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VERTIKAL LIFE Magazine
Tiki Black

Tiki Black

Tiki Black is an award-winning singer-songwriter who grew up in France and Cameroon and lives in the U.K.  My nomadic childhood has led me to embrace life in general and music in particular as a world beyond boundaries. 

I am fascinated by songs from all over the world and the songwriting process.  I believe that these creative expressions perfectly blend emotion, logic, and art to help better understand perspectives around the world.

VERTIKAL Magazine is a wonderfully open platform in which I can research and discover musical talents from around the word regardless of their genre, nationality or other traditional categorizations.  As Creative Director for VERTIKAL I hope to bring a fused and blended perspectives as I explore and reflect on the inspirational impact of music, arts, and creative innovators that I admire.

 

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The Enchantment of UK's Own Little Sparrow.

 

Her name should say a lot of it already but sometimes it is essential to spell it out when it comes to a lovely sound.   Enchanting vocals and music to match are stuff that dream worlds are made of. Performing songwriter Katie Ware carries her stage name "Little Sparrow" very well as she delivers, songwriting and performance wise, accompanied on the later by beautiful musicians.


Elbow's front member Guy Garvey realized this and nicknamed her the cockney sparra which ultimately led to her adopted artist's pseudonym. Her debut album "Wishing Tree' (2014) takes you through a journey not dissimilar to that of life, with the delicate yet strong voice of a passionate music craftswoman.

A Singapore duo that found the formula to Indie Blue Rock

 Pitch Feather is the delightful vocals of Alberta Leong and the superb instrument skills of husband Chuan on songs written by these two inspired artists. The band hails from Singapore and serves a nice mix of folk, indie, rock and rock shortened to "indie blue rock".

From the lovely new folk ballad Elderflower to the epic and aptly-named Painter's Symphony through pop rock Lavender Girl and the light and playful melody of indie pop track Usual Day, the couple takes their audience through the human journey on their album Mountains and Tides, almost summarising the experience in the track The Odyssey.

Here and there, epic guitar riffs, subtle melismas, choir-type harmonies, even Celtic vibrato and a number of other surprising musical enchantments find themselves on the album that make you doubt at every new musical twist, that this LP is a DIY artistic project created by a Singaporean couple at the back of their house as a side project and in their spare time.

 Her clear musical talent is underpinned by a musical pedigree...

 

It is easy to categorize Carla Bruni as a face and body with a higher than average ability to hang make-up and clothes. It might even be easier to identify her in relationship to her passage in the French white house or to her aristocratic background. However, under music, all humans are equal and it is the color she brings to the rainbow of music that is here of interest. 

 Her clear musical talent is underpinned not only by a musical pedigree (her father is a composer and a pianist) but by her own musical influences (ranging from The Beatles to Bob Dylan) and her ability to uniquely stamp her melodies by doing Folk with an air of Chanson while mixing it with various genres and retaining a certain musical simplicity. The understated elegance of her music is reflected in its minimalist instrumentation and her effortlessly smoky (literally even) voice, resembling the characteristic breathy voices of French female music artists of a previous generation, yet unique, sounding more like a whisper than a sung lyric. The lyrics occupy a center stage, typical in French chanson but also highlighted in her rendition of some beautifully crafted English poems.

Expressing the Purity, Innocence and Energy of Children...  

                        

Korlan

It can somehow be debilitating that genius is late if at all recognised especially when it has the unique ability to unravel life enigmas and present them as another simple and natural event. It is the talent that Kazakh composer and pianist Korlan possesses and generously shares with the world. What seems to us as a melodic bridge between life secrets and our emotional response to it is merely her way of expressing, as she says herself, “the purity, innocence and energy” of “children, animals and nature”.


When you have her advanced composing and piano skills, you could be ‘limited’ to what music theory and practice have to offer. However when you add to that her natural talent as well as her great sensitivity and closeness to nature, you end up with evocative and powerful melodies as only she can serve in each of her piano pieces.

Korlan’s portfolio has it all, breadth, depth, it moves you within, moves you without. Her own personality weaves around each key and chord to print a timeless legacy of breathtaking moments and emotional observations set in impeccable and exquisite music and fuelled by her love for humanity. Human emotions find their resonance, from childhood feelings to adult emotions and the language of music rekindles with humanity at its core, as it suddenly becomes accessible, even familiar.

A Tree with Deep African Roots....

COCOMBassi Coco Mbassi rightly describes her music as a « tree with deep African roots and branches that extend some towards classical music, some towards soul, gospel and jazz, and others towards Latin music and even pop music.

Now, discover this acoustic blend in her soulful voice, her Cameroonian roots, her ecclectic musical upbringing (from Haendel to Cameroonian traditional music to the Jackson 5) , and her deep partnership with her classically-trained bassist husband Serge Ngando Mpondo.

Her prestigious awards and worldwide recognition sees her winning Radio France International Découvertes Contest in 1996, the German World Music CD Critics Award in 2001 and being nominated for the BBC World Music Awards 2002. Each album release demonstrate how much she deserves this atention,:the first one,

One of the most understated....

Paul FogertyWith topical songs à la John Lennon meets Bob Marley, the softness of Paul Simon at the tip of his tongue and fingers, the Americana/Country meets Folk troubadour Paul Fogarty is one of the most understated yet deeply expressive musicians out there.

Once you have wallowed into the ever growing musical legacy of Australia-born Germany-based Fogarty, it becomes impossible to deny how much his music could be a soundtrack to the life of those who look for an answer under every rock and over every mountain they face.

 His tunes accompany their life’s journey not like some mere background music to drown the unaccommodating sounds of real life or to be told how to get there. His music is for those who, even with fear and pain, still believe in themselves and their ability to find their own way home.

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