I Am David Sparkle?
Drawing blanks at these local band names? Well, don’t be too hard on yourself because there many out there who are just as clueless and unenthusiastic in the local music scene.
While there are indeed pockets of ardent fans supporting local bands, the numbers certainly remain too small to truly sustain the local music industry. This lack of widespread support has left many local musicians to pursue their interest in music part-time; as an leisure activity after working hours.
Yet despite the challenges of making it in the local industry, several local bands have hung on and made a name for themselves.
Electrico, arguably Singapore’s most successful pop act, has won multiple awards including “Favourite Artist: Singapore” at the 2005 MTV Asia Awards. The band has also enjoyed chart success, hitting the number one spot on both local and overseas pop radio stations with singles like “I Want You” and “Love In New Wave”. In 2007, both Electrico and another indie pop rock outfit, The Great Spy Experiment, travelled to USA to play at the Texas music festival South By Southwest (SWSX) after their successful application.
Veteran pop-punk band Plainsunset, who were reunited in 2006 after splitting up two years prior, has enjoyed a strong fanfare amongst local youths. According to the band’s biography, a record turnout was present for their reunion gig held two years ago at Esplanade’s Baybeats Festival.
Younger, small-time local bands have also gotten in on the act by releasing full-length albums and EPs on independent labels such as Wake Me Up Music, Aging Youth Records and Kittywu Records. On any given weekend, gigs and concerts for local bands are also held at venues such as The Substation, Esplanade Outdoor Theatre and *scape Youth Park. A 24/7 subscription based local music radio station, named Redistar was also launch earlier this year.
But while commendable success has been achieved by local bands in recent years, can local bands keep this up? Why aren’t more people listening to local acts? Critics deem local music productions to be inferior compared to those by international acts but do they have a point?
The Urbanwire went out to the streets and to find out if such sentiments does indeed strike a chord with some youths.
Do you share the same thoughts as those featured in the video? Whatever your opinions, we would like to hear from you, so do drop us a comment below.
As the What Say You? draws to a close, we would like to thank everyone again who has contributed to the series. If you have anything to say about the series, don’t hesitate to drop us a comment!
What Say You? is a 3-part series produced by Elliyani Mohamad and Hoong Wei Long. It will attempt to showcase what this generation of Singaporean youths really cares about and has to say on various topics like foreign politics, the arts and global issues.