On Roofs and Rocking

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This year, just like the past couple years and as long as I’ve been a part of my fraternity, we are putting on our philanthropy event Rock the Roof. It’s a local battle of the bands type deal where we bring in about 6-8 bands, they play for a whoever is in attendance, and then there is a point system given to judges who decide who was the best.

 

Last year we had some exciting bands, and one of our own actually won the competition (I know, sounds fishy, but they were very good.)

 

We’re excited about this event because it brings together a lot of people from campus and is a fun night for everyone involved, and usually brings in a solid amount of money for charity.

 

*In previous years, we’ve raised as much as $10,000 for our philanthropy, Big Brothers Big Sisters of Kentuckiana*

This year, however, we’re expecting some changes. To start, we’ve moved our location from Tin Roof’s local atmosphere to the much bigger

 

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Headliner’s Music Hall, which can hold a couple hundred instead.

 

What has previously been more of a bar atmosphere with music on the side will now probably change to a music centered event, which means we hope our new bands will bring some quality and entertainment, something we definitely expect of them.

 

So far I’ve probably invited half of all of the people that I’ve ever encountered on this campus. I’m currently working on the other half.

 

In case anyone is reading this and would like to attend, it’s on April 13th at Headliners (as the poster states), and doors open at 6:30.

 

Below is a link to buy the $8 tickets, instead of paying $10 at the door.

http://event.etix.com/ticket/online/performanceSale.do…

 

 

This one should be our best event yet, and I am more than proud of our VP or Programming Eric Elder, for making it happen this year.

 

Rah Rah SigEp.

 

 

To See the World

As a millennial, and a college student, and someone who loves the idea of seeing as much of the world as humanly possible, I love the idea of traveling.

 

This isn’t exactly newsworthy, I would venture to guess that at least half of the undergrad population at Louisville wants to travel at least a little bit.

Last year, I did it. Just a bit. Nowhere too far, or wide, but a couple places that were at least a plane ride away.

 

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I saw Miami, Myrtle Beach, Panama City, New York, Chicago, Indianapolis, Columbus, and Gatlinburg.

 

Like I said, none of these places were too far, but I loved visiting them all the same. I climbed the smokies, went to so many (mostly Jon Bellion) concerts, saw Wicked on Broadway (wow what an experience), and gained a greater appreciation for the country that I live in.

 

Out of all of those places, I would say that Chicago was my favorite. I went for a concert and, don’t get me wrong, the city was expensive, but it was great. The concert was lively and blew my mind, and the food after was great, and the hostel we stayed in was pretty great all things considered.

 

New York was, honestly, not great. The people were rude (I know you’ve heard that all the time and I should’ve expected it), the prices were unbelievable, and we had tickets to a movie at a time at night when the theater was closed. Yes, closed.

 

I saw a lot of great things with a lot of great friends last year, but I’m not even close to being done.

 

I just got back from Gatlinburg for Spring Break (my preference to a beach because, honestly, I find beaches boring).

 

I currently have plans to go to Denver on May 7th for a concert, and a 4 day trip to New York on May 2-6, just to give it another shot.

 

I still have plans to see Portland, Washington, Houston, and Iceland. One of those is not like the other, I know.

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I want to see and swim in the blue lagoon, in Rejkavic, Iceland.

 

I want to See the World.

 

And I intend to do so.

 

I can’t live without lists

I love lists, and I hate them. I incessantly list everything that I enjoy and I won’t lie, it takes a certain level of the fun out of it. But I cannot help it, it is engrained in my brain to list, rank, order things and compare them to other things.

 

And music is no different.

So here are my top 5 songs of 2016.

 

NUMBER 5: 

Am I Wrong – Anderson .Paak ft. Schoolboy Q

If you’re into the hip hop scene and listened to literally any music in 2016, you probably heard about Anderson .Paak’s meteoric rise. From featuring on Dr. Dre’s 2015 album “Compton” to coming through with this masterpiece “Malibu,” Anderson .Paak was definitely one of the hottest acts of 2016.

Oh, and this song is bananas.

Favorite line: “They wanna know where I’ll be in 5. But what about today? What about tonight?”

 

NUMBER 4: 

Nikes – Frank Ocean

This song seems to be divisive. Some people that I know hate it because of the voice changer and all of the added effects. My favorite version is the Spotify version, which gets rid of the narrating voice throughout, but keeps the voice changer effect. But the song stays good no matter what, even great. I linked the video, but it is super NSFW, so I hope if anyone watches it they are in a place where they will not be judged for doing so.

Favorite line: “Said she need a ring like Carmelo, must be on that white like Othello.”

 

Number 3: 

Maybe IDK – Jon Bellion

This pick is more about lyrics than music, which I am admittedly a sucker for. And that’s not to say the song is sub par by any means, because I think it’s simply fantastic. Jon has an adept knowledge of exploring complex ideas and thoughts and putting infectious music behind it. One of my favorite things as a fan is the idea that my favorite artists struggle through the issues that I struggle through, and this song is a perfect example of that.

Favorite line: “I wonder why I feel short when I know my money’s tall, I wonder why I miss everyone and I still don’t call.”

 

NUMBER 2:

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If I Believe You – The 1975

This song is another perfect mixture of lyricism and music. The opening lines, the choir, the ambient noise in the beginning, all the way down to the mellow ending, this song is very close to perfect. This song was one of the best spectacles I’ve ever seen live. Unfortunately, all traces of this song have been removed from YouTube, so you’ll have to go through Spotify to listen to it, unless you want the live version.

Favorite line: “If I believe you, will that make it stop? If I told you I need you, is that what you want?”

 

And…finally….my pick for best song of the year is….

 

 

NUMBER 1: 

Somebody Else – The 1975

Yes, my top two songs are both by the same band. I realize that’s a no no usually, but hey, I obsessed over this list, and this is the decision that I came to. I cannot tell you how many times I have listened to this song, and I can only imagine that it will be countless more before it gets old, if it ever does. Skip to to 3:00 in the music video for song. You won’t regret it. Although, again, this one is a tad NSFW as well, so be careful about viewing.

 

Favorite line: “I took all my things that make sound, the rest I can do without.”

 

 

Aren’t lists fun?

 

Euphoria

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I think the goal of any fun activity is to do just that. Have fun. But the best kind of fun is the kind where you totally forget what you’re doing and you completely lose yourself in the activity. You are removed from reality and completely lose track of time, something that in my opinion is increasingly difficult in this day and age. Some call this phenomenon Euphoria. Or maybe it’s just me.

 

My “Euphoria” is concerts.

And movies.

And sports I suppose.

But today we’re going to focus on concerts. If you enjoy music, and you’re under the age of 40, or over the age of 40 for that matter, you have probably been to a concert. In my opinion the best kind of concerts are intimate ones, maybe in a small club or a bar-turned-concert hall where the capacity is literally challenged by the bodies crammed inside it.

Without a doubt the best concert that I have ever been to was one put on by a man named Jon Bellion.

 

jb

 

Still a relatively small name, his reputation is growing. He is currently opening for the 21 pilots on their tour, and I can imagine his name and fanbase will grow exponentially as the tour continues. His biggest song, “All Time Low,” though released technically more than two years ago, just went certified platinum as he released it on his first album as the leading single.

 

 

But I caught him right on the good spot.

If you’re a hipster about music or anything at all, you know that the best time to find something is riiiiight before it blows up. Right before it starts to really get popular and all the “everyday” fans get ahold of it.

I found Jon on Youtube almost three years ago, and I have been absolutely obsessed with his work ever since.

All that leads up to the concert.

On November 23, 2016, I went to see Jon Bellion on the second part of his Human Condition Tour in New York, New York. Originally from Brooklyn, this was supposed to be his biggest and best crowd.

Oh boy was it.

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There were about 3,000 people packed into this little concert hall called Terminal 5.

 

 

 

It was definitely at capacity. We were on the second floor balcony because we wanted something to lean against after a long day, but that didn’t stop it from being one of the best nights of my life.

If you’ve ever found something that you really enjoy, and you really connect with, and then gone and seen that thing performed or enacted in person, than you probably know what I’m talking about right now. The goosebumps on your skin that can only come from an experience like this are truly contagious. Once you experience that, you want it over and over again. This concert, from beginning to end, was just that. As Jon stepped on the stage for the first time that night, he quietly announced, to that sellout crowd of 3,000 +:

 

“This is the first time in my life that I feel like I’ve made it.”

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You can imagine the absolute roar from the crowd at hearing something like that. We were experiencing something, but so was he, and dammit it was magical. The concert went on, the lights and band matching the energy that he displayed performing and on his beat pad throughout the night. Jon was born to do this. And I was born to consume it.

Probably one of the best parts was at the end of the concert, when he does his scheduled encore. Before he was finished with his “last song”, the crowd began chanting the lyrics of the encore song. Everyone in that building knew it was happening, and he ate it up. As the chorus drops and everyone in the crowd goes crazy, Jon and all of his hometown friends came out on stage and threw water everywhere, enticing the crowd into an even bigger frenzy.

 

I will never forget that night.

 

My Euphoria.

Singing in the Street

For my next post, I will write about what I believe was the best movie of the year. While I haven’t seen the big Oscar contenders (“La la Land”, “Moonlight,” “Arrival,” etc), I genuinely don’t think that this movie can be topped. So, before I give it any more of an introduction, my favorite/best movie of the (last) year is/was….

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Yes, Sing Street. Written and directed by John Carney, previous writer/director of “Once” and “Begin Again,” it gives off the same type of feel. It is very musically focused, and there is obviously the love theme as well.

As the poster states, the story can be summed up as the following:

 

Boy sees girl in schoolyard, wants to impress her, walks up to her, and makes up the fact that he is in a band. Needing to back up his braggadocio, he goes back to his new friend at school and tells him that they need to form a band. So they do it.

 

And it is fantastic.

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Lead actor and singer Ferdia Walsh-Peelo was good, probably even great. He performed all of the songs in the movie instead of lip-synching, and he portrayed the emotional love stricken teen boy very well. But the best part of the movie was, without a doubt, his brother Brendan, played by Jack Reynor.

 

The main themes of this movie were the young coming of age love, but also the lower-middle class family going through divorce. And they were weaved together almost perfectly, going from a song-writing scene between bandmates to a brother to brother conversation about what they’re going to do when their parents finally pull the trigger.

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This is where the movie succeeds. The music is absolutely top notch. In fact, I was rather hoping one of them would get nominated for Best Original Song in the Oscars (“Drive It Like You Stole It,” and “Up” were the two best), but alas, the Oscars came up short.

 

BUT where this movie truly hits home is in the relationship between the brothers. The older brother, who was once a trailblazer for the younger one and made all the mistakes, only wants what’s best for his younger brother, and roots for him to succeed like only the best brothers do.

 

 

The last scene of the movie, which ends in Connor attempting to sail away to England for a shot at a record deal with this love on his side, is one of the best scenes I saw, in any movie last year. Jack Reynor sells the emotion that he feels for his brother so well that you absolutely forget you are watching a movie and it makes you remember any kind of brother relationship you have ever had.

 

 

 

I won’t lie, I teared up in this one too.