Frank Zappa Explains the Decline of the Music Business (1987)

≡ Category: Music |1 Comment

“Remember the 60s?” says Frank Zappa in the interview above, “that era that a lot of people have these glorious memories of?… they really weren’t that great, those years.” Ever the grumpy uncle. But Zappa does get nostalgic for one thing, and it’s an unexpected one: the music business.

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French Filmmaker Michel Gondry Creates a Steamy New Music Video for The White Stripes

≡ Category: Music |Leave a Comment

Talk about prolific. French filmmaker Michel Gondry has just released his 85th music video–this one for The White Stripes’ new song “City Lights.

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The History of Spiritual Jazz: Hear a Transcendent 12-Hour Mix Featuring John Coltrane, Sun Ra, Herbie Hancock & More

≡ Category: Jazz, Music, Religion |8 Comments

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Jazz has inspired a great many things, and a great many things have inspired jazz, and more than a few of the music’s masters have found their aspiration by looking — or listening — to the divine. But that doesn’t necessarily mean they subscribe to traditional religion.

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Learn How to Read Sheet Music: A Quick, Fun, Tongue-in-Cheek Introduction

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You’re probably familiar with the scene in Milos Foreman’s Amadeus (or its brilliant 30 Rock parody). Thomas Hulce as the irreverent musical prodigy feverishly dictates the “Dies Irae” section of his final, unfinished Requiem Mass in D minor, conjuring it out of thin air.

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Paul McCartney Shows You How to Make Mashed Potatoes (1998)

≡ Category: Food & Drink, Music |Leave a Comment

10 minutes of Macca making mash. That’s what’s on the menu today.
The clip above was shot back in December 1998, only eight months after Paul McCartney lost his wife Linda to breast cancer. Devastated by the loss, McCartney stayed out of the limelight for most of that year.

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Patti Smith’s New Haunting Tribute to Nico: Hear Three Tracks

≡ Category: Music |2 Comments

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Like Lou Reed, her reluctant co-leader in the Velvet Underground, German-born model-cum-singer Nico had a pronounced mean streak. Or, as Simon Reynolds writes in The Guardian, “talk of her dark side is accurate.

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Malcolm Gladwell on Why Genius Takes Time: A Look at the Making of Elvis Costello’s “Deportee” & Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah”

≡ Category: Music, Podcast Articles and Resources |2 Comments

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In every musician’s discography, one album has to rank at the bottom. In the case of the prolific and respected singer-songwriter Elvis Costello, fans and critics alike tend to single out 1984’s Goodbye Cruel World, which even Costello himself once described as “our worst album.

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An Animated John Lennon Describes His First Acid Trip

≡ Category: Music |Leave a Comment

Way back when, we featured an animation that documented the first acid trip of novelist Ken Kesey. In Kesey’s case, it all happened in a careful, calculated way in 1959, under the care and control of the U.S. government. Six years later and 5,000+ miles away, John Lennon’s maiden voyage went down in a very different way.

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Watch Nirvana Perform “Smells Like Teen Spirit,” Just Two Days After the Release of Nevermind (September 26, 1991)

≡ Category: Music |1 Comment

It’s hard to imagine a time when Nirvana’s “Smells Like Teen Spirit” didn’t belong to all of us. One day it didn’t exist. And then one day it did, and for so many of us who heard that churning opening chord, that was it. Maybe it took one listen, or five, but it was clear this song was going to mean something.

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Hear 508 Hours of Songs Recorded by Rudy Van Gelder (1924-2016), the Engineer Who Created the Sound of Modern Jazz

≡ Category: Jazz, Music |2 Comments

The art of audio engineering is mostly a dark one, an alchemy performed behind closed studio doors by people who speak a technical language most of us don’t recognize. That is until recently.

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