Category Archives: Music – Theater

Be not afraid of greatness:some are born great, some achieve greatness, and some have greatness thrust upon them. – From Act II, Scene V of “Twelfth Night”  by William Shakespeare (1564-1616)

Peter, Paul, and Mary

Peter Paul and Mary“Peter, Paul and Mary are folk singers.” So stated the liner notes to the group’s self-titled 1962 debut album. Today, this declaration seems redundant, because the term “folk music” has come to be virtually interchangeable with the group name, but when the words were written, they were meant less as a stylistic distinction than as a mission statement.

In the decades prior to the ‘60s, through the work of such avatars as Woody Guthrie, the Weavers and Pete Seeger, folk music had become identified with sociopolitical commentary, but the idiom had been forced underground in the Senator Joe McCarthy witch-hunting era of the late ‘50s.

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Loog – Three string guitar

three string guitar

Another day, another three-stringed guitar on Kickstarter. This instrument comes to us courtesy of Rafael Atijas and started out as a thesis project at NYU. It is a simple, 3-string guitar for kids that is tuned to open chords and allows you to strum up and down the neck without having to perform many fretting maneuvers. The guitar comes unassembled and includes an instruction book.

The project isn’t currently funded (we suspect it will be shortly) but the guitar costs $150 and for $300 you get a special lesson from Rafael himself. $500 gets you a few guitars while $1,000 gets you a set of two. The Loog is also upgradeable.

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Three Trapped Tigers

Three Trapped Tigers

Three Trapped Tigers are three guys from the UK who create experimental music. So far they’ve released one EP each year, for the last three years. Each song that they have made on these EPs runs into each other so that each track’s title is numbered chronologically (i.e the three EPs have a total of thirteen tracks numbered one to thirteen).

Despite their serious OCD issues the music is, at first listen, a chaotic. Explosions of aggression from guitars and frenzied trashing chords are all too common in Three Trapped Tigers’ music. On closer inspection, you soon realise there is actually organisation to this sonic madness, extremely tight organisation. So what you actually get is angular riffs, rave synth lines, electronic beats sporadically taking over the drums and soothing downtempo pads. You realise that you actually end up where you started, there are so many sounds going on, placed with extreme accuracy to shock you at the perfect moment.

Video on Vimo here

Three Dog Night

Three Dog NightThree Dog Night touted itself on being "pure entertainment" in an era of musical messages. They were there to look good and make hit records, and that’s exactly what they did, amassing fourteen gold or platinum awards between 1969 and 1976. They outlasted nearly all of their contemporaries, and most of their critics.

"We were blasted back then," said co-founder Danny Hutton, "by people who thought ‘commercial’ was a dirty word. Yeah, we weren’t ‘purists.’ Purists believe there’s some virtue in being unknown and living in poverty. We wanted to play music that would have a broad appeal — please the greatest number of people. If being commercial meant satisfying your audience, then yes, we were commercial. And proud of it."

Three Dog Night began their streak in 1969 with "Try a Little Tenderness," "One," "Easy to Be Hard," and "Eli’s Coming." In 1970, the hits continued with "Celebrate," "Mama Told Me (Not to Come)," "Out in the Country" and "One Man Band." Cory Wells, another founder (along with Chuck Negron), talked about the biggest of those songs.

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