Pre-Exam Prep creative Purge

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   Sometimes you just have to get it out…

As I take an escape from real life, writing and studying and reading and studying and reading, I don’t want to do too many word related activities.  So, here’s a lil something I’m working on…early stages.  needs something… What’s missing??  I’ll get a hook together when I figure out what  it makes me wanna sing/say.

Hope you like it.

November Jas(in progress)

-Brookes

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I Don’t Wanna Be Loved….I DON’T Wanna Be Loved??? Huh?

...oh the days when it was cool to love and value women.

I was listening to the radio the other day, which I rarely do, because no matter how much you like a song, you hate it when it is played every seven minutes and twenty-three seconds, and I heard this song that was jammin!  I turned the radio up, and started to groove, not so much listening to the lyrics, and then I heard the hook…I don’t wanna be loved, I don’t wanna be love, I just want a quickie….I found myself reminding myself to close my mouth.  I’m so disturbed because I can only imagine that this song is considered a contemporary “slow jam”….Someone’s lil girl is being seduced by some boy passionately suggesting that she be his quickie buddy, and that being able to separate feelings from sex is a sign of maturity. I would venture to say that in previous generations there were definitely girls who went for this, or felt empowered by being able to have meaningless sex, but it seems that this girl is quickly becoming the rule, not the exception?  Is that acceptable?  Perhaps this evolution isn’t an issue at all.  Where should young people learn about romance, and what they should expect from a mature romantic relationship?  Where did we learn this?

Is there anything on the airwaves for popular urban music that is giving this generation even the semblance of heterosexual romance or love?  Anything on these types of stations that might tell a young girl that when she grows up a young man will come along that she will fall in love with, who will show her that he loves her and wants to be with her and spend the rest of his life loving her?  Ok, well how about a song that will tell her that she has value beyond her sex appeal, sexual skills?  As I continued listening I found that the station was dominated with explicit sexual messages about the male prowess, ability to make a young lady wet the bed, make her legs shake, describing women as accessories, bros before hoes (super homo)mentality or “empowered” women spewing aggression and claims of finding pleasure in the use of whips and chains in sex.  There were very few exceptions.  Of course, the line up has to be no more than about 15 songs repeated throughout the day.  Recognizing that the listening demographic is likely 13-25 I have to ask what kind of character development this supports.  While I’m sure we can all agree that there is definitely a sector of parents that cannot be relied on to shape their child’s development along these lines, so is there a responsibility of artists to consider the messages they are sending?  Could part of the responsibility fall on the stations that air the music?  Or, am I just showing my age by even seeing an issue?  idk. let’s go!

oh yeah, guess who’s bizzack. I shouldn’t a left you, without a dope beat to step to!  

-Brookes

where PASSION meets PURPOSE

The newest producer to enter the game, and arguably one of the most sincere that we’ve had in quite some time, Stephen Starks, who goes by the moniker of S-Choir Music, is the creative mind behind the productions available online at www.s-choirmusic.com.   So far, the full-time attorney has established a musical portfolio that offers a dynamic collection of tracks to roll out to, roll up to, help you unwind, club bangers as well as a lil’ something for lovers .  His style can not be linked to any one genre as he offers  joints like the funky and racy  jam “Ridin”, think Britney Spears (pre-K-fed), to joints like “Me and My Girl” which is a light, fun summer day kinda joint.  In my opinion, his musical mastery is demonstrated with tracks such as the emotionally charged “Off Balance” which offers a legato melody accompanied with  a contrasting and ever so slightly off-tempo drum kick.  Lucky for us, he was able to squeeze us in for a brief interview to speak with me about what inspires him to make the clean, refreshing musical compositions available on his site.

B: So would you say that you believe making music to be your purpose?

S-Choir: I would.  I believe that we are put here for many purposes.  One of mine is to be the best man, son, husband, and father (when the days for the latter two come) that I can be.  Professionally, I believe that I am currently attempting to master the art of being the best lawyer I can be.  But, music has always been my passion, and with that comes the challenge of trying to produce quality music every time, without exceptions.  And, I think that is a huge challenge because if it wasn’t every musician would be able to do it with ease and that’s not what I’m hearing.  So, yes, I believe making music–good music–is my purpose.  Now, whether I’ll be able to reach my goal of never letting the people down is a completely different question.

B: What is the inspiration behind great songs like “Off Balance”(one of my personal favorites), “Love Makin”, “Lay On Me” and “Ridin'”?

S-Choir: For me, unlike what I hear about other producers, I don’t walk around with beats in my head.  But, when I sit down in front of the keyboard, I do think that things come to me.  When you hear my music, that’s where I am at the current time.  The music is me for the time being.  There is no grand equation, but what comes out when I sit down at the keyboard with a gin and tonic is what I am and where I am at that time.  I only hope that the listeners appreciate me in that space. 

B: Can you tell us about your process?

S-Choir: I think I just did.  I absolutely love chords.  I do.  With all my heart, I do.  And, the next best thing is strings.  But, perhaps my strength is drums.  Combine those with a dim light, some incense, the right groove, and a cocktail, and the magic happens.  I could do this all day and night every day and night.  I love music!

B: Who out there would you compare your sound/style to?

S-Choir: I wouldn’t.

B: Who are your inspirations?

S-Choir: Although I absolutely love Kanye and Dre, I would say that Pharrell Williams is my main inspiration as far as producers go.  His appreciation for keys and chords is second to none.  I love what he does.  On a personal music acquaintance level, Jeremias Tamarez (producer) and John Redmon (gospel and R&B singer) have been two of the most supportive musicians out there when it comes to what I do.  Those guys are selfless and have given me the support and confidence to make me realize that I have genuine ability.  And, I continue to learn from them.  I thank them.  Musically, that’s where I’m at.

B: How would you define yourself/sound?

S-Choir: Unique and consistent.  I don’t think that I have a particular sound outside of my love for chords, strings, and drums.  But, I will say that I think I take it seriously every time.  I’m a huge fan of the mid-tempo song.  You know, the song that can be either an R&B or Hip-Hop track.  I have always thought that when you hear a beat and you can’t tell which way you’re leaning, you may be on to something.  I think that if you listen to my stuff, you’ll find that they could be either R&B or Hip-Hop tracks.  I’m not sure a lot of producers can say that.

B: Who do you make music for?

S-Choir: Honestly, I make it for those who truly love it.  Not those who just listen to the radio, but for those who listen to the radio and are unhappy. I make it for those who appreciate simple complexity as I like to call it.  I’m not trendy when it comes to music.  I think that a good song is like a good movie.  Even if you walk away pissed at a movie’s ending, as long as you walk away affected, then the movie was successful.  Like good movies, my goal is to make you feel differently than you did before you heard my song.  If I did that, then I was successful.  I make music for music lovers.  At least I hope I do.  I want to.

B: Is there anything you want to tell the people?

S-Choir: Sure.  I’d like to say that if I ever get to the point where I’m doing this to make a living, which is a goal, please know that I take your $13.99 very seriously.  I’m not into producing average music.  I hope that an S-Choir Music track is your favorite track on the CD.  And, if I were ever lucky enough to produce a premier artist’s entire CD, know that every track will be all that I have to give.  If every artist approached music like that today I think we’d be in much better shape.

Wrap-

I suppose this is my opportunity to get my Syd Shaw on, underground review style.  While most of the song snippets available to preview at www.s-choirmusic.com boast the talent of this music producer, moonlighting as an attorney, I fell in love with the tracks that felt the most honest.  If you’re like me at all, music is not entertainment but one of the most profound manners of communication.  I send tracks, not love letters, to express my deepest feelings.  Even without words music can present an individual in a vulnerable, completely naked state.  S-Choir’s ability to give me that as well as the joints to make me bob my head, lay back or get hype  is what is putting him on the radar.  In any field passion for what you do goes farther than just about anything that can be posted on a resume.  S-Choir’s passion for music is apparent in his productions as they each are musical compositions and not just beats. He correctly assessed his style as unique as I can’t think of a top producer who manages to use chords as he does and balance it with varying drums without it coming out as a ballad.  Should his self-definition of consistent prove true, I expect it won’t be long before he’s regarded as one of the best in the game.  S-Choir Music is where passion meets talent, technique and production.  We at Mimosas and Grits wish you much success.

-Brookes