Craig Schuftan


Culture Club 3

Learn the secrets of success with Weezer, Oasis and Satan's favourite art teacher, Sir Joshua Reynolds.

Classic rock made easy by Schuftronics

A short history of unhappiness as a songwriting resource, 1621-1995. Featuring Robert Burton, John Keats and The Smashing Pumpkins.

Anatomy of mellon collie by Schuftronics

AC/DC. Not only the greatest rock and roll band that ever walked the face of the earth, but also the living embodiment of the mature philosophy of legendary 19th century nutbar, Friedrich Nietzsche.

High voltage by Schuftronics

Hello? Is that Tommy Lee from Motley Crue? Yes, I'd like my umlaut back please'. Meet Richard Wagner, godfather of the infamous rock dots, and the only 19th century composer to have a whole subgenre of rock and roll named after him.

Long slow loud by Schuftronics

What's the worst thing about being a singer in a world famous rock and roll band? No, I can't think of anything either. So why do they all look so unhappy? 'It's a pose' says 19th century hellraiser Lord Byron. 'I should know, I invented it.'

We don't do smiles by Schuftronics

It seemed to the people as though life was without purpose, and that boredom and sufffering would be their lot for all eternity. 'Who will save us?' they cried, 'who will show us how to live?' Then, verily there appeared before them a wandering minstrel named Ben Harper and his relentless brethren. He played for them a song originally recorded by Queen and David Bowie. And lo, the people understood!

The terror of knowing by Schuftronics

What's it like being an Australian rapper? According to Dialectrix, it's very lonely indeed. "I'm an outcast!", he says. This has been a problem for all artists since the French Revolution. It's almost enough to make you feel sorry for them - but not quite.

I'm an outcast by Schuftronics

One woman against the entire universe. She's outnumbered and out of options - if she's going to get through this thing, she's going to need... a partner! Read it in a deep gravelly voice and its a trailer for an action movie with Angelina Jolie in it. Sing it over disco and it's the Gossip's song, Heavy Cross. Translate it into a philosophy of life, and you're doing what the philosophers call 'living Romantically'.

It's a cruel world by Schuftronics

Armand Van Helden and Dizzee Rascal drag early 20th century cafe talk kicking and screaming onto the dancefloor. "Society labels me insane", muses Dizzee, "but perhaps madness is close to genius. After all, they shut up De Sade, they shut up Nietzsche..."

Bonkers! by Schuftronics

Find out what puts the Romance in My Chemical Romance, with special guest star Rosie Beaton.

When i was a young boy by Schuftronics

Some of these Culture Club stories are condensed versions of chapters from Hey! Nietzsche!, others take ideas from that book and expand on them by applying them to songs that were being played a lot on triple j at the time, like The Gossip’s ‘Heavy Cross’, Dizzee Rascal’s ‘Bonkers’, Kings Of Leon’s ‘Sex on Fire’ and Dialectrix’s ‘Outcast’. The intro is a re-creation of 'Another Brick in the Wall', achieved with some samples from the soundtrack to a hit musical of the late 70s, a group of high school kids who came in for a tour of the station, and a terrible electric guitar I bought for $60 from cash converters in 1998.


part 1 fear and loathing marina and the diamonds 2

Actually My Name's Marina

"What the audience demands of the artist - really demands, in its unconscious desire - and what the artist thinks it ought to be given... [is] the same thing: the sentiment of being. The sentiment of being is the sentiment of being strong... such energy as contrives that the centre shall hold, that the circumference of the self keep unbroken, that the person be an integer, impenetrable, perdurable, and autonomous in being if inot in action."

marina and the diamonds | the family jewels | identity | personality | realism | authenticity | lionel trilling

WuTang1 e1395794252557

Once upon a time

"Music was now an object that could be owned by the individual and used at his own convenience... Now the Symphony of a Thousand could play to an audience of one. Now a man could hear nocturnes at breakfast, vespers at noon, and the Easter Oratorio on Channukah. He could do his morning crossword to 'One O'Clock Jump', and make love right through the St Matthew Passion. Anything was possible; nothing was sacred; freedom was absolute. It was the freedom, once the cathedral of culture had been wrecked, to take home the bits you liked and arrange them as you please. Once again, a mechanical invention had met capitalism's need to recreate all of life in its image. The cathedral of culture was now a supermarket."

Evan Eisenberg, 1987

wu-tang clan | shaolin | age of mechanical reproduction | aura | ritual | art | artists


Tomorrow's Harvest

"What if I tell you now that I have often longed even for plays I have seen performed - frequently the very ones which bored me most - or for books I have read in the past and did not like at all? If that is not madness, there's no such thing."



Hold to the Difficult

"And you must not let yourself be misled, in your solitude, by the fact that there is something in you that wants to escape from it. This very wish will, if you use it quietly and pre-eminently and like a tool, help to spread your solitude over wide country. People have (with the help of convention) found the solution of everything in ease, and the easiest side of ease; but it is clear that we must hold to the difficult; everything living holds to it, everything in nature grows and defends itself according to its own character and is an individual in its own right, strives to be so at any cost and against all opposition. We know little, but that we must hold to the difficult is a certainty that will not leave us; it is good to be solitary, for solitude is difficult; the fact that a thing is difficult must be one more reason for our doing it."

Rainer Maria Rilke, 1904

rainer maria rilke | kate bush


Always music in the air

'Acousmatic, the Larousse dictionary tells us, is the 'name given to the disciples of Pythagoras who for five years, listened to his teachings while he was hidden behind a curtain, without seeing him, while observing a strict silence.' Hidden from their eyes, only the voice of their master reached the disciples.... In ancient times, the apparatus was a curtain; today, it is the radio and methods of reproduction, along with the entire set of electro-acoustic transformations, that place us, modern listeners to an invisible voice, under similar conditions.'

Pierre Schaeffer, 'Acousmatics', 1966

pierre schaeffer | musique concrete | sonorous objects | acousmatics | pythagoras | phenomenology | twin peaks | red room


Music Sounds Better

'Imagine a traveller from a hundred years ago arrives at our doorstep and asks us why the music of the 20th century operates so frequently on the basis of cyclic repetition. Not just the rap and dance genres of popular culture, but also minimalism - perhaps the single most viable strand of the Western art music tradition... why does so much of our music work this way? What kind of needs do these patterns satisfy?'

Susan McClary, 1999

stardust | daft punk | susan mcclary | minimalism | loop | chaka kahn | repetition