Detroit-based indie rockers The High Strung
, whose penchant for playing live music in libraries was the subject of a This American Life feature
, were invited to play a show at the Guantanamo Bay library this summer. They said yes. What followed is documented in a Vanity Fair
article, written by the older brother of one of the bandmembers.
Some of their turnout may have been siphoned off by the presence of another group that had flown in with them [m]ade up of about eight active-duty armed forces members(...) "They're called USA Express," Derek said. "Which is probably the worst band name in the world. That's the best we can do, the all-powerful minds of the U.S. military? Anything would be better than that. The Rangers. The Fighters. Really, anything.
USA Express was also a rock band, but in a different idiom. They played covers of contemporary hits, as instructed by the Army. "Nothing they did was their decision," Derek said. "Where they went, how long they performed, their playlist. The Army said, You have to learn these 60 songs, and your first tour starts in three weeks. Go." For prurience sake, I asked what the 60 songs were. "Something by Pink, 'Freebird,' 'Billie Jean.'" Derek laughed. "That was the highlight of their first show for me actually, 'Billie Jean,' because I was invited to sit in. Their drummer was this 52 year-old dude, and he wanted to perform some dance moves during 'Billie Jean,' so they asked me to cover for him, and he got up and did this Michael Jackson-style dancing while we played.
Video of that "Michael Jackson-style dancing" after the jump. The High Strung Rocks Gitmo (Vanity Fair, thanks Mark Kleiman)
The new Gorillaz video, the first track in six years from the animated, virtual band, features real singer and Mercury Prize winner Benjamin Clementine crooning in Trump Tower. The song is called… “Hallelujah Money.”
William Onyeabor, the Nigerian musician who pioneered African electro-funk in the 1970s, has died. He was 70-years-old. Onyeabor’s music experienced a resurgence in recent years thanks to the Luaka Bop label’s reissues of his deeply groovy albums. From Luaka Bop: It is with incredibly heavy hearts that we have to announce that the great Nigerian […]
Traditional folding wallets are designed for paper bills—but these days, carrying cash is rarely a necessity. More often than not, I don’t carry cash at all. This Bogui Clik Wallet is the best answer I’ve found for avoiding the hassle of those tight-fitting credit card pockets.This attractive, minimalist wallet features a protective lip, so my cards don’t […]
Using my iPhone while it’s charging is always a hassle. With tucked-away outlets and the meager length of included lightning cables, comfortable scrolling while plugged in is annoying. These 10-Ft MFi-Certified Lightning Cables are super convenient and probably the best iPhone accessory purchase I’ve made.At over three times the length of normal cables, these reach anywhere you […]
With countless applications for modern life, artificial intelligence (AI) is one of the most in-demand fields of study in tech. Beyond modelling human decision making processes and learning abilities, AI can be used to analyze massive volumes of data and create complex interactive systems.This Machine Learning & AI for Business Bundle made mastering these concepts possible for […]