Hi all - I'm back from my trip to the cosmos and boy is my mind tired! Thanks for not crucifying me over my piss-poor attempts at poetry. So what's been happening?
First of all - did you hear about the guy who, using a computer program, stretched Beethoven's 9th out so that it lasts 24 hours? You can hear it at http://www.notam02.no/9/. Interesting to hear the unevenness of playing of even the top classical string players - but who could survive such close scrutiny themselves? Not for everyone, but makes for something different in background music.
Meanwhile, the Chicago Tribune business section notes that global music sales fell 7.6 percent - suffering a fourth straight annual decline. Surprise, surprise. The recording industry blames piracy, the economy, video games and DVDs(???) No word on whether issues like outrageously high prices and lack of quality were discussed.
If you have any interest - I would recommend Fox News entertainment writer Roger Friedman's Fox411 columns, which have been detailing the latest going-ons at the big record labels - where palace coups are happening daily and heads are rolling. This whole incestuous mess is bloody awful, but makes for fascinating reading. No surprise to anyone who has read Frederic Dannen's fabulous book: "Hit Men: Power Brokers and Fast Money Inside the Music Business." Great stuff, but not for the squeamish or those who still think Britney's a virgin.
Speaking of animals - this week, the New York Times News Service reported the results of a study of savanna baboons in Kenya - where after a disease wiped out all of the domineering males in the group - a new community of cooperative and peaceful behavior emerged and has ensued for 20 years. Not musical news I admit (although I did enjoy The Monkees in their day), but food for thought nonetheless. Better watch your step, Dick Cheney.
Of course, the Jackson family got hit by the double whammy this week - what with new allegations surfacing about Michael's sticking a finger in the tyke, and Janet's new album only reaching number two on the charts. Don't feel too sorry about Ms. Nipple - I should have such problems.
Finally, you may have missed the news that Joseph J. Zimmerman of Milwaukee passed away on March 31st. If you didn't know, Mr. Zimmerman was one of the most important people of the last millennium - having invented one of the greatest devices known to mankind: the telephone answering machine. It is interesting to note that the original machine included a 78 r.p.m. record player to play the greeting and a wire recorder to record the message. Joe-Z, we salute thee.
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misguided ramblings of the MusiCurmudgeon
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