Tag Archives: music

Inspiration: Tristan Allen & Amanda Palmer

2 Nov

Inspirational: Emily Bear

5 Oct

 

So this is what happens when you start composing music at three years old… This medley is amazing and give it a listen if a have a spare 6 minutes.

Until next time,

Daisy

Edinburgh Fringe Pt 2

18 Sep

Here we are, part 2 of our Edinburgh journey! (If you haven’t seen part 1, click here.)

Saturday started off with Tony Law and his aptly namely Nonsense Overdrive show. How can you not love a man who enters the room with light up rings and a head torch strapped to his top hat? A great show, with lots of surreal stories and a trip into outer space.

After that we headed over to Pleasance Courtyard for I Need A Doctor, which was hilarious! The premise was that the writers (who were also the actors, the whole 2 of them) had trouble with the copyright and as a result, had to change certain phrases and lyrics in their musical, which lead to non-rhyming songs and bizarre nemeses. A very funny hour it was, you know when your cheeks hurt from laughing that you’re in the right place.

Half an hour after the Whosical musical and about half an hour’s walk away, was Stella Graham; a fine comic who told us the troubles of working at summer camps in America (parents will sue you), a story involving curley chips and the c word, and who used to have a mullet (she provided us with photographic evidence).

The evening’s show was 4.48 Psychosis. Now I don’t know if you know about 4.48 Psychosis (is it still part of GCSE drama?) but it’s a piece of writing by Sarah Kane in 24 sections with no stage directions, characters or settings. Seen by some as the writer’s suicide note, it’s been the subject of much debate and interpretation when performed. The production we saw – DEM Productions – intermixed normal everyday conversation, settings and characters with Kane’s abstract prose. It worked well but there wasn’t really any closure (though I didn’t think there would be) as it just ended.

Sunday was a later start to the day, watching an impressive piece of physical comedy in The Sword & I. The tale of an invisible sword that has terrible and magical properties were interspersed with accents clouds, punctuation and pretending to be a small South American mammal.

The evening began with Caroline Rhea (Aunt Hilda!) who was on top form and possibly the best event at the Fringe. Matchmaker extraordinaire and lover of star signs, she was hysterically funny and I was genuinely gutted when the hour was up.

Mr B The Gentleman Rhymer finished off our day with a superb set of covers and originals, including his Six Ages of Love. There was dancing, naps and fabulous banjolele solos.

The next morning was spent wondering round the city, stopping off at our favourite new café the Elephant House before heading over to the Assembly Rooms for Avenue Q featuring a Scottish Trekkie Monster. Harry Styles* made for a wonderful Nicky and the show was fun as it usually is.

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image by Daisy

The rest of the day was spent exploring the castle and taking pretentious pictures which is what happens when you run out of colour film and have to revert to black and white.

All in all it was a brilliant week and I would definitely go back!

*No, not really. It was off putting how much he looked like him though.

About the writer: Daisy is an irregular photographer, wannabe writer and full time female. In between tea and toast breaks she spends far too much time on the internet blogging, tumbling and tweeting. She is unapologetic in her love of the Spice Girls.

Edinburgh Fringe Pt I

13 Sep

The idea to go to the Edinburgh Fringe Festival came about at the beginning of the year and was jumped on with enthusiasm and delight by Sarah and me. There was endless flicking through the gigantic programme that was sent out and scrolling through their website for shows and events to see. I do love planning things!

Luckily, having a similar taste in humour, it wasn’t hard to find things we both found interesting. Tickets were ordered for cabaret acts, music and even a few theatre pieces. Most of the shows last for an hour and there are also plenty of free things available to see, from the obvious street performers to an excellent murder mystery and a very interesting one-woman play about Bette Davis.

We arrived on a Tuesday and after booking into our B&B, headed straight back out for our first performance. The Creative Martyrs’ After The Apocalypse was delightful and I fully recommended going to see something the day you arrive if you can. The basis of the show is that the inevitable apocalypse arrives halfway through one of the duo’s performances and survivors make their way over to the musical hall; hilarity ensues.

It was an hour of songs, comedy and political campaigns that I would have happily paid for (the show was free) and would leap at the chance of seeing again.

The next day was an early one; our first show was at 10 on the top deck of a bus at the Free Sisters. Miss Clara Bell was a funny, piano playing girl who stored chocolate down her top. Interesting observations about moustaches were made and correct Twitter etiquette was discussed – do we ‘tweet’ or ‘twot’?

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image by Daisy

After the squishy chocolate we headed over to Biddy Mulligans Bar for For The Love of Folk aka an Irish chap called Raymond playing his guitar in a tiny, tiny pub. The songs were accompanied by short intros or stories about them; recurring themes were drinking, love, prison and fighting. Funny, charming and educational, it was a wonderful way to spend 90 minutes. (Props to the guys in the corner for singing along.)

In the evening we had a troupe of Aussies called Instant Order doing a Harry Potter themed trial by audience. Someone had been murdered and audience members got to decide the witnesses’ houses, patronus and favourite spells. I mean come on, how many duck patronuses have you heard of? Another hour that went by far too quickly, with laughs coming thick and fast.

Next up was EastEnd Cabaret who were filthy and oh so hilarious! Manbeasts, gin and creepy photoshopped images of Meatloaf filled the hour and it felt like it was over in a flash. I wasn’t so fond of the Rohypnol song though; it just all more creepy than funny.

Day number 3 started off with Bette Davis Ain’t For Sisses, an interesting look at the actress on the night before the 1939 Oscars. I can’t help but feel that it would have been more enjoyable if I knew more about Bette Davis. Nonetheless, I liked the show very much and was another free one I would have paid for.

The evening show was The Bloody Ballad, which was amazing! A rock n’ roll fuelled musical about murder, manslaughter and true love. It starts with a girl called Mary recounting her story along with her band, The Missin’ Fingers of how she met a boy and the chaos that ensued. It was a hell of a lot of fun!

The next morning we were up bright and early for The Hawke Papers at The Blind Poet. Now this was good: an interactive murder mystery set in the 19th century, someone has died (obviously) and another is incorrectly identified as the murderer. The audience’s role as detective is to question and frisk (!) other witnesses and gather evidence.

Immediately after was Blues and Burlesque and, lucky for us, it was at the same venue! It was OK. There two girls, one stripped while the other sang amusing songs including a jazz cover of Boom Boom Boom by The Outhere Brothers.

Our show for the evening was Emilie Autumn, which was a bit disappointing. Don’t get me wrong, I love Emilie Autumn but she didn’t play many songs and the crowd didn’t seem very lively. There was an amusing re-enactment of some fan fiction (the things people write…) and it was visually stunning but it never really came to anything.

In between shows we wondered around the city, watching street performers, finding fantastic places to eat and traipsing around the museum. Edinburgh is such a fantastic city and there was no end of things to do. True story: we unintentionally raced Stephen Moffat up some steps and won!

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image by Daisy

Next week, part two of our Edinburgh Adventure featuring Avenue Q, Aunt Hilda and a castle!

About the writer: Daisy is an irregular photographer, wannabe writer and full time female. In between tea and toast breaks she spends far too much time on the internet blogging, tumbling and tweeting. She is unapologetic in her love of the Spice Girls.

Soundtrack for summer

5 Aug

A simple, eclectic playlist to get you ready (if you aren’t already) for any summer’s day*!

The Beatles – Here Comes The Sun. Classic.

Nina Simone – Ain’t Got No – I Got Life. Yes, it’s the one from that advert; Simone has such a fantastic voice, her cover of Here Comes The Sun is also worth a listen.

Elbow – One Day Like This. Oh god. They played this at Reading a couple of years ago and it was perfect.

Yann Tierson – La Valse D’amélie (Version Originale). In fact the entire Amélie soundtrack is a summer staple. Can’t you just picture yourself wondering round the streets of Paris with this playing in the background? Oh to have your own portable orchestra…

The Kinks – Sunny Afternoon. A must have, preferably listen to it whilst having an ice-cold beer. Your life may be turning to s**t around you, but so long as the sun is shining, you’re golden.

The Blanks – Teenagers Forget Streisand Because The Only Girl Is Cooler Than Dynamite. Contender for the longest song title ever, this wonderful a capella mash up is wonderful.

ELO – Mr. Blue Sky. An obvious choice but a must have! The song changes pace a bit towards the end but the duelling choirs are fabulous.

Nick 13 – 101. Summer is made for aimless drives and roadtrips. All the better if you own your own Thunderbird or Cadillac.

Leftover Cuties – When You’re Smiling. A brilliant cover of the classic – the ukulele and old timey trumpet is a superb spin and makes for a purely fun version of the song.

Guilty Pleasure Summer Tune:

Avril Lavigne – Here’s To Never Growning Up. This is TERRIBLE song. But there’s just something about it, you know when you can’t quite put your finger on it? Catchy chorus, semi relatable lyrics, criminally overused ‘whoas’; it’s all there. And good girl Avril, marrying Chad Kroger so that no one else has to. It had to be someone.

*Any summer’s day is vastly improved with the addition of some Pimm’s, a barbeque and it’d be handy if you had your own swimming pool.

About the Writer: Daisy is an irregular photographer, wannabe writer and full time female. In between tea and toast breaks she spends far too much time on the internetbloggingtumbling and tweeting. She is unapologetic in her love of the Spice Girls.

Love Letter to the 90s

7 Jun

My 90s were spent listening to pop music: embarrassing, sugary sweet, bubblegum pop. With Viva Forever at the West End, the Backstreet Boys receiving a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame and the Big Reunion on TV, my mind has slipped back to that time and I have unashamedly been listening to some classic gems from the era.

So gather round, grab your glittery temporary tattoos and Hubba Bubba Bubble Tape and let’s delve into the strange thing that was 90s music.

Spice Girls – Stop. I can’t believe this didn’t get to number 1! It had great hooks, a dance routine and was insanely catchy. The Spice Girls will forever be my favourite pop group and they taught the best lesson of all: girl power.

B*Witched – To You I Belong. Possibly the deepest thing a 7 year old could listen to.

Steps – Love U More. The strangest and most difficult dance routine I ever attempted… This brings back memories of the legendary Steps Video with the flying sofa and dodgy CGI backgrounds.

TLC – Unpretty. Creepy flying CCTV cameras aside, don’t let society impose their ideals of beauty on you.

Five – Keep On Movin’. I was more of a girl groups kid but Five were alright. It’s one of those feel good songs that you can’t help but like.

Backstreet Boys – Everybody (Backstreet’s Back). This video. I can’t even.

S Club 7 – Bring It All Back. Yup, I went there. Remember the TV shows? The bad acting? It all comes flooding back now… Not the best group of the 90s but still enjoyable.

Billie – Because We Want To. Long before running around on the small screen with Christopher Eccleston, Billie Piper was a pop star. This was an anthem for girls everywhere and if memory serves, I think I had this single on a cassette tape back in the day.

Eiffel 65 – Blue (Da Ba Dee). Don’t worry- I liked it when this showed up in Iron Man 3 too.

Cher – Believe. Possibly the ultimate 90s song and one of the first uses of Auto Tune, I honestly thought it was a man singing the first time I heard it. I love it.

 

In other news: how long will it be for films and TV shows set in the 90s to be defined as ‘period pieces’?

About the writer: Daisy is an irregular photographer, wannabe writer and full time female. In between tea and toast breaks she spends far too much time on the internet blogging, tumbling and tweeting. She is unapologetic in her love of the Spice Girls.

Bad direction

15 May

We’ve all heard of them. If you haven’t, I’m wondering what cave you’ve been hiding in and if there’s any more room? No, in all seriousness, since being on the X Factor One Direction, have become one of the biggest selling boybands of all time. Their ‘Directioners’ are nothing but supportive and will certainly not let their beloved boys receive any insult without strongly defending them.

The group originally started out as five separate boys auditioning for the show, but the judges decided to put them all together as a group, believing that they would work better this way. They were right! Louis, Zayn, Harry, Liam and Niall have been booted to stardom since winning third place. I have one gripe with this band however and that’s not Harry’s continued publicity with present/ex/who the fuck cares what the tabloids make up, girlfriend, Taylor Swift; it is in fact their songs.

Their first song, in my opinion is amazing. What Makes you Beautiful, is a brilliant message to send to their legions of young female fans worldwide. This song talks about how a girl is beautiful but she doesn’t realise it. This is a lovely message to send. In a way, this could be saying that all of you girls out there who think you are ugly or are struggling with self-esteem issues, you are still beautiful no matter what you think and there is someone who realises this even if you are unsure of it yourself. I believed that this band really had potential and they did. They really had potential to show young women how to feel about themselves, which is what Yellow Bunting aims to do. For such a major emerging popular band, this is such a breakthrough. However they ruined this with another song…

‘Let’s go crazy, crazy, crazy til we see the sun’, ‘hey girl, it’s now or never’ and ‘if we get together, don’t let the pictures leave your phone’ are just some of the examples of lyrics of Live while we’re young. In fact the chorus of the song is ‘tonight let’s get some and live while we’re young’. With a catchy beat, I even find myself nodding along to this song on the radio and can quite imagine plenty of teenage girls dancing around in their bedrooms to quite frankly these disgusting lyrics. Now I’m not one for these scapegoats for how society acts. I don’t agree that the Columbine shooting had anything to do with Marilyn Manson or his music but maybe a lot to do with the lax gun laws in America. However for such a publicised fashionable band to like, I cannot believe that they are allowed to release this kind of material. Especially when it is quite common for pictures to get out of girls by their male counterparts, telling girls not to let ‘the pictures leave your phone’ can only end badly. This isn’t my main gripe with the song however. The lyrics, ‘I know we only met but pretend its love’. In other words, we’ve just met but let’s pretend we’re in love so we can fuck all night.

However with five young boys in the band, is this the right publicity stunt to give them? Aren’t they meant to come across as clean cut? Now I’m not saying that younger girls are easily influenced but for their record company to release this song sends feminism back a number of years and teenage pregnancies up higher. Not because the target audience is influential but because this song makes it seem that there is nothing wrong with just sleeping around. And also some of the audience may be easily influenced: is it their duty as they are in the limelight to send out the right message?

Sending a bad message out is however not a new thing. Popular 90’s band, The Spice Girls, released many songs with titles and lyrics that were meant to connote different things that young ears should maybe not hear. (The age group for the Spice Girls was probably a tad younger than for One Direction). But with modern culture seeming to decline in any morale and kindness for others, is this then more reason to promote good feeling about yourself and not sleeping around? Like in What Makes you Beautiful, did they have it right the first time?

But is it the band’s right to influence their fans? Or should they just be able to go on and live their lives?  Although they don’t have to bring it into their music. Whatever artists say is forever recorded in papers and in the press and can be brought back at any moment. If JK Rowling, in the height of Harry Potter, had said pretend you’re in love so that you can fuck around, there would have been outrage because of her younger readers. However because these are five young boys, it seems to have been ignored. So do these boys owe something to their fans to be somewhat of a good influence? Or is this just modern culture and we need to get used to it? Or is it in fact just a catchy tune that no one listens to the lyrics of? Well let me just ask you this, do you not find it easier to sing along to your favourite song rather than revise maths? The lyrics stick in your head. I for one can admit to listening to sad songs, trying to make them fit to my situation at hand. So what do you think Yellow Bunting readers? Do One Direction owe it to their fans and modern culture to send a good message out or can they simply go in a bad direction?

About the Writer: Becky has just finished a degree in English and Creative Writing and is very happy with her 2:1. She is friendly, bubbly and just so happens to be the co-creator of Yellow Bunting. She hopes you enjoy it and that you get involved!