Quora: The Quality of Popular Music

just words

Original question: How do the record executives decide what music is in demand? Do they give the public what they are wanting, or just play certain music and then say that it is what people want?

My Answer:

That’s a good question!

I think it would be pure speculation, whether they tried to guess what the public is wanting, or not. Your assertion they play music “then say that it is what people want” makes me chuckle.

I spent 25-years in radio. During my career, radio would make or break a song. It’s still important, and what I’ll tell you here is still valid.

The bottom line is, these three truths: There are great bands out there you’ll never hear about; there are mediocre-in-every-way artists who are pushed by labels and agencies who you’d THINK were the best Continue reading “Quora: The Quality of Popular Music”

How the Internet Twists Reality

just words

Who are your friends?

It’s a question that should be asked again, now the Internet is underway and mankind has morphed around its powers, twisting bodies into huddled, comfortable little blobs that love to interconnect by cyberchat. Who are we connecting with?

Now we don’t, though, just align with people on the Internet, we align with groups, causes. And even though a world of information is immediately available, we don’t need more than a meme to make important choices. Continue reading “How the Internet Twists Reality”

The Final Episode of The Twilight Zone

The Final Conspiracy Theory

How far am I going to go? If you’ve been reading my recent articles, you may have me peeking down, right at the edge of the rabbit hole, just a tiny slip away from reporting insanity! What I’m writing doesn’t sound like reality. It sounds more like an episode of a TV show.

I wish it to be a classy old show with genuine humanoids writing and performing … like The Twilight Zone from back in the day!

How far will I go? Just following the dots! Keep your hat on!

I don’t know if it’s true, but it sure makes a great finale …

The Battle to Save Humanity

Get ready, my friends, to balance on a cliff of credibility.

“A respiratory virus doesn’t explain why people are magnetic! A respiratory virus doesn’t explain why people are spinning around thinking they’re being attacked by demons! A respiratory virus does not explain why, when a woman is injected, her baby is murdered inside of her womb, Continue reading “The Final Episode of The Twilight Zone”

Rhode Island Energy Encourages Customers to Prepare Now for Significantly Higher Winter Electricity Supply Prices

The following press release from Rhode Island Energy proposes, from the horse’s mouth, your electricity and natural gas prices are going up in the next six months! It’s unusual for a utility company to make an announcement like that, which sounds like a warning.

Below the press release you can learn more about the option mentioned in the release, “choosing a supplier that’s right for you.” For businesses of any size, savings can be substantial, and I can lead you through the simple process. I have access to a wide matrix of different suppliers who are licensed to broker and contract prices in states throughout the country, and there’s no obligation or cost to get a list of quotes.

Despite summer rates being the lowest in years, escalating costs of natural gas will have major impact on electricity supply prices starting October 1

PROVIDENCE, RI (July 21, 2022) – While most Rhode Islanders use less electricity in the winter months, they likely won’t see a decrease in their monthly electric bills this winter as they may have noticed in the past. That’s because there are several ongoing market conditions that are impacting most sectors of the economy, including the rising cost of natural gas and other global economic events, which are driving up the price of electricity supply.

Rhode Island Energy delivers electricity to customers, but it doesn’t own the power plants where that electricity is generated. Customers can shop around and choose the electricity supplier that is right for them. If a customer chooses not to shop around for electricity supply, the company secures the energy supply customers need to power their homes and businesses and passes it on to customers at cost without any profit. That rate is called the Last Resort Service (LRS) rate.

Today, Rhode Island Energy submitted its filing for the winter rate season to the Rhode Island Public Utilities Commission Continue reading “Rhode Island Energy Encourages Customers to Prepare Now for Significantly Higher Winter Electricity Supply Prices”

Save on Electricity and Natural Gas

High costs for fuel and electricity may be here for a long time.

This article will focus on one of my specialties, electricity pricing! It’s a business I got involved with a dozen years-ago. Today I’m focused only on commercial  accounts. Savings can be substantial.

Click HERE to get started, no obligation, no cost.

If you don’t currently have an energy supplier (or even if you do), please consider having me get you some (multiple) competitive quotes for electricity and natural gas. Continue reading “Save on Electricity and Natural Gas”

Guitar Lesson Three – Barre Chords

Guitar Lesson Three

Lesson three will begin as this document.
I may make it into a video later.

It’s inspired by a Quora question. Read on!

If a guitarist never makes an effort to learn barre chords, what are the playing experiences they’ll never be able to enjoy?

That’s a great question!

I can assure you, when you start playing barre chords, you’ll also start to learn how to play the guitar! You’ll begin to understand the simplicity of how the guitar is laid out and how to find all the notes you need!

Everything on a guitar is done is sections, even when it appears a guitarist is flying all over with his hands. There are simple reference points, which can be found by counting up to what fret you’re on, using the dot markings as reference points, or, most likely, using your current position as a reference point (where you’re moving from).

Hagstrom Viking and Hagstrom HL550 guitars. Choose your weapon!

Let me show you how versatile and simple the guitar can be, by starting in one place. There are many things you can “assign” to a location on the neck of the guitar. Then, I’ll show you how you can move at once, to another location, and, relatively-speaking, everything stays the same.

In other words, I’ll show you freedom and simplicity you can never see if you don’t come up the neck for both single notes and chords, as well as logic Continue reading “Guitar Lesson Three – Barre Chords”

The World’s Most Blatant Steal: Behringer (re)Introduces the Mackie Big Knob, and Puts it on Steroids!

When Mackie came out with its “Big Knob” series of monitor controllers (designed as big volume knobs to save you from having to walk over to your powered speakers and turn them up and down), it was a brilliant invention; and first of its kind!

Not any more.

Behringer,” a sister of the well-respected “Midas” gear and knob company, has obviously studied the Mackie Big Knob units very carefully, and their new offering, years after Mackie invented the thing, is basically an exact copy of the Mackie front panel layout Continue reading “The World’s Most Blatant Steal: Behringer (re)Introduces the Mackie Big Knob, and Puts it on Steroids!”

Neaky Freat

My Many Personalities!

We’re on a mighty trip!
We never get it right!
But God grades on a curve
You get what you deserve! A song!

By popular demand (not my cat!) I’ll do a Turkey Day share.
This is still in process, and represents my latest project.

It’s called “Neaky Freat.”
It’s about dancing.
I play all the instruments, designed the drums and wrote the tune.
Working on this in iMovie as I migrate to a better interface (DaVinci).
Also getting to know Apple Motion a little better, which is fun!
At this point, I haven’t added the bass guy, some FX and finishing. Continue reading “Neaky Freat”

Why Don’t Musicians Use Expensive Studio Microphones When Playing Live?

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Studio and Stage

Re-posting one of my articles from Quora. The question: “Why don’t musicians use expensive studio microphones when playing live?”

My Answer

Because a typical studio microphone would feed back.

Many studio mics have a pickup pattern that is very generous; a circular area around the microphone, as if viewed from above the mic, showing the primary area of pickup … almost like a radio station coverage area …

ALL stage microphones have a significantly different pattern. They’re designed NOT to pick up sound from behind Continue reading “Why Don’t Musicians Use Expensive Studio Microphones When Playing Live?”

Tennessee Whiskey and Its Effect on the iPhone 6 Video Performance, Featuring Malaena and Duke Robillard!

DJI Osmo Pocket Gimbal
vs
DJI OM-5 with iPhone 6

Here we have a fine local group in Connecticut that goes by the name “Malaena.” It’s a six-piece act and you’ll see they have a team of strong vocalists, including a bass player who sounds just like Van Morrison!

This was a casual outing, where I tested a DJI OM-5 gimbal arm that holds an iPhone. As a result, I was shooting this video in 1080p with my iPhone 6, which is actually software upgraded to an iPhone 7.

But that didn’t help!

The video performance of the older iPhones is poor in comparison to the DJI Osmo camera, and the Osmo will go to 4k and do even better. The iPhone footage is grainy, with no color depth Continue reading “Tennessee Whiskey and Its Effect on the iPhone 6 Video Performance, Featuring Malaena and Duke Robillard!”

Gear Review: Boss VE-8 Acoustic Singer

Review: Boss VE-8 Acoustic Singer

Something’s got to go in between your microphone and your PA system! Over years of working with doo dads and widgets, I can testify, there are many devices that belong nowhere in your setup. But if you find that thing that goes after the mic and before the speaker, it may turn out to be more important than either the mic or speaker! Continue reading “Gear Review: Boss VE-8 Acoustic Singer”

Love Yourself (Sheeran) – Mark Urso

So, I saw a great band, and they did this song, so I went home and figured it out. The only problem is, I’m not as great as they are!

Love Yourself

But I’m trying! Playing with a Boss VE-8 Acoustic Singer pedal, with no amp. The electric guitar is plugged into the pedal, which goes into my recording DAW. The pedal arrangement on the VE-8 is quite excellent. In all my time playing with audio equipment, I’ve never Continue reading “Love Yourself (Sheeran) – Mark Urso”