Saturday, March 8, 2014

Salute to Female artists

Since it's international women's month, I want to pay tribute to great women. Last year, I've been busy being a tough woman. Hence, I'd like my post after a few months of somber to be about women - great women that is. Since I love music, I'd like to list down my favorite live performances of great female singers. Some singers sound great in record but a few sound great or even better live, which to me is the mark of a true, great singer.

1. Whitney Houston - i will always love you

Yeah, I'm not a big fan of divas but you can't ignore Whitney Houston when she sang her own rendition of an original cowboy song "I will always love you." The song became an internationally loved song. It's a favorite contest piece for aspiring singers. How many artists tried singing Whitney songs and this song specifically, but there's no better version than Whitney's. Among the live performances, this was the best. Her vocal prowess is very evident.

2. Sinead O' Connor - nothing compares 2 u

This is yet another cover. This is originally a Prince song. However, Sinead's version was more poignant and don't you just love her skinhead? How cool was that? Growing up, I always fantasized about having the same skinhead. Anyway, this particular performance from the MTV VMA's was the most special. It's as if Sinead let the audience saw her soul. It was so heartfelt and her trademark rich voice which fades (I don't know what's the technical word for that) fits this song perfectly.

3. Sarah Mclachlan - angel

 Sarah's voice is angelic to begin with and her signature song, Angel made Sarah unforgettable. This live performance specially is so poignant. Sarah's piano playing is like second nature to her. This is actually a music video which makes it even more interesting because she made a music video out of a real performance. These days, music videos are commercialized with all fanfare. This is simply great music.

4. Annie Lennox - why

Oh Annie! Annie is one of my favorite artists. She's an amazing musician and I love when people keep it simple. The song is titled "Why." It is as extremely simple as it is meaningful. This was performed in open grounds but Annie's voice was solid. She made adlibs which somehow veered away from the original record but it was tastefully done. Annie is a true artist and this live performance is a testament. If you don't enjoy this performance, my question is why?

 5. Lea Salonga - I dreamed the dream from Les Miserables

Lea Salonga is one of the Philippines' greatest export. She was a coach/judge in the Voice of the Philippines but I dare say she is THE VOICE. Lea's voice is classic. Her notes are clean. She is the star of Broadway. She was casted in the 25th anniversary presentation of Les Miserables and you would know why when you watch this live performance. In the film version, Anne Hathaway played Fantine and when asked how she felt singing the immortal "I dreamed the dream," she replied that she wishes she could sing it like Lea did. This is not a good video clip but the performance is no way near good, it is great!

Sunday, December 29, 2013

Holiday cheers...

Oh I miss writing! Before 2013 ends, I wanted to share some holiday cheers, how? - the way I know, a LIST! This time, let's list down the coolest things you can do during the holidays...

1. Another year of successes and disappointments has gone. Buy yourself a nice treat. Buy that thing you wish all year long to celebrate success. If this year has been very disappointing then, all the more - treat yourself to lighten up your spirit. You are not able to share or give happiness to anyone else if you aren't happy yourself. So be happy!

2. If you live in the city, go back to your hometown during the holidays. It will bring you close to your family. How wonderful it is to spend the holidays with your family. It will also bring you to  your roots. The holidays are those few times during the year that you can slow down a bit and look back. It will bring you nostalgia, great childhood memories, and embarrassing experiences. It keeps people grounded, to know where you came from. It will also take you where you're heading...

3. Prepare to shock everyone when you come back after the holidays. Got that long locks, shock your officemates with a pixie! Get  yourself a tattoo! Change your wardrobe! To keep yourself interesting and people interested in you, you have to change - hopefully for the better. Getting something changed for the new year also jumpstarts your new year. It gives you more confidence and that zest you never knew you have.

4. Sleep! Oh how I want this for myself =)   All year long, you struggle at work, in school or wherever. This is the best time to relax and recuperate. As you go back to work and school, you won't have time to rest again. Give yourself the best relaxation you could possibly have. You will be rejuvenated for another year's battle.

5. Learn something new. Tired of eating in fastfood chains, get yourself cooking! Want to startle people around you, learn that French or Japanese! Bored of your weekends spent in the malls, enroll yourself in a martial arts class. Drum lessons anyone?

6. Keep your records. List down your accomplishments for the year. You have to constantly remind yourself that you are on track with your dreams and goals. At the same token, you can track which ones you target for the coming year, or which areas you need improvement on. Some people create dream books but you don't have to go that extreme. Just keep track and keep it in your head...

7. Clean up! Clean up your mess literally and figuratively. Don't you want to open the new year with a clean slate? Tidy your stuff and yourself. Learn from the mistakes this year and unlearn the bad habits. Clear your mind with new goals and focus. Suit up and conquer the world!

8. Booze! Hey, these are the few times when you can drink and not worry about work tomorrow morning so get yourself ice cold beer. Whiskey? Merlot? Whatever it is that tickles your fancy, go ahead, indulge. Drink up!

and the coolest thing you could do during the holidays...

9. Move on! Another year is offer and the coming year has a lot to offer so move on and be prepared! Embrace the blessings and take on the challenge. Smile!