Music and the moving image together form a very powerful spectacle which can transform the way people perceive an artist or a musical piece. Many pop videos are full-scale mini movies, yet others are a medley of moving images which sometimes relate to the artist or the music and some other times are totally unrelated to either.
Producing a music video used to be the preserve of artists who had the multi-million pound backing of a record company. Nowadays, technological advances, reduced prices, culture shifts and they way we do things, plus the rapidly changing landscape of not just the music business but the World as a whole, has made it possible for aspiring up and coming singers, bands and musicians to capture and distribute their art in ways that would not be possible barely a decade ago.
This has allowed artists to team up with creative individuals to push the boundaries and produce truly exciting, innovative and very watchable videos, such as the following examples I had the pleasure of discovering during 2012:
(In no particular order)
Finn Bonel – Love’s The Only Thing
This is a very unusual video in that it goes backwards…. literally! Set in the splendour of London’s Regents Park, it shows a man chasing a woman, but the film has been reversed so it goes backwards. The cinematography is simply spectacular – slow motion, with lingering close shots of the protagonists as they race through the park. She is young, very pretty and has a smug look about her, he is smartly dressed, and carries a bunch of flowers, but his face is distorted with anger and frustration…. the song, Love’s The Only Thing, is the perfect soundtrack with its catchy chorus, fabulous string arrangements and great lyrics. The end is a masterful twist which will have you grinning from ear to ear and most probably wanting to watch it all over again!
Las Migas – La Guitarrina (Nosotras Somos)
Las Migas are a female quartet of supremely talented musicians based in Spain. To describe them and their music is far too complicated for words. To have an understanding of what they are about you only need to watch one of their videos or one of their live performances, and you will soon realise these girls are about simple living, being in touch with nature, good food, wine, music and song.
Their musicianship is breathtaking and beautiful, blending the sublime violin with two magnificent guitars plus spine tingling flamenco vocals overflowing with Andalusian passion and latin fire. They use the richness of the Spanish language blended with classic Catalan to relate stories fuelled with passion, pain, loneliness, happiness and wild abandonment. Their sound is Mediterranean, warm and very feminine.
This video captures all these elements perfectly and will leave you wanting to find out more about these stunning and talented senoritas!
Tom Tyler – Shooting Star
Tom Tyler is a multi-instrumentalist and supreme singer song-writer who some describe as a one-man super band. His debut album ‘Silence’ is a collection of self-penned songs which capture his journey and relate his experiences. One of the tracks from his album, ‘Shooting Star’ was made into a video which was shot in London’s iconic Notting Hill Gate and around central London. It tells a story of people sharing an urgent message, which eventually leads to one of the recipients of this message to come to the rescue of a scantily clad young woman who seems to be about to jump off a building.
Dana Immanuel – Sidekick
Dana Immanuel is a deliciously eccentric chanteuse and versatile multi instrumentalist. She describes her sound as “associated with the bayou, triple filtered through bourbon, double bass and a touch of alt-country eccentricity.” Her songs are cleverly written and memorable. Their originality and uniqueness engage and transport the listener into a bohemian world where the only limit is the imagination.
‘Sidekick’ is a banjo-led ballad with smoky vocals and pulsating bass and percussion. The video was shot entirely in Paris and once again, like in all the videos of this summary of 2012, the cinematography is spectacular and the story is interesting and engaging.
Soneni and The Soul – Million Miles Away
This London-based group left a huge impression when they visited the Brooklands Radio studios. Led by the charismatic, eloquent and bubbly Soneni Nkomo, their sound is a refreshing fusion of afro beats, Zimbabwean roots and funk, bound together with pure soul. Influenced by many musical styles, artists and genres, each member of the group brings their own ingredient to the mix, and the end result is a unique soul-influenced sound led by Soneni’s impeccable vocals.
The video to Million Miles Away was shot in London and tells a story of realisation, determination and hope. The simple, yet powerful lyrics combined with infectious chords and images everybody can identify with makes this a special and very memorable video which will leave a mark on anybody who has dreams and aspirations. Furthermore, it is powerful enough to trigger a change in someone’s life!
Joanna Weston – Amy
Joanna Weston is a talented and versatile singer song-writer. With her fiery red hair, English rose complexion and soothing voice, her songs are unique, melodic, memorable and combine elements of folk with country pop.
Amy is a simple song about Joanna’s best childhood friend, but it is delivered in such a way it never fails to cause goosebumps. The video really conveys this friendship and the innocence of two girls growing up, and elevate this already great song to whole new levels. Once again, the cinematography is spectacular and the setting is perfect for the song.
Unsung Lilly – Happy
2012 has been a whirlwind year for this group of five incredibly talented and dedicated musicians. Originally a successful covers band for many years, they decided to start writing their own material and soon discovered that the contrasting vocal styles between the two females Sera and Frankie, together with the musicianship and solid backing of the guys on guitar, bass and percussion produced a unique, exciting and fresh sound combining elements of pop with funk and lots of soul.
This video conveys perfectly the spirit of Unsung Lilly, a band which is about to take the World by storm with its catchy chorus, infectious reggae vibe and quirky shots of the members of the band having the time of their lives! 2013 promises to carry on where 2012 left off for this fabulous band from Surrey.
Linda Harrison – Be With You
Linda Harrison, a supreme pianist and vocalist with a powerful yet angelic voice capable of inducing goosebumps even on hardened souls. This Edinburgh born chanteuse, now residing in London is well on her way to living her dream, with a collection of masterfully written and produced singles and numerous and very credible accolades to her name from some significant music industry figures.
“Be With You” is a charity single release in aid of NSPCC (National Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Children). The song is a powerful masterfully written and produced ballad. The video is set on the seaside and features Linda playing an upright piano while dancers around her display graceful movement blended with subtle violence which gives a strong clue of what the NSPCC is about. If you wish to support this cause you may purchase this song on iTunes by clicking on the following link: Be With You