Watch the Foo Fighters’ Taylor Hawkins (RIP) Give a Drumming Masterclass

If you’re going to back Dave Grohl behind the drums, well…. As so many have said, in so many ways over the week­end, in poignant trib­utes to Foo Fight­ers’ drum­mer Tay­lor Hawkins, who sad­ly passed away at age 50 on Fri­day — you’d bet­ter be damned good. As the Foo Fight­ers formed with Grohl on gui­tar and vocals, the for­mer Nir­vana drum­mer, now front­man “need­ed some­one who would not make fans keep wish­ing he had stuck with drums,” as NBC’s Daniel Arkin writes.

Grohl almost did stick with drums, at least in the stu­dio, record­ing the parts him­self for the band’s first album, The Colour and the Shape, after con­flicts with orig­i­nal drum­mer William Gold­smith. Hawkins was the tour­ing drum­mer for Ala­nis Moris­sette at the time — a much big­ger act than Foo Fight­ers in the late 90s. But the two kept bump­ing into each oth­er “back stage at fes­ti­vals around the world,” as Grohl wrote in his 2021 auto­bi­og­ra­phy, The Sto­ry­teller: Tales of Life and Music. “Our chem­istry was so obvi­ous that even Ala­nis her­self once asked him, ‘What are you going to do when Dave asks you to be his drum­mer?’ Part Beav­is and Butthead, part Dumb and Dumb­er, we were a hyper­ac­tive blur of Par­lia­ment Lights and air drum­ming wher­ev­er we went.”

Not only did Hawkins become Grohl’s “best friend and part­ner in crime” — his blond, beard­ed dop­pel­gänger behind the drums — but he was a fero­cious musi­cian on his terms, col­lab­o­rat­ing with Bri­an May, Den­nis Wil­son, Slash, and mem­bers of Jane’s Addic­tion, form­ing his own band, Tay­lor Hawkins and the Coat­tail Rid­ers, and get­ting vot­ed “Best Rock Drum­mer” in a 2005 read­ers poll by drum­ming mag­a­zine Rhythm. The acco­lade, if high­ly sub­jec­tive, is still high­ly deserved.

Revis­it Hawkins’ great­ness above in the BBC Radio 6 Drum­ming Mas­ter­class above, a near­ly hour-long spe­cial in which the man him­self walks us through his ear­ly life, his influ­ences, his drum­ming tech­niques, and his behind-the-scenes expe­ri­ences play­ing with Moris­sette and Dave “Steve Miller on steroids” Grohl. It’s an essen­tial watch for fans and per­haps one of the best ways to remem­ber the only drum­mer who could suc­cess­ful­ly back Nir­vana’s for­mer drum­mer for over two decades. He will be dear­ly missed for far longer than that.

Relat­ed Con­tent:

Dave Grohl Tells the Sto­ry of How He Wrote “Ever­long”

Dave Grohl & Greg Kurstin Cov­er The Ramones “Blitzkrieg Bop” to Cel­e­brate Han­nukah: Hey! Oy! Let’s Goy!

Watch 1,000 Musi­cians Play the Foo Fight­ers’ “Learn to Fly,” Nirvana’s “Smells Like Teen Spir­it,” Queen’s “We Will Rock You,” Bowie’s “Rebel Rebel,” and The Who’s “Won’t Get Fooled Again”

Josh Jones is a writer and musi­cian based in Durham, NC. Fol­low him at @jdmagness

Explore MoMA’s Collection of Modern & Contemporary Art Every Time You Open a New Browser Tab

There are brows­er exten­sions designed to increase your pro­duc­tiv­i­ty every time you open a new tab.

Oth­ers use pos­i­tive affir­ma­tions, inspir­ing quotes, and nature pho­tog­ra­phy to put your day on the right track.

We here­by announce that we’re switch­ing our set­tings and alle­giance to New Tab with MoMA.

After installing this exten­sion, you’ll be treat­ed to a new work of mod­ern and con­tem­po­rary art from The Muse­um of Mod­ern Art’s col­lec­tion when­ev­er you open a new tab in Chrome.

If you can steal a few min­utes, click what­ev­er image comes up to explore the work in greater depth with a cura­tor’s descrip­tion, links to oth­er works in the col­lec­tion by the same artist, and in some cas­es instal­la­tion views, inter­views and/or audio seg­ments.

Expect a few gift shop heavy hit­ters like Vin­cent Van Gogh’s The Star­ry Night, but also less­er known works not cur­rent­ly on view, like Yay­oi Kusama’s Vio­let Obses­sion, a row­boat slip­cov­ered in elec­tric pur­ple “phal­lic pro­tru­sions.”

Vio­let Obses­sion’s New Tab with MoMA link not only shows you how it was dis­played in the 2010 exhi­bi­tion Mind and Mat­ter: Alter­na­tive Abstrac­tions, 1940s to Now, you can also tog­gle around the instal­la­tion view to explore oth­er works in the same gallery.

You can hear audio of Kusama describ­ing how she “encrust­ed” the boat in soft sculp­ture pro­tu­ber­ances in her favorite pink­ish-pur­ple hue “to con­quer my fear of sex:”

Boats can come and go lim­it­less­ly and move ahead on the water. The boat, hav­ing over­come my obses­sion would move on for­ev­er, car­ry­ing me onboard

A link to a 1999 inter­view with Grady T. Turn­er in BOMB allows Kusama to give fur­ther con­text for the work, part of a sculp­ture series she con­ceives of as Com­pul­sion Fur­ni­ture:

My sofas, couch­es, dress­es, and row­boats bris­tle with phal­lus­es. … As an obses­sion­al artist I fear every­thing I see. At one time, I dread­ed every­thing I was mak­ing.

That’s a pret­ty robust art his­to­ry les­son for the price of open­ing a new tab, though such deep dives can def­i­nite­ly come at the expense of pro­duc­tiv­i­ty.

We weren’t expect­ing the 3‑dimensional nature of some of the works our tabs yield­ed up.

Stop, Repair, Pre­pare: Vari­a­tions on Ode to Joy for a Pre­pared Piano, No.12008 by Jen­nifer Allo­ra and Guiller­mo Calzadil­la required a live musi­cian to play Ode to Joy from Lud­wig van Beethoven’s Ninth Sym­pho­ny upside down and back­wards, from a hole carved into the cen­ter of a grand piano.

Frances Ben­jamin John­ston’s plat­inum print, Stair­way of the Trea­sur­er’s Res­i­dence: Stu­dents at Work from the Hamp­ton Album 1899–1900, is per­haps more eas­i­ly grasped if you can’t go too far down the rab­bit hole with the art­work appear­ing in your new tab.

An excerpt from the 2019 pub­li­ca­tion, MoMA High­lights: 375 Works from The Muse­um of Mod­ern Art, New York pro­vides a brief bio of both John­ston, “a pro­fes­sion­al pho­tog­ra­ph­er, not­ed for her por­traits of Wash­ing­ton politi­cians and her images of coal min­ers, iron­work­ers, and women labor­ers in New Eng­land tex­tile mills” and the Hamp­ton Insti­tute, Book­er T Washington’s alma mater.

Book­mark such bite-sized cul­tur­al his­to­ry breaks, and cir­cle back when you have more time.

Speak­ing of which, allow us to leave you with this thought from artist Felix Gon­za­lez-Tor­res, cre­ator of 1991’s time-based instal­la­tion Unti­tled (Per­fect Lovers), a par­tic­u­lar­ly con­cep­tu­al offer­ing from New Tab with MoMA:

Time is some­thing that scares me… or used to. This piece I made with the two clocks was the scari­est thing I have ever done. I want­ed to face it. I want­ed those two clocks right in front of me, tick­ing.

Set your Chrome Brows­er up to use New Tab with MoMA here

Relat­ed Con­tent 

MoMA’s Online Cours­es Let You Study Mod­ern & Con­tem­po­rary Art and Earn a Cer­tifi­cate

How to Make Comics: A Four-Part Series from the Muse­um of Mod­ern Art

The Muse­um of Mod­ern Art (MoMA) Puts Online 90,000 Works of Mod­ern Art

- Ayun Hal­l­i­day is the Chief Pri­ma­tol­o­gist of the East Vil­lage Inky zine and author, most recent­ly, of Cre­ative, Not Famous: The Small Pota­to Man­i­festo.  Fol­low her @AyunHalliday.

A Vintage Short Film about the Samurai Sword, Narrated by George Takei (1969)

Long before it was a nation­al­ist ral­ly­ing cry in Japan dur­ing WWII, the term Yam­a­to-damashii referred to some­thing less like racial impe­ri­al­ism and more like chival­ry — the “Japan­ese Spir­it” or “Old Soul of Japan,” as Greek-Japan­ese writer Laf­ca­dio Hearn wrote. Per­haps sur­pris­ing­ly, the “Japan­ese Spir­it” was not based in the mar­tial arts of the samu­rai at first, but in the schol­ar­ship of Chi­na, as the ancient nov­el The Tale of Gen­ji explains when defin­ing Yam­a­to-damashii as “a good, sol­id fund of knowl­edge… a fund of Chi­nese learn­ing.” This would change when the code of Bushidō evolved, and the samu­rai, with his elab­o­rate armor and ele­gant swords, became a cen­tral fig­ure of hon­or in Japan­ese soci­ety.

In The Japan­ese Sword as the Soul of the Samu­rai, the near­ly half-hour doc­u­men­tary above by trav­el­ing Amer­i­can doc­u­men­tary film­mak­er Ken Wolf­gang, George Takei nar­rates the tale of the samu­rai’s sword. The film begins with the leg­endary char­ac­ter Yam­a­to Takeru (who one schol­ar spec­u­lates may share a com­mon ori­gin with King Arthur). This ur-samu­rai inher­it­ed the first sword from the tail of a eight-head­ed drag­on that was slain by a god.

The sword, nick­named “grass-mow­er,” Takei tells us, is enshrined near Nagoya, “the sec­ond of the three sacred sym­bols of Shin­to, the nation­al reli­gion of Japan.” When we turn from myth to his­to­ry, Takei says, we find that the “ear­li­est known swords are found in the… tombs of the ancient Yam­a­to peo­ple, who are believed to have inhab­it­ed Japan between the 2nd and 8th cen­turies AD,” and who are the ori­gin of Yam­a­to-damashii.

“As Japan devel­oped, so did the sword,” becom­ing ever more refined in the coun­try’s Mid­dle Ages, where the weapon reached its “peak of per­fec­tion.… Its qual­i­ty has nev­er been sur­passed to this day.” The sword became a soul — and we, as view­ers, are treat­ed to an insid­er’s view of the meth­ods of its forg­ing. The smithing of swords is no mere craft; it is a “reli­gious rit­u­al” that begins with prayers and offer­ings — fer­vent impre­ca­tions to the gods that the new sword may approach the per­fec­tion of a “grass-mow­er.” The forge is lit from the alter’s fire, and it can take months, or even years, to make just one sword. Don’t miss the rare oppor­tu­ni­ty to see the process in just over twen­ty min­utes in this short doc­u­men­tary film.

via Aeon

Relat­ed Con­tent:

An Origa­mi Samu­rai Made from a Sin­gle Sheet of Rice Paper, With­out Any Cut­ting

How to Be a Samu­rai: A 17th Cen­tu­ry Code for Life & War

The 17th Cen­tu­ry Japan­ese Samu­rai Who Sailed to Europe, Met the Pope & Became a Roman Cit­i­zen

Splen­did Hand-Scroll Illus­tra­tions of The Tale of the Gen­jii, The First Nov­el Ever Writ­ten (Cir­ca 1120)

Josh Jones is a writer and musi­cian based in Durham, NC. Fol­low him at @jdmagness

Adapting Agatha Christie for the Screen — Pretty Much Pop: A Culture Podcast #118


In light of the new­ly released, Kenneth Branagh-direct­ed film Death on the Nile, Pret­ty Much Pop dis­cuss­es the con­tin­u­ing appear­ance of the works of the world’s most suc­cess­ful mys­tery writer in film and TV. 

Your host Mark Lin­sen­may­er is joined by repeat guests Sarahlyn Bruck, Al Bak­er, and Nicole Pomet­ti to dis­cuss the recent films, the Sarah Phelps TV adap­ta­tions (like The ABC Mur­ders), the Poirot BBC TV series, and some old­er adap­ta­tions.

We take on the dif­fer­ent char­ac­ter­i­za­tions of Poirot and how recent, grit­ti­er inter­pre­ta­tions com­pare with those of James Bond and Sher­lock Holmes. Also, how should a screen­writer adapt such fact-heavy nov­els? What works and does­n’t in terms of mod­ern­iz­ing them to cur­rent audi­ence expec­ta­tions? How did Christie keep things inter­est­ing for her­self writ­ing so many mys­ter­ies? How deep do her med­i­ta­tions on psy­chol­o­gy and ethics run in these books, and can that be ade­quate­ly con­veyed on screen? What’s the future of the mys­tery genre?

Here are a few rel­e­vant sources:

Lis­ten to Nicole’s Remakes, Reboots and Revivals pod­cast. Look into Sarahlyn’s book and oth­er writ­ings. Check out Al’s work fight­ing dis­in­for­ma­tion at Log­i­cal­ly.

Fol­low our guests at @remakespodcast (Nicole), @sarahlynbruck, and @ixisnox (Al).

This episode includes bonus dis­cus­sion fea­tur­ing all of our guests that you can access by sup­port­ing the pod­cast at or by choos­ing a paid sub­scrip­tion through Apple Pod­casts. This pod­cast is part of the Par­tial­ly Exam­ined Life pod­cast net­work.

Pret­ty Much Pop: A Cul­ture Pod­cast is the first pod­cast curat­ed by Open Cul­ture. Browse all Pret­ty Much Pop posts.

Patti Smith Talks with Malcolm Gladwell About Her Life as an Artist

Bro­ken Record–the pod­cast host­ed by Rick Rubin, Mal­colm Glad­well, and Bruce Headlam–has released its lat­est episode fea­tur­ing an in-depth inter­view with Pat­ti Smith. Here, Glad­well talks with Smith “about her writ­ing in the stu­dio Jimi Hen­drix built, Elec­tric Lady,” where “she met Hen­drix in 1970—just weeks before he passed away. Pat­ti also talks about hang­ing out with and writ­ing lyrics for Janis Joplin, and she recalls the fun she had dur­ing a failed attempt to cov­er Adele in con­cert.” The con­ver­sa­tion also nat­u­ral­ly cov­ers her time with Robert Map­plethor­pe in the Chelsea Hotel (see vin­tage footage here); her rela­tion­ship with William Bur­roughs and Allen Gins­berg; and the chal­lenges she faced writ­ing Just Kids.

Stream the inter­view above, or find their pod­cast on Apple, Spo­ti­fy and Stitch­er. Also be sure to check out Pat­ti Smith’s dai­ly mus­ings on Sub­stack.

If you would like to sign up for Open Culture’s free email newslet­ter, please find it here. Or fol­low our posts on Threads, Face­book, BlueSky or Mastodon.

If you would like to sup­port the mis­sion of Open Cul­ture, con­sid­er mak­ing a dona­tion to our site. It’s hard to rely 100% on ads, and your con­tri­bu­tions will help us con­tin­ue pro­vid­ing the best free cul­tur­al and edu­ca­tion­al mate­ri­als to learn­ers every­where. You can con­tribute through Pay­Pal, Patre­on, and Ven­mo (@openculture). Thanks!

Relat­ed Con­tent

Vin­tage Footage Shows a Young, Unknown Pat­ti Smith & Robert Map­plethor­pe Liv­ing at the Famed Chelsea Hotel (1970)

New York’s Famous Chelsea Hotel and Its Cre­ative Res­i­dents Revis­it­ed in a 1981 Doc­u­men­tary

Pat­ti Smith & Fred “Son­ic” Smith Per­form a Stripped-Down, Beau­ti­ful Ver­sion of “Peo­ple Have the Pow­er”

Pat­ti Smith and David Lynch Talk About the Source of Their Ideas & Cre­ative Inspi­ra­tion

Pat­ti Smith’s List of Favorite Books: From Rim­baud to Susan Son­tag

Pat­ti Smith Sings “Peo­ple Have the Pow­er” with a Choir of 250 Fel­low Singers

Hear Pat­ti Smith’s First Poet­ry Read­ing, Accom­pa­nied by Her Long­time Gui­tarist Lenny Kaye (St. Mark’s Church, 1971)

Japanese Researcher Sleeps in the Same Location as Her Cat for 24 Consecutive Nights!

Cross cat nap­ping with bed hop­ping and you might end up hav­ing an “adven­ture in com­fort” sim­i­lar to the one that informs stu­dent Yuri Naka­hashi’s the­sis for Tokyo’s Hosei Uni­ver­si­ty.

For 24 con­sec­u­tive nights, Naka­hashi for­went the com­forts of her own bed in favor of a green sleep­ing bag, unfurled in what­ev­er ran­dom loca­tion one of her five pet cats had cho­sen as its sleep­ing spot that evening.

(The choice of which cat would get the plea­sure of dic­tat­ing each night’s sleep­ing bag coor­di­nates was also ran­dom­ized.)

As the own­er of five cats, Naka­hashi pre­sum­ably knew what she was sign­ing up for…


Cats rack out atop sofa backs, on stairs, and under beds…and so did Naka­hashi.

Her pho­tos sug­gest she logged a lot of time on a bare wood­en floor.

A Fit­Bit mon­i­tored the dura­tion and qual­i­ty of time spent asleep, as well as the fre­quen­cy with which she awak­ened dur­ing the night.

She doc­u­ment­ed the phys­i­cal and psy­cho­log­i­cal effects of this exper­i­ment in an inter­ac­tive pub­lished by the Infor­ma­tion Pro­cess­ing Soci­ety of Japan.

She reports that she eager­ly await­ed the rev­e­la­tion of each night’s coor­di­nates, and that even when her sleep was dis­rupt­ed by her pets’ mid­dle of the night groom­ing rou­tines, bunk­ing next to them had a “relax­ing effect.”

Mean­while, our research sug­gests that the same exper­i­ment would awak­en a vast­ly dif­fer­ent response in a dif­fer­ent human sub­ject, one suf­fer­ing from ail­uro­pho­bia, say, or severe aller­gies to the pro­teins in feline sali­va, urine, and dan­der.

What’s real­ly sur­pris­ing about Nakahashi’s itin­er­ant, and appar­ent­ly plea­sure-filled under­tak­ing is how lit­tle dif­fer­ence there is between her aver­age sleep score dur­ing the exper­i­ment and her aver­age sleep score from the 20 days pre­ced­ing it.

At left, an aver­age sleep score of 84.2 for the 20 days lead­ing up to exper­i­ment. At right, an aver­age sleep score 83.7 dur­ing the exper­i­ment.

Nakahashi’s entry for the YouFab Glob­al Cre­ative Awards, a prize for “work that attempts a dia­logue that tran­scends the bound­aries of species, space, and time” reflects the play­ful spir­it she brought to her slight­ly off-kil­ter exper­i­ment:

 Is it pos­si­ble to add diver­si­ty to the way we enjoy sleep? Let’s think about food. In addi­tion to the taste and nutri­tion of the food, each meal is a spe­cial expe­ri­ence with diver­si­ty depend­ing on the peo­ple you are eat­ing with, the atmos­phere of the restau­rant, the weath­er, and many oth­er fac­tors. In order to bring this kind of enjoy­ment to sleep, we pro­pose an “adven­ture in com­fort” in which the cat decides where to sleep each night, away from the fixed bed­room and bed. This project is sim­i­lar to going out to eat with a good friend at a restau­rant, where the cat guides you to sleep.

She notes that tra­di­tion­al beds have an immo­bil­i­ty owing to “their phys­i­cal weight and cul­tur­al con­cepts such as direc­tion.”

This sug­gests that her work could be of some ben­e­fit to humans in decid­ed­ly less fan­ci­ful, invol­un­tary sit­u­a­tions, whose lack of hous­ing leads them to sleep in unpre­dictable, and inhos­pitable loca­tions.

Naka­hashi’s time in the green sleep­ing bag inspired her to cre­ate the below mod­el of a more flex­i­ble bed, using a polypropy­lene bag, rice and nylon film.

We have cre­at­ed a pro­to­type of a dou­ble-lay­ered inflat­able bed that has a pouch struc­ture that inflates with air and a jam­ming struc­ture that becomes hard when air is com­pressed. The pouch side soft­ly receives the body when inflat­ed. The jam­ming side becomes hard when the air is removed, and can be firm­ly fixed in an even space. The air is designed to move back and forth between the two lay­ers, so that when not in use, the whole thing can be rolled up soft­ly for stor­age. 

It’s hard to imag­ine the pres­ence of a pussy­cat doing much to ame­lio­rate the anx­i­ety of those forced to flee their famil­iar beds with lit­tle warn­ing, but we can see how Nakahashi’s design might bring a degree of phys­i­cal relief when sleep­ing in sub­way sta­tions, base­ment cor­ners, and oth­er har­row­ing loca­tions.

Via Spoon & Toma­go

- Ayun Hal­l­i­day is the Chief Pri­ma­tol­o­gist of the East Vil­lage Inky zine and author, most recent­ly, of Cre­ative, Not Famous: The Small Pota­to Man­i­festo.  Fol­low her @AyunHalliday.

Relat­ed Con­tent 

A 110-Year-Old Book Illus­trat­ed with Pho­tos of Kit­tens & Cats Taught Kids How to Read

An Ani­mat­ed His­to­ry of Cats: How Over 10,000 Years the Cat Went from Wild Preda­tor to Sofa Side­kick

GPS Track­ing Reveals the Secret Lives of Out­door Cats

How Yayoi Kusama, Obsessed with Polka Dots, Became One of the Most Radical Artists of All Time

Yay­oi Kusama turned 93 this past Tues­day, and she remains not just artis­ti­cal­ly pro­duc­tive but glob­al­ly beloved. Her work itself con­tin­ues to appeal to an ever wider range of view­ers of all nation­al­i­ties and ages. “Yay­oi Kusama is a Japan­ese artist who is some­times called ‘the princess of pol­ka dots’,” says the brief intro­duc­tion to her life and work offered at Take Kids. “Although she makes lots of dif­fer­ent types of art – paint­ings, sculp­tures, per­for­mances and instal­la­tions – they have one thing in com­mon, DOTS!” That’s cer­tain­ly one way of describ­ing her, though any­one who’s fol­lowed her 70-year-long career will notice the con­spic­u­ous absence of oth­er, equal­ly impor­tant ele­ments of her art’s devel­op­ment: men­tal ill­ness, for instance, or enor­mous num­bers of phal­lus­es.

Yet even the new video essay on Kusama from Great Art Explained, a Youtube chan­nel very much pitched to an adult view­er­ship, takes as its focus the artist’s rela­tion­ship with var­i­ous­ly sized two-dimen­sion­al sol­id cir­cles. At the age of ten, says the chan­nel’s cre­ator James Payne, she “had her first hal­lu­ci­na­tion, which she described as flash­es of light, auras, or dense fields of dots. The dots would come to life and con­sume her and she would find her­self oblit­er­at­ed.” Since then, and though her art has “crossed from art to fash­ion and from film­mak­ing to per­for­mance art, her con­tin­u­ing explo­ration of the pol­ka dot has remained the one con­sis­tent motif.”

In approach­ing an artist through a sin­gle motif rather than a sin­gle work, this video breaks from the stan­dard Great Art Explained for­mat, but that does­n’t stop Payne from telling Kusama’s sto­ry with his usu­al suc­cinct­ness. He begins with her dis­com­fit­ing upbring­ing in a well-off rur­al Japan­ese house­hold and con­tin­ues to her dis­cov­ery of and sub­se­quent cor­re­spon­dence with Geor­gia O’Ke­effe, who made Kusama the nec­es­sary intro­duc­tions in the New York art world. Through her rig­or­ous work habits and con­tin­u­ous push­ing of aes­thet­ic and polit­i­cal bound­aries, Kusama even­tu­al­ly became a fig­ure of some renown in that city’s avant-garde scene of the nine­teen-six­ties — a milieu that proved recep­tive to the “soft-sculp­ture phal­lus­es” with which many of her cre­ations then bris­tled.

Kusama returned to her home­land in the ear­ly 1970s, and soon there­after only those with the sharpest mem­o­ries of the avant-garde six­ties remem­bered her work. Only a 1989 ret­ro­spec­tive at New York’s Cen­ter for Inter­na­tion­al Con­tem­po­rary Arts returned her to the inter­na­tion­al fame she has enjoyed ever since. Many of us now have vivid mem­o­ries of step­ping into her com­plete­ly mir­rored, dense­ly dot-lit “infin­i­ty rooms” over the years and in dif­fer­ent muse­ums around the world. Though Kusama began mak­ing them in the mid-nine­teen-six­ties, they’ve turned out to be ide­al­ly suit­ed to the social-media era. “Peo­ple queue up for hours for just six­ty sec­onds in one of her infin­i­ty-room instal­la­tions,” says Payne. “Each image they take of infin­i­ty joins mil­lions more on the inter­net — itself infi­nite.” Only now, in Kusama’s tenth decade, has the rest of the world caught up with her.

Relat­ed con­tent:

Down­load Full Issues of MAVO, the Japan­ese Avant-Garde Mag­a­zine That Announced a New Mod­ernist Move­ment (1923–1925)

Ven­er­a­ble Female Artists, Musi­cians & Authors Give Advice to the Young: Pat­ti Smith, Lau­rie Ander­son & More

The MoMA Teach­es You How to Paint Like Pol­lock, Rothko, de Koon­ing & Oth­er Abstract Painters

The Great Wave Off Kana­gawa by Hoku­sai: An Intro­duc­tion to the Icon­ic Japan­ese Wood­block Print in 17 Min­utes

Great Art Explained: Watch 15 Minute Intro­duc­tions to Great Works by Warhol, Rothko, Kahlo, Picas­so & More

Based in Seoul, Col­in Mar­shall writes and broad­casts on cities, lan­guage, and cul­ture. His projects include the Sub­stack newslet­ter Books on Cities, the book The State­less City: a Walk through 21st-Cen­tu­ry Los Ange­les and the video series The City in Cin­e­ma. Fol­low him on Twit­ter at @colinmarshall or on Face­book.

Pristine, Restored Footage of George Harrison & Bob Dylan Rehearsing “If Not For You” at the Concert for Bangladesh (1971)

“Dylan… was real­ly into the whole idea of it for the refugees.…” says George Har­ri­son over the restored footage above from 1971’s Con­cert for Bangladesh. The qui­et Beat­le’s scouser lilt will sure­ly tug at your heart­strings, as will Har­ri­son and Dylan’s care­ful rehearsal take of “If Not for You,” a song they did not end up play­ing togeth­er dur­ing the con­cert. It’s a sig­nif­i­cant shared moment nonethe­less. As fans know, “If Not for You” became a key­stone song for both artists at the turn of the 70s.

Dylan wrote the song the year pre­vi­ous as the first track on his 1970 New Morn­ing, a record crit­ics her­ald­ed as a return to form after the panned dou­ble album, Self Por­trait. Har­ri­son him­self sat in on a ses­sion for the song and record­ed a “lan­guid ear­ly ver­sion,” notes Bea­t­les Bible, “at Columbi­a’s Stu­dio B in New York.”

The track is “thought to be Har­rison’s first record­ed instance of slide gui­tar,” a tech­nique that would char­ac­ter­ize the sound of his dou­ble debut, All Things Must Pass. His pres­ence arguably helped shape the direc­tion of Dylan’s record­ing, which Dylan him­self would lat­er describe as “sort of Tex-Mex.”

Har­rison’s album, released in the same year as New Morn­ing, fea­tures his — per­haps bet­ter known — ver­sion of “If Not for You,” a song that has been cov­ered dozens of times since. (All Things Must Pass also fea­tures a 1968 col­lab­o­ra­tion between Har­ri­son and Dylan: name­ly, the open­ing track, “I’d Have You Any­time.”) It’s a song that seems to sum up the two musi­cians’ con­tent­ment with their mar­riages and lives at the time. The per­for­mance, though only a sound­check, pro­vides “an inti­mate glimpse,” crit­ic Simon Leng com­ments, “of the warm friend­ship between two major cul­tur­al fig­ures at a point when both were emo­tion­al­ly vul­ner­a­ble.”

On one hand, the Con­cert for Bangladesh was a world-his­tor­i­cal event, pro­vid­ing inspi­ra­tion for Live Aid and oth­er sta­di­um-sized ben­e­fit shows. “In one day,” as Ravi Shankar put it, “the whole world knew the name of Bangladesh.” NME called it “The Great­est Rock Spec­ta­cle of the Decade” and Rolling Stone’s edi­tors described “a brief incan­des­cent revival of all that was best about the Six­ties.”

But on the oth­er hand, in moments like these, we can see the con­cert as a turn into a more mature, sen­si­tive sev­en­ties. “Instead of cry­ing ‘I want you so bad,” wrote Ed Ward in his 1970 New Morn­ing review, Dylan is “cel­e­brat­ing the fact that not only has he found her, but they know each oth­er well, and get strength from each oth­er, depend on each oth­er.” In the take at the top, Jack What­ley observes, Har­ri­son and Dylan “spend the entire song look­ing at each oth­er, as if they’re singing about their own rela­tion­ship.”

via Laugh­ing Squid

Relat­ed Con­tent:

George Har­ri­son “My Sweet Lord” Gets an Offi­cial Music Video, Fea­tur­ing Ringo Starr, Al Yankovic, Pat­ton Oswalt & Many Oth­ers

Bob Dylan’s Famous Tele­vised Press Con­fer­ence After He Went Elec­tric (1965)

How Bob Dylan Cre­at­ed a Musi­cal & Lit­er­ary World All His Own: Four Video Essays

Josh Jones is a writer and musi­cian based in Durham, NC. Fol­low him at @jdmagness

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