shelleyhanveywriter

'Let me live, love and say it well in good sentences'

Posts Tagged ‘Singer-Songwriter

Getting lovingly reacquainted with some old favourites

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I am loving Apple’s new music streaming service: Apple Music, which is initially available on a three month free trial basis before introducing membership fees from ÂŁ9.99 per month for individual users.

I tired of Spotify a while ago and only occasionally listen to user playlists, mainly due to the complicated navigation required to access your favourite genres or albums. This is the best feature of Apple Music in my opinion – you’re asked for your favourite genres and artists and your ‘For You’ tab is customised on a daily basis with albums which fit in with your preferences.

Unsurprisingly I have fitted firmly in to the country-pop-rock category and have been getting lovingly reacquainted with some old favourites : Carrie Underwood’s ‘Some Hearts’ (2005), Alicia Keys’ ‘The Element of Freedom'(2009) and Bon Iver’s ‘For Emma, Forever Ago’ (2008) to name but a few. I also love that Apple compiles playlists of notable songwriters and producers such as Max Martin and Xenomania.

Pop is unashamedly my greatest passion; artists such as Jennifer Lopez, Janet Jackson, Backstreet Boys, Madonna, Christina Aguilera and of course, Britney Spears, just sound better with each passing year. 1998 to 2005 has to be the amongst the best seven years of music to date, surely?

shelleyhanveywriter 🙂

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Written by shelleyhanveywriter

August 5, 2015 at 3:34 pm

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James Bay releases debut album ‘Chaos and the Calm’

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The long awaited debut album from 2015 Brit Awards Critics’ Choice winner, James Bay, was released today on Republic Records (March 23rd, 2015).

‘Chaos and the Calm’ features 15 tracks which showcase Bay’s classic rock and blues predilections, but also pay a welcome homage to his surroundings whilst he was recording in the pilgrimage capital of country, Nashville.

‘Hold Back The River’, ‘Scars’, ‘Collide’ and ‘Move Together’ are my current favourites.  I am definitely firmly rooted at the soft rock/blues end of the musical taste spectrum, but I think this record has a bit of something for everyone in this ball park.

I’ve been looking forward to this album for months now and I for one am not disappointed. I hear the similarities between Bay’s sound and that of later date Kings of Leon, but I have to say that I much prefer Bay’s music and I would liken his tone and vocal edge much more to Justin Vernon (Bon Iver) or Ben Howard. Aged just 24, I think we can look forward to a long and well established career from this artist.

A very satisfying debut.

http://www.jamesbaymusic.com

@JamesBayMusic

shelleyhanveywriter 🙂

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March 23, 2015 at 6:00 pm

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I Don’t Want To Change You

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The second full length track has been released from Damien Rice‘s upcoming third album, ‘My Favourite Faded Fantasy’ (Ireland – October 31st, 2014, UK & EU – November 3rd, 2014, Australia and NZ – November 7th, 2014).

‘I Don’t Want To Change You’ is as reflective, emotive and orchestral as you might expect, but there is a definite shift in tone from the bitter frankness of tracks such as ‘Rootless Tree’ and ‘Me, My Yoke and I’, as featured on 2006’s ‘9‘. Perhaps, after his time away from the spotlight, Rice has found some inner stillness and finally made peace with his history and histrionics. I rather hope not, because no one does heartbreak and repressed rage quite like him. ‘Elephant’ is my second favourite Rice track (unsurprisingly perhaps, given that it was said to be originally titled ‘The Blower’s Daughter, Pt. 2’). The last sentence is so perfect: “well you can both keep me pinned, ’cause it’s easier to tease, but you can’t make me happy, quite as good as me…well you know that’s a lie“. Just like Rice to flip the entire meaning of a track in the last six words.

All of the U.S. and European tour dates recently released have sold out, and tickets are selling online via auction sites for up to ÂŁ2,000. I’m keeping everything crossed for more UK dates and will post details as soon as I get them.

shelleyhanveywriter 🙂

http://www.damienrice.com

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September 25, 2014 at 11:48 am

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Bad boys and tortured souls

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In various ways and at different times, I’ve felt a lack of love over the past few years. It is my belief that this began when someone really influential and significant left my life.

That person was Damien Rice.


It was 2004 and I had been introduced to the wonder that is Rice’s debut album, ‘O‘. It’s fair to say that it was infatuation at first listen and so began my emotionally fulfilling, yet completely one-sided love affair with one of the great Irish poets and performers of our time. We went on to laugh, cry and share such special moments in each other’s company. He brought my favourite female singer-songwriter, Lisa Hannigan, in to my life and accompanied me to a gig that I will never forget. He provided the soundtrack to one of my favourite films, Closer, and in my young and hopeful naivety I truly believed that nothing would ever change.

And then he left.

Not a word for 8 years. I heard a rumour of overgrown beards, mountainside retreats in Tibet and a possible loss of muse, but after a series of disheartening social media searches, I reluctantly realised that I had to move on and I really thought I had. Of course there were the six-monthly rumination periods were I would just sit and wonder how things fell apart, but on the whole I was doing ok.

Then something happened…

 

Rice surprised everyone this week by announcing the release of his third studio album, ‘My Favourite Faded Fantasy’ (Ireland – October 31st, 2014, UK & EU – November 3rd, 2014, Australia and NZ – November 7th, 2014) and providing a teaser video of the track. Online hype is huge, as is to be expected for an artist whose debut album went 10x Platinum in his native country. I think it would be no exaggeration to state that this is surely the most anticipated album of 2014.

To quote Loz herself…”I feel like I’ve been trying to cover this up – I still love him. I try to convince myself that I’m over him, but I’m not”.

I feel your pain Loz – your armed robber bad boy is my tortured soul Irish crooner.

shelleyhanveywriter 🙂

http://www.damienrice.com

 

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September 10, 2014 at 1:53 pm

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Masters, Hens and Cherry Ghosts

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So it’s been a while since my last post. I’ve been busy with studying for my Masters, organising hen weekends, becoming a Godmother and doing a bit of private tuition on the side. But now I’m back, to let you know, I can really shake ’em down…yep, there’s been time for a few classic romance dramas too.

I’ve been listening to one of my favourite chillout albums a lot recently; Birdy‘s 2011 self-titled debut. I’ve decided that her cover of Cherry Ghost‘s ‘People Help the People’ is one of my all time favourite songs. In fact, I’m yet to hear a remix of the song that I don’t like. There’s a great one on Chilled Ibiza by Two Inch Punch. I first heard the original song at a festival that I reviewed back in 2011; Friends of Mine Festival. The track has clearly stood the test of time, much unlike the festival which was canned after a year due to the company going in to voluntary liquidation after failing to pay debts to artists, individuals and suppliers. The line-up was as ambitious as the financial projections, it would appear.

Regardless, I will always fondly remember the first time I heard this track and will likely never get another chance to see Cherry Ghost perform live; for which, friends of mine, I am truly grateful.

 

shelleyhanveywriter 🙂

Written by shelleyhanveywriter

August 29, 2014 at 2:40 pm

This week I’m mostly listening to: Banks, Charlene Soraia and James Vincent McMorrow

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This week I’m mostly listening to…

Banks is an electronic soul singer, keyboardist and songwriter from LA. ‘Waiting Game’ is the first track to appear on her debut EP entitled ‘London’ (September 10th , 2013). The EP showcases Banks’s sultry, emotive and soulful vocals perfectly and as a result, critics and musical peers alike have been quick to namecheck the LA native in their top tips for 2014. Katy Perry is a big fan and she has excellent taste in music; she brought the amazing School of Seven Bells to my attention. Banks is a highly commercial and image-driven artist, in a similar fashion to Lana Del Rey. She appears to have the full package and I would be very surprised if she wasn’t sitting firmly in the UK album charts by this time next year.

 

Charlene Soraia has released a new music video for her track, ‘Standing Stone’, which is also free to download on her Facebook page. The music video was a collaboration between Soraia and her fans – she asked fans to send in pictures of themselves with family and loved ones, in the hope that they might be featured in the retrospective visual.

Soraia is preparing to release her second album ‘Love Is The Law’ later this year. Like many people, I’ve been a fan of hers since hearing her cover of ‘Wherever You Will Go’ in 2011 and it’s been great to see the development in both her songwriting and artistic style. Soraia has a close relationship with her fans and facilitates this through her various social media channels. You get the impression that she is just an ordinary, down to earth girl with an extraordinary vocal talent that even she doesn’t quite know what to do with yet. Unaffected: the best quality one can have.

 

‘Cavalier’ is taken from James Vincent McMorrow‘s upcoming second album ‘Post Tropical’, to be released on January 13th, 2014 (UK/US). The record features music that McMorrow describes himself as preferring to listen to. Debut album ‘Early in the Morning’ (2011) was heavily folk-influenced, whilst this collection leans more towards the softer side of R&B and has been categorised somewhere between Antony And The Johnsons and James Blake. McMorrow’s appeal for me has always been his lyrical sentimentality delivered via his stunning falsetto. He makes these songwriting and vocal qualities appear effortless and simplistic and these elements of his artistry are as prominent as ever on this record. I expect this album to do very well in 2014.

 

www.hernameisbanks.com / @hernameisbanks

www.charlenesoraia.com / @CharleneSoraia

www.jamesvmcmorrow.com / @jamesvmcmorrow

shelleyhanveywriter 🙂

Written by shelleyhanveywriter

January 10, 2014 at 4:01 pm

New artist recommendation of the week – Tom Odell

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Tom Odell is my new artist recommendation of the week.

Odell has been writing songs since the age of 13 and just a few short months ago signed to Lily Rose Cooper‘s record label; a friend of Cooper’s discovered Odell and recommended that she catch one of his shows. After likening his energy onstage to that of David Bowie, Cooper was hooked and signed the 21-year old pianist without hesitation.

 

‘Another Love’, the title track for Odell’s forthcoming debut EP was chosen by Burberry for their Spring/Summer catwalk show at  London Fashion Week…no doubt picking up a few more celebrity followers along the way. Odell will release his debut EP ‘Songs From Another Love’ digitally on October 28th, 2012. The EP will also be available on a 7” double vinyl on November 12th, 2012.

 

Odell puts me in mind of early Coldplay, Damien Rice and Ben Howard, so if you are a fan of any of these artists I’m pretty sure that you’ll like what you hear. I look forward to seeing lots more of this hotly-tipped new artist; I think he just might help to fill the hole in my heart vacated in 2010 by Johnny Flynn.

http://www.tomodell.com

shelleyhanveywriter 🙂

Written by shelleyhanveywriter

October 11, 2012 at 3:10 pm

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