Tuesday, 18 October 2016

Self Pity Party - Week 7

Welcome to the time to let it out and let go. It's alright you're amongst friends. 
Lets get right to it. 

Starting off strong with "Don't Wanna Know" by Maroon 5 feat Kendrick Lamar. I keep hearing this song and its so damn catchy. It was only recently i actually listened to the lyrics and realised its perfect for the blog. I've never been the biggest fan of Maroon 5 but like most of everyone else I do love Kendrick Lamar.

Ne-Yo and "So Sick". His second single from his first album, it managed to get to number 1 in both the UK and the US. I can totally see why. Entertainingly a female singer known as Lil' Vick recorded an answer song to this track, which is about Vick being sick of Ne-Yo's love songs.

Charlene Soraia with "Wherever you Will Go". I am a big fan of the original by the band The Calling however this version of the song just has so much more to it. The first was a perfectly acceptable boy band song for the time period, this is a wonderful love song full of feeling. A little surreal that it was recorded for a Twinings tea advert isn't it?

Continuing my trend of including artists people don't expect to see here with "The One That Got Away" by Katy Perry. This song is actually based on a real ex boyfriend of hers. The late (obviously) actor Jonathan Lewis who was found dead in his driveway in September 2012

Gnash feat. Olivia O'Brien with "i hate u, i love u". This song was the first chart topping track in Australia for both artists. Gnash has included a reference to the Blink-182 track Dammit in the song.

And this week finishes with Jack Peñate and "Torn On The Platform". Ending on a bit of an upbeat and entertaining note. I'm in too much of a good mood to not having something a bit full of energy to end with I think. Interesting fact about Jack Peñate, his grandfather was Mervyn Peake, author of the Gormenghast novels. Incidentally totally worth a read.  

So ends another Self Pity Party. Time to put the walls up and the games faces back on. Just don't forget to let them down from time to time.

Tuesday, 11 October 2016

Self Pity Party - Week 6 Hip-Hop Special

So after a short break I return with a hip hop special edition of the Self Pity Party on its new slot of Tuesdays. I didn't like it on Sunday night, not a great night for the theme I think. Don't want to feel that down before Monday morning, for that way madness lies. So onwards. Let's start big.  

That was The Weeknd with "Wicked Games". Now anyone that knows me and my music tastes know I absolutely love The Weeknd, so the fact it's taken this long for me to put him in one of these is amazing. This was the debut single for the Canadian superstar and what a single. If you haven't heard his whole album by now i recommend it. You need it in your life!

Next we turn it up a notch, Jhene Aiko with "Lyin King". Here is another artist that i cannot get enough of, I've got everything she's done and if you could wear out mp3s like a cassette tape I would have with hers.

"You & Me" by Marc E. Bassy feat. G-Eazy. This song has so much going for it, good vocalist, hook that is catchy as hell, an awesome dub drop and a rapper you've never heard of. What more could you want in a song? The chorus line is such a wonderful description of a familiar awkward situation.

This is Fort Minor and "Where'd You Go. I've hopefully made it link a minute into the song, i'm sorry if it didn't work. Many will recognise the lead of this band as co-lead vocals of Linkin Park, Mike Shinoda. With the way life seems to turn out so many people have to work away from their families for whatever reason. Things can get so busy we can forget to tend to the people we work so hard to provide for.

"The Worst" Jhene Aiko. Ok so I squeezed a second song by her in. I couldn't help myself, she just sounds so good. That's all there is really to say, it's a great song and I wanted it on the list.

That was Phonte with 'The Good Fight'. I've got a soft spot in my heart for rap that describes everyday life that isn't shooting people or getting high. The schemes in this song are so smooth, they tell a great story people can totally get behind. Not to mention his flow is great.

So there ends this hip hop special on a cold Tuesday evening. I hope you've enjoyed these tracks, and will come back next Tuesday for the next installment of the self pity party.

Just here saying relax and take a breath, don't worry, you can handle it.

Sunday, 21 August 2016

Self Pity Party - Week 5

Welcome to another week of sad songs and melancholy music, just squeezed it in on time. This week I've chosen 6 tracks. It just felt right when I was going through my tracklist of potential songs. It's a bit of a breakup related night tonight with songs detailing after a breakup when you still feel for them, the realisation of loss and of taking someone for granted once they've left, the absence of conversation and friendship after a breakup, the thoughts of "what if?" when you are alone, finally accepting that you have to let them go and move on and then ending with hopefulness for the future. 

That was Weeping Willows with "The Burden". The Weeping Willows are a Swedish indie band who, as of 2006, were the 99th most successful band in Sweden. Most of their songs are about heartbreak and unhappiness in love. My kinda band.

Passenger with "Let Her Go (acoustic)". I find it amusing that this song for British artist Passenger became a hit in the Netherlands, getting to No. 2, before it became one in the UK (and a heap of other places). I chose this acoustic version over the radio release for two reasons, firstly most people who know the song will have only heard the normal one and I want people to hear new things and secondly done acoustically I find it's just utterly devastating.

"We Don't Talk Anymore feat. Selena Gomez" by Charlie Puth. Until researching for this blog I didn't realise it was Selena Gomez on this track with him. Apparently her vocals were recorded in a closet and in only 15 minutes. For a song with a sad subject matter it's really catchy.

Keith Urban and "Now I Wanna Cry". I think this is the first appearance of a country song on this blog. With the amount of songs of loss and heartbreak in that genre that's pretty surprising. Also surprising to me is that it isn't your usual american country since it's written and performed by a New Zealander.

"Start Again" by Conrad Sewell. Originally the song was co-written by Sewell as a potential track for Kylie Minogue but it was rejected. Thankfully as I don't think this song would have been anywhere near as good as it is if it had been done by her. Sewell said in an interview that he performed the song just in one take, the emotion just took hold and carried him away. It really shows.

And this week finishes with "Tomorrow Is Going To Be Better" by Joshua Radin. This is the first time an artist has a second track on this blog, not surprising it's Joshua Radin since I love him and his music. I added this one in mainly because I couldn't bring myself to end on such a downer but also because a very important part of heartbreak and loss is understanding that tomorrow is going to better.

Life goes on and pain fades. We just have to make sure we manage to get ourselves there.

Sunday, 14 August 2016

Self Pity Party - Week 4

Wait, what's that? It's actually on time for the first time ever? Long may it continue. Got a great set of tracks this week. No theme this time, but i'm considering the next one carefully. Have an idea for a weekly theme? Go ahead and leave a comment, it's easy.

That was Gavin DeGraw with "Not Over You". Co-written and performed with OneRepublic's singer/songwriter Ryan Tedder, the song manages to achieve that upbeat song about a depressing subject that I love so much. The song itself you can find yourself humming while the lyrics are something that many can, sadly, relate to.

James Bay with "Let It Go". I find this is one of those tracks I totally get into the sound of everything together and just mishear most of the lyrics, if I even hear them at all. However I still get the song and its meaning, which I think is a mark of a great track. It'll be recognisable to many due to its use in many recent TV shows including Supergirl and The Vampire Diaries.

"The Thrill is Gone" by Chet Baker. Originally a show tune by Lew Brown and Ray Henderson Chet creates a very haunting interpretation of the piece. I don't have much to say about it but it is such a fantastic track, evokes such emotion and feeling within you. Just wow.

Molly Sanden and "Why am I crying". Swede Molly Sanden represented her country for the Junior Eurovision Song Contest. Later this song was used in 2012 in a swedish song contest called Melodifestivalen. The festival is used to find that years entry into the Eurovision Song contest. It came 3rd.

And ending with Fuck it by Eamon. I've always loved this song. I wasn't alone in that sentiment with it getting to number one in over 10 countries. Eamon went on to write more tracks all focusing on breakups and bad feelings. Gotta feel bad for this guy, he seems be the other side of a Taylor Swift song.

And nobody wants to be the other side of a Taylor Swift song.

Monday, 8 August 2016

Self Pity Party - Week 3 Covers Special

Aaaaah I was so close to getting it up yesterday, honest.

This week I've got a, "Under the Covers" special lined up. Under the covers was Annie's name for the little cover songs section on the show. This week it's a bit of a James Vincent McMorrow sandwich and at 6 tracks long no less. 

That was James Vincent McMorrow with his cover of "Wicked Game" originally by performed by Chris Isaak. This song gained prominence as the trailer music for season 6 of Game of Thrones. McMorrow says that he accepted the request to use the song and then promptly forgot about it until he saw the trailer with everyone else.

Sarah Connor covering Gregor Meyle's "Keiner Ist Wie Du". The song is expresses the want to get over the pain and suffering after the loss of someone. Well written and well performed by Sarah Connor who is a multi award winning artist with 8 studio albums.

"Don’t dream it’s over" performed by Sarah Blasko. Originally by the band Crowded House, it became the band's biggest international hit and this version was recorded for an album celebrating the music of Tim and Neil Finn

That was "Can't Help Falling in Love With You" covered by Haley Reinhart, previously of American Idol fame. This song was used in a commercial for Wrigley’s Extra gum, within a week of its release it had gained over seven million YouTube views and 19,000 digital download purchases. I can totally see why.

Hurray for the Riff Raff with I'm So Lonesome I Could Cry by Hank Williams. The band recorded it for their 4th album which was originally a kickstarter reward to fund the album before that. 

"Higher Love" by James Vincent McMorrow. The original song was by Steve Winwood and features the vocals of Shaka Khan and got to number 1 in the charts for just one week. 

And that brings this week's party to a close. Not a massive tear jerker this week, but hopefully still some good tracks for everyone to enjoy. 

Monday, 1 August 2016

Self Pity Party - Week 2

Ok, ok so it's a little late again. It'll be time for a celebration when I actually get it up on time consistently. Got a good selection this week, some serious tear jerkers. So let's get on with it, less talk more.....uuhhh Rokk?

That was Nicki Minaj feat Skylar Grey with "Bed of Lies". I think this might be the only song of Nicki Minaj's that I actually like, and i really like it. It's a nice easy start to the playlist today. Fun fact about this song, it was debuted in Glasgow for the MTV EMAs.

That was Joshua Radin with "Star Mile". I've loved this song since I first heard it, I loved it so much I have the lyrics stuck to the wall of my bedroom at my mum's house. I think I was first introduced to him with the song Winter used on *that* episode of scrubs with Brendan Fraser. Yeah if you know scrubs you know exactly which one i mean. "Where do you think we are?". Now that is a sad scene done well.

Wow that song just ruins me, that was Labrinth with "Jealous". I first heard this played by Annie Mac and she said its one of the few songs to make her cry I the car and i totally see why. Written about his father, when recording the video he was asked to sit and try to summon up the feelings and thoughts he had while writing it, which he said was a very hard thing to have to do. Probably why he looks so very emotional during the video. Well done that director, I think.

I Don't Wanna See You With Her by Maria Mena. I only came across this song a couple days ago. We've all had that awkward situation where we come across an ex with their new partner and they are happy. And we are not. You just wish the ground with open up, it doesn't. Or that they wouldn't see you, they do. This song just sums all that feeling up for me.

Blue October with Hate Me. I came across this band on the American Pie soundtrack and had to order their album due to the strength of the song Calling You. This was a long time ago when you only did online shopping if you really, desperately wanted something and were willing to risk it not arriving any time soon. I needed that album and it didn't disappoint. This song is an answer to Calling You, the lyrics dealing with his drug addiction and depression that damaged the relationship with the girl he was so in love with in Calling You.

So that's that for this week. I hope you liked the choices and they helped people get a bit of a release. I'll see you all next week, hopefully i'll actually get the post up in time...

Tuesday, 26 July 2016

Self Pity Party - Week 1

So here it is. The inaugural Self Pity Party (albeit a bit late). 

Just a reminder this is a time for everyone to stop feeling strong, stop putting on that brave face and to just have a little break down time. To let it all in and let go. 

I think I've picked out 5 great tracks for today. My aim is to gently bring you down to the depths of self pity and then bring you back out and leave you on a higher note. Please read and listen as you go along, I've written it to be consumed that way. Might make less impact if you read it all and then listen. 

We start with an artist that I love, this guy got me through many a tough time with his upbeat and imaginative albums with sharp, killer lyrics. This song however I managed to miss until quite recently and then it totally side swiped me on the bus and left me fighting back the tears. So without further ado.

That was Watsky with "Dedicated to Christina Lee".
I'm sure that's a situation lots of us can relate to from when we were in high school. Rejecting someone because they weren't cool enough or being rejected because we weren't cool enough. Kids can be mean, kids can be cruel but more often than not kids just don't understand what they are doing or saying yet. 

Next up is a song I think I first heard played by Annie Mac and it was just stunning. The duet is really good, the lyrics are really heart-string tugging and the melody is great. It all goes together to make a hard hitting song for anyone who has been in a relationship that's reaching the end of it's life. Be that romantic or platonic, I think this still applies and hurts just as much. 

That was A Great Big World and Christina Aguilera with "Say Something". In an interview with Rolling Stone magazine, 'A Great Big World' said that they expected her to use her usual large vocal style maybe somewhere at the end of the record. However when she came to record it that's not how she felt at all. Shes quoted as saying 'I want to let the song breathe and be open' and let's be fair, it's exactly what the song needed.

Now we've reached the depths of this weeks playlist, that was Damien Rice with "Greatest Bastard". There was a time where I couldn't hear this song without turning into a blubbering wreak, I feel it describes a past relationship I had so well it could have been written about us, and I'm still unhappy with myself about it.

Wasn’t Expecting That by Jamie Lawson is a song I describe as a stealth depressing song. It lures you in with lyrics of happiness and a life going well and then sucker punches you at the end. Combining that with his great voice and simple guitar you get a great song that always causes me to pause in thought when it's done.

Mr Hudson with Everything Happens to Me. That was our last track and hopefully one that you can laugh a little at. It's a special talent to take sadness and misfortune and to wrap it up in humour and entertaining lyrics.

Thanks for reading and joining me for the first week of this new feature and I hope to see you next Sunday.
Remember however bad it gets it can always get worse but it will get better eventually.

Thursday, 14 July 2016

New blog announcement

A long time ago I fell in love with a radio show called The Musical Hot Water Bottle on Sunday nights with the amazing DJ Annie Mac. I was a faithful listener for many years, looking forward to that show on Sundays between 22:00-00 :00 (later it ran 22:00-01:00). It got me through many a terrible week and also was a lifeline after a very terrible break up.

Annie Mac has since moved on to doing the weekly new music show which is great in it's own right but it isn't a touch on the MHWB.

In the MHWB she had a feature I adored called The Self Pity Party. Four to five songs that were a little depressing or would pull your heartstrings. Songs about love, loss, pain and other things of that ilk. She billed it as a time during the week for everyone to stop feeling strong, stop putting on that brave face and to just have a little break down and let it all in and let go. Maybe have a little cry, maybe a little scream. A bit of cathartic letting go.

While her chillout show might live on with another host in the same time slot, the features that made that show didn't live on. I hope she wouldn't mind me appropriating the segment title, I think she might even approve of something she started living on with the same spirit she intended. 

I think I miss this feature more than I miss any other from the show, when it went off the air I really had to find time to do the same thing for myself. I started making mini self pity party playlists just for myself so i could vent and let go, if only for a moment. I still make them, not weekly any more (or sometimes daily in times of real troubles) so I thought why not make a blog out of them for other people to potentially enjoy. 

So to draw this ramble to a close, starting on the 17th I will be doing a 4-5 song post every Sunday called The Self Pity Party. Some will have themes, certain genres etc but all with the same theme. 

This weekend will just be a quintessential mix, 5 songs that really encompass the mix itself. Hopefully from there I will start to populate the blog with other things but that's getting ahead of myself.