Category Archives: Opinion

The Hand Pan – Daniel Waples Explains…

Daniel Waples is a musician from London who has been spreading the meditative sounds of the Hand Pan across the world.

He visited Africa several times, taught himself the tribal drum rhythms he heard on his travels and then transposed these rhythms onto the Hand Pan, creating lushious, meditative and relaxing sounds.

Daniel’s approach to life, the way he thinks and the way he expresses himself and his ideas are all inspiring. As you watch him play, look at his relaxed and pleasant smile. It’s infectious. This is a guy who has found his passion and his meaning to life – we could all learn a lot from this young man’s words.

And as an extra treat, here’s the video of the week from handpan.org:

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Walk off the Earth – Somebody That I Used to Know (Gotye cover)

Now this is simply amazing…

I have never seen this done before and it is just mind-blowing. The concentration and perfection is astonishing. Five people playing one guitar? Who knew it was possible! They are immensely talented musicians as the rest of their videos on YouTube highlight.

If you liked that then check out one of the best covers of Adele’s Someone Like You you will ever see:

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Maverick Sabre

Maverick Sabre has one of the most iconic and breath-taking voices that you will have heard in a long time.

Maverick Sabre

Maverick Sabre

With today’s charts being taken over by copy cats who all flaunt their bodies and sound the same, Maverick Sabre brings a sigh of relief and allows us to believe that there is still talent (and I mean pure, natural talent) out there.

The Irish vocalist and rapper will captivate you instantly as soon as he hits that first note. His voice is just amazing, there’s no other word to describe it.

Being only 21, his voice will deceive you into thinking he is a lot older. His vocals ooze maturity and sophistication. There’s is nothing to fault here. He is simple one of the best vocalists I have heard in ages. Lets just say he’s the male equivalent of Adele and I think you’ll get the picture.

Check out his cover of the Sam Cooke’s classic, A Change is Gonna Come. I guarantee you will be left speechless…

Maverick Sabre’s album is out now to buy.

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Valentine’s Day – What’s Your Soundtrack?

So the glorious day that is Valentine’s Day was yesterday and all you couples out there were probably having a very special day together. Maybe spoiling each other senseless on a shopping spree, maybe catching a film or if you were really lucky, you headed out to a snazzy restaurant and your other half treated you to a bottle of Champagne.

But I wonder how many of you received one of those awful soppy compilation CDs you see advertised so frequently around this time of year?

None hopefully.

In an attempt to make more money (as if Valentine’s Day isn’t already a complete money farce), record companies and artists choose to release rubbish love albums which I’m guessing are supposed to make your other half feel like the only person in the world. If you love them, you should show them every day not just one day a year and then through an appalling selection of songs.

I mean, don’t get me wrong, everyone likes a good love song but it’s annoying when every TV advert is another addition of the same songs by different artists.

I can’t help but think that maybe these CDs are produced to make single people even more depressed and lonely on Valentine’s Day. I bet you there are singletons out that who buy themselves one and sit home alone and drink wine singing along to the songs (a bit like Bridget Jones). I don’t know what’s worse, being bought one by your partner or buying one for yourself?

Either way, those CDs are my pet hate near Valentine’s. Don’t buy them, your partner will only hate you.

 

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This blows me away every time…

Last year I had the pleasure of seeing Naturally 7 perform live. They were only a supporting act but they were the best supporting band I’ve ever seen.

So the reason for this blog is to make people aware of them. I’m guessing the majority of you haven’t heard of them so, for anyone who doesn’t know who they are, Naturally 7 are a vocal play group. They produce their own songs as well as doing covers of old classics, such as Michael Jackson’s Billie Jean.

Naturally 7After browsing youtube for videos of them, I found a great clip of them performing on a Paris subway where they burst into a cover of Phil Collin’s Feel It (In The Air Tonight). It’s a fantastic clip of them. They’re giving it their all on this train. First of all, the other people on the tube don’t seem very interested but eventually they take to them, just like I think most of you will.

There’s no denying that they’re a great band. Their harmonies are always spot on and they’re interesting to listen to and watch. It’s mesmerising. Armand Hutton (AKA Hops) is my favourite, he does the bass. For such a skinny guy his voice is extraordinary. When he opens his mouth this extremely deep bass noise comes out.

If you like what you hear, check out some of the other videos I’ve linked below:
Wall of Sound
Solos
More Than Words

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Please Stop Now Britney…

I was driving to Stroud yesterday with Radio 1 on. Sometimes Radio 1 is great, other times the worst music in the world floats through the airwaves.

For example, last night they played Britney’s newest single, Hold It Against Me, which is just atrocious. It sounds like an old 1990s single mingled with Disney’s painful young star, Hannah Montana.

The chorus is the worst part in the song. It really is like she’s taken it from a Steps song (I’m going to guess that you’re getting a good idea of just how bad it is now). She’s also sadly and destructively taken a few hints from Cascada, as a friend rightly suggested, meaning the backing music is just as horrific.

It’s a shame. Britney was loved by everyone at one point but if she produces songs like this, no-one will ever love her again.

For every artist, there’s a time when they should just stop. They should pack in what they’re doing and either retire or do something different. I feel Britney’s past it now and she’ll never be as popular as she once was. Please stop now, Britney.

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127 Hours Soundtrack

Stupidly, I agreed to go and see this heart stopping, gross film. I’m sure you’ve all heard of it by now, it’s 127 Hours.

Luckily, through all the tension and slightly disturbing parts, it was a really good film and the music was definitely key to this.

The director, Danny Boyle, has paired up with A.R. Rahman again for this soundtrack. They worked together on the multiple oscar award-winning Slumdog Millionaire and they’ve teamed up again on this triumph to wow audiences with an emotional whirl wind of a soundtrack.

James Franco in 127 Hours

James Franco in 127 Hours

In 127 Hours, music is an essential part from the word go. As soon as the film starts, a thumping bass track called Never Hear Surf Music Again by Free Blood is played while Aron Ralston (James Franco) sets off on his adventure. It’s a powerful song that symbolises his adrenaline and excitement for his trip.

Never before have I been so involved in a film and its soundtrack. The music is such an integral element to this film. It helps create emotions within you that wouldn’t be as strong without that particular song or composition.

It’s such a rollercoaster of a ride watching this film. Your hands will be sweaty, your heart will be beating two times as fast as it should be and you’ll want to look away or leave the cinema during some moments. The music which accompanies every scene draws up all the extra emotion within you for you to be able to fully appreciate Aron’s situation.

The compositions by Rahman, such as the trio Liberation Begins, Liberation In A Dream and Liberation, are just fantastic pieces of music. They appear throughout the film in different sections and although it’s same piece of music which is gradually built on, they capture the atmosphere and panic of Aron so well.

When you listen to them they’re quite simple compositions, there’s nothing fancy going on, but they bring so much to the scenes. It’s definitely this type of music that made my heart skip beats and my hands begin to sweat.

Throughout, the soundtrack excelled itself. It mixed fast paced, bass music with pop songs such as Bill Withers’ Lovely Day to the more touching vocals of Dido in If I Rise. For every emotion there was a song to sum it up and that’s what a soundtrack should be.

 

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