Thursday, April 17, 2014

Landfill Harmonic: An Orchestra from Trash!

"The world sends us garbage. We send back music." (Favio Chavez, orchestra director)

I received this YouTube video from my choir director. I find it really fascinating as two of my main interests (of many) are music - though I used to play violin that is besides the point - and recycling.

This video seems extremely fitting for Earth Week in more ways than one, which by the way happens to be 'just around the corner.'

Have you ever heard of the acronym GIGO (garbage in, garbage out) in the field of IT/computers? It essentially refers to the quality of the output being dependent upon the quality of the input, whether intended or faulty.

Well, the video above illustrates a slightly different concept: GIMO (an acronym I invented) for 'garbage in, music out.'

On a slightly different note (pardon the pun as that immediately came to mind), how can you (1) create something out of 'garbage' or recyclable material and (2) make music in your life out of improbable circumstances (like the expression "When life gives you lemons, make lemonade")?

Watch and listen and be inspired. Perhaps it will give you some ideas? ;)

Friday, April 4, 2014

Seconds: Tribute to TED Talks

My second installment of TED talks (that happen to be held in Vancouver, BC) features music with a twist. Well, some of you may not call it that, i.e., 'music.' However, it changes about 3/4 into the video where it may sound more like it to you.

Similar to one of the TED talks in my previous posting (March 21st), it features a beatboxer, yet with a completely different style. (I believe he uses a tape loop where his 'music' is recorded so he can transpose on top of it which he does in the video.)

I heard about Shamik, a Vancouver-based beatboxer (making music with his voicebox) and DJ: through a radio show. "Free Spirit", a piece of his music played at the beginning and end of "Breaking the RULES with Tammra Broughton LIVE on LIVING PROOF RADIO" (April 1, 2014, or direct at

His "Shamik vs M.I.A." - M.I.A.=Missing in Action - an interesting mix of beatboxing and rap similar to "Momentum". Most of his beats and music featured on his website are short pieces (

When I first heard beatboxing, I was so mesmerized that I felt like a little kid with a new toy or a bright and shiny object. I might have looked like one too, albeit it didn't matter to me. I was right up close, as close as I could get, with my eyes and mouth wide, in awe, like a child in wonder. How marvelous the human body is and what sounds it can make!

What appeals to you about this genre of music? How can you be in a state of wonder hearing this anew?