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Lorde: “Royals” and “Team”

Running into music written and performed by an individual — Lorde — who is the same age (to be precise, 15 days older) than my youngest child is an interesting experience. I find that the best approach is to remain open to the music without trying too hard to relate to Lorde herself, which would be a bit creepy.

Lorde, who is from New Zealand, has the much more interesting given name of Ella Maria Lani Yelich-O’Connor. I hadn’t heard of her until a few days before she won two Grammy awards (Song of the Year and Best Pop Solo Performance) for “Royals,” which is above.

Young doesn’t mean superficial or non-serious, as is evidenced by her musical and literary influences. This is only some of what is related in her Wikipedia entry:

Lorde’s music draws from electropop, but she grew up listening to soul musicians Etta James and Otis Redding, as well as her parents’ favourite records by the likes of Cat Stevens, Neil Young and Fleetwood Mac. She cites the unusual vocals of Grimes, the band Sleigh Bells and producer SBTRKT as her prominent influences.[61][62] Lorde also stated that she was inspired by the initially hidden identities of Burial and The Weeknd, explaining, “I feel like mystery is more interesting”,[11] and called American musical artist Nicki Minaj an “important female in pop.”[63]

Lorde describes short story writers Raymond Carver, Wells Tower, Tobias Wolff and Claire Vaye Watkins as lyrical inspirations – particularly noting their sentence structures.[64] Lorde stated her music is also inspired by authors, citing Tobias Wolff, Sylvia Plath, Walt Whitman and Leonard Cohen as influences on her writing.[65] (Continue Reading…) 
 
Below is “Team.” Billboard looks at other potential impact musical acts from New Zealand.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f2JuxM-snGc

Below is “Team.” Billboard looks at other potential impact musical acts from New Zealand.

Here’s What’s Here

The Daily Music Break explores every genre of music, from hip hop to opera. It's simple: Boundaries are dumb. It's all good. Here is more about the site and here is our index:

--A Tribe Called Quest to The Dick Hyman Trio (In other words, A to H)

--Indigo Girls to Queen Ida (I to Q)

--Radiohead to ZZ Top (R to Z)

Reading Music

The stories of the great bands and musicians are fascinating. Musicians as a group are brilliant, but often troubled. The combination of creativity and drama makes for great reading.

Here are some books to check out.

Duke Ellington brought class, sophistication and style to jazz which, until that point, was proudly unpolished and raucous. His story is profound. The author, Terry Teachout, also wrote "Pops," the acclaimed bio of Louis Armstrong. Click here or on the image.

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What else is there to say? Here is the story behind every song written by The Beatles. Click here or on the image.

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The Grateful Dead don't get enough credit for the profound nature of its lyrics. Many of the band's songs are driven by a deep and literate Americana ("I'm Uncle Sam/That's who I am/Been hidin' out/In a rock and roll band" and "Majordomo Billy Bojangles/Sit down and have a drink with me/What's this about Alabama/Keeps comin' back to me?").

David Dodd's exhaustive study tells the story, song by song. Click here or on the image.

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