Back when I was growing up and learning physics and music, ‘proper’ music was performed by people with degrees in the subject and was composed by British or European composers between about 1650 and 1900, plus Benjamin Britten (I would include Debussy, but he was French and I was doing the Royal Schools courses). The … More Metal. It’s entirely in the classical music tradition
When I was a kid I was deeply impressed by a music video shot in a snow-bound Montreal Olympic stadium. It was the British super-group ‘Emerson, Lake and Palmer’, performing their version of Aaron Copland’s ‘Fanfare for the Common Man’, which was basically his three-minute piece split by a six-minute solo section of their own. … More Fanfare for the common transistor
New Zealand’s ingenuity seems limitless these days. Back in 2012 a graduate student at Victoria University, in my own city of Wellington, invented a robot bass guitar. Awesome or what? Here’s the instrument – MechBass – playing ‘Hysteria’: Soon, the same machine is going to perform as part of an ensemble: http://www.qtheatre.co.nz/plot-twist-bass-guitarist-robot That’s extremely geeky … More Human creativity always wins – for now
This December it’ll be 20 years since Frank Zappa died. He was a truly great American composer. You can still get his albums – and a lot of stuff released since from his legendary ‘Vault’. Popularly, Zappa was the potty-mouth wild man of rock whose songs provoked offence – especially ‘Catholic Girls’ and ‘Jewish Princess’. He … More Frank Zappa was my “Elvis”. Was he yours?