Citizenship and Immigration Canada just made it easier to book gigs – the work-permit requirement to perform anywhere serving food and drinks as a major part of their business model has been removed! Well, mostly – you can’t work anywhere on an ongoing basis without a work permit, and that includes bars and restaurants. But still!
This is a big deal for some of us. Everyone else, carry on as usual.
Forbes Magazine has noticed the return of the analogue synthesiser. I’ve seen a lot of people buying old and rebuilding; I wasn’t aware how many of the classics were back in or about to return to production.
Korg MS-20 (courtesy Wikipedia)
There seems to be some idea floating out there – and certainly in that Forbes article – that it’s a matter of rejecting digital, with it’s an implication that it’s some sort of Overdue Retreat From False Progress, and similar foolishness.
That’s not just wrong, it’s stupid. It’s the kind of derpitude written for people who don’t understand a subject and are wearing their late-middle-age everything-was-better-in-my-day nostalgia crap goggles.
Never wear those.
But something real is happening: a recognition that these were interesting and unique instruments in their own rights, and that new “versions” of the instrumental idea are not the instrumental idea. Just as the successors of the lute were not lute version 2.0, the successors of these synths are are not these instruments, version 2.0. They’re new instruments, with their own merits and flaws.
The technology model of continuous improvement doesn’t apply to everything, no matter how hard you try.
Similarly, just as MIDI violin doesn’t preempt real violin, emulations of the actual instrument – while useful, I’m a huge fan of the Animoog implementation on my iPad – do not always replace the actual instrument.
Particularly not with players. Not with the musicians. All of these things have their own physicalities, and for a lot of players – like me – that’s important. There are tens of thousands of bass guitars out there; there are a few I love. There are far fewer Irish Bouzoukis out there; and there are two, so far, I love. Part of that’s the sound; part of that is the physicality. It all matters.
I’m glad that’s finally being recognised for these classic analogue subtractive synths. The recognition that they are unique instruments, of a kind and a type, and of value not as a step to something else, but to themselves, and their unique sounds – it’s long overdue. Returning them to production is no more some kind of reactionary step backwards than is continuing to produce fiddles.
And I’m all for it. Welcome back to the fold, subtractive synths. We missed you.
Happy almost-new-years everybody! Time for either the big new year’s clean and hatsumode, or lots of vodka science and quality assurance testing, or hey, why not have both? I’m for it. We could call it Vodka Science Day, throw it in with the rest. Only downside is I’m not sure anyone would notice. I’ve, er, “got friends” who just call that Thursday.
If your music collection needs refreshing, the big Mega-Music New Year’s Download that I talked about before is still going, so go grab that while you can. And all my Bandcamp downloads are still set pay-what-you-like, too.
If you had – or still have – trouble with their official download link, here is a backup that I put up myself, so use that instead.
Whup, gotta gear up, kaiju’s about ready to hatch, and you know what a mess that is! Have fun out there, and try not to die.
That’s supervillain for, “Hey – I like you.”
Okay, so I mentioned the big project? Well, a bunch of bands, including us, SJ Tucker, Heather Dale, and lots more, got together for a truly massive free mega-music download package. Seriously, there are like 39 artists in this thing:
If the download link there doesn’t work for you for some reason – it’s been a bit swamped! – here’s a direct link to the .zip file with all songs:
In addition to the previous, there’s Betsy Tinney, Talis Kimberly, Pandora Celtica, Julia Ecklar, Ginger Doss, Whisky Bards, Tom Smith, us – so many different bands.
GO GET IT. And if you like what you hear, a lot of us are doing specials right now on our own download pages, like us, where everything of ours on Bandcamp is currently pay-what-you-like. That won’t last forever, so GO. NOW.
Click for full-size
And a happy new year to everyone!
eta: Okay, maybe having everybody involved tell all their people at the same time wasn’t the best idea. XD If you’re seeing an XML error, it’s a result of server overload; try again in 15 minutes to an hour. But my Bandcamp downloads are working fine – Bandcamp is more robust. :D
Via John Scalzi: Random House is trying to adopt ALL the wretched, musician-bankrupting models of the record labels, and force them onto writers, all at once.
I DO NOT HAVE STRONG ENOUGH WORDS FOR THIS: DO. NOT. BUY. IN.
John’s post, with all the gruesome details. The imprint is called “Hydra,” but it’s Random House.
DO NOT BUY IN. DO NOT LET FRIENDS BUY IN.
This is EXACTLY the model that labels have used to take ALL the money from the artists – ALL of it, so strings of chart-topping hits never “make money” and send artists into bankruptcy after years of below-minimum-wage returns.
DO NOT BUY IN. RUN from this. Run from it, and STOP OTHERS FROM SIGNING.
Seriously. This new model from Random House is the EXACT model musicians are trying to work around and recover from. IT IS BUILT TO STRIP MINE YOU FOR EVERY PENNY YOU EVER MAKE, AND MORE.
There is no winning here; not just for anyone who signs this agreement, but every other writer trying to sell their work. EVERYBODY loses – except the imprint, of course. And eventually even they even lose.
DO. NOT. BUY. IN. And tell others. This cannot be allowed to fly.
Cracksman Betty has shown up on iTunes! It costs more there! I don’t know why! But they make those decisions, not me! Clearly they think it’s a real album. :D Yay! It’s not much more, they just set their standard pricing on it. But that’s okay by me. ^_^
If you haven’t given a listen yet, you can hear the whole thing right here, on Bandcamp. No 30-second samples here! They you can buy it on iTunes, or hopefully give it some review love, which it very much needs.
I never did a review raffle beforehand because there wasn’t a beforehand! So I’ll do one now instead: write and post a public review in the next two weeks (plus a little – two weeks plus the weekend) and I’ll email you a special home-burned CD edition of the album. (It’ll be less S-100 Bus which you’ll still have to download on its own because of licensing, but it’s free, so that’s okay.)
This should play the whole album for you:
Post the link to your review here in comments to enter. And have a good weekend!