27 Sep, 2010

Mobile site: http://m.jcschutz.com 


Posted at 03:11 under MUSIC, OTHERS


as i believe that many of my readers access my blog and website from their mobile phones, i've made a mobile site, a smaller version of my website for you:

http://m.jcschutz.com

where of course the M stands for 'mobile'.

if you have any problems viewing or loading the site, please let me know at the contact page.

=)





26 Sep, 2010

http://twitter.com/jcschutz 


Posted at 06:17 under MUSIC, OTHERS


i've finally taken the time to start a twitter account.

follow me in real time at twitter.com/jcschutz

=)





19 Sep, 2010

300 000 visits!!! 


Posted at 02:29 under MUSIC, MUSICAL, OTHERS, THOUGHTS


while i was sleeping, the number of visitors to my blog passed 300 000, since i started it on AUGUST 8, 2007. the statistic is probably quite truthful, since the counter don't re-count the same IP-address as a new visitor until after 4 hours.

the whole idea with this blog was to allow you to comment, in english, swedish or portuguese, but as destiny put it i have also been learning japanese. however, if you comment in japanese - please write in romaji, as this blog can't handle hiragana, katakana or kanji (all characters are transformed into code, and become unreadable).


300 000 visitors in three years, that's 100 000 each year! i humbly thank all of you.

so, what has happened during these three years?

in september 2007 my second album BLISSA NOVA was released in japan, and i was invited to do a promotion tour, which took place in november and early december. i met so many people, and i had a CULTURE SHOCK on returning to sweden after only 12 days. i was thinking: is THIS my home? is THIS my country? the taxi driver who took me from stockholm central station to my home in sickla udde didn't want to pay tax and he offered to pass an ATM (cash point) so i could pay him in cash and not with my card. i said no.

visiting japan for the first time changed my life. wonderful people, wonderful food, everything was clean and in order, people respectful and honest. i saw that there's a world outside of sweden.

the release of my third album C'EST LA VIE in december 2008 took me to japan a second time, and soon after i started to write songs for a musical. this took me to japan again in july 2009, which i spent mostly in kansai area where i spent three weeks finding inspiration and input for the songs and the story.

JAPANSTIFTELSEN (the scholarship foundation for studies of japanese society) later gave me a travel scholarship to return a 4th time in 2010, and i stayed for six weeks in may-june. during this visit i met many musicians, producers, composers, artists, etc, etc. and i met my girlfriend Tae, which is why i'm currently back in tokyo again, for the 5th time. i'm sure the customs officers wonder why i come so often!

last year i studied JAPANESE at the (online) university of DALARNA in sweden, and i previously finished my Bachelor of Arts degree in PORTUGUESE at the university of STOCKHOLM where i have lived since 2005.

as you may have read before, i'm now working on the production of a new album, which actually may turn into TWO new albums if we're lucky. i'm currently struggling with arrangement, tempo, and re-writing some of the lyrics again and again and again.

but working with art is not about continuing. it's about knowing when to stop and sit back and think: well, this is actually pretty good. at this moment in my life i can't do any better.

and i'm very proud of my musical creations so far. i have written more than 400 songs since i was 16 years old. however, many of them are not songs i would ever play again. they were part of my period of learning, understanding and conquering the world of composition, of writing, of reflection, and of acceptance. it's like saying: at this moment, this is me. you like it or you don't.

many of my first songs were very political, songs about peace, love and understanding. later, i tapped into a more serious vein, discovering world music and the bossa nova, and by chance i was first introduced to good soul music in tokyo by Tomoaki Nakamura (Musicanossa/Bar Music Shibuya). discovering soul music for real also made me re-realize that

what the world needs now, is LOVE!


today, there's an election in sweden, and i seriously hope it's the end of the liberal powers. people think too much about themselves. however, there IS a bigger picture. this is not about socialism, communism, or any kind of dogm-ism, it's about realizing that we're in this boat TOGETHER.

and the lesson we need to learn is love. because we need to learn it. again and again. my life is not only about me and my wishes. i'm here for a reason, you're here for a reason, we're all here for a reason. after writing so many songs about so many different things, learning to understand so many feelings, i've come back to point zero. perhaps i should dedicate the rest of my life as a songwriter, singer and composer to the work of peace, love and understanding. i think the world is getting ready.


to show my respect to all of you who keep coming back to my blog, here's a special 300 000 visitors gift MP3 download. it was recorded live with a band in Tokyo on june 13 at Loop Daikanyama.


SLOW DOWN - mp3
(words and music by J.C. Schtz)

J.C. - vocals and guitar
Shinya - keyboards
Yoshi - electric guitar and backing vocals
Jun - bass
Ruy - drums




(photos by Sunao Honda)


this song will be included in an internet radio special, to be broadcast maybe next month, including an interview and 6 or 7 songs recorded in front of a live audience the same day. we will also make some clips available on youtube from this great gig.

join the newsletter in the right menu! you'll get more treats that way (^_^)

SLOW DOWN - mp3

this download link will only be valid until october 1.


thank you very very much!

=)





14 Sep, 2010

James Taylor surprise 


Posted at 07:03 under MUSIC, THOUGHTS


last night i heard a song that took me back almost 20 years in time, and at the same time reminded me of the intricate connection between people and moments throughout our life.

it was a very warm-hearting moment indeed.

when i was a teenager, my neighbour gave me a cassette tape with Cat Stevens, John Martyn and another singer, whose name I never learnt. but I loved his songs, and i even made my own cover version of one song with a chorus that went "Close your eyes, you can close your eyes, it's all right".

i LOVED that singer and guitarist.

last night i heard that song again, in a lovely live version with Joni Mitchell, and i realized that the singer that i once loved was noone less than JAMES TAYLOR.

i remember that cassette tape very well, because it opened up my eyes for acoustic music. so thank you Michael for bringing me that cassette tape way back then, and thank you Tae for suddenly reminding me of this very beautiful song, which i had since long forgotten about.

this is how amazing life can be. 20 years later and a different person can re-connect us with something that happened long ago. this is the real "world-wide-web", how we "inter-are" with eachother. persons all across the world, without knowing it, are connected and linked with eachother in different ways. it's a world-wide tapestry of threads, destinys and coincidences that make up this "web" of existence and co-existence on our beautiful planet.

today, after a delicious cup of morning coffee, i tried to play it on the piano keyboard and i soon remembered the chords, even though it's more than 15 years since i played it on the guitar.

listen to this great song in a live recording from the british BBC sometime in the 1970's... the great album which includes this song is called "Mud Slide Slim and the Blue Horizon". be sure to get it!

JAMES TAYLOR - YOU CAN CLOSE YOUR EYES




it's allright!

=)





11 Sep, 2010

Heat 


Posted at 03:46 under THOUGHTS


i'm sorry it's a month since i posted anything here. i've been very busy, both with my personal life but also with my new songs, which are beginning to take shape in a very nice way. and i'm currently back in tokyo, and hope to be able to finish my new album here during the autumn. but it takes lots of time and money, so there's still no release date planned.

tokyo has been H-O-T.

around 35 degrees for weeks, and at night rarely dipping under 28. but coming from a country of famously-bad-weather such as sweden, i can't really complain. but perhaps the tokyo city development officers should consider more options to keep the temperature down, such as more parks, more trees, and less skyscrapers that stop the ocean winds from reaching the streets and cooling the city.



last week i visited sendai and matsushima with my girlfriend Tae. it was my first time north of tokyo, and i was happy to spend some time there. the beautiful family house was situated in the watari district amongst the many ricefields between the mountains and the ocean. i was very happy to meet all of you. doumo arigatou gozaimashita! yoroshiku onegaishimasu.

and thank you Tae-chan for letting me see this part of your past. chou tanoshikatta! xxx

=)





09 Aug, 2010

August 9 


Posted at 11:05 under ART, MOVIES, JAPAN

yesterday i watched Akira Kurosawa's movie RHAPSODY IN AUGUST. actually, it was a coincidence (??) that the story is about survivors of the atomic bombing of Nagasaki (which was 65 years ago Today), remembering, reminding, understanding and generational gaps.

some critics claimed that it ignored the atrocities of japan before the bombing, and just focused on a japanese family, some even saying that Kurosawa had made an anti-american movie. actually, the old woman in the movie, who lost her husband 45 years earlier, because the bomb, she says several times that she is not bitter or angry at the usa, she blames the war itself, not a specific nation. and i believe that the fact that the story tells of a family, gives authenticity to the movie, as they were not involved in any war-crimes themselves. this movie is about a family, not about the history of wars in asia.

however, we see the movie from her grandchildren's perspective, which gives the movie some kind of distance, despite the strong theme. Kurosawa was one of the best directors of all times, but this is unfortunately not one of his best movies. one reviewer whose name slipped my mind, called it a "sketch".

but it's a strong movie, with the old lady struggling with her own memories and her uncaring children as she takes care of her grandchildren who are staying with her as their parents have gone to Hawaii to visit a rich relative, played by Richard Gere. He does a good job speaking japanese. when american actors speak japanese it sounds usually very fluffy and childish, but i think he does a good job.

sorry, but i couldn't find a subtitled trailer:




i'm glad to know that Gere is also a buddhist and a true humanitarian soul. he was probably very happy to work with Akira Kurosawa, in a story about forgiving and learning from the past, in this movie that was one of Kurosawa's last.

today my thoughts are with the survivors and relatives after the Nagasaki bombing in 1945.

=)





06 Aug, 2010

August 6 


Posted at 12:28 under THOUGHTS, JAPAN


today, AUGUST 6, it's 65 years ago since the devastating bomb over HIROSHIMA. i read in the swedish daily news (www.dn.se) that today was the first time that usa, great britain and france sent representants to the memorial ceremony in hiroshima.

65 years without sending representants? i thought you won the war. perhaps some respect for the hundreds of thousands of victims would have been appropiate before.

however, it was about time.

today, the world has the total capacity of 150,000 atomic bombs. every year, billions of dollars, euro, pounds, or whatever the currency, are put to produce weapons, mines, bombs, etc etc etc.

but why?

because it's part of the economy.
because it's good business.
because we make money from the sales.
because we only care about ourselves.
because we think with our wallets and not with our hearts.


maybe i'm naive, but what's the problem? why can't we respect eachother? why can't we help eachother? people die every second because they have no food. and we put our money into weapons.

there's a serious intelligence meltdown. i'm waiting for the PEACE & LOVE revolution.

HIROSHIMA PEACE SITE:
pcf.city.hiroshima.jp


* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *


but august 6 is also a day with positive connotations,
because it's my girlfriend's birthday!

H A P P Y B I R T H D A Y , min lskling ! ! !



i hope some bird will sing for you in my place.

=)





03 Aug, 2010

New songs..... 


Posted at 22:38 under MUSIC, MUSICAL, THOUGHTS


as i've got plenty of new songs written, i will post something here during the next few weeks. it's all just early pre-production samples, but it will give you an idea of the sound.

i'm currently working on two projects - my fourth album with 9 or 10 songs, and the musical, which will include more than 25 songs. the musical songs are not finished, but my aim is to finish them during this year.

so, for the curious, what about the sound, what about the style of music?

my next album is influenced by 70's soul, and most songs are very melody-based, with easily recognizable chorus parts. i've tried some of them live, and many people really loved them.

as for the musical, the style is not at all influenced by bossa nova. there is some strong world music influences, and as musical songs should be they are focusing on the lyrics and melodies. the style is a little different from song to song, because each song is expressing certain feelings or action in the story, but some people will call them 'pop songs'.

i don't know. i'm just the composer, don't ask me to put the labels ;)

of the music from all the musicals i have heard, it strikes me that the songs themselves, which should be the main part, are often very weak. therefore i have been putting a lot of effort in writing the melodies.

so, yes, it's two years since i recorded C'EST LA VIE. but i have been writing more than 30 new songs during this 'silence'.

and if you ask me, it's 30 of the best songs i have ever made! more than ever before, i have had the feeling that i am just a collector of the songs; i tune in to the right frequency and listen. then, i try to put them down on paper. most of the time, each song can take weeks to get right.

and then, one day, with a feeling of complete satisfaction, i can sit back and smile. then, very often, a small tear of thankfulness also brims in my eye as my heart is overwhelmed by the emotion of hearing a new song which i can barely understand myself how it came to life.

i never understood inspiration. it's something out of this world.

=)





01 Aug, 2010

Blog update 


Posted at 14:43 under ART, OTHERS


i've just updated my blog, with a new look, and a partly re-organized structure.

in the menu on the right you can see CATEGORIES, now also including MOVIES, OTHERS and a special category for everything regarding my japan experiences and visits, obviously called JAPAN.

i have also re-organized ALL posts (from the start of this blog) so they are easier to find, as some posts never had a category at all. that's fixed now. only some small posts are still un-categorized, so only the really curious person can find them =)

i hope you like the new black and green "bamboo" look. as always, let me know what you think.

=)





30 Jul, 2010

Tokyo radio: J-Wave 


Posted at 23:43 under MUSIC, JAPAN


yesterday i had a wonderful surprise.

a friend in Tokyo heard my song "Passion" on her favourite radio station, J-WAVE, and told me about it in an email. it was a coincidence, as she was just home for a short time on her day off, and during that short time they played my song. i was very happy!

here comes the funny part - the host and DJ of the show, Rachel, also sent me an email, inviting me to join her show next time i come to japan!

=)

i performed 3 songs live at J-WAVE in 2007. it was the first time i was in Japan - the second day, after four hours of sleep after 2 evening gigs the night before, and enjoying my life's first jetlag, i did my first japanese radio performance.

with the view from the radio studio in Roppongi overlooking all of Tokyo that lovely sunny november day, it is a memory for life.

i'm very glad to be able to visit J-WAVE again. "Rendez-vous" is a daily program, monday to thursday at 81.3 FM hosted by Rachel Chan. maybe you can hear it online if you're not in japan. i enter their website sometimes and listen to their podcasts. it's good practice for my japanese, and of course they play lots of good music!

next time, maybe i'll even be able to answer some questions in japanese =)


J-WAVE 81.3 FM:
j-wave.co.jp

Rachel Chan's blog:
ameblo.jp/rachelchan

Rendez-Vous @ J-WAVE:
j-wave.co.jp/original/rendezvous


J-WAVE - "the best music on the planet".

i'm thankful to be heard under that slogan!

=)






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