Audio News for March 24, 2017

Chuck Berry Dies – The “Father of Rock & Roll” is gone at age 90.  He was one of the first inductees into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. He combined beguiling narratives, fusing rhythm and blues with country and western to transfix the U.S.  Bill Clinton called Berry “one of the 20th Century’s most influential musicians.” His career had rocketed in the ‘50s after he signed a record deal with Chess Records at the behest of his friend Muddy Waters.

Juno Concert Fuses Classical Indian Music with Dance & Rock – The Beatles, Rolling Stones and Beyonce have all incorporated Indian music into wildly popular rock songs. Now rock & roll and Kathak fuse together in a one-time performance at Aroha Fine Arts in Stittsville in central California. The audience will be entertained and learn about both the dance and music from India that inspires modern music. The focus of Kathak dance, from Northern India, is storytelling, and the dancers use their feet to make intricate patterns like percussion.

Tiny Adapter Adds Hi-Res Audio, a 3.5mm Headphone Jack. and Wireless Charging to iPhone 7s – RES now makes a converter which implements a 192/24 audio chip for hi-res with a normal headphone jack and Qi wireless charging.  All you need on your iPhone is a Lighting port, some added bulk, and a wireless charging pad. It also has built-in noise cancellation. The unit may be preordered on Kickstarter for $20, with shipping expected in May.

Yamaha RX-A860 AVR – The new AV receiver from Yamaha has Dolby Atmos and DTS:X immersive audio, seven channels of amplification, MusicCast wireless multiroom audio support and is equipped for next-generation home cinema. There are seven HDMI inputs and two outputs, plus a button remote. It has HDMI passthru in Standby, so you don’t need to power up the system for the nightly news. It has four digital audio inputs, split optical and coaxial and vinyl support. You can network over Ethernet or Wi-Fi and use Bluetooth aptX for streaming audio. There is Virtual Rear Speaker processing for soundtracks with 6.1 or 7.1 mixes. It nearly gets everything right for a seven-channel unit, at about $800.

Maine’s Only Classical Station Bites the Dust – Even though most of its programming came from elsewhere, WBACH-FM was a reliable commercial all-classical radio station in Maine. They played gentle music – mostly familiar classical music at all hours of the day and night. But now it is country and western station. This left Maine listeners without access any more to the great and inspiring music which is our heritage.

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