N'T H4T3 TH3 PL4Y3R, H4T3 TH3...

“don’t hate the player, hate the 
game” carnival world where we 
compromise self for prizes 

Monday, January 23


Having enjoyed my own RVA follies over the years, I enjoy this song. DJ Harrison is pretty great. Also lolol at 1990s gentrifiers who get mad about the RVA branding as having ruined Richmond and drawing in 2010s gentrifiers. It was all of y’all. The city was not cooler because cooler people were displacing poor people than the more normal people displacing poor people now. Relatedly, the "Jeff Davis Flea Market" is the absolute most perfect ending for anything Jeff Davis, a wonderful multicultural raggedy ass flea market where you can get piñatas and purple camouflage pants that would make the actual Jeff Davis roll over in his grave.

C4RRY1NG TH3 W4T3R 0F...

carrying the water of 
a world spun intricately 
by men without grand design 

Sunday, January 22

SONG OF THE DAY: Sassy Lady (kudzu'd)

I didn't watch much Star Wars shit as a kid, but whatever that one scene is where they're in a garbage pit and the walls are squeezing in, I'm glad I at least saw that one, because that's scene definitely embodies existence.

WH3N 1 D13, 1 H0P3 T0 B3...

when I die, I hope to be 
remembered as patron saint 
of positive foolishness 

Saturday, January 21

Hatsu Basho 2023 Honour Tanka Day Ten: ABI (6-4)

[Takakeisho stumbling in the final third, 
tightening things up] 

Abi won the last 

basho, but has struggled so 
far New Year's basho 

I always associate 
him with Ryuden in mind 

they both debuted at 
top level the same New Year's 
basho, three years back 

both fighting to achieve their 
kachi-koshi, maintain place 

Abi begins with 
thrusting attack, seemingly 
poised for victory 

Ryuden fights it off at 
dohyo's edge, and flips the script 

rikishi mind would've flailed 
and been beaten then 

Abi, however, quickly 
stepped aside and slapped holmes down 

Ryuden tumbled 
to the outside, as Abi 
walked back to his side 

taking the pay envelope stack 
from gyoji, like a boss 


rather be guided towards 
goodness than channeled into 
indulgence of poor choices 


self-manufactured icons 
of saintly encouragement 
work like guardian angels 

Thursday, January 19

Hatsu Basho 2023 Honour Tanka Day Nine: HIRADOUMI (6-3)

[looking like Takakeisho's basho to lose] 

Kotoshōhō came 

into day 9 tied for lead 
with Takakeish

his rapid ascent challenged 
by younger Hiradoumi 

Hiradoumi's had 
only two bashos before 
as makuuchi 

last basho, he earned 10 wins, 
and highest ranking ever 

two behind leader, 
Hiradoumi's having an 
impressive basho 

both he and Kotoshōhō 
clutch mawashis for control 

Kotoshōhō backs 
Hiradoumi up, looking 
for lift and push out 

but Hiradoumi holds tight 
his grip of Kotoshōhō 

twisting him sideways,
Hiradoumi forces his 
opponent over 

Kotoshōhō's grip on the 
lead slips just as easily 

entering final 
third of basho, chasing a 
hungry ozeki 

but for now, let us applaud 
Hiradoumi's scrappy win 

SONG OF THE DAY: Double Trouble

Got some boom bap era dancehall mix downloaded from some random ass blog because I’m an old fool from the old school who still manually downloads mp3s and refuses to stream. Anyways, the whole thing slams so wonderfully, but especially shit like Mad Lion coming on just makes me want to put on unworked in work boots with the laces untied and walk to the country store 4 miles away and buy 3 blunts, a tall can of something, and think about the chicken thighs they got there. Then when you have all the everything you ended up getting, you gotta sit at the picnic table sort of by the store but also not exactly part of it, just there under a tree, half warped but all the way perfect, and drink your tall can and watch the world pretend to matter for a few minutes.

HVM4NS T00 34S1LY ST4CK3D...

humans too easily stacked 
into predictable thought 
patterns by algorithms 


still dwelling in the shadows, 
avoiding the spotlight of 
the mainstreams of consciousness 

Wednesday, January 18

Hatsu Basho 2023 Honour Tanka Day Eight: AZUMARYU (6-2)

[been enjoying the fuck out of the NHK World daily highlights] 

over long career, 
Azumaryū's made top tier 
nine different times 

all nine time, make-koshi 
losing records were achieved 

this is only the 
second time Azumaryū 
has remained top tier 

finishing 7 and 8 
last time, still makuuchi 

"inside the curtain" 
for the new year, and chasing 
a winning record 

Azumaryū has shown fight, 
but has not looked excellent 

against Aoiyama 
on day 8, he faced the shock 
leaderboard joiner 

the two do not exactly 
have a picture perfect bout 

it is bumbling and 
off-balance, and yet one man 
must always still win 

the big Bulgarian brute 
loses control moving forward 

Azumaryū does 
a casual slap down to 
achieve victory 

two wins away from first ever 
kachi-koshi performance 

sumo veteran 
at 35, but not as 
famous rikishi 

lower rank and file struggler, 
nearing best ever finish 

Hatsu Basho 2023 Honour Tanka Day Seven: HOSHORYU (5-2)

[been watching but not posting my things, 
but I'm back on my shit temporarily] 

young Mongolian 
sekiwake Hōshōryū's 
rapid ascension 

kachi-koshi as fuck for 
a year's worth of these bashos 

11 wins last 
time, hoping to repeat that 
feat now (and next time) 

33 wins is magic 
number for ozeki rank 

facing last basho's 
winner - Abi, Hōshōryū 
shows strength of calmness 

once all four fists bump the ground, 
Abi comes out thrusting hard 

Hōshōryū's head bends 
at neck, but doesn't break, from 
absorbing energy 

Hōshōryū put on his heels, 
all the way to dohyo's edge 

once there, Hōshōryū 
flips the script, switching places 
with pushy Abi 

once with inside advantage, 
Hōshōryū shoves Abi out 

chipping away on 
his quest for eleven wins 
is young Hōshōryū 

nephew of Asashōryū
the former yokozuna 

currently, our lone 
yokozuna is injured, 
and sole ozeki 

but a new generation 
of stars seemed poised to arrive 

SONG OF THE DAY: Execution of A Chump

I miss long-term hip hop tag teams, whether it was a pair of MCs, or a producer DJ/MC pairing, or whatever. Guru and DJ Premier were serious boom bap tag team champs, but everybody seems to be solo now, and the only tag teams we get are singles stars special projects. That ain’t the same… not enough one on one fermentation of ideas and synchronization of auras. Anyways, here’s a Gang Starr song that I still play the fuck out of.


anonymous solitude 
in the rusting margins of 
man’s declining industry 


controlling my explosions 
far better than I used to, 
channeling anger away 

Monday, January 16

Sunday, January 15

Saturday, January 14

Hatsu Basho 2023 Honour Tanka Day Six: MIDORIFUJI (4-2)

[second third of the basho is getting going now, when things heat up]

day six Hōshōryū 

seemingly dominates foe 

Hōshōryū is rising star 
Mongolian rikiishi 

only 23, 
and knocking at the door of 
ozeki status 

destined for greatness, he clamps 
Midorifuji's right arm 

pushing smaller man 
to edge, not quite enough 
for elimination 

Midorifuji pushes 
back, and they both re-center 

Hōshōryū mostly 
maintains left arm clamp, begins 
another thrusting 

Midorifuji resists 
Hōshōryū's other arm grasp 

getting underneath 
Hōshōryū's right arm, to 
counter his offense 

at dohyo's edge, Hōshōryū 
puts all his force into foe 

contorts himself, flipping his 
opponent's body 

both behemoths go crashing 
off raised platform heavily 

gyoji points to 
Midorifuji's side, but 
the judges confer 

(this means slow motion replay 
for us watching things at home) 

repetitive back 
and forth of two big bodies 
crashing to the ground 

sure enough, Hōshōryū touched ground 
first - Midorifuji wins 

Hatsu Basho 2023 Honour Tanka Day Five: AOIYAMA (5-0)

[I have realized that NHK World app on Roku now has daily recaps with all the top division bouts, for free; this is a game changer for my viewing enjoyment]

big Bulgarian 

Aoiyama ain't pretty, 
but he gets it done 

mostly makuuchi for 
well over a decade now 

not all men have a 
potential yokozuna 
run innate to them 

many toil in rank-and-file 
existence, plugging along 

Aoiyama's body 
shape ain't one that screams "athlete" - 
almost comical 

he's mastered what he's got to 
best of his ability 

on day five, he and 
hapless Ōhō have a push 
and slap around fest 

it ain't beautiful sumo, 
and it drags on a bit long 

but that's rank-and-file 
bread-and-butter... surviving 
those ugly moments 

finally, Ōhō stumbles 
and Aoiyama slaps him down 

somehow, after five 
days of this New Year's basho, 
Aoiyama's perfect 

perfect is relative though... 
unbeaten wabi-sabi 

TH3 0LD W4YS R0M4NT1C1Z3D...

the old ways romanticized 
by some were the destruction 
of older ways for others 

Friday, January 13

Hatsu Basho 2023 Honour Tanka Day Four: KOTOHOSHO (4-0)

[getting caught up still, just realized the NHK World app on Roku plays a recap with all the bouts]

Kotohōshō had 
never beat Tochinoshin
five previous bouts 

the big Georgian's brawn is hard 
to resist if he gets hold 

Tochinoshin's poor 
right knee, wrapped heavily, and 
always near snapping 

the former ozeki still 
has that barrel chested strength 

a common sight for 
Tochinoshin to grip foe's 
mawashi, then hoist 

in lunging lifts, pushing his 
sizable foe out the ring 

chest to chest, the young 
Kotohōshō gets his arms 
underneath, snugly 

Tochinoshin struggles for 
his favored mawashi grip 

Kotohōshō keeps 
advantage, it is he who 
instead hoists a fool 

Tochinoshin's left shoulder 
socket challenged to hold taut 

Tochinoshin pushed 
back, losing at his own game, 
left clutching shoulder 

Kotohōshō unbeaten
after four days, one of five 


unfurling an endless scroll 
which further fogs our inner 
visions with false sureties 

Hatsu Basho 2023 Honour Tanka Day Three: TAKAKEISHO (2-1)

[catching up on day three action] 

our lone ozeki 
left (with no yokozuna) 
is Takakeishō 

while others clamor to climb 
the banzuke scroll, he holds ground 

three years ozeki, 
but has suffered injuries 
(plus there was covid) 

he's had three bashos in a 
row with ten wins or better 

been very good, but 
not dominant... last yusho 
was three years ago 

now's the chance to prove himself 
potential yokozuna 

day three, and the big 
man already had one loss, 
but it's still early 

bloodied in early basho 
bout, and repeated today 

he and Daieishō 
slap and headbutt each other, 
fighting for control 

neither can gain controlling 
grip around the other though 

center ring, battling 
steady, until Daieishō 
starts pushing forward 

Takakeishō retreats to 
dohyo edge, at defeat's brink 

Daieishō thrusts, but 
Takakeishō deftly steps 
directly to right 

Daieishō crashes out, while 
Takaneishō remains, safe 

with bloody mouth, our 
lone ozeki receives fat 
stack of envelopes 

New Year's basho's main event 
star, chasing that next level 

F4R T00 34SY T0 G3t SPR34D...

far too easy to get spread 
out way too thin in modern 
times which lack a pause button 

Thursday, January 12

Wednesday, January 11

Tuesday, January 10

Hatsu Basho 2023 Honour Tanka Day Two: ONOSHO (2-0)

[day two is done and it's still an unsettled storm of characters] 

Onosho is one 
of many young rikishi 
aiming for the top 

top can be quite literal 
in terms of banzuke scroll 

dwindling in top half 
of maegashira for years, 
with great potential 

first two days of this basho, 
he has straight dominated 

bulldozer style - head 
first into opponent, with 
full force bodying 

Takanosho had no hope 
at achieving victory 

force made receiving object 
easily moved back 

undefeated after two 
days, Onosho swaggers off 


when you’re born half-forgotten, 
those with stars in their eyes don’t 
easily recognize you 


each human obstacle is 
lesson to be had; learning 
to limit my reaction 

Monday, January 9

Hatsu Basho 2023 Honour Tanka Day One: TAMAWASHI (1-0)

[my paying attention to sumo comes and goes, but I just rewatched all of last year's bashos over the holidays, so am amped for the Hatsu basho this month; usually my attention peters out before day 15, or life snuffs out my time to do these]

no yokozuna 
plus rather weak ozeki 
era of sumo 

opportunity for new 
faces to establish selves 

and yet, on day one 
of new year's basho, an old 
Mongolian macked 

Tamawashi's the eldest 
rikishi still competing 

somehow, better than 
ever... even winning Aki 
basho late last year 

only his second career 
yusho, as this advanced age 

teetering at edge 
of sanyaku (highest-ranked) 
status as old man 

38 years old... and yet 
somehow even more wily 

is young and full of fire, and 
comes out bullrushing 

slapping and thrusting to edge, 
and both men ballet spin out 

twisting goes to review, and 
deemed too close to call 

a redo is in order - 
second chance for the young bull 

again charges, pushing back 
old Tamawashi 

at dohyo's edge, enormous 
pirouette and body slam 

Tamawashi shifts 
the young bull's momentum back 
against his own self 

thus, old ass Tamawashi 
ends day one with perfect record 

SONG OF THE DAY: La Borrachita

I’ve been yelling “CUMBIA!” at the crows a lot lately. I’m hoping they understand. They usually do. Been feeding them peanuts for a long time now, and they hadn’t been leaving no trinkets as of yet. Starting to think I’m getting hustled by these country ass crows, and only city crows are gump enough to give people trinkets. But I’m hoping maybe these guys just been holding out and will start leaving cumbia records on top of the shed I feed them at.

Friday, January 6

Thursday, January 5

SONG OF THE DAY: Nak Deranine

Every time I eat a big juicy apple, I immediately wonder why I don’t eat apples way more often. And then I also understand that if biblical mythology was truth, I can get why them apples was so damn tempting, especially if you’re just sitting around naked with the only other human and y’all are naked. Who wouldn’t eat that apple? And what kinda deity is like, “Okay, I know y’all are naked, and there’s this juicy ass apples just dangling here. But you can’t have none. Cool?” Hell nah.
Side note, my favorite obsessive dork of recent memory is the “apple variety” dork – them rare souls who go wandering around, seeking out forgotten and obscure varieties of apples, as our post-modern agricultural practices have narrowed everything down to an easy to control handful, and thus eliminating a wealth of apple varieties, in the name of progress, which tends to crush a whole lot of great shit just to make everything easier to produce at a greater profit.

41N'T TH4T H4RD T0 F1ND B34VTY...

ain’t that hard to find beauty 
if you half bother trying; 
plenty folks just stay hating 

Wednesday, January 4

Tuesday, January 3


Even in living in the Greater Go-Go Belt (from far south of Baltimore to about Petersburg, with rural trickles into the Piedmont of Virginia that fluctuate, occasionally even reaching North Carolina), there’s so much music that got to exist that is hard to find. So much stuff has gotten a second life due to the digital era, but a lot of it – this song for example – seem to have had a second life in Europe and beyond all the while mostly forgotten in America. Are we that superficial here in America, bouncing between next things too fast to pay attention to the last dozen things deeply enough? Maybe. But how a 10-minute long go-go tinged song called “Status Quo” complaining about Reaganomics could’ve gotten lost on me until the past year bums me out. This shit is great. Political as fuck, but not in a pretentious way like today’s online politics tends to always be, and still funky as fuck too. Where the fuck is Donald Banks now? What happened to this dude? And obviously this was such a jam that the original Kapital Sity Records release got re-released by 4th & Broadway in Europe. I miss physical media, which I guess is why I’ve gotten so into 45 collecting the past year or two. Shit just takes a weird life of its own, bouncing between homes, and will exist magically in an unplayed state for decades. There is a 45 version of this, obviously not 10 minutes long, but I ain’t found one I can afford yet. Best believe if I do that shit is going in the collection. I just hope if they chop up the song for the 45, the b-side is just full of percussion breaks from this long version, because I need that as much as anything else.


used to expect appointment 
with death at an early age; 
somehow made half century 

Monday, January 2

SONG OF THE DAY: I'm Coming Out (kudzu'd)

Spent a chunk of the evening piecemealing some old direct drive turntables that had been in a dilapidated camper for like a decade, then in my front shed for a while. Seems like all that did was compound the lounge contained therein, because them bamas are still functional. Something to be said for solid machinery as compared to plastic parts. Just gotta get some needle cartridges and find some yard speakers to run out the back window and then I can torment the abandoned quarries with 45s at 33 speed of old disco jams like Diana Ross, blasting out into the woods like ghostly warbles from the old house up there where that one boy named me’s been living at.


mental miles accumulate, 
and internal tread gets worn 
down; but we must continue