Volcanic Eruptions Interrupt Air Travel In Europe

It’s been a quiet few days for air travel in Europe as flights have been cancelled, airplanes have been grounded and passengers have been stranded at airports all over the continent. And it’s all a result of ash produced by volcanic eruptions on the island of Iceland that has been dispersed into the atmosphere. These particles of ash can be sucked into jet engines causing damage to the machinery and can also damage windscreens and landing gear. As a result, flights have been cancelled at the majority of European airports since Thursday and the disruptions seem set to continue for a few more days as the Eyjafjallajökull volcano keeps on erupting. However, every cloud has a silver lining as other forms of transport have benefitted from the airlines’ loss. Most people are making alternative plans by taking trains, boats and buses, but John Cleese has had to take a taxi from Oslo to Brussels that apparently cost nearly €4,000. And he still had to get the Eurostar back to London after all that. Here’s a cover of a Simon & Garfunkel tune from Icelandic singer Emiliana Torrini and a song called Volcano by Damien Rice with a little help from Lisa Hannigan

Sound of Silence (Simon and Garfunkel cover) – Emiliana Torrini

Volcano – Damien Rice & Lisa Hannigan


Record Store Day 2010

Today is Record Store Day, an annual celebration of independent record shops around the world and, by extension, a celebration of the vinyl record. The 7″ single (played at 45 revolutions per minute) and the 12″ album (33 1/3 rpm) were developed in the 1940s and became the most popular form of music carrier within a decade. The success of the single coincided with the arrival of rock & roll at the end of the 50s, but the coming of age of the album format saw LPs outselling singles by the end of the 60s. The first big challenge to vinyl’s dominance of the music market was the introduction of the cassette tape at the end of the following decade. The possibility of portable music was heralded by the arrival of the Walkman in the early 80s, paving the way for cassette sales to overtake those of records by the end of that decade. Vinyl’s future was also challenged by the switch from analogue to digital in the shape of the compact disc in the middle of the 80s. The combination of the cassette and the CD led to the swift demise of the record, while the continuing popularity of the CD eventually killed off the humble cassette. The major record companies continued to profit from all these format changes, particularly when consumers upgraded their vinyl to newer (and more expensive) CDs

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