Now you can own your own short commercial break.

We7: Getting Closer to a Workable Model for Free Music Downloads – ReadWriteWeb: “The music industry is in desperate need of new models and an interesting one got some financial support today. We7 announced today that it’s raised $6 million from Peter Gabriel and Spark Ventures.

The UK site offers DRM-free MP3 downloads with super-short ads preceding each song – for the first 4 weeks after download. Once a month you can select 20 tracks to remove the ad clips from, any additional ad removal will cost 20 pence (about 39 cents) per song.”

It’s very complicated isn’t it? That seems to be the main issue with We7 in articles that I have read on and off. Personally I love LastFM but they are not getting the support that We7 seems to be enjoying. I get new music from Amie St. as well so my ears are being broadened, sometimes painfully!

(I started writing this a little while ago, lost my train of thought…)

Bheadh spéis agam cloisteáil céard a cheapann na ceoltóirí faoin gceann seo. Ó mo thaithí féin ag plé podchraoladh leis na ceoltóirí i mo chlann féin, ní miste leo má labhrann tú thar roinnt den amhrán, ag an mbun nó an mbarr mar shampla, mar bhealach éifeachtach chun é a chosaint. Cé nach ionann é dar liom taispeánann sé go bhfuil ceoltóirí oscailte a fhad is a bhfuil muinín acu ionat.

I recently read Nicholas Carr’s new book “The Big Switch” as I was participating as a panellist on Soiscéal Pháraic. At least a chapter of that book is concerned with how technologists and technology companies are making big bucks out of creatives who are using their platforms to share their ouevres (MySpace, Blogger (Google), YouTube etc.). In a way musicians are lucky that they have the likes of Paul McGuinness to fight their corner albeit in an entirely wrongheaded fashion. Writers, animators, artists, basically all other artists whose work can be digitised haven’t been able to make the switch to digital with the kind of support that music is getting, partly because there was never the same level of “hangers on” 😀 to support with their art. Brilliant to have that freedom in some ways but unless something is done to change the current model for delivery and consumption of creative digital work there will be a lot of poor AND lonely artists and writers out there. Well they can always make friends on Twitter, Facebook etc. Now I must ask my family to contribte their thoughts, them being neither poor nor lonely artists although I would say none of them would turn down a lotto win.

Tús maith leath na hoibre

Mo chéad lá mar dhuine “ar scith” agus seo mar a thosnaigh mé: ag breathnú amach ar radharc álainn Bhinn Eadair ó shléibhte Áth Cliath. Thug mé síob do Lilbro who is recording the soundtrack for Lance Daly’s latest feature “Kisses” in this amazing gaff up past Kiltiernan. I met two other members of the post-production crew. Lovely people who are enjoying the seasonal splendour in an amazing location and getting paid for it – lucky suckers!

Coming back from An tOireachtas in Westport at the weekend(roinnt grianghraf ag Oireachtas 07) I realised that Autumn is past her best and the winter is on her way. Autumn is my favourite season and it was great being driven across the country because as a passenger I was really able to drink in the golds, reds, yellows, oranges and browns. The last dance before the long sleep.

Today is the beginning of a new era for me. The first time I have ever been unemployed since I had half an hour to get from my last Drama Studies exam to my first job in RTÉ. That is not to say that I am going to spending loads of time blogging. Small matter of a large thesis due at the end of January. This change in circumstance couldn’t have happened at a better time.

So obviously I have been doing a lot of thinking about my strengths and my ambitions and while chatting at dinner the other day I had a terrible realisation. When I arrived home at last from An tOireachtas, the boys were all watching “Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back” which was quickly followed by some very creative Lego work, resulting in three spaceships. At some point Himself pointed out to G that there is no up or down in space which is the reason why many astronauts get spacesick and the bottom fell out of my world. I suddenly realised that all my plans to be the first Gaelgeoir in outer space would come to naught as I wouldn’t even be able to make it on the bus to the spaceship without puking on my colleagues shoes. So now what am I going to do? I suppose I can still work on that “extra in Star Trek” plan… Are they still making Star Trek. Maybe I should aim for Dr. Who or that other one they’re making in Wales which wouldn’t involve too much travelling. Although the ferry OH GOD. It’s never going to happen, is it?

Back to reality. A few people have been asking me where to get StarLittleThing’s new album “It’s Easy to be Alive You Just Are”. Apparently Tower Records off Grafton Street have been restocked or you could try Road Records on Drury St (or is it Fade St. It is.) in Dublin. And for the virtual among you it can be bought at or on ITunes. Now I don’t mean to be rude but would ya ever stop reading and go and buy your copy now!

Oh no just one more thing: like a total sheep I’ve given into peer pressure and joined Facebook. You’re the experts you find me.

Pass the Dutchy

We had a great weekend at our friends’ wedding in Gronigen. We went to an amazing exhibition of Peter Struycken’s work. He is a digital artist who has been working since the 60s. I was going to link to his work online but very surprisingly he doesn’t seem to have a website! Kudos to anyone who can find it. Here’s something to keep you going in the meantime. I saw the name Carel Struycken mentioned in the exhibition and being a bit anglocentric presumed sister/ wife/ daughter. He’s actually his brother and is none other than Lurch from the Addams Family and Mr. Homm from Star Trek. It’s all about synchronicity isn’t it.

We picked up Tiger costumes for the boys. Too cute. Okay it’s late. Good night.

Oh forgot to mention StarLittleThing launched their album last Friday. We missed it as we were in Gronigen and if you missed it give yourself a big kick.

Stars? YES! Little? NO! Things? All the bright young

Friday night was Culture Night 2007 in Dublin City. I apologise to the very cultured people who were being shown around the inner sanctum of Lord Powerscourt’s, Richard Wingfield 3rd Viscount (1730-1788), city centre abode. I barged up to their tour guide and asked “Is this the way to the Loft?” There was no way on earth that I was missing another StarLittleThing gig! I have had no luck so far and I know I’m missing their album launch on 5th October in Crawdaddy so I was damned if I was missing their single launch. I needn’t have worried: I was there a fashionable half an hour late and they were an even more fashionable hour and a half late. We were kept amused by all the free beer and based on the nonsensical conversation I had with the young girl serving the free booze she had also kept herself well amused.
It was brilliant. I know I’m completely biased but the energy in the room when they picked up their instruments completely changed, notched up. I, of course, danced. I can’t believe there were people there who didn’t.

The only downside of the evening was when I was introduced to this older man and the first thing he said to me was, “You look like Bette Midler”. All I could think to say to him was, “I’m so @#*&ing insulted!” Normally I wouldn’t be so rude but I really don’t like Bette Midler. I demurred a little bit but I didn’t take it back.
Don’t miss StarLittleThing at Crawdaddy 23.30 on €15 entry includes free copy of the album. A bargain.

Then we headed down to the Port House for a few pinchos and finished up in wagamama for noodles. A delicious evening.
I was feeling a little worse for the wear when I wrote this. I was at a hen on Saturday. Not my best work darling.