December 6, 2012 |
The Academy Awards haven't been kind to songs of late. The last few years, the category has been treated as an after-thought, with either one film dominating the slate of nominees or voters struggling to find five songs worthy of contention. After the nadir that was 2012, when only two songs were recognized, the academy has promised change. Five songs will be nominated for the upcoming awards, and once again the rarely showcased art of cinematic songwriting will be handled with grown-up respect.
December 26, 2012 |
Google recently rolled out a free scan and match feature for its Music service, but it seems to be switching explicit versions of songs with clean ones and vice versa. The Mountain View, Calif., company rolled out the new feature a week ago giving consumers a free alternative to similar services offered by Amazon.com and Apple, which charge $25 for their services. But earlier this week, reports hit the Web saying users are having their songs switched out for incorrect versions that either bleep out words when they're not supposed to or don't when they should.
December 22, 2013 |
The raison d'être of Stevie Wonder's annual holiday concert is the collection of toys for needy children in the Southland, something he's done enthusiastically for 18 years now, each edition featuring a different lineup of friends, musical colleagues and family members. Saturday's installment of Wonder's House Full of Toys at the Nokia Theatre, however, may have given the biggest gift of all to the audience of about 7,000: the first-ever performance of his landmark 1976 double album “Songs in the Key of Life” in its entirety.
July 28, 2010 |
Ben Jaffe, the tuba player and creative director for the Preservation Hall Jazz Band, was sitting in his Faubourg Marigny house one spring morning, drinking fresh-brewed New Orleans chicory coffee and worrying about the oil spill. He and music producer Bill Lynn had just watched oil executives blame one another for the Deepwater Horizon rig disaster, and Jaffe, who comes from a long line of jazz musicians, was sick of it. He glanced over at a glum Lynn, and as if by instinct, they started riffing on a standard New Orleans tune, "It Ain't My Fault."
February 18, 2011 |
The song just came to him. Boiling with anger on that first day of February after Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak refused to step down, Ramy Essam grabbed his guitar. Within 20 minutes, he banged out lyrics cobbled together from the chants of the crowd in Tahrir Square, and then climbed a wobbly stage. "All of us are standing together, asking for one simple thing: Leave, leave, leave, leave," he sang, in a hypnotic echo of the words that had ricocheted through the square all day. "He will leave, because we won't leave.
October 11, 1992
Pop Eye (Sept. 27) asks why Randy Travis' greatest hits were released simultaneously on two separate albums although they could easily have fit onto one CD or cassette. Travis' record company responds by claiming that the cost of publishing royalties made them do it, that "doubling the number of songs . . . would create a doubling of the price." Not true. Publishing royalties currently cost record companies a government-mandated maximum of 6 1/4 cents per normal-length song (among the world's lowest, usually split equally between writer and publisher)
August 2, 2012 |
Bob Dylan and counterterrorism? Say what? It may sound like an odd pairing, but that's exactly what Cinemax is giving us with the new season of "Strike Back," the channel's series about a stealth counterterrorism unit crossing the globe to squelch threats. For the second season, debuting Aug. 17, two brand-new Bob Dylan songs will be featured. The first song, "Early Roman Kings," premieres Thursday on Cinemax, HBO and cinemax.com. The video for the song will feature scenes from the new season starring Philip Winchester, Sullivan Stapleton, Rhashan Stone and Michelle Lukes.
July 15, 2013 |
Jay-Z and Kanye West argued for days over the songs "Holy Grail" and "Oceans," Jay-Z said in a new interview with the BBC's Zane Lowe. "We had this whole plan when me and Kanye did [the] 'Watch the Throne' album that we would go right into our solos after that," he said in the interview, referring to the rappers' joint 2011 disc, according to Britain's NME . "Soon as I thought we had wrapped up 'Watch the Throne,' I made two records -- I had 'Holy Grail' and 'Oceans.'" But once Jay-Z played the songs for West, the latter evidently insisted they go on "Watch the Throne.
April 22, 2010 |
"People used to say nobody can sing my songs but me — they're too personal," Joni Mitchell explained last week during a rare interview. Apparently, nobody told John Kelly not to try adapting her songs. The renowned Obie Award-winning actor and performance artist has been belting out Mitchell's songs for more than 20 years. This weekend, the New York-based Kelly concludes the L.A. run of his acclaimed solo tribute to the iconic, iconoclastic singer-songwriter, "Paved Paradise: The Art of Joni Mitchell," at Renberg Theatre.
December 19, 2012 |
Google wants you to use its Music service, and it's willing to store 20,000 of your songs for free in the cloud to get you to try it. The Mountain View, Calif., company announced a new scan and match feature for U.S. users that will let them quickly store their music libraries to the cloud-based Google Music service. Users can then listen to their music on any computer or mobile device. Songs will stream at up to 320 kilobits per second, although the quality may be lower depending on your Internet connection.