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Levi Hart To Join Kid Rock On Stage In Denver

Kid Rock is on a one-of-a-kind tour, playing in intimate clubs all across the country. Not only is the country superstar playing smaller venues, but he’s also bringing along donations to local charities at each stop on the tour. And, because he was feeling extra generous, Kid Rock decided to partner with OurStage to help select an opening act for his SOLD OUT show in Denver on December 1st.

You’ve been judging and ranking the artists you think deserve this opportunity all month long, and now we finally have a winner. Please join us in congratulating Levi Hart. His soulful, twangy melodies struck a chord with the OurStage fans and helped propel his winning song, “Set It Free,” to the top of the channel. Check out the playlist below to hear the winning song as well as more songs by Levi Hart.

Live Wired [Review]: Chris Carrabba 11/20

Acoustic performances typically have a sense of quiet and calm about them. These shows tend to be in front of a smaller audience without the force of a full band behind them. Sunday night, at the Paradise Rock Club, was completely different; It was a simple acoustic performance that turned into one of the most intense shows. A sold out crowd filled the venue in anticipation of seeing Chris Carrabba, who came out armed with just an acoustic guitar and the microphone in front of him (which he hardly had to use). Carrabba, who has been releasing music for over twelve years with Dashboard Confessional and Further Seems Forever, is clearly meant to be on stage. He has such a unique and powerful control over the crowd with just his voice and his words.

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Vocal Points: Live Vs. Recorded

There’s something exciting about discovering an artist who not only records fantastic music, but can also perfectly duplicate their music onstage. In this auto-tune age, an artist who can rock just as hard every night in front of hundreds, sometimes thousands of fans as they do the studio—where they have multiple takes to nail that high note—is a rarity. That’s why I continue to go to live shows. Enduring all the mediocre acts is really worth it when you finally come across an exceptional talent. Vocally, I’ve always been blown away by James Taylor‘s live performance and how well he re-creates his sound live. His gentle and soothing voice translates perfectly to live performance, he is a master at utilizing the tone of his voice to mesh, but also to contrast his simple arrangements.  His low-key delivery is able to captivate his audience and get them intertwined in his magnificent stories.

Continue reading ‘Vocal Points: Live Vs. Recorded’

Jordyn Mallory Vs. Taylor Swift

It’s pretty remarkable to think of all the things Taylor Swift has accomplished at such a young age. At only twenty-one years old she has already released three studio albums, won four GRAMMY Awards, and was the youngest artist ever to win the coveted CMA Award for Entertainer of the Year. On top of all of her awards and accolades, she was also played a key role in the growing popularity of country music in general. The combination of elements from country and pop music in her style allowed her songs to catch the ears of die hard country fans as well as casual listeners. She opened up the world of country music to many people who had never given it a chance before, subsequently boosting its popularity in the mainstream. Her story has inspired young artists all over the country to pick up acoustic guitars and start writing songs. One OurStage artist in particular, Jordyn Mallory, seems to be following right in Taylor Swift’s footsteps.

OurStage's Jordyn Mallory

Taylor Swift

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Thursday, November 17, 2011

UTG: Album Review – Rihanna ‘Talk That Talk’

Artist: Rihanna
Album: Talk That Talk
Genre: Pop
Label: Def Jam

 

Not that I’d ever hop on the ‘oh won’t someone please think of the children’ bandwagon, but Rihanna’s influence on the younger peeps actually concerns me. Even more so now I’ve had to listen to a whole album at once. When I was growing up, I had the Spice Girls to look at. The odd dodgy revealing outfit aside, they were perfectly respectable icons, preaching about girl power and loving your mum and even safe sex (a message fantastically buried in aRihanna - Talk That Talk Christmas song). The youth of today have Rihanna, who essentially wants to shag everything around her and, memorably, was asked the other month to put more clothes on by a Northern Irish farmer whose field she was using to shoot her latest video. I’m not prudish, but is there really something so bad about wanting your pop stars to wear some clothes? Really? Some corners of the internet (I’m looking at you tumblr) might call this thinking anti-feminist. But if that’s what feminism has become in this day and age, I’m horrified.

The gaudy sexuality Rihanna displays is, at this stage, so forceful as to be ludicrous. Is it some kind of empowerment kick after the whole Chris Brown saga, or are insiders really that desperate to sell records? Is it all an attempt to distract us from the fact her voice sounds like a blunt chainsaw in heat? Talk That Talk is a competent, if banal, offering from this most ubiquitous of pop stars, replete with all the lurid imagery and club beats you’d anticipate. Its catchier songs are decent, its explicit songs woeful, and her emphasis on disarming sex appeal actually devalues the odd song that’s just alright. It all gets lost in the X-rated mire.

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Live Wired: Female Vocalists Take The Stage in Pro Performance Videos

We’re exploring the world of Pro Performance Videos here on OurStage once more for this week’s Live Wired, and have come up with some wonderfully unique live footage from a couple of different female vocalists. Both artists have beautiful voices that are captivating, even when watching their videos through the computer screen. While both performances are on the simpler side, this approach only enhances their talents and helps to shine a light on both their songwriting skills and connection with the audience. We were lucky enough to get the chance to talk to these artists about their respective performances as well as their experiences with live music, and gain some insight into their backgrounds as musicians.

First up, we have Tina Lundelius from Maryland, who is new to the world of live performance, but certainly is fitting in quite well. Having already won many awards for her songwriting, she’s gotten the chance to play in huge music cities including Nashville and Los Angeles. In the video below, she’s performing her song “Live Life Wide” with just an acoustic guitar. It’s nice and refreshing to see a quiet performance, but one that’s filled with emotion shown through both her face and voice. While Tina told us that she puts a lot of effort and preparation into each performance, especially this one, she likes “for each performance to be unique and slightly different from the last so I like to feed off the audience’s reaction”. She is focused on really connecting with her audience through her music and tries to “make them feel like I’m not just standing in front of them and playing some songs”. We were especially intrigued to hear about the differences between American and European audiences, as Tina is currently in England performing her music. She explained that “Europeans are just interested in fresh and talented music” and that while in America, audiences can sometimes come across as rude, she told us that “entire pubs will go silent when I begin to play”.

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Exclusive Q&A: Ben Lee Takes Us ‘Deeper Into Dream’

OurStage Exclusive InterviewsMaking a dramatic shift in how you approach songwriting can be incredibly difficult, especially for those who’ve been set in one way for a long time. So, when you look at the case of Ben Lee, who’s been making his mark in the music industry since he was fourteen, solo and in the band Noise Addict, it makes his latest output all the more impressive.  With his recently released album Deeper Into Dream, this indie pop mogul made serious adjustments and improvements in his craft to the delight of many music critics who panned his previous release The Rebirth of Venus. To give us some insight into what experiences and reveries went into this revision of technique, Ben Lee took some time to explain his new writing approach, how he approaches collaborations and tell us who he’s excited about in the music industry today.

OS: About Deeper Into Dream, you’ve said that you wanted to take a more personal approach to writing this album. Did you run into any difficulties making that shift? Do you find that it’s easier to be more personal when writing lyrics for other people to sing?Ben Lee

BL: Well, it’s all relative. My music has always been personal, but I guess what I mean is I wanted to be more vulnerable. Sometimes I think I’ve found it hard to admit weakness or my flaws (both in life and in music), so I was conscious of wanting to have more questions than answers on this album.

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Vocal Points: Marie Hines-Influenced By All, Sounds Like None

OurStage artist Marie Hines has been making music for as long as she can remember, beginning to write songs at the age of twelve. The depth of her songwriting abilities, musical vision and vocal ability make for a truly breathtaking combination—both on her records and in live performance. Its clear to see why Marie has ranked high in the Best of the Best Charts on OurStage, as well as had other great success on and off the site. Marie is currently creating another five-song EP that will be released in February. We had a chance to catch up with Marie and ask her about her musical background and what has molded her into the phenomenal singer-songwriter she is today.

OS: You say you started writing songs at the age of twelve but when did you begin singing, and when did you begin formal voice training?

MH: I guess you could say I’ve always been a singer. I used to walk around my house at ages three and four belting the theme song for The Little Mermaid at the top of my lungs… My poor parents! I sang all through middle school and high school, but didn’t start formal voice lessons until my senior year in high school—I needed help preparing for my audition for the School of Music at Belmont University in Nashville. I was accepted as a Commercial Voice major at Belmont, and studied there for four years, graduating with a degree and a hefty load of vocal training under my belt.

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GuacaMusic: Nodo

Bogotá or Caracas? Arepas de choclo or arepas de maíz? Carlos Vives or Franco de Vita?

Colombia vs. Venezuela…

If you had to choose between Colombian and Venezuelan music, which one would you pick? Hard choice, huh?

Luckily, you don’t have to pick just one. Here on OurStage, there is a band that offers the very best music of these two countries. We are talking about Nodo, a band that defines itself as the Colombo-Venezuelan answer to post-grunge, grunge and hard rock, and plays songs in both English and Spanish. Nodo formed in 2004 with the goal of being a true revelation for the rock in Bogotá. Since then, they have done so much more than that. The band has recorded two video clips and continues to add more songs to its repertoire.  Their music transcends geographical borders which explains why the band can be heard outside Colombia, in Venezuela, greater Latin America and the US.

Intrigued?

Go to Nodo’s profile and play the song “How,” the band’s first single recorded in 2010. This song has been getting rave reviews from OurStage fans and has made it into the top ten charts several times. But that’s not all. Nodo’s “How” has also been a tremendous hit at local radio stations such as Radionica Colombia 99.1 FM.

If you are into “How”, then you will love “Mentira,” another Nodo favorite about how lying can destroy a relationship. Play it and you will see why these guys continue to climb the top ten charts. The music is just amazing and the lyrics are profound.

Enjoy this playlist by Nodo and see how Latin music is best when influenced by artists from different countries. ¡Provecho!

 


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