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Archive for February, 2013

Diana Gameros: Her BAMM.tv Favorites

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We’re still celebrating our Artist Of The Month
– the wonderfully talented singer-songwriter Diana Gameros. Coming up tomorrow is an exclusive poster giveaway and on Thursday we’re offering the incredible chance to spend some time in the studio with Diana.

Today, however, we asked Diana to pick her five favorite videos from the BAMM.tv archives. Here are her choices …

Infantree “Living Proof”

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BAMM.tv Rundown: 5 Great Hidden Tracks

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So the humble CD has seen better days, but let’s not forget that – while it ruled the physical-format roost – it was a good friend to us all. It had plenty of quirks and distinctions which were unique to the format – like those little spokes which made it impossible to get the damn thing out of the case, or the fact that they scratched incredibly easy and then skipped mercilessly, or their massive overpricing, or their limited 74-minute storage capacity, or …

Ahem. Let’s concentrate on one of the more nostalgic elements, shall we? Who remembers the phenomenon of the ‘hidden track’ – the cheeky musical additions to albums which went unlabelled or unheralded. Vinyl records could contain such hidden delights, true (via the technique of ‘double-grooving’), but CDs remained the dominant format for these sneaky add-ons. Let’s take a look at some of the best ones …

5. ‘Zero Is Also A Number’ – Nick Cave

A real oddity, this. In 1996, ‘Songs In The Key Of X’ was released – a compilation album of music influenced by (or featured in) seminal TV series ‘The X-Files’. Cave’s brilliant ‘Red Right Hand’ was a full-fledged album track, but the sleeve notes contained a cryptic message: “Nick Cave and the Dirty Three would like to remind you that zero is also a number.” By holding down the rewind button for a few minutes at the very start of the CD, listeners could discover a hauntingly beautiful secret track that actually surpassed the rest of the album. Mulder and Scully would have been proud.

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BAMM.tv Artist Of The Month: Diana Gameros

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Time for another BAMM.tv Artist Of The Month feature: a selection of great music, exclusive articles and prize giveaways (among other things) from one of our favorite up-and-coming artists. This month we put San Francisco singer-songwriter Diana Gameros under the spotlight …

Soulfulness is a hard thing to quantify. People are a varied breed, and experience tells us it would be foolish to go all-out and categorise emotional response – music that leaves one listener cold may well prove to save the life of another. Music may be universal but the gamut of reactions works on a far more personal level – an innate form of relativism that both unites and separates us all.

Sometimes, though … sometimes you just have to appreciate the resonance of an artist. Opera may not do it for you, but you can’t help but quiver at the bombastic authority of a tenor or soprano. Heavy rock could well be the last thing you’d listen to, but you’ve have to be a cultural zero-mark not to marvel at a virtuoso guitar solo. As for emotive, Latin-tinged, classical acoustic songwriting? That might be outside your sphere altogether, but – frankly – if you’re not massively moved by the heart-stopping performances of Diana Gameros, then you might as well nail that coffin lid down now.

Luckily – here at BAMM.TV – we are big fans of emotive, Latin-tinged, classical acoustic songwriting. And we’re even bigger fans of the heart-stopping performances of Diana Gameros.

Stick around, and you might just find out why.

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BAMM In-Depth: ‘Local’ Music In A Global World

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Does one novelty pop song herald a musical revolution? When “Gangam Style” whinnied into the charts and a billion YouTube views at the end of 2012, music from South Korea, and “K-pop” in particular looked as though it was on the verge of a lasting breakthrough. Before PSY’s arrival, despite its straightforward charms and regional appeal, beyond the East Asian context, it was always the bridesmaid, never the bride.

Trans-Atlantic music journalists momentarily praised the song’s global domination—and in usual fashion, the same sources seemingly moved swiftly on to herald its imminent death a few trends later. Is the excitement about global music generated by K-pop’s success just a flash in a pan? Freya Bigg, co-founder of United K-Pop, told BAMM.tv: “PSY isn’t typical of K-pop, so I don’t know if he is really is a good representative of the genre, but he has definitely opened minds to the Korean language at least. If anything changes, it might be that people are less hesitant to try listening to K-pop when introduced, because they’ve already had experience of it, despite it not being typical.”

So, have Western conceptions of Eastern pop radically changed? And does it even really matter, when domestic markets in East Asia and other regions are growing bigger by the minute?

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我们BAMM tv 有一个疑问:在全球化的世界里,什么是“本地音乐”?

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一首新颖的流行歌曲是否可以带动流行音乐世界? 在2012年底, 一首 “江南style”悄悄地进入了,并在Youtube得到超过10亿的浏览量。当这一切发生得时候,南韩的音乐,特别是韩国流行音乐“K-pop”看起来像是站在了一个持久突破的边缘。尽管PSY所拥有的是简单的魅力和地区性的吸引力,但是在这之前,东亚的音乐永远只能是个配角,就像新娘旁边的伴娘一样。

這首歌能在世界上得到認可,就連大西洋音樂記者現在都稱讚,記者們平時在一首歌熱墦的時候會討論一段時間,但很快便慢慢淡忘,很多人對這首歌這樣興奮,k-pop成功是否短期成功?Freya Bigg, United K-Pop的含夥人向BAMM.TV說:”PSY不知是否一個k-pop典型的代表,但是至少會令人們願意接受韓語歌,若流行音樂世界再有韓語歌,人們會更加快接觸韓語歌.因為之前巳有收聽韓語歌的經驗.”

現在亞洲地方的國內音樂市場漸漸變大的問題,西方對東方流行音樂的看法,是否變得重要?

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BAMM.tv Rundown: Five Crazy Cover Versions

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Cover versions are a somewhat divisive prospect. They can generally go two ways: either an artist can reinterpret an existing song with passion and respect, or they can utterly destroy it, not so much burning bridges with musical aficionados as nuking the toll booth from orbit.

There is a third category, however – one that exists outside the traditional realm of ‘good’ or ‘bad’ and more in the realm of ‘just plain unbelievable’. Here, then, are 5 of the most downright bizarre cover versions you’ll ever hear. You may love them or hate them, but you certainly can’t deny their uniqueness …

5. William Shatner – ‘Common People’

The original: generation-defining Britpop tune from Jarvis Cocker and company, mixing in deadpan social commentary with chiming guitars and irresistible melody:

The revamp: William Shatner adds his unique ‘bewildered old man in post office’ slant to proceedings:

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BAMM.tv Rundown: The Greatest Band Logos

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See that picture above? The Rolling Stones have updated their famous ‘lips’ logo to celebrate their 50th anniversary, and – if anything – this revamp only goes to solidify its reputation as one of the all-time great band logos: instantly recognisable, effortlessly cool and simple enough to reproduce quickly on a billion T-shirts and a quadzillion bedroom posters.

So – which other band logos can proudly stand alongside those luscious red lips? Let’s construct a virtual hall of fame and take a look at some of the exhibits, shall we?

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GTA V: Musical Predictions

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Why are we writing about a video game? Because the Grand Theft Auto franchise is no mere video game – it’s a genuine pop-culture phenomenon, and, as anyone who keeps up with joypad-twiddling will tell you, music is becoming an ever-more integral part of gaming. The Rock Band/Guitar Hero franchise have flogged themselves to death, yet were undeniably a turning point for the industry. And Valve’s ‘Portal’ series has featured a couple of bespoke bona-fide pop classics (sung by an evil computer no less), not to mention a specially commissioned tune by The National.

But Grand Theft Auto … ah, Grand Theft Auto. The music that features in the game – blaring from a selection of in-car radio stations – adds to the experience on an almost indefinable level. Remember blowing up helicopters to the strains of Blondie’s ‘Atomic’ in Vice City? Cruising a motorbike through smouldering drug plantations while humming Loretta Lynn in San Andreas? Speeding away from a bank robbery to Alexander O’Neill’s ‘Criticize’ in GTA IV? Sure you do.

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