‘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!

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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.

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‘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.

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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.

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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

‘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.

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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…”

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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

Louis the Child – Love is Alive ft. Elohim

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Chicago bread electric duo Freddy Kennett & Robby Hauldren, better known as Louis the Child recently released their newest single “Love is Alive” featuring Elohim.

I first heard this track a few months back while seeing them play in Brooklyn NY. Upon announcing they were playing a new track at the show, the duo jumped up on their stage table and immediately assumed ‘grooving positions’… Robby with some sort of swimming motion and Freddy nodding and slowly pumping his fist. It was hard to tell, but it looked like both of them had their eyes closed, basking in the rolling bassline and encouraging vocals from Elohim.

“This song is very special to us and carries a message we feel is very important especially considering the state of our world at the moment,” Louis the Child said in an emailed statement originally reported by Billboard. “We need more love,  and we hope this song helps spread love.”

I have to say I agree. And if you think about it, things are quite simple… We’re all here together, in one big ship called the Earth zipping around the Sun at 67k mph. So while we’re along for this supersonic ride, let’s remember that no matter how disheartening and chaotic things seem, we can throw on a tune like this and embrace the unique and extraordinary love we all share for one another.

Until next time,

– Trachstar

Artist Spotlight: Jeremy Rosinger

 

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I was able to chat with producer Jeremy Rosinger who is dropping his first project and we were able to talk influences, styles and beats. Shouts to Reviving Real for the bringing Jeremy and this dope project our way , head to their site here (http://www.revivingreal.com/).

Read up and listen to the album “10:57” below

 

Lets start off with the basic producer question, how do you yourself start a beat? Do you have a groove in your head already and you start messing around on your pad or does it come from some type of inspiration or experience?:

“I’d love to meet a producer who has one answer to this question. Sometimes I’ll start with just a snare I like and build from there. Sometimes I hear a sample that inspires me. My best music, however, comes from times I hear a new song or album that resonates with me. Nothing compares to hearing new music– it makes me want to create my own.”

I know you said you just graduated college 2 weeks ago and are ready to drop an album… lets talk about the concept of “10:57” and the how it came about

“The time, 10:57, is a reference to the exact length of the project. It is short and to the point with constant changes. But going deeper, time in general is a strange concept, it’s something we created to keep order. I want to stop watching the clock, though. I want to stop letting life pass by without appreciating it, which is not an easy task. While listening to my project, for a brief moment, I hope people stop watching the clock.. making the title and artwork a bit ironic.”

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I noticed in “take the stairs” there are a ton of real sounds incorporated in the track. Did you record those sounds like the coin and the door squeaking open and closed?

“Yes! I’m glad you noticed that. “take the stairs” came about during a project for one of my music technology courses. We were supposed to record a song with a certain amount of instruments, but I’m more into sampling. So I went around with a pair of microphones and recorded a bunch of miscellaneous sounds. Everything in the beat aside from the chords you hear were recorded by myself and sampled into the song. The snare is a handful of almonds being tossed into a red solo cup.”

Can you tell us some of your biggest influences in music? If I were to ask who you bump on your studio headphones on a regular basis who would it be?

“Terrace Martin and Isaiah Rashad are two of my biggest influences right now. Terrace because of his versatility; I read about him producing Herbie Hancock and YG’s albums at the same time. He’s also a dope sax player, which was the instrument I studied at school. Isaiah has a vibe that cannot be touched; if there’s one artist I could sit down with right now, it’d be him.”

Clockwork//Butter might be my favorite record on this album, do you let a beat like this develop over a couple of days/weeks or do you sit down and don’t get up until its done?

“clockwork // butter” wasn’t originally intended to be one song, it was actually two completely separate beats for a while. One day I tried transitioning one into the other and it just worked. I don’t think any of my tracks are ever ‘finished,’ but the second half of this track was made, for the most part, in one sitting.”

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If you could work with any musician in the industry who would it be?

“As I mentioned earlier, I’d love to work with Isaiah Rashad. At this point in my career though, I’d be honored if any artist wanted to sit down with me.”

Whats in store for the future once this album drops? Any performances/collabs happening soon?

“For now I want to focus on the present. But I can assure you that there is more to come!”

Jeremy’s Soundcloud: https://soundcloud.com/jeremyrosinger

 

Music is life,

Chewb

Year End in Hip-Hop: Top Albums

Its 2017 and ABAD is good at being timely. This write up was created by a good friend of ours, Miles, who is not only a dope-ass artist but he knows his music. Here is a list of top albums in 2016 with artwork created by the man Miles as well:

 

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  1. Untitled Unmastered, Kendrick Lamar

What is there to say about this album that hasn’t already been said? At a lean eight tracks, Kendrick basically double underlined what he taught us in 2015: King Kunta reigns supreme.

Notable Songs: Untitled 03, Untitled 07

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  1. Blank Face LP, ScHoolboy Q

This album really was/is a treat. A good mix of nostalgic LA hip hop (Big Body, Dope Dealer), H Y P E music (THat Part, JoHn Muir) and “conscious” story telling. (Black THougHts, THat Part Black Hippy Remix) As of the writing of this article eight out of seventeen songs have music videos, of all shapes sizes and colors, from the 22 minute Short film, comprised of three different music videos (with other songs included for background and split second cameos) to the colorful, trippy, groovy Miguel track that I’m sure we will all be sick of come summertime.

Notable Songs: Kno Ya Wrong, Tookie Knows II

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  1. Lemonade, Beyonce

YAAAAAAAAASSSSS QUEEEN. If you got fucking sick of hearing that this year, thats too bad. Beyonce is here to stay. Follow up to her massively successful eponymous album, Lemonade is an amazing genre blend of hip hop, R&B, Rock and roll and smashing windshields with baseball bats. Its also basically a huge middle finger to Jay-Z; no longer is the dynasty his.

Notable Songs: Don’t Hurt Yourself, 6 Inch

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  1. The Life Of Pablo, Kanye West

Oh, Kanye. This album is connected to a lot of key moments this year. Ultra Light Beam on SNL. Yeezy Season 3 at Madison Square Garden. The world realizing that Taylor Swift is a snake. Facts (Charlie Heat Version). Need I go on?

Notable Songs: 30 Hours, Famous

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  1. A Seat At The Table, Solange

When Solange announced she was dropping an album this year a lot of people thought it would be Lemonade pt 2. Imagine their surprise when this album was more in the vein of To Pimp A Butterfly. Solange didn’t invent being unapologetically black, but she did create a pretty great soundtrack to do so to.

Notable Songs: Mad, Don’t Touch My Hair

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  1. Cozy Tapes, A$AP MOB

Nearly two years after the death of A$AP Mob founder, A$AP Yams, the long awaited Cozy Tape Vol. 1 finally released in October of 2016. It’s 100% Bangers. With the exception of a skit or two, this entire album slaps. Featuring all the A$AP members you know and love (Rocky, Ferg, Twelvyy, Nast, etc) as well as pretty much everyone who has been popping off in the last few years from Tyler, the Creator to BJ The Chicago Kid to newcomers like Lil Boat and Lil Uzi Vert. Its good shit, man.

Notable Songs: London Town, Telephone Calls

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  1. Yes Lawd! – NxWorries

2016 has been Anderson .Paak’s year, if no one else. Hot off of being heavily featured on the long awaited third Dr. Dre album, he released his second solo album, Malibu, made an appearance on just about every hit juke jam this summer. I thought about including Malibu on this list (its still a good record), but it is far out-shined by this album YES LAWD!, from Anderson .Paak as the soulful yet dirty mouthed, MC and Knxwledge, the Producer whose songs drip with an old school aura, wrapped in an almost vaporware flair. If this list was top albums to have sex to 2016, this would be number one.

Notable Songs: Suede, Fkku

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  1. Telefone – Noname

You probably heard about Noname from her Chance The Rapper features too. Chi-town born and bred, Noname is not a female rapper-she’s just a rapper. Quiet and soft spoken, yet slinging complex rhymes loaded with heavy ideas, she almost evokes an Andre 3000 like aura. She’s not afraid to rap about things most people wouldn’t talk about, with a light that most people wouldn’t dare. Noname said it best herself: This album sounds like kiddies on the playground when momma was running up (ooouuu you about to get your ass beat)

Notable Songs: Diddy Bop, Sunny Duet

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  1. Coloring Book – Chance The Rapper

This boy just cant stop. After releasing his third mixtape in May, and becoming a father at some point before that, Chance has since appeared on Saturday Night Live a total of three times, he created a unique live experience for his hometown of Chicago, performed at the Fifth Camp Flog Gnaw carnival, as well as across the country and the world. Still unsigned, still unwaveringly positive, still 100% Chancellor, Chance the Rapper represents a major change in the music industry that will take some time to fully implement itself.

Notable Songs: Smoke Break, Juke Jam

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  1. The Sun’s Tirade – Isaiah Rashad

Isaiah Rashad was one of those names I had definitely heard of but couldn’t name a single song of. Probably because up until recently his only release was a single EP from back in 2014. The Sun’s Tirade is Rashad’s debut LP on the TDE label, home to Kendrick Lamar, SZA and Jay Rock (all of whom make appearances) making this the launchpad from which Rashad enters his spot light. There are also featured appearances from The Internet’s Syd, as well as Kari Faux which both make me very excited for future collaborations.

Notable Songs: Park, Wat’s Wrong

HONORABLE MENTIONS

  1. Cashmere – Swet Shop Boyz

A weird supergroup composed of a former member of NYC rap group Das Racist, and a critically acclaimed british actor/rapper; Heems and Riz MC rap about race relations in a post 9/11 world with a perspective often over looked in Hip Hop. You can also catch Riz MC in Star Wars Rouge One, and in the HBO Mini Series The Night Of, which also premiered this year. (I could write a whole other article about Riz MC alone, do yourself a favor and catch up with his work.)

Notable Songs: Zayn Malik, Shoes Off

  1. The Divine Feminine – Mac Miller

Say what you will about Mac Miller, he’s consistent. He released a killer mixtape in 2014, his first major label album in 2015, and in 2016 he does a bit of a pivot. At 11 tracks, this album is on the short but sweet side, emphasis on sweet. Mac’s production is pulsating and clean; his flows are refreshed, sideways and unexpected. His lyrics are dirtier and more explicit than ever and probably shouldn’t be played in the car with your moms; but not in an Eminem/Tyler the Creator way, but in more of a “vivid descriptions of pussy eating” kind of way.

Notable Songs: Planet God Damn, Stay

  1. Lost En Los Angeles – Kari Faux

After being remixed on Childish Gambino’s 2014 tape, STN MTN, Donald moved Kari Faux out to Los Angeles for a year while she worked on her debut album. Honest and straightforward as ever, Kari lays bare her insecurities in the intro track, and then without even missing a beat, candy colored production and dizzying swagger take you away into the album, not stopping until the very end, leaving you wanting more.

Notable Songs: Nothing 2 Lose, Don’t

  1. Blonde – Frank Ocean

Another album that is the product of the fight against the “music industry”, this album’s release was preceded by a visual album that fulfilled Frank Ocean’s various contract obligations, allowing him to release his REAL second album as an independent release. More conceptual than 2012’s Channel Orange, Blonde is really more of an R&B album than a hip hop release. Some thought that its genre classification would be cleared up when it was to be inevitably nominated for a grammy, which it was not, as Frank Ocean specifically did not file for it to be considered, despite it qualifying.

Notable Songs: Nights, Self Control

  1. Prima Donna – Vince Staples

After releasing his debut double LP Summertime ’06, in 2015, nobody really expected Vince Staples to release an EP not even a year later, complete with a ten minute long short film that features every song on the release and ties together and gives context to the theme of the album and what seems to be one of the themes of 2016: Fuck the traditional “music industry”.

Notable Songs: Big Time, War Ready

Diplo and Friends Mix: Gryffin Flight Log 004

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Diplo and Friends…a classic.

It’s been awhile for me since I’ve posted, but I’ve encountered way too many new tracks and artists since the time my lazy ass didn’t post all summer long so I’m motivating myself to get back started by highlighting to you guys yet another gnarly mix  by one of the chillest EDM artists around – Gryffin.

The soul Gryffin produces in his tracks is better than any other DJ I’ve had the pleasure of listening to (heavy opinion I know but still, it’s up there at the very least)

I’m actually sitting here listening to this mix for the first time and with 10 minutes in I’ve been convinced to post this article before even finishing the entire mix. Hour long mixes are perfect for any type of activity whether it’s focusing during work, chillin’ out with a brew, long car rides, you name it.

Enjoy this mix and look forward to more music coming your way from yours truly.

– Ben

Interview: Ira Lawrence

 

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Earlier this month I interviewed Brooklyn Based Indie artist Ira Lawrence about his upcoming project titled “MAPAGKAWANGGAWA”. Listen to his song “All My Fake Friends” as you read the interview:

First off I love “All My Fake Friends,” it’s bold and you lay it all out there. Can you take me through the inspiration of this song?
Thanks a lot! I contracted an awful stomach bug and was quarantined at the Yuj Inn in Manila, when I discovered that BACK IN NEW YORK, my roommates were squatting in my apartment. They were supposed to have moved out weeks ago, owed me a lot of money, were still racking up utility bills, stopped returning my emails, and I had to hear about the whole mess through a mutual friend. My cellphone got fried in Camiguin (Filipino electrical sockets may look the same as American outlets, but that doesn’t mean you should charge your Iphone overnight during an electrical storm), so I had a desperate Skype call over janky youth hostel wireless with Time Warner Cable that mostly involved me screaming ” CANCEL MY SERVICE, MY ROOMMATES HAVE STOLEN MY APARTMENT”. Ironically, the Time Warner representative worked at a call center located in Manila, so he showed me some mercy.
Once I got back to America and eventually got my money back, I had to stop and ask myself: why did I go so far out on a limb for folks who obviously couldn’t reciprocate? Then, I had to deal with the nagging friend-shaped void of absence that’d been left in the wake of the whole debacle. Thankfully these messes make for great songwriting fodder…
You are involved in the art scene as a playwright, how did you find your start in music and theatre?
I acted in tons of musicals and plays in high school (drama nerd alert)- I was even president of the drama club- and I took a guitar class that taught me how to play Smashing Pumpkins, Nirvana, and Jethro Tull songs during school hours (hands down the best class I took in high school). When I got out of college, I realized that I wanted to be a creator instead of an interpreter, so I quit acting, started a band and wrote my first play. For a while there, stuff with my playwriting seemed to be moving a lot faster than my music, so songwriting moved to the back burner and simmered in my subconscious (despite several failed attempts at starting new bands and solo monikers).  All that changed in 2014 when I met my estranged grandmother for the first time, and she gifted me my estranged grandad’s electric mandolin. I took that as a pretty huge sign from the universe to start making music again…
Tell us about your upcoming album “MAPAGKAWANGGAWA”, and the influences behind it
I quit New York, and headed for The Philippines with my AustraliAmerican Theater collective EVERYTHING IS EVERYWHERE (2 Aussies, 2 Americans, 2 Gals, 2 Dudes, 2 Goys, 2 Jews, 2 Legit 2 Quit). We were in residence in Manila creating a new theater piece for The Sipat Lawin Ensemble’s Karnabal Festival. In The Philippines, I visited bombed out hospitals from World War II on the island of Corregidor, snorkeled through a sunken cemetery on the island of Camiguin, and almost wound up as a lead in a Filipino soap opera. MAPAGKAWANGGAWA is hugely influenced by my trip as well as the audacious work of The Sipat Lawin Ensemble. At Karnabal, I saw a participatory theater piece called Gobyerno- where the audience is literally placed in the role of a city planner. I saw theater pieces that incorporated live animals and elegant shadow puppetry, as well as an American Idol style contest featuring HIV positive drag queens and former military sex slaves singing Beyonce.  MAPAGKAWANGGAWA  is the name of the street where so many of these performances took place, and it’s also a Tagalog word for charitable.  A dollar of every album sale will go back to The Sipat Lawin Ensemble so that they can continue to make work which is vital vital vital vital vital to their community and the world.
When I got back to the States I immediately began channeling my trip into music.  I gave myself the strict parameters that the only instrumentation to be featured on the album would be sounds created by the mandolin. I subconsciously had a sense that MAPAGKAWANGGAWA would be released during an election year, so I hope that this album can be a lens by which American audiences can consider the ongoing impacts of colonialism, war, and corporate power on the health of the rest of the world.
I wrote a bulk of the songs in transit- at the Filipino Dream Casino in Paranque, my parent’s backyard in Baltimore, jetlagged as fuck in my cousin’s house trying not to fall asleep, my girlfriend’s apartment in Brooklyn- and recorded them at Ryan and Molly’s apartment between Christmas and New Years 2015 while watching their cats. It’s mixed and Mastered by John Jagos aka Brothertiger and available on a custom limited edition USB Flashdrive.
How does moving from Brooklyn, NY to the Philippines help your creative process? 
 
The pace of New York can really start to wear on you, and it’s hard to get perspective. During my first few years there, I had kind of a nervous breakdown identity crisis. I needed to shake off the residue of all that psychic damage and come to terms with my present self (inheriting the mandolin was a big part of that). When Everything Is Everywhere got the residency at Karnabal, it was a really good excuse to get the hell out of dodge and cut some of the dead weight out of my life. If I hadn’t left all that bullshit behind, I honestly don’t know what my life would look like right now, but I can assure you, I’d be a much sadder person.  I’d reached a burnout point startlingly similar to the one Joan Didion describes in her essay “Goodbye To All That”. I was open to the possibility that maybe Manila could wind up being my future home… but when I was offered a shot to audition for a lead role in a Filipino Soap Opera, it just didn’t feel right in my gut… and I knew that maybe there was a lot of stuff that I was avoiding back in New York, and it was probably time to face it instead of running away. Thankfully my play Billy Bitchass got accepted into the 2015 Samuel French’s Off Off Broadway festival and that was a good enough excuse to give New York another try. I’ve been very fortunate in that my art has taken me to some really amazing places, but the indecisive “WHERE DO I EVEN BELONG?” pacelessness I felt during the whole period from New York to Manila and back was the fire that helped me write so many songs. New York and I are on better terms now, but I wouldn’t have gotten to that place if The Philippines hadn’t opened my heart and broadened my mind.
What are some of your biggest influences in the artistic community?
Brian Eno, Guided By Voices, R.E.M., The Mountain Goats, Bowie, Sipat Lawin, Everything Is Everywhere, Applespiel, Boho Interactive.
Ira’s Bandcamp:
Talk to you fuckers soon
Music is life,
Chewb