Future of Music

Recently on Digg Dialogg they interviewed Trent Reznor of Nine Inch Nails. The questions were voted on by the community and a few of them revolved around the future of music. Nine Inch Nails has gotten some press about their use of Creative Commons on recent releases, selling limited edition, deluxe and various digital formats. Notable was their release of the instrumental work Ghosts I-IV under a CC license while still ending 2008 as the top selling album on Amazon.com.

Questions from the interview include advertising, tips for bands getting started and opinions on the future of the industry. You can watch the interview in full online

For those interested in the topic of music and the changing industry we have:

The future of music - Covering a little history and a lot of the future of the music industry, this book gives a glimpse at what might be available in a few years. CDs and traditional music stores will be replaced by various digital distribution channels, an increase in consumer choice and avenues of discovery.

Appetite for self-destruction : the spectacular crash of the record industry in the digital age

For a more general overview and debate we also have:

Off the record : the technology and culture of sound recording in America - If you're interested in a bit more history of sound recording then this is the book for you. From Thomas Edison to high fidelity to the home recording movement, the history, successes and failures are covered.

The anarchist in the library : how the clash between freedom and control is hacking the real world and crashing the system - How the digital age is evolving and affecting our culture is the focus of this book. While touching on music and P2P, this one is much more broad and philosophical in scope.

Free culture : how big media uses technology and the law to lock down culture and control creativity - The title says it all and the book is of course also available online in multiple formats licensed under a Creative Commons license.

The pirate's dilemma : how youth culture is reinventing capitalism - From punk to hip hop, the reuse and remix culture and how it is shaping our economy.

Free-conomics

Related to all this is the idea of making money by giving things away. Chris Anderson, author of The Long Tail is currently working on a book about this and you can read many of his ideas on the subject on his blog. He gave a talk about this idea at the O'Reilly Media Tools of Change Conference and you can listen to it below:

1950s Dixieland Jazz in Ann Arbor

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On Sunday, April 19 from 3:00 to 4:30 pm, ragtime music expert (and former Boll Weevil band member) Mike Montgomery will discuss Dixieland Jazz In Ann Arbor and tell The Story Of The Boll Weevil Jass Band. Montgomery was the pianist and co-founder of the Weevils. He will discuss what Dixieland Jazz is, where the name came from and play excerpts from Weevil recordings to illustrate the various musical conventions used by almost all traditional jazz bands (e.g., breaks, stop-time, after beats, double-time, changing keys). Recordings will include excerpts from sessions with an African-American congregation in Ypsilanti, selections from the group’s 10-inch 78 rpm record, and much more. Be at Malletts Creek Branch this Sunday to learn about a unique moment in Ann Arbor jazz history.

Nina Simone Compilation Reveals Depth of Catalog

It's a voice that sounds ages old, a deep undulation from an ancient bayou. Her songs are stories at once universal, yet deeply personal. When Nina Simone (1933-2003) tells you, "my back is strong / strong enough to take the pain / inflicted again and again," in the touchstone track Four Women (click this link to hear the song now), it is with tremendous, unarticulated context -- a single page out of a volume on America's penchant for violence -- that gives her words the power to silence a room, to make you stop for a moment and admire the depth of expression that this artist wields.

Last year, RCA/Legacy released To Be Free, a 3-CD compilation of Simone's work, which best serves as an introduction to the singer's unparalleled musical style. For the seasoned fans of her music, this album also contains live recordings from club shows during the late 60s and a 23-minute DVD of a television special she did in 1970.

Because her delivery is both deep and piercing, and her musical style blends folk, soul, jazz, and blues on nearly every recorded track, Simone has few contemporaries; that said, newcomer indie artist Antony Hegarty of Antony and the Johnsons has a strikingly similar, fault-line shaking vibrato, and Andrew Bird -- who plays the Michigan Theater tonight -- often crosses genre lines in his music. Check out all of these artists from the AADL's extensive music collection today.

National Library Week Concert: Candy Band

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They're back! Candy Band - the famous Detroit rock group comprised of four stay-at-home moms who were sick to death of “whiny music” for kids - will return to the Downtown Library on Tuesday April 14, 1 to 2pm to perform a live concert. You have never heard ‘The Alphabet Song’ or ‘It’s Your Birthday’ played like this! They were a smash when they appeared at AADL in September – do not miss them this time around!

Happy Birthday Marvin Gaye!

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Marvin Pentz Gay, Jr., better known as Motown legend Marvin Gaye, was born April 2, 1939. Celebrate this singer/songwriter's birthday by checking out some of his music from the AADL. Try Blue Velvet: The Ultimate Collection by his early R&B band The Moonglows, or pick up some of his solo classics like the 1971 release What's Going On, his 1973 release Let's Get It On, Love Songs, or the Marvin Gaye Concert Anthology.
To learn more about this Grammy winning musician and his tragic personal life, check out the biography Mercy, Mercy Me: The Art, Loves and Demons of Marvin Gaye, Trouble Man: The Life and Death of Marvin Gaye, or What's Going On? : Marvin Gaye and the Last Days of the Motown Sound. Many Marvin Gaye fans also recommend reading Divided Soul: The Life of Marvin Gaye, which isn't terribly well-written, but is largely based on interviews for a projected autobiography that was cancelled after Gaye's death in 1984.

A little Raphael Saadiq for your soul:

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Raphael Saadiq has been playing music since the ripe old age of six. His professional music career began with the R&B-dance group Tony! Toni! Toné!. He then moved onto the short-lived, grammy nominated group Lucy Pearl. In 2002 he released his first solo album, Instant Vintage, followed by Ray Ray, both critically acclaimed. He got into producing and has collaborated with Mary J. Blige, Snoop Dogg, Isley Brothers, Stevie Wonder, and Joss Stone, among many others.

Last fall’s release of Saadiq’s The Way I See It was nominated for three R&B related Grammy Awards. The album is definitely new soul that is comparable to old soul, with remnants of The Delfonics, The Four Tops, and Al Green springing to mind. If you close your eyes you might just think it's the 1960s.

Great concerts this weekend, for free!

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The The University of Michigan School of Music offers some outstanding free concerts. Two are coming up tonight. The first, at 5:15 p.m., at the School of Music's Rehearsal Hall, is by the the Prism Quartet. These U/M alums perform progressive saxophone music. The New York Times calls the group "mellifluous and stylistically versatile." The second concert, at 7 p.m., in the Stamps Auditorium, features Daniel Bernard Roumain, a Haitian-American composer who combines classical influences with funk, rock and hip-hop. He will be joined by U of M faculty and students. Take advantage of this great opportunity to hear some excellent and innovative music.

The first piano in Ann Arbor

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(Submitted by Wystan Stevens)

This is the house where little Lucy Ann Clark (later Mrs. Judge James Kingsley) played the piano that made the Potawatomi Indians dance. (Her instrument was the first piano in Ann Arbor, and the first west of Detroit in Michigan Territory.) The site of this house is now the outdoor area of the Downtown Home and Garden store, on Ashley at Liberty. In the left background of the photo is a building on First Street with a lot of lettering on its walls. Can anyone make out what the lettering says. (Click on the photo for a larger view.)

"Sometimes when Miss Clark played, the Indians would lurk around the door and windows and some would dance on the strip of bare floor at the edge of the room that the carpet was not wide enough to cover." (From the Cornelia Corselius papers).

Chick Corea Reunites with John McLaughlin

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On Saturday, April 4, at the Hill Auditorium, Chick Corea and John McLaughlin lead a phenomenal jazz combo called Five Peace Band, showcasing the talents of alto saxophonist Kenny Garrett, bassist Christian McBride, and drummer Brian Blade. Any of these artists alone is worth the price admission, but all of them playing together is sure to be a spectacular evening of live music. The performance is a University Musical Society event, and is likely to feature tunes from the early 70s fusion era -- when Corea and McLaughlin played with Miles Davis' Bitches Brew lineup -- in addition to more recent pieces from these artists. The AADL owns recordings of all of these musicians, and through our recently updated Picture Ann Arbor gallery, aadl.org also has pictures of Corea / McLaughlin from the early 1970s and from their reunion tour this year.

Corea/McLaughlin/Ann Arbor: Then and Now

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The University Musical Society and AADL invite you to participate in Then and Now: Community and Cultural Change from the Fusion Era to Today, an online exhibit in celebration of Ann Arbor’s community heritage from 1968-1975 and the return of Chick Corea and John McLaughlin to UMS on April 4. Both of these musicians have continually reinvented themselves over the years while maintaining an exceptional level of artistry and commitment to their music.

Help us to show Ann Arbor's parallel evolution in its cultural, musical, and community landscape. Do you have a photograph from that era or the present day that you’d like to share? We’d love to include it on our site. Go to pictureAnnArbor to find out how to submit your photographs online, or email AADL Productions at productions@aadl.org to arrange a time to submit your photographs in person.

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