Radiohead's Jonny Greenwood doesn't think that the supposed low sound quality of MP3s is something to get worked up about.
We had a few complaints that the MP3s of our last record wasn't encoded at a high enough rate. Some even suggested we should have used FLACs, but if you even know what one of those is, and have strong opinions on them, you're already lost to the world of high fidelity and have probably spent far too much money on your speaker-stands.
This conversation with Greenwood is part of a new series by Sasha Frere-Jones' on the sound quality of recorded music.
Sasha Frere-Jones lists a bunch of people who are on Twitter.
people who are just back from a really awesome run
people who are involved in "social networking" and optimizing the power of re-Tweeting and "computers"
people who can't figure out what their kids want to eat
people who have never seen snow
people who like Battlestar Galactica
Sasha Frere-Jones on Auto-Tune, the studio gizmo responsible for the cool/cheesy voice effects in Cher's Believe and, more recently, most of T-Pain's work.
T-Pain, who is currently working on his third album, "Thr33 Ringz," spoke to me on the phone from his studio in Miami. He first heard the Auto-Tune effect on a song by Jennifer Lopez -- he doesn't remember which one -- and borrowed it for a mixtape appearance in 2003. He says it's no trade secret that he uses Auto-Tune with the retune speed set to zero, and likes to recall a time he spent selling fish out of a truck with his father in Tallahassee: "My dad said, 'They can know what you're using, but they'll never know how to use it. They can see that we're using salt and pepper.'"
Frere-Jones demonstrates how Auto-Tune works in a short audio segment. Anil Dash wrote about Auto-Tune in the context of Snoop Dogg's recent Sensual Seduction video. A free Auto-Tune clone called GSnap is available for free.
I uploaded a few of Auto-Tune's greatest hits to my Muxtape: have a listen.
This short blog post by Sasha Frere-Jones about rock show patron drink tipping practices is impossible to excerpt...lots of lovely little bits. Ok, twist my arm:
When Chromeo played, their crowd drank house vodka and Budweiser. Didn't tip. Some of them did what I'll call the slide-backs. They put a dollar down on the bar, wait until you turn your back, then palm their buck and walk away. Classy. When your night starts out with "What's your cheapest drink?" that's also not good."
The phrase "au contraire mon Frere-Jones" is just hanging out there, waiting for someone to use it.