Midweek Music [07]: Sean & Zander

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snzIt’s great that my job allows me to meet really cool people from all over the world. Last week I had the honor to work with a fabulous team and amazing photographer/director Geoff Mööre who introduced me to this duo that he works with. You can hear a soulful old school Americana charm in their hybrid of folk, country, pop, ragtime, bluegrass and gospel tunes. After some digging around, I realized Zander Schloss (Circle Jerks, Thelonius Monster, Low and Sweet Orchestra, etc.) and Sean Wheeler (Throw Rag) are such veteran musicians! This 2011 album is probably considered old after 3 years, but it is such a breath of fresh air to what we have these days – let’s just say this is what good music should be. Can’t wait to hear more new songs from them and hopefully to catch them live someday! Sit back and enjoy with a whiskey (or orange juice if you’re underaged. haha)

Oh, the MV is directed by the very talented Geoff! So simple yet beautiful shots. Love it! (I’m totally not bias here. haha) Such a fun quirky beat too!

 

 

 

Retablo – Sean and Zander

All the prayers and all the saints 
The rooster crows as the paint dries on the chain 
Sometimes even losers win 
Another stolen Retablo 
I know the light don’t shine through fear 
Come on down, hey Zeus I’m here! 
I’ll wrap you up and walk you home 
The throne the tourist and the truth don’t live in Rome 
Aint never gonna let me 
Aint never gonna let me 
Let me go woah woah oh 
Aint never gonna let me 
Aint never gonna let me 
Let me go woah woah oh 
Behold the clock, the blind, the blessed 
And the burden of repent 
Deadly to speak of what they say 
We cut it sideways but the saints get in the way 
Aint never gonna let me 
Aint never gonna let me 
Let me go woah woah oh 
Aint never gonna let me 
Aint never gonna let me 
Let me go woah woah oh 
All the prayers and all the saints 
The rooster crows as the paint dries on the chain 
Sometimes even losers win 
Another stolen retablo 
Aint never gonna let me 
Aint never gonna let me 
Let me go woah woah oh 
Aint never gonna let me 
Aint never gonna let me 
Let me go woah woah oh 
Woah Woah oh…

Midweek Music [06]: Ages and Ages

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agesandagesI forgot to blog last week but here I am back again with something good.

Ages and Ages is a 7 piece choral pop band that comes from Portland, Oregon. Their songs are unabashedly inspirational, carefully crafted and crazy catchy. One thing I like about their music is how positive the messages are, without losing the raw choral feel.

I’ll let them put this song and video in their own words, “This song is about keeping yourself right even amidst darkness and negativity. For the video, we decided to portray this struggle through the story of a bunch of young kids who set out to make things right, but lose a part of themselves along the way. They may have started off on the same path and with good intentions, but their struggle reveals varying agendas and leads them in very different directions.”

Divisionary – Ages and Ages

Do the right thing do the right thing
do it all the time do it all the time
make yourself right, never mind them
don’t you know you’re not the only one suffering

I see you up again wandering so diligently
crossing your t’s as though it weren’t irrelevant
they say formality, this is what they really meant:
they can be the walk and we can be the pavement

Do the right thing do the right thing
do it all the time do it all the time
make yourself right, never mind them
don’t you know you’re not the only one suffering

So what you’re up against all the disingenuous
They wave you along and say there’s always room for us
But we know better than that to take’em serious.
Still don’t let’em make you bitter in the process

And when the light is up, this is how oughta be
We’ll make it alright, they’ll come around eventually
They say it’s nothing but that ain’t the reality
They may take us on but they can never take us easy

Cuz they ain’t moving, they’re just moving around
So if you love yourself, you better get out now

I hear a higher calling
Better here than there I guess
so long

Bystander Effect?

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Instead of lazing in bed, I decided to take Momster out for lunch.

While waiting for the bus/taxi (we are both indecisive), Momster and I were just observing the changes in our neighborhood when someone caught our eyes.

I have seen him around the neighborhood, having a beer or two with the old men staying around the area at night. He has uncombed hair, his white shirt was open at the throat, exposing his tan wrinkled skin as he made his way, in a rather haggard manner, to the side of the pavement.

Momster shook her head and commented in Cantonese,” These old men and women around these blocks, forever doing dangerous things like this….look at him, he can barely lift his leg up….” before she could end the sentence, we almost witness a fatal accident right before our eyes.

The old man by now has reached the middle of the two way traffic lane where the pedestrian refuge lies. He walked really slowly and I noticed that he was unable to lift his right leg up on the refuge and so he had to balance himself in between the gap of the two refuges.

I replied to Momster, “yes, please do not jaywalk like this because…”

His left leg shuddered and went limp as he took another step forward. He fell backwards and hits his head against the floor and went still for a few seconds.

Momster gasped and grabbed my hand. I couldn’t really hear her words as my mind was in a mess.

“Oh my god….shit…fuck..his head is right there..fuck..” my heart was racing as I noticed a car speeding down the lane as the light turns green at the intersection. It felt almost like a movie scene.

Thankfully the car slowed down in time and swerved past the man, missing his head by just an inch as he lied there motionlessly.

“Did he hurt his head? Is he ok? Shit..What am I suppose to do now?!”

I told Momster to stay still as I dashed towards where the old man was lying and checked if he was ok. He was obviously alive (thank god) but unable to move as he could not even straighten himself up. I gave him my hand, grabbed him by the shoulders and tried to lift him up as much as I can. Hell, a skinny girl like me, trying to lift a fat old man who was probably double my size, was a really bad attempt. (Momster was not much of a help as she was still pretty shaken by the scene and it’s not like she has more strength than I do.)

I saw people across the street passing by, just watching. The cars behind me slowed down to see what was going on. Nobody, not one single soul, came over  to help. (and my mind goes “fuck you all.” even though I didn’t say it out loud.)

Finally, a kind young driver from the coming traffic stopped his car, rather badly parked in the middle of the road to block the entire traffic, got off from his car and helped me to lift the man up and took him across the street. The driver behind got out of his car, not to help, but to see what was going on. The old man, with scratches on his hands from the fall,  held our hands (the driver and mine, together, a rather awkward moment) and mumbled a bunch of things to me which I didn’t understand but I am guessing he was expressing his gratitude since I only understood “Thank you” in Hokkien. I told him in Mandarin not to do that again and use the traffic lights further down the street, but he didn’t seem to understand me and just limped off.

I went back to where Momster was and sternly told her never to jaywalk like this without me being by her side, nagging nonstop over how an aging body doesn’t reflex as quickly as the mind thinks it does. These incidents definitely underscore the urgent need to make our streets safer, also it makes me wonder where this old man’s family members were. Perhaps if he had someone with him, today’s incident could have been prevented.

Also, shame on those people who stood around to watch instead of helping. Bystander Effect? Whatever it is, nothing can justify you doing nothing when someone is in dire need of help. It’s not about being a “hero” but a matter of choice to not just stand there and watch - stand up and help the next time you come across such situations, please.

Midweek Music [05]: Woodkid

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Yoann Lemoine, with the stage name ‘Woodkid’ is one of the many successful music videos director turned singer-songwriter. He is the director behind Katy Perry’s “Teenage Dream”, co-created Lana Del Rey’s “Born to Die” and Mystery Jets “Dreaming of Another World“, not forgetting Pharrell’s “Happy” music video which he worked as the creative director. I loved his song “Run Boy Run” which was nominated for 2013 Grammy Awards ‘Best Short Form Music Video’.

Last week he released the official music video of ‘The Golden Age’ feat. Max Richter ‘Embers’. Let’s just say that this 10 minutes video is quite epic and beautifully shot. Graceful but powerful song! If you have the time, check out his other videos here.

 

 

Woodkid - ‘The Golden Age’ feat. Max Richter ‘Embers’

Walking through the fields of gold
In the distance, bombs can fall
Boy we’re running free
Facing light in the flow
And in the cherry trees
We’re hiding from the world
But the golden age is over
But the golden age is over

Boy, we’re dancing through the snow
Waters freeze, the wind blows
Did you ever feel
We’re falling as we grow
No I would not believe
The light could ever go
But the golden age is over
But the golden age is over

Listen, I can hear the call
As I’m walking through the door

Did you ever dream
We’d miss the mornings in the sun
The playgrounds in the streets
The bliss of slumberland
Boy, we are family
No matter what they say
But boys are meant to flee
And run away one day

When golden age is over
When the golden age is over
But the golden age is over
The golden age is over

Midweek Music [04]: MØ

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Dreamy nordic voice – Karen Marie Ørsted, better known as MØ (whose name means “maiden” or “virgin” in Danish), is no cookie cutter in the music industry. I guess you can say that she falls under the pop music trend and reminds me a little of Lana Del Rey’s melancholy, but probably on more antidepressants. She’s definitely gonna be a rising star, else you people are just totally bonkers to not appreciate this up and coming Danish singer here!

Check out her other single Don’t Wanna Dance and her cover of Spice Girl’s Say You’ll Be There too. So good.

 

 

 

Walk This Way - MØ 

All my life I’ve stepped to the rhythm of the drums inside my head
Longing for the sweet sound of my mama
Make them all walk this way

There’s a light for you, burning for you

Oh, my mama said: “It is burning for you
Oh, don’t let it go, oh, don’t let it it go
You’ll find a way, baby, make them all burn.
(You’ll make them all burn)

I’m a post-teen monster, bold and blind
From the top of my head to the shaking ground
Blame the billboards ’cause they’ve let me down
I’m a symphony of the world gone wild
(What a pretty sight)
And I spit and I cry for the dirty mind
Never really got it, baby
(You’ll make them all burn)

But I think about it all the time
Tough luck, when, oh, will the days come around
Boy I am thinking ’bout it all the time
(You’ll make them all burn)

All my life I’ve stepped to the rhythm of the drums inside my head
Longing for the sweet sound of my mama
Make them all walk this way

There’s a light for you, burning for you
Oh, my mama said: “It is burning for you
Oh, don’t let it go, oh, don’t let it it go
You’ll find a way, baby, make them all burn.

I’m a bug in your eardrum, that’s my luck
(That’s my luck)
And I won’t, won’t stop ’til the day I die
You’ll never get my posse and I

We’re a symphony of the world gone wild
(What a pretty sight)
And we long for the place where we can be found
Burning like a star in our minds
(You’ll make them all burn)

But I think about it all the time
Tough luck, when, oh, will the days come around
Boy I am thinking ’bout it all the time
(You’ll make them all burn)

Sun rises beyond the sea
The dead will see and we might stop living

All my life I’ve stepped to the rhythm of the drums inside my head
Longing for the sweet sound of my mama
Make them all walk this way

There’s a light for you, burning for you
Oh, my mama said: “It is burning for you
Oh, don’t let it go, oh, don’t let it it go
You’ll find a way, baby, make them all burn.

Sunshine is beyond the sea
You’ll find a way, baby
Make them all burn

School ≠ Work

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I mentioned in my earlier post that I hate to admit it – my parents were right. We spent almost a quarter of our entire life studying, obviously we want to study something that we like to do in the future (minus the compulsory education which leaves you no choice). Why would any one in the right mind spend almost 3-9 (diploma-masters) years doing something that doesn’t relate to their future career?

But here’s the thing, reality often isn’t all marshmallow and candy canes. Nobody can really tell what kind of job they will end up with. Everything you have studied prior to your first job, really contributes in every little unexpected way. Of course I am not referring to specialized jobs like doctor/lawyers etc which require years of studies and experiences. But in general, you can be doing something that you don’t have a degree for.

Take my personal experience for example – I’ve graduated with a design diploma, a social sciences (sociology and organizational behavior & human resources ‘OBHR in short’ majors) BA then a comparative education MA. For years I’ve done part time jobs in the marketing/events field – nothing I’ve studied in school really directly contributed to that. But I can ensure you that I’ve put things taught in school into practical use. It’s often the soft skills you learn from your tertiary education that matter most. And you’ll never know when life decides to throw you a curve ball – I chose to do OBHR as my major simply because I wanted to avoid as many math-related/accounting modules back in my uni days, who would have thought I’ll be doing recruiting (HR) now?

So here’s my advice to the juniors or students reading this, it’s really ok to be studying any majors/research area. Do what you’re passionate for at the moment. As long as you learn to apply the things you’ve learnt into your future career. You may think employers look at what you study in school, most often they do not BUT it’s important to have certain experience such as internships that prove you’re a good fit for the industry and for yourself to understand your ability in a certain role. Sure enough, your field of studies may matter but who knows? I was lucky to enter a company who sees beyond a certificate. It’s ok to explore and find what you eventually want to do. I mean, even to this day, I’m not sure if recruiting is what I want to do for the rest of my life but I’m happy with where I am and the things I’m learning on the job. That’s probably most important – to see every opportunity as a learning platform and be flexible enough to put your knowledge into practical use! Oh, congrats on your graduation and welcome to the real world :)

Midweek Music [03] : Faul & Wad Ad vs Pnau

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I am terrible at publishing the drafts that are collecting dust on my blog. Sorry for the disappearance but I can’t seem to find a balance between focusing on work and blogging yet. Hopefully I’ll be regularly blogging once again with so many things to share!

So I came across this song by chance during my first work trip to Hyderabad, India. This song was #1 on iTunes in Germany and it’s such a lovely summer tune (if there’s such a thing) – sexy sax infused house music that has catchy lines.  This Parisian electric duo, Faul & Wad Ad decided to cut the track by using Pnau’s famous “Baby” segment (which I like both!) and here you go, another major release for the duo that top the charts!

On a random note, I want one of those toilet roll guns. haha

Faul & Wad Ad vs Pnau – “Changes”

Baby, I don’t know
Just why I love you so
Maybe it’s just the way
That God made me this day

Baby, I don’t know
Just why I love you so
Maybe it’s just the way
That God made me this day

Honey, I hear you
And I feel for you
It won’t be too long till
We’re back as one again

Baby, I don’t know
Just why I love you so
Maybe it’s just the way
That God made me this day

Baby, I don’t know
Just why I love you so
Maybe it’s just the way
That God made me this day

Honey, I hear you
And I feel for you
It won’t be too long till
We’re back as one again

 

Midweek Music [02]: Yukon Blonde

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Came across Yukon Blonde one day as I was randomly tumblr-ing. This Canadian Vancouver-based indie rock band has rather good trippy videos like” Guns”  and “Stairway” (which I like more) but I will feature their most current single “Six Dead Tigers” instead.  I think this band is getting a lot of hipsters attention with its travel back in time influences (and actually traveling around the globe with the on-going tours). Not perfect in my opinion but good enough for a weekend reading session.

 

 

Yukon Blonde – “Six Dead Tigers”

There was no future and nothing left to write
No great answers like a …
Then one morning came and.. new my mind now
With a note from the sky
Last night tango ..a six dead tigers running in the field to light
When the future came to the light five white horses
I can’t be away more on tv nothing left to say
Last night .. diamonds and .. fear and strong is all you know
Diamonds and gold mirrors and .. is all you know
Love is a .. mirror and .. is all you know
Diamonds and gold mirrors and .. is all you know
Diamonds and gold mirrors and .. is all you know
Diamonds and gold mirrors and .. is all you know
Diamonds and gold mirrors and .. is all you know

 

10 Things That I Never Understood…till now

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People used to say “You’ll understand once you get older.” I hated that line. But now that I am 27 (note: I don’t understand why girls are so sensitive about their age when it’s a fact we’re getting older every year), I am starting to understand this saying. I can probably list a whole lot of things down but let’s stick to just these 10 for the time being…

#1 – It is acceptable to feel tired by 10pm on a work day and wanting to sleep before midnight.

It is indeed frustrating that our bodies are just wired to feel the exhaustion after work and it’s almost impossible to stay awake past midnight. When I was still studying+part time working, I used to be able to stay up till 4am to clear my projects/party till the next morning but somehow it’s a myth to me now.

#2 – (Almost) Every gathering’s key conversation topic rotates around work/marriage/kids/insurance/housing.

We have all become boring people who finds impractical conversations a waste of time. No more chatting about the idealistic world we don’t live in, bring on the useful life hacks, housing policies, which school should I send my kids to…zzz but that’s grown up life for ya

#3 – Everyone is too busy for anybody. Nobody really gives a shit about your life.

Sometimes it’s not about not wanting to care about anybody else but your priorities in life have changed. I understand. However, it is sad that people reach out to others only when they need something from the other person. Whatever happened to the simple hello or a random “miss you” message as a friend?

#4 – When you’re the only (few) single amongst your happily-ever-after friends, it gets awkward

They are your friends, they don’t judge. But somehow the conversation goes from them saying “I miss being single” to “Do you want me to introduce you somebody?” to ” You know, perhaps you need to think about what is wrong with you..” to “your clock is ticking you know, you should settle down” say what? I think it’s perfectly fine being single at 27 in this 21st century, gimme a break.

#5 – Nothing in the past matters any more, nothing.

Ex boy/girlfriend who broke your heart? That bitch in school who gave you hell when you were 14? That B- that screwed up your GPA? Nah, nothing really matters now. Skip the drama and get over it.

#6 – Even if you hate to admit it, your parents were probably right about (most) things.

As much as I hate to admit it.

#7 – The awkward moment when you hear a song and go “omg that’s like our secondary school days song!”…and the teen behind goes “woah, that’s retro!”

Yup kid, that’s right. I’m O-L-D.

#8 – You learn to say “No” to everything you couldn’t refuse before.

And I do mean everything – from party invites to having your so-called friends calling you up in attempt to sell you insurance – “no thank you.”

#9 – Less impulsive buys because you’re saving up for something better

No more walking into that local $10 store and coming out with a bunch of useless stuff that didn’t seem to make sense once you reach home. Now you learn to save up for bigger better things – like a nice massage spa treat, the car you’ve been eyeing, that house you’re dreaming of and perhaps just start with a vacation or two.

#10 – Often speechless…You have no words for the complete lack of intelligence.

It’s not about us being extra smart…there’s just a lot of stupid things being said or asked in this world. Whatever happened to common sense?

 

Midweek Music [01]: Funeral Suits

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Funeral Suits

A three-piece Irish alternative rock band “Funeral Suits” which reminds me a lil of “White Lies” or “Kasabian” in earlier days. Dark lingering lead vocals with eerie videos for most of their music, I grew quite fond of their (not so) new single as featured below.

I will try to feature a song/band every week as how I used to with “AOTW aka Artist Of the Week” in my old blog, if you are interested in sharing or checking out music shared by my friends and I, feel free to join the facebook group “myy #nowplaying“. Enjoy! :)

 

Funeral Suits – We Only Attack Ourselves

Don’t be afraid, of the smoke in our grenades.
It won’t sting your eyes.
I’m gonna climb
gonna go out and start a fight
I won’t desert you.

How come the sun don’t shine on me?
Anymore
You know, you know

And how come the sun don’t shine on me?
Anymore
You know, you know

Don’t be afraid, of the smoke in our grenades.
It won’t sting your eyes.
I’m gonna climb,
gonna go out and start a fight
I won’t desert you.

La, Da, Da, Da…..
Oooh

How come the sun don’t shine on me?
Anymore
You know, you know

And how come the sun don’t shine on me?
Anymore
You know, you know

La, Da, Da, Da…..
Oooh