Four great SoundCloud songs you've probably never heard

I use Apple Music for the majority of my music listening. It works well and lets me add most of my favorite songs, but there’s a lot missing from it. From what I’ve heard, it takes a little bit of work to get your songs up on iTunes/Apple Music. Unless an artist is well known and doing well in their music career, oftentimes, it’s simply not worth it to publish to Apple Music.

SoundCloud, on the other hand, provides extreme simplicity when it comes to publishing music, and makes it easy for listeners to find your songs. So, lots of artists get their start on SoundCloud, which entices me to use it alongside Apple Music. Yeah, there's a popular and pretty true idea floating around that SoundCloud is full of mumble rappers, but this isn’t about that part of the site. If you look, it’s easy enough to find a lot of gems on SoundCloud.

Here are four good songs I’ve found on SoundCloud that have less than 10,000 listens at the time of posting this.

1. "Decadence" by Gr._.ff

The lack of attention to this song has astounded me since I found it. It starts off with a pretty sweet melody but completely switches mood halfway through, and I love that about this song. I’ve had a few friends who judged this song before it was even a few seconds in, but I think that you have to listen to the entire song to fully appreciate this one. Age of song: 3 years old Listens: 7,332 Likes: 174

2. Read the rest

Spotify's antitrust complaint against Apple is a neat parable about Big Tech's monopoly

Spotify has asked the EU Commission to intervene in its business relationship with Apple, citing the fact that Apple takes a 30% vig on all customer revenues from people who join the service or buy songs through an Iphone app, while Apple's own competing Itunes store does not have to pay this commission. Read the rest

Listen to Tame Impala with Justin Timberlake

Take 'em to the bridge. Read the rest

Save the ARC, the largest popular music library in the United States

New York City's ARChive of Contemporary Music (ARC) is a cultural treasure packed with actual treasures. Inside the walls of this not-for-profit private research library in TriBeCa are 3 million physical audio recordings, many on vinyl records. The ARC's founder, Bob George, is also a cultural treasure -- warm, obsessive, kind, committed, and a walking encyclopedia of popular music -- from obscure folk to the avant-garde. In recent years, Bob's been working closely with the Internet Archive to digitize many of the ARC's scarce 78s for broader access and, yes, preservation. Bob launched ARC in 1985 when his own record collection outgrew his apartment. Now the ARC needs help. They've launched a GoFundMe to raise $100,000 to keep the ARC alive. From Rolling Stone:

Far from the kind of crackpot hoarding that sometimes happens in cities, George’s archive has been supported by powerhouses in music and entertainment. It houses Keith Richards’ blues collection. Their current board is varied enough to include both Youssou N’Dour and Paul Simon (Lou Reed and David Bowie were both once members). It consulted for Tom Hanks on the making of That Thing You Do. It’s the go-to repository for album art for everything from Grammy exhibits to Taschen books... George’s commitment is dogged. When Martin Scorsese wanted an obscure Italian song in Goodfellas, George roamed Little Italy humming the tune until someone recognized it (“You can solve every problem in New York if you just walk through it,” he says).

At a time when some in the city were scrubbing Keith Haring murals off subway platforms, George was welcoming every genre, including then-unpopular punk and hip-hop (among the archive’s greatest collection is a trove of punk 45s).

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Prince's shoe-maker used to supply 30-40 pairs of high-heeled boots/month, totaling 3,000 pairs

Prince was self-conscious about his height -- 5'3" -- and wore high-heeled boots (either 4" or 3 1/3") whenever he went out in public, and moreover, he did not like to be seen wearing the same pair of boots at two different appearances on the same day. Read the rest

Beninese musician/activist/genius Angélique Kidjo has released a tribute to Talking Heads' Remain in Light and IT. IS. FUCKING. AMAZING.

Angélique Kidjo is a Beninese musician of enormous talent and repute (and three Grammys!); with 10 brilliant albums to her credit; album number ten is special, though: a tribute to Talking Heads' 1980 album Remain in Light (available for $7.92 as DRM-free MP3s); I've been listening to it all morning and, speaking as someone who would give any of the Talking Heads principals one of my kidneys if need be, I am head-over-heels in love with this album: Kidjo is touring the world with it and judging by the videos, she's an electrifying performer. Read the rest

Listen to the last song John Lennon recorded

On November 14, 1980, John Lennon recorded three rough songs at the apartment he shared with Yoko Ono in New York City's The Dakota apartments. "You Saved My Soul (With Your True Love)" was the last demo he recorded before he was murdered on December 8, 1980 outside his home. Listen above.

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Catchy German cover of Black Sabbath's "Paranoid" but with lyrics about Sherlock Holmes

Famed German schlager-psych duo Cindy und Bert belt out a cover of Black Sabbath's Paranoid but with alternate lyrics about, um, Arthur Conan Doyle's Sherlock Holmes novel "The Hound of the Baskervilles." It's the B-side from a very rare 1971 7" featuring their cover of Neil Diamond's "Holly Holy."

(via r/ObscureMedia)

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Video of piano performance has twist ending

You may, about thirty seconds in, wonder what's up with terribletan's performance of Mozart's Piano Sonata No. 16.

Stick with it. Read the rest

Watch Johnny Rotten act like an ass to Henry Rollins and Marky Ramone last night

At a panel in West Hollywood last night to promote the new documentary series Punk, John Lydon gave a wonderful performance as Johnny Rotten in which he talked trash to both Henry Rollins and Marky Ramone. Highlights above and below. Please forgive the annoying auto-play. Also on the panel were Duff McKagan (Guns 'n' Roses), Donita Sparks (L7), and Punk producer/fashion designer John Varvatos. From Rolling Stone:

“...You called Black Flag a bunch of suburban rich kids and we wanted to tear your ears off,” Rollins said (to Lydon.

“Yes, I did, but I didn’t like the fucking music,” Lydon said. “It was boring.”

After (Marky Ramone) spoke to how the Ramones blazed a trail for punk in New York and took that to London, Lydon said that he was “not even an original Ramone.” “But I did the Blank Generation album with Richard Hell, and you took his image,” Ramone replied. “All you guys took Richard Hell’s image. That’s all you did.”

“And you’re still covering your fucking ears,” Lydon said, grimacing that he’d gotten a rise out of the drummer.

"And Sid Vicious was the star,” Ramone said, prompting Lydon to smile and stick his tongue out. “That’s right, he was,” Lydon replied. “He was the star for asshole fake idiots like you. Enjoy your drugs and fuckin’ have a happy death.”

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Morrissey announces a week of shows on Broadway

Time to pre-order some gladiolus. Morrissey announced a week-long residency on Broadway in Manhattan from May 2-11. Moz will hold court at the 1,500-seat Lunt-Fontanne Theater and, according to the poster, he'll be "singing the songs that made you cry and the songs that saved your life.” Apparently he'll play tunes from The Smiths and his solo career including material from his new covers album California Son.

Unless, of course, he cancels the whole damn thing due to a hot dog vendor on the corner or just because.

Above, the first single from California Son, Morrissey's take on Roy Orbison's "It's Over."

Meanwhile, last week The Guardian asked Morrissey's recent collaborators to comment on the singer's distasteful right wing politics: "'I feel like I've been had'"

(Spin) Read the rest

Prodigy vocalist Keith Flint dead at 49

In a message posted to its official Twitter account, UK electronic music group The Prodigy announced the death of singer and songwriter Keith Flint today.

“It is with deepest shock and sadness that we can confirm the death of our brother and best friend Keith Flint ... A true pioneer, innovator and legend. He will be forever missed. We thank you for respecting the privacy of all concerned at this time.”

In an Instagram post, [via NME] Howlett wrote: “The news is true. I can’t believe I’m saying this but our brother Keith took his own life over the weekend. I’m shell shocked, fuckin angry, confused and heart broken.”

Pitchfork posted an obituary.

Flint was a regular fixture of the UK’s late-1980s rave scene. At a beach party, he met Howlett and suggested they form a band. Howlett began recording as the Prodigy, eventually touring America and bringing along Flint to hype the crowd. By 1996, Howlett had enlisted him as a frontman. When they released “Firestarter” that March, Flint’s emphatic performance and inverted mohawk became ubiquitous, making the video a staple of international music channels. A global hit and UK Number 1 for three weeks, the single teed up The Fat of the Land, one of the most successful UK dance albums of all time, helped along by follow-up singles “Breathe” and “Smack My Bitch Up.”

If you are in crisis, please call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255),or contact the Crisis Text Line by texting TALK to 741741

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The Beatles: absolutely wonderful recording studio "bloopers"

The fun is contagious.

"I'll try to remember, John, and if I don't it's just too bad INNIT!?"

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Amanda Palmer has a new album coming out and NPR is streaming it for free!

On March 8, Amanda "Fucking" Palmer (previously) will release There Will Be No Intermission, her third studio album and the first release in six long years: it's an ambitious 71 minutes long, and the whole thing is streaming as a preview on NPR's First Listen. Read the rest

Mark Hollis, lead singer of Talk Talk, RIP

Mark Hollis, lead singer of Talk Talk, has died. He was 64. While the UK "post-rock" band may be best known for their 1984 synthy single "It's My Life," Talk Talk's true masterpiece was the much more experimental 1988 album "Spirit of Eden" that dripped with ambient, jazz, and avant-garde influences. It's an absolute stunner.

From The Guardian:

Talk Talk’s bassist Mark Webb, aka Rustin Man, paid tribute to Hollis on Instagram. “I am very shocked and saddened to hear the news of the passing of Mark Hollis,” he wrote. “Musically he was a genius and it was a honour and a privilege to have been in a band with him. I have not seen Mark for many years, but like many musicians of our generation I have been profoundly influenced by his trailblazing musical ideas.”

In an interview with Q’s backpages at the time, later republished in the Guardian, Hollis expressed awareness that he could be “a difficult geezer” but that was because he refused to “play that game” that came with the role of musician in the spotlight.

“It’s certainly a reaction to the music that’s around at the moment, ‘cos most of that is shit,” Hollis also said of Spirit of Eden. “It’s only radical in the modern context. It’s not radical compared to what was happening 20 years ago. If we’d have delivered this album to the record company 20 years ago they wouldn’t have batted an eyelid.”

Posted on Instagram by Talk Talk bassist Paul Webb aka Rustin Man:

View this post on Instagram

I am very shocked and saddened to hear the news of the passing of Mark Hollis.

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Florida inmates sue prisons for digitally confiscating the music they were sold

Last August, Florida's prison system announced that it was switching digital music providers and would be wiping out the $11.2 million worth of music that it had sold inmates -- music they'd paid for at $1.70/track, nearly double the going rate for music when not purchased from prison-system profiteers. Read the rest

Ja Rule has plans for to Fyre up another music festival. Seriously.

Ja Rule, who claims he hasn't watched either of the Fyre festival documentaries, is ready to rise like a phoenix from the, er, flames:

"(Fyre is) the most iconiq festival that never was," he says. "So I have plans to create the iconic music festival." Read the rest

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