Building it up makes for a stronger foundation

Yesterday I got a good video in my inbox good video from my friend Michele.

It has all the ingredients to make you feel the warm fuzzies inside–a blind street singer, people working together to make something beautiful, literal strangers all over the globe connecting through music. And if you watch it without feeling anything, I’m afraid you may need to go to Popeye’s and order you some SOUL.

And since WordPress cockblocks everything I try to embed from Vimeo, which SUCKS, because Vimeo is like Youtube with a soul (there’s that key word again!), just click on the link above through the screenshot. I promise you feel like you wasted your time. And if you want to give me a hug later, I can’t promise that, but I’ll take it.

This cover of Stand By Me was recorded by completely unknown artists in a street virtual studio all around the world. It all started with a base track—vocals and guitar—recorded on the streets of Santa Monica, California, by a street musician called Roger Ridley. The base track was then taken to New Orleans, Louisiana, where Grandpa Elliott—a blind singer from the French Quarter—added vocals and harmonica while listening to Ridley’s base track on headphones. In the same city, Washboard Chaz’s added some metal percussion to it.

And from there, it just gets rock ‘n’ rolling bananas: The producers took the resulting mix all through Europe, Africa, and South America, adding new tracks with multiple instruments and vocals that were assembled in the final version you are seeing in this video. All done with a simple laptop and some microphones.

Another video that has that same element of building upon something already set, layering people, bringing people together — an artist named Nyle. He walks us through a performing arts school’s studio (I’m guessing since the musicians have a teacher directing them at the beginning) where both video and audio are being recorded simultaneously so you know these people kick ass at what they do and they ENJOY it. The end of this video is a party complete with a dancer girl who has a six-pack so fine you’d rather have that kind on a Friday night than some beers.

Nyle - Let the Beat Build

Nyle - Let the Beat Build

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One comment on “Building it up makes for a stronger foundation”

  1. as a rabid geenum fan, i want to first thank you for the new, reader-friendly format of your blog. huzzah. second, i get my “soul” from the chinese buffet down the street. between the black owner, the mexican cooks, the mandarin-speaking wait staff and the white people that eat there, it’s a regular melting pot of “soulness”. finally, i am anxious to know when your CD will be released; you know, that one you’ve been talking about non-stop, for ages. i told my mom i want to get “geenum’s voicemail quotes to inspire – the collection” for christmas, so you have until then to churn that shit out. (note: this is just a joke. if you really give me a voice recording of yourself this christmas, i will kill you. or smash whatever gift i buy you.) byeeeee!


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