Take note of the newly rearranged links list on the right. I've broken out my favorite MP3 blogs, all of which post tracks for download. The quality of the writing tends to vary, as does the frequency with which they're updated, but the tunes featured on them are generally of interest to the sort of people who dig the stuff on this blog. Three blogs are especaily noteworthy:
--Jefitoblog is amazing, and if you go there regularly, you will be rewarded with many tasty treats. A few weeks back, Jefito posted entire Springsteen bootlegs from 1978 and 1995, and one from Van Morrison in 1990. His "Listening Booth" and "Complete Idiot's Guide" features are indispensable as well.
--WFMU's Beware of the Blog has lots of MP3s, but is much more than an MP3 blog. Take this post from last week, which purports to be the minutes of a lunch-table conversation among several staff members on the subject of heavy-metal culture.
--Strictly speaking, the Hype Machine is a blog aggregator, collecting links to other MP3 blogs and the music they're posting. You'll be directed to lots of contemporary and independent-label stuff here, but you'll also get just enough links to older stuff to make the site worth visiting on a regular basis. It never hurts to try and get hip with newer stuff, either--although sometimes, I find myself wondering if the only way I'll get hip again is to have one replaced.
Recommended Reading: I recently finished an actual book, with covers and pages and everything: Always Magic in the Air: The Bomp and Brilliance of the Brill Building Era by Ken Emerson. It's about the seven songwriting teams of the late 50s and early 60s who created some of pop's most memorable music: Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller, Gerry Goffin and Carole King, Barry Mann and Cynthia Weil, Jeff Barry and Ellie Greenwich, Neil Sedaka and Howard Greenfield, Burt Bacharach and Hal David, and Doc Pomus and Mort Shuman. As much as I know about music, it was still surprising to be reminded how many classic tunes came out of these 14 brains, and of how brief their heyday really was.