Artist Spotlight: Elizabeth Vincent

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Happy New Year! We are so grateful for seeing 2017 all the way through and making it to 2018! For our first blogpost of the new year today, we’re shining the spotlight on a talented singer-songwriter who performed at our Open Mic Night back in March 2017, her name is Elizabeth Vincent. 

 

Hi there Elizabeth, can you tell us a bit about yourself? 

Hey! My name is Elizabeth Vincent, I am 23 years old and I’m a Gospel/Christian artist currently studying Medicine at University.

 

Welcome to the blog and thanks for joining us today! How long have you been doing music and songwriting? How many songs have you written and do you play any instruments?

Officially, as an ‘artist’, I’ve been doing music for almost 2 years now. However, I’ve been creating music for longer than I can remember. I started singing at a really young age and I used to sing along to just about everything. (Side note: do you remember “Psalty” the TV show? Well, that was the show with all the tunes, haha). My earliest memory of singing publicly was at my school’s Christmas concert in year 6. Funnily enough, the other parents told my mum I should be doing opera; oh, how things have changed!

I play the piano and I would love to learn how to play the guitar one day as it’s much easy to carry around, haha. I write songs but the specific amount; they are too numerous to count lol!

I’ve been songwriting for several years but I always say that I think my songs ‘took shape’ when I started learning the piano. When I was younger I definitely did not think I’d be pursuing music the way I am now - thank God for the Holy Spirit’s leading. 

 

Following the Spirit's leading, that's the way to go! I do know of Psalty the singing songbook (I think that's what it's called) although can you imagine, I've never watched one show 😱 It's interesting that opera was suggested for you as I haven't gotten that vibe from your work lol. I guess your style has grown as you've grown over the years! How did you get started in music and what made you decide to become an artist?

The decision to do music officially as an artist involved a gradual process of God slowly nudging me and using individuals to encourage me to share the music He’d blessed me with. I’ll be honest, initially I was hesitant, however it truly is a blessing to see people relate to songs that I wrote from my heart. To begin, I bought equipment, software (Logic Pro X) and started to lay down arrangements for my songs in my bedroom, and here we are now!

 

Wow! It’s good that you listened & it sounds like once you decided, you were definitely very determined with getting started in music! Who would you say is your biggest influence?

I would say my mum. Apart from being an excellent role model, she has always encouraged me to pursue my interests (singing, piano, art, poetry etc) and I appreciate her so much for that.

 

That’s amazing! Ok so speaking about influences, I believe that ever artist is the sum of their individuality plus all the artists who influenced them the most. Who is your favourite Christian/gospel artist & what's your favourite album?

This is so difficult, but one of my favourites is Christon Gray as he’s an incredible vocalist, producer, and is extremely humble and authentic. As for my favourite album, at the moment I’d have to say Marvin Sapp - Close. I have listened to that album on repeat since it was released in September.


I have to check out Christon Gray, haven’t heard of him before! Also I haven’t yet heard Marvin Sapp’s New album so I’ll add that to the wish list! If there was 1 artist you could work with, who would it be and why?

There are so many artists I’d love to sing with but if I had to pick one right now I’d say Jonathan McReynolds. His heart for God, his authenticity and his talent is admirable, but also musically I think his high singing voice and my low-tenor/alto-range may sound nice together!

 

It seems like everyone I’ve interviewed wants to work with Jonathan McReynolds as well lol. Genuinely one of my favourite artists so you may have to join the queue behind me 😂

Ok so moving on, let’s find out a bit more about you as a person. If you were stranded on a deserted island and could only take 3 items with you, what would you take and why? Do you have personality quirks? 

 

Hmm 3 things? Probably my Bible, a lot of water and a swiss army knife for food and to make a shelter.

We’re all quirky in some way! Despite how reserved I can be, I am actually a lot more hyper than people think.

Also, I don’t know if this is weird but when I am sitting by the piano, or somewhere else, writing a song I can immediately hear what the whole band/orchestra sounds like, in my head.

 

Whoa, that sounds amazing! You’ve got that composer Beethoven thing going on. Would love to hear one of your full productions soon! If you could go back in time for 1 day/week, what year/era would you travel to and why?

Hmm, minus all the negative history, musically, I’d love to travel to the early 20th century to hear artists like Mahalia Jackson (~1930s) and Duke Ellington; OR even further back to the Classical era to meet composers like Bach and Beethoven. I love classical piano and jazz so that would be a dream for sure!

 However, the ultimate dream would be to go back to the time where Jesus walked on this Earth. I’d take all those questions I have about the Bible with me and come back to 2017 with an abundance of knowledge 🙂

 

Good answers; You’d be very much sought after for both musical and theological insight! So last year Jonathan McReynolds & Travis Greene caught some flak for their different responses to being asked to sing at the inauguration of the US President. How do you choose what to sing/where to sing? How do you decide what gigs to turn down?

I really love this question. In terms of where to sing, the moment I get an invitation somewhere I commit it to God in prayer. In the process I also assess what sort of invitation it is, logistics, and enquire further about the gig. All of this combined helps and guides me to approach the decision with wisdom. Sometimes the gigs to turn down receive a gentle “no” from the Holy Spirit, so I have to pay very close attention to not miss that.

There is also a lot that goes into picking a set list. I go through many options before I end up with the main ones for the night (+ a few back ups). Again, it starts with prayer, then I think about the type of event and “audience” demographics. However, it’s important to not let that last factor sway your decision too heavily as I have been pleasantly surprised at the songs people of different age ranges have responded to.

 

 I hear that, it’s always good to get others views on these things. Being Spirit-led & practical is so important as an artist because there’s so much choice that wisdom is necessary! Aside from music, what would you say is your biggest passion?

In all I do I just want to represent God well, whether that be through personal relationship with Him, serving others, or my studies, so I would say that is my biggest passion. Although I may not be able to speak explicitly to patients about Jesus, I try and represent Him well through my acts of love, care and dedication. Medicine truly is a career close to my heart and I am grateful to be able to study it!

 

Amen! Jesus had that way of speaking to ordinary people using ordinary things without quoting scripture (though He was grounded in it and He is the word). Sometimes we need that subtlety to reach people! So it’s a new year, what does 2018 hold for you?

2018 has just begun but let me tell you, God has been so gracious to me (as always!). I am so grateful for every person God has brought my way to support me on this journey, their encouragement has gone a long way. In 2017 I was privileged to participate and win the ‘Yamaha Gospel Star Search’ competition and my music video for ‘Father Can I Call You That’ was nominated for the JUMP Music Video Awards. All these incredible things could not have happened without the grace and mercy of God. All this to say: the rest of 2018 excites me and I cannot wait to see what else God has in store.

 

That is amazing, well deserved and hopefully more to come this year!  Is there anything else you'd like to share?

Even though I haven’t been doing music professionally for very long, I’d just like to encourage people who are considering it. I’ll tell you firsthand that the music industry can be a very daunting place. At times it is difficult to navigate and there are many things to research along the way. However, it has also taught me great lessons: be creative, rely on God alone and believe in the gifts He has given you. The saying “your gifts will make room for you” is true.

 

Also, please remember that your impact is not determined by the number of people that follow you but rather, on the individual lives you’ve touched. That is much more rewarding. Do not worry about how far you think other people have gone, as comparison is a thief of joy. Be content at every stage, your journey is not the same as the next person’s. And, more than anything, do not allow “busy-ness” to stop you from pursuing that deeper relationship with God - fight for your time!

 

Well said! Where can our readers see you singing live? Do you have any upcoming gigs/dates to share?

Alongside my degree I am working underground on my next project, so there are no confirmed dates as of yet. Nevertheless, keep an eye on my website (www.elizabethvincentmusic.com) and social media for updates.

Thank you very much One Sound Music for the interview! It really was a pleasure 🙂

 

Thank You Elizabeth, my Gospel Singer/Songwriter/Pianist/Medical Student Friend! You can catch her on her website and socials below! 

 

Website: www.elizabethvincentmusic.com

Email: elizabethvincentmusic@gmail.com

Facebook: www.facebook.com/elizabethvincentmusic

Twitter: @eavincentmusic

Instagram: @elizabethvincentmusic

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Artist spotlight: His Will

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Hey guys, it's been a while! Today we're back with our latest Artist Spotlight and this time we're featuring a very exciting group of young people from the West Midlands area. They are called "His Will" and God willing you will be seeing them on our youtube channel soon! 

 

Hey guys, lovely to have you on the blog today! Can you tell us a little bit about yourselves?

 

We feel we are a friendly group of friends that sing contemporary style music. We mainly sing our songs acapella but we wouldn’t necessarily say that we are an acappella group. At the moment we have a group of 5 members. We say at the moment because over the years the number has fluctuated between 3 and 7 and with members at uni not being able to be as active as they would like we find it hard to pinpoint the actual number.

 

Why did you choose your name? What does it mean?

So our name is pretty self explanatory we are mainly here to do the will of God. His Will. And disclaimer we actually didn’t choose the name ourselves it was chosen by a woman from one of our churches. We went around for a while without a name funny enough because we just didn’t know what to call ourselves and she just laid it on us. It’s all explained in our song “His Will” where it pretty much explains us doing the work of God.

 

Wow, that is great. How long have you guys been making music?

We have been doing music for quite a while. All of us have been singing since a very young age but as a group we have been together about 4 years.

 

4 years is actually a long time! How did you get started? 

 

For some reason Adrian tells this story a lot differently than everyone else. He would say that we evolved from being the “Adrian’s group” but it really didn’t. Ok so Danielle wanted to sing the song “Potter’s hand” with Alvin and after they sung it they thought it would have been even better with a 3rd harmony. So they brought Delainie in to make a trio. Adrian thought he would be a really good addition to the group after that so he became the bass singer. This is how the group was first born really in about 2013.

 

Wow, I love hearing group origin stories, they're always so cool and yours is no exception! It actually reminds me a bit of the story of my all time favourite Acapella group Take 6. They have influenced me and my music in so many ways! So talking about influences, who would you say is your favourite Christian/gospel influencer/artist?

 

At the moment we all have DEFINITE differing opinions but our artists are as follows: Joyous celebration, Isaac Cates, Todd Dulaney, J Moss and Bill Gaither.

 

You've listed some real powerhouses of gospel singing and songwriting there! Who would you say is your biggest influence?

 

Our styles are all so different its actually mad to try and pinpoint 1 influence. So we won’t. That’s our rebellious side shining through here haha but we will only name a couple. Resound are a big influence on us. Their blend is crazy!  We would also have to say SCRIPTURE SAYS!!!!! Well they’re just……they’re just! We just love them! They’re almost as weird and crazy as us to be honest and their harmonies are just……..(speechless there’s no words at the moment). They’re our sister group. But we admire and appreciate their acappella vibe its so refreshing and different.

 

Aww I love that! They're were equally gushing about you so it's great to see the mutual respect and admiration. Speaking of Scripture Says, they are phenomenal songwriters as well. Are you guys into that as well? How many songs have you written? 

 

We actually have quite a few songs written to be honest. Our problem mainly is that we don’t get anything down recorded or even sing them all. We would say that we officially have 4 songs though because they’re the ones we have actually sung.

 

I see, so you have loads in the bag/pipeline but only 4 you've performed. Great stuff! What about instrumentation, do you play any instruments? If so which ones? If not, which would you choose?

 

We're all at different stages with this! 

Richard – doesn’t play an instrument but would like to learn the bass. Adrian – Plays saxophone and violin and would like to learn the guitar. Serene – Plays violin and would like to learn piano or guitar.

Danielle - Plays piano and would like to learn the bass and the ukulele. Alvin -  Plays saxophone and piano and would like to learn the musical saw and trumpet.

 

Well that's a lot of talent there! It's got me longing for the day His Will lay down their voices and pickup those instruments and blow us away! I notice Adrian and Serene want to learn the guitar, it's the best instrument - go for it! (Not that I'm biased or anything!) 

Ok so moving on, if there was 1 artist you could work with, who would it be and why?

 

That’s so tough because there are so many artists that we would love to work with both as a group and individually but the main ones would need to be: Lalah Hathaway, Fred Hammond, Jason Nelson, Jonathan McReynolds.

 

You just named my favourite male vocalist and favourite female vocalist, can we just take a minute :D Good choices there indeed, I'd love to work with any of them but especially Lalah and Jonathan! Tell us 1 quirky thing about you guys as a group?

1 quirky thing about us is that we are actually quite weird and we admit it lol. But we think that being weird is part of our personalities. We are all definitely different weird and funny in completely different ways but we all work together.

 

Most of the year is gone now lol, but I'll ask anyway. What does 2017 hold for you?

 

2017 is a very steady year for us we are planning to do some recording to actually try and get some of our original music down somewhere. But that’s mainly our plan.

 

That's great, we really need more of a recording culture in the UK gospel scene ESPECIALLY in the SDA church which has so much talent. Good to see you're doing your bit for the culture! Aside from music, what would you say is your biggest passion?

 

Food! Say no more. We know that might sound so weird but we all really love food. We love cooking, we love going out to eat. We love dessert. Omdz dessert yaaasss heavenly desserts makes us very thankful. If we are ever in a bad mood all we need is either a waffle or a really good burger.

 

LOL! Where do you guys put the food? Y'all do a good job of hiding it away! Ok so let's move on to some questions about you as a group. Quickfire, ready, fire, aim! Numero uno: Who's the loudest in the group?

 

Serene. Without a shadow of a doubt. If you know her you know her.

 

LOL! I thought she was pretty quiet myself tbh #justsayin (ok maybe I'm trying too hard?) Anyway, who's the biggest joker?

 

We are all funny we like to think anyway but Alvin is really funny. We’re undecided about whether we say this in a good or bad way though. There are some days that we question and wonder about him.

 

Lol! Who is the deepest thinker?

The deepest thinker is definitely Alvin he questions everything. He’s just different.

 

Wow don't have it Alvin! Who is the most creative?

The most creative of the group are definitely Danielle and Alvin. It’s like they’ll say they want to show us something they’re working on or a mess about and then all of a sudden its like bam! You’re actually floored.

 

What's your proudest moment as a group been so far?

 

We would have to say our proudest moment was opening for the group Committed. We opened with the song 'The Lord’s prayer' by Isaac Cates and it’s one of the hardest songs we have sung as a group. Adrian hates starting songs but he did really well. It was the first time that we have done a full set instead of just 1 or 2 songs. It was such hard work and the feedback that we got after the concert was so encouraging and positive.

 

Yeah we were at that concert and y'all were off the chain! Amazing (glory up) Where do you see your ministry in 5 years time?

 

We would want to be on our 2nd world tour. No that’s a joke aha we aren’t ready for that sort of thing any time soon. We would want to have released an album, maybe 2 hopefully. At the moment God has been leading and a lot of people have been asking when certain things are going to happen with us but we are still following God’s direction.

 

You know what, that's a great place to end this. Your name is His Will and it's great to see that in your ministry you're serious about following His will and His direction. Is there anything else you'd like to share?

 

Really we just want to share our music. We have instagram and facebook under "hiswill music". These are our main sources. But watch this space for updates of our material we do have plans.

 

Thanks for joining us today and sharing your journey His Will. You can check them out on Facebook by following their page here: His Will or on Instagram page here: His Will. Till next time, blessings!

(L to R) Danielle, Serene, Alvin, Adrian and Richard. 

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(L to R) Richard, Danielle, Adrian and Serene

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(L to R) Richard and Danielle

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(L to R) Adrian and Serene

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Richard

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Danielle

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Serene

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Adrian

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Artist Spotlight: Paris Miami

Welcome to our second artist spotlight! We have been talking to one of our artists who we manage, the supremely talented Paris Miami. She has been working with One Sound Music for around 1 year and 3 months now and caught up about her musical journey so far...

 

Hey Paris, thanks for joining us today. Can you tell us a little bit about yourself

 

Hey Tochi, thanks for inviting me! My name is Paris and I'm a 21-year-old singer songwriter from the West Midlands. I write my own songs and play the guitar, performing around the UK. Currently I am being managed by One Sound Music. I'm also a student at university studying Illustration and Graphics and I simply love anything creative.

 

That’s awesome to hear, especially the part about One Sound managing you lol. On a serious note though, it sounds like it's all pretty full on for you doing illustration and graphics as well as music. How long have you been doing music?

 

I've loved music since I was a child, my family are quite a musical bunch so I think it's in our blood. There was a piano at my grandparents house and a guitar so I was around instruments and singers often.

I was always active in choirs throughout school and at church I was often apart of praise teams for Youth days and other events etc. At the age of 16 is when I got my very own brand new guitar and from that point is where my journey as a solo artist began.

 

We have seen you on the church scene over the years and your talent is evident. How did you get started on the musical path? What made you start?

 

I guess I started by taking that step to put myself out there. I knew that I could sing but I think my voice was hidden when singing with others so I thought it was time to show more of myself. I decided that I would put a video out on Facebook and see what people's responses would be. At the time I was using my laptop to record with its dodgy webcam, but it did the job for the time being, before you know it I uploaded about 4 videos and the feedback was great. 

 

Ah I remember those days, especially when you posted your beautiful arrangement of “The Lord’s prayer” on the Gospel Video Challenge back in 2012! Although the video quality wasn’t the greatest, your talent definitely shone through! Speaking of shining through and musical inspiration, which current Christian/Gospel artist would you say speaks to you? Who is your favourite?

 

My favourite gospel artist is Mali music. I just love his tone and lyrical content. He's actually been my main inspiration since the age of 16! If it wasn't for him I don't know if I would be the artist I am today or would have started my journey at the age that I did.

 

Wow that’s pretty amazing to hear! From the little I know of Mali Music’s work, I can see some hints of his influence, although you definitely have your unique style which comes through. Still on the subject of musical inspiration, what is your favourite album and why?

 

I don't have a favourite album. But there's an E.P called 'The Love Art Memoirs' by Alex Isley. There's not a week that goes by where I don't listen to it!

 

Wow that sounds interesting, I’ll definitely try and check that out! Now I understand that you’re also a songwriter, how many songs have you written?

 

So far I have written 9 originals songs and I have re-arranged 5 hymns. 

 

We know and love your original work and also your hymn re-arrangements! You definitely have a distinct style, which comes across when you perform, both in your chord choices, harmonic choices and the way you weave your thoughts together. In musical terms, who would you say is your biggest influence?

 

I don't really know what my biggest influence is, it's just music as a whole. I listen to hundreds of artists and they all impact me in different ways. I go searching for music like it's treasure and whomever I find on a good day is my influence in that moment in time.

 

Ah I see, that’s fair enough. I can see it’s good to have a wide range of influences, so there’s benefit in staying ‘in the moment’! Moving on, this is probably a silly question, but my first guitar had a name (she was called Bessie). One guitarist to another, does your guitar have a name?

 

Yes my guitar actually has a name! It's named after my good friend Tino. He's an awesome guitarist and if can play at his level one day I will be very happy.

 

Ah that’s pretty awesome! I also know a Tino who is a guitarist and he may be featuring on our blog soon with his group Scripture Says Acapella, I wonder if it’s the same one :)

Moving on then, are you a multi-instrumentalist? Do you play any other instruments aside from guitar?

 

I can play the drums and that is actually my favourite instrument.

 

Wow! That’s a surprise! Hopefully we’ll get you on the channel soon playing the drums for us perhaps? Ok here’s a question for you; if there was 1 artist you could work with in the whole wide world, who would it be and why?

 

This is a hard question I can't possible narrow it down to just one, so I'll tell you my top two. First would be Shakka, he's my favourite non-gospel artist. His creativity is just out of this world and he exudes a lot of positive and fun energy within his work. I think we would be able to create some really cool stuff together. My second artist would be Mali Music, he really thinks outside of the box when it comes to sharing the gospel through song and it would be great to meet someone that has inspired me so much.

 

Ok that’s another artist I haven’t heard of yet, so I’ll go and check out Shakka! It would be amazing to get to work with those artists who have inspired us so I do hope you can realise that goal. On a lighter note, can you tell us 1 quirky thing about yourself?

 

One quirky thing, hmmm. Well I like to beatbox. I would love to master it one day that would be dope!

 

Well you really are multi-talented and you come across as being very multi-faceted! Other than music, what would you say is your biggest passion?

 

Aside from music I'm passionate about art and design. I'm currently an Illustration and Graphics student so I love drawing and expressing my self through that medium.

 

That’s amazing! It seems like you’re blessed with creativity and you seem to be going hard for it in all areas of your life! That’s pretty inspirational to me and I’m sure it will be to our readers. Is there anything you'd like to share with them?

 

I would like to say that everything I have and have achieved thus far is because of God. My voice is the gift He has given to me and I want to use that to uplift and inspire others.  I like to think that He has big plans for me so I just try to keep trusting him. I encourage anyone to pursue what God has placed on your heart, it's possible to make your dreams happen. Keep praying and pushing.

 

Amen to that! We all need the reminder and push sometimes! We’re almost finished with 2 months of 2017, what does this year hold for you?

 

Hopefully amazing things. I’m focusing on just getting out there more and singing at new venues and events. I'm also aiming to release an E.P. so watch this space!

 

An E.P.!!! Whoop whoop, I personally cannot wait to purchase that! You already know how much I love your music! However while we wait for the E.P. to come out, do you have any upcoming gigs/dates so that we can come and hear you live and direct?

 

I’ll be performing at the One Sound Music Open Mic night on Sunday 19th March 2017 from 7:30pm to 9pm at Costa Coffee on Southwark Street in London, SE1 1RQ so come down and check it out.

Additionally I will be performing at Friends Zone which is a live music and Spoken words event on the 14th April at the Tank TV studio Coventry University. Time from 5pm till 6.30pm. I’ll also be doing other gigs this year, but follow me on social media so that you can get the latest updates as and when I have them. 

 

Thanks so much for joining us today and sharing your story Paris, it has been fascinating talking to you. You can connect with Paris Miami and her music via our One Sound Music youtube page and also through her various social media: 

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/parismiamimusic/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/Paris_Miami_x

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/paris_miami/

Bandpage: http://parismiami.bandpage.com

Soundcloud: https://soundcloud.com/parismiami

Musicality: The secret ingredient? Part 1

Hey, my name is Tochi and I’m a guitarist. I’ve been playing since around 2004/2005 and I primarily play acoustic guitar. I’m not the best guitarist, but I have been privileged to play in some amazing situations with some amazing musicians. In this blog, I just want to explore the concept of musicianship/musicality which I think is the secret ingredient that can elevate your playing to greater heights.

 

One of the great jazz guitar teachers Ted Greene provides a cautionary word which is definitely important to remember as musicians. He states the following in his introduction to the classic ‘Chord chemistry’, "...you might like the sound of a chord or chord pattern given in the section on moving voices, and you might fit it into a blues...however, be careful not to delude yourself into thinking something is great just because it is different. The desire to be different can be a healthy thing as long as it does not become more important than the desire to play music that is enjoyable to listen to."

https://www.scribd.com/doc/2088025/Chord-Chemistry-by-Ted-Greene 

He talks about the decision making process a musician goes through when arranging a song, and highlights that there is a need to make choices that lead to enjoyable music rather than just music that is different. While the desire to play music which is different is not necessarily bad, I think that playing music which is enjoyable to listen to is infinitely more important. I think the skill of 'musicality' is one which helps with making that happen.

Musicality is something that I’ve heard some great musicians describe/talk about and is also something that I’ve observed when I’ve witnessed some of the greats while they play. I think it’s very possibly the secret ingredient  that helps to bridge the gap from 'decent' to 'great' as a musician. More than imparting good technical ability, the great musical teachers are concerned with imparting deeper values; an ability to understand the music and be intentional when making choices while playing a piece of music. 

I would like to have a closer look at what musicality is, and perhaps explore some of the skills which form part of musicality and how this applies to us as gospel musicians, working on honing our craft for God’s glory.

The desire to be different can be a healthy thing as long as it does not become more important than the desire to play music that is enjoyable to listen to.”

 

Definition

The Oxford English Dictionary defines musicality as:

1: Musical talent or sensitivity:  2: The quality of having a pleasant sound; melodiousness:

Webster’s dictionary’s definition is somewhat similar:

1:  sensitivity to, knowledge of, or talent for music

2:  the quality or state of being musical : melodiousness

These definitions highlight ‘sensitivity’ which is an interesting concept which recurs in both definitions and is something we’ll come back to a bit later. In doing some digging online, I came across a great definition at this site (https://www.musical-u.com/blog/what-is-musicality/) which explains it as follows:

"Musicality is a set of “inner skills” which let you freely and confidently express yourself in music.”

This definition brings to mind that it’s a set of skills, which give you freedom and confidence to be expressive in playing. This is somewhat similar to the more traditional and perhaps classical idea of ‘Musicianship’. I’d even argue that Musicality is essentially a colloquial version of this word.

For me, ‘musicality’ or ‘musicianship’ is essentially skills which give a musician the ability to make correct musical decisions in the moment when playing or singing a song. Another idea which is somewhat synonymous with this is the idea of having the right ‘feel’ for music which many have claimed cannot be taught. A prime example for me is the illustrious and great guitarist Paul Jackson Jr. I love his playing because his decision-making is impeccable. This is demonstrated in the video clip below where he plays over a simple motif and shows how to play the right thing to enhance the music everytime.

In the iconic album ‘Gospel According to Jazz chapter 1’ - his impeccable decision-making is also evident. In every single song, every single solo, he makes the right musical decision every time, and harking back to Ted Greene’s idea, it makes the music that much more enjoyable to listen to. 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j9mlQTQxeFA - Lord I want to be a Christian

This track is a prime example of 2 masters demonstrating their intense musicality and this comes out in how they play together. In the "Lord I want to be a Christian" track, notice how for the first 3 minutes, the track is pretty much just saxophone and guitar. While the sax is leading, Paul Jackson Jr does some little but beautiful and tasteful moves on the guitar to fill the spaces. Then in the call and response section, he mirrors Kirk Whalum but with a bit of extra spice added. This is musicality in action. 

In conclusion, while having a knowledge of many chords is great, and knowledge or progressions, riffs and songs is great, I think that greater skill is having the skill of musicality or musicianship which helps with making good choices when deciding what/how to play. It would be better to know less chords but understand how to use them in the best way than to have a plethora of chords with no clue on their usage. If you want to make the next step in your musical journey, maybe, just  maybe musicality is the missing secret ingredient. 

In part 2, we’ll look at some of the core musicianship skills which I think are most important. I hope you enjoyed the blog - let me know what you think below.