Friday, April 29, 2005

Sandow on Indie Rock

Another nice post by Greg Sandow, this one on indie rock. It's great to see a another "serious" classical music person understanding this stuff (like Alex Ross). Hopefully people like Sandow and Ross can help classical music find ways to be more relevant and accessible.

Monday, April 25, 2005

Running Numbers

I've often wondered what it means to "run numbers," something that Harvey Keitel's character does in Mean Streets; this article answered the question.

Sunday, April 24, 2005

The Sleeper Curve

I just finished reading this article on a topic near and dear to my heart, television. I instinctively recoil at the hand-waving arguments made in the piece, but I do agree with its overall gist that television drama has become more complex. Couple things, though: Johnson doesn't mention film at all, and I can't imagine that trends in television are unrelated to what's going on in movies. I know that David Chase, creator of The Sopranos, aspired to bring the complexities of film to a television series, and that his vision for the show was deeply influenced by the intertwining of domestic and mob life in Goodfellas. Given the similarity of the media, it just seems like an obvious point to address. Also, as a nitpick, Johnson left out discussion of two great shows that would fit nicely into his arguments. The first is The X-Files, which used all kinds of obscure terminology and was really fun to watch until it jumped the shark. The second is The Wire, which I blogged about recently. In terms of plot complexity, it's probably harder to follow than any of the shows mentioned in the article.

Saturday, April 16, 2005

How To Do a Film Festival

So I was looking at the schedule for the upcoming San Francisco International Film Festival, and I was completely overwhelmed. Tons of films, lots of which could be good, and few of which I'll actually have time to attend. Does anyone have a strategy for picking out films to see in a situation like this? If so, I'd love to hear about it. For now, I used this GreenCine Daily post as a sort of filter. Perhaps the interface on the film festival web site is not ideal; I remember the web site for the Seattle International Film Festival being better last year.

Thursday, April 14, 2005


Greg Sandow writes a great blog on the state of classical music. Reading this entry made me wish I had been in Pittsburgh at the time. There's lots of other good stuff there; check it out.

Sunday, April 10, 2005

The Wire Rules

I just finished the second season of The Wire today; wow. It was even better than the brilliant first season. The show doesn't have the same hype as The Sopranos, and it's not as good, but it's the closest I've seen another HBO show get. So, when you have some time, get the DVDs; you won't regret it. But, seriously, wait until you have some time. I have the 3rd season too, but I need to wait a couple of weeks to start watching it to avoid the distraction. Anyway, it's past my bedtime.

Tuesday, April 05, 2005


GreaseMonkey is perhaps the coolest Firefox extension I've found yet. You can do all kinds of cool web page modifications with it, as listed here. Right now, I have all links to New York Times articles going to the single-page format, and a script that fixes some of the crappiness in allmusic. Once you've installed the extension, to install the linked scripts just right-click and select "Install User Script...".


Just wanted to give a quick plug to the online stream of WHRB, which is the best classical music station I've found online since Andante Radio, which is no longer free. I just heard a fantastic performance of Das Lied von der Erde on there the other day, and you'll rarely find a station that plays pieces like that in their entirety anymore.