2018 has been a strange year for music in my opinion. In the Western music scene, we saw a few comebacks from some of my favourite artists such as Kylie Minogue, Simply Red releasing a DVD of their recent concert in Brazil. In the world of Bollywood Music however, 2018 was officially the year of song remakes (some of which are still releasing this month despite being majorly disappointing) but on the positive side, the Hindi independent music scene became much stronger and made its mark this year.
I have listed some of my favourite songs from this year below. There are more Western songs than Bollywood ones, and I predict that this is a sign of the times to come as the Bollywood music industry is nothing like it used to be.
On Thursday last week, I got the chance to perform in the MHFA England Christmas choir at our office Christmas party!
If you read my previous life update about singing in the choir, you will have read that we had one rehearsal that week, and after that, we had 3 more rehearsals: 2 were in meeting rooms and one was out in the middle of the street which ended up being a lot of fun, as we had some passers-by join us too!
It’s been a while since I have given a life update here at the blog, but seeing as this update has a musical connection, I thought it would be good to share.
Since the end of June I have been working full time at MHFA England (Mental Health First Aid England) as an Operational Administrator. This is a very special organisation that believes in training people to become mental health first aiders in the work place and other areas in life. I couldn’t be happier to work for such a committed organisation and as Christmas is nearing, my colleagues decided to create a unique Christmas choir this year, which will perform at the MHFA England Christmas party, and, I am one of the choir members!
This weeks Westlife Wednesday song is the romantic ballad What Makes a Man. I was going to choose a song in sequence of albums, but this one features higher on my list of favourites so had to mention it this week. What Makes a Man features on the bands second album Coast to Coast, and was the third single to release from the album.
This week’s Westlife Wednesday features their next big hit Flying Without Wings – a song that means so much to so many people.
Flying Without Wings released in 1999 and became the third biggest selling single for Westlife, according to Wikipedia. The video of the song depicts its meaning very well. Shane and Mark are the main singers on the track with Bryan, Nicky and Kian on the backing vocals. While Shane’s vocals have the correct emotional force, its Mark’s voice that truly elevates the song to another level.
In my favourite golden oldie monthly song series, I have mostly been alternating between Western and Bollywood songs, but I decided to switch things up last month, by choosing one of my favourite albums (Talk on Corners) and for this month, I am sticking to Western music with a major throwback to a hugely popular 1990’s superhit song Crush by Jennifer Page.
Now without going into too much detail about why I remembered this song this month, I have always loved listening to it, since it released, to hearing it being regularly played at various shops in my local shopping centre even today. To me, Crush is a “perfect song cadence” as its melody flows from start to finish, and there are no noticeable key changes or rhythm changes that can disrupt the flow.
India’s and my 😉 favourite fabulous four SANAM, have recently released another new rendition of the ultimate Bollywood romantic classic song Ek Pyar Ka Nagma Hai.
The song Ek Pyar Ka Nagma Hai, which is initially from the film Shor has romantic lyrics and a soothing melody (with a very prominent violin intro) and I am happy that it has received a SANAM rendition, especially after their previous wonderful renditions of the classics like Aap Ki Nazaron Ne Samjha, Lag Jaa Gale and Tujhse Naraaz Nahin Zindagi.
To celebrate the recent Westlife reunion, I have decided to share my favourite songs from the band, here at the blog, over the next month or so every Wednesday.
Their first song that I will be sharing is their very first single from their very first album, Swear it Again. I remember instantly falling in love with the melody of the song, the piano intro and Shane’s emotional vocals. This song marked the beginning for the band and I feel they bought true romance (from a male perspective) back into pop music.
Shane has sung the majority of the song and he already showed a high level of sincerity in his strong vocals. Mark provided some variation by singing the higher parts of the romantic song, in a more embellished and dramatic manner, and this singing combination is something we are treated to in their future songs as well.
I think we can all agree that 2018 hasn’t been one of the greatest years in Music, but, with the recent announcement of Westlife reuniting, has somewhat made up for it. They are the first boyband that I have truly loved and here’s why I couldn’t be happier with their latest annoucement.
Not only have I seen them perform twice in concert (once at Wembley Arena and secondly at Earls Court) but, I was also a member of their official fanclub back in the day! Even though they were originally a 5 member band, they continued to excel even as a 4 member band proving their strength as singers and musicians.
So who are Westlife? A quick recap for anyone who has been living under a rock all this time. The band consist of members Shane Filan, Nicky Byrne, Mark Feehily and Kian Egan who are all originally from Ireland. Shane is naturally the lead singer who is supported by Mark on the vocals with Kian and Nicky providing backing vocals. Bryan McFadden who was the 5th member of the band, also sang the third lead in many of the bands songs, but sadly departed from the band to go solo and is also not part of the reunion.
I am pleased to share a brand new interview with artist Sherrin Varghese, here at Jem Girl at the Piano. Not only is Sherrin a versatile artist, who is one member of A Band of Boys, but, he has also had a successful solo career as a singer, musician and actor. Sherrin will be sharing his journey through the music industry as well as his (some might say controversial) views about the current Bollywood music scene, in this indepth interview. This interview also marks the start of my “Get to Know” series, where my readers will have the chance to get to know an artist up close and personal. Disclaimer: All views expressed in the interview belong to the artist in question. Read on to learn more about Sherrin and also A Band of Boys.
For those who maybe new to you, please share with us your journey into the Hindi music industry.