After a period of disorientation spawned by this accent expert's astounding resemblance to actor Glenn Howerton (of "It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia"), I loved the rigorous attention to linguistic detail in this video. It's just amazing to watch an expert apply their knowledge in such specific ways.
I'm far from an expert on dance, so I'll defer to Fred Astaire, who reportedly called this sequence the greatest dance number ever filmed. The Nicholas Brothers, Fayard and Harold [official site], were most famous for the Hollywood musicals of the 30s and 40s, but their dance careers spanned six decades.
I love insights like this into how experts in various fields do the things they do. This video reminded me of this amazing piece from Song Exploder, and the video of Earl Young describing his invention of the "four on the floor" drum beat that gave rise to most electronic dance music you hear today.
Four-on-the-floor, a beat pattern that's widely used in electronic dance music, has its roots in disco. And drummer Earl Young invented it.
Watching Young move effortlessly between beats that undergird some of the most popular music of the last 50 years reminded me of this piece from Song Exploder, in which John Roderick of The Long Winters describes watching virtuoso drummer Matt Chamberlain lay down an amazing series of drum tracks for his song "The Commander Thinks Aloud."
I've written before about the podcast Song Exploder, in which Hrishikesh Hirway takes a song and breaks it down into it component parts. Through interviews with the musician and isolated tracks of instruments and voices, he explores the formative ideas and decisions that created the track. If I had to pick a favorite podcast, it would get the nod.
This particular show is utterly amazing, because it describes the unexpected results when The Long Winters brought in guest drummer Matt Chamberlain, described as "the best in the country" to lay down tracks on their tune The Commander Thinks Aloud. Chamberlain played 5 tracks, one after another, then... well, it's pretty cool to hear songwriter John Roderick describe it.
Listen to the entire show below, or click here to jump directly to the piece about Chamberlain's contribution, at 8:40.