Apple has baked iCloud into the core of iTunes, and the app’s interface has been decluttered and enhanced with new features like the MiniPlayer. We’ve been combing through the innards of iTunes 11 to find all of the little changes and additions. Here’s our updating list of iTunes 11 tips and tricks: READ MORE
Sneer if you must, but the simple fact is that smooth jazz hath charms to soothe the savage beast (if not the snobby music critic). At its best, it can offer the perfect combination of velvety, cake-like sonic textures, sweet melodicism and sturdy funk beats. If you’re looking for flights of virtuosic improvisatory fancy, you’ll want to consult the Young Lions or dig into your old vinyl collection, but let’s be honest: the average listener cares less about the solos than about the mood and the melodies, and smooth jazz provides both in spades. READ + HEAR MORE
Motown’s Frank Wilson wrote and produced hit records for such big names as the Supremes and the Temptations, but he was best known for a single recorded in Los Angeles that featured his own voice — and was never released.
Copies of his ”Do I Love You (Indeed I Do)” had already been pressed in 1965 when Motown founder Berry Gordy asked him to choose between being a performer or writer-producer, Wilson’s family said. When he decided on the latter, almost all of the singles were destroyed. READ MORE
Over time I’ve learned to be a rule-bender. Sometimes a rule-breaker, but mostly a bender. A repeat-offender of a bender, if you will. How else does one find the limits without taking a few risks? As NFL Hall of Famer Michael Irving poignantly said: If you’re not cheating you’re not trying hard enough. I say this because this morning Facebook threatened to sanction me for “making friends” with people I don’t already know. Duh! Isn’t that the definition of making friends? So after reading me the Riot Act they annoyingly “re-educated” me (extra screen clicks) and permitted my return to the Land of Faces where I was met with good news for one of my unbridled grabs at friendship garnered me the privilege of discovering a musical group by the name of Nathan’s Way.
Now I had never heard of this group before that moment. I have no New York connection to speak of… until Facebook. By serendipity I happened to befriend talented arranger Gregory K. Lathan who put his group’s video on my timeline. He had no real idea of me or I of him. There’s no way he could have known that I was up all night organizing my ginormous (as in gigantic times enormous) music collection whereby the likes of 5th Dimension, Manhattan Transfer, Take 6 and other such harmonically gifted luminaries figure prominently. Yes, this group just hours ago unknown to me, landed into my cultured consciousness with a hallowed resonance not enjoyed by musicians so young, so new, and so beautiful in recent history. And what a return to jazz-infused vocalized glory they are!
Gregory K. Lathan , Kira M. Smith, Charles Murray, and Leslee Warren are, collectively, Nathan’s Way. Will they carry forth the tradition of music that transcends categories, key and time signatures, time, space, cultures? “I Wanna Be Friends.” But kids, hear my fervent plea . Where’s my digital album? Your place in my music archive is reserved. Fill my drive, guys… if you dare.
Sometimes it pays to bend the rules.
Two weeks ago the New Orleans native, who moonlights with the rowdy rap collective Odd Future Wolf Gang Kill Them All, posted an open letter on his Tumblr website sharing the details of his unrequited love for another man when he was younger – a seemingly counterintuitive move in the firmly closeted world of urban music.
But instead of backlash, the revelation – not quite a declaration of sexual orientation – only propelled Ocean’s rise to fame.
The digital version of his first studio album, “Channel Orange,” released seven days ahead of schedule, quickly topped the iTunes sales chart, selling more than 100,000 copies. READ MORE