HITS x Berlin

We hosted our very first live gig in Berlin - and this is what it looked like.

Cover The HITS

Our latest video series - covers performed by our favourite acts, exclusively for us.

Kat Frankie

Photos of the mega talented Kat Frankie performing in Stuttgart.

Video Interview: Scenic Route To Alaska

Melting away in front of Stuttgart's castle, we had a chat about touring, band names, Toy Story and a lot more.

Find us on YouTube!

Visit us on the 'tubes for interviews, exclusive performances and outtakes.

Behind The Song: "More Than Friends" by ASHS

Hey guys!

Every now and then we stumble upon songs we instantly want to listen to again.
Sometimes we know, even before we've heard it in full, that we're dealing with a massive "hit-to-be" right there.

Unfortunately we don't get to decide the level of popularity a song reaches,
 we just get to help it along the way.

So in case you want to help artists out; visit our website for new music aplenty,
stream it, buy it, follow the artists and if you can - go to gigs.

Ready to control the music industry with your voice?
Brilliant, let's do this!

- Behind The Song -
"More Than Friends" by ASHS

ASHS has emerged from Toronto's underground music scene.
She chooses to keep things mysterious, not revealing anything about the person behind the music.

However, the brilliantly arranged and relatable tracks speak from themselves.
It only took one track for us to fall for ASHS' sound - and of course we had to be nosey and invite her to tell us more about this genius of a track.

Here's what ASHS told us about "More Than Friends":

"I wrote "More Than Friends" as a way for me to pull myself out of my typical routine of falling too hard, too fast, for someone who didn't deserve it.
I felt myself catching feelings early on, and realized that he hadn't actually done anything to earn that kind of love from me yet. I pulled back instantly, and decided to put myself first and not get caught up in my emotions.

The writing process for the song was very quick.
Usually, when I'm out doing something, I'll get an idea and just make a quick voice note or jot down some lyrics on my phone, so I went into this session with a verse/concept idea I had written a few days before.
 My producer and I started working off of the idea for the vibe I was feeling, and the verse fit in perfectly. That created the momentum and the rest of the song just flowed out.

We wanted to experiment with different vocal fx, so many of the sounds you'll hear in the song are not actually instruments.
"More Than Friends" was one of my first sessions for this project, so the vocal treatment we created on this track has helped me shape my sound as an artist."

Listen to "More Than Friends" right here:

- buy "More Than Friends"
- stream "More Than Friends" -

ASHS online: Facebook | Spotify | Instagram

Thank you for your visit!

Credits // Words (Intro & Outro): Vanessa Jetwash | Image & Words (About Song): ASHS

Video Of The Day: "Too Smooth" by Jane Ellen Bryant

Hey guys!

How much time do you spend watching music videos?

For me... it's probably a lot of time because it's part of finding the music we introduce to you.

But the more time I spend on watching all those videos, the more I appreciate the details and storylines.
And I think it's important to celebrate great videos just as much as the songs.

So much time goes into the planning, editing, directing, filming, set building, etc. - so our VOTD feature is here to pay the respects all these amazing videos deserve.

- Video Of The Day -
"Too Smooth" by Jane Ellen Bryant

Jane Ellen Bryant is a singer/songwriter from Austin, Texas (US).

Her sound marches on the fine line between Pop, Americana and "heartbreaking rock'n'roll" and is inspired by powerhouses such as Sheryl Crow, Bonnie Raitt and Sara Bareilles.

Jane's voice is as unique as her songwriting - both elements stand out from the very first time you listen to one of her tracks.
Her latest EP, "Let Me Be Lost", is the kind of EP you just need to add to your playlist.

Her new video for "Too Smooth" is now here to get us all grooving.

Jane Ellen Bryant's vocals in "Too Smooth" lull you in and don't let go of your attention.
Which is honestly fine, because her voice is an absolute delight to listen to.

The song has a vintage-y vibe to it which is reflected perfectly in the music video.

Jane's vocals lead you through the track, whilst the electric guitar is here to guide you attention back and forth between vocals and instrumentals.
It's the layers that make the track stand out with such grace; they keep you excited with every listen because you know you'll find an element you hadn't noticed during the previous listen.

And just like the song itself, the video keeps you entertained throughout.
Fun sets, vintage-glam outfits and bubblegum colours are here to brighten our day.

Watch the official video for "Too Smooth" right here:

- stream "Too Smooth" here -

Jane Ellen Bryant online: Website | Twitter | Facebook | Spotify | YouTube | Instagram

Thank you for your visit!

Credits // Words: Vanessa Jetwash | Image: via Right Angle PR

Song Of The Day: "Sucker Punch" by Sigrid

Hey guys!

Happy Wednesday!
If you're anything like me, you need an upbeat track to get through the day.

I don't know why, but sometimes Wednesdays just feel very monotonous to me.
But thankfully our email inbox always has my back - and in return I have your back.
Isn't that great?

Today I invite you to have a little dance party with me as we all make it through the day.

Our track of choice?
Let me tell you!

- Song Of The Day -
"Sucker Punch" by Sigrid

Sigrid is a singer/songwriter originally from a tiny place in Norway.
At the age of 18, she moved to Bergen, Norway and quickly became a part of Bergen's music scene.

Her bold and modern pop sound is shaking up the industry, one day at a time.
Signed to Universal Music, the young musician was hyped as one of the most exciting break through acts of 2017 - and she did live up to those expectations.

Her debut EP "Don't Kill My Vibe" didn't only "wow" us at house in the sand,
Sigrid helped defining a new era for women in pop music.

Earlier this year she released the "Raw" EP and blew away even those who weren't fully on the Sigrid train just yet.

Since then, things have kept growing and growing - and it's not stopping.
Next month she is set to play her biggest headline show to date at the O2 Brixton Academy before supporting George Ezra on his arena tour next year.

And now she's here with "Sucker Punch", an upbeat track which is going to brighten your day in no time.

The track deals with feelings of uncertainty and hesitation, but it does just that in the catchiest and most grooveable manner.
There's something about the instrumentals that gets you in the mood to dance, the way the song slowly builds up towards the chorus is intriguing and keeps you waiting.

Waiting for the chorus which, honestly, will stay in your head for the next few days.
Sigrid has a talent for crafting pop melodies you can't and won't forget - and the way she delivers them with a voice so confident, so charming.

Please put on your dancing shoes and join our "Sucker Punch on repeat" party. 


Listen to "Sucker Punch" right here:

- buy and/or stream "Sucker Punch" here -

Sigrid online: Website | Twitter | Facebook | Spotify | YouTube | Instagram

Thank you for your visit!

Credits // Words: Vanessa Jetwash | Image: Sigrid via No Big Deal PR

Behind The Song: "Blue Luck" by Josh Savage

Hey guys!

I am in a very cool position where I often get to listen to music before it gets released.

I'm not saying this to brag or sound cool, but because I genuinely enjoy it and am very happy about what house in the sand has enabled me to do.

The first album I ever got to listen to before its official release was Tom Odell's "Long Way Down".
From that moment on I was hooked and knew that this weird thing they call the music industry was exactly what I wanted to a be part of.

Because I tend to be the "over-excited mum" in my friend group, I usually get... well, over-excited about music.
And ladies and gents, the song you get to find out more about today - that was one of those songs I couldn't wait for to be released, so that you guys would be able to hear it too.

Maybe I'm a bit biased because the artwork is a photo I took, but you just need to listen to this track.
It's  i n c r e d i b l e.
So please grab your headphones or speakers and let's get to know this track together.

- Behind The Song -
"Blue Luck" by Josh Savage

Josh Savage is a singer/songwriter originally from Winchester, UK and is currently based in Berlin, Germany.

His sound is so versatile that you just need to file it under Alternative.

So far Josh has independently relesed two EPs; "Spaces" (2014) and "Quatre Épines" (2015), the latter showcasing Josh's French roots.

In 2015, Josh played 79 shows with Sofar Sounds - all across America and Europe, in just 5 months. You can stream the documentary made on the road right here.

His two previous singles, "Whisper In The Snow" ft. Alice Pearl and "Ghosts" have racked up hundreds of thousands streams.

And yesterday Josh released his new single "Blue Luck", which is the first single off of his upcoming EP, "Agon", which will be out on 8th March 2019.

(Wondering what "Agon" means? Let everybody's darling Wiki explain it:
"Agon is an ancient Greek term for a struggle or contest. [...] Agon is the word-forming element in 'agony', explaining the concept of agon(y) in tragedy by its fundamental characters, the protagonist and antagonist."

If you want to catch Josh on tour, you have the following options:
8th November - Monarch, Berlin (GER)
18th November - TivoliVredenburg, Utrecht (NL)
22nd November - Railway Inn, Winchester (UK)
23rd November - The Islington, London (UK)

Today Josh tells us how "Blue Luck" came to life:

"Behind the social media veil of my music career, I've had a tough and defining two years.
You know that feeling when life seems to be working against you?
When I moved to London on a whim, I got mugged a week later, my laptop broke the next day, my guitar gets lost on a flight to a show, etc, etc.
Most recently, my family grieve loss after loss and teetered on the brink of financial ruin.

I told my friend Steve all this bad luck was doing my head in and he told me something that will always stand by me:
"You can't hide from bad luck, just have to ride it out."

Despite all the shit, I count myself more fortunate than a lot of people.
Music is everything to me and has saved me in many ways. With music as a medium, I can let my frustration out, overcome drawbacks and get back up again.
I ride on still and I can finally see the light at the end of the tunnel.

"Blue Luck" was written on my first Poland tour.
I landed in Warsaw to discover the airline left my guitar at Heathrow and I was booked to play TED x Warsaw the next day. I was FUMING.
My couchsurfing host was out for the day, so I picked up their old guitar and this song just came out of me.

I recorded "Blue Luck" at Urchin Studios in London with Matt Ingram, who is an absolute joy to work with.
 I had a limited budget, so all we had was a small mixing room and a vocal booth to record my EP on Matt's UA Apollo Twin Mkii.
We got a big sound by recording a choir of 3 (me, Matt and my sister Aniya) with overdubbed takes of us standing in different parts of the room.

We also may have sneaked into the main live room to add drums, claps and hammer octaves on the piano when it was free for an hour...

I ditched the acoustic guitar and I guess this is definitely my angriest song, haha." 

Listen to "Blue Luck" right here:

Thank you for your visit!

Credits // Words (Intro & Outro) & Image: Vanessa Jetwash | Words (about song): Josh Savage

Video Of The Day: "Don't Mind / Will Abide" by 1000 Gram

Hey guys!

Music is attention-grabbing on its own.
No doubt!

How many times do we find ourselves completely entertained by a guitar riff, a bassline, a drum solo or even an acapella bit?

But when you pair a brillaint song with an equally brilliant music video, that's when you end up with art.

And we created our VOTD feature because we love music videos a lot.

So please let us introduce you to 1000 Gram, the band whose latest music video made us hit the replay button instantly.

- Video Of The Day -
"Don't Mind / Will Abide" by 1000 Gram

1000 Gram are based in Berlin, Germany and Göteborg, Sweden.

When you check their Facebook bio, you'll find them calling their sound "Anti-Indie".
Ultimately, we invite you to be the judge and figure out their sound yourselves.

1000 Gram are:
Moritz Lieberkühn (vocals, guitar)
Arne Braun (guitar)
Paul Santner (bass)
Alexander Simm (guitar)
Lukas Akintaya (drums)

The band's latest album "By All Dreams Necessary" was released on August 31st of this year and has been well received, not only by the band's loyal fanbase, but also by music journalists of all sorts.

If you want to catch the band live, you can:
16th October: Cammerspiele, Leipzig
17th October: Sunny Red, Munich
18th October: Swamp, Freiburg
19th October: Café Galao, Stuttgart
20th October: Hafen 2, Offenbach

The video for their latest single "Don't Mind / Will Abide" was shot on Berlin's subway escalators - and those locations made for great entertainment.

We love the creativity behind this video as it completely compliments the song and the band's vibe.

Who doesn't love people watching?
The video makes it even more fun because you get to listen to a brilliant track at the same time.
Just like the song, the video builds up in intensity and you're taken on a journey of sounds and, well, escalators.

Check out the video for "Don't Mind / Will Abide" right here:

- stream the album -

1000 GRAM online: Website | Facebook | Spotify | YouTube | Instagram

Thank you for your visit! 

Credits // Words: Vanessa Jetwash | Image: Paul Aidan Perry via Listen Collective

Behind The Song: "Little Wound" by Violetta Zironi ft. Ed Prosek

Hey guys!

One of the most powerful aspects of music is without a doubt the way it can make us feel different emotions.

There are songs which allow us to dream, to dance, to feel happy.
And then there are songs that tug on our heartstrings, because they address the feelings we might want to hide.
Or because they bring up memories we wanted to forget.
Or because they are more honest than we wanted to be.

There are so many reasons why music makes us feel certain feelings and house in the sand is a platform for songs that have that special ability to transport us into different moments of our lives.

Today we're excited to feel some heartbreak with you guys.
(That sounded terrifyingly cynical, didn't it? Sorry!)

But you'll love this song.

- Behind The Song -
"Little Wound" by Violetta Zironi ft. Ed Prosek

Violetta Zironi is singer/songwriter from Italy.

She started writing music at the age of 16 and spent time gigging around the North of Italy with a country and blues trio.
Her gigs and festival appearances led to Violetta making a new for herself and soon sign a deal with a label, whose plan it was to turn her into the next Italian pop star.

After a few single releases, Violetta realised the songs didn't represent who she really was, so she turned her back to the label and went back to being an independent musician.
She spent time crafting her skill set and finding her own sound, which is inspired by Folk, Americana and Country and still allows her European and Mediterranean roots to shine through.

In 2014 she opened for Soul legend Ben E. King, who invited her on stage for a duet of "Stand By Me".
In 2015 she met singer/songwriter Jack Savoretti and got to be his special guest on tour.

The following year Violetta left her hometown in Italy to live in London and Berlin, travelling back and forth.
Later on that Summer, she went on another journey through Texas, Louisiana, Alabama, Tennessee and Arkansas, meeting many talented musicians with whom she started writing songs.

She recorded her debut EP, "Half Moon Lane", in Berlin and has received a lot of attention for the six track EP.

Just recently Violetta released her latest single, a stunning duet with Ed Prosek.

Today she's here to tell us more about the writing process of "Little Wound", so grab a cup of tea and let's learn more about the song:

""Little Wound" is a song I wrote with an American singer/songwriter, my friend Ed Prosek.

It was the very first co-write we did together and we decided to embrace the Italian roots that we both share. (Ed's background is Italian as well.)

We tried to write an emotional song, that told a story with both, the lyrics and the melody. It talks about that feeling you get at the start of a relationship, and somehow you grow fond of that feeling more than of the person you are engaging with.

It's a confession of guilt.
We decided to put ourselves in the shoes of the "bad one" in the relationship, telling the other person that we are sorry, but this is just what we are, although it doesn't mean we don't love the other.

I came up with the concept of having a little wound on my heart, that it's almost imperceptible but it's there and it's part of me.

Ed and I decided to record it as a duet, to celebrate the start of our writing partnership. We recorded it live at home - literally with three mics; one for my voice, one for his and one for the guitar. We love recording live as we feel the vibe doesn't get lost.

It's definitely a step forward in my artistic development, compared to my previously released EP, "Half Moon Lane", but it's definitely the continuum of my last single "One More Goodbye". I tried to portrait myself in those songs, be honest and show who I am.

I am definitely a melody freak. I love melodies more than anything else and I prioritize it. The challenge after is to find lyrics that have the same impact as the melody. I usually write the melody first and then the lyrics, because melodies trigger concepts in my head.

There is a video for "Little Wound" and it's me and Ed performing it live and stripped down, exactly like we wrote it and recorded it."

Watch the acoustic video of the song here:

- stream "Little Wound" here -

Violetta Zironi online: Website | Twitter | Facebook | Spotify | YouTube | Instagram

Thank you for your visit!

Credits // Words (Intro): Vanessa Jetwash | Image & Words (about song): Violetta Zironi

Album Review: "Politics Of Living" by Kodaline

Hey guys!

Alright, I really want to use this intro part of today's post to talk about one of my favourite things -
when artists and bands explore new sounds and make them work so brilliantly.

I love it when musicians feel confident and comfortable enough to evolve and create something they haven't done before.

To me, exactly that is art; the process of discovering new versions of yourself and to utilize modern techniques.

We live in time in which a lot of fans are quick to criticize those acts who venture out of their comfort zones.
It's understandable to some extend- sure, if you love a band's sounds, you might want to hear exactly said sound and nothing else, but let's all embrace change.

Today we're thrilled to chat to you about Kodaline's brand new record, so let's do it.

Band: Kodaline
Title: Politics Of Living
Genre: Alternative
Label: B-Unique Records, Sony Music
Release Date: 28th September

Kodaline are a four piece from Dublin, Ireland.

Their sound is ever-evolving, going with the times and discovering new dynamics all the time - but to genrefy it for you, we'd use the word Alternative.

Kodaline are:
Steve Garrigan
Mark Prendergast
Jason Boland
Vinny May 

2015 was a whirlwind for the band; they released their fantastic second record "Coming Up For Air", played tons of festivals, performed with Ed Sheeran and continued touring.

They then slowed down the touring side of things and started writing and recording new material.
Soon they released single "Brother" (and made everyone cry with it) and later on in 2017 they dropped their latest EP "I Wouldn't Be".

Since early 2018 the band has been sharing singles off of the the brand-new album "Politics Of Living", which has been released today.

So, let's check out the new record, shall we?

1) Follow Your Fire
2) Hide and Seek
3) Angel
4) Worth It
5) Shed a Tear
6) Head Held High
7) Born Again
8) I Wouldn't Be
9) Don't Come Around
10) Brother
11) Hell Froze Over
12) Temple Bar

Opener "Follow Your Fire" is indeed a fantastic opener.
It showcases the Kodaline we know in the verses, but allows us to get to know the new elements of the band's sound in the choruses.
And we truly think of the new sound as an addition, rather than a change. They've still got the elements we fell in love with years ago and "Politics Of Living" is the perfect proof for that.

"Worth It" is infectious.
It's probably going to get you to click your fingers and sing along in no time. There's something anthem-like about the track that just soaks you in.
Instead of solely relying on the new electronic sounds, they have used multiple layers and have created a colourful track in the process.
Whether it's the piano, the guitar riffs, the bassline or the guiding drums - the band has seemingly effortlessly combined their strengths with their need to evolve.

If you have seen Kodaline live, one thing you've probably noticed is how in sync the band is; they work in unison and that's a super prominent element of their sound.

Does anyone else remember when we all cried our eyes out to the band's music video for "Brother"?
Yeah, that was an emotional day, wasn't it?
Well, even though we were already familiar with the song, it still wows us.
It's the melody, the rhythm and of course the intensity of their combined harmonies. It's the way they tell stories. 

There's one track one the album which made my jaw drop to the floor - it's number 11, "Hell Froze Over".
They almost spit the lyrics in the pre-chorus, right before singer Steve belts out all of his emotions and you can  l i t e r a l l y  feel the frustration.
Soaring electric guitars help carrying the emotion of the track, while the beats and bass tie it all together. It's tracks like this that really show how versatile Kodaline are - and how damn good they are at writing relatable songs.

To sum it up: When we think of Kodaline, we think of the most creative acoustic sessions, harmonies and songs that transport emotions.
"Politics Of Living" includes all of that- but doesn't stop there. The band has ventured out into the electronic side of music and they've combined those elements with their signature sound in such elegant way.

The album is a brilliant mix of new sounds and old comforts, fantastic arragements, impressive musical talent and an incredible production.

You should listen to these tracks: Worth It, I Wouldn't Be, Brother, Hell Froze Over

Kodaline online: Website | Twitter | Facebook | Spotify | YouTube | Instagram

Thank you for your visit!

Credits // Words: Vanessa Jetwash | Image: Kodaline

Behind The Song: "The City" by Charlie Hole

Hey guys!

Yesterday we celebrated our new social media outfits with a new playlist.

Thank you all so much for checking it out and for the lovely feedback,
it truly made my day.

If you've listened to the playlist, you will have heard the song we're here to talk about today.
And if you haven't, no problem - that's why we're running today's feature.

I'm super thrilled to say that today the fabulous Charlie Hole is here to chat us through the story behind his latest single, "The City".
I always love finding out what inspired an artist to write a song about it and I especially love it when I also love the song.

So, ladies and gentlemen, let's check this out!

- Behind The Song -
"The City" by Charlie Hole

Charlie Hole is a singer/songwriter from Bournemouth, UK.

His carefully crafted music combines Acoustic and Folk elements in such elegant manner.
Charlie started making and writing music at the young age of eleven and has been going strong ever since.

With inspirations such as Bob Dylan, Leonard Cohen, Tom Waits & Paul Simon, it's no surprise that we find a lot of personality and intimacy in his songs.

His debut album "The Joy of a Caged Bird" was released in 2013.
With loyal fans and praise from none other than Rod Stewart and three time Novello Award winner Andy Hill, it's safe to say we're not the only ones with his music on repeat.

In October of 2017, Charlie dropped his latest EP, "Someone Else's Dream" and proved that his music is proper on-repeat material.

On June 8th of 2018 Charlie released a new single called "The Ballad Of Anne Beverley",
and just last week he shared his latest single, "The City", with us.

Today we get to find out what inspired the song, so please check out what Charlie told us about it:

"I lived in London for about five years in total; playing the open-mic circuit, busking and learning how to live away from home.
I wrote "The City" after moving out of London and reflecting on my time there with the benefit of a bit space and distance. I've always been hugely influenced by my surroundings and London really imposed itself on my writing in a lot of ways. It left a mark on me for sure.

It's a song that encapsulates everything there is about living in one of the greatest cities in the world; the good, the bad, the ugly and everything in between.

I love London, but it damn nearly killed me.
There were definitely times where I just couldn't breathe or hear myself think and I just had to get away from it all, back to sea.

I  also had some amazing times there and I learnt so much about myself and the world.
I often felt overwhelmed living in a place that had seen so much history, and I couldn't help but feel that in some way, we were stitching ourselves into its tapestry somehow...

I used to think about all the people that had passed through that place over the years, how many stories it could tell, how many dreams it had made or broken over all that time.

I also wanted to give the city a personality, like it was this omniscient presence watching over all of us, deciding who was going to win or lose on any given day, like it held all of us in the palm of its hands.

 I felt like it was bigger than all of us and I wanted to get that across in the song.
There's a bit of everyone in there, I hope."

Listen to "The City" right here:

- stream "The City" here -

Charlie Hole online: Website | Twitter | Facebook | Spotify | YouTube | Instagram

Thank you for your visit!

Credits // Words (Intro & Outro): Vanessa Jetwash | Image & Words (about song): Charlie Hole

Playlist: the HITS essentials

Hey guys! 

We've had a face-lift on social media.

Okay, wait - that sounds like we've live streamed our face being lifted - which was not the case.
(Phew! I know.)

No, we just got a new logo for our social media channels and I'm absolutely in love with it.
You can find it by visiting our channels, they're all linked below.

It was designed by the brilliant Chris Stringer who has been a part of the HITS gang for multiple years. He's one of our favourite musicians and he's also super talented when it comes to graphic design.
So please go check out his work - you'll love it.

Graphic Design | Music

I'm so thrilled about this little change up on our socials, it just feels fresh and inspiring - which is exactly what we've needed around here.

So to celebrate our hip socials, I made a (not so) little playlist.

As you've noticed in the title of this post, it's called "the HITS essentials" - please let me explain that:

We love the music we share all year around - we wouldn't share it, if we didn't like it.
That's just the way we handle things around here - why write negative reviews when you could just focus on spreading the word for the musicians you do believe in, right?

So this playlist doesn't mean that we only love the featured artists.

The HITS essentials are songs by artists that either are part of our little gang or that have been interviewed and photographed by us and were a delight to be around.

(Please note - this playlist originally was 4 hours long, we had to cut it down a bit. So if you are an artist and are not featured on it, please know that we still love you!)

house in the sand has been built on friendships, we wouldn't be where we are without the friends we've made in music.

So, why don't you press play and check out a few stories below: 

Now, this wouldn't be house in the sand if I didn't write about a million words about the songs above.

The first track you'll find on the playlist is our title track - "Wrong Directions" by Martin and James.
This blog is named after a line from the song. ("I'll build my house in the sand until the waves knock it down.")
I first heard this song in 2011 when Martin and James supported Taylor Swift.
A year later I started a blog and needed a name for it - the song came to mind and soon the line became our name.
Seven years after hearing it for the first, Martin played the song for us at the house in the sand show in Berlin. Talk about things coming full circle!

Of course we needed a Jack Garratt track on here because he's mega fun to chat to and a musical genius.

ROE found us through the Jack Garratt interview and we fell in love with her sound.

Kodaline are still the winning champions of  the unofficial "funniest band to interview award". And I will always cherish the moment I made them read the lyrics to their songs in different accents.

When we discovered Rhys Lewis at Barn on the Farm in 2016, we felt like little talent scouts who predicted big times for the brilliant musician. AND WE WEREN'T WRONG.

Back in 2014 we met Jamie Lawson for an interview and a session right before he supported Ed Sheeran.
I still remember him playing "Cold In Ohio" for house in the sand's third birthday - it was so simple but so breathtaking. Jamie is one of the nicest people we've met through music, so it's always a pleasure to have him involved.

When I first heard The Lunar Year's "Porcelain", I cried.
(Okay, I also cried when I heard it the second, third and seveny-sixth time.)

Ben Barritt is part of the original HITS squad and his music is a playlist staple for sure.

We'll admit, we haven't interview Hozier (yet) but as a writer, his music inspires me to push myself and to be bold, yet artistic. Therefore his latest, "Nina Cried Power", just needs to be on this list.

The day I was in the studio with Jim Kroft and ended up singing choir vocals on "Redemption", I knew that this industry is the most random thing I've ever been a part of. And for that I love it.

Right after recording that song and getting a total of 5 hours sleep within 48 hours, I went to a cool hotel in Berlin to film an interview with Gavin James. He was so bubbly and fun to chat to, so that made being awake so much easier.

When Sony Music invited me to interview Tom Walker in early 2017, I said yes after hearing 30 seconds of his music. Of course I've been cheering for him when "Leave A Light On" went viral. So well deserved! 

The Vaccines are on this playlist because I did my first ever phone interview with their bassist - and I was so nervous. But it ended up being super fun and interesting, just like their live shows.

"Don't Act Like You Know Me" by The Arkanes will probably still make me boogie when I'm 80. Guess they'll always be my brothers.

Because we can't have enough rock music in our lives, Novatines just need to be a part of this party playlist.

Liam McClair was the first friend I've ever made in Manchester and he's the best tour guide who made me fall in love with the city. So, "We Should Talk" (about Manchester).

Tom Odell was the first artist I photographed as an official music photographer. Every time I've had him in front of the lens, I was blown away by his growth as an artist. I also still remember hearing "Another Love" for the first time and being drawn to his talent from the very first second on.

Wrabel is the kind of artist I want to be best friends with. So if anyone finds out where I can apply, please let me know. Until then I'll be sobbing to "The Village".

In 2010 I went to see Rooney live. They were the first indie gig I went to and I had my point and shoot camera with me, standing in the front row and snapping away. I remember how much I loved the results and being able to re-live the gig through photos so much, that I knew I wanted to be a music photographer. And look at me know, I regularly have the time of my life in photo pits.

Of course I had to end this playlist with a Paramore track. There's no other way to do this. I've loved their music since 2009, so in some ways they've made me

And that's it!

I really hope you'll love the playlist as much as you do. As you can tell the songs and artists mean a lot to house in the sand and I hope that the playlist is a nice way to support them.

I also want to thank all of you reading this for being a part of house in the sand - you give us a reason to re-do all our logos, to lose sleep over details in the designs and to have the best time of our lives creating content and sharing the music we love with you.

Here are all the platforms you can find us on, just click the little icons and they'll take you to our channels:

www.twitter.com/houseinthesand  www.facebook.com/houseinthesand  www.instagram.com/houseinthesand  www.youtube.com/houseinthesandBlog  https://open.spotify.com/user/houseinthesand?si=ez8xJSdtRGmAyrkPgLfKHQ  www.soundcloud.com/houseinthesand

Thank you for your visit!

Credits // Words: Vanessa Jetwash | Image: Chris Stringer x HITS

7 songs: John Thacker

Hey guys!

You know, I'm having a lot of fun writing posts for you.

It's so cool that I get to share the music I love and that people are actually interested in hearing it.
We're all playing a huge part in music by caring about independent artists and sharing the art they create.

So let's all continue to be cool, shall we?
(I know, I know - why couldn't even stop if we tried.)

Today I'm super thrilled for two reasons;

1) the 7 songs feature is back: I love love love this feature, because I love finding out which songs people connect with.
2) because today we've got the fabulous John Thacker here to do a little playlist take-over.

He'll be sharing his selection of 7 songs with us and I can't wait for you to check it out.

But before you do, please make sure to check out John's music and follow his socials.

Listen to John's latest collaboration with Pet Planes:

John Thacker online: Twitter | Facebook | Soundcloud | Spotify | YouTube | Instagram

Let's check out John's playlist!


1) a song which makes you dance
"Perfect Places" by Lorde

Now, this song doesn't make me dance like I'm at a festival jumping up and down to the latest EDM DJ, but it makes me jump around in my house like a crazy person with my headphones on.
Not a care in the world, and it just makes me feel so happy and free! My happy dance song.


2) a song that calms you down
"Mystery Of Love" by Sufjan Stevens

I think this is one of the most beautiful and captivating movie soundtrack songs ever.
When I need to relax before a show, or when I'm feeling like I need inspiration, I'll play this.

The song takes me on a journey that I could listen to on repeat for hours.
It matches so well with the equally beautiful "Call Me By Your Name".


3) a song with a deep meaning
"Samson" by Regina Spektor

My all time favourite song by my all time favourite artist!

Now these are big statements, I know, but couldn't be more true when it comes to this song.
Regina has always influenced me more than anyone else when it comes to lyrics.

This song has been with me through so many heartbreaks and feelings, the story of the lyrics just stand out to me so much, so powerful, and I connect with this song and Regina like no other.
This song for me is what heartbreak, love, loss, hope, all feel like, all in one beautiful song.


4) a song that makes you feel nostalgic
"Foundations" by Kate Nash

Oh man, I love this song still to this day!

It reminds me of so many things, but mainly reminds me of sitting on the kerb with my childhood friends with our singles from HMV and playing this song on repeat without a care in the world.

Oh - and looking at each other and shouting "LEMONS" every time. Weird that now, nine years later, the song has a completely different feeling for me - nostalgia, yes, but also a new meaning.


5) a song which has accompanied you for a while
"Time Is Dancing" by Ben Howard

I listen to this song on a every other day basis.

Ben just has magic, doesn't he?
This song is just so subtly epic, it's my perfect "stare out of the window and think into my future song".


6) a song from your favourite genre
"Hoppipolla" by Sigur Ros

So, I don't have a favourite genre.

But I love love Icelandic music! 
Sigur Ros and Jonsi have been big influences in all my work, not just my music but my acting, my writing and my life!


7) a song by an artist / a band which has surprised you
"What You Waiting For?" by Lily Allen

Lily is another artist who I've been so inspired by.

But her latest album, "No Shame", was such a pleasant surprise; the entire album brought me back to the mid 00's, the lyrics are punchy but honest. Lily isn't trying to be anyone else here.
Unexpectedly the best album of the year so far!

Lily was one of the first artists who insipred me to write my early songs, her lyrics stood out to me.


And that was John's selection!
What do you think? Did you find any new favourites?

Previous 7 songs features: Racoon Racoon | Jackson Dyer | Simon Alexander | GOUX

Thank you for your visit!

Credits // Words (Intro): Vanessa Jetwash | Words (about songs) & Image: John Thacker