On the Power of Hustle + Tunes by Betty Who, CONWAY, HOLYCHILD, Madi Diaz and more

My current desktop background courtesy of designlovefest
My current desktop background, available for download on designlovefest.com {click on picture}

I believe in the power of hustle. Constant activity. That there is always something you can be doing to generate momentum and change in your life. It doesn’t take much time to send an email reconnecting with an old contact. It doesn’t hurt to ask a question where the answer might be no (it might also be yes!)  Even reading can be a step forward if you’re gaining some small piece of knowledge you didn’t know before. Whenever I go out to an event or a show, if I meet one new person no matter where they work or what they do, I consider it a night well spent. How did you hustle today?

Tadpole Audio’s 45 Favorite Songs of 2011

By Amanda DK

‘Tis that time of year again.  When it begins to snow on the east coast, turns to sweater weather on the west coast and music lovers far and wide begin posting their lists of the best 50 or 100 songs of 2011.  First of all, I only got to 45 this year and second of all I don’t feel comfortable claiming these songs to be the “best.” “Best” is a strong word.  In no particular order, below you will find just some of the songs that moved me personally this year. Moved me to dance, sing, cry, stomp, flail, fist pump, clap, smile, jump, shout, hum, or sometimes all of the above.  I can only hope you love them half as much as I do; maybe even get turned on to an artist you’ve never considered before.  Enjoy!


Neat Tracks / Thao & Mirah “Eleven (ft. tUnE-YarDs)”


Enter Thao Nguyen (“Thao”): Known for her raw, brassy riffing and sensuality.

Enter Mirah Yom Tov Zeitlyn (“Mirah”): A sound chameleon, each album subtly different from the next, but with the same throughline of airy, breathy vocals.

Their powers combine on Thao & Mirah, the bluntly named first collaborative album from the two earthy songstresses, released on yesterday on Kill Rock Stars.

The result?  I’ll venture to say the whole is greater than the parts (and I loved Thao’s Know Better, Learn Faster).  I adore this album in the same way I do Alexander Ebert’s “Alexander” – on the surface it’s simple, but unique flourishes both with the vocals and in the instrumentation on every track make the whole experience really special.  Thao’s trademark offbeat belting intertwines perfectly with Mirah’s sweetness.  Each track is a little different, some with twangy garage guitars, other with a foundation of fuzzy beats.  All of them feel intimate, as though listening in on someone humming along to themselves; recorded so close you can hear fingers brushing across the guitar strings.

And then there is the opening track, “Eleven,” which is on another plane entirely – in an awesome way.  “Eleven” is the most lush, produced track on the album, which may have something to do with the contributions from Merrill Garbus, better known as the bad-ass (and buzzy) tUnE-YarDs.  Whatever the reason, the song is an expression of joy in the form of tribal beats trimmed with dreamy electronic bells and whistles.  Play this at your next neighborhood summer block party.

Thao & Mirah “Eleven (ft. tUnE-YarDs)”

Purchase Thao & Mirah at the Kill Rock Stars store.  A digital download of the album is only $5.00!

Animal Kingdom: We’re Going On A Bear Hunt

Lions and tigers and bears – oh my!  Well, if you’re not Judy Garland you must be at the zoo, because who goes there and DOESN’T check out the lion habitat?  Or the tigers?  Or the elephants and giraffes for that matter?  Lame people that’s who.  The same people who don’t check out the lions at the MGM Grand in Vegas – though, it would make sense for lame people to avoid Vegas in general.  Yeah.  Or I guess those people might just feel strongly about not keeping wild animals in captivity and have chosen not to support such abuse…which, if you think about it, isn’t really lame…it’s kind of noble…

They’ll never take the sun bear away from me.

Just listen to some music, okay?

Animal Kingdom: We’re Going On A Bear Hunt by teamanda

Catch local bands Warpaint and Pizza! after their shows at SXSW – Warpaint at Spaceland on March 29, and Pizza! all over LA including Silverlake Lounge, Spaceland and the Echo over the next couple months.  Check them out performing “Mammoth Skull” below…

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