At Zappos, Culture Pays

HENDERSON, NV - JULY 22:  A sign is seen on th...
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Found at At Zappos, Culture Pays.

Clue that something a little weird is happening at Zappos can be found near the bottom of the home page of the company’s website, where you’ll find lists with headings such as “Shop with Us” and “Customer Service,” beneath pictures of Anne Klein, Rockport, and Nike footwear; New Balance shirts; and Tommy Bahama shorts. Buried in one list is a link advising, “Don’t ever click here.” I did, of course, and the link opened a YouTube video of the Muppet rock band performing, as lead singer Beaker lip-syncs, “Never gonna give you up. Never gonna let you down.” It is a not-so-subtle message to Zappos’ customers and perhaps to its employees as well.

Another link opened a company-produced video in which employees talk about their favorite Zappos values — there are 10 values in total — with the same conviction and enthusiasm that the Muppet band brings to its musical antics. A clear winner: “Create fun and a little weirdness.”

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Photocredit: christian.senger

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Listening to Kate Nash: i indeed read a book in stead

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Admiring the awesome The Rural Alberta Advantage playing, great pics & a setlist!!

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The Rural Alberta Advantage played Maxwell’s, Mercury Lounge & Terminal 5 – pics & a setlist

photos by Vincent Cornelli

The Rural Alberta Advantage

“It’s been a lot of shows since SXSW [2009],” says [The RAA’s lead singer, Nils Edenloff] with a chuckle, taking a few minutes to call from a Tim Horton‘s somewhere off the 401. “I think by the end of [2009] we might hit 100 shows. I’m hoping we hit 100 because that would be pretty cool to say.”

Just add it to the band’s list of milestones. In addition to the above, you can score a No. 1 on the Canadian college radio charts, inclusion on the bill for Vancouver‘s Cultural Olympiad this February and credit for writing the Prime Minister‘s (or maybe just his assistant’s) favourite song of the moment, “Edmonton.”

Edenloff has a harder time ticking off his achievements from the last year. “It’s funny because it feels like every step is a new high,” he reflects. “When we first played New York [in January] at this little bar, Piano’s, we felt like ‘This is the most amazing thing ever.’ I never thought anything would top that. And then SXSW, it was a crazy-amazing time down there, everything just went really well. And, you know, playing Alberta for the first time, if just feels like everything is getting better and better.” []

Continue reading Admiring the awesome The Rural Alberta Advantage playing, great pics & a setlist!!

Music for bikers #3 personal yearlist 2009: Greg Koons and the Misbegotten

Los Angeles twangsmith Greg Koons writes from the perspective of a poor kid from off of Route 83 in Pennsylvania, though now he’s all grown up and carrying the hard-hurting freight of life and love, which live in a solid set of songs on his full-length debut. Welcome to the Nowhere Motel is full of jangle-and-strum roots-pop: “There but by the Grace of God Go I”, with its Buddy Holly-like vocal delivery, is the catchy handclapper; “Janey’s Got a New Boyfriend” chugs with an early ‘80s hit, FM melody; and “A Picture of My Pa Before He Died in Vietnam” (this dude’s got a knack for titles) stomps with an ironic exuberance. Koons is most memorable, though, when he slows it down on tender, lovesick ballads with Springsteenian detail, either bumming out over the failed promise of Los Angeles or singing the prettiest song you’ll ever hear about falling in love with a beaten-up hooker in a truck-stop bathroom.

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For # 4 click here

For # 5 click here

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