Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Mayssa Karaa

A couple of days ago a friend sent me a link via FB to a Dutch group who had covered Jefferson Airplane's White Rabbit.

That was so cool that it started me on a search for who had recorded that amazing version for the movie American Hustle.

And that's when I found Mayssa Karaa, young lady of the awesome amazing voice.

So I just felt I had to do a piece on her so I could listen to her whenever.
Mayssa Karaa (born 1989, Lebanon) is a singer from Beirut. Currently based in Boston, Massachusetts, while attending Berklee College of Music she toured with Italian tenor Pasquale Esposito, and later collaborated and toured with Arabic musician Simon Shaheen. She has also toured with the Berklee World Strings Orchestra. In 2013 she was the featured vocalist on the Arabic version of "White Rabbit" on the American Hustle Soundtrack. Karaa was awarded the National Cultural Award of Lebanon for the song at the American Hustle premier in Beirut, and as of 2014 she is working on her debut solo album.             [Wikipedia]
Mayssa’s manager, Dawn Elder says, “Mayssa has the capability to cross over like no other artist before her. The unique colors, tones, and grittiness in her voice, and her versatility in both English, Arabic, not to mention Persian, Italian and French, is unprecedented. Her passion for rock music and desire to bring an organic fusion with Middle Eastern music to her songs is both refreshing and exciting.”
First up check out her MasterPeace message.
September 21st,2014 at the Ziggo Dome of Amsterdam, it will be broadcast around the world via the web and TV networks.
Watch out for it.

MasterPeace in Concert

Here's a very cool piece by the Persian composer Hafez Nazeri, it is from the Rumi Symphony Project, which is Hafez’s most passionate and ambitious undertaking to date,

Rumi (30 September 1207 – 17 December 1273), was a 13th-century Persian poet, jurist, theologian, and Sufi mystic. Rumi's importance is considered to transcend national and ethnic borders.

Needless to say the voice of Mayssa, as ever, is impeccable.

The Passion of Rumi

The Passion of Rumi by Hafez Nazeri performed by Mayssa Karaa, vocalist, with Berklee World Strings directed by Eugene Friesen, Berklee Performance Center, Boston, Massachusetts, November 13, 2012.
Featured instrumental soloists: Naseem Alatrash - cello, Layth Othman Al Rubaye - violin. 

In complete contrast check out this beautiful Adele cover.
No video, photo by Ramzi Rayess.

Someone like you

From my favorite opera - Bizet's Carmen this beautiful aria beautifully sung.
Habanera, is the popular name for "L'amour est un oiseau rebelle" (Love is a rebellious bird) the entrance aria for the character Carmen.


In honor of his new album and the impending 80th birthday of Leonard Cohen I'm happy to include thus wonderful version of one of his most recorded classics.
It's a pity it's very short,


Talking of great singer-songwriters, Mayssa's cover of Belgian singer-songwriter Jacques Brel's classic is one of the best I've heard.
Prepare for goose bumps.

Dans Le Port d'Amsterdam

Well this is the song that got us here, this is a slightly different version from the movie sound track.
As one would expect. Truly beautiful.

White Rabbit

Monday, September 15, 2014

Silya & The Sailors

Today another great talent from Oslo, Norway.
Although nowadays Silya is based in New York.

I just love this girls voice. It's as beautiful as she is.
Born and raised in Oslo, Norway, SiLyA sang in the school choir and played classical piano from the age of 8. Being a warm-blooded Norwegian, she was also fascinated with rhythm. At 15, she started dancing, worked hard at it, and majored in contemporary/jazz dance at The Oslo National Academy of Art while simultaneously being a member of several street dance companies doing shows for television and stage.
Look out for the new album from Silya & The Sailors ~ "Unanchored" totally awesome.

First up a little ditty from Silya and her very, very tight band "The Sailors".
This pairing is at the peak of the talent scale.
Just totally beautiful amazing sounds.
This track should blow you away,

Little Thing Called Love

Music video by Silya & The Sailors performing Little Thing Called Love.
(C) 2014 Silya Music under exclusive license to Sony Music Entertainment Norway AS
Track 5 Unanchored 

The lady sure can sing the blues, awesome song, amazing feeling, tremendous vocals, brilliant band. 

This one wil haunt you.

Become My Dream

Music video by Silya & The Sailors performing Become My Dream.
(C) 2014 Sony Music Entertainment Norway AS
Track 7 Unanchored 

This is a great video, first up Silya explains her fascination with the 40's then she breaks into this amazing song.
I'd go as far as saying she is extraordinary.


Track 6 Unanchored

This one despite the lack of visuals is a song to be reckoned with.
Totally brilliant.


Track 11 Unanchored 

I don't know the why or the where, I think it was circa 2012 and it would appear Silya is sans the Sailors and plus a bunch of hot young ladies.
But it would be a crime to miss this one.


Not included on Unanchored 

Finally today, another circa 2012 track.
Another beautiful song with the amazing voice of Silya.

No use in runnin'

Written by Silya Nymoen and Electric City Productions
Video shot, directed and edited by Jonathan Hoeg
Bisi Music/ Cosmos Music Group
Track 3 Unanchored 

Saturday, September 13, 2014

White Rabbit

Today I heard a new version of White Rabbit, via a friend from Holland.
Thanks Boele.

I have loved this song from it's original release on Jefferson Airplane's 1967 album Surrealistic Pillow and always considered it to be Grace Slick's property.
Nobody else could sing it and few attempted to try it.

This version performed live on The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour.

Jefferson Airplane

From the Dvd "Fly Jefferson Airplane"

That was up until last year when I heard a new version on the soundtrack of American Hustle, this was sung in Arabic by the amazing Mayssa Karaa. a version worth checking out.

Mayssa Karaa

Then I heard this version by the 3 J's, had someone told me a male could sing this song and still bring out the goose bumps I would have said they were crazy.

3 J's