Tag Archives: music

The Opposite of Death

The sweetest, life-affirming eruption of ebullience I’ve encountered today comes from Jon Stewart. The subject is his learning to play drums in middle age. [Interviewer] Do you make sure to practice your rudiments and paradiddles? I have a teacher, and … Continue reading

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The Dome and the Well

Umm Kulthum died in 1975. I had a passing acquaintance with the singing of this venerated Egyptian artist, but knew nothing of her life. I learn from this article by Tom Faber that Umm Kulthum’s singing was admired by western … Continue reading

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Art Is God-Light

In my language, the one I recall now only by closing my eyes, the word for love is Yeu. And the word for weakness is Yếu.How you say what you mean changes what you say.Some call this prayer. I call … Continue reading

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Just a Closer Walk: Things Figured Out

Dark matters don’t lend themselves to nosegay piety. I sniff something of my allergy to vestments and gospels in Sonny Rollins’s tolerance, at 89, for honoring the elusive there where it lies. He has, by his words, shunned the laughing … Continue reading

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“Play Like You Don’t Know How”

“… Play like you don’t know how to play guitar.” That’s the instruction that John McLaughlin recalls Miles Davis giving him. It was on the occasion of his being pressed precipitately into service to collaborate in Davis’s milestone album “Bitches … Continue reading

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But Here We Are: Me and…

I feel foolish at bobbing and weaving through the tall grass of music theory, unled and untaught, not glimpsing even sky, much less horizon. All I would have to have done — note the pluperfect infinitive — is to have … Continue reading

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¡Viva el pinche Franglaisismo!

Mixing English and French with artistic abandon “irks some purists.” The irking of purists is always and never a good sign for those who straddle irkdom. FouKi, a popular Quebec rapper whose real name is Léo Fougères, observed that Franglais … Continue reading

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“Porous, Promiscuous Phenomena”

Jorge Carrión’s article was translated by Erin Goodman, and appeared in the NYTimes on January 26, 2020, entitled “Rosalía and the Art of the Remix.” Rosalía is new to me, but personal and professional ties to Catalonia and Spain incline … Continue reading

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Artie Shaw on Glenn Miller

I transcribed this snippet from the Ken Burns documentary about jazz. It inspires me to make mistakes at what I’m doing. [Glenn Miller]… was sort of the Lawrence Welk of jazz. It was one of the reasons he was so … Continue reading

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Musicianshift

http://www.nytimes.com/2019/12/19/arts/music/terry-riley.html “For me music is a daily practice that I try to deepen in the sense that I get to understand more about what music really is, and sometimes what I think it really is is the simplest elements — … Continue reading

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