Let Me by Zayn Malik

This is a perfect song to set the summer mood. It is by ex-One Direction member Zayn Malik (who was the second most talented member and the second most successful member).  Whilee the song is such a carefree, fun song, it has a much deeper meaning.

In case you didn’t know, Zayn dated model Gigi Hadid for 2 years before splitting in March, this song was written before then, and for her, he states,

“I was in love—and I think that’s pretty evident. I was aspiring to be in love with someone for the rest of my life and the rest of theirs, as we all do.”

Here’s a bit of lyrics from the song:

Baby, let me be your man
So I can love you (I can love you)
And if you let me be your man
Then I’ll take care of you, you

For the rest of my life, for the rest of yours
For the rest of my life, for the rest of yours
For the rest of ours

You can really hear what a huge range of vocals Zayn Malik possesses. He is one of the few male singers that can actually hit a high note and it is very evident in this song.

A cool part of the song is the music video for it, it serves as a thriller. It is actually part two of a series of videos, part one being the music video for Dusk Till Dawn. In part one, Zayn is on the run with a suitcase, yet we aren’t sure what is in it, there is a huge explosion and a car chase. Zayn is much past his boyband One Direction days and anyone would enjoy seeing the video.

But now onto Let Me. In part two Zayn has finally reached a destination, but he is still on the run. I won’t spoil it for you, but there is a lot of action but the meaning of the song still hones true in the video (you have to watch it to see)

It is such a bop! It is sure to be a huge chart topper. Don’t believe me? Go and listen to it yourself, you’ll be glad you did.

Musical Review: Les Misérables

This past week, I went to go see a school musical with my parents. Since this musical was set around the French Revolution, I watched the movie musical with Hugh Jackman, Amanda Seyfried, Anne Hathaway and more. I was very excited to see the musical and had very high expectations. The show was about 2 1/2 hours, which didn’t seem that long.

The musical/story, in short, is about a man, Jean Valjean, who was sentenced to 19 years in prison for stealing and attempted escapes. He is eventually released. Many years later, we see him again but as a totally new man-the mayor of the town. He takes in young Cosette whose mother, Fantine, passed from fatigue, stress, and an unidentified disease. Years pass once again, and it’s right before the French Revolution.  By now, Cosette is now much older and is courted by Marius. Jean Valjean can feel his life slowly slipping away from age and decides to go on a “vacation” so that Cosette doesn’t see him passing. He sees the ghost of Fantine and walks with her to see all the people who died in battle, and there the musical ends.

The actors were incredible! All of them could sing so amazingly and had so much emotion evident in their voices. The set designs were on point, all the costumes were so beautiful, and the orchestra pit played so wonderful and added more color to the story. There weren’t any negative opinions that I heard the next day, and I think overall the musical was an amazing success. This was my first school musical and is definitely going to be remembered for a long time.

-Phoebe L.

Les Miserables, in all its formats, is available for checkout from the Mission Viejo Library

Music Review: Bedroom Floor By Liam Payne

I have decided to do something different from what I normally do, a review on a song! Now if you don’t know who Liam Payne is, let me tell you. He was a member of the extremely known boy band One Direction. As they are currently on hiatus, the members have decided to pursue solo acts, so far Liam and Zayn have had the most luck.

“Bedroom Floor” was released on the 20th of October this year, and it will be on his upcoming album (which he claims will be released in January). It was written by Charlie Puth, and he does indeed make an appearance in the song.

The song starts off with a bit of a tropical sounding entrance, but the lyrics are anything but happy.

Baby, heard you’ve been talking about me lately
Telling all your friends how much you hate me
But who you calling up when you get lonely?
When you get lonely, yeah
You be saying real, real nice, real nice things
When I’m touching you
You be getting real, real, real, real, real jealous
When it wasn’t you, oh
And every now when my iPhone, iPhone rings
I be telling you
I told you, I told you, I told you
You said it was over
You said it was over
But your clothes say different on my bedroom floor
This song may not seem like anything different than a normal song when you just read the lyrics. You may just think to yourself “Oh look, another pop song”. But Liam does something different with his voice that sets him apart from all of the other pop singers. He sings this song entirely in a falsetto. In case you don’t know what a falsetto is, it is a high note, which is very hard for a man to sing, but Liam hits every note perfectly! Especially live.
An interesting part of the song is that you would think itis from his perspective, but It actually isn’t. If you were to watch the music video, you would see that it is indeed from a women’s perspective. As Liam stated “But it’s very nice. I like the fact that it is empowering on the woman’s side, because it’s not often that you see it from this angle.”.
In case you were wondering where Charlie comes in, he makes the phone call noise!
If you are looking for a new tune to add to your playlist, I have reason to believe this would be it!
-Skylar N.

2017 American Music Awards

Last night was the first time I watched the American Music Awards (AMA’s). The lineup for the performances was incredible. Some of the amazing artists that performed were Demi Lovato, Shawn Mendes, Niall Horan, Selena Gomez, and international k-pop sensation BTS. The awards were held at the Microsoft Theater in Los Angelos, CA. There were awards given out like “Artist of the year,” “Favorite male and female artist,”  “New Artist of the year,”  and many more. Also last night, Christina Aguilera honored Whitney Houston singing the songs, “I Will Always Love You,” “I Have Nothing,” “Run To You,” and “I’m Every Woman”.
Selena Gomez performed for the first time after her kidney transplant surgery. She sang her newest song “Wolves,” which was a collab between her and Marshmello, released only three days ago. Shawn Mendes performed his hit song “There’s Nothing Holdin’ Me Back” which got the crowd jamming out with him. For me, one of the most shocking performances last night was P!nk’s performance. She performed her song “Beautiful Trauma” on the side of the JW Marriot Hotel… at a 90-degree angle!! I remember watching the performance in fear that something might go wrong. Lastly, the boy-band that’s taking the social media world by a storm- BTS. BTS is a South-Korean band consisting of seven members, each having their own personality and style. They performed their song, “DNA” from their latest album Love Yourself: Her. The audience went crazy when The Chainsmokers announced that BTS would be performing. This was BTS’ very first performance on American TV, and they absolutely killed it! Watching the awards made me excited to watch next year’s American Music Awards. 

Opera, Opera, Opera!

Would you pay $26 to see Lin-Manuel Miranda in Hamilton on Broadway, live?

I know few Orange County friends who love opera, let alone are willing to see one. This may be because Orange County has few operas. I’ve been looking! The Segerstrom Center for the Arts has some performances, but Costa Mesa is pretty far. Moreover, it only has concert performances (full shows done without staging or costumes in front of an orchestra).

Recently, I discovered my favorite opera, Carmen, broadcasted live for free on the Santa Monica Pier from the LA Opera. The LA Opera is the grandest local opera house, and witnessing something this professional live was moving. Dancers were hired from the depths of Spain for a genuine Spanish vibe, and costumes shimmered and poofed in all their Spanish glory. Tickets are at least $90 for a “cheap” theatre seat, in which performers can barely be seen or heard; free showings are unheard of!

My friends and I zoomed to the pier and fangirled over the huge stage and thick French accents. The music can be found in our playlists; we hummed along the whole time. The opera is risqué, funny, and dazzling. If more people had access to opera in Orange County, I’m sure we could love and appreciate it the way this crowd did on the Santa Monica Pier. It was so enjoyable!

The Live at the Met series is broadcasting full operas live from the Metropolitan Opera House in most Regal movie theatres. This is the best opera house in the country! I’ve never seen a bigger stage, and the cameras show so much detail I can see reflections in the characters’ eyes. Tickets are around $26, with over 10 operas this year! More than the average movie ticket, but very cheap compared to live tickets, often at Hamilton prices ($855+). Only internationally famous and experienced singers have been cast! If you’re an opera fan like me or are ready to behold these regal performances, please come and support the art by attending. Few people know about it, but more should.

This is the same as $26 to see Lin-Manuel Miranda in Hamilton live on Broadway, in the movie theatre!

The Orange County School of the Arts is also doing L’Enfant et Les Sortilèges in the spring, so look out for that!

Meanwhile, I will be hunting down local operas. I’m determined to find performances in Mission Viejo! Operas can be expensive, but I’m working on finding deals so teens can experience this difficult and powerful art form at an accessible price. I’ll keep you updated!

What local opera productions do you know of? Please comment to let me know!

-Jessica F.

Rhianna

The Goddess herself, Robyn Rhianna Fenty was born in the beautiful islands of Barbados in Saint Michael’s. She is currently 29 years old born, February 20th, 1988. She began her career recording demo tapes under record producer Evan Rogers in 2003. She then worked her way up and signed a contract with Def Jams Recording.

She is now worth millions and produces hundreds of beautiful songs. Her music gives females a sense of girl power and makes you want to get up and dance. The artist won a Grammy Award for her album Apologetic and is one of the best selling artists of all time. Her sales exceed 230 million records worldwide.

My favorite songs have to be “Too Good” that she featured in with Drake, “Disturbia”, “What’s My Name”, and “Stay”. She is a huge inspiration to me, that if you strive for greatness, there’s nothing left than to become perfection. I’m absolutely in love with rich Barbadian accent and her style. If I had the ability to spend one day with a famous music artist, without a doubt it would be Rhianna.

Drake

Rappers nowadays are only singing about money, girls, and gangs. Absolutely no purpose or feelings behind what they sing about in their videos. This makes it hard to believe there are any rap singers out there worth listening to. With such a strong opinion about music these days, I’m very picky when it comes to listening to music. But, I can optimistically that the artist Drake is not like the others.

Aubrey Drake Graham is 30 years old and was born October 24th, 1986 in Ontario, Canada. He started off in the teen drama “Degrassi” and moved onto music around 2009. His hip hop and R&B music is known all around the world for the catchy, upbeat songs. He sings about his hometown Toronto, ” the 6″ along with his family and friends. His most recent album More Life has been played on the radio, spoken about on TV, and even been featured in magazines! Drake is known for his charm, his way with words, and his ability to touch your soul with his music. Predictable, at least 80% of all his fans are girls and more are to come. He is an amazing rapper and a great musical influence. His songs range from let’s get crazy and dance to let’s sip some wine and cry. Drake is the way to go if you’re trying to get down at the club or lay in bed and think about life.