Friday, January 21, 2022

Friday's Playlist: Complex Pop Songs



This Friday's Playlist features some great pop songs which are infinitely more complex than they appear on the surface: odd time signatures, unusual chord changes, labyrinthian melodies, cryptic arrangements, mind-bending harmonies... all wrapped up in perfectly hummable, catchy little ditties full of hooks and commercial appeal.

Thursday, January 20, 2022

The vexation of Eric Clapton

Eric Clapton in Paris, 2006


Extra-musical reasons have dragged Eric Clapton in the conversation this past year. What conversation? As usual with social media, it's a bit muddled but the two main things that come up are his racism and his anti-vaccination stance. Those are two big, real issues and they needn't be conflated with one's opinion of his singing,  playing, songwriting, performing or what-have-you.

Friday, January 14, 2022

Friday's Playlist: Third Stream

Happy Friday! For this playlist, we've put together a small selection of so-called Third Stream compositions. The Third Stream as theorized by conductor and composer Gunther Schuller  is a musical genre that fuses jazz and classical music. It's an intriguing approach to both composing and improvising and it should come as no surprise that there are as many approaches to this aesthetic as there are participants: Mingus sounds nothing like Miles who sounds nothing like Ornette.

Friday, January 7, 2022

Friday's Playlist: Gary Lucas - Sessions & Contributions




For the first Friday's Playlist of the new year, we are focusing on the career of journeyman guitarist Gary Lucas. We've been on a Gary Lucas kick since he played an exquisite show in Paris back in November, and we decided to prolong the experience by concocting this selection of songs from his numerous sessions and contributions.