December 14th, 2020

The term “Happy Holidaze” has become a cliché, the progenitor of silly memes and cards – and has also taken on a new meaning in 2020. What a year it’s been, and I doubt that there’s a single one of us who doesn’t feel dazed by it. But the holiday season is a time of rejoicing, and my holiday wish is that we can find renewed spirit, togetherness, hope, and, yes, joy during the season and in 2021.

I want to again take the opportunity to thank everyone at Copper for making this magazine possible. It has been, in the words of Paul McGowan, a “shining beacon,” certainly in my life, and it has helped me get through some tough times this year. Perhaps Copper has made your lives a little brighter also.

In this overstuffed holiday issue: John Seetoo recommends some Christmas songs you might not have heard before, and WL Woodward looks at favorite holiday movies. Wayne Robins reviews Dave Alvin’s From an Old Guitar: Rare and Unreleased Recordings. Jay Jay French ponders Zen and the art of criticism. Larry Schenbeck examines the bel canto work of Rossini. Ken Sander tells about his time with Johnny “Guitar” Watson. Don Kaplan asks: what happened to honk, bonk, boing and blomp? Dan Schwartz reflects upon Keith Jarrett’s retirement. J.I. Agnew concludes his series on vertical tracking angle and stylus rake angle.

Anne E. Johnson finds that Bach and Beck are where it’s at. Steven Bryan Bieler ponders chess and music. Adrian Wu continues his series on audio testing. Tom Gibbs reviews new releases from Smashing Pumpkins, David Bowie and Seasick Steve. I review the new book, Audio Research: Making the Music Glow and conclude our interview with The Audiophiliac, Steve Guttenberg. Ray Chelstowski has an inside look at when Clarence Clemons toured with the Grateful Dead. Stuart Marvin contemplates the many and varied cover versions of “Hey Joe.” Our audio/visual department looks at late arrivals, audiophile wedding rings, days gone by, musical holiday gifts of yore, and more.

To Test or Not to Test, That is the Question? Part Two

In the last installment, I discussed the most quoted test…

Audio Research: Making the Music Glow

If I had to bet on it, I’d say 99…

Wedding Belle Blues

Steve Guttenberg: the Audiophiliac, Part Two

In Part One of this interview (Issue 125) we talked…

Timing Is Everything

Hey Joe Covers: Crime or Sublime?

The first time I heard Jimi Hendrix’s recording of “Hey…

Whatever Happened to Honk, Bonk, Boing and Blomp?

While doing her Stripsody, performer Cathy Berberian expressed herself by…

When Jerry and The Big Man Almost Busted This City in Half

This past March Round Records released GarciaLive Volume 13. The…

Changers in the Night

Now that’s what we call holiday gift-giving! Circa 1960s.  …

Dave Alvin – From An Old Guitar: Rare and Unreleased Recordings

You’re driving through the New Mexico desert in the dark.…

Johnny “Guitar” Watson: A Real Mother for Ya

In 1980 I find myself working on another bus tour…

Rossini (Bel Canto Part 2)

Here’s a question that should be a softball: who was…

A World Without Keith Jarrett

“I even have dreams where I am as messed up…

Zen and the Art of Criticism

Who hasn’t walked out of a show, turned to a…

Beck: Where He’s At

Let’s talk lo-fi. Not on the listening end, of course,…

Vertical Tracking Angle Meets Stylus Rake Angle, Part Two

In Issue 125, J.I. covered the mechanical aspects of record…

Those Christmas Movies

I don’t live my life by many rules. Basically, I…

Bach’s Goldberg Variations

According to an anecdote in an 1802 biography of J.S.…

Two Big Hits…and a Definite Strikeout!

Smashing Pumpkins – Cyr Smashing Pumpkins was one of my favorite…

Hit the Board, Jack

When I was a teenager, no one understood how I…

Christmas Songs Worth Listening To

As the calendar days inexorably approach Christmas, the usual playlist…

A Holiday Gala

The 2018 Los Angeles and Orange County Audio Society annual…
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