November 28, 2012 |
Want to hear Mick Jagger talk about the Beatles? Tony Bennett laud the genius of Louis Armstrong? B.B. King express his blues over the future of the blues? Audio interviews with those and dozens more of the biggest names in rock, pop, jazz, blues, country and R&B are now streaming free at the Library of Congress website , opening access to hundreds of hours of recordings collected by veteran music industry executive Joe Smith. As reported in June, Smith donated his collection of audio interviews with many of the most celebrated figures in 20 th century pop music.
November 7, 2012 |
It started out as an inside gag, a bit of dadaist prankster wordplay. When Café Tacuba began thinking about a title for its new album, the Mexican alt-rock band opted to pay tongue-in-cheek tribute to the shape-shifting Artist Formerly Known as Prince. Thus was born "El Objeto Antes Llamado Disco," which in English translates as "The Object Previously Called a Record," the band's first studio release in five years. "It was a joke," says José Rangel, a.k.a. Joselo, the band's lead guitarist and sometime vocalist, speaking by phone in Spanish.
November 2, 2012 |
The 8-bit world of "Wreck-It Ralph" brought English composer Henry Jackman back to his roots. His musical studies began long before his classical training at the University of Oxford and were initially of the more chiptune variety. Jackman remembers his first-ever paid gig in the music industry was converting audio for games to play on the Commodore 64, a home computing system that rose to prominence in the late '80s. "I was maybe 16," said Jackman, who at the time was working on the Virgin Interactive game "M.C.
October 25, 2012
This week Microsoft is set to release an operating system for computers, tablets and smartphones that will put a vast amount of music at users' fingertips, free of charge - with the music industry's blessing. XBox Music, a service integrated into Windows 8, is just the latest in a series of music-related initiatives by the software giant, and its record hasn't been good (seen any Zune music players lately?). Nevertheless, XBox Music could be a turning point in the music industry's fitful adaptation to the broadband era. The new, advertiser-supported service will let users play songs on demand from an online jukebox, create customized webcasts based on the music of their favorite artists and buy MP3s from an online store stocked with an enormous selection of tracks - in short, a combination of Spotify, Pandora and Apple's iTunes.
October 24, 2012 |
After plummeting for more than a decade, music sales have finally leveled off. Yet the vast majority of artists and bands collect less from music sales than they would from working two weeks at a food court at the mall. It may be easier than ever before to record and distribute songs, but that just means it's harder than ever to stand out in the crowd at the iTunes Store. Steve Koskie, a tech entrepreneur and music industry veteran, thinks he can help. Koskie is chief executive of Monkeybars , a Los Gatos, Calif.-based site the gives artists the tools to sell their music virally through their websites, blogs, Facebook, Twitter and hundreds of other outlets.
September 13, 2012 |
Veteran music industry king- and queen-maker Clive Davis will relate his lifetime of experience in a new autobiography slated for publication early next year. Currently chief creative officer for Sony Music Worldwide, Davis had a central role in launching and/or developing the careers of Janis Joplin, Bruce Springsteen, Whitney Houston, Barry Manilow, Patti Smith, the Grateful Dead, Alicia Keys, Jennifer Hudson and countless others over more than half a century as a top record executive.
September 11, 2012 |
Think all that song swapping and free downloading doesn't have real world effects? Think again. Hydra Head Records, the Los Angeles-based experimental metal label founded by Vacation Vinyl co-owner and Isis founder Aaron Turner, is shutting down, the label announced through its blog Tuesday. The label is best known for its deep, dark excursions into various scary-sounding subgenres such as drone and noise metal. In the 19 years since it was founded (in Boston, when Turner was a teenager)
August 24, 2012 |
Los Angeles singer and songwriter Beck has begun offering his new group of compositions, "Song Reader," for pre-order, his publisher announced on Friday. The 20 new songs might be called an album, except that Beck himself won't be performing them; rather, his new work will only be available via sheet music. That's right: As he announced last month, to hear "Song Reader," you'll either have to learn how to play the songs yourself or lower your standards and start hanging out with musicians. Beck's new work will be released by San Francisco publisher McSweeney's in the format that drove the music industry before the arrival of recorded sound in the early 1900s.
August 21, 2012 |
Maybe most recognizable for sharp, crudely drawn comics explaining dog behavior or the music industry , Web comic strip the Oatmeal has moved into the fundraising arena with a recent campaign in support of a Nikola Tesla museum in Shoreham, N.Y. The comic's creator Matthew Inman called Tesla, the Serbian American inventor of alternating current, "the greatest geek who ever lived" in a recent strip (which, be forewarned, features the...
August 9, 2012 |
In Los Angeles, singer Beto Cuevas enjoys a degree of anonymity unthinkable in his native Chile or anywhere else in Latin America. Outside the U.S., Cuevas is a major music star thanks to his 17 years as the frontman of one of the most well-known alternative rock bands in Spanish, La Ley (The Law). "I fell in love with L.A. from the first time I went there with La Ley in 1993," says Cuevas by phone from Mexico City before catching a plane to head back to California, where he's lived since 2002.