Drummer Mike Reed put together his quartet People, Places and Things to play music by their 1950s forebears. But it makes sense that, after a few years together, they'd also play later pieces, tracking the evolution of Chicago jazz on a new album titled Clean on the Corner. One dividend of their repertory work is that it inspires Reed to write his own tunes in the same spirit, like "The Lady Has a Bomb."
Singer-songwriter Nick Zammuto spent most of the '00s as one half of the experimental folk duo The Books, but in the wake of the project's recent breakup, Zammuto has released his first significant solo work in about a decade. Adopting his fun, imaginative approach to experimental music, the self-titled record finds him executing his unique vision with the help of a full band.
Cafe Racer is a coffeehouse and bar in Seattle near the University of Washington. Last Wednesday, it was the site of a shooting that left four people dead.
Cafe Racer is also a music venue, home to a Sunday-night improvisational jam session called The Racer Sessions. Sunday night's Racer Session wasn't inside — it was too soon for that — but the show did go on.
For much of the past decade, music video games like Rock Band and Guitar Hero have let millions of aspiring rockers live out their dreams of stardom, waving fake instruments and mimicking their favorite music icons. Jamin Warren, founder of killscreendaily.com, says iPhones and iPads have inspired game designers to re-imagine the music game.
Early synthesizers were supposed to imitate or re-create other existing sounds, but as anyone can tell you, they mostly sounded like synthesizers. That distinctive whine and wheeze captivated all manner of pop artists, from prog-rockers to classical composers to soul musicians. However, back then, synthesizers were so expensive and bulky, you needed a major-label budget and an entire studio wall to install them.