From Herbie’s Desk.

– Creative Thoughts and Things Grabbing My Attention!

8th January 2022.

Three Paloma’s or one Paloma three ways?

For a while now I’ve tried to listen to a new artist or band each day.

I started this habit as a way to vary what I was listening to, to discover new music that I might not normally have listened to, and also as a way of building an easy habit which ward spill over into the other artistic areas of my life.

For the most part I’m pleased to say most of the music that I’ve listened to I’ve enjoyed.

I count myself as fortunate in having quite an eclectic taste in music to begin with.

One of the artists that I’ve listened to along the way was Sigma.

These two talented musicians and producers have worked with a number of the top flight artists such as Bryan Adams, Rita Ora, and Paloma Faith.

Paloma Faith is an artist who immediately struck me as being a little bit ‘out there’, but I quickly came to realise that most of this was carefully constructed. She was an artist in her music, in her looks, and in the way she presented herself in interviews.

Even a cursory listen, or read through, of some of those interviews made it clear that she was not only a talented singer and musician, but also a very careful songwriter.

One of her tracks on the 2014 album A Perfect Contradiction was titled ‘Changing’.

I heard the original album version first and I liked the track. The melody, the lyrics, the music, were all great.

Then this song was released again, this time with collaboration with Sigma and it was given a very different musical feel. A much more intense bass and drum mix was added to what appeared to be the original vocal line, but it still worked fantastically.

Sigma – Paloma Faith – Changing

I was immediately interested therefore when I saw another version of that song had been released.

It was still a version with Paloma Faith and Sigma but entitled the ‘Goldsmyth edition’.

This time the music was much more laid-back in a jazz feel and the intense speed of the original Sigma collaboration was almost now the opposite. The musical instruments providing additional phrasing to Paloma Faith’s vocal line rather than driving it underscoring it adding extra texture and emotion which supported and backed up her voice.

Sigma – Paloma Faith – Changing – Goldsmyth Edition

It made me think of artists like Monet who would have six or seven canvases on the go at one time. For Monet the multiple canvases were an attempt to capture a specific moment a specific light affect on the subject of his painting. But each change in light gave a different emotion a different texture a different viewpoint on the objects of the paintings themselves in much the same way that these three versions of the same song do.

As creative is it easy to focus upon the endpoint of finishing a piece of writing, completing a canvas, or recording a song, but how often do we really reflect upon those finished pieces and imagine ways in which they could produce a different meaning or texture by subtle changes?

In writing perhaps the story can be told from a different character point of view, in music different instrumentation in different sections of the song or changing the melody line of the verse and the chorus around.

Part of what we should be doing as artists and creatives is to discover different ways of presenting our work, to be pushing ourselves out of our usual comfort/creative zones.

Stay safe and creative!

Every Blessing!

Herbie.