Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Shameless Plug

This is Skating Polly. They're a punk-pop riot grrrl band from OKC, and they're 10 (Kelli Mayo) and 15 (Peyton Suitor) years old. I got to interview them a couple weeks ago, and they are the most awesome little girls I've ever met.

Here's the story I wrote about them for the OU Daily.

Music Discovery Sites

Although there are still plenty of us out there who prefer the gentle crackle of a spinning record to a sterile mp3, we can all use the Internet to expand our musical horizons. Here are some great sites you can use as a jumping off point on your journey to aural enlightenment!

  • Pandora is my personal favorite, though it's a bit basic by the standards some of these other sites set. If you create an account, you can create as many personal "radio stations" as you want by typing in an artist or song name. Pandora will then play songs that have similar traits. You can rate each song with a thumbs-up or thumbs-down so it can further shape the station. Downsides: you can only skip a certain amount of songs per hour, and there are a few ads.
  • Musicovery is cool as well. You can go Pandora style and just type in an artist name, but what makes this site special is the mood and decade selector. You can click anywhere on a spectrum of "Positive - Energetic - Dark - Calm" and then select the time period you want to hear from. Downsides: you have to sign up for the premium (paid) membership to skip songs, and a lot of times clicking "60s" brought up a lot of classical music. Hmmm...
  • Musicmesh employs a visual aid. Type in an artist, and it will show you a map of albums that you'd like as well. Downsides: the library seems a little limited; when I typed in fairly well-known indie acts like Tallest Man on Earth and Monsters of Folk, it didn't seem to recognize them, so you may have to stick to more famous bands - like Led Zeppelin!

Cool, right?

Monday, August 30, 2010

Music and Discovery

Hello !

This is my first post on a blog that may take several different forms as I attempt to navigate this world of narcissistic online journalism. I do know that I will be writing about music about 99% of the time. It is my favorite thing to write about; in fact, it's also my favorite thing to think, talk and learn about. (I may also veer off into territories of women's and queer issues, politics, and general pop culture, but I'll try to keep things focused.)

Since this is my first post, I'll introduce myself. Here's me gazing out onto a harbor, as I often do.

My name is Annika Larson, and I'm a Professional Writing junior with minors in Spanish and Women's and Gender Studies at the University of Oklahoma. I was born and raised in Green Bay, Wisconsin (Go Pack Go!). I now live in Norman in a tiny apartment with my boyfriend and our kitten. I write for my school newspaper's Life & Arts page. I enjoy traveling, watching movies, reading books and magazines, perusing the Internet, and collecting records.

My favorite kinds of music are 1960s pop and rock, folk, and modern indie rock/pop/folk/you get the picture. Most of the music I love the most was produced before the year 1980. Lately (as in the past 3 months or so), I've been listening to The Beatles (a constant through my entire life), Paul Simon, The Tallest Man on Earth, Conor Oberst/Monsters of Folk, Robyn and The Shirelles.

On this blog I hope to encourage some discovery in the world of music; I'm going to look for new and different things, and I hope I can share something new and different with any readers I may have. I hope I can share older music in new ways, and newer music in good ways too!

Until next time,