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Jeff Yasuda

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Funk 101

Posted by Jeff Yasuda on Feb 28, 2020 2:39:52 PM

There are a number of reasons why I love funk, but to boil it down: funk is all about the groove - a highly rhythmic experience where each musician needs to think about their specific part and most importantly, how it fits within the broader context of the song. The guitarist may be doing something different from what the keyboardist and bassist is playing. The kick drum might be locked in with the bass while the overall rhythm is different from the guitar strumming. Each musician has a role - they need to find and stay in their lane or “pocket” - so that they properly fit with what the rest of the band is doing. Finally, adding a hooky melody and horn section over the rhythmic section requires a deep understanding of finding your place in a band.

Ironically, while the rhythmic interplay and the need to find the pocket make funk incredibly complex to play, funk is often just a one-chord song. The experience is about listening to what the other band members are doing as opposed to focusing on your own playing. In my early years playing in various rock bands, it seemed that the experience was often about increasingly playing louder and louder to make sure your part was “heard.” Eventually it just led to a cacophonous, head-banging, ear-splitting experience - which, can be awesome in its own right, but just different from what funk is about. When I started to focus on playing jazz, I learned the importance of actually listening instead of playing. Miles Davis always emphasized that music isn’t about the notes you play, it’s about the notes you don’t play. I was recently asked what exactly funk is and the origins of funk. Let’s turn back the clocks and learn a bit more where this great style of music began.

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Topics: Feed.fm Blog

Spotify’s Direct Listing – Why it is Exciting for the Music Industry

Posted by Jeff Yasuda on Jan 9, 2018 6:11:02 PM

Recently, the latest rage in the music world is that Spotify has confidentially filed “IPO” documents with the Securities and Exchange Commission. However, unlike a typical IPO where an investment bank underwrites and allocates shares to institutional investors, Spotify will allow existing investors to sell shares directly on the public markets. Direct listings, which are highly unusual, have often been done by small-cap companies. This is the first time that a company with a multibillion dollar valuation, in Spotify’s case $20 billion, will offer shares in this manner. The direct listing will provide liquidity for existing shareholders and will allow new investors to participate in a pure-play, on-demand music streaming service.  While at first glance, this may appear to be a bizarre strategy, as we discussed in a recent Bloomberg interview, this is an incredibly exciting moment for the music industry.

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Topics: Feed.fm Blog, Music Business, Music streaming, Music as a Service

Context (Not Content) is King

Posted by Jeff Yasuda on Oct 27, 2017 3:32:47 PM

Miles Davis always said, “Music is the space between the notes. It’s not the notes you play, it’s the notes you don’t play.”

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Topics: Feed.fm Blog

Music Streaming Demystified

Posted by Jeff Yasuda on Nov 8, 2016 4:57:04 PM
 
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