Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Say Amen to Digital Sampling

This is a video that was first brought to my attention by one of my interactive media students a few years ago, one that I just shared with the Introduction to New Media class that I'm teaching this summer at Fordham University.  We had just been talking about the differences between the concepts of digital and analog, and gotten into the practices of remix and sampling, and this was a perfect illustration.  And while the video was posted on a class blog back in 2008, I realize that I never added it here to Blog Time Passing, so it's well passed the time that I remedy that oversight.

Here's the write-up from the YouTube page where the video is entitled Video explains the world's most important 6-sec drum loop:

This fascinating, brilliant 20-minute video narrates the history of the "Amen Break," a six-second drum sample from the b-side of a chart-topping single from 1969. This sample was used extensively in early hiphop and sample-based music, and became the basis for drum-and-bass and jungle music -- a six-second clip that spawned several entire subcultures. Nate Harrison's 2004 video is a meditation on the ownership of culture, the nature of art and creativity, and the history of a remarkable music clip.

And here's the video itself:

The video mentions Larry Lessig, and now I realize that I never added Lessig's TED Talk, which I have used many times in my new media classes, to this blog (and here I thought for sure I had!).  It's called Larry Lessig on laws that choke creativity, and the summary reads

Larry Lessig, the Net’s most celebrated lawyer, cites John Philip Sousa, celestial copyrights and the "ASCAP cartel" in his argument for reviving our creative culture.

 And Lessig's short bio reads

Harvard professor Larry Lessig is one of our foremost authorities on copyright issues, with a vision for reconciling creative freedom with marketplace competition.

There's a link over to his Profile Page where the longer bio reads

No expert has brought as much fresh thinking to the field of contemporary copyright law as has Lawrence Lessig. A Harvard professor and founder of Stanford's Center for Internet and Society, this fiery believer foresaw the response a threatened content industry would have to digital technology -- and he came to the aid of the citizenry.

As corporate interests have sought to rein in the forces of Napster and YouTube, Lessig has fought back with argument -- take his recent appearance before the U.S. Supreme Court, fighting the extension of copyright protection from 50 to 70 years -- and with solutions: He chairs Creative Commons, a nuanced, free licensing scheme for individual creators.

Lessig possesses a rare combination of lawerly exactitude and impassioned love of the creative impulse. Applying both with equal dedication, he has become a true hero to artists, authors, scientists, coders and opiners everywhere.
And here now, is his outstanding TED Talk video:

And of course including all this here on my blog is fair use, right?  Right? Right...?

No comments: