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Comment It ain't all bad (Score 2) 192

A lot of the comments have been hating on hip-hop, and well, I can't say I blame them. Most of the stuff you hear is just the same old shit. Some boring harmony over a lifeless beat and some lyrics that are so dishonest that it's almost offensive. But then you get some people who take hip-hop and turn it into something wonderful.

There are/were quite a few jazz guys who are taking the chill groove of hip-hop and fusing it with jazz, adding beautiful harmonies and some honest expression. In the 90's there was Branford Marsalis and his group Buckshot LeFonque who mixed jazz, funk, hip-hop, rock and pop. The Dirty Dozen Brass Band fuse the New Orleans brass band sound with just about everything they encounter, including hip-hop (probably best heard on their album What's Going On?). Trumpeter Roy Hargrove has The RH Factor, who deal in a dirty club type of groove.

Then there are guys like Robert Glasper or Jason Lindner who seem to play a more modern jazz with a heavy hip-hop influence. More adventurous harmonic and rhythmic devices, more of an improvised nature, generally smaller groups, but still with that same spacious and cool feel, played in a way that someone could rap over top.

If you think you hate hip-hop but love beautiful, honest music then I implore you to check out some of these groups. They may spark an interest in the genre that will lead you to search for more... of course, when you come across some guy singing about his drugs, money and women, it's perfectly fine to politely tell him to fuck off. Just don't let those arseholes stop you from listening to good music, whatever genre they happen to be polluting.

Comment Re:How do they hold up in a dryer? (Score 1) 444

In my experience, the Australian notes have gone through the dryer and come out without any noticeable damage. They don't hold up so well to ironing though... I was putting some fundraiser money I'd collected into an envelope and my OCD side got the better of me... wanted to flatten out a terribly crumpled $5 note so that it would sit nicely in the envelope. I put the iron on a low setting, and went to work, only to find my $5 not ending up a good 10% or so smaller than the others...

Comment Re:Representatives of the People (Score 2, Informative) 308

Yet almost 50% of their elected representatives, and probably media outlets, supported it.

I recall someone busting Conroy's chops on the ABC radio show Media Watch a short while back. I also remember another ABC radio announcer slipping in some filter related questions to one of the people involved in a child porn ring bust. Something to the effect of:

interviewer: "What about filtering, does that help the problem?"
police guy dude: "Oh, they don't do anything."

I should really try and find a source for that. There were a few other radio shows talking about it as well (I think "Spoonman" on Tripple M dedicated an evening to the subject).

There were a few TV spots on morning chat show type programs, as well as a nice little piece on the 7:30 report. They all (and rather surprisingly for the morning shows) seemed to convey a nice message of "While childporn is bad, and it would be awesome to be able to get rid of it, this filter thing is just stupid." There were also various newspapers who had people blogging about the subject on their websites. I don't remember seeing a whole lot make it to print though.


Submission + - Australia Gets a Do Not Call Register

An anonymous reader writes: After much wrangling and fighting, Australia has finally started taking submissions on its new Do Not Call register. Telemarketers calling numbers present on this list, as of the end of May, will be subject to fines ranging from $AU1000 up to over (*places pinky beside mouth*) ONE MILLION DOLLARS (*removes pinky*). There are concerns that the new register doesn't go far enough — that people should opt in to telemarketers' calls, and also quibbling over the exemption of political, religious, and charitible organisations.

But still, an excellent start. Note that the server for the register is running slow as this submission is being typed up — it seems that this move is mildly popular amongst the population.

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