Sunday, June 21, 2009

Overhearing Music


I realize there’s that software now that enables you to use your cell phone to record and thus identify songs you overhear while walking around.  But I would imagine most music nerds these days are using my default method — trying to overhear one distinctive snippet of the lyrics for later Googling purposes (or Binging purposes, I should perhaps now say — though I think for people to convert from Google to Bing, one’s first impression of Bing can’t simply be that it works about as well — which is what you’re likely to think unless you happen to be vacation-planning or doing one of the other things for which Bing is designed to be superior — but rather that you have been blown away and converted on the spot away from use of an old reliable search engine that has become second-nature for most of us already).

Anyway, the snippet/Googling method works surprisingly well but of course does lead to moments of great frustration when none of the lyrics are audible — save perhaps something near-useless like “love, baby” — and your friends are starting to notice that you’re craning your neck in a funny way to try to hear the song better while everyone else is eating a meal or otherwise going on with their lives.

I had a hard time hearing the psychedelic rock lyrics playing in the dress shop Beacon’s (Helen’s idea, not mine) one week ago today until suddenly hitting a garagey-sounding cover of “You Keep Me Hangin’ On” sandwiched between psychedelic instrumentals and preceded by what I now take it was not actually a Zombies song but, yes, Vanilla Fudge covering Zombies (mmmm — vanilla fudge covering zombies), as some Googling and checking of track lists revealed.  And the real music nerds will now be appalled, convinced that I should already own Vanilla Fudge’s self-titled first album.  (Or they may fear that what I heard was really Tea Company’s cover of “You Keep Me Hangin’ On.”)

Music nerds may be less persuaded that I needed to purchase from Beacon’s hyper-hip CD section one Ennio Morricone experimental album (Crime and Dissonance) and one impassioned but not terribly catchy MC5 CD (Kick Out the Jams).  Just knowing I finally own the song containing the immortal spoken intro “Kick out the jams, motherfucker” is nice, though.  And I bought a rainbow ice across the street at Pizza Town.

But speaking of getting to know the neighborhood: tomorrow, an ex-Nirvana member’s foray into local politics.


David said...

Zombies? Supremes! It’s a Supremes song!

Vanilla Fudge’s name wasn’t just a goof, but a description of their intent to combine heavy and light music. Both the name and the goal were inspirations to Led Zeppelin.

Todd Seavey said...

The Zombies song in question, unnamed above, was “She’s Not There.”

And speaking of things resembling Led Zep: cameos by Fairport Convention and the Strawbs in tomorrow’s Book Selection entry!

Mitch Golden said...

The reason that people will ultimately convert to Bing is that Microsoft will integrate it into the browser. That little search window at the upper right will point to Bing by default. Since Bing will be good enough to not annoy people into finding the way to reconfigure the search window to use Google, their searches will go to Bing by default. Thus will Microsoft’s monopoly on the operating system, which was converted to a monopoly on the web browser via illegal bundling, be converted to possibly monopoly level market share of web search engines.

The relevance of this to anarchist/libertarian philosophy is left as an exercise to the reader.