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WEEKLY DIGEST | 02/25/2019
News, Research, & Opinion

 
  FEATURE  
 

MORALITY THROUGH MUSIC

John Legend: Making Political Music and Morality in Art
NY Times: David Marchese
John Legend’s calm-in-the-storm charisma can be both seen and heard in the video for his new single, Preach, a gospel-influenced cry against political inaction. “Part of what I’ve been able to do,” Legend says, “is put a sympathetic face on some radical actions.”  In the interview, he goes on to say, “Even though I think artists are more geared to be empathetic, people ignore evil behavior when it comes with success and power and quality art — R. Kelly and Harvey Weinstein are responsible for some exceptional art. People were willing to look the other way until it really smacked them in the face.”

 
  RESEARCH AND OPINION  
 

Creators Must Be Paid for Their Art: What Needs to Happen.
XLR8R: Sam Barker
The music industry is failing musicians.

Review: A Road Test for Concertgebouw and Daniel Harding

The New York Times: Corinna da Fonseca-Wollheim
When the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra and the conductor Daniel Harding took the stage at Carnegie Hall on Thursday and Friday the maestro and the musicians, touring together, may been wondering: Is this working for me?

The Met Opera’s New Season: What Our Critics Want to See
The New York Times: Michael Cooper
Highlights of the Metropolitan Opera’s 2019-202 season, include the new staging of Berg’s “Wozzeck.” The return of the bass-baritone Bryn Terfel, after eight years, in Wagner’s “Der Fliegende Holländer.” And the company’s first regular Sunday matinees.

How a Movie Helped Fuel a Viola da Gamba Revival

The New York Times: Michael Cooper
The 1991 Alain Corneau film “Tous les Matins du Monde,” starring Gérard Depardieu and featuring a soundtrack by the Catalan viol master Jordi Savall, spurred the recent revival of French Baroque music, and fuel the renewed interest in the viola da gamba.

The Self-Taught Pianist Drawing Crowds

BBC: Rozina Sini and Kash Jones
Video: Hundreds of thousands of people have seen student Nuradean Arreythe's piano skills after he learned how to play using online videos.

“Hearing” the Hammond Organ

New Music USA: Kelly Hiser
The Hammond Organ was the first electronic musical instrument to become commercially successful. Like the Telharmonium and theremin, whose own popular pasts are not widely known, the Hammond’s early history has much to teach us about how American audiences first encountered and understood electronic musical sound.

 
  NATIONAL  
 

Dominick Argento, Composer who was a Modern Master of Opera, Dies at 91
The Washington Post: Tim Page
Dominick Argento, a Pulitzer Prize-winning composer who was likely the most celebrated creator of new American operas between the heyday of Gian Carlo Menotti in the 1950s and the advent of Philip Glass in the 1970s, died Feb. 20 at his home in Minneapolis, where he had lived for six decades. He was 91.

Nine Months After #MeToo Resignation, Milwaukee’s Florentine Opera Names New CEO

Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: Jim Higgins
The Florentine Opera has named Maggey Oplinger as its new General Director effective March 1, making her the first female leader of a company that's celebrating its 85th season.

John Adams Awarded €150,000 Erasmus Prize

The Strad
The American composer is praised for making ‘contemporary classical music communicate again’.

How Vegas went from Pop Retirement Village to the Home of Rap Royalty
The Guardian: Michael Cragg
A-listers such as Drake and Cardi B are playing the once-tacky town, a sign of its shifting currency

Sammy Davis Jr.’s Knotty Journey, on Film and in Song

The New York Times: Elysa Gardner
How many people does it take to summon the multiple talents, decades-spanning career and complicated life of Sammy Davis Jr.?

From Funerals To Festivals, The Curious Journey Of The 'Adagio For Strings'

NPR: Anastasia Tsioulcas
This story is part of American Anthem, a yearlong series on songs that rouse, unite, celebrate and call to action.

Louisville Orchestra names Jacksonville Symphony’s Robert Massey CEO

Insider Louisville: Sara Havens
The Louisville Orchestra’s national search for a new chief executive is over, as the organization has offered the position to Robert Massey, the former head of the Jacksonville Symphony.

The Many Victims of R. Kelly
NY Times: Robert Chiarito and Elizabeth A. Harris
In revealing details of their case at a bond hearing in Chicago on Saturday, prosecutors portrayed Mr. Kelly as a man who repeatedly used his fame to draw girls and women into his orbit, and then turned them into targets for his sexual gratification.

 
  INTERNATIONAL  
 

Venezuela Crisis Prompts Plans for Dueling Concerts on Border
The New York Times: Mike Ives
Call it a humanitarian battle of the bands. The British billionaire Richard Branson to organize an aid concert for Venezuela this Friday night — on the Colombian side of a border bridge where urgently needed supplies are being blocked by shipping containers.

 
  ENTREPRENEURSHIP  
 

Musicians are Small Businesses Too
The Sydney Morning Herald: Katie Wighton
Being a musician in Australia is hard. Really hard. Musicians are often undervalued and underpaid, even asked to do gigs for free.

Why Hip-Hop Can Help Venture Capital Navigate Changes in the Industry
Trapital: Dan Runcie
As the venture capital landscape matures, hip-hop's investors can stand out because the music industry went through similar changes.

 
  OFF THE BEATEN TRAIL  
 

It’s Cool to Spool Again as the Cassette Returns on a Wave of Nostalgia
The Guardian: Nosheen Kqbal
Pause. Stop. Rewind! The cassette, long consigned to the bargain bin of musical history, is staging a humble comeback. Sales have soared in the last year – up 125% in 2018 on the year before – amounting to more than 50,000 cassette albums bought in the UK, the highest volume in 15 years.

The 50 Best Movie Scores of All Time
Pitchfork.com
With the Oscars this past Sunday, Pitchfork is celebrating with our first Music & Movies week.

The Strange Truth Behind the Amy Winehouse Hologram Tour
GQ Hype: Olive Pometey
Read it, if you dare.

 
 
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