Newsletter #60: Learning by Painting, Dilla’s Posthumous Beats, and How Ghostly Records Transcends Music

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Arts & Culture

Learn By Painting

Learning is a combination of “knowing and making.” Visiting my brother at o-sci-arc”>Sci Arc a few weeks ago reminded me how important it is to do something with the information that you receive. As a rule of thumb, create as much as you consume.

“We don’t want to vote the way someone else tells us to. We want to vote based on beliefs we have chosen for ourselves. Making art is making choices. Art-making is practice democracy.”

A Look At Dillatronic: Dilla’s Posthumous Electronic Beats Comp

It’s one thing to ‘steal like an artist,’ but it’s another to take influence from the things you admire and use them to create your own original work. Dilla mastered the art of influence and everyone has been ripping him off.

“These aren’t songs, these are beats. Like of the first posthumous Dilla productions, this too is a rough draft. It’s hard to listen in 2015 and not think its power is slightly diminished due to the countless imitators.”


Philosophy & Productivity

Ghostly Transcends Its Record Label Roots to Sell an Ethos

My friend and muse Sam Valentini is featured in The New York Times business section today. Sam is a Swiss Army Knife of interests and work, thus why I’m categorizing this piece in the Philosophy/Productivity section of my newsletter.

Sam’s the founder of Ghostly Records and Drip but also a pusher of art and culture. He’s got excellent taste, not to mention his own 👻 coffee beans and Warby Parker glasses! Sam intends to create/sell products that spark dialogue around art and culture. Ghostly is an ongoing experiment, one that leaves you with something special, even if it’s just a thought, as you exit through the gift shop.

“It’s not necessarily that those lifestyle objects are making up the difference in revenue,” Mr. Valenti said. “It’s that by being part of a larger conversation — about art, technology, design — we can make our relationship to the world more interesting.”


Social Media & Tech

Stop saying technology is causing social isolation

As I wrote this week, technology makes it easier to meet new strangers. It helps set up the introductions that become meeting face-to-face meetings.

“Thanks to social media, I’ve been able to meet people that are now close friends of mine. And when I’m out, I like to open Twitter and check how they are, what they are doing, if I have something to say that may interest them. Heck, I even met my girlfriend on Twitter years ago. And I’m absolutely certain that my experience is not an isolated one, as the research above shows.”

Land, Capital, Attention: This Time it Is the Same

People are still trying to cope with all this new technology and the glut of information. How do we filter it all so the mind doesn’t get so obese?

“At the same time digital technologies are producing unprecedented amounts of information that we could pay attention to. On Youtube alone 100 hours of video is uploaded every minute. Increasingly you can measure how valuable something is by how much attention it controls (e.g., Google, Facebook, etc).”


New Music

Episode 70 | Tunes of the Week

  1. Fredfades & Ivan Ave – Reaping
  2. The Cactus Channel – Kill the Doubt feat. Chet Faker
  3. DJ Khalab & Baba Sissoko – Tata
  4. The Milk – Deliver Me
  5. Silver Firs – Signals
  6. Ash Walker – Blue Veins feat. Zeb Samuels

🎧 Listen


Thought of the Week

“I don’t necessarily agree with everything I say.” – Marshall McLuhan

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