Category Archives: Music

Baby, you’re a firework!

So we didn’t plan for it, but the weekend we stayed in Thredbo also happened to be ‘Opening Weekend’ for the snow season. It’s a shame the weather Gods never got that memo, and the snow machines only really made enough to build a half-arsed snowman. Although there wasn’t enough snow for the field to officially open, and not as many people around as they would usually expect, Thredbo still celebrated Opening Weekend with an ice sculpture, family-friendly activities, Sneaky Sound System concert, and fireworks!
Thredbo_Fireworks2Thredbo_Fireworks3 Continue reading Baby, you’re a firework!

Thing 13

Thing 13: See a Favourite Band/Artist Live

Since moving to Melbourne, we have been so lucky with the number of concerts, shows and gigs that are available to us – this thing was so easy to cross off my list!

Unfortunately we haven’t been able to go every great concert that comes our way, but we have gone to a few of my favourites, including Eskimo Joe, The Temper Trap, Snow Patrol and The Killers.

My photographic evidence is average to say the least, but here I go anyways!

- Eskimo Joe, Sept 2011 -
– Eskimo Joe, Sept 2011 –
- Snow Patrol, Sept 2012 -
– Snow Patrol, Sept 2012 –
- The Killers, Jan 2013 -
– The Killers, Jan 2013 –

Thing 4

Thing 4: Learn to Play the Drums

Oh boy.

Why did I put all the ambitious things at the top of my list?!

So yeah, about those drums….

I haven’t done this thing either.

I’m such a fail!

I don’t know why, but I have always liked the idea of playing the drums.

I played a wicked air drum during one particularly great girls night in during my student years – my arms ached the next day, so I must have done a good job, right?

And then there was that time I got together with my siblings and cranked out ‘Rock Band‘!

I take my drumming seriously.
I take my drumming seriously.

I was no good.

Maybe bongo drums are more me?

What do you guys think?

Music Makes Memories

The brain is a wonderful thing. A simple song or smell can evoke a range of memories and images within seconds!

The other day I was listening to an amazing playlist that I had put together (modest much?!) and I was met with a rush of memories that made me smile to myself as I sang along. It got me thinking about the songs that bring the most vivid memories for me, and I wanted to share them with you guys in the hopes you’ll do the same!

The song that started it all was this one:

I’m a huge Empire Records fan, and those of you who have seen the movie may remember that this song plays at the very end, while they’re all dancing on the roof of the store. But, to be honest, it’s actually not the movie that this song reminds me of. Whenever I hear it, I instead go back in time about 10 years ago when I was a poor student living in Dunedin. My flatmates were my best friends and we used to have great parties at our place every weekend. A couple of our friends were really into making up party playlists and it turned into a bit of a competition. This song was a favourite of all of ours and was one we played a lot. It reminds me of being young and carefree, and the lyrics really speak to that time in my life where my biggest worry was passing my assignments and finding money for alcohol!

Another song that takes me back to my student days is this one:

We used to sing this at least twice every Saturday night before heading into town. We actually felt like we couldn’t leave the house until we had belted this out at the top of our lungs, we loved it that much. It was also a time in my life were I was on-again/off-again with a dude and the album now reminds me of him and I couldn’t listen to it for ages after we broke up. Sad times.

Now to wind the clock back even further – I’m talking 20-odd years ago – is this classic:

Every summer when I was growing up, we used to camp at Bannockburn, in Central Otago. This was back in the days when John Farnham was in his element and our Mums thought he was a spunk. We were taught the moves for this song, and to this day my Mum insists we dance along whenever it comes on the radio!

A more recent flashback from two years ago is this amazing track:

I love this song. So much. It reminds me of one of the most independent times in my life, when I was living in Christchurch – I had a car with a decent sound system and was able to drive myself wherever I pleased. I mostly drove alone and had the best car concerts ever! I’m talking speakers at full blast and me singing like no-one was watching/listening. Even if they totally were. Whatevs.

So, now it’s your turn – what songs take you back in time and why?!

 

This Week Im Loving…Steve Smyth

This past week I have gone from not knowing/caring who the heck Steve Smyth is to becoming a little bit obsessed with him. There isn’t much about him online and maybe that’s the way he likes it – he does have a Twitter account (I totally checked) and a website, but it’s like a needle in a haystack to find much else.

Steve…wait, can I call him Steve? Steve Smyth is an Australian musician who opened for Snow Patrol last Sunday. To be honest, we didn’t know who he was, weren’t terribly interested in finding out, and were totally going to skip his performance. I know, I’m sorry, but you know what it’s like – the doors open at 7pm, opening act starts at 7.30 or 8. They play for like an hour then there’s at least a half hour (sometimes more) break until the people you actually paid for, came to see and listen to FINALLY take the stage and blow your socks off. I am a busy woman and that is a lot of waiting around time.

But, in the end, we did end up getting there at about 7.30-8pm, grabbed a drink and found our seats. Not too long after, the lights dimmed and a lone man with a guitar and a grizzly beard walked on stage. No introduction was made, he just started to play. And boy am I glad he did. Granted, much of the crowd was still arriving, settling in and enjoying their beverages so he didn’t capture the full attention of the large audience until about half-way through when he sung Sylvie sans guitar and everyone fell silent.

He doesn’t really fit into one category or another and I think that’s part of the reason I like him so much. He’s mysterious: his voice going from soft and beautiful, lyrics melting in your heart; to rough and rasping, the words cracking with heartbreak. His sound is mostly bluesy folk with country and rock elements. He plays like he is performing at the local inn on a busy Friday after a long week, with the flagons flowing, hobbits dancing on the tables and the serving girls getting their bottoms pinched by lonely travellers wanting a warm meal, cold beer and somewhere to rest their weary feet.

Other times, he’s more like a rogue cowboy, sitting in front a small campfire with a rat on a stick and vegetable broth warming up in an old copper pot, singing to his horse as he waits for daylight to come again.

He didn’t speak much, preferring to let his music do the talking. I felt like he really didn’t ever want to stop playing and at one point said that they would have to kick him off the stage in a minute!

 

His parents are ministers, not troopers; his hair is brown rather than fiery red; he plays a guitar rather than a lute, and he isn’t an arcanist trying to find out about the Chandria that killed his family long ago; but his songs are exactly the kind I imagine Kvothe singing in the Kingkiller Chronicles series. Yes, I am comparing Steve Smyth to a book character and now you all know just how nerdy I really am, but you guys, he is amazing.

I found his back story fascinating (and not completely unlike Kvothe’s relationship with Abenthy, just saying) and written like poetry. That man really has a way with words, bending them to his will and making a simple sentence sound magical. I am hooked.

So a few days after being wowed by this previously unknown phenomenon, I went out and bought his album, Release. Surprisingly enough, it was cheaper on iTunes than my usual store of choice, so it has been playing on my iPhone ever since.

His music won’t necessarily pump you up for gym class, make you feel better after a hard day or indeed make you cry yourself to sleep, but if you are after some new material that takes you away to another world, in another time and place, then this album is totally for you. It’s like books for your ears. And yes, that is a real thing.