While I was practicing today I started to play the first lines of Long and Winding Road, but then I needed help remembering exactly how the melody unfolded from there.  I put it into YouTube and ended up clicking on a clip of Ed Sheeran from the film Yesterday (because I like the way he does covers and I thought from the description HE was going to do L&WR), but it turns out Himesh Patel does it.  In the film, Patel plays the character Jack Malik who wakes up after a bike accident and he's in an alternate timeline where no one has ever heard of the Beatles. 

He's a frustrated songwriter who knows all the Beatles songs, and when he starts playing them for his friends everyone is blown away, and eventually he becomes a huge star even though he's plagued with this guilt of knowing he didn't write the songs.  Essentially he's just taking advantage of a freak situation.

There's a saying amongst writers that you better write your idea for the book/story now, or else someone else will write it.

A few years ago I started writing a novel called Deck, Duke and the Time Machine, with a similar plot...except instead of an alternate timeline, Deck goes into a time machine and comes out in 1934 when Duke Ellington is just getting started.  Deck is a frustrated songwriter who knows all the Duke Ellington songs.  He gets the idea to stay in 1934 and write Duke's songs before Duke writes them.

You can read the initial chapters here.

I haven't finished the book.  And now I come upon this movie that basically has the exact same theme, except that the screenwriter was more savvy than I and made it into The Beatles instead of Duke Ellington, and an alternative timeline, which is way more hip and vogue than that cliched time machine crap.

Oh well.

I've heard my college professor friends complain about student plagiarism; apparently many students feel like if something's on the Internet, it's free for the asking.

Back in the day when cable TV was big, musicians would go on the shows but we would have to pretend to play.  I.e. we would pretend to play in front of the cameras, but in reality our recording that we'd already made was what was playing on air.  I don't know about other genres, but we jazz musicians always hated that.  It seemed fake, even though we were "playing along" with our own record!  But it wasn't the same as actually playing.  The production studios didn't have the mics and other equipment to actually film us playing live, which is why it was done that way.

I also recall a time when I was playing in the pit with a ringer orchestra that was accompanying a presentation by several high school girl's choirs.  During rehearsals some of the girls would step out to take solos.  But there were two girls who took "solos" who were actually just lip syncing to the real singer, who was down in the pit with the orchestra. 

I asked the conductor why those girls were lip syncing.  The conductor said that they had made all the costumes for the show, and in exchange, they wanted solos.  But they couldn't sing.  Hence the ringer singer in the pit.

Those two girls got a lot of applause for their solos, because the singer in the pit was really excellent. I thought it was strange that they were apparently happy with receiving the applause even though they knew it was undeserved.  They knew it, their friends in the choir knew it, the orchestra knew it; everyone knew they were lip syncing, except the audience. 

I could never do that.