With Just A Hint Of Mayhem

Music trivia, useless info, extra added random stuff and the odd rant from me

Interview – Laura Kindelan – March 19th 2018 March 22, 2018


Laura checks out an excellent, if somewhat expensive, Toots & the Maytals LP at the Vinyl Cafe.

I had the absolute pleasure of interviewing York singer, songwriter and ace musician Laura Kindelan earlier this week in 45 The Vinyl Cafe on Micklegate. Laura was eloquent, effervescent and spoke about her major influences, where she might take her sound next, her musical guilty pleasures and her favourite chocolate among many other things. Check out that conversation below.

  1. Who is your biggest musical influence and why?

Well there isn’t just one person, for me it’s the sound and the performance. For the sound, it has to be Lianne La Havas; I love her jazz guitar, melodic vocals and song writing. I particularly love her lyrical patterns and use of unusual words. My history teacher introduced me to her.

As for performance, I would have to name two people; Amy Winehouse and Damien Rice. I believe that both of them show the beauty of imperfections. Damien Rice’s mix of his first album “O” massively fluctuates in volume within songs, which could be considered wrong but I believe it’s emotive.

  1. What is next for you, where do you go from here?

I am very happy to be a slow burner. I am not focussed at all on becoming a product or a brand. I want to be a well-respected musician, singer and song writer. That has to include maintaining respect for myself and my craft. I want my music to speak for me, not the image. I would also love to work with a really tight rhythm section in the future.

  1. Musically do you have any of what you might consider guilty pleasures, if so what are they?

That is a tough one, the first one that I can think of is Abba. However, I don’t feel too guilty about it as they wrote, produced and released such great songs. But perhaps my real guilty pleasure is my ‘go to’ party song; “Bitch Better Have My Money” by Rihanna.

Photo by Michael Parr

  1. How do you prepare for a gig?

First, I always do some vocal warm ups. I like to make myself feel nice, to feel good. I don’t often wear much make-up, but for a show, I choose to get dressed up with make-up and nice clothes. Everything I do to prepare for a gig contributes to making me feel comfortable and confident on stage. I really believe that a performer should invest the audience in what they do by personally connecting with them, and to do that, you need to be happy and comfortable with yourself. Confidence is key to any good performance.

  1. Name one thing in your musical career that you are most proud of and feel free to tell us why?

My headline show last year at the National Centre for Early Music in York. It felt like such a magical night and I am so proud that I did it. I can’t quite believe that it happened. There were around 180 people there, really listening and enjoying the night – It’s definitely something I’ll never forget.

Click here to check out my review of that show on this blog last year

  1. What drives you to write songs?

Sometimes it is all about getting something off my mind; a feeling or a relationship perhaps. Currently I really love to experiment with harmonies, shapes and different tunings on my guitar. I think I draw influence in this experimentation from Jeff Buckley and Tom Misch, particularly with pretty harmony and rhythm from the latter. I see my sound as evolving into something similar to Tom Misch, only much grottier!

Photograph by Tomorrow’s Photos

  1. How does your song writing process work?

I have lots of lyrics stored on my phone that I’ve written as they come to me and I sometimes go there for inspiration. Although, as I said before, I love to experiment with harmony and chord progressions so I often begin here.

  1. Name a song that you believe you could cover and make it better than the original?

At the moment I am playing around with a very different arrangement of “Do I Wanna Know” by the Arctic Monkeys. I am trying out a very slowed down version which is more ‘head bobby’, with more dissonance and harmonics. I think this new vibe adds more meaning to the lyrics.

  1. Which of your songs would you like to see covered by someone else and who would be your top choice to do it?

I would like it to be someone completely different from me, how about Hello Operator? That could actually be amazing, we should make it happen!

Photo by Tim Downie

  1. Tell me something that you have never told an interviewer before (and this does not need to be music related)?

My signature dish, that I make incredibly well (if I do say so myself), is Carbonara with mushrooms, bacon and cream. Bon appétit.

  1. Name three things that you simply cannot live without?

My family, good food and Doctor Martens. I’m hoping to build a collection of Docs – I currently have four pairs, including one with a snake-skin pattern.

  1. What is your favourite confectionary item?

Terry’s Chocolate Orange, beyond any doubt the best there is!

Now check out some of Laura’s rather excellent tunes.

All photographs were provided to me by Laura and are credited to the photographer in the caption. The first picture was a rare good one taken on my phone. Video links were specially selected by Laura herself.

 

“Maybe I need a straight jacket, face facts I am nuts for real, but I’m okay with that” November 11, 2013


EminemI’m a bit late with this but I thought the 2013 YouTube awards deserved a mention. (Thanks for the reminder Mr H). The highest profile awards went to Eminem who was artist of the year and Girl’s Generation a South Korean K-Pop group won the video of the year for their song “I Got A Boy”. Other winners were;

Response of the Year: Lindsey Stirling & Pentatonix, “Radioactive”

YouTube Phenomenon: “I Knew You Were Trouble”

YouTube Breakthrough: Macklemore & Ryan Lewis

Innovation of the Year: DeStorm, “See Me Standing”

images-girlsgeneration-Girls_Generation_Creed_9_Gates_by_DarsephtanI felt that it was a nice surprise that Lady Gaga, who played a new song “Dope” at the awards show, won no awards. Eminem has also been in the news a lot recently. His recent UK number one single “The Monster” featuring Rihanna was the seventh consecutive year that Rihanna has had a UK number one. Only Elvis Presley and the Beatles have managed that before. In a two sevens clash numerical coincidence Eminem’s new album ‘The Marshall Mathers LP 2″ became his seventh consecutive UK number one album. He is the first US artist to acheive this feat.

images

 

“I hate to turn up out of the blue, uninvited” April 14, 2013


adele-has-it-all

A few days ago the one billionth song was downloaded in the UK only ten years after the legal download was first launched. Now that is quite a phenomenal performance isn’t it? The top 10 most downloaded songs in the UK are;

1. Adele – Someone Like You

2. Maroon 5 ft Christina Aguilera – Moves Like Jagger

3. Gotye ft Kimbra – Somebody I Used To Know

4. Black Eyed PeasI Gotta Feeling

5. Rihanna ft Calvin Harris – We Found Love

6. Kings Of Leon – Sex On Fire

7. Carly Rae Jepsen – Call Me Maybe

8. LMFAO – Party Rock Anthem

9. Bruno Mars – Just The Way You Are (Amazing)

10. Jessie J – Price Tag

No real surprises there really, all artists of the modern age. Of course there have been the campaigns to get old songs in the chart via downloads. Some of these have been successful and many haven’t. We now have the annual let’s stop X Factor getting to the top at Christmas. That probably peaked with the success of Rage Against The Machine‘s “Killing In The Name”. There have also been the slightly more ridiculous campaigns which probably culminated in the arrival of Judy Garland’s “Ding Dong The Witch Is Dead” from the Wizard Of Oz at number two in the charts this week aimed at ‘celebrating’ the death of Margaret Thatcher. I was in two minds about this plan, but frankly right now I don’t think it feels right. The whole idea of celebrating anyones death is odd. Why not just get out on the streets to protest against what the current government is doing to the country. That makes more sense doesn’t it?

9gag-adele-funny-haha-lol-Favim.com-247593

 

“Feet fail me not, this may be the only opportunity that I got” September 19, 2012


The team at the finish, just how fresh do we look? 😉

Regular readers will know that I took part in the world-famous Great North Run last Sunday. It is a half marathon (13.1 miles) which starts in Newcastle and finishes in South Shields. It was my first half marathon for 17 years so I wasn’t expecting a great time. I was part of a team of five and I am pleased to say that I came third in that little group with an official time of 2.44. But also big congratulations go to the rest of the team as well; Stuart O’Hara, Nick Cooper, Simon Downs and David Carline. In the overall race I was 35,301st, but I did still have a pulse at the end of the race and I have suffered no major aches or injuries. To my knowledge I was beaten by a the fridge man, a gingerbread man, a Scooby Doo (although I did beat another Scooby home) and Jesus. JC carried a heavy wooden cross for the whole run and gave me a rather disdainful look when I asked whether he was in fact Jesus or Brian.

The atmosphere and support were tremendous and perhaps the only negative was the heavy rain at the start. especially as it took me 50 minutes to actually reach the start line from when the gun went off. But there were somewhere in the region of 55, 000 entrants. A lot of our excellent Olympians and Paralympians were also there to offer support. In fact I was even able to high-five with the swimming superstar Ellie Simmonds and the magnificent Mobot himself, Mo Farah.

Up to now we have raised 83% of our target sponsorship for the Save The Children charity. So thank you to all of you who have contributed so far, but it’s not too late. Click here if you would like to donate. I also promise that this will be my last begging post for some time. So now for a special treat how about some appropriate songs?

 

“I’m gonna paint you by numbers and colour you in” aka The Brit Awards 2012 (February 21st) February 22, 2012


It’s that time of year again, the annual celebration and all round back slap of the UK music industry that is the Brits. There are 46 nominees this year including Adele who comes to the party already the proud owner of six Grammys. In a slight departure from my live typing last year I am doing this from the recording of the show. This meant I was able to spend a great night with Catwoman and some of our best friends and their lovely daughter Amelia. (Incidentally if you’d like to read the blog I write monthly for Amelia just click here)

So on with the show. A great and bombastic opener, “Charlie” from Coldplay. As with last year the event is presented by James Corden. The little clips introducing the best album nominees began with Adele’s ’21’ which is appropriately enough the best-selling album in the UK so far this century. As expected there was a film montage in memory of Whitney Houston which preceded the live appearance of Florence and the Machine. I am always blown away by that girl’s voice and tonight was no exception with a superb performance of “No Light No Light”. She seemed encased in a white light prison at one point. A prism prison if you will!

The first award was for Best British Female, presented by the beautifully proportioned Kylie Minogue. Whilst I would have liked to have seen Kate Bush win it there was really no surprise to see Adele be announced as a very worthy winner. She gave a really amusing acceptance speech including suggesting that she felt like a drag queen next to Kylie. The Best International Male award was presented by Jessie J and Jack Whitehall (who the fuck is he?) The winner was Bruno Mars with a bouffant hair do that seemed to add about a foot to his stature. His thank you speech was probably the blandest and least controversial there has ever been at the Brits.

The next live act was Olly Murs with the Rizzle Kicks. This is a real dilemma for me, I love the Rizzle Kicks but Olly Murs voice makes me want to eat my cats vomit with a side order of fresh road kill. It was a big dance production of Olly’s “My Heart Skips A Beat” including an attempt at Murs robotic dancing. At least his Mum and Simon Cowell would be proud of him.

The Critics Choice award went to Emeli Sande and was known in advance, this was given to the wonderful Jessie J last year. Mr Ed Sheerhan was the next turn to take to the stage with a wonderfully sparse version of his superb song “Lego House”. Just how good was that? The next award was for Best British Single presented by the immensely talented Tinie Tempah. Sadly the winner was the rather insipid attempt at anthemic; “What Makes You Beautiful” from X Factor Pop Muppets One Direction. Did they get dressed in a James Bond costume shop?

Jenson Button was chosen to present the award for International Female, not for his musical talents presumably. Still he’d make a better James Bond than One Direction, probably a better singer too. The award went to Rihanna, possibly one of the sexiest women on the planet in my opinion. To make up spectacularly for Olly Murs Noel Gallagher appeared with his High Flying Birds with the stupendous “AKA What A Life” with Chris Martin off of Coldplay on keyboards. I think it’s now very clear that Noel was and is the more talented Gallagher brother.

Next was a tribute to Amy Winehouse. Quite fittingly interspersing some of her brilliant songs with some great interview clips all shown in black and white. Losing Whitney was very sad but losing Amy was a tragedy. Best British Male was the next gong and it was presented by the sharp dressed and edgy Plan B. The award went to Ed Sheerhan who has now ditched the green T Shirt for a suit and tie.

Huey Morgan and Jo Whiley presented the Best British Group award. This one has been taken home by Coldplay twice before (in 2001 and 2003) and this year they make it a third. It was voted for by BBC Radio Two listeners. A really sincere acceptance speech though. James Corden then interviewed, very briefly, Kylie Minogue. He really should stick to his day job! The stage was owned by Adele for the next live performance, a storming “Rolling In The Deep”. She looked stunning, I wonder if that pretentious twat Karl Lagerfeld was watching.

The International Group award was presented by two of the remaining members of Queen, Brian May and Roger Taylor. The Foo Fighters were very worthy winners and were the first recipients of the evening not able to be there to collect their award. They did supply a great little video clip though. Nicole Scherzinger was joined by none other than musical superstar, sorry I meant football superstar Cesc Fabregas to present the Best Breakthrough act award. It was the second of the night for Ed Sheerhan. An interesting acceptance speech, apparently his manager could do with a new sofa.

Bruno Mars performed “Just The Way You Are” dressed like a tuxedoed James Bond lookalike. Except that the hair is probably an explosive secret weapon presented to this pint-sized warbler by Bond Boffin Q. Then we had another awkward Corden interview, this time with the prepubescent One Direction. A bizarre pairing of Rob Brydon and Will.i.Am presented the Best International Breakthrough act which unsurprisingly went to the talented and somewhat astral Lana Del Ray. She also won the award for blubbiest acceptance speech of the night, but I do love her album.

“We Found Love” from Rihanna was a live performance to be reckoned with. Only she could make a kind of painters smock sexy whilst performing in front of a gang of dancing painter decorators. Her hair had grown immeasurably from her earlier appearance. Has she taken the same follicle elixir as Bruno Mars or was it just a really classy syrup?

Finally it came to Ray Winstone to present the Outstanding Contribution To Music Award to Blur aka Graham, Dave , Alex and Damon. Next was the MasterCard British Album of the year award, presented by the man with talent oozing out of his pockets, George Michael. This had Adele’s name on it months ago didn’t it? That girl will need a bigger shelf for all these awards. How the fuck did they end up curtailing her acceptance speech in such an abrupt way.

Blur were on stage to close the show kicking off their set with “Girls And Boys” and then appropriately “Song 2”. They were then joined on stage by Phil Daniels for a great rendition of “Parklife” Sadly that is where the TV coverage ended, I would love to have seen the whole set from Blur. I hear that they finished off with “Tender” and “This Is A Low”, but somehow I imagine this was quite a high for them!

 

“Yes we’re going to a party party, yes we’re going to a party party, yes we’re going to a party party” February 9, 2012


I can hardly believe it really. I started this blog because I was as they say ‘between contracts’ and frankly I was a little bored. But now it’s probably my favourite hobby. Why am I telling you all this? Well the blog is three years old today, 9th February 2012. I have loved every moment and I have met some wonderful people through it too. The most amazing thing is that I would have been knocked out if my viewing figures went into double figures on a weekly basis but now the total for three years is an incredible 1.04 million. I’d like to thank each and every one of you; especially the 51 who have subscribed and the 180 who are following it on Twitter.

I have made close to 450 posts and there have been nearly 530 comments. Some of the more amusing things are the search terms that have landed people here. The top 10 search items for the 12 months to 9th February 2012 are;

lady gaga 10,670

street signs 3,923

esthera sarita 3,555

rod stewart 2,910

imelda may 2,561

bjork 2,019

spencer elden 1,828

michael jackson 1,649

kate bush 1,625

dream catcher 1,385

The Lily Allen Naked experiment clearly still has some residual interest with 368 hits for Ms Allen naked. The naked thing is quite weird; many of you have searched for a favourite celeb naked including; Lady Gaga, Rage Against the Machine, Take That, Bono, Rod Stewart, Kate Bush, Simon Cowell & Louis Walsh. I mean come on people, first it’s not kind of site and second who really wants to see some of those naked? Louis Walsh naked bloody hell that’s perverse!

The largest referrals outside of search engines this year came from;

Facebook.com

williamyoung.org

barelyawakeinfrogpajamas.wordpress.com

pretendinglifeislikeasong.wordpress.com

glasswalking-stick.blogspot.com

A big thanks to all of those. The Will Young one came about after I said some nice things about him in another of my anti X Factor posts.

The most viewed YouTube video from my blog in the past 12 months has been Wyclef Jean‘s “Stripper Song”. It’s a great song but there is no stripper in the clip, it’s just audio!

As for the most downloaded pictures from the blog in the last 12 months, that tells a similar story to the naked searches and the Stripper Song. Here they are in order of popularity;

the most downloaded picture on my blog Feb 2011 to Feb 2012

Number 4 and 5 take things to another place entirely!

Who do you think you're kidding Mr Hitler? That bus doesn't go to Poland

Back in the days when he was a laughing-stock.

And finally I also had the audacity to start three new blogs in the last 12 months. Feel free to check them out, rate them, comment on them and stuff.

http://withjustahintoflearning.wordpress.com/

http://withjustahintofamelia.wordpress.com/

http://starsinmyglasses.wordpress.com/

Thanks again for bothering to take a look it’s a pleasure having you here. I’ll close with a few birthday related songs;

 

“See how I’ll leave with every piece of you don’t underestimate the things that I will do” December 31, 2011


Spotify recently announced it’s top ten most played songs for 2011, but wait a minute it’s not over for a few more hours! Anyway I suspect that the Spotify plays on the last day of the year are unlikely to have a significant impact on the top tunes. Adele is top with “Rolling In The Deep“.

It’s an incredibly female dominated list too (on that note it also includes “S & M” from Rihanna). Eight of the songs are from the ladies. Rihanna has three entries, Jessie J and Adele have two each and Katy Perry has one. LMFAO and Bruno Mars make up the ten. “Pumped Up Kicks” from Foster The People was top in the USA.

Here is the full UK list and enjoy the top three below;

1. Adele – Rolling In The Deep

2. Bruno Mars – Grenade

3. Rihanna – S&M

4. Jessie J and B.o.B. – Price Tag

5. Jessie J – Do It Like A Dude (Explicit version)

6. LMFAO – Party Rock Anthem

7. Adele – Make You Feel My Love

8. Rihanna and Drake – What’s My Name?

9. Rihanna – Only Girl In The World

10. Katy Perry – Firework

 

 
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