Song of the Week Videos

Song of the Week: “Bye Bye Bye”

Remember that catchy chorus and those impeccable dance moves? Who doesn’t? This week’s song of the week, *NSync’s “Bye Bye Bye” is dedicated to my best friend since 6th grade, Ansela. She’ll be getting married this weekend and then moving to Texas, so it’s a bit bittersweet for everyone.

We grew up knowing each and every lyric to *NSync and Backstreet Boys tunes and forever debated who was the better boy band. We went to our first concert together, (BSB – I was the hugest BSB fan) and second concert (*NSync – Ansela LOVED them). We even used to fantasize about which member we would marry, she loved Lance of *NSync and my favorite was Brian of BSB. I’ve already said more than enough to embarrass us both, so go ahead and watch the video below. Enjoy!



Poll of the Week: Which 90s Band Do You Miss Most?


The 90s were a time where boy bands ruled the planet (or so it seems to me). For those that didn’t know me back then, consider yourselves lucky. I was OBSESSED with the Backstreet Boys. So much so, I was convinced I would marry one of them (preferably Brian Littrell, the smooth crooner with those beautiful blue eyes…) But I digress.

Last night, I noticed a missed call from my friend and concert sidekick/photographer/videographer Wendy Hu. She left a voicemail blasting BSB’s “Everybody” and I couldn’t help but smile. This isn’t the first time I’ve received a message with Backstreet Boys on the other end. In fact, all throughout college my mom would frequently leave me similar voicemails when she heard one of their songs.

When I posted this on Twitter I quickly received responses asking me whether I knew what happened to various 90s bands. So, rather than wonder to myself, I figured I’d ask you which 90s band you miss most and what happened to them. I’ll choose a few for the poll, but feel free to add bands I’ve missed in the comments.While you’re at it, leave me some song suggestions!

Which 90s Band Do You Miss Most?
Ace of Base
La Bouche
‘N Sync
Song of the Week

You Sing, I Write’s Christmas Playlist

It’s that time again. The tree is decorated, the gifts are (almost) all wrapped and holiday music has been heard non-stop since Thanksgiving. For this year’s Christmas playlist I’ve included some reader favorites as well as a few of my own. Listen below and feel free to leave additional suggestions in the comments!

Charlie Brown: “Christmas Time Is Here.”


Bruce Springsteen: “Santa Claus Is Coming to Town.”


N’Sync:”Oh Holy Night.”


House of Heroes: “O Come, O Come Emmanuel.”

House of Heroes “O Come, O Come Emmanuel from Ransom TV on Vimeo.

Elvis Presley and Martina McBride: “Blue Christmas”

Did I leave out any of your favorites? Let me know! Wishing you and yours a Merry Christmas.


SXSW: Day Three Recap

I woke up early Friday to head to Cedar Street Courtyard for my interview with Anya Marina. Before her set, Anya talked to me about the inspiration behind some of her songs, her recording process (which involved recording one song topless to get the right vocals for the song) and overcoming people’s expectations of her not making it in the music scene. I’ll be posting the full Q&A; in the upcoming days, so check back for that.

Anya’s performance was nothing short of enjoyable. The California native had all in attendance laughing along to her stories about eating goat milk yogurt for breakfast, quitting her job to be a musician, and visits to her therapist. Highlight of the set was stand-out single “Move You” and her acoustic cover of T.I.’s “Whatever You Like.”

Next band up for Filter Magazine‘s showcase was the phenomenal Idle Warship. Truly a must-see the band, consisting of Talib Kweli, Res, and Graph Nobel among others, Idle Warship had every hand in the courtyard raised in the air during their energetic set. The Brooklyn/Philly/Toronto members had the crowd rocking so hard at one in the afternoon, you would have thought it was 1 a.m. on a Saturday night. Highly recommend catching them if you get the chance as their impeccable blend of rock, R&B; and rap is impressive.

While Idle Warship was a hard act to follow, New Hampshire-based Wild Light held their own introducing some indie music to the crowd. Wild Light definitely had the indie diehards support in the audience while performing in the scorching Austin sun.

Next band I caught at the Filter showcase was Manchester band The Whips and boy did they have the crowd’s attention. From the energetic fans surrounding me (most likely from Manchester), I felt like I was at a dance party with their computer generated electronica and strong bass and drum beats. Everyone around me was jumping with their fists pumping in the air. I headed out after their set, but still have their single, “Trash” stuck in my head.

Headed to catch Fanfarlo with the roomies after some much desired (and delicious) ice cream on 6th Street. Every indie music lover’s band, Fanfarlo switched up the typical expected showcase with a variety of instruments — from clarinet to violin — they represented indie music at it’s best at Emo’s Annex Friday afternoon.

My favorite performance of the night goes to Jason Reeves. Playing at Live.Create. Lounge as part of VH1’s Save the Music showcase, he impressed the audience with his heartfelt stories and adamant view on the importance of music in schools. Playing tracks off his most recent album, The Magnificent Adventures of Heartache (and other frightening tales), it is evident that he is a hopeful romantic as many of his tracks deal with relationships.

Before introducing “Someone, Somewhere” Reeves told the crowd the song is about “being in love and being hopeful when everyone is telling you it’s not going to happen. We have to fight and stand up for that.” With his hushed singing style towards the fade out of the track, you could sense the emotion in every song played throughout his set.

About VH1’s Save the Music campaign, Reeves said, “What’s happening in this building is so powerful. I believe music changes lives. It’s one of the only truly beautiful things we have left as human beings. This is not letting music die. Please do everything you can to save music, otherwise we’re all going to die.”

The rest of the night was a bit of a blur as plans kept changing once realizing I couldn’t catch a few bands I hoped to see (Lights Resolve, Tinted Windows, Lady Sovereign) but all wasn’t lost. I caught part of Solange‘s set at the Convention Center. Dressed to the nine, seeing Solange and her band perform had that New York City lounge feel as the lighting and dance contribution by her and her backup singers was stellar. How she dances in those heels I’ll never know, but she wowed the crowd with songs off her recent release. You can catch her set live on Direct TV so be sure to check your cable listings to be part of SXSW.

I was dying to catch Luna Halo‘s showcase after seeing them open for Switchfoot over a year ago. By far the best opening band I have ever witnessed, their blend of indie rock is impressive and their performance last night was nothing less than stellar.

Perhaps the most interesting venue to catch a show had to be Lisa Hannigan‘s set at 11 p.m. at the Central Presbyterian Church on 8th Street. While she’s no doubt an impressive talent, the dimmed lighting and laid-back vibe definitely was soporific and after catching a few songs I headed back to 6th Street to catch Nashville-based band Shirock (see below).

What Shirock has been doing in relation to promoting their debut album, Everything Burns is inspiring. The band has launched a non-profit organization called Everything Burns as a way to encourage and enable people to help those in need by providing awareness of various charities throughout their tours. The idea behind Everything Burns is “not to get stuck in the mundane,” said frontman Chuck. “Engaging in culture and getting involved [is what’s important]” he continued. Truly a stand-up example to all musicians, I’m interested to see where Shirock will be in a few years.

Wow, totally didn’t realize I caught 10 shows until I finished writing this post! Definitely the place to be for the music addict, SXSW obviously has the most versatile line-up you’ll see anywhere. Didn’t catch Metallica or The Decemberists unfortunately but the rest of the festival looks promising as I’ll be seeing Third Eye Blind‘s performance tonight at Stubb’s! Keep reading for updates throughout the rest of the weekend and into next week!

P.S. Hopefully I won’t be losing all respect from you readers, but one of the highlights of the night had to be running into Chris Kirkpatrick from ‘N Sync right off 6th Street. My inner 13-year-old obsessed boy band fan came out and I’m still regretting not taking a picture with him. I know, I’m a music journalist and gotta be professional but ‘N Sync! Takes me back. Cue “Tearin’ Up My Heart” . . .


Your Favorite Holiday Songs

I received an overwhelming response from everyone on their favorite holiday tunes from my post last week, so I decided to include some today. Hope you all have a great holiday and you’re spending the season with your loved ones and eating lots of tasty holiday treats. I can’t wait to eat all the cookies I’ve been making as well as my Mom’s amazing fudge! Still have a few Christmas gifts to wrap myself so I’ll definitely be listening to some of your music suggestions while I’m doing that! 🙂

The classic Charlie Brown Christmas song, “Christmas Time Is Here.”


Vintage Bruce Springsteen. Watch as the Boss and his band play “Santa Clause Is Coming to Town” live from a 1978 performance at the Capitol Theatre in Passaic, NJ.


N’Sync’s beautiful a cappella version of “Oh Holy Night.”


Definitely not your “traditional” holiday song by any means, but a fun one at that. Check out No Doubt’s quirky punk take on “Oi To The World.”


Quite possibly the most beautiful rendition of “Silent Night” I’ve ever heard. Watch below for Enya’s performance of it in Gaelic.


Lastly, try not to give yourself too much of a headache while watching this video of a house Christmas light display as The Waitressess’ “Christmas Wrapping” plays in the background.


Did I leave out any of your favorites? Let me know! Merry Christmas 🙂


My Top 5 Holiday Songs

Last week’s Song of the Week featured one of my favorite holiday tunes, “Blue Christmas” by Elvis Presley. Since then, I figured I’d compile a list of my top five holiday songs below (in no particular order). Stay tuned tomorrow for one more!

1. “The Christmas Song” by Nat King Cole

2. “Wonderful Christmas Time” by Paul McCartney

3. “Last Christmas” by Wham!

4. “Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays” by N’Sync

5. “Oh Holy Night” by Josh Groban

What’s your favorite holiday song? Did I leave one out that you recommend?

Song of the Week

My Favorite Holiday Tunes

I finally started to listen to some holiday songs while wrapping gifts this weekend. Besides figuring out that I am by far the worst gift wrapper (you know, the kind that cuts the wrapping paper just about an inch too short so there’s a little strip of box showing underneath), I happened to find an old Christmas CD I must have made back in high school and figured I’d share some of my favorite tunes. So here’s my top 10 favorite holiday tunes, in no particular order.

1. “The Christmas Song” by Nat King Cole
To be honest, I had no clue this was even the name of the song. Possibly better known for its subtitle and opening line – “Chestnuts roasting on an open fire” – Nat King Cole’s calming voice makes everyone want to sit back, relax and drink some eggnog while trying to resist the temptation of opening all those gifts under the Christmas tree.

2. “Let It Snow” by Dean Martin
Another classic holiday song by crooner Dean Martin with lyrics such as “The weather outside is frightful, but the fire’s so delightful/Since we’ve no place to go, let it snow, let it snow, let it snow.” Seriously, who doesn’t love a perfect rhyme scheme repetition throughout a song? I think every song should be entirely made up of clever rhymes.

3. “Sleigh Ride” the instrumental version.
I think all those years of playing “Sleigh Ride” on my clarinet throughout high school finally has grown on me. It really is a quality song. I really like Relient K’s version as well…you can check it out on their MySpace

4. “Wonderful Christmas Time” by Paul McCartney.
From the catchy intro McCartney has me hooked. Everyone should simply have a wonderful Christmas time.

5. “Last Christmas” by Wham!
Possibly one of the more depressing holiday songs, Wham! demonstrates how horribly heart-wrenching it is to have your heart broken on Christmas.

6. “All I Want for Christmas is You” by Mariah Carey.
This may be my favorite Christmas song. The lyrics, the rhythm. Maybe it’s just the hopeless romantic in me, but every time I hear this song I just can’t help but sing along regardless where I am.

7. “Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays” by N’Sync.
Okay, okay. You can make fun of this choice, but remember I grew up during the boy band era. This song just can’t help but get you into the holiday spirit. The piano introduction, the up tempo beat throughout the song’s entirety, Justin Timberlake . . . I have a feeling it may be a lot of people’s guilty pleasure holiday song.

8. “Blue Christmas” by Elvis Presley.
He is the King. Need I say more?

9. “Do They Know It’s Christmas” by Band Aid.
It’s amazing that this song was released back in 1984 and it’s probably one of the most played holiday songs today, not to mention this song has helped raise money for famine relief in Ethiopia. Singers on this track include Duran Duran, Paul Young, George Michael, Sting and Bono, just to name a few.

10. “Oh Holy Night” by Josh Groban.
His voice is simply phenomenal on this song. He starts out the song softly, but then perfects throughout the song in spots where his voice and the music both slowly crescendo.

Again, these are only 10 of my picks out of hundreds of holiday songs out there. Hopefully you enjoyed a few of them! Merry Christmas.