Playlist: HITS magazine

To celebrate the release of our first print issues, here's a playlist featuring all artists involved.

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.

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: "Stray" by Douglas Joshua

Hey guys!

Thanks to the beauty of scheduled posts and organised work behaviour, it's actually been over a week since I've last sat down to write.

Now, before you go and call me lazy, I've actually been stuck somewhere between GDPR emails and music submissions and boy, was it a lot to get done.

In between writing emails and trying to get some sleep, I've almost lost my mind on Social Media and was melting in Stuttgart's sun while interviewing bands.

So it actually feels nice to be back on here, sharing brilliant songs with you.

Without getting too cheesy - thanks guys! For coming over to listen to the tracks we want to share.
I hope you enjoy your stay and find new songs you love.

Today we'll get to learn more about the story behind Douglas Joshua's debut single.

- Behind The Song -
"Stray" by Douglas Joshua

Douglas Joshua is a singer/songwriter from Bath, UK.

His sound combines Folk and Acoustic elements in such seemingly effortlessly manner, that you can't help but stop in your tracks to listen to his songs.

"Stray" is one of those songs that will let you dive into the depths of it.
Right from the first few notes, you know you're in for a treat - you'll relax and you might even find those relatable words you're looking for.

It's a genuine and heartfelt song and that becomes apparent the deeper you fall into the song.

If Douglas' debut is this good - we sure can't wait to hear the follow-ups.

Find out what Douglas told us about what inspired him to write the song, the recording process and watch out for a pretty funny story from the video shoot:

"This song narrates the feelings of helplessness as a close friend or relative is struggling with mental illness.

I came to write about this when a close friend of mine was suffering with depression and alcohol addiction.
As I became more aware of the situation, I began feeling more and more worried, but also guilty. I wanted to help, but I didn't know how. I have found it a difficult topic to talk about, so I thought it was appropriate to express how I felt through the music.
I do still find it difficult, but the song has helped me to understand my own feelings, let go of that feeling of guilt and also share it with others, which I think is important. I feel a weight off my shoulders when I sing it

Currently I produce, engineer and mix all of my own work.
Although this can be a slow process and sometimes makes it difficult to be objective about my work, it does give me as much creative control as possible from start to finish.

I've managed to put together a great band and we work really well together in constructing arrangements for my songs.
We started recording back in December 2017; I would go into the studio with each musician individually to track their parts, starting with drums. This really gave me an opportunity to appreciate each instrument's role in the overall arrangement and work with the band to fine-tune and get the dynamics of the performance just right.

We were lucky enough to be able to record drums and vocals in the studio through a lovely TL Audio valve desk, and using my new favourite vocal mic: the Sontronics Aria. The rest was either recorded in mine or Dave's living rooms.

I think this track is a lot more personal, raw and honest than songs I have written in the past, so I'm proud for it to be my debut single. (It also changes time signature a lot, which is fun!)

The most fun I've had during this whole process has definitely got to be the video shoot!
We decided to record a live video in an empty swimming pool in Cheltenham, only to find that it was half full when we arrived! I fell in the water twice while trying to empty the pool on bucket at a time - but thankfully I had a good team of helpers to empty the pool and the weather was good enough to dry my clothes off before the band and crew arrived!"

Watch the live video for "Stray" right here:

- stream "Stray" -

Douglas Joshua online: Website | Facebook | Spotify | YouTube | Instagram

Thank you for your visit! 

Credits // Words (Intro & Outro): Vanessa Jetwash | Image & Words (about song): Douglas Joshua

Video Interview: Alx Green

Hey guys!

Every now and then musicians are in my area and stop by to create some content.
It's actually quite fun to walk around my home town to find cool spots for photo/video sessions.

Growing up, nothing exciting ever happened in this area (in my opinion anyways) and so to finally bring some of the excitement into town feels pretty cool.

But of course I don't keep cool stuff to myself - instead I come here and share everything that I find brilliant with you guys.

And without getting to emotional, just know that it really makes me happy to have this platform where I can talk about music whenever I like. It's pretty darn cool.

But now, let me introduce you to Alx Green.

Alx Green is a singer/songwriter from Chester, UK.
His sound combines modern Folk with classic Blues elements.
He released multiple demo EPs before recording and releasing his first studio EP in 2016, and then releasing follow-up EP "For Today" in March 2018.

Touring Europe constantly releasing music got him the attention and support of BBC Radio 2, BBC Introducing, BBC Radio Merseyside and many more.

After dropping everything to fully focus on his music, Alx started to make himself a name, touring over 22 cities on one tour and shaping his craft.

During his latest Europe tour, Alx stopped by in the area for a brilliant performance.

We ran around in the boiling heat to find a great location to film - and once we did, we sat down to chat about his latest EP, tour, Social Media, a lot of sand and a lot more.

Watch our interview here:

Thank you to Alx for being such fun to work with - what a delight it was even though it was so warm out there.

Check out Alx performing his song "Hollow" here:

Alx Green online: Website | Twitter | Facebook | Soundcloud | YouTube | Instagram

Thank you for your visit! 

Credits // Words & Video: Vanessa Jetwash

how I find motivation and inspiration

Hey guys!

So, I'm gonna be honest with you here - I'm not sure I'm the most qualified person when it comes to writing about this topic.

I don't always feel motivated and I don't always feel inspired.
There are times in which all I want to do is lay on the couch and watch random videos on YouTube.

But maybe that's what qualifies me, because I always manage to pull myself out of those holes?
I don't know.

As someone who works in a creative field and works mostly alone, I do know the struggle of rather wanting to spendi time on the couch. It takes a lot of will-power and discipline to kick your own butt and to actually follow through with your plan of action.

I've been doing this for a few years and I think I have my go-to backup plan if my motivation and inspiration take the high road.

Please keep in mind though that nobody can tell you the exact formula to an inspired and motivated life - we're all different and need different approaches.

So here are my tips!

1. visuals for inspiration
I'm big on visuals. I love photography and find visual art extremely powerful.
So I love following brilliant photographers and people who portray important and inspiring messages in their photos.
Social Media makes it so easy to find inspiration, and I think especially Instagram and Pinterest are holy grails when it comes to visual inspo.

I have private accounts on both platforms, which I use just to find art that sparks that creative flame in me - and I highly recommend it to everyone who reacts to visuals.
(This could also work with YouTube/vimeo, if you are a filmmaker or are looking for self-help videos.)

2. vision boards for motivation
This one's for the motivation side of things. Pretty much every YouTuber ever talks about them - vision boards. And, probably just like you, I used to roll my eyes pretty much every time I heard the word.

Why would a collage of pictures motivate me?
Well, because it reminds you of what you want - and it shows you what your life/career could look like - if you got your butt off of your couch and actually worked for it.
Personally, I have a digital vision board on Pinterest - but if you're an oldschool gal/pal, go for the tradional prints.

3. surround yourself with inspiring people
Yeah, I know, it sounds pretty life coach-esque and maybe a bit dramatic.
But apparently the five people you interact with the most, are the ones who influence us the most.
Unfortunately that can mean that if you hang around rather unmotivated and uninspired people, you might become one too.

That doesn't mean you can't be around those people (if they happen to be people you care about!), maybe just look for people who have the same drive and visions you have - form a community.
And if you don't have those people around you, find them online - there are so many forums and groups in which you can find like-minded people. Good luck!

4. set goals and revisted them
We all know that typical January 1st; we write long lists of things we want to change or achieve and then we put them somewhere and forget what we initially wanted to change. Out of sight, out of mind.

So in order to stay on top of things, remind yourself of those goals and revisit your list whenever you need to. Sometimes it's even cool to reevaluate and even change your mind.
But really, keep your goals where you can see them - it doesn't have to be in the form of a vision board, it can even just be a simple list you keep on your desk.

5. learn new skills
This is a big one for me - whenever I learn a new skill, I feel so much more excited about everything I do, because I remember how satisfying it is to master a new craft.

You'll partly feel like a new person and you'll remember how good it feels to be motivated.
I usually learn a lot via YouTube - there are tutorials for pretty much everything - and they're free.
So what stops you from learning?

6. new project
I'll be honest, before we started organising the HITS x Berlin gig late last year, I felt a bit lost and didn't know where exactly I wanted to take things.
But once I had this project to work on, everything else made sense again and I felt like it all had purpose.

Needless to say that I was on a constant high, especially after the gig.
So my advice is - if you're feeling stuck in a rut, refresh your excitement levels by taking on a new project - it doesn't even have to be huge.

7. bite the bullet first
We all know those tasks - the ones that we constantly push away because we don't want to do them. They're uncomfortable, they're annoying and we'd rather forget about them.

Well, get uncomfortable - because that's when you'll actually get shit done.
Once you are doing the things you don't want to be doing, you'll actually realise that you are capable of doing what's uncomfortable - which will then motivate you to keep going.
You see the cycle you'll be falling into, right?

Those are my little tips of how you'll hopefully find motivation and inspiration.
I hope they helped you in some way.

And if all fails, just run on the spot and kick your own butt - that should work too.

Thank you for your visit!

Credits // Words & Photography: Vanessa Jetwash

Release Of The Day: "Oh River" by Hannah Grace

Hey guys!

I think it's safe to say that the year is in full swing and we're surrounded by briliant releases,
whether they come in album, EP or single form.

It's pretty amazing to see just how many attention grabbing tracks one can find out there,
and it would honestly be a shame to not share them with as many people as possible.

If you know where to look, you'll find some of the most incredible tracks out there.
And in order to save your time, we like doing the work for you - always presenting you what we think you'll love.

And dear HITS readers - today you're in for a real treat - check it out!

- Release Of The Day -
"Oh River" by Hannah Grace

Hannah Grace is a singer/songwriter from South Wales.

Her variety in sounds is just as wide as the spectrum of influences that inspire the young musician.
Drawing inspiration from incredibly talented female artists such as Joni Mitchell, Stevie Nicks and Florence Welsh, it's no surprise that Hannah's sound varies from Folk, to Soul, to Jazz with sprinkles of Pop and Rock.

Her tremendous talent soon caught Gabrielle Aplin's attention, whose label, 'Never Fade Records', Hannah is now signed to.

Over the years Hannah released her debut EP "Meant To Be Kind", toured with Gabrielle Aplin and supported Irish phenomenon Hozier, played countless festival sets and released her well received EP "Mustang" in 2016.

Her brand new single, "Oh River", is the first single off of Hannah's upcoming debut album and follow-up to her last release,
"Praise You" - Hannah's version of Fatboy Slim's track, which was chosen for Lloyds Bank nationwide campaign, subsequently sold in excess of 50k copies and was played on BBC Radio 2.

"Oh River" is an attention-grabbing and breath-taking track.
It has a simple feeling to it, but wins you over with so much depth and detail - making it impossible to not fully commit to the song. 

The main elements, piano, strings and Hannah's powerful vocals, seem to melt together into one of the moving tracks we've heard in a while.
It's a song you'll most likely have on repeat, feeling the need to discover all the little details and layers. The songwriting, as well as the production allow you to sink into a dream world and give you the chance to go on a journey of emotions.

Hannah says about the track; "I wrote this song with a wonderful songwriter and friend Jessica Sharman and as soon as we wrote it, I knew it that it would be one of the defining tracks on my debut album.
My Dad always said to me growing up "Be with the ones you're with" and it is a phrase that has stayed with me ever since. "Oh River" is about appreaciating the world around you and living in the moment."

Listen to "Oh River" right here:

- buy or stream "Oh River" -

Hannah Grace online: Website | Twitter | Facebook | Soundcloud | YouTube | Instagram

Thank you for your visit! 

Credits // Words: Vanessa Jetwash | Image: via Never Fade Records

Behind The Song: "Heaven Knows" by Harry Strange

Hey guys!

One of many things I love about house in the sand is how collaborative it is.

There was a time in which running a blog was a very lonely business and the only creators behind it were my laptop and me.
And blogging is still a very sheltered activity, but we've managed to feel less lonely by directly working with the artists we feature.

Also - I can't stress enough about how brilliant the HITS team is.

We actually owe today's post to Carolyn, who wrote the intro and made this feature happen.

So please support Carolyn by following her online:
Website | Twitter | Facebook | Instagram

And now, let's dive into today's post!

- Behind The Song -
"Heaven Knows" by Harry Strange

Harry Strange is a singer/songwriter from London, UK.

Harry's music captures a special element of unique and intricate songwriting, intertwined with emotionally fitting production work and vocals.

In May of 2017 Harry released his first single, "Back Around", which made it's rounds across the inter webs and gained an impressive amount of streams on Spotify.

After a year of silence, we just got a new gem with "Heaven Knows" - a song which shows that taking the time to really hone in on a creative direction for future music has paid off.

At only 20 years old and currently spending his days at University of Bristol, there's plenty more in store to stay tuned for.

Check out what Harry told us about the creative process behind "Heaven Knows":

"I released my first single "Back Around" nearly a year ago now, so for me, I really wanted to release a song that I felt something strong towards but also something that showed some kind of musical development.
I think as soon as I heard the first mix of the track, I knew it was the perfect single to follow "Back Around".

The way the song came about was really an amalgamation of three or four songs that I had written over the space of a few months. I was lucky to work with a great producer and writer called Jack Gourlay and we sat down in January and went through my notebook and sort of picked out the parts that really stood out to us.

We then spent the first day gluing these pieces together and working on the first verse. We knew it had to be a solid opening to the track, so we spent around half an hour on each line, so I've got plenty of alternative versions somewhere!

In terms of production, both Jack and I decided to leave that to the last day in the studio.
We really felt that the song had to be perfect and could stand alone with little to no production, so the majority of the time we were writing with just keys.

This said, it was when we added the chorus backing vocals that we got a very good idea of where the song was going to go in terms of production.
We loved the idea of it being 'stripped' in a sense, how it starts and ends with just vocal and keys and then thre rest are just little bits of ear candy that keep you engaged as the song continues.

I feel that there are definitely similarities between "Heaven Knows" and my previous release in terms of the songwriting. I really connect with narrative lyrics and I feel they both have that in comming.
But this said, I definitely think that there are some new things to be heard in this track."

Watch the lyric video for "Heaven Knows" below:

- stream "Heaven Knows" -

Harry Strange online: Twitter | Facebook | Soundcloud | Spotify | YouTube | Instagram 

Thank you for your visit!


Credits // Words (Intro): Vanessa Jetwash | Words (about artist:): Carolyn Lederach | Image & Words (about song): Harry Strange

Interview: Matthew Mole

Hey guys!

I remember the first time I sat down to do research for an interview.
That was in 2012 and I honestly had no clue what I was doing, so my Google search history looked a lot like this:
- how do you interview musicians?
- how to do research for interviews
- what did I get myself into?

Hundreds of interviews, intense journalism studies and six years later, I don't need Google's help anymore, but actually fell in love with the process of researching and forming interview questions.

It's interesting having to structure conversations before they even happen and it's so wonderful getting to learn more about the artists behind the music we enjoy.

Today we get to share a conversation we had with the brilliant Matthew Mole,
so please let us introduce you to this fantastic artist.

Matthew Mole is a multi-instrumentalist and singer/songwriter from Cape Town, South Africa.

His sound combines Folk, Electronic and Pop in such seemingly effortlessly manner, delivering live sets which convince on all fronts.

In 2011 Matthew released his debut EP "You did well, kid" independently and offered multiple songs for free.
A year later he won Converse's "Get Out Of The Garage" competition along with a gig in London's 100 Club and a recording session at the Converse studio in New York.
He then signed to Just Music and released his second EP, "Same Parts, Same Heart" in December of 2012.

In 2014 Matthew released his album "The Home We Built" as a double CD featuring 32 tracks.

2017 saw the release of his latest LP, "Run", which features some of Matthew's finest work to date.

If you are based in Europe, you'll be able to check out Matthew's energetic live shows yourself - here are the dates:

30th May - Kulturladen, Konstanz (GER)
1st June - Bregenz Life Festival, Bregenz (AT)
2nd June - Degginger, Regensburg (GER)
3rd June - Konzerthaus Schüür, Lucerne (CH)
7th June - Molotow, Hamburg (GER)
8th June - Surfana Festival, Bloemendaal (NL)
10th June - Tunes in The Dunes, Cornwall (UK)
13th June - Merlyn, Nijmegen (NL)
14th June - Paradiso, Amsterdam (NL)
19th June - Blueshell, Cologne (GER)
20th June - Club Stereo, Nuremberg (GER)
21st June - Fluc, Leopoldstadt (AT)

- click here to get tickets -

Below you'll find our conversation with Matthew and you'll get to learn more about him and his art.

house in the sand: Hi Matthew, thanks so much for taking the time to have this chat!
How are you today?

Matthew Mole: Thank YOU for having me! I'm doing great, thanks! Can't wait to be back in your amazing part of the world.

HITS: So, you'll be on tour again very soon, coming back to Europe.
How do you prepare for a tour? Do you have a routine when it comes to rehearsals?

Matthew: I have been playing extensively around South Africa with quite a lot of festival shows happening here.
We have been working towards the strongest live set possible, to put on a fun show for audiences here at home. All of this, at the same time leaving room to make a few adjustments for the audiences in Europe.
That way we are constantly working with basically the same live set here trying to make it as tight as possible for Europe!

HITS: What's your favourite thing about performing live?

Matthew: It's always about the interaction with the audiences. I mean, if they weren't there, then the show would be a little awkward!
So my favorite part is trying to give them as much energy as possible and seeing how that gets reciprocated.

HITS: We've seen some footage of you performing and you actually take your drums into the crowds, which looks so cool! So how did you come up with the idea to do that? And what are the reactions like?

Matthew: I've always loved the idea of doing different things away from the stage at times.
It just moves the whole focus of the show for those few seconds or minutes. I've seen a few bands go into the audiences with instruments and I really wanted to try it out!
It's been so much fun to do, so I've just kept try to do it! 

HITS: Not too long ago you've supported Bastille live - first of all, what was that experience like?
And secondly, if you had to pick any band or aritst to support you on tour, whom would pick?

Matthew: That really was an amazing experience. They are a band that I love, which is a massive bonus. I learnt a lot from them, from how they are with people to how they set everything up on stage.

When it comes to bands opening for me, that's really difficult because I'm still trying to work towards that kind of things, haha! But I love it when there's an opportunity for youger/up-and-coming bands and artists to open up shows!

HITS: How did you meet your band?

Matthew: It's really just myself and a drummer.
There are three of them, depending on whose schedule works best for the tours. Josh Klynsmith is coming with on this tour.
We met years ago in South Africa when I used to play solo shows. He plays for a band called Gangs Of Ballet and we play lots of shows together here in SA. Same with the other two drummers, they both play for other bands.

HITS: Do you have your "must-haves" when it comes to live gear? Are you specific with the brands you use?

Matthew: I do have a few favorite brands, but only because that's all I have used for most of musical experience. I've gone through a few different acoustic guitars and I think I am still figuring out which is my favourite. I love Shure gear, their electronics have played a huge role in my live set.

HITS: Do you ever get writer's block? If so, how do you handle it?

Matthew: I do! But I think it's just overthinking. So when I feel stuck, then I either move on to a different idea/song or I just take a quick break from what I am working on.

HITS: What are your thoughts on Social Media? Do you ever find yourself needing a break from it?

Matthew: Social media is great. It's an amazing tool to spread your music, but most of all it's the best way to engage with followers from all over the world in real time.
I often get a bit overwhelmed and tired from Social Media, but I try and keep consistency and then it becomes a little more natural.

HITS: We've built a house in the sand - if you were to build a house anywhere in the world, where would you build it and why?

Matthew: I've always told my parents, since I was like four years old, that one day I will get them a house. So I would love to build them a house here in South Africa. They would choose to live in Cape Town, so I'd find the best part of Cape Town and build one for them there!

Matthew Mole online: Website | Twitter | Facebook | YouTube | Instagram

Big thank you to Matthew for taking the time to have a chat with us.
And a huge thank you to Barbara for arranging this conversation.

Thank you for your visit!

 Credits // Words (Intro & Questions): Vanessa Jetwash | Answers: Matthew Mole | Image: Tyler Walker via Matthew Mole

Song Of The Day: "Ain't Too Proud To Beg" by Sonny

Hey guys!

It's probably no secret that we are extremely excited about new music.
We just love getting to know artists, discovering their signature sound and watching them grow.

What's incredibly mind blowing to us, is being introduced to young artists who already have it all going.
You know the kind; they have a sound that's so mature and well arranged, they hit us with so much depth in their lyrics and just get us so excited for the future.

Today we're celebrating one of those acts and his latest single, so be prepared for pure greatness.

- Song Of The Day -
"Ain't Too Proud To Beg" by Sonny

Sonny is a singer/songwriter from South Shields, UK.
His sound combines Acoustic, Folk and Pop in such charming and honest manner, that you'll find yourself lost in his sound in no time.
He started gigging around Newcastle at the early age of 14 and hasn't stopped making music since.

2017 saw the release of his debut EP "Hopeless Romance" which has racked up millions of stream and has gotten supported from BBC Introducing as well as multiple influencial magazines such as Clash and Fault Magazine
Follow-up single "Yesterday's Gone" was just as well received and allowed Sonny to built a loyal fanbase.

Besides playing festivals like Secret Garden Party and Boardsmasters last year, he also supported Gabrielle Aplin on tour.

This year Sonny will be performing at The Great Escape in Brighton, supporting Catherine McGrath on her sold out UK tour in May, as well as supporting Saint Raymond on his UK tour in June.
To shorten the wait for his fans, Sonny just released his first single of 2018, "Ain't Too Proud To Beg", a track he wrote about memories of a past failed relationship and the feeling of wishing the mistakes that were made never caused it to end.

Here's what Sonny says about the track; ""Ain't Too Proud To Beg" is about looking back regretfully on a relationship. Realising you made mistakes and being desperate to put them right again. This song means so much to me because it's based on a personal experience and I feel like it's a relatable situation that so many people go through - not knowing what you had until it's too late."

"Ain't Too Proud To Beg" was released via Never Fade Records on May 4th 2018 and you definitely want to check it out.

Listen to "Ain't Too Proud To Beg" here:

- stream or buy "Ain't Too Proud To Beg" - 

Sonny online: Twitter | Facebook | Soundcloud | YouTube | Instagram

Thank you for your visit!

Credits // Words (except quote): Vanessa Jetwash | Image: Sonny via Never Fade Records

7 songs: Simon Alexander

Hey guys!

We've already completed the first week of May 2018 - 
isn't that crazy?

I mean, I know, we all say it all the time - but time flies and we genuinely hope that you're making the most of your time.
And just to clarify, "making the most of your time" doesn't always mean constanly working hard and never taking any breaks- no. In fact, I think in order to make the most of the time we have,
we also need to relax and make sure we're actually living in the moment.

And in order to do that, we will continue to find the coolest playlists for you guys - so lean back and enjoy the music.

Today we have another guest DJ taking over and it's Simon Alexander!

Simon Alexander is a singer/songwriter from Göteborg, Sweden. 
His sound walks on the fine line between Folk and Indie and combines those key elements seemingly effortlessly, creating a sound that sweeps you off your feet, while still keeping you grounded with honest and storytelling lyrics.

Influenced by the early day heroes such as Jeff Buckley and Neil Young, it's no surprise that nowadays he's drawn to the sounds of Hozier and Matt Corby.

Simon has always had a big interest in music and spent the majority of his time as a drummer in multiple constellations, all while also working on his own material.

In 2015 the project Distant City Light released "Cold Shiver", which marked Simon's first release as a songwriter.
He then moved to Malmö, where he continued his music studies and kept on working on his solo music.

In Summer of 2016 he met up with Tobias Ekqvist and started working on his debut EP "Won't Be Found", which then got self-released on February 15th 2017.
This EP got him signed by Rehn Music Group which recently celebrated the release of his single "Slide".

Listen to "Slide" right here:

Simon Alexander online: Website | Twitter | Facebook | YouTube | Instagram

Let's check out Simon's selection!


1) a song which makes you dance
"Bad Bad News" by Leon Bridges

I loved Leon's previous record and had been waiting for some new music when he released this one a couple of weeks ago.
I've been jammin' to it ever since. I really can't help myself when I walk around with it in my headphones, the groove is just too good. In the music video he's even dancing to it himself!


2) a song that calms you down
"Shepherd" by Anais Mitchell

Before I knew anything about her, someone compared me to her in a YouTube comment, so obviously I had to check her out. In my search I stumbled across a live video of her performing on NPR Tiny Desk Concert and I just fell for this lovely song.


3) a song with a deep meaning
"Death With Dignity" by Sufjan Stevens

If someone asks me for a singer/songwriter that can convey true emotions, then Sufjan is my go-to-guy.
This song centers around the death of his mother, and he fully grabs your attention and tells his story. If you're not moved by this, then you're just cold.


4) a song that makes you feel nostalgic
"Going To California" by Led Zeppelin

With several Zeppelin tattoos on my body I can't deny that this band has meant a lot to me.
My dad got me hooked on them from an early age and they've kept me company for as long as I can remember. "Going To California" always stood out for me and was constantly played on my vinyl player during my late teens and early twenties.


5) a song which has accompanied you for a while
"Old Man" by Neil Young

The same goes for "Old Man" as above.
I remember it from when I was young, but started listening to it more when I heard it in the film "Lords Of Dogtown" from 2005. From there on it has stayed as one of my favorite songs, even to this day.


6) a song from your favourite genre
"Angela" by The Lumineers

Their "Cleopatra" record must be one of the best folk records of this decade.
Every song offers some seriously good songwriting, and to me singer Wesley Schultz defines what is a perfect vocallist for this genre.
I find myself playing "Angela" way too often, but it's just such a good song.


7) a song by an artist / a band which has surprised you
"33 "God"" by Bon Iver

I can't make a list like this and not mention Justin Vernon.
I mean, I've been a rabid fan for years but weirdly enough not yet been able to go and see him live. No matter what record he could've put out as a follow-up to his sophomore album, I knew I'd love it. But sure did he surprise me with the direction he went, creating something completely different from what fans were expecting. And to no suprise... I totally loved it.


And that was Simon Alexander's playlist - did you enjoy it?

Previous 7 songs features: GOUX | Meadowlark | Arlissa | Marion Harper

Thank you for your visit!

Credits // Words (Intro & Outro): Vanessa Jetwash | Words (7 songs): Simon Alexandder | Image: Ian Moloney via PR kit

Song Of The Day: "You're The Light" by Jane's Party

Hey guys!

We don't know how they do it, but some bands just get us up on our feet and make us want to dance all day.
Of course, let's not complain about it - but seriously, how do they do that?

Well, anyways - Jane's Party from Canada are 100% that kind of band that just makes us shake those hips.
The first time we heard them perform live was when they played us a song in their dressing room - and the only thing that stopped us from moving was the limited space.
(And maybe the fact that we were actually filming.)

And just last week they've dropped a new song AND BOY we can't stop jamming to it.
Naturally, we wanted to share it with you.

So ladies and gentlemen, please put on your dancing shoes and join our dance marathon.

- Song Of The Day -
"You're The Light" by Jane's Party

Jane's Party are a four piece from Toronto, Canada.
Their sound blends together multiple genres, leaving us with an addictive Alt-Pop/Rock sound.

Jane's Party are:
Devon Richardson
Tom Ionescu
Jeff Giles
Zach Sutton

The guys have been playing together since 2006. This experience shines through in their live sets, treating the audiences with entertaining and brilliant shows.

With their energetic and fun driven songs, Jane's Party have shared the stage with Blue Rodeo, Sam Roberts Band, Arkells, Wintersleep, Matt Mays, The Maccabees, Tom Odell, LIGHTS, Manic Street Preachers and others.

So far they have released:
LP: The Garage Sessions (2009)
EP: Jane's Party (2011)
LP: Hot Noise (2013)
LP: Tunnel Visions (2016)

And now they're here with their new track "You're The Light".

They probably couldn't have released this song at a better time - we're all looking for upbeat and fun songs and Jane's Party are here to provide us with this banger.

"You're The Light" is straight forward and some serious groove business.
We're getting slight 80s vibes from the backing vocals, layered with some subtle synths and a whole lot of

The catchy guitar riffs seem to duett with the guiding bassline and the steady drums - leaving us with the perfect mixture. In fact, it really seems like Jane's Party know how to cook up a brilliant and fun recipe.

The song builds up towards the end and literally explodes in the last chorus, highlighting (omg a pun) each individual and their element of choice- showing us that Jane's Party is one strong band we need to watch. 

What you'll notice about the video, is the contrast of the lights and colours, here's what the band says about that:
"From the get go, the video for this track was meant to encapsulate us as performers, featuring our personality and stage presence, while putting us in the spotlight. It showcases a variety of light-based environmnets, each exploring the dynamic between light-medium and us.

Each "world" (as we called them) possessed innate contrasting qualities that varied deeply in the way they allowed us to operate within them.

The "red silhouette" world reduces the space to just two dimensions, while the "forest of lights" creates a complex, three dimensional environment. The "infinity mirror" world expands a small space to infinity, while the "LED panel" world utilizes a large space, sectioned off by a finite square boundary."

Now, dive into Jane's Party's world of lights 
and enjoy "You're The Light" here:

- buy or stream "You're The Light" -

Jane's Party online: Website | Twitter | Facebook | Soundcloud | YouTube | Instagram

Thank you for your visit! 

Credits // Words: Vanessa Jetwash | Image: via Jane's Party

Performance Of The Day: "Go On" by Tom Leeb

Hey guys!

It's been a while since our last Performance Of The Day - which is really strange because we've been spoilt with brilliant performances in the past few months.

And so it's about time to hype up some fine live performances again and share those videos with you which just leave us wanting to go to a gig immediately.

Live music can be therapy; it can be healing, it can be stress-relieving, it can help you forget your troubles and worries - so why only feel these feelings when you're at a gig?
We're all about letting music cure us, so we're taking live music with us everywhere we go - including this little ol' website.

So let's dive into today's performance, shall we?

- Performance Of The Day -
"Go On" by Tom Leeb

Tom Leeb is a singer, songwriter, actor and comedian from Paris, France.
His sound is on the acoustic side of Blues Rock and is headed towards alternative Pop sounds.

With influences varying from John Mayer, Ben Howard, Bon Iver and Matt Corby to Frank Sinatra, Gene Harris and Jamie Cullum, Tom's range of influences is as wide as his sound.

His love for melodies and the depth of his lyrics add a timeless feeling to his music and allows you to dive deep into the songs as he presents them in such thoughtful ways.
With some tracks dealing with the emotions we feel when we're in love and others describing thoughts about patience and the perception of time, this variety of topics makes sure every listener finds something to relate to.

This acoustic performance of Tom's new single "Go On" was filmed in the stunning church of Oppède-le-Vieux.

The live version doesn't stray too far from the original which is a perfect example of the simplicity of Tom's sound.

Although the elements of the song are simple, it's anything but shallow, there are so many details to discover.
With soothing, yet expressive and souly vocals, Tom wins us over in no time and allows us to dive into the track and get lost in the music.
His love for melodies is shining through and it's probably what makes this track such a joy to listen to.

Watch Tom's performance of "Go On" right here:

- buy or stream "Go On" -

Tom Leeb online: Facebook | Soundcloud | YouTube | Instagram

Thank you for your visit!

Credits // Words: Vanessa Jetwash | Image: Tom Leeb PR kit

Video Of The Day: "Here We Are" by LOWES

Hey guys!

"Go on a walk, soak in a bit of nature" - I think that's the number one tip we all receive when we tell people that we're stressed out.

Whether you're a fan of mother nature or not, you'll probably know that there is something so soothing and reassuring about being surrounded by trees and flowers and clean air.

Because I have a horse to look after, I'm out in nature every day and it always feels like a mini-break from stress and anxiety.

In case you can't make it out into nature today, let us bring nature and its calmness to you;
with today's video, we present you everything you need to listen to on a hectic day.

- Video Of The Day -
"Here We Are" by LOWES

LOWES are a four piece from Lancaster, UK.
Their sound combines Indie and Pop with hints of Alternative and a whole lot of uniqueness.

The band met in Lancaster's local scene just a little over 18 months ago and soon started writing, recording and producing songs together. Releasing their debut single "Awake At Night" themselves, the band quickly got a lot of attention and recognition.

LOWES are:
Evie Plumb
Jamie Walker
Luke Paget
Oliver Kane

Their new single "Here We Are" is the first track off of their upcoming debut EP "ELEMENTS".
LOWES directed the video, wrote the concept and shot all scenes themselves, creating a music video that couldn't represent the band better if it tried.

The song is about those times in which you sort of force yourself to slow down and figure out where exactly you stand in life. It's about the calmness and freedom you feel when you dive into nature headfirst.

Check out the video for "Here We Are" right here:

- buy or stream "Here We Are" -

LOWES online: Twitter | Facebook | YouTube | Instagram

Thank you for your visit!

Credits // Words: Vanessa Jetwash | Image: Jess Gough via Sony Music

7 songs: GOUX

Hey guys!

I've recently been asked why this feature is called "7 songs".

Well, if you were expecting a super deep answer for it - I'm sorry to disappoint you.
The reason is that I like the number 7 and it turned out to work so well because I found seven emotions I wanted to cover.

So, things don't always need to have a deeper meaning in order to make sense, right?
Anyways, let's dive into today's post.

Today our guest DJ is GOUX, so let's get to know her!

GOUX is the project of a singer/songwriter and producer based in Manchester, UK.
She's spent the past year locked in her bedroom to work on her music, experimenting with different synthesizers and drum machines.

Inspired by artists like Lapsley and HONNE, combined with her love for the sounds of the 80s, GOUX has created her very own Electro-Pop sound.

So far she released three singles, before then dropping her debut EP, a selftitled four-track, just last week on April 27th. 

Listen to her latest single "Red Light" here:

GOUX online: Website | Facebook | Soundcloud | Instagram

Let's check out GOUX's selection!


1) a song which makes you dance
"Higher" by Groove Junkies x Scott K ft. Indeya

So pleased that Spotify discovery churned out this belter of a tune a few months back.
Groove Junkies have a knack at making people want to move their feet and keep the party going, this would definitely be my essential party tune.


2) a song that calms you down
"Only You" by Satin Jackets

I would say this tune gets played at least once every bus journey I take, it just never gets old.
The thing about this track is that it fits in any scenario, whether it be sat on the bus, at home in bed with a cuppa or even on a night out, it's just so chilled and feel good with a bouncy beat that keeps things pushing along nicely.


3) a song with a deep meaning
"Always" by Shook

I wouldn't say this tune has a specific memory or meaning attached to it for me, however I do remember when I first heard it, feeling choked over the arrangement and melodies, the piano can convey so much emotion and the vocals aren't overdone. Sometimes less is more!


4) a song that makes you feel nostalgic
"Makes Me Wonder" by Maroon 5

This tune.
Oh wow, this song sends me straight back to 2007, I absolutely LOVED this band all round to be honest and still listen to the first three albums on odd occasions, it's kind of a shame the way that they have progressed since but hey, at least we still have the memoires!


5) a song which has accompanied you for a while
"DX7" by Dabeull ft. Holybrune

Again I would say that this tune gets played at least once every time I'm on the go.
This song was the turning point for me in electronic music, it inspired me to swap out my guitar for hardware synthesizers and also to approach songwriting in a completely different way.
Dabeull has a natural gift when it comes to melody and synthesis, I haven't heard one bad tune from him yet.


6) a song from your favourite genre
"Ya Just Need 2 Believe in Yaself" by Folamour

This is a recent find if I'm honest, but by god did it leave an impression.
I absolutely love chilled, feel good, melodic house tracks and this tune ticks every box.
Trying to pin down specific 'stand out' elements of this song is difficult as it is an absolute all round banger.


7) a song by an artist / a band which has surprised you
"Hard Times" by Paramore

I wasn't following Paramore at the time when this single came out, but I stumbled upon it shortly after its release and was pleasantly surprised to hear how a band I once loved as a kid had progressed and grown with its audience. I was immediately on board with their new sound!


And that was GOUX playlist - what do you think?

Previous 7 songs features: Meadowlark | Arlissa | Marion Harper | Jalen N'Gonda

Thank you for your visit!

Credits // Words (Intro & Outro): Vanessa Jetwash | Image & Words (7 songs): GOUX