Tag Archives: Colbie Caillat


Every time I listen to Colbie Caillat’s music, I feel as though I’m transported to the beaches of Malibu with the warmth of the sun and the salty smell of the ocean.  Of course I’ve never actually been to Malibu, but her music is full of warmth and sunshine, and it’s a real pleasure to listen to her music, particularly when pop music gets so depressing lately.

I’m currently reveling in her debut album Coco – while her other albums hold beauty, there is something so fresh, authentic, and extra special about Coco.  However, when I get to her song “Realize,” I’m always amazed how depressing her song “Realize” actually is.  Her vocal performance and the acoustic nature of the song leaves you smiling, wanting to lay out in the sun.  But, upon closer examination of the lyrics, it’s rather a heartbreaking story about unrequited love, especially emphasized with lyrics like “If you just realize what I just realized/ Then we’d be perfect for each other/ And we’ll never find another,” and “It’s not the same/ No, it’s never the same/ If you don’t feel it too.”  So she’s fallen in love with someone who has yet to make the same realization.  I mean, it’s not like Adele’s “Rolling in the Deep” or “Someone Like You,” but it’s not like “Realize” is “Walking on Sunshine” either.  It’s just interesting to me how there is always more to music than what’s on the surface.

Recipients of Album of the Year

As I’m listening to and studying the nominees for the 2016 Grammys, I’ve started looking at past recipients and how the awards have changed over the years.  For instance, the biggest award of the show, Album of the Year, was originally just given to the main artist, but they expanded it to include the main artist, the featured artist(s), the producer(s), the engineer(s) and/or mixer(s) and the mastering engineer(s).  Basically it’s given to everyone who contributes to the album making process, which I think is great because it recognizes everyone’s work and how it contributed to make the album the best of the year.  I actually think they should do this for the genre categories for best album (e.g. Best Country Album is just given to the main artist and not the whole team).  That being said, Album of the Year recognizes everyone except songwriters.

I’ve been thinking about this for a while, and the Grammys should include the songwriters in this group.  For instance, Taylor Swift won Album of the Year in 2010 for her second album Fearless .  Liz Rose, Swift’s long time cowriter and collaborator, was not part of this Grammy-winning team despite the fact she cowrite four of the songs on the album with Swift (Rose did win Best Country Song with Swift that year for “White Horse,” a songwriter’s award).  Three of those songs Rose cowrote were three of the five hit singles from the album (“White Horse,” “You Belong with Me,” and “Fearless”), one of which won two Grammys (“White Horse”) and one nominated for three (“You Belong with Me”).  It could be argued that without Liz Rose, Fearless would not have been the album that it was because Swift might not have finished the four songs Rose cowrote, or if she did it would not have been at the level they were at that won her Album of the Year.

Swift and Rose winning Best Country Song for “White Horse”

Colbie Caillat, on the other hand, cowrote one song (“Breathe”) with Swift and provided background vocals, earning her the role of featured artist.  This therefore entitled her to the Album of the Year Grammy despite the fact that she worked on only one song on the album whereas Rose worked on four.

Without the songwriters, the album literally could not be made.  How can you produce, record, sing, or make an album if there is nothing written?  You would have nothing to perform.  And is it really fair to give someone who is only featured in only seconds of one song on the album the biggest award of the music industry just because they’re “featured” and not someone who literally is the root creator of the album?

I realize the Grammys have to draw a line of recipients because obviously it take a lot more people to create and promote an album than who would get the award, but I think songwriters are too important to overlook.  Granted, nowadays a lot of the songwriters are the performer and/or producer, but like Rose, some are solely writers.  You can’t have a great album without great songs, and you can’t have great songs without great songwriters.


I apologize for the lack of updates over the week, it’s finally warm and beautiful here in New England and I’ve been using any excuse to stay outside in the sun.  Soaking it up while I can.  Therefore, I’ve decided to post a playlist of songs I think embody this beautiful weather.

Will You Count Me In?

Anytime I listen to Colbie Caillat’s music, I just feel the summer sunshine radiate from inside me, which is something I need given another huge snow storm is blowing through here (#arcticlife).  Ever since her song “Bubbly” came out in 2007, I’ve been a fan of her music and the way her voice can warm your soul.

“Bubbly” is one of the few songs that can make my day better, and make me realize that love can actually exist.  I know that sounds cynical, but I hope one day to find someone who means to me what  these lyrics describe, but I’m skeptical if that will ever happen.

For Caillat, “Bubbly” has been her most successful song to date, peaking at number five on the Billboard Hot 100, and being certified platinum (selling over a million copies).  She has won two Grammys, one for her collaboration with Jason Mraz for their song “Lucky” and the other as a featured artist on Taylor Swift’s Fearless.  If you haven’t heard of Colbie Caillat (which would be weird if you haven’t), you should definitely check out her music.  I personally think her album Coco is her best (it features “Bubbly”), but her others are just as perfect.

And on a random note, I found this video of Caillat singing “Smelly Cat” from the hit 90s sitcom Friends.  It was the song that Phoebe (played by Lisa Kudrow) was famed for playing in multiple episodes.  If none of that means anything to you, the clip is still a good example of Caillat’s incredible vocals:

Apple Picking Playlist

Whenever my family and I do something and take a road trip, I always make a cd with different songs.  Since we’re going apple picking tomorrow, I made this playlist for our ride, so I thought I’d share…especially because it’s been a long time since I’ve blogged…this semester is legit killing me (#stressed).  Normally I put upbeat/happy songs and a wide range of genres on the playlists for my family so there’s something for everyone, but I think I kind of dropped the ball on this one.  Oh well. I’m an artist.

If you’re wondering why I randomly added “Ew!,” the Jimmy Fallon skit/song, my family like Jimmy Fallon…so it was meant as a joke…although I do think the song is actually quite good because of will.i.am’s production.  Plus, Jimmy Fallon rapping as a teenage girl is hilarious.

“Love Whiplash” by Jayme Dee – #PhillipsSongOfTheDay

A while back, I was searching YouTube to watch the music video of “Rolling in the Deep” by Adele, when I stumbled across this:

I was immediately taken by the fact that this person, whoever she was, was playing every single instrument.  I thought the video was clever and inspiring, not to mention she sounded great (“Rolling in the Deep” is a pretty hard song to sing, especially around the chorus…it takes a pair of steel lungs and a lot of anger).  And it was one of the few times that I actually watched a cover video on YouTube from start to finish.

After watching this video, I needed to know more about this girl.  According to YouTube, her name was Jayme Dee and she had a bunch more covers.  All of them were pretty unique, but it wasn’t until I stumbled across her MySpace that I found an original song entitled “Love Whiplash.”  After listening to this song, I was a fan.  What was more, I found that she was an unsigned artist.  This thrilled me because ever since Colbie Caillat, I always wanted to watch an artist transform from unsigned to getting a record deal to releasing an album/playing on radio.

Colbie Caillat had uploaded her song "Bubbly" as an unsigned artist to MySpace, which apparently became the number one most listened to song on MySpace by an unsigned artist.  She then got a record deal with Universal Republic Records, and "Bubbly" was released as her first official single, which then went on to Chart number five on Billboard's Hot 100.

At that moment, I hoped the best of Jayme Dee, wondering if I might just hear “Love Whiplash” on the radio one day.  I logged offline and forgot all about her  for like four months (in all honesty, it probably was like two days, but two days feels like four months when you’re in college).

Take a listen to the original version of “Love Whiplash”:

Then, one day, rather randomly, I decided to check back on Jayme Dee and see if she posted any new music.  Again, I could only find “Love Whiplash,” but I found out that Jayme Dee had gotten signed by Universal Republic Records!  Let the countdown to a stellar album begin!

Well, a year passed by.  And then like another.  I might be exaggerating, but it wasn’t until the summer of 2012 that we got her first official single, “Tip Toes,” an upbeat song about falling in love or, rather, having an intense crush on someone.

Check out the official music video for “Tip Toes”:

This certified me as a fan.  “Tip Toes” is the only song I ever heard that is 100% pure happiness and joy, and perfectly embodies the summer and sunshine.  And, on July 30, 2013, we finally got her debut EP, Broken Record, which featured a new version of “Love Whiplash.”  Honestly, I prefer the original version (see/listen above); I think that version has a warmer, natural air to it, whereas the version on her EP is a bit overthought and too-complicated.  The main problem I have with the Broken Record version of “Love Whiplash” is that Jayme Dee sang it in a completely different way.  For instance,  listen to the way she pronouces the first line “I never know if you’re seriously” in both versions, and it’s like she has two different accents….it’s weird.  I do have to commend her vocals on the EP version because they are a bit bolder, especially around the chorus.

Regardless of the version, “Love Whiplash” is #PhillipsSongOfTheDay because I think it is a incredibly clever idea: the guy is sending her so much mixed signals that she has “whiplash.” It’s a simple idea that I can relate to.  Plus the lyrics are pretty snazzy/intriguing:

“Are you just trying to play with me?
Do you get joy from my misery
I’d like to think
It’s just a phase and we’ll work it out
But you keep jerking my heart around

Now I’ve caught a bad case of love whiplash
You push me off and then you pull me back
Please could you tell me if you’re being sincere
Cause darling I can’t stand to cry another tear”

“It’s not a long conversation
Don’t waste all your precious time
It’s not a difficult equation
A simple yes or no will do just fine”

*This whole post and idea of naming "Love Whiplash" #PhillipsSongOfTheDay was inspired by the fact that I sneezed today (I'm incredibly sick...yay) and thought "that sneeze just gave me whiplash," which reminded me of "Love Whiplash"...#random*

Listen to Broken Record:

The whole EP is worth a listen; Jayme Dee’s music overall may be sugar-sweet pop music, but she subtly infuses jazzy/bluesy elements into her music that’s rather intriguing.  Songs that stand out in the EP include “Tip Toes,” “Love Whiplash,” “Broken Record,” and “Till I Fall Asleep.”



The Juxtaposition of Lana Del Rey

This is how I work: when it’s sunny and warm outside, I’m happy.  When it’s cold and snowing, I’m sad.  Pretty basic.  I don’t care about the research I’ve read at school, the weather affects my mood, because I hate Massachusetts Weather.

It’s currently the most depressing time of the year for me here in arctic: winter.  The past two months literally have had below freezing temperatures.  It’s just been so dark and cold, and so much snow.  Sad face.

Given the fact that I listen to music mostly based on my mood, and that I’ve been so deflated because of this weather, you’d think I’d listen to music from the ever so effervescent Lana Del Rey (sarcasm), especially her album Born to Die.  But the thing is, that’s really a summertime album for me.

I’m not kidding.  Last summer, one of the albums I had on repeat was Born to Die, and had her songs “Born to Die,” “Video Games,” and “Summertime Sadness” (both the standard and Cedric Gervais Remix (which just won a Grammy)) on repeat on my iPod, especially when I was out biking in the beautiful sunshine.  Today, while at work shelving books, I realized I hadn’t listen to the stunning Lana Del Rey’s music in months, so I decided to dedicate an hour to Born to Die.  It didn’t last; the album kept reminding me of summer and I thought “huh, this is a summer album.”

If you’ve heard the album or any of those songs, they’re not upbeat songs; they’re not songs that would provide you much motivation while exercising or songs that would cheer you up.  So why are these slow, somewhat melodramatic, and rather ethereal songs more compatible for my summer?

The somewhat magical thing about Lana Del Rey’s music is that while it’s depressing-sounding, it does not make the listener depressed.  In a weird way, her musical content is rather bold in that she sticks to themes and strong opinions of heartbreak that others stray from; I doubt anyone would tell their boyfriend, even in song form, that they were “born to die,” or that, rather poignantly, “I think I’ll miss you forever/ Like the stars miss the sun in the morning sky.”  From her lyrics and her music, Lana Del Rey’s listeners pick up her darker emotions and either relate to them or simply understand them.  Take her summer hit, “Summertime Sadness,” the lyrics, on the surface, would appear rather optimistic for Del Rey.  With such lines like “I just wanted you to know/That, baby, you’re the best” and “Oh, my God, I feel it in the air/ Telephone wires above are sizzling like a snare/ Honey, I’m on fire, I feel it everywhere/Nothing scares me anymore,” one would expect this love song to be about the height of romance with no depressing undertones.  But when you add swirling strings and ambient tones to Del Rey’s crooning, you get a rather depressing song about heartbreak.  While the song truly is about a breakup in that Del Rey is listing out all the positive/wonderful things about her relationship that she’ll miss like we miss the summer during winter, the production of the song could have been manipulated to create a more positive experience for listeners.  Take Colbie Caillat’s song “Realize” for example.  The song, like all of Caillat’s signature songs, sounds positive and happy like the sun-kissed home she’s from (she’s from California/Malibu/Hawaii type place).  Her vocal performance and the acoustic nature of the song leaves you smiling, wanting to lay out in the sun with your significant other.  But, upon closer examination of the lyrics, it’s rather a heartbreaking story about unrequited love, especially emphasized with lyrics like “If you just realize what I just realized/ Then we’d be perfect for each other/ And we’ll never find another,” and “It’s not the same/ No, it’s never the same/ If you don’t feel it too.” This is a case where the production/performance of the song changes the scope of the song to be more positive for the audience.  Lana Del Rey, however, does the opposite in that she purposely keeps her music in Born to Die on the negative side to emphasize her misfortunes.

I honestly don’t know why I associate Lana Del Rey’s music with the summer.  I do feel like some music is seasonal, and logic and my past experience would sort Lana Del Rey as a winter’s artist, songs not to be listened to during the upbeat summer.  But that’s not the case.  Perhaps it’s just me; perhaps LDR should be listened year round.  Let me know with poll below!