Archives for category: videos

What an amazing thing to stumble across in the middle of the night. I found it on Twitter, so why am I surprised? This video of blooming flowers set to music is breathtaking. An artistic flower lover’s dream, it perfectly displays the intricate, delicate beauty we sometimes take for granted. We are moved from unfolding flowers to the New York City skyline to the stars. A spellbinding treat for often jaded minds….and hearts…and, yes, even souls.

http://www.atlasobscura.com/articles/spring-timelapse-flowers-blooming?utm_source=twitter&utm_medium=atlas-page

​Aimee Mann is one of my all time favorite singer songwriters. According to my taste and experience, she’s never done any bad music. I didn’t discover her until her solo career, but enjoy her ‘Til Tuesday days too. The combination of her voice, lyrics, and melodies has run through my mind like a stream moving as fast as she can produce albums. 

Some music inspires my fiction way more than the rest. Aimee Mann’s has been known to help me generate plot almost faster than I can keep up with it. Some of the best scenes I’ve ever written are connected to her work on the Magnolia Soundtrack and most of all, Bachelor No. 2, or the Last Remains of the Dodo. The latter is my favorite of her albums, and Mental Illness reminds me of it quite a bit. Drenched in strings that are the perfect companions to guitar and piano, Mental Illness is lavishly melodic. She also displays her wonderful ability with often subtle vocal acrobatics. 

Mental Illness strikes me as Dodo’s charming older sister. Containing several waltzes and her usual complex lyrics, this album is amazing and quickly became the kind of thing I have to keep listening to at odd moments. Especially when the unusual, catchy, and beautiful Goose Snow Cone pops into my head. I looked up what it’s about. Turns out Goose is a cat she knows, who also stars in the sweet video. This one is going to keep me listening, as I wait for whatever comes next from Aimee Mann.

This gorgeous video is titled Memories of Paintings. It was created by Thomas Blanchard. I have to say after watching it that he is a very talented and visionary artist. Perhaps unique. I don’t know, because I’ve never seen anything like it before and have no idea how unusual it may be. What I do know is that it is the most innovative, beautiful, and graceful use of paint imaginable. The swoop and swirl, blending, remixing, and changing of colors all set to lovely music make up a visual experience I know I won’t be satisfied to see just once. Amazing art.

http://www.atlasobscura.com/articles/watch-and-be-hypnotized-by-the-flow-of-moving-paint

Hearing X Ambassadors’ song Renegades on the radio is one thing…enjoying a great song. Seeing the official video is another thing entirely…being inspired. The extremely challenged athletes featured are absolutely incredible. Their physical strength alone is remarkable. Their grace, humility, and courage serve as an unspoken challenge to those of us who do not face the realities of their daily lives. I know I’m now much more aware of the need for gratitude and grace when faced with adversity.

X Ambassadors Renegades Official Video

I got Ryn Weaver’s The Fool album on a whim, while browsing my Amazon Music app. It can be a good place to discover new music, if you’re patient enough to go through stuff like New Music and Recommended For You, sometimes even $5 Albums. I got lucky when I bought this one.

Ryn Weaver has an interesting style and beautiful voice. Both are showcased in this video Ryn Weaver — The Fool ( Acoustic) . I glanced over some reviews that compared her to Heather Nova and Florence Welch of Florence + the Machine. I have to agree. She has that vibrato thing going too, though in a unique way.

This video is also cool because of the setting. It looks like an empty pool, which makes for unusual acoustics…pristine and expansive at once.

I like the album, but find some of it more produced than I typically care for, at times coming off as almost experimental. I wish I had an entire album of these unique acoustic versions. I see that there are more than one video on YouTube recorded in the same place, so I’ll have to dip into them more when I have a chance. No pun intended, believe it or not!

Ryn Weaver — The Fool (Acoustic)

Heather Nova is one of those amazing singer songwriters I was fortunate to stumble across in the days of yore, when brick and mortar music stores abounded and impulse music buying was at its peak. I liked to roam the alternative aisles, sometimes accompanied by my favorite sales guy, who was so tall looking up at him while he enthused about some music he was sure I would like would make my neck hurt. He was almost always right about the music, though. That personal interaction with like minded music lovers is something I really miss, now that music shopping online has become my norm.

The day I discovered Heather Nova I was on my own, wandering the aisles, perusing covers as I flipped through CDs. The pretty green of her Siren cover art jumped out at me and unwittingly I made what turned out to be a very wise purchase.

Falling in love with Siren led to falling in love with Oyster. The combination of her ethereal voice and gorgeous evocative lyrics became part of my personal soundtrack for my writing. I can hear Walk This World, Truth and Bone, Winter Blue, and Paper Cup still and be taken right to specific characters and plots. I love that entanglement of writing and music so much. It’s one of the things that make writing/screenwriting such a joy.

I was disappointed when it became harder to find Heather Nova’s CDs. Even the all knowing hive mind known as Amazon music didn’t have much, except for foreign releases that were either unavailable or unacceptably expensive. She did a couple more I was able to get, but as she grew into her talent a lot of her music had segued from the raw beauty of those two beloved albums into more polished mainstream sounds.

Fast forward to a few days ago, when I did a periodic check of my Amazon music app’s search engine, in case she had something new. Ta da! This time she did!

Enter The Way It Feels. Of course I bought it immediately. At first I thought it was going to be another one with the best of her sometimes ragged vibrato filed smoother than I would like. Then I got to The Archeologist .  I can’t stop listening to it. Though not raw and visceral like Blood of Me, it still has that element of unique beauty that made me love her music so much in the first place.

There are other songs on The Way It Feels in a similar vein, but I haven’t been able to drag my ears away from The Archeologist for long enough to truly appreciate them. For now, I’m content to let that one wash over my soul to inspire me and also to simply make me happy to have new Heather Nova music to be as thrilled with as I was the first time I listened to Siren and Oyster.

I think I’m going to have to try to find some of those obscure recordings she did on a tropical island that were released in Australia, and see what gems they may hold. I have to say that Siren was a very apt title for that early album.

Heather Nova — The Archeologist (Live)

I didn’t have to mourn the loss of the Mumford and Sons sound I love so much for long. My Aussie friend with great taste in music came through with another perfect CD for my birthday. She’ll email saying to send a list of a few for her to pick from, and Vance Joy was my top choice. I cannot get enough of his big hit song Riptide, but the whole CD (Dream Your Life Away) is awesome.

If Mumford and Sons and The Lumineers had an Australian child, it would be Vance Joy. He has a really nice voice and a great sound. All the songs on the CD have a noticeably unique sound, all of it Aussie musical goodness. Funny thing is that this time I didn’t realize the catchy yet haunting song of the video I kept seeing on middle of the night music television was a new addition to my Australian music obsession. Now I know that and that Riptide is breaking Australian music records. Good for him. I hope he’s around for many albums to come.

This video is such a cool unplugged version of Riptide. Vance Joy, a ukulele, and his heartfelt words.