Tuesday, January 27, 2009

"Its the final countdown...Were leaving together,But still its farewell and maybe we'll come back,To [class], who can tell?" Europe

1. I thought the Native American culture was very interesting. It's so different to our culture and yet it was here before we were. When they marry, the man moves to the woman's tribe. It's almost the opposite of what happens in our culture. The woman takes the man's name.
2. I think it's amazing how influential our culture is. Our modern music has been absorbed by most of the cultures we've studied. Of course they have developed it and made it their own. However it's, funny that our music is just a melting pot of other cultures' music (African drums+Spanish six string guitar= rock). So essentially many cultures are reabsorbing their own music. Well... an evolved version of their own music.
3. I definitely want to learn more about blues. I'd like to explore a "bluesy" voice. Not here at Converse obviously, but independently... If only I could play the guitar or were a better piano player. Bo Diddley is the coolest.

Friday, January 23, 2009

"Music doesn't lie. If there is something to be changed in this world, then it can only happen through music." Jimi Hendrix

I thought that the Japanese puppet show was honestly the best puppet show I'd ever seen. While searching for more I came across a Japanese puppet show trailer for the video game Harvest Moon: Animal March and it just so happens I've been playing Harvest Moon: Another Wonderful Life recently so I found this amusing. It's in Japanese so I can't understand a word of it, but its fun none the less.

I also find Geisha very interesting. Westerners have a misconception about Geisha. Most people think they are prostitutes, but they are more like entertainers. This Geisha trio includes two percussionists and a flutist.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

"Rock, Flag, and Eagle!" Charlie Day

When I think of music and society, I think of protest music, or that is what I am most familiar with. John Lennon is one of my favorite peace advocates. His song "Imagine" is probably his most well known songs. The song calls for peace and kindness for all people and between all people. I even have a pair of special edition John Lennon converse all-stars. I also thinkof the protest CD that was released in 2004 entitled "Rock Against Bush." When I first heard about this project I thought it was an anti war call for peace kind of thing. Several of my favorite bands contributed to the volume, including The Offspring, Flogging Molly, and Sugarcult. However, it ended up being a Bush "bash." I'm no Bush fan, but I do think that the president deserves some degree of respect. I did some research on the volume for this blog and I found out that it was inspired by The Rock Against Racism tour in the 1970's. Rock Against Racism (RAR) was founded after Eric Clapton and David Bowie made some racist remarks. RAR performers included Carol Grimes and one of my favorite bands of all time, The Clash.

Then there is the government's censorship of music. According to Wikipedia, Isreal banned music by Wagner and Beethoven. They were banned because of their association with the Nazi Germany era. Although both composers were dead before the Nazi movements.

Friday, January 16, 2009

"Music expresses that which cannot be said and on which it is impossible to be silent." Victor Hugo

For this cool stuff entry I began at wikipedia with this article http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Latin_American_music. I was then drawn to the sub catatgory titled Indigenous music. Here the article talks about several instruments that the early Mayans and Aztecs played. This is the tlapitzalli, also known as a clay duet flute.

This tlapitzalli looks like the instrument that Mr. Tumnus plays in the most recent The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe film.

I am a huge nerd so I also had to include the ocarina that the article talks about. This is what I think of when I think of ocarina:

but this is a real ocarina that would be used in latin America:

Latin American Idol!!!
My WiFi keeps going out so I can't get the video to download. I'm posting the link for now and I'll post the video when I have a more dependable connection.http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xLPnG2z1CFQ

Thursday, January 15, 2009

"Music washes away from the soul the dust of everyday life." Berthold Auerbach

We all know the traditional rite songs for weddings and funerals.("Here comes the Bride" and "Taps") I never thought about any other rites until the assignment of this blog. If you consider yearly milestones as rites then every birthday is a rite. Wikipedia includes rites of worship in their entry titled "Rite." That would mean every time a church gathers to worship, they are participating in a rite. The entry also includes rites of passage, such as graduation. I never thought of a graduation as a type of rite. We sang a Faith Hill song at my highschool graduation. which I thought was odd, but it worked. Dr. Moody arranged it himself.
I've noticed that many people are choosing to stray from the music traditionally played at certain rites. Usually religious songs are played at funerals, but people are vouching for playing the deceased's favorite song like "Bohemian Rhapsody" instead of "Amazing Grace." My grandfather's funeral was more traditional. We sang one of his favorite hymns and when we were done one of my aunts broke into an impromptu song that was apparently another of his favorite songs. Also I went to a wedding that the bride didn't walk down the aisle to "Here Comes the Bride." I wish I could remember what it was. It was very interesting.

Monday, January 12, 2009

"There is nothing in the world so much like prayer as music is." William P. Merrill

The first song I ever sang in front of a crowd was "Jesus Loves Me." Granted, I was 5 and my grandfather was the pastor. Music and religion have always been present in my life. I don't remember much about my grandfather's church because he retired not long after my musical debut. My mother "tried on" a few other churches after my grandfather retired. Each church we visited handled music differently. The Baptist church played some classics like "The Old Rugged Cross," and the audience did little more than sing. The evangelical church had a lot more audience participation. The audience was dancing in the aisles. There isn't a strict guideline on how to perform worship, at least not in Christian churches. I'll admit, I only have experience with Christian religions. I have no idea how non-Christians go about worshiping their chosen deity.

Until fairly recently (and as far as I know in my limited experience), rock n' roll was banned from traditional churches. My grandmother loves to remind me that the drums in rock music sprang forth from pagan societies and therefore do not belong a house of God or in my CD player. However, now there are several denominations that allow popular Christian music like the Newsboys or Relient K. So I would say music influences religion in a big way. The modern Christian music that I have heard in churches is still always melodious. I'm pretty sure Christian "screamo" still isn't accepted.

Music is always, if not a religious, a spiritual experience. Everyone is touched by some form of music.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

"One good thing about music, when it hits you, you feel no pain." Bob Marley


Did you guys know that there is a Native American Music Awards ?

Here's a website that sells Native American instruments. www.kesslermusic.com/HighSpirits/flutes.htm


I found this really cool website that promotes musicians from Africa. It's like myspace only less lame. http://www.africanmusiciansprofiles.com/ansprofiles.com/ This site has everything from modern music to traditional African music.
This video channel is dedicated to promoting African music in the U.S.http://www.youtube.com/user/idamawatu

These musical horns are made from the horns of a Kudu, pictured below.