Friday, April 29, 2011

Hal Crook Play-Alongs Online

Yes, finals are approaching and many students will be heading out for the summer, but don't forget about the library while you're away. We can help you keep your chops up wherever you are with our online Hal Crook Play-Alongs. For each piece, you can download an MP3 that includes all instruments or one that leaves out piano, bass or drums and download a PDF of a lead sheet for your instrument. There are over 40 pieces to choose from, and they are rated by level of difficulty and tempo.

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Happy Birthday, Kim Gordon

After a few too many posts about death, I wanted to celebrate life. Kim Gordon, the iconic bass player and singer for Sonic Youth turns 58 today. We have plenty of music and videos by the band as well as books about the band. If the full list is too daunting, a good starting point is their 1988 album Daydream Nation (CD 293).

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

RIP Phoebe Snow and Poly Styrene

The death knell keeps sounding, this time for two female singers who carved unique identities in the 1970s, singer/songwriter Phoebe Snow and Poly Styrene, leader of the punk band X-Ray Spex. NPR offers a tribute to Snow, and Slicing Up Eyeballs rounds up some of Styrene's videos and an eloquent tribute from Billy Bragg. Explore more of their work here at the library.

Phoebe Snow:
It Looks Like Snow, CD 4639
Never Letting Go, CD 5898
Phoebe Snow, CD 4648
Second Childhood, CD 9817
Something Real, CD 6653

Phoebe Snow, MP1630.S645 P4

Phoebe Snow and David Bromberg, DVD 85

Poly Styrene
Germfree adolescents / X-Ray Spex, CD 16754

Punk: Attitude, DVD 1705-1706
Punk: The Early Years, DVD 3313

Thursday, April 21, 2011

RIP TV on the Radio bassist Gerald Smith

TV on the Radio bassist Gerald Smith, 36, lost his battle with lung cancer on April 20. Come to the Media Center to listen to and watch his work with the band, including Dear Science (CD 30479 ) which topped the 2008 Village Voice Pazz & Jop critics poll.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

National Grilled Cheese Month

You can't bring food into the library, but that shouldn't stop you from celebrating National Grilled Cheese Month. Some cheese-related items in our collection:

Frank Zappa, You Are What You Is, CD 2823
The liner notes open with an essay by Zappa entitled "Say Cheese" about our being a nation who chooses cheese. Zappa claims that it was written for Newsweek but rejected as too "idiosyncratic."

String Cheese Incident, 'Round the Wheel, CD 15292

Primus, Sailing the Seas of Cheese, CD 9641 and Score MP136.P75 S2

Ween, Chocolate and Cheese, CD 19475

Nirvana, Bleach, CD 25662, Score MP126.N58 B5
Includes the song "Big Cheese"

Robyn Hitchcock, Jewels for SophiaCD 20374
Includes the song "The Cheese Alarm"

George & Ira Gershwin's Strike Up the Band, CD 7602
Includes the song "Fletcher's American Cheese Choral Society"

Edgar Meyer with Béla Fleck and Mike Marshall, Uncommon Ritual, CD 19351
Includes the song "The Big Cheese"

Friday, April 15, 2011

Remembering Joey Ramone

Joey Ramone, the gangly lead singer of one of the most influential punk bands, the Ramones, died ten years ago today after losing his battle with lymphatic cancer.

Of course the library has lots of material by the Ramones and about the Ramones.

A few highlights:

The Ramones, CD 23275
Their 1976 debut album that regularly turns up in lists of the greatest albums ever recorded. As Joey Ramone states in Please Kill Me: The Uncensored Oral History of Punk (ML3534 .P54 1996), the band recorded the album for $6,400 in a week at a time when superstar acts like Fleetwood Mac had recording budgets of half a million dollars and would spend years making an album. No wonder songs like "Blitzkrieg Bop" were hailed as a cleansing breath of fresh air compared to the bloated, rotting corpse of rock and roll at that time.

The Ramones: End of the Century, DVD 1593
It tells the story of the band but doesn't gloss over their difficult personalities.

Sleater-Kinney wrote a song in tribute to him, "I Wanna Be Your Joey Ramone," for their 1996 album Call the DoctorCD 15498

Thursday, April 14, 2011

National Library Week Trivia Contest

To celebrate National Library Week, Stan Getz Library will be posting library-related trivia questions to Twitter today and tomorrow. The contest is open to Berklee affiliates. We're giving away free burritos.

Follow us on Twitter.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Music, Brains and eBooks

Want to read up on music and the mind before our April 21 event, Music and Our Emotions? You can do so with with eBooks. You can view our eBooks on a computer or many other mobile devices; no proprietary device, i.e. Kindle, is needed. Just click on the links below for a few books related to the event. For access to our growing eBook collection, you can also limit your catalog search to "Electronic Books."

Language, Music, and Mind by Diana Raffman
Music, Language, and the Brain by Aniruddh D. Patel

Friday, April 8, 2011

Dave Grohl on Performance

NPR has an interview with lead Foo Fighter Dave Grohl, Dave Grohl: How To Make An Arena Feel Like A Punk Club. He cites Freddie Mercury, Paul McCartney and Bruce Springsteen as role models for how to bring intimacy to large-scale performance. Take a look at the Media Center and decide for yourself with these examples:

Queen Rock Montreal and Live Aid, DVD 3279-3280
Paul McCartney: Good Evening New York City, DVD 3889
Bruce Springsteen & the E Street Band: Live in New York City, DVD 515-516

While I'm not the U2 fan that I was once, I still continue to be amazed by Bono's ability to hold a huge audience in the palm of his hand. See for yourself and make up your own mind.

Elevation 2001: U2 Live from Boston, DVD 517-518

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Just Kids at Stan Getz

Want to know how to make the most of your tuition dollars at Berklee? Read for fun. Yes, our collection includes lots of materials to help you with your studies and performance, but we also have lots of music-related materials that the rest of the world is clamoring to get their hands on. Case in point: Just Kids by Patti Smith (ML420.S63 A3 2010). It won the 2010 National Book Award for Nonfiction. It's a New York Times bestseller. Public libraries in the area have huge lists of holds and can't buy enough copies to keep up with demand. And yet I'm the only person who has checked it from Stan Getz Library.

If you haven't heard about the book yet, it is the memoir of musician and poet Smith about her early adulthood in New York with her lover and friend photographer Robert Mapplethorpe. When they met, both were just starting to pursue their dreams of being artists. Together they forged their artistic identities and scraped by while doing so. The story winds down as their careers start to take off, when they are no longer "just kids."

Smith established herself as a writer long before embarking on this memoir, and the story is so exquisitely rendered that you don't have to be a fan or her or Mapplethorpe's work to enjoy it.

I'll be checking the book back in after completing this post, so come get it while it's hot and explore more of our books just for fun.

Monday, April 4, 2011

Victor Wooten Named to Top 10 Bassists in Rolling Stone Readers' Poll

Rolling Stone has been conducting weekly polls of their readers. In response to the recent question of who is the greatest bassist of all time, Victor Wootin made the Top 10. Check this out as well as the rest of the Victor Wootin display at Stan Getz Library before the April 8 Liberal Arts Symposium at which he is the featured guest.

Friday, April 1, 2011

Happy Birthday, Sub Pop

On April 1st, 1988, the lease for Sub Pop's first designated office space officially commenced, and the label now observes this as its founding date. The Seattle-based record record label became synonymous with the rise of grunge, releasing albums by Nirvana, Mudhoney and Soundgarden. Over the years, their geographic base expanded, with signings such as Cincinatti's Afghan Whigs and Denver's the Fluid, and their signature sound diversified, as heard in recent releases by the Shins, Fleet Foxes and Beach House.

Come to the Media Center to listen up on the influential label's musical offerings. Sub Pop founders Bruce Pavitt and Jonathan Poneman are among those interviewed in Hype! (DVD 2983), a documentary about the rise of grunge.