Benj's Tech Songs

Music about the past, present, and future of technology

Month: March 2016

Phil Schiller’s Rock and Roll Band

When Apple’s Senior Vice President of Worldwide Marketing, Phil Schiller, isn’t grinding away at his 9-5, he knows how to get down with a few friends.

Here’s a link to the song on SoundCloud.


We work too hard,
Don’t ever leave,
We’re tired of being slaves to the pocket machines.
iWatch, iPhones, gobbeldy-gunk;
Even Jony’s had enough of all that junk.

So me and Craig and Eddy Cue
Are gonna bring some rock to you!

We’re Phil Schiller’s Rock and Roll Band.
Phil Schiller’s Rock and Roll Band.

From now on,
When we’re up at the Loop,
We won’t let Timmy tell us what to do.
We’ll do what we want
and design what we please,
Then watch all the customers
get on their knees.

Then we’ll get drunk and fall down flat;
There ain’t no $^&%* app for that!

We’re Phil Schiller’s Rock and Roll Band.
Phil Schiller’s Rock and Roll Band.

Welcome to Tech Songs

nasa_test_experiment_1I promised myself I wouldn’t make a big fuss over doing a new thing, so I’m going to try to keep this short.

My name is Benj Edwards, and I’m a tech journalist by profession.  For the past decade, I’ve been writing mostly about computer and video game history for publications like FastCompany, The Atlantic, PC World, Macworld, PCMag, etc.  You can read more about that here, or see my other blog, Vintage Computing and Gaming.

Writing and exploring tech history has taken me on many great adventures, but I’ve often found myself thinking back to an earlier time when my days were almost completely consumed by creating music.

In 2002, I started a website called that carried with it a simple conceit: visitors to the site would submit song titles to me, and I would ras_clef_smallwrite interpretive songs based on them.  Then I would record the songs and put them on the site in MP3 format.

I recorded and published over 100 songs in that fashion between 2002 and 2005 (my brother Jeremy did the others). The styles and genres varied, but they mostly centered around pop-rock with irreverent or humorous lyrics.

For the next decade, I barely touched a guitar or piano, focusing almost completely on freelancing.  But last year, I started fiddling around with some nifty recording software, and new songs came pouring out.

I fell in love with making music again.

Just last month, I had a fun thought: What if I could combine my love of music with my love of tech history? I could write songs about Atari, IBM, Apple, Google — the people, the places, the culture, the games. And I began doing just that.

So far, though, no one has heard any of the songs except me and my brother. But I have discovered it’s not as satisfying to create music without having an audience to enjoy it. It’s like singing to a brick wall. (For the record, the brick wall likes it.)

Enter Tech Songs, this new site where I plan to regularly publish original tech-related music. Along the way, we might even talk tech history when it’s applicable to each song. And I am hoping to make YouTube videos to go along with some of the songs, which is new for me. These are still the exciting early days, so I am not entirely sure where this project will take me.

As you listen, keep in mind that the songs you will hear on this site won’t be polished Top 40 hits, which often have teams of literally dozens of people working on them. Instead, each one will be hand crafted (artisanal! small batch! organic?) by me — and sometimes with the help of my brother, who is awesome on guitar. Sure, I’m not the world’s best vocalist or a virtuoso instrumentalist, but I am hoping to convey at least a fraction of the immense fun I have in creating these songs.

And fun is the whole point these days, during a time when music rushes through the Internet like a never-ending waterfall. Some people look at the waterfall and say, “WHOA.” I’m the guy who’s about to go over it in a barrel. It may turn out to be a bad idea, but at least it’s going to be a fun ride on the way down.

Dormant Cyber Pathogen

Twitter user extraordinaire Glenn Fleishman mentioned this phrase on Google, and I thought it sounded like a good song title, so I threw something together in about an hour and a half.

Google Searches (False Positives)

A frantic song about law enforcement algorithm matching gone horribly wrong

I’ll Meet You At The Old Robot Factory

A swing beat number where two lovers in the distant post-apocalyptic future meet and frolic at the site of an abandoned robot factory.

Romance ensures near the arsenic pits, radium shaft, and the cast-off legs. Surprisingly, no one dies in the song.

© 2024 Benj Edwards

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