Jack Hawitt ft. Nyaki – “Dark Hotel”.

This song has been one of my favourites for quite a while now. I’ve heard about Jack Hawitt for the first time some months ago, don’t remember when exactly, and this song was the first of his that I’ve heard. This must have been around the time that my faza on Gwil was slowly fading from the dominant position so I was beginning to look for someone new to get a faza on. Jack Hawitt was one of the first candidates that I’ve considered, mostly just because his name was Jack and I wanted to have a faza on Jack, but it didn’t work out, he’s cool but too normal for that.

What I like most about this song is the lyrics, which I think are very relatable but also full of hope, hope that there is help and support out there, for many people with mental illness, or those who experience some temporary lows or crises in life as well. Also it’s just a very nice song, and both Jack and Nyaki are very good singers.

Jack Hawitt is from Britain, and he’s been active as a singer for a while already, and Nyaki is from Norway, but I haven’t heard any other songs by her.

I hope you enjoy this very nice pop piece. 🙂

Hamzaa – “Hard To Love”.

Hi people! 🙂

I’ve found a new British artist that I really like lately. Her stage name is Hamzaa, which apparently comes from her stepfather’s surname, and her real name is Malika, and she has a gorgeous voice. This song of hers is my absolute favourite, also because I think the lyrics are quite cool.

Rebecca Ferguson ft. Afsheen – “Uncrazy”.

Hey guys! 🙂

I’ve heard about Rebecca Ferguson a couple of times over the years, and I’ve also heard some of her music, but previously somehow it didn’t make a strong impression on me. But recently I’ve heard more of her music and I realised that I actually like her. She has a really cool voice and I love her Liverpudlian accent. I think this song also has great and relatable lyrics. Who’s your uncrazy? For me, it’s undeniably Misha. 😀

Song of the day (16th April) – Declan J Donovan – “Anymore”.

Here’s a song I’ve recently grown to really like. In case someone of my more long-term readers would be confused, this is not that Declan I’ve had a faza/music crush on, that one is Declan Galbraith. I do like Declan J Donovan too, even though I don’t think I could ever have a faza on him, and this is my absolutely favourite song of his. I’ve only just learnt about it when preparing a bit for this post that this song was actually played on Love Island, which I suppose might be an interesting bit of info.

Olivia Garcia – “Freedom Hearts”.

Today I have a very catchy pop song for you. Olivia Garcia is a singer from Manchester who took part in X Factor some years ago, and then also in British preselections for Eurovision 2017, but didn’t get chosen in the end. I think the song is quite cool and her voice is very powerful, so thought I’d share.

Olivia Chaney – “False Bride”.

Hello people! 🙂

I have another beautiful folk ballad for you today, and an English one as well. In any case, at least this version is English, the ballad itself apparently comes from Scotland. It is also known as “I Once Loved A Lass” and is told from a man’s perspective.

I know a few versions of this song, but I guess Olivia Chaney’s is my favourite, although I love Sandy Denny’s version too.

And, again, it strikes me how easy it seemed to be for people in the past centuries to die. You only needed an unrequited love, and then you could just lay down and die. I guess, looking at it objectively, it’s good that mankind has grown out of this strange ailment. 😉 At the same time, as someone who has struggled with passive suicidal thoughts for most of my life, I have to admit that I often thought that this ability must have been really handy. I remember listening to “Annachie Gordon” for the first time as a tween or so, and I was so utterly amazed that one can just die in a matter of seconds solely because of love.

Emily Portman – “Two Sisters”.

Today I have a folk song for you, a beautiful English ballad. Well, this performance is English, but the song is actually known in many European countries, like a lot of folk ballads. I’ve heard different versions, both in terms of plot, melody and language. From English, to Scots, to Hungarian… But I think I am right to assume that it originated in the British Isles. Sometimes it’s known as “Cruel Sister”, but Emily Portman’s version is called “Two Sisters”. It’s a murder ballad – somehow I’ve posted a lot of those, well, I guess they must be really good. –

So, as I said, Emily Portman is English, and the song comes from her album titled “Glamoury”, which was made in cooperation with a harpist Rachel Newton (I haven’t heard her own music but from this album I think she must be a great harpist and I really like her harp play) and another singer – Lucy Farrell – I like that, since it’s said in the song that after the younger sister’s death, a harp was made of her breast bone by a minstrel, this song, in Emily’s version, actually contains harp. A lot of harp. The whole album contains quite a lot of harp, though I can be never satiated. Here goes, I hope you like it.

Jack Vallier – “Copenhagen”.

Hi people! 🙂

So, those of you who have been following my blog for a while know about my fazas/crushes and that lately I’ve been in a limbo, which is never a pleasant situation to be in, but is particularly unpleasant when it’s a faza limbo and when your existence is pretty much driven by fazas and stuff that they generate whatever that might be. And because that limbo is my first one – that is, previously I always went smoothly from one dominant faza into another – I feel very uncomfortable in it and am doing a lot of desperate faza hunting, particularly in the world of music because, albeit I do have literary fazas as well, it’s the music ones that are the strongest. You also know then that I’m a Jackophile and that my dream is that my next crush would be called Jack, or something else Jac-. It’s not a requirement whatsoever, I don’t really care what they’re called because as soon as I get a faza I will love their name anyways as far as I know, but that would be just extra nice, I’m just clueless about how to go about active faza hunting so I just had to have something to look out for, so primarily I look around for musicians called Jack or something similar. That doesn’t really help much but at least it is something that I can use as a criterion in my searching.

So there have been a few stronger candidates – one that I won’t even mention by name even though it’s highly unlikely any of my readers would have ever heard of him, but he’s too cringey for my “snobbish”, as a lot of people say, music taste 😀 even though he was actually Sami, and I suspect he has a developing alcohol problem because some kind of alcohol is present in almost all of his music, and I’ve already had a crush who was an alcoholic so I don’t want it to become a pattern hahaha, plus that crush of mine – Cornelis Vreeswijk of course – was so much better of a lyricist, and could write beautifully even about wine, while this guy here cannot. Then there was Jack Christopher Alsopp a.k.a. Just Jack (yeah, I have shared his song here). A nice guy, but too normal for me. I can’t even imagine myself having a faza on him so that was just wishful thinking, I don’t even like his music enough. Then there was Jack Rutter – very folksy and pleasant, from Huddersfield in England (which made me realise I’d just love to have a northern English crush!), I do like him a lot, he’s also a guitarist like all my previous major male crushes, and a bouzouki player like my last dominant crush Gwilym Bowen Rhys. – But, sadly, it didn’t work out. After that, Spotify recommended me a song by Jack Hawitt and Nyaki called “Dark Hotel” (I’ve intended to share it with you but somehow never have, but hope I finally will some day), and then I was familiarising myself with Jack Hawitt’s music, which was pleasant, but… you may have guessed it – too normal, too mainstream-y. – Then there was Hamish Napier, a fantastically versatile musician from Strathspey in Scotland – he’s a flautist, pianist, singer and what not – and his musical comfort zone is very wide. Versatility is something I really appreciate in a crush, I can’t imagine myself having a crush on someone one-dimensional because, if you are familiar with the meaning of the word faza for me, it helps me to develop, and it’s easier when there’s more diversity, but somehow my brain and Hamish Napier’s and his music didn’t click strongly enough. Also one of his parents is a harpist – I don’t know which one, though of course it most likely must be his mother, and I don’t know her name, but that’s a nice fact isn’t it? – It didn’t help anything. My faza is not going to be on Hamish Napier. There also was Jack Pantaleo, I believe he’s from California and also seems fairly versatile – he’s a social worker and has some background in psychiatry, but also is a certified harp therapist. – If you didn’t know, harp therapy and harp healing is a thing in many places all around the world, there are academies, online courses, certificates, and then such people work in hospitals, care homes, other institutions, do music therapy and such. I’ve been interested in it for a long time as a harp lover, and I thought it would be really cool to have not only a crush who is a harpist (such a rare thing for a guy to be a harpist these days isn’t it?) but also a harp healer. He has apparently written a book, and that book is accompanied by a CD with his music, and this seems to be his only album. I had a listen to it, and while obviously I love harp, and so I enjoyed listening to it, I didn’t find anything special or above average in his play, though then again, I am neither a harpist nor anyone with music background so I’m just saying how I feel very subjectively about his music. Also, while I like my faza objects to be unpopular and not frequently heard of in general, there has to be at least some info available about them in whatever language of the world, otherwise there’s not enough fuel to get my faza going for long enough. And there’s not much info on Jack Pantaleo. I wouldn’t even know how he sounds or probably not even what he looks like. There have been a few songs on his albums, with vocals, but I really disliked the voice of the vocalist.

And so, finally, getting to the actual topic of this post, there has also been Jack Vallier whom I have discovered a few days ago. Very normal, too, but I do like his music, and this one song in particular, it’s been sitting in my brain since I first heard it. As I was reading on him and immersing myself in his music, at some point Zofijka heard him in my room and she said she likes him – he does sound very much like something Zofijka would like – and then we were talking about him, that I thought he could be my new crush, and then, because Sofi liked him, she got very excited about it and wanted to see what he looks like, because that’s always my mission for her when I have a new crush, that she has to see what they look like and describe them to me and give me her opinion. Usually it works so that the more Zofijka is disgusted, either by their music or looks, the more this person is worth my attention. 😀 From my previous crushes she has only approved of Declan Galbraith but only until he matured and changed his looks and music style a bit. So, while I told her that it seems highly unlikely that Jack Vallier will be my next crush even though I do like his music despite it’s just pop, she ran to her laptop and looked him up. At first I thought it was very promising because Sofi kept making all the gagging noises and choking and such very spectacularly for a very long time implying that she’s throwing him up because he’s so disgusting, but when she finally was capable of speaking coherently she said “Well, no, actually, he’s just… he’s okay, he’s just… normal. I just don’t like guys with earrings”. 😀 Me neither for that matter, haha, though if I got a serious faza on him I probably would care very little about that.

Jack Vallier is from Bournemouth, UK, as far as I know, and his music is really cool, and pleasant, albeit normal. I hope that if, by any chance, Jack ever sees that post he won’t feel that it’s a critic or an offense or sarcasm or anything because it’s not meant as such. I seriously like a lot of “normal” music, as you can clearly see from my blog, and I don’t perceive it as inferior or wrong as long as it’s not trashy or overly cliche. This song of his is my favourite. 🙂

Before Breakfast – “Buddleia”.

Hi people! 🙂

This band is completely new to me, I actually only know this one song by them and I heard it a few days ago for the first time, but I really like it! The band is based in Sheffield and consists of four women, who met each other at uni, Gina Walters – who is the leader and the vocalist – the celloist Lucy Revis, Annie Rushworth and Debra Finch. I think I am going to listen to more of their music, if it sounds as good as this I think I’ll really like them.

Nina Nesbitt – “Is It Really Me You’re Missing?”.

Nina Nesbitt is quite a well-known singer and songwriter from Scotland. I think it’s also cool and worth mentioning that she’s also part Swedish – her mum is from Sweden. – I really like her music, along with other similar British artists like Gabrielle Aplin or Lauren Aquilina or Birdy or the like. And I like this particular song for a good few reasons so I thought I’d share it.

 

Kate Rusby – “Little Jack Frost”.

Hi guys! 🙂

So it’s Advent, and Christmas is coming, so we can listen to our favourite Christmas music again! This is one of my personal absolute winter classics. And Jack Frost is one of my favourite characters in European folklore. He has arrived here for good as it seems, so I am welcoming his with this lovely little song, hoping you will like it too. Kate Rusby is also one of my most favourite English folk singers, she’s really amazing! I love her voice and her accent, most people who know her seem to love her accent haha, and she does this song so very well. It just makes my brain melt. 🙂

 

Martin Simpson – “The Cruel Brother”.

Hi people! 🙂

Today I decided to share another very interesting Child ballad with you. I know many versions and interpretations of it but for some reason I like Martin Simpson’s the most. Somehow it always makes me imagine what’s happening in it very vividly, unlike other versions of it. I hope you will find it very evocative as well. 🙂

Ray Fisher – “Willie’s Lady” & Martin Carthy – “Willies Lady”.

For today I have for you a song in two versions. Firstly because I like them both, and secondly, because they’re both in different languages.Ray Fisher was Scottish, so her version is in Scots, as all the songs she sang, and Martin Carthy is English and his version is in English. Also, I have no idea about what the perception of Scots language is like in people whose first language is English, I don’t know how much you can understand of it, in my case I was able to understand more than I thought I would listening to it for the first time, I suppose both thanks to English and Swedish, as there are Scandinavian influences at all, but there were still big patches of the lyrics that I wouldn’t understand, and even had trouble understanding various bits and pieces when reading the lyrics, so eventually had to just look up what it is about, and then understanding of the song has become much easier. So, if you’re gonna have the same dilemma, Martin Carthy’s version is very much the same in terms of lyrics, only with a few differences, like that in his version Willie is a king, and it’s his wife who comes up with a plan of how to get rid of the spell that Willie’s mother has cast on her, while in Fisher’s version it’s Billy Blind who gives Willie that idea.

“Willie’s Lady” is a Child ballad, and I think I have said it on my blog before that I really love the collection of Child ballads!

 

So, here are the two versions of this song. 🙂

Martha Tilston – “Songs That Make Sophie Fizz”.

Hi people! 🙂

Today, I’m going to share with you a song by Martha Tilston – who belongs to my most favourite English folk singers. She is really talented and expressive, and I like her light and airy voice a lot. I also love her finger style guitar play very much! She has a lot of connections to people who make folk music, coming from a very folk-oriented family. Her father is the singer Steve Tilston, and her stepmother is Maggie Boyle, who is also a well-known folk singer and musician, hailing from Ireland. So a lot of family friends are folk musicians, or somehow related to folk music scene as well. But Martha’s music is quite a lot different from what her father or stepmother does. She’s been leaning more towards alternative scene, especially at the beginning of her career, and I like that!

I just have some nice associations with the song I’m going to share with you. It reminds me very much of my own sis Sophie, who perhaps is not a big fan of this song, but a lot of things definitely make her fizz, and music does the most. She loves to dance, and rollerskate as well. To make it more funny, the Sophie i the song is indeed Martha’s “big sis”. So it makes her another artist on my blog who has a sister called Sophie (or some variation of this name) and who wrote a song about/for her. The other one is Ji Nilsson, whose sister is Sofi. Isn’t that so very cool?! I guess Sophies make the best sisters!

 

Song of the day (20th September) – Maisie Peters – “Feels Like This”.

Hi lovely people. 🙂

This is a song from an artist I really like recently for the feel of her music and her youthful voice. I’ve been listening to a lot of similar British artists on Spotify lately and I’ve seen Maisie Peters as an artist similar to many of them, so at some point I just had to check her out and liked her pretty much immediately. Her music has some simple charm. This song is my most favourite from her, I love the sound of it!

 

Song of the day (17h September) – Lucy May Walker – “Safety Net”.

Here’s a song from a young British artist I recently discovered. Lucy May Walker is from Worcestershire, and so far I think I like her music, though I’ve only heard a few songs.

Lucy Ward – “A Stitch In Time”.

Hi guys. 🙂

I have a folk song for you today, there hasn’t been a lot of folk here lately, I guess. It’s from one of my favourite English folk singers – Lucy Ward. – Apart from being a great singer, Lucy also plays several instruments, mainly guitar and concertina. She performs traditional folk songs, as well as her own material. There’s something in her voice I like. I remember not liking her very much when I first heard her years ago, but somehow her music and her voice have grown on me. She is a very expressive singer in my opinion and you can hear her passion for what she’s doing on her albums, and she generally seems a very positive person. I also like the minimalism in her music, as well as the versatility of the topics of her songs. She’s not afraid of singing about death, violence, murders or protest songs but her music can also have a humourous feel. Lucy Ward was the BBC Folk Awards winner in 2009. The song I want to show you, comes from her debut album, called “Adelphi Has To Fly”, which I think is my most favourite album by her. And this song is a perfect example of what I’ve written about her not being afraid to dig in serious topics, since this song is about a woman living with her constantly drunken husband who was abusing her physically, but you can’t say it’s a serious song at all! Quite a clever idea to deal with the alcohol problem in the family, seems like it was successful! 😀 The song is based on a true story and written by Mike Waterson sometime in the second half of the 20th century.

Aislin Evans – “Feel About You”.

Hi guys. 🙂

This is a new artist to me, and I’d assume she’s generally rather new to the music scene because I’ve only found two or so of her songs so far. She’s from London, and I really like her lyrics, she seems to always write them very emotional, so far at least. I also like some synthpop like hers once in a while, so Aislin Evans is definitely one of my non folk British faves right now.