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Saturday, November 29, 2014

Playlist for the Unpopular Music web cast for November 29, 2014

No Thanksgiving, Christmas, Black Friday, food coma, football or even Star Wars references in this show (I even regret referring to them in this sentence), just a relatively jazzy playlist after the break for the last Saturday in November.

Sunday, November 23, 2014

The grass is always greener on the other side of the fence because an international cartel of executives have scientifically determined what shade of green you prefer.

An article by Derek Thompson from the Atlantic  looks into the ways the major media companies use Shazam, Spotify and other digital music services to quantify the audience's preferences, and use them in the marketing, and sadly, even the production of what he calls the "dispiriting sameness in pop music".

I encourage reading it as the article confirms several suspicions of mine. But, I'll break out a few points for comment. 

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Video for today

DakhaBrakha is a Ukrainian ancient-to-modern group who are playing in Cambridge on Saturday. Here's a performance from Prarie Home Companion. Almost as entertaining as the music are the not impressed audience members (?) in the background, waiting for Garrison Keillor to hilariously (?) expound on potato salad or something wild like that.

Ticket info, and a few more videos are here.

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Three videos for November 16, 2014

Here are three random videos I came across this week. They're not at all connected and have their own significance, and no relationship between them is implied.

Fist we have an IBM commercial, of all things, directed by Jim Henson, of all people, with music by Raymond Scott (well, he at least is partly known for liking to use machines to generate ideas).

Saturday, November 15, 2014

Playlist for the Unpopular Music web cast for November 15, 2014

Another week, another playlist and not much else I'm sorry to say,

I did enjoy Robyn Hitchcock's performance at the Armory of the Arts on Wednesday. Looking forward to Sarah Cahill's recital at MIT tomorrow and Roomful of Teeth's performance on Friday in the same series.

But enough about me, the playlist is as usual, after the break, along with a link to some classic jazz nerd arguments....

Saturday, November 8, 2014

Playlist for the Unpopular Music web cast for November 8, 2014



Oscar Wilde, here again to remind you that consistency is the realm of the unimaginative.
Today's example, after the break, as usual...

Friday, November 7, 2014

Top 7 for the time since I last did one of these posts

A Better Tomorrow + I Say a Little Prayer by Ground Zero

from Ground Zero Plays Standards

An epic blowout medley of the theme from a John Woo / Chow Yun-fat movie, and Roland Kirk's arrangement of the Bacharach and David number (with a quick Chopin quote for good measure). I'm not at all familiar with this group outside of this record, which is sort of a Naked City or Oranj Symphonette type idea (minus the hardcore screaming). The minute-and-a-half of record noise at the end gives you a soothing chance to wind down.

My Brightest Diamond at The Sinclair in Cambridge MA, September 22nd

Shara Worden is one of my favorite voices in pop music today and a fantastically creative all-around musician. This show did not disappoint. She was even loose and funny (my one reservation about her is that she can be kind of pretentious and theatrical and maybe a little precious in a Kate Bush kind of way). But her music grabs me in a way that Bush's does not (or not enough). All in all a great show (but, everyone, let's keep "Fever" on the shelf for a while, okay)

 Saare piiga laul merest (Island Maiden's Song from the Sea) by Lepo Sumera

as performed by Tonu Kaljuste conducting the Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir and the Tallin Chamber Orchestra