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Music

Musical Auteurism: Recognizing Genius

An album is not an insulated document, but rather something that breathes and grows within an artist's discography. I challenge music fans to not simply find songs or albums that they like (though certainly that has a completely worthwhile place), but to find entire discographies (from acknowledged classics to forgotten albums) to grow with over time.

Zachary Williams
Music

Bill Evans Trio: Explorations (OJC Remasters)

For all the attention paid to his sense of harmony and melody, one could overlook an equally integral aspect to Bill Evans' mastery: he knew how to swing.

Music

Paul McCartney: An Auteur

Paul McCartney's effortless musical mastery (with no suffering artist gimmick) robs him of the serious consideration he deserves. But like literature and film's greatest auteurs, he will eventually undergo the Hitchcock / Shakespeare transformation from popular entertainer to century-defining artist.

Film

Against the Consensus: 'Chungking Express'

This film is a case study in style over substance. This is not always a bad thing. Godard, a master filmmaker, made a career out of this concept. However, when the style offered is derivative, the idiom looms forebodingly.

Music

Bud Powell: Un Poco Loco

In between stays at mental institutions for schizophrenia, Powell left behind a remarkable legacy. Sadly, he hasn’t received the same widespread admiration that his close friend Thelonious Monk secured. But to true fans of the jazz genre, Powell is revered.

Music

My Top Ten Beach Boys Albums

The Beach Boys are my favorite band, and all following pop composers are compared to the incomparable standard of Brian Wilson, the true pop genius

Music

My Top 10 Rolling Stones Albums

The Rolling Stones = Rock & Roll. It doesn't get any cooler than Mick Jagger strutting around while Keith Richards -- cigarette hanging from his mouth -- nonchalantly riffs like a king.

Music

The Lost Art of the Non-Album Single

The album is a phenomenal format, don’t get me wrong, but there was something truly magical about Motown, the Brill Building, and the British Invasion simultaneously giving you the best two minutes and 30 seconds they had.

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