As my generation collectively reaches yet another decade of existence, we begin to experience more and more of what our parents must have felt at this point in their lives. Among other things, the music that defined us in our early years, is starting to only be available via the archives of time. Whether the bands have broken up, still play but have faded out of relevancy, or key members fell victim to untimely deaths, the music they created, the music we passionately latched onto, still exists, but is no longer receiving perpetual rejuvenation of relevant newness. Nirvana is without a doubt, one of those bands. Heart-Shaped Box is without a doubt, one of those songs. And like every generation preceding ours who believed in and held something dear; we too, pay homage to the greats.
Nirvana’s “Heart-Shaped Box” covered by Kawehi
Meet Kawehi. A Hawaiian “one woman band” you may already know from her steadily increasing internet fame. Her full-band sound comes from an intricate combination and utilization of guitar, MIDI keyboard, beatboxing for percussion, obviously singing vocals, and Ableton Live in conjunction with a trigger touch pad. Ableton and the touch pad provides the capability of recording, storing, and performing one-touch playback and stopping of loops of each individual recorded part. With Ableton’s playback settings in coordination with the time signature of the song, when triggering a loop or loops on the touchpad for playback, the loops intuitively start on the next measure or cue so the music comes in all at the same time and all at the right spot. If this is starting to sound somewhat familiar, you might know about Dub FX, a known worldwide street performer who creates music utilizing similar concepts and techniques.
Kawehi is unsigned and known as a DIY artist, making use of crowd-funding services like KickStarter, to fund both her and her endeavors. Her newest project to which her version of Nirvana’s Heart-Shaped Box belongs, is an EP of covers called, “Robot Heart”. Robot Heart is a concept EP about a female robot who wants to become human. That description alone, is enough to validate choosing the song, Heart-Shaped Box, whether for being a song somewhat about a vital life-sustaining organ or the rumored claim that it’s about Courtney Love’s birth canal. Either way, she did a pretty amazing job covering it and it’s even more impressive to see her do it live in this video. Click anywhere on this sentence to go to Kawehi’s KickStarter page and contribute to her Robot Heart project.
Hit up the comments below and let me know what you think of the Nirvana cover… or just post about Nirvana and all the other bands you miss and wish were still doing their thing. The latter of the two will probably end up with me having a pretty killer playlist of nostalgia.
By: Eli Rebich