I’ve known Will Robin since his sophomore year in college, when he asked me to sign a copy of The Rest Is Noise at an event in Chicago. That summer he asked if he could do any work for me as an assistant; he ended up helping me hugely with Listen to This, my second book, and with the early stages of Wagnerism. In the ensuing decade, as I continued to grind away on the same book, Will went to graduate school, became an assistant professor at the University of Maryland, married, fathered an adorable baby boy, and completed his own first book. He’s become a valued colleague and a close friend; I now feel I learn more from him than he does from me. All this by way of saying that I feel personal joy at the arrival of Industry: Bang on a Can and New Music in the Marketplace, which Oxford University Press publishes today. At its heart, Industry is the story of the emergence and evolution Bang on Can ensemble, but it goes much wider, examining the struggles within new music to find a footing as the mentality of the Reagan era dismantled arts funding. There were gains and losses in the course of that evolution, and despite his close contact with the Bang on a Can leaders Will doesn’t shy away from delineating compromises with the “gig economy” and other aspects of neoliberal economics. What I find most admirable in the book is the balance it strikes between historical narration and critical analysis: such balance is hard to achieve. Will will have a book launch “at” the 92nd Street Y tonight; he’ll be conversation with my longtime colleague Allan Kozinn, who covered the rise of Bang for the New York Times. The following day, he chats with Anne Midgette. Heartiest congrulations!
Trailblazing dance duo Daft Punk have called it a day after 28 years together.
Today, a video entitled ‘Epilogue’ was posted on their YouTube channel, featuring a poignant scene from their 2006 film Electroma along with the legend ‘1993-2021’. No further details were provided on the decision to quit.
Thomas Bangalter and Guy-Manuel de Homem-Christo released four albums during their 28 years together as Daft Punk, the most recent being 2013’s multi-Grammy-award-winning Random Access Memories. Since then they have kept a typically low profile, producing the occasional track for The Weeknd and Australian band Parcels, but rumours of a 2017 tour came to nothing.
It is not known whether the duo will continue working together under a different guise, or pursue separate projects.
A posthumous Tony Joe White album, Smoke From The Chimney, will be released by Dan Auerbach’s Easy Eye Sound label on May 7.
The songs were worked up by Auerbach from a batch of vocal/guitar demos passed to him by Tony Joe White’s son and manager, Jody White. The album also features Bobby Wood on keyboards, Paul Franklin on pedal steel, Marcus King on guitar and Stuart Duncan on fiddle.
Watch a video for the first single “Boot Money” below:
“For one reason or another, my Dad would never just want to go into a studio and write with somebody, or go work with somebody,” says Jody White. “He liked to do it at his place, and his way, and it turned out how it turned out, you know what I mean? So, this album really all worked out perfectly. He was making these tracks for Dan all along, but we just didn’t know it.”
Adds Auerbach: “These songs feel like a collection to me and they all seem to work together, in a weird way, even though they’re so different. There’s some heartbreaking ballads and some really raunchy carnal blues. But it all works together like scenes of a movie.”
Pre-order Smoke From The Chimney here and check out the tracklisting below:
Smoke From The Chimney
Del Rio, You’re Making Me Cry
Listen to Your Song
Someone Is Crying
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