Not 1, but 2Cellos!

Ever since I fell in love and got addicted to the music of Walk Off The Earth (WOTE) and thought that for the most part, I’ve only really been listening to mainstream music (aka: music made available to us through the commercial radio); I realized that I’ve been totally deprived of my right and access to good music!

That, even if I say my choice in music is totally my own, it’s still technically dictated by what I see on TV and hear on the radio – ergo, it wasn’t really my choice in the first place! It was a predetermined choice just handed out to me by popular media and ofcourse I just gobbled it all up like a regular diner in a typical buffet. True, I still had my music preferences but it was based out of a predetermined choice and was in fact limited.

So, to break that subconscious programming presented to me, I am now on the hunt for music that may not have reached our shores yet (by shores I meant the Philippines) but are still my preference and definitely my choice – regardless of what popular media says! 😉

Since I do not have access to all types of music available all over the world, I have enlisted the help of Jango.com in accomplishing this goal. Today, I listened to the music of WOTE and similar artists and found some that I liked.

I am featuring one of those here…

And I do need to reiterate that my taste in music is of a wide range and pretty eclectic so I do not like to pin myself to a specific genre but instead based my preferences on ear and heart gauges and if that music makes me either close my eyes to savor it, or tap my hands and feet to the rhythm.

The one I am featuring today made me close my eyes and smile…

Now for the typical format, here is a Wikipedia article about them. (Thank goodness for Wikipedia, right?)

2Cellos

2cellos

2Cellos (stylized 2CELLOS) is a Croatian[1] virtuoso cello duo, consisting of Luka Šulić andStjepan Hauser. Signed to Sony Masterworks since 12 April 2011, the two were discovered after uploading a music video of their cello-only cover of Michael Jackson‘s “Smooth Criminal” to YouTube.[2]

Background

Šulić, born in MariborSR Slovenia (now Slovenia)[3] and Hauser, born in PulaSR Croatia (now Croatia), both classically trained musicians, met at a master class in Croatia while still in their teens. Šulić—the younger of the two by a year— attended the Academy of Music in Zagreb, and then studied in Vienna. Šulić later entered London’s Royal Academy of Music. Hauser attended the Royal Northern College of Music in Manchester, after completing his studies at Trinity College in London.[4]

The duo rose to fame after their cover of “Smooth Criminal” became a hit on YouTube,[5] receiving over three million views in the first two weeks[4] and over ten million views in all.[6] The creation of the music video was prompted by the cellists’ financial difficulties, despite their musical success in the UK. The duo met in Pula, where one of Hauser’s friends, a director, proposed that they try the pop music market by creating a video to “Smooth Criminal.” The video, originally posted on 20 January 2011,[7] features Šulić and Hauser facing off alone in a large white room, playing Jackson’s tune.[4] In fact, before they became partners, the two cellists were sometimes considered rivals, competing against each other in music contests.[7]

Careers

2Cellos is currently signed to record label, Sony Masterworks,[8] and finished recording their first album in May 2011,[9] which carried the Menart Records name in Croatia.[10] Released on 19 July 2011,[11] their debut eponymous album, includes covers of songs by U2Guns N’ RosesNine Inch NailsSting,ColdplayNirvanaMuse, and Kings of Leon. Hauser told la Repubblica that the album would also feature a cello version of Michael Jackson’s “Human Nature.”[4] The duo said that they chose songs that could be adapted into covers playable on only two cellos.[12] In anticipation of the release, 2Cellos released their second single “Welcome to the Jungle,” a cover of the Guns N’ Roses song of the same name.[7][13]During many of the numbers performed, they are accompanied by the drummer, Dušan Kranjc, who is an occasional member of the group.

Elton John asked the duo to appear with him on his 2011 summer tour,[5] which began in Cardiff, Wales on 8 June.[4] John, who personally called Šulić, said that he had watched the “Smooth Criminal” video and wanted 2Cellos to participate in the thirty-city tour.[14] The two had previously performed on The Ellen DeGeneres Show of 25 April 2011.[8][15] 2Cellos also performed at the 2011iTunes Festival in London.[14]

The duo performed an arrangement of “Smooth Criminal” in the third season of the television show Glee.[16] The episode in which they appeared, titled “Michael”, aired on 31 January 2012, and was the first time that the series highlighted instrumental musicians. The scene featuring “Smooth Criminal” was set up similar to 2Cellos’ original music video for the song.[17] On 4 June 2012 2Cellos performed with Elton John at the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Concert at Buckingham Palace.On 12 June 2012 2Cellos performed in front of full Arena Zagreb.

Although the two record covers of mainly rock songs, Šulić and Hauser say they still play with orchestras and will not abandon playing classical music. The cellists say they would someday like to go on tour with both a classical and a contemporary orchestra.[7] Their second studio album, entitled In2ition, came out early 2013, and features new twists on a diverse range of classic tracks with a few surprise vocal and instrumental duet partners including Elton John, Lang LangNaya RiveraSteve VaiSky Ferreira and Zucchero. The album was produced by Bob Ezrin(Peter Gabriel, KISS, Pink Floyd).

Other tracks include covers of AC/DC‘s “Highway to Hell” featuring Vai, Coldplay‘s “Clocks” featuring Lang Lang, Muse‘s “Supermassive Black Hole” featuring Rivera, an Italian version of “The Book of Love” by The Magnetic Fields entitled “Il Libro Dell’Amore” featuring Zucchero, Karl Jenkins‘ “Benedictus”, and “Oh Well” featuring Sir Elton.[18]

In July 2013, the duo filmed a commercial for the Japanese mobile phone company, Docomo.[19] Their second album, In2ition, debuted at number 1 on the Japanese Albums Chart, in August 2013.[20] As a part of their world tour with Elton John, that included concerts in North America, Europe and Asia, 2Cellos performed at Madison Square Garden two days in a row, in December 2013.[21] In March 2014, they had a solo Japanese tour.[22]

In February 2014, the pair published their rendition of AC/DC‘s “Thunderstruck” to YouTube. The video depicts the duo playing before a Baroqueaudience, which soon finds out that the song is anything but classical. The music starts with a Baroque type melody after Vivaldi, but soon the pace increases to the level of presto, with semi-quavers played at a great speed. Sometime cooperating, sometime competing, the motive “Thunder” is played via chords on a cello, whereas at the same time the other cello produces the sound of a rock band. A middle-east melody is juxtaposed, and (prerecorded) segments are fused in. The music ends with the cellos imitating the sound of electronic organ and guitar. It is typical of the “BaRock” style (Baroque + Hard Rock).[23][24] The video went viral in the beginning of March, gathering 10 million views in the first two weeks.[25]

As Šulić told to The Sydney Morning Herald, “we love AC/DC as much as Bach.” Hauser added, “both [AC/DC and Bach] are simple and convincing in what they do.” [26][27]

~ ~ ~

Now that we got formalities out of the way, here is 2Cellos.

I swear, just looking for these videos and just listening to the first few seconds is already giving me the goosebumps and making me teary-eyed!

This is exactly the reason why I should not be confined within the limits of mainstream music – because I just can’t bear myself getting deprived of all this wonderful music out there!!!

I am sure when I review this post and listen to all the songs, I’ll either be ecstatic or crying my heart out or possibly even both!!! Whew!! Thank goodness for that serendipitous moment of bumping into the video for WOTE! And thanks to Walk Off The Earth for making me literally walk off the earth now…

Join me in this journey of breaking out from the mainstream music and looking for something new and something great! I know this is JUST the beginning!!! 😉

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Nmed  11/24/14 @ 3:26pm

Walk off the Earth

WalkOffTheEarth (1)

Nope, this is not some suicide note.. 🙂

In fact it is a great share of my recent most favoritest (I know that is technically not a word but I claim poetic license to use that here and so do some American teenager movies..) song/s and band these days…

I just could not get enough of them and in fact I’ve downloaded most of their songs (with the exception of those I couldn’t download for some reason using Loudtronix) and have been listening to them endlessly.

Anyway, I have not heard any radio airplay of their songs (at least not in the Philippines yet) but they are already making waves in the international music scene and are in fact a YouTube sensation!!! (All out of their own effort and huge musical talents…) And take note, they have original songs not just covers!!! (Awesome, right?? Wait until you hear all their songs below..)

If you haven’t already heard them before, I featured one of their covers on my last post – the really cool 5 dues and 1 guitar ensemble singing Someone That I used To Know. 

They actually already have a Wikipedia article too:

Walk off the Earth is a Canadian rock band that was formed in 2006 in Burlington, Ontario, and has gained success around the world by making low-budget music videos of covers and originals. The band built its fan base independently with no help from record labels, booking agents, or management. In February 2012, the music industry publication Crazed Hits reported that the band had signed a recording contract with Columbia Records.[1] The band is best known for its covers of popular music onYouTube, making use of uncommon instruments such as the ukulele and the theremin, as well aslooping samples. The band’s recorded music and videos are produced by member and multi-instrumentalist, Gianni “Luminati” Nicassio.

walkofftheearth

History 

The band’s first big success came from covering the songs of The Gregory Brothers. The video of the band’s live cover of Gotye‘s “Somebody That I Used to Know” became rapidly popular on YouTube in early 2012, gathering over 127 million views in four months[2] and received positive responses from both Gotye and his co-singer on the song, Kimbra.[3][4] The band has also covered Rude by MAGIC!, “Someone Like You” by Adele, “Party Rock Anthem” by LMFAO, “Payphone” by Maroon 5, “Roll Up” by Wiz Khalifa and dozens of other tracks.[5][6] In December 2012, the band released an original single titled “Gang of Rhythm”.[7] On March 11, RollingStone magazine streamed their unreleased R.E.V.O. LP in its entirety. The full length R.E.V.O. album was released on March 19, 2013, after which they commenced in the R.E.V.O. Tour through the U.S and Europe. They began another US and Europe tour, Gang of Rhythm, in 2014.[8]

Current Members

Touring members
  • Lee Bolt – guitar, banjo, bass, mandolin, ukulele, ukulele base
  • Shameless James O’Neill – trumpet, percussion
  • Zach Gerber – drums, guitar, bass, vocals, percussion
Past members
  • Pete Kirkwood – drums, vocals

Popularity

  • The band’s cover of Gotye’sSomebody That I Used to Know“, with accompanying video where all five members are shown playing on one guitar, went viral in early 2012 and has so far gained over 160 million hits on YouTube.[9] The production is live, taken from the 26th cut of a 14 hour session.[10]
  • Ellen DeGeneres featured the band on her January 23, 2012 show where they played live, again on one guitar.
  • The band’s cover of Taylor Swift’sI Knew You Were Trouble” with four of the five members and guest beatboxer KRNFX using only vocals (in the style of a capella) and uploaded to YouTube on January 1 of 2013 has since gone viral.[11]
  • The band appeared in the Season 4 premiere of CTV’s The Listener, performing two songs and socializing with the main characters in the bar.
  • They were included in the YouTube 2012 review, doing a part of an acoustic version of “Gangnam Style” on one guitar, a reference to their viral video
  • The band’s YouTube video of Lorde’s “Royals” was featured in the 2014 Grammy Awards.
  • The band’s original single “Gang of Rhythm” is the theme song of popular Catalan TV show El Foraster.

~ ~ ~

I’m possibly boring you with all the nitty-gritty details so here is a sample repertoire from them starting with my favoritest (poetic license, remmber?) original track called Summer Vibe.

Boy am I glad I serendipitously stumbled unto their video because, REALLY, this is just one magical musical heaven right here… Raw, original, inspiring, fun and totally eargasmic!!!

So go back and listen to their songs over and over again to get your very own eargasm.. I know I would! And actually I am! 🙂

music heaven

nmed 11/20/2014 @9:08am

Serendi, Serendipity, Serendipitous! ;-)

serendipity-movie-quotes-zbsi6z0n

Do you believe in serendipity? I do! 

serendipity (noun) – the occurrence and development of events by chance in a happy or beneficial way

Here is an example today. I was googling the lyrics of an old song that I wanted to sing along to while it played on jango.com and this video just started to play while I was on the lyrics site. The video was not visible on my screen so I had to find out where the sound that was messing with my current song was coming from and to my luck, I found this and couldn’t stop listening.

It had to get featured here!!! And sooo, here it is! 😉 Enjoy it like I did!!!

Can you believe all the good sound was coming from 1 guitar and a bunch of dudes and 1 dudette all cramped up in one little space so they could fit in one camera frame???!! hehe.. 🙂 Seriously though, such great and raw talent! I am in awe!!!

clapping-minions-gif

And apparently, so are the minions!! hehe..

nmed 11/14/14 @ 1:09pm

The (actual) healing power of music

music heals

This video below is from Music and Memory Blog and is a powerful and real-life example of how music can and has helped people with medical conditions.

For someone who loves music as much as I do and who would like to spread the love to all, this really made me teary-eyed and I would like to dedicate this post to those who are ill and those who need all the more love and music in their lives.

Here are some classic old songs (mostly) that really hit the spot and are great for motivation and inspiration:

May all this music heal you….

First one is inspired by Henry from the video above, Singing in the rain. 

What a wonderful world

Let It Be

We are the world

You raise me up

Amazing Grace

Don’t stop believing

Stand by me

Take Me I’ll Follow

Heal the world

The Jubilee Song

Tell the world of his love

My Grown-up Christmas List (very apt because Christmas is right around the corner already…)

Just googling all these songs and listening to them is making me all teary-eyed so I’ll end here, otherwise, I’ll have a bucket of tears without even finishing this whole post.

Hoping those who share my post today will also get inspired and motivated and ultimately “healed” not necessarily in body but also in spirit… 🙂

music-heals

nmed 11/05/14 @ 11:21am