The Bill Evans Trio in London, 1965: Two Sets by the Legendary Combo

On March 19, 1965, the Bill Evans Trio stopped by the BBC studios in London to play a pair of sets on Jazz 625, the now-legendary program hosted by the British trumpeter Humphrey Lyttelton. The combo–which featured Evans on piano, Chuck Israels on bass and Larry Bunker on drums–played two sets, including most of the songs from their just-completed album, Trio ’65. The two 35-minute programs (shown consecutively in the video above) take us back in time to see and hear one of the most brilliant and influential jazz pianists of all time, at work in a tightly integrated trio.

Set One:

  1. “Five,” by Bill Evans
  2. “Elsa,” by Earl Zindars
  3. “Summertime,” by George Gershwin
  4. “Come Rain or Come Shine,” by Harold Arlen
  5. “My Foolish Heart,” by Victor Young
  6. “Re: Person I Knew,” by Bill Evans
  7. “Israel,” by Johnny Carisi
  8. “Five,” by Bill Evans (reprise)

Set Two:

  1. “Five,” by Bill Evans
  2. “How My Heart Sings,” by Earl Zindars
  3. “Nardis,” by Miles Davis
  4. “Who Can I Turn To?” by Anthony Newley and Leslie Bricusse
  5. “Someday My Prince Will Come,” by Frank Churchill
  6. “How Deep is the Ocean?” by Bill Evans
  7. “Five,” by Bill Evans (reprise)

Related content:

The Universal Mind of Bill Evans: Advice on Learning to Play Jazz

Thelonious Monk, Bill Evans and More on the Classic Jazz 625 Show

“Good Chemistry” Explains Chemical Bonds with Cutout Animation and Teenage Romance

Love, or the promise of it, sells clothes, cologne and many a compact disc—but who’d think love could sell chemistry? Sixteen-year-old Eli Cirino did, and was he ever right. The tenth grader submitted an extra credit video for his chemistry class and what he got was probably way more than he bargained for. Good Chemistry explains chemical bonds using construction paper animation of positive and negative ions and covalent bonds set against an original song sung by Cirino. It’s all edited together with images of a cute couple reaching out and clasping hands. A sample of Cirino’s lyrics: “We always on the lookout for a partnership, positive and negative you get the drift.” It’s catchy and sweet, to the tune of more than 290,000 views on YouTube by the end of the day Wednesday. Extra credit for Cirino for bringing the video in at pi-time: three minutes, fourteen seconds.

Kate Rix is an Oakland-based freelancer. Find more of her work at .

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Entitled Opinions, the “Life and Literature” Podcast That Refuses to Dumb Things Down

Proust. Mimetic desire. The inflationary universe. 1910, American writers in Paris. The history of the book. These topics may sound unusual enough to pique your interest. They may float through your mind once in a while, capturing an hour or two of your curiosity. They may periodically send you to the library on reading binges. But for KZSU-FM’s Entitled Opinions, they are meat and drink. Since 2005, professor-broadcaster Robert Harrison has explored these topics and many more besides in the intellectually expansive long-form conversations he conducts on Stanford University’s radio station. Always beginning with a monologue, Harrison spends the bulk of his broadcasts thinking aloud about these rich topics with philosophers like Richard Rorty, novelists like Orhan Pamuk, many a fellow academic, listeners, and his own brother. (Sometimes he up and conducts the entire show in French.) Each and every one of these he makes available as a podcast, on the show’s site and on iTunes.

“These are not like Stanford courses online,” said Harrison in a Stanford University News profile. “These are programs where intellectuals speak to each other at a high level of intellectual exchange—no one is excluded per se, but you do have to have intellectual curiosity. We refuse to dumb it down.” Having recently returned from a prolonged hiatus, Entitled Opinions has kept not dumbing it down with conversations on geography, hermaphroditism, political philosopher John Rawls, and Petrarch and Petrarchism. I myself engaged Harrison in a long-form interview on my previous podcast, The Marketplace of Ideas, in which we discussed the evolution of his show; his books on forests, gardens, and the dead;  his life as a rock musician (so that explains those episodes on Pink Floyd, The Doors, and Jimi Hendrix); and getting called “the most pretentious man in the world” over e-mail. We die-hard Entitled Opinions fans demand to know these things.

Colin Marshall hosts and produces Notebook on Cities and Culture. Follow him on Twitter at @colinmarshall.

The Art of Making a Flamenco Guitar: 299 Hours of Blood, Sweat & Tears Experienced in 3 Minutes

The Flamenco guitar grew up in Andalusia, the major province in southern Spain, where it became integral to the culture during the 19th century. The modern flamenco guitar (a first cousin of the modern classical guitar) is typically made with two of three woods — spruce on the top, and cypress or sycamore on the back and sides. When put in the hands of the right luthier, the guitar can become a thing of beauty. Case in point: This artful video by Greek filmmaker Dimitris Ladopoulos brings you inside the workshop of Vasilis Lazarides, who specializes in making high quality flamenco guitars by hand. (Visit his guitars online here.) 299 hours of blood, sweat, tears and love go into making each fine guitar. But you can watch it all happen in a matter of three minutes, with the music of Edsart Udo de Haes providing the soundtrack.

If electric guitars happen to be your thing, you can also watch Fenders being made in 1959 and 2012.

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Watch FLAMENCO AT 5:15, a Life-Affirming, Oscar-Winning Documentary About a Flamenco Dance Class

Hear Metallica’s “Nothing Else Matters” Covered in Unexpected Styles: Gregorian Choir, Cello Ensemble, Finnish Bluegrass, Jazz Vocal & More

Building the Golden Gate Bridge: A Retro Film Featuring Original Archival Footage

This past weekend, San Francisco celebrated the 75th anniversary of the Golden Gate Bridge. And if Bethlehem Steel were still around, it would have been celebrating too. Once America’s second-largest steel producer, the now bankrupt company fabricated the steel used in the construction of the iconic bridge — all 68,000 tons of it. Somewhere during the 1950s, the Pennsylvania-based firm revisited the making of the Golden Gate Bridge, producing a 26 minute film that incorporated some amazing archival footage. Every phase of construction gets covered, and the film ends with the bridge’s big opening day in 1937. It’s not to be missed.

via The Atlantic

Download David Hockney’s Playful Drawings for the iPhone and iPad

Last year, the Royal Ontario Museum (ROM) in Toronto staged an exhibit of David Hockney’s playful drawings produced with/for the iPhone and iPad. Hockney became an early adopter of Apple’s popular devices and started creating finger-drawn images (using the Brushes app) in 2008. Initially, the English painter only shared his digital drawings with a small circle of friends. Then he decided to make them available to the larger world, presenting them first in Paris in 2010, and then later in Toronto. Here, Hockney explains the basic thinking behind his Fresh Flowers exhibitions.

Throughout the Canadian exhibition, the ROM invited the public to download a series of free images by Hockney. They’re all still online, and we’ve gathered them below. What will you do with them? Put them on your iPhone or iPad, of course. (Find instructions here and here.) Or whatever other device you please.



Flannery O’Connor Reads ‘A Good Man is Hard to Find’ in Rare 1959 Audio

Flannery O’Connor was a Southern writer who, as Joyce Carol Oates once said, had less in common with Faulkner than with Kafka and Kierkegaard. Isolated by poor health and consumed by her fervent Catholic faith, O’Connor created works of moral fiction that, according to Oates, “were not refined New Yorker stories of the era in which nothing happens except inside the characters’ minds, but stories in which something happens of irreversible magnitude, often death by violent means.”

In imagining those events of irreversible magnitude, O’Connor could sometimes seem outlandish–even cartoonish–but she strongly rejected the notion that her perceptions of 20th century life were distorted. “Writers who see by the light of their Christian faith will have, in these times, the sharpest eye for the grotesque, for the perverse, and for the unacceptable,” O’Connor said. “To the hard of hearing you shout, and for the almost-blind you draw large and startling figures.”

In April of 1959–five years before her death at the age of 39 from lupus–O’Connor ventured away from her secluded family farm in Milledgeville, Georgia, to give a reading at Vanderbilt University. She read one of her most famous and unsettling stories, “A Good Man is Hard to Find.” The audio, accessible above, is one of two known recordings of the author reading that story. (The other, from a 1957 appearance at Notre Dame University, can be heard here.) In her distinctive Georgian drawl, O’Connor tells the story of a fateful family trip:

The grandmother didn’t want to go to Florida. She wanted to visit some of her connections in east Tennessee and she was seizing at every chance to change Bailey’s mind. Bailey was the son she lived with, her only boy. He was sitting on the edge of his chair at the table, bent over the orange sports section of the Journal. “Now look here, Bailey,” she said, “see here, read this,” and she stood with one hand on her thin hip and the other rattling the newspaper at his bald head. “Here this fellow that calls himself The Misfit is aloose from the Federal Pen and headed toward Florida and you read here what it says he did to these people. Just you read it. I wouldn’t take my children in any direction with a criminal like that aloose in it. I couldn’t answer to my conscience if I did.”

To continue reading the full text while you listen, open this page in a new window. And afterward, you can follow this link to a recording of O’Connor reading her 1960 essay, “Some Aspects of the Grotesque in Southern Fiction,” in which she writes: “I have found that anything that comes out of the South is going to be called grotesque by the Northern reader, unless it is grotesque, in which case it is going to be called realistic.”

You will find O’Connor’s reading of “A Good Man is Hard to Find” housed in our collection of Free Audio Books.

Related Content:

Looking for free, professionally-read audio books from Here’s a great, no-strings-attached deal. If you start a 30 day free trial with, you can download two free audio books of your choice. Get more details on the offer here.

When Respected Authors, from Goethe to Henry Miller, Try Their Hand at Painting

Freshly posted on publisher Melville House‘s blog, you’ll find examples of visual art by textual artists; drawings and paintings, in other words, drawn and painted by people who have gone down in history for their way with sentences. This could easily turn into a lesson about not quitting one’s day job. But, as you can see from the work above, Maria Nys Huxley at Siesta, Melville House blogger Kevin Murphy hasn’t put together a study in the incompetence of the dilettante. You’ve surely already guessed the literary connection: the painting came from the hand of Brave New World author Aldous Huxley, who put his wife Maria Nys to canvas in 1920, when both were still in their twenties.

The post features more paintings from the late eighteenth century to the mid-twentieth by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, Victor Hugo, Marcel Proust, Hermann Hesse, e.e. cummings, Zelda Fitzgerald, Jack Kerouac, Flannery O’Connor, and Henry Miller. Each one reflects  something familiar about the painter’s main line of work: Goethe’s, bucolic reverie; Proust’s, the sketchiness of fading memory enriched by a scattering of bold details; Hesse’s, a stare of unbroken intensity. One particular outlier, with its simple pen-and-ink composition as well as its overt humor, expresses the literary personality of its creator more strongly than all the others put together:

Can you guess the author — er, artist?

Find the full collection here.

via @KirstinButler

Related content:

Photos of Famous Writers (and Rockers) with their Dogs

The Writing Rooms of Famous Writers

Famous Authors Read Other Famous Authors

Colin Marshall hosts and produces Notebook on Cities and Culture. Follow him on Twitter at @colinmarshall.

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