Mudita Journal

Music Archive

Wow! The classical-jazz hybrids of Jacques Loussier

May 1, 2011  ·  Category: Music

Tonight I discovered the wonderful jazz-infused performances of classical music by pianist Jacques Loussier. For a taste, listen to his interpretations of Bach, Debussy, and Chopin. I'm a casual enthusiast of both classical music (especially Bach, Beethoven, Chopin, Debussy) and jazz (including David Sanborn, Larry Carlton, Al di Meola, Miles Davis). After much listening, though, to my ears classical music often begins to feel dry, stark, two-dimensional. Similarly, some jazz can begin to feel disorganized and schizo. What I like about Loussier's interpretations is that he seems to find a creative sweet-spot between the two, where sweet and sour mix into something ...

Gardening, Not Architecture

February 17, 2009  ·  Category: Music

"If You Only Knew" -- a new music video from my friend Sarah Saturday, who some of you might remember from her 2003 interview at the Atlasphere. Tried to embed it here, but it mucked up my blog.

Happy Holidays: The Song

December 25, 2008  ·  Category: Music, Objectivism, Personal

Happy holidays, everyone. The holidays can be an awkward time, sometimes, figuring out what to do for whom. But once in a while you see someone hit the ball so far out of the park, you remember why it's worth trying in the first place. On that note, Los Angeles composer Mike Shapiro just made my evening by sending out this little ditty, which he wrote himself, in lieu of sending cards. Somebody buy that boy an eggnog.

To whomever introduced me to the music of Bedouin Soundclash…

August 1, 2008  ·  Category: Music, Reviews

...Thank you. Tonight, while working, I've really enjoyed listening to their albums Street Gospels and Sounding a Mosaic. Rhythmic, upbeat, groovy. Not normally a reggae kind of guy, but their music is catchy. The song "When the Night Feels My Song" (from Mosaic) is a good one to sample, to get a feel for their music. ...Although I think I like Gospels slightly better, as a collection of songs. So try "Midnight Rockers" off that album, instead.

We The Living’s acoustic cover of “Viva la Vida”

June 8, 2008  ·  Category: Music, Reviews

This is terrific! I have (and love) We the Living's album Heights of the Heavens -- which gets a strong 4 out of 5 stars, in my book -- and would enjoy seeing them record more acoustic pieces. Roney and his band-mates are huge fans of Atlas Shrugged, incidentally.

Tristan Prettyman’s music is fantastic

May 6, 2008  ·  Category: Music, Reviews

If you like music in the vein of Sarah McLachlan or Norah Jones, you simply must check out the music of a young musician named Tristan Prettyman. I discovered her two albums Twentythree (2005) and Hello (2008) a few days ago, and I can't stop listening. Highly, highly recommended. She's a bit more country than Sarah, and a bit less hokey-folksy than Norah Jones. But she gives great melody with a terrific voice. (Oops, did I just say that?) She actually does a dead-ringer for Norah in the song "Blindfold." If you do give her a listen, ...

Trace Bundy: Acoustic “Sweet Child O’ Mine”

March 4, 2008  ·  Category: Music

I couldn't agree more with Allison Taylor: I’m not the biggest fan of Guns ‘n Roses, but I do love this song (Sweet Child of Mine)…and I am a huge fan of acoustic guitar. This rendition by Trace Bundy is very soulful.

David Byrne on the Evolving Music Industry

December 23, 2007  ·  Category: Intellectual, Music

Glenn Reynolds points us to a fascinating article by David Byrne on the changes currently taking place in the music industry. Byrne was a member of the Talking Heads. Some key points: What is called the music business today, however, is not the business of producing music. At some point it became the business of selling CDs in plastic cases, and that business will soon be over. But that's not bad news for music, and it's certainly not bad news for musicians. And from later in the article: In the past, music was something you heard and experienced — it was as much ...

Charice Pempengco on Ellen Degeneres Show

December 22, 2007  ·  Category: Music, Reviews

Thanks to C4Chaos for this tip about another phenomenal, world-class singer coming from the Philippines. Her genre isn't really my genre, but I can sure hear the talent. I had a similar reaction to the videos of Arnel Pineda: What is it about seeing such a big voice come out of such a small body? And their guilelessness. Complete unpretentiousness. Talk about mudita! Seeing Pempengco's reaction to Ellen and the crowd, after her first performance, brought tears to my eyes. I stand in awe.

Journey Finds a New Lead Singer, and He’s Filipino … and He’s Good

December 15, 2007  ·  Category: Music, Reviews

His name is Arnel Pineda. First things first -- watch this video of him singing Journey's hit "Faithfully" (backed up by his Filipino band The Zoo): Hat-tip to C4Chaos for his post "Journey Welcomes Arnel Pineda with Open Arms," with this fascinating backstory about why guitarist Schon is swooning over a Filipino singer: Filipinos are hopeless romantics who love music. That's why ballads are big hits in the Philippines. Journey [was] one of the biggest bands in the Philippines when I was growing up. I remember listening to Journey songs on the radio, in restaurants, in buses, tricycles, and jeepneys. I ...