Thursday, November 08, 2007

We Are the Champions

Who said you can't do physics and rock at the same time? Check out this entry on SPIRES:
Radial Velocities in the Zodiacal Dust Cloud.
Brian May (Imperial Coll., London) . 2007.
Wikipedia fills in some of the story:
May studied astro physics at Imperial College London, graduating with a B.Sc. (Hons) degree, and then proceeded to study for a Ph.D., having written a significant amount of the doctoral thesis, and carried out a majority of the research required, May abandoned his doctoral studies to pursue his music career with Queen.
On a similar tack, but in the opposite order, I saw my old college friend Vijay Iyer play the Jazz Standard the other night with his band Tirtha (guitar, piano, tabla trio, playing jazz strongly inflected by Indian musics). He was a physics major at Yale (like me, sort of -- I graduated with a poli sci degree, but finished a lot of the major), went off to graduate school, and simultaneously started playing pro gigs all over the world, eventually leaving physics after getting his PhD to play full-time. And now he's signed to Savoy Jazz and named top "Rising Star Jazz Artist" and top "Rising Star Composer of the Year" for the second year in a row. Great show, and further proof that sometimes you can do both science and art -- but usually only one at a time.

(Thanks, Corey!)

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