Category Archives: Music

Why some people tend to hate Taylor Swift?

Taylor Swift may have everything. She got the fame, fortune, friends, current lovelife with Calvin Harris and influence. Nevertheless, many people seems hating on her. That’s probably the reason why she wrote “Shake it Off”, which is an answer to all her haters.

Taylor used to be labeled as  “America’s Sweetheart” but it seems she had lost that. The more she got popular, the more haters existed.

I am not a hater of Taylor Swift. I love her especially during the days of “Fearless”. She looks pretty, charming and harmless. She writes her own songs. She doesn’t have to go naked to sell records and concert tickets. But I noticed some changes about her. Though, she had great pop songs recently.

I often checked social media news and articles from Billboard and other sites. Based on comments from netizens, I am able to make a lists of why many people hates Taylor Swift.

1. People criticize her for writing songs about her exes. At least in every album she made, that theme is always there. Well, maybe that’s her way of sharing about her life as she used to in her songs?

2. Some haters call her flirt for dating a lot of men and if the relationship failed she’ll write it into a song (as written at number 1). They even questioned why with a lot of guys she has been with, why nothing succeeded? They claimed Swift is the problem.

3. Some people say she’s hypocrite. She pretends to be a good role model and a person when in fact she’s the opposite. Well, that’s what some people thinks of her.

4. Taylor was called by others as “greedy”. First, she removed all of her catalogues from Spotify for higher compensation pursuits. Second, she trademarked some lyrics from her songs, which had many frowned.

5. Oh wait, someone said she’s superior like she can influence anybody. Remember about the open letter to Apple?

6. Billboard’s Facebook page became like her fan page. I laughed when someone said this after almost everyday, Taylor is in their news.

7. Many of her haters were Katy Perry fans. Everybody knew the riff about the two artists and Katycats came to rescue.

 

There you have it. I know there are more comments written about her, but all those written were just based on my observations. This is not to degrade Taylor Swift as I also listen to her music. It’s just like not everybody will be pleased at a person or an artist.

 

Recap: Your Face Sounds Familiar 2 September 20, 2015

The recap for Your Face Sounds Familiar 2 continues tonight. Last night, five artists performed and impersonated 5 icons, Kean Cipriano as Randy Santiago, Myrtle Sarosa as Jessa Zaragosa, Denise Laurel as Christina Aguilera, Michael Pangilinan as Janno Gibbs and Eric Nicolas as Louis Armstrong.

Tonight, three artists performed which started with Sam Concepcion who impersonated R&B singer Jason Derulo with the worldwide hit “Talk Dirty”. He really nailed the performance, from Derulo’s dance moves to his looks. It was great to start tonight’s episode.

The next performer has been KZ Tandingan doing pop rock singer P!nk. It was a decent performance, though knowing P!nk as an exceptional singer who is very rare, is hard to imitate.

The last performer was comedian, singer and theater actress Kakai Bautista who impersonated Comedian Ai-Ai Delas Alas, who was difficult to copy as the judges commented.

If I am going to rank the 8 artists, it would be:

1. Sam Concepcion

– he perfected copying Jason Derulo and I question Gary Valenciano’s judgement. For just missed few words, it affected the ranking.

2. Kean Cipriano

– it was another perfect performance. It’s just that what Sam did is more difficult.

3. Eric Nicolas

– he portrayed Louis Armstrong well, but I don’t think the vocals was perfect. Honestly, the way he sang it bothered me.

4. Denise Laurel

– it may not be perfect but the looks is excellent. Vocally, Christina’s vocal gymnastics is extremely difficult to copy and it’s still a decent performance.

5. Michael Pangilinan

-vocals was perfect but I am not convinced with the looks.

6. Myrtle Sarosa

– her looks is way more like Alex Gonzaga but she sang it well.

7. KZ Tandingan

– it was a modest performance. I am a fan of KZ’s artistry but not yet convinced with impersonation.

8. Kakai Bautista

– I have high hopes in her but the performance, I think, is a failure.

That’s just my ranking it doesn’t count. The final rankings were:

1. San Concepcion

2. Michael Pangilinan

3. Kean Cipriano

4. Eric Nicolas

5. Myrtle Sarosa

6. KZ Tandingan

7. Denise Laurel

8. Kakai Bautista

Next week will be another interesting episode and expect intense performances from the 8 artists.

 

Your Face Sounds Familiar 2 airs on ABS-CBN 2, Saturday and Sunday night.

Recap: Your Face Sounds Familiar 2, September 19, 2015 Episode

It’s Saturday night and I have my habit of watching my favorite local TV show at the moment. It is “Your Face Sounds Familiar 2”. Last week, I made a recap of the episodes from Saturday to Sunday. The winner for the week ended for Eric Nicolas who copied Willie Revillame. We will see this week if he will nail his performance and stay on top.

This week’s episodes will be interesting once again as 8 of the celebrities will be impersonating 8 icons either local or international artists.

The show begun with last season’s winner (and now a regular in the show) Melai Cantiveros impersonating Manny Pacquiao’s mom, Dionisia Pacquiao. Melai did so well even without a performance. She did Dionisia’s signature, her way of singing Miley Cyrus’ “Wrecking Ball” (Reking Bul as pronounced). As usual, she made the audience laugh as she really nailed it.

The first performer for the night was Rocker Kean Cipriano who impersonated Randy Santiago. From the looks to movements and even his voice, he performed it well. I can’t even see Kean in that performance.

Cosplayer Myrtle Sarosa connected to the song after her breakup when she sang and impersonated Jessa Zaragosa. The look didn’t get it but her voice is great. Even Jessa Zaragosa herself is in the audience and approved Myrtle’s performance.

Actress Denise Laurel did Christina Aguilera through the song Lady Marmalade (actually sang with Pink, Lil Kim and Mya). The song was difficult to sing knowing the range of Christina’s voice but Denise tried and she sang it well despite not hitting the highest note. The way Christina moves her fingers and her look was well-copied. However, Christina’s flirt was lacking in her performance.

Among the vocals, Michael Pangilinan is on the spot. The looks may not be perfect but his voice or the way he sang it will take him to top 5 this week.

The last performer was last week’s winner Eric Nicolas who this time, impersonated Louis Armstrong with the iconic, timeless and beautiful song “What a Wonderful World”. He did well however, the way it was sang was more of a growling. The looks was good though.

Among all the 5 performances tonight, I think the best was Kean Cipriano. The competition is not yet over since 3 other artists will perform tomorrow. The winner this week will also be picked and announced tomorrow.

 

Your Face Sounds Familiar 2 airs on Sunday and Saturday on ABS-CBN 2.

The advantage of technology for music artists

Many famous music stars now once dreamed of becoming popular and hitting it big do not happen in a blink of an eye. They have to pass the hole of the needle before they officially ink a contract in a record label. Recording demos, researching, and attending auditions. Those were just few of musicians and singers struggle to work for alongside with many sacrifices. Sometimes it would take years before debut album was recorded and released, while others do not get to record even they have a contract. There were lots of things labels has to consider. It might be the music that will fit the artist and the target market. Musicians ending up sacrificing the kind of music they want and eventuating in doing what the label bosses tells the artist what to do. After all, it’s business, MUSIC BUSINESS.

With progress and advancement of technology, getting a contract and releasing an album becomes easier for musicians. We cannot say there are no hardships, it’s just that there are other options artists can do to finally ink a contract or release an album. Many independent artists recently have had hits and sold millions of records.

There are softwares now that can be used to create music. Many artists do covers and original compositions and upload it on YouTube. They promote their music through social networking sites. Creating websites has become easier where music can also be posted as well as blogs. Others can put it on music streaming sites or apps like Spotify or sell it through iTunes.

Remember, Justin Bieber became a YouTube sensation as well as other singers like Carly Rae Jepsen, etc. Charlie Puth is also one of them who had now a number 1 hit with Wiz Khalifa and a top 40 hit as the lead artist. Shawn Mendez became a Vine sensation and just had a number 1 album.

There may be a lot of options to make and promote music, however, success do not happen overnight. Musicians still make sacrifices, do hard work and know how to take advantage and make use of technology.

 

Will it take years for a new Justin Timberlake albums?

It was known to many that Justin Timberlake was formerly the leader of boyband NSYNC. I am a fan of NSYNC so when he released his solo album, I’m also a fan of Justin Timberlake. Since I love R&B especially that time when he debuted solo, I preferred his music even more than in NSYNC. Justin succeeded as solo artist, hence, his group never had a comeback album.

His debut LP “Justified” contained more of danceable and R&B tunes that was far from the kind of music he did with NSYNC (though “Celebrity” had R&B songs in it). He had matured from his music to his image. During his debut, it was believed that Justin and Backstreet Boys’ Nick Carter is up for competition when they had released their first single at the same season. Nick Carter, though, had moderate success after failure to hit top 10.

Despite the success, many NSYNC fans hoped for a reunion album. I even though it myself. But nothing was heard and even a new album from Justin took almost 4 years after “Justified” was released on 2002. That time when Justin Timberlake gained more success and fans had moved on that new NSYNC material will not come to fruition in the near future.

 

Despite his continuous success, Justin never released a solo record for several years. He focused in doing movies, business and producing records and he even stated on social media that he won’t be releasing new music. More than six years after his second album’s release, he finally released new record he entitled “20/20 Experience”. Shortly after the album’s release, he announced he will be releasing volume 2 of that record. The first volume has proven his power in selling records. The volume 2, despite topping the charts, became his lowest seller. It does not affect his status though as he was already considered an icon.

It’s been two years since his last album’s release. Will fans wait for more year to hear new record from him? Surely, fans are excited to hear from him. Since there’s no news coming from him, all fans will do is wait.

 

 

 

Song Reviews: Nick Jonas, Natalie La Rose, Ed Sheeran

Nick Jonas – Chains

After the huge hit “Jealous”, which became Nick’s breakthrough solo single after hitting the top 10 in many countries including major markets, US and UK, Nick released “Chains” as his second hit and was another US hit. “Chains” is a R&B song at mid-tempo with synths and drum beats. The song was epic and I never imagined he can pull such a song. It may be lyrically about in a difficult relation but it has its seducing way of pulling listeners to the song. He also even sounded a better vocalist than his brother Joe Jonas, who has been the main vocalist of their band. It also broke the one-hit wonder status for having two consecutive hits.

Rating: 8.5 of 10

 

Natalie La Rose – Somebody (ft. Jeremih)

She’s one of the breakout artists for 2015 after her first ever single “Somebody” broke the US top 10 and a higher peak in UK at number 2. The song is an R&B pop song and showed her dance move in the music video. It can also remind you of Whitney Houston in the music video since it pays homage to her apart from its interpolation of Houston’s big dance hit “I Wanna Dance with Somebody” back in the 1980s. The song’s catchy and can make you move with its R&B beats. It was a rare R&B sound now from what we here on the radio recently.

Rating: 8 of 10

 

Ed Sheeran – Photograph

After making everybody fall in love with “Thinking Out Loud”, Ed went more sentimental with this song “Photograph”. It started with guitar and then lyrics that’s touching and a melody and music video that will make you reminisce. The song has become a US top ten hit, his 3rd from sophomore effort “X” though a top ten hit in his hometown UK after a higher peaking “Bloodstream”.

Rating: 8 of 10

 

Throwback Song Reviews: Hanson, Natalie Imbruglia, Savage Garden

Hanson- Mmmbop

The Hanson brothers have had independent releases and this song actually written years back before its mainstream release. It was 1997’s one of memorable (and now timeless) song as it unexpectedly went to the apex of music charts worldwide. It’s been a mystery for many about “mmmbop” means. Some even gave a negative meaning, when back at the time, new words existed (remember zigazig-ah from the Spice Girls in 1996). But I think it’s message and positive and imagine how these then-teenagers (the youngest was13) could be this talented. They write songs, they created it and came out with such wonderful and catchy melody and was loved by many, young or adults.

Rating: 8.5 of 10

 

Natalie Imbruglia-Torn

This song may sound originally from her however, this song was first recorded by a European artist (non-English) then recorded in English by Ednaswap. Nevertheless, this song became prominent more with Natalie’s version. Her version perfectly fits her voice and style. She was adorn by many and influenced other artists including Britney Spears, which she was supposed to follow Natalie’s kind of music instead of bubblegum pop. The song eventually became a huge hit in 1998 and was one of the most remembered pop tunes during 1990.

Rating: 8.5 of 10

 

Savage Garden-Truly, Madly, Deeply

Savage Garden already had hits before this song (actually, their third single) but effectively did slower love songs. The same formula was followed with their second album’s carrier release “I Knew I Loved You”. The words of the song expresses the man’s sincere love for the woman evidently with the title. But it was proven more with the entire lyrics as he promised to do anything for the girl. The song fits romantic people. The melody and the way Darren did his vocals was perfect. It was released late 1997 but break the charts in 1998 which it became a sleeper hit.

Rating: 8.5 of 10

 

Some facts from Wikipedia

Most Successful Scandinavian Pop Groups

You might not know some hit pop songs you heard were created in Scandinavian region, particularly in Sweden. Even pop stars Celine Dion, Britney Spears, Backstreet Boys and a lot more recorded their songs in that region and had hits. One of the most notable songwriters and producers there was Max Martin. Apart from songs made in Scandinavia, you may have liked some pop songs from pop groups that were from that region. I have heard a lot of them and I think they are brilliant in making pop music. Here are some of the most notable pop group from Scandinavia:

 

Abba

Who doesn’t know Abba? They may have had hits in the US but success was limited compared to other parts of the world. So far, according to estimates, sales were over 300 million and the most successful song from them was “Dancing Queen”. The group was not the only the biggest band from Sweden but also in the entire Scandinavian region. Prior to international succes, they were already popular in their country, Sweden.

 

Roxette

Back when I was still in grade school, I used to hear this group’s song. I have a friend who has their album and play it in our school with his walkman. My cousin also has their album. “The Look” became their breakthrough hit followed by a string of number one singles. Their biggest ballad I think was “It Must Have Been Love” which was a global smash.

 

Aqua

This is actually my era when this group topped the charts. Many loved the song “Barbie Girl” even it became controversial due to its lyrics as claimed as sexual. Also, the song received so much criticism but still became a hit. They had multiple hits like “Doctor Jones”, “Turn Back Time” and a lot more. However, their sophomore effort didn’t work like their debut did. The group were the biggest pop group in Denmark ever.

 

Ace of Base

This four-piece group consists of 2 males and 2 females dominated the charts in early 1990s. If you have liked “The Sign”, then it was their biggest song. If you watched Pitch Perfect, you heard the song several times. They had multiple hits until they went hiatus. Still, their music is remembered and even influenced other artists like Lady Gaga, which she had conformed.

 

Missing the Former MTV

I have grown up watching music channels. Here in Asia, there are two music channels that were popular at that time, MTV (Music Television) and Channel V. I am a huge fan of music and I prefer MTV than Channel V though. However, when our cable provider changed MTV Southeast Asia to MTV Indonesia, I refrained watching the channel since they mostly plays Indonesian music videos which I am not familiar of their music and language. Channel V often plays Chinese music videos so I am not watching music channels since that time. Our cable provider don’t even offer another music channels other than the two.

 

After several years, YouTube existed. Now, you can watch any music videos you want, old or new, for free. Most viewed videos on YouTube are even music videos. Then I wonder what happened to MTV. So far, MTV here in Asia (unlike in the US) still plays music videos though, MTV Philippines has closed down perhaps the reason is the dominance of a local music channel MYX.

Singers and even MTV fans are complaining on MTV because the channel which should be playing music (it’s even the “M” on MTV) rarely plays music videos now. What they currently airing are reality shows which many are accusing as scripted. Even their Facebook page mostly updates non-music news, often were nonsensical.

I miss MTV, I mean the old MTV. The old MTV that I used to watch since I was at adolescent stage. There may be new platforms to watch music videos like YouTube or Vevo, but it’s a great feeling to go back to the past and what you’ve used too. No indication yet that the cable channel is going to revamp its format. Many are still hoping for the old MTV so it’s not yet late. If not, there’s YouTube where it’s free to watch any music videos you want.

European Pop Groups that Didn’t Break American Market

There are lots of European pop groups who became successful in their territory but received moderate response in America. Even Backstreet Boys and NSYNC, initially, they were popular in Europe and Asia but were still unknown in their homeland. After their success in other countries, they broke the American music stores with millions of albums sold and top ten hits.

 

Some European pop groups though, made it big in America as well. Consider the Spice Girls who change the pop landscape and popularity crossed to America. One Direction is also one of these groups that hit it big Stateside. But how about the other groups who attempted but failed? Who are these bands? Check below:

 

Westlife

These guys from Ireland are record breakers in UK for scoring 14 number 1 hits and more than 20 top 10 hits. They also sold millions in Asia. They tried to break American market with their debut but to no avail even though scoring 1 top 20 hit via “Swear it Again”. They attempted to crack American market again but didn’t push through. Still, they were one of the biggest selling boybands of all time.

 

Take That

Take That can be considered biggest selling British band in their own country. Despite their success, they remained one-hit wonder in the US. If not for “Back for Good”, they never got known in the US.

 

Boyzone

This Irish boyband came before Westlife and they became successful in Europe and Asia during their peak. Their biggest hit “No Matter What”, entered component charts of Billboard but never became a hit in official charts.

 

Girls Aloud

Girls Aloud became superstars in UK after several platinum albums and more than 20 top 10 hits. The girls focused in the UK and did not break the US market.

 

Sugababes

Sugababes used to have 3 members and when one of the member left, she was replaced. The group ended with no original member left. However, the group became huge in UK and Europe with numerous top 10 hits but performed moderately in the US with only one top 100 with “Hole in the Head”, which was almost at the bottom of the chart.

 

Steps

This five-piece male and female group scored multiple hits in UK and multi-platinum albums. They had an album that was sold in US but with modest reception.