Play It Again, Jon: Songs vs. Performance Pieces

Composer/producer/musician Jon Brion distinguishes between songs and performance pieces. What’s the difference? In a 2006 episode of Sound Opinions (rebroadcast in a 2012 episode of 99% Invisible), he cites Led Zeppelin as an example of the latter. Though he’s “a big fan” of Zeppelin, their songs “are the ultimate performance pieces.” He explains, And the way…

Moomin Merchandise

Occasionally, publishers and authors send me children’s books. When time and interest coincide (alas, too infrequently), I review them and post my reviews here. More often, I write reviews of books I’ve bought. I do not review children’s-book-related tie-ins. I view such products with some skepticism, and have written critically about merchandising that targets children….

Let’s Talk About Taste

There’s a new Facebook meme: “How to determine who to unfriend on Facebook.” Click on the link, and you get a list of “Friends who like Nickelback.” The joke depends upon pervasive dislike of the popular Canadian band. At best, I find the group’s music benign. I could imagine it being used to sell soda…