music

Rock, get up, get down, miuzi weighs a ton

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Enter Spotify, a platform that is definitely not the answer. In fact, it only exacerbates such conundrums. Yet for now it has manipulated the vast majority of music industry “players” into regarding it as a saving grace. As the world’s largest streaming music company, its network of paying subscribers has risen sharply in recent years, from five million paid subscribers in 2012 to more than sixty million in 2017. Indeed, the platform has now convinced a critical mass that paying $9.99 per month for access to thirty million songs is a solid, even virtuous idea. Every song in the world for less than your shitty airport meal. What could go wrong? […]

Indeed, Spotify’s obsession with mood and activity-based playlists has contributed to all music becoming more like Muzak, a brand that created, programmed, and licensed songs for retail stores throughout the twentieth century. In the 1930s, the company prioritized workplace soundtracks that were meant to heighten productivity, using research to evaluate what listeners responded to most. […]

Spotify playlists work to attract brands and advertisers of all types to the platform. […] We should call this what it is: the automation of selling out. Only it subtracts the part where artists get paid.

{ The Baffler (2017) | Continue reading | Thanks Tim }

The trick is, you use the truth when you wanna tell a lie

{ Thanks Thomas! }

the ffrinch that fire on the Bull that bang

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Two programmer-musicians wrote every possible MIDI melody in existence to a hard drive, copyrighted the whole thing, and then released it all to the public in an attempt to stop musicians from getting sued. […]

Riehl and Rubin developed an algorithm that recorded every possible 8-note, 12-beat melody combo. This used the same basic tactic some hackers use to guess passwords: Churning through every possible combination of notes until none remained. Riehl says this algorithm works at a rate of 300,000 melodies per second.

Once a work is committed to a tangible format, it’s considered copyrighted. And in MIDI format, notes are just numbers.

“Under copyright law, numbers are facts, and under copyright law, facts either have thin copyright, almost no copyright, or no copyright at all,” Riehl explained in the talk. “So maybe if these numbers have existed since the beginning of time and we’re just plucking them out, maybe melodies are just math, which is just facts, which is not copyrightable.”

All of the melodies they’ve generated, as well as the code for the algorithm that generated them, are available as open-source materials on Github and the datasets are on Internet Archive.

{ Vice | Continue reading }

I’m in that black on black Porsche Panamera, in the back like “ooh wee”

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Using Music as Medicine – finding the optimum music listening ‘dosage’

There was a general agreement of dosage time across 3 of the 4 domains with 11 minutes being the most common amount of time it took for people to receive the therapeutic benefit from their self- selected music preferences. The only exception was the domain of happiness where the most common length of time for people to become happier after listening to their chosen music was reduced to 5 minutes, suggesting that happy music takes less time to take effect than other music. 


{ British Academy of Sound Therapy.com | PDF | More

photo { Sarah Illenberger }

‘Live fo’ her life and die fo’ her life.’ –R. Kelly

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BBC Music Magazine surveyed 151 conductors working across the world to come up with a top 20 great symphonies.

The Eroica, Beethoven’s Third Symphony, came in at No 1, followed by his Ninth, the “Choral”, in second place. Mozart’s last symphony, No 41, the “Jupiter”, was in third place while Mahler occupied the next two places with his Ninth and Second symphonies respectively. […]

The top 10 is completed by Brahms’s Fourth Symphony (6th); Berlioz’s Symphonie Fantastique (7th); Brahms’s First Symphony (8th); Tchaikovsky’s Sixth Symphony (9th ); and Mahler’s Third Symphony (10). […]

Mahler is represented three times.

{ The Guardian | Continue reading }

Symphony No. 10 by Gustav Mahler was written in the summer of 1910, and was his final composition. At the time of Mahler’s death the composition was substantially complete in the form of a continuous draft, but not fully elaborated or orchestrated, and thus not performable. Only the first movement [Andante–Adagio] is regarded as reasonably complete and performable as Mahler intended. Perhaps as a reflection of the inner turmoil he was undergoing at the time (Mahler knew he had a failing heart and his wife had been unfaithful), the 10th Symphony is arguably his most dissonant work. […]

The circumstances surrounding the composition of the Tenth were highly unusual. Mahler was at the height of his compositional powers, but his personal life was in complete disarray, most recently compounded by the revelation that his young wife, Alma, had had an affair with the architect Walter Gropius. Mahler sought counseling from Sigmund Freud. […]

The unsettled frame of Mahler’s mind found expression in the despairing comments (many addressed to Alma) on the manuscript of the Tenth, and must have influenced its composition: on the final page of the final movement, Mahler wrote, “für dich leben! für dich sterben!” (To live for you! To die for you!).

{ Wikipedia | Continue reading }

gelatin silver print { Robert Heinecken, Then People Forget You, 1965 | More Robert Heinecken | PDF }

and the lellipos cream to her lippeleens and the pick of the paintbox for her pommettes

Those festivals ain’t my thing. Elon Musk keeps trying to get me to go to Burning Man. No thank you. […]

I used to date Ivanka, you know. […] Twelve years ago. Tommy Hilfiger, who was working with my daughter Kidada, said,“Ivanka wants to have dinner with you.” I said, “No problem. She’s a fine motherfucker.” She had the most beautiful legs I ever saw in my life. Wrong father, though.

{ Quincy Jones | Continue reading }

Real-time imitation of piano chord sequences with unexpected harmony or manner

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People’s capacity to generate creative ideas is central to technological and cultural progress. Despite advances in the neuroscience of creativity, the field lacks clarity on whether a specific neural architecture distinguishes the highly creative brain. […]

We identified a brain network associated with creative ability comprised of regions within default, salience, and executive systems—neural circuits that often work in opposition. Across four independent datasets, we show that a person’s capacity to generate original ideas can be reliably predicted from the strength of functional connectivity within this network, indicating that creative thinking ability is characterized by a distinct brain connectivity profile.

{ PNAS | Continue reading | Read more }

related { Neurobiological differences between classical and jazz musicians at high and low levels of action planning }

Finally, we marry to make a nice feeling permanent. We imagine that marriage will help us to bottle the joy we felt when the thought of proposing first came to us.

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{ Storm Thorgerson, cover for Pink Floyd’s album Wish You Were Here, 1975 | US release, UK release }

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For Pink Floyd’s 1975 triple platinum Wish You Were Here album, Capitol Records execs headed to the L.A. offices of Stunts Unlimited. Ronnie Rondell, 59, a veteran of TV shows such as Baretta and Charlie’s Angels, was cast as the man on fire. “I got $500 and only worked an hour.” Fellow stuntman Danny Rogers, 53, the glad-hander, was paid only $250 but caught a lot less heat during the carefully controlled shoot on a nearby movie lot, where a crew armed with fire extinguishers stood by. Rondell’s suit was painted with rubber cement and ignited three times before it ripped and his flame-retardant long Johns peeked through the holes. His eyebrows and eyelashes were singed in the process. “It’ll happen in a heartbeat,” says Rondell. “The fire wraps around your face real quick, like a barbecue thing. The wig was fried, it melted up into a ball.”

{ People | Continue reading }

Quante uova a settimana possiamo mangiare?

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Dinner is served at 7:16 and finished at 7:20 P.M. […]

My only nourishment consists of food that is white: eggs, sugar, grated bones, the fat of dead animals, veal, salt, coconuts, chicken cooked in white water, fruit-mould, rice, turnips, camphorated sausages, pastry, cheese (white varieties), cotton salad, and certain kinds of fish (without their skin). […]

My doctor has always told me to smoke.

{ Erik Satie | Continue reading }

art { Andy Warhol, Silver Car Crash (Double Disaster) (detail), 1963 }

‘I wonder if Superman ever put glasses on Lois Lane’s dog & she was like, “I’ve never seen this dog before. Is this a new dog?’ —Rob Fee

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Katy Perry, Billy Joel and Rod Stewart are asking the U.S. government to reform provisions of copyright law that they say enrich large technology companies at their expense.

The three are among the more than 100 artists and managers who have filed petitions asking the U.S. Copyright Office to amend parts of the 1998 Digital Millennium Copyright Act. The office has said it will study the effects of so-called safe harbor provisions in the law, which shield services such as YouTube from liability when users upload copyrighted material without permission. […]

The industry is stepping up its fight as streaming becomes a more significant source of sales. Revenue from such services increased 29 percent last year, according to the Recording Industry Association of America, with most of that growth coming from paid subscription services that license music. Sales of CDs, along with online purchases of music, are shrinking.

{ Bloomberg | Continue reading }

painting { Dan Witz }

At the record company meeting, on their hands — a dead star

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I do have a problem in reference to electronic dance music and pop culture in general. It is becoming more and more difficult for actual artists and talented people to survive. It’s turning every product that’s made in the culture into a commercial. Now, in order for anyone to make money, they have to be a part of an artisanal beer commercial. I can speak for me personally that I write pretty introspective thoughtful records; not good for selling beer. Technology has de-valued not just music, but the idea of artistry and people are no longer willing to pay.

{ Jay Denes | Continue reading }

The music business is something one suffers through in order to be able to make music full time. That being said, most of what gets made is simply a result of economic conditions in a given time period. There’s been no artist development in the record biz for over 20 years now. So, of course music has suffered greatly. People didn’t suddenly get untalented or insincere, there’s just no economic infrastructure left to support the development of excellence. So when it occurs it tends to be a bit of good luck, a hit on a first record that allows an individual or group to have a long enough career to develop their skills.

{ Jay Denes | Continue reading }

screenshot { Sean S. Baker, Tangerine, 2015 }

I want to rock with you (all night)

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{ Dermatologic problems of musicians | Pseudo-Cello Scrotum? | via Improbable }