Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Yahoo News "S’pore singer remembers her roots" & her upcoming album "Free to Fall"

Watch the video and news release of the song "Free to Fall" from the upcoming album of Singapore jazz singer Michelle:



Information credits to Yahoo News:

Sorry guys...I have removed the Yahoo news article
for those who have read it. Apparently I received
news from Michelle that Yahoo has made some
major reporting errors with the article and are
now working on the corrections.

OMG...how can Yahoo make such a mistake?
I will update u guys with the latest
version once its updated! That's why its important
to double check with the interviewed artist on
the media materials to be released. 

YAHOO media in charge: If u are looking at it,
its best that u can send me the latest version of
the news article on Michelle once its amended
correctly. :)

Here's the updated version of the news article below:

Every first and third Wednesday of the month, Yahoo! MusicScene shines the spotlight on talented, up-and-coming Singaporean bands or musicians. This week, we catch up with pop singer Michelle, who believes that it is good to remember where her roots lie.

Singapore singer-pianist Michelle wants to retain her local characteristics while aiming to conquer global markets.

Already making her mark in Europe, the 35-year-old has performed with Grammy-nominated pianist Kenny Werner at the North Sea Jazz Festival, and was chosen by Michelle Weir (author of Vocal Improvisation) and Grammy-nominated Phil Mattson to demonstrate scat singing at the 2004 International Vocal Festival, Tilburg.

"There is a struggle to maintain who you are as a person, as a musician," Michelle told Yahoo! Singapore.

She also prides herself as a musician who does not follow trends and believes that she should stay true to how she wants to grow as a musician.

"It's very easy to get the record label to help shape me and mold me. I don't have to explore music on my own. Life would have been easier that way," she said.

Having started singing at the age of 5, Michelle is now a 'gig veteran' of about 20 years.

When performing both originals and covers with her band as Michelle and the Stuff Toys at BarStop along Devonshire Road, Lamborghini owners and successful entrepreneurs would specially make their way down to watch her performance.

"There was a guy who even rescheduled his business flight just to be back on time to see Michelle's performance," said her Dutch husband and manager, Theo, 41.

Even though she has done many gigs, Michelle confessed that she is extremely selective about the venue she will perform at.

"There are a lot of places where you don't even have to prepare for a performance, because the audience is not there for the music. That's the kind of place we don't want to perform," said Theo, who is also a filmmaker.

Michelle likes to perform for audiences who appreciate it when an artiste shows originality.

"Who are you as an original artiste?" and "Can I hear your own version of this song?" are the questions Michelle wants to hear from her audience, as opposed to "Can you please do that song by so-and-so?".

"I also require the venue to provide a grand piano," she added.

Playing music that contains a hint of pop and soul, Michelle also draws elements from various other genres like blues and jazz.

"Actually, I never liked the jazz description because of the image it will give Singaporeans," said the vocal instructor, who is currently the head of the pop department in Raffles Music College.

"Here, the type of jazz most people refer to is swing jazz, but what I do is more dynamic."

Currently making a comeback from a one-year hiatus, Michelle has chosen to gig less these days as she explains that gigging too much could hamper her artistic growth.

"A lot of bands remain stagnant artistically because they gig too much. However they are caught in this money issue, and if it comes solely from singing gigs, then they're caught in a bind.

Having taught vocals for at around 10 years now, Michelle trained as a teacher for three years and was formerly plying her trade in the Lasalle College of the Arts.

She considers her role as a vocal instructor to be on par with her career as an artiste, and takes pride in her area of specialisation.

"If you're just an artiste, you cannot just come out and 'teach' people how to sing. You need to understand how the body functions and to press which buttons," she said.

Michelle is set to release a new album later this year and to start gigging again in a yet-to-be-announced venue.

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