Robot music, and Todd’s jury duty for attempted murder

No robots were harmed in the making of this podcast. All music sourced for this episode was computer generated, except for a couple samples later on in the jury duty story (you can tell).

I got to catch up with Todd again while he was finishing up summer break from teaching and he told me about some cool and bizarre examples of computer generated music. He has been on jury duty for weeks, prohibited to discuss the criminal case, and now he’s finally finished!

Most music was captured from Generative FM

The first pop song ever written by artificial intelligence is pretty good, actually [Quartz]

An A.I. Wrote a Christmas Song and It’s Really, Really Creepy

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Tweet the show @sorrytopic, or at Rob @robrogan and Josh @themacinjosh.

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Alex Monroe, part 1: Buddhism

We’ve got another special edition with Rob and guest of the show, Alex Monroe! Alex is a percussionist living in Chicago, and the Executive Director of Beyond This Point – ooh fancy. They mostly talk about meditation and the philosophy of Buddhism. Coming soon, in part two there’s an interesting introduction to modern / ‘new’ music for you too.


If you’re looking at these show notes in your podcast player like a totally normal person, we don’t blame you; that’s how it should be. There are a lot of media excerpts in these notes however, and we highly recommend that you read the rest of this on our website. Go ahead and open it up in the background while you listen, we won’t mind 🙂

13:00 – Threads (mvt. 1), by Paul Lansky – Narration by Alan Watts – Performed by beyond this point and Matthew Duvall. Here’s the video:

16:30 – Alan Watts’ recorded lectures make up the soundtrack for this awesome hippy game called Everything. This is the trailer you heard:

Buddhism has transformed Alex’s worldview, even his politics! Rob feels like he had been somewhat Buddhist all along, but didn’t realize it until he read What the Buddha Taught. That Goodreads link has lots of options to buy or check out from a library.

27:20 – Music sampled in the background is from Satyagraha by Philip Glass, someone you’ll hear more about in Part 2. Listen to the full piece here

29:00 – Alex talks about the Headspace app, which is helping him meet his goal of meditating every day for a year! We also play audio from one of the videos just because it’s a cute mix between goofy and interesting. Here’s the Headspace ‘How It Works’ video:

44:00 – Rob refers to some books by Pema Chödrön. A pretty long, but great audiobook he listened to is called Noble Heart. A good, shorter read is The Places That Scare You.

If you want some free podcasts of Buddhism, meditation, Q&A sessions with beginners, and much more, check out AudioDharma. You can search for it in your podcast app to subscribe, or go to the website and browse for specific lectures.

Rob loves talking about this stuff, so if you want to hear more, figure out a way to let us know and maybe we’ll do more like this episode.

/ Side note

51:00 – Totally switching gears, Alex needed to vent about his quest to find an auto part that no one had.

We’ll be back with Alex Monroe, part 2: New Music in a couple of weeks!

Check out for photos, YouTube clips, and other great stuff.