If it’s too loud, you’re too old… or maybe the soundman’s just a jerk

It’s insanely loud at way too many shows.  

I don’t believe it has any relation to my age because I do enjoy harder music sometimes.


I’m talking about the piercing pain threshold that a venues’ exploding sound system seems to dance around.  

If you notice the soundman, controller of the giggawatts* amplitubes* and general fury, is typically wearing earplugs.  

That’s nice that he’s protecting his ears from the onslaught of sound he’s just unleashed onto the rest of the unsuspecting folks who just wanted to have a good time.  

Thanks dinglebat

If you see the guy in corner with the bleeding ears, that probably just means he’s wants to rock even harder.  

seriously though, 

One side effect of that mess is that I’m savoring beautiful sounding live music.  

When I go to the Green Mill to hear some jazz, I can stand 15 ft from the performers and get a hit from this GIANT wall of sound. 

Or when I got the opportunity to record a local choir and hear 100 people singing their hearts out in a majestic harmony.  

It’s not harsh.  it’s not piercing.  it doesn’t make you wish you could stuff cotton in your ears.  

It’s warm and inviting.  The sound will caress your ears and ease your soul.  


If you bypass that looking for something else, well then your probably just chasing your tail headed right back to the beginning.  

It’s all good tho, it’s always better the next time around



* in case you didn’t know that’s most definitely high standard industry science terms for sure.  trust me.  i knew a guy once who said something


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Hiphop producers need to know where The Bar is

By now we all know at least a few…

I’m one..  You might even be one yourself.

I’m talking about the producers makin’ those beats.

Through the studio, I’ve gotten a chance to work with many Hiphop and Rap artists.

Grandmaster Flash

and I love the lyricism, soul, sound, inventiveness, and the history of Hiphop.

But one thing has been really buggin’ me for a while now…

At least 90% of the time they come in with beats that are basically four bars of garbage looping over and over again.

The mix sounds like butt, there’s no structure for an arrangement, no melodic or rhythmic growth and to be honest, it’s just boring.

And even if the beat is kinda sick, its usually cause there’s an underlying jazz or soul riff that is keeping the thing together.  And that was hard work from a group of people who knew the meaning of swinging to the moon on a tune.

But the thing is, anybody can listen to a song and say.. hey that part sounds cool.

Looping that over and over and over again does NOT make you a genius.  Actually these days, with the ease of technology, it probably wont even impress a 10 year old.

To add insult to injury they call themselves “Producers”.  Laughing Club

A few here and there got it… but most of these jokers just have us laughing

<<< see Laughing Club for more details

Creating a simplistic musical backdrop is not being a producer.

That’s the modern day equivalent to the Backing Band or sesh cats.

A producer directs the artist, the band and the flow of the song.  It’s his or her job to make sure the creative vision is met and exceeded.

If you just make a beat and are not working with the artist to get the best take of the song and vision, then you’re not even in the right game.  It’s like you showed up to the basketball court with a soccer ball.

And just for the re-e-re-e-record… The popular name “beat” doesn’t even make sense because it’s expected to contain much more than just a rhythmic element

Now I know it’s kinda harsh, but wake up moflows.  The progression of this music started in the gospel church.  Then formed into Blues and Jazz.  It turned into soul and r&b and rock and funk and countless others and then into hiphop.

James BrownThe foundations on which this style is built with such greatness, it’s almost pointless to try and describe it here.  It demands a lifetime of exploration and experience to appreciate it’s glory.

All the countless giants who came before us pushed themselves to the brink of their creative existence to give us a whisper of the cosmic song.

ATTENTION: That’s the bar.  

Anyone below it needs to step their game up.  That’s def me, it’s probably you and pretty much just about everyone we know

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Math is NOT a universal language… But I do know one that is

It’s contradictory from what intelligent folks might say, but it’s true

Math is not a universal language.

X = 3.2

hmmmm…  what could X be?

Well if I was an alien civilization, a remote tribe, or hell maybe even someone who hasn’t learned math yet, the first step is probably wondering what the F + 2 do these funky symbols mean?

And after they figured them out, how many things across the universe could 3.2 represent?  It could take an eternity to find the answer, if it’s even possible. (Thinking about the hieroglyphs..  without the Rosetta Stone, we made have never deciphered them.)

Math actually requires a second language, like english for example, to explain what the parts of the equations represent.

It’s not a universal language, but elegant way to make accurate predictions about the flow and mechanics of nature and the things we make from it.

The true universal language is actually nature itself.  The frequencies that make up sound, light, electricity, ect.  There’s no explanation needed for experience.  When a sound wave hits your ears, or a light wave hits your eyes, your organs automatically translate it.

A lute from 1,500 years ago would sound the same then as it does now.  And a person from either era could hear the melodies and rhythms of their space/time counterparts instantly.

What’s specifically powerful about that kind of communication is that

the substance of the frequencies transfers data.

Think of all the information you get when light hits your surroundings.

See an audience member brought to tears by a captivating artist playing a beautiful piano piece.

You can uplift the spirit with the stomp of the feet and a howl of the lungs.    It’s a language all humans have been speaking continuously from our beginnings.  The language of the universe.

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Perfect Smartphone Music

I thought it was kind of funny that

old jazz music still sounds pretty damn good coming from a new smartphone and its tiny speaker.

Louis Armstrong – King of the Vipers

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The world’s smartest people looking like complete idiots..

Seth Godin is an amazing thinker and writer of a thought provoking blog which you can check out here

Was reading his spring gadget/book list and ordered 2 that I found to be pretty intriguing.


End This Depression Now

What sold me was the quote taken from The Treasure of the Sierra Madre

“Anyone who is willing to work and is serious about it will certainly find a job. Only you must not go to the man who tells you this, for he has no job to offer and doesn’t know anyone who knows of a vacancy. This is exactly the reason why he gives you such generous advice, out of brotherly love, and to demonstrate how little he knows the world.”



Mad Like Tesla

I got a kick out this quote pulled from Time magazine writer Lev Grossman, “There’s nothing like the passage of time to make the world’s smartest people look like complete idiots.”


I feel it’s important to remember conventional wisdom used to think the world was flat.

It’s funny to think that the things we know to be cold hard truths could and most likely will be proven false at some point in the future.


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Amy Winehouse does Reggae

Her reggae track ‘Our Day Will Come’ appeared on BBC’s Radio 1 on Wednesday (Nov 2, 2011). It’s a reworking of an early 1960s hit made popular by Ruby and the Romantics, and finds Winehouse exploring familiar soulful territory.

Listen to the track HERE > http://www.twitvid.com/U3AAJ










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A Thought

We are all the chosen ones

To exist is to be chosen

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