• The Blue Jam Monologues Play all

    This collection of monologues, originally conceived and written by Robert Katz, with later collaboration by Chris Morris, are taken from Morris's radio series 'Blue Jam'.

    Morris and Katz skilfully weave together cleverly groggy first person storytelling with thick ambient soundscapes and loops, creating a disturbing, disgusting, funny, and strangely enthralling world for our nameless sympathetic half-tramp hero to fall victim to.

    This narrator takes us on a journey through his nightmare world; populated by pretentious art scenesters, cynical media executives, obsequious dinner guests and unfriendly, aggressive passers by.

    Like all of Morris's work this will not be to everybody's taste, certainly not the faint of heart, squeamish or easily offended. To everyone else be prepared to immerse yourself head first into one mans car crash nightmare of a life.
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  • How Music Works 1 - Melody Play all

    Why does melody affect us so deeply, from the moment we are born? Tunes touch our deepest emotions, and are capable of inspiring love, sorrow, faith, and hope. But how does a melody actually work?

    In this film composer Howard Goodall looks at melody's basic elements. Why are some melodic shapes common to all cultures across the world? Can successful melodies be written at random? If not, what are the familiar melodic patterns composers of all types of music have fallen back on again and again, and why do they work?

    Setting out on a journey that moves through the centuries, Howard looks at the curious link between Tudor England and the Mississippi Delta, and uncovers melodic shapes common to all cultures across the world. Following a trail of diverse musical sources from Gustav Mahler to Paul Simon, Shaker hymns to Bulgarian folk songs, medieval choral music to the Broadway showstoppers he reveals the tried and tested tricks of the composer's trade.
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  • How Music Works 4 - Bass Play all

    Music is usually broken down into melody, rhythm and harmony. But what about the very lowest notes in music, that can have an impact on all three? In this film Howard looks at the abiding fascination musicians and composers have had with the bass.

    For half a millennium instrument makers have been trying to construct instruments of all shapes and sizes capable of thudding, sonorous low notes. Only with the arrival of the synthesizer did they succeed in producing a rival to the mighty organ. With disco, dance, and drum 'n' bass, the bass has arrived centre stage.

    But bass notes have another, crucial role. Far from just plodding away in the background, bass lines can have a critical effect on the whole structure of a piece of music, helping to drive the chord progressions.

    Howard looks at the dark horse of the musical family, and its use in the hands of such diverse musical talents as Johann (and Richard) Strauss, John Philip Sousa, Stevie Wonder, Elton John, Albinoni, Bach and Motown's resident bass maestro, James Jamerson.
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