A memorial for the novelist Robert Stone (1937-2015) from a former student.
Lou Reed cared about art long after he could have stopped caring. Art is what drove him and fueled his work, what inspired him and made him so inspiring. And in this cultural moment where fame and page views often trump all other claims to attention, that is huge.
I find Bon Iver's records eminently listenable. But I also find they lack some unnameable quantity of soul.
This is the imaginary soundtrack to a film that, knowing the film business, will never get made. You can read about the script online.
Back on the grid again, after a holiday week in Amsterdam & Barcelona, which brought some deep thoughts on life online & off as well as some literal fireworks.
The internet-era chanteuse Lana Del Rey is the subject of much speculation, consternation and affection. Anyone who cares about the odd little independent music subculture I exist in—as odd, I'd venture, as the academic subculture—is atwitter about her.
Here are some more-poised than usual thoughts on the first ten years of this record label-like thing I've been running. To cover the entire bodily spectrum in a single mixed metaphor, I'd like to think this piece is a bit less of a gut-level kneejerk response than I usually muster, a bit more of a heady, meditative deep thought.
This mixtape is probably the closest I'll ever get to attempting to start a dance party.
Alec Hanley Bemis lives in Brooklyn, NY but spends a lot of time in California. He obtained his B.A. in History from Yale University. His writing has appeared in LA Weekly, The New York Times, The New Yorker, Spin, AsthmaticKitty.com, the Los Angeles Times, and many other publications. In 2001, he co-founded Brassland, a record label that documents the work of a growing community of musicians, including The National and Nico Muhly. Currently he continues to run Brassland, consults for the UK-based music company All Tomorrow's Parties, co-manages The Dirty Projectors, and acts as general manager at Cantaloupe Music. In the past, he has taught in New York University's graduate journalism program, produced projects for the new media-design firm, Funny Garbage, and written for Faith Popcorn's BrainReserve.