Saturday, 31 December 2011

I think music in itself is healing. It's an explosive expression of humanity. It's something we are all touched by. - Billy Joel

Music oxygen (Mark Catron)

For my last post of 2011 I decided to choose a random performer from Search. It is easy to get stuck in a rut and go and see the people you are familiar with but going random can reveal some hidden gems. Music was performing at Cloud Nine, a beautiful setting I would normally associate more with romantic dancing but this was a great concert to attend alone. I stood in the corner surrounded by a huge crowd and tuned in. There were some couples dancing but most of the crowd were sitting or standing as it really was the type of music to lose yourself in. The crowds made it laggy which is a downside of a popular artist or venue but it does create a buzz. This crowd wasn't too full of gestures either, just applause and compliments  ( Top tip: I turn my gesture sound off so I don't miss what the singer says between songs) 

Music had written all his own songs and he has an extensive list. He sings from the heart with a soft, American accent and plays guitar. My favourite song was Why should we believe which was inspiring. I also liked Sticks and stones which contained the line "made me taste so many tears" and was  about being hurt and being in pain but surviving.

I was going to describe Music  as an acoustic folk type singer but actually he said something between songs which describes his style much better. He said he had just figured out his genre...dark country! I can't say I am a huge country fan being a true Brit but country has a huge following in SL from the US contingent. However Mark's style was not what I think of as country. It was modern and thoughtful and maybe a little melancholic or wistful  rather than dark. I read in his bio at the end of his concert that he has autism and has battled for many years with misdiagnoses. It is easy to see that his music has been very healing and I am glad he is sharing it with SL audiences.

If you fancy some time out to reflect and be introspective then Music is your man.

Happy New Year!! 

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Thursday, 29 December 2011

I don't know anything about music. In my line you don't have to - Elvis Presley

Have you ever been to a live music event in SL? Pretty weird huh? Listening to someone in their living room singing karaoke. Well, there is a bit more to the live music scene than that.

So, everyone likes music right? I can still remember the first concert I ever went to when I was just 13 years old at Hammersmith Odeon in London. It was Nik Kershaw, an 80's  pop idol, with spiky hair. I sang along with the thousands of other teeny boppers and my love for live music was born. I know. This does not make me an icon of coolness and I don't pretend to have any style when it comes to my music taste. In fact my taste is so eclectic I love everything from David Bowie to Michael Buble and a great deal in between. Don't judge me for not being cool!!!

What I miss most about getting older is going to gigs or concerts and being part of a live event. Nothing beats the atmosphere, the ad libs and the screaming.....which is why I discovered that I love going to live events in SL. I know lots of people don't like them, probably don't see the point and you aren't going to find many undiscovered indie bands to be fair. But scratch the surface and there is some real talent in SL. Real life performers who use their av to croon out the oldies, sing the blues, jazz it up with a big band backing track or play guitar or piano and even some songwriters performing their own stuff. The thing I found I liked is that you can bust out the moves on the dance floor (unless the lag is dreadful!) either by yourself or as a couple or chill out in the corner of some pretty spectacular venues. Also if you find a performer you like then you get to know a crowd of people too. My fave performers are the ones who put on a show, make me laugh and engage the crowd. If you look up live performances in search you can pick one that appeals, dress appropriately or not (come on, you know that's half the fun) and head on over. One of the good things is that most live performers have something of a following so its worth a visit just to see some people if you fancy some company. In my experience the crowds are friendly although this does vary. Just one thing: Most performers these days do not get paid and they rely on tips so be generous when you can to them and to the venues. 

In 2012 I will try and feature some of my faves and maybe some new faces too.  More pics, less waffle. Get in touch if you have a suggestion or want to be featured yourself. So, if you haven't tried live music, give it a go. The beauty of SL is that if you don't like someone you can just tp away and go shopping.........