Category Archives: Music

March 30: Happy Birthday, Jethro Tull!

    No, no, not those guys. This guy, the guy those guys were named after:   Baptized on this day in 1674, the real Jethro Tull was a very influential British agronomist who invented several farming tools, and promoted … Continue reading

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21 March: Happy Birthday J S Bach!

Here is my favorite conductor, at the age of 2 1/2, leading a performance of Bach’s Toccata and Fugue in D-Minor. It takes a great deal of self-confidence and composure to conduct with a sippy cup, don’t you think?

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Elephant Jam

Remember the dancing elephants in Fantasia, in the Dance of the Hours? Disney had it wrong; they should have been in the orchestra. Imagine building a xylophone for a 6,000-pound mammal. Columbia University neuroscientist slash experimental musicianDavid Soldier (aka David Sulzer) … Continue reading

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Guitar Hero Fire Sculpture

    Chris Marion is a high school student who likes math, fire, and DIY projects. One of his latest don’t-try-this-at-home projects (that he appears to have tried at home) is alternately being called a “fire organ” or “fire sculpture.” … Continue reading

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“Bach’s Cello Suites–Six Questions for Eric Siblin”

Scott Horton, in Harper’s: Bach’s cello suites are among the best known works of classical music, now risking popularization to the point of fatigue as they provide background music for cat food commercials. But one hundred and forty years after … Continue reading

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Ten Variations on a Theme from St Nick

Mental Floss brings us 10 Alternate Versions of “A Visit from St. Nicholas” My two favorites are this one from Dave Barry ‘Twas the night before Christmas. Or Hanukkah or Kwanzaa or whatever religious holiday your particular family unit celebrates at … Continue reading

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Ngram du Jour, 20 Dec 10

I have decided to publish an Ngram every day. Let’s start with .. Sex, Drugs, Rock and Roll

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