Month: December 2014

Wade in the waters of Muscle Shoals

Just saw the exquisitely made Muscle Shoals documentary, captivatingly directed by Greg “Freddy” Camalier with gorgeous cinematography by Anthony Arendt.


RewindThe richness and feeling of the visuals complements its subject in paying tribute to the beauty and mastery of America’s indigenous twentieth century sounds.

It is the story of some of the greatest music ever created at two fabled recording studios — Rick Hall’s FAME Music and the 3614 Jackson Highway studio AKA Muscle Shoals Sound Studios, not far away that was opened by his former house band, the SwampersBarry Beckett (keyboards), Roger Hawkins (drums), Jimmy Johnson (guitar) and David Hood (bass). [Unfortunately, the two studios are often conflated as one and the same; see below for clarification.] Each has its own contribution to music recording history of the American south(east); each has made indelible art that will continue to provide extraordinary insights of our collective joys and bittersweet heartaches via bluesy grooves and outstanding storytelling.

Here’s a preview. Soak it in. 🙂


Rick Hall’s FAME Studios


3614 Jackson Highway Muscle Shoals Sound Studios













See also:

Aretha Franklin to The Black Keys: The Muscle Shoals Story (both FAME and Muscle Shoals Sound Studios)

The Muscle Shoals Music Foundation, “to enhance the legacy and sustain the future of the legendary Muscle Shoals sound.”

Legendary Muscle Shoals Sound Studios historic building to be revived by Dr. Dre’s Beats Electronics



Classical Guitarist Sharon Isbin Is Sublime

PlaySaw this article on and found myself grateful to hear Sharon Isbin’s mastery once again, probably for the first time since I initially heard her in the late ’70s. Let the sound and fret work envelop you.

A Call for Tactile, Contextual Music Discovery—Hello Shazam?

Wouldn’t this be great to apply to music discovery?!FastForward

An excerpt…

Take…mind mapping (conceptual and topical) and Google Earth-style contextually visual discovery—and combine them within an app that employs the tactile, multi-touch interface of a tablet such as the Apple iPad to get a…discovery application structured as a contextual map that permits hyper-focusing on…topics of interest through screen gestures.

Certainly something to explore.

And what happened to Syntact—a clever idea for “band in the hand” tactile music remixing and manipulation?! It may not replace actual musical or technical skills for artists yet it does provide possibilities for creative interaction. Maybe we’ll hear more after their presentation at the NAAS conference in Slovenia today. To be continued.