Search the Community
Showing results for tags 'pop music'.
(Photo courtesy of Nina Setner) This week’s featured artist is Nina Setner, an incredibly talented singer with a broad range: jazz, cabaret, vintage and current pop/R&B, musical theater, and opera. She is a lifelong lover of music and has studied vocal performance in university, record stores, and beyond. Her music can be found on her YouTube channel, as well as SoundCloud. Q: When and how did you find out about Second Life? A: I'm an oldie in SL--I'm coming up on my 13th rez day this October, which seems particularly insane to me. Back in 2007, my life changed radically because I'd had my first child earlier that year. Going out with the girls had been replaced with staying home with the baby, so all of a sudden I found myself without much of a social outlet. One night we happened to be watching a now ancient episode of CSI with a storyline in which SL featured, I was intrigued, and here I am--though to be fair, I would say that in addition to the life-changing relationships I've made along the way, it's the music first and foremost that has kept me here. It has always been my touchstone, in both lives. Q: You sing in a wide variety of styles, two of which are jazz and cabaret. For people unfamiliar with these genres, how would you describe the difference? A: Oh wow, great question--I'll do my best! In the simplest terms possible, jazz is a musical style, and cabaret is a performance style. Jazz requires a lot of imagination and willingness to experiment and be fluid with rhythm, time signature, melody--but often within a pretty strict framework. In order to excel at it, I think you have to be brave and give into the process. You can't scat sing or improvise 8 bars timidly--you have to go in with your whole heart. Cabaret on the other hand is a more intimate performance setting, as opposed to a larger theater or arena, etc. It can be free form (on the piano bar end) or it can be scripted ahead of time in a more formal cabaret club, but in both settings, singers are enjoying a rapport and a connection with their audience, either by telling them a story through songs they've chosen ahead of time or engaging with them off the cuff. Cabaret singers commit hundreds--thousands, actually--of songs to memory, because in a setting like that, you need to be ready and able to sing requests from multiple genres, jazz certainly being one of them. Q: You mentioned that you are a mother. How do you balance your creative outlets with raising kids, and do they like music as well? A: I was a regular in the club circuit here in Chicagoland where I reside in the days before I had my kids. When I stumbled into SL, I had NO clue about the live music community or potential opportunity to continue performing at a high level, but thankfully I found out pretty quickly. While they were little, I had to keep my schedule incredibly light--one, maybe two shows a week tops. As they've gotten older and can entertain themselves for an hour (though everyone who follows me regularly has heard my kids in the background *far* more often than I'd like over the years!), I've been able to increase that show load. My kids are young musicians as well, but neither of them enjoy singing. Apparently they're “too shy.” I keep hoping that'll magically change one day. Fingers crossed! Q: When books are adapted into films, there are always purists who say the source material was better. Has there been a film adaptation of a musical that you feel should only be experienced live in the theater? A: Another fantastic question. I think musicals that are more on the visual spectacle end--for example, The Lion King--I think that those are best appreciated live and in person. It's difficult to transfer the director's vision to the screen in those circumstances. I'm also a bit of a Sondheim fanatic/purist, so while I've been really happy to see his work getting the wide exposure and recognition it deserves through film adaptations of Into the Woods and Sweeney Todd, nothing takes the place of seeing Sondheim done as Sondheim intended. On the flip side, some musicals transfer brilliantly--the film version of West Side Story is still, for me, the one to beat. I have yet to see a live performance of it (or any other movie musical) that I liked more. Q: Did you study music or are you self-trained? A: At this point, it feels like I've been studying it my whole life. I started playing piano as a young kid and added voice lessons to the mix during my early teen years. Those piano lessons really helped shape my ear and broaden my repertoire beyond what I even understood at the time (I was playing Hoagy Carmichael's "Stardust" and songs like it back in high school out of random piano collections I'd pick up at the local music store--who knew I'd still be singing those songs 30 years later?) I did study music in college--I went to the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and hold degrees in both choral music education and vocal performance, and I'm still studying today--that never stops! Q: What is the most meaningful aspect of the SL music community to you? A: So, so many things. What SL and the music community in particular have added to my life and work as a musician is sort of incalculable. But I think reaching out over thousands of miles, making those connections and sharing your art and your passion with people you never would have had the opportunity to meet otherwise? I think that's pretty damn special. I hope we're here for years to come. Thank you so much, Nina! Don’t forget to check out her calendar for upcoming performances, and her group in SL. If you or someone you know would like to sign up to be featured in Music Mondays, please fill out this form. For more information, take a look at our official announcement.
Pictured above: Holly Giles at ~No Strings~ This week's featured artist is Holly Giles (pronounced 'Jiles'), a smooth crooner with an eclectic style hailing from Australia. She likes to sing country, rock, and pop from classic to contemporary and can be found at her venue ~No Strings~ each Tuesday and Saturday at 8pm SLT. (slurl for venue: http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Areumdeuli/226/27/80) Please check out her music on her website as well as this video. Q: When/how did you hear about Second Life? A: In 2011 I joined an online chat platform called IMVU due to some personal stuff that forced me to be at home and unable to work. I ended up staying for 5 years. I heard about SL from some people at IMVU who were trying to convert some of us over, haha. I created an SL account in 2015 and kinda used both IMVU and SL for about a year until I decided that SL was more to my liking, with people around my own age. I was in SL for about 2 years before I even KNEW there was a Live Music Community lol, so once i discovered that, I gave away my IMVU account to a friend and I have never looked back. Q: I really enjoyed your renditions of classic country songs. What drew you to that genre? A: My music is actually very mixed genre, with country music only taking up about one third of my song list. I was raised on classic country music with my mum having her own band in my childhood, so I learnt my love of country from her and I always say that classic country is my soul music lol. But I do love all music so I tend to sing what I love, from classic country, classic rock, 90's pop and country, through to modern pop like Lady Gaga. Q: As with any artistic style, country music has evolved so much over the last century. Which decade/era is your favourite, and why? A: Oh that's easy. I love the old country. The Merle Haggard, Johnny Cash, Dolly Parton, Loretta Lynn era of country. These country legends are like storytellers. Every song has a story. Every song has a purpose to it. I don't know how else to explain it. I can have my heart broken and find my story in a classic country song. I can feel overjoyed about something and find my happiness echoed in a classic country song. While I love all music and listen to even the most modernist of pop music, I personally just don't get that feeling from it. I get the happiness of an awesome beat, or well-written lyrics but yeah, not that feeling. Q: If you could open for any musician (alive or deceased), who would it be? A:I think a lot of people who follow my music would expect me to say Dolly Parton right now, and I thought I would too, but you know, I think I would LOVE to open for Bette Midler. Wow, what a musician she is. I think if I opened for Bette Midler, I could sing anything I wanted to before she took the stage. I could sing some James Brown, followed by a Dolly Parton song, followed by some Creedence lol. I wouldn’t be restricted to one genre, like I would be if I opened for Dolly, I feel. Q: Do you ever get stage fright before performing in SL? Describe your preshow ritual. A: OMG. I only started singing, I mean really singing in Second Life AND real life 2 years ago. The reason I never sang before is that I suffered MASSIVE stage fright. I would freeze up and my voice would go shaky if I tried to sing in front of anyone. It took a lot of help and compliments from online friends for me to get the courage to sing in Second Life. My very first show I was so nervous that I felt sick. But by halfway through I suddenly forgot that I was nervous and I just sang. I found the talking part a lot harder than the singing part lol. Now, I don't feel any nerves in Second Life, but am working on my nerves in RL lol. Q: What is the most meaningful aspect of the SL music community to you? A: Without a doubt, the part I enjoy the most is singing a song and seeing in local things like “OMG I love this song!” or "Oh wow, I haven't heard this song in years!” I love getting requests, I love sharing my love of music with others. I love talking about how my mum used to sing this song or that song in her band while I slept under tables at the local pub. I love that 2 years ago I couldn't sing this song or that song, but that now with some practice under my belt, I can blast that song out like it's nothing. I love just being able to sing and the fact that people want to hear me sing still blows me away every time I open my mouth. Thank you, Holly!