Thirty-Six Cents: The Rise and Fall of Shog

Shog was a band started in high school with a couple of friends from the swim team. The year was 1996 and I almost had my driver’s license for the first time. The only person with any band equipment was the guitar player, Josh, who had a red Fender Telecaster and a small Fender amp. We just decided we were going to start a band and that’s what we set out to do.

I remember driving over to the guitar player’s house to practice. I would write songs during school (mostly in Spanish class) and then we’d come up with the music at night after swim practice or on the weekends. I was the lead singer so I eventually invested in a professional microphone, but at first, we just used headphones to record into (the device is the same).


Our first album was recorded in December around Christmas time. It was recorded mostly in my parent’s garage, but some of it was in the bass player’s bedroom. It was recorded on a single track cassette and the album cover was printed on an inkjet printer. We dubbed about 25 copies and gave them out on Christmas day as presents.

We recorded two more albums in high school, one more on tape (Sessions), and our first on CD (Sky). By the third album we all had instruments, had a 4-track cassette recorder, and been playing several shows at churches and events around Indianapolis. At one of our shows in Franklin, our drummer made a connection with someone he eventually married.

When it came time to choose a college, the three seniors in the band chose Kentucky Christian College (now called Kentucky Christian University). The junior stayed behind in high school and eventually went to Indiana State. At KCC we picked up first one new guitarist, John Tellier, and then a second one, Bill (who loved Creed). Below is a video of us going on a photo shoot at the top of the hill.

By the end of our second year at KCC the band was starting to fall apart. Bill wanted to join another band. The bass player was making plans to get married and change schools. Eventually all 5 members left KCC at end of our sophomore year to 5 different locations: vocals to Milligan College, bass to Ball State University, drums to Franklin, Bill back to wherever he came from, and John back to Illinois. The six of us got back together once for my wedding:

Shog at My Wedding

Shog Discography

Fun Facts about Shog Albums:

  • All albums start with the letter ‘s’.
  • The songs on Sky and Sessions are both in alphabetical order, indicative of them being processed on a computer.
  • One of the last songs, “Thirty-Six Cents”, was also the number of songs produced by Shog over time if you don’t include “Introduction”, “Abstract Art”, and “Apollo 13” from Out of the Wrapper.
  • Shog Discography

Sweettarts: Out of the Wrapper

  1. We Wish You a Merry Christmas
  2. That
  3. Summer Loving
  4. Spanish 1
  5. Or Brain
  6. More Love, More Power
  7. Mi Medley
  8. Introduction
  9. Day Tripper
  10. Closer Walk with Thee
  11. Apollo 13
  12. Abstract Art

Shog: Sessions

  1. Walking
  2. The Tracks
  3. Noko Incidence
  4. Mine
  5. Leslie Ann
  6. Isn’t He
  7. Flush
  8. Emotion of the Hour
  9. Explorescape
  10. Dr. Pepper
  11. Cry of My Heart
  12. Awesome god
  13. Arms of Love
  14. Abba Father

Shog: Sky

  1. He is God
  2. Rain Song
  3. Sky
  4. Sulfur Soup
  5. Through God

Shog: Statues

  1. Groovy Day
  2. I am Peter
  3. Rain Song
  4. Sky
  5. Sulfur Soup
  6. Thirty-Six Cents

Shog: Peaceful War

One Night – a Rock Musical

This is a story about three boys and one girl who meet on a train “one night”

This is a “jukebox musical” compilation I made on Spotify which weaves a story out of pop songs. You can listen to it on Spotify here: One Night

[Act I]

1. Some Nights by Fun – Three boys looking for something to stand for decide to stay up all night and start walking towards the train station.

2. Breathe Me by Sia – A girl named Valerie is walking the streets alone at night after selling herself for drugs. She gets on the train.

3. Kill Your Heroes by Awol Nation – The boys notice her sitting alone and afraid and decide to approach her.

4. Shake it Out by Florence and the Machine – The train stops and they all get off the train downtown and go into a club where Valerie sings while one boy goes to the bar and the other two go off to the bathroom.

5. We are Young by Fun – The boy at the bar begins courting Valerie inside the club. They end up leaving the club together and walking along the street together.

6. Lights by Ellie Goulding – The girl ends up talking about how much she misses her home and begins walking back towards the train when the other two boys appear.

7. Ho Hey by The Lumineers – One of the boy begins singing to Valerie stating that she should be his sweetheart instead. She doesn’t want anything to do with him.

8. Wide Awake by Katy Perry – Valerie then realizes now what she has to do and she goes home to her family.

9. I Will Wait by Mumford & Sons – One of the boy begins to kneel down and begins singing to her about how he will wait for her.

10. The Cave by Mumford and Sons – They boys get off of the train and begin walking home as the sun rises.

[Act II]

11. Fiction by The xx – One boy wakes up lamenting the night before. He curses the daylight and the light of day between him and Valerie.

12. Madness by Muse – Another boy wakes up back at home in his room and begins singing about Valerie. He realizes what she needs and begins to make a plan.

13. It’s Time by Imagine Dragons – the third boy wakes up and refuses to change who he is or where he came from. He wants to bend the world to his will – and because of that he is lonely.

14. Both of Us by Taylor Swift and B.o.B. – Valerie wakes up at her house and is confronted by her angry father. She ends up realizing why she left home in the first place and begins running back to meet one of the boys.

15. Glad You Came by The Wanted – Valerie meets one of the boys and he begins to sing to her about how glad he is that she’s come back.

16. Good Time by Owl City and Carly Rae Jespen – Valerie and the boy sing a duet together about the good times they see themselves together in the future.

17. Too Close by Alex Clare – Just then, another boy appears to confront Valerie about his love for her and he sings her this song.

18. As Long As You Love Me by Justin Bieber – Another boy appears to proclaim his love to Valerie.

19. Wild Ones by Flo Rida and Sia – Valerie ends up choosing one of the boys and they sing together about making a new home together.

20. Home by Phillip Phillips – The boy and Valerie go make a new home for themselves.