Sunday, February 28, 2010

Sunday Morning Rain Is Falling

Lazy Sunday? Curl up with a documentary - maybe this one.

Scratch: "A documentary movie examining the birth and evolution of hip-hop DJs, scratching and turntablism. Contains interviews with some of hip-hop’s most famous and respected DJs including Grand Wizard Theodore, Q-bert, Mix Master Mike, Cut Chemist and DJ Shadow."

Seriously, I haven't been this engrossed by a movie in a long time - and I am not your go-to hip-hop person.

(The proof is in the pudding: my runner-up choice is the heavy-on-the-costumes-and-voiceovers The Genius of Mozart. Just so you know.)

Kids / They Are Just Impossible To Control

Punk rock ukulele festival returns.

(via jezebel)

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Friday, February 26, 2010

Maybe You're The Only One That Sees / Anything Good About Me

This post... this post is a wonderful amalgamation of so many things near and dear to the hearts of those interested in musical tidbits:
1. Musical animals
2. Musicals in general
3. Cover songs and copyright questions?

Hey! Did you get all the way to "Defying Gravity"?

(via lifesapitch)

Who Let The Dogs Out?

So you know the theme music for Law & Order? (Actually, I didn't before this. Anyway.) Dogs don't like it. An exposé in News.Com.Au helpfully summarizes the main points in a series of bullets right at the beginning of the article - here, let me recreate it for you:

* Theme music makes dogs howl
* Certain notes signal auditory nerve
* "They can't help it"

Poor puppies.

(via arbroath)

(This Song's Just) Six Words Long

Ten word wiki defines "musician" as:
A person who creates music. Generally either autistic or depressed.

That's ten words!

(ten word wiki)

Thursday, February 25, 2010

I Write The B-Sides

Does anyone else find this a tad creepy? Clever, but creepy.

(The New Zealand Symphony Orchestra, December 1999, via coloribus)

Buy Buy Buy Buy / Sell Sell Sell

From: (The Customer Is) Not Always Right
(You know it.)
Invisible Incentive
Music Store | Burton on Trent, UK

(There were a series of compilation albums on release called “Air Guitar Hero”, which had a very tongue-in-cheek advertisement. I had just sold a copy to a customer who returned to the store 10 minutes later.)

Me: “Are you OK there?”

Customer: “Well, I didn’t get my free air guitar with this CD.”

Me: “Excuse me? I’m not sure what you mean.”

Customer: “This CD, it’s supposed to come with a free air guitar.”

Me: “…”

Customer: “On the advertisement, the one on TV. It says comes with free air guitar!”

Me: “Um, that’s a joke they made on the advertisement.”

Customer: “But it says on the advertisement I get a free air guitar with this album!”

Put On A Happy Face

Tee hee! Tee hee hee!
Browse: Sleeveface.

(via accidentalmysteries)

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

I'm Like A Bird


It started out on Broadway (huzzah, Broadway!). When it received a - ahem, less than stellar - reception, it was made into a 1975 television special (huzzah, television!). Total number of broadcasts: one.
Draw your own conclusions.

(via metafilter)

Parallel Lines / Move So Fast

These are really gorgeous: Marco Fusinato's visual take on scores by contemporary composers. You should check out the whole series. (Really you should.)

(via swissmiss)

If You Liked It Then You Should Have Put A Ring On It

Oh Francisco Táregga, you turn of the century composer you! You thought you would write a nice waltz (a "Gran Vals," in fact), but alas! what it has become...

Here's a version of the original (you'll recognize it):

(via metafilter)

Monday, February 22, 2010

Elvis, Elvis, Let Me Be! / Keep That Pelvis Far From Me

Presenting Elvis Presley in his network TV debut 1956! And I thought the Olympic figure skaters had some inappropriate hip action going on...

(via youtube, metafilter)

Elle Promenait Ses Mains Sur Un Clavecin / Et Chopin La Trouvait Belle

Several years ago, pianist Martha Argerich gave the BBC an interview focusing on Chopin's Piano Concerto No. 1 in e minor:
"Chopin was a genius ... what can I say! He's the pianist ... the musician, pianist ... whom I would have loved the most to be able to hear, playing. I'm so curious about his playing, much more than anybody else, much more than Liszt, and much more than anybody else. You know? I'm so curious, I would love to see how he played, really, because of his compositions, the way he writes for the piano, which is totally different than anybody else, you know, and the way he makes the piano sound and the way he writes for the piano, .... it's totally different. The virtuosity, and of course ... which must not be obvious, because the musical quality is extraordinary in Chopin -- so, the virtuosity, which is tremendous because it's terribly difficult ... it's there, but it has to be ... like an understatement. And it has to show, I mean, it's not a show-off thing, you know. It's called a Concerto Brilliante, yes, brilliant. ... Well, but I think this is not....

I have to tell you that when I don't play Chopin for awhile, I don't feel like a pianist."

(More of the interview plus sound files here.)

Now I Know The Difference / From Gold And Brass

Tromba marina, oh tromba marina. Sounds like a boat, but it's an instrument - not a particularly popular instrument (at least not since the early 1700s), but an instrument nonetheless. And WHAT an instrument! When you play it with a bow, the vibrating string (singular) causes the bridge to move against the soundboard; voilà: a stringed instrument that sounds like brass.

(More, and how to acquire one at Unprofitable Instruments.)

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Ooo That Body's Like Music To My Ear

I saw this live once; it was awesome then, too. "And no sweat! And no sweat!"

("The Body of Your Dreams" by JacobTV, performed Andrew Russo)

On The Good Ship Lollipop

Where am I going to be January 3 - 15, 2011? Unfortunately not on Symphonic Voyages' maiden trip to the Caribbean.

"A performance festival on the high seas," the ship will feature its very own 60-piece orchestra as well as soloists Cho-Liang Lin, Susan Lorette Dunn, and Larry Rachleff. Concerts nearly every night (nothing too fancy, but plenty of standards: a little bit of Mozart, a little bit of Beethoven, maybe some Stravinsky here and there), time to explore the islands, an opportunity to schmooze with musicians - that sounds like a nice January.

(via insidetheclassics)

Saturday, February 20, 2010

She Blinded Me With Science

(By graphic designer / illustrator Glenn Jones, via vectortuts+
PS: you can get this design [entitled "Experimental Music" harhar] on a t-shirt.)

When Will You Realize / Vienna Waits For You

WHAT. THE. YESPLEASE. Apparently I'm into spoof commercials this week. A little twelve-tone music, anyone?

Youtube tells me this was "done in 1977 by Robert Conrad, the founder of WCLV classical radio in Cleveland, Ohio, USA. The script was written by conductor Kenneth Jean and Mathias Bamert is said to have had a role in the production."

(via nerdcore)

Friday, February 19, 2010

My Baby Likes To Shoot Pool

You might as well just give up. A pool table with built in speakers and a MP3 jack? You're never going to get your unemployed former-music-major kid out of the basement now.

(via trendhunter)

In The Kitchen / On The Floor

I'll take three, please.

(via insidetheclassics and youtube)

Can't Get Enough Of This Everyday Love

Mission: Ranjit Bhatnagar set out to make a new handmade instrument every day of February 2008.

ACCOMPLISHED. Check and go. Done and done. chronicles his month. There are instruments made from diet coke cans, from broken tree branches, from copper tape and wires. There's a coconut banjo, an electric jasmine kalimba, a matchbox synthesizer...all true, you bet.
As Bhatnagar points out (and then posts clips to prove his point), some of these instruments sound less than - erm, pleasant - but what a wonderful idea!

Thursday, February 18, 2010

I Am Going Crazy / Everybody's Crazy

"A Musician's Wife" by Weldon Kees

Between the visits to the shock ward
The doctors used to let you play
On the old upright Baldwin
Donated by a former patient
Who is said to be quite stable now.

And all day long you played Chopin,
Badly and hauntingly, when you weren't
Screaming on the porch that looked
Like an enormous birdcage. Or sat
In your room and stared out at the sky.

You never looked at me at all.
I used to walk down to where the bus stopped
Over the hill where the eucalyptus trees
Moved in the fog, and stared down
At the lights coming on, in the white rooms.

And always, when I came back to my sister's
I used to get out the records you made
The year before all your terrible trouble,
The records the critics praised and nobody bought
That are almost worn out now.

Now, sometimes I wake in the night
And hear the sound of dead leaves
against the shutters. And then a distant
Music starts, a music out of an abyss,
And it is dawn before I sleep again.

(via famouspoetsandpoems)

You Left Me Speechless

The Library of Congress has an awesome new podcast series called Music And The Brain. The website says:
The Library's Music and the Brain events offer lectures, conversations and symposia about the explosion of new research at the intersection of cognitive neuroscience and music. Project chair Kay Redfield Jamison convenes scientists and scholars, composers, performers, theorists, physicians, psychologists, and other experts at the Library for a compelling 2-year series, with generous support from the Dana Foundation.

And if you can't choose on your own, here's a sampling:
-Halt or I'll Play Vivaldi! Classical Music as Crime Stopper
-States of Mind: Music in Islamic Sufi Rituals.
-Your Brain on Jazz: Neural Substrates of Spontaneous Improvisation

(via metafilter)
(special thanks to m.burns)

Open Your Heart / And Catch My Disease

I typed in "composers who" and google auto-completed "died of syphilis." So I went with it.

Niccolò Paganini (1782–1840)
Franz Schubert (1797–1828)
Gaetano Donizetti (1797–1848)
Bedřich Smetana (1824–1884)
Hugo Wolf (1860–1903)
Edward MacDowell (1860-1908)
Frederick Delius (1862–1934)
Scott Joplin (1867/8–1917)

Maybe Beethoven? Maybe Mozart? It contributed to the Schumann-crazy? Ohboy.

(via wikipedia [NSFW, guys, so very NSFW])

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

I've Been A Puppet, A Pauper, A Pirate / A Poet, A Pawn And A King


"A Boy Named Sue" - you know that Johnny Cash song - was written by none other than Shel Silverstein! The poet even won a Grammy.

(via youtube)

"Meet Me In The Bathroom" / That's What She Said

I know that secretly you've always wanted to know what the bathroom in The Flaming Lips' Oklahoma house looks like, so I'm fixing that void in your life.

Shiny! More pictures at designmilk. (It is a pretty cool bathroom...)

You Can Skate Around The Issue / If You Like

In the 1988 Olympics, pair skaters Ekaterina Gordeeva and Sergei Grinkov made some - interesting - musical choices for their free-skate. The program started off nice and cozy with Mendelssohn's Symphony No. 4 - but then it transitioned into Chopin's Piano Concerto No. 2 - and on into an instrumental version of the "Revolutionary" etude - and on into Mozart's "Marriage of Figaro" overture (with a disco beat, no less) - and on!

C'mon figure skaters: get it together. Everyone knows Mendelssohn does not Chopin does not Mozart equal - especially in 4 1/2 minutes. What a horrible mess for the musicologists in the audience!

Read Anne Midgette's wonderful, almost-scathing article about the choosing, splicing, speeding, and editing of music in the figure skating world.

(image via ekaterinagordeeva)

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

If We're Keeping Score / We're All Choir Boys At Best

It's worth a closer look: here.

And...there's a performance of this piece on youtube! It begins with a (mostly, sometimes) humorous introduction - the actual music starts at 4:14.

The Circle Game

Upstairs-downstairs-in-its-nightgown. (You'll see.)
J.S. Bach's "Canon 1 à 2" from Musical Offering (1747).

(via opencultureyoutube)

He Began To Feel / That His Puppets To Him Were Very Real

Terrifying? This is a 6ft banjo-playing George Harrison-lookalike marionette. (That's an inch and half taller than the real Harrison, in case you were wondering.)

(via arborath)

Monday, February 15, 2010

Get Outta My Face / While I'm Reading My Keats

I'm headed to the library to read about some operas.

Flavorwire recently published an article with its picks for "10 Best Songs About Libraries and Librarians" - you can view them all (spoiler: I was decidedly excited to see MC Poindexter's "Library Rap" on this list) and even LISTEN to them right here.

It's A Bittersweet Symphony


(via youtube)

Every Day Turns Out To Be / A Little Bit More Like Bukowski

Poetry collection of the day:

Play the Piano Drunk Like A Percussion Instrument Until The Fingers Begin To Bleed A Bit, by Charles Bukowski

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Play Us A Song / You're The Piano Man

Options, options - you've got (virtual piano) options.

Virtual Piano: I don't understand exactly why this one is useful, but it's sort of fun and let's say aesthetically pleasing.

Virtual Keyboard: drumbeats ba dum chhh.

Java Piano: because everyone needs an especially pixelated online piano.

The Virtual Piano: the virtual upright.

I Predict A Riot

We're watching The Godfather II. It's that scene in Havana, all the people at the New Year's party are falling over themselves to get out of the building - and suddenly I notice a familiar rhythmic motif... my (non-musicologist) roommate and I simultaneously yell "THE RITE OF SPRING!"

Check it out.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Rock Me Amadeus!


(*To be fair, I don't think all these people exactly mean to be Mozart impersonators - but isn't that funny too?)

Devil's Dance Floor

I've been trying to find out anything/everything about that punk-fiddle gig from the Opening Ceremonies last night. So far I'm coming up with NOTHING.
Instead, I'm going to post the tweets Google decided would be a reasonable substitute for REAL INFORMATION. Ready, go:

Interrupt my usual book tweets to tweet about the Olympics: have learned from this ceremony that Quebec is a punk-rock fiddling hell
- wordsfrommtl

Pretty nice Olympic opening. Especially the goth-Irish-fiddling-punk-tap dancing awesomeness.
- retak

RT @planetrussell: Canada rocking the unique, punk/funk/folk fiddle-'n-dance sequence at #Vancouver #Olympics. Visuals? Think Mad Max me ...
- GlobalVA

So I've decided I'm never going to be interested in any non-punk rock tap dancing fiddle playing olympics again.
- machiavellia

Friday, February 12, 2010

My Loony Bun Is Fine Benny Lava

There are covers, and then there are covers. Think about the art of covers, guys.

(via metafilter)


Mitsuko Uchida: In Action.

(via metafilter)

Like Dylan In The Movies

Please compose a short theme that will symbolize everything this tv show is about, while simultaneously capturing the hearts and earworms of our home audience. Thank you.


(Twin Peaks, via nerdcore and haveyouseenthis)

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Drawn To The Rhythm

Speaking of Stravinsky...

By: Pablo Picasso. The artist and composer collaborated on Pulcinella in 1920, Picasso drew some sketches in his downtime. You know how it is.

(via Wikipedia)

Tiptoeing Through The Tulips

I just bought a ukulele - a pretty little mahogany colored ukulele. Now my small hands can play ALL the chords!

Anyway, the impending arrival of the aforementioned instrument prompted an internet search for chords and factoids. It was to be a search of epic proportions - and it would have been, except I stumbled upon this and had to stop for awhile and now nothing will never be the same again:

I would also like to direct you to Tiny Tim art.

So Mothers Be Good To Your Daughters Too

And somehow I'm guessing they don't mean that crazy Stravinsky stuff either.

("I Want to Talk to My Teen About Movies, Music" by Walt Mueller)

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

If I Had A Hammer

Press that vinyl, press that press that vinyl.
(A behind-the-scenes look at how records get pressed. Gotta Groove Records: Cleveland, Ohio.)

Gotta Groove Records - "Groove With Us" from Nick Cavalier on Vimeo.

(via make)

I'm Just A Product Of My Raising / I Say 'Hey Y'all' And 'Yee Haw'

Actual (Country) Song Titles:

Billy Broke My Heart at Walgreens (and I Cried All the Way to Sears)
Ruby Wright

Did I Shave My Legs For This?
Deanna Carter

Drop Kick Me Jesus (Through the Goal Posts of Life)
Written by Paul Charles Craft

Get Off The Stove, Grandma, You're Too Old To Ride The Range
Colin Hartridge

Get Off the Table, Mabel (The Two Dollars is for the Beer)
Bull Moose Jackson

Here's A Quarter (Call Someone Who Cares)
Travis Tritt

How Can You Believe Me When I Say I Love You, When You Know I've Been A Liar All My Life?
Burton Lane & Alan Jay Lerner

If Whiskey Were A Woman, I'd Be Married For Sure
Written by Stuart Holdsworth, Jack Routh and Randy Sharp

I've Got a Cowboy In The Saddle, and Another One's Holding My Horse
Iris Larrat

My Head Hurts, My Feet Stink, And I Don't Love Jesus
Jimmy Buffett

Redneck Martians Stole My Baby
Hank Flamingo

She Offered Her Honor, He Honored Her Offer, and All Through the Night It Was Honor and Offer
Sligo Studio Band

You're The Hangnail In My Life, And I Can't Bite You Off
Hoyt Axton

You're The Reason Our Kids Are So Ugly
Lola Jean Dillon & L.E. White

(I know it doesn't seem like it, but I had to perform some major triage here. So many more.)

There Were Bells On A Hill / But I Never Heard Them Ringing

My tinnitus (can I claim it like that?) is usually tuned to a B-flat.

Apparently, scientists are finding that if I were to remove all the B-flats from the music I listen to, my tinnitus (I'm claiming it) would decrease in loudness. Researchers think that either a re-wiring of the auditory cortex causes the brain to focus on different pitches, or that the auditory neurons ascribe to a "use-it-or-lose-it" philosophy.

I think getting rid of the B-flats would adversely effect my musicology career.

The rest of the article at Discover Magazine.

(special thanks to Maureen, image via

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Drove My Chevy To The Levy

Charlie Nothing and the Big Ding
circa 1975
1954 Chevrolet redesigned
"I make my guitars out of American Cars"

Charles Martin Simon

(via metafilter)

I Won't Be Your Yoko Ono

Richard O'Regan wrote a review of one of the very first Fluxus concerts (1962). Here 'tis:
The opening work that night was 'Danger Music No. 2' by a New Yorker, Dick Higgins. Higgins entered and took a bow. He sat himself beside a bucket. His wife, Alison Knowles, appeared with a pair of scissors. She began to cut his hair. Higgins looked content. After 15 minutes, the audience grew restless. Paper airplanes circled from the back row. Conversation took over. 'I'm sure I don't know what it is all about or what it is supposed to mean,' commented one of Germany's well-known abstract painters. 'I tell you Higgins is performing a rare work,' said Emmett Williams, a part-time performer and composer of this Very New Music living in Germany. 'He could play a Chopin étude every night. But Higgins can't give another performance like this for six months, until his hair grows back.' 'But there is no music,' we protested naively. 'Is this parody or protest?' 'You have to understand,' said George Maciunas, the American promoter of the festival, 'that in new music the audible and the visible overlap. This is what is called action music.'

(O'Regan, Richard. 'There's Music-and-Eggs-in the Air!' in Stars and Stripes. Sunday 21 October 1962, pg 33.
via Higgie, Jennifer. The Artist's Joke: Documents of Contemporary Art. London: Whitechapel and the MIT Press. 2007.)

Fiddler On The Roof

Oh hey! A superbowl ad that isn't misogynistic for a change! Although in real life doesn't have ads for violinists. Accuracy - heigh ho.

(via Inside the Classics)

Monday, February 8, 2010

So Fly / He Was Transatlantic

Boop boop diddam daddam waddum shoo.

(Borusan Istanbul Philharmonic Orchestra 2007, via coloribus)

I Left Home Just A Week Before / And I've Never Ever Seen A Jedi Before

He's everywhere!

(Orchestra Camerata; Orchestra Háskólábio; Orquestra Sinfônica Brasileira; Fresno Philharmonic Orchestra; Darth Vader's Orchestra)

Simply The Best

Philip Farkas was the principal French horn of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra for years and years. And years. (1936-1941, and again 1947-1960 to be exact.) He's considered one of the most important French hornists and French horn pedagogues - oh, ever.

Very impressive.
Originally, though, Farkas played the tuba. Yes, the tuba. Then one day on his way to school, the streetcar driver refused to let him board because his instrument took up too much room. "Well, what instrument would I be allowed to bring?" he asked (that's a paraphrase, guys). The driver looked around, pointed to the French horn case of a nearby band student - and the rest is noise. No wait, I mean history.

(via IU)

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Friday, February 5, 2010

Paint It Black

Notations 21 is an anthology of graphic scores. It's beautiful! Now if only I was gainfully employed...


(Steve Roden)

(Makoto Nomura)

You can see more of the scores (and read about the inspiration behind them) here.

It's A Rollercoaster Kind Of Rush

Now this is my kind of rollercoaster:

Zürich Chamber Orchestra

And I'm Tangled Up In You

You know how you can put your headphones on the table, turn away for two seconds, and when you look back they're a tangled mess? You put them in your bag, walk two blocks, and when you pull them out again they're one big knot?

Dorian Raymer and Douglas Smith of UCSD studied the physics of random knotting. Moral of the story? Any kind of tumbling or turning = tangles. And there's nothing you can do about it.

(Still doesn't explain the mystery of the tabletop, though. Music-hating gnomes, probably.)

(via bookforum, photo credit Raymer and Smith)

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Sitting Waiting Wishing

Alex Ross has a new book coming out in September! It's called Listen to This. Says Mr. Ross: "The new book is a panoramic tour of the musical world, touching variously on Bach, Mozart, Schubert, Verdi, Brahms, Marian Anderson, Frank Sinatra, Cecil Taylor, Led Zeppelin, Björk, Radiohead, Mitsuko Uchida, Esa-Pekka Salonen, John Luther Adams, Lorraine Hunt Lieberson, Bob Dylan, and the Malcolm X Shabazz High School Marching Band. In the Preface, I say that the aim is to 'approach music not as a self-sufficient sphere but as a way of knowing the world.'"

It's not available for pre-order on Amazon yet, so don't bother trying. Not that I've checked once or twice...a day.

All the information that is currently available can be found: here. (And perhaps a preview of what's to come: here?)

Don't Want No Paper Gangsta' / Uh Oh

The Law of GaGa:

(via 2'23")

Anthems For A Seventeen-Year-Old

Start your day off right with Glenn Gould playing Bach's Partita No. 2. He's so young! Young and crazy. In a good way. Qualify qualify.

(via Open Culture)

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

I Need A Hero / I'm Holding Out For a Hero

But this is what happens when our heroes go over to the dark side:

There's A Hero / If You Look Inside Your Heart

This is like the image-makeover portion of the Incredibles: Let's get rid of frock coats (in the event of crowd-surfing, tails could be a major impediment) in favor of platform shoes and long hair!

(via Dark Figures)

I Can Be Your Hero Baby

They have movable arms and legs. Just saying.

(via Shakespeare's Den)

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

I Remember When / I Remember I Remember When I Lost My Mind

Theremin Orchestra: because one isn't screechy enough.

Bonus: Gnarls Barkley's Crazy - theremin-style.

I Know What You Want

Gnod is a self-adapting recommendation website - slogan: "Even if you don't know what you're looking for - Gnod will find it." Enter three bands (/ musicians / composers / it's probably most useful for bands) that you like, and Gnod will instantly come up with a recommendation.

Let's test it...

Beethoven / Bach / Brahms = Mozart. (A little obvious, Gnod.)
Bartok / Rachmaninoff / Albeniz = Dvorak. (Okay, better.)
Messiaen / Ligeti / Penderecki = Lutoslawsky. (Now we're talkin'!)
Metric / Florence and the Machine / Kings of Convenience = Chairlift. (Accurate indeed.)

Try your luck here.

I'm Not Gonna Write You A Love Song / Cause You Asked For It

Thomas Mann's novel Doctor Faustus is about Adrian Leverkühn, a fictional composer who makes a deal with the devil in exchange for twenty-four years of creative genius.
Words: check. Visual? What does a soulless composer look like? Take one:

Adrian Leverkuhn by Joshua Hughes
oil on canvas
25" x 21"

(image via SaatchiGallery)

Monday, February 1, 2010

Writing This Letter / Hoping You're Okay

To Leonard Bernstein
7 Middagh Street, Brooklyn, NY
Main 4.9079
April 28th 1941

Dear Lenny,
Please forgive the lateness of this - but I have been working all day & night for the last three weeks on the score of the operetta & I haven't had a moment for letters.
I was very, very pleased that you liked the Sinf. da Req. Judging by your remarks you certainly 'got' what I wrote, & it was extremely nice of you to take the trouble to write & say so. I am sure that it's the 'best so far' - and as it's the last, that is as it should be. I might argue with you about one or two of your remarks about my earlier masterpieces - but may be there is something in what you say. The only thing is, maybe those particular vices are less vicious than some others I can think of - such as inhibitions, sterility, self-conscious ideas of originality - but we won't go into that now!
How are you? I saw you were conducting on the Radio on Saturday - how did it go? When do you come to New York? I shall be around until June 1st or thereabouts. Give me a call when you get here. How are your chamber concerts going? As you probably know - the Bowlesesses departed for Mexico.
The Operetta is chaotic. Goberman is not doing it - Hugh Ross has taken it over - & although he has the right mentality for training choruses, (entre nous) he is not so hot on orchestras. However - we shall see.
Thank you again for your note. You ask how the others liked the symphony - all the ones I respect were pleased - including Aaron, Chavez, Colin, Lincoln et all -

Best of luck,
Yours ever,
Benjy B.

(via Letters from a Life: Selected Letters of Benjamin Britten Vol. 3; Edited by Donald Mitchell, Philip Reed, and Mervyn Cooke)

If You're Into It

Secretly, I judge musicians based on what their nails look like. No wait - not so secretly. If your nails are long and metallic-teal, then you are not a real pianist. BAM.

That being said, my disdain shouldn't stop the nail-painting if it really keeps you going. And in that case - I'll even get you a how-to video! (Also, isn't that background music nice and relaxing?)

We Could Start A Basement Band

An organ with no pipes. How is that possible? The answer is: STALACTITES. Obviously.

You can find "The Great Stalacpipe Organ" in a subterranean cave in Lurrey, Virginia. Built in 1954 by a musician/mathematician/electronic scientist, it took three years to finish. But hey - it never needs to be retuned!

(via atlasobscura)