This Week In Music: 27th May 2023
ARTIST OF THE WEEK: SREEJA CHAKRA “LIFE OF YOUR OWN”
I am in Dubai this week for work, attending a party for the local music scene and I am introduced to a young woman who tells me she is an unsigned artist, looking for opportunities. We exchange Spotify links and I head back to my hotel thinking nothing of the exchange. But because I could not sleep, I tapped on my phone and headed to her Spotify page, really out of curiosity. But when I heard Chakra’s voice step into the light after the first tentative acoustic bars of her neo-RnB track “Life of Your Own“, I was not sure I was hearing right. A perfect voice, delivered with such feeling and maturity, it sent shivers down my spine. The song is a quest for self-discovery, delivered with restraint. The lyrics in pop songs sometimes play second fiddle, but in this track they match the music. “My eyes bleed like a high tide” sent me searching for the meaning behind the song, but like the wistful violin solo at the end, it still remains deliciously elusive.
Sreeja Chakra is a Bengali singer-songwriter and activist with a BSc in Music studies from Denver, CO currently residing in Dubai.
BELL – MILLION DOLLAR FINGERS
In a Revenge of The Nerds-style ad, Canadian insurance company Bell and Zulu Alpha Kilo, Toronto ad agency demonstrates its “all in” commitment to insurance.
While it’s not uncommon for the world’s greatest athletes to insure their most important body parts, esport athletes are pushing to be seen in the same regard. Bell’s “Million Dollar Fingers” campaign demonstrates that shift by insuring the fingers of each team member for $1 million, a first for the telecommunication giant.
Toronto Ultra is a Canadian professional Call of Duty esports team consisting of four players. Its parent company, OverActive Media, agreed to a partnership with Bell until 2025, providing the team with a premium gaming experience through its fibre internet technology.
TINA TURNER: LEGENDARY ROCK’N’ROLL SINGER DIES AGED 83
Legendary singer Tina Turner has died at the age of 83.
The Queen of Rock ‘n’ Roll died after a long illness at her home in Küsnacht near Zurich in Switzerland.
Tina’s spokesman confirmed she died “peacefully” at home and added: “With her, the world loses a music legend and a role model. With her music and her inexhaustible vitality, Tina Turner thrilled millions of fans and inspired many artists of subsequent generations.”
Her official Instagram added: “It is with great sadness that we announce the passing of Tina Turner. With her music and her boundless passion for life, she enchanted millions of fans around the world and inspired the stars of tomorrow.
“Today we say goodbye to a dear friend who leaves us all her greatest work: her music. All our heartfelt compassion goes out to her family. Tina, we will miss you dearly.”
Roger Davies, the singer’s manager of 30 years, paid tribute to the star, saying: “Tina was a unique and remarkable force of nature with her strength, incredible energy and immense talent.
“From the first day I met her in 1980, she believed in herself completely when few others did at that time.
“It was a privilege and an honour to have been a close friend as well as her manager for more than 30 years. I will miss her deeply.”
APPLE LAUNCH NEW CONCERT DISCOVERY FEATURE ON APPLE MAPS AND APPLE MUSIC
Apple has announced the launch of a new feature in its Apple Maps and Apple Music applications allowing users to find concerts in a select number of locations across the world.
The all-new concert discovery feature became available on May 18, leveraging information from the music website Bandsintown.
10 cities feature across the world on ‘Apple Music Guides’, including Chicago, Los Angeles, London, Paris, New York City, Berlin, Tokyo, Melbourne, Detroit, and Mexico City.
Over 40 new guides have been launched, each curated by Apple Music editors, celebrating “the best venues to experience live music in some of the world’s leading cultural hubs”, Apple explained. New features are said to “celebrate the joy of live music, and give fans and artists more ways to connect.”
Apple also launched a second new feature, Set Lists, giving a space for major tours around the world allowing fans to listen back to set lists from concerts and read about each track.
SPOTIFY REINSTATES TRACKS FROM AI MUSIC GENERATOR FOLLOWING “FAKE STREAM” ALLEGATIONS
Spotify has reinstated tracks from Artificial Intelligence (AI) generator Boomy after allegations it was “fake streaming”.
The AI music application claims to create “original songs” which were uploaded to Spotify last week before the streaming service blocked its content over allegations of “stream manipulation”, Music Tech reports.
On May 6, Boomy Tweeted that its releases by the applications artists had been “re-enabled” on the streaming service with the statement: “Supporting our artists and creators who use the Boomy platform is our top priority, and we greatly appreciate your patience these past few days.”
KORG LAUNCHES NEW TRANSLUCENT “CRYSTAL” SYNTHESISER FOR 20TH ANNIVERSARY
To celebrate 20 years since the release of microKORG’s Crystal synthesiser, KORG has announced the launch of a brand new translucent special edition synth.
The Special Edition microKORG Crystal Synthesizer/Vocoder takes elements from the original 2003-release Crystal synthesiser from KORG with a “fresh new look”.
The microKORG’s see-through body peers into the mechanics of the machine, a popular design choice in the early ‘00s with gaming devices such as the GameBoy, PlayStation, and Nintendo 64.
All features on the new microKORG remain the same as its retro predecessor except for its casing, including a built-in vocoder, dual analogue oscillators, and translucent knobs, dials, and wheels.
Find out more about KORG’s Special Edition microKORG Crystal Synthesiser/Vocoder here
Written by Anthony Vanger
Additional research and reporting by Adam “Badger” Woolf