The Soviets Who Bootlegged Western Music on X-Rays: Their Story Told in New Video & Audio Documentaries

≡ Category: History, Music |Leave a Comment

When you learn that Soviet music-lovers bootleged Western rock, pop, jazz, and more on the surfaces of discarded x-ray plates, you can’t help but want to learn a bit about it.


The Secret Link Between Jazz and Physics: How Einstein & Coltrane Shared Improvisation and Intuition in Common

≡ Category: Music, Physics, Science, TED Talks |2 Comments”>Giant

Scientists need hobbies. The grueling work of navigating complex theory and the politics of academia can get to a person, even one as laid back as Dartmouth professor and astrophysicist Stephon Alexander.


Jane Austen’s Music Collection, Now Digitized and Available Online

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“What really matters is what you like, not what you are like,” says the narrator of Nick Hornby’s High Fidelity. “It’s no good pretending that any relationship has a future if your record collections disagree violently.


Animated: Frank Zappa on Why the Culturally-Bereft United States Is So Susceptible to Fads (1971)

≡ Category: Music |2 Comments

Frank Zappa was always frank. You gotta give him that.
Speaking with Village Voice journalist Howard Smith in 1971, Zappa talked candidly about the tastes, opinions, and beliefs of most Americans, whether they apply to music or politics or anything else. “You have a nation of people who are waiting for the next big thing to happen.


Watch “The Corridor,” a Tribute to the Music Video Stanley Kubrick Planned to Make Near the End of His Life

≡ Category: Film, Music |Leave a Comment”>Rabbit

When Stanley Kubrick died, he left behind numerous film ideas that would never see the light of day. There was his epic Napoleon film; an adaptation of a Jim Thompson novel; his long-talked about Holocaust film Aryan Papers; and so much more.


What’s the Essence of Music & Sound?: Meditations from Radiolab’s Jad Abumrad Presented in a Short, Creative Film

≡ Category: Music |Leave a Comment

If you’ve ever listened to Radiolab, one of the most popular and enduring podcasts out there, you know how much music (and sound more generally) plays a special role in the show’s production. And that’s all largely the creation of Radiolab’s co-host, Jad Abumrad.


The New Prince Online Museum Archives 16 of Prince’s Official Web Sites, Spanning 20 Years

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In March of 2015, The Guardian published a piece on Prince’s vault, begun by his former sound engineer Susan Rogers before his Purple Rain superstardom: “It’s an actual bank vault, with a thick door,” she said, “in the basement of Paisley Park. When I left in 87, it was nearly full.” That was 30 years ago.


The Haunting Background Vocals on The Rolling Stones’ “Gimme Shelter:” Merry Clayton Recalls How They Came to Be

≡ Category: Music |2 Comments”>Rolling

The question of what an artist is willing to give up for her art is unanswerable until the moment of sacrifice arrives, and she must make a choice—safety, comfort, family, etc, or the leap into a creative endeavor whose outcome is uncertain? Then there are those artists—often just as talented and ambitious—who make these choices f


Hear Electronic Ladyland, a Mixtape Featuring 55 Tracks from 35 Pioneering Women in Electronic Music

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Given that we’ve previously featured two documentaries on electronic music pioneer Delia Derbyshire, an introduction to four other female composers who pioneered electronic music (Daphne Oram, Laurie Spiegel, Éliane Radigue & Pauline Oliveros), and seven hours of electronic music made by women between 1938 and 2014, no loyal Open Culture rea


Rufus Wainwright and 1,500 Singers Sing Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah”

≡ Category: Music |28 Comments

We’ve seen 1999 members of Choir! Choir! Choir! perform “When Doves Cry,” a moving, mass tribute to Prince. And they’re now back, 1500 strong, with Rufus Wainwright at the helm, singing Leonard Cohen’s beloved and oft-covered song, Hallelujah.


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