Home Menu Spotify




Gooding with guitar in the woods

Here we go again, sports fans. I saw the brilliant Neil Gaiman do this once and thought, What a fun thing to keep track of. It’s a cool way of knowing what we are putting into our minds and hearts, and we can stalk each other’s list to see what lights us up and what sucks.

Last year, I just listed my books (and audiobooks—we get some nice road miles to burn up). This year I’m going full-tilt nerd. I jot down everything I check out in the back of a monthly journal under READ/WATCHED/LISTENED/WORKED ON. Love to know what you totally agree or disagree with. Good books and movies are the best way for me to get reinspired or clear my mind to get back to work and hopefully see things in a little different light.

I heard a couple folks last year say, Jeez, that’s a lot of stuff. But it’s really not when you think of how many hours we get in a year.  There are also some days when we play two shows a day, and your mind is so sapped that the best way to heal is to hide in a hotel room and watch or listen to something totally unrelated to your work. Also, I don’t play video games. That’s not a slam on video games, I just get bored or so addicted to finding the next level that I feel my day slipping away. I’m probably playing the wrong games, too. Does Super Mario or an old Galaga machine count?  🙂

I’ll post the distilled version of these lists on FB/INSTA/TWIT/YOUTUBE soon. Hit me up at any and all social media @goodingmusic. Excited to know what inspired you this year.




Why We Sleep, Matthew Walker (terrible—did not help at all :-), ha ha)

The Early Years, Tom Waits

The Soul of America, James Meachem (brilliant)

War of Art (I’ve read this many times, so, so good—thanks again, Erin O’ Neill)

Welcome to the Music Business: You’re Fxxxed, Martin Atkins (brilliant)

Linchpin, Seth Godin (too much of this kinda marketing self-help stuff can be a pillar for me to study and not actually POST, but this one is great. We are all remaking ourselves to survive right now. “ARTISTS SHIP!!” Yes.)

12 Rules for Life, Jordan Peterson (so, so good—brilliant—thanks, Brian Sullivan)

Graduates Guide to Money, Tana Ackerly Gildea (now this is a family member, so I’m biased, but the book is great. Here’s to continuing our financial literacy work together in the ATL!)

Forever Words, JR Cash

Me, Inc, Simmons (I know, I know, Kiss never leaves me)

On Writing Well, William Zissner

Eating Animals, Jonathan Safron Foyer (brilliant—it ain’t easy, but the truth seldom is)

Crushing It, Gary Vaynerchuck (read a couple others I can’t remember; all these help me with my imposter syndrome online)

Graduation Debt, Reyna Gobel (thanks, Margeret Engel)

Wealth Is a Choice, James Studinger (met at a show in Michigan—great guy)

All about the Money, Kirk Allen (Kirk gave me this at a show in Michigan as well; wonderful guy—GO MI!)

On Writing, S. King (read every few years—so, so, so good, but I’m a KING superfan)

Tools of Titans and Tribe of Mentors, Tim Ferris (this is like 200 podcasts distilled; just lock yourself off Amazon while they plug their fave-under-$100 items—I almost bought a damn weighted blanket, and I sleep under three dogs already)

Set Your Voice Free, Roger Love (read every couple years, amazing vowarm-ups ups here; and if you don’t know what middle voice is, buddy, get ready for a whole other world—I learned late, but I learned :-))

The Orchard Keeper, Cormac McCarthy

The Stonemason, Cormac McCarthy

Blood Meridian, Cormac (miserable and beautiful—à la human existence—this one took some time; no speed reading when a person is jabbing your soul with a burning knife. Also, I should have NEVER, NEVER forgotten my high school Spanish. I have a lot of work to do)

Cities of the Plains, Cormac

The Crossing, Cormac  (are you getting a sense I kind of dig Cormac McCarthy? First third of this book had me in tears)

The National Parks  (various books and maps)

Fashion in Rock,  John Varvatos (and yes, even with these cool ideas, my closet is still basically 10 pairs of black jeans and 10 white and gray T-shirts, but it’s all about the boots, belts, and jackets!)

Various, Best Of, plus Drowning in Water, Charles Bukowski (another all-time fave)

The Fifth Risk, Michael Lewis (GET THIS BOOK! GET THIS BOOK!)

Collected Lyrics, Hank Williams

Simplify Your Life, Elaine St. James (thanks, Dawn Starks :-))

A Dull Roar, Henry Rollins (you feel altogether lazy reading Rollins, but he is a shot of energy and useful anger)

Porcelain, Moby (BRILLIANT. I had no idea how good this man writes. You will feel like you lived in NYC in the ’90s. Will teach you to stop making excuses for your gear and just CREATE.)

Letters from a Stoic, Seneca (thanks, Pete from Me Like Bees)

Queen Bio (Terrible. Loved the film and worshipped the band since I was eight but gave the book to DAV)

Promise Me, Dad, Joe Biden

Discipline Equals Freedom, Jocko Willink  (basically just tiny discipline pep talks, but I needed ’em, and they are killer)





The Defiant Ones (1000 percent YES. Artists like this will fire you up like nothing else)

Dave Chapelle new specials (brilliant—good as it gets. Even when you disagree, you’re in his corner;- so smart real and authentic and so damn funny)

West Wing (entire series, therapy for sure)

Seinfeld,  Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee (wonderful and good break for the mind—very fun)

Anthony Bourdain, Parts Unknown (haven’t see all seasons; honored to have about 30 songs in this series and fun to hear things come up as I watch his travels. Though, as a vegetarian, this is a tough show to watch. 🙂 At least he shows exactly where our food comes from)

David Letterman interview show (fabulous—so good to have him back)

S Colbert, Bill Maher, Jon Oliver excerpts

My lady was laid up this summer a bit, and we binge-watched the following comedians. WHAT A BLAST.

Jim Jeffries, all specials

Bill Burr, all specials

Ricky Gervais, latest special

Adam Sandler, latest special (very funny—good to have him back, too)

Battle of Sexes (great movie—Carell is just nonstop—can’t wait to see Marwen!)

Better Call Saul 4 (brilliant)

Who Is America (brilliant)

Ozark 2 (loved it)

Silicon Valley 5

Flint Town (couldn’t stick with it but enjoyed a couple of seasons before we lived in Flint for a few weeks in April)

Handmaid’s Tale (just started—Jesus)

Billions 3

Succession (brilliant—bring on the next season!)

Modern Family, Friends, and The Office (all fun to decompress and fall asleep to)



Three Billboards (fantastic)

Only the Brave (let down, but the bar was so high for me with Taylor Sheridan)

Black Panther (I had this too built up in my mind, but it was still great)

Red Sparrow (Jesus … and this is the country we think is our friend now?)

Andre the Giant documentary

Robin Williams documentary

The Final Year

Dead Poet’s Society

Shot Caller (this was a sleeper—brilliant)

Truman Show (my wife hadn’t seen this one; it holds up perfectly—they predicted the tech bubble we all live under now)

Deadpool 2 (seeing Marvel movies with Tyler is like going to see Kiss or Willie Nelson with me—a lot of screaming and clapping)

Three Identical Strangers

Ballad of Buster Scruggs (Tom Waits steals it!)

Bohemian Rhapsody (A lot of friends hated it. I loved it)

A Star Is Born (excellent)

A Quiet Place (a fun dispute in the band—I loved it :-))

Won’t You Be My Neighbor (this should be required watching for being a human—557 stars)

BlackkKlansman (Spike went all the way in the end—wonderful)

The Hero (seeing Sam Elliot in Star is Born made me look up more of his stuff; solid movie, but I’d watch Elliot read the phonebook)

Fasting documentary

The Miracle (thanks, Sacha Millstone)

Creed 2 (loved it)

Good Kill (must see—terrifying) and First Reformed (Ethan Hawke doing his best work)

Going to see The Mule tonight. Please don’t let me down, Eastwood. This trailer is perfect. 🙂





The National, the song “Bloodbuzz Ohio” (I put this one song on a loop for like two days—good God)

Judas Priest, Firepower—YES

San Halo, various

Hans Zimmer, various (I could listen to Dunkirk soundtrack on loop forever, and why so much hate for the new Blade Runner score? Fit the picture perfectly to me)

Emmylou Harris, Wrecking Ball (still the warmest, most peaceful record ever made—Daniel Lanois—just otherworldly)


CATALOGS on Spotify

(I love going through and making a best-of playlist of an entire catalog—interesting to hear an artist journey across many, many years)

The Roots



Pretty Lights (yeah, I’m late to this party, like so many others :-))

Eskmo (composer of Billions on Showtime. He is fabulous)

DJ Shadow (forgot how ahead of the whole game he was)

Moby (his book got me back to his music—”God Moving Over the Face of the Waters” is still a masterpiece)


Gustavo Santaolalla (thanks, Andrea Kalin, for the reminder :-))


Radiohead (God, what a catalog)

Freddie King

Cesaria Evora (my amazing friend and publishing administrator Pat Blair makes these dinners down in Venice, California, and always plays the best stuff. She is like 69 going on 25. Hipper than I’ll ever be. She turned me onto Evora, among many others that fill my soul)

Sinatra (I never listened enough; puts you in a great space to keep on truckin’)



Bands B-sides from Building The Sun (join LIL RED ARMY to hear :-)—Patreon link coming soon)

The Most Fire (this side project has now ballooned into three LPs full of me working out my feelings for the division sweeping the country—dark and depressing and weird—the enchanted forest gets dark at night, folks. Not sure what I will do with this, but it was extremely fun, cathartic, and easy to record)

Couple dozen tunes for band’s next record

Several Americana/country songs that I will probably never release but were so fun to write (Shawn Belford, I still owe you a jam :-))

Some new records for Kingdom 2—http://kingdom2music.com/ (this is where I put instrumental stuff or things too weird for the live shows)

Carter Hulsey, various—one of my fave writers and one of my fave human beings. Check him out here, please: http://www.carterhulsey.com/

Also mixed some records for a couple of friends. I HATE mixing other people’s stuff. But I LOVE my friends. And one of ’em paid me really well. You know who you are, Craig Morris.



The Daily

Bob Schneider podcasts 1–21 (brilliant—subscribe here—he will wander and rant and almost lose me and THEN baam, amazing wisdom and humor and some of the most brilliant songs around. He is unafraid of showing the work and showing things that are very rough—very refreshing: http://www.bobschneider.com/songclub/)

Joe Rogan (this podcast is starting to be a problem—I cannot turn it off, and I am avoiding other things to keep listening. It’s TOO GOOD. I’ve heard dozens now, but a recent one with Lawrence Lessig, EVERY SINGLE AMERICAN SHOULD HEAR THIS ONE. Until we fix campaign finance, we can’t fix anything else. RIGHT AND LEFT SHOULD BE TOGETHER ON THIS ISSUE! :-))

Also killer on Rogan:

Chris Stapleton, Sturgill Simpson (brilliant), Maynard (Perfect Circle/Tool)Neil BrennanJordan Petersen, Steven Pinker, Matt TaibbiBilly Corgan (actually made me a fan), and Jocko Willink (though I’m not getting up at four a.m. unless I ate 10 bowls of cereal the night before)



The Coming Storm, M Lewis (I love this man. Wrote Moneyball, The Big Short, Flash Boys. He can take the most complex and technical things and make them funny, heart-breaking, wonderful)

Sebastian Manasculco

Unshakeable, T. Robbins

Principles, Ray Dalio (couldn’t finish—too dry)

Me, Inc, Simmons (I know, I know, Kiss never leaves me)

Crush It/Thank You Economy, Gary Vee (I know he’s over the top, but it helps)

Joe Perry bio

Ignore Everybody, Hugh McCleod (five stars, bubba)

Grapes of Wrath (maybe my all-time favorite book on the planet, but like all the classics where the narrator has to do voices—UGH. I miss being able to use my imagination)


That’s it, folks! Maybe next year we should add live shows we got to see. I will tell you, the highlight this year was Vince Gill (with Timejumpers) destroying every guitar player on the planet while he was sitting in an old chair at Third and Lindsley, yawing in a Hawaiian shirt. Thanks to Jeff Anderson for taking us. I’m sorry I kept jumping up and screaming and making stankface during his solos—I didn’t realize what a slouch I was at the guitar until a few decades into my life. Good God.

Thanks for joining me. More rants and reviews every Wednesday. Please hit me up at FB/TWITTER/INSTAGRAM/YOUTUBE/SPOTIFY @goodingmusic, and please share this mania with your friends!


Please subscribe to @goodingmusic on all social media.

You can also subscribe to our blog’s RSS feed: http://goodingmusic.com/blog/feed/.

< Back

Loading PlayerLoading Player...