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Seeing Things in a Different Way

Dan finds links for new ways to visualize music, old film, old cars and old reel-to-reel tape recorders

This edition of Off the Beaten Path is once again a collection of interesting though miscellaneous websites that I’ve stumbled upon through friends, readers, net surfing and social media posts.

Visual Music with “Weird Sheet Music”
Many of my friends in radio and TV are musicians. One co-worker introduced me to something I had never heard of — graphic scores.

If you aren’t familiar with a graphic score, it’s a different way to write down a musical composition through graphics instead of musical notes in the traditional fashion. You might ask why someone would do this. It’s because not all music is played with instruments, and this “freeform” method of creating a score has to have a broader way to describe not only the note and length, but even how to make the sound that produces the many aspects of the piece. This link will give you the same introduction I had. Be sure to watch the embedded video so you can get the concept. After you watch this, I’d invite you to do a search for “graphic score” to see the many, many ways graphic scores can be displayed. I think you’ll find that there’s almost an “artistic beauty” in the way it’s displayed.

Old Film Gets Developed
I recently read about this guy who gets old undeveloped film that he and others find (either the exposed roll or in the camera), and he develops it to find out what “treasures” exist. It’s an interesting hobby.

A Sears Car?
I think most of us know that Sears sold houses, but did you know that Sears had and marketed a car? Actually, their very old 1900s catalog had a “horseless carriage,” but recently I learned about their super inexpensive 1952 “Allstate” based on another design that failed for the innovator. It’s an interesting story and even worth digging into further. Coincidentally, I’d swear the picture of the car at the assembly line (in the story) is coming out of the same facility that produced the Tucker (another fascinating car story!).

LOTS of Reel-to-Reels!
From YouTube, here is a great video of reel-to-reel tape recorders. Oh, not just one, two, or fifty, but over 400! What a great collection! How many can you identify or have worked with?

And finally …
On a more serious note, there is a short narrative film called “Foster Child.” It is a look at one example of what foster kids face. It’s a truly moving story about what a child in foster care can face. It’s sad, tragic, yet there is hope in the story for a better life. It’s a film worth watching.

If you stumble across a good or unusual web site that might be of interest, please don’t hesitate to send me the link and any info you might have about it. My email address is [email protected].