Saturday, September 29, 2012

Baybeats Music Festival 2012

I am sure there are quite a number of you who love listening to independent local bands. In fact, as Singaporeans, we all should support local bands because they put their hardwork and dedication for the benefit of entertaining audiences in their home country. I support local bands and that is why I attended Baybeats. Baybeats is a music festival that happened from the 29th June to 1st July organised by the Esplanade Theatres to showcase some of the best independent bands in Singapore. Some bands performing include Obedient Wives Club, The Great Spy Experiment and so much more. Now I am going to show you my experience at this awesome music-oriented event.

It's a good thing I came early because most of the seats have already been taken up at the Esplanade Outdoor Theatre even though it was still 15 minutes away from the start of the concert. From the looks of the audience, many of them wore merchandise of their favourite local indie band. There were even families with little children enjoying the concert. It's amazing that people of different ages come together and enjoy good local music together. It's these little things that will bring more exposure to local indie bands. By the way, I like how the stage looks like. It's all colourful and the graphic banner at the bottom is certainly eye-catching.

Finally the band Obedient Wives Club appeared after lots of waiting. They were formally introduced by the host of Baybeats and after the band introduced themselves to the audience, they started playing their songs. I loved their performance mainly because of the lady's beautiful voice and the band's indie pop music were certainly pleasant to listen to. The lead singer doubles up as the band's pianist which is great because I like singers who sing and can perform a musical instrument at the same time. The band's name Obedient Wives Club is a little bit weird and it's actually supposed to be targeted to the controversial Malaysian group with the same name. Overall, I like this band's performance and I certainly look forward to seeing them again in future performances.

Before I proceed to the second performance, I decided to visit this place called the Festival Village. The Festival Village is an area with stalls selling various merchandise ranging from T-shirts and lanyards from the different indie bands that will be performing during Baybeats. There were also several stalls set up by indie shops like Singapore-based Straits Records, MacBeth Footwear and Happy Teardrop. If you're a big fan of any of the indie bands that performed during Baybeats, you can head on over to the Festival Village and bring home a piece of indie memorabilia.

After l checked out all the great stalls at the Festival Village (Didn't buy a thing there), it's time for me to check out the next performance at Baybeats. I watched this great indie band called Black Diamond Folds and they performed Indie Rock songs at a giant temporary stage near the Marina Bay Floating Platform. The stage where the band performed reminded me of those outdoor music festivals in the US where big name celebrities perform such as SXSW and Vans Warped Tour. Anyway, although the band already started performing, the stage lights were dim and dark and it took some time for them to be brightly lit.

Finally after waiting for about a minute or so, the stage lights were bright and colourful. Some of them moved around while some of the lights flickered excessively to the point where I can get a headache. Don't worry though, I did not get a headache. I had fun watching the band performed. Just like Obedient Wives Club, Black Diamond Folds also had a lady as the lead singer. They performed cool indie rock songs causing people to bang their heads along with the music. Many people were seen having fun with the band. Their music was moody and catchy at the same time. Unlike the Outdoor Theatre where the Obedient Wives Club played, this temporary stage did not have seats. Still, it was a great experience being here and they managed to make people dance along to their music.

Of course, I wasn't done yet. You think I will go to a music festival and just watch two performances only? Nope, I continued watching more. The next performance I watched was by a local indie band called For This Cycle which was also held at the Esplanade's Outdoor Theatre. For This Cycle's music genre was mainly Acoustic Pop/Rock. All of the band's members were guys and the lead singer mentioned that they were all friends who grew up together. They performed sweet soulful songs that were mainly slow and some of the songs were easy to sing because of the simple lyrics (which they told us before performing the song). One of the backup singers which is also the lead singer's friend has an amazing voice. He was given a solo singing session during one of the songs and it was just speechless. I wish I can sing as good as all of them. Anyway, For This Cycle is an awesome acoustic pop band made up of cool talented guys.

The last performance I watched which took place at the Esplanade Concourse was by a local singer-songwriter, Rachael Teo singing Alternative Folk songs. She was a very enthusiastic singer who wasn't shy about making mistakes with her singing. In fact, when she was performing one of her songs, she said she could not remember the first words. After some support from the audience, she finally remembered and continued singing. It was great to hear that although she did mess up at times, she still moved on with it and did not take it too seriously. She also told the audience that she recorded her solo album right at home with a regular microphone instead of doing it at a professional studio. Despite the location of her recording session, the album was available for sale at the Esplanade Shop.
Her songs were awesome cheerful and motivational songs and it made my day even better after listening to them. Overall, she was a great enthusiastic singer who loves to have fun at the same time.

In conclusion, my trip to Baybeats Music Festival was a satisfying one. I get to know more about local bands that were unheard of and they all made me appreciate local music even more. What's great was that, even though it's a music festival mainly targeted to indie fans, people of different ages and families also enjoyed their time here at the Baybeats Music Festival. More music festivals like this should be held all year round to make people appreciate local music. If you're a big fan of mainstream music, maybe you should take your time off for a while and listen to what our homegrown musicians have to offer with their music. I am sure you will appreciate it. With all that, I certainly look forward to next year's installment of Baybeats Music Festival.

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