the photography, music and ramblings of Matt Lipstein

Street Poetry is my everyday

Spotted this on Bergen Street while walking to school. I've always loved the idea of posting random street poetry. It's such a basic way to communicate - anonymous but direct.

Is this even a poem? Is it a list of things you want to hear? Things you need to say? Maybe all of the above.

Have more fun in bed

I'd seen this posted a few times in the past few days, but only got around to watching it today via Design*Sponge. This video is incredible. Beyond the technical accomplishment itself, this stop-motion video is relaxing, whimsical, and inspirational. Take a few minutes out of your day to enjoy it.


Tweet Tweet

So I'm jumping over technology's most recent digital divide and getting started on Twitter. It seems like no one, including those using twitter, can explain what it is - or more to the point, why it matters.

I'm hoping by trying it out I'll be able to get a grasp on what the hub-bub is all about.

Check out my Twitter page and follow me if you want to get in on this.

A Special Sufjan Afternoon

And now for the first ever guest author on Stupidfresh, I give you my wife Amanda (a.k.a. Bubbles McMurphy, Minder, Mandy Staxxx, etc.) Read along as she recounts the story of what she surprised me with this past Sunday...

... Matt and I went to this really special music listening party on Sunday. A while ago, there was a contest run by Sufjan Stevens. He writes Christmas songs every year, and he wanted to trade his song (including all the rights and everything) with another songwriter who won the contest. So this guy Alec wrote a beautiful song, sent it to Sufjan, and won the contest. Sufjan sent him his own song, and now this guy is the "owner" of an original Sufjan song, just as Sufjan is the "owner" of Alec's song.

Now Alec could do anything he wanted with the song (put it on the internet, play it himself, put it into a musical, etc.), but he decided to make it available to people to come in small groups to his apartment and listen to the song a few times on headphones. We got a reservation and went to his place yesterday at 3:00. There was another couple there along with 2 of Alec's friends and a radio producer who was doing a segment for the NPR show Studio 360. We sat in the living room and chatted over tea and homemade cookies, and then we got to listen to Alec's song and to Sufjan's song.

Alec played his song out loud, but the Sufjan song we all listened to simultaneously through separate sets of headphones. It was such a powerful experience, so intimate and personal while still being social. It was really moving to know that we would only hear the song at that place and in that moment, and then we would never hear it again, probably. It really brought a different consciousness to the act of listening to a song. The song was beautiful and tender, as many Sufjan songs are, but the experience is probably what will stay with me more than the actual song.

While I was listening to it for the second time, I thought, "How cool! The baby can supposedly hear things now and is going to hear this song, too." Then I realized that the baby probably wouldn't hear it because it was in my headphones. After the song was over, I sheepishly asked the favor to play the song one more time while the headphones were on my belly. Alec happily agreed, and the baby got a listening party all to itself! Maybe you'll hear about it on the radio someday!

New York, I love you sometimes.
[Direct Link to Alec Duffy's wonderful winning song, Every Day is Christmas ]

Dark Was the Night

When was the last time you were really excited for an album to drop? With instant access to digital downloads (legally or otherwise), it seems like anticipation isn't associated with music like it used to be. In a welcomed return to that familiar feeling, I've been getting really excited for an album release coming up.

February 16th will be the release of the charity compilation Dark Was the Night.

There will 31 exclusive tracks, many of them ridiculous collaborative works as is the label's style. Here is a sampling of the artists and combos:

Dirty Projectors + David Byrne
Feist + Ben Gibbard
Bon Iver
My Brightest Diamond
Antony + Bryce Dessner
Iron and Wine
Sufjan Stevens
Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings
Cat Power and Dirty Delta Blues

Hells bells! That's just a smattering. Check the full track and artist list here.

The Red Hot organization (the leading international organization dedicated to fighting AIDS through pop culture), have been releasing awesome compilations for decades to support their charity. They are responsible for the Stolen Moments record from the early 90s (which is one of the more influential albums on my own life.) This next one looking like a mother-father.

Above is a handy widget that let's you hear three choice tracks from the upcoming release. Check them out and then go buy the album next week. It's for a good cause and looks like a sick record in it's own right.

Recession got ya' down? Read this.

John Maynard Keynes wrote this in 1930 during that era's economic turmoil.

"This is a nightmare, which will pass away with the morning. For the resources of nature and men's devices are just as fertile and productive as they were. The rate of our progress towards solving the material problems of life is not less rapid. We are as capable as before of affording for everyone a high standard of life... We were not previously deceived. But today we have involved ourselves in a colossal muddle, having blundered in the control of a delicate machine, the working of which we do not understand. The result is that our possibilities of wealth may run to waste for a time—perhaps for a long time."

Found it on this Epicenter post about the timbre of this year's TED talks.

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