Category: General Interest


Amy O
Elastic
Winspear

Indiana-based Amy O’s (Amy Oelsner) “Elastic” is justly titled owing to the artist’s penchant for out of the ordinary song structures, changes in pace (moving from opening track “Lavender” to “Soft Skin” or “History Walking to “Sunday Meal”, for example) and melodies. The twelve track album is a quick listen with only two tracks (“Cherry Blossom” and “Spill”) running over three minutes. But, the briskness of the album along with the changes in tension and mobility moving track-to-track and the melodic relationships are what makes this debut album work. Oh, it’s a fair bet that there’s a hook or two that will stick in your head. “Elastic” is a worthy debut.

Visit Amy O at Facebook and iTunes


Guantanamo Baywatch
Desert Center
Suicide Squeeze

Visit Guantanamo Baywatch at Facebook and iTunes

Hey dudes and dudettes…Yet another great act in the Suicide Squeeze portfolio, this Portland-based band , Guantanamo Baywatch, really knows how to dish out the surf punk. If you have any doubts just check out “Conquistador” the lead track on the band’s new release, “Desert Center”. ” Jason Powell continues to lead on guitar along with new member Jordan Owen. Yeah, can’t help but think Dick Dale and the Del-Tones and the The Barracudas gone punk. Guantanamo Baywatch does it all, and man, there’s no messing around. Want rhythm? You got it! Chris Scott is together on drums and there is no overlooking Chevelle Wiseman. Ride the wild surf on her bassline. Check out “Area 69”, for example. Go for it – “Cowabunga”!


Sally_newsfeedSally Morgan wrote the book on contemporary vocal technique – literally. Sing Like You Speak™: Simply and Naturally. SLYS™ is specifically designed to restore the effortless vocal production that is natural to the human instrument making your singing powerful, joyful and free. Sally has been successfully training singers for more than 30 years.

What Is Singing? Seriously. What Do You Think?
by Sally

Singers all hold ideas in mind about what singing is and what it isn’t. I was leading a MythBusters for Singers workshop for the NY Singing Teachers Association, a workshop dedicated to examining those untrue thoughts we all have about singing, when the following exchange happened. It was the perfect teachable moment!

The singer had skipped a few measures of the song while singing the first 16 bars or so and I asked him to start again. This is the conversation that followed.

He was upset and said:
“Darn, I didn’t even start singing yet.”

Sally:
“Really? What were you doing then?”

Student:
“I was just telling a story.”

Sally:
“So what’s singing then?”

Student:
“Well… it’s certainly more than telling a story!”

Sally:
“Is it? Were you telling a story with music?”

Student:
“Yes I was.”

Sally:
“So what is singing then if it’s not telling a story through song?”

I could not have had a better set up to demystify one of the myths of singing. Myth: singing is something extraordinary – outside the norm of communication.

Truth: Singing is the most natural form of communication and the more real and natural and normal it is, the more engaging and amazing it is.

Minutes after this conversation with a redirect from me on how sing the song this man brought the audience to tears with his emotional honesty by simply telling a story through his song.

As he continued to sing the song, his simple honesty allowed him up to really wail and it was thrilling to hear! The audience told me they got goose bumps from his performance. The singer felt empowered.

It is amazing how simple, honest communication through song communicates volumes to your audience.

Is it time for you to examine what you think singing is? Let me know! I’ll help you change your mind about singing. With Sing Like You Speak™ singing is as simple and natural as talking to your best friend.

Click here for the best voice lessons on the web!


Umm
Double Worshipper
Majestic Litter

Visit Umm at Facebook and Amazon.com

Seasoned musicians Stefanie Drootin and her husband, Chris Senseney, have released “Double Worshipper” offering up an irresistible eight-track indie rock journey. The album opens up with “Black Summer”; a driving rock guitar intro to the duo’s congruous vocals. Experientially, there’s a lulling psych thread that really works in the sense that it’s difficult not to feel contented. That’s not to say the album is in anyway gooey as it most certainly kicks with tracks such as the fuzzy “I’m In Love” and the fast, upbeat “Idiot Child”. In short, “Double Worshipper” stands up lyrically and compositionally making it an exceptional debut for Umm.


Sara Evans
Words
Born To Fly Records

Visit Sara Evans at Facebook and iTunes

American country music singer-songwriter Sara Evans has released “Words” her eighth studio album and the first on her independent label Born To Fly Records. Clearly what distinguishes this album is that all of the fourteen songs are written by a female songwriter. That’s not to say that there are not any melodies worthy of special attention. There’s some ear-pleasing country pop tracks such as “Marquee Sign” written by Evans, Jimmy Robbins, and Heather Morgan and featuring vocals by Evans’ daughter, Olivia. “Letting You Go” written by Evans is good country folk. You probably won’t feel blown away by the album, but keeping in mind the emphasis on female songwriters and the pleasant feeling one is likely to take away, if you’re into contemporary country it should be added to your collection.


Sheer Mag
Need to Feel Your Love
Static Shock Records

Sheer Mag is Kyle and Hart Seely, Matt Palmer, Ian Dykstra and Tina Halladay. The band’s debut album, “Need to Feel Your Love”, offers up an amalgam of grizzly punk, classic rock and progresssive rock led by Haladay’s sizzling high-powered and commanding vocals. While there can be no ignoring Halladay’s awesome voice, her bandmates are exceptional in executing mature arrangements. Sure, there are white-hot tracks like “Meet Me In The Street”, “Turn It Up” and “Suffer Me” where there’s not much in the way of free headroom, but “Milk And Honey”and “(Say Goodbye To) Sophie Scholl are relatively easy-going. You’ll likely be compulsed by the total ass-kicking-ness of “Need to Feel Your Love”!

Visit Sheer Mag at Facebook and iTunes


HorizonVU Music and Belushi’s Paris Canal announce the launch of the HorizonVU Music – Belushi’s Acoustic Showcase For Women In Music. The object of the series is to make a positive statement on behalf of women in music by featuring the best nationally and internationally accomplished women performing music covering the spectrum from whimsical folk to alternative acoustic rock.

The venue is Belushi’s Paris Canal http://www.belushis.com/bars/paris/canal catering to the upscale university and young work crowd. Frequented by the after classes-after work segment, it sits on one of the canals running through Paris making it exceptionally attractive. The showcase is clearly an opportunity for female musicians to showcase their work for a generally young, vibrant audience.

Every effort possible is going into ensuring the series builds in popularity and has considerable longevity. We’ve currently booked for the fall and look forward to scheduling performances during the winter months!

For information concerning future concerts and participation contact decibels@horizonvumusic.com.

6 June Stay Local
12 July Marca Cassity
22 August Jane DeCuir
29 August Jackie Paladino
6 September NED
10 October Mary Kay Mass
31 October Juni
15 November Sumana

Copyright © 2017 HorizonVU Music, All rights reserved.

Sally_newsfeedSally Morgan wrote the book on contemporary vocal technique – literally. Sing Like You Speak™: Simply and Naturally. SLYS™ is specifically designed to restore the effortless vocal production that is natural to the human instrument making your singing powerful, joyful and free. Sally has been successfully training singers for more than 30 years.

Your Body-Your Instrument-is Smarter Than Your Mind
by Sally

Your body is smarter than your mind. Your body is your singing instrument. So why does singing seem to be so difficult? Sing Like You Speak™ is here to teach you it ain’t necessarily so.

Breathing is completely natural. You are reading this, so your breathing is working – you are alive.

And yet when it comes to singing, we second-guess or even doubt the body’s natural ability. We actually override nature by overthinking the process and relying on the mind to ‘figure it out’ instead of trusting the natural process of breathing and phonation. We actually invite the mind to participate in a perfectly natural process.

Does this sound familiar?

You take an inhale and you immediately think, that isn’t enough air to get through the phrase! So you push and pull at the muscles of your abdomen to “help” your singing process.

But guess what? You run out of breath even faster!

That’s what happens when you take a subconscious process – breathing – and make it a conscious process.

The purpose of your inhale is to open the whole instrument. It is to open your resonators, release the jaw and larynx and open all the way down to the lower back and abdominal muscles, thus activating those powerful muscles that will naturally work to propel breath and sound easily through your open instrument.

When I was developing Sing Like You Speak™ my contemporary vocal technique, I could not ignore the fact that singing is natural. And if singing is natural and breathing is natural – what makes singing so difficult?

Makes singing difficult…

Voice teachers who tell you to manipulate and force the physical instrument
Trying to imitate most singers recorded after 1997 where the singer has been recorded (first was Roy Vedas Fragments of Life) and then a sound engineer has manipulated the voice for better pitch, tone quality, rhythm. You are not listening to a voice but to an electronically altered sound that cannot be imitated by the human instrument.
Myths or false thoughts about the effort involved in singing
Trusting the mind and not the body

Sing Like You Speak™ always uses the natural physiological process for simple, healthy signing. Your inhale is to open the instrument. Done right, releases the jaw, tongue and larynx, opens resonators and activates the very intelligent low abdominal and back muscles. That sound like a lot to do but it can be achieve with one thought.

When I have new voice students who has studied voice with another teacher in the past there’s always a conversation that goes something like this.

Student: That’s it? That’s all you do to inhale?

Sally: Absolutely! A simple opening inhale.

Student: But how do I get enough air to sing a long phrase or to sustain a pitch?

Sally: With a simple opening inhale. It seems you want to feel how much effort you are using to breathe.

Student: Of course. The effort tells me that I’ve gotten a good inhale.

Sally: Aren’t you taking lessons to learn how your singing can be effortless?

Student: Well, I didn’t really believe that it could be easy. My last teacher taught me to push out on the inhale and pull in like crazy to exhale.

Sally: Yes, that’s typical old-school teaching. Let’s experiment with a simple, opening inhale.

First step is a simple, opening inhale…

Align your instrument collarbones wide, head on top of the body
Release the jaw and tongue
Feel as though you are opening your instrument all the way to your bottom
Blow the breath out and simply observe how the abdominal and lower back muscles are working – just observe to not interfere.
Use the above breathing process for our experiment proving how brilliant the body can be. No pushing or pulling of belly muscle allowed!

Experiment 1

Perform a simple opening inhale as described above
Exhale saying an FFFFFF
Observe what muscles are working

Experiment 2

Perform a simple opening inhale as described above
Exhale saying a VVVVV (be a motorcycle)
Observe what muscles are working

Experiment 3

Perform a simple opening inhale as described above
Exhale saying a ZZZZZ (be a bumble bee)
Observe what muscles are working

Experiment 4

Perform a simple opening inhale as described above
Exhale sighing an MMMMM
Observe what muscles are working
What did you observe?

If you were able to perform the simply opening inhale then with each experiment you felt a different set of muscles working. The physical intelligence of your instrument chose which muscles to use. Your physical intelligence simply knows what to do. Your mind cannot possibly figure out how to use different muscles for different consonant sounds.

I love the fact that my physical intelligence takes over the singing process when I allow it to. Taking the process out of my mind and putting it into the body where it belongs lets me focus on the music, on phrasing, on character, on enjoying the massive vibration of my sound and having a blast doing so!

Click here for the best voice lessons on the web!



FNAC Live 2017 – 6 – 8 July – Hôtel de Ville

The FNAC-sponsored annual outdoor music event held in the heart of Paris distances itself from its peer festivals in that it offers music-lovers a string of buzzing concerts featuring artists who represent the best in modern French music, all for free. Each year, the music retailer giant FNAC assembles an impressive line-up of talented artists – from up-and-coming mavericks to established musical veterans – to the 4th arrondisement’s historic Hôtel de Ville district for riotous festivities and sonorous music spanning 4 nights during the first week of July – following a 5pm to midnight schedule. The event promises a series of electrifying musical performances from the likes of firebrand Julien Cleric and the talented darlings of record label Label Microqlima (The Pirouettes, Fishbach, Mémé Tan etc) on the festival’s opening night, to an eclectic assortment of artists (Juliette Armanet, Albin de la Simone, Tim Dup…) on the remaining nights. The jam-packed festival schedule will also feature concerts held at the smaller, more intimate venue of the Salon des Arcades for those festival-goers seeking a more relaxed, subdued festival experience – for more information about the highly-anticipated live event, click here!


Breakfast Muff
Eurgh!
Amour Foo

Visit Breakfast Muff at Facebook and iTunes

Post-punk is alive and well with Eilidh McMillan, Simone Wilson and Cal Donnelly – Breakfast Muff. Not to be taken lightly, Breakfast Muff is a genuine post-punk band of the do-it-yourself variety. “Eurgh!” is exciting. It’s loud trashy punk ferocity for real delivering songs with the kind of rough edges reminiscent of 1970s/80s . You’ll be greeted with a great intro – the ripping, frantic “Lunch Money”. 00:49 seconds later you careen into the relatively melodious “Arms Brains”. The album’s killer song “R U A Feminist” follows, leaving no doubt that the band will confront women’s right and other political subjects head-on. “Eurgh!” ends on the melodious “Stinky Goodbyes” and somewhat off-kilter “Waving Cat”. Okay, this album isn’t for everybody, but if you think post-punk is only about aggressive growling and barking, you’re wrong, and Breakfast Muffin’s “Eurgh!”delivers on creativity, experimentation and fun.


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