What a week! Charlottesville, Raleigh-Durham and Chapel Hill (plus Dallas last night, recap of that on the next post). Beautiful part of the country, super-hospitable people, and lots of music. Been a while since I’ve seen so much green.
Thanks to everyone who attended the various meetings and talks. I left town energized and armed with a bunch of great new ideas. I’ve posted some pix and thoughts below… if you have any you’d like me to add, please send ’em in – firstname.lastname@example.org
First stop was Charlottesville, VA and UVA’s gorgeous campus where I spoke to Prof. Fred Maus’s music theory class…
Not a bad looking music building!
Very cool to hear that they’re really integrating rock/pop music into the core curriculum. I learned how hard it is to keep chalk from squeaking when you write on a chalkboard…
Enjoyable lunch with Brad, the first luddite blogger I’ve met. He writes for thetechlounge.com. We both stopped by Plan9 Music store (clear favorite on the blog comments and emails – thanks everyone) to pick up some local discs. The impact of the DMB success is very noticeable – they’ve done a lot to promote music locally.
Raced across campus to Darden school to speak with a group of MBA students.
So much green everywhere… Thanks to Miguel and his entrepreneurs group for a stimulating discussion. Felt like something of an imposter given my rather lackluster educational history…
Drove back across town for a meetup at the Gravity Lounge – one of the best music rooms I’ve seen in a while. Paradise for an acoustic show – you don’t find a lot of spots that are clearly built with a music-appreciating audience in mind. Low ceilings, rugs and nice absorbent bookshelves around the room. Took a picture of the venue pre-meeting.
About 50 folks showed up for a lively dialogue. Lots of discussion about how we create ‘sets’ on pandora playlists.
Ran out of steam, so skipped the clubs that night. Recovering the previous night’s redeye.
Woke up bright and early the next day for the 4 hour drive to Raleigh Durham. Where I started the day at Duke with Prof. Marc Farris’ advanced music theory class. Some sharp kids there – learned that a IV-I cadence is called “plagal”. Suggested that modes would make for good genome genes – the “phrygian” construct of some rock is a signature style.
Spent the afternoon chatting with folks at Fuqua BSchool, followed by great dinner with some of the students. “I want to start my own company” was clearly the theme. The business discussions definitely are invaluable in stimulating thoughts about how to make this whole thing work. I also learned that undergrads campout for months to enter the lottery to get basketball season tickets… biz school students in RVs, ugrads in tents!
Another beautiful day on Wednesday, headed over to Chapel Hill with my wonderful host David – a million thanks to for being such an extraordinary host – driving me around, helping with boxes of hats and Tshirts. Can’t thank you enough. Music communities are sure to grow with people like you.
Started at Kenan Flagler, the UNC bschool to speak to a group of entrepreneurs. Sharp questions.
Then met up with some undergrads on the main campus in the blendCoLab group. Really dug talking to the students – about 12 or so. Young and eager to become entrepreneurs. Also some interesting perspective on community sites. On the way out David and I stopped by SchoolKids Records (thanks all ye commenters) to pick up local stuff. There are clearly some consensus local favs – headed for the Music Genome.
Got together with about 100 folks at the Carolina Theatre that evening for a terrific meetup. People talked a lot about different ways to start stations – mood, genre, and a random start station… also a strong desire to be able to control the playlists through specific musical attributes.
Also a lot about commerce – how to fulfill more of our catalogue. We went for a couple hours, and kept rapping afterwards with some hardy souls. It’s just so great to see such enthusiasm for music. Also very pleased by the reception of our new pandora gear! More options and finally some style :)
Topped the evening off with a great show from Calexico (thanks for rallying Jennifer!) at the fabled local Cat’s Cradle (definitely the consensus favorite spot among the blog commenters). Cool room and great sound. Had to capture the wall-o-posters. THis is giggin’ country.
Slept the sleep of the dead…
Up early and on to Dallas, TX… to be continued.