#1 - WHAT IS THE ONE ALBUM (OR EP OR SONG) THAT YOU THINK SHOULD BE THE VERY NEXT MUSICAL THING THAT EVERYONE PRESSES PLAY ON THE NEXT TIME THEY FIND THEMSELVES THINKING “WHAT SHOULD I LISTEN TO NOW”?
I am privileged to work as a moderator for a respected UK music site, which is a vehicle for people to discover new bands and music. I listen to hundreds of tracks every week and I am only allowed to pick six each weekend, which is incredibly hard. Likewise it is impossibly hard to choose just one album from the thousands I've listened to. I've pondered this question all day. I want to pick music which will stand the test of time, and will not be sullied by the decade it was made. If pushed I choose Y's by Joanna Newsom.
I have listened to this album more than any other, it has such rich depths to plunder, it's filled with mystery, poetry and beauty ...like reading a play, watching a theatre production and listening to music all mixed into one.
If I had more choices I would include Vashti Bunyan's 'Diamond Day' ...a picture postcard world seen through naively beautiful eyes, and sung with a voice a pure as glacial snow. I am a massive fan of music soundtracks, and if allowed two more picks, I choose Giù La Testa by Ennio Morricone, which is perfection, and The Wicker man - by Paul Giovanni.
#2 - WHAT IS THE ONE MOVIE OR TV SHOW THAT YOU THINK SHOULD BE NEXT IN EVERYBODY’S NETFLIX QUEUE (OK, DOESN’T HAVE TO BE NETFLIX, WE’RE ALL INTERNET ADULTS HERE AND KNOW HOW TO FIND ANYTHING ONLINE, ONE WAY OR ANOTHER)?
There are so many amazing pieces of TV and film to choose from. In this crazy world our senses are bombarded with so much, it is hard to stay focused and not get distracted by the 'next best' thing.
I adore the works of Studio Ghibli. Ghibli films are works of art, and there is something for everyone. I love the fact that these films try to tell important messages about mother nature and are all films with 'a genuine heart'. The two Ghibli linked films I have enjoyed most in recent years are 'The Red Turtle' and 'Princes Kaguya' (but I could choose 5 others).
#3. I (AND BY “I” I MEAN “THE PERSON THAT IS READING THIS”) AM GOING TO THE BOOK STORE (OK, PROBABLY AMAZON) TO FIND THE VERY NEXT BOOK THAT I WILL BE PUTTING SOME EXTREMELY VALUABLE ‘ME-TIME' ASIDE FOR. WHICH BOOK WOULD YOU GET, IF YOU WERE ME (AND, I SUPPOSE, YOU HADN’T ALREADY READ WHAT YOU’RE ABOUT TO SUGGEST)?
Finding one book recommendation is as impossible for me as choosing my favourite album. The book which made the biggest impression on me, is a book from 1904 by Hermann Hesse called Peter Camenzind, it is a book about a young man trying to understand the nature of his feelings and talent. I read this book when I was in my early twenties, living alone, feeling very shy, and drinking far too much... I felt an immediate affinity.
If I had more choices I would pick from an array of wonderful modern fairy tale stories (Uprooted by Naomi Novik, The Snow Child by Eowyn Ivey, The Book Of Lost Things by John Connolly). I also adore 'Lord Of The Rings' but I saw this as a lazy choice.
#4 - WHAT IS THE ONE WEBSITE (OR JUST ANY OLD INTERNET THING: APP, GIF, SERVICE, WHATEVER) THAT YOU WOULD GET REALLY DOWN IN THE DUMPS ABOUT IF IT WERE TO SUDDENLY GO AWAY?
If I had to pick one website, I would pick SoundCloud. Without Soundcloud I would not have been able to create finished versions of my music. I write my songs, create demos and then publish them. Without Soundcloud I would not have found a collective of singers who love my songs enough to record them. I work with singers and artists from all over the world (America, France, Belgium, Japan, Canada, Scotland). Soundcloud allows us to connect, communicate, collaborate, and find an audience.
I am not a fan of the way Soundcloud is trying to become a streaming service, for me they should continue to concentrate on being a vehicle for new and undiscovered artists to find their audience.
#5 - AND FINALLY… PLEASE GIVE ONE COMPLETELY UNAIDED RECOMMENDATION THAT YOU THINK EVERYONE SHOULD START DOING / USING / WATCHING / EATING / THINKING / QUITING / ETC-ING TO MAKE THEIR LIVES A LITTLE BIT MORE BETTER AND/OR BEARABLE.
I apologise in advance for my recommendation. A younger version of me would laugh, and pour oceans of scorn. My friends will laugh and call me a hypocrite.
I stopped drinking eight years ago (doctors orders). I was a big drinker, with a big appetite for beer and whisky. Now I don't drink, I have an un-blinkered view of the challenges alcohol can cause. Alcohol can relax people and allow conversation to flow, but people rarely stay in the 'sweet spot'.
As a result of stopping drinking, I began to explore the world of alcohol free, I've tried hundreds. There are some wonderful non alcoholic beers on the market, lots of small craft brewers are creating magical brews with all the taste, and non of the headaches. I urge people to try brews like 'Weird Weather' by Mikkeller, which is a cloudy IPA, you will be amazed.
OK folks, there you have it. Things that Russell from Jeanes thinks you should consider incorporating into your day/life. Before you log off and get your beer fridge listed on ebay, take a minute to follow Russell on Twitter / Instagram and Jeanes on Facebook — and then swing by Bandcamp to give some ear time to the music collaborating happening under the Jeanes collective.