New music

This one has been in my head lately, though it’s relatively new…

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The Heart Beats…

Oh, The Strokes…this is so 2006!

But it perfectly reflects my current mood (stuck in a city, belong in a field, and so on), and I was longong to listen to it for a few days now…

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Examples of the “success” of austerity: disbanding a national orchestra and closing down public broadcasting!

Some will say there was a long time coming. Others that it was just a matter of time. Others yet will point out this is just a preview of what will happen in other places, like Spain or Portugal or Italy (you know, because us “Southern” Europeans are all the same!!).

I will say this is possibly one of the saddest examples of the “success” of austerity.

Well, well finance gamblers, incompetent public managers and corrupt politicians, hats off for getting away with all the misery you are causing. You must sleep like babies!

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The end of my PhD journey

Well, hello, hello. Oh, my dear, old blog has been so neglected lately.

So, here’s a little bit of an update with some great news I’ve been meaning to share for a while now.

I went to England in May for my PhD Viva (thesis defence in the UK) and that went really well. I had a very engaging discussion with my examiners who seemed genuinely interested in my work. It was really exciting to talk to people who are encouraging, supportive and really do see the value of your work.

Viva prep, Canterbury, 22 May 2013

Viva prep, Canterbury, 22 May 2013

Suddenly, all those struggles, effort, sweat and tears felt completely worth it!

I will be editing the final document in the next few weeks and once I submit the final bound copy to the University and the British Library, I will share it here too.

I also intend to submit most of my studies for publishing, although I am more keen to have it peer-reviewed and submitted to an open access journal. If I can’t find one I’m happy with, I’ll have it peer-reviewed by colleagues and published here for anyone who wants to access it.

I am also working on a chapter for a book on music identities so stay tuned for more news on that front.

I am hoping this will keep me going for a couple of years. In the meantime, I have a job that has nothing to do with my research work or even academia. But it pays the mortgage while I’m finding my bearings in New Zealand.

Plus, it’s one of those 9 to 5 jobs that I don’t have to worry about all the time and let’s me disconnect once I’m out of the office. I can even catch up with non-academic reading at lunchtime! Wow!

However, it seems I can’t stay away from research for too long so I have already some research ideas brewing. I’m taking my time though.

To wrap-up this post before it becomes an essay, I want to thank all the singers and non-singers who took time to participate in my studies. I wouldn’t have been able to put together the 8 studies in my thesis without your collaboration, so thank you all so very much! I do owe one!

Now let me leave you with the music in my head today: Daft Punk’s new album Random Access Memories.


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Muse {Live}

There’s nothing better than a band who understands that classical instruments have a place in rock music!

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Strong voices

I’m a book person but I make exceptions for Tolkien. Plus, I really enjoy Howard Shore’s work in these movies.

This one’s my favourite in The Hobbit. It gives me chills!

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Songs that unify

I doubt that there is anyone who identifies as “Portuguese”and does not know this song. Young and old, we all know it.

We have many songs created during the dictatorship that speak of freedom and tell of the struggle for democracy. We all know them. But this one sits on top of all those.

I find it very interesting that these types of songs are very unique. They are not inspired by famous songs going around at the time, but instead events or people from the particular situation a nation, a people, is in.

Of course you can find these types of songs all around the world but the specifics of the song are always idiosyncratic. They belong to one people and no other.

Grândola Vila Morena is our song. It is not possible to pass it on to another country or another people. It belongs to the Portuguese people. Always the People.

I have spoken about Zeca Afonso’s work here many times. I have even shared this song before.

But I was very happy to watch these imagines from my country. Another civilized demonstration against this ridiculous government. I’m proud the Portuguese are standing up (even if those in the power seats refuse to listen and step down).

I also suspect that today, Zeca would have been proud that his song, his gift to us, to the Portuguese People, was used, once again, to unite us all.

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Entrainment or Conditioning?

What this dog is doing is quite interesting. But perhaps only the result of conditioning. If not, if this dog is entraining to the music rhythm, it is an amazing event!

Either way, I am sure any researcher in this field, particularly those interested in evolutionary musicology, would love to take a closer look at this dog!

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All this exists

I don’t have an extensive Fado repertoire in my head. Never really enjoyed listening to it until about a year or so ago.

But, for some reason, woke up with this one in my head. Only the music though, because I really didn’t know much of the lyrics. It turns out, it’s about what Fado is.

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Marriage Equality – Yes, please

I went to my first kiwi wedding last weekend. The location was beautiful and it was a lot of fun.

While I stood there watching that lovely couple exchanging vows, all I could think was that every couple should be able to share such a day with their family and friends.

I hope New Zealand follows on Portugal’s footsteps and makes marriage equality a reality.

On another note, this one has been in my head ever since!

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