Travis Vick

If you have ever heard of Manteca California, you would probably know it used to be the home of the glorious “Manteca Waterslides.” However, another equally remarkable thing has come forth from this quaint farm town located in the central valley. His name; Travis Vick. So moving beyond this incredibly lame and cheesy introduction, the artist I introduce to you is simple in style, yet exceptional in talent.  (I went to high school in ol’ teca town with Travis. I know…HBB *holler big baller*) He uses an array of instruments in his music including, Piano, Guitar, Accordion, Banjo, Bass, Mandolin, Harmonica, Ukulele, Trombone, Clarinet and Drums. (My personal favorite being the banjo. I love that “twangy” sound and ever since I found out that Steve Martin could play, I have grown a certain fondness for the instrument. I just love Steve.)  On his myspace music page he classifies his sound as “melodic folk rock.” His melodies are intriguing and voice is soothing. His falsetto is beautiful and delicate  (“October 31st”) while the notes he hits in the lower register are rich and pure (“Box”). It is powerful while still remains an endearing quirkiness. Also, being a big fan of harmonies, the parts he interleaves in his songs are perfectly blended, smooth and warm. Some of the harmonies are a layering of his own voice or other singers, including his sister. I just love this artist and I would try to relate his sound to other artists in order to give you a feel for his sound, but due to my lack of musical knowledge…and laziness, I will let you see for yourself. I recommend the songs “The Hedges” and “Seamus Fruitfridge” from his EP, “Player Piano” and the songs “Box” and “Bees Don’t Bite” from his music myspace. You should give him a good listen, a real good listen.

MUSIC MYSPACE

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-Courtney

Regina Spektor

As my first post to this Blog, and as the first post from a girl, I figured it would be appropriate to post a female artist. Girl Power. (p.s. I’m not a feminist) So therefore I introduce you to, or reacquaint you with, Regina Spektor. She is not incredibly unknown, but not always seen in the public eye. This unique singer/songwriter grew up in Moscow and eventually made her way to America’s east coast. Her striking features combined with her pure and endearing voice make her incredibly charming. (I read she once worked on a butterfly farm…adorable right?) From what I know she speaks, Russian, Hebrew and some Latin and often times incorporates these languages into her music. It is hard to classify her music in one genre, but some of the styles she incorporates in her songs are Alternative, Folk, Jazz, Russian, Jewish, and Classical. Occasionally she alludes to literary works or figures like Fitzgerald (“Poor little Rich boy”) or Shakespeare’s “Hamlet”. (You can thank Wikipedia and my geeky English major side for that) Her piano playing is always innovative, sometimes sounding like the simple tune of a music box (like in her song “music box”) or even a sort of Russian Dance song (Like 2 minutes into her song “The Flowers”) Besides her outstanding piano skills, the true unique and engaging element of her music is the inventive and broad use of her voice. From beat-boxing to the buzzing of her lips, she utilizes all sorts of unorthodox vocal techniques to add the subtle nuances that make her songs so great. While all her albums are great, her three latest albums, “Soviet Kitsch” (2004) “Begin to Hope” (2006) and “Far” (2009) are my personal favorites. I posted the album Soviet Kitsch. I recommend the songs “Ode to Divorce”, “Us” and “Chemo Limo”.  Enjoy.

-Courtney

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*This blog does not upload or store any copyrighted music. The site provides links to, but is unassociated with, file hosting sites such as Mediafire, Megaupload, and Rapidshare. From the Fringe is intended to be used for music discovery purposes only. Please support the featured artists by purchasing their albums. - From the Fringe © 2010

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