JULY 2012 Issue • 206
P E E BL SUMMER MUSIC SPECIAL ISSUE SPECIAL RE-ISSUE
CARRIE MANOLAKOS LARRY G(EE) XYLOPHOLKS POST POST LAYNE LYNCH ISHI
n i p e ble inside
36 24 36 2 BLEEP
ON THE COVER Carrie Manolakos may be a YouTube sensation right now, but she’s been making music for years. We talk with the Mamma Mia and Wicked actress about her newest venture: singing her own words. XYLOPHOLKS If you’ve taken the train in New York, you may have seen a skunk and a pink gorilla playing a xylophone and an upright bass. It’s not just a gimmick. These are some serious ragtime musicians.
THE BLEEP QUIZ
This duo met on the open mike circuit and realized they might have something together musically. Turns out, they were right.
If you like feathers, neon and music you can dance to, you need to check out Ishi. They’re on the soundtrack for the new Steve Carrell/Kiera Knightly film “Seeking a Friend for the End of the World,” and yes, they make that headdress look good. Check out our BLEEP Quiz featuring musician Larry G(ee).
Letter from the Editor One of the things I love most about this life is the fact that hearing a song can instantly take you back to a very specific moment in time. We spend our years creating this soundtrack of our lives without even knowing it, and when we hear that song again, we’re transported back to that moment and it’s as real, as vivid and as tangible as it was when it was actually happened. Today I was sitting at my desk in Manhattan, listening to one of my Spotify playlists and suddenly, I found myself driving down highway 121 in Dallas, the top’s down on my convertible, three of my best friends are in the car and we’re headed toward Six Flags. As I listened to this song that played in the car so many times, I felt like I was actually there. But it didn’t stop there. I could smell the over priced funnel cakes, I could feel the wind on my skin as we rode the Titan, I could feel the air conditioning before we watched the show at the Southern Palace. I was transported to the carefree summers of my youth, a memory made all the more profound with the passing of time. And I can feel all of this because of one song. That’s profoundly powerful. There’s true power of music. This issue is our annual music issue and it’s full of incredible singers and musicians that are creating, today, the soundtrack we will remember ten years from now. From belting Broadway veterans to songwriters just getting started, we’ve compiled a group of musicians for you to watch out for and add to your own playlists. That’s of course not all that’s in here. We’ve got some really cool features on both interior and exterior design and we’ve got an incredibly personal and beautiful essay written by one of our favorite writers, Alex Wright. We’re also in the Olympic spirit with this issue’s BLEEP List. Be sure to read through our reasons why you should be watching, even if you aren’t into sports at all. Much like music, the Olympics make the people come together. Perhaps Madonna was onto something.
Ryan Brinson Editor-in-Chief 4 BLEEP
HIGHLIGHTING YOUR SMILE
FROM THE GAP TO THE GARDEN
Alex Wright writes a personal essay about growing up with a model mother, how divorce shaped her and how she channeled all of it to became an actress.
We catch up with Larry G(EE) before he heads out on the Warped Tour this summer.
Our Cocktail Connoisseur Nathan Robins serves up some delicious summer cocktails that will take your 4th of July festivities up a notch.
Denton Tarver moved to New York to be on Broadway and after conquering the stage, heâ€™s set his sights on a new challenge: Your backyard.
Another Ben Humeniuk cartoon!
Editor-in-Chief Ryan Brinson Editor at Large Julie Freeman Design/Decor Editor Lisa Sorenson • Culture Editor Rachael Mariboho Business & Audience Development Manager Sarah Rotker Cartoonist Ben Humeniuk Cover Photography by Kevin Thomas Garcia Contributors: Danielle Milam • Alex Wright • Charly Edsitty • Amy Stone Holly Renner • Colton Scally Featured Photographers: Colton Scally, Richard Ross All articles and photos are the property of the writers and artists. All rights reserved.
by Rachael Mariboho
Every four years, an event occurs that brings the whole world together: the summer Olympics. From July 27 to August 12, our eyes will be on the city of London as we marvel at the thrill of victory and weep at the agony of defeat. It is a competition incomparable to anything else in the world, and, unless you are made of stone, you will be as riveted as the rest of us here at BLEEP. However, while the actual athletic events may be the central focus of the games, there are other reasons why we are excited by Olympic season. Yes, it is a season. Don’t believe me? Turn on NBC for 2 minutes anytime day or night. Here, in no particularly important order, are five reasons why you should be excited about these Olympic games.
The opening ceremonies
While always a crowd pleaser, London’s opening ceremonies have a lot to live up to. During their 2008 opening ceremonies, China basically showed the entire world what is possible when you have unlimited funds and are the world’s most populous country. No one thinks London, or any place for that matter, can top that. But, as Hugh Grant reminds us in the film “Love, Actually,” “England is a small country, but a great one too. It is the country of Shakespeare, Churchill, and the Beatles. Sean Connery, Harry Potter, and David Beckham’s right foot.” If England can produce icons like these, then there is no limit to what they can do in one opening ceremony.
Visa Commercials narrated by Morgan Freeman
Whoever came up with this campaign, with its all-inclusive tag line “Go World” is a genius. I dare anyone to watch the Derek Redmond Visa commercial from 2008 and not cry.
I know this is a sporting event, but with fierce rivalries, tricks that should not be humanly possible performed by girls who weigh 80 pounds, and the chance that the girl who just won from China might only be eight, this is an event worth checking out.
Usain Bolt and Michael Phelps.
Running and swimming may not be my favorite events (obvious after reading number three) but there is something extraordinary about watching once-in-a-lifetime athletes go after world records again. Win or lose, these are the men we will still be talking about for many Olympics to come.
An unexpected perk of the Olympics being held in London is that the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge (along with the adorable Harry) are the official British ambassadors of the Olympics. Not only will viewers get an amazing fashion show, but it will be fun to count the number of times she is discussed on the Today show for no other reason than that she is Kate Middleton. 8 BLEEP
Imagine: How Creativity Works by Jonah Lehrer Danielle Milam 2 out of 5 thought bubbles “Creativity is inventing, experimenting, growing, tak- experiments and data. This is interesting to a point. ing risks, breaking rules, making mistakes, and hav- More interesting are the personal conversations ing fun.” — Mary Lou Cook Lehrer had with the business leaders about how they foster creativity in their business community. I was skeptical when I saw this book. How can While the points he makes about creating a creative anyone define creativity? Doesn’t defining it and environment are interesting, I did not find them pinning down how it works take away the magic of it? particularly useful. For example, Lehrer lauds Pixar Surprisingly, Lehrer does a good job of defining for their innovative architecture of their headquarters how to find creativity without completely defining that force people of all fields to collaborate. This is what it is. He mixes science of the brain with narratives wonderful. However, I have no architectural control of creative genius to shine a light on that spark of over the building I work in. creativity we all feel inside of us. Again, Lehrer outlines simple things we can do The first part of the book focuses on individual to generate communal creativity. And, again, he creativity. Lehrer delves into science to explain that bored me with the depth of the scientific data. Yet, our preconception that some people are creative I still found myself suffering through the science to while others are not is simply wrong. The science says get to the next narrative describing Pixar, Apple, or we all have creativity inside us. Some of us are just Shakespeare. better at unleashing it. I am glad I read this book for the simple insights it Lehrer goes on to describe some seemingly simple gave me on my own creativity and what I could do to steps to take to open our brains up to increase our cultivate it. Was it groundbreaking new information? creative output. This expository is useful but easily No. I do most of these things already without knowing becomes drab and uninteresting to read. Luckily, why they work. Lehrer mixes in some well-written narrative about Truthfully I recommend skimming through Chapters creative legends 1-5 (individual creativity section) and getting your including Bob co-workers and boss together to read Chapter 6 Dylan, the creator (describes the way to elicit the most communal of post it notes, and creativity in the work place). After that, sell it to the Yo-Yo Ma. nearest secondhand book store and save the room After exploring on your shelf for something else. the individual journey of Must Read For: Anyone running or working in unleashing the a business setting; those who need a creative creativity inside boost, people who don’t think they are creative. us, Lehrer then explores communal Want more book reviews? creativity. Again, Check out www.daniellesviews.blogspot.com this section is fraught with more scientific BLEEP 9
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Highlighting Your Smile An actress’ reflection by alex wright
was an ugly kid: pigeon-toed, bow-legged, confined to braces, and somehow lucky enough to have a mullet haircut. One would assume that having a fashion model as a mother would not ease my unfortunate plight, but on the contrary, my mother would make me feel like the most beautiful girl in the world. Our spare bedroom in the house had been converted into the “dress-up” room; my mom would store her old pageant gowns, couture modeling pieces, my tattered tutus, and extra makeup from her Dixie Lee Cosmetics makeup line in boxes all around the room, and instead of furniture, there was a small children’s plastic table with yellow chairs. The sequins, the feathers, the lipsticks, the shoes all became my mask—I could become anyone and anything I wanted, and even though I was swimming in my mother’s dresses, tripping in her shoes, and undoubtedly had a smudge of dirt streaked across my face, I felt beautiful. Being a creative person, my mother always encouraged my sister and me to create stories and plays, and most of my family’s evenings were spent in the living room, being forced to watch me perform my newest princess play around the fireplace. When my parents first met in Texas on a blind date, my mother was a model, and my father was an ambitious surgery resident from a “dirt poor” family in the Mississippi Delta. My father was immediately attracted to her sense of humor, her ability to laugh at herself even through the toughest situations. A big fan of Madonna, my mother would go to my father’s hospital and do Madonna impersonations for the patients, dressed in lacy gloves and leather skirts— 12 BLEEP
she even had maternity belts placed in her leather pants and skirts, because she figured that there was no reason why she couldn’t be pregnant and look cute. Needless to say, I had a tape deck in my dress-up room, and dozens of Madonna tapes. My favorite song to dance to was “Like a Virgin”, but in my five-year old brain, “Like a Virgin” became “Like a Surgeon”—a clear sign that I am a perfect combination of my surgical father and performing mother. My mother believes in the power of a good tube of red lipstick. “You must highlight your smile, your white teeth,” she would always tell me. My father was a surgery resident whose smile and emotions were always hidden behind a thick dark beard, yet his deep blue eyes did all the communicating that a smile or grimace could not. While I am sure that they loved each other, it was never about the other person or pleasing the other person. It was instead about filling an emptiness, a hole that they experienced in their own lives. They filled it with each other, but a relationship full of holes can never float. Once they were married, my mother moved from Texas to my father’s hometown of Cleveland, Mississippi in the deep Delta—a town of approximately seven people. My parents were the golden couple of the four there: if you needed your gallbladder removed, my dad was your man; if you needed a makeover, etiquette lessons, a talk show host, or a modeling agent, my mother was your gal. Our family remained in the spotlight with my mother modeling on the side for small town editorials in the surrounding towns and cities, using my sister and me
as props or cute accessories—which I am sure was difficult, considering how unfortunate I was in the looks department. Our cat was even on the front page of the newspaper once because they were having a “slow news day.” What no one knew was that behind the red lipstick and glossy veneer of perfection that my parent’s marriage had become, were ugly secrets that floated in the dark hallway between my mother’s bedroom and my father’s guest room. A common scene for my Barbies to reenact was Barbie threatening to divorce Ken—it was always difficult to maneuver Barbie’s stiff plastic arm, seeing as it had no joints, but I was somehow able to make her capable of slapping Ken. My father was the only surgeon in town, so his schedule remained packed; he often did house visits or had patients come to our house at night. I have very few memories of him other than the fights that he and my mother had. After they separated and he moved into an apartment on the other side of town, he would see me only on certain nights of the week. Once, on a particularly slow day at the hospital, my father picked me up after pre-school. Upon arriving at the house, my father realized that my mother had changed the alarm code. Our small town only had a sheriff, who happened to be my uncle, so while there was no threat that my father would be arrested due to this intrusion, I remember my father looking so lost and so small. Perhaps in an effort to comfort me, or maybe just to comfort himself, my father took me upstairs to the “dress-up” room—which is the first and only time I
remember him stepping foot into that messy space— and asked me to put on a play for him. It was something he had never done before; due to his surgery schedule, he was fortunate enough to not be privy to my fireside performances. He awkwardly took a seat at the red and yellow plastic table, his frame protruding over the edges of the hard plastic, while I quickly pulled out my favorite costume piece. It was a red leotard with sequins on the top and a red taffeta tutu on the bottom; it had a rip down the back, so there was always a taffeta tail that spun off of the bottom of the tutu; this imperfection was my favorite part of my princess costume, because when I ran with my pigeon-toed feet, it was if I had a flag flouncing behind me, announcing my arrival and declaring my departure. After I had gone through the wardrobe, hair, and makeup department, I performed my “princess play,” which basically only consisted of an ad-libbed monologue about how beautiful and princess-y I was. I remember standing in front of my father, eye level to this sitting man who suddenly seemed so sad and lonely, and trying so hard to yell over the blaring alarm my princess lines, wanting to make him smile, wanting him to know it was going to be okay. In that moment, dressing up and performing was not an attentionseeking act done by a five-year old; it was a means to make him smile—this stranger, this man I had never seen before who somehow looked like my father. I felt older than my father in that moment. I had a responsibility—I had to make him laugh. I did cartwheels, I sang Annie at the top of my lungs, and BLEEP 13
I had about ten different costume changes. I gave him a crown to be my prince, and I directed him on where to stand and what to do for our two-person play. I screamed and yelled over the alarm, trying desperately to be heard, and trying even harder to communicate with a man I had known to be a father, but never knew to be my father. For the majority of my escapade, my father remained seated in his yellow plastic chair, his face buried in his hands, his large back rounded over like a roly-poly. Every now and then, as if remembering that he was seated at a child’s table in a dress-up room and noticing that he was in the company of an out of breath and ugly five-year old staring him down and 14 BLEEP
belting “Like a Surgeon,” he would raise his eyes and smile. In the end, my mother came home, found us in the dress-up room, and in one fell swoop, picked me up and carried me out of the room, leaving my father listening to Madonna and the ringing of an alarm. I am not saying that in that instant my whole fiveyear old perspective on “play-pretend” changed. I still have moments where acting and performing is a self-centered act of just wanting attention, of just wanting to be told I did a good job, that I am beautiful and no longer that ugly five-year old dancing on the fireplace. But it was the first time I had wanted to perform in order to make someone else feel something. I think everyone feels lonely and lost, like
they are trying to be heard over an alarm and yelling fruitlessly at a world that sometimes covers its ears and shuts its eyes. It is our responsibility as artists to connect with people that we have never met before and show them they are not alone. Up until that moment, I felt like I had never truly met my father. He was a stranger to me, yet somehow we found a way to connect through our shared experience of the red taffeta leotard, of the tape deck, of the alarm. My favorite pieces of art are the ones that when I leave, I feel emotionally stirred—I do not feel as lonely or as lost, and I am reminded again that everyone is struggling, searching. When I am doing my best work, it is not about me, it is about the other person. My parent’s
relationship failed because it was not enough about the other person; it remained about their individual needs and desires, and instead of wanting to fill the other, they only wanted to fill themselves. It is a delicate balance of pleasing yourself and pleasing the other, and I strive to do that in my work as an artist. We all wear masks, and we are all actors; we cover our lives in lipstick and facades and act as if there is not a blaring alarm ringing in our ears. We just yell louder. However, it is when I stop screaming and I start performing, when I take off the mask, when I get messy and let the smudges of dirt show, when I remove the lipstick, when I remember what it felt like to be five and vulnerable and responsible for someone else’s happiness, that I am carried far away, picked up in one fell swoop, and taken away from the ringing alarms of the world. Art is a vehicle of growth: it removes the mask, and reveals the truth, even though it can often be ugly. That is why art is so communal—it acts as a leveling factor that bypasses social status, age, gender, sexuality, and race. It unites us as audience members and artists because we all try to hide our flaws, and we all strive to find beauty in the ugliness. What no one tells you when your parents split is that their divorce is not one specific date; May 26, 1994, was the day my parents’ divorce papers were signed, yet their divorce has lasted for over fifteen years, and it will continue to repeat itself over and over again, a sort of sad reminder of what went wrong in the relationship, and what could go wrong in future ones. I have learned a lot from my parent’s relationship. It taught me how to not fill the holes in my life with another person, how to be strong and self confident in myself, and how to fall in love with the person and not the title; at the same time, it has taught me how to give selflessly of myself, and how you can’t shut out the people you love with changed locks and alarms. I was an ugly kid. I had leg braces, a mullet, and a fascination with lacy Madonna gloves and tape tracks. But I am learning that those imperfections add character to the often messy roles we play in life. And sometimes you just have to put on some red lipstick and grin and bear it. As my mother would say, “You must highlight your smile.” BLEEP 15
The Cocktail Connoisseur
ummer has arrived and is in full force across the country. There’s no point in denying the weather and trying to beat the heat is futile, but with a burst of fresh flavors, I aim to help you forget it, at least for a time. This trio of drinks is at home at a summer garden party or by the ocean side. While the last drink maybe something more appropriate for later in the evening, the first two are a great way to ease into a lazy afternoon with a late brunch. If you’re looking for something more traditional (or something you can order at a bar) my recommendations for the Summer are a Singapore Sling, a Tom Collins, or an atypical G&T. Singapore Slings are made differently everywhere: they can be sweet or sour and can have a variety of ingredients depending on who you ask, just make sure it has Bénédictine in it. A Tom Collins is very much like a gin and tonic, but with lemon juice and seltzer instead of lime and tonic, plus a little sugar. They are sweeter, and are a great way to mix up your choice of gin. If however you want to stick to tonic try adding something new to your G&T. I like tossing in a shot of a floral liquor like Crème de Violette, or a dash of fruity bitters. As always, be safe and don’t be afraid to tinker with these recipes, have fun.
Mint is often added to lemonade and lemon based drinks, but despite a personal affection for antiquated millinery doing things that are old hat is not my style. I decided to substitute in some basil for this summer concoction. The basil is meant to be an accenting note, and can become over powering if abused. On the other hand if you really like the taste of basil and want to bring it to the forefront you can easily make some basil infused simple syrup. Just mix equal parts water and sugar and bring to a boil, then allow a handful of basil to steep in the mixture for half an hour or so and add the syrup to your drink once it chills. I considered tossing in some cucumber essence, but at a certain point this drink ran the risk of becoming a salad, and I did make a promise not to use anything too obscure. Foregoing the cucumber I opted for a shot of Pimm’s No. 1 as they often complement each other in the classic cocktail, Pimm’s Cup. Pimm’s is a gin based herbal liquor with hints of citrus and spice. This isn’t a particularly potent drink and Four Fresh Basil Leafs if you want to make it stronger ½ oz. Grand Marnier (Or Triple the Pimm’s can Sec) be increased or 2 oz. Pimm’s No. 1 supplemented 4 oz. Sparkling Lemonade with a good gin, I recommend using Squeeze of lemon one with strong citrus or cucumber Fill a shaker partially with ice and notes such as add basil, shake to bruise the leafs. Bombay Sapphire or Hendrick’s Add Grand Marnier, Pimm’s No.1 respectively.
and lemon. Shake to combine, transfer to a rocks glass, top with lemonade and stir. 16 BLEEP
Being from the South (or South-adjacent as I oft think of Texas) I couldn’t resist including a tea based drink. Tea is remarkably versatile and in my opinion is underused in the modern bar, in fact must punches, at least the traditional ones, center around tea despite otherwise having huge variations in ingredients. If iced tea alone were not Southern enough, the hometown spirit of New Orleans takes a center role in this drink. Southern Comfort is somewhat hard to define. If you haven’t had it you should pick up a bottle, it won’t cost you much, and try out a few cocktails. Originally bourbon based it still retains some whiskey flavor along with an infusion of spices. It doesn’t play well with everything, but when it does it’s a thing of bayou bliss. Sweet 3 oz. Fresh Black Tea (Chilled) Tea Vodka is now produced by more 1.5 oz. Sweet Tea Vodka distilleries then I can keep track of, some are considerably sweeter than 1.5 oz. Southern Comfort so before you add simple syrup 1+ oz. Simple Syrup (Optional, to others, to this drink give it a taste and adjust taste) accordingly. As I mentioned before, tea is compatible with many flavors, so this Fill a shaker with ice, add all inis a great drink to experiment with. If gredients, shake to combine and you have a berry liquor like Chambord around, substitute it in for the transfer to a tall glass. Southern Comfort and give it a taste. If you want something more floral try St. Germain instead, or something less complex (and stronger), a good bourbon.
Minted Berry Martini Late spring and early summer is berry picking season in many parts of the country so I had to incorporate them in a drink. Berry flavors often mix 6 Fresh Mint Leafs poorly with strongly flavored alcohols (with the exception of bandy which pairs nicely ¼ C. Mixed Berries (Chilled or with several) and even some berry liquors Frozen) are questionable themselves, there is a 1 oz. Chambord reason Hideous is named as it is. Even with a simple base, vodka, this is a somewhat 3.5 oz. Vodka temperamental drink and you may have to modify the proportions to get it to your liking. Muddle mint leafs with berries in Leaving the mint out is an option, and may make this drink more accessible, as mint and the bottom of a shaker (a spoon berry combination may have a medicinal handle can be used in place of taste to some, but when it’s well balanced the a muddler) add Chambord and combination is invigorating. Chambord is a brandy based black raspberry vodka (and ice if necessary to liquor which comes in an unmistakable bottle chill), shake to combine. Strain that plays off the form of a globus cruciger – through a fine mesh strainer into the cross topped spheres held by monarchs symbolizing the authority of Christ over the a martini glass and garnish with world. It’s flavorful stuff so use it sparingly. mint leaves and whole berries. I chose to use frozen berries (strawberries, raspberries and blueberries), to chill the drink and avoid diluting it further with ice, but you can use fresh if you prefer.
Nathan Robins is a graduate student studying in Massachusetts. Currently working in Washington, DC he seeks out the best and worst bars the nation’s capital has to offer and is ever seeking to bear witness to a ethanol inspired political scandal. He wrote this article its recipes on an airplane, hundreds of miles from a proper bar sipping underwhelming complementary cocktails.
Carrie manolakos she’s donned the green makeup in wicked, her cover of radiohead’s ‘creep’ has more than 780,000 views on youtube and she’s been called out by alec baldwin on twitter, but all carrie manolakos really wants to do is sing what’s in her heart. photography by kevin thomas garcia
What was the first performance that you remember? I did the first grade show and was in the chorus, but it wasn’t until I was ten that I had a solo. That was the moment when I thought, ‘I think I need to do this.’
I was 21 so I couldn’t have been more green. I grew up a lot on that tour. I feel like the person I am now and the person I was starting that show is like nightand-day. It taught me endurance and what the ‘on the road’ lifestyle is like.
How did you follow the path? I was always singing. My mom said I sang before I talked. They made a rule in my house where I couldn’t sing the same song more than once in a rowm since I would sing the same song over and over. I was always trying to learn more music and listen to music. I also did quite a bit of theatre growing up in Syracuse. They have a pretty decent theatre community out there so I started getting involved with that as much as I could.
What came after that? I finished school and did Mamma Mia on Broadway in 2008. After that, I got the Wicked tour so I did that for about 13 months.
What did that tour teach you that the first one did not? It couldn’t have been more different. I knew it would be hard for me, soul-wise, because I was standing by and I wasn’t going to be on [stage] all the time. It was a At what point did you decide you were going to challenge, but it taught me how to deal with any kind chase after theatre? of stressful situation. I was going on half way through I did theatre from about age ten until now. In college, the show often. There wasn’t time to freak out, so I I was trying to figure out what was best for me to do. really learned how to be calm. On the flip side, the Going to NYU was so great because I was able to be majority of my time was spent hanging out. On this involved with not just theatre, but so many things. It tour is where I started writing music. I taught myself was good to nurture that side of me but expose me guitar and I would spend my time writing songs, to so many other art forms I wouldn’t have necessarily which I had never really done before. I thought, if I explored otherwise. didn’t use this time I would have failed. So I used my time to write. What was your first big show you booked? Mamma Mia. I was about to start my senior year and What were you writing about? I only had six credits left. I got the job to go on the In the very beginning, I was just trying to write a tour (and eventually play Sophie) and so I took a leave song. It was a little generic. I was having such a hard of absence and finished when I got back. time being away from home and not really doing anything. I think a lot of my music originally was about What did being on that first tour teach you? finding out how to be your best wherever you are. BLEEP 27
How has your writing progressed? I came back in April of 2010 and I think I feel very different from that person. I feel like I’ve finally found myself as an artist and as human. The best thing I can do for me and for everybody else is just be as much of me as I can. That is really what people are responding to most of all. Since the album came out, it feels like I’m getting all the signs from the universe that I should be doing this. I never knew I had it in me.
music thing out. I would put my phone down and 30 seconds later, I would have 40 emails. It was pretty surreal. I never anticipated all of this kind of exposure would happen completely organically. I don’t know anyone at any of those outlets. They just saw it and reposted it.
Where do you go from here with your music? I am writing a bit and I really want to focus on that. We have some shows for a small northeast tour in Pittsburgh, DC, Easton (MD) and NYC. I’m just trying What’s your writing process? to play as much as I can and get back to the craft of I sit at the instrument first, figure out chords and writing. I want to keep working to keep getting better then lyrics usually come after that. But some days I as a writer. just write a bunch in my journal and it happens the opposite way. What’s next? My boyfriend is writing a screenplay and I’m writing Your cover of Radiohead’s “Creep” has over the music for it and playing the lead girl. It’s like 775,000 hits on YouTube. Why did you choose that a modern Annie Hall about the lives and loves of song? Generation Y in New York City. I’m also continuing to My boyfriend suggested it over brunch one day. write as much as possible and I really am looking to I was familiar with the song but it never crossed get back in the studio in the next few months to start my mind to do it. I brought it to the band and we recording some of these new songs. rehearsed it maybe two or three times and that was it. We did ‘Creep’ at the show and that night was the What inspires you? biggest and best night of my life. We were releasing Right now so many things inspire me. Until now, I the album, there was so much love in the room. I thought of myself as a person who was interpreting don’t think anyone knew what song we were about art and music and now I think of myself as someone to do. It was just one of those perfect moments when who’s creating art and music. It just feels like anything everyone and was in sync. Everything was right in is possible in terms of writing and in terms of art. If the world in that moment. I feel like, at that time, I things are rough, I sit down at the piano. If things are was reinventing myself. That moment was the end great, I sit down at the piano. That’s the exciting thing of the night of this big journey I’ve been on, trying about this. You can write music from anywhere. It’s something new, finally putting it out there into the such a way to connect on a level I didn’t know was world. To end on that song was really powerful. possible. When did you realize it was going viral? I put it on my Facebook page and that was all I did. In the first week it spread a lot more than any of my other videos. It was around 18,000 hits and then all of the sudden, I had all these missed calls that it was the front story on Gawker.com! The Monday or Tuesday after was when everyone else picked it up and The New Yorker, the Huffington Post, MTV were all featuring it. I have no team at all. It’s just me trying to figure this
What’s your dream? I guess I haven’t been asked that in a while and now it’s totally changed. It used to be being a lead on Broadway and singing at a microphone and expressing myself. I didn’t really know what that meant for me, but I knew it was there. Now, I would love to be able to make a great living doing music, connecting to people in that way, completely as myself. I think that’s my dream right now. It’s constantly changing, which is really cool.
WWW.CARRIEMANOLAKOS.COM FIND HER ON FACEBOOK AND ON TWITTER!
EVAN &LIZ TWO SOLO ARTISTS JOIN FORCES TO BECOME POST POST
PHOTOGRAPHY BY RYAN BRINSON
LIZ MILLS AND EVAN SAGER HAVE ONLY BEEN MAKING MUSIC TOGETHER FOR A FEW MONTHS, BUT IT’S A PARTNERSHIP THAT’S THE PRODUCT OF YEARS OF PERSONAL GROWTH AND OPEN MIKE NIGHTS. What was the first performance you can remember? LIZ: My first performance was at an open mike in Florida. That was the first time I got up in front of people and played my songs. EVAN: I can’t remember. There wasn’t one of those moments where I can pinpoint an exact performance. When did you start writing your own music? LIZ: I’ve been writing music since I was in high school but I haven’t been playing it out until recently. I was still formulating what kind of artist I was going to be and get the confidence to get up in front of people and do that. EVAN: I’ve been writing music since I was a little kid. In my solo projects, the more singer/songwriter 32 BLEEP
songs, I’ve been writing those since about high school.
musicians channel that. I want to learn how to do that more. I’ve had moments where I felt like I had removed myself and was channeling spiritual energy through music. EVAN: My range of influence is so broad. Anything that comes from a place of emotion, passion and feeling, I like it. The project that we’re doing is a compilation of everything we’ve both ever liked and done separately. We’re mashing it together. We’re trying to find the perfect balance of listenable but original music. The whole music industry is flooded with every type of music that’s so accessible through the internet so it’s very hard to make a mark.
When you started writing music, what was it about? EVAN: I write about pain and spiritual affliction. I don’t have too many happy songs. I write about triumph as well so that might have a positive flair to them but they are mostly about emotional struggle and acceptance. LIZ: I write a mixture of what I’m thinking emotionally and what I’m seeing. I sort of put those together and write about anything that’s going on in my life. I write about other people too. I heard a story about a young woman who was killed in Philadelphia. It How did you two meet? was a really gruesome and awful thing. I write about LIZ: We met on the open mike circuit. We sorta knew things that make me think deeper into the meaning the same people. of my life and other people’s lives. EVAN: We both ended up moving back to the same area around the same time. We were just playing Where does your inspiration come from? some songs and we realized it sounded good. LIZ: We [Evan and I] talk a lot about great musicians. LIZ: We realized that we’d be compatible musically. Music comes from another place and I feel like great The harmonies worked.
EVAN: A musical relationship is just like any other relationship. You either resonate together or you don’t. You can have two people who are incredible musicians but they just don’t work together. How long have you been collaborating. EVAN: A few months. LIZ: We are still a work in progress.
We’ve played in Philly, we’ve played in New York and we’ve played all around the Tri-State area either on the street or at open mikes. People come up to us, thank us, and give us opportunities. LIZ: We are doing it because we love it, not because we feel obligated to do it. So it’s fun.
What’s your dream? EVAN: I was to be self-supporting making music. I Why the name Post Post? just want to do what I do. EVAN: A musician said they played post-hard core LIZ: I would like to make a living doing this. I don’t set music and I said to him, ‘Well we’re post-post hard expectations really, but this, right now, sitting here core.’ The name just kinda stuck. talking about this and being able to play around the city; to me, I’m living the dream. What’s next? EVAN: Everywhere we go, stuff seems to happen. BLEEP 35
RAGTIME LIKE YOU’VE NEVER SEEN IT BEFORE.
xylopholks PHOTOGRAPHY BY RYAN BRINSON 36 BLEEP
JONATHAN SINGER IS THE LEADER OF A BAND, JUST NOT QUITE THE TYPE OF BAND YOU’D THINK. WHILE HE’S PLAYED PERCUSSION WITH THE SAN FRANCISCO BALLET, THE DETROIT SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA, THE PHILHARMONIC ORCHESTRA OF THE AMERICAS AND COUNTLESS OTHER ENSEMBLES, HE CAN BE CURRENTLY FOUND PLAYING NOVELTY RAGTIME AROUND NEW YORK CITY AND GOES BY THE NAME OF SKUNKY. NOT WHAT YOU’D EXPECT FROM A MUSICIAN THAT RECENTLY RECEIVED A FULBRIGHT FELLOWSHIP TO SPEND 2009-2010 IN INDIA. BUT ANYONE WHO’S HEARD THE XYLOPHOLKS CAN TELL YOU, THIS IS SOME SERIOUS RAGTIME MUSIC. When did you start making music as the Xylopholks? Xylopholks began almost 4 years ago. However, I’ve played this music for almost 20 years now. Where did the idea come from? Why do you play the type of music that you play? Where does any idea come from? A lot of people stop on the subway and ask (usually as the train is arriving, giving us about 10 seconds to answer): “Why the costumes?” -- I don’t have a one word answer. Many things factor into why we do what we do. I’ll just say that I think it’s appropriate. I had an appropriate idea, and it came from a variety of interests and intentions. We play the music we do in this group because it’s very fitting for the instrumentation. You could also say the instrumentation is fitting for the music. It’s from the early days of recording, so the xylophone was popular because it would be very clear in acoustic recording settings. You can also hear tuba clearly. However in this case we use upright. It’s a modern take on music of the 1920’s. It would be impossible to be purists and play it exactly as it was played. That’s not our intention, but I think it is uplifting and we want people to experience something like a smile when they see and hear us. A more straightforward answer would be to say we play this music because this is the music of the xylophone. What’s your musical background? How has that directed what you do now? My background is being a classically trained percussionist. I also went to Berklee College of Music which isn’t a very classical program, but a lot 38 BLEEP
One Saturday afternoon, tourists waiting for the 1 train decided to join the band, clapping, singing and even playing along with Skunky and Pinky.
of my interests were in classical music. I also studied and played all sorts of other music. I have a strong interest in Indian classical forms and percussion as well. Pinky’s background is also diverse. We actually spent our senior year of high school together at the Interlochen Arts Academy in Michigan. That’s where we met (we were next door neighbors in the dorm even). He was then a composition major who sometimes played trumpet. Now he maintains an extremely active schedule as a jazz bassist and freelancer in New York.
green so that we wouldn’t get sued. Then I got a call from Cookie Monster himself approving of the act. I like fuzzy creatures and animals. I wish more of them could play music, but not everyone does, so this is my way of helping out. What’s next for the band? If I told you and then it didn’t happen, people could end up disappointed.
What’s your dream? I have a lot of dreams. Currently it’s an organized There has to be a story behind your characters. apartment. I have too many instruments (and Where did they come from? instrument parts) for this space. I set my current Skunky, Pinky, Dog, Banana, Froggy, Baboon, dream to be a slightly-larger and organized living Green Monster...there are many characters. I don’t space. I think many New Yorkers share this dream remember where they all came from, I just know though. many of them crowd my closet now!! -- I can tell you a highlight with Green Monster. I had him created by What do you do outside of the band? a costume maker in Chennai, India. This man seemed This week I’ve spent a lot of time organizing the about as conservative as it gets. Then he says: “Oh, apartment! of course you need the big googly eyes.” We were Let’s see. I do a lot of things. Musically, I play trying to rip off cookie monster but try to make him wherever I am welcome. I maintain a regular practice
of tabla (North Indian drums) - which is a sort of lifelong pursuit. It’s a personal interest. I also play mrudangam (South Indian). I’ve played a bit of Brazilian music and different percussion in different bands. I’m currently working on some solo marimba music which I will perform eventually. I like to take my time with that repertoire. In the fall I will start on a doctorate in percussion performance which will keep me busy. I also teach some courses. I think if you asked any artist what they did to “make a living” you’d find everyone does a million things. It’s no different than another career, it’s just that we don’t do it at one place at a fixed time consistently. Do/did you find it difficult to establish yourself in New York? How did you do it? I don’t know. You go a place to live there, and then you’re there. Who knows if I’m established or not. I can say that more people in New York would know me as the guy in the skunk suit on the subway than anything else. You end up being whatever you are, so that’s what I am to people now. I think as far as establishment, that’s the single most New York activity
that I do. I couldn’t play on the subway in another city as a skunk and have the same identity. It would be different. What types of music do you listen to? Oh boy. I’m trying to listen or enjoy listening to music more. I’ve studied a lot which develops a very critical ear and unfortunately can get in the way of listening with a different kind of ear. I remember growing up and hearing the concert mistress of the Detroit Symphony say she didn’t listen to music outside playing in the orchestra. I thought that was strange, but for the last 10 years I identify with it. I do listen to a lot of music that I play, and those styles, but I try to also listen to other music. I wish it were easier sometimes. What’s your favorite song you play? I like most of what I play. I like playing my friend Michael Winograd’s composition “The Moon, My Gun, My Baby.” He wrote it for his group Michael Winograd’s Infection. It was the xylophone feature for me to play with his group and that gave way to the Xylopholks.
WWW.XYLOPHOLKS.COM FIND THEM ON FACEBOOK AND ON TWITTER!
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www.redpenguingallery.com BLEEP 43
this singer/songwriter talks about re-approaching music and wearing lipstick to dinner photos by Richard Ross BLEEP 45
What was the first performance you can remember giving? The first time I sang in front of an audience, I was in 5th grade and I sang “Part of Your World” from The Little Mermaid for the talent show. I was super into it. I had a mermaid fin that I flipped up and down as I sang. I was 15 when I played my first “real” concert. A few friends and I took our instruments to the park and performed our original songs for one another. There were probably eight people there and I was very nervous.
even realizing it. When I got to Baylor a few years later, there were no private pianos so I was forced to share my intimate thoughts with whoever was in the room. Eventually, people began to approach me and ask me to play more. It was an incredible feeling.
At what point did music become your primary focus? Music became an internal necessity for me after my grandmother died my freshman year of high school. I knew how to play a few songs on the piano but this time, none of them matched the emotions I needed to release. So I sat down and I wrote a song without
Where does your inspiration come from? My inspiration is Jesus. My music is not always directly about him but my life has been so radically impacted by knowing him that my thoughts/lyrics can’t help but be affected. People and my relationships with people also inspire me.
How do you characterize your music? It’s vulnerable. Like I mentioned before, I write because I need to for myself. It’s like when you’re in public and you get some overwhelming feeling that you have to suppress until you get home. For me, my music is that personal overflow.
What other artists do you admire/listen to? Regina Spektor for her adventurous sound. Ben Folds for his amazing ear. Mumford and Sons for their lyrics. The Avett Brothers for their passion. And one of my best friend’s music, Michael Davidson. I probably listen to his music the most, both live and his recordings. Oh and I like dub step.
pianos. There was this one guy who used to study in the same room, Lincoln. One day he approached me and told me I should audition for Uproar. It took me a couple of years to build up the courage, but eventually I became proud to share my music. That initial encounter changed my life and I am very grateful to have been sought out.
What’s next for you? Where do you want to take this? How did you get connected with Uproar Records This summer, I have been working with a local at Baylor University? producer. I’m beginning to re-approach my songs. It was back when I was forced to play on the public Instead of viewing them as complete songs, I’m 50 BLEEP
WWW.FACEBOOK.COM/LAYNELYNCH LISTEN TO HER EP ON SPOTIFY! approaching them as complete experiences. I’m working on restructuring them so people may be able to enjoy them more. It’s a very humbling experience and I’ve still got a ways to go. As for where I want to take this? I’m not sure. I do know that I love it and I pour a lot of time into it. I guess we’ll see where it takes me.
However last night, I had a dream that I got a little black kitten. It was so fuzzy and cute. Good dream. How do you remain creatively fueled? Living, experiencing, and then having alone time. Reading the Bible. Connecting with friends. Jotting down thoughts on my phone. And daydreaming.
What’s your dream? Where does your sense of style come from? My dream is to always have an excuse to write and I don’t really know. My grandmother, I suppose. play. And to grow in the process of doing so. I want She is 91 and she still puts on her lipstick before to work with as many people as I can and I want to dinner. get to know as many people as I can. BLEEP 51
larry DON’T CALL IT THROWBACK MUSIC. THIS SONGWRITER JUST WANTS YOU TO HAVE A GOOD TIME. PHOTOGRAPHY BY RYAN BRINSON
What was the first performance you remember giving? It was in a singing group at church. [The group] was a group of seniors and were missing a member, and I was just a freshman. I was really good at mimicking voices and I had to sing the lead on this part. It was a very soulful part and I nailed it. The response in the church from the girls kinda got me excited. That’s what got me wanting to do music. That was the one memory I can remember thinking ‘This would be cool. I should do this.’ Did you grow up singing? Yes. My parents have a recording studio in their house and my dad would randomly have various people come in and do session work. He had Elvis’ band come in one time and he had people who played with Marvin Gaye come in. I was just a kid and I would sit in on these sessions and soak it up without realizing I was soaking it up. After you figured out that you and music went together, what was the moment you saw a future in it? That’d be the day that my band sold out the Gypsy Tea Room [in Dallas]. It was an EP that we’d released and my friend wrote a really cool piece for the Dallas Morning News. The next thing we knew, the place was sold out. That was our first experience of feeling like I want to do that forever. We spent six more years with this band where we had small local success with selling out the House of Blues and then we toured around North America twice. That was a great experience but also a sad experience. When you’re not advancing how you want to in your career, after long enough, you burn out. We burned out after six years. After that, I took about six months off music. I traveled. I drove out to California and then over to Brooklyn. Within that time, I felt the inspiration of the city and that’s where this EP, ‘Weekend’ was born. From that whole 54 BLEEP
to go. We’ve been on a good streak since ACL [Austin City Limits]. We opened up SXSW Interactive, opening up for Ghost Town Observatory, which was great and ever since then, the energy with the band has been so good.
What’s your new music like? I play soulful music. High energy, feel good music. People will call it throwback music, but I say it’s just ‘good time’ music. Just make people get off their seats and dance. Who else do you collaborate with? I have a songwriting partner, Beau Bedford, and he’s the What’s your favorite moment in your concert? other half of this project. If I’m the ying, he’s the yang. He’s My favorite moment of my concerts is the first song. one of the key people that’s made this happen. Usually from the first song I can tell how a show’s going 56 BLEEP
WWW.LARRY-GEE.COM FIND HIM ON FACEBOOK AND LISTEN TO HIS EP ON SPOTIFY! What inspires you? Real life situations. I can’t make up stuff. I can write for other people and try to go off of their experiences but typically, it has to be something I’ve experienced. I can’t fake it.
way to make a living is to be a touring musician.
What’s up next? The Warped Tour in July. We’ll be playing on the OurStage. com stage which is really cool because it’s something we won. Out of thousands of bands, they picked us. It’s a really What’s your dream? cool opportunity to go on these 22 dates. We will be back To take the music I have and build on it, keep writing in New York to record more and have some more shows more songs and release a full-length. I also want to tour. here. We’re in a good place. We’ve managed to do all of The record labels are still changing and I think the only this ourselves too. BLEEP 57
behind the scenes
JT 60 BLEEP
What are your upcoming projects? JT: The new record Digital Wounds is top priority. It’s scheduled to be released late September. We'll be releasing our rst single “Disco Queen” as a Remix EP on June 30th. Also the song “Pastel Lights” from our last record Through the Trees made it to a feature lm called "Seeking a Friend for the End of the World" with Steve Carell & Keira Knightley. It hits theaters June 22nd. How much work goes into a single song? Rocky: Haha. A TON!!!! The way we approach songs in the studio as opposed to the live version is drastically diﬀerent as I think they should be. The live experience is going to be diﬀerent than sitting down and listening to the album so we usually approach each song from both perspectives as to give the listener the most for each song. Of all the shows you've played, which one stands out as one you'll never forget? JJ: We were opening up for the Friendly Fires and they cancelled absolutely last minute with only 15 minutes till doors were suppose to open. All of their gear was still on stage and we had not even been given a sound check. We were asked/begged by the venue to still play not only our 45 minute set, but extend it to 2 hours! Keeping in mind, the venue just refunded the 600 plus disgruntled people who came out to see the F.F. and did not know who we were. We had a few minutes to make a decision. We stepped up to the challenge and just went for it. The crowd of 600 plus stayed, danced, and sang along the entire show. It was a very gratifying moment to capture the attention of huge crowd and being both the opener and the headliner.
COLTON SCALLY JUAN LERMA JERRAD TRAHAN LOREN WILSON JORDAN RAINES COURTNEY FARMER CASSANDRA WILLIS ADAM GEORGE THE DOOR CLASSIC COACHES DITTO BOUTIQUE JOSH LIFTO
writer & photographer creative director & stylist hair & make up artist campbell agency model campbell agency model model styling assistant photography assistant location limousine model wardrobe limousine driver
For more info on the limousine, check out WWW.CLASSICCOACHES.WEBS.COM
What would your dream concert look like? Rocky: It would look a lot like ACL or Lollapalooza. What's the creative process look like behind the scenes? JJ: We take a feather from John's headdress, the texting power from Becky's thumbs, the hardness of Rocky's pecks, and sweat from my lash-less eyebrows- and Brad mixes it all together till it lls up to the third line on a Solo cup. What's your favorite thing about the music industry? Becky: It sounds so simple but really just getting to do my passion for a living. It's still a work in progress but for me to do what I love is so important as I've already had the miserable day jobs. What's your least favorite thing about the music industry? JJ: The fact that music is an industry. Do you have any stories involving crazy stalker fans? Becky: Well, there is this one Ishi fan that always manages to come to a show no matter where it is in Texas. Which is awesome. But at the last show he got belligerent and repeatedly jumped on stage. John was a great front man, though, and kicked him oďŹ€. So were our dear friends in the crowd who protected us from him doing it anymore. 64 BLEEP Good times!
WWW.FACEBOOK.COM/ISHIMUSIC LISTEN TO THE BAND’S MUSIC ON SPOTIFY! BLEEP 65
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Denton Tarver From the Gap to Grease to the Garden
PHOTOGRAPHY BY RYAN BRINSON
From roofdecks on the East Side to backyards in Brooklyn and Astoria, Denton Tarver is creating outdoor spaces that people want to exist in. What brought you to New York? I was going to school at the Boston Conservatory doing musical theatre. I transferred there and had two years left for my degree but had only one year of financial aid. So when the aid ran out, my parents asked me what I was going to do and my response was, ‘I dunno. I’m just gonna go get a Broadway show.’ And as a matter of fact, I took the bus in and got a Broadway show. I was working at the Gap and I told them I had to quit because I’d gotten the first revival of Grease. ‘From Gap to Grease’ is what I call that epic period of my life. Where did your love of the outdoors come from? I grew up outside of Atlanta and come from a family that is concentrated socially outside. A lot of our family reunions happen outside around campsites and my grandfather had a farm. I would spend summers out there so I always knew I had sort of a naturalist inclination. When did you start doing exterior design work in the city? I just started rearranging my friends’ apartments is how it happened. I found that the spaces I created were the spaces where everybody wanted to stay. They would linger in the spaces I made. So I started paying attention to that. I was looking for something to do alongside performing and one of my friends suggested landscape architecture. I looked into it, ended up going to grad school for it and figured out I didn’t want to do landscape architecture. But I did find what I wanted to do was exterior design with plants and using the principles of interior design but with exterior materials. Why is exterior design so important in New York? Exterior space in New York is really a premium. Everybody’s sort of reacting against the urban jungle whether they know it or not and space has become a real luxury. So being able to heighten their use or make it more exciting is really cool. What sets you apart? What I started telling people is that I’ll always be a theatre person at heart. It’s one of the things that separates me as a designer. Most of the designers I know are a little withdrawn, a little more introspective perhaps, and I think it’s nice to be able to talk to someone like me that’s expressive and available. You’re featured in a web series on design called Urban Gardner. I’m used to getting sides and playing a role in a script, but this time it was BLEEP 71
just me. I had to play ‘Denton.’ They would drop me into these sites that I’d never seen before and I’d have to interview people about their spaces and the plants in them. It was a lot of pressure to come up with content on the fly but I really liked it. It was a nice marrying of my two worlds. I had a really good time doing it. Some episodes are better than others I think but it was really fun. So it was a really cool experience to jump into my new passion via my old passion in a way. The nicest response I had was actually the last day of shooting. The director of photography had been the guy that had followed me around the entire time so his are the eyes that people are going to see the series 72 BLEEP
through. On the way back in the van, he said, ‘I have kinda a dark office and really want a plant in there, can you recommend a plant?’ So we talked about that for a little bit. And then, he said to me, ‘Before we shot this series, I never really paid attention to plants and I never really noticed them. But now, everywhere I go, I see plants.’ So if that’s what he got from the series, then hopefully that’s what people will get from it when they watch it. Where can BLEEP readers see the episodes? They’re being released one per week for the entire summer on YouTube.
What do you want people to know about what you do? One of the things that most people say when I tell them I’m an exterior designer, they ask ‘Well where do you work?’ I work all over the place actually and once you get up onto a roof and look down with eyes that can see it, you see all kinds of spaces for design. Where do you get your inspiration from? Mostly, mythology, as strange as that might sound. Mythology and archetypes. My work is based on a feeling and creating a sensation. It’s creating a mood from a room and that’s what I tell people - that I design outdoor rooms. They have a certain feeling
and are starting to have a signature which is exciting. My work is all about creating a feeling. What’s your dream? A fun, happy life. I love what I do and I love the response I get from people. Just watching people glow from being in the space that I’ve created for them is such a high. I found something that I don’t want to retire from. It’s going to keep me interested from now on.
CHECK OUT ALL THE EPISODES OF URBAN GARDNER AT: WWW.YOUTUBE.COM/SPACESTV BLEEP 73
PHOTOS AND STORY BY:
by joaquin abrego For those of you not familiar with NeoCon, I am here to provide you with some Con “cliff notes” that will give you a brief explanation and look at the design extravaganza. This annual function takes place in Chicago’s Merchandise Market which houses hundreds of exhibitors on 18 different floors. Each has design showrooms set to the nines for the event. Products, furniture, fixtures and design accessories are on display for thousands of designers to drool over. Some of the lines are heavy hitting staples in the community, while others are up and coming independent designers. Regardless of their reputation, NeoCon presenters put on a grand and spectacular three day show for designers to enjoy. To quote their website, “NeoCon is North America’s largest design exposition and conference for commercial interiors, providing over 40,000 architecture and design professionals with more than 120 CEU-accredited seminars and association forums, top-notch keynote speakers. Thousands of innovative products and resources for corporate, hospitality, healthcare, retail, government, institutional and residential interiors from more than 700 showrooms and exhibitors.” So what is the NeoCon experience? Imagine a large space with beautiful finishes, music, furniture and fabrics as far as the eye can see and windows with views overlooking downtown Chicago. Now add about 100 designers talking at once, cameras flashing, cell phones ringing, people eating and a constant flow of traffic through the showrooms. It is definitely sensory overload and almost impossible to retain all the information and product details. Given these circumstances, a camera phone, your charger and a good pair of walking shoes are your best friends during this event. While NeoCon has its overwhelming aspects, it is also very informative, fun, exciting and packed with so many cutting edge designs and inspirations. I would venture to say, it is the design equivalent to a roller coaster. Intimidating at first, but always an invigorating and eye opening experience that will blow your mind. So take a look at some of my favorite products, pieces and showrooms. BLEEP 77
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bleepquiz Larry G(ee)
Musician & Artist
I am...always thinking. I’m here because...I chose to be here. What makes me happiest is...performing on stage. The color that best represents me is...black. What I hope to accomplish today is...writing or starting a song. My best friends are... very good at keeping my feet on the ground. I can’t live without...music. Between an Olympic champion or an Oscar winner, I’d rather be...an Olympic (basketball) champion. (I always wanted to play professional basketball. Unfortunately my lack of height crushed all of those dreams...in High School). If I wasn’t me, I’d be...dead. I like it best when you...can find the good in a bad situation. God is...cool. I’m hungry for...pizza. All. The. Time. I cry…rarely. Style means…a lot in my book. I want to go...on a world tour eventually. The most obnoxious sound in the world is...the sound of a whiner. Get over it, move on, or get out. What makes me weak is...pizza. At this exact moment, I’m passionate about...my career. I crave...more opportunities to succeed. My inspiration is…music. BLEEP 79
The July music issue of BLEEP Magazine featuring Carrie Manolakos, Ishi, Larry G(ee) and more.