The Band 12/31/83 Complete Concert (setlist)

The Band (opening for the Grateful Dead) 12/31/83
San Francisco Civic Auditorium

Rag Mama Rag
Long Black Veil
Shape I'm In
It Makes No Difference
Milk Cow Blues
Mystery Train
King Harvest
Stage Fright
W.S. Walcott Medecine Show
You Don't Know Me (Ray Charles)
Chest Fever
Java Blues
Willie & The Hand Jive

Mark Lavon Helm          May 26, 1940 - April 19, 2012
Richard Manuel              April 3, 1943 - March 4, 1986
Richard Clare Danko     December 29, 1943 - December 10, 1999


Steve Angello "How To Fake Your Fans"

Here's thirteen minutes of footage of the Swedish House Mafia DJ duo member Steve Angello closing out his set and the festival finale at the Dance Valley music festival in the Netherlands.  Mr. Angello's lack of apparent or significant interaction with his equipment led to substantial speculation as to just how much of the performance is pre-ordained.  Portals like the Dancing Astronaut were set atwitter with speculation.  Angello was a good sport about it all and explained in enough detail why EDM and arena scale pyrotechnics require a high level of syncing.

“I just reviewed the clip everyone is talking about . so let me explain , when i do some festivals i have a team there that does all my pyro , fx and co2´s , + most of them have a synced “fireworks show” that is synced to the music so nothing goes wrong for the fireworks show since timing everything is extremely hard for them , so i have a medley mix i close with so they can have everything synced , most big festivals have that and its nothing new , as soon as your closing under a big finale you have that going on.. does that explain it ? i know some of you will still hate cause of the fact that hating if your game but i have now explained it and take it or leave it . i don’t have to prove myself that i´m able to mix i´ve done that my whole life and spend more time mixing then with my daughter so thats it . hope some of you understand , if you don’t sorry about that .. S A”

Having left pixie sticks out for the raver/hater sugar ants Mr. Angello apparently was less the science guy when responding to the continued nattering about a non-starter topic for him.

Can’t believe you guys are still going for it . don’t you have better things to do then make up bullshit to write about me faking a whole set when i just explained that it was the last 11 mins of my set so they could fire of the special fx and all the fireworks , stop with your bullshit and get on with your lives , if it would be up to you guys we would all be stuck in cells without electricity and banging on a floor without a big show so you would feel better for yourselves not being there , i would never fake a whole set in my entire life and those 10 mins are part of the show . if you don’t wanna see fireworks and a massive finale stop buying tickets to events where that happens and stay home instead . i hate when people make up a big story and feed on it like sugar to ants . make something better of your time instead of wasting mine !! if you would put as much time on your own careers as you do talking shit maybe a thing like this wouldn’t affect you , i know who my real fans are and you haters are not my real fans , cause if you would be you would get what i´m saying after seeing the shows we do , you probably haven’t even been to any of my shows and won’t ever come so drop it , get on with your lives ! – SA 

"We All Hit Play" Deadmau5

No love lost here for this knob twiddler, twiddling knobs fine, pushing buttons not-so-cool.  But give the ponce credit for at least acknowledging as such that blah blah due to the needs of syncing the elaborate visual and audio cues to the show out of necessity portions of or the entire show needs to be premixed.  This isn't a huge shocker going wayback to big name DJ talent, in the era of the turntable throwing a mix CD on in the booth, but the stakes is high.   The so-called global phenom Skrillex (shudder) is mixing off two copies of his own CD on his cross country train tour Full Flex Express.

Likewise give Steve Angello the Swedish House Mafia DJ credit for acknowledging much of the same when he said during the climax of his set he has a 'medley mix' that he puts on that syncs to all the visual and pyro cues (see seperate article and clip).  Deadmau5 described the 'necessity' and function of his proscribed set:
okay, so heres me, in a big silly mousehead.. twiddlin a knob or somethin… okay so heres how it works…. Somewhere in that mess is a computer, running ableton live… and its spewing out premixed (to a degree) stems of my original producitons, and then a SMPTE feed to front of house (so tell the light / video systems) where im at in the performance… so that all the visuals line up nicely and all the light cues are on and stuff. Now, while thats all goin on… theres a good chunk of Midi data spitting out as well to a handful of synths and crap that are / were used in the actual produciton… which i can tweak *live* and whatnot… but doesnt give me alot of “lookit me im jimi hendrix check out this solo” stuff, because im constrained to work on a set timeline because of the SMPTE. Its a super redundant system, and more importantly its reliable as FUCK! And obviously, ive done the show a couple hundred times easily by now, so the focus over the past few runs with the “cube show” has been more revolved around adding new audio / visual content to keep it current.
so thats my “live” show. and thats as “live” as i can comfortably get it (for now anyway) of course itll evolve, and change up, but im sure a few key principles will always remain the same.

It seems like the accusation of knob pushing, sorry button pushing, has been getting to Mr. Zimmerman as he continues with his tirade against his detractors that he has a bank of equipment that goes untouched.

Im just so sick of hearing the “NO!!! IM NOT JUST DOING THIS, I HAVE 6 TABLES UP THERE AND I DO THIS THIS AND THIS” like… honestly. who gives a fuck? i dont have any shame in admitting that for “unhooked” sets.. i just roll up with a laptop and a midi controller and “select” tracks n hit a spacebar. ableton syncs the shit up for me… so no beatmatching skill required. “beatmatching” isnt even a fucking skill as far as im concered anyway. so what, you can count to 4. cool. i had that skill down when i was 3, so dont give me that argument please.
my “skills” and other PRODUCERS skills shine where it needs to shine… in the goddamned studio, and on the fucking releases. thats what counts… because this whole big “edm” is taking over fad, im not going to let it go thinking that people assume theres a guy on a laptop up there producing new original tracks on the fly. becausje none of the “top dj’s in the world” to my knowledge have. myself included. 
Deadmau5 (Joel Thomas Zimmerman) Tumblr post


Pete Rock on the MPC

Pete Rock is one of the true masters of Hip Hop production, with a particular gift for often stirring and soulful instrumentals.  He has of coursed produced for countless icons and invariably puts his indelible stamp on the work by bringing out the best in the artist.  Here he talks about how he constructs beats on the MPC (Midi Production Center), the advantages and drawbacks of automated time-stretching features versus his manual preference, how he sources and then chops the samples that appeal to him.  He ends triumphantly building up with a rock solid bass line a Pat Benatar classic.  A true master at work.

In the studio with 9th Wonder (Part 1)

9th Wonder who's now considered a go to super producer in Hip Hop, lifetime member of Little Brother (named after the Little Brother ARP synthesizer), waxes eleqoent here about the challenges and titans of sample based music: Pete Rock, DJ Premier, Just Blaze and particularly emphasizing Blueprint

He reflects on his own father's musical education which taught him arrangement, the manual challenges of physically chopping up samples, how a great producer never really has a 'throw away' beat, knowing the production history of 70's records 'what to chop and what not to chop', as well as how it takes a true musical sense- actual ability to play piano or other instruments- to reconstruct samples in a melodious way.  "It's just hard."


Elzhi - Sound Clash Festival, Toronto (setlist)

Elzhi (elZhi)
Sound Clash Festival
Harbourfront Centre Stage
July 14, 2012

Blue Widow (from forthcoming album The Weather Report)
Halftime (prod. Will Sessions, orig. prod. Large Professor)
Life's A Bitch (prod. Will Sessions, orig. prod. L.E.S./ NAS co.)
D.E.M.O.N.S. (prod. Black Milk from The Preface)
Fire (Remix) (prod. Black Milk from The Preface)
Tainted (prod. Karriem Riggins, from Trinity Slum Village feat. Dwele)
Deadly Medley (prod. Black Milk from Album Of The Year)
Hiding Place (prod. 9th Wonder from The Minstrel Show Little Brother)
The World Is Yours (prod. Will Sessions, orig. prod. Pete Rock)
Come Get It (prod. J Dilla from Welcome 2 Detroit)
Do You (J Dilla from Detroit Deli (Taste of Detroit) Slum Village)
One Love (prod. Will Sessions)
Memory Lane (prod. Will Sessions, orig. prod. DJ Premier)
Represent intro>
Represent> (prod. Will Sessions, orig. prod. DJ Premier)
C.R.E.A.M. (prod. GZA, Wu Tang Clan)
Motown 25 (prod. Black Milk from The Preface)
It Ain't Hard To Tell (prod. Will Sessions, orig. prod. Large Professor)
Detroit State of Mind (prod. Houseshoes, orig. prod. DJ Premier)


Prince - The Glory Years (documentary)

If your interest in the musical heritage of Prince, or your interest in him extends beyond an unavoidable pop flirtation with his well over thirty hits (excluding those he wrote for others and tossed away only for them to find success with, the Bangles Manic Monday and of course Sinead O'Connor's Nothing Compares 2 U) into his much larger canon of music this documentary may appeal. 

(*note you may have to suffer through more than one painful lyrical and cultural analysis by the squinty faced dingbat above but if you do you'll find some other choice Prince intimates)

This documentary doesn't exactly blaze any new ground in terms of gaining an appreciation for Prince's galvanizing impact on popular music.  It's highly doubtful given the ultra-high level of control he's maintained over his own backstory that any truly salacious or bracing insights are likely to come out anywhere frankly.  It may be that he has some fairly iron clad confidentiality agreements in place, it may also be that in all likelihood very few people have been allowed past the purple mantle enough that they could have much insight of their own.  That said throughout this fairly functional and thankfully short documentary the listener is introduced to a handful of Prince acolytes who do have a handful of strong insights into Prince's artistry.  As with the bulk of material that makes up various other slapdash unauthorized bios the key contributors are characters such as Dez Dickerson (former Revolution guitarist) and Alan Leeds (former tour manager, Paisley Park Records President), as well as Rolling Stone's Anthony DeCurtis, who provide the bulk of inside material related to Prince's creative process.  Where this little doc shines a little bit over the countless articles, issues and books written is giving a voice to a handful of the recording engineers that worked closely with him at various points, as well as various session musicians brought in on one off basis'.  The doc deals particularly well with Prince's collaborative relationship with arranger Clare Fischer whom Prince has worked with extensively over the years but due to superstition has refused to ever meet the man.  There relationship is the classic 'exchanging tapes in the mail' collaboration and just one of the wonderful quirks that makes up His creative process.

If you're a real died in the wool member of the New Power Generation it's worth seeking out the above issue of Wax Poetics (10th Anniversary Edition, Winter 2012).  This issue with interviews with bassist Larry Graham (Graham Central Station, Sly and The Family Stone), Morris Day, Jesse Johnson and noted reeds player Eric Leeds (who collaborated frequently as a member of Prince's group and side project Madhouse).  The issue even contains a wonderful article by drummer and musical director Amir Questlove Thompson (The Roots) on 33 Reasons Why Prince Is Hip Hop.  The Questlove article, and the issue on the whole, are one of the few big steps forward in Prince scholarship in the last ten years.  The Artist himself seems to only now be slowly coming around to showing a bit more of what he has on under the purple frock.  Or as this issue attests it's more that the diverse voices that have contributed to his tapestry are finding an outlet beyond fan fodder.