4.18.11

Fiona Apple | After You’ve Gone

I’m testing out the extremely appealing “auto post” feature at posterous.com with this lovely little youtube video.  Within any luck, this post will make to… well… everywhere.

The supremely lovely and talented Fiona Apple sings “After You’ve Gone”.  I don’t normally like to share/post low-quality audience videos, but If you enjoy Fiona Apple, then this one is worth your time.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CiFH3XDeq4I&feature=feedlik

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2.21.11

Rules. Just this once.

Advice from the Important People and Top Ten lists are not things that usually excite me. However, I recently stumbled across this excellent list from author Zadie Smith that shares rules/advice for writers. I found them to be shrewd and insightful and prophetic and good. I also immediately thought of half a dozen talented folks in other artistic disciplines who have learned and shared similar lessons…

I automatically translate these into music/composition terms as I read them. I hope you’ll receive them as helpful tidbits that speak to whatever your craft is…

1 When still a child, make sure you read a lot of books. Spend more time doing this than anything else.

2 When an adult, try to read your own work as a stranger would read it, or even better, as an enemy would.

3 Don’t romanticise your “vocation”. You can either write good sentences or you can’t. There is no “writer’s lifestyle”. All that matters is what you leave on the page.

4 Avoid your weaknesses. But do this without telling yourself that the things you can’t do aren’t worth doing. Don’t mask self-doubt with contempt.

5 Leave a decent space of time between writing something and editing it.

6 Avoid cliques, gangs, groups. The presence of a crowd won’t make your writing any better than it is.

7 Work on a computer that is disconnected from the internet.

8 Protect the time and space in which you write. Keep everybody away from it, even the people who are most important to you.

9 Don’t confuse honours with achievement.

10 Tell the truth through whichever veil comes to hand – but tell it. Resign yourself to the lifelong sadness that comes from never being satisfied.

(All credit and thanks to the guardian.co.uk and Zadie Smith.)

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4.7.10

Funky Gospel Badass Ear Candy

Nobody does it like Stevie.

I love the layered vocals and the overall quality of his voice.

I love the passion that is (as always) bleeding from every second of his delivery.

I love the funky groove.

I love that his ballsy sense of style is always flailing in service to the music, and not the ego.

Stevie!

Oh, oh, oh!

Rock.

This has been installment number three of The Jack Corduroy Assorted Ear Candy Tour.  To see the rest of the journey so far, click here.  Many more to come.  Follow via RSS or Twitter if you would like to be notified of future installments.

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3.31.10

Heart-Melting Ear Candy

Here it is, folk.  Post number two from the long-winded and sporadically scheduled tour through the soundtrack of Jack’s life. These are the songs that made me laugh or ache or thrill so that before I had barely even made it through a first listen I was itching to play it again.  And usually, I did.  Again and again and again and again.  These are the songs to which I have dedicated my undivided attention on five or seventeen or a hundred different occasions.

Today is The Most Glorious Version of Ave Maria ever. You don’t need to be Catholic to love it.  I’m not.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9WSbq3TCcd0

The men of Chanticleer deliver a near-perfect execution of this marvelous bit of heart-melting ear candy.  Don’t take a sip of this music, please.  Gulp it.  Find time to listen to it beginning to end.  Close your eyes.  Listen too loud.

It is flowy and melty and patient and delicate and strong and decisive and expressive and simple.

Amen.


(Do you love it? Buy it on the Chanticleer website!)

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3.29.10

Old School Ear Candy

If you’re a music lover then you probably remember your earliest experiences of loving a piece of music within seconds of it starting.  For thirty-one and a half years I have been subconsciously collecting simple musical moments, hooks, transitions, bridges, intros, instruments, vocal qualities and such.  Just about anything could inexplicably make my ear buzz.  But the times when both my ears and my heart resonated tend to dig most deeply.  As long as I have the inexhaustable resources of youtube and the platform provided by this blog, I’ll be gathering some of the ear candy that has shaped the way I hear music, and therefore the way I make music.  This lens has also become the aesthetic filter through which I receive art in most any genre.

For my kickoff, I bring you the glorious theme from David Lynch’s Twin Peaks.  Music by Angelo Badalamenti.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7oDuGN6K3VQ

The incredibly hooky bass line had me melting the first time I heard it and it still gives me chills.  Old school production values?  Simple chord progression and emotional melodies? Manipulative rock ballad drum grooves?  Yes! Yes! Yes! to it ALL.  Bring it on.  The retro sensibility adds to the charm.  This piece is aging beautifully.  Love it.

I’ll leave it to the film folks among you to comment on the video itself, but I personally find the marriage of this song to this opening to be supremely eerie and effective.  Is there anything this interesting and expressive on television these days?

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3.19.10

Peggy Lee visits Corduroyland

I love it when clients send youtube clips as a way of sharing the type of music they’re after. I’m expecting my new client to provide a bunch of new ear candy. I just got a first idea from my contact on the production team and if this is any indication of the style they’re after, then I can’t wait to see what else they come up with. The whole team is due to discuss the style and send me more ideas next week. Can’t wait.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uT8OEtf5r1U&feature=fvst

It’ll be super fun to create a few demos in this style… although I’ll be at something of a disadvantage by not starting with the incredible and sounds of Peggy Lee and her stand-in.

While I wait for additional reference tracks from this client, I’m hard at work on a student film. My guitar and piano-driven score flirts between alt-metal, grunge, and indie rock. What fun to have these projects on deck! The are completely different from each other, and completely different from the work I’ve gotten up in the portfolio so far. It will be exciting to add some pump and grit to the tame family of my current collection. Stay tuned. No… better yet… watch this amazing video. (Then stay tuned…)

And don’t forget about my yet untitled Very Peaceful Music Project. If you need Very Peaceful Music, particularly if you work in yoga or massage, then be sure to read my post on the topic and email me with your ideas! Don’t be shy.

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