Listen to Brian Eno's beautiful cover of Johnny Cash's "Ring of Fire"

In 1990, Brian Eno and John Cale made a wonderful experimental pop/art rock record called Wrong Way Up, released by Warner Bros. Records. At the time, the label would send out 7" records to alt.rock/college radio stations to promote their new releases. The promo series, called Soil Samples, featured different artists on each side of the record performing songs that weren't included on their new albums.

Above is Brian Eno's contribution to Soil Samples #3, a sublime cover of Johnny Cash's "Ring of Fire," originally written by June Carter and Merle Kilgore.

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Listen to Brian Eno's new cover of the Velvet Underground

Today, Brian Eno released his reimagination of the Velvet Underground's track "I'm Set Free." The cover, titled “Fickle Sun (iii) I’m Set Free,” is from Eno's new album The Ship, coming April 29. Below, the Velvet's original version of the song, from their third album The Velvet Underground (1969).

Eno says:

“The first time I ever heard [The Velvet Underground] was on a John Peel radio show… it was when their first album came out and I thought “This I like! This I want to know about!”. I was having a huge crisis at the time. Am I going to be a painter or am I somehow going to get into music. And I couldn’t play anything so music was the less obvious choice. Then, when I heard The Velvet Underground I thought, “you can do both actually”. It was a big moment for me.

“That particular song always resonated with me but it took about 25 years before I thought about the lyrics. “I’m set free, to find a new illusion”. Wow. That’s saying we don’t go from an illusion to reality (the western idea of “Finding The Truth”) but rather we go from one workable solution to another more workable solution.

Subsequently I think we aren’t able and actually don’t particularly care about the truth, whatever that might be. What we care about is having intellectual tools and inventions that work. [Yuval Noah Harari in his book “Sapiens”] discusses that what makes large-scale human societies capable of cohering and co-operating is the stories they share together.

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Watch rare Brian Eno live TV performance (1974)

Eno performs his first solo single after leaving Roxy Music in 1974. (via Dangerous Minds) Read the rest

Brian Eno doing A/V for Long Now Salon in SF

Long Now Foundation is building out a new Salon in San Francisco as a library/cafe/bar/event space for ruminating on "deep time." It's just been announced that Brian Eno is doing the sound design for the Long Now Salon and creating a permanent audiovisual artwork in the space. Long Now Salon

  Brian Eno designed hospital room - Boing Boing Brian Eno: Composers as Gardeners - Boing Boing Limited edition Oblique Strategies deck from Brian Eno - Boing Boing Read the rest