Search Results

h1

Coverage: Amanda Palmer, “Billie Jean”

July 6, 2009

Guest blogger Scott writes: It’s always a little weird when famous people die. The level of emotional outpouring from people who have attached a piece of themselves to this person they’ve never met is somewhat foreign to me. But it’s different when I can see the specific ways in which someone benefited from the celebrity’s […]

h1

Coverage: Amanda Palmer, “I Google You”

August 20, 2008

I’m still fairly thrilled that one of my favourite authors, Neil Gaiman, is collaborating with one of my favourite Boston artists, Amanda Palmer (of the Dresden Dolls). Palmer’s solo CD, Who Killed Amanda Palmer?, is scheduled for release in early September. A companion book of photographs is in preparation, and Gaiman is contributing the text […]

h1

On a world of distributed Medicis

November 26, 2012

In the 1970s, everyone was pretty sure what it meant to be successful as a musician. The requirements of scale for physical distribution meant that you were pretty much either filling stadia or you were in a weekend band. But with the rise of digital distribution of music, there are endless discussions by artists on […]

h1

Rethink Music: the structure of revolutions

April 25, 2011

In The Structure of Scientific Revolutions, Thomas Kuhn famously wrote about science undergoing “paradigm shifts”: that scientific change occurs in sudden upheavals. It’s normally not all that dramatic, even. What I’ve observed to happen is something like this: at a conference, someone will present evidence for an alternative explanation of data. Some people will listen, some […]

h1

Women, digital distribution, and visual image

August 26, 2010

Another crosspost, this one from Music Think Tank Open; it was written as a companion to the zed equals zee post, “Women in Music: the lost generation.” As a fan, I’ve been excited for the rise of digital distribution and for the direct interaction of artists and listeners because it means I’m more likely to […]

h1

Women in music: the lost generation

August 9, 2010

If you spend any time at all listening to apologists for the music industry, you will hear (over and over again) two primary justifications for its existence: i) that they find and nurture talent and ii) that it’s the only way for artists to reach the top tier of music stardom. So, here are some […]

h1

Live music venues and demographics

January 7, 2010

Much has been made of the future of music being in live experiences, rather than in CD sales. But as someone who sees a lot of live shows, I can’t help but ask, ‘Where are the fans?’ It’s pretty clear that the slice of fans who regularly go to indie rock (for lack of a […]

h1

What does ‘selling out’ mean, anyway?

November 17, 2009

Three recent perspectives on artists licensing their songs to big companies. The end of selling out. A predictably trite blog post in Newsweek about the ‘sudden shift’ to fans not really caring if songs get used in commercials. What does it say about our culture? Carrie Brownstein, of Sleater-Kinney, wrote a post for NPR which […]

h1

What will music fans pay for?

October 9, 2009

This piece was crossposted to Music Think Tank. Earlier this week, I talked about how NPR and webcomics have a business model that’s predicated on the primary work (the radio broadcast and the webcomics themselves, respectively) being available for free; once the overhead is covered, the incremental cost of additional readers or listeners is approximately […]

h1

Music, webcomics, NPR, and money

October 5, 2009

[click for full Diesel Sweeties strip] The topic of creators and money seems to be in the air at the moment. Last week, Amanda Palmer wrote a blog post, “Why I am not afraid to take your money,” which is burning up the Twitterverse and the blogosphere, and a recent PBS MediaShift article discussed financially […]

h1

Music and tech roundup

June 30, 2009

A quick hit of assorted news from around the intarwebs while I’m around the world. Band makes video out of CCTV footage. The Get Out Clause, out of Manchester, performed in front of some of the UK’s ubiquitous surveillance cameras, then requested the footage under the Brit equivalent of the Freedom of Information Act, and […]

h1

Music and tech roundup (er, part 1*)

June 15, 2009

Lots of stuff happening in the music and tech world this week. Custom Facebook URLs for smaller fan pages coming soon. Facebook did a terrible job of communicating that only artists and other brands with more than 1000 fans could register custom URLs during the big land grab last week. But they did announce that […]

h1

Music and tech news roundup

March 31, 2009

First off, the zed equals zee happy hour was a rousing success, with lots of terrific conversation. It was fantastic to meet so many Boston musicians and bloggers face to face, including some of the people behind Boston Band Crush, The Limits of Science, Electric Laser People, and Paul Lamere of Music Machinery and his […]

h1

Tiered pricing for music

March 2, 2009

Why should all your fans pay the same amount and get the same thing? We’ve talked about name-your-own-price merchandise in the context of establishing and maintaining a relationship with your fans. Here’s the other side of it: tiered pricing for music and merchandise. I’m a huge fan of The National. I own all their CDs […]

h1

The return of Muxtape

February 19, 2009

Guest blogger Scott writes: On Monday, the NYT Freakonomics blog reported on the return of mix tape site Muxtape. While the blog entry has pictures and content links that give a sense of where Muxtape is going, there’s very little at the website itself right now, although the story of what Muxtape was, and how […]

h1

Counter-programming: indie music vids

November 28, 2008

[embedded YouTube video; if you can’t see it, click here] If your family holidays are characterized by everyone gathering in the living room and watching large, heavily-armoured men crash into each other (that would be American football, for our non-US readers), and that’s not exactly your speed, I commend to you some counter-programming. On opposite […]

h1

Threesome: public radio personalities

July 23, 2008

Three fantasias which have real public radio personalities as the subject. First, Amanda Palmer tells the story of her unrequited crush on Christopher Lydon (pictured above), former host of The Connection on NPR’s Boston affiliate, WBUR. Next, Jonathan Coulton‘s ode to WNYC host Soterios Johnson‘s secret E- and Red Bull-fueled club lifestyle. Finally, Franz Ferdinand […]

h1

Listen local: The Dresden Dolls

December 11, 2007

The first local band that I heard after moving to Boston was the Dresden Dolls. I had gone to see Michael Gira play with his band, Angels of Light, in the South End in March 2003. Their opening act was an unknown folk-y singer that Gira had signed to Young God Records, with the unusually […]

h1

Coverage: Nightmare Revisited

February 6, 2009

[extended trailer for Coraline on YouTube; if you can’t watch it, click here] Guest blogger Scott writes: Coraline opens today and, while debcha might be most excited about the production of a favored author’s work, I have multiple reasons to be excited. I like gothic spooky, but can’t stomach horror (at least until a Hollywood […]

h1

Coverage: The Dresden Dolls, “Pretty in Pink”

June 17, 2008

Guest blogger Scott says: This comes from a CD of 80s movie theme covers by various artists. Some of the other tracks are nice, but this is the only one that I really feel sounds like the artist tried to make it their own. And I had seriously never listened to the words of the […]