‘Your Father, Rest His Sould’ by Her Ladyship

It was a Thursday a ways back in 2018, and my girlfriend and I had ventured up to Troy Hill to Scratch Food and Beverage for a dinner date. The food was top notch as were the cocktails.

But the reason I remember this night so vividly is because Her Ladyship sang and played some of the most beautiful folk music we have ever heard. I remember there being an audience of about 10 people, and it blew my mind that their talent and sound was heard by so few people that night. A part of me felt so lucky to have been able to hear them, but a part of me also felt anguish that so many were missing out. We actually stumbled upon the show, and for that I am grateful.

HerLadyship

Since that summer month, the Pittsburgh based indie-folk band has released their album Her Ladyship and have played many shows since. I attended a show of theirs at the Wiggle Whiskey Barrelhouse, and I was ecstatic to see such an amazing, well deserved turnout – the garden was packed!

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It was very difficult for me to choose a song off their album, but today’s feature is ‘Your Father, Rest His Soul.’ It’s my favorite of theirs performed live, so for that reason it is today’s beat. Go listen on Spotify right now!

And go learn more about Her Ladyship @ https://www.herladyshipmusic.com and give them a follow on Facebook and Instagram @herladyshipmusic

The feels are too real.

– zimmertime

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Featured Artist of the Week: Benji.

If I’m being honest, when I started writing for ABAD again this past Monday, I knew I was going to release a featured artist of the week on Sunday, and at first it wasn’t going to be Benji. Everyone who knows me already knows how much I enjoy and promote Benji. and his music, so I thought that would be predictable and biased. But then on Wednesday December 12th, Benji. showed up on the front page of PGH City Paper titled ‘Local hip-hop artist reminds listeners to Smile, You’re Alive! ‘ READ THE ARTICLE HERE and damn does Benji. deserve the feature. It’s an incredible story, so if you didn’t click to go read the article, go do that before the rest of this story!

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I was so happy for the guy that he finally got the headline he deserved! So, I started to think about my own story of how I came across Benji. and how and why I started listening to his music so much.

I figured I’d finally explain why I tell everyone I meet to go listen to Benji. Why I’ve been shamelessly plugging Benji. on social media imploring people to listen to him. Why I’ve played his songs at every 6ycle class I teach. Why he’s my favorite artist of 2018.

As I started to think about how I was going to get into this story, I kept coming back to the same 3 questions:

  1. “When was the moment I knew Benji. was a special talent?”
  2. “What exactly was it that first got me hooked to listening to Benji.”
  3. “What activated me to keep listening to his music over and over again (besides the fact that it’s amazing music)”

As I started to think about the answer to those questions, it all started unraveling, and it’s clear to see that it started with his features on Mars Jackson’s G.D.N.L.F album. ‘Alright’ has all the energy and ‘Simple’ features Benji.’s rap and singing talents to where I thought to myself I need to hear more of this guy.

Question 1 answered.

Mars Jackson

And while those features definitely got me wanting to hear more (Shout Out Mars and Benji. for working together and making amazing music!) it’s not like I was hooked to listening to Benji. at this point.

Then came May 24th, 2018. With listening to G.D.N.L.F for some time now, I was going to hear what Benji. was all about on his debut album ‘Smile, You’re Alive.’

As I start to think about the answer to question 2 on this rainy Sunday, I play the album Smile You’re Alive with ‘Rain’ coming on as the first track on the album. I can hear the rain tapping on the roof, and it hits me. ‘Rain’ – the very first song on the album is what got me hooked to listening to Benji. It’s the emotion invoking voice of Benji. singing paired with a beautiful piano in the beginning of the song. It’s the loud yet soft beat drop that gets the song going. It’s the perfectly timed ‘Yeah, Yeah’ after every chorus lyric ‘Rain Down watch it Rain Down’ It’s the intrigue of Benji. starting the first verse of his first album with ‘I thought I gave my mom and dad a grandbaby.’ wanting you to find out more.

And finally, it’s verse 2 of ‘Rain’ combined with all the reasons above that gives the real answer to question 2:

Verse 2:

It’s ok to be nervous, it’s ok to feel worthless
Cause then there’s people like us around who remind you you’re worth it.
Ain’t no need to be perfect, you just needed some searchin’
Feed your mind and your body, so that your soul can be nourished
Then we gon’ flourish til we drop out, swerving with the top down
All the praise is going up, watch the blessings fall down.
Feel like I’m just feet away
Don’t get in my way
On my shoulder frito lay
I eat a chip a day yeah yeah

Question 2 Answered.

3. “What activated me to keep listening to his music over and over again?”

Question 3 is one loaded question, and it’s been a journey.

The simple answer is Benji’s album ‘Smile, You’re Alive.’ From start to finish, it’s a complete album. Seriously, if you haven’t read the PGH City Paper article, go do it NOW

Smile You're Alive

But the long answer is three-fold. It’s his album, it’s his singles, and it’s his multiple performances in 2018 with SlimthaDJ, Eddan Sparks Trio, and so many other amazing musicians and performers. All performances I’ve thoroughly enjoyed.

FYI – Unless I specifically state that Benji. was playing with a band, you must know that Benji. and SlimThaDJ perform together. They are one hell of a performance both musically and comically. If you haven’t seen it first hand, this video sums it up perfectly:

A Timeline of My Experiences at Benji.’s 2018 Performances: 

On June 21st, Third Thursdays @ WYEP  in Bedford Square Southside was the first time I saw Benji. perform. It was a long time ago, but now that I’ve seen Benji. perform many times since then it’s easy to see his tremendous growth in just 6 months. He was comfortable on stage, but he had room to grow and amazingly enough probably still does. Nonetheless, it was an amazing show where he played songs off ‘Smile, You’re Alive’ and closed with you guessed it…Mimosa! He also gave a shout out to Mars Jackson and Clara Kent who were in attendance which is how I found out about Clara Kent – an amazing singer and artist worth listening to; Loner Type by Clara Kent ft. Benji. is everything to me. #tooblessedtobestressedwhywouldIevensecondguessmyhappiness

WYEP

The very next day June 22nd, I went to Club Cafe to see Benji. again thinking this performance would be a more familiar environment for him versus a Third Thursday performance during the day at 6:00pm. So that night, Benji. performed with a band, and it was even better than the night before no doubt. I immediately noticed the potential in Benji. on this night, and even though his performance was fire…the ceiling, the bar, whatever you want to call it was still so high. Benji. was just getting started.

Fast forward to July 14th @ Spirit for The City Music Festival; Benji. had a huge crowd and performed exceptionally. Attending this event also gave me the opportunity to truly realize how talented the city of Pittsburgh really is. I either heard or learned about the following artists from that night, so for that, I am grateful:

Livefromthecity, Tairey, Brittney Chantele, Choo Jackson, Jonny Good, JM the Poet, Bill Waves, Sierra Sellers, NVSV, Linwood, My Favorite Color, PK Delay and more.

I kept listening to Benji. on Spotify, and I kept telling everyone I knew and ran into about the amazing Pittsburgh talent of Benji. both in person and via social media. I wanted to keep practicing what I preached, so I kept going to shows of Benji. whenever I could.

August 11th For the People @ Brillobox – This event was extra special for me because I had seen Uptowne Buddha a couple years back when I lived in Cleveland, and I immediately loved them and knew this event was going to be hype. It was ‘Written In the Stars.’ Other artists who performed at the show were JM the Poet, Brittney Chantele and of course Benji. & SlimThaDj.

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Pictured: Kalie Williams and Dean Bogdanovic @ Brillobox For The People Show

Arguably my favorite concert of 2018 happened on September 3rd @ The Attic’s Backyard – The day was hot and sunny, but the vibes were nothing but positive. The drinks were flowing and the opening acts of Ben Barson (Afro Yaqui Music Collective), Mulu, and Sierra Sellers made everyone forget about the hot sun. As the sun started to fall behind the trees in the backyard, Benji. came on to play with band members who had played throughout the day. It was awesome to see Benji. rap and sing one of my favorite songs of his ‘Elevate’ while playing the drums. Just another showcase of why this dude is so talented.

The BackYard

Ace Hotel – Hound’s Year of the Dog Show on September 28th was an awesome venue and show case of art. Many notable performs including DJ Bamboo, PVKVSV, HEARISMATT, G.R. Zombie, Chris Allen, Benji., and Mars Jackson. I remember Benji. performing his hype song ‘Right On’ while climbing up and sitting on the ladder. From June to September, his stage presence, confidence, and overall performance had come so far.

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With another performance at the Ace Hotel – The Glow Up happened on November 9th; If you missed this event, you truly missed out. An all POC Art & Music Showcase with art from around 40 artists and performances from Clara Kent, Jordan Montgomery, Jack Swing, Brittney Chantele, Black N Mild, DJ Jaybee, Livefromthecity, Ranch God & Prof Ooak and of course Benji. made this a night to remember. It’s up there for my 2018 show of the year no doubt.

The Glow Up

For the latest show I went to, Benji. was the headliner – Benji. and Friends @ Cattivo on December 1st with opening acts Chloe Wiecz Collective and Back Alley Sound. This was the best performance I have seen from Benji. He and Slim played their new singles to start off their performance which lit the crowd up with songs like ‘M.I.A.’ and most notably my friend Kevin shouting and urging them to play ‘Tamale’ so many times that Slim dropped it on Benji. out of nowhere and they still slam dunked the performance. From there the Eddan Sparks trio made a special appearance and Benji. slapped the bass while Brandon Lehman shredded the guitar and Eddan Sparks brought it all together with the drums (Superstition was LIT). To wrap up the show, Benji. then brought on drummer Joey and pianist Jasmine while he played the bass for his ‘Smile, You’re Alive’ songs – Sanctuary, Rain, and Mimosa. This was a show which had undeniable, incredible, energy. The crowd was singing along, and everyone was letting loose, letting the music fill their soul – it was special for real.

Cattivo

I honestly might have missed some shows that I went to, and I definitely wasn’t able to go to all of Benji’s shows in 2018. But fortunately, I was able to see the Eddan Sparks Trio a few times where Benji. serves as the bassist. I also saw Tribe.Eternal play at light up night in Pittsburgh which was amazing as Clara Kent sang her heart out as Benji. played bass for the group that night too. Through all of these live performances it’s clear that Benji. isn’t just a singer, a rapper, a bass player…he’s a MUSICIAN and a PERFORMER.

My Pittsburgh music journey of 2018 has inspired me to start writing for A Beat A Day after taking a 2 year hiatus from doing so. The purpose of ABAD is to show case all of Pittsburgh’s talent with literally A Beat A Day. And don’t worry, I’ll throw in some top hits as well.

It’s been quite a ride getting to know Benji. as a musician, performer, and person in addition to ALL of Pittsburgh’s musicians and performers that I’ve had the pleasure of meeting and getting to know in 2018. I think the ride is just getting started for this city and it’s musical talent. If you’re reading this, let’s come together and put Pittsburgh back on the music map!

– zimmertime

‘Wildfire Romance’ by PM Mirror

First things first, ‘Wildfire Romance’ is a radio hit. It’s just one of those iconic songs that when you hear it for the first time, you know it is special. How can we get PM Mirror on the radio?! is what I keep asking myself!

WildFire Romance

Beauty, passion, emotion is exactly what you will hear in Wildfire Romance. The range PM Mirror puts on display is incredible. His voice is something else straight up! The piano, pop beats, and production value is unparalleled as well.

Make your ears happy and go listen to more PM Mirror at http://www.thepmmirror.com/home.html or go follow him on Spotify and Instagram @pmmirror !

– Zimmertime

Epilogue –

For some time now, I have been attending local Pittsburgh shows, following local artists, and plugging all types of talented Pittsburgh musicians through word of mouth, social media, and now A Beat A Day, so when my friend Annelise responded to one of my Instagram stories telling me I needed to listen to PM Mirror, I immediately did. Shout out Annelise because PM Mirror’s content is extraordinary. This type of music sharing and local support is what I live for. Collaboration, Supporting Others, and Community will bring Pittsburgh to the recognition of music it deserves. One Day At A Time. A Beat A Day.

‘Rolling Papers 2’ by Wiz Khalifa

The lyrics Wiz puts out on this track touch so many points about his life, where he’s been in the past, present, and where he’ll be in the future. I hear this unraveling as I listen to Verse 1, 2, and 3 – the past, present, and future.

wiz simple

Like most, I’ve always been a Wiz fan. Even long long ago before I lived in Pittsburgh. But I have to admit that when I saw him at Thrival Festival in 2017 @ Carrie Furnace in Pittsburgh, my eyes were opened to the true talent he is. At this point in my life I had seen some big names in the game like Jay-Z, Kanye, Kendrick to name a few. It was clear since the first song at the show that Wiz had it all – stage presence, rapping, but most pleasantly, a singing voice that was the real deal. It put Wiz over the top for me to know first hand that he could literally do it all, singing included.

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The beat in this joint is simple and smooth. The piano adds the right amount of touch and emotion. Wiz brings it home throughout.

Rolling Papers 2 is a motivating song about going through the ups and downs. Wiz speaks to recognizing where one is at in their life. He challenges us to always do our best, make decisions and learn from mistakes, and follow one’s heart when it tells you to make that change.

“When it’s time to make a change, I ain’t gon’ fight it, fight it”

This song as well as the album seemed to go slightly under the radar…or maybe that’s just me? What do you think?

– Zimmertime

 

#tbt – ‘Told You So’ by Miguel

My favorite non-Pittsburgh artist of 2018 was…you guessed it Miguel. My favorite fashion brand of 2018…Pleasures. This song has an unbelievable sound lyrically and musically. The wavy vibe of Miguel’s voice plus the Tame Impala feeling of the song just brings the whole piece together so smoothly. Add in the fact that Miguel did a collab. with the trend setting street-wear brand Pleasures, and I’ve been hooked since day one.

miguel pleasures 2

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The song showed up on my top 5 songs of 2018 from Spotify…no surprise here. I have played it consistently in my cycle classes that I teach at 6ycle (shout out), and it’s been a staple for me since December 1st when Miguel released War & Leisure (underrated album fr.)  If you haven’t listened to this song, well sheeeet just go listen to it !!

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Miguel reppin’ that fire ‘Born x Raised’ long sleeve T – another shout out to Threads On Carson in Pittsburgh for reppin’ Born x Raised!

Told You So.

– Zimmertime

‘On Me’ by Treble NLS

The first thing that comes to mind when I hear the first 5 seconds of ‘On Me’ is a close up shot of an artist, Treble NLS in this scenario, with a glowing spotlight following him as he walks out on the stage for a head lining performance of a life time.

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Treble NLS ( Never | Lose |Sight ) recently released his debut album Reine: Story of an American Reject on December 1st and it doesn’t disappoint. 

The album tells a story from start to finish, and ‘On Me’ is the last song on the album. For good reason too. During the last few bars of ‘On Me’ he raps a powerful line on why he makes music – “…I do this to feel my existence more vividly, and stay genuine through all my engagements…”

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Treble NLS declares his independence, both musically and personally, outright on this track and with vigor. It’s an upbeat, motivational hit that wraps his album up perfectly.

Go listen to the full album at the link below!

http://hyperurl.co/izsg5i

 

‘Put You On’ by Livefromthecity

Today’s beat is brought to you by Livefromthecity! Big bass bumpin’, melodic singing undertones, and an earworm chorus is what puts this song on front and center for today’s featured beat.

LiveFromTheCity

Pictured: Livefromthecity
Photo Credit: Michael Schwartz

The song starts off with Live saying “For the city, for the city you know.” And if one and one thing only is true, it’s that Livefromthe7ity loves the 412.

To hear the song, check out the songlink below!

Put You On

– Zimmertime

‘Simple’ by Mars Jackson ft. Benji.

What’s up Pittsburgh, the rest of the world? It’s been about 2 years, but I’m getting back to writing about A BEAT A DAY, so I’m going to keep this “Simple” and break down the vibes on this track by Mars Jackson ft. Benji.

The beat starts off catchy and transitions into a wavy, electric-sounding organ over top to start the chorus off just right.

In verse 1 Mars spits seemingly nonchalant, flowin’ rhymes from start to end about the girl he is trying to get to know and ultimately woo over.

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In the 2nd verse, Benji. begins by singing clever lyrics on wanting to get to know a girl on another level – “Do you really like the things you like or you just like it how they gave it to you? Lift the package and it’s the product, and shawty they ain’t really bangin’ with you. I just wanna see what you’re all about…”

Benji. Champion

It’s like he’s talking about the layers that make up a person, a girl in this case, and appreciating her for those layers that get peeled back as you get to know someone more and more.

Lyrics are always up for interpretation and to me both Mars and Benji. are talking about getting to know a girl on a real, meaningful level and doing exactly that can be Simple.

This is a ‘True fuckin’ playa credential’ song right here.

-Zimmertime

Sunday RnR: Shuffle 8 – The Last Sunday RnR

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Hi everyone, my name is Jagger. I have been putting out Sunday RnR for the past year and a half. After a great deal of consideration, I have decided to put the program on an indefinite hiatus. I have loved being about to share music with anyone willing to read and listen. Music is in my blood, there’s nothing I would rather talk to someone about. Even on days when I didn’t want to or didn’t have the time to post Sunday RnR, as soon as I started researching and listening, I felt great. For now, I have a lot of great opportunities coming up. I’ve just finished college, I’m working on some great film projects, my band’s album just finished its last recording session and will be coming out soon, and so much more. I would love to continue doing this show, and maybe someday I will, but for now the time has come to say goodbye. A Beat A Day was very kind to bring me in and I had a lot of fun working with a lot of people I’ve never met in order to share music. So thanks to them, and thanks to anyone reading or listening right now or anyone that ever has. In celebration, I added 12 more songs (was gonna do 10 but the next 2 songs were undeniably prefect) to the usual shuffle playlist length to send this shit off with a bang.

One last time, thanks for reading, enjoy the music, and long live rock and roll.

Jaggernaut