Boing Boing 

Mass surveillance hip-hop from the director of the Bill of Rights Defense Committee

Shahid Buttar -- the rapper who created the amazing NSA vs USA track/video -- is also a constitutional lawyer who serves as executive director of the Bill of Rights Defense Committee.

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Nerdcore Net Neutrality rap

Nerdcore rapper Dan Bull recorded this Net Neutrality rap today and crowdsourced an excellent video for it in three hours, with the help of his Twitter friends.

Great life advice from neon bassist

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Sure, the bassist who calls himself MonoNeon does a masterful accompaniment of the Jones Big Ass Truck Rental & Storage ads. But the real gem here is his manifesto at the end. I'll transcribe it below for clarity, because it's honestly very useful and freeing. (Maybe not the thing about the high-visibility clothing.) It doesn't matter if you're not a musician; make appropriate substitutions for things like "southern soul/blues/funk." The principles apply broadly.

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• Write your own vision and read it daily

• Have the southern soul/blues & funk at the bottom and the experimental/avant-guard at the top . .. (YOUR SOUND!)

• Make your life audible daily with the mistakes . . . the flaws . . . er' thang.

• Understand and accept that some people are going to like what you do and some are going to dislike it . .. when you understand and accept that dichotomy . . . move on!

• Embrace bizarre juxtapositions (sound, imagery, etc)

• Conceptualize art. Minimalism.

• Polychromatic color schemes. High-visibility clothing.

• DIY!

• Childlike.

• Reject the worldly idea of becoming a great musician . . . JUST LIVE MUSIC!

Children perform Zeppelin!

The Louisville Leopard Percussionists, featuring children from 7-12, perform Led Zeppelin's Kashmir, The Ocean, and Immigrant Song, on marimbas, xylophone, vibraphone, drum set, timbales, congas, bongos and piano. (via Making Light)

Young heavy metal shredder is also a screaming-fast texter

It’s a marvel to watch 26-year-old guitarist Nili Brosh tap 64th notes in her guitar solos, then scoop up her phone and tap messages at the same tempo. Her gates-of-hell texting work starts at 4:01.

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Animated interview with Lou Reed

"I write a song called 'Heroin', you would have thought that I murdered the Pope or something." Audio from a 1987 interview conducted by Joe Smith. (Blank on Blank)

Video: 2CELLOS play "Welcome to the Jungle"

2CELLOS shred classic Guns N' Roses.

Lesley Gore, singer of "It's My Party," RIP

Lesley Gore, singer of the 1963 hit "It's My Party," died today from cancer at age 68.

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Death Cab for Cutie: "Black Sun" music video

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Our friends in Death Cab for Cutie released the video for "Black Sun," the first single from their forthcoming album Kintsugi, arriving March 31.

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CBGB oral history, and Patti Smith interview

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Over at Cuepoint, an oral history of punk palace CBGB's heyday of the mid-to-late 1970s, starring members of the Ramones, Blondie, The Voidoids, and The Miamis, and the inimitable Patti Smith. Also at Cuepoint today, Smith talks with veteran music writer Alan Light.

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MC Frontalot dresses up as Grandma, Little Red Riding Hood and the wolf

MC Frontalot has released the video for "Start Over" -- the Little Red Riding Hood song from his album Question Bedtime. He writes, "I finally got the new video out! And I'm extremely happy with it. Director Alicia J. Rose did a bang-up job putting this project together when I came through Portland in December, marshaling the city's youngsters and more makeup than I've ever worn for anything."

AcousticLabs cover of Beck's "Wave"

Gregory "AcousticLabs" Johnson, who masterfully covers contemporary tunes on effected string instruments, tells us that Beck requested he tackle his tune "Wave" from the Grammy-winning album Morning Phase. It's the first AcousticLabs video in which Johnson shows his face.

Rebel Bass: Star Wars guitars with Millennium Falcon bodies


Doni Guitars of Coventry, England, has created a pair of amazing, Star-Wars-themed guitars based around vintage model Millennium Falcons, with new blue LED lights: a six-string Strat and a "Rebel Bass -- they also make custom flight cases for them.

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My favorite battery-powered Bluetooth speaker is the Grain Audio PWS

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I've tried at least 10 different battery-powered Bluetooth speakers, and the walnut cased Grain Audio PWS is by far my favorite. At $249, it's also the most expensive. But I think it's worth it, especially since I use it almost every day.

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Oral history of 60s-70s musical mecca Laurel Canyon

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Over at Vanity Fair, musical icons like David Crosby, Joni Mitchell (above), Linda Ronstadt, and Glenn Frey reminisce about the creativity and other substances that flowed through L.A.'s magical Laurel Canyon of the 1960s and 1970s.

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An Adventure To Pepperland Through Rhyme & Space: hip hop/Beatles mashups

It's a kind of Grey Album 2.0: Beatles songs mashed up with KRS-One, Kool Moe Dee, Salt-n-Pepa, Nas, Rakim, WuTang, Public Enemy, Beastie Boys and many others -- get it before the censorship campaign kicks in!

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BB King, an animated interview

Blank on Blank's animation of a 1986 interview with blues master B.B. King about his guitar Lucille, his influence on John Lennon, and the real source of the blues.

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Mash-up: Flock of Sabbath

Black Sabbath's "Paranoid" meets A Flock of Seagulls' "I Ran (So Far Away)," courtesy of Andy Rehfeldt. (via Laughing Squid)

Japanese 1980s Funk: amazing 70-minute musical groove mixtape

If offered the chance to visit any time and place in the 20th century, I'd go to Japan in the mid-1980s.

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Music: "Drop the bomb," Trouble Funk (1982)

I thought the lyrics were "Chocolate bomb!" for a while.

Video: Vintage synths of Mark Mothersbaugh (DEVO)

DEVO's Mark Mothersbaugh demos some of his favorite vintage synthesizers and talks about his love for electronic music. (Cool Hunting)

Patrick Costello: the deaf, copyfighting Merry God of Banjo


BB pal and deaf banjo-pickin' dude Patrick Costello writes, "The Washington Post just did a story about my work as a music teacher: ‘Merry God of banjo’"

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Listen: Marlene Dietrich plays musical saw (with bonus Star Trek theme)

Marlene Dietrich always wanted to be a classical musician. Since her cabaret act and film career left little time for her to do the required practice, she played the musical saw instead. Throughout World War II she wowed USO audiences with the novelty. Here she is playing "Aloha Oe" in 1944 with the comedic setup she did in her cabaret act.

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Music: "The Magnificent Seven," The Clash (1980)

"She's seen the ads, she thinks it's nice/ Better work hard - I seen the price"

Rowlf the Dog covers Biz Markie's "Just a Friend"

It's an amazing piece of video editing/lip-syncing, right up there with Sesame Street Sure Shot.

Music: "From the Cradle," Widespread Panic (2006)

I just saw that Widespread Panic will again be at the Fox Oakland come late March.

Beautiful black and red variegated 78 records from the 1920s

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Portland area archivist Cliff Bolling has curated and digitized thousands of 78 records. One prized addition is this variegated series from Pathé's Chanticleer line. Bolling says this was an attempt by the French company to gain market share in the US. The series featured popular American songs, like this version of "Bye Bye Blackbird." by The Virginia Creepers.

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Google strong-arms indie musicians into accepting brutal, crowdfunding-killing deal for streaming service


Google is launching a new, Youtube-branded streaming music service, with the cooperation of the Big Four labels, who got to negotiate the terms of their participation -- unlike the indie musicians, who have been told that they will be exiled from Youtube altogether unless they make it their most-favored-nation distribution service, without the possibility of holding back tracks for backers on services like Kickstarter or Patreon.

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LEGO Movie soundtrack on vinyl!

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Next month, the LEGO Movie: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack comes to vinyl in a special double LP package including a color booklet with liner notes by soundtrack composer (and DEVO co-founder) Mark Mothersbaugh.

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Music video: retro-'80s hallucination for new Marie Davidson track

A strange, 1980s-esque hallucinatory video, directed for Montréal synth-punk chanteuse Marie Davidson's "Balade aux USA."

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