DAY 167: What do maths and music have in common?

What do maths and music have in common? TED speaker Clayton Cameron uses him time at TEDYouth to demonstrate the answer. I dislike maths but I love drum beats. Ahh the corundum when presented with a TED talk that explains maths behind the rhythm. This TED talk was part of the TEDYouth lineup, hence the emphasis on "A-rhythm-etic” I love how Clayton explains to the audience that maths is the backbone of music.  Okay so Clayton is a drummer and not a maths teacher, but if I would have had a maths teacher that broke it down for me like that, then I might of had a better appreciation for maths. When students in my maths  class in primary school groaned “why do we need to learn maths anyway?” answering “to create music” would have been a whole lot more effective than “because it’s in the curriculum" The truth is when I started to teach myself to read music I learnt the connection between maths and rhythm and this made me made dislike … [Read more...]

Day 147: The beat of my own bucket drum

One of my favourite playlists on Spotify contains nothing but drum solos.  It's my get-up-and-go music. (I know , I know that was pretty corny)  I find drum solos  so powerful and commanding that it stops you in your tracks and makes you take notice, as did this drum  solo  by Choclattjared "The beat of my own bucket drum." What I love most about this performance is that there is not a "drum set" in sight.  I usually only listen to drum solos and not actually watch them, however watching Choclattjared play drums is something pretty special. It engulfs him. It's as if he and the drum beats become one. It's a beautiful thing to watch. Talking is limited to one line in this performance that comes right at the end of the piece, " Hello my name is Choclattjared and thank-you for that great conversation" What did you think of   "The beat of my own bucket drum."  I'd love to hear about it in the comment box below … [Read more...]

Day 144: Doodlers Unite. Mr Squiggle was onto something

I am a doodler. I have been one since as long as I can remember. The pages of my school books were lined with doodles that perhaps made no sense to anyone but myself. To be honest, I have never really put much thought into doodles but Ted speaker Sunni Brown has. In her Ted talk Doodlers, Unite Sunni wants to break down the myths that doodling is bad thing. The negativity around doodling is something that we can thank history for as the word was used to define fools or to ridicule someone. These days doodling is associated with wasting time, acting thoughtlessly and making meaningless marks. Doodling is a powerful tool Sunni want everyone to recognise  the doodling  is not mindless scribbling but it can actually be pretty powerful stuff. According to Sunni  "it is a preemptive measure to stop you from losing focus. Additionally, it has a profound effect on creative problem-solving and deep information processing." and "People who … [Read more...]

Day 143: A song about “ceaseless yearning and never-ending want”

Ted speaker and muso Nora York brings to the Ted stage a musical number about "ceaseless yearning and never-ending want." Let's face it's something that we have all gone through at some stage. "I want what I can't have, need what I can't want " These were the core lyrics being repeated, so simple, yet so easy to resonate with. "Sick and tired of the "Later, maybe" What I took from this number is that we are never going to be satisfied if we get stuck in this loop of always wanting more. There is a flipside to this. I think that we need to strike a healthy balance between want and appreciation. I think that we should always thrive for growth and never stand still, but I think that we do need to learn to appreciate the things that we already have. Maybe what we have is enough. "I gotta just claim it I gotta just seize" I guess it comes down to the motive behind our "want." If it's just to out-do our neighbours and keep up with … [Read more...]

Day 116: Please don’t take my Air Jordans!

Continuing on with my "Poetry Slam" theme for my 365 Days of TED challenge is a TED performance by spoken-word artist Lemon Anderson. After I watched Lemon's TED talk all I kind think of was wow, just wow. He performed the piece "Please don't take my Air Jordans" by Reg E. Gaines with such emotion that it brought the story to life. … [Read more...]

day 112: How to make up new words

Ted speaker Erik McKean is a lexiographer with an odd request First things first, what the heck is a lexicographer? A lexicographer is a person that compiles a dictionary. Erin is quick to point out that she doesn't decide what the meaning of a word is - that's everyone else's job and she goes as far to say that we should "Go ahead, make up new words!" We create new music, new art and invent things all the time so why not create new words asks Erin? I can think of one reason why this can be tricky. Sure I can come up with a new word in this very moment, but how on Earth am I going to let everyone know about it? Should their be a "new words" memo that needs to be sent out each day? Of course if you are the creator of The Big Bang Theory all it takes is a popular character dropping catchphrase -bazinga! How to make up new words If you do decide to make up a new word (or words) Erin has put together a list of six tips to make up new … [Read more...]

Day 110: A new kind of music video

Have you ever wondered what a music video would look like if the music itself directed the video and not a director's concept? Designer and Ted speaker Jakob Trollback wondered this and the results of his experiment is featured in his Ted talk "A new kind of music." Although I don't think that this Ted talk is for everyone, I like the concept behind it. Often video clips can give an entire new meaning to a song. Often the songwriter is not involved in the music video creation. This means that another interpretation is added in the mix and it may or may not be in sync with the song's true meaning. The artistic endeavours (and ego) of a director may trump the essence of a song and visuals may be forced to fit the lyrics. Jakob Trollback's approach to his experiment is to allow motion and animation to take centre stage of the music video. Truthfully, I wasn't that blown away by the results but his Ted talk did get me thinking about … [Read more...]