Blackout

23 year-old Londoner Freya Ridings released her debut single Blackout in May 2017.

Liked this? Don’t miss Freya Ridings’ hit single: Maps

Find her on Facebook. 

Find her 2017 album on iTunes: Live @ St Pancras Church

Ancient Road / Fallen Heart

I struggled picking a favorite – his Solo (Ancient Road) or the Band’s performance (Fallen Heart)  – so here’s a 2-pack.  Jeremy Enigk, 42, a singer-songwriter from Seattle. Find him on Facebook and iTunes.

Please

Ray Lamontagne permitted 16-year old Sawyer Fredericks to sing his unreleased song “Please” as his original single for the final of The Voice 2015.  Frederick won the competition, and wow, what talent (despite needing a haircut).

And if you are a purist (I am)…Here’s Ray’s version:

Tour de Chance

Fréro Delavega is a French musical duo made up of Jérémy Frérot and Flo Delavega who took part in season 3 of the French musical competition series The Voice: la plus belle voix. The duo’s website can be found here: frerodelavega.com

If you liked this, check out the duo singing Skinny Love (cover Birdy)


Annie (and Hozier)


If you missed the 2015 Grammy’s and missed the performance by Hozier & Annie Lennox, here it is. Fantastic…


Thank you Rachel

Island Xmas


The music starts at 0:54 sec of this video.

Christine Anu, 44, is an Australian pop singer and actress. Anu is arguably Australia’s most successful indigenous performer and one of Australia’s most popular recording artiste, backed by an award-winning repertoire spanning across music, theatre, dance, film, television and children’s entertainment. Her illustrious career over two decades boasts of platinum albums, sell-out musicals, Hollywood blockbusters, and high-profiled collaborations with showbiz and musical luminaries such as Baz Luhrmann (Moulin Rouge), Paul Kelly and David Atkins.

Find this tune and her new 2014 Christmas Album: Island Christmas


Cold Specks: Winter Solstice


Jim Fusilli, Cold Speck’s Arresting Mix:

Now 26, she (Ladan Hussein) was born in Etobicoke, Ontario, to parents from Somalia. Calling herself a “typical moribund teenager,” she took up a guitar at age 15. After relocating to London, where her extended family was dubious about her choice of career, Ms. Hussein was playing as Cold Specks at St. Pancras Old Church when a producer from “Later… with Jools Holland” caught her show and invited her on the BBC program. The other guests on the November 2011 broadcast included Mary J. Blige, Florence + the Machine, My Morning Jacket and the Who’s Pete Townshend. At the conclusion of her a cappella version of “Old Stepstone,” the traditional folk ballad, Mr. Holland cheered, “The power of the single human voice!”

On her two albums, including this year’s “Neuroplasticity” (Mute), Cold Specks delivers contemporary rock that either arrives with the confrontational authority of hardcore punk and free jazz or is as contemplative as folk and mellow soul. In concert here last week at the Echo, she and her four-piece band demonstrated how arresting that complex mix can be. In a conversation before her late-night set, Cold Specks—whose real name is Ladan Hussein, though she is also known as Al Spx—was quiet, perhaps even shy, a contrast to her bold, insistent music. “I’m a listener,” she said, “not a talker.” She added that she doesn’t follow modern music and was enjoying the doo-wop a manager put on in the van as they traveled between gigs.

…“I am who I am,” she said earlier during a conversation, a simple remark that later seemed a promise of much more extraordinary music to come.

Find her new album on iTunes here: Neuroplasticity

Find this tune on her 2012 album: I Predict a Graceful Expulsion

alt-J


alt-J is an English indie rock band formed in 2007 in Leeds, England. The band’s debut album An Awesome Wave was released in September 2012 in the United States, and won the 2012 British Mercury Prize. Their second album, This Is All Yours, was released on 22 September 2014 and went straight to UK number 1.

Liked this? Don’t miss another alt-J tune titled: Left Hand Free.


Fink: Looking too Closely


Fink, aka Fin Greenall, is a singer, songwriter, guitarist, producer and DJ.  He was born in 1972 in Cornwall, grew up in Bristol and is currently based in Brighton, UK.  His mother worked in the field of classical music and his father was a folk musician. Fin can recall “the one thing of his dad’s that Fin Greenall wasn’t allowed to touch was the old Martin acoustic guitar.” In an interview, Greenall remembers “It was his one possession where he said, ‘everything in this house is owned by everybody – apart from that.'” Their presence had an impact on his future in music. “The great thing about growing up in a house where music is a big factor… was the fact that music being part of your life was a perfectly natural thing.”

Find this tune and his 2014 album on iTunes here: Hard Believer


Related Posts: Fink: This is the Thing and Perfect Darkness

Wallflower Medley (Diana Krall)


Here’s a medley of songs from Diana Krall’s new album titled “WallFlower” scheduled to be released in February, 2015.  Find details here on iTunes and Amazon.

And if you can’t get enough, check her on a longer Youtube clip of Eagles hit: Desperado.


Related Post: Diana Krall – Case of You

Herb Alpert: Honesty and passion are everything


Herb Albert Readies New Album by Marc Myers

Herb Albert, 79, is still at it today. At the end of 1965, he went head to head with Bob Dylan and the Beatles. His album climbed to No. 1 in 1965 and his albums in each of the next three years topped the charts.  More than 40 years later (January, 2014), he won his ninth Grammy for “Steppin’ Out,” and on September 30 he will release “In the Mood.” (Excerpts from the interview below)

Q: A remake of “Chattanooga Choo Choo” might be stretching it, no?

A: The Glenn Miller song from 1941 just popped into my head and stayed there. A number of people, including my wife, Lani Hall, told me not to record it, that it was too square. But the song felt good and I’ve made a career out of doing what feels good to me. If a song works and it’s honest, people will get it.

Q: Does it bother you to be thought of as the “king of casual?”

There’s a word called “happy.” I’ve always wanted to be that, and my music and trumpet reflect this ambition. I listened to jazz when I was young, but I have a classical background and studied formally for eight years. I just react to what sounds good and try to stay as spontaneous as possible. I’ve never rehearsed most of the songs I’ve recorded. I have relative pitch, so if I hear a song once, I can play it back instantly. Mostly, I try to be honest and listen to my inner voice.

Q: Was “Rise’s” success in 1979 unexpected?
A: Everything in this business is unexpected. My nephew and producer-songwriter Randy Alpert initially wanted me to turn Tijuana Brass hits into dance records. It just didn’t feel right but I gave it a shot. I brought in musicians and we played down a disco version of a “Taste of Honey.” I couldn’t feel it. Randy had written “Rise” [with Andy Armer] and wanted us to do it at 120 beats per minute—the standard disco tempo back then. But I slowed it down to 100 beats, giving it more of a soulful feel, and it worked.

Q: How do you feel when someone calls your music cheesy?
A: [Laughs] They’re thinking too hard. Art is a mystery. There’s no way you can figure out what’s special if you analyze it. You either feel it or you don’t. The definition of art isn’t breaking your neck. Why would you do that? Honesty and passion are everything—at least they are for me.

Read Full Interview in wsj.com here: Herb Albert Readies New Album by Marc Myers


Find Herb Alpert’s New Album here: In the Mood.

 

Let it Go


James Bay, 22, is from Hitchin, UK.  He brings his twist to the music of his heroes Carole King, Crosby, Stills & Nash, Jackson Browne and James Taylor. Bay’s 2013 debut album: The Dark of the Morning. Bay’s Website: JamesBayMusic.com for Bio. Interview with James Bay: NoiseTrade


Related Post: James Bay: Move Together.

Thank you Rachel.

Happy Birthday Bruce (65!)


Bruce has been performing for 50 years. Over 120 million records sold worldwide. And he’s still belting ’em out…

Once you’ve fallen in love with Bruce, there’s no returning to normality, your life will pretty much be centred around that man, you’ll always bring the conversation round back to Bruce and your friends will get fed up with the amount you talk about him. But that doesn’t matter, because he’s Bruce Springsteen, the most adorable man in existence. The way he genuinely cares about his fans, making their dreams come true. The way he is clearly having the time of his life on stage, night after night. The way he makes you feel like the only person in the whole stadium, he’s singing to you. The way that no matter what mood you’re in, there’s a Springsteen song which sums it up perfectly, Bruce is always there to look after you. He makes the world a more bearable place to live. (Source: thatmusicguy8)


Friday night I’m going nowhere


Friday night I’m going nowhere
All the lights are changing green to red
Turning over tv stations
Situations running through my head…


Sunday Morning: Why I live in mortal dread


You’ll say you don’t have time to watch this.
It’s 13 minutes.
You need to move on to the next post.

And I’m telling you that
this woman is something special.

Don’t quit on this one.
Take it to the finish.

Good Sunday Morning.


Megan Alexandra Washington, 28, was born in Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea. She is an Australian musician and songwriter also known mononymously as Washington. Originally performing jazz music her style evolved to indie pop and alternative rock where she sings and plays piano and guitar.  She developed a stutter early in her life and continues to struggle with her speech.  Find her website here: washingtonmusic.com.au. Find her album on iTunes here: I Believe You Liar

About Today


The National is an American indie rock band formed in Cincinnati, Ohio, United States, in 1999, and currently based in Brooklyn. The band’s lyrics, which have been described as “dark, melancholy and difficult to interpret”, are written and sung by Matt Berninger, a baritone. The band has recorded six studio albums; the most recent, Trouble Will Find Me, was released in May 2013 and was nominated in the 2014 Grammys for Best Alternative Album.

Find this song on iTunes on the album Cherry Tree.  Find their most current album here: Trouble Will Find Me


Post Inspiration:Preciousandfregilethings

Don’t Let Me Go


Jarle Bernhoft, 38also known as Bern/hoft, is a Norwegian singer, multi-instrumentalist, composer and lyricist. Bernhoft is from Nittedal in Norway, but currently lives in New York.

what he [Bernhoft] did with those few tools was quite extraordinary. Using them, and via a process of instant recording, looping and layering, he was able to create the sound of a full band – including all the instrumental parts plus backing singers on rich harmonies – and it was all just him.”  – The Guardian

Find his website here: Bernhoft.org

Find his new album released last month here: Islander / Bernhoft


Let Me Comfort You


Erick Baker, 35, is a singer-songwriter from Knoxville, Tennessee. He didn’t sing or write songs until he enrolled at the University of Tennessee. Baker had picked up the guitar during his college days and played occasionally at parties for fun, by his own admission in hopes of meeting women. While doing a set at an open-mike night in Knoxville, Baker was spotted by a local promoter who gave him a spot opening a show for John Legend and soon buzz about Baker began to spread. He has performed with national acts, including rock musician James Blunt, alternative country musician Brandi Carlile, pop-rock musician Gavin DeGraw, the rock band Goo Goo Dolls, the rock band Heart, R&B artist John Legend.

My songs belong to every right turn and wrong turn that have led me here,” Baker says.  “They reflect the pieces of poetry hidden in the experiences that lie in each of our everyday lives.

Find this tune on iTunes: Erik Baker: Live At The Bijou Theatre

If you liked this, don’t miss: Erick Baker – Stay Awhile


Credits:


George Ezra


George Ezra (born George Ezra Barnett), 21, is a British singer songwriter. His debut studio album Wanted on Voyage will be released on 30 June 2014.  Ezra was longlisted for the BBC Sound of…2014, where he eventually finished in fifth place. 

Ezra is the he son of an art teacher and a deputy head. Music trickled down to him via an elder sister, a regular at local venue the Marquee (“She was going out with the promoter”). He made his stage debut at the Marquee as a 13-year-old in a covers band, “singing the female part of Teenage Dirtbag, wearing eyeliner and my sister’s skinny jeans”. When he left school at 16 he took a job in a local sweet factory – “two jellybeans for the box, one for me, all the way.”  Ezra dropped out of college and embarked on a year of support slots, criss-crossing the country by train. Within a year he had a record deal with Columbia. (Source: The Guardian: George Ezra)

Find this song on iTunes on his EP titled Did You Hear The Rain.

His website can be found here: The Official George Ezra website


Triple Smack-Down: Cloud Cult

There is something special here. Can’t put a finger on it. I introduced Cloud Cult earlier this month. (Their bio is worth checking out.)  And when you can’t seem to get enough of something that good (ice cream, pasta, Cloud Cult), you just keep bringing it.  Here’s three new clips from Cloud Cult: Chemicals Collide. You Were Born. Breakfast With My Shadow.


Find their album on iTunes here: Unplug

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