Archive for August, 2012

CONVERSATION W/ ALANIS MORISSETTE

By: Rob Brayl
For BiggerThanBeyonce.Com

Last night, I attended ‘A Conversation with Alanis Morissette,’ hosted by Rolling Stone editor Anthony DeCurtis. Yup! Little ol’ me was in the presence of music biz royalty, y’all!

Besides a few awkward moments, the entire conversation was blistering and brilliant. Alanis spoke with such eloquence and depth, that at times, I felt like my brain was freezing with splendidness.

The woman is so deep, she’s a gaping hole! (Compliment, people.)

But for real, besides the fact that she’s been a revolutionary comet for women in music, she also came across as enlightened and vulnerably potent; an undeniably genuine human being.

Below are a few of my favorite quotes from the night:

“I feel like I have these gifts, and if I don’t use them, things start to go terribly wrong.”

“We’re all expressing pieces of God every day, whether we know it or not.”

“The songwriting process is exhausting and effortless at the same time.”

“I’m an alpha woman – and there’s tons of us – and at one point, we would have been burned at the stake and had our heads chopped off, but now we’re being championed. There’s never been a greater time to be a woman.”

“Marriage and committed relationships are a hotbed for healing.”

Love her!

Havoc and Bright Lights, Morissette’s eighth studio album, is out now.

POEMA

By: Rob Brayl
For BiggerThanBeyonce.Com


Welcome to a new era of country-infused pop music.

Meet Poema (sisters Shealeen and Elle Puckett), New Mexico natives who cite Patsy Cline, Nickel Creek, John Mayer, and Loretta Lynn as influences.

In listening to their music, it’s apparent that these soulful songbirds have a soft spot for folk and music rooted in whiskey.

Says Shealeen: “It’s the story-telling. It draws you in. We write like that and connect with those types of songs.”

Poema’s full-length debut, Remembering You, is set to be released on September 11th via Tooth & Nail Records.

Listen to the track, Clean Getaway, below.

RAY CHARLES, JUST CUZ

By: Rob Brayl
For BiggerThanBeyonce.Com


I have a little too much fun making these, you guys.

And admit it, you lurve it!

[Related: Chiddy Bang Drop Feel-Good Song Of The Summer]

SCRIPT FT. will.i.am PACKS A PUNCH

By: Rob Brayl
For BiggerThanBeyonce.Com

If you read this little bloggy on the regular, then you must know that I love a good feel-good anthem. Especially when it carries a message that doesn’t involve bitches or bling. Ya know, from zee heart! Today’s ditty that fits this particular category, comes from Irish pop rockers The Script. For new single Hall of Fame, the boys teamed up with Black Eyed Peas’ will.i.am to create a lead track that truly sticks.

On top of all this, is the fact that the video features boxing. Which, as we all know, is the most bad ass sport! (Sorry, badminton players.)

Hall of Fame is taken from The Script’s third album, #3, which is set to hit stores October 9th.

PUNK ROCK BOOBIES [PROLLY NSFW!]

By: Rob Brayl
For BiggerThanBeyonce.Com

So needless to say, yesterday was hella fun! Topless protest (sorta/kinda/not really a protest – see video below) in Bryant Park… The boys were lovin’ it! And I loved how happy it made them! I mean, look at those faces. Kinda makes me wish I had boobs. Anywho, I digress…

Meet Moira Johnston, a female rights activist from Philly who has become notorious for blaring her ta-ta’s this summer, to bring awareness to the fact that it’s a woman’s legal right to be topless in NYC. Crazy, right? I had no clue either! According to a 1992 law, female New Yorkers have the right to go topless anywhere men can, so long as they’re not engaged in commerce.

Learn something new errday!

On a separate yet related note, within hours of posting the above picture to my Facebook account, the photo was removed. Nothing says punk rock like violating Facebook! I don’t know if this was all Facebook’s doing, or if one of my “friends” turned me in first, but either way, I found it to be a complete joke! Which then, of course, circled back to why Moira has her boobies flappin’ in the breeze in the first place.

Oh, society. You and your stupidity never cease to amaze me.

MUSE MADNESS

By: Maria Ciezak
For BiggerThanBeyonce.Com

One of my favorite bands in the world, Muse, is back with a new single and a new album. Madness is the second song to be heard from Muse’s forthcoming sixth album, The 2nd Law, which is set to be released in October. The first single out was Survival, which was also the official song for the London 2012 Olympics.

In my opinion, this is very different for Muse. Sure, listeners may not recognize the act’s new sound upon first listen, but it’s great to see a change in their musical style.

Also, the lyrics are completely wholehearted, so be sure to pay attention.

Take a listen.

THIS MADE MY DAY!

By: Rob Brayl
For BiggerThanBeyonce.Com


What can I say? I have a thing for underground artists. Literally!

Besides the fact that this singer is fabulous, there’s just something about this particular song being belted underneath the City of Dreams, that leaves a smile upon the heart. So damn authentic! Nothing but pure, honest emotion.

I’m completely head over heels in love with New York.

So proud to call this beautiful city home.

***I shot this on my iPhone, so excuse the quality.

***Update: “Like” Silvia Jhony (the subway performer above) on Facebook.

And in case you missed it, check out my feature + interview with the incredible subway artist, Freddy Marx Street, HERE.

***UPDATE: The singer in the above video can be

SET IT FREE

By: Maria Ciezak
For BiggerThanBeyonce.Com

Players, educators, and students very often overlook the fact that music should be fun. It is easy to be distracted by many things that have nothing to do with playing music. We all have a variety of circumstances or situations that may cause frustration, anguish, or anything else that may get in the way of having a good time while jamming out. But one band in particular did not miss the memo. That would be New Jersey rockers, Set It Free.

Set It Free is a band that stands for freedom, expression, happiness, and the love of music. Back with a new clip for their single Don’t Stand Alone, this video portrays these guys extremely well. Everything about this song screams hit; it’s catchy, optimistic, and compacted with an amazing full sound.

This track will appear on their upcoming full-length, set to be released this fall.

Don’t miss the party.

I RSVP’d, Attending.

#IWASHERE

By: Rob Brayl
For BiggerThanBeyonce.Com

I WAS HERE.

NOT SO LUCKY

By: Caitlin Hoffman
For BiggerThanBeyonce.Com

Not So Lucky is a munchable chocolate Pop Tart. These boys were brought together by rivalry, respect, and an undying passion for music. They reek of pop-punk with the same uppity appeal as Fall Out Boy, All Time Low or Boys Like Girls.

Each boy has his own unique love-affair with musical vibrations, but it is these differences that bring such a solid sound together.

They’re perfect for late summer nights, for grads, proms, or sneaking out with friends. Such a circumference of life is one I no longer belong to, but there will always be kids looking to have fun. I like knowing there will always be bands ready to help new generations make new memories.

This music is a litter of puppies cuddling my auditory canal. It’s shockingly genteel but still bubbling over with energy. A great way to grab the tail-end of summer.

PAPA ROACH IS STILL KICKIN’ IT

By: Maria Ciezak
For BiggerThanBeyonce.Com

One of my favorite rock acts, Papa Roach, are back with a new single entitled Still Swingin. The track, taken off of their forth-coming album The Connection, has old-school Papa Roach written all over it. If you are an avid fan, you will know what I mean.

Check it out!

You can also catch these guys on the road this summer as part of The Uproar Festival.

YELLOWCARD HAS MAJOR STAYING POWER

By: Rob Brayl
For BiggerThanBeyonce.Com

Yellowcard’s Here I Am Alive is certainly an anthem for the underdogs, the bullied, and the dirty little freaks. And in the Robby Starbuck-directed clip, the visual message parallels lyrical content as Ryan Key sings to “to the kid I was before,” heading back in time (joined by Tay Jardine of We Are the In Crowd) to pay a visit to his younger self.

The result is a heartwarming pop punk clip that resonates.

The new album, Southern Air, is their eighth studio album in 13 years.

Talk about staying power!

T-SWIZZLE MOVES ON

By: Rob Brayl
For BiggerThanBeyonce.Com

In case you live under a rock, Taylor Swift has just dropped a brand new single. Yup! T-Swizzle is back, and more Bitter Betty than ever. Well, not entirely. Entitled We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together, the country songbird stays true to the tradition of her previous work, writing about ex-boyfriends in a way only she can. Except this time, the surface is much different. The track completely abandons the country aesthetic for a full-on pop makeover. Instead of the borderline melancholy that usually backs a Taylor song, this number is extremely poppy and lighthearted.

This is definitely not the Taylor Swift we’re used to hearing. Who’s to blame? Easy. That would be producers (and co-writers) Max Martin and Shellback. Pop powerhouse hit-making machines.

So far, critics seem to either love or hate it, many claiming the song sounds too much like an Avril Lavigne record.

Regardless, I LOVE TAYLOR SWIFT! And I don’t care who knows it.

Personally, I think the song is catchy as hell and kinda funny. Especially the “LIKE EVER” part during the breakdown of the song.

Formulate your own opinion!

Lyric video below.

*Sidenote: Do you think this song could be about Jakey Snugglebutt?

MMMIKA

By: Rob Brayl
For BiggerThanBeyonce.Com

Y’all know how I feel about Mika, right? Well, to put it into elementary terms: I think he’s all that and a bag of Popchips. Omg, you guys. Have you tried Popchips?! I’m seriously hooked! Anywho. Ok, where was I? Oh yeah, Mika… Yes, so here we have Mika in all his cutesy bliss in the just-released video for new single Celebration.

Shot in New York, the video tells the story us writers know all too well. The story of f*cking writer’s block! OY@*R%*#*#$*#VEY.

The upbeat, infectious track is slated to appear on Mika’s forthcoming album The Origin Of Love, which is set to drop September 16th.

Check it!

Oh and PS: Popchips, if you’re reading this, please send me some swag. My belly will love you forevah!

YOU’RE WELCOME!

By: Rob Brayl
For BiggerThanBeyonce.Com

[Related Post: This Sh*t Is Hilarious]

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