Current Blog Posts

In India, Streaming Offers an Alternative to the Brand Partnership Model

Where the West Sprouted a Thriving Infrastructure of Labels, Distributors, A&R Networks, and an IP Regulatory System, India Relied on an Archaic and Unregulated Model: Artist-Film Partnerships

Date: 06/06/2018
By Pavan Vasdev

Bollywood films weren’t always the colorful song-and-dance musicals with which we associate them today. India was an early adopter of the silent film, and in 1913, entrepreneurs flocked to build a nationwide network of studios, cinemas, and talent agencies. This network was the first to spread a common cultural identity across a fragmented collection of cultures known today as India. When the talkie arrived in 1931, musically inclined entrepreneurs quickly recognized the film industry’s sprawling network as a nationwide publicity platform for artists. And so the Bollywood musical was born, as a partnership between film studios and musicians. Initially, intermediary...

Scoopity Data

How Kanye’s Latest Troll May Have Been a Masterful Move in Collecting Data

Date: 05/24/2018
By Pavan Vasdev

On April 27th, Kanye West tweeted to his 28 million followers: “lift yourself”, followed by a link to his website. There, a playable file titled “LIFT YOURSELF MASTER…” sat available for free streaming. The song? A sample of Amnesty’s 1973 hit Liberty over which Kanye rambles “poopity scoop, scoopity poop…”.

Nice troll, Yeezy.

On the surface, this seems just another rickroll from the champion of controversial marketing himself. But considered in context of the crippling closed-door data sharing policies held by streaming services, Kanye’s troll might just be a mastermind play in gathering valuable information about his listeners....

The Power and Science of Music Therapy

Conference Preview: Music Therapy at the Intersection of Medicine, Society and Our Personal Lives

Date: 05/08/2018
By Sound Arts and Industries

Some of the world’s leaders in Music Therapy will gather at Northwestern University on May 11 for a symposium: Music Therapy at the Intersection of Medicine, Society & Our Personal Lives.

“I was thrilled that [all of these experts] agreed to speak at a conference about Music Therapy,” says Nina Kraus , Hugh Knowles Professor of Neurobiology, Communication Sciences and Otolaryngology at Northwestern University. Kraus is also one of the founders of Northwestern’s Sound Arts and Industries Program.

The sold-out symposium will aim to generate awareness and excitement around the...

The Sonic Color Line with Jennifer Stoever

Jennifer Stoever, author of The Sonic Color Line: Race and the Cultural Politics of Listening, discusses how sound studies, race and gender intersect.

Date: 04/05/2018
By Sound Arts and Industries

Jennifer Stoever is an author and professor. Her latest book, The Sonic Color Line: Race and the Cultural Politics of Listening , examines the connection between sound studies, politics and race. We caught up with her after her recent talk at Northwestern University.

Q: After getting your BA in English, what shifted your interests to want to focus on issues of race and ethnicity?

A: I was an English major at UC Riverside, and I actually wrote a paper about how African American writers imbued their texts with speaking voices – sounds that novels and autobiographies were...

A Look Back with Tom Myers

Northwestern Alum Tom Myers reflects on his time as a student and how it shaped his sound career.

Date: 03/23/2018
By Sound Arts and Industries

Q: Do you remember the first time you fell in love with film?

A: I was probably 13 or something like that, and I was not interested in sound yet, but there was this TV show on PBS, “The Men Who Made the Movies.” It had interviews with great directors like Alfred Hitchcock, and they would interview them about their careers. In the early 1970s, there were a lot of great movies. It was an exciting time in American cinema, and I was like, “Oh, man. This is what I...

How a Tuba Player Founded a Conference for Game Sound

We get to know Northwestern graduate and GameSoundCon founder Brian Schmidt.

Date: 03/08/2018
By Sound Arts and Industries

When Brian Schmidt started his freshman year at Northwestern in 1980, he was going to be a tuba major in the School of Music.

“I wanted to be a tuba player, but I found something new that totally ricocheted me in a different direction,” Schmidt says.

That ‘something new’ was an interest in computer music. Thanks to Northwestern professor Gary Kendall, Schmidt shifted his focus of study, deciding to pursue a degree in music and computer science.

“I got really fortunate my freshman year,” Schmidt says. “[Professor Kendall] got a grant to study 3D hearing, so there...

Incubating Creative Entrepreneurs Inside 2112

Students visit Chicago’s largest film, technology and music incubator

Date: 03/01/2018
By Sound Arts and Industries

In the third EPICS Sound MA Career Trek of the quarter, Northwestern Sound Arts and Industries students visited 2112 , Chicago’s largest film, technology and music incubator.

“Unless you visit, it can be hard to visualize what an incubator is,” says Katherine Lelek, Assistant Director of the Office of External Programs, Internships and Career Services (EPICS).

The students who attended the Career Trek got a look at 2112’s 160,000-square-foot space, which includes 2112 partner Fort Knox Studios . 2112 has band rehearsal spaces, conference rooms, a warehouse for hosting events and co-working space.

Anyone can become a...

An Artist-Scientist Finds Her Voice in Sound

An interview with Northwestern Sound Arts and Industries student, Malika Gumpangkum

Date: 02/15/2018
By Sound Arts and Industries

Malika Gumpangkum is a Tampa, Florida native with a BA in English Literature from Emory University. She is also a student in Northwestern’s Sound Arts and Industries program. Gumpangkum recently shared her interest in sound, her dream job as a film critic and what she hopes for in her future career.

Q: How did you end up choosing to pursue a BA in English literature? Was that an interest of yours from a young age?

A: At first, I was majoring pre-med and English, but had a change of heart and focused solely on English literature. My...

Sounds in the Sky

A Q&A with Stephan Moore about his Lincoln Park Conservatory exhibit

Date: 01/25/2018
By Sound Arts and Industries

On display now through March 7 at the Lincoln Park Conservatory, Florasonic: Stephan Moore: A Grid Against the Sky is comprised of a set of conjoined metal instruments called the Wall of Metals. The prerecorded sounds from the instruments are slowed down, reversed, mixed, and manipulated in real time to create a series of complex harmonies determining cross-hatched patterns aimed at filling the interior volume of the Fern Room.

Marketing Director for the Experimental Sound Studio Ryan Packard sat down with Moore, a lecturer for the MA in Sound Arts and...

There’s More Than Meets the Ears in this Video Game Exhibit

Interactive video game exhibit goes beyond fun and games.

Date: 01/11/2018
By Sound Arts and Industries

Now through February 25, you can explore the world of video games through “The Ears Have Walls: A Survey of Sound Games,” a collaboration between Northwestern lecturers Stephan Moore and Chaz Evans.

Evans is the co-founder of the Video Game Art Gallery , a pop-up organization dedicated to increasing “cultural appreciation, education of video games and new media through exhibition, study, critique and sale.”

The gallery, located in Logan Square, has been showing exhibitions since 2013. It’s one of two locations hosting “The Ears Have Walls.” The second exhibition space is the Experimental Sound Studio ’s Audible Gallery....

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