BBC MUSIC launches with ‘God Only Knows’ remix

BBC launches new MUSIC site with God Only Knows,
a star-studded film
featuring ‘The Impossible Orchestra’

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I heard about this on the way in to work this morning – but I didn’t know what the event was going to be until sitting down with the family at 8pm. It reminded me of the great ‘Perfect Day’ BBC promotional film. I have gathered these comments from various sources available online. The song was broadcast simultaneously on Tuesday 7th October 2014 on BBC One, Two, Three, Four and Radio 1, 2, 4, 6 and 5 Live.

The track, which will also be released in aid of Children in Need, features 27 artists across all musical genres. They include Sir Elton John, Stevie Wonder, Chris Martin, Sam Smith, Brian May, Jamie Cullum and Nicola Benedetti.

God Only Knows has reached almost mythical status in the pop canon. Written and produced by Brian Wilson with lyricist Tony Asher and younger brother Carl Wilson on vocals, it was released in 1966 as part of The Beach Boys’ Pet Sounds album. It reached Number 2 in the UK and Number 39 in the US Charts. It has become one of the most lauded tracks of all time. Rolling Stone placed it at 25 in their 500 Greatest Songs of All Time and in 2006, Pitchfork magazine crowned God Only Knows as the best song of the 1960s.

BBC Music will encompass TV and radio programming, digital services and schemes to support emerging talent including the introduction of classical music to UK primary schools. The song’s original writer, Brian Wilson, also features on the track, along with the BBC Concert Orchestra. The collective group of musicians has been named the Impossible Orchestra. Bob Shennan, director of BBC Music, said: “This ‘impossible’ orchestra is a celebration of all the talent, diversity and musical passion found every single day throughout the BBC.”

Watch the ‘making of’ here

The line by line breakdown of singers is as follows:

BBC Concert Orchestra

Martin James Bartlett – celeste

Pharrell Williams – I may not always love you

Emeli Sandé – But as long as there are stars above you

Elton John – You never need to doubt it

Lorde – I’ll make you so sure about it

Chris Martin – God only knows what I’d be without you

Brian Wilson – If you should ever leave me

Florence Welch – Well life would still go on believe me

Kylie Minogue – The world could show nothing to me

Stevie Wonder – So what good would living do me

Eliza Carthy – God only knows what I’d be without you

Nicola Benedetti – violin

Jools Holland – piano

Brian May – electric guitar

Jake Bugg – lalalala

Katie Derham – violin

Tees Valley Youth Choir – God only knows

Alison Balsom – piccolo trumpet

One Direction – God only knows what I’d be without you

Jaz Dhami – God only knows what I’d be without you

Paloma Faith – God only knows what I’d be without you

Chrissie Hynde – God only knows

Jamie Cullum – God only knows what I’d be without you

Baaba Maal – God only knows

Danielle de Niese – God only knows what I’d be without you

Dave Grohl – God only knows

Sam Smith – God only knows what I’d be without you

Brian Wilson – God only knows what I’d be without you

read:

THE TELEGRAPH:  the Future of Music on BBC

THE GUARDIAN: BBC MUSIC LAUNCH

Sources: BBC Media Centre, BBC YOUTUBE Channel, BBC NEWS WEBSITE
(accessed 7th October 2014)

In Search Of The Ideal Music Venue

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Trevor Cox Professor of Acoustics from Salford University goes in search of the best venues for different types of music. Trevor is fascinated by the effect that the acoustics have on the enjoyment of different types of live music. He visits various music venues and tries out their acoustics by playing his saxophone. He talks to musicians, sound engineers and experts in acoustics about the venues and the effect that their design has on the audience’s enjoyment of music. He asks whether the size and shape of venues has had an effect on the way music is composed. And he travels to Finland to meet Professor Tappio Lokki who can replicate the sound of famous concert halls in his laboratory.

With contributions from acousticians Adrian James, Rob Harris and Niels Adelman-Larsen, sound engineer Derrick Zieba, and musicians Jessica Cottis and Trish Clowes.

Listen to the BBC Radio 4 programme here:

Music & Video Games

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Games Designer Paul Bennun explores the growing popularity and ambition of music composed for video games.

Video games now have the resources to match that of the big Hollywood orchestral film scores. But it’s not just commercially that video game soundtracks are taken seriously. Composers are becoming more interested in it artistically and BAFTA and the Ivor Novellos have recently recognised the form with their own award categories.

Bennun traces the development of this new genre and finds out how it is changing the way music is made and consumed. Has it now left behind bleeps and bloops and arrived at the brink of artistic respectability?

Producer: Russell Finch

Listen to The BBC Radio 4 programme here:

Sound Architecture: The Spaces That Speak

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Science broadcaster Professor Trevor Cox explores the science of aural architecture – the relationship between sound, design and human experience.

Building design and city planning is dominated by the visual. But a new science has emerged which explores the relationship between design, acoustics and the human experience, called aural architecture. Every space has its own unique soundscape, created by a combination of the overall design, the materials used in construction and the way that space is used by humans.

Until very recently, few architects ever gave much thought to what affect that soundscape might have on the people inhabiting the space, be they office workers, school pupils, teachers or shoppers. This has resulted in railways stations where train announcements are unintelligible, restaurants where you have to shout to be heard and open-plan schools in which teaching is all but impossible. More recently, research has shown that a poor aural experience can have a considerable negative effect on how we feel and behave, even at a subconscious level.

Professor Cox hears for himself how some spaces ‘speak’ and meets architects, designers and researchers hoping to transform our aural experience for the better.

All You Need Is Lab: How Technology Inspired Innovation in Music

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Musician and songwriter Midge Ure looks at the many ways scientific and technological innovation have stimulated creativity in pop music.

From the invention of the steel guitar string, through the tape recorder and the synthesiser, to the drum machine and Autotune, musicians have always embraced the latest ideas and adapted or distorted them to produce new sounds.

Musicians Anne Dudley (Art of Noise) and Thomas Dolby join music journalist David Hepworth and blues researcher Tom Attah, exploring how the laboratory has informed and inspired the studio.

Midge demonstrates what you can achieve with just a laptop these days – but laments the passing of an age of invention in popular music.

Featured music includes The Beatles, Chopin, Thomas Dolby, Robert Johnson, Muddy Waters, Little Walter, Charlie Christian, Les Paul and Mary Ford, The Tornados, The Small Faces, Queen, The Sweet, Stevie Wonder, Band Aid, Art of Noise, Donna Summer, Fat Boy Slim, Cher, Daft Punk and Nick Clegg.

Producer: Trevor Dann
A Trevor Dann production for BBC Radio 4

Pauline Oliveros – Pioneer of Electronic Classical Music

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Pauline Oliveros is an American improvisor, accordionist and composer who is considered a pioneer of electronic classical music in 20th century America. At 81 years old, her career spans some fifty years of boundary breaking music-making, and she has been the recipient of numerous awards. On April 1st 2014, she performs a real-time improvised performance linking musicians in Stanford (California), Troy (New York) and Montreal. This is the first performance of this kind in the UK at the Birmingham Conservatoire.

The performance forms part of Frontiers: Extraordinary Music from Downtown New York & Birmingham, a major festival of music presented by Birmingham Conservatoire and Third Ear.

Listen to Pauline being interviewed for BBC Radio 4’s Woman’s Hour here:

Sound of Cinema – Sound and Fury

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How do sound designers use soundscapes and sound effects to manipulate excitement and emotion in the cinema audience?

As part of the BBC’s Sound of Cinema season, Trevor Cox, Professor of Acoustic Engineering, visits Pinewood studios to meet Glenn Freemantle, Danny Boyle’s sound designer. Freemantle describes the extraordinary lengths he went to in order to re-create the soundscape of a remote desert canyon in the film 127 Hours, so that the cinema audience hears exactly what the climber trapped under a rock for 127 hours hears as he tries to escape. And he shows how to build up the sound in a creepy scene to make the audience feel uneasy.

Trevor Cox also learns how the sound of a futuristic motor bike is created in the latest Judge Dredd film ? how does a sound designer create a sound that is incredibly powerful but also believable?

And there’s a revealing trip to a screening room in central London to experience the very latest technology in the world of cinematic surround sound