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He was not originally a rapper by trade

Big Bank Hank, one-third of the Sugarhill Gang, the unlikely ambassadors who took hip-hop out of Bronx parks and onto the pop charts, died on Tuesday in Englewood, N.J. He was 58. [more inside]
posted by chavenet on Nov 12, 2014 - 37 comments

The piano is playing itself

Father John Misty performs "Bored In the USA" on Letterman with laugh track accompaniment. [more inside]
posted by Potomac Avenue on Nov 12, 2014 - 52 comments

"We all want to help one another - human beings are like that."

Charlie Chaplin – Let Us All Unite! [Youtube] by melodysheep (previously). [more inside]
posted by joseph conrad is fully awesome on Nov 12, 2014 - 11 comments

Mining the Brains of Today's Most Dynamic Composers

Meet the Composer is a new podcast that dives into the minds of some of today's top composers. Produced by WQXR and Q2 Music, and hosted by New York area violist Nadia Sirota, Meet the Composer "takes listeners into the minds and creative processes of the composers making some of the most innovative, compelling and breathtakingly beautiful music today." [more inside]
posted by fremen on Nov 12, 2014 - 6 comments

What is a Jeffree's? I'm not sure, but here's their newest music

In 2011, Diplo's Mad Decent label spun off a web-focused sub-label, Jeffree's, focusing on trap, tropical bass, moombahton, and associated distorted club-type sounds. As label honcho Paul Devro explained, the plan was simple: collect what producers had already made, post a new single or EP every two weeks, at first for free, then offer it for sale. The freebie window is closed, but you can still stream the lot, and read about the twelve tracks below the break. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief on Nov 11, 2014 - 8 comments

Vulgar Display of Cuteness

Wyatt (8 mos) plays Pantera [slyt]
posted by gottabefunky on Nov 11, 2014 - 18 comments

Water Bottle Kuduro

DJ Castro does covers of Angolan House music with his voice and a water bottle [more inside]
posted by azarbayejani on Nov 11, 2014 - 5 comments

"This is it, baby. Hold me."

A decade after Halo 2 (and a day before the MCC), enjoy this loose timeline of essential Halo fandom: Halo.Bungie.Org / Halo at Macworld '99 / Red vs. Blue / The Halo Trilogy in 5 minutes / The Cortana Letters / HBO's cutscene library and dialog databank / Main Menus / Kitty Cat / Warthog Jump (and BOLL's Warthog Launch game) / How Not To Be Seen / Fan Art / Panoramas / The Music of Marty O'Donnell (prev.) / Video Games Live: Halo / Analysis by Stephen Loftus / Who was Brian Morden? / I Love Bees and the ARG radio drama / Halo 2 Trailer / Halo 2 E3 '04 Demo / Full Halo 2 making-of documentary / Voice acting / Conversations from the Universe / The Beastiarum / Surround Sound Test! / Geography of New Mombasa / This Spartan Life / The Solid Gold Elite Dancers / Creepy Guy at Work / Gameplay May Change / Master Chief Sucks at Halo / Another Day at the Beach / '06 Bungie Studios Tour / Halo 3 Trailer / Starry Night / Believe / HALOID / No Scope Was Involved / 100 Ways to Die / "Bungie Favorites" gallery / Mister Chief / OONSK / OneOneSe7en / 2553 Civilian 'Hog Review / Griffball / ForgeHub / 405th Cosplay / Neill Blomkamp's Landfall / Weta's Real-life Warthog / Halo Legends anime anthology / List of Halo novels / Halopedia / Halo 3 Terminal Archive / DDR Dance / Animatronic Elite project / HBO's "Guilt-O-Lantern" contest / Keep It Clean / We Are ODST / Sadie's Story / Halocraft / "A Fistful of Arrows" fan comic / RvB Animated (and CGI) / Project Contingency / Halo Zero / Halo 2600 (prev.) / Reach Datapad Transcripts / The last Halo 2 player on Xbox LIVE / Bungie's Final Halo Stats Infographic / Key & Peele: Obama on Halo 4 / Top 10 Halo Easter Eggs / Behind the scenes of Halo 2 Anniversary
posted by Rhaomi on Nov 10, 2014 - 36 comments

A dose of audio nostalgia for early netizens: much of IUMA, back online

"If you want to hear music, you know what you do - you turn on the radio, put on a CD, or even go to a concert. But as the age of the info superhighway inches forward, you can even get music from your own home computer." That's the intro to a short CNN segment on IUMA, the Internet Underground Music Archive, which opened in 1992 as an effort for unsigned bands to share their music on the world-wide web, for free. Unfortunately, it fell the way of many early 1990s online entities: it was bought out, then the new owners couldn't keep up with changing times, and the site went dark. Except before IUMA disappeared, John Gilmore grabbed much of the material and backed it up on tapes, and turned to (MeFi's Own) Jason Scott and Archive.org to bring back IUMA. They did, and you can now browse through over 45,000 bands and artists, and more than 680,000 tracks of music.
posted by filthy light thief on Nov 10, 2014 - 36 comments

"heres a load more completed modular trax... what a fucking racket"

Over the past several months, Dave Noyze (né Dave Burraston) has been interviewing Aphex Twin. He's finally put the exchanges together as a "SYROBONKERS" interview. Part 1 was published on November 3, and Part 2 was published today. Both interviews were accompanied by a number of previously unreleased pieces of music, including a 21-track playlist of unheard songs made using Buchla and Serge modular synthesizers.
posted by Going To Maine on Nov 10, 2014 - 16 comments

*adjusts socks*

Barbara Hannigan performs György Ligeti's 'Le Grand Macabre' with the Gothenburg Symphony. [YouTube] [Wiki]
posted by Fizz on Nov 8, 2014 - 15 comments

These are the times of the parables

A Parable.
"Hey do want to hear an album of spoken word poetry raps?"
*everyone looks uncomfortable*
"It's by a white girl from...England? With uh, garage beats?"
*everyone gets on to a spaceship and flies into the sun"
"Her name is Kate Tempest (previously). There's stories, about dating and generally being disaffected and drinking too much? And she utterly kills it live. Her old band was decent but, this is, like next level."
*no-one is left on earth but Common. He is wearing sunglasses as the sun flares.* *He nods his head.*
Common: "This is dope."
Mike Skinner (he's there too): "Well rude innit. Let's get a kebab mate."
F I N
posted by Potomac Avenue on Nov 7, 2014 - 13 comments

Decopage! (Not the paper kind, the 1989 L.A. public access tv kind!)

Decoupage! was a 1989 Los Angeles-area public access show produced by Kathe Duba and hosted by Summer Caprice. The original concept was an emulation of early 70s sydicated talk shows such as The Mike Douglas Show and Dinah! and featured elaborate sets, sourced from hours of scouring thrift stores. Also, there are wigs. Lots of wigs.

Many of the guests were culled from the L.A. club and arts scene, including Redd Kross, Phranc, and Fred Willard. The show returned to the airwaves in 1997 as Decopage! 2000 and featured a spoken-word performance by Exene Cervanka (using her real last name, Cervankova) and Karen Black singing "Bang Bang" with back-up band L7.

• Direct link to the Decopage! You Tube Channel

[via]
posted by Room 641-A on Nov 7, 2014 - 9 comments

Sci Fi Cello

What do you get when you cross a cello with a Zube Tube and let someone who knows what he's doing play it? You get the Yaybahar, built and played by Turkish musician Görkem Şen. [more inside]
posted by echo target on Nov 4, 2014 - 14 comments

Now with added Chief Commander Ebenezer Obey

Journey dot Africa. Fancy three hours of primo African music with Idris Elba as your guide? BBC Radio 2 and the iPlayer has you covered. [more inside]
posted by Paul Slade on Nov 2, 2014 - 5 comments

Three Articles about Bob Dylan and Fandom

The Halloween Concert That Reinvented Bob Dylan by Sean Wilentz (an excerpt from his Bob Dylan in America) is an article about Dylan's concert in New York's Philharmonic Hall fifty years ago yesterday, which was released ten years ago in Bob Dylan's Bootlegs series. Music critic Sasha Frere-Jones, not the super-fan Wilentz is, wrote about another defining event in Dylan's career, his life in Woodstock, playing music along with The Band. Why did Dylan go to Woodstock? To flee his fans, who have been the subject of a recent book, The Dylanologists by David Kinney, which was reviewed at length by Ian Crouch in The New Yorker.
posted by Kattullus on Nov 1, 2014 - 4 comments

It's a graveyard smash!

You might know the Monster Mash, but how much do you know about the original artist, Bobby "Boris" Pickett? The article includes a link to the official website of The MoNsTeR mAsH, a revenant from Web 1.0 [more inside]
posted by Small Dollar on Oct 31, 2014 - 29 comments

Add it up and there outta be more

So wait, there's a band with Jim Jarmusch on keys and a bunch of experimental Horror film directors that released a record in the early 80s of spooky surf-funk and you're NOT listening to it today? Get on it y'all. It's the story of The Del-Byzanteens. [more inside]
posted by Potomac Avenue on Oct 31, 2014 - 8 comments

Music is the cup that holds the wine of silence

“Select a note,’’ [Robert Fripp] told them, “and then, in silence, establish a relationship with that note. Keep it within you until you can no longer contain it and must give it voice.’’

"Surviving a Weekend with the Wizard of Prog Rock"
posted by oakroom on Oct 31, 2014 - 19 comments

See my grotesque grin: I smile for YOOUU

The only song you need for Halloween: Skeletons by Inflatable Boy Clams. Play it over and over! [more inside]
posted by moonmilk on Oct 29, 2014 - 8 comments

The story behind an iconic photo of jazz-induced hysteria

In 1951, photographer Bob Willoughby took a now-iconic photo of jazz saxophonist Big Jay McNeely and some fans in the clutch of the music during a concert at the Olympic Auditorium in Los Angeles. In 2009, Marc Myers of JazzWax contacted Willoughby to discover the story behind the photo. "You could taste the energy in that air. To this day I have never seen or heard anything to match it."
posted by paleyellowwithorange on Oct 29, 2014 - 15 comments

Needs More John Carpenter

FACT magazine runs down the 100 greatest horror soundtracks (that's a lot of horror soundtracks). Also, there's a companion streamable YouTube playlist.
posted by saintjoe on Oct 29, 2014 - 26 comments

Joni Mitchell in colour

This isn’t the earliest TV footage that exists of Joni Mitchell, but it’s surely the earliest footage of her performing that’s in color. -- Joni Mitchell on Canadian television in 1966.
posted by MartinWisse on Oct 29, 2014 - 9 comments

Of bells, harps, accordions, the kalimba and a saw: amiina

If you've encountered delicately uplifting chimes and bells or a singing saw, seen the contributions of a string quartet in a Sigur Rós video, heard the last recording by Lee Hazlewood and noticed the gentle singing and music, or listened to Yukihiro Takahashi consider words, then you've possibly encountered the Icelandic band amiina. [more inside]
posted by Wordshore on Oct 28, 2014 - 7 comments

Robert Wyatt's soundtrack of his life

When I’m not watching Russia Today, obviously, I’m watching pop TV. Even my son’s embarrassed by the infantilism of my tastes, but there’s some good stuff out there now. Pharrell Williams’s Happy– that’s absolutely fucking knockout. Williams is as good as any 60s soul singer and the song is brilliantly put together. It’s a great drum track, and there are only four chords or so, but they’re just enough. It’s really subtly done, absolutely spot-on. My granddaughter tells me I should totally disapprove of that other song he did, though. With someone else... something lines? Blurred Lines! That’s the one. Take it from me that I don’t like that one at all.
Robert Wyatt talks to the Grauniad about The Soundtrack of his Life. (Robert Wyatt previously) [more inside]
posted by MartinWisse on Oct 28, 2014 - 14 comments

OK Go won't let you down

OK Go's latest video for their new song "I Won't Let You Down" is as always, a great video with interesting choreography mixing modern dance numbers with stuff often seen in old musicals and then goes kind of nuts at the end.
posted by mathowie on Oct 27, 2014 - 57 comments

Riding on a high and windy day

Rest In Power: John Holt, composer of The Tide Is High, early hero of the Legalize It movement, and singer of the spookiest reggae song ever, "Ali Baba", passed away October 19th. Long Live His Music.
posted by Potomac Avenue on Oct 27, 2014 - 10 comments

Keep To The Beaches You're Used To

Bette Midler sings a cover of TLC's "Waterfalls"
posted by The Whelk on Oct 25, 2014 - 17 comments

100 Scifi-Themed Songs, best or not

io9 has come up with a surprisingly good list of 100 science-fiction-themed songs. The comments are actually pretty great, with a lot more songs. There's rap, heavy metal, folk, polka, you name it. Still missing: more coverage of songs in languages other than English. [more inside]
posted by wintersweet on Oct 24, 2014 - 100 comments

" ... and what a stunning voice it is"

We wanted to create something quite muscular and meaty. I was getting a little disenchanted with boring wet music. I wanted something with some kind of punch to it ...
Esben and the Witch formed in 2008 after neophyte guitarist Thomas Fisher bumped into old friend Rachel Davies on the street in Brighton and asked if she'd like to be in a band. Together with multi-instrumentalist Daniel Copeman, they started making a kind of bruised, ghostly electro goth-pop that drew comparisons with dubstep and witch house. Then things changed. Their third album, A New Nature, recorded with Steve Albini after a successful Kickstarter campaign, sees the band step away from their electro-pop origins, combining English-major Davies' lyrical obsessions with Herman Hesse and Jack London with the band's love of uncompromising noise, psych, and transcendent post rock. A New Nature, released last month, can be streamed via Stereogum.
posted by Sonny Jim on Oct 24, 2014 - 11 comments

Far beyond "every good boy does fine"

Music Theory for Musicians and Normal People Toby W. Rush's "Music Theory for Musicians and Normal People" covers a massive range of topics like pitch, rhythm, scales, intervals, and harmonics. The online book itself is arranged as a collection of about 50 PDFs that offer diagrams, notes, and tips for everything music theory related. [more inside]
posted by Lexica on Oct 23, 2014 - 26 comments

Translation: I love mom

AutoRap is an app that will take words spoken into it and automatically tune them into one of several pre-set rap beats. Here, a young girl makes an adorable rap about her mother.
posted by codacorolla on Oct 23, 2014 - 5 comments

There were angels dining at the Ritz

Tim Hauser, founder of the jazz vocal group The Manhattan Transfer, has died at the age of 72. [more inside]
posted by PussKillian on Oct 22, 2014 - 28 comments

music video: The Tropics, "Fireproof"

"Fireproof" is the new music video from San Francisco pop group The Tropics. It features an enjoyable, upbeat, punchy song with a vibrant vocal from lead vocalist Claire George. Lighthearted, smile-inducing bonus: The video is also a spirited, shot-by-shot homage to the video for Marky Mark and the Funky Bunch's 1991 hit "Good Vibrations".
posted by paleyellowwithorange on Oct 21, 2014 - 9 comments

Rick Was Here, a short film on the NYU dorm room where Def Jam started

30 years ago, Rick Rubin was a college student, living in NYU's Weinstein Residence Hall, room #712. It was there that Def Jam Records was formed, shifting the focus of hip-hop from the MCs to promote the DJs, too. Rubin and his label quickly outgrew the dorm, and he hasn't been back since. Recently he returned, and the adventure was captured and put into context by Rolling Stone Film's mini-documentary, Rick Was Here. New footage rolls alongside old, with some animations to bring a few audio-only stories to life. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief on Oct 20, 2014 - 13 comments

Don't Let's Stop

Why is the world in love again?
Why are we marching hand in hand?
Why are the ocean levels rising up?
It's a brand new record
for nineteen-ninety,
They Might Be Giants' brand new album:
FLOOD (43m)
Or, if you'd rather meet James Ensor, there's John Henry (57m)! For something Fingertippy, there's Apollo 18 (43m)! More recent: Nanobots (45m) - Join Us (47m) - The Else (38m) (Official links from the band's YouTube channel! Oh, and they also have a podcast.) [more inside]
posted by JHarris on Oct 20, 2014 - 48 comments

The best chime

Here's the reason why a 10-round rifle magazine isn't big enough. [more inside]
posted by Chocolate Pickle on Oct 20, 2014 - 29 comments

With a Little Help From My Fwends

One week from today, The Flaming Lips will release their full album cover of The Beatles' iconic Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band. NPR is now streaming the entire record for preview. [more inside]
posted by DirtyOldTown on Oct 20, 2014 - 47 comments

Mayokero by Roy Kafri

In this amazing new music video, a bevy of music legends performs a human beat box ditty a-capella. It's part fun game of "recognize that album cover", and part heart-wrenching story of a man with great taste in music but awful taste in consumer electronics. And all in just over two minutes. (SLYT)
posted by Silky Slim on Oct 20, 2014 - 12 comments

They are, once again, your Joey Ramone

On October 21, Sub-Pop will be releasing Get Up, a vinyl box set of remastered versions of Sleater-Kinney's discography. Included with the expected content was a 7" labeled 1/20/15 containing a new song. Titled "Bury Your Friends", it can be streamed at Consequence of Sound. Plugged into Shazam, the song gives you the cover art for an as-yet non-extant album, No Cities To Love. The band has officially let the cat out of the bag, and reunion tour dates are on their website.
posted by Going To Maine on Oct 20, 2014 - 62 comments

Cubist Reggae

Cubist Reggae. From the mind of Aaron Funk, aka Venetian Snares, comes an EP of sharply angular, yet weirdly chill, grooves, all in a variety of unusual time signatures (7/4, 5/4, 15/8, and 21/16).
posted by rorgy on Oct 19, 2014 - 18 comments

"It just doesn't seem quite fair."

Is Sampling Tom Petty Like Plagiarizing from Moby-Dick? [SLYT] Mini-documentary on 'sampling' circa 1989.
posted by Fizz on Oct 18, 2014 - 24 comments

It takes a lot of listening. Good art isn’t obvious

Getting Out of the Woods: A Primer on Not Being a Music Hater
posted by josher71 on Oct 18, 2014 - 142 comments

We still have no idea what we are doing, but it keeps getting better

How to plan your own tour: using the Internet and your fans.
People started to demand, in tweets and comments, that we play in their city. And the most important thing we’ve ever done is reply to them with this: “sure. where?” That’s the important question. At first we would track down and e-mail these fans who were making the demands, asking for advice on venues. Once we had a mailing list, we used it to send targeted “please help us” emails... And then we created our holy grail: THE MAGICAL FORM OF TOUR PLANNING.
Angela Webber, of geek-folk sister duo The Doubleclicks (previously), provides a rundown of how the band plans its tours.
posted by Shmuel510 on Oct 18, 2014 - 8 comments

The Big 'E'

You can read on Buddy Emmons' Wikipedia page how by the age of 19, he had already mastered and redesigned the pedal steel guitar, slowly turning it into the instrument whose sound we are all familiar with, in one form or another. You can read on his website how his peers revere him, and how he gives back to the community whom he's profoundly influenced. (Or, watch a 100-minute concert and tribute.) But perhaps it's just best to marvel at The Big E as he backs up legends in their own right; on television in 1965; how he destroys the world in a 1970's Redneck Jazz Explosion (with Danny Gatton, previously); in the mid-'80's with the Lawton Jazz Kicks Ensemble; at the 1988 British Steel Guitar convention; at the at the 1997 International Steel Guitar Convention; and in 2007, the year he retired. Or just messin' around with Nashville's top session musicians or reinterpreting the classics. There's also a great AskMe thread of Pedal Steel Guitar recommendations, if you want to hear more.
posted by not_on_display on Oct 17, 2014 - 8 comments

Opera On Demand

Top hat at the cleaners? Opera glasses broke? Lost your box? Watch The Metropolitan Opera, the Bavarian State Opera (Deutsch, English) Vienna State Opera, or concerts from the Berlin Philharmonic and a variety of options from medici.tv and The Young Vic, The Globe, The Royal Opera House, The Royal Shakespeare Company, and more. [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns on Oct 17, 2014 - 9 comments

Félix le Chat

10 year-old is handed a guitar, shrugs off the blues
posted by a lungful of dragon on Oct 17, 2014 - 23 comments

Comics from Flynn Gleason: Zombie Apawcalypse and George and his Pencil

If you're looking for a zombie webcomics with a bit of gore and a lot of kitties, you may enjoy Flynn Gleason's Zombie Apawcalypse. Flynn's work may be vaguely familiar to you if you remember a Calvin and Hobbes type comic from the mid- to late-1990s, called George and his Pencil, with archived comics still in their rough pencil-drawn form. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief on Oct 17, 2014 - 1 comment

Taking the '70s more seriously

Style Gone Wild: Why We Can't Shake the 1970s

Collectors Weekly: What prompted such radical changes in popular fashion?

Lutyens: One reason was that people in the West were becoming increasingly affluent, and this gave young people the confidence to question their parents’ values. Because they had money, they could be more independent. Society was also becoming much more liberal as well because you had things like the legalization of homosexuality and the legalization of divorce. People were allowed to be themselves more without being judged by other people.

Then the three main minority movements — feminism, black civil rights, and gay liberation — all these minorities had been marginalized until the late ’60s. In the ’70s they began to assert themselves more and become more visible. So their style became more visible, and it influenced mainstream fashion.
[more inside]
posted by joseph conrad is fully awesome on Oct 17, 2014 - 61 comments

ლ(ಠ益ಠ)ლ

Punch and Judy (The Coffin Factory) Jan Švankmajer - Rakvičkárna (1966) [YouTube] [wiki]
posted by Fizz on Oct 16, 2014 - 12 comments

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