First of all I just want to take a moment, to explain my absence from Open Mic the past few weeks - I have been desperately searching for a house to move into before Christmas and finally we found a place and had to move.
It is extremely hard to find decent housing here in Australia at the moment and I spent a long time searching and then had a mad dash to move, on top of all of this the house we moved into is brand new and it took us a little while to get the internet connected.
So I have been trying to play catch up since the net has been set up and I just wanted to let you all know I'm back and hopefully, no more crazy times keeping me from doing my duties as an Open Mic judge.
Now onto this weeks Open Mic Contest, well I have to say holy shit 153 entries - on top of this so many of you killed it this week, I mean seriously my shortlist actually crashed chrome multiple times!
That is a screenshot of my desktop, I only had open mic entries on my shortlist in it and I had already been super harsh and culled a few.
So many entries this week were of a high enough quality to win, you broke my mind and my computer - I have never struggled like this with the decision before, but I found myself swapping and changing the different entries around for places.
I am simply blown away by the sublime quality and insane quantity of entries, this contest just took things to a whole new level - and a whole heap of you bought it like never before, it's amazing to see entrants grow and evolve through the contest.
Now I have to explain the much larger post than normal, my simplest explanation is I just couldn't choose - well I mean beside the top five I forced myself to select, the rest I just couldn't sacrifice from my list.
I literally spent the entire day scrutinising over this decision, I made a huge number of harsh calls I wish I hadn't made - but the special mentions this week in my honest opinion, well most of them could have easily have placed as well.
There is just to much amazing content being presented, to exclude so many that just blew me away seemed like insanity - so it's Christmas and this is my present to myself, I get to have a massive list of all the entries that kicked arse!
Now without out any further ramblings, here are my top five selections for week 64.
This week's top 5:
1st Place - @kodieamos - Long Dark Highway
Well here you go again making me a fan, seriously I really loved this song at first - but the more and more I listened to it, the more and more it grew on me and now I just adore it completely.
You have such a unique and amazing voice, you have a really nice range and your control is spot on everytime I hear you sing.
On top of all the brilliance of your voice, you also wrote the damn song - just curious is there anything you can't do?
I love the song, it truly is unique, tells a story, conveys multiple emotions and has its own style and structure that just works to perfection.
You use complex language and tell a beautiful and tragic story full of emotion, passion and hope - I love the power you have and how you use it to great effect to embellish at the right moment.
When I hear a new song I usually find myself adding extra trills and vocal gymnastics, to fill it out but this was so perfectly balanced I just enjoyed joining your chosen melody - and yeah by the end I found myself passionately belting it out with you!
You are a brilliant songwriter, singer and performer, you have an energy that is hard to come by in recorded performances - but everytime I hear you enter you simply amaze and astound.
Keep it up, I can't wait to hear more from you soon!
2nd Place - @yusaymon - Welcome to the Machine
Firstly those harmonies are sublime and then the falsettos holy shit you guys are insanely talented, I just can't believe it this song is just brilliant in every single way.
I absolutely love this and can see me listening to this anytime in the general rotation of music I frequent, your harmonies are just the next level - your voices meld together so well throughout the song.
The juxtaposition of the two songs in the medley was just brilliant, it added so much depth to the song as a whole and then that mixed with your brilliant harmonies took it to the next level.
I am such a massive fan of this entry, I just keep on relistening to it over and again and never get enough - each time I notice another element slipped in for effect and now I can't help but sing along with you.
I am also stunned by the fact you both have such huge vocal ranges, this was such a stunning vocal display and I enjoyed it more than I can put into words - all I can say is I hope everyone checks this out, it really was just a phenomenal entry!
3rd Place - @jaredkhamanah - Mercy
Ok so I am a sucker for fancy vocal gymnastics and embellished vocals, as a singer I love the challenge and as a listener I like the varied texture it adds to music - your song fulfills all my needs to make a perfect song.
I love the varied softer verses then smashing it out in the chorus, I love this song and you just performed the hell out of it!
I absolutely love your vocal control and range, but also the power you have hidden beneath the surface - you can feel the emotion in the softer sections and you really hit the tone and emotion of the more passionate/powerful chorus.
This was a brilliant entry, especially considering it's only your second week entering the contest - you just blew me away.
I can't wait to hear more from you soon, keep it up that voice of yours is amazing!
Wow and I will repeat again wow, I just didn't expect this at all and I just so damn happy to have heard it - your four part harmonies are simply divine!
I love this song and you guys just owned it, I love the medley style incorporating multiple favorites and best of all it's the perfect week for a Christmas themed win - and yours truly deserved it.
I can't get over how amazing this entry was, your soprano has insane control there at the end with that super high note - well again just wow, what an insane note to hit and to execute it so perfectly.
I also have to mention the baritone was also insanely brilliant, it just breaks my brain that someone can make a note that deep - it really just worked so well.
All in all you all did a sublime job, I have listened to this countless times and on each listen I find myself with goosebumps - you guys are insanely talented, I just love this so much it's hard to find the words to explain it.
Now I usually listen to these songs in english, but I have to say that hearing it for the first time in another language was simply perfection - I enjoyed this so much and think you all gave an amazing performance.
Thank you so much for sharing these beautiful songs with us, it truly was a pleasure to hear and I look forward to more amazing entries from all of you!
5th Place - @yourmercury - Stay with me
I am just simply in awe of this entry this week, this guy has a simply amazing voice and his control is phenomenal - I just can't get enough of it.
I did struggle this week, but as soon as I heard you sing I knew I had a place reserved - as I continued through the entrants your entry just stayed with me and I had no choice you belonged in the top five this week.
I was already a big fan of this song, I love to hit the highs and man did I love to hear those highs from you - you have a truly insane falsetto, you have such a beautiful timber to your voice.
The control required to pull of a song like this is phenomenal, by the end most voices would be exhausted - but with a Sam Smith cover, that's when you need to pull out the super high notes and embellishments and you killed it.
I love it when someone's first ever entry just blows you away, the joy it brings me as a judge t know we have a new big player in this game - I get excited just to think what else you will bring to the open mic table, how will you amaze us next time!
You conveyed the emotion in the song perfectly, the whole performance was just a pleasure to see and hear.
I really can't wait to see what you have for us next week, keep it up you have an amazing gift keep sharing it with the world!
Well there you have it the second last top five judges selection of the year, can you believe the year is almost over - and were ending it on such an amazing high and positive note for Open Mic.
You are such gifted musicians, I absolutely love my job here as an Open Mic judge - every week you guys give me such joy, you all make such beautiful and amazing music.
It is such an honour to not only be able to hear your music, but to help in some way try to promote and help you gain the much deserved attention your music should be getting.
Music is responsible for such joy and happiness in the world, you are those giving that gift to the world each and every week when you enter Open Mic - your musical gift is the perfect present for all this Christmas, so thank you for sharing a part of yourselves.
I do have to say again I'm sorry/not sorry for so many special mentions, I'm sorry i took so many of you out before I forced myself to submit to the amazing quantity of entries we had this week - and im not sorry that in the end I still special mentioned a huge number of you even for me!
As the year draws to an end and literally as I'm writing this Christmas day is about to arrive, I just want you all to know how much this contest means to me and all the other judges - we put a lot in because we know you all deserve so much for what you so freely give.
I can't get over that we had 153 entries this week that is just insanity, the week before also broke our standing record with 117 entries (I believe) - so this week was just that pure unadulterated insanity!
We have had a huge influx of new entrants and so many of you just helped raise the already high bar even further, I can't wait to hear all the entries next week - this is will be a New Year's Eve to remember.
I wish you all a very Merry Christmas, I am going to have a great early morning with my two beautiful kids and then jump on for the live Steemit Musicians radio show - speaking of...
I'd also like to remind everyone again that all top five nominations from this week, will feature in the Steemit Musicians live radio show on MSP-Waves next week.
A massive congratulations to all of those to be featured in the show, it is going to be great opportunity to get to further share the awesome entries we receive each week - I can't wait to hear the audience's feedback on our selections and your entries.
I hope you can all drop by and support those who made this week's lists, I'm sure they'd appreciate the support - not to mention if you join you get to help choose the weekly 20 SBD winning entry!
Please join us for Steemit Musicians this Sunday 12-1 UTC!
You can listen on twitch- https://www.twitch.tv/mspwaves
You can join broadcast hosts in a special chat room on the MSP Discord Channel: https://discord.gg/kNxM7T6
You can check out http://mspwaves.com/ for more information
On the note of the community I thought I'd take a moment to mention that, over at the minnow support program on our discord chat room Peace Abundance and Liberty - the recently revitalised music room has been getting rather active lately.
As well as the recent burst of activity, we have also added a jukebox to the room - so now when you're chatting with people in the music room, you can choose and play music from youtube (this includes open mic entries, I may have already played a couple I really enjoyed).
So far I have seen a few open mic regulars hanging out and about on the PAL chat rooms, now we have a place where we can actively share music live with people were chatting with - this can help musicians in so many ways, not to mention it's just fun to hang out and chat over and about good tunes.
In addition to the new music room Peace Abundance and Liberty chat rooms have a lot to offer, you can access bots to vote on your posts, you can also meet and interact with over 5000 steemians in the channel - this can be a very useful resource to new steemians, but is also a fantastic place to meet and interact with like minded individuals on many different topics.
Again a big thanks to @soundlegion, @jessamynorchard, @verbal-d and @passion-ground for all they do as judges, please remember to go and check out their top five selections each week and to @luzcypher and @pfunk thank you so much for making all of this possible - until next week.
Which was your favourite entry this week?
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