Sunday Rundown: Hoxton Square Gig, Astrid S and Music Video Prep!

Blog

IMG_8263

This has been another absolutely amazing week, jam packed full of music!  The highlight was my gig in London, which was my favourite gig ever and hopefully is going to lead to bigger opportunities in the future!

Monday:  Monday started off terribly, as I was involved a in minor car accident on my way to tennis!  Definitely wasn’t the best beginning to the week, but despite being very stressful, no one was hurt thankfully!  I then had my production lessons at Manchester MIDI School, which was really fun!  The best part was the evening though as my best friend had bought us tickets to see Astrid S at Gorilla for my birthday!  The gig was absolutely amazing and I was pleasantly surprised to see the support was Taya, who I am also a fan of!  Perfect end to a day that started terribly!

Tuesday:  I was mainly rehearsing and packing for my trip to London, but I also was ordering supplies for the music video we’re shooting next week!  Without giving too much away, the video is for a collaboration I’ve done with Mansfield based artist, Sophie Smith.  Some of the supplies include balloons, confetti, glitter and T-shirts…. but I’m not saying anymore just yet!

Wednesday:  Best day of the week as it was my gig in London!  I was performing at Underbelly in Hoxton Square with my guitarist George.  It was an amazing crowd and I really enjoyed myself up onstage!  I enjoyed working with the promoter and am hoping to announce another London gig soon!  Check out some pictures below and the Facebook live video… high quality vids will be coming soon too!

https://www.facebook.com/plugins/video.php?href=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.facebook.com%2FSally.Caitlin17%2Fvideos%2F1221549757991094%2F&show_text=0&width=267

Thursday:  I spent the daytime in Camden Town, which is one of my favourite places in London and then I headed to Bath to visit my brother!

As always on a Thursday it was Thursday Twenty time on Spotify!

  1. Beautiful Escape by Tom Misch & Zak Abel – Super chilled out, beautiful vocals and lush production!
  2. Marilyn Monroe – Sevdaliza
  3. Elixir by Millesim & Diana
  4. Deja Vu (Kato Edit) by Million Dollar Weekends
  5. When Your Heart is a Stranger (FAISAL Remix) by Friends In Paris
  6. Mala Mujer (Remix) by C. Tangana, Farruko & French Montana – Love the original of this track anyway, sop it’s really fun to have a new version to listen to.  Some unbelievable beat with some new verses, including an English one.
  7. Wishlist by Kiiara – Kiiara is a fav of mine and I’m excited she’s released something new!  Bit of a different, more chilled vibe but it’s great!  Love the strings in particular!
  8. First Love by Lost Kings & Sabrina Carpenter
  9. Praying (Tim Legend Remix) – Kesha
  10. The Best You Had by Nina Nesbitt – I adore Nina Nesbitt’s voice and I think this song is awesome!  Love the lyrics!
  11. Bad Habit by Kid Ink
  12. We Could Go Back by Jonas Blue & Moelogo – Love the typical Jonas Blue feel-good vibe in this track… less cheesy than Mama, so more my scene!
  13. Would You Ever (Conducta Remix) by Skrillex & Poo Bear
  14. Hard To Be Myself by Fickle Friends
  15. Body by Kamille – Awesome song about an important topic that I have also been inspired to write about.
  16. Love N Hennessy by A.CHAL
  17. Hold On by Mahalia & Buddy
  18. Bloodstream by Astrid S  – Loved this one when I saw her live!  Probably my favourite from the gig!
  19. Wildfire by SBTRKT
  20. I Fall Apart by Post Malone – Not usually a Post Malone fan but I think this song is really cool and I can feel the emotion that went into writing it!

 

Friday: On Friday I was chilling in Bath for my brother’s birthday!  Had a bit of a day off from work and went out for a couple of meals and went on a night out in the evening!

Saturday:  I had the long journey back to Manchester and used that time to get some work done on the train!

Sunday: I’ve used today to prepare the studio space for next week and to sort out some final arrangements for the video shoots!

Thank you for reading and I hope you enjoyed all the pictures!

Advertisements

Sunday Rundown: BBC Introducing Amplify Conference, Spotify Playlists and Electronic Music Composition

Blog

IMG_7708

This week has been another busy one, involving blog posts, Spotify playlists and me travelling down to London to attend BBC Introducing’s Amplify Conference.  As an independent musician any opportunities to learn from and potentially network with people in the industry are key, so I thought it was really important to attend as many sessions as possible!

Monday: On Monday I started off the day with tennis and then went into college for my ‘Introduction to Production’ class.  It was a really great session as we were focused on using Simpler in Ableton and designing sounds.  This is something I’m really interested in, so I enjoyed the lesson a lot.  I think it’s awesome that you can take any sampled sound and completely customise it by applying filters and changing the release time, attack etc.

Tuesday:  Tuesday was a day for plugging my new song ‘Take It All’ with blogs and Spotify playlists.  I spent most of the day researching and contacting curators and bloggers with my press release and bio.  It paid off as ‘Take It All’ has been placed on two awesome Spotify playlists and one blog so far!  Check them out:

Sally Caitlin

 

Wednesday:  I started the day with a bit of relaxation and pampering at Bali Health Lounge in Manchester, before going into college to work on some new music and work on my production skills on Ableton.  Then I started my new module: Electronic Music Composition.  The first session was going through the notes on the piano and the theory of scales, which was very simple for me having played piano for years.  However, I did learn a couple of interesting facts and I can tell the course is going to be really useful as we get into the more intense content.

 

Thursday:  I mostly practised with my loop pedal and caught up on admin (as well as Great British Bake Off).  As it was Thursday though, it was Thursday Twenty time!  This week’s playlist is awesome, with loads of really beautiful chilled songs and a couple of curveballs thrown in!

  1. Falling Autumn by alanya – alanya was on my playlist last week too and I have just fallen in love with her voice.  It’s so beautiful and effortless!
  2. Invite Me by Brent Faiyaz
  3. E.T. by WENS – This is such a different version of the classic Katy Perry track that I didn’t recognise the song until I checked the name!  Very chilled, very calming and very cool!
  4. Better by Sam Rui – This one is a bit sassy and is about that feeling when your ex gets a new girlfriend… very easy to relate to and loving the confidence in this track!
  5. Don’t Love Me by Janine
  6. Insecure by Brent Faiyaz – The second Brent Faiyaz song on this week… big fan of this!  Has a slight feel of The Weeknd in his early days.
  7. Memories by Kevin Lake
  8. I’m Gonna Be There by Lash – Love this!  Such a happy and catchy song with a real feel good vibe!
  9. Bom Bidi Bom by Nick Jonas & Nicki Minaj – This is so infectious and stays in your head all day!  Love Nick Jonas’s voice so much too!
  10. Find You by Nick Jonas
  11. Girlfriend by NAO
  12. Not Above Love by AlunaGeorge – I Love AlunaGeorge as they really do have their own unique sound, and this track is no exception!  You can instantly recognise it’s them and the hook gets stuck in my head all day!
  13. How Long by Charlie Puth – I’m loving Charlie Puth’s more recent material… this has an effortless cool to it and the bassline is the key to the song again, like in Attention.
  14. Used To by Sabrina Claudio
  15. Can’t Lie by MiC LOWRY
  16. Easy Love by Lauv
  17. Onanon by Kelela
  18. NUMB feat. GRAACE by Hayden James – Amazinggg vocals here and I love the instrumentation too.  The drop in the chorus is very restrained and it works so well with the relaxed, sexy vibe.
  19. Mad Woman by Sevdaliza – I was drawn to this track as it had a real ‘Banks-esque’ feel to it and I’m completely obsessed with Banks.  I’m looking forward to listening to more from Sevdaliza and seeing if that ‘bad bitch’ vibe carries through all her material!
  20. Rake It Up by Yo Gotti & Nicki Minaj – This is such a guilty pleasure and I hate myself for liking it a little bit!  However, as soon as I hear the beat I want to dance and it makes me want to go out and party… and that’s never a bad feeling!

 

 

Friday:  Friday was the first day of the Amplify Conference so I got the train down to London in the morning and got to the conference at about 1:00pm.  The sessions I attended were: Sentric Presents ‘How to Land a Sync Deal in 9 Steps’, Annie Mac’s Playlist and BPI Presents ‘Heads of Label’.  Sentric’s sync talk was something I particularly enjoyed as it was really comprehensive and informative.  I really felt like I learned things I could immediately put into place!  After the conference I then trekked over to Hammersmith to rehearse with George ready for my gig in Hoxton Square next week!  Very busy day!

 

Saturday: Another great day at the Amplify Conference!  I sessions on ‘How To Get A Gig’, ‘How To Be Good At Social Media’ and ‘Shifting The Gaze: Women in Music’.  I particularly enjoyed the women in music session as JONES, Rae Morris and Becca McIntyre from the Marmozets were the guests and all of them were very inspiring!  I’m a JONES fan in particular, so seeing her speak about how she’s curated her career was amazing!  In the evening I was feeling very motivated so I used that energy and channelled it into writing the press release for my next release and writing my Spotify Bio!

 

FullSizeRender

 

Sunday: My last day at Amplify was a great one as I managed to get to four sessions, plus I had the company of one of my friends, Martins.  The sessions I attended were ‘AWAL Presents: Demystifying Streaming Data’, ‘A Guide to Self-Releasing’, ‘The Music Manager Masterclass’ and ‘Keeping Control of Your Music’.  I was originally meant to be attended a session with JP Cooper, but due to illness, that talk was cancelled.. however the talk on retaining control featured Nina Nesbitt who is an artist I like a lot, so that was a good replacement!  After the conference came the long journey home, despite being back in London next Wednesday!

Thank you so much for reading!  Next week I’ll be talking about my gig in London and then my travels on to Bath!

Sunday Rundown: Wimbledon, London and Gigging

Blog

l3

This week has definitely been one to remember!  I’ve fulfilled my life-long dream of going to Wimbledon, had my first gig with my new guitarist, George, and redone the mixing on Alive to get back to the point I was at before I lost my pen drive!

Monday:  I started the day off by going to the driving range and then I went into college to find the latest version of the Alive project on the studio computer and see how far behind I had put myself!  It actually wasn’t as bad as I had feared as the project on the computer had all the vocals imported into it and some of the mixing had been started.  I did a little bit of mixing and bounced the track, ready to listen and make notes at home.

Tuesday:  Again, I started the day off at the range and then I had a day of rehearsals with George ready for our gig on Friday.  We were finalising the set list and making sure we had our loop arrangements sorted for each song, especially my original songs (Take It All and Lead Me Down).

Wednesday:  On Wednesday I played tennis and then went back into college to do a second mix on Alive, using the notes I had written at home.  I think this mix is now pretty much right, with just a few minor alterations needed… finally!  I’m hoping next week I’ll be mastering the track and sorting out my backing tracks for when I want to perform the track.

For my Wednesday Cover, I teamed up with the lovely Sophie Smith to cover Drake’s ‘Passionfruit’.  I had a lot of fun doing this track with her and it was great to be able to harmonise together!  Check it out:

Thursday:  This week’s Thursday Twenty is summer themed as I’m getting super excited for my holidays coming up!

  1. We Start Fires by Little Giants 
  2. Cold Ain’t For Me by Oceans – This song perfectly sums up how I feel every time I come home to rainy Manchester after being somewhere amazing and sunny.  Perfect pick me up song!
  3. New Rules by Dua Lipa
  4. The Heat (I Wanna Dance With Somebody) by Ralph Felix – Great summer revamp of Whitney’s Classic!  Makes me feel like going and dancing on a beach somewhere.
  5. P.Y.T (Pretty Young Thing) by John Gibbons
  6. Wicked by mansionz – I love this track!  It’s so funky and infectious!
  7. Pretty Girl (Cheat Codes X CADE Remix) by Maggie Lindemann
  8. There For You by Martin Garrix feat. TROYE SIVAN
  9. Fall At Your Feet by Lucy Neville
  10. The Nights by Avicii
  11. Heaven Is A Halfpipe (If I Die) by OPM – This is one of my guilty pleasures!  I used to be obsessed with this song when I was younger and it always puts me in such an amazing mood.
  12. Steal My Sunshine by Len – I think this is my ultimate summer sing-a-long song!  Another guilty pleasure… but such a great one!
  13. Giving It All (Joe Goddard Remix) by Bondax – For me this is an example of when the remix actually surpasses the original.  I’ve always loved this track and in summer it just gets me in the mood to escape and party for a few days!
  14. My Head Is A Jungle (Extended Vocal Mix) by Wanklemut – This is just the best summer nights song and reminds me of so many amazing times in clubs with my best friend… this mix is my favourite as the guitar is just so nice to listen to and it builds so well.
  15. I Like Me Better by Lauv
  16. 2AM (Matoma Remix) by Astrid S – This is one of my favourite summery songs because it has such an island feel to it.. such an amazing remix!
  17. Deja Vu by Sally Caitlin – I thought I would throw Deja Vu on this playlist as it’s the most summery song on my EP and the video is going to premiere soon!
  18. Call Me (White Gold Caviar Remix) by NEIKED
  19. 212 by Azealia Banks
  20. West Coast (ZHU Remix) by Lana Del Rey – There are sooo many great remixes of this song and this is one of my favourites as it’s just so bassy and has such an edgy vibe.

On Thursday I also played in a golf competition.  Looks like my visits to the driving range paid off because I actually won my division and got myself a little trophy!

 

Friday:  On Friday I had a gig at Platform One in Romiley with my guitarist.  We spent the day rehearsing and that was definitely worth it as we didn’t make any mistakes and the gig went super smoothly!  It was definitely a good start to our partnership and I’m very excited to gig again together next week!

Saturday: I went down to London to visit my brother and do a little sightseeing!  We went to the Darwin Brasserie in the Sky Garden for their brunch buffet and some cocktails.  The view from the 35th floor was amazing and we could see the Shard, London Bridge and loads of other sights!  After that we did some intense window shopping in Harrods and Knightsbridge!

Sunday:  I am a huge tennis fan and on Sunday I got to finally go to Wimbledon after years of being desperate to get there!  We started the day with an amazing brunch in Chelsea and then jumped on the tube to head to the All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club.  It was a really great experience and the place was even more magical than I imagined it would be!  My brother’s friend works at Wimbledon so gave us a tour of the broadcast centre, which was awesome as we saw the press conference room.  It was a pity that Marin Cilic was injured for the final, meaning the match wasn’t as competitive as it could have been, but it was great to be on Henman Hill/Murray Mound when Federer won his 8th Wimbledon title!  I was a massive keeno and bought myself a Wimbledon sweatshirt and tennis skirt along with a huge strawberries and cream sundae and lots of Pimms! For the doubles final we got resale tickets for Centre Court, so got to see Jamie Murray and Martina Hingis win the mixed doubles final!  All in all it was a great day, and the only thing that could have improved it would have been Rafa being there!

Thanks for reading and I hope you enjoyed all the pictures!

Sunday Rundown: Camden Gig, Exploring London and Producing a New Track

Blog

FullSizeRender (3)

This week has been super busy music-wise, which is always great, with the main news being that I performed at my first ever gig in London on Friday! 🙂  I’ve also been keeping my new Spotify playlist up to date, booking more gigs and been working on the track I am self-producing… Here is my day by day account of this fab week (15th April to 21st April)

MONDAY: I guess Monday was a fairly boring start to the week as it was admin based mainly… however, I did get closer to finding out where and when the video for Poison is going to premiere, which is very exciting news!  Hopefully on next week’s Sunday Rundown I will be recapping about that! 🙂

TUESDAY: I was at college and actually the only student in!  That sounds boring but it was amazing for my productivity and I got sooooo much done! The main progress was made on ‘Alive’, the track I was talking about last week.  I think the arrangement has been fully worked out now and we added some amazing rhythmic guitar to the choruses, which I feel added so much to the vibe of the track!  Next things to do are record my lead vocal, harmonies and backing vocals and then look at transitions!  So excited to share this when it’s finally finished!

WEDNESDAY: This week I’ve had no voice at all so I couldn’t record a new video for my Wednesday Cover but I did edit some live footage from my Gullivers Gig last Saturday… so this week’s cover is ‘Into You’ by Ariana Grande!  I absolutely love this song and love performing our version with the loop pedal… so check it out and let me know what you think!

THURSDAY: On Thursday I picked my set lists for my upcoming gigs, sorted out all my backing tracks and packed for my trip to London.  Thursday is also the day I update my weekly Spotify playlist ‘Thursday Twenty’ and this week I added some amazing tracks!

  1. Attention by Charlie Puth  OMG I’m obsessed with this song…. so catchy and the bassline is just amazing!
  2. The Cure by Lady Gaga The first Lady Gaga song I’ve liked in a while, but I do loooveee this!
  3. Siren by Kid Cupid – Kid Cupid are playing with me at Hangar 34 in Liverpool on June 1st and I’m really excited to watch them perform after hearing this track.
  4. Strip by Clara Mae
  5. In the Blood by John Mayer – My favourite of his newer songs that he performed last week… such a beautiful track.
  6. Whatever I Want (Young John Da Wicked Producer Remix) by Classixx – Thank youuuu to my Discover Weekly playlist on Spotify for this one…. such a tune.
  7. Despacito Remix by Luis Fonsi & Justin Bieber
  8. Like Home (LUCIANBLOMKAMP Remix) by JOY.
  9. Oh Woman Oh Man by London Grammar
  10. Blades by Farr
  11. Rollin with the Flow by Geek Boy – I love the wordplay and the vibe of this track; it’s got a really fresh sound.
  12. Hypnotized by WeAreTreo – The rhythm of the lyrics in this track is so clever and different and the production has something really cool and summery about it… maybe even my track of the week!
  13. Don’t You Feel It by SubFocus
  14. Can You Hear Me? by Amber Mark
  15. On My Mind by Disciples – Another song I’m obsessed with… just brings a smile to my face whenever I hear it and I can’t help but dance and sing along!
  16. Eyes Closed by Halsey – This is a song I wish I’d written!  Such a relatable theme done so beautifully.
  17. Let Me Out (Banx & Ranx Remix) by Gorillaz, Mavis Staples & Pusha T – Been listening to Gorillaz as I’m so excited to go and see them in December after buying my tickets this week!  I think this has to be my favourite track off their new album ‘Humanz’.
  18. Quit by Cashmere Cat & Ariana Grande
  19. Hot2Touch by Felix Jaehn
  20. 4am by Huntar

https://open.spotify.com/embed/user/11155725702/playlist/3fsHErchu1TvOs4URkHZWu

FRIDAY:  Definitely the most eventful day of this week as I had my first ever gig in London at Proud Camden as part of Absent Kelly’s ‘Camden Clique’.  I was the first support for London-based band arC and was also joined by Bisola, Gabriela Eva and Samuel Hyde.  I was incredibly nervous before as it was the first time I’d performed some of those tracks live with just backing tracks and I also had a really sore throat!  All in all though, it was a really valuable experience and I felt like I learned a lot from it.  I had some great support from the crowd, despite being first on, and I got to meet and watch some great musicians!  Afterwards I had such a feeling of relief too as I’ve been anxious about it for a while, so it was awesome to let loose and party 🙂

FullSizeRender (2)

SATURDAY: I was feeling slightly fragile from the night before but still took the opportunity to go and explore Camden Markets and Piccadilly Circus in London.  Felt good to be out and about and to be spending time with my brother and his friends.  London is such a good place to be a tourist and I think Camden is now my favourite place I have visited there, although I love Shoreditch too!

SUNDAY: Another admin day as I had to write a press release for my EP (although it is a little bit late) ready for the premiere of the Poison video!  I am on a bit of a health kick at the moment as I feel like I’ve let myself get very unfit and have developed some bad habits, so I did go for a hike near my house.  It was really nice to get some fresh air and just be able to relax whilst listening to music.  Plus I saw these horses, who were just too cute not to share!

FullSizeRender (6)

Thank you so much for reading – even though it has been even longer than last week!  I don’t want to make any more false promises, but hopefully I will have a little bit less to say next week! 🙂

Not Stupid Anymore (Deluxe Version)

Me and My Career

not-stupid-anymore-deluxe-version-3-more-pixels

The deluxe version of my EP, Not Stupid Anymore, was released in August 2016 and featured five new original songs along with two remixes of Not Stupid Anymore.  I released the single ‘Call Me Whatever You Want‘ as the lead for this EP as I thought it would be a perfect poppy song for summer!  The EP features all the songs I recorded with The Next Room Productions in London, which all have a similar youthful, girly sound, so if you are into Katy Perry, Taylor Swift or Meghan Trainor, I think you would enjoy this EP!  Not Stupid Anymore (Deluxe Version) is available to buy or stream on all major retailers, including iTunesSpotify and Amazon Music… so get your copy now!  My favourite tracks are Not Stupid Anymore, No Going Back and Love’s Willing Prisoner.

Stuck In Limbo

Me and My Career

Stuck In Limbo is a song that is very close to my heart and also happens to be the song me and my producers have chosen to be my first ever single.  There are three versions of the track that have currently been produced: the original song as I wrote it, a house remix and a garage remix.  I can be seen performing the original on my YouTube Channel or below, however, it is the house remix that we have selected to be the debut track off the EP, as it’s just so upbeat and catchy.

The song is about a very intense relationship with lots of ups and downs. Like most of my original songs, it is written from a place of personal experience and genuine emotions.  At the time of writing the song I felt like I had no idea where a relationship was going and how to resolve all the issues, despite still loving the other person.  This led me to feel like we were ‘stuck in limbo’ because I didn’t know whether we would or should break up or stay together.  I tried to get across the feelings of confusion and hurt through the lyrics of the song and the awkward position of being trapped in a middle place between being happy together and being happy apart.  The song is one of the slowest and most ballad-like that I have written, with a slow, soulful feel to it.  Below is a video of me performing the original version of this song in the studio in London…. I hope you like it!

Get To Know Me Q & A

Me and My Career

IMG_0199

Favourite Artist/Band?

This is a difficult question as there are so so many artists I admire and love but if I had to pick three, I would pick John Mayer, Nirvana and Fleetwood Mac.

 Favourite Album?

This is easy for me as there is one album I will play all the way through whenever I need to relax, and that is John Mayer – Where The Light Is.  The album is the whole of his concert in LA live, so has all of his best tracks along with the audience reactions and great guitar solos linking the songs.  For me it’s just perfect!

Favourite Song?

I have two favourite songs and they are both a bit odd! One is Len – Steal My Sunshine, as it just cheers me up whenever I listen to it and it’s perfect for a sunny day.  The other is Sufjan Stevens – For the Widows in Paradise, For the Fatherless in Ypsilanti.  I just think that song is so beautiful and the banjo part is so relaxing and lovely.

Best Performer I Have Seen Live?

I have seen many great artists in concert, such as Beyonce, Rihanna, Sam Smith, but hands down the best was London Grammar.  I saw them at a festival in Nottingham called No Tomorrow and they were just amazing!  The whole band is so talented, with great songs and Hannah Reid’s voice is mesmerising.  The album is great, but live they are out of this world!

What Instruments Do I Play?

I mainly sing and play piano to accompany myself, but I also play saxophone (badly nowadays!).

How Do I Write My Songs?

I’m a strong believer that you can’t force song-writing or the song won’t have feeling and will be pretty crap.  I carry a notebook with me a lot of the time and always take one on holiday, just in case any ideas hit me when I’m on the go.  Then I go to the piano and work out a melody and chords.  Usually I write lyrics first, then melody and then accompaniment, although occasionally I think of the melody and lyrics together.

How Would I Describe My Original Music?

If I had to label my songs with a genre I would probably say Pop, but I would like to think that they aren’t superficial even though they are upbeat.  I write mostly about my own experiences and emotions, which I think makes my songs heartfelt and easy for others to relate to.

My Music Career So Far?

I’m really just getting started as I have spent the last three years concentrating on my academics, whilst doing music on the side.  My parents wanted me to have a back up plan, in the form of a degree, in case singing doesn’t work out, so I have been at university studying for the past three years, whilst writing music and travelling down to London to record.  At the end of these three years I now have a 1st Class Honours Degree in Chemistry from the University of Nottingham, a fully produced 10 track pop album and a 10 track EP of house and garage remixes of my songs ready to release this summer (hopefully!), so I’m ready to tackle whatever life throws my way!

And Finally, Why Do I Want To Be A Musician?

I’ve always loved singing ever since I was young and when I was 18 I decided I wanted to make the transition from hobby to career.  I’ve spent the last three years focusing on my back up plan, so now I’m ready to give what I really love a shot! Music has got me through some rough times and I love the idea of being able to touch people with my music and maybe provide the same sort of peace for someone else.  The absolute dream would be to perform and have a crowd singing my lyrics back to me; I think that would be the most amazing feeling in the world!