Though you might think otherwise after watching this powerful performance, the members of October’s You Oughta Know artist Delta Rae were all smiles at their You Oughta Know Live. The family-and-friend folk-rock — or gospel, or show tunes, or whatever else might move them! — crew seem to genuinely enjoy each other’s company. But as you’ll see, when the count runs down and it’s time to play, the music takes a hold of them in a way that’s almost spiritual.
This stripped down rendition of “Bottom of the River,” from their outstanding debut album Carry The Fire, is the perfect example of the power these six can wield. Instruments left aside, the song builds around their vocal harmonies and is dragged forward by the clanking of chains in a trashcan. When they perform it, the group stomp the song out like an evil in need of exorcising. Delta Rae boasts four vocalists and six members total, and when they all get going they really get going. The end result is a performance so chilling that you’ll be left actually looking for a hand to hold.
UPDATE (10/1/12): Sorry, we removed the MP3. You can still listen to the song in our video player above ’til your heart’s content, though!
We have been rocking with September’s You Oughta Know artists Walk The Moon all month long now, and we’ve been jamming on “Anna Sun” for even longer than that, but we still can’t get enough of the song. We love it’s sun-drenched synths, the way it insists we not let growing up get in the way of a good time and the way the guys got so sweaty while performing it for their You Oughta Know Live session. And now, we love the most that we can keep their sweaty performance in our iTunes and on our iPods because now there’s an MP3!
You can download an MP3 of Walk The Moon’s rattling “Anna Sun” performance here on VH1 Tuner for free! But be quick — the link expires at midnight on October 1st and you don’t want to miss out.
The stage set for their You Oughta Know Live session, Walk The Moon insisted on kicking things off with their cover of David Bowie‘s “Let’s Dance” before they did anything else. Few songs in the history of music dial up the energy so quickly, and fewer songs yet have been able to articulate serious fun so aptly as “Let’s Dance,” and so of course a band so striving for a good time would take it as a warm-up. And so dance Walk The Moon did while they worked through the jam, throwing in yelps, harmonized vocals and a ripping guitar solo as needed. And then through the rest of their Live session let’s sway, shall we? Read more…
September’s You Oughta Know artists Walk The Moon got a little sweaty during their You Oughta Know Live session. It’s hard work to make music so high energy and fun, and these four boys from Cincinnati throw themselves fully into it. During their session, they played a number of songs from their self-titled debut album (“Shiver Shiver,”“Anna Sun,” and “Tightrope”) and one cover (coming soon!), whipping the sweat from their brows between songs but never tiring. Because, really, the best way to insure that the ghost towns get thoroughly rattled is to rock extra hard.
We kept their Neverland-inspired anthem “Anna Sun” on loop all summer, its sunny synths and calls of freedom charging the warm months and long days. Now that fall has crept in on us and school bells are back ringing, we’ll keep listening, but now for new and maybe collegiate notes.
“‘Anna Sun’ is very much a product of the post-college,” Walk The Moon lead singer/keyboardist Nicholas Petricca told us before their Live taping. “I loved college, and I think we all had an awesome experience around that time of our lives, and I was feeling a lot of nostalgia and sadness and also excitement, of course, because it’s the beginning of who knows what. And so this song is very much about that in between space, and feeling like I am a kid but I am supposed to be an adult and how can I be both.”
So, here’s to lingering summers and looking towards fall! Watch their rattling performance of “Anna Sun” above, and then check out the rest of their You Oughta Know Live set here.
On repeat all the while, “Anna Sun” kept our summer synch-drenched and charged with Neverland-like fantasies of ghost towns rattled. And now with fall is upon us, we are excited to announce that twotimeBig Morning Buzz Live veterans Walk The Moon will represent as September’s You Oughta Know artist! And so alas, the fun does not ever have to stop. The Cincinati foursome dropped by VH1 headquarters last month to play an high energy and hard working — also, sweaty! — You Oughta Know Live set, which we’ll roll out throughout the month. And until then, our photographer Lauren Weissler tagged along, capturing their day, down time, perspiration, face paint and all, to give you a peak behind the scenes. Have a look!
It’s been a feet on the ground, head in the sky sort of summer for The Lumineers. And as the summer winds down and their ascent continues on and up, we have another treat to share from their You Oughta Know Live session. After stunning us with their own “Stubborn Love,” “Slow It Down” and, of course, “Ho Hey!,” the rising American folk rock trio looked back to 1983 with a crunchy-Americana cover of the Talking Heads‘ funky “This Must Be the Place (Naive Melody).” Stripped down, with Wesley Schultz alone strumming at his guitar for almost two minutes before the drums kick in and Neyla‘s cello begins to bellow, their rendering is less playful but goes in extra on the yearning and the “And You’ll love me till my heart stops, love me till I’m dead”‘s.
“Naive Melody” is one of the few love songs that David Byrne ever wrote, and as they cover it, it could fall comfortably into their mix of mostly loving songs. So, cover up your blanks spot, hit us on the head — we are happy to know the The Lumineers, and even more so that they can do this so well!
Check out The Lumineer’s full You Oughta Know Live session here!
At last the second of our July and August YOK artists, Rebecca Ferguson‘s, You Oughta Know Live has, well, gone live! Poised and glowing brighter than her neon orange dress at center stage, she performed for us a stripped down version of her hit single “Nothing’s Real But Love.” She really let the voice that landed her in second place on Britain’s The X Factor soar, growing only stronger and more triumphant where the song gets vulnerability. You can hear both the struggles she’s overcome and the winnings she’s earned, and you can’t help but believe when she preaches that “no money, no house, no car is like love.” She also performed “Shoulder To Shoulder” and a souled-up cover of “Knocked Up” by the Kings of Leon, one of her more surprising but often cited influences.
And! The news gets better: You can download an MP3 of Ferguson’s stunning “Nothing’s Real But Love” performance here on Tuner for free! But be quick — the link expires at midnight on Sunday, July 23rd and you’ll want not to miss it.
Maybe you’ve seen this commercial, the one where the Hawaiian vacation of dreams is planned with the help of his friends and social networks and Bing. And maybe it even inspired you to give Microsoft’s search engine go. Most likely of all, though, it left you with that song stuck in your head and anticipation of the next commercial break when you might hear it again. That oh-so-catchy song is “Ho Hey!” by July and Augusts You Oughta Know artists The Lumineers, and it sounded even better yet when they performed it at VH1 headquarters for their You Oughta Know Live session.
“Ho Hey” swells around the band’s three members, a simple guitar melody, a little kick-drum and a shake of tambourine. It’s the battery of ho’s and hey’s, though, that get into your bones, making the song impossible to shake. Not that you’ll want to.
It’s no secret that we love July and August You Oughta Know artists The Lumineers‘ “Ho Hey!” So joyous and ever infectious, they stomped their way straight to our hearts. We would be remiss, though, if we didn’t share also The Lumineers’ more plaintive side. At VH1 headquarters for their You Oughta Know Live performance, they slowed things down for “Stubborn Love,” a beautiful and yearning song about love that won’t give up. “She’ll tear a hole in you, the one you can’t repair,” it so goes, “but I still love her, I don’t really care.” Refusing to give in and raised by a crescendo of drums and cello, they insist that you “Keep your head up, keep your love” because “It’s better to feel pain than nothing at all.” And when Wesley Schultz wails that, “The opposite of love is indifference,” you can’t help but feel moved.
Meet Rebecca Ferguson, one of our two You Oughta Know artists for July and August. Hailing from Liverpool, the 25-year-old singer made her first big splash on Britain’s The X Factor‘s seventh season, where she won-over the usually salty Simon Cowell and placed second overall. Her successful showing subsequently earned her a record deal. And although her debut album Heaven only hit shelves stateside in May, the lead single “Nothing’s Real But Love” has already found its way to both the top of the UK charts and deep into our hearts. Ferguson’s belting recalls the classic soul of Aretha Franklin as well as that of the quirkier Macy Gray, but she cites also acts like Mike Posner and rockers Kings Of Leon as influences. Here are five things that make us proud to have her as our latest You Oughta Know artist:
1. Earning It On The X Factor
As she explains in her audition tape for The X Factor, Ferguson assumed her dreams derailed when she got pregnant at the age of 17. “I thought, well, maybe I won’t be able to become a singer. Who’s going to want me, now I’ve got a kid? I lost me confidence,” she shared through tears. Not yet ready to put aside her life long dream of being a singer, she climbed the audition stage and hasn’t looked back since.
For her audition, she sang “A Change Is Gonna Come,” and, oh boy, did a change come. Not even the notoriously difficult Simon Cowell could say no to a voice like hers. “You’re voice is totally on the money,” he said. “Let me try to restore that confidence for you,” he told her, sending her forward to reclaim her spirit as well. It was a long time coming, but she knew a change was going to come.