Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Free Music: Jenny & Tyler

Jenny and her husband Tyler met at the University of Delaware. They met in a bus on their way to church. They started leading worship together and from there began writing songs and eating omelets on Tuesday and Thursday mornings. They spent the first year singing together in the stairwells of the student center. The acoustics were incredible. Sometime that fall they started dating and well, as they say, the rest is history. They are really different, but those differences are part of what make us a great team. Tyler pushes me Jenny to try new things and Jenny keeps him somewhat grounded. Their different musical backgrounds inspire us to create new music. If it weren’t for Tyler, Jenny probably would be writing cheesy country songs and Tyler’d be a virtual Jack Johnson impersonator. In 2007, they released a record called A Prelude. an album with songs that were really just the beginning of what they were to become as a duo. In 2008, they moved to Nashville. In 2009, they quit their day jobs and released This Isn’t a Dream. That spring, they toured for the first time. They traveled consistently for the next year, playing in houses, coffee shops, churches, colleges, and bars. Met all sorts of interesting people, some of whom now feel like extended family, and learned a lot about ourselves. This past summer, they decided it was time to make another record. Gathered a group of songs and went into the studio (aka our friends’ closets, living rooms, and basements). They're really happy with the result. Faint Not chronicles our journey. "As writers, songs allow us to communicate experiences and truths when we can’t find the words to speak them. Our hope is that the songs will resonate with you. We don’t know what the future holds, but we’re thankful for where we are today. Definitely be sure to try out their FREE album!

@ Nashville, USA
♫ Folk, Rock, Pop

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Jonas Alaska

Today's feature, Jonas Alaska, is  a discovery I made through Spotify's "What's New" section. Jonas (born 1988), from Åmli, Aust Agder, Norway, released his self-titled debut album in September on Jansen Plateproduksjon. Despite his young age, Jonas Alaska is an incredibly talented lyricist and songwriter with a characteristic sound and a strong voice. After a series of shows, including by:Larm in Oslo in February, many have their eyes on the talent from the south. As a consequence of those concerts, Jonas has played many of the larger festivals in Norway this summer. Artists like Paul Simon, John Lennon and Bob Dylan are often mentioned as references for Jonas Alaska’s music, but as southern Norwegian newspaper Arendals Tidende wrote about the 22-year old: Despite his tight trousers, harmonica, boots and guitar, he is no copycat of Dylan. Jonas Alaska has his own characteristics and his own sound, also fit for the present. The album consists of 11 songs written by the artist, most of them during the past two years. The songs range from heart-wrenching songs, to ballads with captivating harmonies and up-tempo tunes with elements of Americana, folk and pop - all with an original sound, both lyrically and melodically. Alaska’s lyrics often focus on themes such as love, politics and tragedy, but also the simpler things in life that everyone can relate to. Other than Alaska himself on vocals, piano and acoustic guitar, this incredibly talented team of well-known musicians contribute on the album: Thom Hell: Guitar, piano, organ, vocals Even Ormestad: Bass, piano, keyboards Martin Horntveth: Drums, percussion David Wallumrød: Organ, piano Marius Graff: Banjo Audun Borrmann: Electric guitar Thomas Aslaksen: Drums Marcus Forsgren: Electric guitar. Don't hesitate and give his music a try!

@ Amli, Norway
♫ Folk, Pop

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Rebekka Karijord

The last few weeks I discovered that my internship is, with its long days, quite time consuming. That's why you haven't seen updates on here for quite a while. But I still am discovering lots of new interesting music, so I'll try to share those as much as possible with you from now on. Today's feature is Rebekka Karijord. Rebekka was born in 1976, in Northern Norway (Lofoten). She lived with her mother her whole growth. Both her parents are artists. Rebekka went to several musical/performance educations such as the Norwegian Musical Theatre, Academy of ballet and she also went to the Royal Academy of Acting in Stockholm. She has a Swedish family and after four years living in Stockholm she feels she has two homes, one in Sweden and one in Norway. Rebekka composed her first song when she was 3 years old, recorded her first demo with her own songs when she was 8 years old. She also learned how to play piano and the violin during her whole growth. She started composing English songs when she was 12 years old and contributed with her talent to Children’s records and NRK (Norwegian TV) as vocalist, songwriter and actress during her whole growth. When she was 17 years old she was contracted to a major record company, but left out as they tried to control her artistic visions. Afterwards she immediately procured her own computer to start composing digitally, on her own. Rebekka’s music is probably inspired by Northern Norway, more specially Lofoten, where her family lives these days. Her dream would be living in Lofoten with her computers, microphones and just keep creating these beautiful tunes.Rebekka never intended to only sing beautifully, she wanted to project a story with her voice. She wants people to listen to the recording and understand what she went through earlier the same day. To this date, she has released three studio albums, all under slightly different artist names. In 2003 she released Neophyte (as Rebekka) followed by Good or Goodbye in 2005 with Peder Kjellsby (as Rebekka & The Mysterybox) and her latest album The Noble Art of Letting Go as Rebekka Karijord.

@ Stockholm, Sweden
♫ Alternative, Acoustic, Folk

Monday, September 5, 2011

King Creosote & Jon Hopkins

Summer is almost over, and for me that's when the intensive music listening and discovering starts again. So that might be an explanation for the lack of updates lately! Todays post is a recommendation from a friend. Their first release Diamond Mine that was released earlier this year has been on repeat for quite a while now. Diamond mine is a collaborative album from Domino and Double Six artists, King Creosote and Jon Hopkins. Featuring lyrics and vocals from King Creosote sung over musical backdrops arranged and recorded by Jon Hopkins, Diamond Mine is a genuine labour of love, recorded over a number of years without the pressure of deadlines, whenever Jon and KC could get together. Intended to be heard as a single experience, Diamond Mine produces a near classical suite of emotion ranging from cracked despair to patched-up euphoria. Described by King Creosote as a ‘soundtrack to a romanticised version of a life lived in a scottish coastal village’, the record weaves in slices of Fife life, bike wheels, spring tides, tea cups and café chatter to produce a beautiful, unique and timeless album. Don't miss out!

@ London, UK

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Rachèl Louise

Today's post has been in the queue for at least a few weeks, it never got posted when I was finishing my bachelor thesis. Rachèl Louise was born 20 years ago in the heart of Utrecht. Growing up in a family of professional musicians, Rachel’s dream of making her own musical contribution to the world was natural. Her musical talent became evident when at the age of 5 she sung as a featured soloist in a Dutch children’s choir. During her childhood she sang for numerous Dutch and English CD-, DVD- and television productions. Rachel Louise left at the age of 17 for California to continue her education at the famous Musicians Institute in Hollywood LA. Here she was able to develop her own style, and with the help of industry professionals and an inspirational networking environment, work on her musical talents in writing, performing and recording. Now she is back in the Netherlands and working on her debut album. Rachel Louise is a singer/songwriter with pop influences, comparable to Maria Mena, Adele en Sara Bareilles. Together with international producers from Los Angeles, Hamburg and the Netherlands, Rachel Louise is spending this year on the release of an EP with a selection of her repertoire. She will be promoting her music with a series of ‘living room concerts’, small-scale but intimate gatherings with all the ingredients of a personal party: drinks, snacks and live music in an intimate atmosphere in ‘living rooms’ throughout the Netherlands. Recently Rachel appeared on several radioshows, and has already been referred to as one of the new talents from Holland.

@ Utrecht, NL
♫ Singer-songwriter, Pop

Tuesday, June 14, 2011


In the first few years after I discovered last.fm I visited it everyday. But when it became part of CBS and got all the region restrictions and a lot less free playable music I stopped coming to the website so regurarly. A few days ago I discovered they are finally introducing a friend finder, so let's hope it's the beginning for more innovations. What did not change about last.fm is the perfect recommendations for similar sounding artists. As a few hours ago, I discovered today's featured belgium formation Amatorski with last.fm recommendations! Amatorski is a young Belgian band formed in 2008, with a melancholic and narrative style, and some reminiscences of Portishead, Sigur Rós, or Radiohead. Amatorski consists of Inne Eysermans (songs, producing, voice, piano, guitar, accordeon), Sebastiaan van den Branden (guitar, programming, voice), Hilke Ros (double bass, synth bass, voice), and Christophe Claeys (drums, vibraphone, trumpet).Though their name means ‘amateurs’, they reached the finals of the Belgian rock contest Rockrally in 2010. The intimate song "Come Home" hit #1 in ‘De Afrekening’, the alternative hit chart on radio station Studio Brussel. In 2010 they released the Same Stars We Shared (Amatorski debut) EP. Their debut longplayer TBC was released in May 2011. You can listen them in full on their Bandcamp.

@ Gent, Belgium
♫ Alternative, Folk

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Jesse Thomas

Today, while procrastinating from writing my bachelor thesis, I found a new favorite singer-songwriter, while browsing on coffee and Starbucks. Jesse Thomas was featured as "Pick of the Week" at Starbucks back in February. I immediately fell in love with her distinctive smokey voice, whimsical catchy songs and easy to relate to lyrics. Jesse Thomas is an L.A. based singer-songwriter originally from Covington, Kentucky. Late 2008, after graduating she packed up her bags and moved to Los Angeles by herself not knowing a soul when she arrived. After a few open mics around the valley and home-recorded demos, she met producer Jim Roach. Last year's spring Jesse finished up her debut “Hazel EP” which hit iTunes and stores nationally in September 2010. The album debuted in the top ten of the singer/songwriter charts and was featured on iTunes "New and Noteworthy," as well as the "Indie Spotlight." Both her Hazel EP and the "Hearbreaker Sessions EP" are amazing and made it really hard to choose two songs to feature, because I honesty love them all. Jesse already has opened for John Mayer, Owl City, Lights, and Angel Taylor. And since Jesse is back in the studio recording her debut full length album I am sure we will be much more from her. I cannot wait!

@ Covington, USA
♫ Singer-songwriter

Thursday, May 26, 2011


Although I recognized some of her pictures during my quest for a beautiful photo for this post It was really the amazing folk duo "The Civil Wars" that recommended today's featured "Daughter" on their facebook page. I'm glad they did. Daughter's debut "His Young Heart" EP is a real treat for your ears. Featuring four songs, with beautiful vocals and heartbreaking honest lyrics that will make you want more. Daughter's Elena Tonra Grew up in a quiet part of north London and spent her days listening to her parent’s vinyl collections and older brother’s rock CDs. Later she discovered the beauty of acoustic and folk inspired music and started to create stories and poems which formed the skeletons of her songs. While wearing clothes that old people may well have died in, and a bowl-cut the Beatles would be proud of, Daughter tells tales of ghosts, drowning lovers and setting fire to her insides for fun. Don't hesitate and give the EP a listen at her Bandcamp page, or download the free track beneath! As a bonus there is a demo EP available for FREE from here.

@ London, UK
♫ Folk, Pop, Acoustic

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Gabrielle Aplin

The earlier post was accidentally deleted by Blogger in the last few days, sorry for the inconvenience.

No, I did not discover singer-songwriter and internetsensation Gabrielle Aplin through YouTube.. Unfortunately I was not so lucky to discover her so soon. But it was last year when I stumbled upon her "Acoustic EP" somewhere that I fell in love with her voice. Now with the release of her second "Never Fade EP" it's the perfect opportunity to share this gem with you! I just learned that Gabrielle achieved to gather an enormous fanbase just from her bedroom, she's again a perfect example what you can reach with (besides a great voice/and lots of talent of course) with social media nowadays. She for example had iTunes chart success more than five million plays on Youtube and millions of plays on MySpace.At eighteen, Gabrielle Aplin is the self-taught; self promoted singing, piano and guitar playing internet sensation. With beautiful vocals and a raw talent for song writing, Gabrielle's EP's are a great listen. Don't miss out!

@ Bath, UK
♫ Acoustic, Folk, Pop

Thursday, April 28, 2011


Sorry for the lack of updates on here, but I was in the hospital last weekend for appendicitis so had to get rest this week to recover from the surgery.
There is so much music every I encounter every day that unfortunately sometimes artists go unnoticed until you find them again later. The same happened with today's featured folk-pop duo Elenowen. Quite a while ago I stumbled upon their music somewhere on the net, I actually saved their debut album cover in my "to listen" folder, but I wasn't until today when I saw them perform The Swell Season's "Falling Slowly" on The Voice (which was very succesful here in Holland) that I remembered why I needed to check out their music. Hailing from Nashville, TN, Josh and Nicole pursued individual careers before forming the folk/pop Elenowen duo that sings through the journeys of everyday life and the many battles it brings. After about a year of living from paycheck to paycheck working at the same local coffee shop, Josh and Nicole started pursuing their dream by creating their debut album, Pulling Back the Veil which was released January 2010. On Pulling Back the Veil Elenowen showcase their talents with eight songs filled with beautiful harmonies and honest lyrics. Go get it on iTunes or CD Baby.

@ Nashville, USA
♫ Acoustic, Folk, Pop
♥ Falling Slowly (mp3)

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Kris Berry

Today was a beautiful sunny day here in Holland, which definitely inspired today's post. While studying in the sun, I listened to today's featured "Kris Berry"; an upcoming soul and jazz formation from my own  country. While listening I imagined being on an Caribbean beach, drinking coconut cocktails under palm trees. Kris Berry is perfect for warm summer days or even to dream away a little on rainy days. On their five track debut EP, which was released last february Kris Berry are treating you with a melting pot of Jazz, Country, Latin and Rhythm & Blues with songs, that according to the band itself hides the story of it's origin. Kris Berry is Kris Berry (vocals), Jet Stevens (bass), Claus Tofft (percussion) and Coos Zwagerman (trumpet) and their "Flower Empty Tree EP" is available on iTunes and Spotify! Don't hesitate and bring some summer in your life!

@ Amsterdam, NL
♫ Jazz, Pop

Monday, April 11, 2011


Normally I'm not that big on artists getting fame by releasing cover songs, but when I heard this incredibly beautiful cover version of Bon Iver's "Skinny Love" I had to adjust those views immediately. Loyal readers know I'm a sucker for piano driven music, and this stripped down version with piano instead of guitar managed to grab me from the very first few seconds. It's still a cover, but still sounds very original. Can't wait to hear what her own songs sounds like! Birdy is one Jasmine Van Den Bogaerde, a fourteen-year-old (!!!) singer/songwriter from Lymington, England whose self-released version of Bon Iver's "Skinny Love" has broken through on the U.K. charts. It already reached the 25th place and got her a deal with Atlantic UK records and an beautiful new Sophie Muller-directed musicvideo. Let's just hope that Jasmine stays true to herself. If so, she'll have a bright future in front of her.

@ Lymington, UK
♫ Acoustic, Piano, Pop

Monday, April 4, 2011

Misty Miller

I still remember that when I discovered Laura Marling a few years ago I was so surprised when that she was only 18 when her debut album came out. With her new album scheduled for a late fall release, Misty Miller, a very young talented singer-songwriter from the UK seems to fill that gap perfectly with her just released self titled debut album. Misty Miller sounds like a younger catchier version of Laura Marling  she writes pretty songs with her pure soulful voice accompanied on the ukulele. Misty grew up as the only girl in a large musical family, writing songs as a child with her brother. After being encouraged by friends to take to the stage at an open mic festival it was clear that Misty was ready to go into the studio. At the age of 15 she recorded her first tracks for the ‘Remember’ EP and her debut album ‘Misty Miller’. As a fan of the classic artists such as Elvis and Billie Holliday Misty Miller takes influence from their varied styles which can be heard clearly throughout her debut self-titled album. As a young singer songwriter, she composes all her songs on an ukelele, and performs live with the confidence of a seasoned artist. If you can, go see her live, since performing live is what she loves most!

@ London, UK
♫ Indie, Folk, Pop

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Free Music: Susan Enan

It's been over two years since I featured Susan Enan on this blog. Today I recevied an email from NoiseTrade that her album "Plainsong" is downloadable for FREE from their website for a limited time.With this post I wanted to make sure you were not missing out on this great offer! Be sure to check it out! Susan Enan released her debut album 'Plainsong' in 2009. In 2006, while demoing songs for the record, Enan began receiving worldwide attention after her track "Bring On The Wonder" featuring Sarah McLachlan, appeared on the second season of the Fox show Bones. The song was also featured on the shows soundtrack two years later. It took another 6 months to wrap up the record proper which features Enan's remix of "Bring on the Wonder" along with 9 other tracks. In June 2010 Sarah McLachlan recorded her own version of "Bring On The Wonder" for her seventh studio album Laws of Illusion. Susan is currently embarking on a worldwide house concert tour called "Bring On The Song". The self-produced record was recorded in 5 different countries, much of it in Enan's small home studio in Brooklyn. It was finally released in July 2009 and features co-production from Alan Bezozi, musical appearances from Ashwin Sood (drums), Steve Schiltz (guitars), Graham Maby (bass), and vocal appearances from Declan O'Rouke and Sarah McLachlan.  Be sure to check it out!

@ Brooklyn, USA
♫ Acoustic, Folk, Pop

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Anna Von Hausswolff

I am having a really hard time remembering the first time I heard Anna von Hausswolff. But what I will never forget is how her music touched me from the very first seconds she started singing on “Track of Time”. With one the of most honest and expressive vocals I’ve ever heard, Anna makes you feel it in your bones. “Her voice is that of total expression” as her bio says it. On her ten-track debut album, Singing from the Grave, which was released in May after her Track of Time EP, 23-year-old Swedish pianist and singer-songwriter Anna von Hausswolff sings about gloomy Sundays, lovers lost at sea, life, death, pills, and all things gloomy in between. Although Anna already has been attracting plenty of attention in Scandinavia she sadly remains somewhat obscure outside of her homeland. All genuine music lovers should give this enormously underrated album a listen and spread the love!

@ Goteburg, Sweden 
♫ Alternative, Folk

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Free Music: Elastic Summer

Now that spring is coming closer and closer, I already cannot wait for summer to start with long days of being outside and doing nothing. If that is the same for you, then already get in the mood in the mood with the happy carefree indie pop of Elastic Summer. A friend of mine recommended Elastic Summer, and when I listened to their EP I just could not believe they're offering their EP for FREE! Elastic Summer is a pop band based in Brooklyn, New York. It was founded by Rebeca (vocals) and Michael (drums) in the Summer of 2010. They then recruited Joe (guitar) and Bryan (on the bass) with an incredibly successful Craigslist ad. Rebeca is a Brazilian from New Jersey. Michael is from California, Joe is from Texas and Bryan is from Berklee College of Music. Together they enjoy asian cuisine, tequila shots, and playing the board game taboo. The average band height is 6 feet and 1/4 inches. The average age is 22. Their first EP, “Elastic Summer,” was engineered and mixed by Rebeca at her house, and released in February of 2011. And now can be downloaded for FREE from their Bandcamp.

@ New York, USA
♫ Indie Pop

Sunday, March 13, 2011


When reading the name of the today's post you probably would not have immediately noticed, but there is new music from Beatrice Martin (aka Coeur de Pirate)!!. Armistice is the collaboration between Beatrice Martin and Bedouin Soundclash frontman, Jay Malinowski. With music and lyrics written, the pair headed to Los Angeles late last summer to record the album at Big Game Lodge with El Bronx. Martin and Malinowski first worked together artistically when Beatrice lent her voice to the track, “Brutal Hearts” on Bedouin Soundclash’s fall release, Light The Horizon. The song was proclaimed a highlight of the album by critics and the public alike. Out of this came the idea to join forces to create Armistice. Beatrice Martin, most commonly recognized as the enchanting Coeur de Pirate, took home 3 Victoires in France and and 2 Felix, including Breakthrough Artist of the Year, in Quebec, for her self-titled debut album in 2009. Selling over 600,000 albums worldwide. It would be too easy to say that all new music by Beatrice is welcome, but at the sound of the EP with five all beautiful songs, it's safe to say that I would 've loved this EP even if I wasn't aware she was part of it! If you take for instance the featured track "Mission Bells" the undeniable magic between Martin and Malinowski's voices. So even if you've never heard of Coeur de Pirate, listen to the featured song or listen to the full EP beneath.

@ Montreal, Canada
♫ Folk Pop

Friday, March 11, 2011

Anticipated Upcoming Releases [Spring 2011] [III}

Walk the River
♫ Walk the River (mp3)
April 18

April 19

Christina Perri
May 10

Love Notes / Letter Bombs
The Submarines
April 5

Snowglobe EP
Jesca Hoop
April 5

Thao & Mirah
Thao & Mirah
April 26

The Pains of Being Pure At Heart
March 15

Faster Than A Bullet

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Free Music: Pearl and the Beard

"Pearl and the Beard loves you the way you’ve always been". With an opening sentence like this you can't go wrong in my book! So a few months back when I visited The Family Records website, to find some info on Wakey!Wakey!, I discovered this wonderful trio. Pearl and the Beard is three voices, one cello, one guitar, one glockenspiel, one melodica, several drums, one accordion, ninety-six teeth, and one soul. Former strangers Jocelyn Mackenzie, Emily Hope Price, and Jeremy Styles were united in the great city of New York. Each had migrated there from a far corner of the nation with naught but food in their pockets and money in their bellies. Each had the same true love. Since then, the three have nested, and their unique brand of brightly melodic songcraft continues to blossom of its own accord. When I recently found out they're now offering a free EP it seemed like the perfect opportunity to share this gem with you. So don't hesitate, and download!

@ New York, USA
♫ Alternative, Folk, Pop
♥ Black Vessel

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

John Blek & The Rats

When seeing my favorite artists live, I always  hope they bring great supportacts, wouldn't be the first time that a support act becomes one of my favorite artists. The same could have happened if I would go see Caitlin Rose in Germany in the next few days, with her supportact John Blek & The Rats. I really am thankful of Caitlin for mentioning them on her facebook, cause these guys are great! John Blek & The Rats are John (vocals, guitar, banjo), Niall (drums, harmonium), Luke (bass), Aisling (vocal, mandolin, harmonium) and for the Christmas tour Jack (electric guitar). Taking their inspiration from the revelry of music and friends, the bitter end of the bottle, the bruising passage of life and all that comes with it, John Blek and the Rats are a fresh folk outfit from Cork whose melancholy is tempered by a penchant for a good ol’ hodown and a hollerin’. Raised on a diet of the American folk and ballads of their fathers, John Blek and the Rats are a band whose main aspiration is the song. Currently set to release their third EP “A Long Way From Home”, they are on tour which with some international dates in London and Berlin as well. Don't forget to watch their latest music video for Take Me Home.

@ Cork, Ireland
♫ Folk, Pop

Monday, February 21, 2011

Little & Ashley

Tonight's feature is another artist I discovered through a commercial, LA based songwriting duo Little & Ashley was formed when they recorded “Fly Me Away” to accompany an Amazon commercial contest entry, which also starred Annie. Ultimately, the contest entry won both the Audience and the Amazon Jury prize and Little & Ashley, with the help of trombonist Alanna Vicente, finished recording a full-length version of the song which is included on the Stole My Heart EP. They also have completed a deal to compose additional material for Amazon’s Kindle commercial series. Their song, "C'mon Let's Go", "Fly Me Away" and “Stole My Heart”, featured in Amazon’s Kindle commercials for TV are available on Amazon’s music site.  Annie Little has starred in over 40 national commercials and hit TV shows including Mad Men, Scrubs, and Sabrina the Teenage Witch. Longtime musician Marcus Ashley writes and records with Los Angeles band American Weapon, and is currently completing a third release. In addition to music, Marcus has guest starred as an actor on numerous TV shows including Bones, CSI: NY, Scrubs and Ghost Whisperer. Additionally, he has starred in over 50 U.S. national and European commercials including Volkswagen, Heineken, Ford, Levi’s, Coca-Cola, Samsung, Budweiser, and Kodak. But with their first steps in the music business,  Little and Ashley hope to live up to earlier expectations: in high school, Marcus was voted Most Talented and Annie was voted Most Likely To Sing In The Metropolitan Opera.

@ Los Angeles, USA
♫ Indie, Pop

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Anticipated Upcoming Releases [Spring 2011] [II]

Helplessness Blues
Fleet Foxes
♫ Helplessness Blues (mp3)
May 4

Guide to an Escape
Rue Royale
March 3

I Already Love You
Sara Lov
♫ Just My Heart Talkin (mp3)
Feb 16
Time Travel
Alessi's Ark
April 25

Alela Diane & Wild Divine
Alela Diane
April 4

When You Grow Up
Priscilla Ahn
May 2

Let us know in a comment when there are other release we should know about!

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Clara C

The world's most visited video website, YouTube already has brought us many musical talents. Today's featured artist, Clara C (short for Clara Chung) also seems to belong to that category of selfmade artists.. Unfortunately I only discovered Clara last week, which perhaps is due to lack of the very deserved media attention around this talented singer-songwriter. In my opinion Clara deserved at least as much attention as earlier discovered youtube stars like Esmee Denters, who are easily outshone by Clara's raw talent, originality and charming personality. Clara has been a closet musician most of her life, and has only recently revealed her talent to the world. In a short period of time, she has won prestigious competitions such as Kollaboration 10, ISA 09: Los Angeles and the KAC Media Creative Juice Night. Clara has just begun to capture the hearts and minds of the music community worldwide. Her quirky charm, creative ideas, unlimited instrumental and vocal talent has allowed people to see Clara as the next big singer/songwriter. Clara's music can best be described as a synergy of folk/pop/rock sound that when blended together creates a unique experience. She has performed at renowned venues such as The White House Dept. of Education, Hollywood Bowl, Shrine Auditorium and more where she performed for crowds of up to 18,000 people. Clara's debut album was released on September 24th to a sold out crowd at the Hotel Cafe venue. Look for Clara as she tours throughout the year promoting her debut album, The Art in My Heart.

@ Los Angeles, USA
♫ Folk, Pop

Sunday, February 6, 2011

The Bony King of Nowhere

The Bony King of Nowhere is the project of 24-year-old Belgian composer Bram Vanparys. His honest music, characterized above all by Bram’s distinctive voice, claims your heart straight away. Songs are built on melodic backing vocals, guitars and sound layers, as well as the frequent use of unconventional percussion inspired by the Brazilian Tropicália Movement from the 1960s. His lyrics are often theatrical: the virgin Mary addressed by a dying man exalting death from his deathbed (“Maria”), the sunset pictured in a puppet’s world (“The Sunset”), the concept of despair painfully anatomized in the schizophrenia theme from the closing song “My Invasions”. Not your usual love-theme singer, that’s for sure. The universal, yet very wayward character of Bram’s music already perplexed both media and public in his own country, but also evoked international response. After his demo got selected in The Wire Magazine’s “Domino Festival” compilation, Bram immediately got called by Kieran Hebden (aka Fourtet), asking him if he could include some songs in the soundtrack of a film he’s working on (“Boy Meets Girl”, Wildebeest Productions, New York). Also, Devendra Banhart sang Bram’s praises in a personal letter after hearing the demo. And, last but not least, Jon Kelly (Paul McCartney, Kate Bush,…) expressed his interest in mixing the first album of The Bony King Of Nowhere, which was produced by European cultproducer Koen Gisen (An Pierlé&White Velvet) in his weird 1960’s studio. In 2009 The Bony King Of Nowhere released his first album “Alas My Love” on Helicopter Records. He now is finished with his second album ‘Eleonore’ and according to himself it sounds “more direct, more in-your-face, my only goal is authenticity: my work has to be genuine and credible. I feel increasingly attracted to the folk tradition, as it was documented in ‘American Folk Anthology’ by Harry Smith.” We can only agree. Bram Vanparys is a busy bee too. He's already half way through writing his third album and is currently working on the soundtrack for ‘Les Géants’, a film by Walloon film-maker Bouli Lanners. Please let 'em all come, very quickly, since I can not currently get enough of these beautiful sounds.

@ Ghent, Belgium
♫ Acoustic, Folk

Friday, February 4, 2011

Christina Perri

Not a lot of artist featured here on LMLI are already as succesful in the charts as today's feature. Despite her succes and big record label deal I still thinks she deserves your attention. And definitely should not be labeled as the standard pop artist because this girl shows real promise and authenticity. At just 23, Christina Perri has already lived a handful of lives. She's toured the world as an assistant to a rock band, spent a year at a prestigious university, became a wife and then an ex-wife, produced popular music videos, made olive oil in Italy and even served as a fashionista barrista in Beverly Hills. The whole while, music had been tapping her on the shoulder, trying to lead her down a path as a musician. It seems that fate grew tired of this shoulder-tapping approach as well and went for an old fashioned sucker punch. Last June her song when her song “Jar of Hearts” was featured in So You Think You Can Dance, and became a major hit song with the track sold 200,000 downloads in three weeks. Suddenly a hot property, Perri signed a record deal with Atlantic Records and is in the studio finishing up her debut album, with an eye toward a late fall release. Though she's a newcomer to the pop charts, Perri has actually been preparing for this moment since she was a child. Perri first sang in public at her Holy Communion at age six. Piano lessons began at age 8, followed by musical theater from age 11. At 9, her piano teacher "fired" her (as she puts it), because "I would change the endings to all the songs because I didn't like the way they were written. I liked my version better." Perri picked up a guitar and taught herself to play from watching VHS tapes of Blind Melon (whose guitarist, Christopher Thorn, recently sent her a congratulatory email via MySpace). The songs Perri is recording for her debut album are all about love. She excels at setting dark, tumultuous emotions to stunning, pretty melodies, something Fiona Apple and Alanis Morissette excelled at back in the day. "I would love to bring that back for a younger generation," Perri says. "I had them to listen to when I was young, but girls today don't really have their Fiona or Alanis. And writing about love and heartbreak is just who I am. I've tried so hard to write about other things, but ultimately this is what comes out of me. I have zero capability to do anything that is inauthentic to who I am.

@ Hollywood, USA
♫ Folk Rock, Pop

Monday, January 31, 2011

Amy Stroup

TV shows have always been a source for great new music for me.. One of the artists that has been featured in shows quite often is Amy Stroup. If you listen to her music, you immediately know why. Her smart folky pop songs sung by her tender voice just fit in about any significant scene in most drama shows. Amy Stroup communicates what she knows is true about life in melodic lyric and verse. Amy has released four albums under her own label including, The Other Side of Love | Session One. On her latest release,  she has taken a less conventional approach and collaborated with a few good friends and producer Thomas Doeve to release the next three sessions of The Other Side of Love. Session Two features “Hold Onto Hope, Love”, “Chin Up”, “Odds of Being Alone”, and more as heard and featured on ABC’s Private Practice, Brothers & Sisters, One Tree Hill, and more released under her new venture Milkglass Creative. Amy’s single ‘Backed into the Corner’ was featured on this season premier of Grey’s Anatomy. In addition to television placements, her songs have been featured on national television ads including e Harmony and Walmart. Not long ago she released session Three featuring that song and more. “I try to focus on writing simply a great song, one song at a time, and when you are working with people you genuinely enjoy and live life with, the music naturally comes and speaks,” says Amy. Amy draws from a range of geographic locales and musical influences, having called Boston, Texas and now Nashville home. There, she earned a liberal arts degree in marketing and classical guitar from Lipscomb University. Growing up, her musical influences included songwriters Ennio Morricone, Lucinda Williams and Patty Griffin.

@ Nashville, USA
♫ Indie, Pop

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Anna Su

There are many websites where you can listen to and discover music, one of those websites, that I actually started using more and more in the last few months is Bandcamp, and since they added the tags and search function it even got better! One of the discoveries I made on Bandcamp is Los Angeles based singer-songwriter Anna Su. Although there's not much info on her on the net, it's the music that counts right? And she got that part right, on her debut album 'Howling Tree' featuring seven beautiful (I had a very very hard time choosing the tracks for this post, I love all the songs on the album) self written songs Anna Su, combines subtle hints of gypsy jazz with old time folk to create a refreshing new take on a traditional sound, bringing musicians together for the simple joy of making music. Rumor has it that she's already working on a new EP, you definitely won't hear me complain if that turns out to be true.

@ Los Angeles, USA
♫ Acoustic, Folk

Monday, January 24, 2011

Anticipated Upcoming Releases [Spring 2011]

Now this new year is already nearing it's second month I decided to put up a list of some anticipated releases for the coming months, it's nowhere near complete, but just chose a random few in no particular order. When possible I've provided free mp3's as sneakpeeks for what's coming.

Katie Costello
February 22

Barton Hollow
The Civil Wars
February 1

Sister Wife
Alex Winston
March 8

Keren Ann
February 28
Towards the Sun
Alexi Murdoch
March 8
Gold in the Shadow
William Fitzsimmons
March 22
The Deep Field
Joan as Police Woman
January 25
The Valley
March 1
Mondo Amore
Nicole Atkins
February 8
Wounded Rhymes
Lykke Li
March 1

Charlatans at the Garden Gate
February 1
Let England Shake
PJ Harvey
February 14

-----UPDATE 29 JANUARY-----

Tell Me
Jessica Lea Mayfield
♫ Our Hearts Are Wrong (mp3)
Feb 8

Propeller versus Wings
Zoey van Goey
February 14
Trent Dabbs
♫ Follow Suit (mp3)
February 22

Feel free to post a comment if you think that there are releases that should be on the list! [remember that this is a SPRING 2011 list, so summer releases will be up another time]