zondag 28 oktober 2012

'What do you want ?'

I just woke up and thank god it's just only 10 am. I mean, my alarm clock said it was 11 am but here in Holland we put the time one hour back in time last night. Summertime has come to an end. Apparently I was very tired because I never sleep that long. Yesterday Manuel, a guitarist from Groningen came over to make some recordings. I've been playing with him before, but that's a long time ago. I like the sound of his guitar a lot and I love the way Manuel playes. I sent him some mp3 recordings so he could listen and try out something. He knows some songs of mine because I wrote them long time ago and I only rewrote them a little bit.
It was not difficult for him to record his guitar, but sometimes he asked me: "What do you want ? " And you know something... I have no idea. I don't have an example because I don't listen to music a lot. I mean, I like Jimi Hendrix, Coltrane, Dire Straits, Clearwater Revival and more of those old or dead men. If I could I would be a rocksinger, but my voice won't allow me that.I've got a voice which is very limited to folk. After recording 5 of my songs Manuel and Frank (engineer) got really tired and so we quit much earlier than I expected. Manuel and I went to the centre of Amsterdam to drink some coffee, beer and we had dinner together in café Skek (where I played a few months ago).Manuel told me what he thought about my music and he gave me some advice how to go on. The most important thing I think is to look for what sound I like in my music. That will make it more clear for musicians I work with. (I like to play with musicians who have their own ideas so they can work that out unlimited.) But we'll see. For now I am still looking for a percussionist. I can use the recordings as demos and for musicians who like to play with me. Manuel left to Groningen, Groningen is 200 km away so I can't play with him, he lives too far away. And we both want to rehearse a lot if we are in a band together and this is not possible because of the distance. Because of this I was looking for a guitarist who is living in Amsterdam and now I hope I found this guitarist in Frank the engineer. We haven't play together yet so we have to try it out and he also told me he wasn't sure about the time he has for rehearsels and performances. If you wanna hear his sound you can listen to: http://soundcloud.com/annette-vogel/igip-20121104-met

woensdag 24 oktober 2012

'Any Questions ?' at Jet Lounge Amsterdam Songwriter Guild

'Any questions ?' asked singersongwriter Captain Chaos last night at Jet Lounge. No sir, that was very clear to me. I liked what he was doing on his guitar. I could not understand the words of his lyrics but his English sounded like Russian. He's a Dutch guy though.
Captain Chaos

 Maybe he was brought by the Dutch girl who lived many years in Berlin, she finished the show of another Amsterdam Songwriters Guild night at Jet Lounge with her nice performance. (Actually I dreamt about her: she had really long fingers and she could  play many beautiful chords on her guitar.) She called herself 'The singing barwoman'.

To be honest, I think Jet Lounge is a hard place to play, but that's only because of my nerves. At Tuesday night the place is full of excited and a bit tense musicians from all over the world. Last night the level was fairly high..
The night started with some guy who came in a bit late, so there was only one place left on the list: number one. ( You have to put your name on a list before 9 pm ) "Hell of a shit" and some other sounds came out of his mouth, then he put is name on the list and then he went to the table near the toilets to tune his guitar.
When he came back to my table which was just in front  next to the stage he threw six cd's on my table and then he left again to the back. A few minutes later he came back and started playing his songs. I liked his second song but I didn't hear his third because then I discovered a red wine costs a fucking four euro's ! That makes at least 0, 50 per sip. So the whole evening I took only one wine, which was fine with me.

After the first musician it was my turn. I played togehter with Mick and we did three songs. The first song was the song I wrote for the Addicted ( which I am; I am addicted to myself) and again I lost in the beginning the words of the lyrics. It made me very insecure, allthough I did bring the words with me. They laid down in front of me but I couldn't read them very well.

I was very nervous and I couldn't get over it. The audience was very quit and helpfull and nice, but only after somebody told me it was just allright I could relax a little bit. You know, whatever I pretend, I wanna give but I also need some people to tell me I'm doing fine.
Music can give something ( whatever it is) and this was proved by two guys from IJhorst, a town somewhere in Holland. They call themselves Jetfarm and when they played their first song I thought they were nice, but their second song started great and their third song made me happy. It really did. They were just doing great and when I first thought I was tumbling down from the mountain, they made me climb up again.
Something else happened what made me feel much better and this was the deep sigh of Ro Halfhide. He played some of his songs and he did this very well. After playing his songs with his old mate on percussion, he stood next to me at the bar and  I heard him heave a sigh of relief. I smiled, because I recognize how he felt and I said to him  he just gave everything what he had to give.  He agreed with me, and also his friend who came all the way from the East of Holland felt content about their performance.
You see, I think that's an important thing to realize. These guys got already much experiences by playing on the road but still we all share the same emotions as mucisians. I am not writing this down because I want to write down something nice about one of the founders of the ASG, but I write this down because it is the truth about performances. There is shit and there is glory and it all depends on your own subjective perception of yourself and the world which seems to appear in this perception.
So, however, at the beginning of the evening I felt kind of depressed but at the end I felt much better and with Danielle and Mick by my side I really enjoyed the music of other singersongwriters  that night.
Mick, Max, Danielle

Above: Danielle. Under: Ro Halfhide and his mate from Enschede

Me and Mick playing in Jet Lounge

find me on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Annette-Vogel/298815123524320

dinsdag 23 oktober 2012

'My ears and mouth collaborate'

“My ears and my mouth collaborate very well”, a singersongwriter told me last night.
I wish I could say the same. My mouth never listens to me.
It is even worse: I don’t ever listen to me. For that sake I am the enlightened borderliner.  (Which means nothing, of course.)
It seems as if I make decisions in life but I’m only running behind consiousness, just watching what’s going on. I need time to handle many external impressions because there’s already happening a lot in my inner world.
This I tell you because when I hear you talk or I see something happening it seems as if I forget this already the next moment.    My short term memory really sucks and no, it’s not because of the wine., it’s a matter of time. When I am totally on my own and there is silence around me just then I can start processing the chaotic life in my head.
So I write stuff down and I decided to write more on this blog. (Unfortunately I decided to write in English so sometimes it’s a little hard to make myself clear..:) )
This is what happened last night: I went to Zaal 100 and if you play there you get some free drinks and a good meal. I had my dinner together with some other musicians. Having dinner with people you don’t know can be hard sometimes, but this night I am glad I met Marius and Heather. Heather is a very good cellist and for sure a lot of people like to work with her. (Actually I would like that myself  too, and after Frank pushed me a lot to ask her I finally got her emailadres. )
Marius is a songwriter, he plays flute and he rides a bike. A very special bike: a taxi-bike, which means he brings tourists in Amsterdam to places where they want to be. By bike.
After a weekend recording the song ‘By My Side’ I really appreciated it that Danielle showed up to sing the song together with me for the overcrowded room. 

Rufus and Marius

 First we listened to Rufus Kain, a Dutch singersongwriter who is always carrying a notebook ( I always wonder what he writes down, I tried to peek, but I only saw the curls of his handwriting). He told us he’s got plenty of plectrums but he never can find them. (I lose them always too, but I know where I can find mine: they jump into my guitar while I’m playing.)
Anyway, Mick came with me and he had to work today, so he didn’t want to play that late. So we were following Rufus and when we started I immediately forgot the lyrics of my song “Like a Bird’. In the second verse I remembered them again but it was a bad start of the performance.
Paul, the guy who organized the gig, did a good job with the sound. I could hear myself very clearly and I also liked the sound of  Mick's bass, so we had a good time together.
This night I had a special guest: Okke, my lover J and the father of my daughters,  came and listened. As usual he is very critical about the music, but he had a great night because of the pint of beer they sell at Zaal 100.
(Today he has go to the dentist and he hoped he would still be drunk. )
Marius and Heather
After our performance we listened to Marius and Heather and we were drinking together at the ‘musician table’.
I am still on that mountain and tonight I will fly like a bird to Jet Lounge to play some of my songs.  

zondag 21 oktober 2012

"I don't need words for sex and music"

"I don’t need words for sex and music."
This is what a musician told me this night after I figured out he didn't speak a word Dutch but he understood what I was doing with my music.  I must admit, sometimes sex and music are very are similar to each other. I mean, sometimes when I play I can be pretty tensed about my singing out of tune, but also sometimes I go with the flow and just loose myself in this flow. Me, as a witness of myself, feels sometimes like speed flowing in a river to the ocean. 

My experiences are depending on my moods. My manic swinging moods take me to high mountains and deep valleys. Today I was on a mountain. I was still tired of yesterday but we just  carried on by recording the song “By My Side”. It took me the whole weekend and I really love Danielle and Frank:  they put their energy in this job and they did really a good thing ! Finally Mick passed by and he proposed to play the bass and we liked what he was doing, so now I think we did a good job after taking many tracks.
Danielle is a very special person to me, somehow she gives me a feeling of freedom. Frank, the engineer,  is the most sweetest guy with all his patience and tolerating the whims of two women. 

The song ‘By My Side’is  a song about lost. Actually I wrote it for a mother who lost her daughter by an accident. She was sitting in the sleepingroom of her daughter and she was crying every night while she hold the  teddy bear of her child. But somehow she felt her daughter was with her all the time.

I really like the way Charlie Silvestri described this song when he  turned the song on the radio: he called it ‘the song of Hope’. Well, although, I am sometimes a bit out of tune, I think we did a good job by recording this song. Soon I will give you the link so you can listen to it.

After the recording I went to café Lijn 10 and there I met Steve and some other people I met before at that café. I played some of my songs and I was really surprised about the bassplayer and the Italian guitarist who played with me: they followed me despite the chordschemes and sometimes weird measurechanges, and I really had a good time. 
Somehow I got over my depression, and I really liked to meet the people who were playing there. Actually, I already met the bassplayer on Facebook, but this I realized when I asked how he was called. Then he said we already met because I asked him to come over and play at a SWAN night at November 7.
Some girl was celebrating her birthday tonight and she made really good vegetarian soup and I got some cake and soup and I drank some wine and I listened to the other musicians.
Tomorrow I will play at Zaal 100 in Amsterdam, I hope I will be still on the mountain, ‘cause I can never tell where moods will bring me.
Anyway, for now I look forward to it ! 

zaterdag 20 oktober 2012

Danalyze / Danielle Cornelissen

This afternoon I made some recordings with Danielle. She's a singersongwriter and calls herself Danalyze.
She has got a beautiful voice and I am very glad she likes to sing with me some songs.
We recorded at studio 'Frank Fanille' and we had  much fun. Although it took us some time to record By My Side, I think we did a pretty good job so far. After we've had some pizza and wine and water  we lost our concentration a bit,  so tomorrow we will finish the record and hopefully we'll also make a recording of Who I really Am. 
Danielle and I sing together because we  make a collab for the Amsterdam Songwriter Guild.
Danielle and me

session café Ot en Sien last night

Hi everybody,
Last night I went to café Ot & Sien, just across the river Het IJ. Francesco plays there every Friday night and last night Bruno and Jan the rocksinger and Jan the ukelele-player played with him. I played just two folksongs with them and it was fun.

Today I rehearsed with Mick again and this afternoon I will go to Frank to record the song By My Side. Danielle will sing this song with me, because we did a collab for the Amsterdam Songrwriters Guild. I hope we can make a nice recording of it so that we can put it on the internet band camp.

woensdag 17 oktober 2012

What's going on ?

Hey guys !

What's the problem with Amsterdam ? I spoke some people who hate to play in Amsterdam. Yes, they're right, Amsterdam is not that easy to play. But I don't really give a shit ( most of times). If you are a musician, Holland is a small world...
I just told myself I am a singersongwriter because I need some identification with SOMETHING but what am I really ? My soul sounds like an echo of nothingless, deep inside I know who I am...

People tell me I need some singinglessons, I need some guitarlessons, I need this and I need that. Just relax, man, I am a woman with hanging tits, grey hair and I know what's life about.
My ambitions go no further then to express myself.
But, to be honest, there is more than that...
I started to sing and play the guitar because Dana, an old friend of mine, told me it's a way of giving. First I did not believe in this and I told him this. Than I looked at his face and the expression of his face told me that he thought I am able to give something with my music. So I started thinking about this.  I didn't believe people who make music do this because of some noble reasons. I believe it's an ego thing. And really, that's no problem, because giving and receiving are both matters of the ego. But a year ago I thought: maybe he is right. Maybe it's important 'to give'.
Now a few weeks ago I sang my song Irish Girl in Paris. A woman came to me and she told me she was touched by this song because this song reminded her of her daughter. Now I ask myself : did I give her something ? Something good ? Are sad emotions something good ?
Okay, I gave something, but I got no idea. Do I have to give fun with my music ? Some people start to dance ( a little bit). Do I give this to them ? To have a good time ?
What the hell ! Do I really care ? I think it's all an illusion. What's going on ?
 And all those people on Facebook who ask me to like them..."please LIKE ME" .... and you know what I did ? I did the fucking same ! I sent some people a message with the question to like me. So I just go with the flow... What's going on ? 

maandag 15 oktober 2012

CafVino in Amsterdam

Just played in CafVino and the good thing about this gig was that we played my newest song "What I really Am" almost perfect...

CafVino is a little restaurant in Amsterdam at the Krugerplein.

zondag 14 oktober 2012

Life of a musician sometimes really sucks

I should stay always positive and act as if life is great and my music is great and really, I got lots of fans and lots of likes on facebook ( Not yet a 100 for god sake) and really, it's no big deal acting as if I am a big star and bluffing out my life. On the other side, people who really know me, they can hear me complain about my uncertainty about who I am or what I am doing and yes, do I really have to go on this way or should I stop immediately with my musical adventures.
The anwer is of course:  don't stop playing, just go on, what ever happens...

But life of a musician sometimes really sucks.
Of course I am aware of my musical limitations, I am not a very good singer, nor a very good guitar player. I just can't help that I just have to go on making music. Despite the applause that is not given, no "we want more"s, I really think I got to tell something.
Today I had this gig on a little party and the best thing that happened was this woman who came to me and said: "You're sound is terrible, I cannot talk because your music is too loud and the sound is bad and distorted, I don't like it at all. " She ordered her beer and when she left to the other side of the bar I told her I would do my best to change the sound. So I did.
Then, when I was playing and nobody was listening,  I suddenly met her eyes and then she smiled at me and she gave me a big thumb.  Was it because she couldn't hear me at all and she felt confident with it, or was it she did like my music because the sound was better ? I really don't know, my optimistic mind tells me to choose for the last option.

Anyway, this kind of gigs can happen and it makes me really really depressed and feeling misunderstood. Still I am a strong woman and that's why I toast on you and me, where ever you are and what ever you do.

donderdag 11 oktober 2012

Leonard Cohen

I'm gonna try some songs by Leonard Cohen. Hope you like my versions.

zondag 7 oktober 2012

SWAN Songwriters Amsterdam Noord

Last Thursday me and Bruno organized a SWANnight in the Noorderparkkamer in Amsterdam Noord.
I must say, everytime I am really surprised what's happening up there. The Noorderparkkamer is a very special place. You can find this building in the middle of a park next to a channel. It's pretty dark out there, but you can easily find the location by the shining lights. The atmosphere is in the night very spiritual. The Noorderparkkamer is a subsidized project runned by Amsterdam municipality. They offered us to use this location for open mics for singersongwriters.  Marjolijn works for the Noorderparkkamer and she is the one who helps us to manage things go well. Because it's in the middle of a park and it's dark we also got a nice strong guy, Daan,  who helps us to keep the place safe and cozy.
Daan en Marjolijn

This time I had help from Ellen, she did the dranks. I am very grateful to her, she did a good job !

The musicians were as usual great ! You can read all about it on my other blog: 

Me myself I played with good old Frankie again. He came along despite the pain in his back and he played very well. I really love him a lot ! 

This picture I really like. It's from some guy called Ron Goudie and he got this really amazing sound from this little sweety. It's funny how he just put the cable in it at the time  I took the picture.
Next SWANnight will be on November 7 and I hope there will me a lot of musicians.