Archives for category: Music

One evening after talking to the other half about potentially having music in the bedroom. I know – such an in depth conversation.  It seemed the best solution was to hook up an old phone to some speakers and just have it playing in the background.

It came to reason that it can be some effort to find new music on a regular basis, download it and load it on your phone. Nowadays technology has filled this void of our laziness and created many different platforms where you can stream your favourite music to your heart’s content. One of which is Spotify.

Now for those of you who have been living under a rock for the past six years, Spotify is a music streaming service providing music from a number of different record labels.
After using it only for a couple of days, I have to say I’m really impressed with the service. It’s very easy to find new music.

The only thing which is highly annoying (I’m sure you know) is the adverts!

If anyone has paid for the subscription – add free on Spotify is it worth it? Or are you using another service of the same quality?

I really like using one system for all of my music but I’m unsure what one is the best compromise. I’m happy to pay for the subscription if it’s worth the money. Any thoughts?

 

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On the way to work this morning I heard on the radio the new track  by Ed Sheeran ‘Sing‘ which is the first release from the highly anticipated second album x, which is set for release 23 June.

This track is more upbeat and has a really catchy hook! Admittedly I do quite like the somber tone of his previous album,  however it’s a nice change and perhaps a glimpse of the style of the forthcoming album?

Ed Sheeran explains the collaboration with Pharrell for the track –

‘”Pharrell really pushes you and wants you to do the best thing possible. Pharrell must have been on about his 17th idea when he played me this beat. Instinctively, I dismissed it, but I had a guitar in my hand and started playing that riff absent-mindedly. From that moment, I was playing that song and… we just pieced it all together.”

Give it a listen …

I am now a week into reading Alan Rusbridger’s diary ‘Play it Again’, a year where he tries to learn Chopin’s first Ballad on the piano. See my previous posts.

I must say, I’m really enjoying it! It’s so refreshing to hear the words of a true amateur explaining the frustrations of playing. How he has never been able to memorise a single note in his life (I suffer the same problem), how he has always played piano the way he wants to – by reading or playing the notes he feels is best, skipping the slightly harder parts, and blurring them in the background of heavily based chord melodies.

It has given me a kick up the arse to try and learn a semi professional piano piece properly – note by note. Well not professional, but classical let’s say. I’ve always LOVED listening to ‘Claire de Lune’ by Debussy .

So I thought I would give it a try. I’ve counted the piece and put in the fingering and now am playing it very slowly! It’s getting there though. I can play the first two pages.
I’ve had a rush of the old feeling when I was around 6 years old, learning for the first time. How it would take so much concentration and energy to do simple notes. After doing twenty minutes I feel physically exhausted. Although these feelings have come rushing back as I’m not used to staring at the music and not knowing where to begin. It does feel exciting that i’m learning new things, and I shouldn’t be complacent in what I’ve learnt. ‘You can always improve and get better’.

When it’s complete i’ll be sure to post a video of the finished piece.

Music, Dubstep, Blackmill, SoundcloudRecently the only thing I seem to be listening to over and over again is ‘Blackmill‘. A one-man dubstep act featuring 20-year-old Robert Card from Scotland. I say dubstep – I don’t usually listen to dubstep usually however his music has a more melodic and chilled beat with an ambient feel throughout. Rather than the harsh and forced sounds that sometimes can be found in some dubstep tracks. 

My personal favourites are:
Spirit of Life
Evil Beauty 

If you don’t usually listen to this type of music, don’t be put off by the dupstep title. It’s really relaxing 🙂

Let me know what you think?

 

Wow that was a long Monday! After completing a day at my placement I had a shift at my part time job. I guess that’s the downside of being a student. I’ve managed to have a quick something to eat before I now stumble to my bed.

Tired puppy, Monday, Music, Reading

(It’s just too cute not to put into a post!)

I am going to start my new book tonight ‘Play it again’ by Alan Rusbridger (the editor of the Guardian). He set himself the impossible task to learn Chopin’s Ballade No.1 in the space of a year. This particular piano piece is famously known for being one of the most technically challenging.

The book is mainly about (as I’ve read) how Rusbridger uses music to help him get through a year that witnesses the Japanese tsunami, the English riots, and the Guardian’s breaking of both WikiLeaks and the News of the World hacking scandal.

I always find it so interested reading and listening to how people use music in their lives. As a keen pianist, I often use it as a way of zoning out the day and just allowing the music to blur out the events of the day.
That was always my goal. I never had just the sole aim of obtaining ‘x’ grade in piano. My ambition was just to be able to play – what I wanted. I’ve done that. After many painstaking years as a kid where it felt I would never move onto anything harder than ‘Mary Had a Little Lamb’. I can now say that it is a complete pleasure.

How was your Monday? Anything new / exciting happen?

I’ve been playing the piano for sixteen years, and along the way I’ve realised I love to sing. It has been a way for me to completely relax and let go. It’s my meditation if you will.
However I’ve always hated playing and singing in front of anyone! The thought of someone listening to me literally makes my stomach do somersaults. Writing this post even, send a rush of fear through me. It really baffles me how and why I get so nervous?

I’ve always liked being in my little bubble where no one can hear me and I can do what I like.

I guess it’s the worry of people judging something that you love to do.

I’ve always wanted to try and be comfortable with playing in front of people, because I love to play and it would be amazing to share my passion with people.  An experience is always better shared right?

I do not intend to say I’m very good, but if someone can get enjoyment out of it like I can then I would be happy.

Please feel free to leave your thoughts 🙂