The Postal Service Return With New Song “A Tattered Line Of String”

first_imgTHE POSTAL SERVICE 2013 Tour Dates:04/09/13 Tue – Reno NV @ Grand Sierra Theatre04/10/13 Wed – Davis CA @ Mondavi Center04/13/13 Sat – Indio CA @ Coachella04/12/13 Fri – San Luis Obispo CA @ Madonna Expo Center (SOLD OUT)04/18/13 Thu – Phoenix AZ @ Comerica Theatre04/19/13 Fri – Las Vegas NV @ Chelsea Ballroom at the Cosmopolitan04/20/13 Sat – Indio CA @ Coachella05/18/13 Sat – Manchester UK @ Academy 2 (SOLD OUT)05/19/13 Sun – London UK @ Brixton Academy05/20/13 Mon – London UK @ Brixton Academy (SOLD OUT)05/21/13 Tues – Paris FR @ Trianon05/23/13 Thu – Barcelona SP @ Primavera Soundwave05/27/13 Mon – Sasquatch Music Festival, George, WA (SOLD OUT)06/14/13 Fri – New York NY @ Barclays Center (SOLD OUT) After a nearly ten-year hiatus, The Postal Service are back in full force. The band recently announced that they would be joining the Coachella 2013 lineup as well as releasing a 10th Anniversary Edition of their very popular debut album Give Up via Sub Pop Records with a couple of bonus tracks. As if that was not enough, the band then announced that they would be embarking on a 2013 US Tour which will kick off on April 9th in Reno, Nevada.Vocalist Benjamin Gibbard who is known for his solo work as well as his lead role in Death Cab For Cutie and producer Jimmy Tamborello make up the duo that is The Postal Service. Today they released one of the bonus tracks for the reissue of Give Up titled “A Tattered Line Of String,” the band’s first new material in ten years. The song, which has a length of three minutes, has the same electro-pop sound that the band used throughout Give Up with a few more added tricks and features vocals from Jenny Lewis. Give Up was certified platinum last year just shy of 10 years from its original February 9, 2003 release. Led by the single “Such Great Heights,” the landmark album is, after Nirvana’s Bleach, the second-biggest selling album in Sub Pop’s nearly 25-year history. Listen to the song below!last_img read more

West Philadelphia’s The Blockley Welcomes Performance by Soulive 7/18

first_imgIf you happen to find yourself around the West Philadelphia area later this month you’re in for quite the treat; NYC-based band Soulive is making their way to Pennsylvania to grace the state with some feel-good grooves. The Blockley, located at 38th and Chestnut in West Philadelphia, is putting on very few shows this summer, but what they lack in quantity they’re overpowering with amazing quality. Soulive will be playing for their first time at this venue, so it’s sure to be a great night for the audience and the band alike.Soullive has recorded with Dave Matthews, opened for The Rolling Stones and will be sharing their bassist Eric Krasno with Tedeshi-Trucks Band on this summer’s tour; their talent, success, and entertainment is undeniable. This upcoming performance on July 18th at The Blockley is sure to be another notable moment of success for the jam trio.The band’s latest release Rubber Soulive, out in 2010, has been followed by their 14th-anniversary celebration in March by performing at Bowlive IV, the group’s annual two-week long celebration that takes place at New York’s Brooklyn Bowl.The show will be opened by Philadelphia-based Swift Technique, local favorites and leaders in the new school of Philadelphia Funk. Swift Technique’s shows are talked about throughout the city, so it’s an added bonus to a show you already don’t want to miss.Make sure to catch the concert on July 18th. Visit The Blockley’s official site here for tickets and additional information!last_img read more

Rock N Roll Resort Announces Lineup: Dumpstaphunk, Motet, Everyone Orchestra

first_imgSpringtime festival Rock N Roll Resort v4 has just announced their jamtastic lineup, which includes Dumpstaphunk, two nights of Motet, and an Everyone Orchestra performance featuring Steve Kimock, John Kimock, Reed Mathis, Jennifer Hartswick, and Natalie Cressman.The festival takes place from April 4-6, at the Hudson Valley Resort & Spa in Kerhonkson, NY.Rock N Roll Resort v4 also includes two nights of Turkuaz, who recently announced a new album, Cabinet, Conehead Buddha, and many, many more. You can get the festival’s full lineup through their official website.-David Melamed (@DMelamz)last_img read more

L4LM’s Miami Music Week Diary

first_imgIt’s the craziest week in dance music every single year. At the end of March, music fans and industry workers travel from all across the globe to South Beach, Miami, Florida, for a week of mixers, parties, festivals, and clubs. Every where you look, there’s something going on. If there is a space big enough for some turntables and some speakers, chances are, there will be a party going on. Even in the smallest hotel lobbies, someone will be spinning shitty techno music until 6am.It’s hard work to catch everything you want to see – but I tried my best, and documented the whole thing. Here’s a day by day diary of what went down this past week in Miami.TuesdayThe opening day is still quiet in Miami. The music industry have all arrived, meetings are beind held, but the throngs of kandi wearing tourists have not yet arrived for Ultra Music Festival over the weekend. There’s stuff to do – several small pool parties here and there, but this was a good day to relax and take in the calm before the storm.At night, however, things are completely different, as the Above and Beyond was set to perform at Mansion. As one of the hottest acts in dance music right now, this was one of the few events of the early week to completely sell out – and you could tell. Mansion was packed from wall to wall with eager dance fans looking to take in a helping of Above and Beyond’s heartfeld dance music. While once considered a trance act, I feel like Above and Beyond has carved out their own genre at this point. This set was no different, blending progressive electronic beats with soulful lyrics and never losing the party.WednesdayOne of the new entries to this year’s party scene was also one of the most highly anticipated – Good Times Miami debuted with an entirely new concept, bringing partiers a day full of back to back sets and new collaborations. Curated by Skrillex’s OWSLA records, Weds’ line up included an incredible hip hop based set from Boys Noize and Brodinski, which featured an appearance from Baltimore rapper Spank Rock, the legendary Benny Bennassi going b2b with Congorock, and an incredible display of turntablism with A-Trak spinning next to DJ Craze. Those turntable masters, next to each other, switching off, was one of the crazier thing’s I’d see all week. If you were lucky, you also caught Skrillex messing around with some audio equipment backstage, performing for a crowd of maybe 10 or 15 people.Wednesday night sent me to Story for Laidback Luke’s ‘Super You And Me’ party, which is supposed to have a super hero theme, but saw most party goers all decked out in their fancies. Laidback Luke put out a predictable awesome set, captivating the crowd with an incredible set. Support for the night included DJ Snake, who’se song ‘Turn Down For What’ was arguable to most overplayed song of this year’s Miami Music Week (in a loving way), and The Chainsmokers, who had a camera crew running around taking selfies for a remix video they’re working on.ThursdayI dont know if this was a conscious effort, but Thursday was the most packed day in terms of things going on everywhere. But before anything really started, Armin Van Buuren was hosting a press conference, announcing his brand new Phillips headphones. These things are incredible, folding up tight for travel, completely customizable side pieces, and a bunch of other features that only a true DJ would appreciate. Those of us who stuck around were treated to a brief set from Armin himself, going through some of his bigger hits in an intimate setting.After Armin, it was off to the Dirtybird BBQ, one of the most highly anticipated parties of the year. Claude VonStroke brought the whole crew to the Cafeina Wynwood Lounge, a fantastic outdoor space, and threw down a party that started early and ended late. Unlike last year’s event, this one went wayyy into the early morning – you could have spent the entire day at the BBQ. This year’s special guest was hip hop legend Just Blaze, who went through hip hop history with a slew of his greatest productions. It was a welcome change, but I think everyone was ready to get back to the deep cuts with Claude VonStroke hit the decks, followed by Justin Martin, with the two superstars destroying the dance floor.Another highly anticipated event took place at night not too far away – Mau5trap vs Pryda saw two dance music heavyweights share the same booth for the first time – completely unrehearsed and unplanned. Both labels brought their future stars for support, including Eekoo, Fehrplay, and Jeremy Olander, but the main attraction was the label heads themselves. Deadmau5 manned his laptop and controllers, Prydz took the CDJs, and the two put on an incredible show for the packed floor of mau5heads that danced the night away.FridayThe Red Bull Guest House kicked off Friday with a pool party curated by Skrillex’s OWSLA label. The invite only party saw sets from Kill The Noise, What So Not, Milo and Otis, and of course, Skrillex, in a pretty tiny pool area. Oh, and there was an ice cream man that forced you to dance to earn free ice cream bars, tons of weird performance artists, and a huge floating Red Bull logo in the pool that you couldn’t help but dance on. Skrillex’s set was a huge highlight, as he erred towards newer influences of deep and progressive house, and away from the womps and wobbles that made him famous.After a short break, it was back to the Red Bull Guest House for their late night ‘Breakfast Club’, which turns the inside of the Gale Hotel into, well, a breakfast club. From 2:30-7, DJs transform two rooms into night clubs, and the lobby becomes a breakfast buffet, complete with modern fortune tellers, open bar, and a full food spread. Downstairs saw PMR Records’ showcase acts like Julio Bashmore, Cyril Hahn, and T. Williams, while upstairs saw the LuckyMe Collective show off such up and coming stars as Cashmere Cat and Obey City. Due to the way the club was laid out, few people knew Cashmere Cat was spinning upstairs, and his set was pretty much empty, but hey, I enjoyed standing right next to the booth while I got a private Cashmere Cat show. (Seriously, there were times when I was the only other person in the room). Obey City took the decks after, and they must have shut down the downstairs as the crowd ended up all bouncing to the upstairs midway through the set. The bigger crowd added to the energy and the DJ ended up performing a long, long set.SaturdayThe Red Bull Guest House was in full effect again, this time with a day curated by Mad Decent Records. Sets from Zeds Dead, Djemba Djemba, Grandtheft, among others filled up the day, along with a special surprise b2b set from Diplo and DJ Snake. Hip hop appearances from Riff Raff, Wakka Flocka Flame, and Trinidad James rounded out the day’s festivities. In Downtown Miami, the Anjunadeep pool party was in full swing, along with special guest Dusky who showed up for a surprise set. Saturday night saw Dusky perform a three hour set downstairs at Trade, while upstiars Maceo Plez went back to back with Danny Daze for an incredible set of deeper house music. Earlier in the night, Diddy debuted a new track with Guy Gerber before Gerber took the decks at Red Bull Guest House. SundayThe last day of Miami Music Week also saw one of the more highly anticipated sets of the weekend. While the previous days saw the likes of Skrillex and Diplo manned the Red Bull Guest House in previous days, it was 73 year old Giorgio Moroder who threw down the biggest party of the weekend. The legendary producer took to the booth late in the afternoon in the backyard area, moved from pool side to accomodate a bigger crowd. He then spun for around an hour and half, seemingly not wanting to stop. Every time the music, would cut, he’d come back for one more, eventually reprising songs like ‘Hot Stuff’ and ‘I Feel Love’ once more for encores. Throughout his set, Moroder weaved in and out of his classic productions, including the themes from ‘Flashdance’, ‘Neverending Story’, ‘Top Gun’, and ‘Midnight Express’. Throughout the entire weekend, I dont think there was a greater reaction to any set I saw than Moroders, and I think that’s a fitting end to the week – with the man whose responsible for influencing many of the DJs who headlined the big shows throughout the weekend.last_img read more

Trigger Hippy: Life After The Crowes, An Interview With Steve Gorman

first_imgWhat do you do for an encore after you play drums for 15 years in one of the world’s biggest rock bands? Steve Gorman, an original member of rock heavyweights The Black Crowes, did what alot of great musicians do who still have their chops (and their faculties) after such a run — he started his own band.And a damn good band at that. Trigger Hippy stem from an idea Gorman and buddy Nick Govrik had for a few years, one that they weren’t sure they could ever get going.“I think the first time I ever played with (Nick), I said, ‘Man, we gotta start a real band,” Gorman told me from his home in Nashville. “And he said ‘Yeah we should.’ Well you say that alot and then you move on. But it was something that for the both of us was always in the back of our heads. And so in 2009, we were still tryin’, but the Crowes were so busy from ’05 through ’10 that the scheduling was impossible. In 2010 I knew the Crowes were gonna take a break, and I said, ‘Hey look, now’s the time if you’re interested,’ and we had always thrown song ideas at each other, you know, we had this two years of an idea really seriously germinating.”So when it looked like the Crowes were coming to a triumphant (and in some ways, welcome) end after 25 years of taking the world by storm, Gorman was finally able to make Trigger Hippy a reality, the only issue was rounding out the band. First, a lead singer was needed, and after grappling with who to recruit, Gorman realized the perfect choice was pretty much right in front of him.“I was in the car one day and I heard ‘Right Hand Man’ by Joan Osborne”, Gorman said. “Joan and I had been friends forever, and in two years of seriously thinking about this, I never once thought about a female singer. But I heard one note of that song and thought, ‘Oh my God, what’s wrong with me? Joan would be perfect for this.’ I called her the next day and I was like, ‘What’s goin’ on? I haven’t talked to you in forever’, it was a nice catch up, ya know, ‘How’s your kid?’ and ‘My kids are great’ and ‘Anyway, ya wanna start a band?’ She was luckily at a point where she had been putting alot of thought into that very thing, like, it’s hard to be the name on the ticket, it’s hard to just constantly be the artist, everything’s on her shoulders as Joan Osborne. She said, ‘It’s so funny, I’ve been thinking lately, I just wish I was a singer in a band.’ And I said, ‘Well, here it is, let’s go.’ “And Osborne jumped at the chance, flying to Nashville two months later. The next piece of the puzzle was also someone Gorman knew — talented (and briefly Black Crowes interim) guitarist/singer/keyboardist Jackie Greene. But it wasn’t until Greene and Osborne were sitting together at an early rehearsal that the vision of the band became crystal clear to Gorman. It wouldn’t be the jam band he envisioned, it would be more of a vocal based band, given the sheer vocal talent he had on hand.“(Jackie and Joan) were just sitting there off to the side singing,” Gorman said, “It was like, ‘Did you ever hear that song by so and so?’ and he would start to sing it and she would just harmonize, and there was that moment, ya know, like in a bad movie about bands, when we all looked at each other and went, ‘Holy shit!’ I’d love to say it was by design, that this was the vision we always had, but it wasn’t that at all, it was really a great happy accident to go, ‘Oh wait, you guys sound amazing together!’ It just fell into place, like literally overnight. The next day we all got back in the room, and we were wholly on our way to being a real band.”After playing a few gigs with respected musicians like current Widespread Panic/former Allman Brothers & Furthur guitarist Jimmy Herring, they were still looking for that last cog in the machine that would solidify the band, and Gorman was elated when one of Nashville’s top session men, guitarist Tom Bukovac, agreed to come on full time.“We knew we hadn’t found the fifth person yet, we’d had a couple guys play with us and they were great and it was fun, but you could tell they were treating it more like a gig, and we were getting seriously minded about it. I called Tom praying he would say yes to playing a few gigs with us, I really never thought he would say, ‘I’d like to do this’ because I just didn’t think that was possible. But we did three gigs and after the third gig, he walked up to me and Joan and said, ‘Alright, what’s next? What are we gonna do?’ and we coulda just cried, we were so happy. That’s when we started workin’.”Finally, Trigger Hippy are ready to spread their wings, their first full album of soul-infused rock is due out in September, and Gorman couldn’t be happier. Why? Just Google the name and you’ll find a dozen live videos that show the band’s power and promise, from solid original tunes to covers like The Beatles’ “Don’t Let Me Down”, the Grateful Dead’s “Sugaree” and Neil Young’s “Southern Man.” So as Trigger Hippy begins their journey, does Gorman think his legendary first band will ever come a’ callin’ to pull him away from this exciting new venture?“I don’t think so. I’ve thought that before, but if you go see Chris (Robinson, The Black Crowes’ lead singer) he’s very happy doing what he’s doing. But I haven’t given the Black Crowes a second thought since that last tour ended. We had a really good year last year, everyone was respectful of each other. We got along as well as we needed to and I thought the shows were good, so when it ended, I just felt like, that was great, see you guys later, perfect. Now my sole musical focus is Trigger Hippy. Time to move on.”[This article was originally published on Steve Houk’s blog, Midlife Rocker.]last_img read more

Paul McCartney and Stevie Wonder Share Official Remix Of ‘Ebony And Ivory’

first_imgAs Paul McCartney readies the re-release of his famed 1982 album Tug of War, the former Beatle has shared the first taste of just what this deluxe version has to offer. The album famously showcases McCartney working with the great Stevie Wonder, most notably on the track “Ebony and Ivory”. Now, some 33 years after its release, the inter-racial piano tune has been given a complete makeover. With heavy bass and alternate vocals, check out the official remix of “Ebony and Ivory”, as premiered on Billboard earlier today.[Photo and track via Billboard]last_img read more

Top 15 Kickass Performances From Boston Calling Music Festival

first_imgBoston Calling Music Festival welcomed a ton of premier musical acts to Boston’s City Hall Plaza this past weekend, 9/25-9/27. Alabama Shakes, The Avett Brothers, Chromeo, Chvrches, Alt-J, Walk the Moon, Father John Misty, Of Monsters and Men, Twin Shadow, Misterwives and more made appearances throughout the memorable weekend. All in all, the stacked lineup made for another music festival for the books.Photographer Maria Mata was on site to capture all of the top-notch performers from Boston Calling. Check out photos of our top 15 performances, with a full gallery at the bottom.Gregory Alan IsakovOf Monsters and Men The Avett Brothers Father John MistyWalk The MoonChromeo Load remaining images ChvrchesAlt-JDirty BangsFidlarTwin ShadowMisterwivesNate RuessBen HowardAlabama Shakeslast_img read more

This Presidential Candidate Plans To Reunite Pink Floyd If Elected

first_imgNever mind that the band members, and never mind that founding keyboardist Richard Wright passed away in 2008… if Governor John Kasich is elected, he has a plan to reunite the members of Pink Floyd for a few songs, because apparently that’s the best way to capture voter attention when you’re trailing 25+ percentage points.While the Iowa caucus mainly focused on the race between Ted Cruz and Donald Trump, Kasich unveiled his new plan to capture the vote. In an interview with CNN last night, Kasich said, “If I’m president, I am going to once and for all try to reunite Pink Floyd to come together and play a couple of songs.”Of course, David Gilmour recently came out and said that he’s “done with” Pink Floyd, and of course he and Roger Waters just despise one another. We’re certainly interested to see how Kasich might pull something like this off, something that seems incredibly infeasible.If he is elected, however, the first song he’d want to hear would be “Money.” We would have asked for “Echoes,” but that’s just us.Watch the interview below:[H/T CoS]last_img read more

Maya, Aztec monument casts get the shake-out, dust-off

first_imgPlaster reproductions of Maya and Aztec carvings, which preserve precious details now lost on the originals, are leaving dusty, haphazard storage for cleaning, cataloging, and crating that will prepare them for a new era of usefulness and relevance.Made more than a century ago, the plaster casts, housed at the Peabody Museum of Archaeology and Ethnology, re-create the elaborate stone carvings that adorned Maya and Aztec cities that once buzzed with life across Central America.The original carvings held images of rulers and rituals as well as examples of script that have proven key to deciphering the Maya’s written language, a process ongoing today.Over the years, some museum staff considered the casts a poor second to the original monuments, and they were nearly forgotten. Their odd sizes made them difficult to store, and the casts lay stacked along walls and corridors in the Peabody Museum’s annex.But time has taken its toll on the originals left in the field. Driving rain and searing tropical heat have eroded the monuments, vandals have broken pieces off, and thieves have carted some away entirely.The casts provide scholars an invaluable resource, preserving monuments that are gone and tiny details lost on those that remain. Those details can influence a glyph’s meaning, making the plaster casts an invaluable resource for scholars seeking to understand the written ancient Mayan language and what it tells us about their history and culture.The five-month project marks the first time in 30 years the plaster cast collection has been tended to in a systematic way. Museum curators, students, and others working on the project have until Feb. 28 to remove all 700 casts from storage, clean them off, and assess their condition. They’ll also be prepared for 18 months’ temporary storage, after which they’ll be moved into a new, renovated home in the former High Energy Physics Laboratory.Senior Collections Manager David Schafer and Head Conservator T. Rose Holdcraft said the project involves an unusual level of collaboration and coordination for the Peabody’s staff. The Peabody holds 1.2 million artifacts, so the 700 casts make up just a small part of the collection. They present an unusual challenge, however, because most of the Peabody’s artifacts are small, while many of the casts are quite large, requiring more than one person to move them.“They’re large, they’re heavy, and even though they’re made of plaster, it’s 100-year-old, fragile plaster,” Schafer said. “We’re used to carrying pots and artifacts, not multi-hundred-pound casts.”The project was sparked by the Faculty of Arts and Sciences’ plans to renovate the building. When completed, it will hold Physics Department labs, classrooms, and offices. It will also hold a new casting and teaching lab for the Peabody, together with a storage area for the casts.“It’s been on our conservation priority list for many years,” Holdcraft said.The project entails more than just cleaning and physical conservation of the collection. By its completion, the casts will begin a new era of usefulness.As the casts are brought out of storage, Barbara Fash, director of the Corpus of Maya Hieroglyphic Inscriptions Program, is examining each one, updating its catalog information, and, for the many that are in several pieces, putting them back together. The catalog will be updated with scholarly data as well as practical information, such as how much each one weighs and how many people it will take to move it.Once assessed, the big, bulky casts will be placed in new, rigid, dust-free, lightweight containers, packed with foam to protect them from damage. When the renovation is complete, each will have its own shelf, and together with the catalog information, become a much more accessible resource.“We’ll know where everything is. When someone wants to see a certain monument, we’ll know where the pieces are,” Fash said. “It’d really be great, in the long run, to put the big ones back together, maybe in resin and put them outside so people could see them in their full glory. It’s sad to see them on the ground in pieces.”Though the project is slated to begin in earnest this month, by mid-September, preparatory work had already begun. Dozens of casts lay spread out on the large open floor of the High Energy Physics Laboratory’s high bay. Fash, Schafer, and Holdcraft were at work, directing staff and students engaged in the project. Some moved among the casts while others toiled at nearby tables, examining and carefully cleaning casts with small, dry pieces of special latex sponge.Katherine Brunson, a senior and archaeology concentrator, worked to gently vacuum and remove soot from one cast. Brunson was familiar with the casts from earlier projects she’d worked on, including one of an unusual monument adorning a cave wall in Yucatan, Mexico.“I get to do hands-on work, see the pieces themselves, rather than a photograph. It’s a rare opportunity,” Brunson said.last_img read more

Taxonomist Carl Linnaeus on show at HMNH

first_imgCarl Linnaeus believed that the fruit of the Tree of Knowledge was not an apple but a banana. He came to this conclusion in 1737, while studying plant specimens at Hartecamp, the estate of George Clifford, a wealthy Dutch banker and director of the Dutch East India Company. Clifford collected exotic plants from around the world and had succeeded in getting a banana plant to flower and bear fruit in his greenhouse. Linnaeus’ belief in the theological significance of the banana is enshrined in the name he gave it: Musa paradisiaca.Today, one would be hardpressed to find someone willing to argue the banana’s case as the original forbidden fruit, although in the 18th century, there were many who took such theories seriously. The form in which Linnaeus expressed his belief in the banana’s paradisiacal origins, however, is still firmly entrenched in scientific practice. Three hundred years after the great Swedish naturalist’s birth, scientists the world over are still using the system he invented to classify plants and animals.Harvard’s Museum of Natural History (HMNH) has mounted an exhibition to commemorate Linnaeus’ 300th anniversary and the system of binomial nomenclature he invented. While small, the exhibition brings to life the man of whom the philosopher Jean-Jacques Rousseau said, “I know of no greater man on earth.”Born on a farm in southern Sweden, Linnaeus was expected to follow in the footsteps of his clergyman father, but from an early age he was fascinated by nature. He went to the University of Uppsala to study medicine, which at that time included a course in botany.Linnaeus’ studies led him to the conclusion that the scientific investigation of nature was being hampered by the lack of a consistent taxonomy of the natural world.“There were different systems in use at the time,” said Janis Sacco, the museum’s director of exhibitions. “Some were ecological, based on the idea that organisms that existed in the same habitat must be related to one another. Linnaeus believed that there should be a regular, systematic way of identifying what something is by comparing it to something else.”His solution to the problem was a hierarchical system beginning with three kingdoms (animals, plants, and minerals), and branching out from there into classes, orders, genera, and species. The groupings were based on the similarity of physical characteristics. He used Latin names because Latin was the universal language of learning, familiar to all educated Europeans.“Systema Naturae,” the 11-page pamphlet in which Linnaeus first introduced his system, appeared in 1735. Linnaeus’ personal copy, replete with his hand-written notations, will be on display at the HMNH Nov. 6. This one-day appearance will be the only public showing of the unique volume in New England. The exhibition also includes a copy of the book’s 10th edition, which had grown by 1758 to include 4,400 species of animals and 7,700 species of plants.A highly religious man (although arguably not a humble one), Linnaeus believed that he had been put on earth to classify nature according to the order that God had originally intended. He took as his motto “Deus creavit, Linnaeus disposuit” (God created, Linnaeus organized).But despite his piety, Linnaeus’ commitment to classifying organisms according to observed characteristics sometimes got him into trouble with religious authorities. His classification of humans as animals that bear obvious similarities to apes and monkeys scandalized theologians.Not that Linnaeus was asserting or even implying that humans developed from monkeys. There was no notion in his system of one species developing or evolving from another. That idea was still a hundred years in the future. Linnaeus, along with all naturalists of his time, subscribed to the idea that every living thing on earth had been created by God in the course of a single week and had not changed since then.And yet, simply by arranging organisms according to a logical order based on physical characteristics, Linnaeus laid the groundwork for the insights of Charles Darwin a century later.“He wasn’t an evolutionist, but he set the stage for evolutionary theory,” said Sacco.Linnaeus made several collecting expeditions over the course of his life, including one to Lapland, where he identified and named the reindeer. He never traveled beyond northern Europe, however, and most of the specimens he named were brought to him by explorers returning from more distant lands. As a professor at the University of Uppsala, he was assisted by an ever-growing team of assistants, whom he referred to as “the disciples.” A small, wiry man with indefatigable energy, he lived until 1778 and wrote 70 books and 300 scientific papers over the course of his life.Since his time, biologists have revised many of his classifications, based on subsequent discoveries and more sophisticated observation methods. The use of DNA analysis has added a whole new dimension to the search for relationships among organisms. But the basic structure of his system remains virtually unchanged.“His work is considered the cornerstone of systematic biology,” Sacco said. “He was just dealing with the ‘what.’ The ‘why’ and the ‘how’ he left to others.”[email protected]last_img read more