*DISCLAIMER* I wrote this post at least a month ago, but I kept trying to decide whether or not to post it cause it’s a very opinionated and a rather sensitive topic, but what the heck right? I’m just here to say what I think, not intentionally dissing anyone in particular. So if you read this and you think “what the hell, are you talking about me??”, I’m probably not. Or maybe I am. I don’t know.
All around the world, bands are trying to make it big everyday, be it locally or globally. Some bands struggle for years, some have instant success, but I believe that every band has its core group of supporters and followers no matter what. Here in Singapore, we have tons and tons of bands in our music industry, and for some reason we Singaporeans ALWAYS have something to say about each band, be it good or bad. I’m super guilty of this sometimes.
Our music circle is basically broken down into two core groups – the indie bands and the cover bands. Indie bands are those who play only original music (meaning songs they’ve written themselves) and cover bands are those who play songs that are already popular on music charts or on radio. More often than not, music followers in Singapore will choose to follow either group, sometimes sparking heated debates on music forums and blogs about which is better. But the funny thing is, there is hardly any animosity amongst the bands from either side of the spectrum. And quite often, indie bands sometimes try to do covers while cover bands try to make original music as well.
There’re so many indie bands I love like – (click on their names to view their sites)
WEST GRAND BOULEVARD (the sweetest guys ever)
THE GREAT SPY EXPERIMENT
ALLURA (big up to Inch for her solo album too)
THE FIREFIGHT (Josh is also the guitarist for A Vacant Affair)
TIRAMISU (that’s my baby in the green scarf on the right btw lol)
CARACAL (whom I still think should’ve opened for Paramore)
and of course B-QUARTET (Bani’s the drummer in case you didn’t know)
There’re still so many bands to list down but if I did the list would go on forever.
Then there’re the cover bands like – (click on their names to view their sites)
EIC (aka Jack and Rai/Alvin’s life partners)
THE GOODFELLAS (I’m unbiased okay, I think they’re bloody amazing)
SHIRLYN & The UnXpected
Timmy (aka Ngak and Clement)
and well, us. =)
Dictionary.com defines the term “Music” as –
mu·sic [myoo-zik] Show IPA
1. an art of sound in time that expresses ideas and emotions in significant forms through the elements of rhythm, melody, harmony, and color.
2. the tones or sounds employed, occurring in single line (melody) or multiple lines (harmony), and sounded or to be sounded by one or more voices or instruments, or both.
3. musical work or compositions for singing or playing.
4. the written or printed score of a musical composition.
5. such scores collectively.
6. any sweet, pleasing, or harmonious sounds or sound: the music of the waves.
7. appreciation of or responsiveness to musical sounds or harmonies: Music was in his very soul.
8. Fox Hunting . the cry of the hounds.
As much as I believe and agree that music is all about creativity and individualism, who’s to say we can’t achieve that by interpreting someone else’s composition? The one thing I love about Jack & Rai is that every song they do sounds like the original song, yet it doesn’t. You get what I mean? It’s entirely their own take on how the song sounds and how they want it to move and flow. It’s funny how people give us shit for not doing our own thing at our gigs, but when we do do our own original songs, 90% the crowd just doesn’t pay attention cause it’s something “foreign”. Sometimes we even get blasted for not being able to play certain songs, like songs that are not in the band’s repertoire. As much as we try to accommodate EEEEVERY single one of your requests, there are certain songs that some bands play while others do not, so don’t hate on us just cause we can’t play your request.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m not complaining about our jobs or that nobody appreciates what we do blahblahblah, but this is the general idea in people’s heads right? Like with the Channel 5 programme Live N Loaded, they were trying their best to promote local music to a much bigger national audience, but people were still bitching about bands and the programme all over the net. Why can’t we just shut up and appreciate the talent we have? If Singaporeans don’t even support their fellow men, who will?
Like during Timbre’s & Power 98’s joint anniversaries at Timbre Mobile at ECP, where cover and indie bands were asked to play side by side. I wanted to go up to every one of the patrons and shake them till their teeth rattled cause none of them were paying attention to the indie bands. But the bands still played on with so much heart, and finally people starting noticing and responding. If only they’d take the time to listen, they’d realise how freaking awesome our local bands are. And during concerts when organisers get local bands to open for the headlining act, if you’re a concert-goer, you’d notice that some bands get boo-ed by their fellow Singaporeans WHILE THEY’RE ONSTAGE. Seriously, even if you’re really excited for the main act to come on or you don’t really like the opening act, there’s no reason to boo is there?? We all go to the gig knowing and expecting that there will be an opening act, so just tahan for that short 30min set, appreciate that it’s our own bands up there instead of some other country’s band and applaud when they’re done. If you really don’t like them, then just don’t applaud or respond, why do you have to boo?
This is just a small cry to everyone to please, start paying attention to what the youth of this country have to say. I honestly believe that local bands CAN make it big, but they need everyone’s help to get up there.
(totally didn’t get the last definition about Fox Hunting btw.)
Okay, I’m done ranting.