Beyond Music Vol.3

The Challenge

The ongoing virus pandemic continued to severely restrict the lives of artists. Thanks to our global online platform, the Beyond Music Projects were able to proceed unimpeded. Given today's diverse challenges, the four-time Grammy Award-winning producers of our Vol.3 album, Michael League and Bill Laurance, chose "conflict" as the guiding musical theme. Artists were asked to apply this concept to every element of the musical creation process. "Conflict" was to be used as a creative and inspirational tool to think about all kinds of struggles they face in their daily lives and reflect those experiences in their music.

Musical theme

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Submissions Beyond Music Vol.3

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    Artists
  • 0
    Countries
  • 0
    Songs
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    Instruments

The Outcome

Meet the producers

Album

Tracks

  • 1. Min Eigen Veg Nic Legacy, Msafiri Zawose, Makihiyo
  • 2. Chand Ke Phool Nic Legacy, Bijayashree Samal, Gozub, Žofie Kašparová
  • 3. Crossway Giuliana Potenza, Marshall Muze, Juan Barallobres
  • 4. Hold Oss Marthe Valle, Gamze Yilmazel, Hussain Hajj, Jens Kristian Rimau
  • 5. Wororo Nic Legacy, Msafiri Zawose, Tefo Mahola, Makadem, Fatime Songoro
  • 6. Ghetto Lullaby Adam Baldych, Yotam Ishay, Simon Wyrsch, Bodek Janke, Kari Sal
  • 7. Moksha Vishnu R, Varijashree Venugopal, Lukas Gasser
  • 8. There Must Be A Better Way Poggy, Jonathan Baptiste, Mauritz Lotz
  • 9. Midday Prayer Sofia Labropoulou, Shabnam Parvaresh, Leonardo Sapere, Vassilis Ketentzoglou, Mamak Khadem
  • 10. I'm Next Giuliano Modarelli, Gurdain Rayatt, DonBlu
  • 11. Calles Vacías Joan Paredes, Lis Kamala, Fer Ruiz, Ernest
  • 12. The Sight Of Mud & Concrete Yotam Ishay, Kan, Youngchae Jeong, Harshitha Krishnan
  • 13. De Lo Que Estamos Hechos Sebastián Pérez, Ronan Skillen, Silvia Aramayo, Matías Núñez
  • 14. Un-Knowing Josh Doughty, Ali Asaad, Simmy Singh
  • 15. Lelo Syssi Mananga, iZAYA, Ronan Skillen
  • 16. Walking Song Felix Higginbottom, midori jaeger, Mira Siegel

Listen to Vol.3 at

Buy Vol.3 at

Selection

Discover the winning music pieces of Beyond Music Vol.3

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Winning Submissions

  • “Hold Oss”

    • About the music piece

      “Hold Oss” addresses the dehumanization of refugees and aims at confronting the listener with the truth about what it means to be a fugitive. Which often is to lose your name and your identity. With the song, the collaborators want the listener to find the nameless and faceless refugee in themselves, in order to face the truths about having to flee your home.

    • Involved Artists

      Marthe Valle composer, lyricist, singer Play Video
      Hussain Hajj Musiscian, Singer, Lyricist Play Video
      Jens Kristian Rimau Musiscian, engineer, producer Play Video
    • Producer Statement

      “This simple melody and use of space grabbed us straight away. A brilliant example of how less can be more. The repeating motif provides an effective anchor on which the simple progression patiently evolves. This song has a powerful restraint and distinctive sonic palate and character that leaves you feeling grounded and wanting more.”

      - Michael League & Bill Laurance

  • “Calles Vacías”

    • About the music piece

      “Calles Vacías”, which translates to “empty streets”, intends to reflect the transitory and conflictive conditions we all have to go through as humans. These conditions seem to mainly appear when we’re in a dissolved state of the present, initiated by conflicts in our everyday life. Therefore “Calles Vacías” introduces its main character: a pedestrian, strolling through a city without anyone paying attention to them. The pedestrian reflects on solving the problem of the dissolved present. It’s about how to overcome the daily conflicts, and how to heal from them. 

    • Involved Artists

      Joan Paredes Compositor, letrista, cantante, productor, arreglista. Voz. Cuerdas. Play Video
      Fer Ruiz Compositor, letrista, cantante, productor, arreglista. Voz. Guitarra. Piano Play Video
      Ernest Compositor, letrista, cantante, productor, arreglista. Voz. Guitarra. Bateria. Bajo. Mezcla. Play Video
    • Producer Statement

      “An instantly arresting melody, cleverly highlighting new extensions over a descending chromatic chord progression. The layered vocals compliment one another beautifully, creating a rich tone and leading us in unexpected directions. With the concise arrangement, this song has instant character with a clear sense of what it is, whilst leaving just the right amount of room to be developed further.”

      - Bill Laurance & Michael League 

  • “Min Eigen Veg”

    • About the music piece

      "Min Eigen Veg" is about the search for one’s own path in life, and about the loneliness and constant inner conflict of not knowing where this path will lead. There is pain and deception, but also love and beauty along the way. All are equally important and necessary steps on this journey.

    • Involved Artists

      Nic Legacy Composer, producer, arranger, backing vocals, bass guitar, lap steel guitar, drums, percussion Play Video
      Msafiri Zawose Composer, lyricist, lead vocals, backing vocals, Tanzanian ilimba (a.k.a. kalimba) Play Video
      Makihiyo Composer, arranger, lyricist, lead vocals, backing vocals, langeleik Play Video
    • Producer Statement

      “Simple yet effective compositional content with a cohesive fusion of styles. The strong pulse and simple melody grabbed us immediately with the unique combination of a langeleik with Tanzanian ilimba. The distinctive 6/8 vamp and trancelike groove were instantly engaging and the melody evolves beautifully. This track also has a really strong sense of contour, saving the full entrance of the groove. Hard to keep your head still with this one!”

      - Michael League & Bill Laurance

  • “The Sight of Mud & Concrete”

    • About the music piece

      The subject of conflict is addressed in the song’s instrumental structure and composition. “The Sight of Mud & Concrete” starts out with a conflictive progression of chords, ones which seemingly have the same sonic energy, like two magnets that share the same energy, pushing each other apart. Later, in the track’s final section, a cathartic rhythmic climax is reached, resulting in the instrumental conflict being solved. 

    • Involved Artists

    • Producer Statement

      “We looooved this opening chord progression. The rubato feel with rich harmonies was immediately arresting. Then a simple melody with clean and spacious instrumentation develops into a beautiful melodic line that stretches unexpectedly away from the tonal centre. There is a lot of strong compositional content here that is ready and primed to be developed further.”

      - Bill Laurance & Michael League

  • “There Must Be A Better Way”

    • About the music piece

      “There Must Be A Better Way” is about finding a better way to exist, having explored all the dead end roads in one's life. It's about finding peace and meaning in the consequences of chaos and suffering. It’s about learning from the mistakes we make and about paving the way for more compassionate and intuitive choices for ourselves and the world. The song radiates an overall feeling of exceedance, overriding peace and harmony. It elevates the listener above undertones of conflict and chaos, which are surrendering and unravelling beneath the surface, ultimately revealing unity.

    • Involved Artists

      Poggy Composer, singer (all voices), lyricist, guitar and flute. Play Video
      Mauritz Lotz Producer, arranger, percussion, and soundscape. Play Video
    • Producer Statement

      “A great example of simple elements being used in complex ways. The simple two note melody stretched out over an uneven phrase cleverly keeps you guessing where the one is and combined with the counter melody in the bass and guitar, this track really seems happy in its own skin. With simple instrumentation, it’s also striking that the pulse of the song comes from the melodies and guitar parts and doesn’t ever feel like it needs any more percussion than the subtle amount that’s there. Mature and effortless, this is a beautifully written song that makes you want to listen again.”

      - Michael League & Bill Laurance

  • “Midday Prayer”

    • About the music piece

      “Midday Prayer” is a middle-eastern bolero combining elements from Iranian, Greek and Argentinian music. It’s an unlikely kind of prayer, a confession that occurs during the brightest hour of the day, when the sun reaches its highest point and nothing can be hidden. In this moment, one is exposed, vulnerable, and yet liberated. Farrochzad, who is an iconic and rebellious Iranian poetess, inspired “Midday Prayer”. Through her verses, sin transforms and acquires a divine quality. It becomes an anthem of femininity standing against the absurdity and the evolving darkness of our present.

    • Involved Artists

    • Producer Statement

      “This track feels like a prayer. The simple melody with organic instrumentation of kanun, guitar, cello and voice create an effective sense of feeling grounded, whilst lending the track a deeper voice that seems to live beyond the music. This track has a unique patience and humility, giving it a striking sense of cohesion and power.”

      - Bill Laurance & Michael League

  • “Lelo”

    • About the music piece

      The song is about being taught to avoid conflicts at all costs. But sometimes, enough is enough and the day comes, where we have to stand for ourselves, confront and return the blow. “Lelo” starts as a purely percussive track in 4/7, setting the tone for an edgy atmosphere. This is followed by vocals and lyrics in Lingala, giving the song its afro vibe.

    • Involved Artists

      Syssi Mananga Lead vocals, back-up vocals, lyrics, composition Play Video
      iZAYA electric guitars, synths, electronic production, composition Play Video
      Ronan Skillen Udu, gongs, Uhadi bow, drum kit, percussion, composition Play Video
    • Producer Statement

      “The simplicity of the vocal matched with the subtle complexity (and undeniability) of the groove really did it for us. We're both huge fans of odd meter figures that don't sound like odd meters, and this one grooves so hard that you don't even notice. This song really offers a fresh, unique palette to the record and leaves lots of room for further development while having a very clear identity.”

      - Michael League & Bill Laurance

  • “Crossway”

    • About the music piece

      “Crossway” is about the internal conflicts every human has to deal with deeply inside. These conflicts are often also projected onto the outside. The disputes resulting from this are not created by anyone tangible, but their appearances mean that we have to live and go through them to be one step ahead and face the limits that we have. Structures can annoy and hurt, but crossroads give you the opportunity to move and see a little more of the beliefs we have about ourselves and our lives.

    • Involved Artists

      Giuliana Potenza Singer, composer, lyrics, creator of some instruments arrangements and backing vocals Play Video
      Marshall Muze Singer, composer, lyrics and backing vocals Play Video
      Juan Barallobres Instruments, beats, and production Play Video
    • Producer Statement

      “A striking melody and chord progression with an effective use of production. This melody moves in all the directions you hope it will, whilst cleverly keeping you guessing. The combined vocals of Giuliana Potenza and Marshall-Muze create a complimentary combination of vocal tones, with revealing lyrical content focussing on the need for self reflection, in light of striving for resolution whilst the memorable chorus reinforces a concise structure and particularly satisfying contour.”

      - Bill Laurance & Michael League

  • “Ghetto Lullaby”

    • About the music piece

      “Ghetto Lullaby” is a piece based on a melody from the IVth String Quartet (Lento) by Polish-Jewish classical composer Szymon Laks, who survived two concentration camps during World War II. This composition links five extraordinary artists, who not only represent countries involved in the conflict of World War II, but also combine classical music with improvisation. The piece unites artists and different musical genres by using a rare Renaissance violin as a lead instrument.

    • Involved Artists

    • Producer Statement

      “This melody, taken from the IV string quartet of Polish / Jewish composer Szymon Laks (1901 – 1983) stayed in our head for days after first hearing it. While simple, the melody moves in unexpected directions and with uneven phrases that leave you wondering where one began and the other ended. Re-realised by the stunning tone of Adam Baldych’s Violin and with simple understated instrumentation, this track is a beautiful homage to the original composer, utilising a mature use of space and contour.”

      - Michael League & Bill Laurance

  • “De Lo Que Estamos Hechos”

    • About the music piece

      “De Lo Que Estamos Hechos” is about where we come from, the places we call home and how these places give us the desire to fight for our planet to save it from the many disasters and conflicts threatening it. It’s also about the mystery of love and how, despite these disasters, we keep finding ourselves strengthened, nourished and hopeful because of the love we give, and the love we receive.

    • Involved Artists

      Sebastián Pérez Composer, arranger, guitars, drums, vocals and percussion Play Video
      Silvia Aramayo Lyrics, lead and background vocals Play Video
    • Producer Statement

      “The only song on our list with acoustic guitar as the featured instrument, the clever, weaving guitar figures set up a perfect foundation for some of the richest vocal harmonies on the record. A very active bass performance provides beautiful momentum, helping the song glide along throughout. The two of us have some additional ideas for how to reframe the material to accentuate its intimate, breezy optimism.”

      - Bill Laurance & Michael League

  • “Wororo”

    • About the music piece

      “Wororo'' is a psychedelic fusion of afrobeat and jazz music. It describes the modern obsession with material wealth and living the easy life, often leading to conflict. With lyrics in four languages (Swahili, English, Hungarian and Xhosa), the song challenges the listener to try and appreciate what they already have and to see beyond superficial desires.

    • Involved Artists

      Nic Legacy Composer, Producer, Arranger, Bass guitar, Electric guitar, Synthesizer Play Video
      Msafiri Zawose Composer, Lyricist, Lead Singer Play Video
      Makadem Composer, Lyricist, Lead Singer, Nyatiti
      Fatime Songoro Composer, Lyricist, Lead Singer, Saxophone Play Video
    • Producer Statement

      “Our heads were bobbing from the first bar of Wororo. Rhythm reigns supreme here, both in the wonderful performance from the rhythm section and in the vocal parts, which invite the listener to join in on the chorus instantly. We were both big fans of the lo-fi, gritty bass and drum sounds as well, which will set up the perfect base upon which to build in the production process. The fluttery synth parts give this one a beautiful push in a non-conventional direction, and we'll definitely be using those as a guide for further exploration.”

      - Michael League & Bill Laurance

  • “Walking Song”

    • About the music piece

      The idea behind “Walking Song” is a composition without lyrics that people of all ages and cultural backgrounds could sing, hum or play along to. The song isn’t restricted to a particular language or a prescribed meaning/narrative. Its title was inspired by the long distances families travel in order to escape conflict. The song also serves as an exploration of ideas on the material. It leaves room for possible solos in the middle. More piano or other instruments could potentially be added.

    • Involved Artists

      Felix Higginbottom composer, producer, percussion, piano, guitar (badly).
    • Producer Statement

      “One of the more minimalist submissions, Walking Song offers a light, consonant energy that feels like a palette cleanser in the context of the other material. A simple, beautiful chord progression and hooky, rich melody that lends itself to being expressed in a variety of contexts and instrumentations combine in an effortless way. Of all the songs on the record, this one leaves the most room for further development and collaboration with other artists in the Beyond Music community, which we will certainly be taking advantage of.”

      - Bill Laurance & Michael League

  • “Moksha”

    • About the music piece

      In Indian philosophy, “Moksha” is the ultimate liberation from conflicts. The song is born out of a musical and spiritual conflict. Vishnu, a guitarist with deep love for both traditional Indian and Western music, had to earn his freedom both physically and musically by mastering multiple genres through instrument innovation, but also socially and emotionally, breaking free of opinion and expectations of purists and traditionalists, carving his own path in music. “Moksha” is the embodiment of this liberation and ultimately a song that aims to transcend musical boundaries.

    • Involved Artists

      Vishnu R Composer, Producer, Arranger, Navtar (unique 9-string fretless, fretted & harp guitar), Guitar Play Video
      Lukas Gasser Co-Producer, Arranger, Mixing, Drums, Tabla, Darbuka, Piano and Bass Play Video
    • Producer Statement

      “Moksha feels like the perfect bridge between the more serious, downtempo, acoustic selections and the higher-energy, explorative ones. It's grounded, grooving, and patient, with one of the most intricate and beautiful melodies on the record. A rich color palette featuring a variety of lesser-known stringed instruments (Navtar!), carnatic flute, drum set, piano, and percussion connects the dots and provides a wonderful foundation for an unbelievable vocal performance from Varijashree Venugopal.”

      - Michael League & Bill Laurance

  • “I’m Next”

    • About the music piece

      “I’m Next” is a track about the countless opportunities we seem to have in life, but also about how most aspects of our lives are determined by what class, race or gender we are. This song takes aim at raising awareness and calls for the equal spread of chances and opportunities for everyone in this world, despite where you're from or what society wants to label you as. 

    • Involved Artists

      Giuliano Modarelli Composer, producer, guitarist, percussionist, programming Play Video
      DonBlu Vocalist/Mc
    • Producer Statement

      “A driving, deep groove and a hypnotizing guitar hook create fertile ground for a wonderful flow from South African emcee DonBlu. We were excited to represent both South Africa and the spoken word in selecting this song, which drives forward with a loping energy unique to the collection of selected songs. We were particularly taken by the lyric and the feeling of its superimposition over a 12/8 drum pattern, creating a rich interaction of rhythms that draws you in. Above all, this one makes you move.”

      - Bill Laurance & Michael League

  • “Un-Knowing”

    • About the music piece

      Three unlikely artists come together from across the globe to create this collaboration of Syrian vocal, violin and kora music. The origin of the piece started as a creation by Josh on the kora, which Ali added his haunting vocals to. Lastly, the beautiful and moving strings by Simmy joined. Altogether, the song creates a moving and mysterious emotion, one of unknowing. It’s moving towards something exciting yet scary. Could it be a conflict or ultimate freedom? Nobody knows.

    • Involved Artists

      Josh Doughty Composer and kora player Play Video
      Ali Asaad Singer, Song writer, Composer Play Video
      Simmy Singh Violin player, Composer Play Video
    • Producer Statement

      “Bare, intimate, and deeply emotional, Un-Knowing is by far the most wide-open selection of the sixteen. Space is the place here, leaving kora alone to support goosebump-inducing performances from Syrian vocalist Ali Asaad and British violinist Simmy Singh. While it feels spacious and free, brief melodic meetings between the three musicians draw you in to stay for the improvised tangents. We're looking forward to growing out from this auspicious encounter of three unique voices.”

      - Michael League & Bill Laurance

  • “Chand Ke Phool”

    • About the music piece

      “Chand Ke Phool”, which translates to "moon flowers", is an unique Indian/Andean cumbia song. It's inspired by the giant impact of one particular hypothesis: The suggestion that earth and moon were once one planet that was broken into two by a monstrous collision with another planet. This hypothesis stands as a metaphor for how Pakistan and India were hit by great conspiracy, and therefore divided on the basis of religion. Similar occurrences appear in the histories of countries like Romania, Moldova, Ireland and Yugoslavia. At the core of all conflicts, there is a void, which can bring peace and prosperity if it’s filled with the sharing of love and care.

    • Involved Artists

      Nic Legacy Composer, Producer, Arranger, Bass guitar, Percussion Play Video
      Bijayashree Samal Composer, Lyricist, Lead Singer Play Video
      Gozub Composer, Producer, Arranger, Ukulele Play Video
    • Producer Statement

      “One of the most instantly recognizable songs of the bunch, Chand Ke Phool grabs you from the first second and takes you away in its playful, bouncy flow. The interaction between the vocal and flutes provides a feathery bed in the high end that makes this one feel like a dream. The blend of Indian and South American traditions is fascinating here, and something that will continue developing in the coming production of the track. It's an earworm for sure.”

      - Bill Laurance & Michael League

  • Honoured Submission “Find Us (Beyond)”

    • About the music piece

      In addition to the 16 awards that will be part of the Beyond Music album Vol.3, Beyond Music would like to present another award in the form of pure prize money. The honour goes to the team behind “Find Us (Beyond)”, a collaboration by three artists from the United States, Switzerland and Italy/Netherlands. 

      “Find Us (Beyond)” is a song about how many of us are stuck in our own heads, isolated from the truth about others. We see an idea of someone instead of who they really are and who they could become. We fail to see the universality of what our own symbols and facets mean, and we get lost in specificity. "Find Us (Beyond)" is a call to humanity to believe in better methods when conflict arises. Bypassing our world's problems is not an option, we need to approach them from a heart-centered place. A place beyond ancient walls, aged stories from the past and endless wars. Meet us there, meet us beyond. 

    • Involved Artists

    • Beyond Music Statement

      "Jacoby, Kate and Elisa have created a song that could not have better expressed the essence of Beyond Music. "Find us, beyond heavy weapons, meet us there, we'll be waiting" Jacoby sings over a slowly rising wave of synthesizers, while Kate tenderly plucks her harp. Beyond - that's where we want to transport the listener with Beyond Music. Beyond isolation and exclusion, where music ultimately unfolds its power of unification. This place is Beyond Music, and "Find Us (Beyond)" soundtracks this notion magnificently.”

      - Regula Curti, Founder & Konstanze Wiedemann, CEO Beyond Music

Production

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More producer feedback

Michael League about
There Must Be A Better Way
Michael League about
Crossway
Michael League about
De Lo Que Estamos Hechos
Michael League about
Lelo
Michael League about
Min Eigen Veg
Michael League about
Moksha
Michael League about
Wororo
Michael League about
Chand Ke Phool
Michael League about
Hold Oss

Insights + Interviews

Michael League about
The uniqueness of Vol.3
Bill Laurance about
The theme of conflict
Michael League about
What makes Beyond Music special
Bill Laurance about
The production process of Vol.3
Bill Laurance about
The potential of Beyond Music
Michael League about
The meaning of music
Bill Laurance about
The opportunities of music
Michael League about
His wish for Beyond Music
Bill Laurance about
What is ahead for Beyond Music