Why I Am Not A Guru

“Only the blind follow me.” – Alien Sex Fiend: Ignore The Machine In The Who’s 1969 rock opera Tommy, the titular character loses his primary senses following a childhood trauma, eventually finding his way through the tactile experience of playing pinball. He then concludes that simulating his experience as closely as possible could cause other […]

Standard Songs of the Modern Era

This was originally published at Fresh On The Net and is inspired by my colleague Neil March’s article on great cover versions and the subsequent discussion that took place in the comments. The subject of cover versions can be a touchy one for many independent musicians trying to build a creative career distinct from the […]

Among Musicians There Are No Divisions

This story concerns Roddy, a fantastic fiddler and folk musician hailing from Glasgow, Scotland, who I met on the Leeds music scene. To give a little backstory for those who don’t know, the city of Glasgow has a history of sectarianism between Catholic and Protestant communities, most famously associated with the rivalry between the city’s […]

Music’s Worst Motivational Techniques (that worked)

Musicians can be an unruly bunch, so producers, bandleaders and managers need some way of knocking them into a high performing unit. But what to do when an employee of the month award, a paintballing trip and a bunch of attaboy certificates won’t cut the mustard? What follows is a compendium of harsh, bizarre, dangerous […]