Tuesday, July 20, 2010
A new feature on this site is a simple one. Posting two versions of songs I love. One of the joys of Youtube is finding covers of songs and sometimes it's surprising who covered what. I hate those singer songwriters indie versions of songs so you will hear v few of them here. Instead there will be versions from TV shows or B sides to hit singles or other album tracks by a variety of stars. First song is Just The Way You Are. If ever there is a perfect love ballad it has to be that one. Barry White would be an obvious choice but instead here is the very gorgeous Olivia Newton John and her version which she sang on her TV show back in 1978. And of course the second version has to be Billy Joel.
Sunday, July 18, 2010
I am very much a Gaga fan. However, Alejandro was one of my least favourite songs on The Fame Monster. The video for Alejandro changed that for a few weeks. Today, an artist is ridiculed for not being original but I think Lady Gaga is as original as you get nowadays. Every artist has to have influences and she draws on many. Enough to provoke reactions anyway. I love the choreography in the Alejandro video and the image above is one of the best I have seen recently of Gaga. There are moments when she reminds me of Gwen Stefani. I went to see her in concert a few months ago and she was very entertaining but the theme of going to the monster ball was just ok instead of being amazing. We had seated tickets and it was one show I wished I had been standing at. She gives a 100% and it's not many new artists who could have a choice of the one big song at the end of the show with Just Dance, Poker Face and Bad Romance all performed in the latter part of the show to full effect. I always get the sense that behind it all she is a pretty fragile person and I know the media are waiting for that grand meltdown which is not going to let happen just yet if ever. Alejandro always reminded me of La Isla Bonita for some reason even though it's nothing like that song apart from the latin vibe. It is Ace of Base that Alejandro borrows from the most. I posted a Robin Skouteris mix of La Roux and The Gossip a few weeks ago and here is a mix of Alejandro and All That She Wants by Ace of Base. I think it works well but I feel it didn't really need the addition of Please Don't Break My Heart which is pure old fashioned bubblegum pop by Kalomoira.
Today I heard a song that I thought was the Dixie Chicks with a guest male vocalist but was in fact Need You Now by Lady Antebellum. It was a song I had known about but hadn't heard, like so many new songs this year. Sometimes I read about a song on a blog but don't always listen to or watch the video. John at Pop Music Notes posted about the song many months ago here. I really think John is my music kindred spirit in America as I love so many songs he likes. I know my sister Emma likes good pop country too so this one is for you Emma. .
Thursday, July 8, 2010
Monday, July 5, 2010
Eminem is an artist that I can never make up my mind on. He is one of the best rappers but I am not the biggest fan of rap in general. The bigger a rap or Hip Hop artist such as Kanye or Jay Z gets the less I like them. I really liked the 8 Mile movie but after that I had little interest in Eminem. His songs are often very well constructed and that has to be admired. If singers influence fans Eminem definitely does that. I really feel that a large percentage of his fans, those who have made his new album Recovery a worldwide hit, have some amount of identification with him. Not Afraid is a song that has cemented that fan base and added to it. Love The Way You Lie also adds to his fan base and is one I have listened to a lot over the past two weeks. A lot of Hip Hop songs work because of the chorus and the combination of Rihanna and Eminem works to great advantage on this song. I think the lyrics are both interesting and disturbing. The only article I've found on the song's lyrics is here. I wonder what his fans and other listeners think of the lyrics. Do listeners still think about lyrics? Eminem is an artist that I would never normally post on this site but it's always the specific song that appeals to me and I think it's Rihanna's best song in a long time.
The American magazine Entertainment Weekly is my favourite website for information on new movies but it also is great for music news too. This week, on it's website, it features a top ten of songs that they believe stand out this Summer. I love some of them and really dislike at least three. The top ten lists in the magazine are often well open to debate so that's the joy of them. I won't tell you what the list comprises of, it's one of those move on to the next one type and can be found here.
Here is the song that impressed me the most. It's Big Boi, from Outkast and Be Still. It's taken from his new solo album Sir Lucious Left Foot: The Son Of Chico Dusty which isn't really solo at all as it features a host of collaborations. The addictive chorus on Be Still is by Janelle Monae, the much written about new female singer. Big Boi also appears on her own song Tightrope. Like a lot of good Hip Hop ballads Be Still is slightly ruined by the horrible opening line but it's all good after that..