Category Archives: Uncategorized


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Sad song

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Sick Ray Conniff Cover

Ray Conniff must be sex music in New Zealand

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Test post

From Dora IV, posted by Jonny Perl on 10/12/2010 (3 items)

Generated by Facebook Photo Fetcher

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My sites

I first learned to programme (forgetting an unconsequential flirtation with BASIC in the early 80s on the Vic 20) in 2000.  I had been working on websites for the last 5 years and I could deal with HTML but the actual programming and interaction of forms and data seemed beyond me.

In the autumn of 2000, almost by accident, I came up with an idea for a website and decided to learn PHP so I could build it.  While I don’t regret doing that, the standard of my coding left something to be desired.  I actually learned how to do it (wrong) from a particular book.  This was the one.  Even the front cover is evocative to me now.  I remember that $29.99 seemed a lot to pay for such a thin book. But then again, if such a thin book could teach me how to do this, wasn’t that a good thing?

It actually took many nights of staying up learning stuff and plugging away.  I’m still not sure if my partial programming knowledge (I had worked among programmers) was a help or a hindrance.  Anyway, in March 2001 my site was ready and I unleashed it on the world.  Incredibly people actually went to it!  I announced it on a music mailing list of which I am a longtime member.  The nascent blogging community picked it up and I probably had about 50 people linking into it within a week, and member numbers grew dramatically.  And the site was kind of cool. Basic, but kind of cool. There wasn’t so much of this around back then remember.  I then started this very blog just a few weeks later.

Anyway, as I said, my code seriously blew chunks. I had been putting off fixing it properly for many years (and this is in spite of having become a reasonable programmer in the meantime). Now in 2011, my programming career having pretty much come and gone, I have gone in and fixed it up? Why? Because the number of bots trashing my server pushed me over the edge. I have hardened the settings and had to reprogramme a bunch of things to get them to work at all.

Now, what I really need to do is update the whole concept of and remake the whole thing for the modern world. But one step at a time! In the meantime, touch wood, the thing is safe and will stay up there for a bit.

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My Band T-Shirt

Cool site.

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I found your camera

Looked at this site a while back.   A nice simple idea, well executed. It sometimes brings up gems like this:

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Well well well

With the 10th anniversary of this blog approaching I’ve moved it onto a new platform so I can continue to post to it.

At the end of the year 2000 I came up with the idea of Musical Taste, and I launched it in March 2001. At this stage I had no idea what a blog was, but a lot of them came up in my web stats.  Shedloads of them actually. I thought ‘hey, this looks like an improvement on Geocities’, and went and signed up for Blogger. I have imported all the posts over here.  I went through a few stretches of actually writing stuff. Much of it is seriously dull but I’m preserving it as a historical record.

Later in 2001 I responded to an email from then Blogger owner Evan Williams (now Twitter magnate). He said ‘please mate, can you spare a bit of change – we are out of cash’. I sent $14.  Within 2 years Google had bought the thing so I’m guessing his money problems were resolved.  Earlier this year Google ended support for FTP updating in Blogger, which is why I have finally migrated it to WordPress.

I will write a new blog post every day from now on.

That’s a joke.

Let’s be honest, the posts from the last 4 years can be counted on 2 hands. But give me some credit – I didn’t let it die completely!

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David, you were a great friend and I am really sad I won’t get to talk to you again. I might talk to you anyway.

Your friend
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So I’ve all but switched away from CDs, having completed a mammoth project to digitize all my CDs earlier this year. The CDs are now in storage. I ripped them to FLAC but then found that the best solution for me was probably iTunes with an iPod Touch as a remote. I won’t bore you with the details but it worked out pretty well.

Having finally ripped all the CDs (let’s forget about records here for a second, although they all still have pride of place in my living room), I was curious as to who the top artist would be. Serge, Astrud, Lalo, Scott, Ennio?

Finding out was actually a ridiculously long process. I tried one application that made me install lots of hideous Microsoft BS. I couldn’t get it to work and eventually wound up with a simple PHP/MySQL solution that’s probably no better than something I could have written myself. But the important thing is I didn’t have to write it myself!

Anyway, drum roll…

The top artists (ie by number of tracks) turned out as follows:

481 Ennio Morricone
298 The Beach Boys
288 Serge Gainsbourg
276 Julie London
255 Cal Tjader
225 Lalo Schifrin
201 Les Baxter
199 Scott Walker
198 Elis Regina
192 Marcos Valle
179 Duke Ellington
174 Antonio Carlos Jobim
173 Lee Hazlewood
164 Dusty Springfield
155 Esquivel
151 Astrud Gilberto
148 The Zombies
136 Hildegard Knef
127 John Barry
126 Peggy Lee
124 The Beatles
123 Pet Shop Boys
118 David Bowie
118 Petula Clark
115 Quincy Jones
115 Henry Mancini
115 Joy Division
114 Roy Budd
114 Pixies

There are of course a number of flaws to this method of analysis:
– It all depends on how many tracks the artist recorded. Looking at it that way it’s no surprise that Morricone is top or that the Smiths didn’t make the list, for example (they couldn’t have – barring me owning lots of live bootlegs with different track names!)
– The list seems skewed towards artists by whom I own box sets (Joy Division, Quincy Jones, Peggy Lee, Hildegard Knef, Zombies, Duke Ellington, Elis Regina. Beach Boys all fall under this category)
– It takes no account of listening habits.

If we were to take a look at a list of the top ten most listened to artists, it reveals a few things – e.g. that there’s now a baby in the house – hence lots of nice quiet music – plus I’m not around most days so another person’s choices are being reflected:

148 Julie London
125 Kahimi Karie
68 Novi Singers
67 Elis Regina
61 Pixies
57 ESG
46 blossom dearie
45 Collage
43 Sonic Youth
39 Blur
36 Gram Parsons
34 Astrud Gilberto
34 The Beatles
33 Baden Powell
32 Belle And Sebastian
32 Money Mark
30 Lou Reed
30 Siouxsie and The Banshees
30 Elis Regina e Jair Rodrigues
30 Peggy Lee
30 Bell Sisters
29 Cass Elliot
28 June Christy
26 Michael Jackson
26 Dusty Springfield
25 PJ Harvey
24 Minnie Riperton
24 Scott Walker
24 B.J. Ward
23 The Five Stairsteps

Fascinating stuff (or is it?)

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