Monday, September 8, 2008

Pork, Beans, and Free Music

Is anyone else enjoying the Weezer renaissance that's currently playing itself out online? Apparently so, judging by the nearly 13 million views of their new Pork and Beans video on YouTube.

The video is clever and funny. Except, that is, if you're unfamiliar with the micro-celebrities of the YouTube universe. (I wish I could take credit for that clever term.) It pays tribute to them by incorporating parodies of their videos into the Weezer video. But these aren't typical parodies. Weezer managed to convince the actual YouTube-elebrities (that one is mine, thanks) to reperform their skits with members of the band. The results are really fun to watch, especially the ones with Tay Zonday.

Wait a second-- incorporating isn't really the right word, since the Weezer video consists entirely, in one form or another, of these parodies.

Anyway, if you haven't seen any of the original clips that the music video uses, then it will seem like a bunch of nonsense. If you fall into this category and this post has still managed to catch your interest then you'd do well to watch a few of these before moving on to the Weezer video. Please keep in mind that a few of them contain language and/or situations that some people might find offensive. In my ongoing efforts to maintain harmony and goodwill among the faithful readers of this blog I've excluded the more flagrant offenders from this list:

Casting Kung-Fu
Dramatic Gopher
Chocolate Rain by Tay Zonday
Guiness Record for Most T-Shirts Worn at One Time
Miss Teen South Carolina
Korean Pachelbel
Diet Coke and Mentos Experiment
Charlie the Unicorn
Charlie the Unicorn Part 2
Daft Hands
Daft Bodies
Ryan vs Dorkman
All Your Base Are Belong to Us
Numa Numa Kid
Evolution of Dance

And if you enjoyed Tay Zonday as much as I do, then you won't want to miss this accoustic version of him performing Pork and Beans with Weezer member Brian Bell. And while I'm at it, here's another Tay Zonday spoof, just for good measure.


As long as I'm on the topic of music I may as well share with you what has recently become my new favorite website.'s slogan is "We're not evil"- the idea being that we, the users, get to decide how much we'll pay for the songs we download from the site in addition to deciding which file format we download the songs in and how many computers we save them on. That's right, none of the "Digital Rights Management" nonsense that you have to put up with from the more popular online music vendors. All this, and the artists get a 50% cut each time they sell a song.

But none of that is what makes me like the site so much. The reason I keep coming back to Magnatune is that they let me stream entire albums. Yeah- I can log on to the site at work, choose an album on their site and listen to it, for free, while I'm working. Their primary reason for doing this is so that potential purchasers can know exactly what their getting when they purchase and album or a song. But the handy side effect is that even if you're not planning on buying the music, you can still listen to it.

Of course, when you stream the music online there's a little blurb at the end of each track that reminds you that you're listening to and kind of interupts the flow of the album. But when you're listening for free you haven't got a lot of room to complain.

They don't carry big name artists- no Weezer here; and a lot of what they do have just doesn't interest me. But I've managed to find enough music that I do like that I find myself bringing up the site over and over at home and at work. In no particular order, here are a few of my favorites:

Lines Build Walls- Ehren Starks
The Depths of a Year- Ehren Starks
Woods of Choas- Rob Costlow
Dry Fig Trees- Gerard Satamian
24 Preluds for Solo Piano- Jan Hanford

And no, I will not force you to choose between listening to them or muting the volume on your computer just because you decided to visit my blog.

1 comment:

Kami said...

Tim. You rock. I wrote a post about your post. It will publish in a couple days. Thanks for all the links to the videos.