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 […]

May 18

Ten Songs About Young Ambition and Passionate Love

What to say about a third record? Having passed the second record – a typical minefield for music acts – I feel very little worry. I’ve finished recording, and have handed the record over for mastering. After which, we hand it over for specifically lacquer mastering, where it is subsequently pressed into vinyl form. The […]

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 […]

February 27

Interview: Reonda

I will be performing at SXSW in mid-March, which will be an exciting opportunity to perform with some of the best Asian-American music talent (make that some of the best music talent) in the country. I was pleasantly surprised to see another performer at my showcase who lives in Brooklyn.  Reonda, who also designs her own line […]

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 25

A Brief Guide to What Does St. Lenox Sound Like?

People sometimes ask – what does St. Lenox sound like?  I have a hard time answering that question and reading through reviews, it’s interesting to note that there’s relatively little consensus.  I’ll keep a running log of comparisons, to provide some semblance of a guide. Adam Levine (Cincinnati CityBeat) (Willfully Obscure) Billy Joel (Music. Defined.) […]

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 […]

December 17

Triangulation of Emotion and Emotional Competency in Listening

Unless you adopt a pure form of an association theory in music (under which the connection between emotions and music is merely one of repeated association), you understand that music expresses human emotion in such a way that is more or less universal, and that an exploration of music and its complexities will inevitably be […]

November 25

Transfiguration in Music

At first glance, this post might look like a gripe about a single critical comment in an otherwise exuberant review from the Harvard Crimson – an obsession with a minor blemish from a perfectionist.  I assure you that it is not, I swear it’s really not.  I wanted to make an observation about music as an […]