Tag Archives: music

Tubular Bells – Mike Oldfield

Cover of "Tubular Bells"

Cover of Tubular Bells

Now where did Mike Oldfield go?  If I had enough patience to watch the opening ceremony of the London Olympics I could have seen him there…

The hours I spend listening to Tubular Bells… Almost all of its first part is instrumental but at the end, Oldfield “invites” each instrument one by one to join the music. The last to join is of course the Tubular Bells. This brings the 1st part to a wonderful, yet still gentle climax. The 2nd part features a very musically gifted  caveman and the cheerful tune of the Sailor’s Hornpipe. You’ve got to listen to it to understand.

Tubular Bells was the first record to appear on Richard Branson’s Virgin Records in 1973. Its opening theme also appeared on the soundtrack of The Exorcist.

It was nice to see how the two parts are about 20 something minutes long. Just enough to fit one side of a vinyl record.

Mike Oldfield is still active, now that I know where he is I have some musical catching up to do…

Click here to get to Tubular Bells on Amazon


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Camel – Rhayader

https://i0.wp.com/upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/f/fa/Camel_In_Concert.jpgHeard Camel‘s Rhayader on my cable’s music channels. It was great hearing them again. I’m always impressed by how much Progressive Rock groups were able to get inspired by Classical Music without loosing their own touch and sound. Camel’s Rhayader is a good example to that.

The following YouTube video shows Camel live doing Rhayader and then Rhayader Goes To Town live in 1977.


Click here to go to the The Snow Goose album on Amazon


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Steve Reich – Psalms morning

Portion of column 19 of the Psalms Scroll (Teh...

Portion of the Psalms Scroll (Tehilim) from Qumran (credit: Wikipedia)

The music I hear in the morning has the most effect on me. Usually I find Baroque music the most enjoyable to listen to as the day starts. I guess this is because its festive and very structured. It’s very repetitive and has all kinds of exciting forms of combining musical themes together. Altogether Baroque music have meditative and focusing effects on me, exactly what I need in the morning…

A few years back, I flew from Tel Aviv to London. I was about to meet my new bosses in a new firm I just joined. Away from my family I needed a musical companionship that morning more than the usual. I tuned the radio in the hotel room to one of the classical music stations.  The music I heard was meditative and composed with all kind of interesting structures.  In addition I suddenly heard familiar words sung. About 3,500KM (2,200 miles) from home I heard a musical piece in Hebrew. It sounded too modern to be Baroque but it had many common feature. What I heard was Steve Reich‘s “Tehilim” (Psalms) and it certainly made me closer to home and at the same time ready for the new starts waiting for me on that morning.

Steve Reich (born 1936) composed “Tehilim” in 1981 and its his first piece to reflect his Jewish heritage. You can listen to it on YouTube below don’t let the background lights distract you from the music:

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Last Brick in the Wall

Pink Floyd—The Wall

Pink Floyd—The Wall (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Saw a real good documentary on the history of the rock last night. 60’s to 80’s rock to be precise. History of music in general is all about the continuous chains of inspirations and influences, starting as early as the dawn of humankind. The program’s starting point was Syd Barret and his influence on Pink Floyd, David Bowie, all the way to Roxy Music.

Watching this excellent program you can understand who did what and to whom but as I’m sure you’ll agree, to really understand music you need to spend much more than one hour listening to it.

The constant tension between the search for the right form of expression and the way the audience perceive them, haunted musicians long before the 60’s. Roger Waters wanted to protest against the rioting crowd at the grandiose Pink Floyd performances. In order to prove the disconnection between the group and its crowd, he conceived the idea of building  The Wall, live on concert, to symbolize this gap (as well as other ideas).  Continue reading


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SoundCloud (TORLEY)

One of the things I realized while searching for materials to post about, is the vast number of sharing ideas you can find on the Internet. Social media is taking some really creative new forms.

I’m writing this post while listening to a musician who’s nick name is In Mobile. His real name is Olivier Malhomme and he is from Mayet, France. I found his music on SoundCloud.com. Here is what SoundCloud about page has to say:

SoundCloud is the world’s leading social sound platform where anyone can create sounds and share them everywhere.

Recording and uploading sounds to SoundCloud lets people easily share them privately with their friends or publicly to blogs, sites and social networks.”

Its hectic in there, lots of downloaded material, some of the artists are teenage House DJ’s, some of them are deep into classical music. Some share their loved songs and some share their personal events such as weddings, by sharing the music they composed to it. A cool feature lets you leave a written comment on every fraction of a second of the track.

SoundCloud Innovation: Continuous playback of ...

SoundCloud (See-ming Lee 李思明)

I only started exploring SoundCloud. The whole site is simple and has a dynamic feel to it. Even the most simple and naive musical experiments get a new meaning when you get to take part and understand who is standing behind them. Let me know what you find in there…

I really like the music In Mobile loaded!

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The What, How and most importantly – Why of music

In 20 minutes conductor Michael Tilson Thomas compacted an essential guide on music’s history, it’s fantastic human expression capabilities and its relation to technology.

Another great TED lecture, You owe it to yourselves!


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Gas Music!

Sometimes there are things I’m happy to see on my neighbor’s lawn. This amazing gas – color organ named FireHero is one of them. It was assembled by Chris Marion an 18 years old bright inventor, who has more ideas than time or money to realize them.

The nice thing about it is that what helped Chris build this beast is an electronic platform named Arduino. Arduino is an open source project that allows inventors and non technical people to build relatively sophisticated projects at low-cost. The board comes packed with all the needed software for developing those applications.

The Arduino blog has lots of very creative and often not so practical projects. However its a great demonstration of imagination and how people made their fantasias come true. Worth looking at! You will also find a detailed explanation on how to assemble your own Fire Hero organ. My neighbors will be happy to assist you !  😉

To see all music related Arduino projects click here.

Un Arduino Diecimila

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Cavemen’s Flute date back 40,000 years

Journal of Human Evolution

Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The Mother Nature Net cites a study published in the Journal of Human Evolution which describes amazing discoveries in the Swabian caves in southern Germany. Two bone flutes which are dated between 40,000 and 45,000 years ago were discovered there. This is the earliest indication of artistic creativity and of the technological innovation in that era.

2,000 or 3,000 years after the flutes were made an extremely cold climatic phase started in Europe. It is not clear how it effected the people of those times.

It seems that the history of Music dates way back before the history we learn in schools. Maybe it’s time to learn the history of arts first. It will give the well known history of wars and conflicts another perspective.

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English: Ben Folds performing in Knoxville, TN...

English: Ben Folds performing in Knoxville, TN at the Valarium on 2009-02-22. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)


I bumped into WXRT93 post on Ben Folds Five and rushed to the free download link (how could I resist?). That’s how I discovered PledgeMusic which is a great tool for promoting musical projects with the fans help. The amazing part is that the musicians get to keep their artistic freedom and the fans get great new ways to interact with their favorite musicians. The PledgeMusic about page explains:

“PledgeMusic for Fans

PledgeMusic is a way for you to help your favourite artists make their records.

It helps artists and bands design a specifically tailored fundraising campaign to raise money for their next release. Pledge encourages the artists to participate with their fans in an exciting and unique way by creating an irresistible menu of exclusive content and experiences. The list can be anything from DJing at your house party, to attending a rehearsal, or even a movie and dinner with the band!
There is no risk to you as your money will only be taken once the artist’s target amount has been raised, and Team Pledge will keep you informed of the project’s status every step of the way.

So please get involved and have a good time helping your favourite bands create more great music!

PledgeMusic for Artists

PledgeMusic is a music company offering you a new way to take control of your career. We’re not interested in being a rights owner – Pledge does not want ANY rights to your music, live income, merch etc. We just help you fund whatever type or format of record you want to release next.

To do this we simply help and encourage you to participate with your fans in an exciting and unique way. Pledge allows you to easily create an irresistible customised menu of exclusive content and experiences that integrates your database, MySpace friends, Facebook fans, Twitter followers and various other social networking sites. You decide how much money you’d like to raise and your fans pledge money for whichever item or experience they want. They will only be charged once the full target amount has been raised and there’s even the option to build a charitable donation into your campaign. We charge a flat 15% fee and we have no hidden fees or transaction costs whatsoever.

You are your own A&R and Marketing Manager – you choose the studio, the producer, the artwork, the promotion – it’s all down to you! Let the fans be your label, while you keep the rights to your music.”

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Two interesting points of view on the state of the music industry, on which side are you?


Positive Music Place

Dear Mr. Gill,

I recently read your comments about what the music business has become.  I’d like to thank you for articulating, with brutal honesty, feelings felt by many musicians about the current state of our industry.

However, I’d also like to challenge you–and the countless artists who feel the way you do.  Yeah, the music business sucks.  What can we do about it?

The first step is to ask why it is that music has become devalued.  The superficial answer may be that in 1960, recorded media, such as 45s and LP records, cost more to manufacture and distribute.  Digital downloads have less overhead expenses attached to them; thus a lower price point is possible.  In general, the trend of technology is that it gets cheaper as it evolves.

But what about the bigger picture?  Is it true that “creative brains are being sorely mistreated?”

There’s no nice way…

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