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Inspire. Motivate. Laugh. Love….. Your Guilty Pleasure. ♥


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Beyonce Does It Again!

Beyonce

While the lucky few have been getting the Mrs Carter Tour experience, the rest of Beyonce’s fans have been waiting with bated breath for a new album, and she has suprised the whole world by dropping her album on iTunes, UNANNOUNCED.

Twitter users woke up this morning to a buzz about the new release, a self-titled “Visual Album“, created with both songs and videos for the songs to create a more holistic experience. MtV

Columbia Records tweeted on Friday, “#Beyonce The Visual Album. 14 songs 17 videos available now on iTunesMusic”.

The album is a more personal look into Bey’s life, with a song featuring Jay Z called “Drunk In Love” and another track and video name “Blue”, which features princess Blue Ivy. The album has 14 songs and 18 videos and ends with a digital booklet (see the slideshow here).

Beyonce released a brilliantly made video statement this morning where she explained her thinking behind the new release:

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“I see music, as more than just what I hear. When I’m connected to something, I immediately see a visual, or a series of images that are tied to a feeling or an emotion, a memory from my childhood, thoughts about life, my dreams or my fantasies, and they’re all connected to the music. And I think its one of the reasons why I wanted to do a visual album. I wanted people to hear the songs with the story that’s in my head, cause it’s what makes it mine. That vision in my brain is what I wanted people to experience the first time.

I feel like right now, people experience music differently, I remember seeing Thriller on TV with my family, it was an event. We all sat around the TV and I’m now looking back and I’m so lucky I was born around that time. I miss that immersive experience. Now people only listen to a few seconds of a song on their iPods, they don’t really invest in a whole album. It’s all about the single, and they hype. Theres so much that gets between the music and the artist and the fans. I felt like, I don’t want anybody to give the message when my record is coming out. I just want this to come out when it’s ready, and from me to my fans. I told my team, I wanna shoot a video for every song and put them all out at the same time. Everyone thought I was crazy, but we’re actually doing it, it’s happening. I wanted to make this body of work, and I feel like something that’s lost in pop music. I wanted people to hear things differently and have a different first impression. Not just listen to a ten-second clip but actually be able to see the whole vision of the album. It was important that we made this a movie, that we made this an experience. I wanted everyone to see the whole picture, and to see how personal everything is to me. I will make my best art, and just put it out. And that’s why it’s out today.”he story that’s in my head, cause it’s what makes it mine. That vision in my brain is what I wanted people to experience the first time.”

If you weren’t a serious Beyonce stan before now, this is the body of work that might just turn you.

Track List:

1. Pretty Hurts

2. Haunted

3. Drunk In Love (ft. Jay Z)

4. Blow

5. No Angel

6. Partition

7. Jealous

8. Rocket

9. Mine (ft. Drake)

10. XO

11. Flawless (ft. Chimamanda Ngozi Adiche)

12. Superpower (ft. Frank Ocean)

13. Heaven

14. Blue (ft. Blue Ivy Carter)

Pretty Hurts (Video)

Ghost (Video)

Haunted (Video)

Blow (Video)

No Angel (Video)

Yonce (Video)

Partition (Video)

Jealous (Video)

Rocket (Video)

Mine (ft. Drake) [Video]

XO (Video)

Flawless (ft. Chimamanda Ngozi Adiche) [Video]

Superpower (ft. Frank Ocean) [Video]

Heaven (Video)

Blue (ft. Blue Ivy Carter) [Video]

Grown Woman (Bonus Video)

Credits (Video)

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The World’s First 24-Hour Music Video

pharrell

This has been a very good year for Pharrell Williams, aside from the usual which includes a lot of good music produced (for major albums like Jay Z and Miley Cyrus’ ) and being directly involved with two of the biggest singles this year, Blurred Lines with Robin Thicke and Daft Punk’s Get Lucky, don’t forget that the pop impresario also got married (finally!) at the age of 40, to model Helen Lasichanh.

Pharrell, best known for his non-aging goodness and his amazing genre-melding music with N.E.R.D. and as a solo artist, recently recorded the song “Happy” for the new Despicable Me 2 soundtrack  and has now debuted a record-breaking music video for the song. The video is 24-hours long!

24hoursofhappiness.com

24hoursofhappiness.com

A first of it’s kind, the interactive video was released on Thursday, 21st November at the stroke of midnight and is available for streaming at 24hoursofhappy.com. The video features various dancers lip synching and dancing throughout a single day while the four-minute song is played on a loop. Each loop of the song introduces a new dancer/singer who include anonymous dancers/extras as well as celebrities like Magic Johnson, Steve Carell and Pharrell himself.

To allow the video to be interactive, the video has  a clock interface hovering above it which allows the users to fast-forward or rewind to different parts of the video and share any specific section they would like to in Twitter and Facebook. There are already non-interactive segments (up to an hour long) of the video posted on Pharrell’s YouTube channel which are also awesome to watch.

There is no better feel-good song than this one this year and I’m so HAPPY about the equally happiness-inspiring video.

So press play and sing along. 🙂

Happy

It might seem crazy what I’m ’bout to say

Sunshine she’s here, you can take a break

I’m a, Hot-air balloon that could go to space

With the air, like I don’t care, baby by the way

Because I’m Happy  (clap along if you feel like a room without a roof)

Because I’m happy (clap along if you feel like happiness is the truth)

Because I’m happy (clap along if you know what happiness is to you)

Because I’m happy (clap along if you feel like that’s what you wanna do)

Here come bad news talking this and that

Well gimme all you got and don’t hold me back

Well I should probably warn you I’ll be just fine

No offense to you, don’t waste your time

CHORUS

Bring me down, can’t nothing

Bring me down, your love is too high

To bring me down, can’t nothing

Bring me down, I said

CHORUS x2

Bring me down, can’t nothing

Bring me down, your love is too high

To bring me down, can’t nothing

Bring me down, I say


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One Last Tour

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This weekend I went to see Swedish House Mafia’s show in Johannesburg, and all I can say is: EPIC!!

In case you didn’t know, Swedish House Mafia are a trio of house music producers and DJs, consisting of Axwell, Steve Angello and Sebastian Ingrosso.

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Sebastian Ingrosso; Axwell; Steve Angello

The DJ’s have, over the years, released music on their own, as well as together and have been very successful in both endevours. They have officially been together since 2008, but in these last 4-5 years, the supergroup have been called “the faces of mainstream progressive house music”, having placed at number 10 on the DJ Magazine Top 100 DJ Poll in 2011.

Axwell (@Axwell) placed #12 on the DJ Magazine Top 100 DJ Poll in 2011 produced the hit “I Found U” and “Watch The Sunrise”, which peaked at #6 in the UK Singles Chart but has otherwise been producing remixes for other artists, including Usher’s “Burn”, N*E*R*D’s “Maybe”, Nelly Furtado’s “Promiscuous and Madonna’s “Jump”. In 2012, he released the single “In My Mind” on Beatport.

Steve Angello (@SteveAngello) placed #23 on the DJ Magazine Top 100 DJ Poll in 2011 and his remix of Eurythmics “Sweet Dreams” was what really put him in the limelight. He produces under a number of different aliases, from Who’s Who, Buy Now, Fireflies, General Moders, Mode Hookers, Outfunk and The Sinners, most of which are with his childhood friend Sebastian Ingrosso. Most recently, they’ve release “Bodycrash” under Buy Now. He has worked with Erik Prydz under the name A&P Project and with group member, Axwell, under the name Supermongo/Supermode. He also owns his own record lable, Size Records.

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I got my ticket!!

Sebastian Ingrosso (@SebIngrosso) placed #26 on the DJ Magazine Top 100 DJ Poll in 2011 and won the award for the highest new entry into the chart in 2009, a record which has only been beaten by Deadmau5 in 2008. Sebastian is the creator of musical hits such as “How Soon Is Now”, “Calling”, “Reload” and “Cupid Boy” for Kylie Minogue.

On June 24, 2012, the group announced on their website that their upcoming tour would be their last. “Today we want to share with you, that the tour we are about to go on will be our last. We want to thank every single one of you that came with us on this journey. We came, we raved, we loved.” The tour, aptly named “One Last Tour”, kicked offi n November 2012 and will end in March. There has been a great response to the tour, with the group having to add extra shows to their roster. There is also a final appearance at the Ultra Music Festival in Miami, with an opening set on March 15 and a closing set on March 24, which I am sure will be phenomenal.

In an interview with Rolling Stone magazine in regards to the group’s breakup, Angello said that “we just decided that we reached a point where we didn’t know what the next move would be,” and that “we’ve had beyond our dreams and we’ve come very, very far”; Angello also stated that he is focusing on developing his own label, Size Records, while on hiatus.

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For the fans…

The boys have a “One Last Tour” website for their fans, where they have, not only put up information about their tour dates and shows, but have allowed their fans to experience this tour with them by blogging about their time since they went on tour. There is a section where you can “Ask SHM A Question”, a tour gallery and a fan photo gallery where the fans can upload their pics from the shows.

For the fans who would like something to remember SHM by, there is Take One: A Documentary Film About Swedish House Mafia, made by director Christian Larson a few years ago. They have also compiled a book in honour of their final compilation, called Until One: Book Edition, which you can download for free from the website or at (http://www.onelasttour.com/UntilOne-book-edition.pdf). In Sebastian Ingrosso’s own words, it is like a family album chronicling their incredible journey from childhood to their travels around the globe and the success of their music. They are also keeping a tour book, filled with information about the countries they were in, the things they did whilst there and lots of pretty pictures for their fans, and they are constantly updating it.

Jhb Love

Jhb Love

Saturday Night’s show, their second in Johannesburg was one hell of a goodbye to their fans, and I had one of the best seats in the house. The crowds came out in their thousands and by the time I got there it was too late to reserve a front row spot for myself. As a really short person, my main aim was to atleast be able to see one of the screens, but after some walking around and manouvering, I lucked out. I got a really good spot next to a railing on the right hand side of the stage where I could see, not only the screen clearly, but also a part of the stage and the three DJs themselves. I will admit that I ended up climbing onto the railing and balancing against a tree, and from my vantage point I saw EVERYTHING! I watched the whole show from halfway up that tree and what a show it was. The music was incredible, the lights and laser show was on point and the fireworks…WOW! As I screamed and jumped my way through “Save The World”, “Euphoria”, “Leave The World Behind” and “Don’t You Worry Child”, I shared that tree with two girls from Israel with whom I quickly made fast friends, bonding over the beauty of music and the atmosphere of pure, unadulterated joy that surrounded everyone.

Waving the SA flag...

Waving the SA flag…

There were a few highlights for the evening, such as when the mafia all pulled out South African flags, Axwell screaming: “Tonight we are the South African House Mafia, you guys are amazing!”, and when the mafia asked everyone to sit down and all 20 000 people in that arena actually sat down! Now that’s what I call power and influence, or maybe we were all just under their spell.

All 20 000 South Africans sat down!

All 20 000 South Africans sat down!

Either way, I left in a daze of joy that felt so amazing

Thank you to Swedish House Mafia for such an incredibly amazing time. Without a doubt, that was THE show of my life!

We Came We Raved We Loved      10      images

Turn Off Your Brain, Turn On Your Heart ❤


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Baainar Here With a Bang!

baainar_records_logoThe world is full of interesting and inspiring people and in 2013, the year for doing great things, I would like to share some of my favourites with you.

Have you heard of Baainar Records? No??
Well listen up…

Baainar Records was created in 2003, and back then, it was nothing more than a young man selling vinyl records out of his bag to his friends. Lunga “The Sid” Nombewu was sourcing records from the internet and selling them, with no aim but to enjoy music and make some money on the side.
Lunga, originally from Port Elizabeth, moved to Johannesburg to study aviation and ended up working for SAA (South African Airways) as an engineer. It was then that he began DJing at the behest of some of his friends who wanted someone to play music in between their sets.lunga *Little known fact, when Lunga started DJing, he was playing Hip Hop and only got into house music when he started perfecting the art if mixing. In a bid to not make a fool of himself in the process, he taught himself how to DJ and began practising furiously.

The more he fell in love with the music industry, the more he saw the need to leave aviation and work in music full time. It was at the SAMC (South African Music Conference) in 2005 that he met Rex Dasenar, a producer from Swaziland who needed help editing his song, and after discovering what Lunga could do, they decided to work together and Rex was signed.
It wasn’t until 2006 that the label as it is today, was really born. When he started bringing in DJs, his main aim was to give them a platform to achieve their dreams. He wanted to find those with potential and nurture them, helping them to hone their talents and providing them with the mentorship and facilities to make the kind of music they wanted to make, as well as marketing it to the world.

Today, The Baainar stable consists of two arms, Baainarbluelle Records and Baainar Digital. In Baainar Records, Lunga has signed eight artists, which he manages, but Baainar Digital is primarily for the sole purpose of mentorship and the nurturing of artists to be released and marketed digitally. He wanted to help young artists find a platform, and so they are not signed to the label and are free agents. Artists like Audio 5, Piper, Eric Error Mokakabye, Four to the Floor and Kaygee Pitsong are just some of the people he has worked with on the Baainar Digital side of things.
Aside from the artists Lunga has signed, Baainar has worked with a number of big names in the industry, both local and international.
House Legend, Nick Holder’s new album,NickHolder which has been highly anticipated since 2007, was finally released in 2012. Not only was it released exclusively in South African, but it was released through Baainar Records, who are handling his distribution and publishing through all of Africa.

The original vision of Baainar Records was to harness and grow talent from Lunga’s home town, Port Elizabeth, and he first found such talent in Mpiwe (Simphiwe Gqushani). Mpiwe was soon followed by Patricson Snare, La Shad, Bluelle, Eltonnick, Rokker Rogers, Nkokhi and Naak Musiq, of “Qina” fame. Some of these artists have since moved on, like Rex Dasenar and Patricson Snare, but those remaining have big plans for 2013.Eltonnick ft. Naak
Baainar’s artists have been included in no less than 15 albums in 2010 alone and have released almost 100 songs digitally. Lunga was included in the 2010 SAMC panel, presenting on digital music.
By March of 2011, Lunga had been profiled as the cover story of the German based Beat magazine and “Baainar Underground Selections” EP had been reviewed in 5 magazines distributed in Miami and Chicago, all relating to the digital arm of Baainar.

Eltonnick (“Move”; “Ndiyindoda”) plans to release a new album, Bluelle (“We Are Africa”; “Galaxy”) is working on introducing electro to the Baainar repertoire whilst building his brand, Rokker Rogers (“Rainy Days”) is mastering some percussion instrument to add a new kick to their collective sound and Nkhokhi will be promoting his newly released album, (J.O.L.)Journey of Life, through gigs and remixing. Naak Musiq (“Qina” ft. DJ Sbu), currently the most recognisable name on the roster will continue trying to balance his music career and his acting on SABC 1’s prime time soapie, Generations.bluelle2
Through all this work, Lunga will be trying to discover more fresh talent, trying to grow the label’s brand and focusing on the business side of things.Eltonnick2
Lunga is also going to be working with Risal Sounds on something new and exciting, but I guess we’ll all have to wait and see what will come out of it.

There is no doubt in my mind that there are beeeeeg things in store for Baainar and it’s creatives in 2013, and to find out more about the individuals, keep an eye out right here over the next few weeks!
Keep an eye out for these merry men…and who knows, maybe one day soon a merry woman?

To get in touch with Lunga:

Think About it


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Jamming With Nick Holder

Although I am a relatively new initiate into the house music family, Nick Holder is a name that I am familiar with.

Tracks like “Summer Daze”, “Sunday” and “Time” are house classics that my brother was forcing onto me long before I was interested in house.

Now that I am heavily into the house scene though, I was very excited to find out that Canadian-born Nick, has moved to South Africa and stays somewhere in the Free State now.

For those not in the know, Nick Holder is a hip-hop and house music DJ and producer from Toronto. If you haven’t heard anything of his, do yourself a favour and find something and just listen, even those that are not that interested in house music, you will not be sorry.

His biggest hit, I believe, is “Da Sambafrique”, and this is the song that gave him the cult producer status he now celebrates. He has 10 studio albums and his hit singles include, “Dont Go Away”, “Sometimes I’m Blue”, “On My Mind”, “Erotic Illusions”, “Freedom”, “Feel”, “Freedom in ’63”, “Inside Your Soul”, “Beyond Your Dreams” and “Dance, Dance, Dance”.

He has also been known in conjuction with groups like Flux Mode, Holder Brother, The Toronto Track Symphony, The Trackheadz and Warriors.

Nick Holder will be featured on the Night Drive Experience tonight, on Rhythm 100 Radio. He will be sitting alongside Bluelle and Hippo and if you miss it, you miss out!

You can listen to the show at 8pm (CAT), until 11pm, simply by logging onto www.r100.mobi, selecting your phone’s icon from the list on the page and streaming it live (FREE on Blackberry!! 😀 ).

You can also catch more information about Nick by following him on his Twitter handle @NickHolder, or searching for Nick Holder II on Facebook or at: http://www.myspace.com/mrnickholder on MySpace.

You can get more information about the show itself by checking out @Night_Drive_Ex or @rhythm100radio on Twitter, or visiting their Facebook page at: http://www.facebook.com/TheNightDriveExperience …or if you’re more like me, you can stalk the show’s hosts by following @RealBluelle (Bluelle) or @SirNhlapo (Hippo).


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A Little Birdy Told Me….

I have always had a love for beautiful voices…

Its not something that can ever be explained, nor something that can be learned. This is nothing to do with timber and tone, theory does not enter into this conversation. When I hear a voice that speaks to me, I just know.

At such moments, all you can do is sit in silent awe as you listen to raw talent fulfill a destiny that could only be God-given.

Birdy has one such voice. She is only 15 years old but boy can she belt out a beautiful tune! This little voice can make a grown man tear up, I swear, and if you hear her without knowing her, you wouldn’t expect her to be so young. With her braces and young adolescent demeanour,  Jasmine van den Bogaerde is of mixed Scottish, British, Belgian (Flemish) and Dutch ancestry. She suprised the judges of the  music competition, Open Mic UK in 2008 when she won at the tender age of 12, beating out over 10 000 other contestants and performing her own song.

She released her first single, a cover version of Bon Iver’s song “Skinny Love” in 2011, and this peaked at no. 17 on the UK Singles Chart. She has since shot a music video for the song and it has been featured on The Vampire Diaries.

Her debut album, released on the 7th of November 2011,  includes cover versions of  “The A Team” by Ed Sheeran and The XX’s song “Shelter”. The album peaked at no. 13 in the UK and the top 10 in Belgium and the Netherlands. My favourite song by far though, is People Help The People, a haunting melodious tune which captures me with the first word.

Birdy’s debut album has sold more than 25 000 copies, and she has since released another single, “Just A Game”, which can be found on the Hunger Games soundtrack, but suffice it to say, if you haven’t yet heard Birdy, give her a listen.

Enjoy!