Twittering Machines

December 9th, 2010

Notations

Posted by michaelavorgna in The Refinery


John Cage
Notations

I didn’t know about Notations when I found it in the Rare Book Room at the Strand Book Store. That said, I didn’t discover Notations any more than a hiker discovers Versailles. But that didn’t stop me from feeling a deep sense of discovery (I’m talking about Notations and Versailles) regardless.

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November 13th, 2010

Road Tour: Fi

Posted by michaelavorgna in The Refinery

Did you ever wonder what the inside of a Fi looks like? Between the sheets, so to speak? I’m not talking about capacitor types and signal path lengths, I’m talking about seeing past the parts into the heart and soul of the beast to have a look at what makes it tick. I had the good fortune along with Stephen Mejias, John DeVore and Nori Komuro to be invited over to Don Garber’s place to hear a new amplifier he’s working on and have a look in and around the place called Fi.

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August 19th, 2010

Lee Perry’s Ark, by Milo Shepherdson

Posted by michaelavorgna in The Refinery


the Black Ark Studio

Lee Perry sure did get a lot of work done. Practically impossible to get a handle on, especially without a turntable and the right stack of vinyl–which takes me through a favorite doorway, to the latter half of the 1970?s.

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May 8th, 2010

More Inspiration

Posted by michaelavorgna in The Refinery

soap bubbles

Soap Bubbles and the Forces Which Mould Them by C.V. Boys first published in 1896 caused quit a stir. In fact, its ripples of influence spread to writers and artists far and wide and helped tip the scales of the rational toward the absurdist. Amen.

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February 1st, 2010

Inspiration

Posted by michaelavorgna in The Refinery

baker
Josephine Baker

Back in art school, the influence of foreign culture on Europe in the later part of the 19th and early 20th century focused on the higher brow – African masks and Picasso, jazz and Matisee, Japanese wood block prints and the Impressionists, Javanese Gamelan and Debussy and so on.

But if we look at inspiration that had its roots in a fleshier form that enticed both above and below the belt, so to speak, all kinds of interesting things happen. And no one aroused as many and as varied imaginations as Josephine Baker. If we follow her danse sauvage and its trail of influence we end up in some amazing places.

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January 28th, 2010

Playing It Over and Over, by Herbert Reichert

Posted by michaelavorgna in The Refinery

Herb Reichert

I was born in Chicago in 1949. I was a skinny feminine nerdy kid that couldn’t sit still. I didn’t talk. I was a ‘rocker’. I called it “bouncing”. Whenever I sat in a chair, I rocked back-and-forth. My parents were embarrassed and none of the kids wanted to be near me. I felt like an alien. That is the bad news.

The good news is; by the time I was ten, the simple singular processes of enjoying music, of buying and playing records, and talking to people about my musical discoveries had made it possible for me to have a few cool friends. Sort of like Ghost World. Playing LPs helped me go from nobody to play with to hanging with the Marko brothers to traveling all over the world.

I bought my first record in 1957. It was an LP by Elvis, entitled, “Loving You”. I would sit in the dark in my living room and bounce on the sofa, dreaming of going to school with a skinny white belt and my collar up. When the teacher told me to stop rocking; I’d jump up, pull out my guitar and shout, “I’ll show you rocking!” Then I’d be Elvis.

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December 5th, 2007

Geeking-out on Miles

Posted by John in The Refinery

My record collection (like any proper record collection) grows relentlessly. As my living space does not, periodic paring of the collection must be done. The first pass is getting rid of junk that mysteriously appears on the shelves. That’s easy. The next two passes are getting rid of duplicates and then losing the lest wanted sides. Pass number two however requires the most work, at least for me, because I listen to the all the dupes and keep my favorite. Sometimes it’s as easy as ditching the noisier of two identical pressings, but often it involves choosing between different pressings.

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