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RIP Shane MacGowan: Watch the Celtic Punk Rocker Perform with Nick Cave, Kirsty MacColl & the Dubliners

Shane MacGowan died yesterday, less than a month shy of his 66th birthday — and thus less than a month shy of Christmas, which happened to be the same day. Though coincidental, that association has made perfect sense since 1987, when the Pogues, the Celtic punk band fronted by MacGowan, released “Fairytale of New York.” That duet between...

Fri Dec 1, 2023 12:56
Jacques Pépin Teaches You How to Make James Beard’s Famous Onion Sandwich

Worried that holiday entertaining may put you in danger of overspending? Preserve your bank account and those joyful festive feelings by serving your friends onion sandwiches. We assure you, they come with the utmost of culinary pedigrees. Esteemed chef and cookbook author Jacques Pépin happily demonstrates the simple recipe, above,...

Fri Dec 1, 2023 12:56
Juilliard Jazz Drummer Hears & Plays Nirvana For The First Time, Figuring Out the Drum Parts in Real Time

What happens when Ulysses Owens Jr–a Jazz musician and jazz educator at Juilliard–hears Nirvana’s “In Bloom” for the first time (minus the drum parts), and then attempts to drum along? What is he listening for? How does he immediately craft an appropriate drum part? And how does it compare to Dave Grohl’s original? Watch above, and you...

Thu Nov 30, 2023 12:57
Rome Reborn: A New 3D Virtual Model Lets You Fly Over the Great Monuments of Ancient Rome

Thirteen years ago here on Open Culture, we first featured Rome Reborn 2.2, a digital 3D model of the ancient metropolis at the height of its glory in the fourth century. And that rebirth has continued apace ever since, and just last week bore the fruit of Rome Reborn 4.0, through which you can get a flying tour in the video above. Intercut...

Thu Nov 30, 2023 12:11
Napoleon’s Kindle: Discover the Miniaturized Traveling Library That the Emperor Took on Military Campaigns

Every piece of technology has a precedent. Most have several different types of precedents. You’ve probably used (and may well own) an eBook reader, for instance, but what would have afforded you a selection of reading material two or three centuries ago? If you were a Jacobean Englishman of means, you might have used the kind of traveling library...

Wed Nov 29, 2023 13:37
The Surprisingly Long History of Auto-Tune, the Vocal-Processing Technology Music Critics Love to Hate

In the fall of 1998, pop music changed forever — or at least it seems that way today, a quarter-century later. The epochal event in question was the release of Cher’s comeback hit “Believe,” of whose jaggedly fractured vocal glissando no listener had heard the likes of before. “The glow-and-flutter of Cher’s voice at key points in the...

Wed Nov 29, 2023 11:29


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