RSS Feed

Tag Archives: Geneva

500 days of Song of the Day

Posted on

Today I celebrate 500 days of song of the day. And well I guess that’s quite something. As a lovely friend proclaimed last night – that’s almost a million. And well I guess it is, almost.

So I have been racking my brain about what on earth I should do to celebrate this momentous occasion. And well I just thought I’d tell you the story.

I was always a music fanatic. When I moved to Geneva from South Africa, to start working in Finance, I was beyond excited to finally have concerts within my geographical reach.

I’ll never forget how after just two weeks of my arrival I nearly hyperventilated when I heard that The National (whose new album I am listening to while I write this) were playing just 45 minutes away.

I got my hands on the new arrivals email list compromising of easily 200 people and wrote an ecstatic message asking who would come with me to the concert. Not a single reply. Not one. In fact when I mentioned indie music people either didn’t know what it was or thought I meant Indian music. This scenario repeated itself more than once.

Out of pure desperation I decided to do something about it. I learnt from my past failed attempts of inspiring fellow friends by smothering them with 3 tons of must listen to music. Instead I started emailing new selected friends a song a day – the basics of indie music I use to say– every morning. Half for the love of spreading music, half to get a concert companion.

Those few email subscribers became ten, that became 40 that became +100. Song of the Day started becoming the reason I could get through my day at work. I started a music collaboration project. I turned the mailing list into a blog. As the view ship grew and we started throwing our own indie music parties. This went on for over two years.

And then I quit my job. I moved countries, changed industries. I started this new blog to tell the story. And now I am in London working in the music industry. And I look back and think – wow. It started with a song a day and stupid amount of passion. And the wonderful people who put up with it and supported me.

And so this is every song (or nearly – some are not Spotify friendly) that I have ever given out. All Song of the days ever.
A music road map to making my dreams come true.

If you have a passion, work at it every day and maybe one day you’ll have the privilege in loving what you do.


My Way In: Introducing Cotton Mount

Posted on

Following from the last My Way In post – as promised I am dedicating this post to tell you about the band that I am now managing.

Cotton mount

So first of all who are they?
Well to be short and practical about it we have:
Daniel Minten (bass, trumpet, viola)
Pierre Schilling (drums)
Thibault Zanoni (guitars)
Igor Varidel (vocals, guitars)

Four really down-to-earth yet opinionated creative guys, very different yet complementary, who made me feel comfortable with their sincerity and excited by their dedication to their music.


What’s their sound?
Dark, raw vocals beautifully juxtaposed onto light and complex instrumental to create a perfect unique melancholy indie sound.

The genre?
Well if you absolutely have to put them in a box then probably it would be indie rock/alternative

Their musical influences?
This is a difficult answer to get without causing a band fight but they finally agreed on the (kinda) communal: Radiohead (yes I know, but you’ll hear it), Pink Floyd and Bashung.

Where are they from?
Geneva. That’s right – Geneva has an indie band. Hard to believe, but true. And because of the scarcity of this sound (but also left-of-centre mindset) in this commercially dominated glitzy city – music was their much-needed self-prescribed Prozac in some way.

Their story?
The guys have been playing together for over 10 years. They have experimented with many different genres and different band formations. Finally things got serious in 2011 as they found themselves on the same new unique sound and the same complete determination to dedicate themselves to music and to each other. And since things have picked up at quite a speed.

Something that made me laugh?
When they first started playing they use to play KORN covers and spent a good portion of their rebellious teenage years vandalizing their school and public places by carving the word UROK everywhere –  their band name back then. UROK you ask? Well it’s KORN spelt backward with the N flipped over. Obviously.

Big News?
After gaining support from founders of Le Chat Noir andL’Usine and sound engineer Renaud Millet-Lacombe Cotton Mount have recorded their début album Still Life. The concert for the launch of album will be on the 27 April at Le Chat Noir – I will see you there.

More Concerts?
11 April at Vernier, Salle des Fêtes du Lignon, more INFO
16 May at La Gravière, Genève (with Technicolor Orchestra)
Many more to come

Like the sound of it?
Well feel free to favourite our Website  which connects you to all platforms,
Like us on Facebook  to be updated with our latest news
Stream us on Bandcamp or Soundcloud
And watch the teaser video on Youtube

What’s next?
We are organizing more concerts in Switzerland but also all over Europe including the UK, the digital and then physical release of the album (fingers crossed) and who knows and indie label deal?

Song of the day: Classik Swiss Choloate

Hello songers,

Sorry for my absence yesterday I was running around for TEDxPlainpalais. Yesterday was the big day and all of our Organizing Committee were really happy and proud on how it went and very thankful for all the help and support (speakers, sponsors, volunteers and audience of course).

Anyways the entertainment act for the event was Classik Swiss Choloate. Classik (Luvanga) was born in Geneva but has Congolese roots that clearly have influenced him. Born with music inside him this led him to teach himself how to use synthesizers using YouTube and to experiments with all types of tricks. Thibault at Colors Record (respect to him for bringing some life and music into Geneva by creating his own label) with the help of Theo quickly saw talent and all three are working on his soon to be first album Be Quiet to be released mid-April at Le Chat Noir. 

I met with the tall bar of dark chocolate and he made my heart melt with his smile. Humble yet strong and clearly talented, Classik doesn’t make much of a noise when you first meet him but just wait till he gets behind his equipment. I was really impressed by him and we were honoured to have him at TEDxPlainpalais and the crowd loved him. I’ll post the video as soon as we have it.

For now stop complaining about how there is nothing going on in Geneva and support him and his label. Here is his track Get Down

If you like it go check him out, he’ll be at L’antidote with his band on the 28 of February.

Oh when I asked Classik if he wanted to say anything his answer: I like Chocolate.

Song of the day: Tonight is a party

Hello kids,

So for those of you who live in Geneva how bout popping over to Cirkus bar after work tonight for a jam or 10 – where I will kindly be DJing as a guest under my old project Indie Nation. You can find out more about the event here.

So you may remember my previous awe and admiration for the new Labyrinth Ear. Well they still havent given me a much anticipated album but they did do a lovely remix of a Morning Parade song which I will definitely jamming to tonight.

Here is Under the Stars

See you tonight


Song of the day: Swinging around a Palace

Hello kids,

caravan palace

So I completely forgot to tell you about my Saturday night. So I was happily dragged to a last minute concert last weekend to none other than the Salle des Fêtes de ThônexI have no idea what the venue looks like normally, but we arrived a bit late and the venue was packed and honestly it resembled a huge high school gym, with the coat room being full so coats stashed everywhere and their make shift bar. And the ambience (and smell) was that of a high school dance – hundreds of people going nuts. But really nuts. I’m sorry what? This is Geneva – what is going on? Enthusiasm, like real enthusiasm – people going crazy. Is Thonex some crazy twilight zone for music that no one told me about. Well I was impressed.

So anyways all the oohing and aahing was definitely justified – they’re name is Caravan Palace. And boy does this group know how to put on a show. They have all the great connotations of ENTERTAINERS. In the sense that not only was the music world class (very NB) but they were performing it with so much energy and personality the room was glowing. These guys run, jump and dance around the stage. All of them have the biggest smiles on their face as if they are having the time of their life, and allowing you to join in. Towards the end the wonderful lead singer Zoe shouted out: We are going to hell, are you coming with? It’s so hot in here I think we are all going together.

Caravan Palace is a French electro swing gypsy jazz band from Paris. I’m taking this from wiki but apparently the three founding member met while making soundtracks to silent pornographic films. That sentence was too good for me to leave it out. Well its been up, up and away for them ever since. They exploded with their hit single Jolie Coquine, so much so that they were invited to play at Olympia (a dream of all French bands). Now they are back with a second album Panic which will be released on the 5th of March.

Here is the first single off that album: Dramophone

I haven’t seen such a fun video in a while. It just makes you want to go back to the old days and DANCE.


Song of the day: What are we doing? Bitching.

Hello kids,

So today I give you Cat Power, you may have remember from the start of this year, I went to watch her in concert in Geneva and gave out  Living in barsWell the strong feline is back with a wonderful album this year called Sun (which is also a great song by Caribou).

I was… surprised…when I saw her. She has staccato stage moves, an inconsistent presence and even left the stage for a good 20 minutes in the middle of the set while people lightly strummed instruments and we all waited in confused impatience. A bizarre character she might be but you also see the music come out from underneath her. And this album proves that drug addiction or not she’s still got it.

Here is the wonderful Ruin, that piano intro and repetition is SO effective. The song is about people in rich countries being so incredibly prone to complaining about small things when there are people who hardly have anything to eat in poorer countries.  Unfortunately this is something that has been repeated so many times it has lost its impact on people. But it still hits me when she mentions Soweto which is in South Africa – a country I lived in for 13 years. Now living again in Europe I am amazed by the level of bitching and the contagiousness of this illness. There is something beautiful you can learn from African happiness. I think very few European laughs from the same depth or gives themselves such freedom to enjoy every moment. African laughter can sometimes be more beautiful than songs.

So don’t bitch, it’s the last work week before Christmas anyways.

Song of the day: You're more than a superstar

Hello kids,

So there are several concert coming up over the next two months. So please remember to check them all out here.
One of these concerts that I am excited for is Bat For Lashes, who I already saw at Open’er Festival this summer and she really caught my attention.

She brought up a new album this year, The Haunted Man, with a wonderful artwork cover:

Here is the most touching song on the album, Laura.

Let me know if you manage to listen to that without getting shivers.

I wish I could make a soundtrack to my life and breathe in the notes every day