INSPIRER.NU MAGAZINE 02 The Winter Issue
Pierce The Veil Super Prime // Artist vs Poet Junior Doctor
Vivi Ponti is a 32-year-old Italian fashion designer. Her brand VIVETTA was founded in 2008
The first collection was launched after the Fresh Lounge “Who’s Next” competition in which Ponti was the competition’s overall winner. Ponti previously worked as an assistant designer for Roberto Cavalli for three years. After Cavalli, Ponti became head designer at Daniele Alessandrini for two years. Her collection has been brought to light recently thanks to celebrities such as Peaches Geldof and support from personalities like Scott Schuman and Elle Italian fashion editor Silvia Fonatanelli.
INTERVIEW BY GUILIA BRANDIMARTI
After working for larger companies (Cavalli, Alessandrini), why did yo umake the decision to leave and create your own collection? I decided to leave the big companies since that kind of job in [a] factory is totally uncreative. I understood, that if I would have liked to be a fashion designer, I would like to design whatever I like. The brand VIVETTA has been made known overseas thanks to journalist, model, and television presenter Peaches Geldof. When did you first meet her? Peaches contacted me in September 2009... I was working on my second collection and she asked me for some styles to wear during New York Fashion Week where she would work on a TV program for Nylon TV. Then we were still in touch and she modeled for Vivettaâ€™s F/W 2010 campaign
Peaches Geldof wearing a VIVETTA design
Your Spring/Summer 2012 line is inspired by an English summer picnic. Tell us about it. The first pieces I designed was the clouds dress with white collar, named Elena. I was in the car for a very long time looking at the blue sky with all that perfect white clouds… they seemed like ice cream, something very soft and pure. Then I decided to do the collection [based] on this idea of freedom. Your clothes are wonderful but eccentric. In Italy there’s an unusual narrowness of mind towards the unconventional clothes. Why do you think that is? I don’t know, I think it is something close to the culture... Who is your favorite designer? I don’t know right now. Could you give us an advice to all young people who want to work in fashion? Don’t be afraid.
VISIT WWW.VIVETTA.IT PHOTOS COURTESY OF VIVì PONTI
KAM ROYAL INTERVIEW BY ELLA GOLDSMITH
Having already headlined shows and shared the stage with Big Sean, Mac Miller, and The Cool Kids to name a few, KAM Royal is a name that you will undoubtedly hear in 2012 as he drops “Quit Your Day Job”- his third and most anticipated release yet. INSPIRER: It may or may not be a secret that you are a full-time student at Tulane University as well as a rapper extraordinaire. How do you balance the two, and what are the benefits of doing both at the same time? KAM ROYAL: Hmmm… I thought it was a secret… hopefully my secret identity is still safe. As for balance, I balance music and school just like any other student who works full time or plays a sport does. I try not to waste my time and sometimes I have to make sacrifices in one direction or the other. I put music first 95% of the time, but when it’s time to do school work, I do school work. One benefit of being in school while I pursue music is that I have less to worry about and more time to focus on music. While I’m in college, I don’t need to worry about where I’m going to live or where my next meal comes from. That stability provides a huge safety net allowing me to focus on music. Sometimes I do have to skip class for shows but I’ve found that my teachers are always open to working with me. It’s a pretty funny conversation the first time I tell a teacher I have to miss class because I’m a rapper. But as I said, they respect that what I’m doing is my job, and as long as I show them respect and put in effort for their class I don’t foresee any real problems.
INSPIRER: Explain the main differences between your first mixtape, “Business as Usual”, and your latest release “Vindicated”? KR: The main difference was me figuring out how to make music and discovering my sound as an artist. Rather than focus on the old tapes, I’d rather speak on my new one, Quit Your Day Job. If BAU and Vindicated were me discovering my sounds, fleshing it out, QYDJ is the first full project where I’ve come into my own as an artists. Everything: sonically, musically, lyrically is improved and unique to me. So the first two I was figuring things out, and Quit Your Day Job is the first time I can demonstrate what I’ve learned about making music and properly and formally introduce the world to KAM Royal. INSPIRER: Though many of your songs are about partying (no problem, there), some of your songs do have a completely different vibe. Where did your inspiration come from for songs like these? (“What a Day”, for example). KR: I think the dichotomy in my subject matter stems from efforts to accurately portray all part of my life in my music. Anyone who knows me will tell you I’m a very happy-golucky person, but I wouldn’t feel honest if I presented myself as only having happy thoughts and making happy music I definitely do have deeper, more complex thoughts and I try to express those emotions through my music. Also, it’s incredibly easy to write fun party songs and I believe that challenging yourself is necessary to better your artistry. On Quit Your Day Job, you’ll find a lot more emotion, a lot more reality in my music than you have before.
KR: I have a couple songs about love on there but for the first time I’m no longer just writing these puppy dog infatuation songs like “Beautiful” on Vindicated. That’s how I felt at the time, but since then I had a serious relationship dissolve. That led to long periods of introspection and I feel like I’ve learned a lot about myself and love. So I look forward to putting that music out there. I want to see how people respond to the more personal music. It’s one thing if you like my party songs, everybody likes to party, but to connect on a deeper level is a connection I find more meaningful, more visceral.
“Everybody likes to party.” INSPIRER: How does the D.C. music scene differ from that in New Orleans? KR: There’s about a million different ways I could answer this question. I’m going to focus specifically on comparing the two rap scenes. Both are similar in that people are only interested in supporting people from their area. Whether it’s your ward in New Orleans or you neighborhood it DC. It’s stupid, I feel like so many artists allow this individual pride to interfere with doing something positive and good for the overall city. Look at a city like Pittsburgh, that’s a city that through cooperation and everyone showing love is now in a really good position musically. DC has talent, people just need to band together instead of trying to get on at the expense of others.
INSPIRER: If I went through your ipod, what would I find that may be a little embarrassing? Or, do you not believe in the idea of "guilty pleasures" when it comes to music? KR: I don’t believe in “guilty pleasure” music. I think music is supposed to make you feel an emotion and whatever song produces that emotion for you is good music. I don’t believe we should limit ourselves to consuming what our peers dictate is “good”. Listen to whatever you want, do whatever you want, dress however you want. Find whatever makes you happy, pursue that, and be proud of that. INSPIRER: What can fans expect from "Quit Your Day Job", in terms of sound, lyricism, and in contrast to your other releases? KR: Expect your first real introduction to KAM Royal. This is the first time all my music has its own distinct sound and the first time my music has that longevity I desire. I don’t listen to my old music at all, but I feel like you’ll be able to come back to QYDJ in five months or five years and the songs would still be good songs, still relevant. The project is much more advanced than my old word. More so than any one song standing out I’d say the narrative of the overall tape is most impressive. I would say expect nothing, just push play with an open mind and a willingness to learn who I am. INSPIRER: What would you say were your favorite albums of 2011? Are you looking forward to anything particular in 2012 (aside from “Quit Your Day Job”, of course).
KR: I think 2011 saw a lot of great albums. Off the top of my head I really dug the the Fleet Foxes new album, Helplessness Blues. Bon Iver crushed it this year. Adele’s 21 is a phenomenal record. Take Care, Sideline Story, Section 80, From the Westside With Love II, LiveLoveAsap, The Marathon Continues. All dope albums that came out this year. I’m looking forward to Common’s new album in 2012. He’s been leaking tracks off it recently and it sounds like No ID did WORK on this new album… I look forward to it. Aside from that I look forward to hearing new music from all the artists I like. I’m really into a lot of young artists now so I look forward to seeing wh at they have next and witnessing their progression. INSPIRER: Where do you see yourself a year from now? Or at least what are your top three goals for 2012. KR: I’m pretty excited about the future. I’m going to put out QYDJ early 2012 and I look forward to seeing how the world reacts. I want to be able to tour off QYDJ and continue to work on my new projects. My goal for 2012 is to get closer to my overall goal of having a sustainable music career by the time I graduate college. INSPIRER: What has been your favorite show so far? Favorite venue? KR: I really enjoy all my shows. Performing is so much fun and I’m still new enough to it that every show is a learning experience. If I had to pick one that jumps out I did a show in DC over Thanksgiving. It wasn’t too big, but it was the first time I got to perform for all my friends back
home. I probably had 50 friends there but they made enough noise that it was like 500 I really enjoyed that. As for my favorite venues, I played a show out at Club Moon in the Palms Hotel in Vegas earlier this year. That was pretty swagged out just because it’s a pretty legendary venue and I was performing with some dope artists. INSPIRER: Who are your top 3 favorite artists right now? KR: I’m glad you said “right now” ‘cause it’s a hard list. My favorite artists right now, the artists I’ve been listening to a lot recently, are Lauryn Hill, Jimi Hendrix, and Fleetwood Mac. That could change next week though. I’ve just found myself going to those artists’ albums the past few weeks. INSPIRER: Say you could design your dream tour, with you as the headliner. Who would you take on board? You can bring people back to life, just for this, so be creative! KR: Jimi Hendrix. Michael Jackson. The two greatest performers ever. [Laughs] Man, every motherfucker would come to that concert. I’d also throw Usher on a few shows, my mom wants to meet him, so performing together could definitely facilitate that. Oh, and I’d definitely put my brother on there as an opening act. He does stand up comedy so I’m not sure how well it would work with a rap show... but then again its Jimi and MJ... not really a rap show anyway. Plus its my tour! So fuck yeah, put Cuzlo… that’s what I call my little brother… on the bill. INSPIRER: What’s one thing about you that people don’t
know and may be surprised by? KR: If I told you it [you] wouldn’t be surprised anymore. Naw that’s a cop out… I think Les Miserables is the greatest love story ever told… I know most of the words. Surprising enough for you? Q: What advice would you give to someone who wants to stay in school while pursuing their musical dreams? KR: It’s not that hard if you commit to it. Don’t half-ass what you’re doing. If you really really love what you do and commit yourself to it it will never be work. Find your passion, chase your dreams, quit your day job. Visit Facebook.com/KAMRoyal for more info
“I Think Les Miserables is the greatest love story ever told”
Photos by James Spata
DEFRIENDI by Ella Goldsmith
The Social Phenominon Sw
While everyone is entitled to an opinion, they are not necessarily entitled to an audience. This has become even more accurate today, in an age where social networking allows people to filter exactly what they want to read and who they want to receive their information from.
Defriending - the process of removing friends and their information from your view - has become very common amongst college students who, once incredibly open to adding anyone and everyone they know, are now second-guessing some of their choices. Be it an unfamiliar face, spam messages, outlandish statements, harassment, or a romantic falling out, defriending is a trend that is quickly sweeping the world of social media. Though Twitter has always been a selective tool by which people can choose whether or not to â€œfollowâ€? anotherâ€™s posts, Facebook has recently begun to shift from an open space into a more private community. Many users have begun to question how many of their 2,319 followers are actually still worth keeping up with. It is not uncommon to wonder where you met someone, if that person is still important to you, or if it is really worth keeping in touch. With these questions in mind, many have gone through and slowly begun the grueling process of deleting people from their lists. Miami University student Natalie Halcuzk weeds
weeping The Nation... out people daily because she is now unfamiliar with many people on her page. “I met so many people randomly in high school. I was excited to add them, and now its three years later and I don’t even remember who they are, so I delete them,” says Halczuk. Defriending is also taking place in the Twitterverse. Many have many specific interests and strive to ensure that all of the information they are getting is in favor or support of what they like. Temple University student Terrence Flechett, an avid Twitter user, described how this has affected him. “I hate Lil Wayne, so I don’t follow him so I don’t have to read anything he says.” Fletchett even goes so far as to delete any of his friends who post things about the rapper. Internet etiquette has become critical in the modern world, with rules surrounding every aspect of having a social media account. There are many dos and don’ts that one must avoid in order to slip into oblivion or offend someone online. “Do not post too much or to little. Both are extremes that can get you deleted” says O’Connor. She also suggests refraining from posting radical political views and depressing comments, though she does not denounce the act of healthy debate. Avoiding these common mistakes are helpful tools in keeping on the good side of your online friends and keeping you away from ending up in the defriended zone.
ARTIST VS POET INTERVIEWED BY: HEATHER HAWKE
INSPIRER:This year Artist Vs. Poet has gone through some drastic changes with both vocalist Tarcy Thomason and drummer Joe Westbrook leaving the band and then being dropped by Fearless Records. There have been a lot of rumors going around about both of those stories; for anyone who hasn’t heard can you guys share what actually happened? JASON: Tarcy leaving the band was something that we suspected would happen once we found out that he was having a child and then even more so when we found out he was getting married. We as a band just couldn’t imagine him being able to lead both lifestyles. We confronted him about it several times personally, on conference calls with our manager, and in meetings with Bob Becker of Fearless Records. Tarcy always swore up and down that we had nothing to worry about and that he would have no problem balancing his family life with AVP. We made the mistake of believing him. Fearless really went all out for us pushing for us to be on Warped Tour 2010 and then on the Fearless Friends tour the following November. They needed Tarcy’s assurance that he would not quit because Fearless was currently investing lots of money to take “Adorable” to radio, marketing and promotion, and also helping us with various tour costs like buying us spots on tours. Artist Vs Poet was finally starting to see lots of hard work pay off, things were becoming really exciting, and then Tarcy told us he was going to quit the band somewhere around two weeks before we left for the Fearless Friends tour. That is pretty much the simplest way to explain Tarcy leaving. I know there are more rumors floating around about how we feel towards him and I would love to get those reasons off my chest but
for the sake of his wife and child I will have to hold my tongue. However, I will say, he did really fucked up things and Joe Westbrook is his only remaining friend from Artist Vs Poet. Joe Westbrook decided to leave simply because he wanted to pursue college and film. We couldn’t really comment as to why exactly Fearless decided to part ways with us because we went back and forth with them since November of 2010, but we honestly feel it was for the better on both parts. Tarcy’s unexpected leave costs them lots of money and left a very bad taste in their mouth. I think it was hard for Fearless to look at Artist Vs Poet and not be reminded about how we essentially fucked them over. INSPIRER: Artist Vs. Poet has some of the most loyal fans I’ve ever seen, have you noticed a change in fan loyalty before and after the lineup changed? JASON: Yes we most definitely have noticed one change: they are more loyal than ever! Everyone has been so amazing and so supportive to us since the lineup change. Joe was welcomed as the lead singer with so much excitement and Dylan has already become a fan favorite. INSPIRER: What inspires you guys to still pursue a career in music? JASON: The same things that always have: Love for music, love for the stage, and love for our fans. INSPIRER: You just put out your Naughty or Nice Christmas EP, how did you come up with the idea to 1) put out a Christmas EP, and then 2) to cover the Nsync and Blink
182’s Christmas songs? JOE: Naughty Or Nice was a last minute idea for sure. We just didn’t want to miss out on the season. Plus we really liked the idea of being able to release the EP for free as our Christmas present to all of our fans and supporters. The N’sync cover was a no brainer. Best Christmas song + the best boy band in the world = perfect cover idea… enough said. The Blink 182 cover was in a way inspired by Ben Folds who we also cover on the EP. Ben Folds did a really beautiful rendition of the raunchy Dr. Dre song “Bitches Ain’t Shit” and we thought it would be humorous to try the same thing with Happy Holidays, You Bastard. I hate to plug, but hell it is a free Christmas present so everyone should feel free to go to www.theinterlude.com to download Naughty Or Nice. Merry Christmas bitches!!! INSPIRER: Besides just releasing the Naughty or Nice EP you also just released two new AVP songs, ‘Doin’ Alright’ and ‘Wasn’t Worth It’ and you’re in the process of working/ recording not only one but TWO albums, a EP and then a full length. How do you guys have the time for all of this? When can we expect those releases? JOE: I feel like people are always asking us if we ever sleep. One person on twitter even asked if we paid people to post for Artist Vs Poet because they had noticed new updates during all hours of the day and night [laughs]. We spend every minute and second we can working on AVP and we have been writing new material since November of last year so releasing an EP and Full Length really isn’t as difficult as it may sound because we have plenty of mate-
rial. A release date just can’t be set in stone yet but we are pushing for the EP to be out early next year and for the full length to follow it shortly. INSPIRER: Out of all the cover songs you guys have done this year, what is your favorite one? Why? DYLAN: I have to say my favorite cover song we’ve done is “Mean” by Taylor Swift. I feel like out of all the songs we’ve covered, Mean seemed to come together more naturally than the others. I feel it also shows the diversity that AVP is capable of and it appeals just about every demographic. INSPIRER: Joe you have a solo project (The Follow Through) and Dylan you have a clothing company (Designated Dylan), after the release of the two new AVP albums next year, are you going to keep pursuing those personal dreams? JOE: The Follow Through wasn’t necessarily a dream; it was more of a musical outlet. My dream has always been to play music for people, especially original songs. I will always have it as an outlet, and who knows, maybe in the future I will release more music, but as for now, I enjoy incorporating my writing style with Jason and Dylan. I used The Follow Through style when writing a lot of the old Artist Vs. Poet songs. As for now, my writing goes to Artist Vs. Poet. The Follow Through will always be around though. DYLAN: I definitely plan on pursuing Designated Dylan
throughout my career in Artist vs Poet. The company was started based on a reflection of my own personal lifestyle and is unrelated to the band. For Designated Dylan, this is only the beginning. I still have plenty of unmet goals for this company and I plan on reaching them despite whatever is happening with AVP. INSPIRER: Whatâ€™s in stores for Artist Vs. Poet for 2012? AVP: New music and new tours....FINALLY.
YAYOI KUSAMA by Lena petersson
The amazing Japanese artist Yayoi Kusama exhibited at the Centre Pompidou in PARIS. Her works, unmistakable, from a childhood memory that founded his artistic universe. A hallucination that emerged around a family table, when they see the flowers of the blanket to multiply the ceiling, walls, floor, and herself.
Since the day these multiplications never leave, peas become his trademark manufactures, and invade his amazing works, paintings, collages, sculptures that havein common is the repetition and accumulation pattern. â€œMy life is a pea lost among thousands of other peas.â€?
Her works are a sort of autobiography of the artist that combines feminism, art brut, minimalism and psychology can be distinguished from the tormented mind of Kusama. Yayoi Kusama was born in Matsumoto in 1929 and produced his first works in 50â€™s or sexual metaphors that will follow in his artistic maturity are already there, just like peas and endless repetition. She then moved to New York she attended the avant-garde artists like Frank Stella or Donald Judd.Yayoi Kusama has emerged as one of the precursors of Pop Art in 10 years, she realize a large number of works and in 1964, she created her first environmental installation: Aggregation: One Thousand Boats Show. The artist also takes part in political struggles that shook the late 60â€™s. She organize Â happenings in the Famous places like Central Park or Brooklyn Bridge and then in 1973, she returned to Japan.
The Unwanted Change o The latest innovations in music via the Internet have caused many changes in the music industry. Because of the popular social media sites, Twitter and Facebook, bands and artists seem much more personable and friend-like to fans. Years ago, fans could only dream of meeting their favorite band or artists. Nowadays, some fans go to concerts nearly demanding to meet the performing bands or artists. What caused this change? Canâ€™t fans simply go to concerts to enjoy the live music? Many people in the music industry have expressed their opinions on the matter. Even though they are appreciative of the fans, there is a point in everyoneâ€™s daily life where they need their peace and quiet, no matter who they are. Another disappointing change of the year is that many more fans expect artist-to-fan, direct selling of music, an effect of YouTube. With numerous artists these days making it big on YouTube first (eh hem, Justin Bieber, Rebecca Black) the fans feel a more personal connection with artists and develop cravings for new music directly online. With the rising number of successful music videos created before any visits to the studio prove that YouTube is creating promises that fansâ€™ cravings for new music can be quickly fed by a music video online. The Internet is to blame for rising expectations of meeting artists at concerts and the demand of more personable approaches for artists to sell their music. When you look at the mass of people lined up outside a venue awaiting a concert, how many of them are truly there to experience live music? That used to never be a ponder-
of the Music Industry
Article by Nicolette Tabor
ing question, but now with the high expectations of artists spending time with their fans, possibly half of those waiting “fans” are there just to snap a photo of themselves with the bands and post it on the Internet. People in the music industry are appearing more and more personable because of Twitter and Facebook. Because of social media, fans are updated on every single thing artists do, leading some fans to believe that they know the artists on a personable level. In the extremely small chance that you actually do know them, that is acceptable to try to spend time with them after a concert, but in reality, you should leave the artists alone. Curran Blevins, the tour manager of We Are The In Crowd, wrote on Property of Zack on the issue. “There is no safe haven, there is no quiet time, and there isn’t anywhere you can go to have a so-called personal life while on the road anymore. There are no longer secrets left for the minds of the fans. Every question is answered, every autograph request met, and every photo taken time and time again. Attending a show is like paying anyone at any job for a service. You are there to see the band perform their music, and be entertained by the live show that they put on. The difference is simply now fans expectations for what a show may be or what is expected of one of their favorite bands has greatly changed. We are all humans, and no one seems to understand that we have bad days…With technology now kids are able to show their discontent to the bands, and what I want the Fans to know is that all of these bands
read your tweets, and all of the band members feel that they have come up short, especially when disappointing fans of theirs” (PropertyOfZack Contributor Blog : : Curran Blevins). The effects created by social media are obscene and devastating. Please, fans, be appreciative of the artists. Yes, it is nice to get an autograph or take a picture with your favorite artist, but please be courteous. Respect their lives and they will respect yours. Nearly everyone remembers the horrendous “Friday” music video created by Rebecca Black. Why does nearly everyone remember it? Because of YouTube and social media. It’s not like the general public wanted to remember that music video, but because of the constant sharing of YouTube links via Facebook and Twitter, Rebecca Black became an overnight, worldwide sensation. Yes, YouTube is a great way for normal people to share their music with others, but it also is a place where untalented people throw together “music videos” and become famous for it. More and more people are simply creating videos on their bedrooms, putting them on YouTube, and instantly start selling their music. If not for YouTube, young Miss Rebecca Black would have never graced the iTunes charts. Also, with Youtube and other social media sites, more fans are obtaining music without charge than ever before. According to Michael DeGusta of the Business Insider, “ten years ago the Average American spent almost three times as much on recorded music products as they do today.” It is growing to be obvious that fans are heavily depending on the Internet for their music and are moving away from buying full-length albums. The seemingly old fashioned way of recording music in studio, distributing albums through record labels, and selling CD’s in stores is a thing of the past. Fans
desire artists to make themselves as open as possible and share their music directly via the Internet. Now, it is understood that not all fans have become heavily dependent on the Internet for music and artist interaction, and the world is grateful for those people that have yet to convert. But, it is just a concerning thing to see that a growing number of “artists” are becoming famous because of silly videos posted online and fans heckling artists for autographs. Fans need to understand that they will not always be able to directly connect with the artists they know and love on a daily basis, even though social media promises them that. The growing sensation of fan-artist interaction is a new thing of our generation and both sides need to realize that. Fans need to acknowledge that artists need their alone time, but artists also need to realize that because of the growing social media, fans desire more personable relationships with them.
“Fans need to understand that they will not always be able to directly connect with the artists they know and love on a daily basis.”
BAND YOU SHOULD KN Junior Doctor is a four piece pop punk band from Cocoa Beach, Florida. In early 2011, they released their first full length album entitled Clumsy Words and Pickup Lines. Junior Doctor recently signed to Universal Records, and I got a chance to interview their lead singer (or shall I say doctor), Mark Hartman.
INSPIRER: So, to begin tell me a little bit about how Junior Doctor began? MARK: Honestly, it was just me, Jarrod, and Richard. We played together seven years ago in a band, and then we started writing songs, and we wanted to play shows. So we
NOW: JUNIOR DOCTOR Interview by Kory Woodard
met friends of friends, basically people we didn’t know, until we got all of the parts of the band filled. INSPIRER: So I have to know: what inspired the title of the album? Who came up with it? MARK: I came up with the title and wrote all of the songs on the album. The title came from a line from “Uh Oh”. It’s my favorite line from the song. The whole record is really about relationships, but the bulk is about one relationship I had for a long time. Pickup lines are usually not attempt to be a jerk. They are something a guy does, but not very good. He likes a girl and wants to be close to her, but all he can think of is a bad pickup line. Since the album is about relationships, the title is fitting. INSPIRER: You guys released a music video for “Uh Oh” from this album recently, and Cassie Steele was in it, right? What was it like working with her? MARK: It was really cool. She was super stoked about it. We’ve all been fans of her; she does music as well. It was neat to meet her. Basically, she was the star of the set. The first day, she walked up to us and interjected. She then started telling us about her ideas for the video, then she walked away. After that we were all whispering about the star
that was walking around. We’ve stayed in contact with her and become friends. We might do a song with her, so look out for that. INSPIRER: I recently heard the awesome news that you guys just signed to Universal. You must be super excited. MARK: Definitely, it has been interesting because as a kid you get signed and you’re the biggest band in the world. This is actually when you work the most. Bands start as a couple guys writing songs in their living room. It’s a great honor. Super exciting, means that we’ve had to work harder than we’ve ever had to. But it’s what i want to do with my career, my life. INSPIRER: Can we be expecting a tour early next year? What are some big cities we could see you in? MARK: Yeah, we’re going out with a band, Freshmen 15, in January. We’ll be going from Florida to the Texas area. This next year is going to be full of touring. The best way to hook up with us on website, jrdrmusic.com and figure out where we are. INSPIRER: If you could tour with anyone, who would you link up with? MARK: This is kind of tough... I would probably pick someone I’ve been a fan of since I was a kid. Meeting them would be cool. Blink 182, I loved them. I think they did a lot for guys in bands. Playing a show with them would be insane. I’ve got a bunch of different influences, so maybe
David Bazan, lead singer of Pedro the Lion. It would be awesome to play a show with him. It definitely wouldn’t be the same genre, but I’d love that. INSPIRER: If you were stranded on an island what are 5 things you’d have to have? MARK: I would definitely have to have a case of Oreos. I’m a huge Oreo fanatic, so I definitely need some Oreos. And milk, milk should be included with Oreos. Some method to keep it cold, cooler with ice. I’d probably like to have a guitar or a ukulele, maybe. And a fishing device, like a spear, ‘cause the Oreos would run out eventually. INSPIRER: What has been your least favorite venue to perform at? MARK: That’s a bummer, lemme think- I don’t want to make anyone upset, I think that my least favorite was when we were first getting going, before we were Junior Doctor. We played a lot of shows locally. As a small band you have to take what you have, you can’t just pick the big venues. So we played at this biker bar on Merrit Island, Falkins Roost. We played there 5 times, cause it was the only place they could get a gig. We were pop rock to a bunch of biker dudes that wanted us to play Lynyrd Skynryd, but we didn’t know anything by them. INSPIRER: Where do you see Junior Doctor in 5 years? MARK: Hopefully, without sounding like an arrogant jerk, I see us being one of the biggest bands in the world. In my
opinion, it’s impossible to succeed unless you believe that you will. Our goal is to put records out for years to come. Our song will go out to the radio in January. Play bigger shows. I want fans to love the song. I make a career out of this to help anyone and the people around me. You know, without sounding like a jerk, I want the most success that is humanly possible. Catch Junior Doctor’s music video for “Uh Oh” playing in Mall Food Courts, Journey’s, Tilly’s, G By Guess, Wet Seal, and Foot Locker.
NBA: “BIG THINGS ARE COMING” BY KAMRON CLARK
Last season gave us excitement that the NBA has lacked for the last few years. After a very long and tiring lockout, we are finally back to basketball. This season will be shorter than the normal 82 games. Each team has only 66 games this season to prove themselves. So what should we expect to see from this season? Beer bellies, familiar faces, and big changes are some things we can be certain to notice as the NBA season begins. During the lockout, players were not allowed to use any of their normal facilities to work out or train with their teams. We would have to expect that not all players found it in them to work out everyday on their own - and who could blame them for not fitting training into their schedules when they are too busy filming reality shows, getting arrested, and cheating on their wives. Boris Diaw is a prime example of a player whose only exercise this long off season was moving food from his plate to his mouth. I can’t help but wonder if that is why the NBA’s slogan this year is “Big things are coming”. On the other hand, Oklahoma City’s Kendrick Perkins and Minnesota’s Kevin Love looks great coming back from the lockout. Love lost 25 pounds and got in shape like a player wanting to compete in this league should. We can only wait and see how the shape these players are in will affect their performance. Some big changes have happened recently that should make this season more interesting than last season. Chris Paul and Chauncey Billups join Blake Griffin and the Clip-
pers, showing that Los Angeles might be able to compete this year, the Clippers at least. Tyson Chandler and Baron Davis move to New York to help strengthen the Knicks. Kevin Love’s good conditioning along with Ricky Rubio, Derrick Williams, and José Barea could make the Timberwolves a threat for the first time since they lost Kevin Garnett. Dwight Howard and the rest of Orlando are still waiting to see what happens with him. There is still time before the trading deadline, so there is a good chance we will see some more movement with players and teams. You can still bet on seeing a lot of action from the teams who haven’t had any major players changes as well. The defending champion Dallas Mavericks are planning to repeat their victory from last season, though it may be hard losing Tyson Chandler and José Barea, who were extremely noticeable in the Finals. The Miami Heat are looking to play and dominate like they promised they would last year. The Magic are hoping to keep their championship dreams alive, by of course, keeping Dwight Howard. Kevin Durant and the Thunder have enough young talent to get them to the playoffs, but do they have what it takes to get any farther? The Celtics and Lakers struggled in the playoffs last season. We will see if their veteran players can give it another go without having to acquire some younger talent. Derek Rose recently signed a
five-year extension to the Chicago Bulls, but the Bulls are hoping that they do not have to wait five years to see that contract pay off. The Bulls had the best record last season, but what good is being ahead in the race just to crash on the last lap. I believe that their focus this year is going to be on the finish line. Overall, this season looks to be very exciting for any basketball fan. This looks like the first season in a very long time where almost any team has a chance of coming out on top. The shortened season will make it so teams have less time to make mistakes and each game will have to be taken seriously. Praise Allah, the NBA is back!
â€œYou can still bet on seeing a lot of action from the teams who havenâ€™t had any major players changes as well.â€?
PIERCE THE VEIL by Morgan Young
Mix Latin with hardcore and what do you get? A genre called “Mexicore” created and copyrighted by Pierce the Veil—a five piece band with unique talents that give the hardcore music scene a whole new look. “We’re just four Mexicans making rock music, we don’t know what we’re doing. Just check it out; we’re having fun” says the band. With a lead in like that, every live show is sure to bring in both surprises and great music. The band concluded a co-headling tour last month, ruthlessly titled the No Guts No Glory Tour in which action was packed into each night. To put it simply, jumping off high amps and singing out of megaphones is completely normal when it comes to a Pierce the Veil show. “This tour we were really looking forward to just because we haven’t played in the states in a little bit” said drummer Mike Fuentes on the first night of tour in San Francisco, CA. Taking time last year to visit across seas, the band was ecstatic to get back in a time zone they were familiar with. So, who is Pierce the Veil? They’re much more than an entertaining band with a unique genre. The band signed on with Fearless Records in August and has since been featured on the label’s popular Punk Goes Pop compilation, covering Bruno Mars’ Just The Way You Are. Overall, the band says “so far it’s been awesome; we’re stoked on all the work they’ve been doing”. Now that the tour has wrapped up, the band is preparing for their debut record with the new label. “I was actually just setting up our studio in the back lounge so we can keep writing throughout this tour” noted Vic Fuentes, lead vocalist for the band, before the opening show. “We’re planning on recording early [this] year and we’ll put something out
hopefully next summer or something. But we will see how it goes”. But what really sticks out about Pierce the Veil is the way they feel about fans. Striking up conversation on the subject was simple, and each member of the band had a mouthful to say in light of the subject. Vic Fuentes summed it up by saying getting to “talk to kids who are really truly changed, like the music has helped them in some way. That’s always a pay off for us and when people can say that it’s helped them…that’s not even just us playing on stage, it’s something way bigger to them so it kind of means a lot. It makes us want to make more music when we hear stuff like that.” Mike Fuentes comments on the subject as well saying “I don’t know what they had going on but whatever they found in the music or in the lyrics is giving them some sort of strength is incredible. I’ve talked to someone who’s said that seeing us live has made them look at life differently.” A talented, unique band that has a dying passion for their fans—what more can you ask for in a band? Whether it be because your ears are bugging for some new tunes or because you’re going through a tough time, Pierce the Veil is a band that is guaranteed to get a smile right back on your face.
TOP FIFTEEN ALBUMS OF 2011: BY MO Mayday Parade “Mayday Parade” [MY] Mayday Parade reinforced their talents and abilities after the disappointing release of Anywhere But Here in 2009 with their selftitled full length on October 4, 2011. Front man Derek Sanders showed his best work lyrically as a vast improvement was shown throughout the record. No matter your current emotional state—whether it be sad, happy, loving life, or stressed—there is a song on this album that will pick you up and swing you around on the best whirlwind you’ve ever been on. Nobody is left with an ounce of doubt after hearing the record all the way through. Best Tracks: Stay, When You See Your Friends, and Oh Well Oh Well. Rating: 9/10 New Found Glory “Radiosurgery” [HH] Proving once again that pop-punk isn’t dead New Found Glory has released their seventh full length album titled Radiosurgery. This album has all the right things to make you want it to be summer again with the blue skies overhead, driving with the windows down, blasting the songs and singing along with them. Every song on Radiosurgery has
ORGAN YOUNG AND HEATHER HAWKE the typically simplistic, yet very catchy, New Found Glory lyrics that get stuck in your head for hours on end. While some songs have hints of past albums, it would be unfair to compare because this album can hold its own weight. Some of the songs are undoubtedly better than others, i.e. Trainwreck, but if you’re a loyal NFG fan and are craving their intense high energy songs that they are so exceptional at, then this album won’t disappoint. Best Tracks: Caught In The Act, Anthem for the Unwanted, and I’m Not the One. Simple Plan “Get Your Heart On!” [HH] Get Your Heart On! is Simple Plan’s fourth album and the one that has more of the fun sing-a-long pop punk that we first feel in love with on “No Pads, No Helmets… Just Balls.” While this album has some slow, yet magnificent songs, i.e. a fan involvement song, “This Song Saved My Life” and the metaphorically brilliant, “Astronaut,” it’s more of an upbeat record than the last two albums. On this record they had the brilliant idea to feature not one, not two, not three, but four collaborations with other artists that really ended
up adding something special to this record. The artists range from Weezer’s Rivers Cuomo on “Can’t Keep My Hands Off You”, Natasha Bedingfield on “Jet Lag”, K’naan on “Summer Paradise”, and lastly Alex Gaskarth of All Time Low on “Freaking Me Out.” Simple Plan knows how to do pop punk and if this magnificent album is any indication, Simple Plan will be around for years to come. Best Tracks: Can’t Keep My Hands Off You, Jet Lag, Gone Too Soon Rating: 9/10 Blink-182 “Neighborhoods”[HH] The result of the group’s half-decade absence is Neighborhoods, their first full-length release since their 2003 selftitled record. Neighborhoods isn’t a pop-punk record, it’s not a space-age rock record, it’s a form of release from all the severe tragedies that all of them have had to overcome in these previous years, because of their seven year absence and the various other outlets of music they have all pursued, you have to know that it’s not going to sound the same. Even their self-titled album in ‘03 was getting criticized for straying away from the immature pop punk sound the fans grew up loving. Now, on ‘Neighborhoods’ this is the result of all those personal outlets combining together to form this long awaited album. You have to take this album for what it is. Yes, It does sound a lot like Angels and Airwaves and +44, but you can’t compare it to the old Blink 182, they moved on and now we also have to. Best Tracks: After Midnight, Up All Night, Heart’s All Gone Rating: 8/10
The Cab “Sym-p hony Soldier” [MY] Proving to the world that a record label doesn’t always come into play, The Cab released this fulllength in an effort to reconnect with fans that were lost in their two-year gap of new releases. These efforts transformed into an outbreak of Symphony Soldiers—what they now call their fans—in a positive reaction towards the album. Kicking back their previous sound just one notch, this new album possesses it all when it comes to variety. Whether it is fast or slow, catchy or complicated, there is a song on this record that is a perfect fit for all types of music listeners out there. Front to back is the way it is preferred to be heard as each song really develops into the next, creating a more intimate feel with each listen. Best Tracks: Bad, Endlessly, and Lovesick Fool Rating: 9/10 Yellowcard “When You’re Through Thinking, Say Yes” [HH] In an interview in April 2008 Yellowcard announced that they would be going on an “indefinite hiatus.” Now, after almost three years, here is Yellowcard’s grand return back into the music industry with their fifth studio
record, “When You’re Through Thinking Say Yes.” The album starts off where the band’s last record, ‘Paper Walls,’ finished. Even though the band’s previous efforts echo throughout, the mixture of the band’s signature blend of pop-punk/pop-rock, and don’t forget the violin, flow very well together. Yellowcard couldn’t have picked a more perfect time to come out of hiatus and release this new record. With the reunion of bands like Blink-182, The Starting Line and The Get Up Kids, and the increasing success of new blood, Four Year Strong, The Wonder Years, and Fireworks, this is proof that pop punk will not die. Yellowcard also put out an acoustic version of “When You’re Though Thinking Say Yes” in October. The acoustic album is marvelously done, Ryan Key’s normally ecstatic vocals are kept in check when matching the stripped down instrumentation and the extraordinary percussion. Most acoustic records are just another release but this one pays very close attention to detail and it could possibly be better than the non- acoustic version of the CD. Best Tracks: With You Around, Sing For Me, For You and Your Denial Rating: 7/10 The Summer Set “Everything’s Fine” [MY] Completely turning around their sense of sound, The Summer Set released this second full-length album just in time to
end the summer off right. Lead singer Brian Dales truly showed off his lyrical ability through each song, making the album seem to center about a full relationship as each song leads to the next. Fast and slow paces are conquered by the five talented musicians in ways that are almost unheard of in the music industry today. Unique instruments are brought out to emphasize the passion in Dales’ voice, giving listeners a fair share of instrumentals and vocals. If this album is not already in the iTunes library of yourself or a friend, it’s a must have album in our eyes. Best Tracks: About A Girl, Must Be The Music, and Someone Like You Rating: 9.5/10 The Wonder Years “Suburbia I’ve Given You All And Now I’m Nothing” [HH] Ever since The Wonder Year’s release of “Upsides” they have been climbing the pop punk charts. Musically this album is very enjoyable, lyrically a couple songs need more substance, but pop punk isn’t for deep heartfelt songs; it’s about fun catchy songs that make you forget about whatever is going on in your life. There are a few songs that are exceptions;”Hoodie Weather” is one of them, when I read the track by track for this song it really hit home. Dan ‘Soupy ‘Campbell said this about the song, “The entire world seems to want to leave. Everywhere I’ve ever been, when you ask what’s cool there, the response is, “Nothing; this place sucks. I can’t wait to get out.” But, if everywhere sucks, where are you going, and why? I feel like a lot of people around here are without goals. They don’t know where they want to go or what they want to know. They just know they don’t want to be here, and they don’t want to
do this”…”A lot of people hate a lot of places, but it’s not enough to just run away from them. You need to figure out what you love and what you don’t, and place yourself in this world according to that, or you’re going to end up miserable no matter what city you’re in.” Growing up in a semi small town I know from first-hand experience what this is like, and that’s what I love about this album there’s a lot of connection it’s not just pointless ranting. So if you want to forget the stresses going on in your life but yet have enjoyable pop punk go pick up this all-round positive album. Best Tracks: Hoodie Weather, Coffee Eyes, Don’t Let Me Cave In Rating: 8/10 The Maine “Pioneer” [MY] You can refuse to record their third full length, forcing them to record out of their own pockets, but that will not prevent The Maine from putting out a top dog album. Clicking back to their previous release “Black and White” with the country kick they put into each track, Pioneer allows fans to really hear the sound they have developed since the release of “Can’t Stop, Won’t Stop” in 2008. Rather than a pop/punk album, this is more of an alternative rock sound that we hope sticks with The Maine as they continue on. Sentimental songs, such as
Sentimental songs, such as ‘Jenny’ written about lead singer John O’Callaghan’s mother, are incorporated in between love songs and hate songs to give listeners a variety that they will without a doubt relate to. In the industry today, it’s difficult to find an entire album filled with songs that are relatable rather than being about sex, drugs and getting drunk. The Maine really shows the world who’s boss with this selfproduced full-length album. Best Tracks: Some days, My Heroine and While Listening to Rock & Roll Rating: 8/10 City and Colour “Little Hell” [HH] Dallas Green just released his third solo album “Little Hell” under his cleverly eponymous moniker. This incredibly sophisticated musician has put out his most honest and intimate album yet. The album title is about exploring the little hells and tribulations we all face each and every day. Some songs stray far from Green’s folksy roots with a complete absence of acoustic guitars, but more than make up for it with their strong hooks and creative instrumentation. Green adds in a wonderful handful of upbeat/ mid tempo songs that have an almost post-rock/southern like atmosphere, that sit comfortably somewhere between his energy and his recluse. Although his songs aren’t just acoustic anymore don’t expect them to be happier. These deeply personal topics he sings about help create the intimacy that ultimately makes Little Hell so unique, some involving brutal candidness and very vulnerable moments. Best Tracks: Fragile Bird, We Found Each Other In The Dark, Northern Wind Rating: 9/10
All Time Low “Dirty Work” [MY] Another band, another genre change with the release of a new album. Taking pop punk and leaning it on the pop side, All Time Low made a revolution with their new release. While previous releases such as Put Up Or Shut Up and the more recent Nothing Personal had a variety of sounds throughout the songs on each album, Dirty Work sticks to one genre only stopping to slow down for a couple tracks. Music videos poking fun at other artists have been released and the album blew over with fans, but it is still to be noted as one of the best. Lyrically, Alex Gaskarth teamed up with a handful of co-writers to create a final product that lacked in the area as compared to the usual, but the album makes up for all of this instrumentally. Each member of the band puts passion into their playing and it ends up creating a sound that is truly unique. Being compared to tracks found on KE$HA’s releases has blown off the shoulders of the quartet as they gain pride for their new sound. Best Tracks: Time Bomb, I Feel Like Dancin’ and Paper Moon Rating: 7/10
La Dispute “Wildlife” [MY] Though their 2008 release will always be near impossible to beat, La Dispute did more than prove their talent with this release. Vocalist Jordan Dreyer claims the title as lyrical genius, as his lyrics send chills down the spines of all who really listen. In his own words, “half of writing is finding something worthwhile to write about, and that’s pretty easy so long as you stay attentive”. Attentive to say the lease, the lyrics are all it takes for this record to be one of the best releases all year. Bringing in the instruments and breakdowns that are also present, this album is another hard one to top in their experimental rock genre. If there is one album you listen to off this list, make it this one. It’s hard to find an entire album filled with songs that move you, but pop this record in and it is guaranteed to have you thinking twice about everything in your life. Best Tracks: A Departure, A Letter and King Park Rating: 8.5/10 Every Avenue “Bad Habits” [MY] Fans were held under the impression that Every Avenue could not get more perfect with their 2009 Picture Perfect release, which escalated to the 20 spot in Indie music charts. When the band dropped Bad Habits as a summer
conclusion, reaching the number 8 spot in the same charts, it was clear that Every Avenue only gets better with time. In their best released studio album to date, the new record takes a turn with more meaningful lyrics and laid back instrumentals, appropriate to what has become a popular change in the sound of music more recently. Best Tracks: Fall Apart, Whatever Happened to You and Tie Me Down Rating: 8/10 The Paper Kites “Woodland” [HH] It doesn’t happen a lot, but every once in a while you hear an album that will change your life. This is one of those albums, it’s that magnificent. The Paper Kites just grab a hold of your heart and runs away with it. Their debut album “Woodland” just came out in August, even with only 5 tracks, plus one bonus track, this is an album worth reckoning for. The Paper Kites is a band from Australia that just got done with a tour with another lovely Australia band, Boy & Bear. This indie band will be compared to the likes of Bon Iver with the slow and magnificent vocals yet have the Angus and Julia Stone boy and girl back and forth vocals. Best Tracks: Featherstone, Woodland, Bloom Rating: 9/10 Avril Lavigne “Goodbye Lullaby” [MY] “He was a skater boy, she said see you later boy” is a lyric that is definitely recognized around the world for shaping the teenage years of many.
After a disappointing of The Best Damn Thing released in 2007, fans around the world were in awe at how our favorite punk chick turned into a prissy princess. However, Goodbye Lullaby reassures that she has not gone far. Getting back to her original roots, Avril gives old fans hopes by playing songs filled with vocals and electric guitars that are extremely familiar. Set the princess crowns and tutu skirts aside and let the skater chick side come right back out, like it did in the early 2000â€™s. Best Tracks: What The Hell, Push and Smile Rating: 7/10
LOST AND LOVELESS CLOTHIN Members from pop punk and hardcore bands have started a new trend, bringing a sense of fashion into the music scene. However, one company involving Nick Martin of post-hardcore band Destroy Rebuild Until God Shows (more recognized as DRUGS), makes it their mission to take it one step farther in an attempt to make the world a better place. Beginning early last year with the intentions of spreading positivity, Lost and Loveless Clothing was formed after a conversation between Martin and Alex Lopez, another member of the company, in which the two agreed on “the whole concept of what we want to stand for and what the message is going to be behind what we do already” says Martin. The teddy bear’s name is Patch and he’s “beat up, he’s worn down and he’s been tossed around but his goal is just to make people happy,” says Martin. “That’s definitely what we stand for ourselves.” With bigger goals in mind, Martin and the rest of the crew got together with a designer to come up with the teddy bear that is seen on each item available. “We wanted to brand ourselves with an image or a face that was cute and cuddly but also rough and tough at the same time. So we decided on that,” says Martin. Thinking about it logically, the bear symbolizes much more than just the clothing brand. It stands for exactly what they were hoping to achieve overall with the spread of positivity. Looking around a crowded room may have you seeing familiar faces, but there is no knowing what
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each person has been through in their lives. Lost and Loveless gives hope to those who have had a tough life and even take it a step further by giving back to those who are in need. Martin says “it’s about trying to live as selfless as possible and ultimately strive towards the betterment of other people’s lives and trying to help out as much as possible. That’s what we stand for”. To add to their positive message, the company teamed up with Toys for Tots charity during the month of October, for the initial clothing launch. Matching each donation from buyers with one of their own, Lost and Loveless was able to give back to those in need. “We’re planning on working with as many different charities and things as possible with all of our future launches and we have ideas of how to get
them involved to really make it a little more interesting,â€? notes Martin. Using their communities to their advantage, the crew behind the brand has already gained a name for themselves in the music scene. Reaching out to as many people as possible is going to be quite the task, but one that is worth fighting for. With a message like the one Lost and Loveless has, itâ€™s hard not to support their line.
100 Abandoned Houses: Kevin Bauman by Jade Lawhon I have never had a photo collection from Kevin Bauman let me down and with a project like 100 Abandoned Houses I’m sure everyone can agree it is simply captivating. Kevin, a Denver based photographer finished this personal, and very emotional collection after ten years of capturing empty, abandoned houses around the city of Detroit. There’s a special talent that rests in a photographer’s hands when they have the ability to capture something so underrated and overlooked, and he shows just this in his documentary styled work. These pictures not only bring a haunting yet elusive feel, but each house also tells a story of what used to rest within it’s walls . I literally had goose bumps and tears in my eyes after viewing every house, pondering how someone could capture life in inadimate objects, as if they had souls too. Check out the erie collection for yourself at www.100AbandonedHouses.com.
AMERICAN HORROR STORY The premiere season of FX series American Horror Story was a gift to television viewers everywhere this holiday season. In a time where whimsical shows such as Modern Family and Glee reign supreme, American Horror Story quenched the bloodlust of audiences, and, surprisingly enough, they did so without one mention of the vampire phenomena that at this point may be considered overused and frankly, just plain boring. Throughout the 12-episode season, we follow the lives of the Harmon’s, a family whose recent turmoil (a miscarriage and infidelity on the father, Ben’s, part) cause the threesome (including mother, Vivien and daughter, Violet), to move to a restored mansion in California as an attempt to escape their problems. The mansion, however, is haunted, and is locally known as “the Murder House” because of its unusually gruesome history. Throughout the season it is made clear that if you die on the property, your soul remains on the property, and you are able to walk freely and appear human as long as you’re in the house. However, because these apparitions are trapped in this house many of them have a severe case of cabin fever. One of the few flaws of the series is the sheer number of ghosts. The spirits include, but are most definitely not limited to: a disfigured man in the attic, the victim of the infamous Black Dahlia murder, a promiscuous housemaid named Moira, Ben’s former mistress, a teenage sociopath, Tate, who takes a liking to Violet, and by the end of the
Y SEASON ONE: REVIEW
by Haley Thompson
season, Violet and Vivien themselves are permanent residents of the house. And all of this centers around Vivien’s pregnancy – before she dies she gives birth to twins, one fathered by her husband and the other fathered by Violet’s psychologically disturbed ghost boyfriend, Tate. Sound confusing? The storylines of all of the doomed souls are simple enough, but when they start overlapping and intertwining, audiences may feel the need to rewind or watch an episode twice. The finale, which premiered on December 21st, had a lot to wrap up in the one hour and 10 minutes it was allotted, and it seemed to be doing so when not even 20 minutes into the episode, Ben is murdered by the ghost of his former mistress, Hayden, leaving the baby who was fathered by Tate (the other twin was stillborn) to Tate’s mother, Constance, who lives across the street and knows all of the secrets of the house. However, from there the episode takes a turn into black comedy. Instead of the usual horror that is American Horror Story, the remainder of the episode focuses on happier times. Ben and Vivien laugh to each other as they succeed in scaring away new owners of the home. Vivien also finds the ghost of her stillborn son, and she, Violet, Ben, and her new baby appear to live hauntingly ever after in the mansion. However, it is the final scene in the season finale that draws you back in. The plot fast-forwards to three years later. Constance is getting her hair done and is gushing to
her hairdresser about the great things she expects from her three year old son. Little does the hairdresser know, this little boy is actually the antichrist, the child of a human and a ghost. When Constance gets back home from the salon, the three year old is covered in blood and laughing to himself, as his babysitter lies dead on the floor. Constance appears more amused than concerned. Finally, American Horror Story returns to its evil and bone-chilling plotline. The episode ends like this, a cliffhanger that fans of the show are now all too familiar with. Although somewhat disappointing, the season finale captured us once again in the final scene, and audiences are sure to be back for more when that second season comes around. American Horror Story, although mind-boggling at times, is the perfect blend of drama and dark humor, and brings out the sadistic tendencies that audiences may have never known they had.
ED by Sarah Rucker Most of us know someone with an eating disorder, whether we realize it or not. We may even know the alarming statistics about how many people suffer from eating disorders all over the world. However, what most of us do not know is the agonizing pain that is going on in the minds of those who endure an eating disorder. I took the time to interview a few women who have been recovering from eating disorders to see what goes on within the minds of the suffering. The first interview is with a woman named Ellen. After fighting an eating disorder for years, she is now doing well in recovery. Below are the answers to the questions Inspirer asked her about her eating disorder.
Photos by Sarah Rucker
Q: How would you define an eating disorder? A: Eating disorders are an isolating, hellish prison that suffocates the soul and destroys the body and mind. They are born out of fear, insecurity, a need for control, and a lack of proper coping skills and feed on fear, insecurity, a need for control, and a lack of proper coping skills. Eating disorders are cunning, consuming, manipulative, confusing, and most importantly eating disorders are a disease. It is NOT a choice - to eat, not to eat, to purge, not to purge. It’s a mental obsession with control of food, weight, and body image (which actually cover the real need to control emotions), and a physical addiction to foods and behaviors. My eating disorder was my best friend, and my worst enemy. It was my sole purpose for living, and my death sentence. And ironically, learning the truth about my eating disorder is the one thing that finally set me free. Q: What is the worst thing about an eating disorder (if you can narrow it down to one thing)? A: It’s nearly impossible to pick THE worst thing about an eating disorder. But if I had to pick one, I would say it’s the sense of utter, bottomless despair. I’ve never felt depression, sadness, hopelessness, helplessness, uselessness, and emptiness the way I did at the depths of my disease … And it terrifies me still to think of those darkest moments. But now I know that it’s always darkest just before the dawn. Q: If you had the opportunity to capture Ed* in a photograph, how would you portray Ed?
A: I’ve never really thought about how portray ED photographically (aside from the obvious). I guess the image that comes to mind for me is one of black and white, isolation, and misery, focusing more on faces than on bodies, because any ‘body’ can have an eating disorder. And it’s not really about the body, it’s about the mind. Liz is a mother to two of her own children. She also unwillingly took in another “child” - her eating disorder.
Q: Describe your personal struggle with your eating disorder. How is ED truly a monster in your life? A: Ed robbed me of 3 years of my kids’ lives. I look back at pictures of my daughter as an infant and my son as a toddler and I literally don’t remember them being that age. I was so
caught up in my eating disorder. I was almost taken away from them (in the form of a minor heart attack in church one Sunday 2 years ago) because of ED. That is what led me to finally, after 18 years of battling ED off and on, to seek treatment for myself. My kids literally didn’t have their mother fully present in their lives. It nearly destroyed my marriage. I wasn’t there for my husband at all. I have no idea the effect my eating disorder will have on my kids; I always figured they were too young to know what was going on when they were babies, but who knows? Now I have three kids to parent in my life: my own children and that 5 year old that is my Ed. She requires as much attention and discipline as my children. Ed is more like a 5 year old inside me screaming, kicking, and throwing herself to the floor DEMANDING for someone to take notice and for someone to take her seriously. The minute, even the second I lose focus and forget to “parent” her, [Ed] will sneak up and bite me in the form of a ‘slip” or relapse. Q: How is a mirror a terrible weapon of Ed? A: The mirror is a big weapon Ed uses with me, since my life [as a dancer] and my profession involve using the mirror to correct, critique and try to perfect every movement, pose, and position in ballet. Whatever I see in the mirror never reflects what I feel; if I feel good about something (whether in life or ballet), the mirror will always tell me there is room for improvement. Ed uses the mirror to really put me in my place, to always remind me that “we still have work to do”. The mirror shoots me down. Any time I am proud of something or did something good, the mirror shows me that I shouldn’t be so proud. It never allows me to enjoy a moment, to enjoy an achievement, or enjoy a success.
INTERVIEW WITH a BODY ARTIST: LAWReN ALICE by Sarah Rucker
Lawren Alice produces a unique form of art. Instead of using canvas to paint on, she uses people. She discovered her incredible talent after stumbling upon a professional face painting kit. Spending the entire night trying out the kit, Lawren immediately discovered a small part of her passion. From there, she worked at various places such as the New Jersey Adventure Aquarium and the Franklin Institute. Her first experience with full body painting arrived when Lawren entered the 2009 Face and Body Art International Convention competition in Orlando, Florida. She placed 3rd in the competition, but the best prize was discovering her new passion for body painting. Â Lawren has won many awards for her artistic talent, such as first place in the 2010 Face and Body Art International Convention. Her work has been published in magazines all over America, which led her to landing jobs with Absolut Vodka, Red Bull, and even more outstanding companies. We talked with Lawren to find out more about her passion and artwork.
Sarah Rucker: How or where do you find the inspiration for your artwork? Lawren Alice: I feel like I’m always inspired by and attracted to the tiny details in things. I love intricacy. The stuff that most people would overlook and move past is always the same stuff that I find myself completely stuck on. I pay attention to the details. That’s what I’m drawn to most. The intricate patterns within patterns in a butterfly wing, the hundreds of tiny fingernail sized pieces of peeling bark on a birch tree, the hairline cracks in a cement foundation on an abandoned building. Quiet details that speak volumes louder than their existence… if that even makes sense to anyone other than me. SR: What is the most exciting and rewarding part of your hobby/occupation? LA: I definitely would have to say all the traveling I get to do and the all of the amazing friendships I’ve made along the way are the most exciting and rewarding parts of my job. Since I’ve been body painting, in two short years
I’ve been to various parts of Florida more times than I can count, Dallas, South Dakota, Denver, Las Vegas, New Orleans, Amsterdam, Austria, Rome, Venice, Prague, Jamaica and the list goes on. My childhood dreams of getting out of my small hometown in Southeastern Connecticut to see the rest of the world have finally come true and I owe it all to body painting. SR: What obstacles have come about during your work with body painting? LA: Most people seem to overlook the fact that body painters are not allowed a luxurious amount of time to create their work like most artists are. I feel like one of the obstacles I have to deal with in my work is defending that point. What we do is pretty difficult and most people, without seeing the process, don’t understand how. Other than the fact that we’re painting on a living, breathing, moving human body canvas, which I sometimes associate with trying to stay within the lines of a coloring book while on a bumpy car ride, we also have to deal with time constraints. Models will only sit still for so long before they need to eat, keep hydrated and use the bathroom. They also typically have their own busy lives, so we can’t exactly set them aside for a day and come back to them at another time. With body painting, there’s no such thing as concentrating for hours on single sections at a time taking days, weeks, or months to create one painting. It doesn’t work like that with this medium. We can’t work like oil or acrylic painters. We’re not spoiled with time. We have a day, at the very most, and that’s it. At the end of the night my canvas has to go home, shower and sleep. Tomorrow’s another day and my art is
gone. SR: What advice would you give to other artists wanting to pursue their dreams? LA: To be completely honest, I never really thought I’d be the kind of person to give good advice other artists. I mean, who am I? I haven’t achieved my dreams yet. I feel like I’ve achieved a lot personally, but nothing yet on the grand scheme of things. I have big goals and huge ambition but I’m not quite yet where I want to be. I can’t predict what’s going to happen in the next couple years but I can tell you that I have a crazy itch and ambition to do more. So, the best advice to give to other artists wanting to pursue their dreams? Do what I’m doing - dream big, don’t stop and let ambition run through your veins. It might be corny but I totally think that if you believe it, try your hardest to achieve it and don’t even think of giving up, one day you might make it there. To find out more about Lawren Alice and to see more of her work, visit her website http://www.lawren alice.com/ Photo credit: Noah Musher
SUPER PRIME: interview by Heather Boston Pop-punk outfit, Super Prime, fiercely took to the Boston rock scene in the spring of 2011. In under a year, Super Prime have opened for L.A. bubblegum punk darlings The Dollyrots, released their first EP, established their own music publishing company and hooked up with renowned Boston producer Brian Charles to begin pre production and recording on their first full length LP in September of 2011. Right now, Super Prime plans to release their second EP, “Sun’s Out, Gun’s Out” on October 8th, 2011 at their release show in Boston with The American Spirit, A Guy Named Guy and Me vs Gravity. First of all, how did you decided on the band name Super Prime? We saw the name Super Hit on some incense and kinda liked they way it sounded. So we knew it needed to be Super Something. We choose Prime and it stuck. You guys met each other just two years ago, how did you know you wanted to start a band with each other? We communicate musically very easily. It’s easy to write songs. We decided to start Super Prime after I played some riffs and Adam was down to work on em. What inspires you to write music? Life and all the experiences that come with it. The fans keep the fire burning.
r Hawke If you could go anywhere in the world, where’s one place you would want to play? Tokyo, because it looks really cool, like it’s out of the future. What’s it like for you guys to be a new band in this digital age of music? Do you think there is more or less of fan loyalty than there was 10 years ago? It’s cool to have the newer tools at our disposal, it’s great to run Facebook advertisements in other countries for a much more discounted rate than non-internet advertisement has cost in the past so we can reach more people for less. As far as fan loyalty, we have some loyal fans who are all about us and it’s great, we don’t really see a difference in fan loyalty.
What bands do you guys look up to? And what would be your dream tour line up? Blink 182 from 1998 to 2002 was the greatest. Enema of the State is probably one the most influential albums on our music. Fall Out Boy from 2002 to 2005 is also really big with us. I think our dream tour line up would consist of those two bands, ONLY during those time periods and then the Foo Fighters, cause the Foo Fighters don’t ever make bad albums. You guys launched your own publishing company. Can you tell us why you decided to do that? It’s for protection. Publishing rights are something musicians often overlook and lose a lot of potential income on. It’s important to make sure you own your own publishing rights so you can decide what to do with them. That’s the rationale behind the publishing company. Lastly, what’s in store for Super Prime in 2012? We’ll be releasing our first LP, writing new material, we’re taking the spring off from school so we’ll be rehearsing everyday in preparation for a tour hopefully in the late spring, early summer. We’ll also be making a couple music videos in there so keep your eyes peeled!
interviewed by Kelly Baysinger
Twenty year old fashion model Leah Hight, (now modeling under the name Rae Hight after having switched agencies) has been working in the modeling industry since the age of 15. Originally from Merritt Island, Florida, Rae has become very successful signing with Muse models in NYC, Angels&Demons in Paris, Why Not in Milan, D1 in London, and Paragon in Mexico City. We chatted with her about the business.
How did you get into modeling? I got in to modeling through a charm school (Barbizon) I went through to learn basics of the entertainment industry and its many different facets. After I graduated I started to do local modeling competitions every kind I could find around the central FL area. From there I went out to LA to a nationwide competition (IMTA) to find an agent, and from there my first agency in NYC scouted me and signed me. Did you always want to be a model? I was always told growing up that I should be a model since I've always been tall and thin. Not to mention my sister took photography and would always use me for her projects for school, I realized very young that modeling was definitely something I wanted to do and I could make a career out of it. So I charged forward to find a way to get in to the modeling industry. Coming from a small town like Merritt island did you ever picture yourself where you are now? I have always been a bit of a dreamer, I guess, and always envisioned myself living in NYC and traveling the world, so yes... It doesn't matter where you come from as long as you know where you want to be. Is there a favorite designer you have had a chance to work with and is there someone you dream of working with in the future? I have been professionally modeling for 5 years now and I have been extremely lucky to work with so many different people from Gwen Stefani walking for her label during New York Fashion Week, to walking for Dior in Singapore,
I have worked with Alice&Olivia, Chris Benz, Project Runway, Bensoni, Tommy Hilfiger, and many others the list could go on for quite awhile. I would love to work with Karl Lagerfeld he seems like such a character and so much fun! Do you follow any diet or workout regimen that you believe has benefited you? I do yoga and meditate to maintain my figure as well as keep me mentally relaxed. I do not follow a particular diet however I do tend to eat more veggies and fruits than junk food. Which I think comes from living in so many foreign countries for so long my food choices have become much healthier. What is one misconception people have of models or the modeling industry? A misconception I find that people have about models and the modeling industry, is modeling is not as easy as people believe. It isnâ€™t all glamorous, it takes a lot out of a person. The hairstyles give you headaches, the shoes almost always are never the right size yet you have to make it work. Girls have broken ankles during a runway show and have to keep going! Can you imagine, breaking your ankle and having to continue like nothing is wrong? It takes a girl with very tough skin to be in the industry and survive it. Do you have any advice for aspiring young models? My advice would be to do your research and really make sure you want to commit to this. It is not an easy career choice Iâ€™ve had to give up a lot to come as far as I have in this industry and I will only have to sacrifice more to keep
going. Was there a specific moment when you knew that you could make a career out of modeling? Yes. When I signed with agencies in every major fashion capital city around the world. Is there something specific you want to accomplish while modeling? I want to accomplish everything I can and see as much of the world as possible before moving on from modeling. Where do you see yourself after modeling? After modeling I see myself working in the industry in some way and enjoying what I have left of life.
For more information on Rae you can "like" her facebook page at: http://www.facebook.com/ pages/Rae-Hight/114824151925834 you can also follow her twitter: @rae_hight and for booking inquiries contact one of her agencies.
The Payroll Tax Cut: What it means for Americans, Obama, and the GOP By Ella Goldsmith After countless tumultuous weeks, a decision was finally reached on Capitol Hill this morning as House Republican leaders agreed to pass to a two-month payroll-tax deal pushed by the President. The plan, crafted and agreed upon by both Republican and Democrat House and Senate members, will ensure that the current Social Security Payroll tax does not go up in 2012 and will require the government will continue to pay for citizen unemployment insurance. It was passed after weeks of heated opposition from certain Republican members who refused to back down to seemingly Democratic demands. While the extension will not have a radical effect on the nation’s economy, it will make the 160 million tax-paying Americans, primarily of the middle class, happy to know that their taxes will not go up after the New Year comes in. The true story behind this decision is its undeniable effect on the part of both the Democratic and Republican parties. With both groups facing a big election in 2012, tensions are boiling over yet forcing the members to stay on their best behavior. While Obama’s approval ratings are in decline, the passing of the tax cut may thrust the President into the spotlight as a “tax cutter”, while the Republican’s persisting resistance to compromise with the President over the past weeks has noticeably damaged the party going into the 2012 campaign season.
Republican House speaker John Boehner, who was overall in support of the bill, commented on the actions of his party, saying “it may not have been politically the smartest thing in the world” for Republican House members to hold themselves so staunchly against the tax cut. Boehner added that this was not wise when political grudges “stood between 160 million American workers” and, according to polls, ended up giving Democrats an overall advantage. The palpable political rivalry between the two groups was clearly evident due to a notably “lengthy argument sand nonsensical dialogue” which, according to The New York Times, elongated the process. It seems as though, for now, the growing battle between the nation’s two political entities will come to a close as all business ceases as the holiday break begins. The tax deal is only a temporary solution to a full-scale plan to revive the economy, which will by no means be an easy feat. The House and the Senate will reconvene after the new year to discuss a year-long plan for economic growth.
Interview with Chrissie White By: Allison Newbold Chrissie White grew up in a Seattle suburb. Around the age of 13 she began taking photographs and has continued to do so since. She’s been featured in magazines such as American Photography, Elle Girl Korea, and O Magazine, among others and has won several young photographer awards from various groups and publications. How long have you been shooting photography and how did you get started? I’ve been interested in photography for about 6 years, I got started after joining Flickr and regularly taking pictures of Japanese dolls called Blythe. Eventually I moved [on] to working with people and started to try developing ideas and stories for each image. What inspired you to take photos? Is it the same inspiration that you have today? Inspiration changes and I really can’t remember what used to inspire me but recently I’ve been inspired by books and movies - more especially psychedelic or mystery themed stories. Traveling also inspires me, I like driving around Washington and finding new places to shoot. I really want to take a road trip cross-country and take photos along the way. Do you prefer shooting digital or film? Why?
I prefer film because the colors are richer, the film is sharper, and I find it captures light in a prettier way. How do you create your concepts? Recently, I’ve been coming up with concepts based on questions or insights I’ve had, for example right now I’m really interested in how suburbia affects people versus how the city affects people (especially young people) and I’d love to explore that further. I moved away from doing conceptual art in recent years to do more commercial based photography but I’ve realized that’s soul-sucking and I’m just moving back into doing conceptual art. Do you get nervous before taking photos? Of course, the only time I don’t get nervous is if I’m taking candid photographs or doing photos with my sister or alone. Photography jobs are stressful, especially big ones I’ve found it’s best to do a lot of test shots prior to the shoot to ensure things go the way you want. Sometimes going with the flow and being spontaneous works out better though if you are good at solving problems. Do you plan on making photography a life time career? I’m not sure... at the moment I want to move into motion like film or television. I’m also interested in other forms of art at the moment and so photography hasn’t been as big of a thing for me lately. Where do you hope to see yourself 10 years from now? Hopefully I’ll have explored the world and I’ll be either running my own visual company or making movies!
Last but not least, which is your favorite photograph that you have taken and why? I think most people would agree that my most *acclaimed* photograph is the image inspired by peter pan with the girl flying over the bed however my favorite photograph that i’ve taken is probably this photo http://www.flickr.com/ photos/prettypony/5981957088/in/photostream because it reminds me of that summer and running around doing nothing with my friends.
Contact info: Email: Hello@Chrissiewhite.com Website: Chrisswhite.com Portfolio: flickr.com/prettypony
Dave Melillo: Solo is What We Aim For Interview by Allison Newbold
David Andrew Melillo (born June 12, 1988) is a DriveThru Records recording singer/songwriter as well as the former bassist for pop rock band Cute Is What We Aim For. Originally from Orlando, Florida, Melillo now resides in Rochester, New York. He plays a mellow blend of acoustic guitar-driven acoustic rock and piano-accented power pop somewhat in the vein of early Dashboard Confessional and The Rocket Summer. Melillo began 2011 by refocusing his efforts on his own music. He released a four song EP “Future Focused” in October to be followed by a 13 track mixtape titled “Thinking Of You” in November. What were the first two bands you were in? The first band I was in ever Trexx, named after my best friend Trexx who has been on the road with me since we were fifteen years old. It was my middle school friends and I. I sang in it primarily. Unfortunately, we couldn’t find a bass player so I started playing bass. First shows with The Kickoff (present day, There for Tomorrow!) The next band I was in Arcana, started with my good friend Anthony (now in Dang We’re on Fire). We used to play shows with the guys from We the Kings. A lot of great music came out of Orlando, Tampa and the surrounding areas over the past ten years.
What was your experience like being the bassist of Fueled by Ramen’s Cute Is What We Aim For? It was an enlightening experience. I don’t think anything you do is a mistake as long as you take experience from it. First tour- summer 2005 – immediately after that tour, CIWWAF got signed to Fueled by Ramen and they took off! They got insanely popular. I was still touring internationally with Hit the Lights and doing my thing. 2007 comes along and I’m having a lot of problems with Drive-Thru Records. When I was on Warped Tour with them, it was such a great experience. However, I don’t believe in short cuts. I got used to their lifestyle and I took for granted the opportunities that we got. You hate to see that in yourself because you think you could handle a certain level of success. It was a great learning experience at this point.” What did you do after Cute Is What We Aim For? “We created a band called “Nocturnal Me” which is a direct spin off of Cute and the experience that we had in that. Our lead singer was being a jackass to everyone and the rest of the band was very close. We decided to do our own thing and there would be no fall off. If they liked what we did with Cute, they would LOVE what we did. We had some really great times but I think I’m getting back to where I belong. I feel like I should have always done my thing but I had to take a detour to get there. What is your new EP ‘Future Focused’ and the following mixtape about? The EP ‘Future Focused’ was a four track preview of the mixtape. Everyone gets really weird when I mention the word ‘mixtape’. They compare me to rappers. You take a
bunch of different and diverse songs, covers, and work of all these ideas and interesting tracks that aren’t just musical, but can be conversations. I would compare it to a scrapbook. The mixtape “Thinking of You” is about one situation in my life with a certain person and from all the different perspectives professionally and personally. It helped me get through all the bullshit I was going through in my personal life. What are your plans for the future? I am going to continue to release music. I am a producer/ singer/songwriter working with other bands and still developing ideas. I play a lot of shows in the NYC area, like working with Teddy Geiger. I am for sure working on a follow up to this mixtape and it will really develop the sound I have been working on these past few years. Do you get nervous before shows or have any pre-show rituals? I don’t ever get nervous but I’m never not nervous. I know that doesn’t make any sense but what I always say you should have butterflies flying in the right direction every time you play. If you don’t have any nerves, you don’t give a fuck. I want to get on the stage and do the best that I can. I want to impress them and entertain everyone I can.... I used to take my shoes off before I played but after some glass fell in my foot, I haven’t done that in a while. What is your favorite song that you have written? I really like a brand new song I wrote “Don’t Say It”. It’s my favorite song that I have ever written because I am developing a completely new sound for myself. It started with the mix tape but it’s this song that is foreshadowing where I am going in the future with my music. It’s really exciting
for me because this is exactly what I wanted to do. This is my jam right now. If you could be in any band, what band would you be in and why? I would be in Incubus – thoroughly enjoy every inch of their songs and it would be really fun to play live with them. My favorite song is Circles and it’s so good. Do you prefer Cats or dogs? Dogs. I believe that I was a dog in my past life. I was explaining this to someone. I like cookies and treats. I will do whatever for them. I get really excited around new people. I want to say to hello to people when they walk into the room. Why would you want a cat? Why would you want an animal that hates you? What is your relationship status? I am a single man. People could tell that through my music. I’ve gone through a lot of bullshit. Most people but a certain barrier between their music and personal life, but I don’t have a diary, so music is my diary. What do you look for in a lady? I am all about facial features. There is nothing that could make up for a really unique nose. Anyone from Eastern Europe. I don’t care if they are funny, smart, or interesting. I like beautiful girls.
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INSPIRER.NU Magazine's Winter Issue 2012