Friday, June 23, 2006

Working for stupid and stupid.
From Coolfer, "The Wall Street Journal's Walt Mossberg, the king of gadget reviews, put some humorous, thoughtful questions to Sony's Sir Howard Stringer in yesterday's article."

"Mr. Mossberg: You own a record company.

Mr. Stringer: I do.

Mr. Mossberg: How's that going? How is it to own of the four big entrants in one of the stupider industries in the world...?"

Mr. Stringer: And it's not true that I beat my wife either ... I think you're right about the music companies. They are like all companies that are great and are doing things really well and having a fantastic time. They want the status quo to remain long after the quo has lost any status.

The record companies, remember, were not enthusiastic about the CD. They loved plastic and when the CD came along, they said, 'whoa, look -- windfall.' They were resistant to the digital world and in a way they forced Sony to try and create a music-download system that was utterly and completely secure, and that turned outto be a dream that customers didn't want. Customers drive everything now, not the product.

Mr. Mossberg: Well, on that theme, when is your next copy-protected CD coming out that will install, you know, malicious software? How did that happen?

Mr. Stringer: Actually, it didn't go so far. Computers did not crash. Big Ben did not stop. I'm not trying to blame sombody else, but this was an attempt to do the right thing at a low level. The senior management of BMG or Sony did not know this was going on. We responded very quickly and put out patches. ... We didn't say to ourselves as a company, we're going to screw every computer in town. We made a mistake and Sony paid a terrible price."

All-singing, all-dancing, Costanza
via Franklin Ave, Seinfeld's Jason Alexander in a McD's ad, with a full head of hair.

Quote of the week...
Portishead's Geoff Barrow talks about the new Portishead album, porgressing slowly, over at the band's myspace page... spied at Drowned in Sound...

"The tracks are in a right mess but sounding like [an] album for the first time in years. It’s nice to think us old gits have a few tunes in us without sounding like coffee table Zero 7 [or] Moby chill-out shit!"

"... i wish i was in one of them rock bands that jams for about 6 hours and writes 3 tracks..........called 'mother fuker" or "whiskey woman"

[we] should hire "dangermouse" he would knock up a portishead album in about a week and the kidz would dig it .... it would sell buket loads..........get damon alburn to sing on it ......WICKED!!!!! DOPE........!!!!

fuk em.

im gonna watch the footy."

A few weeks back, I had the pleasure of DJing at the album listening party for local lads The WBC - if you're out and about this evening, check them out. They're celebrating their album release, with an in-store at Real Groovy Auckland at 6pm, and gig at the King's Arms later on in the evening. Righto.

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Listen to solid steel
The Esso Trinidad Steel Band are responsible for one of my fave cover versions ever - I Want You Back. And here's a handy wee music blog with a bunch of steel drum tunes for your enjoyment (check out Gary Numan's Cars done steel drum styles!). The Esso Trinidad Steel Band worked with a variety of folk, including Van Dyke Parks, and Liberace. Snip...

"... One of the band’s biggest breaks occurred during one of their performances at the Expo ‘67. Liberace, the world famous pianist, became fascinated with the band, offering them an opening slot in his show and taking them on tour for two years. Borde recalls, “He was very proud to present to the people in America, this unique type of music. He would come and play ‘12th Street Rag’ or ‘Alleycat’ with us.” With Liberace sitting in on a few songs, Tripoli recorded an album (‘Liberace Presents the Trinidad Tripoli Steel Band’), that later went on to win a Grammy Award..." Link.

Listen to calypso music fanatic Van Dyke Parks about his days traveling with Liberace and the Esso Trinidad Tripoli Steelband.

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Insert clever headline here
If you read the Weekend Herald, you would have seen their tacky little story on the hard times of Mr Pauly Fuemana, the man behind OMC and their huge hit How Bizarre. He has been judged bankrupt, which seems rather odd, given that the song must still be a serious earner. Simon Grigg gets quoted in the Herald's story (without permission, he notes) and has written a post on his blog about it, well worth a read. Simon was closely involved with OMC thru his record label Huh.

snip... "I’m not sure what to say about this rather unpleasant little story in the once mighty but now, only-just-crawling-above-tabloid-level NZ Herald... what saddens me is the way New Zealand so happily crucifies those who it previously celebrated. He has made some financial mistakes, mainly through inexperience, bad advice (and I note that some of those to whom he owed large sums were those to whom entrusted himself for advice, and others who rushed at him as way to make a quick buck but turned) Pauly has done little wrong beyond naivety. In fact he has done a lot right. He waved the flag for his nation all over the world. He was a proud ambassador of his nation and his people...

"I sat with him in radio stations on the other side of the world when he extolled the virtues of New Zealand as a place to live to millions, and, with immense pride explained to newspaper reporters, smitten by his handsome charm, as to the significance of the tattoos on his arms. Indeed, when How Bizarre took off there was massive pressure to re-locate to the UK, and I put it to Pauly but he told me he wanted to raise his family in New Zealand, he loved it and it was home. I understood..." Read Simon's post here.