Browsing Tag

ed sheeran

Kurtis Simmons – Safe Place: Unadulterated Pop Rock

First impressions? This track wouldn’t be out of place on a Disney soundtrack. But beyond that, even as one with more raucous tastes, I became enthralled under the charm that US based Pop Rock artist Kurtis Simmons created with his debut angelic hit ‘Safe Place’.

With a backing track that kind of reminded me of the Lion King, it took a lot for his vocals to win me over, yet ultimately, they did. He leaves the window wide open to his soul, inviting you to come inside with his poetically lyrical fixings which are a constant feature throughout his work. With better direction, as a vocalist Kurtis could be unstoppable. Yet with such sickly melodies the sound hinders his true musical talent, I was waiting for the passion, the anger, the real feeling. But sadly, the cacophony never came. His influences include Steve Perry, Paul McCartney and David Bowie, if only their attitude was more evident throughout his back catalogue.

Safe Place is available to listen to now! Check it out using Soundcloud via the link below:

https://soundcloud.com/kurtissimmons/safe-place

Check out Kurtis’ website for more information on how to download his music & keep up to date with his tours.

https://www.kurtissimmons.com/

Nikhil Swaroop – The Light: The Acoustic Zeitgeist

I’ve only just had the pleasure of being acquainted with Nikhil Swaroop. It took me approximately 10 seconds to fall completely in love with him from when I hit play on his new track The Light (The Original). The video of the light takes place within Nikhil’s inner sanctum, allowing you a personal view into his life, past and pain, with no holds barred.

He’s a stunning singer song writer currently living in India, I have to say it was my first experience listening to Indian acoustic, but one things for sure, it won’t be the last. He has the same pensive delectableness of the quaint sonorous likes of Ray LaMontagne, Keith Urban and Glen Hansard. The light is charged with upliftingly harrow emotion that flows with inexplicable ease.

Aside from his original work, Nikhil has become the master at breathing a little soul into British and American songs, from Lady Gaga to Ed Sheeran, each sound is as staggering as the last. The whole production for the video to The Light only took 50 minutes. He’s kindly left the track as raw as it gets for his fans. If only more artists were that honest with their work.

Anyone Can Relate To Bethany Janette’s “I Miss You”

Bethany Janette is a singer and songwriter with a unique approach to her sound. Her recent single, “I Miss You” is a great example of her intimate lyrics and mellow sound. The song has a beautiful arrangement, where string sections create some amazing atmospheres, and the piano chords really drive the song’s structure.

On top of it all, the song strikes for Bethany’s remarkable ability to really stand out. Her phenomenal approach to songwriting truly strikes a chord with lyrics that are deep and very personal, yet very easy to relate to.

“I Miss You” is a beautiful song of longing where emotion flows like a river.

 

Adam Wendler releases pop-folk track ‘Deep Water’

If the idea of folk and pop meeting together in an upbeat and commercial package has you shuddering at the memory of the likes of Mumford and The Whale’s brand of generic gene splicing, then thank the stars for Adam Wendler. His music is all the things I have just described but he seems more expertly guided in his choices. The melody is infectious, the beat groovesome and the lyrics relatable, the folk integrity and the pop catch blend seamlessly and his understanding of dynamic is masterful.

It’s a song which shows how neatly genres can dovetail into each other when a bit of thought is put into the artisanship and Adam can sleep safe in the knowledge that if ever he decides to take a break from the live circuit his songs would be snapped up by any artist with an ounce of common sense, right up to the likes of Ed Sheeran. I wonder what ever happened to him?

A&R Factory Present: Heffron Drive

Based out of Los Angeles, CA, Heffron Drive is an Alt Pop band started in 2008 by lead singer Kendall Schmidt and Guitarist Dustin Belt. The duo began making music together when they were teenagers. Both Kansas natives met while living on the same street in Burbank, CA called Heffron Drive, which ultimately inspired the name of their band.

Before Heffron Drive had a chance to take off, Kendall booked the lead of a television show/music group and gained worldwide popularity as the lead Singer of the Nickelodeon/Columbia Records project Big Time Rush. After 5 years of success, Kendall, alongside guitarist, Dustin Belt, got back in the studio together as Heffron Drive.

The two best friends and band mates have been busy touring all parts of the world since the revival of Heffron Drive. From Europe to South America, the Philippines and all over the US. Their first album Happy Mistakes was released in 2015, shortly followed up by Happy Mistakes: Unplugged; per the fans request for an acoustic album. Happy Mistakes is a soaring example of how pure songwriting can be. The music is thoughtful and meticulously crafted to go along with lyric and melody that pull on every individual heart string.

 

So far the band has only impressed and they aren’t slowing down anytime soon. With the release of their two new singles “Rain Don’t Come” and “Don’t Let Me Go” in 2016 they have brought a new sound to their music that has pleasantly surprised the fans and attracted new listeners. These two new singles push the limits of what HD is all about; unforgettable music. “Rain Don’t Come” is a heart racing track full of desert vibes and incredibly thoughtful production. “Don’t Let Me Go” is the new sound for the project, showing the love that Heffron Drive has for electronic music while keeping their unique sound alive.

The band has been hard at work in the studio writing and producing new music. Their first new song of 2017, “Living Room”, was released January 13th, followed by an EP entitled “The Slow Motion EP” released February 10th. They will be playing a few shows in Mexico in January, and then of to Europe for a full European tour in February.

A&R Factory Present: Sam Woolf

SAM WOOLF is a 20 year-old folk/pop singer songwriter known for his original arrangements, beautiful pitch perfect tone and emotional original songs. His performances and recordings have obtained millions of views on YouTube and Sam receives tremendous support from his fan club, the “WOOLFPACK” on social media. Sam Woolf has gained national recognition as a finalist on American Idol’s 2014 Season where he placed in the Top 5. Independent Grammy-winning producer Danny Blume produced and recorded an EP “Pretend” containing Sam’s originals for release. It debuted at #9 on the Billboard Heatseekers Chart.

Sam was born in Detroit and lived in West Bloomfield, Michigan until he was 10. Sam has since lived in Florida and he graduated from Braden River High School in June of 2014. Sam’s father, Scott Woolf, introduced him to acoustic folk-rock music when he was a young child. Sam’s grandfather (“Papa Roy”) sent him to singing lessons with opera singer Bob Lischetti for several years, and Sam taught himself guitar. During high school, Sam began performing locally in Bradenton at restaurants and cafés and was a mentee of the Del Couch Music Education Foundation, which booked him for performances at local events.

In the summer of 2013, Sam attended a five week program for high school students at Berklee College of Music (the world’s premier contemporary music school) in Boston. He was one of four students chosen to perform live in the “winners” showcase as well as one of four students selected to perform in the theater-in-the-round singer/songwriters performance. He was also one of the Berklee students referred to American Idol for auditions.

Sam was a featured performer at an Alex Preston concert in New Hampshire, co-headlined with the Doobie Brothers, War, and Jefferson Starship, opened for We The Kings and has performed extensively at other public and private venues in Florida. He has toured throughout the Northeast with the Como Brother’s Band, and was featured on a track of the Como Brother’s EP, Live at 89 North. Sam is currently writing a set of pop originals with Israeli musical prodigy/guitarist Orion Meshorer.

A&R Factory Present: J Lind

J Lind is an American singer-songwriter from Arizona. Following high school, J attended Princeton University on scholarship, where he formed an alternative rock band, Valley Academy. The group quickly became Princeton’s premier indie act, opening for artists ranging from Alus and Luke Christopher to the Grammy-nominated artist, Big Sean, before parting ways in the spring of 2016.

In August, J recorded his debut solo EP at The Chapel in Nashville, TN. Engineered by Joshua D. Niles (COIN, Taylor Phelan, Jason Gray), the record blends warm instrumentation’s with timeless folk signatures to touch on socially relevant themes. J’s debut EP is scheduled for release in January 2017, prior to a string of shows in Europe in the spring.

A&R Factory Present: Josh Kemp

Josh Kemp is a singer songwriter from Nottingham, UK.  His video for  ‘Imaginary Friend: What a Wonderful World’, was shot on location around South East Asia.

Josh Kemp uses just an acoustic guitar and a loop pedal to create a sound to rival a band. Having played 500+ gigs in in the last 3 years on repetitive tours of the UK, Josh’s well practiced audience participation means his set is well suited to both main stage festivals and more intimate acoustic gigs.

Josh Kemp says

“The idea for this song and then video came from the realisation that we are frequently bogged down by negativity, in the news or even in our day to day lives as bad things are a lot more sensational or memorable and the spreading of good things are often deemed cliche, boastful, too personal or alienating.

I noticed that the good parts of life are often over looked or taken for granted
So I wanted initially to write a song that would explain to someone who would never have chance to see it, the best things in the world, in my opinion of course 🙂

We tend not to notice the big things we take for granted until they are gone, and that’s something I aim to change, even if it’s just for 6mins20!”