Friday, February 5, 2016

Friday Miscellanea

Here you go, 100 amazing bass lines:


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I'm sure we have all been in a situation where the guy next door has the tendency to play bad music too loud--it is pretty much the price we pay for the electronic recording and playback of music. But this guy has found the perfect solution. For some odd reason, blogger won't embed so you have to follow the link:


The clip is titled "Neighbor Payback Prank" but a better title would "Neighbor Payback Justice" don't you think? I had some neighbors who had three loud dogs that barked late at night. So one morning, around 6am I put my Harmon/Kardon stereo up to the window, cranked it up and played all of the Rite of Spring for them. No reaction!! So I see why their dogs didn't bother them: stone-deaf neighbors. Still, the act of revenge was enjoyable in itself.

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The Guardian has an interesting note about the challenges Shostakovich faced in his career--a bit more severe than most composers have.
He wrote his First Symphony in 1926 at the age of 19; it was a worldwide success; three years later its dedicatee was arrested and shot. They executed the dedicatees of symphonies? Yes, and musicologists. And anyone who looked remotely suspicious to Stalin’s paranoid eye.
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Somehow, I had hoped the 21st century would be more interesting than this: all known recordings of the Gymnopedie #1 by Erik Satie played together.

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Here is something you probably won't want to see. A whole bunch of folks twerking to the Goldberg Variations? Wouldn't even Donald Trump condemn this for excessive vulgarity?


Bach's lawyer will be calling them in the morning...

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So here is what is hot with string quartets these days. The JACK Quartet playing "Dancing With Somebody" by Joe Twist.


Who would have thought, back in the middle of the last century with Boulez and Stockhausen roaming the landscape, that the big influence in the new millennium would be, wait for it, tango... NTTAWWT.

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And that brings us to our patented envoi for today's post. Bach without all the twerking. This is the Chorus and Orchestra of La Petite Bande, on period instruments. Barbara Schlick, soprano. René Jacobs, altus. Nico van der Meel, tenor. Max van Egmond, bass. Christoph Prégardien, tenor (Evangelist). Harry van der Camp, bass (Jesus). Conducted by Sigiswald Kuijken.


9 comments:

Marc Puckett said...

'Twerking' is one of those words that seems to me to have appeared ex nihilo: certainly they may be jerks (do I have that part of the formation history right?) but I can't figure out what the 'tw' is sourced from.

Bryan Townsend said...

According to Wikipedia:

Though the term seems to be of uncertain origin with common assumptions suggesting it represents a contraction of "footwork" or a portmanteau of the words "twist" and "jerk", the Oxford Dictionaries blog says "the most likely theory is that it is an alteration of work, because that word has a history of being used in similar ways, with dancers being encouraged to "work it". The "t" could be a result of blending with another word such as twist or twitch."[3] There is evidence from ethnographic interviews in New Orleans that the term began as street language in New Orleans with the rise of the local hip hop music known as bounce.[4] Since the late 1990s, twerking was associated[by whom?] with bounce music of Southern hip hop and was disseminated via mainstream hip hop videos and popular video-sharing sites since the mid-2000s. In 2013, twerk was added to the Oxford Dictionary Online.[5] According to Oxford dictionary, the word has been around for 20 years. The word was a runner-up in the Oxford Dictionaries Word of the Year 2013.[6]

Marc Puckett said...

Portmanteau is the word I was trying to pull out of my memory. My assumption had been that it had something to do with sexual acrobatics but 'twist'-&-'work'-in-New Orleans sounds plausible, sure.

Hoping to establish that am not entirely woefully ignorant of contemporary pop music, I did recognise somewhere between a quarter and a third of those bass lines, although after the first five minutes I skipped forward two or three times.

That-- noisy neighbors-- is probably reason number one why I will never ever live in an apartment building. Of course the greater problem is 'neighbors' who are inconsiderate of those they live amongst-- your offender was across the street-- if they are playing that music at such high volume they are doubtless also doing other nonsense.

Bryan Townsend said...

Yes, the Wikipedia article was surprisingly good on the etymology, wasn't it?

Oh, I almost never listen to all of those "100 Best" clips. I just dip into them here and there.

My list of noise pet peeves begins with neighbours playing music, followed by dogs barking.

Marc Puckett said...

The Satie piece was quite interesting and clever, I thought, not that I'd ever listen to it again-- a briefly interesting & clever artistic artefact, not an interesting and clever piece of music-- I wonder how Brendan Landis describes it; in any case it goaded me to read the Wikipedia article about Satie, whose Gymnopedies and Gnossiennes I listen to occasionally without ever having read anything about the composer beyond the most basic facts. There's an article at Disquiet about how, according to the author, Landis's sound art is grounded in Satie's work itself: [http://goo.gl/QdyLeC].

Marc Puckett said...

50,000 listens to that BL Satie at this point. Wonder if anyone went out and bought a CD of Satie's music, or looked about for a concert performance?

Marc Puckett said...

Because Ensemble intercontemporain (that's how it's written) is in my Facebook feed, I discovered Francois-Bernard Mâche's Kassandra. They wouldn't be very pleased because am not listening for any exalted purpose, ahem. Does anyone remember television programming in the early 60s that was designed to teach kids about musical instruments and orchestras? 'And this is the bassoon!' 'Can you tell your teacher what instrument is making this sound?' I know about Leonard Bernstein's Guides but what I'm recalling was not those; perhaps they were made for use in schools. Anyway, am amusing myself trying to identify what is making the sounds in Mâche's Kassandra. A pre-Lent, Mardi Gras, treat.

Jeph said...

Wowee, it's hard to describe just how bad that Goldberg variations thing with the dancers is. I guess I appreciate their enthusiasm, but jeez...

Bryan Townsend said...

@Marc: Satie had an interesting role historically. He was kind of a pre-modernist in the late 19th century and was an influence on Debussy. In Canada there were some interesting music programs of educational value on the CBC. I think the first time I heard a harpsichord was on a Sunday afternoon CBC show, played by Glenn Gould.

@Jeph: dancers pretty much trade in enthusiastically and energetically leaping about!