Happy New Year! I'd like to wish all of you a very happy and healthy new year with lots of great, fresh new music! To celebrate the occasion, I'm sharing some sweet and juicy musical swag for you to have and kick off the new year with.
DJ/producer P Martell put together a very cool remix podcast that includes some of the most popular guilt-free MP3 downloads that were featured on ArjanWrites.com in the last twelve months. A great non-stop mash of alternative pop for you to grab and listen to wherever you are. Enjoy! Get it after the jump. (A big thank you to P Martell for putting this very first podcast together. More to come.)
Listen to the second part of my interview with Daughtry last sunday at The Beatles Revolution lounge at The Mirage Hotel in Las Vegas. The group played an acoustic set to support the One Campaign, which fights global AIDS and extreme poverty around the world.
After the group did their soundcheck, I met up with the guys to talk about the One Campaign, their trip to Sudan for Idol Gives Back, Daughtry's international success and their second album. (My question about their international popularity was triggered by one of my recent trips to Europe where I was sitting in a cab in the south of France and listened to "Home" on a local radio station, which really struck me.)
The podcast below includes both the first and second portion of the interview.
She's a bona fide pop star overseas with chart-topping hits across Europe, and now Robyn is gearing up to take on North America.
The Swedish singer released "The Rakomonie EP" on iTunes earlier this year to give people a taste of her pop candy. The EP includes her #1 U.K. smash "With Every Heartbeat." Her new U.S. single "Handle Me" was released last week and is taken from Robyn's full-length self-titled album that will be in stores on April 29.
Robyn and I caught up a few weeks ago in Europe for our podcast interview. She was at home in Sweden and I was traveling in Amsterdam. We were connected via New York, which explains the slight echo on the line. Half-way through our call, Robyn's cell phone battery gave out and we reconnected again the next day. I did some minor edits to the sound file to create one smooth podcast for you.
Robyn talks candidly about her progression as an artist, being her own label boss, her fashion and sense of style, her inspiration and the importance of her gay fans. A very special thanks to everyone that submitted questions for Robyn.
Listen to an exclusive phone interview I conducted with Duran Duran bassist John Taylor a few weeks ago. For those of you that need a little refresher, John is pictured on the far right in the photo above.
John and I talked at length about the group's new line up, their fantastic new album "Red Carpet Massacre," the collaboration with Timbaland and Justin Timberlake, the importance of fashion and visual presentation, gay fans, Britney Spears and much more.
In more than thirty minutes, we covered quite a lot of ground. Animated and candid, John shared a lot of information about the process behind "Red Carpet Massacre." Noteworthy are his comments about the learning curve working with Timbaland to make it a true Duran Duran effort and not a Simon Le Bon show. He also spoke openly about his ongoing drive to be commercially successful and how he deals with getting older in an intensely competitive music market in which celebrities are constantly under scrutiny.
If you have not heard "Red Carpet Massacre" yet, you can stream the entire album on AOL. It serves up a truly fresh and contemporary sound that they put together with the help of Timbaland, Justin Timberlake, and Nate "Danja" Hills who helped them tool a new sonic architecture. Click here to download "Red Carpet Massacre" on iTunes.
It was pretty amazing to talk to John who is a childhood idol of mine.
Duran Duran really started my passion for music. "The Reflex" was the
first single I bought and their concert at Rotterdam Ahoy in 1987 was
the first pop concert I ever went to. A very special thanks to Abe and Sharon for arranging the call with John.
(Download the MP3 of the interview here. If you share the MP3, please credit ArjanWrites.com and do not alter the recording in any way. Brief illustrative bits of "Nite-Runner," "Falling Down" and "Skin Divers" are courtesy of SonyBMG/Epic Records.)
Download my entire interview with Róisín Murphy that I recorded on the red couch in London last month. I met Róisín a week before the release of her new album "Overpowered," which was the focal point of our conversation.
I decided to post the raw audio footage that I only slightly edited for clarity. It is really odd to hear my own voice back on tape and the perfectionist in me tells me I probably should not throw it out in the ether like this. But this one is for the fans. The things Róisín had to say have more value and meaning in their entire context.
If you have not checked out Roisin's album "Overpowered" then you absolutely must. It is one of the most intelligent and well-crafted pop records of the year. On a related note, fortunately Róisín has recovered from her stage accident and is back on the road looking as stylish as ever.
Click here to download the Róisín Murphy podcast (34 minutes, 32mb).