December 03

Unreliable Narration in Songwriting

There is a song that I released a few days with a reference to a Highway 80 in Kansas.  The lyric references the experience of trying to drive home over the holidays in a flashback of sorts, with the protagonist trying to make it home in time to enjoy Christmas with his parents.  Except, there […]

November 25

The Academic Standard for Publication of Music

In academia, the minimum standard for publishing work is two-fold. An article must say something novel, and it must say something substantial. In other words, you have to say something new and that new thing had to be important enough to publish. The standard, which we will call “the academic standard” works as a kind […]

October 09

Year of Migration Lecture – The Return Home

I was invited to give a lecture about my music videos at the University of Kentucky by the department of Musicology and Ethnomusicology, as part of the Year of Migration series.  Below are the notes from that lecture, entitled “The Return Home”. ///**// The Return Home: First of all, thank you for giving me the […]

September 11

Proposal: The Expenditures Limit on Indie

I was talking with a few PR people of some repute a few months ago, and I remarked that the cost of getting any attention in the indie music scene was so cost prohibitive, that it effectively cut out even the upper-middle class from being represented in indie music.  The effect of this is that […]

August 09

Perfect Strangers Interview – St. Lenox: Indie Music’s Renaissance Man

Photo Courtesy of An Rong Xu.  Print Version of the Article can be obtained at:   St. Lenox is the singer-songwriter alter ego of Andrew Choi, who also happens to be an attorney in commercial litigation; the holder of a doctoral degree in philosophy (with a focus on Kantian ethics); and a former concert violinist […]

May 18

The Violin Competition

You wouldn’t know this, but a pet peeve I have is when people refer to me as someone who went to Juilliard. It’s an annoyance I let slide, because I think people don’t really know any better. You see, although I did go to Juilliard for a bit, attending the pre-college program, it’s actually not […]

February 25

Dog Whistle Programming

Maybe 7 year ago or so, a bar manager for a bar in Columbus that I used to frequent, told me about how their dress code (no baggy pants, no baseball caps) was their way of excluding black clientele.  I was a bit surprised, not just because of the existence of the policy in the […]

February 16

Auto-Tune, Tuning and Emotional Impact

People talk about the negative effects of auto-tune on music, but I think it’s hard to actually spell out how auto-tune affects music from an aesthetic perspective.  All things considered, I think auto-tune can be used strategically at the right time and in the right way to achieve certain aesthetic qualities.  But I wanted to […]

January 17

Music and Social Justice / or Why Many Musicians Should Not Release Records for General Public Consumption

This may come as a surprise to you, especially coming from an exemplar of the DIY music industry.  But I believe that many musicians should not release records for general public consumption.  The reasons are of a social justice and economic nature. When I say this, I don’t mean that musicians should not record an album […]

December 23

The Difference Between Emotional Richness and Aesthetic Quality

It is no secret that emotions can provide insight into important values.  However, the emotions are not themselves necessary indicators of certain types of value.  So, for instance, feelings of sadness can oftentimes indicate a loss of value – you cry when a loved one has died.  However, one might get the same feeling upon […]