[COLUMN/COLUMN] Mind the Gap by Sara Al Hamad: First Christmas/Prvi Božić
24. prosinca 2018.
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[COLUMN/COLUMN] Mind the Gap by Sara Al Hamad: First Christmas/Prvi Božić

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First Christmas

While I am engaging in pagan rituals, my first Christmas outside of Croatia is approaching. I was never much into celebrating it, gifts always seemed like a hassle and family time was something that annoyed me. All this changed during December 2018. Tradition can be really fun when it’s not mean and corrupt, and I am finally enjoying it. Xmas has nothing to do with religion, but it has everything to do with showing how much you appreciate people around you. So, as of this year, I am doing it as it should be done – with cooking, music and crackers, playing silly games with the people you love.

That being said, let’s get back to pagan rituals, cos you are probably wondering what I meant by that. The answer is hidden behind two very powerful words – winter solstice. On this day, new year begins, and I have been celebrating it for a couple of years now. This year I optioned for a traditional and contemporary folk and world roots knees up from the Firepit collective. Surrounded by mostly Irish people, I jumped around in celebration. Long skirts with flowers, beer in the air and stagediving were definitely highlights of the evening. And of course, my friend from Finland with the is-this-really-happening look on her face – priceless! I believe she experienced a cultural shock and I wish I had her permission to share the pictures with you!

During the week, most of my time was spent reading about the Association of Independent Music – AIM. This non profit association of mostly record labels is working on connecting the people in the industry and improving the quality of their services. AIM is also working a lot on connecting tech and music, and this is how I came across their CEO, Paul Pacifico. A very interesting guy, who also knows a lot of artists in Croatia, told me a thing or two of how he sees the industry and what his plans for AIM are. Unfortunately, I cannot go into much details, but I am quite sure they will make some great things in the course of 2019 and you should definitely keep them on your radar.

Random pic of winter wonderland

Speaking of music and tech, last week, an interesting thing happened. Instrumental, a company I already described as the next big thing in one of my columns, landed the competitive UK chart Christmas No.1 with YouTube star LadBaby. They are known for their scouting AI driven platform and they are slowly establishing an all-around service for young artists, which is a very good solution to those without a label. Number of DIY platforms for artists is on the rise, but Instrumental has the tools others don’t, so it will definitely be exciting to see how they will use it.

Since I need to do a lot of cooking now, I am forced to wrap it up, but before I go I want to take this opportunity to wish you all a merry Christmas – enjoy good food, get those few pounds extra and shine brighter than your city lights!

HR

 

Prvi Božić

Dok se bavim poganskim ritualima, moj prvi Božić izvan Hrvatske stiže. Nisam neka osoba za slavlje Božića, darovi su mi se uvijek činili kao gnjavaža i vrijeme posvećeno obitelji je meni bilo uvijek dosadno. Sve se to promijenilo u prosincu ove godine. Tradicija može biti doista zabavna kad nije zla i korumpirana i konačno uživam u svemu. Božić nema nikakve veze s religijom, nego s time da pokažete koliko cijenite ljude oko sebe. Tako da od ove godine radim onako kako trebam raditi – kuhajući uz glazbu i krekere, igrajući lude igre s osobama koje volim.

Kao što sam rekla, vratimo se poganskim ritualima jer se vjerojatno pitate što sam mislila pod time. Odgovor se krije iza dvije vrlo snažne riječi – zimski solsticij. Na ovaj dan počinje nova godina i već je slavim nekoliko godina upravo toga dana (21. prosinca). Ove godine otvorena sam za tradicionalni i suvremeni folk te world music korijene Firepit kolektiva. Okružena većinom Ircima, bacila sam se na proslavu. Duge suknje s cvjetićima, pivo u zraku i stagediving su sigurno bili najbolji trenuci večeri. I naravno, moja prijateljica iz Finske s „događa li se ovo stvarno“ pogledom na licu – neprocjenjivo. Vjerujem da je iskusila kulturni šok i baš bih voljela da imam njezinu dozvolu i podijeliti fotografije s vama.

Tijekom tjedna većinu vremena potrošila sam čitajući o Udruženju nezavisne glazbe (AIM). Ovo neprofitno udruženje koje se sastoji od većinom izdavačkih kuća radi na spajanju ljudi iz industrije te poboljšanju kvalitete njihovih usluga. AIM ujedno radi dosta i na povezivanju tehnologije i glazbe i tako sam došla do njihovog direktora, Paula Pacifica. Vrlo zanimljiv čovjek, koji zna dosta o glazbenicima u Hrvatskoj, rekao mi je dvije-tri stvari o tome kako on gleda na industriju i koji su njegovi planovi za AIM. Nažalost, ne mogu otkriti više detalja, ali sigurna sam da će uraditi neke sjajne stvari tijekom 2019. godine i svakako ih trebate početi pratiti.

Kad već govorim o glazbi i tehnologiji, prošlog tjedna se dogodila jedna zanimljiva stvar. Instrumental, kompanija o kojoj sam već govorila u jednoj kolumni kao sljedeću veliku stvar, ima božićni broj jedan hit u Velikoj Britaniji s YouTube zvijezdom LadBaby. Poznati su po skautiranju s platformom koju pogoni umjetna inteligencija te se polako primjećuju i primjenjuju u raznim servisima za mlade glazbenike, što je zaista dobar izbor za one koji nemaju izdavačku kuću. Broj DIY platformi za glazbenike je u porastu, ali Instrumental ima alat za to dok drugi nemaju. Tako da će biti dosta uzbudljivo gledati kako će koristiti taj alat u budućnosti.

S obzirom da se moram baciti na kuhanje, prisiljena sam završiti s pisanjem, ali prije nego što se rastanem od vas moram iskoristiti ovu prigodu i svima čestitati Božić – uživajte u dobroj hrani, nabacite koju kilicu i blistajte svjetlije od svjetala u vašim gradovima.