"His work is rooted in the power of collaboration within systems: instructions, rules, and self-imposed limits. His methods are a rebuke to the assumption that a project can be powered by one person’s intent, or that intent is even worth worrying about. To this end, Eno has come up with words like “scenius,” which describes the power generated by a group of artists who gather in one place at one time. (“Genius is individual, scenius is communal,” Eno told the Guardian, in 2010.) It suggests that the quality of works produced in a certain time and place is more indebted to the friction between the people on hand than to the work of any single artist." The New Yorker'
s Sasha Frere-Jones on Brian Eno's career and new album High Life.
Don't Watch That TV
is a rabbit hole of fun and weird videos, mostly focused on urban/ dance/ electronic music, sorted into 20 different "channels" or programs
. To make this timesink more manageable, I'd like to bring your attention to their Beat This channel
, wherein producers are challenged to create a new beat, from scratch, in 10 minutes. The first mix is from a young producer who goes by Swindle
, and he pulls off a pretty nice track in the time allotted
, joking he should do all his tracks in ten minutes. But if that doesn't catch your fancy, and all those producers names don't mean anything to you, may I present Kieren Hebden, aka Four Tet
, making a beat with nothing but MJ's Thriller album as the source material
, sampling and distorting it into something weird and new. [more inside]
Texas Monthly profiles Tom Wilson,
a Harvard-educated Republican from Waco who helped launch the careers of Bob Dylan, Simon and Garfunkel, Lou Reed, and a few other musicians you might have heard of.
WMFU DJ Irwin Chusid
has put together a tribute website to music producer Tom Wilson
. Wilson was born in 1931 and died young at 47 in 1978. Among the musicians he worked with: Sun Ra, Cecil Taylor, Bob Dylan, Simon & Garfunkel, Pete Seeger, The Mothers of Invention, The Velvet Underground, Nico, Gil-Scott Heron, and Professor Longhair. Some of his notable and more far-out productions
, include the Bob Dylan "Like a Rolling Stone" session which was the subject of the much repeated Al Kooper organ riff anecdote
. He had been president of Harvard's Young Republican club, graduated Harvard cum laude, and was African-American
. He was also friends with Wally "Famous" Amos
, and it was through Wilson, that Amos, at the time an agent at William Morris, came to represent Simon & Garfunkel.
When record store owner Jeff Bubeck buys an old record collection out of an abandoned storage unit, he has no idea what he’s stumbled across. Jeff learns the collection once belonged to the late great J. Dilla, one of the greatest hip hop producers of all time. Along with the thousands of LP’s from Dilla’s personal collection, there is something else that is uncovered, something huge... [more inside]
Jon Brion gets around. As a composer, he scored some of the best movies of last decade and change – Punch-Drunk Love
, Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind
, Synecdoche, New York
, and I ♥ Huckabees
. As a producer, he's worked with Fiona Apple
, Kanye West
, Aimee Mann
, and the excellent bluegrass outfit Punch Brothers
. He writes pop music like the best of them – witness Meaningless
, Knock Yourself Out
, Here We Go
, or Didn't Think It Would Turn Out Bad
for a nice sampler of his style and range. His live shows are notoriously whimsical and eccentric – he's apt to perform Radiohead's "Creep" in the style of Tom Waits
, or cover Stairway to Heaven as a one-man band
, recreating all the parts to its climax on the fly.
William Benjamin Bensussen is a DJ and producer who started DJing in San Diego's Gaslamp Quarter
, where his weird, heavy sound was generally a dancefloor killer, earning him the name The Gaslamp Killer
But he kept at it, and found a home in Los Angeles, performing with the Low End Theory
crew. On December 1, 2012, Gaslamp Killer joined an ever-growing list of notable DJs and appeared on BBC Radio 1 with an Essential Mix
"This runs the gamut, freak flag and spliff waving in the air. 2 brutal and beautiful hours of raw beats, boom bap, and Birdman. There is psych-rock, there is juke, there is Spaghetti Western. Exclusives from Lotus, HudMo, and Dilla.
" If you like what you hear, there's even more below the break. [more inside]
Director and/or star of many of the greatest films ever made including The Great Dictator
(2:05:16) [Globe scene
and the eternally goosebump providing Final speech
], The Immigrant
(20:01), The Gold Rush
(1:11:49), City Lights
(1:22:40), Modern Times
(1:27:01), and Monsieur Verdoux
(1:59:03), Charlie Chaplin's
movies have entered the public domain in most countries. Below the fold is an annotated list of all 82 of his official short and feature films in chronological order, as well as several more, with links to where you can watch them; it's not like you had work to do right? [more inside]
SI has written an oral history about the making of the movie "Major League".
Charlie Sheen was also interviewed for this piece.
is a new series which takes a look at the creative process of filmmaking through the eyes of some of the entertainment industry's most prolific writers, directors and producers. Each episode will also showcase short films from the region's most promising filmmakers.
Troy Tate and The Smiths: The Not Poor Recordings
. The Smiths were first produced by Troy Tate and the bootlegs have been rather bootleggy as it were. These are one step removed from the master recordings and don't sound quite so hollow... Includes an apparently unheard version of Accept Yourself as a bonus.
Louisiana-born, Texas-based record producer Huey Meaux
, the so-called "Crazy Cajun", has died
. He was the man behind Barbara Lynn
's 1962 hit You'll Lose a Good Thing
. Three years later, in a move to cash in on the British Invasion, he created a faux-British rock band called "the Sir Douglas Quintet" around San Antonio-born singer-songwriter Doug Sahm
, and produced their hit, She's About a Mover
. Meaux also produced Tex-Mex rocker Freddy Fender
's bilingual hit Before the Next Teardrop Falls
as well as Fender's Wasted Days and Wasted Nights
. Sadly, however, Meaux had a very ugly darker side: he was arrested not once but twice on child-sex charges, doing prison time in the late 60s, and an 11-year bid from '96 to '07. Some of the ugly details of this side of his life are detailed in this Houston Press article
from 1996, shortly after his arrest, which will pretty much make your skin crawl... Well, so long Huey.
Happy belated 39th birthday, Amon Adonai Santos de Araújo Tobin
, or as most folks call you, simply Amon Tobin
. The Brazilian-born producer first released music as Cujo
, and has since moved on to his own name, with five albums and a slew of EPs and singles
released since 1997, plus two
video game soundtracks
, and a film soundtrack
. He also has an EP of collaborations
, side projects with Joe "Doubleclick" Chapman
and Two Fingers
. And that's the overview ... (music samples a-plenty inside, or you could skip the chatter and listen to much of Amon Tobin's discography streaming on his website
). [more inside]
Earlier this year, the BBC's Arena
produced and aired an excellent documentary on Brian Eno entitled "Another Green World"
containing "a series of conversations on science, art, systems analysis, producing
and cybernetics". [more inside]
Legendary hip hop producer DJ Premier interviewed in the XXL Icon Interview
and The Smoking Section
. Remarkably candid conversations about his life in East Coast hip hop, with interesting stories about his work with Jay-Z, Biggie, Puff, Nas, Jeru the Damaga, Group Home, Suge Knight, Christina Aguilera and of course, Guru. On finding records to sample: "Well, there’s still diggin’ spots. If you’re in that world like I am, you know the spots, you see everybody—Just Blaze, Alchemist, Large Professor, Pete Rock—we still pop up in those spots. You got Big City records, you got Turntable Lab, you still have A1, you got Academy, you know. I’m not gonna tell you all the digging spots."
He's Now in the Great Screening Room in the Sky
Dino de Laurentiis has passed on, aged 91.
Over 150 films produced
. He gave this young guy
a second chance
after this bomb
. One of his movies had the best Haniball Lektor/Lector ever
. He worked with Fellini, Pacinio, Redford, Schwarzenegger, Bridges, (Jeff), Raimi, and Fonda, (Jane). Goodnight, sweet prince of cinema.
Aaron-Carl Ragland, known simply as "Aaron-Carl" to most, was a songwriter, remixer, producer, radio show host, record label founder and all-around character.
The news of Ragland's death was first posted on his friend and fellow Detroit musician Piranha Head's Facebook page
in a status update, saying simply:
Just lost one of his best friends, Aaron-Carl, and my arms are far too short to box with GOD. One of the best Human beings in the WORLD is gone. I have no words. Music is Silence.
Aaron-Carl himself posted this video
just five days ago on his blog discussing his diagnosis and upcoming surgery after canceling his upcoming European tour
reports that Aaron-Carl is believed to have died shortly after or during essential lymph node surgery; it appears that he died overnight after beginning his first chemotherapy session. [more inside]
Producer/engineer Iain Burgess
played a vital role in defining the Chicago punk sound in the 80's with his work with Naked Raygun, Big Black, and the Effigies. Burgess passed away on Thursday from a pulmonary embolism
, a complication of the pancreatic and liver cancers he'd recently been diagnosed with. Although British, he is best known for his years in Chicago, where he helped create a distinctive large sound
with a live-centered recording style and served as a mentor to Steve Albini
. He also worked with Didjits, Ministry, Mega City Four, the Cows, Pegboy, Shellac, Jawbox and many others.
The man behind the classic sound of Al Green, Memphis producer and soulmeister supreme Willie Mitchell
has passed on
. Many of the Al Green sides are legendary, of course, and very well known (as is the fantastic "I Can't Stand the Rain, by Ann Peebles), but be sure and head over to the excellent Funky 16 Corners
where you can hear three of his lesser-known but deeply
grooving productions. Fat stuff. So long, Willie Mitchell, and thanks for the wonderful music.
The story starts in 1992 or so
, when the 14 year old Brit, Dominic Stanton
, bought turntables and started spinning early drum'n'bass. He transitioned from DJ to producer, made demo tracks, and got signed by age 17. He went on to produce broken beat*
and jazzy downtempo*
, even into the realm of disco edits. Then about two weeks ago, the 31 year old musician called it quits.
The point is that I am no longer Domu. He is a character, always has been, and as of Friday 13th November 2009, he no longer exists. Neither does Umod, Sonar Circle, Bakura, Yotoko, Rima, Zoltar, Blue Monkeys, Realside or any of the other names I put out music under. I am cancelling all my gigs and not taking any more. My hotmail is closed, my Twitter is closed and my Facebook is closed.
Furthermore, his website is closed and the original post of his farewell message is lost, though you can still view the cached version
or find it copied elsewhere
. Domu's website now simply states This really is The End . . .
Step inside for an abbreviated journey. [more inside]
Memphis music legend Jim Dickinson has died.
Dickinson's full credits
are as impressive a resume as you'll find over the past 40 years: session player for many, including the Rolling Stones, Bob Dylan, and Aretha Franklin. Producer for albums by Jason and the Scorchers, Big Star, the Replacements, Screamin' Jay Hawkins, and Mudhoney. Among his survivors are sons Cody and Luther of the North Mississippi All-Stars
. His death comes one week after a benefit show
in his honor headlined by John Hiatt. R.I.P., Jim.
Diplo (Wesly Pentz) has a short interview/bio on The Guardian
, including a guide to his best collaborations
, spanning from Never Scared
as Hollertronix (Diplo + Low Budget
), to M.I.A.'s mixtape "Piracy Funds Terrorism"
), up to his forthcoming work with Switch
as Major Lazer
. But Diplo doesn't just spend his time with recording artists. He's sharing his style-mixing skills with kids in Australia, while a friend of his does the same in India.... [more inside]
Legendary record man and music producer Jerry Wexler
died on August 15, at the age of 91. His keen insight, and his deep love and appreciation for the artists he worked with resulted in an extraordinary enriching of American music. [more inside]
Meet Adam Chodikoff.
He's the guy that finds those before and after videos, where politicians contradict themselves, for The Daily Show.
"Porky's was about anti-Semitism, about racism, it's not just about boys with erections," claims Clark. He then adds, pun intended, "It was a seminal film." Bob Clark
, Director of two iconic
1980's films that profoundly impacted some of your childhoods (no doubt in decidedly different ways), and his 22 year-old son were in a fatal car crash
on PCH this morning. This was set to be a promising year
for the man who brought Ralphie and his bunny suit
to the world. R.I.P.
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passed away Sunday. Yes, the first is a NYTimes
link, but here's
an obit from the Independent
newspaper, and here's
a BBC obit as well. It would be unseemly not to note the passing of the arranger or producer (or both, or co- ) behind the Art Farmer Quartet's Live at the Half-Note
, Sonny Stitt's Stitt Plays Bird
, Max Roach's Drums Unlimited
, the Rascals' "Good Lovin'" and "Groovin'," Aretha Franklin's I Never Loved a Man the Way I Love You
and Aretha Now
, Dusty Springfield's Dusty in Memphis
, Donny Hathaway's Extension of a Man
, the Stones' Black and Blue
, Chaka Khan's first several solo albums, and hundreds of others all the way down to Norah Jones ... a list almost too long to compile. NPR interview here
, lengthier article from Sound on Sound here
, his discogs.com list here
A little known white guy made at least $6.4m out of hip-hop last year
[NYTimes]. Scott Storch has produced 50 Cent, Beyonce and Lil Kim; in fact he made eighty tracks in 2005 and is working on Paris Hilton's new album. He thinks it's because
of his low profile that he didn't get a grammy nomination
and he's upset.
centers around Joe Meek
, Britain's first independent record producer, whose DIY engineering wizardry
would transform record-making during the Sixties. Five years after an international #1 hit in the Tornadoes' space-age Telstar (Windows Media or RealPlayer)
, he would self-destruct, in an end not without tragedy
. His works
--along with his trademarked name
The Day the Music Died. Charles Hardin Holley
. Rest in peace. A remarkably influential songwriter
who left us so much in such a short time.
Plus, this guy
and that other guy
West Wing Drug Bust
Producer of West Wing busted with drugs...perhaps he was not digesting.