Discover more from Sonikmatter: An Occasional Newsletter
Conspiracies, Censorship, and Cancelation
Volume 11: February 2022
East bound and down, loaded up and truckin'
A-we gonna do what they say can't be done
We've got a long way to go and a short time to get there
I'm east bound, just watch ol' "Bandit" run
Keep your foot hard on the pedal
Son, never mind them brakes
Let it all hang out 'cause we got a run to make
The boys are thirsty in Atlanta
And there's beer in Texarkana
And we'll bring it back no matter what it takes
Jerry Reed East Bound and Down (March 1937 - September 2008)
Three weeks ago, I started writing the January issue of this newsletter. Meatloaf, otherwise known as Robert Paulson, had died of complications to covid, and I spent the equivalent of an entire workday writing an angry rant about this fact along with notable mentions of friends that have passed away from this virus, as well as other legends of the music world that we've lost.
The goal of this newsletter is never to be preachy, and no one wants to be bombarded with negativity, so when I asked a friend for advice, he kindly told me that I sounded like the Clif of the past when I was far angrier. Without thinking twice, I deleted it and hit the SECURE ERASE because I don't need that in my life. Nor do you.
Honestly, I am over Covid. I just don't care anymore. I am taking care of myself, getting my inoculations, seeing my physician regularly, and getting tested about once a week. You do you boo. This doesn't mean I don't have my opinions on it, but that's for another place and time.
Over the last week, we've gotten to see Joe Rogan and the "Freedom Convoy" and supposed censorship and cancelations because of beliefs of hidden agendas. Don't get me wrong, I love a good conspiracy theory. For instance, any sane person knows birds are not real. And neither is the Moon.
Conspiracies: Moonfall (movie)
Roland Emmerich, writer of high art and drama such as Independence Day, Independence Day Two, The Day After Tomorrow, The Week After The Day After Yesterday, and several other films where the White House has blownt the heck up. True statistic -- Emmerich has destroyed the President's home at LEAST three times, and possibly a fourth time, off-screen, given the destruction in Moonfall.
The premise is that THE MOON IS NOT REAL AND IS TRYING TO KILL US ALL. No, literally, this is it. Dr. KC Houseman, the only man who has noticed this, is ignored and treated as a crackpot. Even as his analysis and predictions are proven true, all but the true believers treat him as such. Worse than that, the more his analysis and forecasts are proven true, the MORE his detractors feel justified in their treatment of him.
A daring heist of the California Science Center allows our protagonists to steal the decommissioned Space Shuttle Endeavour, replace its engines with new off the shelf engines courtesy Elon and the Chinese, with transportation courtesy of Lexus, whose vehicles supposedly can withstand crashes, gunfire, and falling meteors while looking as if it could be driven off the showroom floor in the end. Facebook and Amazon product placements are shown in an exceedingly positive light, and a throwaway Chinese character is inserted into the mix without being used all the while Ten Cent Films provides global funding and distribution, making me wonder what the version in China will give us and what has been left on the cutting room floor here in America. CENSORSHIP ONCE AGAIN.
By the end, we see the Moon as a giant death star in the sky, the world is saved, and all the good guys have a Budweiser and a smile. Thanks to China. BING BONG JOE BYRON!!!
I live about a mile from one of the best IMAX theatres in town, and it is essential to see films like this in that format. There were probably less than 30 people in the entire theatre, and this is what Covid has reduced us to -- not being able to enjoy bad popcorn films with AT LEAST 44 speakers behind the screen and around the audience to bring an immersive experience that even my Occulus Quest cannot give me. I ain't saying it is high art. I am saying that the $12 I spent to see this was well worth the price of admission.
And again, I am done with Covid. And so are the truckers across North America with the convoy aiming to bring light to 'heavy-handed policies' of the governments of Canada and the United States. We lost Jerry Reed a decade ago to emphysema, and we lost Burt Reynolds a few years back. We need our heroes of the road to sort us out!
Censorship: Keep on Rockin' in the Free World
We, the royal we, at Sonikmatter, have and will never support censorship.
And yet, we unhypocritically will patrol what is posted within our own home and the right to freely associate with those that we feel match our mission. I have friends from all walks of life, and I greatly disagree with a lot of them as they disagree with me. The only difference is that I am obviously correct, and they are...well...not. And that is fine. In the end, I take the dinner party approach to whom I want to associate with...if I am invited to dinner with someone I cannot stand, I firmly but politely let them know I will not be attending so long as they are there.
However, the right to freely decide who one wants to be associated with is a decision only they can make. Joe Rogan, in his love of being an uninformed contrarian, has done what no one else has been able to do in years -- unite David Crosby and Neil Young in agreement:
"We support Neil and we agree with him that there is dangerous disinformation being aired on Spotify's Joe Rogan podcast. While we always value alternate points of view, knowingly spreading disinformation during this global pandemic has deadly consequences. Until real action is taken to show that a concern for humanity must be balanced with commerce, we don't want our music — or the music we made together — to be on the same platform."
Young's statement is one I completely agree with, "I support free speech. I have never been in favor of censorship. Private companies have the right to choose what they profit from, just as I can choose not to have my music support a platform that disseminates harmful information."
I don't need Rogan or Young to make me hate Spotify -- it is already cancer upon musicians. Spotify has made it clear they value that they can control, and everything else a commodity. Spotify made a Faustian bargain with the labels that they get paid upfront, and the artist receives pennies on the dollar, which they then have to share with their labels.
Apple Music, Tidal, and Napster, yes...even Napster...pay artists almost TWICE what Spotify pays. For more information, read The Hustle:
With Winter NAMM being Canceled this year, we still need to showcase the goodness that is out there. So here goes:
The Boy Who Wanted To Rock
Friend of Sonik, David Weiser, wrote this for his son and I can't promote it enough. With any hope, we will see The Girl Who Wanted To Rock come out sooner than later! SUPPORT DAVE!!!
Summer Synthesis 1978
After following Drew's Instagram for a while, I saw this on his Bandcamp page, and it is BEAUTIFUL. Please check it out and consider buying the limited edition CD.
Eurorack "mki x es.EDU" educational DIY Kit
Do you want to learn how to build and design your own synthesizer? Erica Synths and Moritz Klein created a series of 9 kits with the express purpose of how to teach those with little background in electronics how to design and solder their first instruments. Reasonably priced and shipping soon.
C.K. builds a Quad Pingable LFO from 4MS eurorack kit
Yet another build by C.K. in his electronics series. Please consider subscribing!
Scott Peer's SoundEngine has been a friend and partner to Sonikmatter for years. Kurweil, Kontakt, EXS24 and many other instruments supported. (Not a paid link!!!)
For the eagle-eyed readers, you may see that we occasionally post one-off posts to the site. The site has been updated to a few sections, making the community areas more accessible.
Community: AtomicSynth asks (and answers):
Q.What was your favorite gig last year?
Q.Who are your favorite new artists of the previous year?
Q. Did you buy any new instruments?
Q. Did you write any new songs?
Sonikmatter: Mind + Music + Technology
An occasional newsletter. Barely fact-checked and often wrong.
Once again, thank you for reading. If you'd like to support Sonikmatter, consider buying me a coffee -- Venmo @OnlyClifs -- and I promise I will make it weird on your receipt. Or can I??? I have never done this before.
If you’d like to be featured, send an email. Even better, call (415) 683-1381 and sing, rawk, or keytar into the answering machine! I will post the audio to my SoundCloud!