Arsenio Orteza

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Stream of culture

Music | A 10-album series entices a new generation with classical greats
by Arsenio Orteza
Posted 5/24/17, 10:36 am

For the first time in nearly a decade, the music industry saw its revenues rise in 2016.

The reason had nothing to do with the sales of hard-copy or digital music. Those numbers continued to drop. What changed was the number of people subscribing to online music-streaming services that allow them to listen to their favorite music without paying for individual albums or songs. For the first time, streaming accounted for the majority of music consumption (51 percent). And there’s no indication of a change in direction anytime soon.

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Recent albums

by Arsenio Orteza
Posted 5/10/17, 11:36 am


Drew Holcomb and the Neighbors

“California” could’ve been written and recorded 40 years ago, when Holcomb’s vocal twin Keith Carradine sang “I’m Easy” onto the charts and the Laurel Canyon sound had ripened into a sunny alternative to disco. Forty years ago, however, it wasn’t Christians like Holcomb who were writing such songs. They also weren’t singing lyrics like “Do you trust me, baby, with your body? / Mine is yours to keep” (about marriage) or “Whether or not you pray, / black or white, straight or gay, / you still deserve the love of your neighbors.”

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Dave Benett/Getty Images

Playing British-American

Music | Ray Davies issues a musical tribute to America
by Arsenio Orteza
Posted 5/10/17, 11:33 am

Leave it to Ray Davies, pop music’s quintessential Englishman, to make a—if not the—definitive album about life in these United States.

Based on his 2013 memoir of the same name, Americana (Sony Legacy) finds the erstwhile Kinks frontman paying conflicted tribute to America, his decades’ worth of adventures therein, and the emotional ups and downs consequent upon his discovering that American realities often fall short of the American dream.

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