Three Important B’s of Music Die – Paul Bley was a Canadian pianist known for his contributions to the free jazz movement of the 1960s as well as his innovations and influence on trio playing. Bley was a fanstistic jazz pianist and a long-time resident of the United States. He died last week at age 83. Pierre Boulez was a French composer, conductor, writer and pianist. He was also the founder and director of the Paris based Institut de Recherche et Coordination Acoustique/Musique. He made many acclaimed recordings and was a titan of contemporary music. He died last week at age 90. Pop performer and song-writer David Bowie has died at age 69 after an 18-month battle with cancer. He taught generations of musicians about the power of drama, images and personas, and was also a noted actor in films. He had just released his last album on his 69th birthday, Blackstar, with a jazz quartet.
Sony Introduces PS-HX500 “Hi-Res” Turntable – At CES Sony is showing a new turntable system directed toward audiophiles, collectors and connoisseurs. It can convert the analog files off vinyl to either Sony’s propietary DSD format or 96K/24-bit WAV audio files, and feed out via a USB signal. It has a big HRA logo on the front. This is ridiculous because vinyl discs are not hi-res. It’s due out in April with a cost of around £400.
Emotiva Run by a Nerd’s Nerd – That’s what Newsweek calls Dan Laufman in a piece in their magazine. The Tennesse-based audio hardware maker creates all their manufacturing in Franklin, TN and his gear is directed toward audio enthusiats with a modest bankroll. He likes his Chinese counterparts but enjoys no longer having to travel to China every three weeks. He even hosts an annual “Emofest” at their Nashville headquarters.
Crowdfunding In The Limelight – It’s the online process of raising capital for a new product thru many individuals who like it. When people work together to make the venture successful, it results in a better product thru experimenting with technology. Indiegogo is the biggest crowdfunding platform. They claim they have raised campaigns from nearly every country in the world, with millions of dollars being distributed each week due to contributions made by their community. There is a video at Indiegogo explaining crowdfunding for electronic hardware startups. It explains market validation, data capturing, customer interaction, creating evangelists, and raising money.
Classical News – Gianandrea Noseda, who was Musical America’s 2015 Conductor of the Year, will be the next music director of The National Symphony Orchestra. He is a native of Milan and a maestro on the rise. Gilbert Kaplan, economist, journalist and Wall St. investor, has died at age 74. He was obessed with Mahler’s Second Symphony, discovered 300 mistakes in it, became an expert on the work, and recorded it for several different labels. After training at Juilliard he conducted it.