Music

Music: OG Webbie x Just Cause Vol.1 

Chicago-based producer and dj OG Webbie dropped a new mix: just cause. 

Because I mean, who really needs a reason. The 45 minute tape includes tracks from Jay Rock, Kanye West, Future and Treated Crew. The tape is something you put on while you’re getting ready to go out, music to hype you up at the gym or something to zone out to during a long commute. 

Check it out here –>> https://soundcloud.com/ogwebbie/just-cause-vol-1               

                       

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Feature

Dj spotlight of the month: Dj Boi Jeanius

This month I bring you Boi Jeanius. His passion for djing and his keen sense of all things music make him a standout not only in Chicago, but all over the U.S. 

  
Boi Jeanius was given his name when he was 15 by an early mentor. Boi Jeanius would go clean his mentors studio and in exchange he would show him some of the basics of djing. 
“I went home and asked my mom what she thought. She said “genius? It sounds too cocky. You have to be the best if that’s what you’re going to call yourself.” So I decided right then and there what I wanted to do”.

And that’s what he’s done. Boi Jeanius is recognized as one of the most talented dj’s in Chicago. His skill brought him to the finals of the RedBull 3style Dj competition the past two years in a row. 

“I try to incorporate the art form as much as I can. Creating on the fly is what I live off of.” 

In addition to being an amazing Dj Boi Jeanius is also an instructor at Scratch Academy on the north side of Chicago and in his spare time he builds custom dj desks with his father (@liboriodesk). His influences include A-track, Jazzy Jeff, Craze and Chicago’s own Timbuck2. When asked about Timbuck2 he says, “it’s kinda crazy how much influence one man has on an entire scene. I don’t always know how to show my gratitude and appreciation but I try to reflect his teachings in my accomplishments.” 

  
Follow him on social media @boijeanius 

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Music

Music: Joshua Tree in the Open with Young the Giant 

Over the past year I’ve been in love with these In the Open videos from indie rock group Young the Giant. In the videos the band performs beautiful stripped down versions of songs from their 2010 self titled album and their 2014 album Mind Over Matter. Recently the band released Joshua Tree in the Open which is a full length, behind the scenes look at the making of the In the Open videos. Filmed in Joshua Tree National Park in California, fans get a intimate look at the bands process which is pretty damn cool.  

Click here for the video –>> Young the Giant – Joshua Tree in the Open

 
On the bands Instagram page they commented: 

“It’s both interesting and challenging to reimagine our songs in these sessions; to play them stripped of all their production, naked and pure.”

My favorite In the Open session is for “Mind Over Matter” which they perform inside a cave. Definitely worth checking out. 

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Uncategorized

Stay drunk on writing….

I have been stuck creatively. 

Life has been heavy. Everything has been heavy and tiring and disorienting. But these feelings have to pass. You either change or stay stagnant and being stagnant is death. I think one of the reasons things have been like this is because I’ve tried to work within these imaginary guidelines. Tumblr is for my fiction/prose, this blog is for more journalistic writing and my notebook is for all of my random thoughts that don’t fit into a category. So to get things moving again I’ve come up with a plan. 

Stop thinking so fucking much and just write. 

It’s very easy for one to become lost in their own mind. It’s a familiar and safe place but uninspiring if you don’t venture out sometimes. The things you will read here from this point forward is me, venturing out. 

– Ash 

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Entertainment

Entertainment: Broad.Fucking.City

For the most part I’ve given up on television because of how women are represented. We’re either overly sexual, weak or complete bitches and that’s not real life. I don’t know any females who act like the girls on HBO’s Girls but if I did I’d probably punch them square in the vagina.
One dimensional female characters bore me which is why I’m so happy Broad City exists. The show, which airs on Comedy Central, is a heightened version of Ilana Glazer and Abbi Jacobson’s friendship. The two UCB alumni started making webisodes about their lives in 2009 which are so funny and can be found on YouTube (my favorites are “The Commute” and “Date Night”).
Ilana and Abbi are just two 20-something’s living in New York. They have shitty jobs, weird roommates and they smoke a lot of pot. The girls write, produce and star in all the episodes with Amy Poehler as Executive Producer.
Alessandra Stanley from the NY Times called Broad City “more linear, unpolished and narrowly comedic than Girls on HBO” which in my opinion is a good thing. Life is unpolished. I want to see women on tv I’d want to be friends with; women who are smart and funny and un perfect because that’s life.
Hannibal Buress also has a recurring role on the show as Lincoln, Ilana’s friend with benefits. Buress was such a good choice for this character, he’s oddly hilarious without overshadowing Ilana and Abbi. The show has had cameos from Fred Armisen, Janeane Garofalo and tonight season finale featured Amy Poehler herself.
Broad City is Comedy Central’s highest rated new show since 2012. Averaging 1.2 million views per episode it’s no surprise they’ve been picked up for a second season. If you haven’t seen this show yet I definitely recommend binge-watching this entire past season right now, you’ll thank me later.

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Health

Health: Combating the winter blues

The winter months tend to bring a slew of unpleasant things. The car door is frozen, the sun goes down by 5pm, my fingers are numb, I’m not very happy.
Turns out I am not the only one who isn’t a fan of winter. Around this time of year it’s common for people to feel the symptoms of something called the winter blues. The winter blues is characterized by a lack of energy, difficultly waking up, overeating and withdrawal from friends and family. The technical term for the winter blues is Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) which is a mood disorder caused by sunlight deprivation. SAD leaves a person feeling hopeless and depressed without any outwardly apparent reason. Although it can be difficult to get through, all hope isn’t lost when dealing with the winter blues. Here are some tips to turning your mood around and making the most of this winter.

-Light it up
Try to expose yourself to sunlight as much as you can in the winter. Our bodies need sunlight in order to produce Vitamin D and fuel the production of serotonin which helps regulate mood. If you’re stuck inside all day then sit by a window, do whatever you can to get out of the dark. Replace your regular light bulbs with full-spectrum bulbs that are a minimum of 2,500 lux, which feel similar to natural sunlight. These can be purchased at your local hardware store. Also if you have trouble waking up in the morning try putting your lights on a timer and having them turn on 30 minutes before you’re supposed to be awake.

-Keep moving
Here’s another great reason to hit the gym; exercising raises serotonin levels which improves your mood. People who workout regularly tend to be calmer and be more positive. Try to commit to at least 30 minutes a day to being active. Once you get those endorphins going you’ll quit being bummed.

-Get your mind right
If you go into winter dreading it then its hard to appreciate all the good things about it. To help conquer the winter blues it’s important to accept winter for what it is and find ways to look forward to it. Adapt a winter hobby such as snowboarding or even plan a fun trip with your friends. Meditate. Set goals you can work on all winter long and reward yourself when those goals are met. Read and look at things that inspire you. Immerse yourself in things that make you happy and if you’re unsure about what makes you happen then dabble until you land on something great.

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Style

Style: “Made in a Chicago Hood”: DBM

It’s been a good year for Chicago-based designer/creative JoeFreshgoods.
His brand DBM (DopeBoyMagic) has been immensely successful not just locally, but all over the world. Joe and his team put in work and as a result he owns one of the strongest street wear brands out right now. Today his fall/winter collection “October ’96” dropped on dopeboymagic.com with a visually stunning lookbook shot by trashhand. Hypebeast described the collection accurately when they stated it “updates the throwback aesthetics for the modern youth”. I wanted to go back a little and see how it all started. In the two years I’ve known Joe I’ve learned that he’s a great guy with a solid work ethic and a love for strawberry lemonade but I wanted to know what inspired DBM and hopefully get a glimpse of what’s to come.

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According to Joe, DBM was created in 2008 by himself and his friend Vic Lloyd. The two worked at Leaders in Wicker Park and came up with the name DopeBoyMagic as joke. The name stuck. The inspiration behind DBM is 30 years of urban culture and Chicago lifestyle. The goal was to bring the hood to the mainstream fashion world. The first full collection was launched the summer of 2012. Since then the popularity of the brand has grown and Joe has become synonymous with Chicago street wear.
“People identify themselves with the brand” explains Joe, “people see where it has come from and that works in our favor”.
Speaking to Joe now versus the beginning of the summer you can definitely see how he’s grown and how that will translate into his brand. “Some of the pieces are more mature this season. I’m slowly starting to shy away from DopeBoyMagic and move to DBM. We’re trying to reach a bigger audience”.
I think he’s doing a great job at reaching a wider audience while still making the current supporters happy, which isn’t always an easy task. “It’s a learning process everyday” says Joe, “it’s important to stay a few steps ahead of people”.

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The “October ’96” DBM collection is really something to be proud of. I’m absolutely in love with the flight jacket and the Tommy: No Job hoodie is genius. The entire collection can be seen at dopeboymagic.com and if you live in Chicago you’ll have the opportunity to snag your gear in person soon. Joe has been working on opening his own store and its slated to be ready for Black Friday. All I can tell you is it will be in the Logan Square area and it will be awesome. DBM is definitely a hood success story and I’m so excited to see this brand flourish and leave its mark.

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