Best Oscar Moment

For me the best moment of the Oscar (though I admit I didn’t watch start to finish) was Dave Grohl’s performance of Blackbird. Lyrically, for a song used in the In Memoriam sequence, I don’t think the song had much to do with death or passing away etc. but it’s a great song and Dave did a great job.

Get Your Geek On

If you happen to be in the Pittsburgh area you could check out a concert devoted to the music of Star Trek. Jay Chattaway is one of the composer’s featured and little did I know the music of Star Trek has been performed all over the world with Mr. Chattaway as a guest conductor at times.

Check out the article here.

Live long and pizzicato.

There’s a Good Chance You Steal Music

A recent study came to the conclusion that 57 million people are actively stealing music. That works out to about 1 out of every 5 people online. That’s a lot of people!

I think this probably also points to the fact that after all these years of music being available online, going all the way back to Napster, the recording industry still doesn’t have what consumers are looking for.

This article about the study points out that people still like to own music. The record industry doesn’t want us to own anything, instead we should just listen to a song being played for us on some service.

It Could Be Worse

A couple in Greymouth, New Zealand got busted for blasting their classical music too loud from their garage.  Classical music is really best when played at a nice garage filling volume so I guess I can understand. They should also clean up all the old grey poupon jars in the driveway.

Read more here.

Elton John is Doing Free Concert

This is great news if you’re in the LA area. Elton John is going to do a free concert. You can see the details in the Hollywood Reporter article.
There were two surprises for me from that article.

One is that AOL still exists. AOL is going to stream the concert. Get your dial up modem ready and hope you get a full 56k connection.

Two is that Tower Records still exists. It’s long gone from Columbus Ave in San Francisco.

Dude sings like a lady

I found an interesting article on NPR and it’s something I’ve noticed also. More and more male singers are sounding like women. Back in the 80’s you had hair bands with guys wearing makeup trying to look like women. These days it’s men with falsetto voices making it on the radio.

Adam Levine strikes me as one of the biggest male perpetrators of lady tones but he’s certainly not alone. These days in the music industry if one style is successful you’ll see clones for years until the next “new” thing comes along. But there have always been guys singing high. For a obscure example I’ll go with Mickey Thomas with Starship. Prince could hit some high notes, his song Kiss comes to mind. Then, of course, there were the Bee Gees. Maybe it’s the lack of variety on the radio these days that makes it seem like such a majority of male singers only sing high.

A Space Oddity

It recently came to light that while the Apollo 10 astronauts were orbiting the moon they heard what they described as space music. I’m not sure what sort of sounds would be descibed as space music. One thought, like this article states, is that it was something that sounded something like a theremin. That makes sense because at the time theremins were used in cheesey sci-fi movies.

If you are unfamiliar with what a theremin sounds like here is an example:

We may never know what what causing the sounds but I would guess that the origin of the sound is something mundane like electrical interferce but then again who knows…

Got the Advent speakers working again

It took a little trial and error but I was able to get my old advent speakers working again. The main problem with the speakers was that on one of them the woofer was not working at all. It turned out all I had to do was reflow the solder on one of the woofer terminals and it started working again so I was business.

Once I got it working I found that one of the woofers was making a noise
when it was trying to reproduce low frequencies. I ended up fixing a bad refoam job and now everything is working great and it sounds really good.

I also did some modifications to the preamp but that will be another post.

Restoring Old Advent Speakers

I always have some sort of project going on. Being a home owner, there is always something to do. It mght be in the kitchen or bathroom or where ever, there is always something I have been putting off.

Occasionally I do a project just for the fun of it. Getting a vintage hi-fi system up and running is one of them.

I’ll likely cover all the components in future posts but this one is focused on the speakers. The speakers in my vintage hi-fi are Advents. These are the “Original Loud Speakers”. They are the first advent speakers and, when they are working correctly can sound really good. Mine, however, are not sounding quite right. By the way, the photo is not my speakers but they are the same model.

I got these speakers at a thrift store years ago and they were not working right. The foam around the woofer was damaged and on one the woofer was not working at all. I bought a refoam kit and went to work hoping that this would fix everything. Unfortunately this did not fix everything and they still didn’t work right. One wooker was still not working so I gave up and they sat in my basement.

Recently I brought them out again and was able to get them both working after a little soldering. Now, however, I found that my refoam job might not have done the trick. Using the speakers I have hear a raspy buzz. If I hold the woofer down it goes away. I’m thinking I need to revisit my refoaming and see if I can do a better job. It’s a project.