I haven't written lately because my right hand has been in a cast from my fingertips to my elbowrendering me, as a writer, essentially mute. Writing, thinking, and feeling are, for a writer, inextricably linked. How do I know what I think if I haven't written about it?
In my last post (and the story of why it was so long ago is an epic which I won't go into now), I observed that the listener I am today is a completely different critter than the one I was years ago. It's inevitable that time, experience, and liff its ownself change usand change the way we perceive art.
Looking for a small, manageable paperback to read on a commute to Great Neck and back, I picked up a vintage paperback of Ross Macdonald's The Drowning Pool, a novel I'd read 25 years ago. I didn't exactly remember the plot clearly, but my recollection of my fling with Macdonald was that most of his plots dealt with the sins of the grandfathers being visited upon the third generation after.
I've been reading Daniel Levitan's The World in Six Songs: How the Musical Brain Created Human Nature, which makes pretty strong claims for the importance of those tones in time. (Neil McCormick conducted an interesting interview with Levitan in The Telegraph.)
As an audiophile, one of my core beliefs has always been that, once they have heard better sounding music, everybody would want it. That's how it worked with me: My friend Bill sat me down in front of his Quad '57s and cued David Bowie's Heroes on the turntable and once I heard all of those new sounds coming out of my beloved old LP, I was a changed man.
My favorite audio product of 2008 isn't precisely an audio productit's a home theater in a box. I'm referring to Polk's lovely SurroundBar 360, which sells for $1200 and gives you a low-profile 48" "sound bar" and a base station, which includes an optical disc player, DSP processing, and an AM/FM tuner. The base station, of course, contains all the amplification the sound bar requires. Also included is a special umbilical to connect the two piecesand, in a savvy little detail that tells you a great deal about how much thought has gone into the SurroundBar 360, the connectors on that cable cannot be connected "wrong."
Like many perpetually adolescent, emotionally-stunted hipsters, I had a radio show at the campus station back in the day. Crafting a show that had flow was an arcane artone that is virtually impossible to experience on commercial radio stations with limited play lists. Therefore, it was an art that, once mastered, would be of almost no practical use. It certainly wasn't going to get you a good paying job.
Strange collection, but that's the point. How do you categorize that which is beyond category? Of course, Wittgenstein said, " Whereof one cannot speak, thereon one must remain silent." I say, "Eff off, Ludwig."
Interesting article on subharmonics. There are links to recorded examples, which are certainly interesting, but for me, the money quote is: "She demonstrated her ability to top scientists in the US, but they gave up trying tofind out howthe effect happens."
Audiophiles probably know Steve Guttenberg for his writing about hi-fi and home theater in numerous publications, as well as his blog The Audiophiliac. What only a handful of folks know, however, is that Steve is a talented graphic artist, manipulating photographic images to express the world as he (sort of) sees it.