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A Man Who Has Nothing In Particular To Recommend Him Discusses All Sorts of Subjects at Random as Though He Knew Everything

How To Avoid Norwegian Wood Splinters

When I was younger, I played music for money.

99.99 percent of the music I played, I hated. I didn’t care for the remainder, but I didn’t hate it.

We played pop music covers, mostly not current ones. We needed a lot of material. We’d attempt to figure out what people would want to hear resurrected, in advance. That’s tricky. We didn’t hang around in bars anymore –we worked in them. It was already too late to figure out what we should be doing by the time we were in there.

We’d meet in the slack winter season, once a week for a month or so. Everyone would bring in a handful of suggestions. We sort of voted  on each. It wasn’t  a popularity contest. We didn’t say: I don’t like it. I told you; I didn’t like anything. We said: It won’t get over; or it will. If it wasn’t unanimous, we didn’t bother. Unanimity didn’t guarantee success, either, but dry holes were more likely to be found in controversial drilling. That’s dreadful enough to be popular was a common assessment.

It was deuced difficult to get the source material into everyone’s hands back then. Before the Intertunnel, it was real work to lay your hands on music you didn’t like. For a while, I used to go to a store that sold 45s wholesale to people that filled jukeboxes. They’d have everything trite, so they were wonderful. But back then, I’d have to painstakingly figure out all the parts by listening to the records, and communicate it to the other fellows when we met.  It was hard work.

My son plays music all the time now. He can find anything he wants, immediately and without charge. He can get a really high-quality instructional video, too, never mind just the source material. YouTube is an enormously useful thing. The Intertunnel is an enormously useful thing.

Or not.

I have opinions. I’m a big, hairy man with big, hairy opinions. Most of what is on the Intertunnel is just opinion; ill-considered, ill-reasoned, ill-mannered opinion, and inelegantly stated. It’s useless. Services that exist simply to aggregate and direct me to various strains of this twaddle are so much less than useless, I may have to coin a term for it. Distilled twaddle. Twiddle?

The Intertunnel is the most useful thing I’ve ever seen. Because it has an editor. That editor is me. Without the editor, the Intertunnel is the most useless thing I’ve ever seen.

Good luck out there.

9 Responses

  1. well, if you handle Norwegian wood without gloves, of course you are going to get Norwegian wood splinters.
    Get Swiss, or Canadian, or even Russian wood, and you won't get Norwegian splinters.



  2. I don't hang out much in popular culture, but I get bulletins from the front. From what I can tell, That's dreadful enough to be popular still serves as a useful rule of thumb, although appalling, creepy and gross seem to be called into service now and then.

  3. so often when i want real information i find myself sorely disappointed when i turn to the internet. i find it is written at the level of a brochure. then out of the blue i find something strikingly informative and useful. i guess the problem as the 'author' so often says is "there is no editor"

  4. Oh, It's the singing Italian Beatle dude. That was a good tutorial. I'm half Italian, half Norwegian (and half Swede) and I was just about to learn how to play that song. So, um, THANKS!

  5. Danged whippersnappers got it too easy these days… yeah I feel your pain. However, we had a LOT better music around us to choose from.
    Incidentally, I believe my first post here was about the Italian harmony guy and how Sipp was blocked on LAUSD computers…
    The Kings "Switching to Glide"

  6. Oddly enough, one of the world's leading lights of freedom and liberty
    Hillary Clinton said back in 1998:

    "“We’re all going to have to rethink how we deal with the Internet. As exciting as these new developments are, there are a number of serious issues without any kind of editing function or gatekeeping function"

  7. I use the internet for amusement – light reading. Hence my presence here, though occasionally I find profound thoughts in the fun.

    But my heaviest use is in my computer coding – javascript, php, delphi, objectPAL. Google sends me to an almost infinite number of pages where total strangers take a lot of time and trouble to help other perfect strangers.

  8. I belong to a choir. We sing a lot of sacred music, a lot of which are the biggest hits of the 15th, 16th and 17th Centuries. You Tube is just fantastic for finding examples of people singing these, getting the lyrics – in fact, at times there's instructional videos that follow along in the printed music while one part or the whole chorus sings it.

    I also sang a show tune as a duet lately. My partner and I were able to pull up a video clip of Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers singing it. Great stuff!

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