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The last important aspect of phase concerns signal processing. And no, I’m not really talking about the guitar pedal effect called “phaser” — if you’re using a lot of plugins, each one that you introduce into your mix will affect the phase. Each instance of digital processing adds latency to the signal, even if only a few hundredths of a second. Many DAWs and plugin manufacturers attempt various compensations for this, but regardless, it’s important to be aware that it’s always going be there, and in some cases, unavoidably so.

A lot of the time, the student has no particular goal beyond “do this assignment.” So then the critique needs to get creative. I like to ask: If this track is a film or game score, what’s happening in the scene? Students have a lot of implicit knowledge in this area from their own media consumption, so I get wonderfully specific and unexpected answers to this, i.e., “It’s a bar fight in a domed underwater city.” Then we can figure out, how could the track more strongly convey the feeling of a bar fight in a domed underwater city?

Next up, it’s the lowdown on all 40 songs, ordered by weeks at #1, then on down to weeks in the Top 5 in descending order. So we start with the king of 2018.

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So that’s my answer to that question. I get inspired every day because I’m always looking for stories, characters, experiences, and narratives to write about. 

My playlists generally had a progression in them. It wasn’t just a random set of songs thrown together, but rather, a journey with songs that connected somehow. I knew that aspect was key for our tool, which ultimately meant we needed to codify the DJ part of my brain. A.I. was still in its early days, particularly for music, but we were confident we could pull it off. However, as we went down the rabbit hole, we came across a very big problem…

As a performer, she was recently seen in Sondheim on Sondheim at the FreeFall Theatre in a cast that included Ann Morrison (the original Mary in “Merrily We Roll Along”), and Kissy Simmons (Nala, “The Lion King,” on Broadway). She also loves classical music by angsty Germans, moonlighting as the frontman for a yacht rock cover band, serving on the leadership council for March Chorus NYC, and more.

“Several… virtuoso violinists have distinguished themselves by undertaking to record his fiendishly difficult “La ronde des lutins” (or “Dance of the Goblins”) with its extended passages of rapid double stops, artificial harmonics in double stops (using all four left fingers) and left-hand pizzicati.”

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“Psycho”: After 15 weeks in the Top 5, this song finally made it to #1 for a week. Good going, everyone. The form here is pretty clear-cut; it’s almost a palindrome. It’s just that the two verses have our singers doing their own thing. Like, Post Malone does this isolated line for the second half of his verse, just his own thing not to be repeated. This song, combined with others in this study, like “Look Alive,” also illustrates how important the beat is in determining the subdivision of the tempo.

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Speaking of Top “40,” that’s literally what this year’s list totaled (all by itself this time!). Yep, there were 40 songs “Boo’d Up” in the Billboard’s Top 5 in 2018. Exactly 40 — how clean is that?

This album also did two things beyond Brown himself. First, it would help cement soul and funk as commercially viable mainstream music genres. Soul could be fun, loud, raucous and youthful; not just sentimental and romantic. Secondly, it demonstrated the power of a live album to make money, and assured record producers and labels alike that consumers would be willing to buy the same songs on two different albums if one was live.