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Archive for the ‘Music’ Category

Adele Shrugs

When my daughter started talking about maybe going to see Adele when she appears in Austin TX, I had to admit I did not know who Adele is. So I researched a bit, Google of course, and found out Adele was shocked at her tax rate. This was due to her multi-platinum selling recording “19″. What’s worse, her next, “21″ is out selling the first.

Adele recently told Q magazine, “I’m mortified to have to pay 50 percent!,”  she said.”[While] I use the NHS, I can’t use the public transport anymore. Trains are always late, most state schools are s–t, and I’ve gotta give you, like, four million quid. Are you having a laugh?”

Sounds like she needs to learn a new tune, and the Kinks “Sunny Afternoon” may be just the one for her.

“Save me! Save me! Save me from this squeeeeeeze!”

Sorry Adele, follow the Stones lead and go record in other countries.

 

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Wanna Feel Old?

Look at what song was number one on the Billboard chart the day you were born. (HT: Ann Althouse) Yikes!

Of course, it doesn’t have to be your birthday. Other important days (some of which are rather ironic):

Stock market crash, October 28-29, 1929: “Tip Toe Through the Tulips” by Nick Lucas

FDR’s inauguration, March 4, 1933: “You’re Getting to Be a Habit with Me” by Bing Crosby

Outbreak of World War II, September 1, 1939: “Sunrise Serenade” by Glen Gray

Pearl Harbor, December 7, 1941: “Chattanooga Choo Choo” by Glenn Miller

VE Day, May 7-8, 1945: “My Dreams Are Getting Better All the Time” by Les Brown

VJ Day, August 14, 1945: “On the Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe” by Johnny Mercer

JFK Assassination, November 22, 1963: “I’m Leaving It Up to You” by Dale & Grace

Moon landing, July 20, 1969: “In the Year 2525 (Exordium & Terminus)” by Zager & Evans

Fall of Saigon, April 30, 1975: “He Don’t Love You (Like I Love You)” by Tony Orlando & Dawn

My wedding day, August 14, 1976: “Don’t Go Breaking My Heart” by Elton John & Kiki Dee

Ronald Reagan’s inauguration, January 20, 1981: “(Just Like) Starting Over” by John Lennon

Fall of the Berlin Wall: November 9, 1989: “When I See You Smile” by Bad English

Fall of USSR, December 25, 1991: “Black or White” by Michael Jackson

September 11, 2001: “Fallin’” by Alicia Keys

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The Day the Music Companies Died

Charlie Martin writes an obituary, perhaps not too far in advance, for the record companies:

There is a new business model coming, one that will be built around the musicians and their works; promoting them, getting them visibility, letting people know about them. It will be good for musicians themselves, and not just the big name acts: with a potential audience of billions of people, very small acts with a tiny tiny percentage of the potential audience will still make the artists more money then they could have made in day jobs.

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Your Brain on Jazz

I worry about improvising while undergoing an MRI, but the results are intriguing:

The scientists found that a region of the brain known as the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex, a broad portion of the front of the brain that extends to the sides, showed a slowdown in activity during improvisation. This area has been linked to planned actions and self-censoring, such as carefully deciding what words you might say at a job interview. Shutting down this area could lead to lowered inhibitions, Limb suggests.

The researchers also saw increased activity in the medial prefrontal cortex, which sits in the center of the brain’s frontal lobe. This area has been linked with self-expression and activities that convey individuality, such as telling a story about yourself.

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Shaking Up the Music Industry

Legal downloads of 25 million songs.

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The End of the Music Industry?

Is the CD becoming extinct?  How is anyone going to make money from music?  (HT: Instapundit and Samizdata)

 IN 2006 EMI, the world’s fourth-biggest recorded-music company, invited some teenagers into its headquarters in London to talk to its top managers about their listening habits. At the end of the session the EMI bosses thanked them for their comments and told them to help themselves to a big pile of CDs sitting on a table. But none of the teens took any of the CDs, even though they were free. “That was the moment we realised the game was completely up,” says a person who was there. 

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Deep thoughts from Glenn Reynolds here. I like the “Garden of Forking Paths” image invoked by Jorge Luis Borges and exploited by Anil Gupta and Richmond Thomason in their development a logic that combines tense and modality. From that point of view, as we get older, the garden in front of us thins. I had thought of that as discouraging. But it also shrinks opportunity costs.

I’m struck, too, that one can still take up paths long neglected, and that doing so is surprisingly rewarding. I took up playing the bass again after thirty years; in fact, my main Christmas present was a Crate BX100 bass amp. I’ve started composing music, something I hadn’t done since college. Dymphna has taken up ice skating. If you’re in search of a New Year’s resolution, I recommend thinking back and taking up again something you used to love but gave up along the way.

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Top Ten Unknown Musical Artists of 2007

NPR lists the top ten unknown artists of 2007. I especially like Lucinda Blackbear and Georgie James.

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Handel’s Messiah

The St. Cecilia Music Series is sponsoring a performance of Handel’s Messiah—the 1759 Foundling Hospital version, the last version Handel himself prepared, unabridged, on baroque instruments—over three nights at St. Martin’s Lutheran Church, 15th Street, Austin, Texas:

Friday, November 30, 7pm: Part I.

Saturday, December 1, 7pm: Part II.

Sunday, December 2, 6pm: Part III.

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Chanticleer is coming to town

This Thursday, Chanticleer, a Grammy-award winning men’s choir, will be performing in Austin.

This will top off an excellent musical week for me. Today, I played with Rich Harney and Alex Coke, and sang with Kinley Lange and an 80-person choir.

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