Saturday, November 29, 2014

The Classical Stream Kickstarter Campaign

The Classical Stream was an internet radio show that I produced and hosted via But due to the high cost of music licensing broadcast fees, BostonPete was forced to closed down. The Classical Stream is currently without a home.
I'm trying to bring back the show but I need to upgrade my equipment, stock my music library with new recordings, and find an established "big name" server home (like Live365).
The Classical Stream is a different concept in classical music radio. Once considered "long hair" music (before that meant hippies in the 1960's) or only for high-brow, high-falootin' people, classical music is now accessible and established as music for the masses!
My intention is to provide a warm and personal classical music show - not just "play music" but talk about the music and how much it means to the world.
I'll introduce quality orchestras and performers to a world-wide audience and bring outstanding music to the planet!
Of course, I'll only be able to do this with your help. 
Please donate today! We are just over two weeks till the end of our campaign!
You can go here to make your pledge. You will not be charged unless we meet our goal.

Thursday, November 20, 2014

A Thanksgiving Tradition

An Introduction to Traditions
Charlie Brown is as traditional to Thanksgiving as turkey, pumpkin pie and football.

Speaking of football, A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving begins with Lucy convincing Charlie Brown that place-kicking a football on Thanksgiving is a great honor. It usually is a great honor to be part of anything that is steeped in tradition.
But of course Charlie Brown will never kick that football; at least not as long as Lucy is the holder!
This scene serves to remind us that traditions sometimes do fade away. 

One of the most long-standing traditions in the world is that of Passover. It has been a part of the Jewish faith for nearly 3500 years. But it was not something that was traditionally celebrated at first – not like it is now. In fact, the Bible makes a big deal about the first couple of times that the Children of Israel actually celebrated Passover (or the Feast of Unleavened Bread) because they did NOT traditionally celebrate every year.

Traditions are important. Every family has its own traditions.

What are some of your family Thanksgiving traditions?

Another Holiday to Worry About
Holidays – for adults at least – can be very stressful times. Not so much for kids, although Charlie Brown is an exception. He even says clearly that Thanksgiving is “another holiday to worry about.” Charlie Brown’s worries about this particular Thanksgiving are that he has three, somewhat uninvited, guests coming for the holiday dinner. While his sister Sally offers an explanation for why this has happened – because Charlie Brown is so “wishy-washy” – there is probably a better reason. The worry that accompanies many holiday traditions comes from a need to please.

Traditions – The Need to Please
Charlie Brown has a need to please other people. This is something that is, to a certain degree, in every person. We want people to like us. We want to make other people happy. And when people have company coming over, people usually have a desire to feed them well. Charlie Brown’s dilemma is that not only does he have three guests coming for Thanksgiving dinner, his culinary prowess is limited to “cold cereal and maybe toast.”

But for all of Charlie Brown’s wishy-washiness, he is not without friends who will help him in his desperate hour. Linus, Snoopy and Woodstock will all help

Snoopy learns the lesson that with every traditional holiday there are sometimes battles to be fought. Deadlines to meet, menus to fill, gifts to be bought, cleaning, setting the table, etc. Snoopy’s battles happen to be with ping-pong tables and chaise lounges.

But soon, Snoopy orchestrates a new traditional meal.

What are your traditional meals for Thanksgiving?

Charlie Brown’s New Traditional Thanksgiving Dinner is:
Two slices of buttered toast,
Some pretzel sticks,
A handful of popcorn, and
A few jelly beans.

The Real Thanksgiving – More than Meal
Of course, Peppermint Patty is not happy with this new tradition. Oh, and by the way, Peppermint Patty is a girl. There seems to be some confusion as to that recently. She’s what used to be called a “tom-boy,” a girl who tends to do things that are more traditional for boys to do: play baseball, wear comfortable clothes, stuff like that.

Patty takes out her anger on her host, breaking his heart. Patty then is reminded what Thanksgiving is really all about. It isn’t about a meal – it is about being thankful for what you have.

You and I have plenty to be thankful for – Jesus Christ being at the top of the list. His salvation given to us as a free gift is the reason we should be thankful, especially at this time of year. Because our sins are forgiven, we can get together and get along with our family and friends. Even at what can be a stressful time of year!

But Let’s Not Forget the Meal!

A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving closes with a reminder that while the real Thanksgiving is more than a meal, we should not forget the meal!

It doesn't have to be turkey, mashed potatoes and pumpkin pie. It can be salmon steaks with oyster sauce. It can be PB&J’s with cold milk.

But each meal is important, so much so that the Bible refers to heaven as a banquet, a feast to come.

So this Thanksgiving, as you gather around a meal with your family and friends, remember to give God thanks for all His gifts to you, number one of which is Jesus Christ! Don’t let the holiday stress you out, enjoy it and help others to enjoy it and give thanks.

The Classical Stream

Good radio is hard to find.

Personal radio is rarer still, what with all the "bots" and "canned" radio hosts in today's mainstream broadcasts.

I have a passion for good radio, and I had excellent mentors during my time in St. Louis.
Ed Blonski at KFUO, St. Louis
Ed Blonski at KFUO, St. Louis
In fact, those mentors would guide the station I cut my teeth on to the Marconi Award for Classical Music Station of the Year in 1999.

In 2002, I was given the opportunity to host my very own internet radio show and The Classical Stream was born. For nearly 10 years I produced and hosted a show featuring the best music in the world.
Recording at Lutheran Hour Ministries in St. Louis
Recording at Lutheran Hour Ministries in St. Louis
The Classical Stream's home was at But in January of 2012, BostonPete was closed down its music shows due to licensing fees.

Since then, I've been looking for ways to bring The Classical Stream back to the world.
Classical music is some of the finest music in world and is the most enduring music on the planet. Classical music deserves the best venues possible and is performed in some of the most beautiful places in the world.

The driving passion of The Classical Stream is to bring the best music in the world to the widest audience possible in the best way that is possible with the latest technology.
I’m asking you to help! Your support will provide music to the planet that is desperate for peaceful, comforting, and inspiring compositions.

Thank you for your support of The Classical Stream.

Monday, November 17, 2014

In the Dark

Life begins in darkness. For about 9 months, each human being is “in the dark.” Coming into the light must be a frightening thing – strangers with masks on, bright lights shining directly on you, lots of noise. But then the warmth of a mother’s arms, soft words of love and comfort, life in the light is very different than how it began in the dark.

This holds true throughout our lives. Many Christians talk about a “dark night of the soul” and life can be like that sometimes. Going through periods of darkness – depression, terror, the loss of a job, the death of a loved one, and so on.

This seems to be the natural way of things. God even tells us, in His Word, that, “weeping may tarry for the night, but joy comes with the morning” (Psalm 30:5 ESV).

I was reading a book by Frank Viola called “Revise Us Again” and in it, I learned a truth that I had overlooked all these years. The truth that God begins our lives, begins all our blessings, in the dark and not in the light!

In the first chapter of Genesis, it is made very clear that each day begins in the evening – at sundown and not in the morning at sunrise.

Jesus Christ was born at night. He died when darkness covered the land. He rose from the dead early on the first day of the week while it was still dark.

“It is in the hidden hours of the night that God does His deepest work of transformation. The night, the evening, and the darkness are all promises of a new day.
If you can hold this in your heart, it will change your life” (Revise Us Again, p 115).

If you are going through a “dark night of the soul” then keep this in mind!

If it feels like your life is ending, think about this: “What we call the end, God calls the beginning. God takes away to establish, and what He establishes is always better. As high as God is going to elevate you is as deep as He digs to lay the foundation” (p 115).

Help bring back "The Classical Stream" - produced and hosted by Ed Blonski

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Thank a Vet

Note: This is a traditional "repost" from a couple of years ago. An update, Daniel Brown died last month. I was humbled and honored to preach at his funeral. 

Stephen Ambrose, Steven Spielberg and Tom Hanks have done a great service to my generation and those younger in that they remind us why we are free to blog, make movies, vote, travel, and live as we do.
Their books, movies, and TV series bring to life the men and women who fought, bled, and some who died, to keep us free. Band of Brothers, the Pacific, Citizen Soldiers, etc. all tell a story - a true story - that needs to be told to us and our children.
But I also thank another author by the name of Marcus Brotherton. He has brought to the forefront some of the men that didn't make it to the forefront of those other men's stories. Brotherton tells the stories of Shifty PowersEd Pepping, Earl "One Lung" McLung, Forest Guth and others. They were just as much heroes as Richard WintersBill Guarnere, and Buck Compton - and Winters, Guarnere and Compton would be the first to tell you that.
Recently I met another hero of World War II - my word, not his. In fact, he seems to think his service to be no big deal. I'm sure no one would ever write a book or make a movie about his war exploits. But what he did was no less important than anyone else's contribution to the war effort.
His name is Daniel Brown. As far as I know he never fired a rifle in combat, never even saw a battle. Brown served in the Army Air Force as a mechanic - specifically responsible for B-29's. When not serving in the States, he was stationed in Panama. No battles were fought there. But of course, the Panama Canal was of vital strategic importance.
Dan Brown left his wife Betty and all his family to serve in the Army Air Force. He knew that going into battle was a distinct possibility. But go he did because our country needed defending. He put aside his own comforts and dreams - for a time - to do the job that needed doing. That is what a leader does. Dan Brown continues to lead today and is teaching me what it means to be a leader and a true man.
"Doc" Brown and all those who served -whether in battle, in support, or in the states - deserve our recognition and thanks. I love spending an hour or two with him and his wife, Betty, as they tell stories of the war years and after. "Doc" Brown came home to his wife, started a family, lived his life in the freedom that he served to protect.  He went on to become a cop and later a chiropractor. Betty was a dancer and musician. Both were - and are, today - active in their church and share the love of Jesus Christ with everyone they meet.
Just two of the wonderful people we should all thank on this Veterans Day.
So stop a vet today, tell him or her thanks. After all, you owe them a lot!

Monday, November 10, 2014

Happy Birthday, United States Marines!

Note: I wrote this a few years ago and traditionally repost it each November 10.
Edward Schiffmann Wear joined the United States Marines during World War II and was sent to the Pacific Theater. He was the brother of Irene Wear – my grandmother. He died during the Battle of Iwo Jima. The story is told in my family that as he died, he was praying the Lord’s Prayer with a chaplain.
Achieving the rank of Corporal in the 9th Marines Regiment, my great uncle answered the call of his country to defend her freedom against an aggressor nation.
He was one of the 6,812 Americans killed or missing on Iwo Jima.
A man I never met who died long ago and far away continues to have a tremendous impact on my life. My mother still talks about him to this day. She has been sharing stories of her memories of him with me the last couple of days. Yet, I still hardly know anything about him. I don’t know what his favorite food was. I don’t know what he thought of being the youngest to three sisters. I don’t know how he felt about living in the city of Chicago but spending his summers on Long Lake.
In spite of this I still feel tremendously proud, and humbled at the same time, that I am part of his family.
The Battle of Iwo Jima was one of the most important battles in the Pacific Theater of Operations during World War II. It has become iconic of the sacrifice, determination and leadership that United States Marines personify in today’s world.
Called by some the “Greatest Generation,” most of the men and women who answered their country’s call to fight in World War II did so not for glory or fame, but to do a job that needed to be done. They came from all walks of life. Some, like my great uncle, from humble beginnings. Many, again like my great uncle, went to war never to return to the United States alive.
But as far as I am concerned, they did not die in vain. They died, in part, for me. They died for you and for all Americans as well as for all peace- and freedom-loving people around the world. They made the ultimate sacrifice so that I could be free to worship, work, play, and live as I choose.
In this way, they are a lot like Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ laid down His life so that others – the world, in fact – could be free from sin, death, and the power of the devil. Jesus Christ personifies the United States Marines motto – Semper Fidelis – “Always Faithful.”
United States Marines have been protecting these freedoms longer than there has been a United States. Formed on November 10, 1775 in Philadelphia, men and women who served as U.S. Marines have been making sure that the United States is protected from those who would take our freedom away.
Happy Birthday, United States Marines. May God always bless and protect you as you are always faithful to corps and country.