Sunday, August 06, 2017

Weekend Diversion: Songs I found

I often talk about the things I find on the Internet when looking for something else. Sometimes it’s new information, sometimes it expands on and provides more details about something I know. But there are also times when something sends me looking for more information, and this week was one of those times.

The video above is the music video for “All We Are” by German (I think…) group Jonah from their new album, Wicked Fever. I went looking for the song because it was used in the Vodafone ad I shared this past Wednesday, and I wondered who did it and what the whole song sounded like.

Whenever I look for a song I don’t know, I start with the obvious—the chorus—but often it’s too generic to help when I don’t know what I’m trying to find. So this time I used one lyric from the song I thought was distinctive—“We're just like oxygen”—and that led me to the video above.

This was actually far easier than finding the next song on my list.

HGTV New Zealand is running a promotional commercial for its programming (no video of which is available) that featured a song I quite liked—the melody, the arrangement, and the vocals. But I could never seem to remember any of the lyrics. I Googled some of the lyrics and each time found a song that was completely different. Then I’d forget about it.

Then one evening I pulled out my iPad and tried again, searching other lyrics and I hit on a blog post where the person was talking about songs used in YouTube videos that they liked, and the first one they’d traced back to a site that licenses songs for film, video and TV use, including commercials. The song is called “Love is Home” and it was written by Jake Shillingford and Nicholas Evans and licenses to use it are sold on a site called Audio Network [LISTEN]. They don’t say who performs the vocals.

So, I bookmarked the site, and went to bed, intending on looking it up again the next day. Only trouble was, I made a mistake and I lost the link. I needed to find it again.

I again ran into problems finding the song, but I remembered the post about YouTube, added that, and eventually found Audio Network again. To be honest, this time it was really good luck more than a good and methodical system, but I got there. Mystery solved, and all that.

Because of this fraught second search I found Audio Network that, at first, seemed to be an interesting source for licensed music. However, there’s one major drawback: Each use is a separate project—each YouTube video, for example—and it requires a separate license and separate license fee. This makes some sense, and if someone wanted to use a piece as theme music, they could probably negotiate a special license (and fee…). But there was a bigger problem: A convoluted system for registering the fact one is licensed to use a song in a YouTube video, a system that involves dealing with what is apparently an inevitable copyright claim against one’s video. Having experienced that once long ago, I have no desire to go through that again, so I won’t be using any of their music. The music I do use is free, anyway.

There’s nothing particularly new about me searching for a song, and a couple years ago I blogged about one such effort, when I found the Fall Out Boy song “Uma Thurman”, something I found by Googling something like, “song with Munsters theme in it”, and then I found a really cool music video, which was really the reason I blogged about it at all.

This time, it went the other way around: I blogged about a TV commercial, and then set out to find the song used in it. I like finding out new things, and I also like solving mysteries. This time, I did both. I bet it’ll happen again, too.

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