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Music Notes

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On July 11, 2020
John Zorn writes in the Times on the late, great Ennio Morricone, arguing that he was one of the greatest composers of all-time, period. You don’t have to convince me. Ennio Morricone was more than one of the world’s great soundtrack composers — he was one of the world’s great composers, period. For me, his […]

Music Notes

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On June 13, 2020

Let’s start with this interview with the great Sonny Rollins, still alive and active at the age of 89, even though he can’t play anymore. But he’s still politically aware and his min

Music Notes

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On May 24, 2020

There’s not really any major music news or anything since of course there isn’t right now. But it’s time for another open thread on music. I’ve been putting my daily playlists

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Music Notes

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On May 18, 2020
Let’s talk tunes! I didn’t really spend enough time last week talking about the life and impact of Little Richard. But you really need to read Bill Wyman on his astonishing life. Jason Isbell’s new album put a hell of a strain on his very public marriage with Amanda Shires and this is a really […]

Music Notes

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On May 9, 2020

There are two huge names in the music world who died this week. But I want to focus on a third: Wussy’s guitarist John Erhardt. This is a devastating loss for lovers of that great cult band. Erh

Music Notes

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On May 2, 2020

Willie Nelson turned 87 this week. In honor of that, Texas Monthly ranked all 143 of his albums. This is truly the list we all need. Things that are correct about this list: #1 is Phases and Stages an

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Music Notes

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On April 25, 2020
It is Fiona Apple’s world and we are just living in it. I review her album below, but there’s plenty of great material on her in recent days and weeks. Apple is the peak of the tortured artist and one who has self-medicated for a very long time in many different ways. And the work […]

Music Notes

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On April 11, 2020

The loss of John Prine is, for me, the biggest loss of COVID-19 thus far. I don’t have that much to add beyond what Scott and Simon wrote. I saw Prine in 1999, just after he came back from his f

Music Notes

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On March 31, 2020

The last show I saw before the coronavirus restrictions was Bill Frisell, at the Shedd in Eugene, Oregon. This is a good time to talk about Frisell’s role in my musical life. When I was in colle

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Music Notes

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On March 3, 2020
This goes out to everyone who wants to talk about something else than politics on Super Tuesday. This is going to be a very heavy Drive-By Truckers based post. Album review is below. I saw them twice in the last two weeks: the February 22 show in Somerville, Massachusetts and the February 25 show in […]

Music Notes

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On January 25, 2020

Haven’t had a good music notes post in a very long time. Still in my concert drought, but that will be ending soon. With new albums on the way from Drive-By Truckers, John Moreland, and Waxahatc

Music Notes

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On December 8, 2019

I don’t have any particularly compelling personal musical experiences since the last Music Notes post. My concert schedule has a lull in it right now and until the beginning of February actually

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