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A Popular Guide to Unpopular Music
November 1, 2011 4:32 AM   Subscribe

A Popular Guide to Unpopular Music by Kenneth Goldsmith, founder of Ubu. Here is an interview with Goldmith in The Believer.
posted by beshtya (19 comments total) 46 users marked this as a favorite

 
I think you left out this link? If you get in touch with a mod they will fix it.

Great post!
posted by OmieWise at 4:47 AM on November 1, 2011


Goldsmith's links are better thought about than clicked.
posted by Mothra Pisces at 4:49 AM on November 1, 2011


Boy, when he says unpopular music, he ain't kidding, is he?
posted by .kobayashi. at 5:08 AM on November 1, 2011


[Fixed the link; beshtya, let me know if it's not the right link]
posted by taz at 5:10 AM on November 1, 2011


A few years ago, I published a super-boring book that was a radio transcription of a Yankees–Red Sox game. I included everything that was on the radio, from the pre-game show to the ads to the broadcast-booth patter. The book opens with the disclaimer that begins all sports broadcasts: “This copyrighted broadcast is presented by authority of the New York Yankees and may not be reproduced or retransmitted in any form. And the accounts and descriptions in the game may not be disseminated without the express written consent of the New York Yankees.” When the book was published, I sent a copy to the Yankees organization. Naturally, I never heard from them.

Naturally. The Yankees might suck, but they're not stupid.
posted by three blind mice at 5:19 AM on November 1, 2011 [1 favorite]


Thanks for posting the Believer interview, it was particularly interesting to read Goldsmith's explanation of why you can't find Ubu.com with a Google search. I'm reading his "Uncreative Writing" now and am quite enjoying it. I love work that determinedly inserts itself between literature and art.

We just had a Kenneth Goldsmith thread a month ago.
posted by oulipian at 5:29 AM on November 1, 2011 [1 favorite]


How did I miss that? Thanks taz and Omie!

I liked what Goldsmith says about being surprised that there aren't a hundred Ubuwebs around. In my experience, private trackers and certain underground libraries do approach Ubu's model, however, they aren't open and just waiting to be discovered, like some giant trash-heap or some dusty flea-market. If you folks know of such things, do tell.
posted by beshtya at 5:32 AM on November 1, 2011


He's got a piece there on David Soldier but since it's from 2000, it predates my favorite Soldier-centered band: Kropotkins... "If I Had My Way," and "Truck Stop Girls". Soldier's on banjo in those vids.
posted by dobbs at 5:40 AM on November 1, 2011


psssttt ... mefi's own flapjax at midnight is a kropotkin on paradise square.
posted by msconduct at 6:22 AM on November 1, 2011


Awesome. It looks like I have a lot of reading ahead. Which of course should end up with a lot of listening. And a little bit of headscratching, but I think that's part off the fun of going into the musical deep end. A quick perusal and the writing looks engaging enough to jump into an article about someone you've never even heard of and still be interested. Big thanks for this.
posted by Slack-a-gogo at 6:29 AM on November 1, 2011


Thanks for the shoutout, msconduct! And, just for the record, yours truly also appears on the first (now out of print, I believe) Kropotkins release, from 1995. All in all I think it was the best of the Krop's three releases, and I hope it gets reissued sometime.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 6:46 AM on November 1, 2011 [1 favorite]


Dave Soldier's jaw-droppingly awful "Most Wanted Song" and operatic-cowboy-b-girl-orchestral-rapping extravaganza "The Most Unwanted Song" can be downloaded here. I highly recommend.
posted by Sonny Jim at 8:08 AM on November 1, 2011 [1 favorite]


I am one of the listeners who thinks that Ubu's 365-Day project yielded a treasure trove of otherwise ignored musical artifacts. I was going to call them gems, but frankly, some are just polished turds, while others are innocently brilliant. This link has yielded another trove of things-to-be-examined, a pile that grows higher everyday longer I am on this planet.
posted by beelzbubba at 8:22 AM on November 1, 2011


It's a subtle touch that they built /~kennyg into the URL.
posted by mullicious at 8:46 AM on November 1, 2011


It's a subtle touch that they built /~kennyg into the URL.
posted by mullicious at 17:46 on November 1 [+] [!]

mullicious, Goldsmith used to host a show on WFMU till last year. He called himself "Kenny G".
posted by beshtya at 10:49 AM on November 1, 2011


Kenny G has had an on-again, off-again history on 'FMU. He's gotten himself thrown off the air at least once. I've done a great deal of volunteer work at the station over the years, and always knew that working during his shift meant a lot of laughter.
posted by computech_apolloniajames at 10:56 AM on November 1, 2011


When the book was published, I sent a copy to the Yankees organization. Naturally, I never heard from them. Naturally. The Yankees might suck, but they're not stupid.

You see, my first thought was "Naturally. The Yankees can't read."
posted by octobersurprise at 11:45 AM on November 1, 2011


Mefi's own, though he hasn't posted in awhile.

My first post on Metafilter was about Kenny.
posted by roll truck roll at 12:49 PM on November 1, 2011


"Don't quit your day job. Yet" What a headline fail when 4 out of 5 interviewees have day jobs IN music and one of them was a producer at Columbia ffs. I really enjoyed the Satie article though, look forward to reading more.
posted by yoHighness at 9:20 PM on November 1, 2011


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