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Music and Your Concentrating Mind Probably Can’t Be Buddies

Music and Your Concentrating Mind Probably Can’t Be Buddies

I talked about it on the most recent podcast, but a new study published by Lancaster University seems to show a significant detrimental effect on creativity while listening to music (here’s the link).

This is hard to take, especially since I use music to feel as if I’m focusing on the task, whether painting or writing. I’ll have to make an effort to keep the silence going—provided I don’t need to drown out something more distracting around me.

But in a Pollyannic sense, this is good if it gets me treating music more significantly as a medium, rather than something I use as backdrop for other things. It’s not that music can’t enhance an experience, but creation seems to be a different territory, and better left to explore without soundtrack.

Happy Canada Day

Happy Canada Day

Canada, I love you and your many artistic wonders. I always have.

Growing up, I came to rock music late, but it was Gordon Lightfoot (Mom was a big fan), then Joni Mitchell and The Guess Who. I discovered Rush, a permanent fixture on my musical psyche just as I started high school, then Triumph and Saga. SCTV overshadowed every other television show. In rapid succession, I realized most of my favorite media was of Great White North origin.

There were painters like Philip Guston, Agnes Martin, comics like Cerebus, more comedy from Kids in the Hall, and too many bands to name them all here, like Big Wreck, Our Lady Peace, Sam Roberts, Joel Plaskett, The New Pornographers, Tegan and Sara.

Never mind hockey, the only pro sport I follow.

You have my admiration and my heart, neighbors. May it always be so.

Five for Frid-ing

Five for Frid-ing

I was always a fan of the Friday 5 meme, so here’s a past-blast redux, why not.

1) Austin Kleon gave a wonderful talk at the Bond conference last week, on maintaining your creative momentum and such.

2) Since the beginning of hockey season, I’ve been trying to be less a fan of any particular team and enjoy the game and the players I admire more. Still, there’s beauty in the way fandom wears its collective heart on its sleeve, and if you’re outside it you don’t feel the same impact. And since my former fanning was done in support of the Vancouver Canucks, I couldn’t help but be caught up in the last home game the fabled Sedin twins will ever play. Not only was it touching to see such affection pouring from the fans and other players (on both teams), it was also a thrilling nail-biter of a finish in overtime. It embodied the best of what pro sports can offer.

3) The complete visual timeline of the Paramount Pictures logo

4) This hilarious flaming hot take about how bands should keep their sets to 20 minutes long. It’s as amusing for its no-fucks-given style as for the outraged comments taking it very seriously.

5) The always charming Crimes Against Hugh’s Manatees comic strip

Future Friday lists will probably occur, this was fun.