Tuesday, June 03, 2008

Bo Diddley

Bo Diddley dies at 79 years old

In the 1950s, as a founder of rock ’n’ roll, Mr. Diddley — along with Chuck Berry, Little Richard, Jerry Lee Lewis and a few others — helped to reshape the sound of popular music worldwide, building on the templates of blues, Southern gospel, R&B and postwar black American vernacular culture. - NY Times

Friday, May 16, 2008

Want to understand chords - how about eastern music - that have different scales - explore music here

Saturday, January 19, 2008


Big Day Out

For the last few years, there was a special gig night but this year it is history, probably due to the excessive venue popularity with the kind of acts you would expect to see at a Big Day Out. Instead it is the music of a modern era retro refried visionary sensibilities of contrast.

The headline act certainly did it when it started after some delay - RAGE against the machine - a sinewy whining rap machine backed by an aggressive line-up and a tightly directed light-show - huge lyrics paranoid and strong, demanding we open our eyes and feel the fear - of the Government - (maybe they had a point - since they live in LA). They were on the money for the legions - the vast huge crowd that sat in the same stadium seat all day to get a good look. RAGE were the headline act for very good reasons. They packed the stadium. And they were extraordinarily polished, performed that dark urban threat variation of hip hop. This was like the brief era when hip hop was fine blues in a modern urban concept. This was when it was cool, before the bling set in and became the thing. This was not just rock music, it was a hammer fisted religion to its legions of fans. It was f*cking convincing. It was also bloody good. But it was pure rock manipulation. They closed with a smashing Killing In The Name of. And here they are - doing the same song in the early 90s.


In deep contrast Björk presented a delicious and colourful set touring her latest CD. While the fans that liked both, the headline; and, the obligatory (aimed at older fans, one imagines) - jostled for some position for a late-starting Rage, Björk reemerged and was able to perform to a smaller utterly committed crowd. With Army of Me, she had the entire stadium wild in a sort of peaceful hazy frenzy of waving arms. Up close, her show was both overwhelming and ecstatic. It's bright sunshine light up the senses. Bjöork's extraordinary energy transfixed. But it is her own extraordinary interpretative skills with her own material that is increasingly unique and marvelous - a feat of extraordinary complexity and musical depth. The extraordinary pitch she reaches in our pick of the night - her brand new single Declare Independence is a more subtle and enchanting reflection of rage against the system.

Lo-def version

Hi-def version (slower to load)

This was Big Day Out at its finest moment - its valuable moment. With a ten piece brass band dressed and the set made up Bjöork transformed into a creature of the jungle with tribal rhythms and abandon. Her new material is raw and sexual but subtle as ever and perhaps less mysterious to the deeply committed packed in on the other side of the field. It hit well with the crowd.

Monday, December 25, 2006

James Brown

James Brown, "The Godfather of Soul" died early Christmas morning. Brown was aged 73 and was in hospital suffering from pneumonia.

Internationally acclaimed for his passionate stage performances and groundbreaking musical style, he recorded countless hits including (Get Up I Feel Like Being A) Sex Machine and Out Of Sight.

Sunday, December 10, 2006

Music Mogul

Ahmet Ertegun died last Thursday at the age of 83. He was a pioneer in the music business - ran Atlantic Records for most of his life and made multi millions sellers of groups such as The Rolling Stones, and started Ruth Brown's career (she also died recently), plus Aretha Franklin,Otis Redding, Wilson Pickett, Led Zepplin and Ray Charles. One of the greatest Blues record producers, ever. Sadly, he died after being injured in a fall backstage at a Rolling Stones gig on October 29th).