Today we talked about categories of things.  Is popcorn a vegetable or junk food?  I don’t know.. maybe I never will be certain about that.  I mentioned a style of music called “ambient music”.  The word ambient means background, or surrounding.  “Ambient music refers to a kind of music that envelops the listener without drawing attention to itself”  (Answers.com).  Ambient music is great to have playing in the background when you are studying, writing or reading because it doesn’t distract you from your work.  It simply creates a calm and peaceful environment or atmosphere.  I also enjoy other more varying dynamic styles of music.  The word dynamic in music refers to loudness or quietness.  For example, the dynamic of ambient music is very quiet, while the dynamic of rock is very loud.  Some musics like drum and bass for example have a widely varying dynamic and commonly include loud and quiet parts.

So, considering that I usually like music based on category and style, not exclusively based on artist: How do I get lots of new music from a genre that I like?  Here’s how:  There is a relatively unknown and somewhat new technology called “podcasting” that is sweeping the world by storm (idiom= becoming very popular).  Podcasting is a way to subscribe, meaning automatically download a specific music show from the internet.  There are literally thousands of podcasts by professionals and amateurs alike.  Although using the music software “Itunes” is the most popular way to subscribe to these shows, other software known as “podcatchers” can be used to download, organize, and manage your podcasts.  I listen to news podcasts, music podcasts, and even get some Chinese lesson podcasts.  I’m even thinking about starting my own ESL podcast.  I’m a computer geek, so it’s easy for me to do!  However, if you have any questions about starting your own podcast and making your own internet radio station… please ask me and I can help you.  Signing up for a podcast is as easy as putting the podcast’s URL into Itunes!  Then Itunes automatically checks for new episodes and downloads them for you.  Below is a quick list of podcasts I listen to.  I especially enjoy listening to Ultima Thule ambient music podcast when I am working at my computer!  Here is the URL for Ultima Thule:

http://www.ultimathule.info/xml/Ultima_Thule_Ambient_Music_Radio.xml

you can put this text into Itunes “subscribe to podcast” which is in the “advanced” menu.  Then you can check out the ambient music style!

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