Hear the din of cafes, showers, crackling logs, and other great ambient sound sites

Several years back, we posted about the wonderful site youarelistening.to, a strangely soothing mix of ambient music and police radio chatter (!) from various cities. Youarelistening.to isn't the only source of lovely and relaxing field recordings and ambient noise though. Here are a few of DIGG's favorites:

Coffitivity

If your cup of coffee isn't giving you the kick you need, flipping on Coffitivity might be a good next step. Coffivity provides the cozy and comforting sounds of a cafe (which can help you focus according to scientific research) in six flavors, including Paris Paradise, Texas Teahouse, and Brazil Bistro.

Virtual Shower

Mimicking the sounds of the room in the house where everyone does their best thinking, Virtual Shower also boasts a temperature setting that changes the color of the page. You can't hear it, but you'll know it's there.

Blazing Logs Another simple one. Flip this year-round-yule log on to hear the crackle of a fire and not much else.

"The Most Relaxing Ambient Sound Sites On The Internet" (DIGG) Read the rest

Venerable 1990s indie rockers Creeper Lagoon reuniting

My pals in Creeper Lagoon are reuniting for the 25th anniversary of San Francisco's Noise Pop Music and Arts Festival in February! The indie troupe emerged in the early 1990s from Cincinnati and San Francisco's underground music scene with a stream of influential indie releases and grew to alt.rock fame with their excellent 2001 album "Take Back the Universe and Give Me Yesterday" before disbanding. (Dig the video above for "Wrecking Ball" from that album. It'll be a joy to see Creeper on stage again February 26 at Bottom of the Hill.

Other fine acts performing at Noise Pop include Rogue Wave, Ty Segall, Vince Staples, MSTRKRFT, Cloud Nothings, Dawes, Deafheaven, and dozens more.

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Old-timey mass evangelism and the phonograph

The Grammy nominations were announced today and along with Beyonce, Drake, Adele, and Kanye there was a nomination that went to music recorded by Ira D. Sankey, Winfield Weeden, Silas Leachman and the Rittersville Singing Club. No, those are not artists from today… In fact, those performers lived 125 years ago and their recordings have been newly compiled by a husband/wife team dedicated to bringing back to life the music of the post-Industrial Revolution 19th century.

Richard Martin and Meagan Hennessey have one collective dream, and that is to preserve, expose and celebrate the earliest eras of recorded sounds for new generations of listeners. Their label Archeophone Records has produced dozens of releases showcasing music created even before electricity got in the way. These are acoustic recordings created when the music industry was still “cutting wax” and "the business” was in its infancy. John Phillips Souza’s marches were chart toppers, along with sappy ballads and jocular tunes. The world was introduced to “Hot Time in the Old Town Tonight,” and of course, “Take Me Out To The Ballgame.”

Richard and Meagan collect the cylinders for each release, digitize the music found in the 100+ year old grooves, painstakingly master the tracks, rabbit-hole copious amounts of research about the recordings, the artists, and the era, and bring forth a truly amazing product that takes any listener back to a time long forgotten..an almost alien world.

And while in many circles they are known for their Grammy-winning expert work, nothing can prepare an enthusiast for their latest epic deep dive. Read the rest

dj BC has your Christmas mashups covered with this year's amazing Santastic holiday music sampler

dj BC writes, "My best Christmas mashups from the past decade are collected for this year's Santastic (previously) holiday music sampler. You can also dig on the site for the full albums from past years, our 'Menorah Mashups' Chanukah collection, and my chill instrumental album of holiday classical remixes. It's all free." Read the rest

Literal music video interpretation of Queen's "Bohemian Rhapsody"

No escape from reality. (Corridor)

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This Sesame Street song made me cry

I've never admitted this to anyone before but I feel especially comfortable with you.

I was sitting in an oversized La-Z-Boy chair when it first saw this clip, and luckily there was no one around to see my tears.   I'm not sure if it happened because the character was so lonely or because everything turned out fine but I'll tell you this - I still get goose bumps whenever I see it.

Grab some tissues and enjoy the story of The Lower Case n. Read the rest

Guitar made from shotgun that still shoots

Rev. Peyton of the Big Damn Band plays a three-stringed "Guitgun" that he designed and Bryan Fleming fabricated.

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Peter Sellers recites the Beatles (in funny voices)

Robbo writes, "Peter Sellers recorded a series of performances, in a variety of voices, reciting the lyrics of popular Beatles songs. It is demented weirdness - and perfect in all its madness." Read the rest

Hamilton's eerie relevance to this moment in America's terrifying political journey

Lin-Manuel Miranda's smash Broadway musical Hamilton -- which recounts the events of 240 years ago -- keeps looming large in our very current political discourse, from Hamilton's role in the establishment of the Electoral College to Mike Pence's night at the theater and the ensuing Trumpian call for a safe-space for vulnerable politicians who have only their status as the second-most powerful man on the planet to defend themselves from the terrifyingly mild petitions delivered by actual, globe-striding singing fellows. Read the rest

Canada's music lobby admits WIPO Internet Treaty drafters were "just guessing"

Michael Geist writes, "The global music industry has spent two decades lobbying for restrictive DMCA-style restrictions on digital locks. These so-called "anti-circumvention rules" have been actively opposed by many groups, but the copyright lobby claims that they are needed to comply with the World Intellectual Property Organization's Internet treaties. Now the head of the RIAA in Canada admits that the treaty drafters were just guessing and that they guessed wrong." Read the rest

The Beastie Boys' Ad-Rock designed a shoe whose profits will go to Planned Parenthood

Vegan shoe company Keep's $97 Ramos midtop sneaker was designed by Adam "Ad-Rock" Horovitz, and will ship in February, with all proceeds going to Planned Parenthood, a vital woman's health organization under sustained assault from Republicans, who use lies about the rare abortions the organization performs to enrage and focus its low-information base, without any regard for the millions of women who rely on PP for basic health services (and the much smaller number who use PP for abortion). Read the rest

Help Kickstart these cool geometric music controllers

Michael Samuels of Sonic Geometry is Kickstarting a set of polyhedral sound controllers that let users shape sound and light into a multimedia performance. Originally a Master's Thesis project at Berklee School of Music, the prototypes are scheduled for release next year. Read the rest

Vinyl Divas: vintage opera diva album art is weird and wonderful

Vinyl Divas is a comprehensive collection of vintage classical music divas, and it ranges from the sublime to the ridiculous to the sublimely ridiculous. Includes lists by artist name, collection based on themes, and even vanity albums by self-published divas. The fashion, the makeup, the styles, the taste both good and bad... prepare to go down a rabbit hole of 20th century nostalgia. Read the rest

Pauline Oliveros, pioneering avant-garde composer, RIP

Pauline Oliveros, the avant-garde composer and accordionist who developed the influential experimental musical theories of "deep listening" and "sonic awareness," has died. She was 84 years old. Oliveros was a collaborator of minimalist and electronic music pioneers Terry Riley and Morton Subtonick and beloved director of the San Francisco Tape Music Center in the 1960s after its move to Mills College.

“In hearing, the ears take in all the sound waves and particles and deliver them to the audio cortex where the listening takes place," Oliveros once said. "We cannot turn off our ears–the ears are always taking in sound information–but we can turn off our listening. I feel that listening is the basis of creativity and culture. How you’re listening, is how you develop a culture and how a community of people listens, is what creates their culture.”

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Brilliant: YYZ meets Milkshake

Gary writes, "This mashup of Rush's 'YYZ' and Kelis's 'Milkshake' is an absolute masterpiece." Also: Randy "Macho Man" Savage and Thong Song. Read the rest

One-minute anthem for the Trump presidency: "Everything Is Fucked (Keep On Going)"

Metafilter's Cortex wrote and recorded "Everything Is Fucked (Keep On Going)" (MP3) as "a little pep talk, for myself and for anyone else who needs one, as we wade through the fuckedness of all this. Catchy and short and angry and upbeat and exactly a minute long." Read the rest

Listen to "Another Brick in the Wall" played on traditional Korean gayageum

Gayageum virtuoso Luna Lee's intense cover of "Pink Floyd's Another Brick in the Wall (Part 2)."

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