Category: Music (Page 2 of 3)

Wakey!Wakey!, Casey Shea, To Kill a King Part 1

A.K.A ‘I don’t know any executives…’

Tonight me and Frank returned back to the Rescue Rooms in Nottingham to see Wakey!Wakey again. We saw them play there in June and it was awesome, and tonight just cranked it up to a whole other level. They’ve redone the stage since last time, and it was much better. We got quite  a lot closer too! Ed Sheeran was playing next door at Rock City and there were massive queues – those people don’t know what they were missing!

Opening the show was Casey Shea. I’d not seen him live before but I love his albums and he definitely did not disappoint. Just one man with a guitar, and boy does he have a great voice (and great hair too). I just wish that he could have played longer and that more people had heard him. Because he was on really soon after the doors opened, the room was not even half full until after he had finished. He sung some songs that I knew and some that I hadn’t heard before, but I was really happy when he finished his set with my favourite song – Love is Here to Stay.

After Casey came To Kill a King. They supported Wakey!Wakey! in June too, just before their single came out. They played a slightly longer (and louder) set than Casey and completely rocked it. Fictional State (their single from June) was brill, and they also played some songs from their upcoming EP – Bloody Shirt is my new favourite. The EP comes out on the 17th.

Then we get to the headline act: Wakey!Wakey! There’s not really much I can say that I haven’t said before – he is amazing! He talks a lot, but he’s hilarious too, and when he sings he just draws you in. I love War Sweater, and the refrain of  ‘What will your legacy be?’ sounds even more powerful live – it’s one of my favourite lines from all his songs. He played a couple of new songs which sounded great – I can’t wait for the new album! He finished his set with my favourite song – ‘Almost Everything’, I love the chorus – ‘It feels bad now but it’s gonna get better’.

After he had finished playing, he hung around after to meet everyone, and I got another autograph and picture. Just a shame that the venue didn’t close later so he could have played longer first.

The only downside to the night was driving home for 2 hours in the pouring rain, with nothing but silence from the passenger seat as Frank fell asleep shortly after we hit the motorway.

The best thing is, we are doing it all again tomorrow (well I guess it’s actually today now) in Manchester!!!

 

26 Tuesdays of Awesome Music!

One of my favourite artists, Ron Pope, is currently doing an awesome ’26 Tuesdays of Music’ project. I signed up for it in June, and the emails have been coming through every Tuesday since 5th July. The first week was a special treat with 5 songs included, and every week since then I’ve had an email in my inbox with a new song waiting to be downloaded.

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It’s a brilliant way of releasing new music, and I love that because I signed up in June, I don’t have to pay for the songs each week, so it seems like I’m getting new music for nothing. Some of the songs have been completely different to the previous albums (Got My Mojo Working is a particular new favourite), but I also love the other songs, like the new version of I’m Yours.

If you want to check out this project, take a look at his website. You can also follow him on Twitter. If you want to know what he’s like, here’s a brill cover of Firework by Katy Perry that he did with The District:

All I can say is that I’m really looking forward to the next 18 Tuesdays of new music, and keeping my fingers crossed he’ll come and play in the UK!

Album of the Week – Love Shine Through by Tim Hughes

I bought this album at the start of the week – I didn’t realise it was released a couple of months ago. I love the last two Tim Hughes albums, and I can say that I’m definitely going to think the same about this one after a few more listens. He has a way of writing songs which end up stuck in my head, I’ve had ‘At Your Name’ going round on a loop ever since I first listened to it.

Lord of all the earth
We’ll shout your name, shout your name
Filling up the skies with
Endless praise, endless praise

Yahweh, Yahweh
We love to shout Your name, oh Lord
At Your Name – Tim Hughes 

I got the first album for £2 at Wesley Owen a few years ago. Sometimes it pays to pick things up from the bargain bin!

Britain’s Got Talent

Last night, I went to the Motorpoint Arena in Sheffield to see the Britain’s Got Talent live tour with Vicky. At first I was a bit skeptical about how good it would be because I didn’t remember that many good acts from the show, but it was a really good night! The tickets were bought through a deal on Groupon, so I wasn’t expecting great seats, but although we were on the top deck, we still had a really good view. Only half the arena was being used, so it felt quite close (although my fear of heights made me feel a bit weird when we first sat down)!

There were ten acts in total in the final, so they all performed once, and then some of them came back for a second time, or for a duet. Vicky took her camera with her, so we got a few pictures, but the quality is not that great (she blames the camera but I’m not convinced!)

The funniest act of the night had to be Steven Hall. His dance moves manage to be cringy but also hilarious at the same time. Beyonce, Shakira, Grease – all fantastic. And Vicky’s camera seemed to agree. The best pictures she got were when he was on stage. A very close second was Jean Martin. Her crazy organ playing was just as funny as it was on TV, and when she did the ‘duet’ with Steven Hall, that was awesome!

My least favourite act was Razy Gogonea. He wasn’t bad, but I don’t really like his style of dancing. I could see that he was good, and it did look a lot more impressive live than it did on TV, but I just wasn’t entertained by it – it was all a bit too manic.

We also had Britain’s answer to Justin Bieber (although at least Ronan Parke can actually sing!). For a 12 year old, his voice is really strong, and I loved the songs he sang (especially Feeling Good). The young girls went mental when he came on stage, and he did get more singing time than anyone else (which I don’t think was fair). I did think it was really sweet when Stephen Mulhern got him to sign a poster that a girl had made – although I bet she got mobbed on the way out!

My favourite act of the night was the winner, Jai McDowall. He has a very powerful voice, and he sings the kind of songs that I love – I can see him having a very successful singing career. The genre isn’t really Vicky’s cup of tea, so she didn’t like him as much as she liked Michael Collings. But no matter how much you didn’t like him, you could at least be polite. As he was the winner, they saved him until last, but when he started singing, I couldn’t believe how many people got up and started walking out. I mean, you may not like him, but would it hurt you to stay for ten minutes more? When he first auditioned, he was really nervous, and I still think he has some of that lack of self-confidence. When he was being interviewed by Stephen Mulhern, and when he was talking to the audience, you could hear his voice shaking. That disappeared totally when he started singing though – I loved his version of Bring Me To Life – better than the Evanescence or Katherine Jenkins versions. And his version of Josh Groban’s ‘To Where You Are’, was absolutely fantastic!

All in all, it was a great night – even if we did get absolutely soaked waiting for the tram on the way home (why didn’t we take coats)?

Only one last thing to say, and that is thank you to the polite people of Sheffield. When we were waiting for the tram to take us there, a lady getting off the tram gave me her day ticket, which saved me £4. Then, on the tram on the way back (which was really packed), I was prepared to stand up all the way, but a woman squished up next to her kids so I could sit down – very kind.

Sheffield – You Rock!!

 

The Grubbs Effect

This week my website is ‘suffering’ from what I have now deemed ‘The Grubbs Effect’. Usually, my website gets between 50-150 views a week. After I went to the Wakey!Wakey! show last week, Mike Grubbs re-tweeted my website link:

http://twitter.com/#!/WakeyWakey/status/81279347998199809

After he put this on twitter, my website stats went through the roof – 736 views in one day – that’s a 1,386% increase on the previous week!

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Now that his re-tweet is not the latest tweet on his timeline, the tweet is not on his website homepage, so stats have started to come back to normal, but the post is still getting 30-40 views each day. I will be interested to see if the stats stay higher with people checking back – leave me a comment if you are one of them!

Family Records

A few weeks ago, I ordered some Wakey!Wakey! stuff from the Family Records store. Last week, most of the stuff arrived, and there was a note on the invoice to say the poster I ordered was out of stock. I went on the website and it said ‘Out of Print’, so I expected not to get it, but it came today. The fact that it came made my day, but it was made much better by the hand written note that came with it.

In the age of ordering everything on the Internet and having no personal interaction, it was really refreshing to receive a letter with the parcel. It doesn’t take too long to write, but it shows they take the time for each customer and put the thought into what they are doing.

Big thumbs up to Family Records!!

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F*** Yeah (Sorry Mike’s Mum!)

Okay, so if you are reading this, you’ll know that I don’t really swear that often, but the title of this post will make sense to anyone at the Wakey!Wakey! show tonight.

Wakey!Wakey came across to the UK for two shows, one in London on Tuesday, and one at the Rescue Rooms in Nottingham, which I took my brother to today (well I guess it’s yesterday now).

The opening act was To Kill a King. I’d never heard of them before, but they were really, really good –  I will be looking for them on iTunes later on. Frank didn’t like them too much, but thankfully he loved Wakey!Wakey!

The show was amazing – a great energy, and they played all my favourite songs. I love that Mike is such a great singer, but also puts so much emotion into each song – you can tell that he really means what he is singing. In between songs, he told a fair few stories, often getting a bit side-tracked, but always hilarious. In fact, towards the ends he told a story that made him laugh so much he couldn’t start singing again.

After the show had finished, he came back on to play a couple of songs for an encore, but said he didn’t want to play too much because he wanted to come out and meet everyone. I thought that perhaps it would just be a few people and then he would have to leave, but he stuck around and signed autographs and took pictures with everyone that waited – he was there for over an hour.

http://twitter.com/#!/WakeyWakey/status/81117255395586048

Me and Frank were quite near the end, but he was still really polite and lovely. I did turn into a starstruck rambling idiot when I met him though, but I got his autograph and a picture taken with him (as did Frank).

 

After a 90 minute drive  home rocking out to Wakey!Wakey!, I think it’s time for bed now – especially for Frank who stupidly volunteered to work at 8.45 tomorrow morning…

10 days…

…until Wakey Wakey!

wakey-wakey-tickets

Just what I needed…

There have been a couple of times in the last week or so when I have heard/read something that was exactly what I needed.

I have a couple of Bible reading plans, one is a 100 day reading plan in an old book I bought from Wesley Owen, and the other is Project 3:45 on YouVersion (great website btw – check it out). Last week, this came up on my reading plan and I thought it was perfect.

1 Peter 5:6-9
Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time. Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.
Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. Resist him, standing firm in the faith, because you know that the family of believers throughout the world is undergoing the same kind of sufferings.

On my way home from work tonight, I was listening to Brad Paisley’s new album, and the song ‘One of those lives’ came on. The words are very thought provoking, and really put me back into perspective again.

Brad Paisley – One of Those Lives
Man, it’s been one of those days
When I’ve been thinkin’ poor me
I’ve got no right to complain I guess
‘Cause right now all I can see
Is a little angel in a Yankees cap
It makes me realize
It’s just been one of those days for me
But for him it’s been one of those lives

Sometimes, the answer is no

On the day that Brad Paisley’s new album has been released, I wanted to share my favourite Brad Paisley song – No. I love the words to this song. It is very easy to think that God isn’t listening if you are praying for something and it doesn’t seem like you get want you want, but God knows how your life should go, and sometimes, the answer is no. We just need to realise that this God has a plan, and everything will work out.

Make no mistake, every prayer you pray,
gets answered, even though,
sometimes, the answer is no.

When I think of all the answers in my life, I would have to say,
There’s no doubt it was always for the best,
When I didn’t get my way. 

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