March 29, 2010

I miss you Easy
without you rap is boring

Carlos Tarrats, Untitled 4, 2003

* Jeff Mangum is scheduled to play at a benefit for Chris Knox this May in New York City, one of only a few public performances involving Mangum in the past ten years. The author of the linked announcement wrote:

"Since the show will certainly sell out quickly no matter what, we'll be honest and say that while there is no artist we'd rather see perform than Mangum (in the world), the fact that every single person there will be holding up a Flip Cam or iPhone to record it, ruining the moment and breaking our hearts, means we will be skipping the show and waiting for the YouTube footage to be uploaded that night. (And no, the irony of that isn't lost on us.) We'd rather remember Jeff as he was in 1998, when human beings could and did rapturously enjoy a musician's work in the moment without the need to distract from it by holding up devices so they could prove they were there. (And if taking these measures to protect our memories/hearts makes us old Luddites, sign us up. We're pretty sure Jeff himself would be on our side.)"

* From an interview with 19 year old Magnus Carlsen, who is currently the number one chess player in the world:

SPIEGEL: Mr Carlsen, what is your IQ?

Carlsen: I have no idea. I wouldn’t want to know it anyway. It might turn out to be a nasty surprise.

SPIEGEL: Why? You are 19 years old and ranked the number one chess player in the world. You must be incredibly clever.

Carlsen: And that’s precisely what would be terrible. Of course it is important for a chess player to be able to concentrate well, but being too intelligent can also be a burden. It can get in your way. I am convinced that the reason the Englishman John Nunn never became world champion is that he is too clever for that.

SPIEGEL: How that?

Carlsen: At the age of 15, Nunn started studying mathematics in Oxford; he was the youngest student in the last 500 years, and at 23 he did a PhD in algebraic topology. He has so incredibly much in his head. Simply too much. His enormous powers of understanding and his constant thirst for knowledge distracted him from chess.
SPIEGEL: How many moves can you calculate ahead?

Carlsen: That depends on the game situation. Sometimes 15 to 20. But the trick is to correctly assess the position at the end of the calculation.
SPIEGEL: You are a sloppy genius?

Carlsen: I’m not a genius. Sloppy? Perhaps. It’s like this: When I am feeling good, I train a lot. When I feel bad, I don’t bother. I don’t enjoy working to a timetable. Systematic learning would kill me
Carlsen: Chess should not become an obsession. Otherwise there’s a danger that you will slide off into a parallel world, that you lose your sense of reality, get lost in the infinite cosmos of the game. You become crazy. I make sure that I have enough time between tournaments to go home in order to do other things. I like hiking and skiing, and I play football in a club.

SPIEGEL: Do you have a favourite club?

Carlsen: Real Madrid, the royals.

SPIEGEL: Many football players use music to get in the mood before a game. Do you do that too before sitting down in front of the board?

Carlsen: Oh, yes. If I am feeling gloomy before a game, I listen to gloomy music.

* "Be grateful for luck. Pay the thunder no mind - listen to the birds. And don't hate nobody." -- Eubie Blake

-- back Wednesday


Blogger sqrl said...

Great quote from Eubie.

12:50 PM  

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