This is really interesting - speaking as someone who’s never tried to make music in an analogue or digital way. One of the things I noticed in the “what should music writers know?” debates a couple of weeks ago - and I don’t want to reopen them, honestly! - was how the discussion (pro and anti) seemed to default to things like “how are chords made”, “waht is a key”, with very little (if any) discussion about rhythm, let alone the programming and making of rhythm. But if knowing how songwriters build songs around chords is vital, surely knowing the basic techniques and assumptions of digital music-making is just as important for understanding how modern music works and sounds? Not that anyone was arguing otherwise, they just weren’t mentioning that stuff. But ultimately, it seems to me that the reason - or at least a very big reason - for technical knowledge, as a critic, is it allows you to have more informed discussions about the choices made in the creative process.
Popular music and dance almost always reflect the technology of the day. Part of the perpetual anxiety older generations express toward new music has less to do with melodies and harmonies—the core features of which have remained little changed for decades—than with the use of new and unfamiliar technologies to produce those melodies and to express coordinating body movements.
Fred Armisen on ‘Portlandia’ and Minneapolis
And the award for 'Greatest Ever String of Guest Album Appearances' goes to… ROBERT FRIPP!
Drop a cent in the slot and listen to a phonograph record!
View of a customer at Loewy’s 1 cent arcade 14th street, New York.
Click here to view the image in our Digital Archives.
Y’all should follow Hagley vault. They post fascinating historical photos every day. Not all music related, but they have a great collection.
55 years ago today a deadly plane crash took the lives of Ritchie Valens, the Big Bopper and Buddy Holly. Look back at our 1969 feature on the Day the Music Died.
Multiple layers of music history…
Pete Seeger - Waist Deep In The Big Muddy
As the United States grew divided over the Vietnam War, Mr. Seeger wrote “Waist Deep in the Big Muddy,” an antiwar song with the refrain “The big fool says to push on.” He performed the song during a taping of “The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour” in September 1967, his return to network television, but it was cut before the show was broadcast. After the Smothers Brothers publicized the censorship, Mr. Seeger returned to perform the song for broadcast in February 1968.
As a Minnesota music buff, Blood on the Tracks is still celebrated as something of a homecoming for Dylan. Members of the unheralded Minneapolis band still get together to perform.