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Music in the Media
Old 27th June 2012
Music in the Media

Started this thread as a reminder about radio and TV programmes (music production and audio engineering); rather than start a new thread for each show, I'll post scheduling news as it happens. Please feel free to add to the list.

Most of these shows will be available on BBC iPlayer for some time after the live broadcast; not sure on availability outside UK but if there's enough interest perhaps the BBC will make this possible. Credit to the BBC for their history of music/audio programming.

I'll delete the posts when programmes become unavailable.
Old 29th June 2012
Quadrophenia: Can You See The Real Me?

A short film covering the Quadrophenia period: great narrative from Pete Townsend...quality audio and visuals...

Available until Monday 9th July, 2012...get one while they're hot...

BBC iPlayer - Quadrophenia: Can You See the Real Me? Unavailable now: This link still has some articles and clips from the show

In his home studio and revisiting old haunts in Shepherds Bush and Battersea, Pete Townshend opens his heart and his personal archive to revisit 'the last great album the Who ever made', one that took the Who full circle back to their earliest days via the adventures of a pill-popping mod on an epic journey of self-discovery.

But in 1973 Quadrophenia was an album that almost never was. Beset by money problems, a studio in construction, heroin-taking managers, a lunatic drummer and a culture of heavy drinking, Townshend took on an album that nearly broke him and one that within a year the band had turned their back on and would ignore for nearly three decades.

With unseen archive and in-depth interviews from Townshend, Roger Daltrey, Keith Moon, John Entwistle and those in the studio and behind the lens who made the album and thirty page photo booklet.

Contributors include: Pete Townshend, Roger Daltrey, Ethan Russell, Ron Nevison, Richard Barnes, Irish Jack Lyons, Bill Curbishley, John Woolf, Howie Edelson, Mark Kermode and Georgiana Steele Waller.
***WARNING: Contains footage of desirable high-end audio equipment. Viewer discretion advised***
Old 14th July 2012
Woody Guthrie

Documentary on the life of Woody Guthrie, the travelling songwriter and singer who paved the way for the likes of Bob Dylan and Bruce Springsteen. Born in Okemah, Oklahoma, in 1912, Guthrie became a spokesman for a whole generation of downtrodden Americans during the 1930's with poignant songs like Vigilante Man, Pastures of Plenty and the anthemic This Land is Your Land.

With Jack Elliot, Pete Seeger, Alan Lomax, Arlo Guthrie and Arthur Stern.
Available until Fri 14th November 2014
Old 24th July 2012
Making Tracks - Rockfield Studios
BBC iPlayer - Making Tracks: Episode 1

Good narrative by Paul Morley - examines the wider state of the industry through the Rockfield lens.

Cultural commentator Paul Morley explores a history of popular music through some of the iconic recording studios in which classic albums were created. In future programmes he revisits some of the classical masterpieces recorded in the 80 year old Abbey Road Studios and cutting edge pop in Metropolis, the studio complex built when the music industry was at its most bloated peak. But he begins in the rural heart of Monmouthshire - at a studio that grew out of a farm and gave birth to some of rock music's finest recordings - everything from Queen's "Bohemian Rhapsody" to the Stone Roses' eponymous debut album, from Dr. Feelgood's "Down By The Jetty" to Oasis' "(What's The Story) Morning Glory", even from the Waterboys' "Fisherman's Blues" to Adam Ant's "Kings Of THe Wild Frontier". Those trying to explain what part the studio played in creating such musical magic include performers (the veteran Dave Edmunds and the newcomers Iko), technicians (John Leckie and Sean Genockey) and the people who (in some cases, quite literally) built the studio and the business (father and daughter, Kingley and Lisa Ward, and Terry Matthews). As the money flowing through the music industry continues to dry up - Paul also asks what future there may be or the historic recording studios that helped build the industry in the first place?

Producer: Paul Kobrak.
Available until 1st January 2099

More episodes to come: Abbey Road & Metropolis.
Old 29th July 2012
A precipient 30 year-old French documentary about Peter Gabriel and the Fairlight CMI; Peter discusses how technology and global influences will transform music:

...also a Guardian article with Peter Gabriel in which he discusses WOMAD: Peter Gabriel on 30 years of Womad – and mixing music with politics | Music | The Guardian
Old 31st July 2012
Radio programme (14mins): Key Matters - G minor

Ivan Hewett explores the way in which different musical keys appear to have unique characteristics of their own. In this programme, Ivan is joined by musicologist Cliff Eisen to explore the key of G minor, a favourite key of Mozart's for expressing failure, anger and loss.
BBC iPlayer - Key Matters: Series 3: G Minor
Available until 1st January 2099

I've really enjoyed this series...will post links to the other keys as they become available.
Old 7th August 2012
Making Tracks - Abbey Road

BBC iPlayer - Making Tracks: London's Abbey Road

This is Part 2 of the excellent radio series in which Paul Morley visits famous recording studios and explores the recording process...interesting discussion about dynamic range with orchestral examples.

Cultural commentator Paul Morley explores a history of popular music through some of the iconic recording studios in which classic albums were created.

Without them music as we know it would simply not exist. There'd be no technology to capture the sounds envisaged by the musicians and created and enhanced by the engineers and producers... and there'd be no music for the record companies to market and distribute. But more than that, the studios actually played a crucial part in the structure and fabric of the music recorded there - the sounds enhanced by the studio space itself... the potential and shortcomings of the equipment and technology housed in the cubicles... and the ability and 'vision' of the engineers and producers operating it all to find the new sound that makes the recordings sound different and fresh.

Today he visits the world's first purpose built recording studio, and possibly the most famous: the one at No 3, Abbey Road, a stone's throw from a much photographed zebra crossing in London's St John's Wood. Opened by Sir Edward Elgar conducting the London Symphony Orchestra in a recording of "Land Of Hope And Glory", the studios went on to record everyone from Adam Ant, The Bolshoi and Nick Cave... to XTC, Diana Yakawa and the Zombies - to say nothing of Pink Floyd and the Beatles.

But that's not what's drawn Paul Morley to these historic recording rooms - it's the continuing work in capturing the sound of orchestras that is put under the spotlight in this programme. With the help of engineers and producers, composers and those that keep the studios running on a day to day basis, Paul explores how the relationship classical music has with the recording studio differs from the one that pop music enjoys.

Producer: Paul Kobrak.
Available until 1st January 2099
Old 7th August 2012
Making Tracks - Metropolis
BBC iPlayer - Making Tracks: Metropolis

...In the final programme of the series Paul Morley ventures to West London and one of the last major studio complexes to be built in the heyday of the music industry. But without an exalted musical history to fall back on and decades of experience to help run it, how do you go about creating a world-class facility frequented by the likes of Amy Winehouse, Mick Jagger and Rihanna... and how do you keep it going when all around you are closing their doors?

Producer: Paul Kobrak.
Available until 1st January 2099

Highly recommended.
Old 9th August 2012
Darwin's Tune
BBC iPlayer - Darwin's Tunes

A radio programme that examines the theory of evolution through natural selection as applied to music and composition.

Is our taste in music, and how it's changed over the centuries, governed by creative genius or simply by survival of the fittest sounds, chosen by us the consumer? Does Darwin's theory of natural selection apply to more than just life on the planet? The idea of survival of the fittest and cultural evolution can be applied to many aspects of our lives; from fashion to the naming of our children. In a world of digital sampling evolutionary biologist, Professor Armand Leroi of Imperial College and his colleagues have designed an experiment to see if they can create the perfect song by asking individuals to choose which tunes survive and reproduce to create new tunes and which ones die out. If they can do this, where does that leave today's musical producers and composers? Do we still need a trained mind to compose truly amazing music? Armand Leroi discusses the idea that music evolves with evolutionary biologists Dr Luke Rendell of St Andrews University and Professor Mark Pagel of Reading University, composer Dr Martin Parker of Edinburgh University, and composer Aphrodite Raickopoulou.

Producer: Ania Lichtarowicz.
Available until 1st January 2099
Old 14th August 2012
Lives for gear
ritelec's Avatar

Originally Posted by Arthur Stone View Post
Started this thread as a reminder about radio and TV programmes (music production and audio engineering); rather than start a new thread for each show, I'll post scheduling news as it happens. Please feel free to add to the list.

Most of these shows will be available on BBC iPlayer for some time after the live broadcast; not sure on availability outside UK but if there's enough interest perhaps the BBC will make this possible. Credit to the BBC for their history of music/audio programming.

I'll delete the posts when programmes become unavailable.
thanks arthur
Old 15th August 2012
Nothing is original, says kirby ferguson, creator of everything is a remix. From bob dylan to steve jobs, he says our most celebrated creators borrow, steal and transform. Kirby ferguson explores creativity in a world where "everything is a remix."

Great response by Dylan to the issues raised in the video:
Old 18th August 2012
Radio: In the Lounge with Rich Morton
BBC iPlayer - In the Lounge with Rich Morton

Another great music show from the Beeb; it offers an interesting perspective on music too.

For many casual listeners, the music usually defined as 'lounge' may conjure up something kitsch and outdated, bringing to mind the world of Austin Powers or the sentimental, string-sodden arrangements of their parents' record collections. As comedian, composer and lounge aficionado Rich Morton discovers, there's a large and healthy subculture of lounge lovers who view it as anything but outdated. For the past twenty years, clubs devoted to lounge music have been thriving, and several successful series of lounge compilations have brought obscure and sought-after tracks by some of the greatest 20th century pop and jazz performers to the ears of a new generation.

As a composer and collector of lounge tunes, Rich goes in search of the alchemy that produces a lounge classic: whether it's the voice of a Rat Pack regular, the tight brassy arrangement of a Neil Hefti or a Quincy Jones, the timeless simplicity of a Burt Bacharach or Tony Hatch melody - or simply a mood, something indefinable, laid-back, evocative of a time and a place that's anywhere but here...

Producer: Paul Bajoria.
Available until 1st January 2099
Old 23rd August 2012
TV: The Devil's Music

Stunning old-school blues...

BBC iPlayer - The Devil's Music: Series 2: Episode 1

First transmitted in 1979, Alexis Korner delves into the soulful world of traditional black American Blues music. Exploring its origins and reviewing unique footage of acclaimed Blues artists including Sonny Blake, Sam Chatmon, Houston Stackhouse and Booker White.
Available until 1st January 2038.

Originally Posted by ritelec View Post
thanks arthur
YVW - the BBC have a great archive. Fulll credit to the producers and technicians for creating these wonderful programmes. I'm looking forward to the next blues episode!
Old 29th August 2012
TV The Devils Music - episode 2:

Available until: 1st Jan. 2038
Old 1st October 2012
BBC Radio 4 (30 mins): BBC iPlayer - Digital Human: Series 2: Episode 1

There's an interesting discussion about the interaction between DAW tech and traditional music in Mali.

Aleks Krotoski returns with a new series of explorations of our digital world.

In the first in the series Aleks looks at how different cultures are preserving their identity in the face of the homogenising effects of technology.

There's a fear that the digital world will make us all the same. But that doesn't seem that well founded if you look at how widely differing cultures are using technology to express their identity and values. We look at the music sharing culture of Mali in West Africa as explored by musicologist Chris Kirkley and hear from the vibrant and intoxicating atmosphere of the mobile phone music market in Mali's capital Bamako. Back in the UK we look at the interesting way immigrant communities maintain their cultural ties through technology and the unexpected effect this has on the growth of immigrant communities.

Aleks also talks to explorer in residence Robin Hanbury-Tenison about his thoughts on how technology might be undermining cultures. Does he see the spread of digital as a new form of cultural imperialism?

Producer Peter McManus
Available until 1st January 2099
Old 17th December 2012
Gear Maniac

Loving these. Thank you for sharing them Arthur. Looking forward to hearing more.

Don't mean to derail, just adding to the thread... I like this podcast called New Sounds from NPR:
New Sounds Podcast : NPR Podcasts
Maybe someone else will enjoy it as well. It's a show featuring music that we might not hear normally.
Old 30th May 2013
TV (60 mins): BBC iPlayer - Mr Blue Sky: The Story of Jeff Lynne and ELO

I really enjoyed this - great inspiration from an outstanding talent. Lot's of great music, technique and a look around the studio(s).

...The story is told by the British artist himself and such distinguished collaborators and friends of Jeff as Paul McCartney, Ringo Starr, Tom Petty, Joe Walsh, Olivia and Dhani Harrison, Barbara Orbison and Eric Idle. The film reveals that Lynne is a true man of music, for whom the recording studio is his greatest instrument...
Source: BBC
**NB: not available now but clips from show at link.
Old 30th May 2013
Lives for gear
Lute's Avatar

Saw part of it, it was excellent. Must watch for the repeat or iPlayer
Old 6th June 2013
BBC iPlayer Radio 4 (30 mins): BBC iPlayer - The Science of Music: Episode 4

In this programme, Robert Winston explores the science of music performance. What's happening when we perform music? And does it change our brains?
Source: BBC
Available until Thu, 1 Jan 2099
Old 29th July 2013
Here for the gear

Thanks Arthur. This has been the thread I look to when I need a break from work.
Old 29th July 2013
Thanks Victor!

Great blues here: BBC iPlayer - The Devil's Music: Series 2: Episode 4
Alexis Korner focuses on electric Blues and Rhythm and Blues - the form that has generally become know as Chicago Blues.
Available until 1st Jan 2038 (25mins)
Old 11th January 2014
Youtube (1hr+): Sonic TALK 340 - Elektron Analog Keys, Skoog - YouTube

Sonic Talk: Series of hour+ discussions with guests and equipment reviews from Nick Batt @

I'm really enjoying this informal series of shows: variety of topics...regular guests Nick Tindley, Dave Spiers, Gareth Jones +
Old 15th February 2014
Richard Gere's Guitar Collection
Part 1: Richard Gere guitar collection part 1 - YouTube (10 mins)
Part 2: Richard Gere guitar collection part 2 - YouTube (10 mins)

If you're into guitars this will be of interest; basically it's a discussion about the sale of his collection at Christie's NY Auction House (2011) - interviewed by Kerry Keane with G. E. Smith. They show and play some classic guitars.
Old 18th February 2014
Robots play music:
Old 7th March 2014
(110 minutes): BBC iPlayer - Storyville: 2013-2014: Muscle Shoals: The Greatest Recording Studio in the World

Located alongside the Tennessee River, Muscle Shoals in Alabama is the unlikely breeding ground for some of America's most creative and defiant music...
Available until Tue 8th April 2014

Excellent documentary - highly recommended. Great music, great stories, great scenery.
Old 19th March 2014
(Video 112 mins): The Rolling Stones' Gear from Stage to Studio:

Excellent talk at Full Sail University by Andy Babiuk with music, video and illustrations from his book - covers the Stones' guitars, some drums & stage sets from the early days to present...followed by a great Q&A (inc. discussion of The Beatles gear)...very enjoyable for fans and guitar buffs alike.
Old 21st September 2014
Audio-Visual performance: 'The Silence'/I Speak Machine live at The Purcell Room @ South Bank Centre tonight Sunday 21st September:

Old 17th January 2015
Sound of Song
1. The Recording Revolution
BBC iPlayer - Sound of Song - 1. The Recording Revolution

A look at the history and development of recording technology with Neil Brand; an excellent presentation with demonstrations of early (to later) recording processes...visits to Bell labs, etc.

Available for 29 days from 16th Jan. 2015

Length 60 mins.
Old 30th January 2015
TV: Sound of Song
2. Reeling and Rocking
BBC iPlayer - Sound of Song - 2. Reeling and Rocking

A look at the history and development of recording technology with Neil Brand. This episode focuses on tape and technique: Sun Studios slapback; Beatles Abbey Road, Wall of Sound...great interviews inc. Brian Love. Lots of eye/ear-candy and useful info for a Gearslut.

Available for 25 days from 23rd Jan. 2015

Length 60 mins.
Old 3rd October 2015
Great Joy Division/punk film:
BBC iPlayer - Joy Division

Available for 29 days.
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