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Stream Tina Cousins "Wonderful Life"

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If you are ready to start your party weekend a few days early, check out an exclusive stream of Tina Cousin's brand-new dance tune "Wonderful Life." The song is an amped up cover of Black's 1987 original. I was a huge fan of Cousin's in the late nineties and played her remix EP with the hits "Killin' Time" and "Mysterious Ways" over and over again. Her version of "Wonderful Life" was released in the U.K. on Monday, but the track was already put out succesfully in Australia this summer. The single is taken from her forthcoming album "Mastermind." I appreciate this new single, but I'm anxious to hear some new stuff from Cousins soon. Press the play button to start streaming the song in the new Arjan Writes Music Player. (A big thanks to Tina for giving me this track to share on Arjan Writes.)

  Stream Tina Cousins "Wonderful Life"

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November 30, 2005 in Audio Streams | Permalink | Comments (62)

Interview with Alex Patsavis, Musical Director The O.C.

Alex Patsavis is the musical director for the FOX television series The O.C. She also puts together the show's very successful compilation albums that have become almost as popular as the series itself. Patsavis preference for unknown indie tunes has given many young bands an ideal platform to gain notoriety in the commercial mainstream. "The O.C. Volume 5" includes tracks by Kaiser Chiefs, Rogue Wave, Imogen Heap and The Subways [mp3]. I emailed Alex a few questions about how she goes about picking the songs for the show and the albums. Read further to see what she replied.

Arjan: Why do you think audiences are so turned on by your selection of music for the show?

Alex: I think that audiences have been so favorable in their response because source songs are used as almost as another character in the show. We (the producers, editors and I) spend a lot of time making sure that exactly the right song is chosen for each spot.

Do you receive a lot of demo tapes from bands? What is the most interesting thing a band has done to get your attention?
I get about 400 submissions a week – lots of emails, show invites etc. Nothing too exciting as far as bands getting my attention – just wish they would skip the glitter.

What aspects do you look for in a song for the show?
A well-crafted well-recorded track with an interesting lyric… Something immediately compelling.

When you are not compiling soundtracks for The O.C. what is rocking your own iPod?

This week – Starsailor, Every Move A Picture, Clearlake, Infadels, Electric President and Rock Kills Kid

If there would ever be a hot gay love scene in the program, what song would you pick for it?

Depends on the characters and setting but I think Keane is romantic and Rufus Wainwright is always genius.

Thanks for the email interview, Alex!

November 30, 2005 in Interviews | Permalink | Comments (29)

Stream Entire "Brokeback Mountain" Soundtrack

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The "Brokeback Mountain" soundtrack is one of the most exciting new albums to come out this season. The movie's original tunes are composed by the talented Gustavo Santaolalla. Parts of his mesmerizing instrumental score are intertwined with vocals tracks performed by Willie Nelson, Rufus Wainwright, Emmylou Harris, Mary McBride, Teddy Thompsons and others. The Argentina-born Santaolalla has been called the guru of alternative Latin musical production and previously wrote the scores for "21 Grams" and "The Motorcycle Diaries."

Rooted in country, folk and bluegrass, the music on this record perfectly conveys the emotional intensity and the authenticity of the movie's love story that is set in the breathtaking Wyoming landscape. Tender ballads by Rufus Wainwright and Emmylou Harris are mixed with the upbeat country stompers of Linda Ronstadt and The Gas Band.

In an interview with with TIMBT, Santaolalla explains that he was pushed to a new creative level to write music about a love affair between two cowboys. His unique approach to scoring music was very appealing to director Ang Lee. "Usually the way this business works is that they do a first cut, then they send you the cut and then you start scoring," Santaolalla said. "The way I did [my] last three films is that I read the script, I had a meeting with the director, we talked about it, and then I started composing, writing and recording stuff. And it has been great because it has been very useful for the creative relationship with the director." 

I'm particularly fond of Mary McBride's arresting vocal performance on "No One's Gonna Love You Like Me." Rufus Wainwright and Teddy Thompson's duet on their cover of Roger Miller's 1964 "King of the Road" is another gem that should not be missed. The album concludes with the gorgeous Santaolalla composition "The Wings" that is the official movie theme song. For those interested in reading more about "Brokeback Mountain," make sure to visit Towleroad's movie link page. [source, source, source]

Stream the entire "Brokeback Mountain" soundtrack
Listen to a podcast interview with Ang Lee [mp3]
Watch "Brokeback Mountain" movie trailer [wmv]

November 29, 2005 in Audio Streams | Permalink | Comments (131)

Free Download: Krezip "I Apologize"

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Krezip is one of the most commercially successful Dutch acts of recent years. The band has scored hits in the Netherlands, but also in Germany, Belgium and other European countries. Now signed to SonyBMG Europe, the group recently released their third album "What Are You Waiting For." The record was partly written and produced by famed Australian duo Wizardz of Oz  who previously produced songs for Avril Lavigne, Jason Mraz, Liz Phair and Britney Spears.

The group's new, international sound has gained interest from music mogul Clive Davis who has been considering a U.S. launch. Also, radio stations in Brazil have picked up on Krezip. Their new album lives up to its promise by combining slick, radio-friendly fare with the spunk and songwriting talent of lead singer Jacqueline Goveart. She traveled to Los Angeles to do some of the recordings with Phil Tornalley (ex-bassist of the Cure) who also co-wrote Natalie Imbruglia’s worldwide smash "Torn."

"I Apologize" is the third single to be lifted off "What Are You Waiting For." Krezip co-penned this track together with the Wizard of Oz. The song is a sugar sweet, acoustic pop ballad that is perfect to hum to during these cold, dark winter nights.

Download Krezip "I Apologize" [mp3]
Watch Krezip "I Apologize" [real]

A big thank you to Harald and the rest of Krezip's management for providing this track to the readers of Arjan Writes. If you would like to have your music featured on Arjan Writes, email your mp3 to arjanwrites@gmail.com for consideration.

November 28, 2005 in MP3 | Permalink | Comments (5)

Stream Amber "Just Like That" (Jeff Barringer Edit)

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Check out an exclusive stream of Jeff Barringer's radio edit of Amber's new dance tune "Just Like That." Amber hit the top of the dance charts a few years ago with songs like "Sexual" and "This Is The Night." After leaving Tommy Boy Records, she took some time off to write and produce "My Kind Of World," her first independenly released record that shows a grittier side of the singer.

"Just Like That" will be released as a single on January 10 (with a pre-release on iTunes). Fans of Amber's dance hits can breathe a sigh of relief after hearing about the rock and worldbeat influences on her album. This new tune  proves that Amber is still a bonafide dancefloor diva. Several remixers have reworked the song including Jason Nevins, Jeff Barringer, Solar City vs. DJ Rico and Sweet Rains. If you want to know more about the song, make sure to vist Chris' blog and read his interview with Amber. Stream the entire Jeff Barringer edit in the (new) Arjan Writes Music Player below by pressing the "Play" button.

Click to stream Amber "Just Like That" (Barringer Edit)

November 26, 2005 in Audio Streams | Permalink | Comments (30)