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music

@kikoacunningham is one half of Briggz & Cunningham and a bass afficionado.

KikoArtoisCunningham.tumblr.com

5 top must cop albums of 2011 Drive Soundtrack - Various Artists

You will not find a sexier soundtrack, this year. Great to start off your night with. Great to dance to. Great make out music.

Arctic Monkeys - Suck It & See These guys know how to make great rock music. Smart, tasty hooks. Good lyricism. Awesome album.

Class Actress - Rapprocher I love what singer Elizabeth Harper does on this album; a soon to be electro-pop classic. Cool synth work, from her partners in crime. A really sexy, good time.

Little Dragon - Ritual Union This band just has first class musicianship. Yukimi’s sublime voice. Hakan’s great melodic choices, on keyboard. Fredrik’s solid bass work. Erik’s impeccable drumming. Dope album.

Neon Indian - Era Extrana This artist also did a dope e.p., this year, with The Flaming Lips. I choose the full length l.p. An album full of colors. Simply wonderful!


art

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@RuthNineke is the author of five selfpublished books, a snarky blog and an upcoming full length novel. She’s also much, much smarter than you. www.RuthNineke.com

books

When I was asked to write a book review for Mercury Soapbox Magazine there was no hesitation in my response. Of course I would! I knew exactly which books I wanted to share: Storm Constantine’s Enchantments of Flesh And Spirit, and A Planet Named Treason by Orson Scott Card. With our current cosmic situation running remarkably on schedule what better use of my energy than to spread thought-provoking literature? Both titles are Fantasy/Sci-Fi. Both main characters are young men who undergo dramatic shifts both mentally and physically, their lives and destinies instantly changed. In both stories the characters embark on journeys, where they must leave behind their homelands and learn new ways of living. In A Planet Called Treason, societies exchange different goods for metal. Treason’s inhabitants have been banished to the planet generations ago, and metal is the most coveted commodity among them. When the main character, Lanik Mueller – next in line for the throne of his kingdom, is discovered to be a “rad” (short for radical regenerative) he is sent into exile to avoid being harvested. Muellers naturally possess regenerative powers allowing them to regrow injured body parts. During puberty their abilities are a little uncontrollable, but this usually sorts itself out. Those who don’t outgrow the growing phase are sent to harvest their extra parts in exchange for metal. Because of his status Lanik becomes a spy instead, his mission to discover what the Nkumai are trading for metal. The Nkumai are militarily the strongest tribe of people on the planet. Through his journey Lanik learns the secrets of many other nations on the planet and gains new powers to help him save his own people. He must leave behind the ones he loves, but finds in the end they were willing to wait for him, because they believed in his return. Enchantments of Flesh And Spirit introduces a young man named Pellaz. He’s taken away from his family and home, almost entirely by the seduction of another man named Calanthe. Cal isn’t actually a man though. He’s part of a new race of hermaphrodite beings. Around the time of humanity’s downfall – thanks to war and destruction – Wraeththu evolved from an unspecified mutation. Their legends and myth spread throughout the region, but no government or military had appeared to put them down. Pell decides to leave with Cal for Immanion – one of the greatest Wraeththu cities. Along the way Pell is turned into a Wraeththu and learns more about his new race, eventually rising to a higher status within it. There’s a love story between Cal and Pell, even though Pell has a child with another Wraeththu. This is explored more in the other titles in the series on Wraeththu. Aside from the fantastic premise of both these tales I find the basic ideas of each to be relevant to our current events. Both focus on a character whose greater societal situation has a clear and direct impact on his personal life. The happenings of the world around Lanik and Pellaz are no longer some external thing, separate from them but become a direct part of their lives. As change happens to them each learns to accept truths faster, and embrace their personal powers fully. The idea of fear is replaced with the quality of curiosity, each story progressing as our protagonists build new information into what’s already come before. It seems to me that we are now in the busiest, most exciting, times of our lives. The collective consciousness is processing information more rapidly than perhaps we knew it could adapt to. As individuals we are always ripe for receiving knowledge. I dare say we are never not seeking knowledge. And how lucky that these days there is so much of it coming at us! There’s so much we are doing and saying, as we process and share. Each of us is clearly the main character in our own lives. And what goes on within our communities, and governments, and our world is not separate from us. Individuals are always changing, and evolving - though random genetic mutations aren’t the thing yet – we are always in possession of the opportunity to learn to think differently, and experience life in a new way. Acceptance of that also allows us to impact the world we live in, as it impacts us, as we are not actually immune to or isolated from the larger whole.

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stage

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WELCOME BACK! It had been about a year and a half since the last show. But that last one was a doozy. A McKibben Street hot box of bodies, cheap beer and rock & roll, it was wonderful in its frenetic kineticism but what it lacked in art it made up for in dancing and great rock talent. We took some time off to meet a ton of new people, create some new ideas, set a few things in motion but now we’re back, and the Creation Show was proof positive. As the artists (photographer/ painter Patricia Koo, photographer/videographer Errol Basdeo and mixed media artist Lee Ann Irrizary) put the finishing touches on their exhibits and started to greet friends coming in, we were having a tiny meltdown

trying to set up the live streaming performances from Nicole Verhamme (of Golden Boy) and Justina Soto and the Salvation Armband. Ultimately failing, and apologizing profusely, we kicked off the musical part of the show. Bookended by deep house phenom DJ Eugene, the line up was chock full of talent: ART, Life on Impact, Corona, spoken word from Octavia Almonte and Lee Ann, followed by a preview from Adrienne Mack Davis, a short set from Jay Spade, and a mind blowing set from the unstoppable Progress. We had a great time and cant wait for HAPPY HOLIDAZE - our next show, on December 16th, which will host a toy drive AND a food drive as well as a plethora of talented musicians and artists! Join Us!!


OCTAVIA SHARES WORDS JAY SPADE RIPS

CERN AND BOBBI PHOTOSHOPPIN ADRIENNE MACK DAVIS KILLIN IT

DJ EUGENE ROCKIN LEE ANN GOES IN

LOVE FOR THE MASSES PROGRESS TEARS IT DOWN

SETTING UP THE CROWD WATCHING


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CORONA ROCKS ACOUSTIC MINDS BEING BLOWN LIFE ON IMPACT JAMS ART PERFORMS

“i kind of fumbled into bellevill nj it when I was around poet fifteen, so I’ve been pretty much book- tears on my pillow writing ever since” “come to all of our shows because we’re the shit. and always tip your bartender.

new york city alternative/indie rock demo

brooklyn clasically trained singer/songwriter

vans warped tour/fighting for futures/bring it back stage

“realizing that art was something that I was really good at instead of like social studies or something”

harlem painter art battles


“it’s not gonna be as good if it isn’t that raw”

washington heights singer/songwriter working on album

brooklyn/queens “when i was a little kid, i always was stealing photographer the cameras, taking all getting back to painting the family photos” “my biggest challenge is staying motivated, staying on task”

new jersey documentarian/poet book- indigo, there’s other colors in the rainbow

washington heights “i love hip-hop in general, i love the lyricist culture, the movement” working on mixtape queens fusion band playing shows

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“the biggest challenge brooklyn is overcoming fear of filmmaker/photographer doing something. once jump that hurdle, dp of “Bottle Service” you you just keep going”

writing poetry washinton heights “i started ‘cause i used to be rapper angry at my ex shout out This Is Light Mixtape girlfriend. to my ex girlfriend”

new york deep house dj track on mixcloud queens “Myself is the biggest challenge. i feel pretty blessed by the world, visual artist mural on n8th but self destruction, self defeat, those things are huge.” and driggs


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RIE Photography

Isaac Betancourt-Sabillion


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Lauren Pasculli

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Visualoo Photography


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Patricia Koo Photography


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The Graveyard

rachel khona

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By Rachel Khona

A

fter I graduated college I decided I didn’t really want a job so I decided to move to L.A. and become an actress. Of course that meant I had to get a job waiting tables since that’s what every wannabe actress does . So I marched up to Sunset Boulevard and got myself a job at the restaurant in the Standard Hotel. Since I was brand spanking new, I usually got to work the super fun overnight shift from 11 pm to 7 am. This of course meant that I got to meet every loser and derelict whoring themselves out on Sunset Boulevard as opposed to all the celebrities and bigwigs (Dave Navarro, Metallica, Steven Soderbergh, Christina Aguilera, Denise Richards) my coworkers got to see during normal hours. The biggest celebrities I saw were Heidi Fleiss and Tom Sizemore.

So one night these slutty girls decided to stop in at the ripe old hour of 4:30 am. Besides the requisite gigantic plastic boobs, one of them sported a shiny black vinyl bustier and zebra print leggings (and this was before Rachel Zoe put Lindsay Lohan in a pair of leggings and made them all the rage) while the other one was wearing a short seethrough white strapless dress and white heels. Bad move. Only Pamela Anderson can pull that off and still look hot. If you look like the product of multiple generations of incest, it’s not going to work. I was practically asleep so even though I found their taste in clothing highly questionable I was thrilled to have someone wake me out of my stupor. I figured they had just finished clubbing and wanted a bite to eat.

“Hi, we would like a table for two,” Zebra pants said. This was kind of comical, as there was no one in the restaurant. “Sure sit anywhere. Do you want to start off with something to drink?” I asked. “Just menus right now,” strapless dress said. “Wow, that uniform is really hot. That’s cuter than anything we have to wear,” said Zebra pants. “I want to get one of those for work.” “Oh….. What do you guys do?” I asked thoroughly perplexed. What kind of job would find a yellow diner dress acceptable attire? Their boss must be very liberal. “We work at the Body Shop down the street,” White dress said.


I was confused, were they mechanics? Half-dressed girls fixing cars? Maybe even doing car washes? That’s not a bad idea. I should open a Body Shop too. “Oh, what’s that?” I asked. “It’s a strip club,” said White dress. Ohhhhhhhhhh. Now it was ALL coming together. There was a strip club down the street. That makes a lot more sense than the whole mechanic scenario. “That’s festive. Have you decided what you want to order?” They placed their orders which I actually remembered to enter into the computer unlike most of the time when I just forgot. Probably because no one else was there. About ten minutes later their orders were ready. I promptly delivered them, checked on them, and went back to downing coffee behind the counter. When they finally finished eating, I asked them if they needed anything else and gave them their check. I ran the credit card and picked up the signed copy. There was NO tip. OK in all fairness, I know I am probably one of the worst servers to ever walk God’s earth, but this time I actually did a good job! I didn’t fuck up a single thing! And as women who survive on tips, I was appalled that they could be so callous. I was hurt; I really

rachel khona

thought we had bonded over my uniform. Fuck them. It was now 5:15 am I am working for shit, and I had no patience. Shit is going down. “Excuse me, was there something wrong, because I noticed there was no tip.” “The service wasn’t really any good,” Zebra pants stated bluntly. “Ummm, you’re the only customers in here. The service has been amazing.” “Whatever, we’re not tipping you. We’re out of here.” With that, the dumb whores got up and started to run out. As I stood there incredulously, I saw Zebra pants reach behind the counter and grab the ketchup and mustard on the way out. So she’s not just a lying cokesnorting stripper, she’s also a klepto. That biyatch needed to forget about stealing ketchup and steal herself a real nonpolyester outfit from Barney’s.  “Hey, give those back!” I screamed, running after her. “No!” she yelled as she ran out to the valet. Fuck this dumb bitch. I might have been naïve, but I was no doormat. I will take those Lucite heels and clock her in the face with them. I ran after her.  “Wait!! Don’t give her the car!” I yelled at the valet. me rc u r ys o apb ox

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She spun around angrily and glared at me. “That stupid bitch stole the ketchup and mustard!!! She can’t have her car back until she returns it. And by the way, she didn’t tip me, so don’t count on a tip.” I yelled. The valet looked us tiredly. “Give back the ketchup. ….Nicely.” She angrily fished the ketchup out of her bag and handed it to the valet who handed it to me. “Happy?” she snapped. “Fuck you.” I turned on my heel and walked away. Except that I didn’t. I hid inside the hotel’s frosted doors. As the girls got in the car, I walked back outside. As they pulled away I hurled the ketchup bottle at the car, which landed on the back windshield and splattered everywhere. I sprinted back into the hotel, ran down the stairs and hid in the basement. They never found me. Rachel Khona is a nationally published writer and performer from New Jersey. Check out her work and blog at www.rachelkhona.com


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Jake Ferrato, aka @jbfcustoms, is an upcoming hat and sneaker customizer, a style trend blazer with a great eye for colors, patterns and materials.

Where are you originally from?   Akron, Ohio How did you get started in fashion/customizing? What made you think you should get into it? I started painting shoes back in my junior year of high school.  I did that just because I wanted cool shoes and I didn’t wanna pay for the SB releases, etc.  They didn’t make those in my size either (14) so it just made sense.  From there it has continuously evolved into what you see today. How hard was it to spread the word about your work?   That was and still is difficult.  As the small artist it’s tough to get bigger blogs/websites that really drive traffic to pay attention.  Social media has been a great way to help with promotion, though.

Where do you get your inspiration? What about for fabrics, designs, color schemes? Everywhere... A lot of it is just what I want to see done, and what people tell me they want to see done. Are there other areas of fashion you’d like to move into? I’m looking into getting into backpacks. Whats your favorite piece you›ve made so far?   My favorite shoes are the Jet Life Blazers (so exclusive I don’t even own a damn pair)  And my favorite hat thus far is the Grizzlies one I did. What piece of advice could you give future and current designers/ customizers?  Be consistent, and keep your work in view.

Do you have regulars visitors/customers?

Whats the next step for you and your work?

I like to think so! hahaha! I know I have a few repeat customers, and there’s the people that always really show support on Twitter. Thank you to all such people.

Selling out of boutique shops seems to be what’s happening next, as well as getting into some new products.

Did you have to make a transition between selling works in person and selling them online? I’ve really never sold in person, so I’ll probably making that transition in reverse in the future.


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Chris Carr is a vibrant, daring and exciting photographer. Soul-wise and unashamed, he pushes the imperfections perfectly to the surface of his imagery.

Where are you originally from? Washignton DC 0 - 18, Atlanta 18- 23, NY 23- 25, DC 25 - 29, NY 29 - 33 How did you get started in photography? What made you think you should get into it? I went to school for history/sociology; I am fascinated by interpersonal dynamics, social groups and identity formation.. so photography is a great medium for documenting social events, trends, issues, conflict .. the human experience. At different times I was into landscape, flora, fauna, portraits, events, commercial work.. I love how film photography is a mixture of chemistry and magic.. and I think photography is my way of managing the human condition and mortality. How hard was it to spread the word about your work?

It is difficult to answer that question in a straight forward manner..It depends on scope and expectation.. It has taken me a couple of years to build the name for my brand but I have in no way maximized technology, communication and certain innovations in running/managing a small business in this economic environment. So, on one hand, it is easyI use the internet.. I shoot really interesting people (they help promote by sharing on social media sites and telling friends), I shoot events and pass out promo cards or fliers, I always have a camera with me so that when I meet people they immediately know what i spend my time doing.. and through my experience as a mucisian I have met people that can help funnel

work my way or spread the news about my projects or work. On the other hand.. it is extremely difficult to break through and have a platform as large as the magazines or newspapers or really well known commercial photographers.. I don’t have a name like nikola tamindzic but he inspires me because he moved to NY, hit the scene, started shooting with Gawker and within two or three years had two well known blogs and got into all types of commercial and art photography.. so I have a lot of work to do.


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Do you have regular customers? Yes. I have a couple of T shirt companies that hire me on a regular basis (Pockets Fulla Pillz and One vs Many), I have some event clients that have me shoot their parties on a regular basis, I shoot Shecky’s Girls Night Out every year and others like that. There are also people I shoot on a regular basis.. my friends that inspire me and certain models that always link to make some art Did you have to make a transition between selling works in person and selling them online? No.. i only sell works in person. But.. i am starting an etsy account and I will be selling prints and other items via my website What kind of research do you have to do for your work? It depends. There is a lot of planning and art direction that goes into the shoots before we ever arrive on location I tend to conceptualize and discuss with the client, cast for the models, locate stylists, hair, make up or etc.. and then pull off the shoot. So

usually, the more effort that I put in prior to the day of the shoot, the more smooth the shoot actually goes. So sometimes the research is looking at other ad campaigns for what NOT to do, sometimes it is art history, sometimes it is looking at a brand’s previous campaign and making sure we don’t veer too far away from their brand image Where do you get your inspiration? What about for set ups, lighting, makeup, color scheme? The inspirations are life, the world.. all the people I meet and places I travel.. I know it sounds corny, but I am one of those people that would try to draw you if I thought you looked cool.. but I suck at illustration, so photography allows me to achieve the same goal. When I am driving through some mountain town in Croatia.. how can I not take a picture. When I am in some party in Denmark with some amazing people that I just met, eating hash brownies and drinking German beer.. how else would I remember it.. take a photo. I like

imperfection as well.. I am inspired by our faults, our crooked teeth, or bags under the eyes, shoes with holes in them Don’t get me wrong, I also really enjoy capturing beauty and aesthetically awesome people, tattoos, environmental landscapes, cities and the things that stand out when you travel Are there other areas of art you’d like to move into? yes - I would like to shoot large format film..black and white. I would like to shoot videos, short films and eventually help produce indie art movies. I am already in a band, and at some point wheatpasting/ collage and large scale printmaking seem like they would be fun. And maybe carving little raindeer out of wood. I am not too bad at that. Whats your favorite piece you’ve made so far? Honestly, I do not have a favorite. I shot a series of mock Supreme ads with my friend Amy that a lot of people seem to like. and I recently did a couch surfing portrait project that

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produced some awesome images...I have shot a lot of events.. Rock the Bells, Scribble Jam, Howards HOmecoming, CMJ fest for the past 4 years, Winter Music in Miami, South by Southwest, Private listening parties, Martha Stewart Luncheons, Senators and much more.. It would be impossible to say what I like the most.. What piece of advice could you give future and current photographers? Get a day job. haha.. no, I am kidding.. The only advice I can say that wont be as long

as a book (i plan to write one in a few years) would be this:

GO HARDER THAN EVERYBODY For real.. I could talk about equipment, or the market in NY or how to promote yourself, or the politics/social scene of photography or the artistic ethos and philosophy of photography as an art.. but at the end of the day.. the only thing that matters is if you do what you do to the fullest extent. Whats the next step for you

and your work? A kickstarter to raise money for an art space.. I need to be able to curate a space, hang my art, have shows for my friends and do whatever I want in terms of content.. so that is on the plate for this spring. I would also like to set up more corporate event clients, more apparel companies and I need to find a tattooist to follow for six months and make some sick art. Also my nude artwork.. I need old people and guys to shoot nude.. take your clothes off..


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Merc Soapbox Soft release 1c  

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