Jamie Mcguire: Music Is The No-fail Remedy To Writer’s Block


Beats acquired MOG, a music streaming service, more than a year ago, when it was already working on a streaming service or its own. Since MOG already had a functioning service, from a technical point of view, and apps for all major platforms, it’s safe to assume that the reason it took it so long is because getting deals with the music labels is a long and winding process. For launch, Beats Music will offer a web version of the service, as well as Android and iOS apps. A Windows 8 app is said to come at a later date. One of the ways Beats Music will try to differentiate itself is by offering a high level of curation out of the box. You need to start with a great editorial team that has a point of view, but we want to have a situation where we can really scale to the depth of your appetite, Luke Wood, president and COO of Beats, told The Next Web . If you really love music, we want something that can go deep with you for a really long time. And that requires a perfect harmony between the algorithm and human curation. Between the man and the machine. Thousands of playlists centered around artists, music styles, even moods, are being put together to be available at launch. Beats Music is using an editorial team for this, but also algorithms that can generate playlists to your exact preferences. The music streaming world is a highly competitive one, as MOG itself found out, and it remains to be seen whether the Beats brand alone will be enough to carry the service. Apple, Microsoft, Google, and even Samsung are trying to get into the same space, without too much success so far, so Beats may have its work cut out ahead of it. FILED UNDER:

Music Review: Kenny Rogers offers something a little different on ‘You Can’t Make Old Friends’

An artisan gives finishing touches to an effigy of demon king Ravana in preparation for the upcoming Hindu festival of Dussehra in the northern Indian city of Chandigarh October 8, 2013. The effigies are burnt during the festival which commemorates the triumph of Lord Rama over Ravana, marking the victory of good over evil. REUTERS/Ajay Verma (INDIA - Tags: RELIGION SOCIETY TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY)

By Associated Press, Kenny Rogers, You Cant Make Old Friends (Warner Bros.) Kenny Rogers enters his 75th year with an album that blends the familiar with the challenging, seeking new hits and pursuing new ideas even as he enters the Country Music Hall of Fame this fall. Looking for things to do? Select one or more criteria to search Kid-friendly Get ideas His age occasionally shows in the raggedness at the edges of his vocal tone. But Rogers always made the huskiness of his voice work for him, and that holds true through most of these 11 new songs. Impressively, he hits high, forceful notes when required, matching longtime duet partner Dolly Parton on the soaring passages of the wistfully sentimental title tune, which would have fit on any of his solo albums from decades past. On the progressive side, Rogers tackles the struggles of a Mexican immigrant on the Spanish-tinged ballad Dreams Of The San Joaquin; a jaunty Gulf Coast dance tune on Dont Leave Me in the Night Time, featuring accordionist Buckwheat Zydeco; and a complex narrative about fighting darkness in the modern world on Turn This World Around, a duet with young singer-songwriter Eric Paslay. He occasionally reaches too far, as in Merica, certainly the first patriotic tune to reference a spanked child and a drunken uncle. For the most part, though, Rogers proves he can still deliver the romantic ballads and dramatic narratives on which his reputation rests. Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Beats Music Lands in a Few Months to Take on Spotify, Google, Apple, and All the Rest

If I’m not crying during a gut-wrenching scene, how can I expect my readers to? It’s sometimes difficult to get into the writing mind-set, but music helps me get there. One of the fun things to check out on my website is the playlists for each of my books: the music I listened to “to get in the mood.” On my computer, music isn’t categorized by country, Top 40, ’80s and the like, but by happy, sad, suspense, scary and action. Red Hill is set in the Midwest with some country characters, but I wanted the playlist to appeal to readers who might not care for country music, so I added in upbeat music that included a lot of guitar without the twang. The only exception is Skeeter McGee’s entrance song, Copperhead Road by Steve Earle, because, quite frankly, no other song would fit him. I listened to I Will Wait by Mumford & Sons when writing about Scarlet sprinting through town to try to reach her daughters. It has an anxious but hopeful undertone that I wanted to bring into the writing. Islands by Young the Giant was perfect for the long days Scarlet spent alone waiting for someone anyone to arrive at the ranch. Into the Mystic by Van Morrison is a song that sounded close enough to country without being country, and it reflects the sweet moments between Nathan and Scarlet. Joy Williams and John Paul White of The Civil Wars. Their song “The One That Got Away” is on Jamie McGuire’s playlist for her new novel, “Red Hill.” (Photo: Tec Petaja) I added some newer tracks toward the end that I am really excited about, such as Young and Beautiful by Lana Del Rey. The melody is so haunting, the lyrics and Lana’s voice so full of emotion and grief, that the listener has no choice but to be pulled into the music. And The One That Got Away by The Civil Wars evokes the underlying anger that Miranda suffers when the group experiences a loss. I prefer to end my playlists the same way I end my novels: on an upbeat note. So the Red Hill playlist ends with Gone, Gone, Gone by Phillip Phillips.

Magical music tour with The Old Man Band at the Chit Chat

The name, The Old Man Band seems to fit the bill.” Since that official forming in 2012, the band has had gigs every month a number in Brisbane, they’ve played Cheers in Pacifica, and they’ve played at street parties in San Anselmo, Petaluma and Santa Rosa. “Wherever they will have us,” Cossette noted. Many Pacificans already know Brisbane resident Cossette. He’s a tenor with the Seaside Singers, a small chamber music choir under the baton of long-time Pacifican, piano teacher and cellist Judy Tugendreich. (They recently sang at the Fog Fest, and among other local gigs, are famous for their Annual Festival of Holiday Music at Pacifica Performances Mildred Owen Concert Hall.) The father of two daughters, “both raised right on this (Old Man) music,” he pointed out, Cossette has been an electrical engineer with Dolby Labs for over 30 years. But even longer, he has been involved with music. “I started singing when I was in first grade,” Cossette said. “And I liked singing from the start. By the second grade I was performing. I had one of the leads in a musical.” The keyboardist took up piano in the third grade. “I grew up in Southern Oregon,” the musician said. “I am one of four and the piano was one of those things that was required of all of us siblings, for one year. With me it took.” Cossette said The Old Man Band practices once or twice a month, occasionally three times, but it’s always a marathon practice, four or five hours.