Grace Notes: DeLillo’s Silence + RIP, Kondo

From the past week

Some tweet observations ( I made over the course of the past week, lightly edited. I’ll mention: I really enjoy Twitter. There’s a lot wrong with it, but if you mute assiduously, block when necessary, monitor your hours, and stick to a few topics, you can have some great back and forths with people. My refrain about social media: Twitter is where you learn how much you have in common with people you don’t know, and Facebook is where you learn how little you have in common with people you do know.

▰ RIP to the great Toshinori Kondo (December 15, 1948 – October 17, 2020). Sad sad day. The Japanese trumpeter was a master of space and sound, and an essential collaborator of DJ Krush and Bill Laswell, among others. His 1996 collaboration with Krush, Ki-Oku, is a great starting point, as is Nate Chinen’s obituary at

▰ It was nice with physical library books, when returning them, to wonder when and by whom they’d next be picked up. With digital ones, it’s nice to return something early, see the waiting list, and know you’ve made someone’s evening somewhere across the city. Or perhaps next door.

▰ It was a foregone conclusion that reading the new Don DeLillo novel digitally would yield meta moments, including his awareness of the inevitability. Still, I was struck to find a wistful phrase about the discontents of over-connectedness evidently highlighted by fellow readers. (And yes, the book is titled The Silence. Yes.)

▰ Exactly how long is this Ninja Tune video?

▰ Yeah, it’s sorta creepy to send a (seemingly) personalized email follow-up saying you’d noticed I’d opened a recent email about your record and wondered if I’d want to cover it, especially because I’d already taken the time to tell your publicist I wasn’t interested.

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