notnicolajames

Ed Sharpe, Mumfords, Ben Howard, Bear’s Den – all in one day

Screen Shot 2013-07-10 at 12.02.28 AMI am absolutely amazed by the music festival in the Queen’s Olympic Park, headlined by Mumford and Sons, with Ed Sharpe, Ben Howard, Bear’s Den, Haim and Vampire Weekend. This was an overpriced ebay ticket very well spent! Read more…

New singer-songwriter favorite: Harper Simon – Wishes and Stars

girls-headThere’s an amazing song on the soundtrack of the HBO series GIRLS: Harper Simon – Wishes and Stars. That song works not just for twenty-somethings in NYC. The feel of the song immediately reminded me of Simon & Garfunkel’s beautiful “The only living boy in New York”. Little did I know Harper is Simon’s offspring!
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Mixtape #9: More songs about winter, snow, and Christmas

snow-headAfter my Mixtape #2: Best songs about winter and snow, I collected some more indie and singer-songwriter songs for winter and Christmas. They are also on a youtube playlist.
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Mixtape #8: Best Funny Songs about Christmas

xmasheadThis is a mixtape with the best funny and weird Christmas songs. 100% non-cheesy, non-“Last Christmas”. Listen to all songs in one go on my youtube playlist.
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Beck’s sheet music only album is out: “It was a struggle for me”

When I first heard that Beck releases an album that consists not of a CD but sheet music, I was torn. On the one hand this could inspire lots of interpretation of all kinds of musicians. But it also excludes all fans who don’t read sheet music but, for example, guitar tabs. I will join the experiment and start interpreting the songs from Christmas on.

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Mumford & Sons inauthentic?

How have four polite Englishmen made their hoedown folk such a hit?, asks The Guardian today. Although Mumford & Sons seems to be a “thoughtful, friendly, uncommonly levelheaded band”, in the UK they get lots of criticism for being inauthentic.

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Cover of “Bridges” by Charlotte O’Connor

I’m a total chicken – like many singer-songwriters I’m scared to death that someone might not like my music. But this morning I decided to upload my first video on youtube. It’s an interpretation of Charlotte O’Connor‘s song Bridges. Let me know what you think.
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Wedding first dance – how to pick and arrange your song

The first dance at your wedding should be perfect. It’s a magical moment with your loved one and everyone is watching you. If you look for an original, non-traditional song that could work, there are a few things to think about before you give it to your DJ. Here are some tips from my own wedding.
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DVD review: Big Easy Express – a musical indie rock journey

Three bands, 6 cities, 130 people, one train. The movie “Big Easy Express” follows indie rockers Mumford & Sons, Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros, and Old Crow Medicine Show across the U.S. You will see cheering, jamming, clapping hands – a feel-good movie for indie, folk and country fans.
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“Come set us free” – Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros


These folk-rock songs make you want to be part of the band. You can see yourself in a circle of friends, hanging out and making beautiful music. The album “Here” by Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros is magnificent and low-key at the same time. The Rolling Stone calls it “let’s-be-mellow-around-the-campfire vibe” and that’s about right.
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