Archive for the 'Uncategorized' Category

Social Media’s Importance At Different Publications

October 19, 2012

Here’s some cool info my peers and I collected. We contacted different online publications and asked them how important social media skills were when looking at job candidates. Here are the results:

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Shooting at a Rap Show

July 4, 2012

El-P brooklyn rapper

I’ve been doing some event coverage for Neon Tommy. Generally, these are easier to crank out in a hurry than broad-issue based stories, so I can keep relatively close to the ASAP deadlines of digital journalism. As brother Ryan Ray calls it, “service journalism.”

In this post: some photos of Despot, Killer Mike, Mr. Muthafuckin eXquire and El-P snapped at a show last week. I took these with the intention of folding them into a concert review, but ye Gods were determined otherwise. Due to preexisting conditions, by the time a review could have been posted on the news site it was really no longer news.

Thus, this. Included are my notes, punched into my iPod at the show. By my count some 300 people turned out, predominantly males. If this was an article for Neon Tommy I would probably include some discussion of who these rappers are, what Company Flow is, etc. But in this context, I’m comfortable assuming we all know what New York City is.

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Killer Mike at the Echoplex, 6/26/12

Killer Mike grips the mike and holds his ground like a statue from the shoulders down. He dances not unlike a Cee Lo bobble head.

“I just want to thank California for the amazing weed,” he says.”Shout out to my girl Shane. I dedicate this song to her — it’s called southern fried.”

“I want you all to be happy, smoke weed, have healthcare.”

After raging on Obama for a minute, he pulls out his Lighter to toast “Burn.”

“It’s going to be 1992 all over again,” he says. Next, he gets to his Grammy-awarded verse from Outkast’s track “The Whole World.”

Next song dedicated to “dads, uncles and mentors,” kids who never had dads. “I cry” he said, “every night I do that song.”

“Giving you this album has been the greatest moment of my life,” he says of his freshest release, “R.A.P. Music.”

El-P takes the stage and the crowd is inhaled by a fog machine’s cloud.

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El-P setlist:

1) “Request Denied”

2) “The Full Retard”

3) “Works Every Time” ft. Dave Spooner Smith on trombone.

El-P says Zola Jesus is in attendance at tonight’s show. She looks like a Melrose Place version of Yolandi Visser, standing 5 foot nothing in the audience with fluffy blond locks.

4) Drones Over BKLYN

5) “Oh Hail No” ft. Mr. Muthafuckin eXquire

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Mr. Muthafuckin eXquire, Killer Mike and El-P at the Echoplex, 6/26/12

 

6) “Tougher Colder Killer” ft. Killer Mike and Despot

“LA is the number one market of people who buy my shit,” El-P says at this point. “Not new York. L.A. […] I’ve been coming here since 1992 with Company Flow.”

7) “Sign Here” ft. Miles Olvey on keyboard.

Good Meters/Booker T. and the M.G.’s style organ solo.

8) “For My Upstairs Neighbor (Mum’s the Word)”

9) “Stay down” ft. Nick Diamonds of Islands

10) “$4 Vic/FTL”

Post-show thoughts: Perhaps this kind of music thrives in a state of flux. Icons of a particular sort, including el-p, appear to be sprinting constantly for real credibility.

Hardcore El-P fans littered amongst the vastly-male crowd of 300 some attendees were not taken by surprise at the caliber of his performance. Rather, the chunky red-head’s song and dance elicited excitement by leveraging the passion for his catalog that has accumulated in the hearts and minds  of his fans over the course of two decades of mixtapes and memories.

He, who is in the midst of an attempt to confirm his continuing status as a culturally significant hot-firespitter by releasing the dense and wrought “cancer for cure,” strolled and spoke with a prepared consistency.
Similarly, Killer Mike’s posture and penchant for long-form  a cappella verse was becoming of an anointed clansman of canonized hip hop. His performance persona is akin to also-Grammy-winner Rhymefest. As with El-P, his freshest release can be heard as a kind of reality check, presciently vigilant of popular music fans’ ADHD regarding dusty, static, has-been superstars. ‘The emperor does and will continue to wear clothes,’ say tracks tracks like “The Full Retard.” ‘And for the moment, tags on his swag read: outfit features lots of Mishka swag.’

Where the efforts of more nominally substantive folks, e.g.  Despot and Exquire, will eventually lead remains to be determined in real time. Their long-term prominence amongst New York’s current hive of rap fanatics is hardly locked-down at this point. To suggest that the import of Despot’s sometimes-niche, sometimes flat material is being eclipsed by the slobbered-on vulgarity  of Mr. Mutherfucking would be premature, pending a mature evaluation of tracks yet to come. Despot has, at times, touched off the same “white guy keeps it real” nerve that keeps El-P’s supporters stuck on the wagon. Alternatively, Mr. Muthafuckin eXquire is blasting off on the same riotous methodology that propelled the Odd Future kids to prominence in a booze-and-pills-addled heartbeat – his trial necessitates the distribution of a bulkier catalog. But he stands to reap hugely. Since ODB, there’s been no doubt about mainstream listeners’ industry-rattling voracity for rambunctious NYC hypemasters.

End transmission.

Good Whisker Licken

June 3, 2012

My friend Mel sends me bunches of wisdom via text.

Don’t forget, Mel is a canary melon not a lemon. Though I see how you could make that mistake.

Don’t listen to what we say, read this blog post.

January 27, 2011

I put together this poster for my friend Aaron’s play. It’s based on the Nixon tapes, hence what is supposed to be his scowly, jowly eyes and the double V-for-victory/peace sign hands. The hands were based on the Gonzo fist for good measure.

Don't listen to what we say, watch what we do

Like it says, the play is titled: Don’t listen to what we say, watch what we do. If you’re in town Feb. 9 or 10, be sure to come see it! This poster was meant to be printed out on 8×11.5 printer paper so go ahead and put up some copies if you so please.

Here it is without copy:sans copy

I will naught make this a blog about draught

April 26, 2010

Photos from Wanee, from Vani (MacIsaac that is). There are many excellent faces to be discovered, please help yourself!

I will not make this a blog about how I wussed out after one night of camping and slept in the car

April 19, 2010

When Creative Loafing (creativeloafing.com) hooked me up with a review pass for the Wanee Music Festival this weekend, April 15-17, I took the opportunity to talk to the real heroes behind the music: the beer vendors. All photos courtesy Vani MacIsaac, and there’ll be more shots from the event up in a couple days. Thanks to everyone who helped make this possible!

Only the most idealistic of hippies can pretend that people go to a festival like Wanee to hear the music. No one in their right mind would spend a weekend snoozing in a sleeping bag and shelling out cash just to hear Widespread Panic’s umpteenth bongo freak-out.

So who shoulders the responsibility of getting fairgoers in the mood to dance like seasick chimpanzees, eat pork by the fist-full and sit in the sun until they’re a deep shade of pink?

The brew crew— from left to right: Mike Cattell, Jessie Malarsy, Kelly Abbott and Lou DeBono.

Mike Cattell and Lou DeBono have managed a beer booth on behalf of the Knights of Columbus since music festivals started being held at the campgrounds. While they’re not sure exactly when that was (Cattell says ten years ago, DeBono swears he’s been vending since the ’80s) they agree on one thing. As Lou says, “It’s hard work, but it’s a lot of fun.

“We get here at about ten ’o clock [a.m.] and we leave at about two o’clock in the morning.”

Cattell, chiming in on the difficulties of running one of the park’s most popular booths, says that as managers they “have to be here the whole time. So we uh, we get kind of tired.

“We ran into trouble Thursday night because we didn’t have enough people to operate the thing an’ all that.” Organizers estimate that on that night alone some 18,000 fairgoers were in attendance.

Lou DeBono, a manager of the booth, has been a member of the Knights of Columbus since the 1950s

It’s a much calmer scene come Saturday afternoon. While Bonobos Convergence, the first band of the day, run a sound check on the nearby stage a small cluster of friends and family begin to gather around the stand. The two Knights are aided by festival volunteers Jessie Malarsy and Kelly Abbott, who made the trip to Wanee from Macon, Georgia and Chattanooga, Tennessee, respectively.

They stand off to the side while the managers squeegee away a pool of fluid that’s collected on the booth’s concrete floor. Abbott explains that it’s mostly beer and melted ice, saying, “That’s one reason we’re not open yet. They’re going to sweep it up first, so we don’t have to work in a swamp.”

While the volunteers note that while they work without financial reimbursement, there are other incentives for manning a post at the park. Abbott says that she has “a friend from Colorado that I haven’t seen since last year at graduation, so that’s another reason I was like, all about coming. As long as I get to see her this weekend I’ll be good.”

For Malarsy, it’s a chance to reconnect with family— in addition to being his boss for the day, Cattell is “uncle Mike.” When he says, “No, we don’t get paid,” Abbott pipes up:

“Last year we got free beer all day!”

He replies, “We get in free too. We’re just here to hang out with my uncle, we got in for free: it’s a good time.”

As the band’s first jam takes off, DeBono announces that the booth is about to open for business and not so subtly suggests that any non-customers move along. By the time the sun sets on the Spirit of Swanee Park, their suds-schlepping marathon will have gotten so intense that the stand completely disappears behind a wall of thirsty campers. While a last minute performance cancellation may elicit a groan of disapproval from attendees, it’s scary to image what would happen if beer booths were unexpectedly absent from the festival.

For now, there is no such worry. The taps flow, the crowd is happy, and the local Knights of Columbus branch even manages to pick up a little tip money. For Cattell, the brew business is good: “The crowds for all these festivals have been fairly nice people. Sometimes they get a little rowdy an’ that, but we can handle the situation an’ that. We try not to make ’em mad… and they always know they got good service from us.”

Mike Cattell manages 55 volunteers on 8-9 hour shifts over the course of the festival.

I will not make this a blog about A Family Affair with Ivan Neville’s Dumpstaphunk

April 15, 2010

I posted an article about Sarasota’s Google Fiber dreams with a technicolor new toon in the writing section— ch-ch-ch-ch-ch-ch-cheque it out!

Having said that — I’m about to go wrangle up some Mountain Mix for a foray in to the northerlands of Florida, Wannee that is. I’ll be reporting on the music festival this weekend (www.waneefestival.com) which features The Funky Meters, Sharon Jones & the Dap Kings, George Clinton & Parliament Funkadelic and The Black Keys among many other bands that are in all honesty way too cool to talk to me. I’m going to try anyways. Primary objective is to get Dr. John to make eye-contact with me thus wiling me with his voodoo majik; anything else is just gravy.

I’ll let you know how it goes, the internet.

I will not make this a blog about Corey Haim’s death

March 12, 2010

I will make it a blog about me.

If you, well wishing family member or Google search engine spider that you are, have any suggestions as to how I can improve this blogstention of myself, please do let me know.

I’ve posted some sample of my work in the pages on the left— there are stories I’ve reported, cartoons, caricatures, and examples of my design work. I get the feeling that the internet is full of people who know a lot more about all of these things than me.

So hook it up. I’m not going to wait around forever.

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