Wednesday, March 20

The World between Empires: Art and Identity in the Ancient Middle East

"For over three centuries, the territories and trading networks of the Middle East were contested between the Roman and Parthian Empires (ca. 100 B.C.–A.D. 250), yet across the region life was not defined by these two superpowers alone. Local cultural and religious traditions flourished, and sculptures, wall paintings, jewelry, and other objects reveal how ancient identities were expressed through art. Featuring 190 works from museums in the Middle East, Europe, and the United States, this exhibition follows a journey along the great incense and silk routes that connected cities in southwestern Arabia, Nabataea, Judaea, Syria, and Mesopotamia, making the region a center of global trade. Several of the archaeological sites featured, including Palmyra, Dura-Europos, and Hatra, have been damaged in recent years by deliberate destruction and looting, and the exhibition also examines these events and responses to them. ..."
Metropolitan Museum of Art (Video/Audio)
NY Times: See Ancient Trade Route Treasures at the Met

Tuesday, March 19

Ennio Morricone Plays Chess

Collage with modified images.
"Ennio Morricone is responsible for some of the most recognizable soundtracks in cinema. He’s been the go-to composer for Sergio Leone, Pier Paolo Pasolini, Brian De Palma, and many others. He’s especially renowned for his spaghetti western themes, which helped establish the mood of the genre. In 2007, Morricone received an Academy Honorary Award, and in 2016, he won an Academy Award for Best Original Score, for The Hateful Eight. Here, he discusses one of his other great passions: chess. ..."
The Paris Review
Independent - Ennio Morricone: They shoot, he scores
Guardian - 'A Fistful of Dollars? It's my worst ever score'
YouTube: Dance of the Chess Game - Il Segreto Del Sahara (1987)

2009 November: Ennio Morricone, 2014 June: Gruppo di Improvvisazione Nuova Consonanza, 2015 June: The Big Gundown - John Zorn plays Ennio Morricone (1985), 2016 July: Once Upon a Time in America - Sergio Leone (1984)

Wganda Kenya

"Wganda Kenya are one of Colombia’s most innovatory live ensembles and a key proponent in bringing the boundless energy of Afrobeat to the streets and dance halls of Colombia’s Caribbean coast. Between the 1970s and the late 1980s, Wganda Kenya formed part of a small collection of pioneering Afro-Colombian bands that ruled the airwaves in Northern cities like Cartagena and Barranquilla. Along with sister group Afrosound they were put together in the 1970s by Discos Fuentes, the famous Medellín-based label (often described as Colombia’s version of ‘Motown’ for it’s instrumental role in introducing the nation to its popular Afro-rhythm genres of Cumbia, merengue, porro, fandango and salsa.) ... A title that itself invokes an African heritage, their music combines the furious rhythms inherited from the Fela Kuti albums that were arriving in Colombia’s coastal regions at the time with a large spoonful of 70s funk and their own electric, Latin flavour. ..."
Musica Macondo (Audio)
The Best of Wganda Kenya (Audio)
Colombia! the Golden Age of Discos Fuentes. the Powerhouse of Colombian Music 1960-76 (Audio)
YouTube: Soundway presents Colombia! (The Golden Age of Discos Fuentes. The Powerhouse of Colombian Music 1960-76) 20 videos

Monday, March 18

A Handy Guide for Filling Out Your March Madness Bracket

"Nobody picks a perfect NCAA tournament bracket, so there is no perfect advice for filling one out. If we at The Ringer could predict how every wayward bounce will play out over the next three weeks, we’d pursue more profitable enterprises than dispensing tips to the masses. But just because no advice is perfect doesn’t mean that all pieces of advice are equally flawed. March Madness has inspired a whole set of bracket tips and tricks, but only some of them pass statistical muster. Before completing your selections this week, learn which ideas to take to heart—and which to dismiss as unsubstantiated myth. ..."
The Ringer
The Ringer: 2019 NCAA Tournament Bracket Breakdown: Best Matchups, Story Lines, and Scenarios
FiveThirtyEight: Your Guide To The 2019 NCAA Men’s Tournament
ESPN - NCAA tournament 2019: Bracket winners and losers (Video)
SI: Best Bets for 2019 NCAA Tournament's First-Round Games (Video)

FiveThirtyEight: 2019 March Madness Predictions
SI: 2019 NCAA Tournament Bracket Breakdown: A Region-by-Region Guide
March Madness 2019: An idiot's guide to filling out your bracket (Video)
ESPN: 2019 NCAA Tournament Bracket Projections - Joe Lunardi's guide for all 68 teams
SI: The Top 50 Players in College Basketball This Season

Pierre-Auguste Renoir - Peonies (c. 1880)

"Renoir once told a friend 'painting flowers rests my brain. . . . I place my colors and experiment with values boldly, without worrying about spoiling a canvas.' In this still life, vibrant reds and pinks stand out against the dark background and cast blue shadows across the white tablecloth. Using thin washes and strokes of thicker paint, the artist has captured the peonies’ sumptuous colors and the delicate textures of their petals and leaves."
The Clark

2010 February: Pierre-Auguste Renoir, 2010 July: Late Renoir, 2012 February: Renoir, Impressionism, and Full-Length Painting, 2012 September: Renoir: Between Bohemia and Bourgeoisie, 2014 December: Dance at Le moulin de la Galette (1876), 2015 June: Dance at Bougival (1883), 2015 December: Luncheon of the Boating Party (1880-81)

Sunday, March 17

Lester Young - March 15, 1959

"Lester Young died unexpectedly of a heart attack in the early hours of Sunday, March 15, 1959 in the Alvin Hotel on 52nd and Broadway where he had been living for the past year, just across from the Birdland jazz club. Young was just 49, and despite ongoing health problems, he was performing regularly — but he’d begun experiencing severe stomach pain in Paris after spending seven weeks abroad, and rushed back to New York where he died almost immediately upon his return. Dave Gelly details Young’s final hours very thoroughly in his biography Being Prez: The Life and Music of Lester Young, if you’re looking to learn more. It was an event that shook the jazz world; according to critic Leonard Feather, at Young’s funeral, held the following Thursday, March 19, Young’s longtime friend and collaborator Billie Holiday told him, 'I’ll be the next one to go.' ..."
The 1959 Project (Video)
W - Pork pie hat
How to make a pork pie hat. (Video)

2017 July: In Washington (1956), 2018 August: The Jazz Giants '56 (1956)

Furrier Store Sign, Harlem, New York City - Walker Evans

"January 1939. Finnish Harlem (aka Finntown) was a vibrant community in the 1920s to 1940s like Little Syria in Lower Manhattan and Little Caughnawaga in Brooklyn. There were about 9000 Finns between 120th and 130th Sts from Madison to Fifth Ave. By the 1940s-50s, 40,000 Finns mostly lived in Sunset Park (Brooklyn). Pictured is a Finnish deli sign on 5th Ave. The building on the left is at 127th St. Still standing today are the Finnish Progressive Society Hall (15 W 126th St), now the Pilgrim Cathedral of Harlem, and the Finnish Workers Educational Alliance Building (2056 5th Ave)."
Met Museum

2011 June: Let Us Now Praise Famous Men, 2011 May: A Revolutionary Project: Cuba from Walker Evans to Now, 2013 June: Cotton Tenants: Three Families, 2014 May: “Walker Evans and Robert Frank – An Essay on Influence by Tod Papageorge” (1981), 2014 October: Walker Evans: The Magazine Work, 2014 December: Walker Evans: Decade by Decade, 2015 August: Walker Evans: A Life's Work, 2015 October: Walker Evans’ “lineup of faces” on the subway, 2016 June: Walker Evans: Labor Anonymous

Saturday, March 16

Prince Valiant

Wikipedia - "Prince Valiant in the Days of King Arthur, or simply Prince Valiant, is an American comic strip created by Hal Foster in 1937. It is an epic adventure that has told a continuous story during its entire history, and the full stretch of that story now totals more than 4000 Sunday strips. Currently, the strip appears weekly in more than 300 American newspapers, according to its distributor, King Features Syndicate. HRH Edward, the Duke of Windsor, called Prince Valiant the 'greatest contribution to English literature in the past hundred years'. Generally regarded by comics historians as one of the most impressive visual creations ever syndicated, the strip is noted for its realistically rendered panoramas and the intelligent, sometimes humorous, narrative. The format does not employ word balloons. Instead, the story is narrated in captions positioned at the bottom or sides of panels. Events depicted are taken from various time periods, from the late Roman Empire to the High Middle Ages, with a few brief scenes from modern times (commenting on the 'manuscript'). ..."
The Coloring of the Prince Valiant Series Published By Fantagraphics
8 Things You Might Not Know About Prince Valiant
The Atlantic: Prince Valiant’s England
The Definitive Prince Valiant Companion
amazon: Hal Foster

Geneva Skeen - Dream State (2019)

"The Form of the Longform Abstract - Say what you will about the mix of nostalgia, fossil-fuel products, and subpar sound quality that is employed with some finger-pointing regularity to characterize the resurgence of the tape cassette as a 21st-century conveyance of music from recording artist to listener, one positive service has certainly been accomplished: the rise of long-form compositions. It seems more common today than it has been since the heights of the progressive rock era for commercially released albums to contain suite-length pieces, symphony-dimensioned (horizontally if not vertically) explorations longer than extended 12″s, longer than medleys, longer than the attention span attributed (malignly) to a generation raised amid screens. Geneva Skeen’s many-layered collage of a new album, Dream State, on the label Crystalline Morphologies, is such a recording. ..."
disquiet (Audio)
DREAM STATE by Geneva Skeen (Audio)
Soundcloud (Audio)

Friday, March 15

The Good, Bad, and Ugly Public Transit Seat Covers of the World

When CityLab asked followers on Twitter to choose their favorite examples of public transit seat coverings from around the world, a deluge of replies rolled in, many of which expressed affection for patterns that would make a minimalist shudder.
"In the 1930s, the London Underground referred to the potentially nauseating effect of a loudly designed fabric on a seat in a moving subway car as 'dazzle.' Even if you haven’t felt the uncontrollable urge to vomit from the sight of a wild seat pattern, you have an idea of which ones have such potential. It can’t be easy creating a good textile for public transit. Bus, train, and subway seats must do far more than look attractive. They have to stay fresh-looking as thousands of people sit on them daily, all the while trying to deter or mask the attentions of vandals. With all these boxes to tick, it’s no wonder that so many of the fabrics used on public transit are, quite frankly, pretty damned weird. Often the textiles chosen—usually, but not exclusively moquette—have an eye-grating brightness and busyness that would make the average person faint (or at least laugh) if they saw the same pattern used for a shirt or curtains. ..."
Guardian - Sitting pretty: London transport fabrics over the decades – in pictures
Celebrating Britain’s Transport Textile

Sample of moquette as used on trolleybuses and trams, 1930–1949

Jack Kerouac’s “Beat Paintings:” Now Gathered in One Book and Exhibition for the First Time

"Most of us enter Jack Kerouac's world through his 1959 novel On the Road. Those of us who explore it more deeply thereafter may find much more than we expected to: Kerouac's inner life came out not just in his formidable body of written work, but in spoken-word jazz albums, fantasy baseball materials, and even paintings. Though Kerouac has now been gone for nearly half a century, it wasn't until just last year that his works of visual art were brought together: Kerouac: Beat Painting did it in book form, and the Museo Maga near Milan put on an exhibition of the more than 80 pieces it could find, beginning with his first self-portrait, drawn at the age of nine. ..."
Open Culture

2009 November: Another Side of Kerouac: The Dharma Bum as Sports Nut, 2010 July: Kerouac's Copies of Floating Bear, 2011 March: Jack Kerouac on The Steve Allen Show, 2013 September: On the Road - Jack Kerouac, 2014 May: “Walker Evans and Robert Frank – An Essay on Influence by Tod Papageorge” (1981), 2015 March: Pull My Daisy (1959), 2015 December: Hear All Three of Jack Kerouac’s Spoken, 2016 July: Mexico City Blues (1959), 2017 February: The Jack Kerouac Collection (1990), 2017 May: The Subterraneans (1958), 2017 June: The Town and the City (1950), 2018 January: Big Sur (1962), 2018 March: A Slightly Embarrassing Love for Jack Kerouac

Thursday, March 14

Brian Eno: Taking Manhattan (By Strategy)

"It could be argued that Brian Eno is the most consistently creative figure in rock history, someone whose innovation rate over the decades eclipses even that of his shape-shifting collaborators David Bowie and David Byrne. From his disruptive presence in Roxy Music to his alternately quirky and contemplative solo albums, from inventing ambient music to his recent explorations in 'generative music,' it’s a career that has, well, careered, zigzagging from extreme to extreme between pop and antipop, between febrile rhythm and near-immobile tranquility. Then consider his panoply of partnerships with other artists – Devo, Talking Heads, U2 and John Cale, to name just a few – as producer or collaborator/catalyst. Eno is also a musical philosopher, someone whose interviews, critical writings and sundry musings about sound, art and culture deserve to be compiled into a book. ..."
Red Bull Music Academy Daily (Video)

Brazilian Soul, Funk and Jazz on Vinyl

"Thank you all once again for supporting us here on Patreon. Here is the premiere for the latest episode Brazilian Soul, Funk and Jazz on Vinyl. Pirulito-Batucada No.1, Arthur Verocai-Presente Grego ( 03:30 ) Pedro Santos-Ritual Negro ( 05:50 ) Gal Costa-Pontos De Luz ( 07:46 ) Tim maia-O Caminho Do Bem ( 10:23 ) Renata Lu-Faz Tanto Tempo ( 16:24 ) Rosa Maria-Deixa Não Deixa ( 18:44 ) Evinha-Esperar Pra Ver ( 21:16 ) Elza Soares-Mas Que Nada ( 23:15 ) Som Tres-Tanga ( 25:35 ) Toni Tornado-O Jornaleiro ( 27:35 ) Banda Black Rio-Maria Fumaça ( 29:29 ) Antonio Carlos Jocafi - Se Quiser Valer ( 31:50 ) Marcos Valle-Estrelar ( 34:16 ) João Luiz-Super Mulher ( 39:12 ) Arthur Verocai-Sylvia ( 42:25 ) Célia Vaz & Wanda Sá Zanzibar ( 45:18 ) Gal Costa-Relance ( 50:41 ) Lincoln Olivetti & Robson Jorge-Jorgeia Corisco ( 55:08 ) Antonio Carlos E Jocafi-Quem Vem Lá ( 59:05 )
YouTube: Brazilian Soul, Funk and Jazz on Vinyl 1:02:13
Soundcloud (Audio) 1:01:59

Wednesday, March 13

Venezuela’s Deadly Blackout Highlights the Need for a Negotiated Resolution of the Crisis

People collect water from a leaking pipeline along the Guaire River during rolling blackouts, Caracas, March 11, 2019.
"Last weekend Venezuela experienced the worst blackout in its history. Monday, March 11, marked the fourth day of the blackout, which affected nearly all of Venezuela. Power was intermittently restored on Sunday and Monday in parts of Caracas and elsewhere. But areas of western Venezuela had received no electricity since Thursday, with The New York Times on Monday publishing an article titled 'No End in Sight to Venezuela’s Blackout, Experts Warn.' This unprecedented situation provides a terrifying image of Venezuela’s present and future: a nation plunged in darkness, crumbling infrastructure, anxious and desperate citizens, a political class that lacks the resources and will to resolve the situation, and increasingly open opposition calls for foreign or domestic military intervention to 'solve' the crisis. ..."
The Nation

2016 November: Venezuela, a Failing State, 2017 July: The Battle for Venezuela, Through a Lens, Helmet and Gas Mask, 2018 November: The Politics of Food in Venezuela, 2019 February: Venezuela’s Very Normal Revolution

Armagideon Time - The Clash - London 79

Wikipedia - "'Armagideon Time' (spelt as 'Armigedeon Time' in some versions) is a song by Jamaican reggae musician Willie Williams. It was produced by Clement 'Coxsone' Dodd, who used the 'Real Rock' riddim. It was first recorded in 1977 at Jamaica Recording Studio in Kingston, Jamaica, and released as a single in 1979 via Studio One. The single was re-released in 1980 and 1982 through Coxsone Records as a title track to Williams' second studio album of the same name. Clash vocalist Joe Strummer asked Vinyl to stop the recording at that point in the song - something that Vinyl did by announcing the time to the band through the studio intercom: 'All right, time's up! Let's have you out of there!'. However, Strummer felt the band was on fire with this take and spat his retort of 'Ok, ok! Don't push us when we're hot!' in time to the rhythm. ..."
YouTube: Armagideon Time (Live)

Arjen Robben Has Been Cutting Left His Entire Career. So Why Can’t Anyone Stop Him?

"DORTMUND, Germany — All told, Marcel Schmelzer must have spent hours scouring the video, searching for some sort of tell, some kind of clue. Schmelzer, Borussia Dortmund’s long-serving left back, has performed the ritual 16 times over the last decade, building up an unparalleled expertise in the field. He has pored over countless clips. He was hoping to find something, anything that would give him a little advance warning, a bit of a head start. 'I tried to find a pattern,' he said. Thus far, though, he has drawn a blank. Even after all these years, even after all those hours of study, even after all those games, the defender who knows Arjen Robben better than anyone else still cannot work out when, exactly, he is going to cut inside. ..."
NY Times (Video)

Tuesday, March 12

She Invented a Board Game With Scientific Integrity. It’s Taking Off.

On a recent Saturday, Ms. Hargrave, right, auditioned a Wingspan expansion deck at a play-testing session.
"The roseate spoonbill is roughly the size of a great blue heron, with the pink plumage of a flamingo and a giant spoon-shaped bill — 'gorgeous at a distance and bizarre up close,' according to the Audubon Guide to North American birds. It is Elizabeth Hargrave’s favorite bird. 'Crazy bills get me,' she said on a recent sunny Saturday. Ms. Hargrave, a health-policy consultant in Silver Spring, Md., is an avid birder, and her favorite local winter birding spot is the Lake Artemesia Natural Area. Fringed with woods, the lake is artificial, excavated during the construction of Washington’s Green Line in the 1970s; in those days, the area was known as Lake Metro. Setting out on a trail around the lake, bird guide close at hand, Ms. Hargrave had barely set up her scope when she spotted another species of her beloved crazy-billed birds: 'Oh, fun!' She’d caught two northern shovelers, their beaks submerged, trawling for invertebrates. ..."
NY Times
Wingspan - Designed by Elizabeth Hargrave | Art by by Natalia Rojas, Ana Maria Martinez Jaramillo, and Beth Sobel

Cards from the game. The roseate spoonbill's power allows the player to draw new bonus cards; the osprey grants fish to all the players when activated.

The Sonic Arts Union’s Handmade Electronic Music, 1966-1976

"Ann Arbor, Michigan in the mid-1960s is perhaps not the place one would expect the seeds of musical innovation to take root and sprout into one of the most interesting and unique electronic music collectives of the 20th century. But Ann Arbor is indeed where the story of the Sonic Arts Union begins, just a stone’s throw from two other hothouses of innovation: the Ford Motor Company’s production plant in Ypsilanti, and Motown Records’ Hitsville, U.S.A. in Detroit, dedicated to a different kind of production. Formed in 1966 by composer/performers Robert Ashley, David Behrman, Alvin Lucier and Gordon Mumma, the Sonic Arts Union (SAU) became a lodestar for the American avant-garde. ..."
Red Bull Music Academy Daily (Video)

David Behrman and Alvin Lucier with the Sonic Arts Union in Paris, 1974

Monday, March 11

Sylvie - Gérard de Nerval (1853)

Wikipedia - "Sylvie (1853) is a novella by French Romanticist Gérard de Nerval. It was first published in the periodical La Revue des Deux Mondes in 1853, and as a book in Les Filles du feu in 1854, just a few months before Nerval killed himself in January 1855. Sylvie is often considered to be Nerval's prose masterpiece, and has been a favorite of Marcel Proust, André Breton, Joseph Cornell and Umberto Eco. Harold Bloom included it in The Western Canon (1994). An idyll written in the form of a reminiscence, the story is about a hero's love for three women, all of whom he loses - a hymn to unattainable, unrequited love. The story begins when a paragraph in a newspaper plunges the narrator into his memories as a younger man. The perspective seems to shift back and forth between the past and present, so the reader is never entirely sure if the narrator is recounting past events from memory, or retelling current events as they happen. Critics have praised the writing for its lucid and lyrical style. ..."
with hidden noise
Sylvie - Gérard de Nerval
artbook: Aurelia & Other Writings By Gérard De Nerval. Translated by Geoffrey Wagner, Robert Duncan, and Marc Lowenthal.

2007 December: Gerard De Nerval, 2016 June: Voyage to the Orient (1851), 2017 March: Selected Writings of Gerard De Nerval (1957), 2017 June: Did Gerard de Nerval walk his pet lobster through Paris?, 2017 October: Les Filles du feu (1854)

Egzotik - Ali Kuru (2017)

"Few artists can claim to have their own distinctive “musical voice”: a style of composition and production that listeners instantly recognize. For starters, it takes years of experimentation to perfect, and most people simply don’t have the patience, talent or skills to pull it off. Ali Kuru is one of those rare producers whose music sounds like nothing else around. The Istanbul-based artist has spent the best part of a decade honing his trademark style – a fragrant and intoxicating aural brew that combines a myriad of influences with atmospheric field recordings and snaking, mind-altering Middle Eastern instrumentation – via releases for the likes of Luxa Flex, Kalisah, Sound Architecture and, most recently, Leng. ..."
bandcamp (Audio)
Discogs (Video)
amazon, iTunes
YouTube: Egzotik 15 videos

Sunday, March 10

Remarkable History - 112 Waverly Place

The 1826 row now was completely transformed.
"In 1826 Mayor Philip Hone transformed the former execution grounds and potter's field at the base of what would be Fifth Avenue into a parade and drill grounds, called Washington Square. Greenwich Village was experiencing a population explosion as thousands of New Yorkers fled northward to escape the terrifying cholera epidemic which began a year earlier. Well-heeled businessman and former politician Thomas R. Mercein recognized the potential. In 1826, two years before the first mansion would appear on Washington Square, he erected a row of nine upscale brick-faced homes on West Sixth Street, between the park and Sixth Avenue. Three bays wide and three-and-a-half stories tall, the Federal-style houses sat above shallow English basements. Handsome paneled stone lintels adorned the openings and two tall dormers pierced the peaked roofs. ..."
Dayton In Manhattan
NY Times: In the Village, an Intersection of Paint and Quaint

A member of the Ashcan School of painters, Everell used Washington Square as the subject of at least 20 paintings, including this 1910 example.

The College Basketball Mailbag: Zion, Top NCAA Tournament Seeds, and Coaching Predictions

"It’s been a weird college basketball season. There are three great teams, four or five good ones, and about two dozen who mistakenly think they belong in either of those groups. Kansas’s run of 14 consecutive Big 12 titles has ended, Zion Williamson wrapped up the National Player of the Year race before Christmas, and people are seriously thinking things like, 'I’m not sure I trust John Beilein’s offense,' and 'Rick Barnes has what it takes to win a national title.' Indiana, which lost 12 of 13 games at one point this season, still has a shot at making the NCAA tournament despite a 16-14 record, while UNC Greensboro is 26-5, with no bad losses, and has virtually no shot at an at-large berth. Virginia lost twice to Duke and will still probably win at least a share of the ACC regular-season title. ..."
The Ringer

R. Crumb’s Portraits of Aline and Others

"Whatever one thinks of his subject matter, it’s difficult to deny R. Crumb’s prodigiousness with the pencil. He’s a master of crosshatching, and his illustrations and comics boil over with ideas, all sketched in his distinctive style: controlled yet frenzied, obsessed with proportion, often lewd and also oddly sweet. In his Art of Comics interview, Crumb hints at the birth of this style when he discusses how dropping acid for the first time fundamentally altered his work—and his view of the world. 'I remember going to work that Monday, after taking LSD on Saturday, and it just seemed like a cardboard reality,' he says. 'It didn’t seem real to me anymore. Seemed completely fake, only a paper-moon kind of world.' ..."
The Paris Review

2008 August: Robert Crumb, 2010 October: Comics No. 1, 2011 October: Pioneers of Country Music Trading Cards, 2012 August: R. Crumb: The Complete Record Cover Collection, 2015 May: R. Crumb Describes How He Dropped LSD in the 60s & Instantly Discovered His Artistic Style, 2015 June: Heroes of the Blues Boxed Trading Card Set by R. Crumb, 2018 March: Aline Kominsky-Crumb

Saturday, March 9

Newk's Time - Sonny Rollins (1959)

The 1959 Project - "Sonny Rollins’ third album for Blue Note, called Newk’s Time, was on record store shelves in early March 1959. It had been recorded in 1957, with Wynton Kelly, Doug Watkins and Philly Joe Jones at Rudy Van Gelder’s Hackensack studio. 'The record, as I have said, is simply a record of how Rollins felt on one particular afternoon,' wrote Joe Goldberg in the liner notes. 'It is a measure of his achievements that such fleeting impressions can have this much significance.' ..."
The 1959 Project
All About Jazz
W - Newk's Time
Discogs (Video)
amazon, iTunes
YouTube: Newk's Time 34:12

2012 September: The Singular Sound of Sonny Rollins, 2012 December: Village Vanguard, 2015 September: Rollins Plays for Bird (1957), 2016 February: Saxophone Colossus (1956), 2016 May: Plus 4 (1956), 2017 June: Inside Sonny Rollins’s Jazz Archive, Headed Home to Harlem, 2018 April: Tenor Madness (1956), 2017 May: Moving Out (1954), 2018 November: The Bridge (1962)

This Week’s Sky at a Glance, March 8 – 16

"... Saturday, March 9. By the time it's fully dark, the Big Dipper is high in the northeast and beginning to tip left. Look well to its left for Polaris and the dim Little Dipper. Other than Polaris, all you may see of the Little Dipper through moonlight or light pollution are the two stars forming the outer edge of its bowl. These are Kochab (similar to Polaris in brightness) and below it, fainter Pherkad. Find these two 'Guardians of the Pole' to Polaris's lower right by about a fist and a half at arm's length. Now is the time of year when the Guardians line up exactly vertically at the end of twilight. Daylight-saving time begins for most of the US and Canada at 2 a.m. tonight. Clocks 'spring ahead' an hour. Sunday, March 10. On the traditional divide between the winter and spring sky is the dim constellation Cancer. It's between Gemini to its west and Leo to its east. Cancer holds something unique: the Beehive Star Cluster, M44, in its middle. The Beehive shows dimly to the naked eye if you have little or no light pollution. With binoculars it's easy, even under worse conditions. Look for it a little less than halfway from Pollux in Gemini to Regulus in Leo. ..."
Sky & Telescope

Pay It All Back: Adrian Sherwood On 30 Years Of On-U Sound

Adrian Sherwood's garden shed, Annie Anxiety and Lee Scratch Perry. Annie lived in the shed.
"To someone who believes in rebel music, the coincidence of the 30-year anniversary of Adrian Sherwood's label On-U Sound with the populist political uprisings of 2011 could seem almost astrological - like a shift in the alignment of the stars causing an inevitable surge in energies. Adrian Sherwood has a phenomenal CV. Inspired by reggae to teach himself sound engineering in his teens, Sherwood has forged a career that has epitomised the inter-racial trajectory of dub through England, from putting UK production on the map, right through the mutually inspiring transfusion of reggae and punk, acid house and experimental hip hop. ... To celebrate of 30 years of On-U, Sherwood is releasing a series of reissues of key releases from what has been an awesomely prolific label. ..."
The Quietus

2011 September: Adrian Sherwood, 2012 April: Dub Syndicate, 2013 August: Don't Call Us Immigrants (2000), 2014 May: Bim Sherman - Across the Red Sea (1998), 2016 November: Keith Hudson - Brand (1979), 2017 February: Sherwood at the Controls, Vol. 2: 1985-1990, 2017 March: Becoming A Cliché / Dub Cliché (2006)

Friday, March 8

Reissued: African Vinyl in the 21st Century

"The golden age of vinyl records is long past in Africa, but the market for rare and reissued African vinyl outside the continent has been growing steadily since the early 2000s. DJs and collectors have turned an obsession with rare records and forgotten gems from Cape Town to Tangiers into an international reissue and compilation industry, led by record labels such as Soundway, Strut and Analog Africa. This program explores some of the complex and shifting dynamics of neocolonialism, cultural ownership and audience in the African vinyl market. We’ll hear stories from label owners, DJs and artists, touching on controversies around Nigerian disco funk reissues, new career opportunities for sometimes-obscure African artists, the unique vinyl culture in South Africa, and much more. Produced by Morgan Greenstreet and Alejandro Van Zandt-Escobar, with Nenim Iwebuke."
Afro Pop (Audio)
Afro Pop - Temi Kogbe: Friday Night in Lagos
Afro Pop - Reissued: African Vinyl Playlist (Video/Bandcamp)

The Dictionary of Accepted Ideas - Gustave Flaubert (1911)

Wikipedia - "The Dictionary of Received Ideas (or Dictionary of Accepted Ideas; in French, Le Dictionnaire des idées reçues) is a short satirical work collected and published in 1911–13 from notes compiled by Gustave Flaubert during the 1870s, lampooning the clichés endemic to French society under the Second French Empire. It takes the form of a dictionary of automatic thoughts and platitudes, self-contradictory and insipid. It is often paired with the Sottisier (a collection of stupid quotations taken from the books of famous writers). ... The idea of a spoof encyclopedia had fascinated him all his life. As a child, he had amused himself by writing down the absurd utterances of a friend of his mother's, and over the course of his career he speculated as to the best format for a compilation of stupidities. ..."
Flaubert’s ‘Dictionary of Received Ideas’
OnBooks: The Dictionary of Received Ideas by Gustave Flaubert.
Scribd: Flaubert, Gustave - Dictionary of Accepted Ideas (1954)

2012 August: On Cataloguing Flaubert, 2013 March: Sentimental Education - 1(1869), 2016 December: Three Tales (1877), 2017 August: The Sentimental Education (1869), 2018 May: In Which Our Tragic Effects Remain Purely Professional

Hear Patti Smith’s New Work With The Soundwalk Collective, a Tribute to the Avant-Garde Poet Antonin Artaud

"The Soundwalk Collective has made music art out of found sounds since 2004. They recorded 2012’s Medea while traversing the Black Sea and fishing for sounds using a scanner and high powered aerial antennas; 2014’s Last Beat used contact microphones on the architecture of a music club to collect vibrations instead of music; 2017’s Before Music There Is Blood collaged deep echoing recordings of classical music played in various halls. This time, in their upcoming The Peyote Dance, they have brought in poet and rock goddess Patti Smith for a trip into Mexico. The above track 'The New Revelations of Being' is a preview of what’s to come. The album title comes from a book by Antonin Artaud, the avant-garde theater director and author, who traveled to Mexico to explore revelatory visions with the Rarámuri people in 1936. Artaud was hoping that peyote would shake his opioid addiction. ..."
Open Culture (Video)
Soundwalk Collective with Patti Smith

2009 November: Antonin Artaud, 2011 August: La Coquille et le Clergyman - 1926, Germaine Dulac, 2014 September: You Are Quite Unnecessary, Young Man!, 2016 November: Mapping Antonin Artaud

Thursday, March 7

Firing up Weird Science at the Whitney

"A couple of weeks ago, the artist Kevin Beasley was vroom-vrooming his maroon muscle car, a 2010 Dodge Challenger, from his Queens studio to a temporary Brooklyn outpost in a cold, steady rain. 'I’m a car guy,' said the affable Mr. Beasley, who once studied automotive design. It wasn’t a hot rod engine he was racing to see, however, but a century-old cotton gin motor (75 horsepower) that is the centerpiece of his solo exhibition 'Kevin Beasley: A view of a landscape,' which opens on Saturday at the Whitney Museum of American Art. As part of the show, and with the help of complicated sound equipment, he will occasionally “play” the motor like a musical instrument and has invited his own scheduled guests to do the same; they may also perform in other ways he hasn’t yet decided. In doing so, he will contrast that joyous new activity with King Cotton’s legacy of slavery and poverty in the South. ..."
NY Times
Brooklyn Rail: KEVIN BEASLEY with Yasi Alipour
Whitney - Kevin Beasley: A view of a landscape (Video)
art21 (Video)
YouTube: Kevin Beasley's Raw Materials | Art21 "New York Close Up"

The Forgotten Borough's Forgotten Industry: The History Of Lighthouses On Staten Island

An overhead view of the entire Lighthouse Depot circa 1890.
"In our digital age, lighthouses are perhaps known better for providing Instagram content from a New England getaway than for their original function. But behind those picturesque vistas lies a piece of American history that was essential to the founding of the new nation. Today there are 400 active lighthouses in the U.S., and New York City has its own unique history as a center for the luminous navigational beacons. The Statue of Liberty, for example, originally served as a lighthouse, with beams shining out of its torch. The oldest lighthouse in the entire country, on New Jersey’s Sandy Hook, serves as a landmark for New York boaters as they return to shore. And Staten Island—known more today for its Italian-American reality TV shows—was the supply headquarters for the nation’s entire lighthouse industry for over 100 years. You can learn all this at the National Lighthouse Museum, which is tucked in next to the St. George Ferry Terminal. ..."

"Assemblage of the Statue of Liberty in Paris, showing the bottom half of the statue erect under scaffolding, the head and torch at its feet." (NYPL)

Wednesday, March 6

The 26,000-Year Astronomical Monument Hidden in Plain Sight

Markings on the floor showing that Thuban was the North Star for the ancient Egyptians at the time of the Great Pyramids.
"On the western flank of the Hoover Dam stands a little-understood monument, commissioned by the US Bureau of Reclamation when construction of the dam began in 01931. The most noticeable parts of this corner of the dam, now known as Monument Plaza, are the massive winged bronze sculptures and central flagpole which are often photographed by visitors. The most amazing feature of this plaza, however, is under their feet as they take those pictures. The plaza’s terrazzo floor is actually a celestial map that marks the time of the dam’s creation based on the 25,772-year axial precession of the earth. I was particularly interested in this monument because this axial precession is also the slowest cycle that we track in Long Now’s 10,000 Year Clock. Strangely, little to no documentation of this installation seemed to be available, except for a few vacation pictures on Flickr. So the last time I was in Las Vegas, I made a special trip out to Hoover Dam to see if I could learn more about this obscure 26,000-year monument. ..."
The Long Now Foundation
The Long Now Foundation: About - Stewart Brand

Description overlaid on the original technical drawing for the layout of terrazzo floor.

2009 April: CoEvolution Quarterly, 2013 December: THE WHOLE EARTH: California and The Disappearance of The Outside, 2015 July: Watch Stewart Brand’s 6-Part Series How Buildings Learn, With Music by Brian Eno, 2016 October: Whole Earth Catalog

Pioneering Canadian Women In Electronic Music

"Recent lists of pioneering women in electronic music have bolstered the fact that women were right there making significant work during the nascence of electronic music, from the late ’50s to ’70s, on a quest for sounds and sequences never heard before. Yet most of the women who helped pioneer electronic music in Canada don’t pop up in those lists. On the surface, the early electronic era in Canada looks like a man’s game, yet looking a little deeper you’ll find Canadian women on the margins, surrounded by tape machines, computers and instruments of their own making. The dearth of women in the early days of electronic music in general was a product of its time: electroacoustic music developed in the last century within a Western music canon and within institutional confines dominated by male scholars and prodigies. On top of that, rather than only requiring an acoustic instrument such as a piano, electronic composers needed access to an electroacoustics lab or commercially funded studio or the means to buy the necessary equipment to produce and record sound. ..."
Red Bull Music Academy Daily (Video/SoundCloud)

Tuesday, March 5

H.I.V. Is Reported Cured in a Second Patient, a Milestone in the Global AIDS Epidemic

A colored transmission electron micrograph of the H.I.V. virus, in green, attaching to a white blood cell, in orange.
"For just the second time since the global epidemic began, a patient appears to have been cured of infection with H.I.V., the virus that causes AIDS. The news comes nearly 12 years to the day after the first patient known to be cured, a feat that researchers have long tried, and failed, to duplicate. The surprise success now confirms that a cure for H.I.V. infection is possible, if difficult, researchers said. The investigators are to publish their report on Tuesday in the journal Nature and to present some of the details at the Conference on Retroviruses and Opportunistic Infections in Seattle. Publicly, the scientists are describing the case as a long-term remission. In interviews, most experts are calling it a cure, with the caveat that it is hard to know how to define the word when there are only two known instances. ..."
NY Times (Video)

Spiritmuse Records presents MADONJAZZ #155: Deep listening

"Spiritmuse Records presents MADONJAZZ 155: Deep Listening. An 1hr set from Mark Gallagher of deep, spiritual jazz gems from Sunny Murray, Sun Ra and the Art Ensemble Of Chicago, to Italian and French avant-garde sounds, to African, M. Eastern and global raw field recordings and psych folk sounds. ..."
Mad On Jazz (Mixcloud)

Beats of Zion - Rocky Dawuni (2019)

"... In a time when divisive rhetoric is on the rise and the political climate prefers to build walls over bridges, Rocky’s album Beats of Zion is a refreshing message about global unity and a worldview of oneness. Rocky passionately states, “We live in a time when the elements of international morality need to be proclaimed as a guiding principle for how we engage and deal with each other, between individuals, between communities and among nations. It is a time for global mobilization for action on challenging socio-political issues like the environment and the refugee crisis. Beats of Zion is the drumbeat of war against apathy and re-energizing the forces of love and hope.' He concludes, 'Beats of Zion is the rhythm of change beating from a distance and getting louder to awaken positive consciousness.' ..."
Rocky Dawuni
Rocky Dawumi drops new track – Beats of Zion
YouTube: Beats of Zion