I got to hear the sound in the room, the way things were then. Your listeners who weren’t there then should know this: music then didn’t sound at all the way… The Velvet Underground were one of the loudest groups of 1967-68, as far as the volume they played at, and you wouldn’t hear them today. Every high school band that plays at a street fair is louder by far than the loudest bands were then. The equipment they have now wasn’t even invented then, and no one used it like that.
You would hear the sound of the amplifiers themselves in the room. People didn’t plug things into a PA system unless they were playing in a football stadium. So you heard the sound of these amps… The sound was colorful and distorted, and it broke up. People nowadays would say, “Turn up!” They wouldn’t even realize that the band was playing now. Just because volume has changed so dramatically. And it’s not just volume — that actually changes the sound. You heard all these tone colors, it was a very intimate thing.
You’ve got to know that to feel the way the music felt. it was not the way music sounds now. Your ears didn’t ring after every show.
THIS! Maybe the most interesting thing about live music that nobody ever talks about. Except me, and some other people sometimes. But not often! Let’s play quietly! Shhh…
(Quote from Jonathan Richman about Velvet Underground via blah via blah (see link))
I never thought that I’d be discovered. I just thought I’d be somebody who was a hard worker. For me, things started to happen once I completely gave up the concept of being discovered. I discovered what I wanted to do. That would be my advice to young performers: don’t want to be famous. Want to be legendary. In many ways, fame is the industrial disease of creativity. It’s a sludgy byproduct of making things.
I always forgot to switch my phone off silent in the morning, so I missed calls and texts. But now my life is changed! I can choose to ignore my phone, and I am truly alive.
It’s early and I’m in somebody else’s house. We’re renting ours out on Airbnb for a few weeks while we crash or cat-sit in friends and families houses. Sometimes a change of mattress is all you need to become an unintentional early riser.
It’s rare that I get time to write, or to share the random stuff I come across online. So here I am with a cup of tea at 7am to write and share. In no particular order…
I’ve listened to ROTL on and off since the beginning. When I’m not listening to it I don’t think I’ll enjoy it any more. When I start listening again I’m convinced I won’t enjoy it any more. Then about 20 minutes into the episode it becomes exactly what I want to be listening to: a funny, random, winding conversation about life, making stuff and getting old filled with obscure cold war trivia and unpopular opinions. John Roderick’s roundabout take on the difference between Books and books was a highlight (especially since we recently made a vinyl record (but not an Album).
ScratchJr is an introductory programming language that enables young children (ages 5-7) to create their own interactive stories and games.
I’m still not entirely convinced that all children are going to become fluent programmers or that it would be a good idea to try to make that happen, but in case Theo’s mind happens to work like that, I’m glad things like ScratchJr exist.
In this set of dice, green tends to beat red, red tends to beat yellow, yellow tends to beat blue, and blue tends to beat purple. So you might think green is the best dice and purple is the worst. But here’s the twist: purple beats green! There’s no best dice. Use them to win money or drinks or respect or whatever.
I know. What?! It’s very clever. I love a maths-based toy/trick/puzzle/game, and this one had me stumped until I watched the video and read the article.
I think we can all agree that the word “indie” has kind of lost its meaning. I still find myself using it when people ask that very common and broad question of “what kind of music do you listen to?”, but as soon as I include “indie” in my answer, I realize that I really haven’t said anything.
It’s not just because Jeremy HI54LOFI always writes nice things about Bandcamp that I like his blog. He always seems to write exactly what we’re all thinking about online music, and it’s from the perspective of someone who actually likes music rather than a tech blog shouting about royalties and who bought whom. It’s worth a dig back through his blog if you have any interest at all in the DIY/indie/whatever end of music-making and fandom.
Kirby is a file-based cms
None of the questions in this letter are rhetorical: I really don’t get it and I wish that I did.
I knew Brian Eno was a smart guy and a thoughtful writer, but this email exchange between Eno and his friend Peter Schwartz published on David Byrne’s site is one of the most informative, honest and moving pieces of writing I’ve read in ages. I had only most simplistic understanding of how the situation in Gaza had come about and why politicians and the media are dealing with it in the way they are, and now I feel like I understand it a little bit more. Highly recommended reading.
Dear god! How did I not know about this dictionary? How could you even call yourself a dictionary if all you give for “pathos” is “a quality that evokes pity or sadness”?
Amazing. I’m going to start using a dictionary again. And not just any dictionary…
Who cares what my favorite albums are? Your favorite albums aren’t interesting to me, even if I love you. You didn’t make them, you BOUGHT them. If you’d heard a completely different set of albums at the same point in your life, you probably would have identified with those in the same way. Maybe you got lucky and heard some good albums, but who cares? Your favorite albums say less about you than you think.
I love John Roderick.
A few months ago, I started speaking to young (and not so...