By Russell Hope, News Reporter
Kanye West has started publishing his own philosophy and Elon Musk has encouraged workers to walk out of boring meetings.
Can you pick out the Yeezy advice from the words of wisdom by the Tesla founder? Test your knowledge below.
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Drop the needle in the groove – it’s Record Store Day!
To mark Record Store Day, the annual global celebration of independent music retailers, Alan Corr looks back at his own journey through the vinyl, CD and cassette racks
It all began for me in Dolphin Discs in Dundrum Shopping Centre in the Dublin of the late 1970s. In this suburban Aladdin’s cave I discovered a whole new world of 45s, strange album covers that only hinted at the wonders within, and that there was far more to The Beatles than the Red and Blue Albums.
However, for the record, as it were, the first single I ever bought was You Don’t Bring Me Flowers by Barbra Streisand and Neil Diamond in 1978. I was ten years old and it was a present for my mother, ok? Cred was restored soon after with my first LP purchase – Ry Cooder’s 1979 album Bop Til you Drop.
By the time I was in my mid-teens, I had graduated to Freebird Record, which was then located in a dingy basement on Dublin’s ironically named Eden Quay. It was here that I began to encounter that beast of the vinyl and cassette racks – the hardened record store bloke (and it was always a bloke), those somewhat supercilious gatekeepers of cool who would later come to be embodied in Barry, the contemptuous music snob and slob in Nick Hornby’s novel High Fidelity.
Thanks to many “Barrys” down the years, I have left record shops clutching many still prized albums, including Guns N’ Roses 1987 debut, the complete works of Hüsker Dü, and, well, everything by The Beatles.
Then again, in several record shops of the 1980s my requests for Steely Dan were often met with an eyes-to-heaven reproof of, “Nooo, you mean Steeleye Span” and then there was the well-meaning bloke who pointed me to the REO Speedwagon section, when I asked for R.E.M. in a Dublin’s Ilac Centre sometime in the mid-eighties. Incidentally, R.E.M.’s guitarist Peter Buck used to work in a record shop.
Back then, it was a rarefied world of picture discs, gate-fold sleeves and orange vinyl. Now we live in the Spotify generation, a world of clickable instant gratification where the triumph of streaming has endangered the physical artifact and given record shops existential chills. It’s worth noting that ten years ago Ireland had more record shops per capita than anywhere else in the world.
With the arrival of illegal streaming sites at the dawn of the new millennium, actual bricks and mortar music shops – in many ways the canary in the coalmine of the digital revolution – began to really feel the freeze. If the record industry warned us back in the seventies, complete with skull and crossbones imagery, that “home taping was killing music”, the likes of streaming, piracy and YouTube began to leave record shops on their knees.
Now we live in the Spotify generation, a world of clickable instant gratification where the triumph of streaming has endangered the physical artifact and given record shops existential chills.
In the music business, analogue dollars have long become digital dimes. As David Bowie predicted in 2002, music has become like running water or electricity. Bowie? Oh yeah, he also used to work in a record shop too.
However, the fight back has been staunch and has been paying off these past few years. There is a whole weekend dedicated to the joy of vinyl in Dublin’s Royal Hospital in May, new Irish pressing plant Dublin Vinyl has been in operation since December, music shops are popping up all over Ireland, and, of course, today is Record Store Day, the annual global celebration of independent music retailers. It’s now in its 11th year and 46 Irish music shops are taking part.
The digital revolution has sucked some of the mystery out of buying music and made it a sterile environment of frazzled attention spans and sensory overload.
However, it has also made the humble record shop even more of a sacred site and a place of pilgrimage for crate diggers and obsessives – a communal hub to network and hear about gigs and upcoming albums and not just pick up an album or three.
Record Store Day is Christmas for music lovers so let’s join forces today and flip that record over again. Now, where did I put that REO Speedwagon album…?
Alan Corr @corralan
Go here for the full list of Irish music shops taking part in Record Store Day
Man has nap after break-in at Taylor Swift’s home
A suspected stalker broke into Taylor Swift’s New York City home and took a nap, police have said.
Officers investigating a reported break-in found 22-year-old Roger Alvarado asleep in the pop star’s home on Friday evening.
Swift was not at the property at the time.
Alvarado, of Homestead, Florida, was arrested on charges of stalking, burglary, criminal mischief and trespassing.
He was arrested at the same address on 13 February on charges of breaking the front door with a shovel.
Last week, a man from Colorado was arrested outside the singer’s Beverly Hills home.
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Julius Sandrock, 38, was wearing a mask and rubber gloves, and had a knife, a rope and ammunition on him, police said.
He was released from custody amid a continuing investigation.
Ireland’s Deep Atlantic brings the wow factor on Sunday
Underwater filmmaker Ken O’Sullivan has told RTÉ Entertainment he is thrilled that viewers will discover the depth of beauty in Irish waters when Ireland’s Deep Atlantic begins on RTÉ One on Sunday night.
“The North Atlantic is the stormiest ocean on the planet. You can only go when the conditions are really good”
The eagerly-awaited, two-part documentary was six years in the making. It sees O’Sullivan and his team pushing the boat out – literally – to film large whales, sharks and cold water coral reefs on Ireland’s deep seabed – capturing some wonders of the deep for the first time on camera.
“You just get your chances with wildlife, and you need to take them”
“You just get your chances with wildlife, and you need to take them,” O’Sullivan told RTÉ Entertainment as he put the finishing touches to Ireland’s Deep Atlantic during the week.
“It’s not visual effects; we’re not making it up”
“For 10 or 12 years I was filming underwater in the shallows around Ireland – 20 metres, 30 metres of water. For this series what we wanted to do is just get out into the deep Atlantic, ultimately to the edge of the Continental Shelf – but lots of deep water in between – to see what we could find there.
“Seventeen species of whales have been seen in Ireland at one time or another”
“We’ve documented things that were never documented before. I’m not bragging, but I’m very proud. There’s five, possibly six academic research papers coming out of the two programmes. Because I’m probably the only eejit sticking my head in the water and watching these things!
“I’m probably the only eejit sticking my head in the water and watching these things!”
“There’s a scene at the end of the first documentary with humpback whales. It was just the most amazing 40 minutes of wildlife I’ve seen. Anywhere. And I’ve been a lot of places.”
“People look and say, ‘Is that Ireland? Did you really film that in Ireland?!'”
O’Sullivan described documenting underwater Ireland as “a privilege”.
“You might get one chance in your lifetime”
“We’re delighted to show it to people,” he said. “And the big news is we’re delighted that it’s going to – hopefully, we believe – make its way onto the Junior Cert curriculum and the Leaving Cert as additional educational material.
“All the stuff that we documented in Ireland, it’s just a privilege to be able to do it”
“There’s one thing that’s really gratifying that we hear again and again is people look and say, ‘Is that Ireland? Did you really film that in Ireland?!’ We just document what’s there. It’s not visual effects; we’re not making it up.”
Ireland’s Deep Atlantic, Sunday April 22 and 29, 9:30pm, RTÉ One
Click here for more TV news and listings
Daniel O’Donnell reflects on Big Tom’s influence
Daniel O’Donnell was among the stars paying tribute to the late Big Tom McBride on the Late Late Show Country Special, saying he “brought home to the people” who had moved from Ireland to England.
The first portion of this year’s Country Special, which aired on Friday night, featured tributes to the King of Irish Country Music, with Daniel O’Donnell among those remembering him.
“He brought so much to people in England, you know,” O’Donnell told host Ryan Tubridy. “Especially because at the time when Tom and Brian and Philomena and Margaret and Joe Dolan, they were that first crop and they brought Ireland to the people that were in England at the time, and Scotland.”
“It’s not like now; you’d go away and be lucky if you got home once a year, so their presence in the Galtymore and The Forum and all the different halls brought home to the people,” he added.
Fr Brian D’Arcy also featured on the panel and said, “There’s a hole in our heart that can’t be filled and there’s a hole in the culture of Ireland that has suddenly died.”
Country singer Susan McCann remembered a piece of advice she received from Big Tom early on in her career, saying, “One of the bits of advice he gave me was, ‘Susan always make sure when you record a song that the postman can whistle them or sing them’. And it always stuck with me.”
Nathan Carter spoke of his deep respect for Big Tom, hailing him as the Johnny Cash of Ireland.
“I just have so much respect for the man… In my opinion he’s probably the Johnny Cash of Ireland and I think his music will just live on and live on for many years to come,” Carter said.
Carter also paid musical tribute by performing a rendition of Gentle Mother.