Being a solo musician takes a lot of bravery and mental fortitude. It can get very lonely out there putting your heart and creativity on your sleeve for the world to see. Even with solo success there is always room to collaborate with others and add another level to your sound. A fortunate meeting gave us the formation of Gib & Tam.
About seven years ago Gibbran Rashid and Tamsynn-Lee Isaacs met and began creating and performing music together in addition to their own solo projects. In 2014 the two artists officially merged their solo careers into the duo of Gib & Tam. Both already had extraordinary vocal talents but now they could combine Gibbran’s guitar skills with the feisty percussion of Tamsynn. The sound that they create together is a raw and soulful one that brings out the best in both parties.
The duo recently released their full length debut record Uncovered. The 12 song record puts it all out on the table for the world to hear. The opener “Must Be Love” starts the stripped down tone with a reggae based guitar line and intertwining vocals that welcomes you under the covers. Gib & Tam get a little funkier on “Fight”. This one emits a raw power that takes control of you and provides a kind of energizing aura. The raw feel of “New Dawn” creates emotion that bleeds onto the strings of the guitar. It is that kind of music that makes your lip curl up and your head start to bob. By the time you reach the closer “The Mission” you are mentally exhausted from the ride that made you feel like you were truly an intimate part of the music. If you are ready for the emotion go enter the Gib & Tam world at: http://www.gibandtam.com/
If you write good songs get them out there in every fashion possible. Independent music is used in so many places nowadays from commercials to film soundtracks to just simple background noise for YouTube videos. Our friend Jimi Newton is well aware of this and is back with more sounds for us.
Late last month The Sir Jimi Newton Project released The Instrumentals: Music for Videos & Soundtracks. The 20 track record is made up of songs from his previous 3 albums that were first featured with vocals as well as some new instrumental music. Tracks such as “Loving In The 808 State” and “Big Room” bring the EDM party right to your ears and allow you to just be in the moment or add your own personal lyrics. The styles vary to funk, soul, and even R&B through the songs putting out music for whatever background you may need for your own project. And with titles like “Rooftops & Funk” and “Time For Some Jazz” you can get an idea what you are in for even before pressing play. The record is available now on iTunes, Amazon, Google Play, Spotify Tidal, Deezer and several other online stores. Go get a listen if you need some good background tunes while you work like I do at: https://play.google.com/store/music/album/The_Sir_Jimi_Newton_Project_The_Instrumentals_Musi?id=Bkvdbomqhenud27yr33zsk3opn4
Music has played many roles in the gambling world. It’s been a vital strategy on the casino floor, with wild, looping music almost hypnotizing patrons to play longer. It’s also worked for professional poker players, pumping them up for the flop and helping them recover from a bad hand or two. Sound and music composition has also become more prominent in video slots and gaming machine development.
Amaya Gaming Group, which used to operate the longest running online casino Intercasino, is an example of a gaming company that uses sounds and music composition to their advantage. Slots such as Aladdin’s Legacy are accompanied by music that enhances the theme of the game. The Arabian music plays to your senses, which often causes you to get lost in the virtual environment created, drawing your attention from the actual mechanics of the game to its design. As powerful as music can be in inhibiting your gaming, it can also work the other way and improve it.
University of Waterloo conducted a study that concluded with participants overestimating their wins with the musical slots significantly more than with the silent machine. To combat this phenomenon, which the researchers described as “losses disguised as wins,” it would be beneficial for gamblers to bring their own music to casinos. Indie music is a great way to calm down the nerves and help you think straight when making your bets, especially if you’re one the type to stress out when things don’t quite work out the way you want them to.
This indie English rock band is known for their post punk revival and garage rock tunes which are actually perfect for keeping your momentum during a good streak. Their album Whatever People Say I Am, That’s What I’m Not would be a good start to your playlist.
During those losses, you’ll need to listen to something that will calm you down to bring your focus back to the game. The lush ballads from American folk rock group The Decemberists will help keep your cool in those highly stressful situations.
Sometimes you need to turn back the excitement even when you’re on a good streak, as heightened emotions can cause you to act on impulse rather than make strategic moves. Hailing from Sweden, indie pop band Miike Snow has psychedelic pop songs that are catchy enough to keep you on your feet while keeping you on top of your game.
Musical inspiration can come from all kinds of things. One of the best inspirations though has to be finding a special place or area that just seems to speak to you. Whether it be the history of the spot or the view that creates the ideas this can be a phenomenal catalyst for musical ideas. Our recent discovery The Stiltsville lives this life to perfection.
The Miami based band plays a style of Indie Beach Pop that brings out a sound and vibe of an older generation of the Biscayne Bay. In the 1930’s the Stiltsville Generation was an ocean front party and chill spot centered around a collection of small shacks that were built on stilts to withstand the crashing waves. The happy and folky sound is far away from the glitz and glamour of the South Beach area of Miami and that is exactly where The Stiltsville wants it to be. This freedom in music has drawn in a strong following of listeners that want to relate to this laid back lifestyle.
Last month the group released The Stiltsville EP and has plans for a summer tour. The 4 track record brings this beautiful beach vibe directly to your ears. The opener “Yogi” is a peppy little number that brought bands like Spoon and Vampire Weekend to mind. The guitar melody and background harmonies fill the tone with that happy feeling. The song “Bonaire” is a more rocking track that speeds up your tapping toes a little with the focus on the well versed lyrics. The record closes with “McFarlane’s Lantern”. Another beach pop song that has influences from the fun ska punk of the late 90’s with a ukulele thrown in for good measure and to continue the beach vibe. Go get a relaxing musical crosswind in your hair with The Stiltsville sound at: http://www.thestiltsville.com/
Bands and band members may come and go but where there is a passion to make music artists will push forward to reach the promised land. There is a power to this musical draw and fates twists and turns will eventually lead to what is supposed to be. Let’s follow the story of The Links.
The Lafayette, Louisiana based band was formed back in 2011 by a group of high school friends. They got out there, wrote some songs, played some shows and then seemed to fade away. But the dream didn’t die there. The Links relaunched in 2013 with an eventual lineup led by original member Jordan Marola on guitar, vocals and keyboards, Matt Begnaud on bass, and Matt Ashy on drums. Together they craft an interesting mix of alternative rock with influences from the funk, and hip hop genres.
Last month The Links released a new EP entitled Shopping Cow Funk. It touches on a variety of styles showing some true songwriting talent. From the “Danny Boy Intro” opening the listener is set up for an interesting experience. On “Funk Song” the band shows off some true talent on their instruments within a reverb drenched effect that seems to swarm your ears. The dreamy “When You Really” plays with a programmed drum track and a spacey feel to have you reach a higher state. The Links do not search far for song titles as you can guess the direction of “Metal Song”. There is aggressive guitar here laid down with some atmospheric funk that makes for an innovative style. These guys can seemingly put together whatever sounds and styles they see fit to make The Links brand of music.
Keep up with The Links at:
Music should be freedom! There is a lot of pressure in the crowded music industry to fit into specific formats and genres from the larger pop friendly mass media record labels. Fortunately as the independent scene has flourished there is many more opportunities for bands that are proud to do their own thing without any outside forces controlling them. The band fREEX is leading a new indie style.
Originating from the East Bay section on the San Francisco Bay area the band is at the forefront of an original genre being called “Free Expression”. The group is made up of California, Ivan “Vänü” Ganchev, and Jeff Williams along with random other scenesters popping in from time to time. fREEX have been releasing music and refining their craft since 2006. The sound is tough to describe in words but there are strong elements of post punk, alt-rock, and plain old groovy funk mixed in to their fREEX style. Other bands seem to be following suit and a thriving scene is growing out on the West Coast.
The boys have been hard at work with the intention of releasing a new album in the Spring of 2015. Indie Band Guru has heard a few tracks and is excited for more. The Free Expression is very evident on “God, I Love America” with its minimalistic folky opening and mellow melody crashing into a seemingly random aggressive punk chorus. There are no rules at fREEX. “Is There Something Wrong” is more of an alt-rock song led by a gravelly vocal that builds to an energetic explosion that will get your head bopping along. On “The Dark Night Rises” the attack is right from the start. fREEX utilizes some of the hard-soft-hard dynamic that Nirvana perfected years ago. The grinding guitars fit into the groove perfect making for an awesome listening experience. Bottom line: No rules makes for great music. Keep up with more from fREEX at: http://www.freexband.com/