The bizarre rise and fall and resurgence of tiki bars and cocktails is an interesting history that starts with two men, Donn Beach and Victor Bergeron, who traveled to the South Pacific and brought back some "island culture" to the United States with them in the 1930s, continuing on with the craze really booming after WWII vets returned from tours overseas. With the ebbs and flows of popularity, the cultural appropriation in "Tiki culture" has often been overlooked, as to the Māori mythology and meaning behind Tiki carvings and imagery and Hawiian culture of leis and luaus. Let's talk Tiki bars: harmless fun or exploitation. [Soundtrack: Les Baxter's Ritual Of The Savage ( 1951) and Martin Denny's Exotica (1957)] [more inside]
The BBC teams up with the Orkestra Obsolete on the anniversary of New Order's Blue Monday to find out what it would sound like played on a diddley bow, hammered dulcimer, harmonium, zither, musical saw, and singing glasses.
Emanating from the barrier dunes of Virginia, Freedom Hawk’s heavy riffs, rolling groove, and soulful guitar melodies to produce a sound that is distinctly their own. The trio’s brand of heavy rock capitalizes on the best of the heavy ‘70s, but presents a fuzzy take that’s modern and based around quality songwriting rather than style-over-substance retro posturing. for me... Sabbath meets early KISS another track here
Part 4 of an interview with noted video game developer M2, upon the completion of Outrun 3D, the latest on a series of 'SEGA 3D Classics', in which games from the golden era of arcades are meticulously ported to the Nintendo 3DS (!!) handheld system using a variety of interesting, fairly obsessive techniques. [more inside]
Power 85 is non stop streaming of the best dreamwave, synthpop, outrun, and neo retro 80s music, featuring instant requests. (previously)
Style Gone Wild: Why We Can't Shake the 1970s
Collectors Weekly: What prompted such radical changes in popular fashion?[more inside]
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.
The butt-shakingly over the top video for Nicki Minaj's Anaconda (Previously) was released recently and while there's been discussion if it re-claims the twerk or refuses the male gaze, video artist Jeff Osborne has put the song into its 90s "Baby's Got Back" pop culture context with appearances by Jessica Rabbit, Beavis And Butthead, and more. (all videos quite NSFW) [more inside]
Dave Holmes (yes that Dave Holmes) re-vists the hit songs and music videos of July 1983
The BeyondSynth Podcast is a podcast with artists and producers who make synthwave/new-retro/electronic music. From his home base in Canada, Adam talks to the top artists in the scene. Links to guests' music pages for each episode inside. [more inside]
If cruising through neon wireframe landscapes is your kind of thing, and previous mefi posts haven’t satisfied your burning desire for synth wave/retro electro/neo 80s, then perhaps you would be interested in a few of the following albums... [more inside]
Best known for creating the nostalgic mash-up REMEMBER series (previously), Youtube user Thepeterson teams up with Slackstory to create another video clip time machine: REMEMBER 1994
Somewhere in-between the space-age bachelor pad sounds of Esquivel and the gimmicky novelty of Spike Jonze sits Mel Henke, one of the most overlooked originators of the mid-century lounge sound. While most famous for versions of All That Meat, 77 Sunset Strip, and Pennies From Heaven, his largely instrumental wink-wink-nudge-nudge album La Dolce Henke is considered his masterpiece - The Lively Ones - The Twisters - You're Driving Me Crazy - Woman In Space - Farmer John - Old McDonald Had A Girl - See The USA In Your Chevrolet - Last Night On The Back Porch (Warning, historical sexism, erotic car metaphors)
It's The Victory Belles! The house vocal trio for the National WW2 Museum's Stage Door Canteen in New Orleans perform medleys of war-time hits in shimmery brown uniforms (or Santa suits).
Left and to the Back is a blog exploring the dark and dusty world of flop singles and albums, the kind you may find lingering near the stock room of your local second hand record store (if you still have one), or perhaps going for extortionate sums on ebay. [Found whilst trying to answer this AskMe].
Ultra Swank - Retro Living and Design from the 50s, 60s and 70s.
Live From The House Of Blue Leaves, It's The 5. 6. 7. 8.'s! This all-girl Japanese punk/surf rock trio is best known in the west for performing "Woo Hoo" in Kill Bill Volume One, but two other performances were filmed during shooting, "I Walk Like Jayne Mansfield " and "I'm Blue" (Music starts at 3:01) Bonus Material: (I'm Sorry Momma) I'm A Wild One. Teenage Celopatra Hanky Panky Bomb The Twist Roadrunner Interviewed on Chic-A-Go-Go
The Creator's Project unleashes The Eclectic Method’s (previously) latest video, Super Mario Mashup onto the world with a bonus genre-exploding montage and Q&A trying to put it all together.
The Thriller Diaries: Michael Jackson’s 1983 “Thriller” remains the most popular music video of all time: a 14-minute horror spoof that changed the business. Behind the scenes it gave its star a temporary home with director John Landis, sparked a near romance with actress Ola Ray, and revealed how damaged the young pop idol already was.
A future history of the CD revival. In response to a piece on cassette culture (previously), music writer Tom Ewing reports from the 2020s' revival of interest in the compact disc format, and the interplays between hazy memories of growing up in the '00s, reaction against networked "social playlists", and a fetishisation of both the "glossy, uneasy sheen" of the CD sound and the constraints in working with physical artefacts.
Do you like musical instruments with lots of keyboards? And lots and lots of dials? Then you may like 36 15 MOOG: Stuff with Moog and/or 60's and 70's vintage synths in it. (related Ask MeFi) [more inside]
Corey Arcangel is perhaps the internet's most infamous hack, masher-upper, digi/net artist. His work stands for a growing culture of artists who run wildly through animated GIF landscapes populated with corrupted data-compressed bunny rabbits and tinny, MIDI renditions of Savage Garden ballads. As the Lisson Gallery, London, opens its archives to Arcangel's curatorial eye, could digi/net art be set to infect the real, fleshy world, like a rampant Conficker Worm? Has YouTube become the truest reflection of our anthropological selves? Are we destined to roam the int3erw£bs like the mythic beasts of yore, hoping, in time, that digi art can free us from the confines of this fleshy void? [...previously]
"Field Middle School student Max Timander, 12, has taken blogging's egalitarian spirit to a new height, despite his lack thereof. He runs areyourockin.com, a reviewer-centric rock blog covering a smart mix of hot albums (the new Green Day "is so addicting," he says) and "retro" discs -- by early-'00s acts such as the White Stripes and David Gray." [more inside]
80smusicvids.com - Like totally bodacious collection of over 1000 music videos from like the raddest decade. Choice. [more inside]
WYLD CANADA! 120 red-hot slabs of '60's teen garage nastiness from The Great White North (and a fifth volume here.) All the Canuck garage rawk you could ever want, from 49th Parallel to The Witness Inc. [more inside]
My latest two favorite bands with bearded singers, Herman Dune and Gil Mantera's Party Dream have awesome videos. check out Herman Dune's video for "Not on Top" and Gil Mantera's Party Dream's video for "Elmo's Wish."
One two three, four five, six seven nine ten, eleven twelve. [6.5mb .wmv]. An excellent remix video of the the Sesame Street 'Pinball Song'. Features the Pointer Sisters on vocals, apparently. The remix was done by Braces Tower, who also have the mp3 up on their site.
Travis Hallenbeck's website is an awesome collection of links about lo-fi music and art, retro-computing, cheap children's synths, and more. Some gems: CompactFlash for Apple II, Iconolog, The Audio Playground Keyboard Museum (with vintage drum machines reworked in flash). Look around!