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Recent news, commentary, and ideas.


Favorite Songs Carried MLK Through Troubled Times
Huffington Post: Adelle Banks
Hymns, spirituals and other religious songs helped carry Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. through troubled times.

A Voice for Civil Rights for Four Decades
Lexington Herald, Post by contributor Tom Eblen
Bernice Johnson Reagon thinks back on her childhood in segregated southwest Georgia, recalling a force more powerful than injustice: music.

Wayne Wallace: ‘Your Art Should Go Hand-in-Hand With Your Social Consciousness’
IU Jazz Blog
Jacobs School professor Wallace reflects on the power of music as an active part of your life and society.

The 'Ode To Joy' as a Call To Action
Beethoven’s 9th, used by totalitarian regimes as a motif of glory, has more often become an empowering anthem of solidarity, a universal soundtrack to revolution.


US Court Ruling on Net Neutrality is Big Deal for Artists
Future of Music Coalition: Casey Rae
A federal appeals court recently struck down the Federal Communications Commission’s rules meant to keep the Internet open to free expression, entrepreneurship and innovation.

Classical Music in an Age of Pop
Arts Journal: Greg Sandow
Sandow talks about this course and the curriculum that has taken shape over the last 17 years. Here he offers his course overview, schedule, and assignments for those interested in what he’ll be teaching at Juilliard this fall.

Geography of Innovation: Why Nashville Is Music City
Pacific Standard: Jim Russell
Quality of interaction trumps density of interaction any day, and the Tennessee capital has a critical mass of talent from all over the world.

Why Musicians Must Embrace Spotify And Pandora
While most artists can’t depend on music streaming for cash flow, these days they must rely on Spotify and others for something even more vital–exposure.

The End of Ownership: Why You Need to Fight America’s Copyright Laws
Welcome to the brave new world of copyright. If you want to truly own what you buy, you’ll have to fight for those rights — because they are disappearing.

These Phrases Lead to Crowdfunding Success
Digital Music News
A new paper titled “The Language that Gets People to Give: Phrases that Predict Success on Kickstarter” follows research of over 45,000 kickstarter projects, compiling phrases found in funded and non-funded campaigns.

Ex-Curtis Dean appointed Interim Head of San Francisco Conservatory
Slipped Disc
Fitzpatrick replaces outgoing Dean Mary Ellen Poole, who has stepped down after 10 years of service. Former Dean and Chief Academic Officer of the Curtis Institute of Music, Fitzpatrick will serve in an interim capacity until the search for a new permanent dean for the Conservatory is completed.


How To Be Culturally Relevant
New Music Box: Alex Temple
Composers spend an awful lot of time worrying about whether or not what we do is culturally relevant. Whenever I hear words like “relevant” or “important,” I always want to ask, “relevant or important to whom?”

Google Charts the History of Modern Music
Google Research has created a rich, multilayered, interactive chart of musical evolution by visualizing which albums from eras-gone-by remain in our music libraries today.

There Really Is a Conference Where Nerds Study Videogame Music
As a new generation of theorist and musicologists take on the growing genre of game music and sound they need a place to share their research. This year will see the first academic conference in the United States.


Study Suggests What Motivates Young Musicians To Be Great
Pacific Standard
What keeps that instrument from ending up in the closet? A new study looks at young musicians over a period of ten years and identifies how educators can help students make long term musicianship a part of their personal identity.


Three-Year Minnesota Orchestra Deal Ends 15-Month Lockout
Star Tribune
The orchestra board approves the terms of a three-year deal that cuts salaries and benefits roughly 15 percent but ends the lockout.

Role of Governments Key to a Pittsburgh Symphony Iran Trip
Pittsburgh Post Gazette
As the PSO partners with the American Middle East Institute to explore the possibility of returning to Iran this September, 50 years after their first monumental tour, government support would likely play a critical role.

National Symphony, Washington Performing Arts Reach Out With New Initiative
Washington Post
Performing arts organizations across the US are trying to reach new audiences. The NSO has a new program that has given 50 free performances in schools, community centers, homeless shelters, coffee shops—and the train station.


Sphinx Organization Receives $4M for Music Education, Training
“An anonymous donor has given the Detroit-based Sphinx Organization its largest-ever gift: a $4 million gift to expand the scope of its musician education and training programs.”


Beats Music: Algorithm for Your Personal Rhythm
New York Times
Following on its huge success with headphones, Beats Music introduces a subscription streaming service that will challenge Spotify, Pandora and Apple’s new iTunes Radio in the battle over how people consume music online.


Arcam's miniBlink: A Great New Way To Stream Your Music To A High-End Stereo
An explosion in creative use of the format? Podcast network consolidation? Growth in women listeners? The word ‘podcast’ slowly gives way to plain old ‘talk’?


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