Last week, Grateful Dead drummer Mickey Hart officially announced his upcoming solo album, RAMU (short for “Random Access Musical Universe”), and released a pair of new tracks (“Wayward Son” and “Big Bad Wolf”) featuring Animal Collective’s Avey Tare and Tank and the Bangas’ Tarriona “Tank” Ball. Today, Mickey has shared the third single from the new album, the album’s first track, “Auctioneers”. The enthrallingly disorienting track begins in a sonic space you might find deep into a good old fashioned Dead “Drums” jam, and proceeds from there into a full break-beat freak-out.Listen to the newest release off Mickey Hart’s upcoming solo album, RAMU, below or here via Billboard:As Billboard explains, “The song is built from Library of Congress recordings of a 1948 tobacco auction in Kentucky, over which Hart and his collaborators built an uptempo, polyrhythmic swirl of sound. ‘It’s the rhythm of the auctioneers, that’s the energy of [the track],’ says Hart, who works regularly with the Library of Congress as well as Smithsonian Folkways, “They’re selling tobacco, but at such a rapid speed that it’s just fantastic, rhythmically, and it has a melody to it and it fits into the dance. It’s kind of a precursor to rap, in some ways. So I just created something on top of that old sound recording.”Mickey Hart Announces Solo Album, Shares New Singles With Avey Tare & Tank BallHart expounded on what “RAMU” was to Pitchfork last week. As he explained, “’RAMU is truly a multidimensional instrument that allows you to travel to new universes at the flip of a switch…Everything goes through RAMU, the mothership. It’s my instrument, and it’s a very powerful compositional tool. It’s vast, it holds new treasures, and it’s still revealing itself to me.” He continues, “This record includes sounds from radio telescopes around the world, solar winds, the radiation that comes from light and is turned into sound, weather conditions from hurricanes.”“‘I want people to appreciate and understand what’s lying in the archives of the world, just sitting there waiting to be discovered,’ continues Hart, who began developing RAMU during the ’80s and has continued to refine and perform with it, over the years. ‘I live with that stuff all the time, just being in the archives all these years. I’ve got my finger on the button there, and I’ve always loved it. All these things have never really coexisted; I mean, I’ve found things that never coexisted before and kind of married them and the music. You can really have fun with it, and ‘Auctioneers’ is a perfect example of that.’”Dead & Company Added To Band Together Benefit Concert, Oteil Burbridge Cancels NYC Show“‘I didn’t want it to sound like a standard record by any stretch of the imagination,’ Hart explains in the Billboard interview. “I didn’t want to use cliche elements that you would normally put in a pop or rock ‘n’ roll (album). I didn’t use much bass at all, very little guitar, no keyboards, not a lot of cymbals, not a lot of tom-toms leading into verses, choruses or bridges. I pulled out a lot of those things that I identify with modern music. I was looking for the new.”In addition to Tank (Tank and the Bangas) and Avey Tare (Animal Collective),the album features bassist Oteil Burbridge, guitarist Steve Kimock, the String Cheese Incident’s Jason Hann, Planet Drum cohorts Zakir Hussain and Sikiru Adepoju, Michal Menert and others. Longtime Dead conspirator Robert Hunter provided lyrics, and the track “Jerry” even features samples of the late Jerry Garcia experimenting with MIDI guitar during the late ’80s.Dead & Company Announce Fall Tour WebcastsWhile the album release is fresh on his mind, Hart doesn’t have any plans to tour behind RAMU as of yet. He’s focusing on his “day job” in Dead & Company and appreciating how smoothly that ship is sailing. “There’s really hardly any words to describe it ’cause it’s so good now…We finally know how to do it, I think, after 50-some odd years. I think we finally figured it out…” Hart also says that Dead & Co is toying with the idea of hitting the studio to make a new album. “We’ve talked about it…We’ve got some new songs from [Robert] Hunter, and we’re considering it, just thinking about schedules and when we want to go in the studio and so forth and so on. It’s one of those things; We were never a great studio band…it’s really our live performances — and it’s not just the music but kind of a community experience when people come. It really is about them, not us. I think the music is secondary in some ways. We’re kind of just the soundtrack, just like it’s always been.”[h/t – Billboard][Cover photo – Phierce Photo by Keith G; Instagram: @phiercephoto]
Over the years, many of Wisconsin’s athletes have moved on to productive careers in professional sports. With so many prominent Badgers making a living at the next level, you’re sure to recognize many of the players in this list. Well-represented in all four major sports, let’s take a look at former Badgers that are making their mark on the professional world of athletics. Football: J.J. Watt (DE, Houston Texans) — Years Played at Wisconsin: 2009-2010In his nine seasons in the NFL, Watt has established himself as one of the most dominant defensive players in recent memory. Watt has a variety of skills that allow him to line up in a handful of defensive positions, making it difficult for opponents to game plan against him. During his career, Watt has racked up numerous individual awards including five Pro Bowl appearances and three Defensive Player of the Year awards — the most among active NFL players. Destined for a spot in Canton once his career is over, Watt still searches for one prize that eludes him — a Super Bowl ring. Only time will tell if he achieves the ultimate team goal.Watt’s time at Wisconsin was limited following his freshman season at Central Michigan and his early departure for the NFL. Yet Badger fans will remember his crucial contributions during the famous upset of the then No. 1 Ohio State Buckeyes at Camp Randall. T.J. Watt (OLB, Pittsburgh Steelers) — Years Played at Wisconsin: 2015-2016T.J. is the youngest of three Watt brothers and looks to be following in his older brother J.J.’s footsteps as one of the league’s premier pass rushers. After being selected in the first round in the 2017 NFL draft, Watt has lived up to expectations, collecting 34.5 sacks in three seasons with the Steelers. This past year, Watt was named to his second consecutive Pro Bowl and at only age 25, it appears Watt will wreak havoc for opposing quarterbacks for years to come. During his time with the Badgers, Watt underwent a lengthy transition to offensive linebacker following his original recruitment as a tight end. Despite multiple injuries and learning curves along the way, Wisconsin continued its long tradition of crafting NFL-caliber linebackers and developed Watt into a tour de force in the NFL. UW Athletics: Profile of UW Club Baseball’s team president, JJ LambThe coronavirus pandemic has affected us all in different ways. For myself and most other people, it means sitting inside Read…Russell Wilson (QB, Seattle Seahawks) — Years Played at Wisconsin: 2011Wilson has been one of the league’s most consistent quarterbacks during his career with the Seahawks. A fearless leader, Wilson does whatever it takes to win games which can be shown through his career 66.8 winning percentage, second-best among active quarterbacks with over 40 career starts. Following Marshawn Lynch’s retirement after the 2015 season, Wilson was forced to take on a larger responsibility in Seattle’s offense and has developed into one of the league’s best quarterbacks, throwing for 121 touchdowns and only 34 interceptions in that span. While Wilson only came to Wisconsin with one year of eligibility left after his transfer from North Carolina State, his impact on the program was immense. Wilson is still considered to be one of, if not the lone best quarterback in Badger history.Basketball: Frank Kaminsky (F/C, Phoenix Suns) — Years Played at Wisconsin: 2011-2015Following a historic career at Wisconsin, Kaminsky was selected by the Charlotte Hornets with the ninth pick in the 2015 NBA draft. Kaminsky spent four years in Charlotte, then signed a two-year contract with the Phoenix Suns. Though his season was shortened with a stress fracture in his right knee, Kaminsky was productive when on the floor with Phoenix, averaging 11 points per game on close to 35% shooting from long-range. As Kaminsky enters the 2020-21 season as a restricted free agent, it will be interesting to see where the versatile forward lands. Sports video games to try during quarantineThere’s simply no way around it, it’s a tough time to be a sports fan. All large gatherings necessary for Read…Hockey:Joe Pavelski (C, Dallas Stars) — Years Played at Wisconsin: 2004-2006A native of Plover, Wisconsin, Pavelski has been a consistent goal scorer in the NHL for both the San Jose Sharks and Dallas Stars. In five of Pavelski’s 15 seasons, the center has netted over 30 goals and, in the 2013-14 season, he made his first All-Star appearance. Before the 2019-20 season, Pavelski agreed to a three-year $21 million contract with the Dallas Stars. Prior to the NHL suspending play due to COVID-19, Pavelski netted 14 goals and 17 assists in 67 games played. Brian Elliott (G, Philadelphia Flyers) — Years Played at Wisconsin: 2003-2007 In 2006, Elliott, along with Pavelski, won the National Championship for the Badgers and received a spot on the 2006 Frozen Four All-Tournament Team. Elliott has continued his success in the NHL as he has been named to two All-Star teams and received the 2011-12 William M. Jennings trophy for allowing the league’s lowest number of goals. Jennings is currently in his third year with the Philidelphia Flyers. Women’s Soccer:Rose Lavelle (Midfielder, United States Women’s National Team/Washington Spirit) — Years Played at Wisconsin: 2013-2016Lavelle enjoyed a tremendous career at Wisconsin and received a handful of national recognition, being named an All-American in three of her four years with the Badgers. Lavelle was named to the United States 2019 World Cup team and appeared in six of the United States’ seven matches. Lavelle was extremely effective when on the field for the U.S., scoring three goals in the World Cup including a clutch goal in the 69th minute in the final against the Netherlands that secured the U.S.’s second consecutive World Cup title. Football: Top recruits, developing talent leave Badgers primed to reload in key positions for 2020 seasonAs the 2020 NFL draft approaches at the end of next month, Badgers Jonathan Taylor, Zack Baun, Chris Orr and Read…It is clear to see that, with such strong athletics programs year in and year out, Wisconsin has developed an extensive network of alumni that represent the Badgers at the next level of competition. With sports currently on hold, it’s always worth a look back at the memories each of these talented individuals has created for Badger fans around the nation.
Today, March 26, was supposed to be Opening Day.That’s not happening, as you know, but that’s not going to stop us from dreaming about what might have been, even as we watch the smorgasbord of baseball games from the past that are being broadcast all day long. Why him? Because if the Reds are going to be legitimate contenders in 2020, they need Votto to be the Votto of old. And what better time to start than Opening Day? Nolan Arenado, 3B, RockiesWhy him? It was — well, it has been — an interesting offseason for Arenado and the Rockies, and watching him play again would have been great for Rockies fans. Here’s one player from each team we were especially looking forward to seeing perform on Opening Day. MORE: 15 things we miss most about baseballAmerican League Andrew Heaney, SP, AngelsWhy him? The Angels wasted no time naming the lefty as their Opening Day starter this spring. This was supposed to be his first Opening Day nod, which is a pretty cool honor for any pitcher, and that’s reason enough to watch (and it’s the reason we’ll pick another couple of players on this list). But, there’s also this: Heaney didn’t hold back when asked for his thoughts about the Astros and their cheating scandal this spring, and guess who the Angels were scheduled to play on Opening Day. The popcorn was already ready. Jose Altuve, 2B, AstrosWhy him? Because it’s impossible to think about the Astros and their first game of 2020 without thinking of the sign-stealing scandal that broke this offseason. And Altuve somehow became the central figure in this scandal despite the data showing he heard the fewest trash can bangs recorded in 2017. But Altuve hit the home run off Aroldis Chapman in the 2019 ALCS and told his teammates not to rip off his jersey as he approached home plate. And, well, that just seemed all kinds of suspicious. So, to pick one Astros player the most eyes would be on, the nod goes to Altuve. And now we’re done with sign-stealing scandal stuff, I promise. Mike Fiers, SP, AthleticsWhy him? OK, one more, dammit. The A’s hadn’t announced their Opening Day starter yet, but Fiers was certainly a possibility. He got the nod for the first game in 2019 and was a reliable part of the A’s rotation last year, posting a 3.0 bWAR and 3.90 ERA in 33 starts. Fiers, of course, is the player who went on the record with The Athletic and kicked the whole sign-stealing scandal into high gear. So, yeah, his first 2020 start would have been interesting. Worth noting, though, that the A’s host the Astros in the second series of the season, so if the A’s wanted to make sure Fiers wouldn’t face the Astros — seems like an unnecessary early season distraction — they could have pushed him back to start the third game of the year. OK, THAT is the last scandal mention. Double promise, pinkie swear. Vladimir Guerrero Jr., 3B, Blue JaysWhy him? Because he’s kind of amazing and is likely to have a monster season, and popping a couple baseballs over the fence wouldn’t have surprised anyone. Shane Bieber, SP, IndiansWhy him? Bieber is coming off an outstanding season — fourth place finish in the AL Cy Young award and All-Star Game MVP — and was scheduled to face the rebuilding Tigers at home. Feels like a no-hitter, or at least a shutout, was on the table. Kyle Lewis, OF, MarinersWhy him? Lewis, the No. 11 overall pick in the 2016 MLB Draft, skipped over Triple-A last year and posted a .885 OPS in 18 big-league contests for the Mariners last year. He’s likely to have his ups and downs, but he’s an outstanding talent and watching him hit that spring training grand slam was a lot of fun. Chris Davis, 1B, OriolesWhy him? Because hope springs eternal, and Davis was on fire this spring. And, sure, spring stats mean very little, but when you’re talking about a player with a -4.8 bWAR and 53 OPS+ over the past two years combined, any little sliver of success is welcome. Joey Gallo, RF, RangersWhy him? Because we were deprived of Gallo for far too much of a 2019 season — his year ended July 23 when he went on the DL with a broken hamate bone in his right hand — that was setting up to his the breakthrough year we’ve all been waiting for. Jose Martinez, DH, RaysWhy him? Because Martinez feels like a perfect fit for Tampa Bay, a professional hitter without much of a defensive position who is finally in the American League and can shine, primarily as a DH but also spot starter at first and in right field. And what better way to get going than with two or three hits at his new home against an NL team?Alex Verdugo, RF, Red SoxWhy him? New face in a new place, replacing a superstar in Mookie Betts. Intrigue. Adalberto Mondesi, SS, RoyalsWhy him? He’s fun to watch, especially when he gets on base. Big season could be in the works, if he figures out how to get on base more regularly. Miguel Cabrera, DH, TigersWhy him? Because, as I said when I watched a Tigers game from the press box this spring, any time you can see a future Hall of Famer play, that’s a good day. Jose Berrios, SP, TwinsWhy him? His breaking stuff is just mesmerizing. Berrios is coming off back-to-back All-Star seasons and he’s still just 25 years old. Last year, he got the Opening Day nod and struck out 10 in 7 2/3 shutout innings at home against Cleveland. This assignment, at Oakland, would be been a bit tougher but still a chance to shine. Luis Robert, CF, White SoxWhy him? The White Sox took “service time” distractions off the table, signing Robert to a deal that guarantees $50 million over six years, and has team options that could add two years and $38 million. All this despite that he’s yet to make his big-league debut, which is why we picked him here. Robert was brilliant in 2019, batting a combined .328 with a 1.001 OPS, 32 homers and 36 stolen bases at three levels in the White Sox organization. Gleyber Torres, SS, YankeesWhy him? Because he’s pretty much the only healthy starter, right? Really, though, Torres has been exactly the player Cubs fans feared he would be when their favorite team traded him to the Yankees for rental closer Aroldis Chapman (though he did contribute to that little World Series title). MORE: Rob Manfred hopes baseball can resume before JuneNational LeagueRonald Acuña, Jr., BravesWhy him? Because he’s a damn superstar, that’s why. Christian Yelich, RF, BrewersWhy him? Has any trade ever worked out any better than the Brewers’ deal to land Yelich? He’s been an incredible player — one MVP award and one second-place finish — and this offseason agreed to a lucrative extension to stay in Milwaukee for a long, long time. The Brewers were supposed to open their season at home against the Cubs, and the home-crowd reception would have been really something. Jack Flaherty, SP, CardinalsWhy him? How do you follow up an incredible finish — he had a 0.93 ERA in his last 16 starts — to the 2019 season? Well, that’s why we picked him. Javier Baez, SS, CubsWhy him? He’s a star, with a flair for performing on the big stage. Like, for example, Opening Day 2019, when he popped a pair of homers and had four RBIs in a win against the Rangers on the road. Starling Marte, CF, DiamondbacksWhy him? It feels like years ago that the Diamondbacks acquired the two-time Gold Glove winner from Pittsburgh. But he’s coming off back-to-back 20/20 seasons, and all eyes would be on him for his first regular-season game in his new uniform. Mookie Betts, RF, DodgersWhy him? Well, duh. Johnny Cueto, SP, GiantsWhy him? He’s only made 13 starts the past two years, but he’s healthy and was named the Opening Day starter. Cueto gives a clinic on disrupting batters’ timing, every time out. Lewis Brinson, CF, MarlinsWhy him? I am going to believe that Brinson can develop into a star until the day he retires, apparently. He’s been, well, not good in the bigs so far, but Brinson was pretty good this spring — .345 average, three homers in 13 games — and I know spring stats don’t mean much, but I would have been watching and hoping Opening Day would have been his new, fresh start. Jacob deGrom, SP, MetsWhy him? Because when a two-time Cy Young winner takes the mound, you watch. Juan Soto, LF, NationalsWhy him? Soto and Acuña — who finished 1-2 in the 2018 NL Rookie of the Year voting — will be linked as long as they both defy their ages and play like superstars, and they’ll always be worth watching. Tommy Pham, LF, PadresWhy him? Pham feels like the perfect addition to a Padres team that’s on the rise, and I’d expect that impact to be obvious from Day One. Or, y’know, Opening Day. Bryce Haper, RF, PhilliesWhy him? Boring choice? Yep. But you’ll be watching, too. Jarrod Dyson, CF, PiratesWhy him? Been a fan of Dyson since his days as the speedster who helped the Royals thrive in 2014-15, and because that’s what speed do. Joseph Daniel Votto, 1B, Reds
DISCLAIMER: Like Wenger’s record against Mourinho, don’t take this video seriously.It’s Arsenal v Chelsea this Sunday and ahead of the games we got access to a heavily edited press conference between Arsene Wenger and Jose Mourinho.The duo discussed everything from the match at the Emirates to their FA Cup records, before the insults began to fly between the rival bosses.But will the ‘specialist in failure’ finally get one over the ‘Special One’? We’ll find out this afternoon…