Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Chocolate Records: The Ultimate Social Object

Last week, George Howard posted to the Tunecore blog 10 Inaccurate, Erroneous or Irrelevant Things Being Stated about Marketing, Promotion, and Success in the Music Industry. First on his list debunked myths was that the resurgence in vinyl was due to sound quality; he posited that vinyl is popular as a social object, something tangible that can be shown to and shared with others in ways that digital music can't.

Taking this idea to its logical conclusion is a baker who is creating chocolate records that are both playable and edible. The video shows how he took the idea from conception through several failed prototypes until he came up with a solution that worked.

Fife baker creates vinyl record out of chocolate

Monday, June 27, 2011

Film Scoring Takes Center Stage

The Sunday Boston Globe movie section devoted an article to film's greatest score composers:
Keeping score of the greatest film composers

The article also highlighted the two upcoming series at the Brattle Theatre in Cambridge marking the centennials of composers Bernard Herrmann and Nino Rota. Of course the library has works by Herrmann and Rota, but their film scores can best be appreciated watching their movies on the big screen.

Friday, June 24, 2011

Happy Birthday, Jeff Beck

Guitar dynamo Jeff Beck turns 67 today. His career is showing no signs of slowing down, so why not mark the occasion by checking out his music at the library? We have CDs, scores, and videos of his performances. We also have a method book, In Session with Jeff Beck (MT588 .B436 1999) with six works in standard and tablature notation for electric guitar, with chord symbols. It includes biographical information and a CD containing full and backing tracks, and demonstration of solos.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Celebrating Summer in Song

It's the first day of summer. PopMatters has compiled their own list of the Best Music for Summer that includes some favorites of the library staff, including "It Must Be Summer" by Fountains of Wayne from Utopia Parkway (CD 18601) and Spilt Milk by Jellyfish (CD 17902); their staff must share our fondness for power pop.

If you want to track down more songs about summer, or songs about almost any subject, take a look at The Green Book: Songs Classified by Subject, compiled by Jeff Green (Reference ML128.S3 G74 1989). It includes songs from across musical genres and is a boon not only for radio DJs but anyone trying to assemble a themed playlist or set list. Under "Seasons: Summer" are songs such as "Summer in the City"by the Lovin' Spoonful (on CD 5004) and Ella Fitzgerald and Louis Armstrong's performance of "Summertime" from Porgy & Bess (CD 18756).

While some subjects lend themselves to novelty (food; insects), some could be helpful for class assignments (peace; war, battles, military, soldiers) or finding appropriate music for a Halloween party (monsters, ghosts, vampires).

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

We Want Your Opinion

The library wants to hear from you! If at least 40 people fill out this survey, we'll randomly select one of you for $10 at Crazy Dough. If we make it to 100 people, we'll enter everyone into a drawing for a $50 Newbury Comics gift card, so tell your friends to fill it out, too.

Only currently enrolled Berklee students who are not employees of the library are eligible for prizes, but anyone can respond to the survey.

Stan Getz Library Media Center Survey

Monday, June 6, 2011

RIP Producer Martin Rushent

Martin Rushent, a producer whose work in the early 1980s created songs that were staples in the early years of MTV, has passed away at 63. Slicing Up Eyeballs has an obituary:

Martin Rushent, Producer of Human League, Buzzcocks and Stranglers, 1948-2011

Music he produced is available at the Media Center, including:

Buzzcocks: Operators Manual: Buzzcocks Best (CD 5418)
The Go-Gos: Go-Go's Greatest (CD 10187)
Human League: Dare! (CD 16446)
Human League: Greatest Hits (CD 6473)
The Stranglers: Greatest Hits 1977-1990 (CD 24750)
XTC: Waxworks: Some Singles 1977-1982 (CD 4886)

Friday, June 3, 2011

Hot Books from the Library on your iPad

You may already know that the library has a sizable collection of eBooks, but did you know that we have hot new titles and that you can read them on your iPad?

You can find our eBooks by searching our catalog, just as you would for any other materials. The collection will say "Electronic Books," and the item information will include a URL to allow you to view and download the book. You will need to install Adobe Digital Editions on your computer.

On your iPad, install Bluefire Reader, a free app. Bluefire provides complete instructions on how to download library eBooks and put them on your iPad.

So what are you going to read? How about Out of the Vinyl Deeps, a collection of writing by pop music critic and feminist Ellen Willis. Willis was the first pop music critic for the New Yorker. She started in 1968, at a time when rock criticism was a fledgling profession and women in that field were a rarity. The book has been generating a lot of press, such as this report from NPR's Fresh Air. Why not add it to your non-required summer reading list?

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

What's Going On - 40 Years Later

NPR offers a commentary on the 40th anniversary of Marvin Gaye's groundbreaking album What's Going On and its title track. The library has plenty of resources to revisit and learn more about the topic including:
From NPR: What's Going On: A Departure That Defined A Generation