Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Delta Sparks Thought.

Over my breakfast tea and fruit toast this morning (definitely my favourite part of the day), I was reading an issue of Cream Magazine from 2008 that I scored when the news agent next door was throwing it away. I like that they do this. Anyway, I was reading an interview with Delta Goodrem (I know, lame. She was a pop goddess of my younger years, what can I say) which sparked some thought about popular culture and technology.

If you think babble about popular culture is pretentious, please stop reading now.

I warned you.

So the interviewer was asking her about her thoughts on technology, and weather she was a "technophile or a technophobe". She answered that she was a fan of the iTunes, but she loved putting CD's in her stereo, having a tangible collection and looking at the artwork, etc. I am definitely in the same boat, in fact, I pretty much said the exact same thing in a similar conversation just yesterday!

This got me thinking about why exactly Delta and I feel the need to own CD's, when the mp3 alternative is clearly more accessible and convenient. I think it's definitely got to do with the tangible thing. I love to make things. And what's the most fulfilling thing about making something? The finished product. Seeing it, feeling it, smelling it, hearing it. Whichever of those apply to said thing, but the more the merrier, right? Because I feel this satisfaction with my own creations, I like to do the same with the creations of others, so I can understand it better maybe, I don't know.

Obviously, technology hasn't only had this effect on music. It's had a considerable effect on visual art as well. It has allowed for, in recorded music and computerised visual art, this new level of perfection. Even in photography cinematography. A level not possible for humans to achieve without the ever improving technology.

At the moment I'm studying 20th century music in one of my classes, and something I found particularly interesting was the connections between the different genres that developed. One of the most interesting; Minimalism as a reaction to Serialism and Expressionism. Serialism and Expressionism were definitely music for a superior musical mind. Difficult/impossible to understand by the general public. Minimalism saw music back to simplicity. It rejected the strict forms and complexities that were considered acceptable at the time (1960s). Defiantly well loved by the high hippies of popular culture, and eventually also respected by the high classes of these previous genres. Terry Riley is a bit of a minimalist legend, you can tell just by looking at him.

That's enough of the history lesson, it's time to connect my ramble. In popular culture at the moment, things seem to have gone back to basics. The love of handmade, hand drawn visual art. Natural sounding music, HUMAN voices with imperfections in music. Things with character, human imperfection and a dash of chaos. I know I'm a sucker for it. It's kind of like going back to basics again. A reaction to the perfection which is too easily achieved. A new version of minimalism.

So auto tune and co can go screw themselves, they're not wanted here. Not in this part of popular culture anyway. I realise that I'm only focusing on one strand here, the reaction obviously has to come from something. Things like "Glee" and "High School Musical" are there to remind us of this. No disrespect to the fans of technological perfection, it's a matter of personal taste. It would be hypocritical of me to say that I don't love some things to come out of it. There are plenty of bands I love that use it, just for some reason it doesn't bother me in specific cases, such as "Vampire Weekend". Who knows why. If I didn't love the endless possibilites of technology, I wouldn't have a blog, would I? :)

This, is a long piece of babble. Sorry if you were in the middle of something and didn't expect it to drag on for quite so long. You can now go back to that thing you were doing, I'm done.


Saturday, September 25, 2010

I Got Rhythm!

I danced a lot last night. A lot. And although I think it was probably the worst I've ever danced, I had the most wonderful time. There was much smiling, my jaw was aching.

These videos are of my oldest and newest favourite dance scenes from movies. When I was a yougin, I loved nothing more than "Singing in The Rain". Apparently I would sing "Good Morning" every single morning without fail. If somebody did that to me they probably wouldn't still be alive now, so I'm thankful that my parents become quickly immune to my music related crazes. I don't think 'craze' is really an appropriate term for my relationship with that movie though, I still adore it.

YouTube is being lame and won't let me embed the videos, but here's the link for "Moses Supposes" and "Dream of You". Please watch them, they're fantastic!

And I don't really think it's necessary for me to re-declare my love for "500 Days Of Summer", you get the picture. I love how this scene captures the situation so so perfectly!


p.s. On my YouTube travels I found this, which excited me quite considerably :)

Monday, September 20, 2010

Sing to Me.

The human voice is a beautiful, enchanting thing. I was just having a stress moment until somebody downstairs started singing. It completely relaxed me. Thank you, whoever you are.

(I'm not hearing voices in my house, there's a group of people here and I don't know their voices to differentiate between them!)


Friday, September 17, 2010

Victory Corn.

New film!! :)

I took this picture of my bro Kieran on a road trip in the mid semester break. Kieran is a big fan of corn on the cob, however he had not been able to eat it while he had his braces on. He just had them off a couple of days before we left for the trip, and so he was quite excited when we found this indoor food market with a corn stall. He ate the hell out of that corn.


Saturday, September 11, 2010

Smile For The Camera Hat!

I'm feeling overly creative today. A persistent flow of ideas. Not good on what was supposed to be a study day! But hey, I couldn't possibly ignore them, could I?

So I heard this song on the radio at work, and it kind of stuck with me. But not like the usual way that a song sticks with you from the radio when you want to strangle the person who put it on the radio because it's taking over your brain. The good kind. The rare kind. And so I youtubed it, and noticed a rather genius contraption towards the end which excited me considerably. So now I want a hipster camera hat.

(Please click on the vidio before you watch it so that it's not missing bits)


Thursday, September 9, 2010

Spot the Difference.

Marilyn Monroe vs Kate Hallahan.


Monday, September 6, 2010

Lady Sing The Blues So Well.

Before I begin on my main subject for this blog, I'll tell you what made it spring to mind. You see, I've made a decision. I've decided that having a fringe over my face in summer in Queensland is just not going to happen. Spring has barley sprung and already it's giving me grief, making me wish I was bauld. BUT DON'T WORRY, I'm not shaving my head. No, I'm just growing out my fringe until the weather cools again to fringe appropriate weather. But enough about me, let's talk about somebody much more interesting, like REGINA SPEKTOR.

But how oh how do these two subjects link? Well, I don't know if you've ever seen Regina live, but if you haven't, you've missed out on observing one of the most interesting people that exist in all the land. There are so many conversations that she had with the crowd which I wish I could re-tell, but I couldn't possibly, because nobody can communicate quite like Regina. But I'll at least give you one (my favourite) example, not only to satisfy your curiosity, but to explain to you the link between my seemingly irrelevant introductory story and babble about Regina Spektor's crowd conversations.

Okay, so picture this: Mrs Spektor is presenting the audience with a performance far beyond their expectations. You can tell because nobody is talking, barley anyone is even singing along. No, everyone is just staring at the stage in awe of this magical musical masterpiece being created right before their eyes. Suddenly, there is a small spitting noise. A little strange, but nobody really takes notice. Then, the music stops. Regina spits her hair out of her mouth, angrily tosses it behind her back and says in her almost-whisper-American-with-slight-Russian-accent speaking voice, "Sometimes I just want to cut off all of my fucking hair". Then she returns to the piece.

I love Regina a lot.


Thursday, September 2, 2010

Patrick The Photo Taker.


is a photo taking friend of mine named Patrick Self. He's a bit of a legend.

Patrick is an intriguing, philosophical character with a side of incredible photographer. For example,

And something you may not know, he's also a fantastic dancer.
These are just some of my absolute favourites, please see for yourself at his website and/or blog .

Lately, Patrick has had the privilege of shooting some pretty decent bands such as "The Bedroom Philosopher", "Boy and Bear" and "The Boat People" to name a few. Or should I say, they had the privilege of being shot by him. He also has an exhibition coming up in November, which I believe will feature some of these music-related photographs (such as the last one above).

And of course, I have to include one that he's taken of me! This was taken mid Bob Marley sing along at a gathering last summer. What a lovely period of time to remember.