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A statement on the continued decline of music in popular culture.


CJ Shearn
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1 hour ago, JSngry said:

Wait, is New Jack and New Jack Swing the same thing? Starting to think it's not? What I'm think of is from Bobby Brown etc. back in the day. I LOVE that stuff.

If this is something else, please excuse an old guy. 

 

Yeah, new Jack = new Jack swing 

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New Jack Swing's having a sort of critical comeback at the moment. Listening to it now it seems a lot better than it did at the time. All kinds of rhythms going on.

9 hours ago, T.D. said:

See for instance https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_murdered_hip_hop_musicians

"Two studies in the mid-2010s concluded that murder was the cause of 51.5% of hip hop musician deaths. The average age of death is between 25–30 years of age. Hip hop has a higher rate of homicide than any other genre of music, ranging from five to 32 times higher."

That's a horrifying stat.

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20 hours ago, CJ Shearn said:

:rofl:

It is awful he got shot... for no reason other than the stuff IG and TikTok peddles as hip hop culture. My former aide exposed me to more hood culture than I was comfortable with and theres a heavy dose of it several blocks from me, not only do I find the constant posturing and constant emphasis on "stuff" as a measure of self worth silly, I view it as a survival mechanism from the outside looking in. I'm glad that world is not a part of mine but if you can straddle the two worlds? Cool. 

glad you think it's so funny (that kind of nastiness is one of the reasons I don't spend much time around here any more) but it's absolutely true in terms of timing. Find me another station that was doing AOR in '66 or '67. (and for anyone just reading this that laugh emoji referred to my prior statement)

But truly I find that using the laugh emoji when someone is not actually joking is about the lowest form of commentary.

In other words, fuck you. This kind of casual disrespect is something I don't find anywhere else that I post. I haven't spent 50 years, sacrificing so much of my life and energy to the music biz, or lived through three years of hell, to sit passively by while this kind of crap happens. And I know it's only a few here, but I don't make up shit or take credit for things I have not done.

Edited by AllenLowe
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22 minutes ago, AllenLowe said:

glad you think it's so funny (that kind of nastiness is one of the reasons I don't spend much time around here any more) but it's absolutely true in terms of timing. Find me another station that was doing AOR in '66 or '67. (and for anyone just reading this that laugh emoji referred to my prior statement)

But truly I find that using the laugh emoji when someone is not actually joking is about the lowest form of commentary.

In other words, fuck you. This kind of casual disrespect is something I don't find anywhere else that I post. I haven't spent 50 years, sacrificing so much of my life and energy to the music biz, or lived through three years of hell, to sit passively by while this kind of crap happens. And I know it's only a few here, but I don't make up shit or take credit for things I have not done.

Allen, how exactly can you take credit that as a 12 year old your letter (unanswered, mind you) led to AOR programming?

How do you not know that some other 12 year old wrote the same thing, before you did, and you only reinforced the possibility that such a format would be successful? Or that the adults in charge didn't give a shit what a 12 year old wrote and had already been considering the same change?

Correlation is not causation and if I may say, it takes a 12 year old to be certain that a major radio station changed formats because he wrote a letter.

Edited by Dan Gould
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College radio stations had already begun developing the AOR format before that impressionable 12-year-old wrote that fateful letter. Fordham University's WFUV had a show called "Campus Caravan" in 1964 that offered "album material, thematic groupings of songs, interviews with musicians, and topical comments underscored by appropriate musical selections". Not long after, DJ "Uncle Tom" Gamache hosted "Tee Time" on MIT's WTBS. According to Radio In The Television Age (Fornatale & Mills, 1980), "Gamache said he designed the show as "a travesty of commercial radio." He brought in his own records to play and did phony commercials, most of them related to marijuana."

In regards to WOR, the book cites the FCC's mandate to end FM-simulcasting of AM programming as a factor in that station's format changes. "Any habitual listener to WOR-FM must have been startled at 6:00 A.M. on July 30, 1966. Instead of the usual simulcast of WOR-AM's talk show "Rambling with Gambling," a particularly raucous rock song, "Wild Thing" by the Troggs, came blaring across the airwaves. Thus WOR-FM chose to herald the end of its simulcasting and to introduce new FM programming. By the time the deejays went on the air on October 8, 1966 (they included "Murray the K" Kaufman, Scott Muni and Rosco [Bill Mercer]), WOR-FM was quite a visible tree in the city's media forest, heralded by The Village Voice as "the only place to hear vital new music and hear it well".

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I don’t know if Allen’s story is accurate, but I certainly want to believe it (which is also exactly how I felt when I read it) — and therefore I choose to believe it.
 

It’s absolutely an outstanding story, Allen — and regardless of whether it really happened exactly that way or not, I’m genuinely proud to say I know the man who invented AOR radio. :)

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20 hours ago, JSngry said:

It's like Sonny Payne only different. Totally different. But only once you know that it's not 

New Jack Basie, ok? Think on it! 

   

Do I have to?

50 minutes ago, Rooster_Ties said:

I don’t know if Allen’s story is accurate, but I certainly want to believe it (which is also exactly how I felt when I read it) — and therefore I choose to believe it.
 

It’s absolutely an outstanding story, Allen — and regardless of whether it really happened exactly that way or not, I’m genuinely proud to say I know the man who invented AOR radio. :)

+1

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12 hours ago, AllenLowe said:

glad you think it's so funny (that kind of nastiness is one of the reasons I don't spend much time around here any more) but it's absolutely true in terms of timing. Find me another station that was doing AOR in '66 or '67. (and for anyone just reading this that laugh emoji referred to my prior statement)

But truly I find that using the laugh emoji when someone is not actually joking is about the lowest form of commentary.

In other words, fuck you. This kind of casual disrespect is something I don't find anywhere else that I post. I haven't spent 50 years, sacrificing so much of my life and energy to the music biz, or lived through three years of hell, to sit passively by while this kind of crap happens. And I know it's only a few here, but I don't make up shit or take credit for things I have not done.

On 9/15/2022 at 3:40 PM, clifford_thornton said:

I think it's pretty awful that someone got shot.

The pop music world is pretty unappealing to me and long has been. Grew up in the dawn of MTV and became quickly familiar with the idea of music as an image to be sold. Realized that that image was unattainable for me and embracing eccentricity and complexity was more my speed. But the mindset that drives pop music will always be there in some form or another -- it's a commodity, plain and simple, and occasionally that intersects with actual musicality. 

Also, tastes change -- things that I thought were pap years ago sometimes reveal nuance. 

New Jack is pretty terrible but late '80s 'grunge' has a lot of quality music. Not the watered-down versions sold on MTV but the real stuff that was being released on SubPop, Homestead, Amphetamine Reptile, Touch & Go, C/Z, etc., that music is intense.

Allen, you are one strange, bitter, self important dude.  Sure you've done historically important work and are a wealth of knowledge but implying you were the person who coined AOR is dumb, it's not funny... it's a huge bit of ego stroking which ultimately means nothing... you've also crapped on a ton of players I enjoy, Joe Henderson and Dexter Gordon among them so I really have no use for that.  And what people are you speaking of that take credit here for others' work?  Anyway this is on the internet, it's not the real world so these disagreements mean nil. FYI I genuinely was laughing at my phone screen and rolled my eyes reading your AOR story because its fantastic, so absurd. When I was 12 I wrote to Blue Note complaining about certain titles being out of print... it didn't do a damn thing. Likewise I'm sure your letter didn't. You must be related to this joker I knew in college who claimed similarly fantastical shit. This girl isnt mourning the loss of your posts if you call it quits. Bad Mujer out.

 

Edited by CJ Shearn
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Everyone — and I do NOT mean to direct this at any one person — but this statement does include both Allen and CJ…

Everyone (myself included) please try and remember to be kind to each other…

(And that goes for ME too, when I forget to let my ‘better angels’ guide me (which happens all too fucking easily, especially of late, let me tell you)— and I use that phrase ‘better angels’ metaphorically, btw, because I’m basically an atheist, or more accurately, a non-theistic agnostic)

Remember that kindness goes a long way. Whatever negative things or behaviors someone else is exhibiting or actively demonstrating, there’s usually a better side of them to remember that’s still in there.

CJ and Allen, you are BOTH valuable members of this community. I’m sorry that feathers are being ruffled — but also remember that we are all quite limited in this mostly text-based world we ‘live in’ together. Emojis can sometimes help a little, but they’re also prone as fuck to misinterpretation too.

Be kind to each other, and try and assume good intent on the part of one another. Even when it’s not necessary there, just try and assume the other party ISN’T necessarily trying to say something else with a more barbarous intention or interpretation.

Allen, don’t you go anywhere. You’re a super valuable contributor here. I don’t feel like I know you all that well — for whatever reasons, even when we’re in the same threads, we’ve never really discussed things back and forth much (and I haven’t a clue why that is). I’m not in any way suggesting that’s your fault, or has anything specific to do with you. I just don’t feel like I ‘know’ you well enough to be even saying any of this.

And I guess that’s a little true with you too, CJ — but I don’t feel it as strongly because I know you’ve shared a lot with us about yourself.  (And you certainly have too, Allen, and I absolutely don’t mean to suggest otherwise).

(And of course, CJ, you’re super valuable too. You and Allen both are.)

 

No, I don’t know where the fuck I’m going with all this. I woke up at 3:15am, and can’t sleep (life’s really got me down of late).

Anyway, just let’s all try and be kind to each other. And I’m telling myself that too.

Little background, fuck-it…

 

What’s getting me down (and woke me up) is making it harder for ME to want to be as kind as I can be to others lately. For the last 2 months some ongoing insurance fuck-up has me off some meds I’ve been on for a decade, and now my perception of the world is turning a little more ‘grey’ with every passing week, and I’m feeling like wallpaper paste all the fucking time now, oh joy.

It’s not the end of the world, and I’m sure half of everyone here has something worse (and many, a lot worse) that they’re grappling with, than what I’m going through. But it still sucks, and I hate that I have to remind myself not to be such a huge grump all the time (and I mostly do ok, by over-compensating in how I present myself on the outside, to make up for how I feel inside).

ANYWAY, please be kind to each other.

Again, CJ and Allen, even if I don’t really know both of you (or feel like I know you as well as I could) — we’re all friends here. Even when we’re not, we’re ALL friends deeper down. That may not be true all the time, but it’s more true than not.

 

On 9/15/2022 at 4:43 PM, AllenLowe said:

not to digress

 

On 9/15/2022 at 6:08 AM, CJ Shearn said:

The fact that

PS: I’m briefly quoting both of you, so both of you get reply notifications as a result — so that both of you see and read what I’ve just posted right above this.

Edited by Rooster_Ties
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1 hour ago, Rooster_Ties said:

Everyone — and I do NOT mean to direct this at any one person — but this statement does include both Allen and CJ…

Everyone (myself included) please try and remember to be kind to each other…

(And that goes for ME too, when I forget to let my ‘better angels’ guide me (which happens all too fucking easily, especially of late, let me tell you)— and I use that phrase ‘better angels’ metaphorically, btw, because I’m basically an atheist, or more accurately, a non-theistic agnostic)

Remember that kindness goes a long way. Whatever negative things or behaviors someone else is exhibiting or actively demonstrating, there’s usually a better side of them to remember that’s still in there.

CJ and Allen, you are BOTH valuable members of this community. I’m sorry that feathers are being ruffled — but also remember that we are all quite limited in this mostly text-based world we ‘live in’ together. Emojis can sometimes help a little, but they’re also prone as fuck to misinterpretation too.

Be kind to each other, and try and assume good intent on the part of one another. Even when it’s not necessary there, just try and assume the other party ISN’T necessarily trying to say something else with a more barbarous intention or interpretation.

Allen, don’t you go anywhere. You’re a super valuable contributor here. I don’t feel like I know you all that well — for whatever reasons, even when we’re in the same threads, we’ve never really discussed things back and forth much (and I haven’t a clue why that is). I’m not in any way suggesting that’s your fault, or has anything specific to do with you. I just don’t feel like I ‘know’ you well enough to be even saying any of this.

And I guess that’s a little true with you too, CJ — but I don’t feel it as strongly because I know you’ve shared a lot with us about yourself.  (And you certainly have too, Allen, and I absolutely don’t mean to suggest otherwise).

(And of course, CJ, you’re super valuable too. You and Allen both are.)

 

No, I don’t know where the fuck I’m going with all this. I woke up at 3:15am, and can’t sleep (life’s really got me down of late).

Anyway, just let’s all try and be kind to each other. And I’m telling myself that too.

Little background, fuck-it…

 

What’s getting me down (and woke me up) is making it harder for ME to want to be as kind as I can be to others lately. For the last 2 months some ongoing insurance fuck-up has me off some meds I’ve been on for a decade, and now my perception of the world is turning a little more ‘grey’ with every passing week, and I’m feeling like wallpaper paste all the fucking time now, oh joy.

It’s not the end of the world, and I’m sure half of everyone here has something worse (and many, a lot worse) that they’re grappling with, than what I’m going through. But it still sucks, and I hate that I have to remind myself not to be such a huge grump all the time (and I mostly do ok, by over-compensating in how I present myself on the outside, to make up for how I feel inside).

ANYWAY, please be kind to each other.

Again, CJ and Allen, even if I don’t really know both of you (or feel like I know you as well as I could) — we’re all friends here. Even when we’re not, we’re ALL friends deeper down. That may not be true all the time, but it’s more true than not.

 

 

PS: I’m briefly quoting both of you, so both of you get reply notifications as a result — so that both of you see and read what I’ve just posted right above this.

Rooster I'm sorry to hear what you're going through. Insurance fuck ups are never good. Thanks for trying to keep things civil. 

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The “Dead” culture and music is often mocked but that judgment is usually made by those unfamiliar with the music (especially the genius level improvisational aspect of the music). Just because they played in front of more people than any band in the history of music doesn’t mean what some thinks it means.

At 57 I went to my first Grateful Dead related concert since seeing the actual band on 5/11/79 and over the last 5 years have experienced a loving culture of music and spirit while attending maybe 16 to 20 theatre shows from bands that play Grateful Dead related music. 

I’m also thrilled to be seeing Tomeka Reid’s quartet with Mary Halvorson on 9/27, Joe Russo’s Almost Dead on 9/30 (Russo is one of the greatest drummers on the planet including my jazz heroes), Pavement on 10/3 - seeing this band is a dream of mine and it’s happening - and then 3 shows with maybe the greatest living electric bassist on the planet, the *great* Phil Lesh for 3 shows in October at The Capital Theatre. Then Billy Strings in November. Myra Melford’s Fire & Water Quartet in November and Sylvie Courvoisier with Nate Wooley & Wadada Leo Smith in December. 
 

what did Duke Ellington say about great music?

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3 hours ago, JSngry said:

That it helps you get laid? 

Yeah, let's go with that. ;)

The correct quote, I believe, is: "There are two kinds of music. Good music, and the other kind."

I also like this one from Duke: "If it sounds good, it is good." 

Edited by sonnymax
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8 hours ago, Rooster_Ties said:

Everyone — and I do NOT mean to direct this at any one person — but this statement does include both Allen and CJ…

Everyone (myself included) please try and remember to be kind to each other…

(And that goes for ME too, when I forget to let my ‘better angels’ guide me (which happens all too fucking easily, especially of late, let me tell you)— and I use that phrase ‘better angels’ metaphorically, btw, because I’m basically an atheist, or more accurately, a non-theistic agnostic)

Remember that kindness goes a long way. Whatever negative things or behaviors someone else is exhibiting or actively demonstrating, there’s usually a better side of them to remember that’s still in there.

CJ and Allen, you are BOTH valuable members of this community. I’m sorry that feathers are being ruffled — but also remember that we are all quite limited in this mostly text-based world we ‘live in’ together. Emojis can sometimes help a little, but they’re also prone as fuck to misinterpretation too.

Be kind to each other, and try and assume good intent on the part of one another. Even when it’s not necessary there, just try and assume the other party ISN’T necessarily trying to say something else with a more barbarous intention or interpretation.

Allen, don’t you go anywhere. You’re a super valuable contributor here. I don’t feel like I know you all that well — for whatever reasons, even when we’re in the same threads, we’ve never really discussed things back and forth much (and I haven’t a clue why that is). I’m not in any way suggesting that’s your fault, or has anything specific to do with you. I just don’t feel like I ‘know’ you well enough to be even saying any of this.

And I guess that’s a little true with you too, CJ — but I don’t feel it as strongly because I know you’ve shared a lot with us about yourself.  (And you certainly have too, Allen, and I absolutely don’t mean to suggest otherwise).

(And of course, CJ, you’re super valuable too. You and Allen both are.)

 

No, I don’t know where the fuck I’m going with all this. I woke up at 3:15am, and can’t sleep (life’s really got me down of late).

Anyway, just let’s all try and be kind to each other. And I’m telling myself that too.

Little background, fuck-it…

 

What’s getting me down (and woke me up) is making it harder for ME to want to be as kind as I can be to others lately. For the last 2 months some ongoing insurance fuck-up has me off some meds I’ve been on for a decade, and now my perception of the world is turning a little more ‘grey’ with every passing week, and I’m feeling like wallpaper paste all the fucking time now, oh joy.

It’s not the end of the world, and I’m sure half of everyone here has something worse (and many, a lot worse) that they’re grappling with, than what I’m going through. But it still sucks, and I hate that I have to remind myself not to be such a huge grump all the time (and I mostly do ok, by over-compensating in how I present myself on the outside, to make up for how I feel inside).

ANYWAY, please be kind to each other.

Again, CJ and Allen, even if I don’t really know both of you (or feel like I know you as well as I could) — we’re all friends here. Even when we’re not, we’re ALL friends deeper down. That may not be true all the time, but it’s more true than not.

 

 

PS: I’m briefly quoting both of you, so both of you get reply notifications as a result — so that both of you see and read what I’ve just posted right above this.

Thank you.

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5 hours ago, Steve Reynolds said:

The “Dead” culture and music is often mocked but that judgment is usually made by those unfamiliar with the music (especially the genius level improvisational aspect of the music). Just because they played in front of more people than any band in the history of music doesn’t mean what some thinks it means.

At 57 I went to my first Grateful Dead related concert since seeing the actual band on 5/11/79 and over the last 5 years have experienced a loving culture of music and spirit while attending maybe 16 to 20 theatre shows from bands that play Grateful Dead related music. 

...

Many people whose taste / judgment I respect dig the Dead, but my opinion happens to be "No thanks".

I grew up fanatical about early Dead recordings. Skull and Roses and Europe '72, as they were released, were among the first LPs I ever purchased. But after a string of albums I didn't care for (Mars Hotel through Shakedown Street (ouch)) I wrote the band off and never looked back. To my taste (which I admit is questionable) the extended improvisations are mostly tedious. The culture is somewhat cool, and despite misgivings I came to somewhat enjoy clone band Phish (for example), but (a) the music wears on me after a short time; (b) I no longer have time for potheads (or boozers or other big-time substance users).

YMMV of course, no arguing with taste and there's room for both viewpoints. I don't, for instance, go on Dead threads and trumpet the fact that I don't dig 'em. ;)

Edited by T.D.
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25 minutes ago, T.D. said:

Many people whose taste / judgment I respect dig the Dead, but my opinion happens to be "No thanks".

I grew up fanatical about early Dead recordings. Skull and Roses and Europe '72, as they were released, were among the first LPs I ever purchased. But after a string of albums I didn't care for (Mars Hotel through Shakedown Street (ouch)) I wrote the band off and never looked back. To my taste (which I admit is questionable) the extended improvisations are mostly tedious. The culture is somewhat cool, and despite misgivings I came to somewhat enjoy clone band Phish (for example), but (a) the music wears on me after a short time; (b) I no longer have time for potheads (or boozers or other big-time substance users).

YMMV of course, no arguing with taste and there's room for both viewpoints. I don't, for instance, go on Dead threads and trumpet the fact that I don't dig 'em. ;)

Thanks for the post. I haven’t listened to a Dead studio album in years. Mars Hotel & Wake of the Flood were the last ok records. Live shows from 68-78 are mostly tremendous and thankfully we have many great officially releases recordings from 2-track reels and quite a few great multi-track recordings as well. Thankfully I love most of the Garcia/Hunter songs and I’m in recovery so I don’t concern myself with those who smoke weed or do whatever they do!! As far as the improvisation I used to think the same thing but like some of the best jazz & free improvisation it took some time for me to truly “hear” Lesh, Garcia & Weir. Their collective improv with Jerry mostly in front driven by Phil created some music that has no point of comparison to any other music I know of. I certainly had no idea that starting ~2015 that I would feel this way about The Grateful Dead.

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10 minutes ago, Steve Reynolds said:

Their collective improv with Jerry mostly in front driven by Phil created some music that has no point of comparison to any other music I know of. I certainly had no idea that starting ~2015 that I would feel this way about The Grateful Dead.

Me too.  The aural evidence is out there.  I think I've come out the other end - I've heard all (or most) of what there is in their music, so don't feel a huge need to sign up for upcoming Dave's Picks, but I do enjoy hearing what I have when it occurs under random play, and am often pleasantly surprised and delighted.  They were a great band.

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I'm a Dead fan. Became disillusioned when the Godchaux duo left and got off the bus. Got back on early this century when it clicked with me again and began collecting the official releases from '66 to '78 or so. Some great music to listen to!

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1 hour ago, sonnymax said:

The correct quote, I believe, is: "There are two kinds of music. Good music, and the other kind."

I also like this one from Duke: "If it sounds good, it is good." 

"It don't mean a thing if it ain't got that swing".

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As far as I'm concerned, Deadheads and all other cultish fandoms are part of the decline of popular culture precisely because it tends to be so insular. It's a distorting lens through which to view the world. The band itself is fine mostly, and sometimes a fair bit better than just fine, but NOT the be all end all or even anything close.  Nobody is, not the Beatles, not Bob, not Miles, not Blue Note to the exclusion of Prestige and everyone else, not nobody.

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6 hours ago, Steve Reynolds said:

Thanks for the post. I haven’t listened to a Dead studio album in years. Mars Hotel & Wake of the Flood were the last ok records. Live shows from 68-78 are mostly tremendous and thankfully we have many great officially releases recordings from 2-track reels and quite a few great multi-track recordings as well. Thankfully I love most of the Garcia/Hunter songs and I’m in recovery so I don’t concern myself with those who smoke weed or do whatever they do!! As far as the improvisation I used to think the same thing but like some of the best jazz & free improvisation it took some time for me to truly “hear” Lesh, Garcia & Weir. Their collective improv with Jerry mostly in front driven by Phil created some music that has no point of comparison to any other music I know of. I certainly had no idea that starting ~2015 that I would feel this way about The Grateful Dead.

Agreed on Garcia/Hunter. That's the Dead material I loved back in the '70s, and I still enjoy it when heard on the radio. (Sometimes I get the Woodstock radio station when driving, and the Dead and offshoots get significant play.)

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