Drummer Tommy Ramone dies


This 1987 music video from the USA is called The Ramones – Bonzo Goes To Bitburg Live. Lyrics are here.

From Variety in the USA:

Tommy Ramone, Founding Member of Influential Punk Band, Dies at 62

July 11, 2014 | 10:07PM PT

Christopher Morris

Drummer and producer Tommy Ramone, the last surviving original member of the influential New York punk quartet the Ramones, died Friday at his home in the Ridgewood area of Queens, New York. He was 62 and had been in hospice care following treatment for bile duct cancer.

Born Erdelyi Tamas in Budapest, Hungary, and known professionally as Tom or T. Erdelyi, Ramone played on the first three epoch-making Ramones albums, “Ramones” (1976), “Leave Home” (1977) and “Rocket to Russia” (1977). He also co-produced the latter two albums with Tony Bongiovi and Ed Stasium, respectively. He appeared on and co-produced the 1979 live Ramones opus “It’s Alive.”

After leaving the Ramones to concentrate on studio work, he co-produced the band’s 1984 album “Too Tough to Die” with Stasium. He was replaced in the lineup by Marc Bell (Marky Ramone), a former member of Dust and Richard Hell’s Voidoids.

One of the first high-profile releases to emerge from New York’s punk underground of the mid-‘70s, “Ramones” – reportedly recorded in six days on a budget of $6,400 – brought a pared-down, hyperactive style to the stuffy rock scene of the day. Tommy’s driving, high-energy drum work was the turbine that powered the leather-clad foursome’s loud, antic sound.

Tom Erdelyi emigrated to America in 1957 and grew up in Forest Hills, Queens, where he played with guitarist John Cummings – later Johnny Ramone – in Tangerine Puppets. He went on to study engineering and worked at the Record Plant (where he assisted on a 1969 Jimi Hendrix session) and other facilities.

The Ramones coalesced with the addition of fellow Queens musicians Jeffrey Hyman (aka lead singer Joey Ramone) and Douglas Colvin (bassist Dee Dee Ramone). Breaking in their act at Hilly Krystal’s Bowery club CBGB, the band was signed to Seymour Stein’s Sire Records, also the home of such other punk acts as Richard Hell, Talking Heads and the Dead Boys.

The Ramones finally disbanded in 1996 after a show at the Palace in Hollywood. Joey Ramone died of lymphoma in 2001; Dee Dee succumbed to a drug overdose in 2002; and Johnny expired from prostate cancer in 2004.

The Ramones were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2002.

Erdelyi’s other production credits included the Replacements’ major label debut “Tim” (1985) and L.A. punk unit Redd Kross’ “Neurotica” (1987). In later years, he went the acoustic route, playing bluegrass and country music with his partner Claudia Tienan in Uncle Monk.

He is survived by Tienan and an older brother. A private funeral service is planned.

Which blackbird sings best, contest


This video from Norway says about itself:

Blackbird switches to quiet song while hunting for food

Common Blackbird (Turdus merula; Svarttrost; Merle noir) sings loudly from a tree, drops to the ground to poke for grub, then switches to a barely audible twittering song, as if singing to itself. This musical twitter is a variant of the so-called “quiet song”. From the island of Sotra west of Bergen, Norway in early spring. Background songs are Great Tit, European Robin, and Greenfinch.

Translated from Vroege Vogels radio in the Netherlands:

Dutch Championship Blackbird Singing

From Texel to Limburg and from Zeeland to Friesland. From across the country in recent months Vroege Vogels received hundreds of recordings of blackbirds singing. More than 200 people sent in their favorite Turdus merula. After long deliberation, the jury of the Dutch Blackbird Championships nominated three sweet-voiced singers. Now it’s up to you to determine who sings most beautifully. The election is on. The winning blackbird will win a song about it by singer-songwriter Ellen ten Damme. Read more here.

Please note that by moving your cursor over one of the three blackbirds here you can listen to that individual’s sound. Then choose the best singer by placing a checkmark under its picture and vote!

Most Influential Blogger Award, thank you Afsheen!


Most Influential Blogger Award

My dear Internet friend Afsheen of the blog Dreams to Reality ! has been so kind to nominate my blog for the Most Influential Blogger Award.

Thank you so much for this wonderful gesture! All my best wishes for you and your blog!

Here are the guidelines for acceptance – really very straightforward.

To accept this award, the awardee must do the following:

1 Display the Award on your Blog.

2 Announce your win with a blog post and thank the Blogger who awarded you. Do not lump this award with any other award in a “basket”, “bouquet” or “collection” etc, I would rather you didn’t accept the award.

3 Present 10 deserving Bloggers with the Award.

4 Link your awardees in the post and let them know of their being awarded with a comment (or a pingback).

5 Include an embedded video of your current favourite song (YouTube has virtually everything, just copy and paste the link into your WordPress editor). If a video is not possible you can embed a SoundCloud track.

My music video is this one:

Bob MarleyGet Up Stand Up Live In Dortmund, Germany.

My ten nominees are:

1. Timizar design Blog

2. Rob Prince’s Blog

3. Sea Salvage Gifts

4. authorchuksblog

5. Miscellaneous Inanities

6. Erga Photography

7. Under the Pecan Leaves

8. On The Heath

9. Picaturi Cristaline

10. Nazish Nawab

Chimpanzees prefer African, Indian music to other music


This music video is called African Traditional Music.

From Wildlife Extra:

Chimps shun music of West and Japan in favour of African, Indian… or peace and quiet

Chimpanzees prefer silence to listening to Western-style music, but they do like a bit of African or Indian rhythm, according to new research published by the American Psychological Association.

Not that the researchers want to be divisive.

“Our objective was not to find a preference for different cultures’ music,” said study co-author Frans de Waal of Emory University. “We used cultural music from Africa, India and Japan to pinpoint specific acoustic properties.

“Past research has focused only on Western music and has not addressed the very different acoustic features of non-Western music.

“While non-human primates have previously indicated a preference of music choices, they have consistently chosen silence over the types of music previously tested.”

Previous research has also found that some non-human primates prefer slower tempos, but the current findings may be the first to show that they display a preference for particular rhythmic patterns, according to the study published in the Journal of Experimental Psychology: Animal Learning and Cognition.

“Although Western music, such as pop, blues and classical, sound different to the casual listener, they all follow the same musical and acoustic patterns. Therefore, by testing only different Western music, previous research has essentially replicated itself,” the authors wrote.

Sixteen adult chimps in two groups participated in the experiment at the Yerkes National Primate Research Center at Emory University.

Over 12 consecutive days for 40 minutes each morning, the groups were given the opportunity to listen to African, Indian or Japanese music playing on a portable stereo near their outdoor enclosure.

Another portable stereo not playing any music was located at a different spot near the enclosure to rule out behaviour that might be associated with an object rather than the music.

The different types of music were at the same volume but played in random order.

Each day, researchers observed the chimps and recorded their location every two minutes with handwritten notes. They also videotaped the activity in the enclosure.

The researchers found that when African and Indian music was played near their large outdoor enclosures, the chimps spent significantly more time in areas where they could best hear the music.

When Japanese music was played, they were more likely to be found in spots where it was more difficult or impossible to hear the music.

The African and Indian music in the experiment had extreme ratios of strong to weak beats, whereas the Japanese music had regular strong beats, which is also typical of Western music.

“Chimpanzees may perceive the strong, predictable rhythmic patterns as threatening, as chimpanzee dominance displays commonly incorporate repeated rhythmic sounds such as stomping, clapping and banging objects,” said de Waal.

“Displaying a preference for music over silence is compelling evidence that our shared evolutionary histories may include favouring sounds outside of both humans’ and chimpanzees’ immediate survival cues,” said lead author Morgan Mingle of Emory and Southwestern University in Austin.

“Our study highlights the importance of sampling across the gamut of human music to potentially identify features that could have a shared evolutionary root.”

See also here.

Nature and nurture seem to contribute equally to chimpanzee intelligence, @Sara_Reardon reports: here.

Japanese protest against militarist government


This music video is called John Coltrane – Peace on Earth – Live in Japan.

It says about itself:

10 June 2012

John Coltrane – soprano, alto and tenor saxophones, bass clarinet, percussion
Alice Coltrane – piano
Pharaoh Sanders – alto and tenor saxophones, bass clarinet, percussion
Jimmy Garrison – bass
Rashied Ali – drums

From daily The Morning Star in Britain:

Japan: Thousands protest against military change

Monday 30th June 2014

THOUSANDS of people protested outside Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s office today in protest at his government’s intention of reinterpreting the constitution to allow the military a larger international role.

They demanded that the plan to allow the Japanese military to help defend other nations be scrapped.

The constitution renounces war and permits the use of arms only for Japanese self-defence and critics say that the change undermines the charter.

Beating drums and carrying placards and banners, the protesters demanded that Mr Abe resign, expressing outrage that the constitution could be changed by interpretation rather than by democratic process through a referendum.

Communist MP Yoshiki Yamashita accused the government of turning a deaf ear to the people’s voices.

“Can we really keep peace by sending young people to a distant battlefield? We must stop the cabinet decision,” he declared.

The Cabinet is expected to announce its decision tomorrow.

See also here.

Polish workers at anti-fascist music festival in London


This punk rock music video from England is called Clash – Live at Rock Against Racism, Victoria Park, London – 30 April 1978.

By Luke James in Britain:

Unite Against Fascism organises festival at stabbing site

Saturday 28th June 2014

A COMMUNITY music festival is to be staged today at the site of a racist stabbing in north London amid concerns over reprisals.

Unite Against Fascism (UAF) organised the cultural event at Markfield Park in Tottenham, where a mass brawl was sparked last Saturday when Polish skinheads attacked another free musical event.

But the community is coming together to reclaim the park from the gang, which has used it as a recruiting ground in recent months.

Speaking ahead of the festival, factory worker Jacek Szymanski said the Polish community felt “angry and ashamed” by last week’s violence.

“Ashamed because they are Poles and brought disgrace on the whole Polish community in London,” he told the Star.

“And angry because we are afraid that this case will be used as a pretext for further attacks on the Polish community and the wider eastern European community.”

The attack had seen one man rushed to hospital with stab wounds and two Jewish men also targeted, with one having his kipah cap swept from his head.

Rocks, bottles and a flare were thrown in violent scenes as partygoers repelled the attack by the Zjednoczeni Emigranci (Immigrants Together) group of exiled Polish football thugs.

The group has since plastered the community in far-right stickers that show a crossed out hammer and sickle symbol.

UAF national secretary Weymann Bennett said the police were investigating but added that “the most important thing is that the community deals with it on the ground.”

Mr Szymanski said the fascist group represented a tiny minority and hoped “solidarity will emerge between the different local communities” after today.

He said: “It’s not about division between Poles and British people or Poles and Muslims. The man who was stabbed by the fascists in Markfield Park was a Pole himself.

“So the real division is about fascists and anti-fascists and we need to be united in the common good.”

The festival is being put on after more than 200 local people joined a display of unity organised by UAF at Tottenham Town Hall on Monday.

Mick Jagger a bad psychic on World Cup football


This video is called Brazil World Cup 2014 Psychic Animals: Get ready for beastly prediction.

The ‘psychic’ abilities of humans to predict the future most often turn out not to work. Similarly so with ‘psychic’ animals predicting results of football matches. With one exception: Paul the octopus, with 11 out of 13 predictions correct (it is mathematically predictable that among so many failures there would be one animal getting most match results right). Chicito the fortune-telling toucan so far in the 2014 World Cup got two results right, one wrong.

This music video is called The Rolling Stones – Satisfaction (live).

From Associated Press:

Brazil Mocks Mick Jagger‘s World Cup Flop Picks

RIO DE JANEIRO — Jun 24, 2014, 8:01 PM ET

By JOSHUA GOODMAN

The Rolling Stones’ Mick Jagger can’t get no soccer satisfaction.

In what’s becoming something of a modern World Cup tradition, Brazilians are closely following every team the 70-year-old rock star supports with an eye at mocking him for apparently casting bad spells on his picks.

Italy was the latest victim of what local media have taken to calling Jagger’s “pe frio” — a term describing the bad luck that he brings teams that translates literally as “cold foot.”

At a concert in Rome on Saturday night, Jagger predicted to 70,000 fans that four-time World Cup champion Italy would pull off a clutch victory over Uruguay to advance to the knockout phase. The Italians lost 1-0 Tuesday and were headed home after the tournament’s first round.

At a show in Lisbon in May, the singer predicted that Portugal, led by Cristiano Ronaldo, the game’s top player heading into the World Cup, would win it all at the monthlong tournament in Brazil. Portugal is on the brink of elimination after failing to win in its first two group matches.

Earlier in the World Cup, Jagger suffered some good-hearted ridicule after taking to Twitter on June 19 to urge on his native England in a game, also with Uruguay. “Let’s go England! This is the one to win!!,” he wrote. England lost.

While Brazilians may laugh at Jagger, they love his music. The Stones’ 2006 concert on Copacabana beach in Rio de Janeiro drew an estimated 1 million people, a lot more than the 20,000 or so that pack the beach now to watch World Cup games on a giant screen.

Jagger also loves Brazilians, having fathered one 15 years ago with former Brazilian model Luciana Gimenez.

Brazilians’ obsession with Jagger’s soccer insights, or lack thereof, began four years ago at the World Cup in South Africa. Searching for an explanation for their country’s stunning quarterfinal loss to the Netherlands, Brazil’s fans settled on Jagger, who showed up at the stadium accompanying his son dressed in a Brazilian jersey.

Earlier in that tournament, he had already earned a reputation for losing picks by showing up in the stands with Bill Clinton to cheer on the United States, which lost to Ghana in the second round, and then a day later watched as England was trounced by Germany 4-1.

Whether Jagger tempts fate and offers up another prediction this World Cup is anyone’s guess.

But if he does, Brazilians are begging it’s not for them. Within hours of Italy’s defeat Tuesday, social media was buzzing with pleas for the rocker to keep quiet, or better yet, lend his reverse rabbit’s foot to the country’s despised rival, Argentina.

———

Associated Press writer Ana Santos contributed to this report.