DTM Questionnaire, Newt Gingrich

Some time ago, Ethan Iverson of The Bad Plus crafted a short questionnaire about music, and he published several responses on the band’s blog, which I highly recommend. Here are my answers:

Give us an example or two of an especially good or interesting…

  1. Movie score. Not exactly a score, but the use of sound in Stanley Kubrick’s The Shining
  2. TV theme. Asheru: The Boondocks.
  3. Melody. Bill Frisell: “Again”, John Coltrane: “Love”.
  4. Harmonic language. The Vijay Iyer Quartet: Reimagining; The John Coltrane Quartet: One Down, One Up: Live at the Half Note.
  5. Rhythmic feel. Busta Rhymes: “Do My Thing”; Thelonious Monk: “Body and Soul” from Monk’s Dream.
  6. Hip-hop track. Biggie Smalls: “Warning”; Madlib: The Further Adventures of Lord Quas (listen to the whole record as one track).
  7. Classical piece. Ravel: “Sonatine: 1. Modere”; Feldman: “Two Pianos”.
  8. Smash hit. Lil’ Wayne: “A Milli”.
  9. Jazz album. Ornette Coleman: The Science Fiction Sessions; Wayne Shorter Quartet: Beyond the Sound Barrier.
  10. Non-American folkloric group. Homayun Sakhi, Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan
  11. Book on music. The Miles Davis Autobiography

Bonus Questions:

A) Name an surprising album (or albums) you loved when you were developing as a musician: something that really informs your sound but that we would never guess in a million years: Modest Mouse: Everywhere And His Nasty Parlour Tricks.

B) Name a practitioner (or a few) who play your instrument that you think is underrated: Liberty Ellman, Lightnin’ Hopkins, Ali Farka Toure.

C) Name a rock or pop album that you wish had been a smash commercial hit (but wasn’t, not really): Annuals: Be He Me

D) Name a favorite drummer, and an album to hear why you love that drummer: Elvin Jones: Bill Frisell with Dave Holland and Elvin Jones (especially on “Again”, “Outlaws”, and “Blues Dream”); Art Blakey: Free For All (especially on “The Core”).

In other news (and in some sense related to my last post), I attended an Oberlin College Convocation Series speech/Q&A session hosted by Newt Gingrich yesterday. A student directed the final question of the evening towards Gingrich’s prior criticism of Barack Obama’s speech in Berlin, asking for better justification. Gingrich responded by stating that Senator Obama had acted with “arrogance”, and noted, “You aren’t the President, you aren’t the heir of John F. Kennedy…you are just a candidate”. The former Speaker of the House went on to declare that he was strongly opposed to the premise of being a “citizen of the world” (Obama prefaced this label of himself by stating that he was a “proud citizen of the United States of America”, a fact which Gingrich conveniently left out of his critique), and also suggested that it was a poor political choice. “Would you sleep better if your commander-in-chief considered himself a citizen of the world”, Gingrich asked us, “or a citizen of America?” “It’s kind of like when Reagan had the theme song ‘Proud to be an American”, he mused, adding, “I don’t think ‘Proud to be a Citizen of the World’ would work very well as a theme song…well, maybe as a rap song”. I’ll leave you to decipher how many levels of ignorance/prejudice are contained therein for yourselves.