Thursday, July 8, 2010

"I AM AMERICA"....Commenter Will asks today in the COMMENTS SECTION "At the heart of what O and the lib-o-dems hate, just what are we?" Got an answer?


Our friend Priscilla sent me this video and I had to post it...Krista Branch is a fantastic belter (my voice coach would be drooling) and I don't know who wrote the song (I've looked but can't find anything yet) but it is fantastic. Maybe some of you have already seen it but, if you haven't, PLEASE treat yourself. Have Kleenex nearby. (thanks, Pris)
z

46 comments:

beamish said...

Love the nod to mid-1990s piano synth house (techno's not dead, it's recyclable) but the mix down needs work. Dial back the "grunge" guitar punches and throw some filter sweeps on the drum patterns and grab a glow stick 'coz were ravin' baby.

Someone hook her up with a remixer!!

Ducky's here said...

More auto-tune.

Man, it makes you yearn for Sarah Vaughn and people who could sing.

Craig and Heather said...

Interesting, Z. I'll have to digest the message a bit.

As I mentioned on the other thread, the lack of religious continuity may not allow for America to be of "one voice". Would that we truly were one nation, with the unifying goal of honoring God!

I hope I don't get shot for agreeing with Ducky here, but I generally hold back on my admiration of most recorded singers these days. So much can be done with sound equipment, I never know whether I'm hearing genuine talent or a plasticized enhancement.

She sounds impressive in the video...

H

beamish said...

I bet she sings better than you, Ducky.

Heather, there's no vo-coder or auto-tuning in that vocal track that my trained ears can detect. Girl can sing.

The volume of the guitar track is just recorded too loud with the rest of the mix, giving it a "distortion" sound that takes away from the otherwise very dancefloory anthem direction the rest of the instrumentation is going. At some points it drowns out the vocal track entirely, and that's just flawed. Almost as if it were added in as an afterthought that should have been shot down in the studio.

It's good, but could very simply be better.

Z said...

I posted this for its patriotism....but, as a belter who's sung for a very long time and knows good singing from bad, she is a VERY good singer; no cross-over, completely 'on her body'...excellent and rare.
Having said that, she's not a singer I'd buy a CD (almost said 'album'!) of.....it's not technically good singing I admire as much as MOOD.

Beamish...if you were a girl singer, you'd know even better this 'girl can sing'...you're right. She doesn't take the easy route, she's a rare and REALLY good belter; I wish there were more like her.

For the record, 'belting' does NOT mean ETHEL MERMAN-like singing; ya, she sang 'on her body' too but she gave belting a bad name. (if you take a voice lesson and your teacher mentions the typical term 'head voice', run for the hills)

Heather, why would you be shot for agreeing with DUCKY? If I agree with Ducky, I"ll tell him so, and I have! You can enhance but you can't fake what she's got no matter how you enhance, tell you the truth. you can't 'fix' with equipment not singing deeply enough on your body...
I'd explain the whole phenomenon but you'd have to send me money for a singing lesson :-)

Anyway, folks...the song's about patriotism and that's why I posted it! just sit back and enjoy! GeeeeZ!

Craig and Heather said...

Heather, there's no vo-coder or auto-tuning in that vocal track that my trained ears can detect. Girl can sing.

Alrighty then. She does sound good. I'll take your word for it

Thanks!
:)

FrogBurger said...

Love the simple lyrics and references to us being peasants.

beamish said...

Z,

Before I devoted my life to smoking cigarettes, I did some singing, and had some lessons. I know what you're talking about when you say "on body." It's like turning yourself into a bell and ringing out. It ain't easy.

Craig and Heather said...

Z,

You mentioned previously that you don't like to agree with Ducky too often because if you "give an inch, he takes a mile" and I did not know to what degree you extend that policy. Maybe Beamish's point about the noisy soundtrack is what put me off. It's the kind of stuff I play when I'm cleaning the house rather than "listening" for enjoyment.

I don't mean to sound contrary concerning patriotism. I really was thinking about that before the guys' comments distracted me. If we didn't live in an area so highly populated by Mennonites (pacifistic sect), and I had not already been called down hard for misdirected affection, it wouldn't be a problem at all to jump up yelling "YES!" to your post.

As it is, I'm still trying to piece back together where the appropriate line is between love of law, justice and freedom and an idolatrous obsession with American ideals. I don't want to end up back where I was a year ago.

H

FairWitness said...

Keep up your contempt and disdain, Ducky. You're about to have your collective asses handed to you on the Left. We are sick of your lawlessness, your theft, your dishonor, your LIES, LIES, LIES!

We're pissed and we're not backing down. Your movement is finished. America knows the truth now. We're taking back our power, you've proved yourselves unworthy to govern.

You are traitors of this great nation and you are all going to pay for what you've done. Get ready, the Conservatives are coming and we will hold you accountable for the crimes you've committed.

We understand and we care about our country and its future. We're going to save this nation from the likes of you and your fellow criminals.

Keep flapping those smug lips, pal. You're about to meet Lady Justice and it isn't going to be pleasant.

The message in this song is telling everything I AM AMERICA! Our nation is coming back, we're going to recover, we're going to restore order, we're going to repair this economy. And it's going to be good for EVERYONE!

Yes, Heather, Americans not too long ago spoke with one voice. AND WE WILL AGAIN.

We're going forward with or without you. America will win this fight, not you fringe Lefties hellbent on destroying our way of life.

Ducky's here said...

Post some Woodie Guthrie.

Z said...

Beamish, "It's like turning yourself into a bell and ringing out. It ain't easy."
I never heard it put that way but that's absolutely right. Absolutely. Sounds like you somehow stumbled on the right coaching, too. it's rare...you still hear 'head voice' more than you should. If it weren't for 'head voice', Beverly Sills would still be singing. It's why Lena Horne and Streisand still sound so good....NO HEAD VOICE, NO pressure in the throat..

I smoked lightly the whole time I was professionally singing...my coach would say "Why the heck isn't your voice affected by it?" The girls I sometimes sang with (we did cabaret shows) would be singing up a storm warming up and I'd walk in and sing with only a quick warm up in the car on the way there......don't know why, it was just that way!
A belter can really have a big sound and I'd crack up when I had the window down and would do some warming up...pedestrians would stop on the street and look around!

Heather, I won't give in much on political/cultural issues with Ducky because it would give him a foot in the door and he loves to gloat (tho I do think he makes some points, whether he knows he's saying it or not, which I'd even now rather not enumerate or go into detail on!)...I agree with him on music/film, etc. sometimes......I don't dislike Ducky as much as it might seem; I'm glad he's here shaking things up and I love beamish's quips to him :-)

FairWitness...let it RIP! :-)
Glad you liked the song, too........it's good to hear a young woman who LOVES HER COUNTRY and sings about it like she does!

Craig and Heather said...

Yes, Heather, Americans not too long ago spoke with one voice. AND WE WILL AGAIN.

We're going forward with or without you. America will win this fight, not you fringe Lefties hellbent on destroying our way of life.


I did not realize I'm a fringe lefty hellbent on destroying America.

Z said...

See? I'm agreeing with Ducky again...except I like Arlo better :-) WAY better.

Anonymous said...

This is a great song sung by a girl with a great voice, and sung with passion.

To the analysts here. Can't you just enjoy that this is a great fight song for we Americans?

Sometimes it's good to just get enjoyment out of something. It's a song folks, how about just taking it for what it is!

Who the heck cares what the "mix" is?


"the lack of religious continuity may not allow for America to be of "one voice".
I'll have to digest the message a bit."

Heather, huh?


Thanks Z, for posting this. It's great, and I love it.


Pris

Craig and Heather said...

See? I'm agreeing with Ducky again...except I like Arlo better :-) WAY better.

I didn't think you hated him :)

Just don't want to be stepping out of line as this is not my site.

H

beamish said...

I sang tenor in church choir as a teen and noodled around with vocals in a couple of non-serious party bands in high school, but I never threw myself into it enough to rise above mediocrity. The only formal training I've had was called "body bell" lessons, and if you don't practice it, you're going to wind up sounding like Whitney Houston coming back from crack come performance time. I tend to lip synch with the radio because I know how awful I sound these days LOL. I've got a perfect pitch for country music singing, its just that I absolutely can not stand country music.

Ducky's here said...

I don't love to gloat. I frankly don't have a taste for "belters".

Billie Holiday barely had an octave range and I haven't heard a "belter" who comes near that level of expression.

The matter is compounded by artificial electronic augmentation. The "Whitney Houston effect".

Craig and Heather said...

Pris, I was referring to the discussion that occurred after your comment on

https://www.blogger.com/comment.g?blogID=5516627478339613810&postID=6615885304258208277

That might help explain my statement.

What I'm wondering is how unified we really can be in a country that has no official religious affiliation. I mean, we have the Constitution and civil law--but is that going to be a strong enough rallying point to pull us back together as a country? Or, have we just become too "diverse" and "tolerant"?
If political corruption and lawlessness have gone over the edge already, are we looking at having to dismantle the whole thing and start from scratch?

It's just stuff I think about.
H

beamish said...

Pris,

To the analysts here. Can't you just enjoy that this is a great fight song for we Americans?

I like it, and for thar reason. I just think it has better potential repackaged as a dance anthem than the Linkin Park-ish thing the guitar track tries to do at the end.

With a proper remix, kids'll be bobbin' their heads to it bumpin' down the street with over-amped bass speakers.

The girl has a perfect voice to be a techno diva. And, unlike Lady Gaga, it's actually her voice.

Joe said...

I was raised on and schooled in the operatic style of classical singing, and for many years believed that it was the only valid style of music in the universe.

I was in my late thirties when I discovered that I had been stricken with a form of musical snobbery that exceeded all reason.

As I began to spread my musical wings, I learned that the major purpose of music is self-expression, and discovered the intrinsic value of jazz, rock, pop, (disco...well....), rap, soul, southern gospel, and many other forms of music.

I learned to love Louis Armstrong, Dave Brubeck, Lena Horne, the Cathedrals, the Gaithers, George Burns, Arthur Godfrey, Johnny Cash, the eclectic of eclectics: the Boston Pops and hundreds of others...very liberating!

And I loved that video!

Thank you.

(BTW: Electronic enhancement is now a part of musical expression, if not an indiction of raw talent.)

Anonymous said...

Heather, My "huh?" was simply saying, "what does that have to do with this song"? And, what's to digest? It's pretty clear to me.


Btw, when Z speaks about singing, she knows what she's talking about. She has sung professionally, and still does for her church. She has a fabulous rich voice. And yes, she can belt lt out. She's terrific.

Pris

Z said...

Ducky, I tried to explain that belting isn't what you think it is...it's a method of singing and you can whisper and emote while belting.
Streisand is a belter, Lena Horne was a belter...it's how you sing, not like Merman's belting..As I said, she was called a belter because she screamed, they called that BELTING and it's just plain wrong.
Beamish is exactly right...if Whitney could belt, she'd be a better singer, but she crosses over...Okay; I'll try to explain (free of charge..:-)
When a female singer starts to sing higher notes, she usually crosses over into 'legit', or a kind of hooty, operatic sound...that's lazy singing, it's not belting, and most people think it's wonderful but it's extremely unsatisfying. it's 'emperor's new clothes'......no 'there' there.
Beamish has it exactly right...
Coaches don't usually call male singing 'belting' but...I'm not as versed in the male voice as I am the female.

Heather, if America's to survive as our founding fathers (and we) wished her to...yes, I fear we do have to start from scratch and I've pondered this for a long time; this is why I lament the contamination in schools of our kids; we haven't the base to start over from scratch WITH anymore for the most part.

Pris, I'm glad you like the song, too.

EVERYONE: THE WRITER OF THE SONG IS THE SINGER'S HUSBAND, PASTOR MIKE BRANCH. Thanks to our commenter-friend Silvrlady for calling me with that information! :-)

Z said...

Thanks, Pris...Someday, maybe I'll post another song...got to get some recorded and that's going to take a while...I can't imagine doing anything like that anymore without Mr. Z's support.
I really appreciate your compliment, THANKS.

Craig and Heather said...

Sorry Pris.

I assumed my comment was relevant because she is singing about having "one voice" and being united (I paid attention to the lyrics, btw).
Was not aware that it is unacceptable to offer something that is related but goes a bit beyond the video itself.

Neither was I accusing Z of not having an understanding of what "good" music sounds like. I can appreciate talent and hard work as well as anyone. I just admitted that I personally have a hard time getting excited about what sounds good when I know there can be a huge difference when one hears a live performance or one that has not electronic addition. How is my lack of training and inability to discern a reflection on Z's ability?

Z, if I've offended you in any way, I apologize.

H

Craig and Heather said...

Z, I think I get what your saying about "belting", as I've had a brief intro concerning the difference between singing from one's "face" vs from the chest. There is a difference and a need for control. I get that much.


Heather, if America's to survive as our founding fathers (and we) wished her to...yes, I fear we do have to start from scratch and I've pondered this for a long time; this is why I lament the contamination in schools of our kids; we haven't the base to start over from scratch WITH anymore for the most part.

There you go! That was the line of my thinking and what I also fear may be the reality.



I appreciate the "call" the video sends out.

But I keep wondering: Do we have it in us to rebuild from the ground up? Around what/who will Americans eventually unify ourselves?

I really don't mean to complicate something that others here seem to have settled.

H

Ducky's here said...

Well, the lyrics do mention the downtrodden briefly so I assume she's singing about the SEIU membership.

Little bit muddled lyrically and it's compounded by boring phrasing that's consistently smack on the beat, doesn't swing at all and the instrumental track really doesn't do much.

Can't see it becoming something on a level with "This Land Is Your Land".


But, Beamish is right. it does have the monotony of Linkin' Park.

Z said...

Joe, excellent points...I know; a lot of people think someone who reaches atmospheric high notes is a better singer, too. Weird. but a popular conception and, hey, if that floats their boat, what the heck, right? enhancement is just that....you really can make someone sound very different, much better, and that is NOT talent except for the guy on the board!
Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young were off key and not mixing well plenty when they were LIVE but they could mix themselves into perfection, for example.

Heather, I don't know who it'll take to help us rebuild IF our kids aren't past that point...you have any ideas? I love Paul Ryan, who's already recently said his kids come first so he won't be taking on anything more than he has.

No, no insult...
it's always been important to me for people to understand BELTING because I want anybody who loves to sing to have that kind of healthy singing coaching....'head voice' is a disaster after 20 years...belting allows one to sing till a ripe old age. That matters to me.
"the call" was my whole point.
I'd barely given a thought to the technical aspects of her singing or the production...but she is very good, as I said in my post; for this post, that was enough!

I don't know if we can rebuild and who'll do it..any suggestions?

Z said...

Ducky, you miss the whole point and have never exhibited patriotism here...so I can't imagine you'd even understand why this would be well loved...but, knowing that, I do see why you'd call out the elitist card and insult again.
I'm sorry for that.

Craig and Heather said...

I don't know if we can rebuild and who'll do it..any suggestions?

On the way out the door. Will have to give that some thought. But I'd guess it isn't going to be "the one". :P

H

JINGOIST said...

Fantastic! Bravo ladies!
What an inspirational song.

To my COMPLETELY untrained ear it sounds like she can belt it out. All right, it's back to work an the Black Eyed Peas. :-)

Deborah on the Bayside said...

Excellent! Totally not my "style" of music, but appealing way to present the message. If it's hers she should load it up on AmazeFM and go for song of the week. She'll get a lot of play.

Anonymous said...

Z, the messenger and the medium are good, but to me the message is a question. What are we? What makes us 'America'? At the heart of what O and the lib-o-dems hate, just what are we?

As for me, I believe in freedom, not economic slavery to the state. I am America.

Any one else?

~ Will

Z said...

Will, I'm going to change my TITLE here now and, after "I AM AMERICA" (the song title), I'm going to add "WHAT IS AMERICA to you?"

Let's see what comments we get.
Great question. I'd do a completely new post, but everybody's seen your question and, if I know my terrific blogger buddies, they'll be jumping in to answer here!

Z said...

I just thought I'd mention how really weird the blogging world is...I just looked at my sitemeter and there's someone from Turkey reading my piece on gay boy scouts...
you never know!

WomanHonorThyself said...

seen it ..but how powerful Z!

Z said...

Sorry, WILL...nobody bit, but I think I might do a whole post on WHAT ARE WE? thanx

Ducky's here said...

No, I've never demonstrated "patriotism" by your standards,z but let's be blunt, that means nothing.

As an inspirational song it's just too monotonous and predictable, just like the ------- who really only want a return to failed trickle down economics.

Nothing really happening here.

I'm partially negative because she is probably a country singer and currently that style has ruined country. She just isn't going to generate the inspiration of the likes of Ginny Hawker, Kay Justice or Hazel Dickens. Now, give them some Carter family material and they will tear you up.

Just my standards. I never will take to music whose prime quality is making one aware of being conscious.

Z said...

Ducky, I'm afraid you're reading a lot more into this than intended.
it's the song, I don't need obscure country singers to be thrown up to this young girl because you don't care for her style.
Who would say she'd beat the Carter Family or ANY great old country blues singer? ANYONE? I doubt it.

Sorry, it looks like this whole post just gave you a chance to be elitist again...why do you do that?

PATRIOTISM by Z's standards? Thanks...i like that.

Craig and Heather said...

Sorry, WILL...nobody bit, but I think I might do a whole post on WHAT ARE WE? thanx

I appreciated his question.

But figured I already have said enough for now :)

Z said...

Heather! Hey, save it for my post I'll do on this...
I think it's a terrific topic for conversation. thanks!

Leticia said...

The lyrics were right on target, and I have read where some people were not impressed with this young woman's voice, but does it really matter?

It is her message that speaks volumes.

Anonymous said...

The new Battle Hymn of the Republic.

Major

Anonymous said...

Exactly Major, it's a fight song!

Not complicated!!!

Pris

Anonymous said...

"No, I've never demonstrated "patriotism" by your standards,z but let's be blunt, that means nothing."

Wow Ducky, is this supposed to be a revelation to everyone?
I'm still trying to figure out what means "something" to you.

Pris

beamish said...

Well, the lyrics do mention the downtrodden briefly so I assume she's singing about the SEIU membership.

Uh, no, Ducky.