10 Interesting Music Blog Posts

As a music lover, I enjoy discovering new music and digging deep into the meaning of songs. A great way of doing this is reading other music related blogs. Therefore I am going to share ten interesting, emotional and inspiring music blog posts from around the world:

1. 5 awesome songs for your hearing pleasure by Alex Squire

The Quad Life blog

Alex Squire is a blogger who is quadriplegic. He blogs about his adventures of living with his disability. In addition, he shares his love of music and attending gigs and festivals. In this post, he shares 5 of his favourite tracks and explains why he thinks they are so good (And I can tell you, they are belters!).

Read: 5 awesome songs for your hearing pleasure

2. 6 surprising ways music benefits your brain by Daniela

Holistic mind body & soul blog

Holistic Mind, Body & Soul is a blog run by Daniela from South Africa. She has expertise in psychology and shares her knowledge of yoga, meditation, mindfulness and other therapeutic techniques. She advises people on how to overcome things such as mental health, anxiety, depression, stress and physical health conditions. In this blog post, she discusses music therapy and gives information on how music can benefit people’s brains.

Read: 6 surprising ways music benefits your brain

3. Songs that talk about mental health by Claire

Claire's blogClaire is a 20-something lady from Malta who has suffered with mental health since the age of 11. In her blog, she shares her experiences of depression plus other topics including lifestyle, beauty, music, love and happiness. In this post, she shares lyrics from songs that talk about mental health, with a majority of them from Linkin Park, whose lead singer committed suicide in 2017 after battling depression.

Read: Songs that talk about mental health

4. Audible Review: For Esme Explains What It Means To Be A Feminist With “Righteous Woman” by Tatenda Dune

Audible Addixion blog

Audible Addixion is a music blog full of interviews, reviews, audio and videos. In this article, they review the album of female artist, For Esme. The piece emphasises on elements of feminism within the album. I’m not aware of this artist but the writing style of the review has encouraged me to explore the musician’s work.

Read: Audible Review: For Esme Explains What It Means To Be A Feminist With “Righteous Woman”

5. Review: The Thinking Men – Machine Made Men by Vacant Ceremony

Vacant Ceremony blog

Vacant Ceremony is a musician and music blogger. This blog includes music reviews, interviews and other music related content. It has a mixture of new and independent music and classic, well known music. This post is a review of Norwich band, The Thinking Men. Again, I’m not aware of this band but the review has inspired me to check them out.

Read: Review: The Thinking Men – Machine Made Men

6. Rock versions of the national anthem for the young and dynamic India by Vaishalt Adwant

The beat nation blog

The Beat Nation is a blog that focuses on the art, culture, music, fashion and entertainment of India. In this blog post, they share a rock renditions of India’s national anthem as a way of showing solidarity, diversity, equality and positive change to their country. It made me think what it might be like to hear other national anthems performed as a rock version.

Read: Rock versions of the national anthem for the young and dynamic India

7. Scalable music income in the streaming age by Clara Charon

Clara's blog

Clara is a music industry professional who blogs advice to bands and artists on how to make it in the business, the latest industry news and gives live video workshops to teach her audience and share her research. In this blog post, she talks about the impact streaming services have on a musicians income. I admit I use a streaming service more than purchasing music these days and never really considered the effects it has on their income before reading this.

Read: Scalable music income in the streaming age

8. The Foo Fighters rock the pop gods by Michael Owczarek

Kidney pop blog

In preparation for me seeing these rock legends perform live at London Stadium next Saturday, I thought I’d share this review of the Foo Fighters from Australian blogger and musician, Michael Owczarek. He describes everything as I know and love a Foo Fighters gig to be. Plus I like the use of the audio feature where Michael reads out the blog post (great technique for readers with sight loss like myself).

Read: The Foo Fighters rock the pop gods

9. Rock music isn’t the issue in society, it’s the laziness in understanding real problems people have by Miss Mephistopheles

Miss Mephistopheles blog

This blog post looks at the darker side of rock music and explains how people who do not follow this genre make false assumptions that this type of music is devilish and inspires criminals to commit violent acts against their community.

Read: Rock music isn’t the issue in society, it’s the laziness in understanding real problems people have

10. Introducing: Tim Brooks by ROBILAZ

Gigradar blog

GigRadar is a music blog that shares the latest new bands, artist, music and upcoming live shows. In this post, they introduce singer-songwriter Tim Brooks. His music is described as a mixture of “folk, rock and punk-pop”, which I’m now very intrigued to explore.

Read: Introducing: Tim Brooks

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Celebrating 6 months of blogging

6 MONTHS OF ROCK FOR DISABILITY

Six months ago today, I launched Rock For Disability and what an adventure it has become. I’ve got to present how my life is with disabilities, share my passion of music, create social changes plus connect with other like-minded bloggers.

I’ve been persuaded to blog for several years but at the time felt I couldn’t put in the effort or have the motivation while concentrating on my studies and other personal commitments. However, now I’ve finished my degree and settled in my new home, I thought it was the right time to start blogging and I haven’t looked back since.

I admit the progression hasn’t been as easy as I hoped but then I believe blogging is a marathon and not a sprint. I’d rather take my time, work at my own pace and wait for the traffic to flow.

At the moment I blog for pleasure and not for the money. Yes I’m sure many of you fellow bloggers are thinking I’m crazy and that I could make a fortune on blogging. But for me it’s about my passion for writing, telling stories and communicating with the wider population. My ambition is still to become a full time journalist and work in an active newsroom. But if that dream is delayed, then I may consider the monetising route (although I admit I’m a rookie when it comes to the business side of blogging).

Talking of earning money and becoming a journalist, I have some updates. Back in March, I shared my plans for applying to media internships. Well, unfortunately I wasn’t given a placement on the Change 100 scheme. I applied for two positions; one as marketing intern & one as a campaign intern and both were unsuccessful. The people running the scheme say there weren’t any more roles within my location or field of work. I was rather disappointed with this news and felt like I wasted 3 months of my life waiting for this opportunity and putting my summer plans on hold for it. However there is a possibility for some unpaid work which they may get in touch with me about soon.

For the BBC Journalism Trainee scheme, my application was successful and the next stage was submitting a 60 second video and critiquing a Ten O’Clock news bulletin. I am now waiting to see if I’ll be invited to an assessment at the beginning of July.

I’ve also applied for a Production Training Scheme at Channnel 4, where part of my application was to present a two minute video on why is diversity important to me. I’m waiting to find out if my application is successful and be invited for an assessment at the end of June.

I’m continuing to wait for a response from The Guardian’s summer placement I applied for over 8 weeks ago.

In the meantime, I’ve applied for voluntary work at the charities RNIB & Pompey in the Community.

In addition to blogging and applying for jobs, I continue voluntary work as a Content Adviser for the charity Muscular Dystrophy UK and a contributing writer at Disability Horizons. In fact, as a thank you for all my work, Disability Horizons have added me to their team list on their About page which I’m very honoured to be a part of.

So at present, I’m still not earning money but still have a jam-packed schedule going on and I love it!

Thank you everyone for your continuous support and please keep liking, commenting and sharing. Also I’d love your feedback on my blog and would appreciate it if you complete this survey.

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Album Review: Wildness by Snow Patrol

Wildness album cover

After 7 long years of silence, Snow Patrol are finally back with a new album. Wildness is a therapeutic masterpiece; full of love, emotion, mindfulness, thankfulness, reconnecting, letting go and natural beauty.

Lead singer, Gary Lightbody, expresses his battle with depression, his acceptance of his Father having dementia, the social changes in the modern world and enjoying the simplicity of life, all in this 10 track record.

The album opens with Life On Earth, which illustrates the beginning of life and as life goes on, it won’t be what you first hoped but “this is something else”. It won’t destroy you but it is how things happen on earth and to just accept life for what it is. This track has a similar melodic feel as Elbow’s One Day Like This.

There is a similar feeling with the second track, and first single to come off the album, Don’t Give In. Life can be difficult and tough but you have to keep going and battle your problems.

As well as the powerful guitar riffs and drumming, there is also piano keys and strings within some tracks. What If This Is All The Love You Ever Get, is a stripped back song of piano and Gary’s vocals. It is an emotional song that focuses on appreciating the love from friends and family and that love is not just about having a boyfriend, girlfriend, husband or wife. Another emotional track is Soon, which is about Gary’s Father eventually losing his memory to dementia and no matter what he will always be his son. It has a nice mixture of guitar, drums and strings which signifies coming together and the celebration of their relationship.

There are three tracks that have a pop element to them; Heal Me, A Dark Switch & A Youth Written In Fire. They have good catchy rhythms, great to dance to and will work well in a mainstream environment. Plus they will flow nicely when the band support Ed Sheeran this month.

My favourite track on this album has to be Empress. It has strong guitar riffs, upbeat drumming and great sing-along lyrics. I first saw it performed on Jools Holland’s Show on BBC2 and immediately fell in love with it. The song supports and empathises with the young generation of today, how they have more of a voice and having people reconnect with each other. It inspires people to be who they are, express themselves and make life become more simplier.

The two final tracks, Wild Horse & Life and Death are the best to close the album. They have great clapping rhythms and lyrics that you’ll continue singing after the album ends. Plus they will be great to perform at festivals and have the crowd sing and clap along. In addition, the very ending of Life and Death, reminds me of the ending to ELO’s Mr Blue Sky where they say “Please turn me over”.

Overall, Snow Patrol have definitely returned in exceptional style and there is not a single negative thing to say about this album. It ticks all the boxes and more. I can’t wait to see them perform on their UK tour in January 2019.

Wildness is available to buy, download and stream!

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Music Interview: Hail the Hatter

As a bank holiday treat, I decided to publish an extra blog post for your pleasure. Today I want introduce you to a Caribbean rock band, Hail the Hatter:

Hail the Hatter

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Band Name: Hail the Hatter

Members: Jonathan Boos (Vocals), Dax Cartar (Guitar), Nicholai Assam (Drums), Aaron Lowchewtung (Bass)

Genre: Hard Rock

Founded: 2016

Originated From: Trinidad & Tobago, West Indies

Discography: Discovering Light E.P.

_______________________________________________________________________________________________

1. How would you describe your music?

If Black Sabbath, Pantera, Guns n Roses, and Judas Priest had an orgy, the child born from this coupling would be Hail the Hatter

2. How did the band form?

Our singer Jonathan had just moved back home and was missing playing music. So he called a friend who he knew was tapped in to the local music scene. He put Jonathan in touch with Dax. The two got together and realized they both had the same outlook on current Rock music. They both found the music had lost it’s edge, and sense of fun and irreverence that had made it popular. They decided to form a band that exemplify these characteristics. Quickly Nicholai was added on drums and the original bassist Devin Harry Paul were added to the line up and the band was formed. Unfortunately, Devin had to leave due to personal reason, so Aaron hopped on Bass. The band then headed into the studio with Nicholas Marsan singing harmonies and producing.

3. Who influenced you within the music industry?

The legends who influenced are Black Sabbath, Guns n Roses, Pantera, Megadeth, Judas Priest. Some guys on the road now that are huge inspirations are Gret Van Fleet, Avatar, and Rival Sons.

4. Have you performed live much and what was your favourite gig to play at?

We have quite a few awesome gigs. But recently we played a big gig with 12 other bands. The energy was great, and the crowd was hot. Lots of fun. That night we were also competing for a spot at Wacken Open Air 2018. Sadly we came second.

5. What is the best thing about being in a band/musician?

The creative release, and the joy of getting to the end of creating a song you can be proud of. And the ultimate drug is of course a live audience.

6. What plans have you got coming up this year?

We want to get back into the studio and do a full album, after that we want to start planning a tour.

Discovering Light by Hail the Hatter

To find out more about Hail the Hatter, check out their website www.hailthehatter.com, where you can download their E.P. “Discovering Light” completely free.

If you’re in a band or a musician and would like to appear on this blog, use the Contact Form and I’ll forward you an interview template.

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If you enjoyed reading this blog post, please like, comment and share! 👍😀🤗

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5 Recommended game skills on Amazon Alexa

Amazon Alexa logo

A year ago this week, I treated myself to an Amazon Echo Dot, a voice activated device called Alexa. To celebrate my anniversary with my favourite artificial assistant, I want to share some of my favourite game skills:

1. Word Chain

In this game, multiple players take it in turns saying words, where every next word should begin with the last letter of the previous word. For example, “Rabbit – Toad – Dog – Gorilla”. You can choose from four categories; ‘Countries, Capitals, Animals & Fruit and Vegetables’. You can also play in cooperative or competitive mode. You can either play with just Alexa or with other people. If there are no more words beginning with a certain letter, you will be given the option to skip to a different letter and continue the chain or finish the game.

2. Akinator

This is basically a guessing game where you think of a person, real or fictional, and have Alexa ask you yes or no question to find out who you’re thinking about. The only down side to this game is they make some characters defined as “inappropriate for children” which is quite ridiculous.

3. Harry Potter Letters

This game is for all Harry Potter gurus. The way the game works is Alexa will give you a letter and you have to name as many Harry Potter related words as possible beginning with that letter. My highest score is 30 with the letter P! There are also other letter skills including Name Letters, Animal Letters & The Simpsons letters.

(NB: There are many other Harry Potter related game skills including Quiz on Harry Potter, Harry Potter House Quiz & Harry Potter: Would You Rather?)

4. The Magic Door

The Magic Door is an interactive adventure game where you explore different stories in the garden, sea, forest & castle and help the wizard turn back time. Alexa will give you choices on tasks & directions and you’ll solve riddles, collect items and help magical creatures. I spent the first 6 days of having my Echo Dot completing this skill. To find out more on this skill and get hints and tips on how to complete it, visit The Magic Door on Facebook.

5. Millionaire Quiz Game

Forget Chris Tarrant and Jeremy Clarkson, Alexa is in the hot seat now. Yes you can now play Who Wants To E A Millionaire on your Echo Dot. You get 15 questions and three lifelines; Ask social media, phone a friend and 50/50. The bad news is the prize money is not real but of course still fun to play!

To find out more about these skills and all other available game skills on Alexa, visit the Amazon website

If you enjoyed this blog post and would like to find out some more of my favourite Alexa game skills, please comment “More Game Skills please” and I’ll create a future post.

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Album Review: Tranquility Base Hotel and Casino by Arctic Monkeys

Arctic Monkeys album cover

Following the big success and my love for their fifth album AM back in 2013, I was buzzing to hear the next instalment that was released last week.

I would describe their new album, Tranquility Base Hotel and Casino as a grower. It is a good solid alternative record but doesn’t have the buzzing excitement, crazy riffs and booming lyrics we are used to hearing from the Sheffield lads.

It is the kind of album you would listen to when chillaxing at home, soaking in the bath or sunbathing on the beach. The tracks all have the same rhythmic tone and melody as songs like 505 and Only Ones Who Know.

The opening track Star Treatment, I admit, did feel a disappointment on my first listen but after a few more times of hearing it, I really like the bass line and tune. The rest of the album includes the same musical style throughout.

Golden Trunks & She Looks Like Fun have the best guitar riffs throughout. Definitely have a more rock feel to them.

They also add dramatic spooky elements with the track Science Fiction which has the feel of a haunted house, supernatural activity or an alien invasion.

Additionally I cannot fault Alex Turners unique, strong and powerful vocals and lyrics.

I think this album would be great on an acoustic stage or played at small venues but not sure how it will sound at big venues and stadiums. I’m scheduled to see Arctic Monkeys live at the O2 Arena in London this September and curious to know how tracks from this album will sound on stage. However, I can imagine a lot of swaying arms and the arena filled with phone torches twinkling like stars. Stay tuned to find out when I post my “Review: Arctic Monkeys at The O2 Arena” later on this year.

Tranquility Base Hotel and Casino is available to buy, download and stream!

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Why is diversity important?

As you know, I’ve been filling out numerous applications for media internships. This week I was applying for a Production Training Scheme at Channel 4.

Why is diversity important to me?

As part of the application process, I had to create a YouTube video saying “Why is diversity important to me?”. I wanted to share this on my blog and would appreciate your thoughts and feedback. Plus please share why diversity is important to you?

If you are thinking about applying for the Production Training Scheme, applications close Sunday 13th May at Midnight. Click here to apply.

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