On July 1st, 1941, viewers seen the world’s first TV commercial, a 20-second spot for Bulova watches. It isn’t on YouTube yet, but you’re not missing much: just a clock superimposed on a US map while an announcer says, “America runs on Bulova time.” Thankfully, commercials got a lot more interesting throughout the years, so here’s a look at some of the most unforgettable.
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Tragedy has long moved artists to write, we all know that. Look at how many songs came out of the 9/11 attacks. Ben Kono, a hard-working sideman saxophonist from New York, started to put together the pieces of his song “Paradise in Manzanar” not long after the twin towers fell. But it relates to a different tragedy: the imprisonment of Japanese-American civilians during World War II. After reading Jeanne Wakatsuki Houston’s Farewell to Manzanar in the tenth grade, “paradise” is one of the last words I would use to describe the California internment camps. But there’s the old adage about life dealing you lemons…
“Paradise in Manzanar” is one of the most striking tracks from Kono’s solo debut Crossing, which is saying something since the whole album boasts an elegant selection of songs of the chamber jazz and/or post-classical persuasion. There is a fine video of the song being performed live on YouTube and it can also be sampled on Kono’s website.
With the 4th of July holiday over, summer is in full swing and here’s a new tunes playlist ready to provide a soundtrack for everything on the list. From picnics and BBQs to hanging at the beach, the season is just meant to be lived outdoors. A bevy of new releases filled much of the space, rounded out by a few tracks saved from earlier in the year since they seemed more suited for summer. Enjoy!
1. “Make Some Noise” - Beastie Boys
Doing their thing since 1979, the Beastie Boys return with a new release, Hot Sauce Committee Part Two. (The part one was put aside as Adam “MCA” Yauch underwent treatment for cancer.) This lead track is unapologetically recognizable as a Beastie Boys creation, finding new influences from the current music scene.
Lo-fi dream pop lovelies We Are Trees released a new music video for their single “I Don’t Believe in Love”. The song appears on the band’s Girlfriend EP, currently available through Collective Crown Records. We Are Trees have an additional EP Boyfriend also available through Collective Crown.