All of our music is WRONG! The great 440 Hz conspiracy

This is where things begin to get very, very weird, Keep reading. What I’m about to tell you will shake your faith in all the music you’ve heard in your life. This frequency became the standard ISO-16 reference for tuning all musical instruments based on the chromatic scale, the one most often used for music in the West. As early as 1885, the Music Commission of the Italian Government declared that all instruments and orchestras should use a tuning fork that vibrated at 440 Hz, which was different from the original standard of 435 Hz and the competing 432 Hz used in France. In 1953, a worldwide agreement was signed. Those of you with tinfoil hats may wish to ensure that they’re fitted snuggly. [This is my weekly column for – AC]
Gather ’round, kids. If you look down the right paths, it becomes clear that governments and various security apparatuses have used music to control us using music. In 1917, the American Federation of Musicians endorsed the Italians, followed by a further push for 440 Hz in the 1940s. Signatories declared that middle “A” on the piano be forevermore tuned to exactly 440 Hz. All the music of the West that’s based on the standard 12-tone scale is used for the management of crowds as well as thought control. If musical performances were to sound the same the world over, some standardization was required. All the other notes are tuned in standard mathematical ratios leading to and from 440 Hz. Let’s begin with some music theory.
The great 440 Hz conspiracy All of our music is WRONG!

UK Rock’n’Roll Landmarks Tour, Day 2 (Sunday, May 13)

UK Rock’n’Roll Landmarks Tour, Day 2 (Sunday, May 13)
They sell them in the Abbey Road Shop next door. David Bowie memorial mural, Brixton
This showed up on a wall not far from Bowie’s first home after he died. The place to the right is for currently available for rent. Abbey Road fence
Fans are encouraged to sign the wall supporting the fence outside the studios. -AC]
After a morning of reading the Sunday papers and walking through the Portobello Market, a brand new bus pulled up with Richard, our guide from last night, who proceeded to direct us through half of London. It’s become a gathering place for fans. This shot from the bus is to the north with Abbey Road Studios in the distance on the left. A parade of musicians walked past us into the building, all of whom appeared to be carrying classical instruments like violins and French horns. No problem. Hard Rock Cafe Vault, 150 Old Park Lane, Mayfair, London
This is the first-ever Hard Rock and the place where some of the chain’s most valuable artifacts are stored. 2. This Jimi Hendrix guitar–one of his rare Flying V’s–is worth at least $3.5 million. Then it was a famous recording studio. Abbey Road Studios, St. 6. What else is there to say? 5. David Bowie’s childhood home, 40 Stansfield Rd, Brixton
Three families now live in this modest row house where David Bowie was born. There are no tours of the facilities since it’s a working studio. 3. No Sharpie? Note the tourist annoying motorists with their incessant crossings of the street. 4. Abbey Road crosswalk
It’s known as a “zebra crossing” here in the UK. We soon did the same. 7. Love the hat on Bo Diddley’s guitar. John Lennon’s lyrics for “Instant Karma” [I’m spending the week in London with a group of music fans touring through various rock’n’roll landmarks. Some of the best stuff is on display in The Vault. Now it’s a cinema again. Former site of Olympic Studios, 117-123 Church Rd, Barnes, London
First, it was a cinema. John’s Wood, London
The most famous recording studio in the world. 1. They’re probably tired of tourists like us stopping to take pictures of the front door. Abbey Road lecture
I’d love to go to this thing. 8.

Weekly Survey: What one album would you give to aliens to explain rock?

Or should it be something more contemporary, an album that tells our new alien overlords something about the current zeitgeist? A simple question with a devilishly difficult answer. But what if you encounter someone who has never heard it before? Leave a comment below. What would that album be? Nearly seventy years after its birth, there’s are infinite flavours of rock music, but we still know it when we hear it. Think about it. Here’s the thought experiment: Aliens make First Contact and want to know everything about us. Do you go with Carl Sagan’s choice for Voyager’s Golden Record and choose Chuck Berry or do you opt for some Beatles? The United Nations has tasked you to determine what one album would best explain rock to our new extraterrestrial friends. Would Led Zeppelin be a better idea? How would you introduce that person to the entire concept of rock?
Weekly Survey: What one album would you give to aliens to explain rock?

And the winner of the 2018 Prism Prize for Canadian music video excellence is…

And the winner of the 2018 Prism Prize for Canadian music video excellence is…
The Hi-Fidelity Award (artist with the strongest visual identify): Grimes
Audience Award Winner (audience voting, natch):Keavan Yazdani and Sean Brown for Daniel Caesar’s “Freudian, a Visual.”
Special Achievement Award (presented by Slaight Music): Veteran director Cherie Sinclair. The 2018 winner is Fantavious Fritz who directed this clip for Charlotte Day Wilson. Lipsett Award (“an innovative and unique approach to music video art”): Karena Evans for her work on a couple of Drake videos, “God’s Plan and “Nice For What.”
  No one told all the artists who keep making clips, some of which are outstanding works of art. Four other awards were given out. Each spring, music industry types come together to vote on which Canadian director/artist created the best music video of the year. The music video is dead? He took home a cheque for $15,000.

Random music news for Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Random music news for Tuesday, May 15, 2018
That’s a rumour. Apple stores are going to start selling bicycle helmets for a very cool reason (if you’re a cyclist, that is.)
Is Kanye West bad luck for Adidas? You gotta wonder…
Let’s talk about phone tribes. Here’s another article on how virtual reality could change the concert experience in the near future. Which one do you belong to? Interesting idea: Could (should?) Spotify buy Universal Music? We were at Paul McCartney’s house yesterday, by Macca either wasn’t home or receiving guests, Drag, innit? Canadian music sales vs. And now, music news for May 15, 2018. A Facebook cryptocurrency? So why isn’t Mickey in the public domain yet? where they were at this time last year: Total albums, -21.5%; physical albums, -20%;  CDs, -24.6%; digital albums, -23.9%; digital tracks, -20.9%; vinyl +63%; streaming, 54.4%. How can a regular city become a true music city? My group tour of rock’n’roll landmarks of London, England, continues. Is your music on SoundCloud? They’re sure popular. The US Senate is going to vote on restoring net neutrality rules. Good. If so, you may start seeing warnings telling you to take a break. Do you use your phone too much? Wouldn’t that be interesting…
First the first time ever at a royal wedding, there will be a female in charge of the fanfares. Here are five ways to wring more plays out of the platform. Read this report
It was 90 years ago today that a character named Mickey Mouse debuted in a silent cartoon called “Plane Crazy” (NOT “Steamboat Willy” as we often hear, but that was the first public film). How did all these music cruises get started? Fun: 15 music facts that make have you scratching your head. The hazards of using public wifi. Great question.

New Music From The Inbox – Tuesday Edition! (May 15, 2018): Language, Gabe Gurnsey, Simply Saucer, and more!

(May 15, 2018): Language, Gabe Gurnsey, Simply Saucer, and more! New Music From The Inbox – Tuesday Edition!
Syncopated and stilted, this blaring cacophony takes no time to coddle its audience. Artist: Language
Song: “Into and out Of”
Album/EP: Plymouth

Urgent instrumental noise rock, “Into and out Of” feels like a rudimentary-building exercise turned up to 11. The persistent beat, processed robotic vocals, and shifting synths all build into a post-modern synthetic tone, but is it every groovy – and comforting. Watch/Listen: 

Artist: Gabe Gurnsey
Song: “Ultra Clear Sound”
Album/EP: Physical

Hypnotic future-tech electronica that slinks by deceptively quickly, there’s a layer of escapism in “Ultra Clear Sound” that almost makes it feel like it’s being broadcast from behind a sheet of glass. Watch/Listen:  Thank god for the post-00s pop revival. Watch/Listen: 

Artist: Skyler Stonestreet
Song: “Bankrupt”
Album/EP: Single

You might not have heard of her before, but you’ve probably heard her songs – Skyler Stonestreet is the juggernaut pop songwriter behind some of the hits by artists like Chainsmokers, Dua Lipa, Marshmello, and more. Strangely comforting. Artist: Michael Jablonka
Song: “Flump”
Album/EP: Single

Bluesy and biting rock with killer riffs and no fear of the reverb pedal, the deceptively-titled “Flump” has quite the opposite to do with flopping into couches or British marshmallow-based sweets. Rife with fat tones and extravagant presence, it’s kind of like if The White Stripes, Queens of the Stone Age, and Foo Fighters all raised a bratty song-baby together. Launching off from whining staccato guitar into a full band whirlwind, there’s an intriguing draw to this narrative-less progressive taster that may even make you listen an extra time or two. Twangy guitars and multi-part harmonies that feel they were eked straight from a Beatles-era songwriter’s guide, it’s not difficult to fall in love with this inviting tune. A talented vocalist in her own right, “Bankrupt” is exactly kind of song you’d expect from an artist of this pedigree: catchy as hell, top 40s radio-bait, and pleasantly insightful and complicated. The first new song in about 40 years for proto-punk cult Canadians Simply Saucer, “Lo-Fi Garage Symphonette” is a self-descriptive kind of tune. Hooky and riffy with quite the lo-fi story to tell, this tune packs the strutting swagger you’d expect from underground vets. Watch/Listen: 

Artist: Simply Saucer
Song: “Lo-Fi Garage Symphonette”
Album/EP: Single

OK, I’m not even going to pretend that this band was anywhere near my time. Watch/Listen: 

Artist: Cut Worms
Song: “Don’t Want to Say Good-bye”
Album/EP: Hollow Ground

Sunny springtime rock with a bit of a dusty, old-school layer, “Don’t Want to Say Good-bye” is a no frills, to the point, but most importantly enjoyable tune. Watch/Listen: 
Here, because bandcamp embedding is still a crapshoot.

Tool offers a few more details about their new album

Tool (minus Maynard James Keenan who is busy with A Perfect Circle) is now on the road with their lecture series, showing fans how they write and perform their songs. The first of about a half-dozen seminars ran Friday night in Minneapolis. We heard a couple of weeks ago that Danny Carey has finished tracking his drums–a big milestone–which means it’s time for a break. That’s cool, but how many songs are we talking? It’s been a little more than 12 years since the last Tool album, but they are apparently making progress on the new record. When asked about what the record sounds like, they dropped the news that each of songs on the album will be over 10 minutes long. if you want to know more about what these seminars are all about, go here.
Tool offers a few more details about their new album

Deadpool sings “Tomorrow” from the musical Annie on Korean TV–and it gets weirder

(Via Andrew) Here’s what happened. When Ryan Reynolds was sent on a worldwide Deadpool 2 promo tour, he was booked on a weird South Korean TV show called Mask King. The premise is simple: Guests sing a song while wearing a mask. Contestants must guess who the celebrity is.
Deadpool sings “Tomorrow” from the musical Annie on Korean TV–and it gets weirder

Here’s a look at Rami Malek as Freddie Mercury in trailer for Bohemian Rhapsody

The film traces the meteoric rise of the band through their iconic songs and revolutionary sound, their near-implosion as Mercury’s lifestyle spirals out of control, and their triumphant reunion on the eve of Live Aid, where Mercury, facing a life-threatening illness, leads the band in one of the greatest performances in the history of rock music. The movie follows the rise of Freddie and Queen from about 1970 through to the band’s triumphant performance at Live Aid,
Here’s the official summary of the film. In the process, cementing the legacy of a band that were always more like a family, and who continue to inspire outsiders, dreamers and music lovers to this day. Bohemian Rhapsody is a foot-stomping celebration of Queen, their music and their extraordinary lead singer Freddie Mercury, who defied stereotypes and shattered convention to become one of the most beloved entertainers on the planet. Let’s take a look at what to expect November 2.  
  Damn, but Rami Malek looks like Freddie Mercury.
Here’s a look at Rami Malek as Freddie Mercury in trailer for Bohemian Rhapsody

UK Rock’n’Roll Landmarks Tour, Day 3 (Monday, May 14)

You’ll see what I mean in a minute.  
Dr. The tree across the street has turned into a fan memorial. Hope & Anchor, Islington
A historic pub. Sadly, he didn’t seem to home. Roger Waters recruited 23 kids from a nearby school to sing the children’s choir bit on “Another Brick in the Wall, Part 2.” Originally, £1,000 was paid to the school to buy sports equipment. 34 Montegu Square, London
Ringo lived here, first with Jimi Hendrix and later with John Lennon. The studio is gone and the place has been converted to flats. It has a blue historic plaque marking Lennon’s residence. Those claps ended up being used in a new Queen song that was being recorded at Trident at the time, a track called “We Will Rock You.”
Coooooool. Former Site of Britannia Row Studios, Islington
Pink Floyd recorded most of The Wall here. (To get a blue plaque, you have to (a) be 100 years old; or (b) dead.)

Jimi Hendrix’s picture
Sometime in 1968, Jimi went across the street from the place he was sharing with Ringo and had this picture taken. These buildings may be gone in the next six months. That somehow seems wrong. Not that you can tell. John’s Wood
Macca bought this house on April 13, 1965, and has lived here ever since. And no, Lee and his buddies do not get royalties for their performance. Lee, an ex-punk rocker, told how he used to be in a band called Plex which had a cool connection: the drummer’s father owned famous Trident Studios. Amy Winehouse’s House, 30 Camden Square, Camden
She died here. Someone later went to work on behalf of the kids so that they all now receive a royalty from the song and the album. Denmark Street
This is 100 m-long street has been the heart of the British music industry for years. Hence “Fairport Convention.”

The Clissold Arms, Denmark Terrace, Muswell Hill
Ray and Dave Davies (separately) drink there, which has turned the place into something of a Kinks shrine. More on him later. Here are some highlights. Unfortunately, the north side of the street with its historic offices (including the studio where the Kinks recorded “You Really Got Me”() is under severe development pressure. Former site of Wessex Studios, Islington
This former rectory was where the Sex Pistols recorded Never Mind the Bollocks and the Clash put together London Calling. A new guide today. Paul McCartney’s HQ, Soho Square
This is the office of MPL, the company that directs all of Macca’s business. Both Joy Division and U2 played their first London gigs here. We were out all day covering at least 100 km around London. RIngo Starr’s Place. Lee and his mates are very, very jealous. The sign has long disappeared, but I couldn’t resist. One day in 1977, dad asked his son to bring is mates to record some handclaps. The building is now a retirement apartment. One of their customers left a cassette behind. Roundhouse, Camden
So many gigs…

Paul McCartney’s House, 7 Cavendish Avenue, St. Martens Store, Camden Market
They have a small museum attached to the store. Fairport House, Muswell Hill
The English folk scene began in this house in 1967 when some like-minded musicians convened at a house called Fairport.
UK Rock’n’Roll Landmarks Tour, Day 3 (Monday, May 14)

Good news! Podcasting is now legal! (Wait–what?)

Good news! Podcasting is now legal! (Wait–what?)
No more do podcasters around the planet have to worry about unexpectedly being sued up the ying-yang. This requires some explanation. A company called Personal Audio has been targeting podcasters (CBS and Adam Corolla, to name just two), saying that it owned the patent to the concept and technology underlying podcasting. Bloody troll. As of this week, podcasting is completely and unambiguously legal. This is the very definition of a patent troll. We’re going to sue you–unless you want to settle out of court.”
Most podcasters chose to settle rather than be dragged into a long and expensive court battle. This means that was can all podcast without fear. Fortunately, there were appeals which went against the company. But the Court rejected Personal Audio’s petition, which means the company is out of options. Personal Audio’s tactic was to call up podcasters and say “Hey, you’re using our intellectual property and are illegally using our patents. This is how Personal Audio made its money. It was Personal Audio’s turn to appeal, which they did, again and again. About time. Some chose to fight back and ended up losing lower court cases to Personal Audio. They maintained that anyone who got into podcasting owed them a license fee. All patents claimed by Personal Audio have been invalidated. Each time, though, they lost, until the only thing to do was take it to the US Supreme Court.

Random music news for Wednesday, May 16, 2018

Random music news for Wednesday, May 16, 2018
Chris Brown: Once a thug, always a thug (Via Steve)
If you have a smart speaker, you do not want this parrot. Want an ultra-rare drum machine? Yep. Go here. There will be an auction of Prince memorabilia. Here’s what happened. “Pulling a Kanye.”
On that topic, Princes Harry and William have joined Lady Gaga on a mental health campaign. If you can speak more than one language, you might be able to hear sounds differently than those who don’t. New survey: 71% of all UK vinyl sales go to a small number of superfans. Remember how that Norwegian newspaper claimed that Tidal was inflating streaming numbers for Beyonce and Kanye West? But what have the Royals ever done for the arts? Spotify is still in the lead, but Apple is catching up. The time when Keith Richards got rid of Donald Trump. Meanwhile, Courtney Barnett demonstrated that she knows how to deal with trolls. People are really pissed at Tidal. El Al of Israel began flying a turboprop airliner from New York to Heathrow in London. Apple Music says it has now passed 50 million subscribers. You know what could be good for your mental health? Are you ready to start talking about new iPhone models? Slash’s video game music? The first regularly-scheduled transatlantic airline flight began on this date in 1951. That new Arctic Monkeys album is selling well, innit? Factoid: the average American listens to 32 hours of music a week. Damon Albarn almost did something very silly with the master tape of a Gorillaz album. Too bad. There are now some investigations into its practices. A bunch of Norwegian artists are now suing over this. Gotta be some good stuff here. At that rate, it would take 1,600 years to listen to all the songs on Spotify. Check out this opinion. Russian trolls attacked American teenage girls’ computers with a botnet called FaceMusic. No? And when it comes to music news for May 16, 2018…

The concept of awarding a “gold record” turns 60 this week.

More Music From The Inbox 16 May 2018 Matt Steele, Batuk, Eleanor Friedberger and More!

More Music From The Inbox 16 May 2018 Matt Steele, Batuk, Eleanor Friedberger and More!

Artist: Eleanor Friedberger, “My Jesus Phase”
Album: Rebound

NYC is home for this indie star
Sounds like:  real life moments

Artist: Eternal Summers, “Motionless”  
Album: Every Day It Feels Like I’m Dying

Love this sound out of Virginia
Sounds like:  a bit of a Cranberries vibe

Artist: Freedom Fry, “Cold Blooded Heart”
Album: N/A

Lovely sounds out of L.A. Sounds like:  quiet but deep

Artist: The Orchard, “Dream Inside a Dream”
Album: N/A

Interesting stuff out of Alberta
Sounds like:  a little country beauty
Link/Listen/Watch: Artist: Matt Steele & The Corvette Sunset, “Handshake Deal”
Album: N/A

Out of Halifax and making me very happy
Sounds like:  some great rock! Big Space”
Album: Kasi Royalty

This South African mega-talent is bringing it
Sounds like:  trippy shit! Link/Listen/Watch:

Artist: Batuk, “Love At First Sight ft.

Is 2018 the creepiest year in tech? Maybe.

Maybe. Is 2018 the creepiest year in tech?
Slowly, stealthily, technology continues to creep into our lives. (Thanks to FF for the link.) In the process, it’s also getting creepier.