Ze Frank on Theoretical Perfection

Saved as a recurring reminder for myself mostly. via

March 10, 2009

Quincy Jones and Musical Polaroids

Quincy Jones on the production of Thriller:

We did what we called Polaroids. We must’ve looked at 600 or 700 songs. When you get a song you feel you like, you put it down with a rhythm section to get it on its feet, and then you hear Michael sing a couple of takes on it, maybe with a couple of background lines to see how it holds up, so you can see what it might be and you’re not just wasting your time.

As Matt from 37 Signals puts it:

Go through a ton of stuff and give it all a quick shot. Then see what sticks and devote more resources to that. That way, failure is cheap. You’re actually expecting failure and embracing the idea that only a small percentage of your ideas are truly good enough to earn a big chunk of your attention.

February 18, 2009

J.J. Abrams and the Mystery Box

The thing about “Jaws” is, it’s really about a guy who is sort of dealing with his place in the world – with his masculinity, with his family, how he’s going to, you know, make it work in this new town…. It’s why when people do sequels, or rip off movies, you know, of a genre, they’re ripping off the wrong thing. You’re not supposed to rip off the shark or the monster. You gotta rip off – you know, if you rip something off – rip off the character. Rip off the stuff that matters.