With MySpace sinking into the sunset of its existence after having been sold for a pittance of its former value, the game of thrones for its successor has started in the strongest possible way. The first player to have made a move is this new startup, which is the brainchild of Brenden Mulligan (founder of ArtistData, a very well-respected syndication tool for musicians to post information online). OneSheet is its name, and we can define it as a centralizer of any band’s activity on the Internet.
People who use the service log in with their Facebook accounts, and then they can have their data exported from musician-specific sites such as ReverbNation and Bandcamp, as well as from sites such as YouTube, Posterous and Tumblr. All the data featured there will be aggregated together, and displayed in a profile page whose layout bands can actually determine themselves. Continue reading →
The first thing people do when wanting to learn more about any band that’s been brought into their attention is heading straight to Wikipedia to see what can be learned about that artist there. Either that, or they are on their way to YouTube to catch the band in sonic flight. And looking up some lyrics is the next link in the chain, specially if English’s not their first language.
By all reckonings, that’s an almighty amount of toing and froing. It would be great if there were a way to get all that info at once, wouldn’t it? And it would be even better if The Who finally decided to tour South America.
Well, as far as the Shepherd Bush’s contingent coming all the way to this balmy region of the world is concerned I’ve almost lost all hope by now. And I don’t love them any less for that, nor do I listen to their music any less enthusiastically. But I refuse to believe nobody has ever come with a site to let you search the whole Internet in an organic way when looking for music-related information. Somebody must have done something about it. And I’ve scoured the whole digital universe looking for an answer. And hey, look what I’ve found.
LYRICSnMUSIC is a search aggregator that collects together results for sites like YouTube, Wikipedia and the best of the many lyrics repositories that are currently available online. All these are accessible using a tabbed interface that makes for a really cool user experience. You input your query, pick the suitable tab and Bob’s your uncle. Continue reading →
This Unofficial Biography Of Paul Weller Was Published In 1996 By Virgin Books. The Biographer Is Steve Malins.
Written by Steve Malins (best known for being the biographer of Depeche Mode) and published by Virgin Books in 1996, this book chronicles Paul’s entire career until the release of the “Stanley Road” album in 1995. You also have a good overview of his early years, and the ever-present figure of his father (who was to remain Paul’s manager right until he passed away in April, 2009). That was something I really liked about the book – the way the (quite unique) partnerships in music of a father and a son that lasted for more than 30 years can be seen as it was forming, consolidating itself and then when it was tested by commercial apathy only to stand stronger than ever.
The book has 9 chapters which map out Paul’s life and career clearly enough, with the Jam having the most extensive ones as it is only suitable (pardon the pun). The Style Council’s years receive the right amount of pages, too, and the flow is very convincing – how the band lost its edge gradually, and how Paul became isolated in his own (and misguided) artistic sense. The final segment touches upon his tentative steps as a solo artist (“The Paul Weller Movement”) and the subsequent successes of “Wild Wood” and “Stanley Road”. Continue reading →
The Cover Of The Book. The Picture Comes From The "Nonsuch" Photo Shot.
Named after one of Andy’s most ethereal compositions, this book (first released in 1992) stands as a moving portrait of a band that is incredibly cerebral, and yet has the ability to tug at your heartstrings like few bands in history. That contradiction comes as no surprise. The story of XTC involves the clash between ideals and reality, and that is something that comes across very vividly on this book.
The book has 188 pages. It includes 10 chapters, two sections of black & white photographs and a discography at the end. It begins out of chronological order (the first chapter deals with Andy’s breakdown) and then the story properly starts and it is run without detours or digressions. It is also an “authorized” biography – the book was compiled from interviews with the band members and their families. And most key figures like Todd Rundgren and Steve Lillywhite are also among the interviewees.Continue reading →
Compiled by Susan Black, this book was released by Omnibus Press in England in the year 1993. As in other “In Their Own Words” titles it gathers assorted quotes from all through the years and mashes them together by theme. I used the verb “mash” deliberately, as the book could use some editing – there are quotes that appear multiple times under different headings, and such a thing can turn out to be certainly annoying.
Some of the featured chapters include “Songwriting”, “”Money & Possessions” and (of course) “Clothes & Accessories”. The most comprehensive section is thankfully the one named “The Records”, and we can see facets of Elton that are not necessarily palpable through his music in the chapters “Sports” and “Politics”. Continue reading →
Published in 1983, this book covers the story of The Who from the very inception of the band to their farewell tour of 1982. It is a lengthy book (it has 546 pages), and many criticisms were leveled at it owing to that – it was claimed the story was not balanced, since the book has 36 chapters and only one deals with the post-Moon Who. The Kenny Jones albums barely get a paragraph each, whereas the “classic” Who records are covered from every angle to the point that the descriptions become too exhaustive (and even exhausting) for some people. Continue reading →