Oh, Debbie Gibson!

After I had put the Best Of 2017 Spotify playlist together I mentioned in my previous post, I tweeted all of the artists to let them know that they had been included, but Twitter decided to “shadowban” me, so now none of my tweets can be seen! I have contacted Twitter Support, so hopefully they should fix it soon.

As I was feeling sorry for myself, I decided to listen to music (which usually cheers me up, and I’m on a diet so I can’t binge eat, like I usually would when something upsets me!), and I found that I had saved Debbie Gibson in my albums list.

When I was 11, Debbie Gibson brought out her album “Electric Youth” and somehow, I ended up with it on cassette. I would dance to that album in the house every chance I got, and I even made up a dance routine to the title track, though I couldn’t remember it now if my life depended on it. I just listened to it and ended up having a little dance, and it really cheered me up. It’s such a great song, so here’s the video for you, just in case you need a little pick-me-up 🙂

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Best Of 2017 playlist

Over on the Merryn Spotify account, I create weekly top 20 playlists featuring songs I have picked out from that week’s UK and Ireland releases. As it’s the end of the year, I have created a “Best Of” playlist, and I couldn’t get it any lower than 200 songs! It’s been an incredible year for new music from UK and Ireland artists, so if you like new music, take a listen!

25 years since the release of ‘Take That & Party’

Here’s a blog post I wrote today for one of my other blogs, Merryn Music.

Merryn Music

Today, 17th August, marks the 25th anniversary since Take That released their first ever album ‘Take That & Party’ back in 1992. I remember it well, I had been following Take That since their first single ‘Do What U Like’ dropped in July 1991, with its saucy video including jelly covered bodies (which was intriguing to my 12 year old self!).

So, fast forward to August 1992 and ‘Take That & Party’ was released including top 40 hits ‘I Found Heaven’ (UK #15), Tavares cover ‘It Only Takes a Minute’ (UK #7), ‘A Million Love Songs’ (UK #7), ‘Promises’ (UK #38), ‘Why Can’t I Wake Up with You’ (UK #2) and Barry Manilow cover ‘Could It Be Magic’ (UK #3).

To celebrate this 25th anniversary, we have created a #ThrowbackThursday playlist featuring 50 boybands from The Monkees in the 1960s through to Lawson from last year. Enjoy!

– Jenny

 

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Do you like to discover new music?

One of my side projects is Merryn Music where I interview unsigned UK and Ireland music artists every Monday for a feature I creatively called “Independent Music Monday”.

One of the other parts to Merryn Music is the Spotify account. Since Merryn Magazine launched in April 2016, I have been collating ‘new music’ playlists on the Spotify account. These are updated each week and I also have a playlist where I compile the 20 best songs of the week. These playlists feature UK and Ireland artists only.

There are now 300 songs (18 hours 30 minutes of music) on the February playlist:

There are over 300 songs on the March playlist:

I have added a new batch of songs to the Top 20 playlist, so if you fancy a listen, here’s the playlist! 🙂 (NB: I can’t get Naropa’s song off the playlist! I think it’s because it was removed from Spotify, my playlist starts with Brave Giant).

Take That on Carpool Karaoke for Comic Relief

I didn’t get the chance to watch Comic Relief live last night, but I’ve just watched the video of Take That with James Corden for Carpool Karaoke.

I was 12 years old when Take That started and I was a fan since the start. I even got to be front row at one of their concerts when I was 15. I was devastated when they split up, but I was so pleased when they reformed and came back as a ‘man band’! They’re such talented singers and I’m so pleased they’re still performing.

Hearing them singing the older songs brought back happy memories of my teenage years. I’m so jealous of James and everyone who got to meet them in this video, it’s just brilliant!

Do you know an unsigned UK artist or band?

One of the things I love to champion is unsigned UK artist and bands. With that in mind, I run a regular feature on the Merryn Magazine website on Mondays called Independent Music Monday where I interview a different singer or band each week. If you know of anyone that I should be featuring, please ask them to take a look at this webpage, as that will give them more information 🙂

Happy birthday Janet Jackson!

Today (16th May 2016) is Janet Jackson’s 50th birthday! I have always been a big fan of Janet’s, ever since I was given a cassette copy of her 1989 album Rhythm Nation 1814 when I was 11 years old. It’s such a great album and I was hooked from the start. Not only is it a great album, but her videos are filmic masterpieces. To celebrate Janet’s birthday, here’s my favourite song from Rhythm Nation 1814 🙂

RIP Prince



Wow, 2016 is officially starting to suck now. We’ve already lost so many talented people, but now Prince? Really? I can’t believe that Prince is dead. It’s like the words just won’t sink in. I’ve been a big fan of Prince since the early 1990s, I was even lucky enough to see him live in concert in March 1995 at Sheffield Arena. I was only 6 rows from the front and he was simply phenomenal. I really hope that this year is done with taking talented people from us, I’ve never known a year like it.

RIP Prince, thank you for all the amazing music, for sharing your fabulous style with us and for showing that you don’t need to conform to gender stereotypes; you can just be you.

Rick Astley’s back with new music!

To most people the name ‘Rick Astley’ means they got rickrolled and expected to see a completely different video. I’ve always been a big fan of Rick’s but then I was 9 years old when “Never Gonna Give You Up” came out, so I have happy childhood memories linked to Rick’s music.

Tonight I was listening to a Spotify playlist “Tomorrow’s Hits” while working when I heard a song I really liked. I took a look at who it was by, and it was Rick Astley! I didn’t know he’d released a new song. It’s really good and sounds nothing like his 80’s music.

I highly recommend having a listen 🙂

The Voice 2016: Battle Round 1: 27th February 2016

** SPOILER ALERTS IF YOU HAVEN’T SEEN THE OUTCOME OF TONIGHT’S SHOW! **

As mentioned in my post from last week “The Voice 2016: my ones to watch“, I’m a massive The Voice fan. I picked out my favourite 9 auditions and this week we saw whether any of my favourites made it through to the next round. So, away we go!

It was such an emotional night, I’ve never seen so many tears! This year, part one of the battle rounds seemed less shouty than last year, and left you able to hear how good the singing was as opposed to just how loud some of them could scream.

Jolan (Team Ricky)
Jolan was paired up with Efe Udugba to sing The Jam’s Beat Surrender.
It’s a great song that you really don’t hear often. I really couldn’t call it, as they were both so invested and sang their hearts out. In the end, Jolan won and sadly no-one stole Efe. It’s such a shame to lose anyone this talented, but I know you can only have a certain number go through to the next round.

Chloe Castro (Team Ricky)
Chloe was paired up with Alaric Green to sing Hope There’s Someone by Antony and The Johnsons.
It was a really emotional performance with both Boy George and Ricky Wilson tearing up. Their voices really complimented each other, and even though I hadn’t favourited Alaric’s initial audition, I really enjoyed him tonight. Again, I couldn’t call it, but happily Chloe was picked, though Alaric was stolen by Boy George, so he’s also through to the knockout shows. He’s got a great voice, so it was fantastic that he’s through too.

Tobias Robertson (Team George)
Tobias was paired up with Laura Begley to sing Love Will Tear Us Apart by Joy Division.
It was a slowed-down version and sounded beautiful. I felt both were equally pitched during the song, but when Laura was picked, I could see why. So, Tobias is my first loss of the battle rounds, but I’m sure we’ll see more from him as he’s really talented.

Bradley Waterman (Team Paloma)
Bradley was paired up with Rick Snowdon to sing a mashup of I’m A Man/Something’s Got A Hold On Me by Bo Diddley/Etta James.
What a battle! I hadn’t favourited Rick’s audition, but he can sing! It was a very rock concert performance and both singers gave their all. Sadly though, Paloma chose Rick, but Bradley was stolen by Boy George, so he’s still in!

Cody Frost (Team George)
Cody was paired up with Heather Cameron-Hayes to sing Nothing Compares To You by Sinead O’Connor.
Another amazing performance! To say I was underwhelmed by the auditions, quite a few people have impressed me tonight where I hadn’t favourited their original audition, and Heather is one of those people. It was another emotional performance, with Boy George crying pretty much throughout. I couldn’t call it, but George chose Cody but Paloma stole Heather.

So still to battle next week are:
Kevin Simm (Team Paloma)
Vangelis (Team George)
Mia Sylvester (Team Ricky)
Rachel Ann (Team Ricky)

This means that this week, I still have the below in the running and going into the knockout round:
Jolan (Team Ricky)
Chloe Castro (Team Ricky)
Bradley Waterman (was Team Paloma, now Team George)
Cody Frost (Team George)

But we sadly said goodbye to Tobias Robertson (Team George) 😦