• LA-di-DA di-di di-di-di-di-di-di-DA

    26. Apr. 2007, 15:02

    Sun 22 Apr – The Decemberists

    I hereby propose that all venues have a section reserved for short people. Like 5'4" and shorter. And all people 6' and over should not stand in the front or near the center. Unless they can make arrangements to stand in a trench or the orchestra pit.

    The opening act, My Brightest Diamond, was fantastic. They played for 30 minutes, and I could have listened to them longer. Their cover of Feelin' Good was very enjoyable. The rest of their set was off their debut album, Bring Me the Workhorse. The lead singer, Shara Worden had a Cranberries vibe, but the friend I went with said it also reminded him of Lamp. So now I'm going to go look up their music too. And it was Shara's birthday, so I hope we were a good audience. We sang "Happy Birthday" to her in the middle of The Decemberists' set (with extra effort to be in tune).

    The Decemberists were fantastic. Colin apologized right away for the fact that their last concert in Denver had been below par due to illness, and he promised right away to make it up to us by giving a fantastic performance this time. Unfortunately, The Fillmore has a strict curfew (11 pm) so the band had to pack all their fantasticness into a limited amount of time.

    The show had several highlights. Shara joined The Decemberists to sing Yankee Bayonet (I Will Be Home Then), and it was beautiful. Shara's voice is perfect for the part. One of the show's encores was Red Right Ankle, which is one of my favorite Decemberists songs, and the audience sang along softly and in tune, adding a beautiful backing chorus to Colin's lead. The last song of the night (sang with great purpose and direction under threat of the electricity being shut off if they performed too long) was We Both Go Down Together The Mariner's Revenge Song. The drummer went wild with his dancing and drumming, ending up going faster and faster with Colin at the end of the song, using up any reserve energy they had left after the rest of their performance.

    There was audience participation, singing and dancing along, and a just plain fun atmosphere. I think everyone, band and audience, had a great time. You totally should have been there.
  • eerily silent

    31. Dez. 2006, 1:03

    I'm listening to more music than ever, since I have a job that I do better when listening to music on my new iPod Shuffle.

    On the other hand, I'm not on the internet as much due to the fact that this job is 40 hours a week and I need to eat, sleep, and clean my house on top of that.

    I regret the fact that I haven't been able to be as active here, but I thought I'd leave a quick note explaining why.

    Here's to music!
  • Disney marathon

    29. Jun. 2006, 21:33

    I don't know why, but I seem to be in the mood to listen to a lot of vintage . I may have to have an especially cynical Stephen Sondheim marathon to balance it all out.
  • metadata geek

    28. Jun. 2006, 18:14

    Gracenote and I are old friends. When computers first started asking the internet to type in ID3 tags rather than requiring the user to type in song names, Gracenote (formerly the CDDB) was there. Read the Wikipedia article about it.

    Unfortunately, Gracenote and I have grown apart. When tagging mp3 files in iTunes I use Gracenote, but only after I've tried MusicBrainz. You see, Gracenote has more errors than MusicBrainz. A lot more errors. These are usually errors in the artist tag and they are especially bad for albums by various artists. Also, Gracenote has no style guidelines, leading to horribly inconsistent tags, especially for multi-disc sets and series.

    This is bad enough for a personal collection, but for services like last.fm and MOG it should be completely unacceptable. MusicBrainz has errors too (as well as frustrating implementation for the Mac), but it seems much easier to correct their errors and moderate the changes. I'll admit that I have no idea about freedb.org.

    Last.fm is cool for recommending the use of MusicBrainz and for trusting most of a user's own tags (even though this messes with some of their data due to bad tagging). I think MOG made a big mistake in building itself around Gracenote.

    I suppose that there will never be a perfect CD ID3 tag database, especially since the implementation ID3 tags themselves is lacking, but right now Gracenote is not a good database. I hope it gets better. I wonder what MOG will do about this fact. I hope it's more than nothing.
  • Judy Garland, Rufus Wainwright, and the NY Times

    15. Jun. 2006, 2:10

    For you Judy Garland and also you Rufus Wainwright fans, here is an article from the New York Times that talks about Judy's famous Carnegie Hall performance and Rufus' thoughts about her legend and style. Worth a read.

    Go here: http://www.nytimes.com/2006/06/04/fashion/sundaystyles/04RUFUS.html?ex=1307073600&en=c6fbf4d7274d6bcb&ei=5090&partner=rssuserland&emc=rss.
  • American Idol . . . please stop laughing at me, music snobs.

    17. Mai. 2006, 6:00

    American Idol is carrying the mantel of the variety show proudly. Adding in ever-popular "audience participation" it is the only one of its kind to make it big in our cynical, media saturated country today. Call it "variety show 2.0" or something. Still, it hails from a mighty tradition, so don't knock it if you haven't tried it. [And please ignore the Jessica Simpson/Nick Lachey specials from a year ago. I did. They are doing an interesting re-living of Sonny and Cher, though, aren't they?]

    Please do not throw stones, but I kept watching AI after Chris got booted. I did not cry, rend my clothing, or tear out my hair. In fact, my full emotional reaction was "meh."

    Anyway, I thoroughly enjoyed tonight's show. There were no performances that I had to grit my teeth through, no moments when I wished that one could fast-forward live television, no strong wishes that the contestant singing would grasp the right note . . .

    Elliott Yamin did a credible job tonight. He really does have a great R&B voice. I still wish he didn't embroider his songs quite so much (sometimes singing just one note can be impressive too, Elliott). Still, he's a sensitive singer and truly seems to be a great guy. The best song for him tonight was the song he chose for himself—I Believe To My Soul. Paula seemed to "get" his talents as an artist better than Clive did, as it related to song choice, but she was close without being quite on target. Elliott has grown so much as a performer over the course of the show and has constantly raised the bar for the other singers, keeping almost everyone away from the temptation to coast.

    Taylor Hicks also did a consistently great job tonight. I've loved him from the beginning and have voted for him nearly every week. He's distinctly different from anyone else popular in music today, and that makes me happy. Unfortunately, none of his performances tonight were his best so far in the competition. And I wish he hadn't had to sing You Are So Beautiful. He did it the best the song can be done, reigned it in beautifully, but I just think it's a boring song. Still, I really hope he makes it into the final two, since he is unique, has a voice and performing style that I love, and he has delivered superior performances throughout the competition.

    But the woman of the night was Katharine McPhee. Her first performance: meh. But her last two were fantastic, with Over The Rainbow making the list of the top 5 or so performances in American Idol history. Seriously. And my top artist is Judy Garland. I have earned my "Over the Rainbow" credentials. I hope other people are gushing over the economy of the arrangement and staging, because it's something that AI should remember (rather than orchestrating the heck out of everything and doing weird-ass arrangements).

    Note to the judges: judge the singer, not the song, especially if *they didn't pick* the song.

    I think that the final two will be Taylor and Kat. I love Elliott, he just didn't generate anything that transcended Kat or Taylor tonight. If he had pulled something like Over The Rainbow or Summertime or In a Dream he and Kat would be in a dead heat. Neither of them has the momentum or the Soul Patrol of Taylor. But we'll see after Wednesday night. And all of them are going to have albums, anyway. We just get to pick which one comes out first.
  • my grumpy avatar

    16. Mär. 2006, 16:58

    Hey! JyotiMishra is the first person to ever ask about my avatar! He gets a gold star.

    My grumpy mascot is my mom's cousin Lois. The picture was taken in a photo booth, and I have two pictures from the strip. The other one is shown below.

  • iTunes library survey

    20. Feb. 2006, 15:50

    I haven't reconstructed my library from its pre-harddrive-crash glory, but this survey was just too fun to pass up.

    Sort by song title:
    -First Song: !!!!!!!
    -Last Song: Zydeco Shuffle

    Sort by time:
    -Shortest Song: Yarr (0.731 sec)
    -Longest Song: Pilcharddiscomix (30:18)

    Sort by album:
    -First Song: Mambo UK
    -Last Song: Zoot Suit Riot

    Top 10 Most Played Songs:
    1. History Repeats Itself
    2. Western Eyes
    3. The Man That Got Away
    4. Rook
    5. Extraordinary Machine
    6. Every Day a Little Death (sung by Patricia Elliott & Victoria Mallory)
    7. Berta, Berta
    8. Sao Paulo Rain
    9. Virgin State Of Mind
    10. Mondo bongo

    First five songs that come up on Shuffle:
    1. Stabat iuxta Christi crucem (The Lily & the Lamb)
    2. White America
    3. Quiet Life -pf solo version-
    4. Flo
    5. Ben

    "Sex", How many songs come up?: 45
    "Love", How many songs come up?: 757
    "You", How many songs come up?: 1243
    "Death", How many songs come up?: 78
    "Hate", How many songs come up?: 77
    "Wish" How many songs come up?: 44

    And the grand total: 13,715 items, 36.3 days, 56.05 GB
  • "alternative" passes it's mantel to "indie"?

    23. Jan. 2006, 4:04

    Is "indie" rock the new "alternative" rock? People these days are throwing around "indie" as a genre term, rather than as a description of a band's non-affiliation with a major record label. Combine that with the fact that what's labeled "indie" was formerly shelved in the "alternative" section and I'm just confused.
  • disappointment, thy name is Clive

    3. Jan. 2006, 6:44

    I like American Idol. I can't really explain why. Maybe it's my love of cover versions.

    Anyway, I listened to Bo Bice's new album The Real Thing today. I am sad. Yes, I knew it was going to be a pop album. But I hoped it would be fun and happy, like Bo is on TV.

    Nope. It's all boring ballads except for one song (Lie... It's Alright, and even that song doesn't go to the fun and funky place that Vehicle, I Don't Want To Be, and his other performance choices on tv went.

    Sigh. I blame Clive and the other suits that think boring pop ballads are what Bo should sing. Hopefully Bo can do fun stuff on another album.