A major part of being a musician is listening to good music. That "good" part is of importance here.
I remember getting Cassette Tapes (Mix-Tapes) in my childhood. They used to be a collection of good songs recommended by friends.
That is how I heard great music – recommendations.
With CDs, the recommended songs became recommended albums and artists. But the options were still limited and I used to listen to all the songs I had over and over again. (Remember boasting your song collection in GBs? NO? You are probably too young 🤓 )
Then the number of options increased dramatically with the iPod, YouTube and now the streaming services. And ironically, I was at a loss for what to listen to!
Let's face it – the playlists & recommended feed what you hear on streaming services are all bought and paid for and are more of a result of marketing than someone actually curating great music. More often than not, something comes up in my feed and I end up skipping after 30 seconds with an "Eh!".
So I still rely on music that my friends recommend.
And that is why I am proposing this: #MondayMixtape / #MuziclubMondayMixtape
Starting today, every Monday I will make a blog post here with 5 tracks I found during that week that I loved.
Everyone is encouraged to participate.
Here is how:
Make a post (on muziclub/your favourite blogging platform/in the comments section).
Use #mondaymixtape and #muziclubmondaymixtape hashtags.
Post links to 5 songs you like.
Tell us why you like them. Point out features that surprised you, stuff you learnt from the song, etc etc.
If your post is selected, it will be featured on muziclub website and social media platforms.
What better way to start a Monday than by listening to great music?! 🎶 ✨
I will begin with Vol #1:
1. Justin Timberlake – Say Something ft. Chris Stapleton
I heard this one the day it came out. And I was blown away – first by the video and then at the simplicity of the song. Justin Timberlake is known for some heavy production in his songs (if you have heard The 20/20 Experience, you know!). But this one has simple band setup – acoustic guitars, bass, drums, piano (and of course the sprinkle of signature JT). Plus there are only 4 chords in the song – Am, C, G, D (and the F towards the end) – but the melody and phrasing of the song is very clever. It keeps the song interesting.
And that video! My God! – whoever operated the steady camera – hats off! One single shot in that amazing location with all the lighting – and how the song opens up towards the end with all the choir coming in – just too much! It was an instant hit with me!
2. Foo Fighters – The Sky Is A Neighborhood
Raw power! I first heard RUN from their new album Concrete and Gold and loved that song as well. But this one was stuck in my head for a long time. I just loved singing along – and the guitars sound so huge! That power chord chug along with the kick drum trick is something I am surely going to use in one of the songs I produce! Plus the glowing eyes – my god the glowing eyes!
If you are following Muziclub on Instagram then you saw Conrad Sir's students practising this song for the Annual Day. This will be fun!
3. Mree – Atmosphere | Sofar NYC
Marie Hsiao, better known as Mree, is an indie folk singer-songwriter from New Jersey. I guess she started off doing covers on YouTube before she put out her original stuff.
I just love her voice. She brings so much emotion to the words. Sometimes, it is not about the words, but how they are said, how they are sung. And Mree is a genius at it.
I like this Sofar live performance even more than the recorded version of this. Something about how it is mixed, and the ambience, makes me feel I am sitting right there watching Mree perform. And sometimes tears just roll down my cheeks.
Plus that is live singing! Very few can do that. Mree has my respect for that.
4. When Will The Bass Drop? (ft. Lil Jon)
Now since that is out of the way, time to have some fun this Monday. Haaaaaave you heard of Lonely Island? 😉
If you haven't, go click that link and you will binge watch all their videos. The most hilarious stuff I've seen!
When Will The Bass Drop is probably my favourite .. and also Spell It Out and I Just Had Sex (feat. Akon)… hahahahahhahaha. 😂
PS: This one is kind of poking fun at Avicii (with the Davvincii thing) who recently passed away. But what better way to remember a great musician than with a smile! The very first Avicii song I heard was Wake Me Up and I was pleasantly surprised since this was an EDM track which actually had acoustic elements used very creatively and in addition had great lyrics which I connected to. Even though he is gone, Avicii's songs will live on forever. RIP.
5. Portugal. The Man – "Feel It Still"
When I first heard this song on the radio, I felt this was an old classic! Love the melody on this one. Sounds a little like Please Mr Postman, but it's super catchy and super singable. Amazing vibe with the brass here!
And that Kick – wow! How do you get that thump? I "feel it still" 😁
It's a song that will get stuck in your head. Plus the song has a great message – fighting for all the apathy and injustice in the world.
So whats your #MondayMixtape?
Let's hear them lovely songs.
Spread great music 🎶
This article has been contributed by muziclub co-founder Hardik Vaghela.