FYF 2017 Line-Up

The FYF Lineup has arrived and it is truly a blessing from above. With Missy Elliott and Björk headlining on the same day (July 21) and Frank Ocean and Nine Inch Nails headlining on the two other days (July 22-23), FYF is sure to be packed full of a diverse group of youngsters. However, the big-name stars performing at FYF come at a cost: tickets are on sale for $299 rather than $199.

FYF has evolved from a single-day attraction in 2009, to a three-day festival that features many mainstream and iconic names. Unlike Coachella, most of the people that attend FYF are there mainly for the music, not for the Instagram boomerangs and the fashion. Located in Exposition Park in Los Angeles, FYF will please fans of older music (with the #throwback hits of Tribe Called Quest and Iggy Pop), fans of current music (with Solange and Anderson.Paak) and fans of artists on the rise (such as Cherry Glazerr and Mitski).

So, below are a few artists playing at FYF that I highly suggest you check out!

Frank Ocean

It’s a no-brainer. Frank Ocean has been AWOL for a little too long, so any time he is in town or playing a show nearby, it’s basically mandatory! He dropped an album last year called “Blonde” and has so many great hits within that album, such as “Solo” and “Ivy.” He still has the iconic album “Channel Orange” under his belt, as well. When he performs the songs “Thinking of You” and “Super Rich Kids,” I’ll definitely be there screaming the words.

Photo (A Seat at the Table) by Dani Miller. Click image to view source. Photo unchanged. License

Solange

The goddess herself is sharing her beautiful music with us at FYF. Solange is known for her pop/R&B album, “A Seat At The Table,” which covers many subjects ranging from the Black Lives Matter protests to black culture in general. It’s refreshing to see Solange making a name for herself, other than “Beyonce’s sister.” I, for one, am a firm believer that her music proves to be genuine and unique, rather than commercialized and stereotypical. Not to mention, she has really good dance moves. So, go see Solange at FYF to feel #empowered.

Angel Olsen

Angel Olsen, an angel herself, will be blessing us with hits such as “Shut Up, Kiss Me” and “Intern” from her latest album, “My Woman.” With a more pop/gritty sound that showcases pain, love and self reflection, her music will sound beautiful live at FYF. I was able to watch some of her set at Coachella 2014, and it’s true that her music definitely has changed from “sad girl” music to a more upbeat sound. Because of that, I’m even more excited to see and hear her new music live at FYF.

I could talk about this line-up for hours, but this would turn into a novel, so I won’t. However, a few other notable performers playing at FYF that I think you should see are Tribe Called Quest, King Krule, Hannibal Buress, Björk and Cherry Glazerr! Have a great rest of your week, Aztecs!

Ashley Bajet,

signing out.

 

Featured Image by FYF.

 

The Color of Music: Bruno Mars

With the release of his new album “24K Magic,” Bruno Mars has transported pop back to the ’80s. No longer is he the charming, romantic crooner everyone knows and loves. Now, he is an entertainer oozing sex appeal. From his flashy clothes to his wild dance moves, Mars has added his own flair and originality to the airwaves. No one expected the “The Lazy Song” singer to go from chilling in a snuggie to dancing in a sequined getup surrounded by beautiful women – but it happened. And, it works.

The catchy hooks on this album have reestablished Mars as a musician with undeniable talent. However, he could not have created “24K Magic” without the inspirations of soul, disco and R&B artists such as Marvin Gaye, R. Kelly and James Brown. Mars flaunts his charm through the seductive slow jam “Versace on the Floor,” showing some possible inspiration from the R&B group Boyz II Men. “That’s What I Like” takes a ’90s approach with its funky bass riffs and playful vocal melody. The New Jack beat, rhythmic synths and Mars’ vocal delivery make this song the ultimate bop. The song “Finesse” starts off with banging drums that lead to a dance-able chorus, which gives off some serious Bobby Brown vibes. Overall, “24K Magic” is a music industry game changer.

Bruno Mars’ smooth implementation of synths, funky bass lines and foot tapping beats have cultivated an album of perfection. His ability to transform from a fedora wearing crooner to a snapback, gold chain stunting swag master shows his versatility as a musician. As a result, this album is an ode to the passion for music and entertaining he has had since his Hawaiian childhood.

Since birth, Bruno Mars has always been surrounded by music. The stage was practically his second home. He found his calling for performing when he took part in his family’s music show as an Elvis impersonator. Growing up in Hawaii, where the only thing he could do was play music, Mars honed his craft. These humble beginnings have pushed him to transform into the dynamic performer he is today.

I have no doubt that Mars’ musicianship will inspire others. His versatility sets him apart, probably due to his childhood on stage. Mars recognizes this, and has called his performance filled childhood some of the best years of his life. As a result, Hawaii has raised an entertainer who continues to push boundaries and create new standards for music.

Featured Image by Daniel Gregory. Retrieved from https://flic.kr/p/okJu1R 

Hillcrest is For Record Shopping

 

Vinyl records are a medium that is, technologically, considered outdated. Even so, they have been making a comeback in the last few years, and are now trendy. There is something about owning a physical copy of one’s favorite music that seems to make it more personal and meaningful, a feeling that a person can’t really get with streaming or digital platforms. Sure, records can be pricey, and aren’t convenient if you’re on the go, but that might be a positive. It’s a positive because records force you to spend quality time with them. Listening to music becomes a process; you have to open the sleeve, pull the record out while being mindful of not touching the grooves (which can compromise the sound), place it on the mat, find the right RPM, and finally, place the needle, sit back and listen. That is certainly more involved than just clicking play, right? In any case, if you’re new to records or already have a well rounded collection, here is a short list of great record shops in Hillcrest for you to enjoy. If you stop by, I’m sure you could get the shop owners to tell you why they think vinyl is better. 

Record City

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Record City is my go to place for records, especially on Record Store Day. They have a large collection that is pretty neat and is organized by genre. They have plenty of records in every catagory, and you can find some pretty rare gems for as little as a buck. This store has a great oldies/blues selection that you can browse through for hours, but they stay current too. They also have a pretty big selection of CDs and DVDs. Record City is right on 6th Avenue, waiting for you to check it out. 

 

M-Theory

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This store is located on the main street (Washington St.) that connects Hillcrest to Mission Hills. M-Theory has a really good collection of indie favorites, and they carry new music from underground bands that you may not be able to find at any other record store. But, like Record City, they have a great selection in all genres. Plus, they occasionally have in-store performances.

Taang!

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Click image to view source.

Unlike the rest, Taang! is actually its own record label, operating in San Diego. Located on 5th Avenue in Hillcrest, Taang! is much smaller than the other two shops. It’s usually not as organized, however, this makes you dig around, which can lead to surprising (and fun) discoveries. Taang!’s specialty is definitely punk, but they also have a large selection of rap and hip-hop. 

Fleet Foxes is Back!

As the winter weather is fleeing and wildflowers are blooming, it’s only fitting to announce the following: Fleet Foxes has finally put out new music, after six years. Yes, in fact, is has been six years since the group’s last album, “Helplessness Blues,” came out. Listen to their new single, “Third of May / Odaigahara,” below.

If you are an avid listener of Fleet Foxes, you know that through the years their sound has definitely changed, along with lead singer Robin Pecknold’s voice. I was curious to find out if Fleet Foxes would go back to using a wide variety of instruments (“Blue Ridge Mountains“), as their newer sound features a really prominent yet simple lead guitar (“Helplessness Blues“). I think it’s safe to say that the group’s new song is a perfect mix of both old and new. It caters to the grandiose orchestration that many fans seem to love, but brings it back to a more peaceful, reflective sound towards the end.

What I loved most about Fleet Foxes’ previous music is that it seemed to be nature oriented. This song did not disappoint – it had plenty of nature metaphors. Throughout the nine minutes of this experimental track we’re being told the story of the relationship between Pecknold and another founding member of Fleet Foxes, Skyler Skjelset.

Fleet Foxes underwent member changes as well. For example, Joshua Tillman (also known as Father John Misty) was unable to join the band again, most likely because he’s doing his own solo tour. The group currently consists of Pecknold, Skjelset, Casey Wescott, Christian Wargo and Morgan Henderson.

Here’s to going on road trips with new Fleet Foxes music at the top of our playlists! Their new album “Crack-Up” debuts June 16th and they will be at the Hollywood Bowl in Los Angeles on Sept. 23rd. I’ve been waiting six years to see them live, so I’ll be there (crying my eyes out)! Will you?

Ashley Bajet,
signing out.

Featured Image: Newsvibes.com