Tag Archives: music

I don’t quite understand how the swarthy, slapstick cartoon, Popeye, fits with the uptempo, lively sound of Wilco’s new track “Dawn on Me,” but I am excited to see the spinach-guzzling seafarer once again.

Wilco teamed up with King Features (who’s been producing Popeye cartoons since 1932) to create the first hand-drawn Popeye cartoon in more than 30 years. Featuring Popeye, Olive Oyl, Swee’ Pea, Bruno, and the hamburger-obsessed Wimpy, this collaborative music video draws Wilco into the animated world of America’s oldest blue collar hero and incorporates some of the series reoccurring jokes for fans. “Ug-gug-gug-gug.”

Bohemian Rhapsody is one of those songs we all sing in the car when it comes on. I don’t know whether that’s because of Wayne’s World, or just because it’s a cultural institution at this point, but despite its 10/10 sing-along potential, it’s actually an enormously complicated song. How complicated? Let me quote the Wikipedia article below:

Recording began at Rockfield Studio 1 near Monmouth on 24 August 1975, after a 3-week rehearsal in Herefordshire. During the making of the track, an additional four studios (Roundhouse, SARM (East), Scorpion, and Wessex) were used.[1] According to some band members, Mercury mentally prepared the song beforehand and directed the band throughout. Mercury used a Bechstein “concert grand” piano, which he played in the promotional video and the UK tour. Due to the elaborate nature of the song, it was recorded in various sections, held together by a drum click to keep all layers synchronised. May, Mercury, and Taylor reportedly sang their vocal parts continually for ten to twelve hours a day. The entire piece took three weeks to record, and in some sections featured 180 separate overdubs.

Okay, so obviously this is too much for one single person to take on, right?

Enter Richie Castellano: Challenge Accepted.

Granted this isn’t just some random guy, Richie Castellano has a Master’s in music from SUNY and has been the guitarist and vocalist of Blue Oyster Cult since 2004, but you still gotta admire his moxy at seeing one of rock’s most complex songs and saying “Hold my calls, I got this.” It’s almost unfair at how well he pulls it off too. I won’t quite say it’s effortless, but it’s damn fine musicianship and must have taken a fair bit of time to break down, plan out, and pull off.

And boy does he pull it off…

It’s fairly well established by now that we’re suckers for any video that uses movie clips in a clever way. And this musical mashup does just that!

Created by Matthijs Vlot (who’s web servers have died due to the popularity), this video clip art of famous movie moments embraces the emotions of both the films each clip is pulled from and the crooner of a love song they compose. Quite impressive!

(Warning: You will most definitely catch yourself humming this song at inappropriate times for the rest of the day. Yet another reason why the Internet makes life interesting…)

Michael Bublé is one of the coolest people alive – there’s really no debating that. He’s a modern-day crooner who’s charted a path through the pop landscape, armed only with a silky voice, and a shitload of swagger. But fame means dealing with fans, and sometimes fans are crazy – like a mom who stops a concert to tell Michael her 15 year-old son wants to be a singer.

Trust me on this one: you really have to see how this ends.

…more specifically, the Pentatonic Scale. I hesitate to give any more away for fear of robbing you of some really amazing moments, so I’ll instead deviate from form and just copy the Youtube description:

Musical artist Bobby McFerrin directs his audience in a demonstration of the power of the pentatonic scale at the event “Notes Neurons: In Search of the Common Chorus” from the 2009 World Science Festival.

I feel I’ve made my love of mashups and remixes abundantly clear by this point, so it should come as no surprise that this week’s post remixes, art, sci-fi, movies, and a healthy dose of the surreal. But here’s another secret: I really love the movie A.I. – I know, I’m maybe the only one, but there’s something about that film that really hit he hard. The questions about the veracity of simulated and/or scripted responses to external stimuli, the inhumanity of humanity, the idea that our evolutionary successors might not be biological but technological – all of these were fascinating ideas to me, and have stuck in my mind every since.

So I’m excited that Pogo, one of the more innovative video remix musicians in the genre, decided to take on the film with a beautiful piece called Davyd. Whether or not you enjoyed the film, there’s a lot worth experiencing here. Pogo really captures a lot of the sweeter aspects of the film, preferring to utilize sounds from the first and third acts almost exclusively, while excluding the darker second act almost entirely.

This is one video best enjoyed via headphones. There’s just so much nuance and musical composition that really comes through with a more isolated soundscape. Either way, it’s a creative new spin on a familiar work of art, and I’m glad to have experienced it.

I bumped into this epic music mashup last week and decided to hold on to it for today. Why? Because I love it. There is something about the Shaft theme that some how makes the Imperial March more menacing in a “oh no you didn’t” sort of way.

The track was recorded live on a APC40 by Chris Evans-Roberts then layered with matching video in Adobe Premiere. If you find yourself as addicted to this funktastic mashup as I am, ‘don’t hold back’ and download the song for free here.

I’ll just say from the outset that I’m a passing hip-hop fan, and understand only a little about how beatboxing incorporates into hip-hop. So maybe it’s just me, but until this video started I was unaware that the human voice was even able to make some of these sounds. French beatboxer Eklips doesn’t just stop with mimicking drum and bass though, as he’s got a truly impressive ability to imitate both human and instrumental sounds (Seriously, horns? The guy just throws out trumpets like it’s nothing…) and even simulates postproduction studio effects at some points.

I came away truly impressed at both his skill, as well as his ability to do everything you hear in a single 4 minute take. I think the true test of whether or not something’s awesome is if you feel compelled to immediately hit up Google and start searching for more, and I’ve got five different tabs awaiting my ears.