Archive of posts tagged with "linkthink"

September 13th, 2010

Wax On! (700 Club Linkthink)

self-portrait in stainless steel sculpture
here’s looking at me

Apropos of noticing, this marks the 700th post since I moved this blog to my own server, way back in October 2006 — almost exactly 4 years ago, and well before Google/Blogspot starting alienating users en-masse. That’s a lotta posts, and I want to thank all of you who read here on occasion for the support, criticism, love, and feedback in general. (Speaking of, I also recently passed the 4000 comment mark — spam free! — which is maybe even more impressive than 700 posts.) As loyal readers know, I wax and wane like the name, and I’m grateful to those who can deal with the ebb and flow. Recently, it’s been more ebb than flow, but as you know, I’ve got my reasons. (Two of them, mainly.)

So, I thought I’d celebrate, and wax a little, with classic bit of “linkthink” for ya, mostly w&w + extended fam related –

  • First, I want to point you all to the latest helping of bass baditude c/o of my pardner in Beat Research, DJ Flack. Last month Flack boiled down a really tasty mix, full of weighted bangers, including a number of his own, for Mad EP‘s radio show. It’s a great distillation of the sort of set he’s been rocking on Mondays at the Enormous Room, so if you like what you hear, come catch him live. I love how the mix brings Flack’s own bouncy, tuneful productions into conversation with the music that inspires him (from dub to garage, & lots in between). You can see the tracklist and grab the mix here, or head over to Soundcloud if you prefer that –
    StepDropAndRoll by dj_flack
  • Speaking of my man MadEP/MattyP, I was just enjoying one of his own latest productions last week, thanks to !Kaboogie records, which is releasing an EP on Sept 20 including heat from MadEP, Ed Devane, the Banker, and Sarsparilla. As I listened to MadEP’s track, which features at least 3 or 4 distinct species of bass, through headphones last week, I was struck by how the lows were resonating not only my eardrums but my cranium, face, and down into my neck. As I noted on Google Buzz (yeah, I still use that), “i thought my brain was gonna leak out my nose for a minute.” Which Matty took as a high compliment, which it was. Another charming part of the track is that it includes some vocal cameos from one of Matty’s dear kids, who, I’m told by proud pops, also helped design the bass-patch on the track! Now that’s proper parenting. (And if you want a true testament to his superdaddiness, read this tweet from last night!)
  • I’d also like to point people to the episode of WNYC’s Soundcheck that I appeared on a couple weeks ago. Our “world music 2.0″ convo will have familiar contours for many longtime readers, but I thought it was a nice summation of some of the major differences between what formerly (and still) gets marketed as “world music” and what a lot of us have been hearing as the music of a new “world,” a world of increasingly interconnected technologies and societies and marked by shared urban signifiers, random walks on YouTube, and banging club beats. I didn’t get to say everything I would have liked to, nor did I say everything the way that I would given a second chance, but that’s live radio for ya! (In particular, though, I want to note that I misspoke when I said that DJ Tito was sampling a reggaeton vocalist — actually it was mambo/merengue — and when I placed kuduro in “Brazil” rather than Angola/Luanda — total brain failures on those two.) You can access it here, or just stream it below. And don’t miss host John Schaefer’s sympathetic take on laptopping teens of the whirled vs. “rich producers manufacturing world music supergroups.”
  • In other news, I gotta thank Christina Xu once again for spotting yet the latest allusion to the good ole “zunguzung meme.” If you haven’t heard it yet, Vybz Kartel’s new track, “Whine (Wine),” produced by Max Glazer of Federation Sound, employs our familiar zig-zagging friend as a recurring, structural element (rather than a one-off reference)!
    .
  • And I want to send a shout to Dan Hancox, who published an interesting, apparently provocative piece in the Guardian on “treble culture,” aka, “sodcasting” in London. It reads largely as a defense and celebration of the practice, and as such it invited a fairly strong bit of opposition in the comments. Since I’m still polishing up my own essay on the phenomenon, I’m grateful for the plenty more grist for the mill this provides. Also, to Dan for quoting me in the piece! e.g., –

    .
    On London buses, I’ve seen middle-aged gay couples playing South American pop on a wet Saturday afternoon, moody raver mums sodcasting acid house from their glory years; it’s not just the preserve of teenagers with attitude problems.

    Nor, contrary to popular belief, is it an especially recent phenomenon, says the American anthropologist and musicologist Wayne Marshall, who is currently researching what he calls “treble culture”. “Sodcasting could fit into a time-honoured tradition of playing music in public as surely as reggae sound systems or the drums of Congo Square, never mind their antecedents,” he says. “Transistor radios and ghetto blasters are both good examples of a longstanding history of people making music mobile. The case of the transistor radio shows that people have long been willing to sacrifice fidelity to portability; while the ghetto blaster reminds us that defiantly and ostentatiously broadcasting one’s music in public is part of a history of sonically contesting spaces and drawing the lines of community, especially through what gets coded as ‘noise’.”

  • Finally, I want to point people to the Library of Vinyl blog, where Pacey Foster shares exciting news about becoming the trusted keeper of a trove of early Boston hip-hop demo tapes, as well as to b-ball blog supreme Freedarko, where I’ve got a guest post discussing this incredible cassette:
    .
    SUPER THINK (SIDE I)
    .
    FD’s Bethlehem Shoals asked me if I might write up an “imaginary archaeology” of the thing, and since I can’t actually find anything on the interwebs about either the mysterious TROLL ASSOCIATES or the beat-boxing, tape-head-rocking Double D Crew, who have forcibly occupied the cassette since the mid-80s, that’s about the best I’ll be able to do at any rate. So here goes an attempt to channel my inner Dave Tompkins

    .
    On one very merry late 70s Christmas morning, a young Markie D, yet to rise to local stardom as one of Boston’s several answers to Doug E. Fresh, found in his stocking a cassette boasting amazing contents: basketball “SUPER THINK” according to Julius Erving. Released by the suspicious but nonetheless seemingly credible TROLL ASSOCIATES, Dr. J’s informational and inspirational spoken-word performance had a reportedly noticeable effect on Markie’s ability to penetrate the perimeter. But when those dividends dried up around the same time hip-hop came to town, the tape was — somewhat ceremoniously — taped over, scotch guarding the knocked-out knockout tabs that tell cassette-players to keep their heads to themselves. (As noted clearly on the cassette, duplication was prohibited, but the word was mum on overdubbing.) For several years the tape played host to the latest greatest raps one could catch on the airwaves, or copy via visiting cousins from New York.

    Eventually, it served as the eye-popping receptacle of 9 minutes of beatbox fury, bragadocious cautionary tales, and reverb freakouts, carefully packed and mailed to DJ Magnus, whose “Lecco’s Lemmas” radio show on WMBR (and later WZBC) was fast becoming the primary platform for the Bean’s aspiring rap talents, including a young, recently-relocated-to-Brooklyn M.C. Keithy E (aka, the late, great Guru of Gang Starr). The broadcast of these 9 minutes may have warped more minds than the TROLL ASSOCIATES’ original and perhaps even taught more listeners the proper method for driving the lane despite that the wisdom of Dr. J had by this point been encrypted into a series of throat clicks, pursed-lip bass bombs, and allusions to famous German automatons counting in Spanish.

    Recently rediscovered by vinyl librarian Pacey Foster, Boston’s premiere hip-hop historian and assistant professor of management, now you too can learn how to dunk like Dr. J, or at least maybe rock the bells like Markie D. Here’s how:

    Double D Crew, Lecco’s Lemmas tape (nĂ©e Julius Erving, “Basketball” — Super Think, Troll Associates) from wayneandwax on Vimeo.

That is all, for now. Thanks again for stopping by! Here’s to 700 more…

/wax off

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December 11th, 2008

See, Saw, Seen


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December 7th, 2008

Frass Tea

  • "what i want to do by writing the names of anything connected with the 2.0 life we are living in the slums of the third world is to point out the gap between the reality we still live in and the ephemeral world of technologies."
  • ethan z offers some thoughts on the importance of "bridgebloggers" and "xenophiles" (as opposed to, as ethan often considers, homophiles) :: 'It’s been a challenge for me to define xenophiles as a category without falling victim to definitions that are trivial or superficial. It’s easy to dismiss the idea by suggesting that everyone who eats sushi and listens to world music is – or considers herself to be – a xenophile. Too loose a definition and “xenophile” ends up sounding like a synonym for “liberal”, “multicultural or even “politically correct”, which isn’t what I’m intending. Xenophilia is about connecting with people, not with cultural artifacts or other things. Liking Japanese food or Senegalese hiphop doesn’t make you a xenophile – xenophilia is about making connections across language and cultural barriers motivated by your interest in making better sushi or translating Daara J lyrics.'
  • on the ghanaian "invasion" of nollywood in the wake of the global financial crisis (h/t rachel) :: "In Nollywood, money is everything just like in any other show business. Nigerian marketers hold the ace because they fund most movie projects. Long before the global cash crunch became pronounced, Nollywood has been experiencing it own kind of cash crunch. Money has been scarce. And that is why it is real hard today to find a blockbuster movie featuring as many as four to five A-list artists in Nigeria."

videyoga ::

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December 4th, 2008

Odes on a Popular Plugin

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December 2nd, 2008

Iron Chic


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December 1st, 2008

Hey, Big Lacuna

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November 30th, 2008

Immersion Blender

  • larisa/ripley's article on the recent rash of dubious takedowns in the mp3blogspotosphere :: written for a youth/general readership, so pretty backgroundy, but a good explanation of the current lay of the land :: bye bye blogspots
  • like many other music blogspotters in recent weeks, gregzinho gets hit with a DMCA takedown notice, served to him by Blogger/Google thx to some bottomfeeder based in irving, TX (who cut his teeth doing "anti-piracy" "work" for his own pr0n sites and has now turned his attn — presumably for a decent paycheck — to music blogspots) :: there are layers and layers of middlemen in this reeking, sinking ship of an industry :: can u see the rats running up the masts?
  • on musical copying, copyright, and chilling effects from ray charles to kanye to the legendary K.O., incl a brief history of sampling litigation in hip-hop :: certain issues (e.g., race & appropriation) call for more nuance, but the focus — a good argument for why copyright/IP doesn't work so well in music — is sharp :: nice generals too — "Musical styles change over time and so do their techniques of appropriation. Sometimes musical generations find their successors are engaging in different types of borrowing than they themselves engaged in. They do not always find it congenial. It is striking how often musicians condemn a younger generation’s practice of musical appropriation as theft, while viewing their own musical development and indebtedness as benign and organic. … [Sampling] is a different kind of borrowing than the adaptation of a chord pattern from a gospel standard to make an R&B hit. But which way does the difference cut as a matter of ethics, aesthetics, or law?"
  • bravo to james boyle (& yale U press) for making his new book on the public domain & enclosure in the digital age — quite appropriately — downloadable, readable as html (with the ability to comment on individual paragraphs!), and CC licensed!
  • "The internet makes copying cheap. Businesses that see their livelihood as dependent on the restriction of copying – concentrated in the recording, film, publishing and software industries – are understandably upset. Their goal is to have the same ability to control their content as they had in an analog world but to keep all the benefits of pervasiveness, cost saving, and viral marketing that a global digital network brings. To that end, they have moved aggressively to change laws worldwide, to introduce stiffer penalties, expand rights, mandate technological locks, forbid reverse engineering, and increase enforcement. It is not so much a case of wanting to have their cake and eat it, as to have their cake and make your cake illegal. Yet there are hints in each of these industries of a different business model, one that aims to encourage, rather than to forbid copying. …"
  • "These images of kids playing video games were created by Robbie Cooper, a British photographer who employed a Red camera — a very-high-resolution video camera — and then took stills from the footage. Cooper, who says he was inspired by the camera technique that Errol Morris used to interview people in his documentaries, arranged his equipment so that the players were actually looking at a reflection of the game on a small pane of glass. He placed the camera behind the reflection so that it could look directly into their faces as they played." :: write-up & slide show @ http://www.nytimes.com/slideshow/2008/11/18/magazine/20081123-games_index.html

videyoga ::

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November 28th, 2008

Penultimate Warrior

  • a little local DJ history (and a mix!) c/o the Soul Clap dudes & Eddie Neal :: pull quote — 'Back then [late 70s / early 80s] the Boston club scene was not as open as it is now. Club managers and owners were very closed minded regarding patronage. There was a lot of prejudgements made about people around race and ethnicity. To put it bluntly; most club managers and owners liked to control what jocks played to keep the dance floor as “undiverse” as possible. This served as a deterrent for minority patronage and allowed very few opportunities for jocks of color like myself. I taught myself how to become multi-dimensional when it came to rockin a dance floor. This meant I could be successful regardless of the format. I spun dance rock, progressive rock, top 40, disco, funk, hi-energy, reggae and merengue.'
  • more kuduro c/o soundgoods, including a link to 4 kuduro podcasts?! who said this music was flavor-of-last-month anyway?
  • very cool project documenting / visualizing local histories of graffiti, buffing, more graffiti — urban palimpsests, digitally archived :: (via culturge)
  • 'A recent study, however, suggests that despite this cornucopia, the boom in online research may actually have a "narrowing" effect on scholarship. James Evans, a sociologist at the University of Chicago, analyzed a database of 34 million articles in the sciences, social sciences, and humanities, and determined that as more journal issues came online, new papers referenced a relatively smaller pool of articles, which tended to be more recent, at the expense of older and more obscure work. Overall, Evans says, published research has expanded, due to a proliferation of journals, authors, and conferences. But the paper, which appeared in July in the journal Science, concludes that the Internet's influence is to tighten consensus, posing the risk that good ideas may be ignored and lost – the opposite of the Internet's promise.'
  • via SFJ, kper offers up a mix of that glitchy, wonky, bassy global goodness :: 'The mix showcases a lot of the guys I’m speaking about in the features I’m writing – starting with Jay Dee, who’s been an undeniable influence on a lot of these guys, and then moving on to the new generation of producers with L.A beat heads like Flying Lotus, Ras G, Samiyam and Take, the Lucky Me collective up in Scotland with Rustie, Hud Mo and Mike Slott, the always shifting Hyperdub label in London, 2tall also in London, Dabrye and Waajeed in Detroit, Megasoid and Ghislain Poirier in Montreal, edIT and the Glitch Mob in L.A, Mark Pritchard aka Harmonic 313 in Australia, Danny Breaks in the UK and more. The variety of the producers and their location is another important element in this whole new era of boom bap and wonk.'
  • SFJ on recent developments in beatsmithery, a la Flying Lotus and his instrumentalist ilk :: 'Ellison and his contemporaries have come up with a fusion of the extreme detail allowed by software programming (fractal spidering of sounds, a backdrop of crackles, and prickling, feverish rhythms no human hands could play) and the bedrock thump of hip-hop, the grounding beat that has bled into almost all pop music in the world. Ellison’s Flying Lotus releases this year—an album titled “Los Angeles” and a series of EPs—are a good index of how one branch of hip-hop is going to move into the next decade, detaching itself from traditional hip-hop rhyming and forming new splinter genres.'

videyoga ::

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November 26th, 2008

A Farce To Be Reckoned With


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November 23rd, 2008

Patriotic License


  • thx to boima for pointing me to this — quite a mix — enjoy the minimal steez and that intro track/mix, despite some serious schizophonia, works remarkably well :: ethno techno sez wha? thought so.
  • "Social network sites, online games, video-sharing sites, and gadgets such as iPods and mobile phones are now fixtures of youth culture. They have so permeated young lives that it is hard to believe that less than a decade ago these technologies barely existed. Today’s youth may be coming of age and struggling for autonomy and identity as did their predecessors, but they are doing so amid new worlds for communication, friendship, play, and self-expression. We include here the findings of three years of research on kids' informal learning with digital media." :: shorter version — "Hanging Out, Messing Around, Geeking Out" = crucial :: grab here the white-paper, the 2 pager, or click through the book version in HTML
  • charlie's calling out the big guns — the berkman center all-stars! — and the other side is calling time :: "The RIAA's case in Boston against a 24-year-old grad student, SONY BMG Music v. Tenenbaum, in which Prof. Charles Nesson of Harvard Law School, along with members of his CyberLaw class, are representing the defendant, may shape up as a showdown between the Electronic Frontier and Big Music. The defendant's witness list includes names such as those of Prof. Lawrence Lessig (Author of 'Free Culture'), John Perry Barlow (former songwriter of The Grateful Dead and cofounder of the Electronic Frontier Foundation), Prof. Johan Pouwelse (Scientific Director of P2P-Next), Prof. Jonathan Zittrain (Author of 'The Future of the Internet — And How to Stop It'), Professors Wendy Seltzer, Terry Fisher, and John Palfrey, and others."
  • ' Recent South African films, notably Triomf, Jerusalema, SMS Sugar Man and Bunny Chow, have been carving their way out of the morose state of our cinema, refusing to pander to the two or three formulas that seem to govern our output: if it isn’t addressing our political past, it should be vulgar slapstick or kitsch-inspirational. [They] view South African realities through distinct lenses and celebrate the aesthetic possibilities of filmic translation. As such they are not bound to restrictive, pseudo-moral codes. … they are exploring our multitudinous realities from new and unexpected perspectives, which in itself makes them valuable. … On the state of SA cinema, Kaganof says: “While the films are all in English, we are still making colonised films, using the colonial idiom of Hollywood to further distance ourselves from who we are. The sorry state of South African cinema reveals the sorry truth about post-apartheid South Africa. We are not liberated. Not by a long shot.” '
  • this is about as confrontational a 'gangsta ras' manifesto as i can imagine (and you wonder why certain rastas, paradoxical as it seems, condemn reggae and try to use copyright to prevent misuses of selassie's name?)
  • noz on effervesynth neo-snappery — "All these dudes have expanded their palette from just blips and bleeps to blips, bleeps and really lush synth pads."

videyoga ::

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November 21st, 2008

Skin Care Adventure

  • Mark Anthony Neal — 'Never before has a First Lady's body been subject to the amount of scrutiny and surveillance as is the case with Michelle Obama; she has been rhetorically poked, prodded and groped. Many would have found such a line of coverage unfathomable and even offensive if applied to women like Nancy Reagan, Barbara Bush, or Roselyn Carter, as was rightfully the case with depictions of Sarah Palin as the Vice-Presidential "MILF." … Underlying this notion of "realness" that Michelle Obama embodies are notions of accessibility and availability. If there is anything that the history of black women in this country should teach us, is that the idea that black women's bodies were accessible and available to any–and all–concretely frames our understandings of black women's histories whether it be the spectacle of the "Hottentot Venus" (Saartjie Baartman), the tragedy of Crystal Mangum or the nameless and faceless victims of sexual violence and rape.'
  • this happened — 'The largest of these exhibits [at the 1904 St.Louis World's Fair] was the Philippine village, a 47-acre site that for seven months in 1904 became home to more than 1,000 Filipinos from at least 10 different ethnic groups. The biggest crowd-drawers were the so-called primitive tribes — especially the Igorots, whose appeal lay in their custom of eating dog.'
  • "NYAHBINGHY ORDER IS THE ORDER OF THE DAY RAS TAFARI IS LIFE REGGAY IS DEATH" :: bobo dreads explain why reggae is too enmeshed in babylon / "the world" for true/turbaned rastas to participate :: some thoughts about reggae — "satan music that" "reggae more bring crime and violence" "music is food for the soul, but which music … man say you have a right music and a wrong music" "reggae promote sex and oralism" "it water down and a turn streggae" "it's distracting to the nation … it elevate the rest of the nation, the indians, the chinese" "death music" "reggae is satanism" "it nuh teach no one nothing" "reggae could only provide the material thing" "bun reggae"
  • interesting reasoning about 'interesting reasoning about reggae by bobo ashanti' — including some discussion of racism in partic rastafari mansions :: plus, this interesting bit at the end — 'As is pointed out in the comments of the Bobo interviewed at Bull Bay, even if you are a very true and good Rastafarian, and your lyrics are very true and spiritual, if you are involved in the Reggae industry you will have to compromise your livity at some point. … That doesn't mean that for many of us the Roots/Rastafarian side of the music isn't an inspiration and a positive thing in our lives still. Just have to be honest about it, coz even then, of course it is not a pure thing untainted by "Babylon".'
  • radiolab is back, with an episode on choice :: can't wait to listen, but i can't decide when/where would be best (thx again, forestfruits)
  • on the use of music as torture by the US military — and more banally by the author & his mom (h/t forestfruits)
  • fascinating profile of a fascinating thinker re: culture & ownership, gifts and value (thx, dominic) :: (non)money quote — 'The literature on gift exchange — tales, for example, of South Sea tribesman circulating shells and necklaces in a slow-moving, broad circle around the Trobriand Islands — gave him the conceptual tool he needed to understand his predicament, which was, he came to believe, the predicament of all artists living “in an age whose values are market values and whose commerce consists almost exclusively in the purchase and sale of commodities.” For centuries people have been speaking of talent and inspiration as gifts; Hyde’s basic argument was that this language must extend to the products of talent and inspiration too. Unlike a commodity, whose value begins to decline the moment it changes hands, an artwork gains in value from the act of being circulated—published, shown, written about, passed from generation to generation — from being, at its core, an offering.'

videyoga ::

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Wayne&Wax

I'm a techno-musicologist, internet annotator, imagined community organizer.

I left my <3 in the digital global, but I reside in Cambridge, MA, where I'm from.

I represent like that.

wayne at wayneandwax dot com

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