Tag Archives: music

I Am Finally Getting Into Soundcloud. Thanks, Ozzy and Glitch Mob.

I’ve flirted with Soundcloud long enough. Finally, a deep dive proves very rewarding.

This post will be brief. I’m a fan of Black Sabbath. I’m a fan of electronica. Upon making the focused effort to explore music at Soundcloud, I came across this gem. It’s pretty much been on repeat in my headphones, in my car, in my head when away from my headphones… you get the idea. Enough chitchat. On with the goods:

War Pigs Glitch Mob SoundcloudSo there. And here’s an image for handy reference at other sites where I promote my blog posts like Pinterest, Tumblr, Facebook, etc. Again, let me encourage you to check out Soundcloud and search for something you think you might find interesting there. Chances are you’ll find something fun.

What do you think? Are you a fan of Black Sabbath or The Glitch Mob? What are your thoughts on mashups? Are you a regular patron of Soundcloud or other music sharing destinations? Let us hear from you in the comments.

Jimi Hendrix: Hear His Excellence And Legacy

hendrix

Here’s nearly two hours of Hendrix music and compelling interview clips in support of the release of a previously unearthed batch of recordings. It’s a fascinating listen.

As a guitarist growing up, it didn’t take long for me to fall under the spell of Jimi Hendrix. And to this day, decades later, he’s cemented in my mind as the greatest rock guitarist of all time. Others before and since have certainly been great and influential, but to me, the massive confluence of creativity, talent and ambition in Hendrix can never again be matched.

Jimi Hendrix.promoFB.0307-13That’s why I recently revisited this amazing two-hour broadcast from NPR’s World Cafe, published around the time of a new release of some previously unheard recordings of his studio sketches — which, of course, sound to us like complete compositions, but who knows what Hendrix may have had in mind. Regardless, this is a well-produced and highly enjoyable broadcast.

Besides the music, there are also great clips of interviews with Hendrix’s sister, his contemporaries from his time of performing, and several other fine artists with interesting perspectives on his music and legacy. It’s so enjoyable as a Hendrix fan to get a generous heap of quality music previously unheard, blended with color from other voices also worth hearing. 

What do you think? Are you a Hendrix fan? What artists influenced you and are they still relevant to you today? Let us hear from you in the comments.

Never More Than A Dream

This is a lyric from one of my favorite songs, “Sweeter Than Anything,” by PJ Harvey. It’s also the title of my most popular Pinterest board.

I love everything about the track — its ethereal, almost haunted atmosphere; its darkly timbred instrumentation; and of course Polly Jean’s smoldering, longing delivery. The Lordes and Lana Del Reys of today owe everything to Harvey (and Kate Bush, and Tori Amos… etc.) and this track illustrates exactly why.

nmtad02The line, “You were never more than a dream” appears near the end, as an intonation of understanding, right before Harvey sings the title. A perfect, gentle ending to a swirling story of longing and reflection.

So that’s why “Never More Than A Dream” seems to me the ideal collection of words as a title, befitting this Pinterest board I’ve been growing for some time. The images there are generally mysterious, vintage, artful, or fleeting in some way. This board also happens to be a repository for images I find just plain interesting. It’s the most active board I keep on Pinterest, and if you’re a fan of this blog (hey, you’ve read this far…), you will probably enjoy what’s there as well.

nmtad01What do you think? Are you active on Pinterest? Do you have any themed collections of images or music you keep coming back to or that resonate with others? Let us hear from you in the comments.

After Hours – Crystal Method Featuring Afrobeta w/Lyrics

Lyrics to After Hours (feat. Afrobeta)

Ooh, ah aw. (4x)
It’s too early in L.A.

What you gonna see?
(laughs)
It’s on my ace, gon’ down.
What you gon’ & seen’?
I can’t go down…
Oh, oh,
Down…
Down…
Oh, oh, oh, oh,

Ooh, ah aw.

We can go home tonight.(2x)

It’s got the pants, put me in a trance.

Ooh, ah aw.
We must go home tonight.
Even though it’s wrong.

(laughs)

What you gonna see?

Up in ya, take your time.
We couldn’t make it if you’re blind.

Up in now, take your time. We couldn’t make it, if your mind. (2x)
Up in now. (3x)

Up in now, take your time.

This is my crack at deciphering lyrics on this track. Find out more about it and the rest of the new album here. Find out more about Afrobeta here and The Crystal Method here.

UPDATE: Afrobeta weighs in!

Very cool! Thanks for checking this out, Afrobeta!

The Crystal Method are one of my all-time favorite musical acts. I literally own all their records, and that’s not something I can say about many bands or musicians, except maybe for Led Zeppelin and a few others. I’m so glad they’re still making awesome music and keeping the creativity alive this many years in.

What do you think? Have you ever tried to decipher lyrics from a mysterious song? Are there musical acts you discovered in the ’90s that you’re still enjoying? Let us hear from you in the comments.

Rob Zombie – The National – Richmond, VA

I recently had the pleasure of enjoying a performance by Mr. Rob Zombie and band at The National in Richmond, Virginia. I would describe it as a solid metal show: much headbanging, heavy grooves and loudness. Here are some photos and a crude video I shot about three rows back from the stage.

Online Video and Image Editing Tools In Action

I compiled the video from separate clips using the YouTube Video Editor, and found it a very handy, intuitive tool. In the case of the photos, the top and bottom pics have been cropped, bordered and given effects with Flickr’s photo editor (powered by Aviary). I found it a handy way to add some fun dimension to my shots.

14165209344_8dee206a47_z

13960569710_59408894d5_z

14143885271_f51909c473_z

13978463367_6121378947_z

Couldn’t resist a quick selfie with the crowd. These goofballs behind me got in on the fun and we had a good laugh. I did the same thing moments earlier when the fellow in front of me snapped his own shot.

What do you think? Have you attended any good concerts lately? Are there any music acts you’ve been into for years but only seen recently? Let us hear from you in the comments.

Tonight the Streets Are Ours: Recent Musical Obsession

Creativity’s Spirit Romanticized via Street Art

This track has been haunting me the past several months. Like most people, I first heard it behind the closing credits of Exit Through the Gift Shop, the Academy Award-nominated documentary of sorts by British artist Banksy.

Not only do I love the wall of sound timber of production; I’m just as struck by the yearning, rich tone of Richard Hawley‘s voice conveying the lyrics, which, in the context of this film (as I prefer to interpret them), celebrate individuality, creativity, vision, and belief in oneself – particularly from an outsiders’ perspective. Though the third verse suggests a romantic theme, hearing the track at the end of a film about renegade expression adds a powerful new dimension for interpretation.

Do you know why you’ve got feelings in your heart
Don’t let fear of feeling fool you
What you see sets you apart
And there’s nothing here to bind you,
It’s no way for life to start

But do you know that
Tonight – the streets are ours
Tonight – the streets are ours
And these lights in our hearts they tell no lies

Those people, they got nothing in their souls
And they make our TVs blind us
From our vision and our goals
Oh the trigger of time it tricks you
So you have no way to grow

But do you know that
Tonight – the streets are ours
Tonight – the streets are ours
These lights in our hearts, they tell no lies

And no one else can haunt me
The way that you can haunt me
I need to know you want me
I couldn’t be without you
And the light that shines around you
No, nothing ever mattered more than not doubting
But tonight the streets are ours

Do you know how to kill loneliness at last
Oh there’s so much there to heal dear
And make tears things of the past
But do you know that
Tonight – the streets are ours

Full version here:

Bonus: Impressive Film Accolades:

From Exit Through The Gift Shop’s official website:

Best Picture of Leaves On a Poster
What do you think? What’s a recent music obsession you’ve had on repeat lately? Did you see this film? Let us hear from you in the comments.

In The Pleasure Groove: Love, Death and Duran Duran – Audiobook Review

I just completed the audio version of In The Pleasure Groove: Love Death and Duran Duran, narrated by John Taylor, bassist and co-founder of Duran Duran.

In The Pleasure GrooveThe band have long been one of my favorites. In fact, the very first record I ever bought with my own money was Seven And The Ragged Tiger. On cassette, of course.

Duran Duran Rocks

I’ve been into Duran Duran’s music since I was 10 years old, because I like the sound: exotic, upbeat, futuristic, yet with an undeniable groove. It was an older female cousin who turned me onto them and I noticed that girls really liked the band – “those guys must be doing something right,” I thought, and I’ve been following their career and enjoying their music ever since the early ’80s.

John Taylor of Duran Duran

John Taylor of Duran Duran in the ’80s, living the dream. Photo: New York Times

Of course I’m biased as a fan and music lover, but I’ll still say this book was great overall. The initial description of Taylor’s upbringing and childhood seemed long at first, but it’s a relevant setting of context for the ensuing fame story, as we watch this lad from Birmingham navigate punk and disco into new wave and rock, all as a bassist and band member with artistic vision, along with those of his band mates who soon become heartthrobs, almost to their detriment.

Duran Duran Still Rocking

The guys are still at it, recording and touring to this day. Here they are at Coachella in 2011 performing their very first single, “Planet Earth,” and obviously enjoying the thrill. Taylor ends the book with a description of this very moment:

It’s an outdoor festival, so tour manager Craig will not get to give his usual cue to take the house lights down. Tonight, that’s one of God’s jobs. And what a job of it he’s doing. A glittering bauble of sunlight fights to stay above the horizon. A full moon appears – a late-coming VIP that takes a seat above the lighting gantry at 11 o’clock high. Nature presents for us a better light show than any human could ever have created.

My heart is pounding. There’s no better time than this, when I’m about to take stage and the future belongs to me. This is what the moment feels like as I walk out onto the stage one more time. Roger’s drums kick in. An eight-bar count and I’m in with him, the galloping groove that started it all for me. Thirty thousand California kids, eyes and teeth smiling, cameras and cell phones popping, a million tiny seductions all at once. And the music never sounded better.

I would recommend the book to anyone with a passing interest in what it’s like to be a working-class kid who falls in love with music, reaches the height of fame because of it, and handles the aftermath (good and bad) with grace.

What do you think? Ever read a book by a rock star? What were your impressions? Is there any music favorites from your youth the carryover to today? Let us hear from you in the comments.