Hail Satan!

The Mountain Goats, a show that involved no animals at all. Perhaps a few demons doing their possession thing, but if that’s how the members of this band got their amazing levels of suaveness, then it is welcome. At times, the singer’s voice had just the right amount of grateyness that any cheese to pass through it would send you into shock if not taken under proper supervision. Dang some of this man’s lyrics are super dark, but through his voice, it don’t even register as such.

I had to post a video that is basically a full show because a huge part of the good time had was the monologues in between songs, and the inane banter that occurs. Shame that the drum and bass weren’t featured. Give it a good watchin, totally worth it.


Get your EDM on!

For strange reasons I resisted the wave of electronic music that hit us in the past few years. “Oh this dubstep isn’t even music blah blah blah.”

There’s no reason to limit your intake of music due to snobbyness. Glitchmob was the first to ease me out of such thoughts and I was able to see this show over in yonder Scottsdale. Amazing show got me hooked, and I wanted to see more.

Next it was off to Porter Robinson land, but this time it was at the Marquee. It was packed, and it was sweaty as hell. I am surprised I did not get hit hard with dehydration.. every time I went out to get a drink a song would come on that sounded super amazing so I had to run back to my spot near the front and ride that energy. I musta looked pretty bad off at one point as people were giving me the ice from whatever drinks they were finishing up, good times. That show went till about 2 in the morning, I’ve never been so tired.

That videos not the marquee but, hot dang, from 1:50 onward, that build and drop is crazy!

My full conversion to being absolutley in support of the Electronic Dance Music came from the Bassnectar show, 2 hours of seamless amazing music just made it all so complete.

To hear another’s voice

In the song Contemplate by Wale, he brings up the topic of listening. Referencing his romantic interest he states, “Cut me off every time I’m talkin’, which means she aint never hear nottin” Its a strange topic to think about, to break down conversation, because it is a natural thing that we have… but can’t it also be improved?

I absolutely love the conversation structure of The Big Lebowski, one person is not done talking before another begins their thought in that movie. The pace is great, and in my mind adds an urgent flow, which leads to excitement to the conversation. For me, to hear another’s voice is to assume at least a comradery with them, if we are entering into conversation. With said comradery comes an implied level of respect for one another, so if we are quick to interject ideas into the train of thought, neither party is apt to take offense.

We play a game of verbal Tetris, manipulating and stacking topics and thoughts until we arrive at an agreeable outcome, then the long straight block clears the rows. At which point, silence… thoughts rebuild, its a fucking Z block on the way, shitty start to a new row, but also… interesting. This is the point of humming, of eye wondering, of smiling, and baseless gigles. The music starts and Dr Mario is throwing pills at us. Crap, its a whole new game… its a whole new game! but we are prepared for it, the ground rules are familiar, hell the stage is almost identical. Don’t let the lab coat intimidate.

How you speak, how I listen.

I’ve been listening to a podcast called Ace on the House at work for the past few weeks. It is a home improvement show hosted by ex-carpenter now celebrity Adam Carolla, and his boyhood friend, still construction worker, Ray. When I first clicked on the link it was just to dive deeper into my long standing love affair with Adam Carolla, but I wasn’t expecting to be enticed by a whole different realm… jargon, and the knowledge to back it up. I know very little about construction or home improvement, yet when these guys start to form solutions to peoples situations half way through a call I am ears wide open listening. Then to see their collaborative process, where Adam will pitch his idea, then Ray will tell him about some new product that has hit the market since Adam left the game. “No fuckin way, they got that?” the real excitement expressed by these guys over their world is super fun to listen to.

Ace Ray and Nick

One of the funner episodes was with Nick Offerman from Parks and Rec. Nick is a fine wood worker who just knows so so much about wood, the different species of wood, and the fine art of canoe building. There are some points in their conversation where you actually hear Nick do this little giddy squeal over what they are talking about, which is such a break in character from his pinnacle of manliness that he plays on Parks and Rec. I could listen to these guys talk about wood all day… and I have.

Makes me wonder why I can’t reach this level of interest in many classroom settings. What is the missing element there, or what is different.

More on goals, not moron goals…

I’ve been digging on listening to people’s motivation lately, I love listening to interviews and hearing celebrities talk about the work required to get to where they are at finally, and how that, still, isn’t the end goal. Another great source of this thought pattern are those obsessed with fitness. Mad props go out to those who get lost in the gym. I recently was reminded about an Australian who went by the name Zyzz. He lead a small movement down there in Aussieland called Aesthetics, it mostly involved walking around with no shirt on, rave dancing, and behaving in manners that many would label douchey, but having an amazing outlook on life! In one of his videos he talked about when he first started body building. How he used to be so skinny, rail thin, that in the beginning he only wanted to “get shredded’ to impress the girls. Then he says it went beyond that, it became about his own progress, the feeling he got from setting goals in the weight room and shattering them. Its weird, many times when goals are brought up my mind goes off into the land where I’m at a retail meeting and the manager is talking about the meaningless goals yet again. Its no good to make that mind journey though, achieving goals can be its very own kind of high just waiting for us to take that ride.

We need a Zyzz playlist to groove to and get to some goal shattering

Positive waves

Kelly: Well Oddball, what do you think?
Oddball: It’s a wasted trip baby. Nobody said nothing about locking horns with no Tigers.
Big Joe: Hey look, you just keep them Tigers busy and we’ll take care of the rest.
Oddball: The only way I got to keep them Tigers busy is to LET THEM SHOOT HOLES IN ME!
Crapgame: Hey, Oddball, this is your hour of glory. And you’re chickening out!
Oddball: To a New Yorker like you, a hero is some type of weird sandwich, not some nut who takes on three Tigers.
Kelly: Nobody’s asking you to be a hero.
Oddball: No? Then YOU sit up in that turret baby.
Kelly: No, because you’re gonna be up there, baby, and I’ll be right outside showing you which way to go.
Oddball: Yeah?
Kelly: Yeah.
Oddball: Crazy… I mean like, so many positive waves… maybe we can’t lose, you’re on!

-Words of wisdom from Donald Sutherland in Kelly’s Heroes.

I once knew a man who populated his home with plants. He didn’t do it just cause it was perdy, he told me that plants clean the air of negative waves. Plants never have lived very long in my house. Can fake plants can achieve the same results of wave scrubbing? Is this the answer? These are pressing issues.

Shows to go to

Licensing Expo – Las Vegas
This seems to be one of the top places to go in order to get some insight / access into the entertainment and commercial industry. Shucks, ‘taint even that far away, Vegas is just around the river bend. I had no idea that this is the launch pad for those mass produced hotel paintings and the like. That is really cool that your work can be added to a catalog that interior designers are lifting from for their client’s projects.

Dates & Location:
June 18-20, 2013, Mandalay Bay Convention Center, Las Vegas, NV

Also theres the Massive Black workshop. Massive Black are the guys behind ConceptArt.org and they put on these super cool workshops all over the world. It seems like a great place to just go network with peers and people from the industry. I can see a lot of open, constructive conversations about portfolios happening there, and loads of inspiration. The people from Massive Black are all so talented and ready to share that with anyone, plus they have the sense of humor to call themselves Massive Black, and have their logo be a rooster, gotta respect that.

Android Jones
Additional perks include Android Jones being one of the big hitters from Massive Black and I’ve been groovin on his stuff for some time now, wheeeeooo buddy.

Hes so Van Damme inspiring!!

Van Damme manages to do the splits in pretty much every movie he stars in. Hell, in Bloodsport he does like 4 spinning split kicks in a row, whilst blinded!

It reminds me how cool it is that often times as artists and creatives we have a certain mark that tends to infect our work. Even if we are making things of a completely different subject matter, people can often tell that something is ours. It could be dangerous if it makes it so we never progress and are just trapped by a certain “style”, but if we just allow our work to have a recognizable feel to it.. that is a cool aspect.

…man… look at dem splits!

Flirting with crazy

Photo by Simon Fernandez

This man is at the helm of Howlin Rain, and after seeing his raw animalism on stage opening for Band of Horses, I wanted to look a little more into this crazed bearded man. Enter mini documentary about his infatuation with making music.

Listen to any artist and they’ll tell you about how its all just a gift and requires absolutely no work or time to be good at their craft. Wait, no… its the complete opposite! When he briefly describes the bands journey as release tour rehearse record, release tour rehearse record for a decade, and then you’ve earned your position in the music world, it puts things in a little bit of perspective. I am rather new to this whole creation of art scene when I think about it in his terms, I still haven’t done my decades penance. But you can also see the aftermath of that dedication in his attitude. I love his thoughts regarding the infiltration of our minds that creation causes. He says that, “Every artist is enticed by the opportunity to do that… flirt with something that’s gonna make them crazy, and potentially crush them.” I love listening to people talk about the passion they posses for their work, it inspires me to go and make more myself.

Its odd, people often don’t pay much attention to an opening band, but they too can have so much to offer us.

Dear Me : Yes Yes Yes!

One short term goal has been checked off the list, this last Saturday I got to see Foxy Shazam in concert. I had heard that these gentlemen were one hell of an experience, and their videos tell the same story. After a summer of touring with Slash, they made a little stop at a dingy bar in Salt Lake City. This was an intimate place man, and when you are seeing a artist known for his blazing energy on stage, you wonder if he’ll be able to pull off the same moves in such a small area. Well it was no problem, the lead singer Eric was everywhere, doing summer salts, jumping on his guitar players shoulders, headstands, swinging upside down from pipes in the ceiling, it was amazing! It wasn’t just the singer though, everyone in this band is a fountain of energy, just spewing forth awesomeness. The keyboardist surfed his keyboard out into the crowd, then jumped out as well. We held up both keyboard and him while he played laying out like superman. Its these kind of stage antics that make me love it when bands acknowledge that they have a crowd it is so incredibly different than standing just up there and playing your instrument.

The night ended as Eric requested cigarettes from the crowd. About 7 were given to him and he lined them all up between his fingers. Gimme a lighter! he called, he then lights them all and takes huge drags from the group. As the band starts to jam, he takes the cigarettes out, turns them around and eats them! This was the Foxy I had heard tales of, I am so glad they did not disappoint in any regard. It was one of those shows you wish they could have played for another hour or two.