Jane Ellen


JMT 1.13 JMT Recommends

Jane's Musical Takeaway
bits and bobs and my two cents

Episode 13: JMT Recommends

Since I began publishing this enhanced blog (with an eye to eventually joining the ranks of musical YouTubers) several people have asked me if there's any channel that I regularly watch. Actually, I have more favourite channels than I care to admit, so this week I decided to share my personal top recs for YouTube music vloggers (the following list is in no particular order).

If you've been following the JMT, you probably remember my very first episode on this amazing young pianist. Since that time her channel has grown to 111k followers, and she has performed in prestigious concert venues in Singapore, Brasil, and Germany. Here's a video where she compares a piano from 1929 with one from 2016:

RICK BEATO: Everything Music
Not only is this man a musical genius, but if you work through his content on music theory, ear-training, chords, scales, film scoring, jazz, and music production, he'll give you the equivalent of a professional music education for free. He also has a popular series called What Makes This Song Great, in which he analyzes hit songs. Here's his take on Adele's 'Rumour Has It':

Composer and pianist Nahre Sol produces a wide assortment of videos, including piano technique and tips on how to play in the style of other composers. She approaches pop music genres from the perspective of a classical pianist, and even explains how she composes. Here's one of my favourites, exploring Classical Music for Your DEPRESSED Soul:

INSIDE THE SCORE: Classical and Movie Music Analysis
This UK vlogger creates fantastic video essays exploring the art and craft of film music, as well as videos about classical music appreciation. Since many of us are caught up in the finale of Game of Thrones, I thought I would share his astonishing half-hour analysis of its music:

ADAM NEELY: New Horizons in Music
Composer and bass player Adam Neely is based in New York; the goal of his channel is to provide weekly content on new horizons in music and theory. He also shares practice techniques, explores artist concerns and legal issues, and offers his thoughts on the arts in general. Here's his amazing video essay on the value of music:

CLASSICAL NERD: music history, theory and tehcniques
Composer Thomas Little produces phenomenal video biographies of great composers, but also includes videos on music theory and composition. I restrained myself (with great difficulty) from featuring his epic 50 minute History of the Doctor Who Theme, and decided to share a musical murder story instead:

As you can see, I watch a lot of geeky music channels but I also enjoy a bit of urbex (urban exploration) now and again. Urbexers have a self-proclaimed creed: 'take nothing but pictures, leave nothing but footprints'. A true urbexer only enters an abandoned place if there is existing access or prior permission; buildings are never vandalized in any way. In case you're interested, here are three urbex channels whose adventures I enjoy following:

  • BROS OF DECAY: Belgian brothers travelling the European continent
  • 539 PRODUCTIONS: often focuses on historic US cemeteries and mausoleums
  • STEVE RONIN: young world traveller/photographer with a strong sense of wanderlust

Jane's Musical Takeaway:

If you like the material on any YouTube channel the mantra is: like, subscribe, and comment. This helps people get recommended, which helps their channels grow; it can also help with income to support their art. Some channels offer monthly support opportunities through YouTube, whilst others have a Patreon page or a personal page where you can contribute as little as a couple of dollars a month to help support their endeavours. You can also help by following your favourite vloggers on social media outlets such as Twitter and Instagram.

Caveat: YouTube can be a rabbit hole, but it's a veritable encyclopaedia of knowledge. One can find channels that teach woodworking, vegan meal prep, mythology, beginning design, or modern history. There are book reviews, lecture series, surveys of ancient history, ship building, indie films, primitive technology ... seriously, the sky's the limit. But you may want to set a timer, otherwise I'll see you in Wonderland. You'll find me at the Mad Hatter's table deciphering mediaeval Italian trecento madrigals with a rather large and erudite white rabbit.

Find even MORE recs:
HALLOWEENERS: The Series, hysterical, largely improvised horror/comedy about best friends
Luke Faulkner, pianist and composer; check out his Last snows of spring
Ask Lovecraft, Leeman Kessler answers questions as author H P Lovecraft
BBC Ideas, short films for curious minds

If you enjoyed this episode of Jane's Musical Takeaway, buy me a cup of coffee :)

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