♪ MJ: Coldplay Magic

Music

The midweek jam for this week is Magic by Coldplay. I wasn’t even aware that they were coming out with a new album this May, but I’m pretty excited. Coldplay has been there from when I broke free from my musically-sheltered childhood (another story for another time!). I remember buying X&Y at a thrift shop and playing it to death on my first CD player that still had a cassette player. I definitely still have that CD player there, and have grown to love all their other stuff too. This is one band on my list to see live.

Do you like it? Coldplay has always been a feel-good band for me. Are you looking forward to their new album coming out?

♪ MJ: Stop Everything You’re Doin Now & Smile – MOD SUN ♪

Music, Thoughts

Midweek Jam for y’all!

“if you could only see right now
that you got all you need right now and smile”

Mod Sun’s “hippy hop” music is really jiving with my bones right now. MissMeghanMakeup did a great video on Positivity last July. This video pointed me to research the law of attraction and Mod Sun’s book “Did I Ever Wake Up?” I ordered the book and read it in a day and it did change my outlook.

I’m in the process of making some positive changes in my life. Taking control, taking charge of my mood and attitude. There are so many things that can bring us down. I don’t want that anymore. I am really excited about changing my life for the better and putting myself as a priority, taking care of myself physically and emotionally.

In the past couple days Meghan made another video about positivity. I watched The Secret after that, a documentary kind presentation of the book titled the same about the law of attraction. I did read Mod Sun’s book, but I didn’t really listen to much of his music, so that’s what I’ve started doing and I thought I would share one with you. I wouldn’t say it’s all young-ear-friendly (swear words and weed culture and such)… but I quite enjoy the sounds and the vibes. Seems like he’s got a great attitude as a performer and is really down to earth and relatable in his book.

 

♪ Midweek Jams: MAGIC! Rude ♪

Music, Thoughts

cannotchange

Our choices are incredibly powerful! We don’t get to choose the family we are born into, but we get to choose our friends, and who we love. Are the people around you positive? Are they uplifting you? Do they support you? Are you in mutually beneficial relationships that involve give and take, compromise and appreciation?

This song caught my attention on the radio, and I recently looked up the music video and fell in love even more.

Choosing who you love and who you let into your life can have huge implications on who you become. They say you are the average of the 5 people you hang out with most. You need people who support you, who aren’t afraid to give you some constructive criticism and disagree with you, people to have fun with, people to grow with. You may not find all of these things in every relationship. However, there are a ton of people in the world; you don’t need to waste your time being dragged down by those who constantly put you down, pressure you to be someone you are not, or look for ways to sabotage you.

“I’m gonna marry her anyway..”

There’s something about this song that I just love. The video makes me really happy, the way the guy dances. But I love that he knows what he wants, and he isn’t letting the disapproval of the dad change what he’s made up his mind to do. I don’t see it as an issue of disrespect of that coveted parental blessing, but rather as an act of freedom and love and choosing who you want in your life. I think it is beautiful.

Sound Healing

Music

Even though I have a real boyfriend, I kind of want this shirt…

Image

I can’t get enough. I’m taking a course in digital recording right now, and I just finished my first project (Hotel California by the Eagles). I find it’s constantly on my mind and whenever I’m feeling down it helps so much. I can’t make it through Say Something without crying (just watch the video please), and love jamming out to the Zolas (Knot In My Heart).

Looking for what I will do for my next recording project and I’m considering being brave and doing a cover with my own voice! My idea is to update one of these classics with some beat boxing remix magic.

Oh Johnny! Oh Johnny! Oh! – The Andrews Sisters

Ain’t that kick in the head – Dean Martin

Sixteen Tons – Tennessee Ernie Ford

Why is music important in your life? Let me know in a comment below!

My Jams

Uncategorized

For Christmas, my mama and pops got me a ukulele. They got it on their recent trip to Hawaii. I thought it would be a lot easier to play than it is. I’ve played guitar for almost 6 years, but I have a lot to learn. The softer strumming, new chord fingerings and tuning… It’ll be fun though, and much more portable for travelling fun.

http://instagram.com/p/ifqum_yu_Q/

Right now in the musical world, I’m loving a couple things:

1) One Republic

2)Breezeblocks by Alt-J

Their album NATIVE just runs through me like fresh water. It moves me, lyrics and melodies and all. I can’t stay still while I listen to it, and it is my favourite thing to have going in my earbuds at the moment. I even have started to plan a music video I want to make for Counting Stars, however, there are so many good ones on that album, I don’t know which I will choose yet to work on.

I have a remix of Breezeblocks by Alt-J on my running playlist, but the original is my favourite. They have a bit more of a unique sound and Breezeblocks weaves voice and silence and beats in an intriguing way I think. I also like their song Bloodflood, it’s very mellow.

Skip the Charades

Uncategorized

Let’s skip the charades
You’re seeing right through me anyway
Can we just speak plain?
We’re playing for the same team 
But I’m the one that’s acting like
Acting like
Acting like
I’m so strong
You’re the one that’s acting like
Acting like
Acting like
Nothing’s wrong

I listened to this song on repeat for the last hour of my long run yesterday. I really want to cover it, but I have to learn the tab first. Doesn’t music have such an amazing ability to clear your mind or make you think even more deeply? It’s interesting how in one season I appreciated certain music for the acoustic quality, for the voice of the artist… then in another, the lyrics pierce me deeply and make me ask questions about my life. 

Prior to this, I listened to the complete discography of Dallas Green (City & Colour) a few times. The questioning, melancholy theme that runs through all of his songs hit me hard yesterday and I appreciated his music in a new way. 

If you are going through a hard time in your life, I would encourage you to explore some music you have never listened to, or to pull out some music from your past that you haven’t heard in a while. When your soul is in a searching and vulnerable state, music can be all the more powerful. You may find that you aren’t alone, that your feelings are normal, or that you have the power to change things. You may find empowerment or sympathy through music. You may just find distraction. Or maybe you will find new meaning in the words of a songwriter that you’ve heard a hundred times. 

I don’t know what will happen. But I suggest you give it a try.

Cold War Kids and Dallas Green are some great artists to get you started. 

Leaving the Country

Uncategorized

Dear Travelling Appreciateurs of Musique,

I couldn’t get tickets to see the Lumineers here in Vancouver, but I got them for their second concert down in Redmond, Washington. Me & mi amor drove down to Bellevue for lunch and walking before making our way to Marymoor Park for the concert.

It was a gorgeous day in Bellevue (a very fitting name for the place that day).

IMG_6576

IMG_6578

IMG_6580

IMG_6579

We went to the Cheesecake Factory for lunch. We both had decided we would recommend the place to anyone who asked before we even got our meals, basing our decision on the delicious and unlimited bread that we got as a starter.

We both got the Macaroni and Cheese Burger. This was the best and biggest burger I have ever eaten. IN. MY. LIFE. Mike agreed. We had to take most of the burger as well as a slice of cheesecake(when in Rome) home with us. It was just as delicious cold. It was pretty much worth the 2+ hour ride just for that burger.

IMG_6595 IMG_6586

Then it was onto the concert. Nate Rateliff and Dr. Dog opened for the Lumineers. I hadn’t heard either of these bands, and I really liked them! I felt they were better fits for the Lumineers than their last time round (Y la Bamba).

Check out “You Should’ve Seen The Other Guy” by Nate Rateliff

& “Heart It Races” by Dr. Dog

& “Falling in Love” by the Lumineers(one of their newer songs)

IMG_6603

IMG_6623

IMG_6624

IMG_6618

IMG_6614

Where’s the furthest you’ve travelled or would travel to see your favourite band?

Follow Your Heart

Music, Thoughts

Dear Indecisive, Torn or Otherwise Confused Readers, 

When I am going through a tough time, this is my go-to song. Against the Grain by City & Colour evokes the melancholic nature of decision making in the most important areas of your life.

Image

It provides words of assurance that you do not need to “fix” your life. Something that so frequently occupies my mind and my time.

There is a quote I love, “Nature never hurries, yet everything is accomplished.” by Lao Tzu. I feel Dallas Green is giving a similar message.

To allow the natural progression of events in your life to direct you to a certain point, to act out of instinct and the deepness of your heart’s longings.

Image

In this song Dallas Green’s connecting point throughout is that you have to make your own way through these dark tunnels and confusing times. Even as you do, you can be your own biggest obstacle. Your resistance to change, or your past pain.

This song has been so relevant to my life in many different seasons. It is sad, but comforting at the same time.

[Photos above from when I saw City & Colour in concert at the Neptune Theatre in Seattle, January 2012]

You need not to climb mountaintops,
You need not to cross the sea,
You need not to find a cure for everything that makes you weak.
You need not to reach for the stars when life becomes so dark,
And when the wind does blow against the grain,
You must follow your heart,
You must follow your heart.

When all your friends have come and gone,
And the sun no longer shines,
And the happiness for which you long is washed away like an ocean’s tide,
When all the hard times outweigh the good,
And all your words are misunderstood,
When the day seems lost from the start
You must follow your heart,
You must follow your heart.

If you feel you’ve paid the price,
And your wounds should cease to heal
And everything you love in life spins like a winding wheel.
If you should wake to find you’re abandoned,
And the road you’ve traveled leads to a dead-end
When death creeps in to play it’s part,
You must follow your heart,
You must follow your heart.

The Gipsy Kings

Music

Dear Maraca Shakers,

My boyfriend introduced me to this gem of a band, The Gipsy Kings. The band members come from the south of France, but they perform in Spanish. The Gipsy Kings consist of 8 band members: 2 sets of brothers. The 5 Reyes, and 3 Baliardos have popularized the classic flamenco of their parents internationally adding “rumba Gitano,” which their website explains is the South American rumba rhythm combined with flamenco guitar playing.

Image

I’ve yet to listen to all their music, or even most of it– they’ve released 12 albums since 1986– but I’ve enjoyed everything that I’ve heard so far. It’s hard to sit still when you’re listening to them. It’s wonderful to dance to, or to clean to!

As I don’t speak Spanish (though I am definitely going to learn!), the words and music melt together and I can appreciate it as a whole. I find when listening to music in English, I can get distracted by the lyrics and I never really appreciate the actual music unless it is a guitar solo in the middle or something.

The Gipsy Kings were originally named Los Reyes, because of their family name, which is translated to mean The Kings. They were also considered a gypsy band as they began their journey busking the streets of Cannes, and playing at parties and weddings. Thus out of Los Reyes and their gypsy lifestyle was born The Gipsy Kings.

Fun fact: 3 of the band members are left-handed and play their guitars upside down.

3 Songs that will convince you they are awesome and that you should check out more of their music:

BAMBOLEO

DJOBI, DJOBA

VOLARE

You can find out more about the Gipsy Kings at their website:

http://www.gipsykings.com/index.html

-jessi hannah jay.

Follow me on Instagram & Twitter @jessihannahjay

ps. I know this post is late! Life has a way of getting in the way and demanding that you do practical things like sleep and exercise and clean up the house.