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  • Articles, Celebrities, GirlSpring.com, Music, This and That

    What To Do When All of Your Favorite Musicians are Dead

    Anyone who knows me knows that I’m a fan of many celebrities. Most of those celebrities, however, happen to be dead. There’s Leonard Cohen, Jeff Buckley, Prince, the list goes on and on.

    I know of some other people who also share this problem. In this article, I thought I would lay out some of the bad things and some of the gratifying things about being a fan of dead celebrities.

    Many of the people I’m a big fan of are musicians. One of the most obvious downsides to this situation is that my favorite artists can’t make music anymore. Some musicians, though, have music released posthumously. This music is usually comprised of stripped-down demos and unfinished songs. The songs sometimes feel as if they were never meant to be released. The artist clearly has no say in what does and does not get released after their death, so these songs often feel like an invasion of the artist’s privacy, and sometimes even of their minds. This can also happen sometimes with officially unreleased records.

    For example, Jeff Buckley created a song called “All Flowers In Time Bend Towards The Sun” with Elizabeth Fraser, another musician (of the band The Cocteau Twins). This is my all-time favorite song from Jeff Buckley, and arguably my most favorite song ever. It is raw, real and unplugged. You can hear the relationship between the two artists clearly in the recording. The fun they have while making this piece is evident throughout it. It is a beautifully written and recorded song. But it is technically unreleased.

    Elizabeth Fraser has come out since Jeff Buckley’s death and expressed how upset she is that the song has been published on Youtube and other music sharing websites. The recording is a personal moment shared between two friends. When I listen to this song, I sometimes feel selfish in consuming it. Although I love it so much, I can’t help but feel like I’m stealing something from Jeff and Elizabeth. This is the slippery slope you encounter with unfinished songs that end up getting released.

    Prince is another great example of this. All of his posthumous releases are questioned. Throughout his long career, Prince was known as a perfectionist. Every album was carefully crafted and completely his own. He didn’t like his songs to be covered by other artists. Every release seemed so meticulous and perfectly curated to contribute to his overall image as an artist. He is also known for recording many songs and for having an extensive vault of unreleased music. Prince died in April of 2016. There have been five posthumous album releases. Each of them has been met with critical and hesitant eyes. None of the albums have included many new songs from the vault.

    Although many of these songs have been released in the past, either by Prince himself or (in the case of his Originals album) by another artist, it is still a bold and risky choice to release this music. Again, this is another instance where one might feel guilty while listening to these songs. Considering his picky behavior while he was alive, who knows if he would have ever wanted these new albums released to the public.

    Another downside that comes with being a fan of dead musicians is the remembrance and mourning of their death every year. This is really tough for many people. Although this is an obviously sad occasion, it can bring fans closer together. Many fans take to social media to express their thoughts and to remember their favorite artists. You can meet new people this way and relate to them. I’ve met a few people through Twitter this way. 

    So is there anything good about being a fan of a dead musician? It can easily all seem like doom and gloom, but there are some fulfilling parts of this dilemma.

    Like I’ve mentioned, you can find new friends through being a fan of celebrities. This happens with really anyone who is vocal about their interests. There is something really special about relating to strangers through a subject that you’re both passionate about.

    Also, you can spread the message of the creators’ art, as they are no longer allowed to do so. You play a small role in keeping their memory alive. I love talking about and sharing the music of my favorite artists.

    Maybe this article hasn’t made the issue more appealing to anyone, but I’ll leave you with this: like it has been said many times, a true musician never dies.

  • Articles, GirlSpring.com, Music

    Amazing Women in Music

    women in music

    I’ve been thinking about music a lot recently; looking through my saved songs on Spotify and scrolling through my different playlists. While doing this, I have noticed how early music has influenced later music and pop culture. Women in music have contributed so much to society. In this article, I’m going to be looking at seven powerful women throughout different genres in music who I’ve been loving recently (from both the past and the present). 

    Aretha Franklin:

    Genre: Soul, R&B, Gospel, Jazz

    The Queen of Soul. Aretha Franklin is widely regarded as one of the most talented and influential musicians of all time. Her music encompasses a large variety of genres. Her voice is powerful and loud, singing about the social issues of her time. She was the first woman to be inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame and won plenty of music awards throughout her life. Franklin performed at Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s funeral, was featured on the cover of TIME magazine, and received the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2005, among many other achievements. Aretha Franklin was one of the most powerful people in the music industry, and her songs continue to shape artists today.

    Here are some Aretha Franklin songs to check out:

    I Say A Little Prayer Chain of FoolsSpirit in the Dark

    Stevie Nicks:

    Genre: Rock & Roll

    Stevie Nicks is a member of the band Fleetwood Mac, but she has also had an amazing solo career. She is one of the most accomplished women in music today: the only woman inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame twice, has won Grammys, hit number 1 on the US Billboard charts with her first solo album release, and has had countless songs go Platinum. Her unique voice always stands out against any instrumentals. No one sounds like Stevie Nicks.

    Stevie Nicks songs to listen to (both solo and with Fleetwood Mac):

    Blue DenimSeven WondersAfter the Glitter Fades

    Sade Adu:

    Genre: Soul, Smooth Jazz, Sophisti-pop

    Normally referred to simply as Sade, this singer created (and continues to create) smooth music with soul influences. She was born in Nigeria and raised in the U.K. Her band (also known as Sade) was very popular in the 1980s and 90s. Adu’s voice is calming and pairs beautifully with her soothing instrumentals. Several of her albums have gone Platinum. Her music always has a distinct tone. 

    Here are some great Sade songs to listen to

    The Sweetest TabooBullet Proof SoulNo Ordinary Love

    PJ Harvey:

    Genre: Alternative Rock, Experimental Rock

    PJ Harvey probably has the most ear-catching music of all of the women on this list. This English artist tackles controversial topics with her typically loud and surprising music. She has been nominated for Brit Awards and Grammys. Harvey explores femininity and female sexuality with her lyrics and imagery. She is not afraid to express herself exactly how she wants to, no matter who she shocks.  

    Great PJ Harvey songs to check out

    Happy And BleedingDown By The Water50 Ft Queenie

    Mitski:

    Genre: Indie Rock

    Mitski is one of the most recent artists on this list. She released her first album in 2012. Her music is real and raw. Her poetic lyrics hit deep and connect with her listeners; at one moment you hear a slow ballad, then switch to a dance-worthy rock tune. She was nominated for a Grammy for the packaging of her last record, Be the Cowboy, released in 2018. Mitski’s lyrics are some of the most hard-hitting on this list.

    Some Mitski songs to get into:

    Liquid SmoothA Burning HillA Pearl

    Lizzo:

    Genre: Hip-Hop

    Lizzo has only released one album, Cuz I Love You. It came out this year. Despite her new career, she has already performed at a few award shows and been nominated for awards. Her music explores self confidence and social issues. She is a role model for young girls, preaching self-love. Her music is fun and catchy, and her voice is dynamic, too. She is known for her rap and hip-hop songs, but she can also sing very well. You can hear this in her song “Jerome.” I can’t wait to see what else Lizzo has in store.

    Some fun songs by Lizzo:

    Truth HurtsJuiceLike A Girl

    Jade Bird:

    Genre: americana/folk

    Jade Bird has also only released one album. Her first album, Jade Bird, was released earlier this year, but she has released a few EPs in the past. Her music has been quite successful, too with a song hit number 1 on Billboard’s Adult Alternative Songs chart in 2018. She toured with Hozier as his opening act this year. Although she is from England, Jade Bird is very inspired by American folk music. Her style mirrors that of the 70s. Her songs talk about relationships and struggles. There’s a lot to come from Jade Bird.

    Some songs by Jade Bird:

    I Get No Joy Good At ItLottery

    Hopefully, this article helped you learn more about the history of women in music (and maybe introduced you to some new artists).

    Here’s a Spotify playlist of all the songs mentioned in this article:

    Musicians can shape lives, look at one of our Springboarder, Audrey’s, experience with Betty Who, and how she changed Audrey’s perspectives!

  • GirlSpring.com, Music, TRENDING

    Rising Star Cloe Wilder Charms with “I Don’t Wanna”

    cloe wilder

    We are excited to present Cloe Wilder’s newest single, “I Don’t Wanna”

    ABOUT CLOE WILDER: 
    Dark/Pop’s newest powerhouse, Cloe Wilder, is a force to be reckoned with. Armed with incredibly powerful songwriting skills, in addition to a voice beyond her years, 13-year-old songstress Cloe crafts melancholic, yet fiercely relatable songs that touch the deepest parts of the human psyche. Championing the concept of accepting one’s mental health issues and embracing imperfection, she is set to become a revolution in her time, starting with her flawless debut, “Overthinking”, and carrying the torch with her upcoming single, “I Don’t Wanna”.
     
     

     

  • Articles, Music, Shero

    Betty Who: Music and A Message

    Betty Who

    Anyone who has attended a concert has experienced “that” feeling. The excitement, the anticipation. All of the hours you’ve spent singing, or crying over, the lyrics suddenly feels like minutes. It’s loud, it’s hot, and you might’ve already been elbowed in the face by someone trying to get by, but you wouldn’t trade it for the world. Suddenly, the lights go out and your heart starts to race. It feels like you are floating in the air and everyone in the room becomes unified at that moment. It truly is surreal.

    Personally, I think it is important to support the content and the character of artists you look up to.

    Artists who are truly powerful highlight their message as much as their music.

    I’m pretty sure I was introduced to the music of Betty Who the same way most everyone else was – the viral proposal, flash-mob video in Home Depot. I fell in love with her song, her message, and with her voice. Betty’s music and her concerts are always welcoming. She creates a safe space for anyone who needs it.

    (Editor’s Note: I had never seen the Flash Mob video that Aubrey mentions, so I searched it and attached it in case you also want to have the biggest grin on your face for five minutes straight.)

    Betty Who isn’t just a Singer. She’s my Role Model

    The first time I saw Betty Who perform was at the South Carolina Pride festival. I had never seen so many people on Main Street. Everyone, including me, was waiting for Betty. We sang every word together. We danced together. A few months later, I saw her again and had the absolute honor of meeting her. She was like walking sunlight. Then I saw her again, a few months later. I couldn’t get enough of her or her crowds. They have the same energy every time and it feels incredible to be in the middle of it. No matter where you came from, where you are going, or who you love, you are embraced at her shows. We are all in that moment together, and it’s magical.

    Everyone looks to artists for inspiration. Betty leads by example. When she enters a room, it instantly becomes brighter. She has a comforting energy that makes you feel safe. Betty’s activism for equality and her dedication to spreading love reminds me to speak up for what I believe in, regardless of how loud I have to be. Whenever I feel down about something, my mom asks me the same question. “What would Betty say?” and she waits for me to say “Betty would tell me I’m beautiful, I’m strong and I can do anything in the world.” She reminds me to be kind to myself and to love my body.  

    Does Betty look gorgeous in the sparkly dress, jewelry, and full glam makeup that she wears on stage? Obviously. Does she look gorgeous in jeans and an oversized hoodie? Of course. There is a common theme between these two outfits: she always wears her confidence, and that is eternally stunning. I admire her humility and graciousness and strive to be more like Betty. I adore her, everything she does, and everything she stands for. Betty Who has permanently changed the way I treat myself and the way I welcome others. 

    Find your role model, who knows, maybe they’re hiding in your list of Spotify Artists.

    It is so important to find inspiration in others and use it. Whether it’s the content of someone’s character, something they create, or a combination of both. Inspiration is the fuel for our lives. It pushes us to always contribute something to the world around us, often spreading to improve the lives of others. 

    Betty Who
    Aubrey and Betty Who

    To Betty – Thank you so much. I don’t know if I will ever be able to fully express how much you mean to me, so just thank you for everything you do. I will love you forever, Aubrey Best

    To Zak (@zcassar) – Thank you for capturing Betty’s beauty and sharing it with the world. Thank you for being so kind to me, and for letting me use your pictures! Also, best wishes to the two of you <3

    Music can be transformative and help shape who you are. Some people find comfort in pop music like Betty Who, others find it in some stranger places… like at heavy metal concerts. Check out what you can learn from living like a metal-head.

  • Articles, GirlSpring.com, Music

    The Women of Country Music are Fixing its Bad Reputation

    country music

    Everywhere I go I hear, “country music is disgusting” or “all country singers talk about is treating girls badly, their trucks, and beer.” But in reality, country music is one of the longest lasting forms of music. In fact, it began to form sometime in the 1920s out of a blend of American Folk Music and the Blues.

    Being myself an avid country music listener, I mostly hear singers talk about how much they love their partners or how they wish the world was a better place. So I ask: Why does country music get such a bad reputation? Maybe it’s because everyone needs something to hate on and country music is just the easy victim. Maybe it’s because of the fact that it is indeed a male-dominated genre. However, with a new breed of female country singers such as Kelsey Ballerini, Maren Morris, and Kacey Musgrave, I think there is a great group of women to revive country music from its preconceived reputation.

    Another up and coming Country Music Star is Ciera Mackenzie! Check out our interview with the talented singer and take a listen to her amazing music in the video below:

  • Articles, GirlSpring.com, Music

    Living Life Like a Metal-Head

    I am a 20-year-old college woman who listens to heavy metal music. Yes, we exist.

    Assuming most people have never been to a heavy metal concert, I can assure you there’s nothing else in the world quite like it. I was raised on the genre and have been to my fair share of eardrum-bursting venues; I have been an accidental mosh pit member more than once.

    From the outside looking in, these gatherings may seem like a mob of tattoos, piercings, and alcohol; I don’t look like I fit in. But the best part? You don’t have to.

    Never in my life have I felt more comfortable than when I’m at these concerts, jumping and screaming along with a band and thousands of my closest friends.

    In those moments, I feel closer to strangers than some of the people I’ve known my whole life.

    I understand the music is scary; I never understood why I was attracted to the metal community until this summer.

    A few weeks before the fall semester started, I attended a Breaking Benjamin and Five Finger Death Punch concert with my family. I could hardly contain my excitement as we pushed through crowds of all-black clothes and multi-colored mohawks.

    I learned valuable life lessons that day, and it didn’t hit me until Five Finger Death Punch snarled the song “Jekyll and Hyde” into the microphone.

    Heavy metal concerts are the most accepting environments I’ve ever been in. Every single person in the audience is vastly different, but when we’re all together, we’re a family living the same experience. No phones were out—we were only focused on connecting with the music and each other.

    We had nothing in common except for the music.

    Although I didn’t realize it until that very moment, metal concerts have been teaching me my whole life to always live in the moment and be accepting of others. And it’s shocking that something most people perceive so negatively has had such a positive impact on my life.

    Metal-heads have it all figured out.

    It doesn’t matter who you are or what you enjoy—we all need to live life like it’s a heavy metal concert.

    Want to know more about Heavy Metal? MIT has a brief history of it. Here is a playlist of the best metal, headbang away:

  • Articles, Confidence, Music

    June Playlist (Pride Month)

    Pride Playlist
    (parental advisory)

    1. Girls/Girls/Boys – Panic! At The Disco
    – this is a song basically about how a girl and guy can be bisexual. I really like the beat and it is a very catchy song.

    2. Honey – Kehlani
    – I love Kehlani!! She is an amazing artist and this song is literally amazing. It’s basically her talking about her feelings towards other women and how she thinks they are beautiful. It’s a soft beautiful song and it will never not be beautiful in my opinion.

    3. Same Love- Macklemore X Mary Lambert
    – In this song, Macklemore tells a story about someone dealing with coming out and events that have occurred after they did come out. It tells that you can accept yourself if others don’t. Mary LAmbert’s vocals are wonderful also she sounds like an angel. (top on my list!!)

    4. Girls – Girl In Red
    – In ‘GIRLS” girl in red talks about hiding her feelings for other girls and debating if she should hide them and how she wrapped them up inside. She expresses how she really feels this way but she shouldn’t and she can’t help her feelings and that it’s not a phase. overall, a rocking song.

    5. Curious – Hayley Kiyoko
    – This song is a hit from the beginning to the end. She talks about another female companion that moves on to a guy but she’s curious if she is really happy in that relationship and if it’s serious, She also brings up their old times and old things they used to do but in the end she says she can handle it.

    6. Girls Like Girls – Hayley Kiyoko
    – This is yet another Hayley Kiyoko hit! She basically is saying that girls like girls just like boys do and people should just be okay with it. Which, I totally agree. Girls can like Girls just like Boys can and it shouldn’t be a problem.

    7. Born This Way – Lady Gaga
    – Now I’m sure many people know why this is on this list and it doesn’t need an explanation but for the people who don’t I’ll gladly explain. Lady Gaga as the icon she expresses that we are all the same girl, boy, gay, straight, etc. We are all the same and being apart of the LGBTQ+ community isn’t a choice, it’s simply the way we were born.

    8. Bloom – Troye Sivan
    – This is just a great LGBTQ love song that just gets your blood pumping. The lyrics, beat, his voice is the perfect package deal.

    9. HIM – Sam Smith
    – “HIM” is a song about Sam talking to the ‘holy father’ about his secret. The secret about him being gay and how he can’t that he is in love with another man. He also mentions that shouldn’t mean that God shouldn’t love him any different and that he hopes he doesn’t hate him for ut and how god shouldn’t care for him for it.

    10. Cool For The Summer – Demi Lovato
    – In this song, Demi is talking about how this summer she is exploring her sexuality and trying new things. People shouldn’t be scared or ashamed to explore their sexuality.

    11. What I Need – Hayley Kiyoko X Kehlani
    – Two beautiful artists coming together making great music is what this track is. They both express their love and needs from their female lovers. It is a great song just to dance and sing along to and I’d be surprised if you do listen to it and don’t do any of those things.

    12. Bonus Track: Dancing Queen – ABBA
    – not an LGBTQ+ song but come on.. this song will is a HIT to play at any place or party.