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Entries in music (11)

Monday
Nov122007

Take Me With You Dearie (1909)


A friend just sent me a link to Early Aviator, which has some great images of flight from the early 20th century. Some are serious photographs while others are fanciful illustrations of what aviation was to be.

Some of the sheet music imagery and titles feel like they could be part of a Mr. Show sketch. The image above is from sheet music published in 1909 by Junie McCree and Albert von Tizler, titled "Take Me Up With You Dearie."

See also:
Futuristic Air Travel (circa 1900)
Aerial Navigation Will Never Be Popular (1906)
Pears Soap Flying Machine (1906)
Postcards Show the Year 2000 (circa 1900)
Flying Bicycle (1919)

Sunday
Oct282007

Robots vs. Musicians (1931)


This ad from the March 9, 1931 Simpson's Leader-Times (Kittanning, PA) is in no way subtle. The consequences of using recorded music at theatre performances rather than live musicians are, "Monotony in the theatre - corruption of taste - destruction of art." Yikes.

Here is a struggle of intense interest to all music lovers. If the Robot of Canned Music wrests the helm from the Muse, passengers aboard the good ship Musical Culture may well echo the offer of Gonzalo to trade "a thousand furlongs of sea for an acre of ground." Are you content to face a limitless expanse of "sound" without a sign of music?

 

Monotony in the theatre - corruption of taste - destruction of art. These must inevitably follow substitution of mechanical music for living music.

Millions of Music Defense League members cordially invite you to join them in putting the Robot in his place. Just sign and mail the coupon.


See also:
The Future is Now (1955)
All the Music of the Centuries (1908)
"I Can Whip Any Mechanical Robot" by Jack Dempsey (1930s)
The Robot is a Terrible Creature (1922)
Gigantic Robots to Fight Our Battles (Fresno Bee, 1934)
Mammy vs Robot (Charleston Gazette, 1937)

 

Sunday
Oct072007

The Future is Now (1955)


The 1955 short documentary The Future is Now showed viewers what technological changes they could expect in the near future. The clip below demonstrates home video, videophone and electronic music.

 


 

What do you wear to answer the phone? What difference does it make? None, today! But tomorrow, if videophone comes, as well it might, then the world has found itself another problem.


A special thanks to Jake over at the Paleo-Future Google Group for alerting us to the TCM airing of this paleo-futuristic classic.

 

See also:
Television Phone Unveiled (1955)
Futuristic Phone Booth (1958)
Governor Knight and the Videophone (Oakland Tribune, 1955)
Face-to-Face Telephones on the Way (New York Times, 1968)
Disney's Magic Highway, U.S.A. (1958)
Picturephone as the perpetual technology of the future

Tuesday
Oct022007

All the Music of the Centuries (1908)

The article below appeared in the January 3, 1908 Des Moines Daily News (Des Moines, Iowa) under the title, "The Poor Past Centuries." The piece describes a ceremony in Paris where phonographic records were buried beneath an opera house, to be opened in 2007. Sadly, I have not heard if this treasure has been unearthed yet.

Articles like these remind me of the genuine sense of wonder people felt about new inventions of the late 19th and early 20th century. Recorded music was to survive beyond the life of the creator thanks to new technologies. Hopefully, copyright law won't keep that from happening in the 21st century.

That was a curious ceremony performed last week in the subterranean passages of the opera house in Paris. Dignified people solemnly deposited in a specially constructed vault phonographic records of the great voices of today. There are songs and arias by Tamaguo, Caruso, Scotti, Plancon, Pattl, Melba, Calve and others. They are to remain there, hermetically sealed, for one hundred years. Then in the year 2007, they will be withdrawn, and the airships will stop while the passengers hear the historic voices of "the last century."

It's when we read of such things and think what they mean that we begin to realize what a wonderful age this is in which we are living, how different it is from other ages, and what it might have meant to us if the things we know today had been known hundreds of years ago.

Suppose the phonograph alone was nothing new?

We could go today and command all the music of the centuries. We could listen while Bach played the organ, Amati the violin and while Arion swept his harp. We could hear Paganini. We could listen to Palestrina directing the choir in the church of Santa Maria Maggioro, or to Father Ambrose chanting in the dim cathedral at Milan. We might even hear again of David in the psalms, or go back to the shores of the Red sea and listen to the song of Miraim.

And this is only a little in the realm of music alone. There are the orators and the poets and the players who might speak for us. Webster and Patrick Henry and Sapphe and Homer and Demothsenes and Aeschylus - the voices of history in our sitting rooms!

But what is the phonograph? Only one little invention of a multitude. Rameses could never call up the great pyramid. William the conqueror never dreamed of wireless telegraphy. Xerxes never saw a moving picture. Charlemagne never even got a glimpse of a single electric light.

At this moment the cub reporter stirred himself. He has been to college.

"No," he said, "and Darius never had any breakfast food."

"And Adam didn't have no street cars," observed the other boy.


See also:
Gardens of Glowing Electrical Flowers (1900)
Moving Sidewalk (1900)
Moving Sidewalk Mechanics (1900)

 

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