Villa St. Jean International School   

The Sufferin' Kind
at Villa St. Jean

 

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"I remember as we were moving in to the new rooms, walking down the halls with my gear, hearing instruments being played - an un-amplified electric guitar on my right, bongos at the end of the hall...over the weeks we got acquainted and started jamming twos and threes in the Rec room by the piano...after a while a pretty steady group of six coalesced: Guitarists Henry Rowland (Lead), Larry Gruza  (Rhythm), Randy Dalton (Bass), joined by Don Smith (Drums), Malcolm Lawrence (Lead Singer) & myself (Keyboard)...several of the guys had remarkable mimicking abilities...Malcolm could sound exactly like Mick Jagger and Eric Burdon, while Henry's solos were often hard to distinguish from George Harrison's...we discovered a music store in town and started renting equipment...we eventually moved to the basement of the gym, where we found plenty of room for our growing equipment list: drum set, Fender amps, guitars, mic stands...later we got a Farfisa organ...and my dad threw in a birthday "Burns Black Bison guitar", all the rage with its Wild Dog and Split sound effects...working up a repertoire of popular hits was sometimes challenging, as Rock songs, particularly English Rock tunes, were often banned from the air waves.. a way around this was found when Pirate Radio Station Ships began setting up off the English Coast, transmitting 3 miles off-shore in International waters...one station I remember tuning into, to get chord patterns for songs, was "Radio Caroline", (still transmitting !), particularly DJ Jim Murphy...over time we worked up about a 60 tune playlist , including a fair number of originals...after school we often hung out in town at cafes, one particular favorite being the "Chess Club", due to its popularity with the girls schools, and to a great cappuccino-like beverage they served called "Renverser"...when word got out we had a band going, the club harangued us to come down and play...when we got there, there was a line out the door to the sidewalk & around the corner...they sold out of most everything in the 1st hour...soon other clubs and beer halls started offering us gigs...then the Villa picked up on the idea of us playing at school dances and after ski break parties, and helped us out with equipment moves by providing a van...later we got into a bit of touring, as Lead Guitarist Henry Rowland's folks lived in Paris...we were able to hop on a train after school on Friday, travel all night, arrive in France at 6am,  & get our gear down to, & setup at, a Paris discotheque ("La Locomotive") for a gig that night, pulling the reverse stunt to return to the Villa in time for some very strong morning coffee indeed... as graduation approached, Decca Records International announced they were sponsoring a "Battle of the Bands" competition...we entered & took 1st place".

Cliff Thompson, Sufferin' Kind Guitar/Keyboard

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1966-1967

Electra



We started with 4 guys, no keyboard,
& were called "Electra"

 


The Sufferin' Kind




Business Card

 




Later we added keyboard & renamed the group "The Sufferin' Kind"…



…the group also grew to 6, sometimes more with sit-in's.



Cliff, at the keys, 1967.



Villa Van at the ready. 

 





The Graduation Ball
was filmed in 8 millimeter by Cliff's Dad Bill…



Cool dress garb…




& a singer's
wailin' wall …









moves an enthusiastic crowd of dancers & revelers - 
that's NASA 
Space Science 
Director for Strategic and International Planning, 
Dr. Marc S. Allen
(center)




The film of the Graduation Ball was combined with 
additional footage of the town, school, post grad gathering
and made into an 8 minute Apple iMovie Streaming Video by Cliff's wife Toni
(Note: The transmission will scale to your bandwidth & can take a while before playback begins)

 

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2001-2002



Cliff, still at the keys, 2001



Cliff & Henry ("Broz") 
at the VSJ Vegas Reunion, 2002. 
Broz still making music with his group, 
"The Rowland Brothers" 
"No Sleep for the Dreamers"


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2003


The Sufferin' Kind 
Music Circle Project

launched January 2003

 

Mission Statement:

Villa St. Jean's House Band "The Sufferin' Kind" aimed to recommend and provide the finest in music across many categories to VSJ alumni. The alumni in turn often recommended their choices for greatest hits, many of which songs became part of The Sufferin' Kind's repertoire. The synergy between band & alumni became a great way for all of us to expand our musical horizons by sharing information on discoveries of great new music. A recent successful "Find your lost high school friends" Internet search by VSJ alumni turned up all members of "The Sufferin' Kind", which discovery lead to the creation of this historical & current Music Circle monthly recommendation website in 2003. "The Sufferin' Kind Music Circle" is an effort by interested "still-kicking" band members, alumni & "Friends of The Sufferin' Kind Music Circle Project" to continue this great tradition, covering the period from the dispersal of the graduating classes in the late '60s, down to the modern-day and future, by continuing to ask, "What great music have you heard since then, what are your current recommendations for the greatest examples of music in any given category, music you're listening to now as well as music from the past that still stands up to the test of time?"  

Of special interest is music along dimensions that can be described by word strings like harmonious-melodic, delicate-intricate, dense-"wall-of-sound"-complex, epic-soaring, tender-moving-compassionate-endearing, ethnic/world fusion, progressive-transcendental/inspirational-esoteric (especially synth/electronic) and rockin'-drivin'-energetic;  in short, music you like to play over and over again on a long drive, at a celebratory party, or as a gift to honor a respected friend - pieces that are really distinctive, that trigger responses ranging from the "get you rockin"/"shake your booty" reflex to the "drop your jaw/floored by the beauty/tenderness/power/soaring spirit of invoked emotion" - in a phrase, "your top 10". Especially valued are instrumentals,  as well as any recommendations in the "beyond "Sufferin' Kind" repertoire" arena of Jazz & Classical music, from which much excellent material serves to deeply inspire continued interest in musical composition. Additional favorite ares include international and indigenous local music, and fusion work (South America, Africa, Malaysia...). All that's needed for a recommendation at a minimum would be a Song (Track) Name, and,  since there tends to be many duplicate names, ideally the "Group/Artist" &/or "Album" name - just email your recommendation to
VSJ Alumni '67 "Sufferin' Kind" band member Cliff Thompson.

Categories of Music:

The current list is inspired by the typical organization of music by category as found at a large music store (or its online equivalent) and may evolve as we suggest refinements and discover new areas.

Music Recommendations

An "ideal scenario" for how a musical piece is typically recommended and selected runs roughly as follows: 

(1) Band members, Alumni & Friends Of... run through the category list and suggest their recommendation for the best example of a musical piece in a given category, typically a track off a CD album - or, as noted above , "All that's needed for a recommendation at a minimum would be a Song (Track) Name, and,  since there tends to be many duplicate names, ideally the "Group/Artist" &/or "Album" name - just email your recommendation to VSJ Alumni '67 "Sufferin' Kind" band member Cliff Thompson.

(2) An MP3 version of the track is broken into samples and uploaded to a common Web Storage File area for a brief time during which members can play the composition. After the time period, initially a month, the selection is replaced by the next recommendation. 

Legal Considerations


To avoid gnarly digital property rights issues
, members implicitly commit to an honor system that insures the playing of the MP3's are for "preview purposes only", exactly like the "Listen to Samples" links on a typical on-line music CD purchasing website. To further honor this commitment, it is strongly recommended that the MP3 always be split into at least 1/2's to insure their status as samples (more info in "Limitations" section below). When members find a recommendation they like, they can obtain the CD in their usual way, thereby providing the artist with additional revenue. The intention here is not to "rip artists off burning MP3's". Most "Listen to Samples" clips are too short (30-60 seconds) to get an accurate representation of the piece. Often a song doesn't even "get going" in this short a time, so the song, even the entire album, is frequently written-off. However, a single representative piece, played in it's entirety, (but always broken into MP3 pieces to insure their status as samples), resolves this problem.  As an example, Sufferin' Kind Lead Guitarist Henry "Broz" Rowland, for his new group/album "The Rowland Brothers"/"No Sleep for the Dreamers" (pictured above in the "2001-2002" section "Cliff & Henry ("Broz")...No Sleep for the Dreamers" photo), provides several tracks of full-length MP3 samples  for play and download off his Zebox write-up webpage (access by clicking on the "Broz" link above). If you just listen to the album's Amazon music "Listen to Samples" links and play the "Hydronic She Said" sample, you'll never get to the awesome guitar solo just past the end of that sample (access by clicking on the "No Sleep for the Dreamers" link above). It wasn't until I heard the full-length track MP3 sample Broz provided, and was rather awestruck by the guitar solo, that I was convinced I "had to have this album" and was swayed to buy the CD.
Thus the intention is two-fold: 
(1) to help people find great music, when otherwise overwhelmed by the vast collections of music choices in a typical music store/website, based on the power of the internet community newsgroup "word of mouth" recommendation and a really good sound sample 
(2) to help musicians garner further income, by recommending purchase of the CD, via this new channel, an additional revenue stream that would otherwise be unavailable


Limitations

An MP3 is always split into at least 1/2's,  to insure its status as a sample, using an MP3 Splitter utility (for example "Yaosoft COOL MP3 Splitter").

Launching The Sufferin' Kind Music Circle:

To get the ball rolling, in January 2003 I picked a portion of the category list, the "Progressive Rock (Instrumental)" section, & offered my pick for the "Greatest Progressive Rock Instrumental" I'd heard to date, a continuous pair of compositions, the latter of which, originally too large, having been run through the MP3 Splitter. The MP3 files were created & uploaded. Additional support was provided by 2 spin-off Sufferin' Kind Virtual Bands who are great fans of The Sufferin' Kind Music Circle Project: the first of these is the Anti-Terrorist, Jihad-Bashing Band, "Mullah Moolah & the Infidels", who provided consulting expertise regarding more recent music, while the second group, the ever mercurial band "Predatory Tunicate", offered Quality Assurance resources for music in general.


This month's music recommendation

The entry may be played by clicking on the Track links below - wait for a while to let the streaming file download enough to your local buffer to start playing, at which point your streaming MP3 player (Quick Time, Windows Media Player, etc) will launch. If any download problems develop &/or as an alternative to slower connections, you can try the alternative "Track Listings\Listen to Samples"  link  below. 

Supplemental background information on the Category, Group & Album, useful for comparing related resources,  is provided by links in those columns to the corresponding  information on the definitive "All Music Guide" and "Amazon Music" sites, with additional information from the excellent "Artist Direct" site. 

Sufferin' Kind Music Circle  - Play List

Date: August 2005

Recommendation: Greatest Latin Folk Jazz Fusion Song of 1997
Category 
Genre/Type
*/Style*
[Alt. Cat.]
(Recommended by)
 
Group / Artist  Album
(with "AllMusic" track listings & audio samples)
Track

Jazz  /  Latin Folk *

[Jazz / World Fusion]

Essay
*

(Luis Montero)

*access requires AMG login (email/password)
 

Juan Carlos Quintero

Way Home

bullet

Caribbean Sun Dance, pt. 1

bullet

Caribbean Sun Dance, pt. 2






Track Listings\Listen to Sample (Amazon)
(offers "used & new" link)

Comments: 
Villa St. Jean '71 Alumni, Peruvian Luis Montero, over this last month, from Peru, has been emailing Music Circle many fine Latin Afro-Peruvian/Andean Folk-Jazz fusion music samples (as well as sharing his stunning online collection of Peruvian indigenous village & countryside photo albums), & offers this month's recommendation, the song "Caribbean Sun Dance" on the CD "Way Home" from artist "Juan Carlos Quintero" from Peru, South America. "In terms of sheer technique...acoustic guitarists...pale in the shadow of Colombian born Juan Carlos Quintero...who re-emerges...with a vibrant tour of his homeland, appropriately titled The Way Home...from the effortless interaction with his longtime ensemble featuring pianist Joe Rotondi and bassist Eddie Resto, a host of all-star percussionists, as well as a love for Latin folkloric music...Quintero...[does]...pop-flamenco...be-bop licks...[along with]...more polyrhythmic hybrid excursions...which fuse...fast and rumbling flamenco runs with folksy, twangy Country and Western sensibilities...and...blend...straight ahead and pop flamenco flavors...[&}...also...odd-metered, avante garde..." -- Jonathan Widran, All Music Guide

 

Previous Recommends: 
History
 


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2004


The Sufferin' Kind II
Digital GarageBand

launched January 2004

 


Sufferin' Kind II - Digital GarageBand (New Works):

At the beginning of January 2004, Apple Computer Applications Group Audio Product Marketing Manager Jeff Taylor selected the month's song recommendation for VSJ Music Circle...Later in January, at Macworld, Moscone Center, San Francisco, Apple Co-Founder Steve Jobs introduced the revolutionary "GarageBand" pro music composition software "for the rest of us", a top-secret Apple project Jeff had been working on.  Replying to my email about me raving over getting & learning the new music tool, Jeff replied "… This product was the result of an enormous effort between Apple and our german counterparts Emagic…this application is the first of its kind… to bring "pro" capabilities to the average computer userThe software instruments (both sample based and modeled instruments like the 70's electric piano) are absolutely world class. I didn't spare any expense making sure we had the very best we could find…I feel like a proud father…".

Ever since a recent successful "Find your lost high school friends" Internet search by VSJ alumni turned up all members of..."The Sufferin' Kind",... which discovery lead to the creation of...[this]...historical & current Music Circle monthly recommendation website in 2003, I'd been wondering if the band might yet once again play someday somehow - some months ago I discussed with Jeff the possibility of setting up, for example, a web-based video-conference where band members could jam over a video-phone conference call, but Jeff pointed out the problems, even with the best software then available, of signal latency - the speed of light is just too dang slow!  Then... after wife Toni & I had got our copy of GarageBand & taken a cursory look, & after I had sufficient time to recover from the delicious delirium induced by the profound impact of what I saw & heard, an artistic creation that changes the World, enabling the rest of us "who labor for their livelihood" to create Great Music…an idea struck me with the brilliance of a searchlight shining "with the power of ten billion butterfly sneezes" - would it be possible to build a virtual "Sufferin' Kind like" band, in terms of what works such a group might create in a recording studio and produce as tracks on a CD?  Could band members & other musically interested share & distribute tracks for future compilation? Could robust multi-part compositions of a band's players be created & assembled quickly & easily?  I decided to perform a simple test to see if I could, from scratch, learn & get handy enough with GarageBand, to put together a 4-6 piece band, compose a couple of tasty instrumental composition segments, including a Rock piece & a World Fusion example, complete with drums, bass, rhythm/accompaniment & lead melody, producing an mp3 file suitable for upload, playback & download from the web ("$0.99 per song fee waived for this test" ;),  using only what comes with the installed original GarageBand software, with no additional software (like the "Jam Pak" of additional musical goodies (instruments, etc)) or hardware (like the MIDI interface keyboards), & do it...in what little time I had available (Tuesday & Wednesday night) & finish in time to make & accompany the monthly VSJ Music Circle recommendation email announcement (Thursday night).  So, Tuesday night I spent a few hours & went through just some of the GarageBand Tutorial Files & a few sections of Help, then started creating the segment for the Rock piece, named "Predatory Tunicate", then Wednesday night spent another few hours finishing up the segment for the World Fusion piece, named "Mullah Moolah & the Infidels", then creating & uploading the mp3's to the web.  Total time from study to upload was about 4 hours.  Links to the new composition segments "Predatory Tunicate" & "Mullah Moolah & the Infidels" are provided below.

(NOTE: To get the pieces to play a bit longer, you can select "repeat play" - in Windows Media Player > Play > Repeat)  



Short Samples:

Mullah Moolah & the Infidels

Predatory Tunicate

Full Song:

Update 4/29/04 - 1st new song "Chattanooga Choogle" (4 min 15 sec; ~6 Meg mp3) created in GarageBand & added to Web Streamload Hosted File Public Folder site.

(Note: Current Streamload account allows for around 150 or so "listens" (streaming downloads) of the song a month; if you get a message indicating the limit's been reached, you can do an MP3 File Download of the song, from the Streamload Hosted File Public Folder site, to your local desktop, & play the song off your hard drive).  
 

Direct Streaming link (invokes Player):





 
Download Link (saves file):

(Note: to download, either use the Web Interface (select song by checking check box to left of song Name 01_Chattanooga_Choogle.mp3, then click on either the "Download" button to left of song name or the screen-top command icon bar "Download" arrow) or your Computer Interface (in Windows, right click filename 01_Chattanooga_Choogle.mp3, & select "Save Target As…"; on Mac, press-hold Control key, click filename 01_Chattanooga_Choogle.mp3, & select "Download Link to Disk")
 

Chattanooga Choogle (stream)

Chattanooga Choogle (download)


Notes
* Choogle
(chüg΄əl - 1. to lazily raft down river

Dedication
To Apple Computer Applications Group Audio Product Marketing Manager Jeff Taylor & his wife Katie, on the occasion of their marriage 04/04. Thanks deeply for this incredible musical instrument GarageBand - what an astonishing  result from a music lesson/jam session we shared at your piano so many years ago.

Review
Mr. Richard Fader of New Jersey writes, "Dear Rosannadana, when I heard this song Chattanooga I wondered "What kind of music is this?  Is it rock with a Latin beat or Latin with a rock beat? How long is it ? And  just where where did it come from?  It sounds like a cross between your kind of Latin music & Santana, which leads me to ask you, isn't the name of this group really "Santana Rosannadana"?


Links 
Player note:
Windows Media Player 9 displays …
1) full track info in window bottom marquis, including Album, Artist, Song
2) accompanying Light Show with graphics animation driven by the music dynamics (beat, frequency) for example 
Windows Media Player 9 > View > Visualizations > Musical Colors > Blue Flame

Additional GarageBand Resources

Apple Macworld GarageBand  
Retail Apple Stores GarageBand Presentations (15") & Workshops (60") ( San Francisco Apple Store)

Reviews: Tweakheadz SynthTopia 
Tutorials: SynthTopia

Supplemental Loops/Instruments
Notes: 

* 3rd Party vendors like those below often offer free loop collections, in addition to regular loop CDs which typically sell for ~ $50
* Custom loop creation resources like those below enable creation of your own GarageBand AppleLoops & loop CDs

Apple: GarageBand Jam Pack
3rd Party: Access AMG loops  Instruments Bitshift Drums On Demand PowerFX

Custom: Adding loops to GarageBand Expanding Your GarageBand Loop Library
Apple Developer Connection Development Kits AppleLoops SDK Soundtrack Loop Utility (SLU)   (wav/aiff to Appleloop)
  Utility: Sound Converter (mp3 to wav/aiff) Doggiebox               (drum kit beat sequencer creator to aiff/slu/GarageBand)
Converter utilities (Dailymp3.com)


(NOTE: For PC users, a reasonable GarageBand alternative is Cakewalk Home Studio)
(NOTE: For Web Surfers, especially the younger set, interested in exploring basic loop-based music composition, Coke Music Studios  offers a free, online, multi-track loop Music Mixer)

 

Music Theory & Composition Resources:

The following very approachable books & "music wheel" dials offer considerable & succinct information on music creation.  The "music wheels" effectively capture & implement the essence of theory & model in a very handy "analog calculator like" format.

"How to Play the Piano Despite Years of Lessons : What Music Is and How to Make It at Home"
"Chords & Progressions for Jazz & Popular Keyboard"
"HarperCollins College Outline Music Theory"
"The Complete Idiot's Guide to Music Theory"
"Inside the Music: The Musician's Guide to Composition Improvisation and the Mechanics of Music"
"The Gig Bag Book of Picture Chords for all Keyboards"
"260 Drum Machine Patterns"
"MIDI for Musicians"
"The Midi Companion" (recommended by San Francisco's Haight Ashbury electronic music resource store "robotspeak" owner Steve Taormina)

Ron Greene's Music Dials

 

Internet Radio:

Internet Radio stations abound & were the subject of recent San Francisco Chronicle stories, excerpts from which note "SomaFM, an Internet radio station that broadcasts from a garage in Bernal Heights, beams seven channels of music to the entire planet, past meridians and across the equator and back through modems logged onto somafm.com...created in 1999 by software developer Rusty Hodge...powered by...15 servers lodged into the corner of Hodge's garage...On the station's Web site is a log of all tunes played...Hodge is...working with four other Bay Area residents...All told, their CD collection pushes 10,000...An average of 8,000 listeners tune in to SomaFM at any point during the day...Hodge...encodes his own play lists, 35,000 tunes at a time...": 

SF Chronicle stories:

"Move over, pirate radio"
"On the Internet radio dial"

Selection of Internet Radio station from the Chronicle stories:

Featured: SomaFM Live365

Africanhiphop Astralwerks Air Bossanova
Digitally Imported Epitonic KEXP
Stereolab StreamingSoundtracks 

Pirate Radio 
In late '60's Europe The Sufferin' Kind band found, as noted in this website's opening paragraph, that "...working up a repertoire of popular hits was sometimes challenging, as Rock songs, particularly English Rock tunes, were often banned from the air waves.. a way around this was found when Pirate Radio Station Ships began setting up off the English Coast, transmitting 3 miles off-shore in International waters...one station [band members were]  tuning into, [for example] to get chord patterns for songs, was "Radio Caroline", (still transmitting !), particularly [the] DJ Jim ['Murph the Surf'] Murphy [show 'The Midnight Surf Party']...".

 

Download Music for Custom CD's & MP3 Players:

Music Circle Play List Recommendations can generally be searched for, found & downloaded, in a format suitable for burning onto a CD or loading onto an MP3 player, for typically under a dollar per song, from any number on online music services that have appeared recently. Popular music download sites include: 

Apple iTunes    Free Mac & Windows versions

MSN Music

BuyMusic Emusic
Napster RealRhapsody Wal-Mart Music Downloads
Winamp Sony Connect Cnet Music Download              (Chronicle, 04/26/04 "Cnet unveils indie site")

 


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2005
 



 

 

Radio Villa St. Jean Music Circle (KVSJ)
A Global Online Internet Streaming Audio Webcast Radio Station
in Low Band, High Band & Mobile
launched April 2005


 

 

Installation Info
 

 Format

Low Band
"Live365" Version,
Web App for Mac/PC,
56K & up
 

 

High  Band
"Mercora" Version,
Windows App for PC (XP/2000), 
Broadband
 

 

Mobile
"Mercora" Version,
Windows Mobile App for
Pocket PC/Phone Edition/SmartPhone, 
WiFi / GSM/GPRS

 

Download / Install / Play

 

Radio Villa Low Band Live365 Station

 

  Radio Villa High Band Mercora Station *   Radio Villa Mobile Mercora Station  
 

 

 

* Note, XP/Broadband users: Choosing Mercora would free up & make available more "Maximum Simultaneous Listeners' slots for listeners with other kinds of Computer/Operating System/Connection Type on Live365 Station

     

Special Features

 
 

   
 

Quick Start for the "Good To Go": Click the "Play" icon to navigate to the "Radio Villa St Jean Low Band Live365 Station" web site, then when there, (temporarily disable any  pop up blocker), click on its Play icon. For 1st-time listeners, Live365 pops up a required free Registration screen set, then its required free Player auto downloader/installer, then plays a 30 second ad while loading, then starts playing the "Radio Villa St. Jean Music Circle Playlist". For a more detailed explanatory walk through, in the "Installation Info" above, click the "Radio Villa Low Band Live365 Station" help file link.

 

 

Enter an artist or genre, then click the "GO" button, to invoke a browser displaying any Mercora Search Results info. If found, and you've installed Mercora, click the results Play button to connect to a Mercora Radio Webcast & hear the music.
 

 

 

 

 


RadioVilla Mobile is particularly enjoyable over a WiFi hotspot such as those commonly found at hotels & airports, including T-Mobile WiFi Hotspots at Starbucks, Borders Books, Hyatt Hotels, Red Roof Inns & FedEx Kinkos.
You can also enjoy Radio Villa over your Pocket PC Phone Edition / SmartPhone, anywhere in the world where there's a GSM/GPRS signal,  where it's especially effective conquering the tedium of   commuting, doing the chores & waiting in lines. No extra MP3 player needed, no need to download tunes, never run out of storage space & never have to deal with downloaded music limited copy/expired time period licenses - just use your existing mobile device like a virtual transistor radio to "tune in" to the webcast & enjoy the music.

 

.

Now Playing on RadioVilla
Mercora Player for PCs
 

Five Channels  


     
 
  • To see what's playing as time rolls on, you can update the playlist by refreshing this page (F5)
     
  • To hear the music (if you have the Mercora player installed), click any song in the Channels Playlist above
     
  • To download the player, click the button below - it's free, legal & secure, with no adware, spyware, commercials, announcers, or DJ talk
 
 

Get Mercora!

 

 

 

 

Background Info 

 

Radio Villa St. Jean Music Circle ("Radio Villa")

Radio Villa was created to present the Music Circle's ever-growing list of music recommendations in a new way, & through a new medium, evolving beyond the current format of offering a single song split into "Listen to Sample" audio clips.

Radio Villa airs the complete collection of Music Circle recommendations, since 2003, in a Playlist of songs, each song played in its entirety, not broken into audio clips.

Radio Villa is on the air now, broadcasting around the world, between 18-24 hours a day, 7 days a week. The station established a global reach within the 1st few weeks of test trial runs, with listener logs showing  folks tuning in from Japan, Peru, France, Croatia, Canada, Brazil, Poland, Turkey, Venezuela, Germany, Morocco, Greece & Bahrain.

Radio Villa transmits in 2 Bands from 2 Stations:

  • Low Band: Runs on Mac or PC. Format (32kbps) can be heard by 56k modem listeners and all broadband listeners. Free Basic Account. Free Basic Player. Some Advertisements (removable with minor account upgrade). On the air 24/7. Broadcasts as a Web Application over the Live 365 Network

  • High Band: Runs on PC. Format (96kbps) can be heard by broadband listeners only. Free Basic Account. Free Basic Player. No Advertisements. No DJ talk. On the air ~18/7. Broadcasts as a P2P V.2 Application over the Mercora Network

 

Security
Unlike earlier generation online music systems, there's no music uploading, downloading or listener access to other listener's computers. Music collections for playlist broadcasts are copied, uploaded & stored to the Mercora/Live365 Server Network, & broadcast from there, protected by their Firewall & other security measures, so there's no opportunity to trace back to your machine's IP address.  With streaming audio, there's no file transfer taking place, only streaming audio bits, which do not provide an opportunity for a"piggyback" Trojan or virus. Further, in P2P V.2, the Mercora network doesn't use any specific hard-assigned Ports, but instead uses UPNP which picks random ports from 1-256k. Mercora enforces all authentication (PC ID, your ID, etc) to ensure you are who you say you are, as well as avoids the use of any Ad-ware/Spy-ware. Other than that, it's as safe as the host OS it runs upon, the same OS as yours (if you're running Mercora, it's only available for Windows, mainly 2000/XP, and the safety of that OS is insured by vendor Microsoft as long as you've installed the necessary security updates (Service Pack 2, etc).

Legality
As noted on the Mercora Website FAQ page, "Mercora has obtained the necessary licenses so that you can broadcast music on the Mercora Network legally. Specifically, Mercora enables the webcasting of music according to the Digital Millennium Copyright Act, 17 U.S.C. § 114...Mercora has obtained the statutory license for the non-interactive streaming of sound recordings from Sound Exchange, the organization designated by the U.S. Copyright Office to collect and distribute statutory royalties to sound recording copyright owners and featured and non featured artists. Mercora has also taken care of all U.S. musical composition performance royalties through its licenses with ASCAP, BMI and SESAC."

Royalties
As noted on the Live365 Website "Cost to Broadcast" page, "Royalties: for musical works (songwriter royalties, owed to ASCAP, BMI and/or SESAC) and performances (Digital Sound Recording Performance royalties, owed to SoundExchange or Royalty Logic)...Digital Sound Recording Performance ("DSRP") royalty:" [is]...Calculated under either the Librarian of Congress rate or the Small Webcaster Settlement Act (SWSA), paid to SoundExchange or Royalty Logic...Librarian of Congress determination...Annual Minimum...$500...Current Rate...$.000762 per performance...Small Webcaster Settlement Act...Annual Minimum...$2,000...Current Rate...10% of revenues, as defined...Musical works royalties:...Rates estimated based on "experimental Internet licenses" available on respective royalty organization websites...ASCAP...Annual Minimum...$264...Current Rate...1.615% of revenues, as defined...BMI...Annual Minimum...$264...Current Rate...1.75% of revenue, as defined...SESAC...Annual Minimum...$158...Current Rate...$.00786 per page request...Additionally, depending on streaming format used, licensing fees...paid to the owner of that format (e.g. Thomson for MP3 patent)..."

Features
Comparison
 

 

Radio Villa St Jean Music Circle

Station

High  Band Mercora

Low Band Live365

 

 

 

Broadcast Format
 

96kbps
 

FM 32kbps/32kHz/stereo mp3PRO
 

On the air (hh/d)

 

~6-8am~midnight/7(Pacific Standard Time (PST))
(figure conversion to your time zone with world time converter
)
 

24/7

 

Minimum System Requirements:
Platform: OS/Browser

 

PC: Windows 2000,  XP or higher
May work on Windows 98/ME
May work on Mac running Virtual PC
 

PC: Windows 9X, NT, ME, 2000, XP / Microsoft IE 5
Mac: OS#, X / IE, Netscape, Safari

 

Maximum Simultaneous
Listeners

100 (-300 or more; Bandwidth handled by Relay Server)
 

100
 

 

 

 

Listener Basic Account
 

• Free. Unlimited listening (free 7 day trial) then limited listening to 1 Hr./day
• Listeners can restore unlimited listening by upgrading their free basic account to a "Premium Account" ($3.99/mo)
 

Free


 

Listener Basic Player

Free PC "IMRadio" Player

Free PC/Mac "Live 365" Player

 

 

 

Advertisements
 

Entirely ad free
 

 

• Not entirely ad-free, but a very low rate, typically a 30 second spot at beginning of listen & after roughly every ½ dozen songs; still, significantly better than most FM Radio
• Listeners can remove all ads by upgrading their free basic player account to a "VIP Preferred Member" ($3.65/mo with free 5 day trial)

 

 

 

Special Features


 

• Forums, Groups, Chat, Picture Sharing, Blogs
• 10 Broadcast Channels
• Time Shifting ("Tivo for Radio"): Enables saving of tracks for later on-demand playback (Premium Account)

• Message Boards, Chat
• Playlist Broadcast Scheduling

 

 

 

 

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"What is essential is invisible to the eye", 
The Little Prince, 
by Antoine de Saint Exupéry, 
(who attended Villa St. Jean 1915-1917).




(Visit the Little Prince section 
of the kar'ikter store)



 

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Time-Out Section 
The section that boldly dares to proclaim: "Enough with the MP3's already!"

Quantum Superposition Politically Correct AND Incorrect Department




Anti-Terrorist, Jihad-Bashing Band, "Mullah Moolah & the Infidels"
pick of the political comix,"The Spiders"
(See 01/03 "Wired" magazine for Pt. 4!)

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Credits:
Graphics/Layout (original): VSJ alumnae Steven MacIntyre & Kevin Di Palma
Photos, Black & White: Joe Stivers (VSJ yearbook photographer 1966-1967)
Photos,  Color: Henry "Broz" Rowland & Cliff Thompson
Photos,  Color Video Stills: Bill Thompson
Video iMovie: Toni Thompson
Business Card:  Randy Dalton
Text: Cliff Thompson

Website Host/Sponsor:
San Francisco
Robotics Society of America