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    The Computer Audiophile

    Easily My Album Of The Year

    I know, it's only September, and I'm announcing my album of the year. That, plus the fact I don't always give out awards, make this "album of the year" even better. This album came out September 3, 2021 and I've listened to it nearly nonstop ever since. Heck, it's Sunday and I couldn't even wait for the week to start before posting this article. 

     

    Lady Blackbird's debut album called Black Acid Soul is easily my album of the year. I love the music, her voice, the emotion put into the music, and absolutely everything else about the album. Just press play on this one and you'll thank me later. Seriously, there isn't a track that I skip. 

     

    The album is available from all the streaming services AND available for purchase via Bandcamp. Here's a link to the Bandcamp page LINK.

     

    Here are the album credits, followed by the YouTube playlist of the album. 

     

    Produced by Chris Seefried 
    A&R by Ross Allen 

    Deron Johnson playing Steinway Baby Grand, Mellotron, Casio Synth 
    Jon Flaugher playing Double Bass 
    Jimmy Paxson playing Drums, Percussion 
    Chris Seefried playing Electric Guitar, Acoustic Guitar 
    Troy “Trombone Shorty” Andrews playing Trumpet 

    Recorded and Mixed By Seth Atkins Horan 
    Mastered By Bernie Grundman, At Bernie Grundman Mastering LA CA 
    Recorded at Sunset Sound LA CA 
    Mixing at Gnu Gnome LA CA

     

     

     

     

     

     

     




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    On 9/6/2021 at 9:01 AM, hopkins said:

    Hope its ok to give a more "nuanced" appreciation of this album.

     

    The warning that I received, you may take with however many grains of salt you wish, that the black acid that is circulating around us, is specifically not too good. It's suggested that you do stay away from that; of course, it's your own trip, so, be my guest. 

     

    x-D

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    1 hour ago, The Computer Audiophile said:

    Good morning guys, so we're all in agreement that all art is 100% subjective. Great to hear. 

     

    Only kidding.

     

    Sure :-) We know ;-)

     

    OK - I'll play / kick off today!

    For the sake of pax, let's set aside what seems bleeding obvious to many (you may say, "prove it" - which is both fair and possible - but come on - tedious too) ... That is - there is widespread and spontaneous agreement abroad in the world about what makes good Art. I keep my remarks which follow to Fine Art for now. I'll give at least one reason why I think Fine Art and Music are not equivalent in this respect.

    A polished version of these notes would take until at least tomorrow! Perhaps this is like an essay outline. (I used to be good at that sort of thing.)

    INTRO
    Objectivity lurks in relational aspects of human experience. There are both quantitative and qualitative dimensions of relating.

    PHENOMENON
    Subjective - a unique or idiosyncratic viewpoint. Experienced alone. No triangulation.
    Objective - shared or common viewpoint. Experienced in relation. Has effects.
    [cf. quantum matters (sic) such as state/behaviour dependent on observed/not observed. Speculative but truly interesting nonetheless. All Creation is the product of the Unwitnesed Observer. I could go on. Don't worry, I shan't. Unless you insist. Even then.]

    MODE and EFFECT
    No man is an island. It is more "natural" to experience "together" than "alone".
    Role, significance, importance of human language. Language is the medium for shared experience. For all we know, human language, in species-specific ways, is bound up inevitably with aesthetics, beauty, subjective experience of pain etc.
    Leverage effect on personal narrative, personal meaning, and personal mental condition the result of sharing. This Forum refers. Any you like. But let's say esp. Album of the Evening and Music Theme Threads. We are not alone. I listen differently - in a more enriched way - when I have shared. That's what I get out of it - whether I get strokes for my posts or not.

    We share in our imaginations too. Psychologists have different expressions for this. e.g. Parent Ego State (TA).

    LIMITATIONS
    No less than truth is available seeking objectivity. What gets in the way is fear, inhibition, ego, pride.
    And self-interest.

    Think honesty as having the reverse effect.
    These things are amongst those that speak to the qualitative dimension.
    The quantitative dimension is a proportionate one. The more vicarious the experience, the more the objectivity (already lurking as potential) is manifest - subjectively if you like. Happiness and satisfaction await! We tend to listen to music alone - so we may think our appreciation is highly subjective. Somewhat true for Fine Art. Probably less so because of our awareness of existing cultural understandings and consensus. Also explains Beatles. I never listen to Beatles - already know it all in my head.

    CONCLUSION
    "Art is all subjective"? "all art is equal in an of itself"? Nah
    We might think it is - in vain - but little if any of our Art-experience is entirely subjective. All Art is not equal in our minds.

    "judging art based on what other people think is a bit preposterous" rofl

    "Well of course there *is* nothing objective about art" lolol

     

    The holes in my argument are lack of padding - not lack of substance.

    image.png.f7bcefa25583c4f7c350799a739219d4.png

     

    You heard it first here folks!

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    3 minutes ago, Iving said:

     

    Sure :-) We know ;-)

     

    OK - I'll play / kick off today!

    For the sake of pax, let's set aside what seems bleeding obvious to many (you may say, "prove it" - which is both fair and possible - but come on - tedious too) ... That is - there is widespread and spontaneous agreement abroad in the world about what makes good Art. I keep my remarks which follow to Fine Art for now. I'll give at least one reason why I think Fine Art and Music are not equivalent in this respect.

    A polished version of these notes would take until at least tomorrow! Perhaps this is like an essay outline. (I used to be good at that sort of thing.)

    INTRO
    Objectivity lurks in relational aspects of human experience. There are both quantitative and qualitative dimensions of relating.

    PHENOMENON
    Subjective - a unique or idiosyncratic viewpoint. Experienced alone. No triangulation.
    Objective - shared or common viewpoint. Experienced in relation. Has effects.
    [cf. quantum matters (sic) such as state/behaviour dependent on observed/not observed. Speculative but truly interesting nonetheless. All Creation is the product of the Unwitnesed Observer. I could go on. Don't worry, I shan't. Unless you insist. Even then.]

    MODE and EFFECT
    No man is an island. It is more "natural" to experience "together" than "alone".
    Role, significance, importance of human language. Language is the medium for shared experience. For all we know, human language, in species-specific ways, is bound up inevitably with aesthetics, beauty, subjective experience of pain etc.
    Leverage effect on personal narrative, personal meaning, and personal mental condition the result of sharing. This Forum refers. Any you like. But let's say esp. Album of the Evening and Music Theme Threads. We are not alone. I listen differently - in a more enriched way - when I have shared. That's what I get out of it - whether I get strokes for my posts or not.

    We share in our imaginations too. Psychologists have different expressions for this. e.g. Parent Ego State (TA).

    LIMITATIONS
    No less than truth is available seeking objectivity. What gets in the way is fear, inhibition, ego, pride.
    And self-interest.

    Think honesty as having the reverse effect.
    These things are amongst those that speak to the qualitative dimension.
    The quantitative dimension is a proportionate one. The more vicarious the experience, the more the objectivity (already lurking as potential) is manifest - subjectively if you like. Happiness and satisfaction await! We tend to listen to music alone - so we may think our appreciation is highly subjective. Somewhat true for Fine Art. Probably less so because of our awareness of existing cultural understandings and consensus. Also explains Beatles. I never listen to Beatles - already know it all in my head.

    CONCLUSION
    "All Art is Subjective"? Nah
    We might think it is - in vain - but little if any of our Art-experience is entirely subjective.

     

    The holes in my argument are lack of padding - not lack of substance.

    image.png.f7bcefa25583c4f7c350799a739219d4.png

     

    You heard it first here folks!

    I love it, great post. 

     

     

     

    4 minutes ago, Iving said:

    there is widespread and spontaneous agreement abroad in the world about what makes good Art.

     

    I'm not trying to be pedantic, but how do you define good in this sense? Visually appealing? Worth money? X number of people are interested? Came from an artist popularized by the press with a neat history?

     

    I think my major hold up is that in order for something or someone to be better at something than another, both must be attempting the exact same thing. For example, if two artists are asked to paint the Eiffel Tower on a 24x36 canvas and make it look as realistic as possible, using the exact same materials and tools. Then, we may find out who is better at painting the Eiffel Tower on a 24x36 canvas and making it look as realistic as possible, using the exact same materials and tools. 

     

    Artists aren't attempting to do the same thing, thus it's impossible to objectively say one is better than the other. 

     

     

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    11 minutes ago, The Computer Audiophile said:

    I love it, great post.

     

    Thank you. I think maybe there is a little more in it than you at first realise :-)

     

    11 minutes ago, The Computer Audiophile said:

    I'm not trying to be pedantic, but how do you define good in this sense? Visually appealing? Worth money? X number of people are interested? Came from an artist popularized by the press with a neat history?

     

    I think my major hold up is that in order for something or someone to be better at something than another, both must be attempting the exact same thing. For example, if two artists are asked to paint the Eiffel Tower on a 24x36 canvas and make it look as realistic as possible, using the exact same materials and tools. Then, we may find out who is better at painting the Eiffel Tower on a 24x36 canvas and making it look as realistic as possible, using the exact same materials and tools. 

     

    Artists aren't attempting to do the same thing, thus it's impossible to objectively say one is better than the other.

     

    OK - well I did say it would be tedious to conduct a trawl of evidence for objective references in art appreciation. But come on - there are plenty. I think maybe you are asking "which one is right?" - which I understand  - but if you began to understand my "essay" (and much else I waffle on about on this Forum) you might appreciate that "being right" is about the least relevant and most harmartic phenomenon on the planet.

     

    We had a similar conversation on another thread about absolute references for SQ. I tried to explain > once how humans "hunt" truth without such references.

     

    I also declared somewhere else that "the only truth [aside Revelation] is between your ears and it will die with you". iow - human objectivity is not about absolutes and strict references. It's about common or shared understandings. As distinct from unique or idiosyncratic ones.

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    1 minute ago, Iving said:

     

    Thank you. I think maybe there is a little more in it than you at first realise :-)

     

     

    OK - well I did say it would be tedious to conduct a trawl of evidence for objective references in art appreciation. But come on - there are plenty. I think maybe you are asking "which one is right?" - which I understand  - but if you began to understand my "essay" (and much else I waffle on about on this Forum) you might appreciate that "being right" is about the least relevant and most harmartic phenomenon on the planet.

     

    We had a similar conversation on another thread about absolute references for SQ. I tried to explain > once how humans "hunt" truth without such references.

     

    I also declared somewhere else that "the only truth [aside Revelation] is between your ears and it will die with you". iow - human objectivity is not about absolutes and strict references. It's about common or shared understandings. as opposed to unique or idiosyncratic ones.

     

    Are you suggesting perception is reality, but in much better terms?

     

     

     

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    Just now, The Computer Audiophile said:

    Are you suggesting perception is reality, but in much better terms?

     

    No. With all due courtesy, I think that is another philosophical can of worms.

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    1 minute ago, Iving said:

     

    No. With all due courtesy, I think that is another philosophical can of worms.

     

     

    When I read this, I thought you were saying perception is reality. 

     

    4 minutes ago, Iving said:

    human objectivity is not about absolutes and strict references. It's about common or shared understandings.

     

    Gravity is objective. Before there was a common or shared understanding of it, it was still objectively true. There is a common or shared understanding in over a billion people that a man lived inside a whale for three days. I don't consider that objective. 

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    OK

     

    Perception -

    solo event - one person gazing at canvas - debate - which is reality - painting - 1st person view - onlooker's?

    depicts stereotypical subjectivity - i see why you chose "perception" - perception of the painting = a reality? debate can centre on 1st person only - it's not my concern for present purposes

     

    Common or shared understandings -

    exist anyway in our imagination (lots of ways - we all have rich mental representations of "powerful" others - parents, teachers, lovers, best friends, mentors)

    mental dialogues go on all the time - less of these is good!

    sharing what we care about reinforces our understandings - if we are honest then for the better - it changes our mental structure - we enrich shared or common understandings about things progressively over time - our brains our incomprehensibly replete with inter-related "data" - shared and common understandings lie in the domain of objectivity not subjectivity

     

    The gravity / whale thing - do we still need it

     

    I hope I'm not diluting what I want to say with flying vernacular ...

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    5 minutes ago, The Computer Audiophile said:

    We need audio shows back, so we can all sit around drinking our favorite beverages and talk audio the meaning of life. Only kidding. It would be fun to talk about this stuff in person, where I'm sure we'd better understand one another in about 30 seconds :~)

     

    With you all the way ...

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    btw - I know very little about Britney Spears, but I do think she is an incredibly good-looking woman. My brain's "reputation node" demands I more extol Nina's virtues, whether looks or otherwise - musical credentials being much more convenient. I think the truths are:

    1. I have probably played "Born To Make You Happy" about the same number of times as [fav. version of] "Ain't Got No .. I Got Life".

    2. If I could take only one of these to a Desert Island, it would be "Ain't Got No". But not because I'd still be pre-occupied with my reputation, but because that song and Christie's "Yellow River" I played over and over during a short catastrophic episode in my life. The main product of listening would be gratitude.

    Also - when I listen to Britney, I can't stop thinking about Chris Connaker because he loves her too. Thus at least part of my appreciation is objective.

    Less so with "Ain't Got No" ... that's very personal. But Nina per se - well she's among "most often mentioned" on this Forum - and I'd probably experience many happy associations listening to her other tracks.

    Is this ALL subjective?
    Of course it's not.
    And we don't need absolute yardsticks to understand that.
    My "subjective" perspectives on Britney and Nina were not constructed, nor do they continue to be moulded, in a one-person vacuum.
    Everything is relational.
    Everything is imbued with shared and common understandings.

    image.png.22b9e3cb679d868da43504a70a45a50e.png

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    As we approach the anniversary of 9/11, I am reminded of how devastating that tragedy was and how it made me shun music for a while (I had lived in New York City for most of my life at that point).   It seemed to me that all music was irrelevant in the face of a world that had changed, probably permanently according to my thinking at the time, for the worse (it was clear, for example, that it would lead to demonization of the "other" and war, as but two consequences).

     

    When I finally did want to listen again, my first choice was anything by Bill Evans.  That is part of what great art means to me: the ability to reintroduce you to your world and the ability to introduce you to new worlds.  

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    On 9/7/2021 at 12:12 AM, The Computer Audiophile said:

    It’s art, there’s no such thing as appropriate. 

     

    Your comment made me think of the "musical saw". 

     

     

    Incidentally, however, that performance does remind me of Cecil McLorin Salvant's singing on "What a little moonlight can do" so perhaps some people may actually like it 😂

     

    So here's something else that I think every one will relate to and agree to be completely unnecessary from a musical standpoint 😁 

     

     

     

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    10 hours ago, The Computer Audiophile said:

     

    I think my major hold up is that in order for something or someone to be better at something than another, both must be attempting the exact same thing. For example, if two artists are asked to paint the Eiffel Tower on a 24x36 canvas and make it look as realistic as possible, using the exact same materials and tools. Then, we may find out who is better at painting the Eiffel Tower on a 24x36 canvas and making it look as realistic as possible, using the exact same materials and tools. 

     

    This is more literal and strict than I meant.  I agree that art is not a competitive sport, and that we cannot be precise.  So on Dylan vs Lennon, just for example--I'm with you, completely subjective.  But that does not mean it's difficult to say that both are in the top 1% of songwriters of the past 100 years, and are easily ranked ahead of over 90% of the others

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    9 hours ago, Iving said:

    btw - I know very little about Britney Spears, but I do think she is an incredibly good-looking woman.

     

    Great analogy!  Britney is beautiful by pretty much any American standard.  So are Alicia and Taylor.  And Denzel and Brad, to keep the sexism out of this.  The obese guy from Minnesota that Chris referenced is probably not in this league.  We can rank art the same way we rank physical appearance within a given culture--not with super precision, but most definitely within broad categories

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    Too much too much, I'm restoring a critical part of my redacted post from above.  

     

    merlin_193451295_e94829c6-699d-472b-a4fc-50c97c53f8a3-jumbo.jpg?quality=90&auto=webp

     

    Q: Theoretically... you meet this maskless woman in a crowded local bar and she point blank tells you her name is Britney Spears.  

     

    Do you believe her to be a world class beauty?

     

    Being honest, would you have picked her out at first sight? 

     

    Would you even believe her without the accouterments of stardom on display around her?

     

     

    Ahahahahahmmmm, NO!

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    31 minutes ago, PeterG said:

    Britney is beautiful by pretty much any American standard.

     

    Guess what... I disagree.

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    I don't have the notes/citations to hand; all the same, I recall from my undergraduate days (decades ago) lectures in Social Psychology on topics popular even earlier, that interpersonal attraction - based on empirical studies using photographs as stimuli - could be just as much a process of elimination as selection. Thus the @rando choice of that particular still of Britney was at least biased if not ruthless!

     

    The most recent image of Britney in my mind's eye was this one:

    image.png.d1f38cd9068b5dbe34f280ed4ec3601d.png

     

    and I chose my words carefully when I said "good-looking". I might have said "handsome" and I would have meant it generously. I find her interesting. If I'd been asked to proffer an instance of "beautiful" or "world class beauty" or “pretty” or even “sexy”, I'd have suggested something else. I wouldn't date Britney (but this wouldn’t have to do with her looks – I am too old for drama in that sphere of my existence).

     

    Perhaps the appeal of people in photographs / the media / even real life is different for men and women, and might in turn depend on your "eye" if gay, trans, whatever.

     

    But all this is a dreadful distraction! I wasn't intending that we should travel from Music to Fine Art to the attractiveness or otherwise of people! Quoting "Britney ... good-looking" from my last post is focusing on its least important aspects! I was interested in expanding on the existing subjective-objective theme - but harnessing the context [Britney/Nina] introduced recently by others.

     

    Turning full circle somewhat ... Chris posted an Album of the Year which happens to be recognisable as Contemporary Jazz with a particular vibe. This type of music is popular here and features often on the thread Album of the Evening. [Do I see posters influenced by Album Covers as much as by the merits of the music.] The most interesting aspect of this conversation to me is the question what this Album of the Year, and of that ilk, broadcast in the way of common or shared understandings. I wrote about this already focusing on Genres. In Blues it is struggle/despondency. In Boogie Woogie and Rockabilly rhythm and dance. You get the picture. So what does this Album broadcast. What does it provoke in the way of common or shared understandings. I can't answer the question. Well - I could - but my answer would not be popular. I am not tuned in to it. My loss. I guess.

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    2 minutes ago, The Computer Audiophile said:

    When I started this community in 2007

     

    imho you've done well to stick it out for 14 years (and going strong i hope ...)

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    On 9/8/2021 at 10:14 AM, The Computer Audiophile said:

    We need audio shows back, so we can all sit around drinking our favorite beverages and talk audio the meaning of life. Only kidding. It would be fun to talk about this stuff in person, where I'm sure we'd better understand one another in about 30 seconds :~)

     

    We could always setup a discord server for Audiophile Style. This way people could actually voice chat or even use web cams (and not for porn, gaming, or work for once).

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