September 3, 2013
Re "Protest songs still march on," Aug. 28 As Harry Belafonte notes, folk and gospel music galvanized support for the 1963 March on Washington. Just as important, however, was the emergence of rock 'n' roll, which prompted musical - and societal - desegregation. Before Elvis Presley's recording debut in 1954, radio stations were musically segregated. Stations were either white - in management, listeners and featured artists - or black. Presley created a quandary by being a white singer who sounded black.
August 9, 2013
The first track from the soundtrack for “The Hunger Games: Catching Fire” will be Coldplay's "Atlas" and will be released Aug. 26. This will be the first original song the group has recorded for a movie. "I have great respect and admiration for Coldplay, and we are thrilled with how well they have connected to the themes and ideas within the film," director Francis Lawrence said in a statement. "Their unwavering passion and excitement for the project elevated the collaboration even further, and we can't wait to share this music with audiences around the world.
June 29, 2013 |
The moment of unplanned silence prompted by a midceremony miscue between groom and DJ still stings. Music, after all, was to occupy a key spot in our recent wedding, playing a role otherwise reserved for scripture, prayer, meditation or hymn in a more traditional religious ceremony. In place of the usual wedding march, my nephew Leo, 11, and his guitar teacher had earlier serenaded the gathering with an expert - objectively speaking, of course - version of the Beatles' "Here Comes the Sun" as my soon-to-be wife, Jenny, and her father walked down the aisle.
June 20, 2013 |
Remember the days when Pixar meant perfection? When you could count on its animation to amaze, its stories to sweep you up? Remember "Up"? Or the smooth ride in "Cars"? The "Toy Story" pals whose friendship was anything but plastic? The love among the ruins unearthed by "Wall-E"? A clownfish dad's deep-sea desperation in "Finding Nemo"? PHOTOS: Disney without Pixar What has happened to the memory makers who gave us all that? They are nowhere to be found at "Monsters University," the latest shiny new movie to roll off what increasingly feels like the Disney-Pixar assembly line.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
June 9, 2013 |
Sometime between ring-a-ding-ding and hunk-a hunk-a burning love, America slipped into something more comfortable and Bob Thompson was there to help. Thompson was one of the foremost composers and arrangers of what came to be known as "Space Age bachelor pad" music - tunes that allowed hi-fi buffs to turn the lights down low, mix the perfect martini and show off their tweeters and woofers. With cascading strings, upbeat rhythms and - as in his piece "Mmm Nice!" - breathy female singers, Thompson's music set a mood, but was more than mood music.
May 11, 2013 |
One detail I didn't have room to include in last weekend's Arts & Books feature on the soundtrack to "The Great Gatsby" was just how the film's director, Baz Luhrmann, recruited Jay-Z to help him assemble the music for the movie. In an interview Luhrmann said he hadn't met the rapper before "Gatsby" star Leonardo DiCaprio offered to introduce the two men one night in New York, where Luhrmann and DiCaprio were doing early work on the film and Jay-Z was in the process of recording "Watch the Throne," his 2011 collaborative album with Kanye West.