music

Playing jazz bass

A brief crash course.

I enjoy writing short tutorials to get people started on something that may have seemed intimidating to them before, and I thought it might be fun to write up something that isn’t related to software but that I have thought a lot about in the last 15 years: jazz bass playing.

When I first heard about Albert Meroño-Peñuela and Rinke Hoekstra’s midi2rdf project, which converts back and forth between the venerable Musical Instrument Digital Interface binary format and RDF, at first I thought it seemed like an interesting academic exercise. Thinking about it more, I realized that it makes a great contribution to both the MIDI world and to musical RDF geeks.

Lou Reed

And New York City.

(To listen to while you read this: The Blue Mask.) New York City helped to define who Lou Reed was, but since I first became aware of him in the mid-seventies, Lou Reed played a big part in defining what New York City was to me. It’s difficult for me to picture the city without him.

Having a Blue Ridge Christmas

They're playing my song!

A few months ago I saw a call for contributions of recordings of original holiday songs for a CD to be called “A Charlottesville Songwriters Christmas” to benefit a local charity. Around here there seems to be a law that when you name a business you have to name it either Jefferson (whatever), Piedmont (whatever), or Blue Ridge (whatever), so I decided to write a song whose name is a variation on “Blue Christmas” called “Blue Ridge Christmas.” I thought about…

Converting wpl playlists to m3u playlists

Simple XML in, simple text out, but no good search results for wpl2m3u? Write a little XSLT.

I’ve switched around between music-playing programs over the last few years. I suppose I should call them “media players”, but I only use them to play music, which is part of the reason I ended up using Songbird, an open source Windows/Linux/Mac music front end that doesn’t pretend to be anything else. It looks a bit like iTunes, without all the ads in your face; how great is that?