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Amy Winehouse Dies At 27

23 Jul

News broke today that singer Amy Winehouse died in her London residence today. At age 27, she joins the ranks of Morrison, Joplin, Hendrix and Cobain, all of who experienced their untimely death at this age. Winehouse was known for her self-destructive persona. Her first major hit single “Rehab” embraced this. For years, her habits and vices were brutally lampooned by the media. Now, the same outlets that celebrated her tragic downfall must gather at least some reverence for Winehouse’s talent.

Though she was popularly chastised as sloppy and implosive, Winehouse made some indisputable contributions to the music scene. In an overwhelming backdrop of pop friendly female artists, she drew upon the classics, helping to bring soul back to mainstream consciousness. During her short moment, Winehouse helped chip away at the mold of what women should look or sound like. Her success was a harbinger for that of Adele, Corrine Baily Rae, Duffy and others.

While the cause of Winehouse’s death is not yet know, it is clear that she was dealing with some heavy demons. Whether her torment was the result of media bullying or bleak insecurity the most tragic aspect of her death is that she will never create new music again.

Here’s my favorite Winehouse song, Tears Dry on Their Own

Madonna as Number One Artist on Rolling Stone’s Queens of Pop list

9 Jul

Hi all,

I was recently perusing through the relentless abyss of internet musical commentary when I decided to check out one of the ultimate staples in entertainment journalism, Rolling Stone. The website posted a super neato ranking of the modern queens of pop, with selection determined by readers.

First of all, I want to shake the hand of whoever is responsible for placing Sir Elton John as number 9 on the list, comfortably one spot away from Mariah Carey at number 10. Kudos to you good madame(s) or sir(s), kudos to you.

Ultimately, the content of this list, in my opinion, was pretty solid . The sequencing was a little odd though-Aretha Franklin was at 6…Britney Spears at number 3. But this can be chalked  up to the fact that the list was derived from a reader’s poll, in which case reply variance can always produce some weird twists.

Overall Queen Madge is well deserving of the number one spot. Yeah she may not be a vocalist in the same league of Aretha, but the lady pretty much invented, or at least greatly defined, modern pop as we know it today.  As stated by Rolling Stone, “Sure, her last few albums didn’t match up to the classics. Nobody cares. She’s Madonna”. They are certainly right. At this point, Madonna could  maitntain her iconic status even while  fading into obscurity at  Bora Bora.

Madonna on a horse, just because.

Madonna is currently working on a much anticipated 12th album, proof that living legends can indeed maintain a perpetual cultural relevance.

Cults: A New Band to Watch For

19 Jun

Hey there all,

If you are anything like me, you are always on the look out for new music. My way hipper friend recently pointed me in the direction of a band called Cults, composed of the New York duo Madeline Follin and Brian Oblivion. This up and coming group has a sound that is very 1960’s esque, with the sound quality of their recordings taking you back to the essence of the period. Cults signifies a steady trend in contemporary music; a carefree whimsy conveyed through simple melodies and airy lyrics. I’ve posted some of Cults’ tracks below, hope you enjoy!

I have no idea what they are supposed to be doing here

Marina and the Diamonds

5 Aug

Quick post today on one of my new favorite artists Marina Diamandis (her stage name sounds like shes part of a group but shes a solo artist).

The Catherine Zeta doppelganger is of Greek/Welsh heritage, and shes known for her quirky style, pitch, and lyrics content.

Beneath are two of my favorite Marina and the Diamonds singles, “Hollywood” and “I Am Not A Robot”.

I really love the social commentary of “Hollywood”. Interesting that such an on-point critique of everything considered classical American is drawn by a foreign perspective. A perfect hybrid of cynicism and kitsch.

“I Am Not A Robot” is equal parts beauty and power. The video is artsy and dramatic, and the lyrics are potent with a message of emotional honesty and self-empowerment.

For an added bonus, hears an acoustic version of “Hollywood”

Drake’s “Thank Me Later”

3 Aug

Hey there guys,

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Have y’all heard Drake’s newest album yet? Its been out for a while now, and his tracks, including non-released singles, have been all over hip hop stations. Seriously, I think that New York’s Hot 97 plays the same handful of Drake songs and re-mixes on a loop.

I love Drake’s “Thank Me Later” because it highlights his full range of skill. Drake (who records his verses by reading them off of his Blackberry) sings and raps, blurring the distinctions between each discipline.

Not to mention some of the songs are really infections. At first “Find Your Love’ struck me as kind of monotone and over-simplified, but after a couple of listens the hook of Drake’s rhythm was downright addictive.

Drake also demonstrates his personality as an artist. You really feel as though, despite the millions of other listeners, Drake is speaking directly to you. His lyrics come out genuine and even charmingly witty (“But do I ever come up in discussion over double pump latte’s
and low fat muffin’s?”)

My fav tracks off of “Thank Me Later” have to be, in no particular order, “Thank Me Now”, “Over”, “Up All Night” (feat Nicki Minaj) and “Light Up” (feat Jay Z)

Overall, Drake’s “Thank Me Later” is definitely  great background music to a tough workout or party 🙂

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