musical musings

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i’m just going to leave this here.

i haven’t had the words since this happened. i just want to thank you for the memories.


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Austin City Limits 2017

Well, it’s OFFICIAL – I’m going to Austin City Limits this coming October (weekend one)!!! *internally screams*

Who else is going? Who are you most excited to see?




learned a new word today to finally describe this feeling i get when i listen to certain songs.

wikipedia definition: frisson (french for ‘shiver’) is a sensation somewhat like shivering, usually caused by stimuli. it is typically expressed as an overwhelming emotional response combined with piloerection (goosebumps). stimuli that produce a response are specific to the individual.

frisson is of short duration, usually no more than 4–5 seconds, usually pleasurable.[1] typical stimuli include loud passages of music and passages that violate some level of musical expectation.[2]

my definition: “scorn” by portishead (a remix of glory box that i discovered from watching an old favorite movie, the craft). this song gives me serious frisson.

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my year in music 2014

i’d like to think of 2014 as my “year of travel.” i usually sit back and reflect on the year as it comes to an end and try to think of one category to place it in. this year i traveled a lot (for me) – cruised to the southern caribbean, toured israel for my second time on a 10 day trip, spent 10 days in southern california, spent a weekend in nyc at governor’s ball, relaxed and partied in provincetown for a weekend, returned to my old stomping grounds in pittsburgh for a couple of days and hung out on cape cod.

my travels introduced me to new music as well as inspired me to dig back into the archives and listen to some old favorites to fit my mood.

according to spotify, who tracked my listening habits throughout the year (creeps!), i actually listened to a lot of reggae rock. weird. i didn’t even realize how much i had been listening to pepper (who i’m sad to say was horrible live) and damien marley.

one of my favorite songs of the year was “wotless” by kes the band. i heard this song on a boat in barbados that took me snorkeling on gatorade-blue waters and it was so beyond fitting for the scene that i could’t even deal. i didn’t have access to wifi out on the ocean (drats!) but i managed to use my super-savvy music obsession skills and wrote down some of the lyrics so i could look it up later on. i listened to “wotless” so many times after the cruise just to try and relive some of those moments. it made me a little less depressed that i don’t actually live on an island and i spend winters shoveling out my car every other day.

governor’s ball was huge for discovering new bands to listen to. after my weekend in nyc, i gained a newfound appreciation for disclosure, and started listening to the war on drugs, bleachers and banks. it also made me nostalgic for some old favorites like outkast, the strokes, julian casablancas, tv on the radio, the naked and famous and the kills. plus, i got to see jack white – and ended up seeing him again at fenway park, which was incredible.

my trip to israel reintroduced me to one of my old favorites, matisyahu. it just seemed right to listen to my fav jewish rapper while i was there. he totally gets it. i also started listening to bastille more while i was in israel because i had just seen them at gov ball a week before i went – i felt electric when it was 3:30 am with the sunrise peeping over the horizon and my tour bus was driving through the desert on the way up to mount masada and i had “of the night” playing in my ears.

going to california enabled me to see one of my favorite bands of 2013, haerts, as well as get to know another band i only vaguely knew, st. lucia. both of the bands had the perfect sound for my surroundings in sunny southern california. “wings” by haerts will always be one of my favorite songs and st. lucia was the perfect backdrop to my beach days.

i got to meet some musicians this year as well through my job at the river. i met ingrid michaelson, phillip phillips, melissa etheridge, deer tick (twice), the hold steady, paolo nutini, st. paul and the broken bones, foster the people and hozier. after meeting these musicians in person i typically went home and binge-listened to them for about a week. all of them were pretty cool, also – #1 coolest though was paolo nutini, who actually spent time with us during the promotion just chatting and goofing around – not just strictly business.

overall this year was fantastic all things considered – a lot of new changes and excitement with music to accompany everything that was going on. 2015, we ready.

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top 5 favorite creepy songs for halloween

if you know me, you’ll know that i love horror. i love to be scared. i’ll always choose a horror movie over a comedy or drama (or anything else). i’m not sure why, but i just love it. i’ve watched so many horror films that i actually feel numb to even getting scared by them anymore (besides the occasional movie that makes me nearly pee myself).

along with my love of the horror movie genre is my love of creepy music. i actually have a spotify playlist called “evil” so i can catalog all my strange and scary music choices. am i weirding you out yet?

in honor of halloween this friday, i’ve compiled a list of my top 5 favorite creepy songs to send shivers down your spine (in no particular order).

1. “living dead girl” by rob zombie

i love me some rob zombie. his grungy horror style appeals to me for some reason (in both his movies and music). there’s nothing like sitting down with a bowl of popcorn and watching the devil’s rejects for the hundredth time. this song is one of my favorites, but i recently discovered an album of his called american made music to strip by which features all remixes of some of his most popular songs. if you like this, you should check it out. white zombie is pretty great too.

2. “house of the rising sun” by lauren o’connel

i first heard this song in a commercial for american horror story: coven. i didn’t really live the show that season, but i had to find this song after i heard it. it’s a cover of the classic by the animals, but this version gives me actual goosebumps every single time i listen to it. she sings the song in a slow and sultry style, and i actually listened to the lyrics more closely to realize this song is a lot heavier than i had always thought. her voice is reminiscent of a dark lana del rey. in fact, i think she should totally cover this song as well.

3. “personal jesus” by marilyn manson

marilyn manson looks like he celebrates halloween 365 days of the year. i love his dark twist on this song, especially with the juxtaposition of his antichrist image and the topic of jesus and faith. there are lots of versions of this song and i enjoy all of them; most notably by depeche mode and johnny cash. but marilyn manson’s version is perfectly deranged – check out the video to see how weird he looks holding a cute little baby.

4. “scorn” by portishead

this dark and sexy remix of the song “glorybox” is featured in one of my favorite witch movies, the craft. it conjures up images of dark magic and mischief. portishead is one of my favorite trip hop bands ever and i can’t get enough of them – this song though never ceases to intrigue me and creep me out at the same time.

5. “mad world” by gary jules and michael andrews

donnie darko is one of my favorite movies. every time i watch it, i come up with a new conclusion to what i think might have actually happened. it twists my mind in a million directions. i also love the soundtrack…quietly creepy and chill-inducing. this song is probably the most well known from the movie, and it’s a cover of the classic from the band tears for fears. i prefer this version, though – sort of dark and lonely and introspective, and reminiscent of the feel of the movie itself.

this was tough – i probably could’ve replaced a few of these with a nine inch nails or echo and the bunnymen song, but it was hard to choose. what would you have added?tumblr_nap219pfaE1tjsogwo1_400

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smart people listen to radiohead and dumb people listen to beyoncé, according to new study

i just have to say, this made me LOL.

Consequence of Sound

How does a person’s intelligence relate to the type of music they listen to? For the last several years, a software application writer by the name of Virgil Griffith has charted musical tastes based on the average SAT scores of various college institutions. For example, students attending the California Institute of Technology have an average SAT score of 1520. By looking at Facebook to determine the most popular (or — “liked”) band of students at Cal Tech, Griffith was able to conclude that Radiohead really truly is music for smart people. A highly scientific study, I know.

As Digital Inspiration points out, Griffith’s latest chart reveals Sufjan Stevens, Bob Dylan, The Shins, and — uh — Counting Crows as other favorite bands of smart people. Meanwhile, Lil Wayne, Beyoncé, The Used, and gospel music comes in at the lower end of the spectrum — or, as Griffith puts it, is music for dumb people.

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nme’s 100 most influential artists (and who they missed)

i’ll get right to the point. here’s their list:

100. Deerhunter
99. The Cure
98. Yeah Yeah Yeahs
97. Iceage
96. Country Teasers
95. Dirty Projectorsde5d89f27c935733bfcccb5ecb1c75b7
94. Richard Hawley
93. Black Lips
92. St. Vincent
91. Foals
90. Flying Lotus
89. Simple Minds
88. Oneohtrix Point Never
87. Billy Bragg
86. The Triffids
85. Black Flag
84. Nine Inch Nails
83. The Jesus and Mary Chain
82. Massive Attack
81. Animal Collective
80. Dusty Springfield
79. Suicide
78. Stevie Wonder
77. Best Coast
76. Vampire Weekend
75. The Wedding Present
74. Slint
73. Wu-Tang Clan
72. Grimes
71. Rilo Kiley
70. Pharrell
69. Nick Lowe
68. The National
67. Jay Z
66. The Slits
65. Diplo
64. The Zombies
63. Talk Talk
62. The
61. DJ Shadow
60. DJ Rashad
59. Chic
58. Black Sabbath
57. James Blake
56. Happy Mondays
55. The Chills
54. Aphex Twin
53. The Fall
52. Nas
51. Television
50. Sufjan Stevens
49. Death From Above 1979
48. Bat For Lashes
47. The Cars
46. Wiley
45. T Rex
44. Bikini Kill
43. New Order
42. PJ Harvey
41. Led Zeppelin
40. Tame Impala
39. Brian Jonestown Massacre
38. Dr. Dre
37. Kraftwerk
36. My Bloody Valentine
35. TV on the Radio
34. Depeche Mode
33. The Knife
32. Pavement
31. Bjorktumblr_lhrie5vGYd1qg35us
30. Bon Iver
29. Bruce Springsteen
28. Beck
27. The Stone Roses
26. Fleetwood Mac
25. Nirvana
24. Queens of the Stone Age
23. Burial
22. Sonic Youth
21. Hole
20. Prince
19. Neutral Milk Hotel
18. Aaliyah
17. Blur
16. The Velvet Underground
15. Jonathan Richman & The Modern Lovers
14. The Clash
13. Joy Division
12. The Breeders
11. The Smiths
10. The xx
09. Nick Cave
08. Kate Bush
07. The Gun Gun Club
06. The Flaming Lips
05. The Strokes
04. The White Stripes
03. Kanye West
02. David Bowie
01. Radiohead

…and here’s who they (quite obviously, in my opinion) missed – in no particular order:

the beatlesF05F7927-71AA-49A7-B8EF-687AF7108BC9
the who
jimi hendrix
bob dylan
the rolling stones
the talking heads
neil young
johnny cash
michael jackson
pearl jam
daft punk
arcade fire
miles davis
little richard
james brown

for justification/explanation on how nme created the list, check out their blog post on the topic.

did i miss any? please, correct me if i’m wrong.