The Rambles of Neil Monnery

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Archive for the ‘music’ tag

On a song that just makes me smile…

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I think we all know that I’m no music critic or music writer. I have many, well some, well one or two journalistic qualities and writing about music isn’t one of them. So I tend not to write about it and music certainly isn’t my thing as it were. Yet every so often a song comes about that I keep clicking on whether it be YouTube or Spotify when I’m on the move and a song but an artist who is somersaulting up my music thoughts and that artist is former Canadian Idol third place finisher Carly Rae Jepsen.

From her third album E•MO•TION, we’ve already had the awesome video and above average catchy pop tune of I Really Like You but her second release is even better. The video is again superb as it shows Carly during her promotional tour for the album in New York, Paris & Tokyo and is filmed without a plan or script, it is just a camera following Carly around during down time between events (it has since come out that Carly didn’t even know it was for a music video until well into filming) and shows a young woman just enjoying life. I also loved the karaoke bar scenes as it reminded me so much of Lost in Translation, a film that just makes me happy. So the video is great but what about the song?

It is knock out of the park good if you are a fan of pop with an 80s synth vibe then it’ll be right up your street. There is plenty of music that is great that is deep and meaningful but often people (well I know I do) just want music to cheer them up and that is where cheesy easy-listening pop music comes in and that is what this song comes good. It is packed full of energy and bounciness that I think we’ve come to expect of Carly and to be frank just full of full good vibes and that is what I want in my pop. Throw in a surprising amount of saxophone and you’ve got yourself a sure-fire hit and a summer song that’ll go far.

It still surprises me just how much I am liking her music. It is what I call ‘happy music’ and the type of music that you can often find me bouncing about to in the kitchen when making dinner. On a slightly deeper level it reminds me that their is a big wide world out there and whilst there is oh so much bad that we see populate our news outlets, there are also opportunities to people to just be happy and isn’t that deep down what we all want, to smile and be happy?

Watch and enjoy. If you don’t find yourself bopping along then I’ll be surprised.

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August 2nd, 2015 at 5:09 pm

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On I really really really really really really like you…

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Pop music. I haven’t heard a genuinely classic pop music song so far this year. I have heard many good songs but they’ve been in other genres. Yet what do you get when you get one of the greatest actors of his generation to star in a music video for a third placed Canadian Idol? You get one of the most catchy and quality pop tunes for a long, long time.

Carly Rae Jepsen burst on to the scene with Call Me Maybe and also had another hit in a collaboration with Owl City but has been off the radar for a while and then boom, she comes out with this.

Pop music should make you smile. I listen to lots of different genres of music dependent on my mood and some make you think, some make you zone out, some pumps you up but pop music should make you smile, make you bop about. This song does that and does that in spades. Who though had the idea of plonking in Tom Hanks as the lead character and why on Earth did Tom say yes?

Well surprisingly it was reportedly Tom’s idea! Yes the coolest man in Hollywood (bar Bill Murray) heard about the project as he knows Carly’s manager and when told about the music idea wanted to be asked. I mean just how cool is that? Then at the end there’s even a cameo from Justin Bieber (that I missed the first few times I watched the video). So the video ticks a lot of ‘celebrity’ boxes.

I have long thought good music videos will help change my mind on a song. For example I’m not a huge fan of ‘Sky Full of Stars’ by Coldplay but I absolutely adore the video (embedded below) so therefore when it pops on one of the music channels I don’t turn over immediately and subconsciously I like the song more than I would without a cool video.

Carly’s song is extremely boppy and catchy but the video takes it to the next level. I mean who doesn’t want to see Tom Hanks dancing? I know I do. The song is available for digital download in the UK from Sunday 26th April and this has smash hit written all over it. This will surely be her second UK #1 and has the chance to be the song of the early summer. This is pop music at its absolute best.

Catchy, cheery, a happy message. Love it and this is why I don’t write reviews. How terrible was this blog post…? Please don’t send answers on a postcard.

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April 19th, 2015 at 6:21 pm

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Crazy magical sex? Yes please and some rather personal thoughts…

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Well the title is a bit weird but it will make sense. This blog is about three things, thirdly the headline crazy magical sex and how awesome I think it would be, secondly the lyrics to a song and how they speak to me but first it is about how a music video can at times influence what you think about a song.

Yesterday morning I was up at some stupid hour and before clubland.tv went off the air for two hours of teleshopping at 6AM, the last song played was one I hadn’t heard yet. It was by an American House DJ known as 3LAU and the song was called ‘How you love me’ and it was certainly catchy. However the video was one of the most intriguing I’ve seen for a long, long time. You can watch it below:

It is about a young lady telling her boyfriend that she is ready for sex, then the young lady in question has some rather crazy (and seemingly awesome) magical powers and they have a good time. He then sneaks off to go with another girl but before he escapes he makes the epic fail of a) leaving his phone behind and b) not getting out of there without waking up super hot magical powers sex girl.

Just a quick note here – the woman he’s going to meet is nowhere near as attractive as the girl he’s trying to sneak away from.

So anyway using her magical powers she knows what he is up to, then she magically tries to choke him (kinky) and then uses her rather large teddy bear collection to attack him before giving her big teddy evil life and then the evil teddy does something rather bad to our male lead who thought he was just going to have his cake and eat it with two women. The ending is left rather ambiguous, has he been turned into a teddy? Is that why she has a large teddy collection? Is this why my friend Emma has a large teddy collection, are they there to attack any men who try to play her for a fool? Many unanswered questions but the video is basically just flat out cool and whilst the song itself is very catchy and certainly worthy of a spot on my YouTube dance mix and my iPod the next time I go to update it, the video adds to the song.

Now on to the lyrics:

Nobody’s perfect I’ll never try,
But I promise I’m worth it if you just open up your eyes,
I don’t need a second chance,
I need a friend,
Someone who’s gon’ stand by me right there till the end,
If you want the best of my heart, you’ve just gotta see the good in me.

Cause I could be the rain in your desert sky,
I could be the fire in your darkest night,
I could be your curse or your angel,
It’s all in how you love me.

I could be your sun when it’s cold outside,
I could be your rock when there’s nowhere to hide,
I could be your curse or your angel,
It’s all in how you love me.

It’s How You Love Me.

You get what you give, that’s the simple truth.
So, just lend me your hand and I’ll give you someone to hold onto.

I don’t need a second chance,
I need a friend,
Someone who’s gon’ stand by me right there till the end,
If you want the best of my heart, you’ve just gotta see the good in me.

Cause I could be the rain in your desert sky,
I could be the fire in your darkest night,
I could be your curse or your angel,
It’s all in how you love me.

I could be your sun when it’s cold outside,
I could be your rock when there’s nowhere to hide,
I could be your curse or your angel,
It’s all in how you love me.

It’s How You Love Me.

Yes. Nobody is perfect and that is something I have long come to terms with. There is no Sabrina/Harvey stone in two halves that create a perfect whole. Not to delve too deeply into my private life but sometimes I sit here (or somewhere else – I think in many places – I also think laying down and walking) about what I want in a partner. On one hand you want the fireworks, the insane chemistry and pure lust but then you also want the person that you can see being a life partner, who could be the friend who’ll stand by me right until the very end and who can be the yin to my yang who I can share my life with. I suspect what it comes down to is finding the person who is the best mix of the two. Movies make it seem like the former is the all important whereas maybe the latter is the key. Who knows. I suppose that is all part of the individual journey of life that we all undertake.

I have in essence been single for all of my 31 years and you get to a point where letting someone into your life is actually a big deal. I can’t speak for other long-term singletons but I can speak for myself when I say you just get used to the lifestyle. I suspect it is the same the other way round, those who have spent most (if not all) of their teenage and adult life in relationships are scared to a degree about single life. Potentially jumping into a relationship would for me be to some degree scary because it is out of my comfort zone. Being single is what I’m used to but then on the other hand the rewards far outweigh the risks and what if there is potential for something awesome and magical out there?

I am starting to find my, I won’t say MoJo but I will say maybe my desire to actually test those potential waters. I am still shy and awkward (more awkward than shy these days though) and I am positively naive in so many things on this front. Everyone learns it when young and I never did. My knowledge on romance, how to deal with potential romance, dating etc. is so miliscule that you could fit it on the back of a postage stamp, but for the first time in a long while I think I’m ready to allow myself to get hurt if that is what has to happen. Maybe it is time to try to not only hit the Home Run but to actually step up to the plate to be in a position to hit the Home Run even though the chances of striking out are abundant.

What this all means I’ll leave to the reader to decide but there have been changes in my life recently away from personal stuff that has freed me somewhat and to some degree focused my mind on what I want and what I see me getting from this whole journey of life. Whilst just bumbling along content with life has been fine and dandy, maybe I actually yearn for more and maybe despite my protestations, maybe I actually want to find someone with whom to share my life. I’ve always said I’m comfortable with the single life (and I am) but does comfortable equate to actual happiness? Seeing my sister so happy at her wedding was such an eye opener. It truly was.

Wow. I did not see me typing this when I woke up this morning. I certainly did think to myself how much I wished I still kept my LiveJournal where I could be more open and frank but this is a very public blog so I have to tippy-toe around certain issues.

To end with though lets circle back to the music video and the first few words of the headline. If anyone has magical powers and wants crazy magical sex then I could probably have my interest piqued by that proposal. I’m pretty open minded but bringing a teddy bear to life with an evil conscious is something that I’d at least take a double take over and I don’t want any woman (no matter how crazy hot and magical she may be) ever bring my Care Bears to life. They know too much and have the dirt on me.

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August 5th, 2014 at 8:48 am

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Lissie – Go Your Own Way – It just blows my mind

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I don’t write a lot about music on here. Most people say my music taste sucks. In the interest of fairness it should be noted that such amazing songs as the two Yeo Valley raps on my iPod, Hanson has three songs I think and I have both Savage Garden albums on there. Most recently though I have gravitated to more clubbing music but there are other people I like and one of them has just blown my mind.

I loved the debut single from American folk singer Lizzie. The song When I’m alone (embedded below) was nice and catchy with a flowing melody and a pretty good voice.

However I had forgotten about her. Last week one of the nurses at the hospital told me that I should listen to her album. I forgot to do anything but I heard a version of Fleetwood Mac’s Go Your Own Way on a Twinning’s Tea advert. I punched it into YouTube and it turned out to be by Lizzie.

Go Your Own Way is one of my very favourite songs. So to hear a version of it that is completely different to the original is always going to be tough but this just blew my mind. My favourite song of 2012 and it isn’t even close.

This is the type of thing that the judges on the X Factor and The Voice want their acts to do. Take a song and make it distinct. It is extremely hard to do certainly in a few days when you don’t really know what you are doing. If they need any inspiration though they need to listen to both versions of this song and then they might start to understand.

Fleetwood Mac’s version…

Lissie’s cover version…

I just think it is just *that good…

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April 23rd, 2012 at 3:34 pm

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Rebecca Black’s New Single – My Moment Video

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Following on from her debut single ‘Friday’, Rebecca Black is releasing her second single entitled ‘My Moment’ in the near future and the video has been put on YouTube. I have to admit that I was partial to Friday and I actually don’t mind this tune. I feel a lot for her and the stick that she has got around the world but heck she’s fighting and with over 400,000 twitter followers she is certainly taking her chance to make a career for herself.

So please listen to the single and watch the video for her new single. It’s not bad. It’s not great but it’s not bad and that I think is a result for Miss Rebecca Black.

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July 19th, 2011 at 12:15 pm

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Rebecca Black’s Friday removed from YouTube

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How many 13 year-olds have uploaded a video of themselves singing on YouTube? More than one or two I’d imagine. However just how many of them have uploaded a video of them singing on to YouTube and had over 160 million people view that video? I think the answer to that question might just be one – Rebecca Black.

When her video Friday hit YouTube it quickly became the biggest Social Media phenomenon that I can remember. It may have been the biggest of all time. Facebook and Twitter both went into meltdown and if you had made it through the past couple of months without having heard the song then you’d have been going some. However watching said video now is not as easy after a despute between the artist and the production company has led to the video being taken down from the video sharing website.

The Ark Music Factory had started to charge viewers $2.99 (£1.85) to watch the video via it’s YouTube platform. This was done without the knowledge nor consent of Miss Black. The 13 year-old has now launched legal action over the video and with a copyright claim has enforced YouTube to take the video down. I am pretty sure that she is happy for the video to stay on the site as long as it is free but the production company think they can milk this for even more money.

It will be a very interesting case to follow as to who exactly owns the rights to the video and song. Rebecca Black’s parents paid Ark a sum to produce the song and video but have been claiming since March that they company are exploiting her. This could get messy folks. This is another example of talentless nobodies getting their fifteen minutes of fame. With the way things are going I’ll get commissioned to write and star in my own TV show in the near future. If Imogen Thomas and Rebecca Black can be stars with no talent then so can I…

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June 20th, 2011 at 2:30 pm

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Eurovision 2011: Blue – I can (and they just might)

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Like most sane people – I adore the awfulness of Eurovision. Yes I know that it has lost a bit of zest since Terry Wogan decided it had gotten too political even for him but it still is well worth an evening (or more if you watch the semi’s) of entertainment. For years the UK have put in piss poor entries that we knew deep down had no hope of winning. From Daz Simpson to Scooch we have been roundly kicked in the knackers by Europe and deservedly so but this year it might well be all different.

Now if you didn’t know our entry this year is Blue who have reformed and their song ‘I can’ is actually good and they can pull this off. They are still famous across Europe and the song has what most Eurovision winners need – a catchy melody (yes I know Lordi didn’t but they were the exception). If you haven’t heard the song yet then here is the video. Let me know what you think:

Blue – I Can

Now I’m not what you call a Blue fan but they weren’t the worst boy band ever. They had a few half decent singles and their European wide success should help us. Last years winner was fantastic and I do have Lena Mayer-Landrut’s song Satellite (Germany) on my iPod. I also enjoyed Tom Dice’s Me & My Guitar (Belgium) so not all the songs are terrible.

I do think it would be fun to win it all this year. People will moan about how its a waste of taxpayers money blah de blah and we should pull out of Eurovision but for what we spend on it – it works out as great value fr money for the BBC year in year out. Millions will tune in for the cheesiness of it and Ireland are throwing Jedward at Europe so surely we won’t be last – surely…?

PS: I bet if UKIP got to power they would want to remove us from Eurovision. This cannot be allowed to happen!

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April 20th, 2011 at 7:59 am

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Rebecca Black – Friday

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Now that I’ve been culled from the Lib Dem Blog aggregator because I’m not a card-carrying member of the party (yes I still haven’t joined – one day I’ll get around to it, probably, maybe) I feel more at ease writing about non-political things that crop up in my mind. So on to the song of the year so far. Oh yes it’s my review of the quite erm…shall we say ‘interesting’ song and video by Rebecca Black. If you haven’t had the ‘pleasure then please watch the following video.

First of all no matter the standard of her voice and the heavy use of auto-tune to make her sound like she’s not as awful as she is, just how bad is the actual song? I think it might just be the worst song I’ve ever heard. Just how many songs tell me in bad English the order of the day of the week? Or how many songs have a whole verse about the hard decision people have about which seat to take in a car? In the video the only seat available is the middle back so unless she’s going to be a whiny bitch and ask people to move then there is no decision to make. Also no-one in that car is wearing a seat-belt, that’s shocking. Seat-belts are cool kids because they save lives.

Away from the song then the singing of it is not great. It’s not as bad as some people are saying but it’s certainly not got much going for it. In a way I feel for her as she has gained a lot of notoriety but on the other hand she’s got notoriety and when you are a 13 or 14 year-old girl trying to make your mark in the music industry then that isn’t a bad place to be. Simon Cowell said he loves it and she’s been on Good Morning America. So hey things could be worse.

However for a $2000 investment and 38million views on YouTube already you’ve got to say that it was a pretty damned good bit of business. I’m ‘looking forward’ to the follow-up release…

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March 23rd, 2011 at 11:45 am

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