OK, I know I always say this, but this entry really does have a lot of fascinating stuff in music journalism, including some long-reads that are worth savoring. Enjoy!
From the L.A. Times, a Robert Ashley appreciation http://www.latimes.com/entertainment/arts/culture/la-et-cm-robert-ashley-appreciation,0,2675910.story#axzz2va6X11do
From Wired, Amazon Prime pricing and music streaming http://www.wired.com/business/2014/02/one-way-amazon-ease-pain-prime-price-hike/
From Aeon, why we love repetition http://aeon.co/magazine/altered-states/why-we-love-repetition-in-music/
From Wired, turning colors into sound http://www.wired.com/2014/03/cyborg-neil-harbisson-teaches-musicians-play-color-sheet-music/
From the New York Times, the Detroit Symphony’s cutting-edge streaming service http://www.nytimes.com/2014/03/22/arts/music/detroit-symphony-dives-headlong-into-streaming.html
From the Washington Post, the opera singer on “The Bachelor” http://www.washingtonpost.com/entertainment/music/sharleen-joynt-between-the-bachelor-and-the-challenges-of-an-opera-career/2014/03/20/ed346a6a-ada8-11e3-a49e-76adc9210f19_story.html
From the New York Times, musicals spilling into opera companies http://www.nytimes.com/2014/03/26/arts/international/opera-companies-turn-to-musicals.html
From Al Jazeera America, young black classical musicians http://projects.aljazeera.com/2014/detroit-music/
From the Wall Street Journal, the best composer-conductor you’ve never heard of http://online.wsj.com/news/articles/SB10001424052702304418404579463194137990718
Finally, a new season of Pirates baseball that doesn't come on the heels of double digit consecutive losing seasons. How cool is that?
Talk about good starts. For Plum softball player Hannah Adamski and Vincentian baseball player Jay Cortese, it's more like torrid starts.
Adamski's start has been on the unbelievable side. She has been up 11 times in three games and has eight hits. But get this: She has seven home runs. And she's only a sophomore.
Adamski hit three home runs in the first game and two in each of the next two games. All of them were over the fence. No inside-the-park jobs. She's a darn good athlete, too. She qualified for the PIAA swimming championships earlier this year.
Meanwhile, Cortese has had quite the two days. Yesterday, he pitched a one-hitter and struck out 12 against Karns City. Today against Springdale, he hit for the cycle and had nine RBIs. He was 5 for 5 with a single, triple, home run and two doubles.
Cortese also is a good athlete. He was a starter on Vincentian's basketball team that made it to the WPIAL Class A semifinals and PIAA quarterfinals.
Pitt passed the halfway mark of spring ball today with its eighth practice of the season. Here are a couple of quick notes from the session (which was unfortunately indoors on this gorgeous day)...
- No real change to the depth chart on either side of the ball. Bam Bradley sat out of today's session, which meant that redshirt freshman Reggie Green was the second-team Sam linebacker. Other than that, it was pretty much as it has been all camp with backs and receivers rotating through, and Jones-Smith/Johnson/Rowell/Rotheram/Clemmings along the offensive line.
- On the defense, more of the same with Soto/Render/Mosley-Smith/Durham along the line and Gonzalez/Galambos/Thomas at linebacker. Starting secondary is still Coles/Vinopal/Webb/Pitts.
- Chryst described today's session as "up and down" and we saw that with three picks from the quarterbacks. The first was a pass from Chad Voytik intended for Ronald Jones running a corner route, but the pass was just a bit underthrown and Lafayette Pitts was able to step in front and pick it off. The second one came from Trey Anderson on a crossing route over the middle where it looked like he just didn't see Nicholas Grigsby dropping back into coverage, and Grigsby made the pick. Finally, Voytik had the third when he didn't see Trenton Coles falling back and Coles picked him off.
- James Conner did some positional drills with the defensive linemen today. This isn't necessarily news, because he has been subbing in on the defensive line at times this spring, but most of those times were just him coming on in emergency situations. This was the first time I can recall Conner actively working with defensive ends coach John Palermo and the rest of the unit in individual drills.
- One position to watch this spring is the nickelback role, which has fluctuated a lot. Today, it looked like Jahmahl Parder was the first guy off the bench in sub packages, but I also think the coaches do like Trenton Coles in that role too.
- Grigsby was a guy who stood out to me in today's practice because I think he could bring a lot of versatility to some defensive packages next year. He's a linebacker by trade, and the second-team Will linebacker right now, but he also comes on some of Pitt's sub packages as essentially a fourth defensive lineman. Specifically today, we saw a look that had Soto/Render/Durham as the defensive line, with Grigsby and Galambos as the linebackers, but Grigsby playing more as just a stand-up rusher, similar to what Ejuan Price would do at times last year (before he transitioned to more of a true defensive end).
- The day wasn't perfect for the secondary, as they bit hard on a couple of fakes at the end of practice. First, Lafayette Pitts fell hard for a double-move by Tyler Boyd, which went for a 63-yard touchdown from Voytik. A couple of plays later, pretty much everyone in the defensive backfield bit on a play fake, which allowed Anderson to find a wide-open Ronald Jones for another long touchdown.
- Still limited work for Adam Bisnowaty and Gabe Roberts in today's practice. Both had helmets and shells on, but neither took part in team drills.