‘Are You In?’ by Incubus #tbt

The soothing guitar, the rumbling of the drums and cymbals, the bass and DJ sound effects eerily yet beautifully coming into the mix with every sound coming all together with a toe-tapping beat and a guitar rift to get things going, makes this song one of my favorite songs, well, since I can remember.

I was 8 at the time when ‘Are You In’ was released in 2001 as a single and eventually on the album titled Morning View by Calabasas native band Incubus. ‘Are You In’ introduces sounds of jazz and swing music plus DJ Kilmore producing fluttery, ocean-like sounds on his what seems to be synthesizer at the time. The spacey, wavy sounds he puts out on this track along with a full band contribution are just unmatched. Further, after doing some research, the group created this album when they were living in and producing the album in Malibu. Every time DJ Chris Kilmore would show up to the house on Morning View street in Malibu to start recording while over looking the ocean and Pacific Coast Highway he would say, “Ahh Morning View, it’s time to rock!”

A few summers ago, I made it a point to make sure I knew when I’d be passing Morning View on my drive up Pacific Coast Highway 1 with my girlfriend, Kalie, from LA to San Francisco. Needless to say, it makes sense why they titled their album ‘Morning View.’

Morning View.jpg

 

When I listen to music, I don’t just listen on the surface and I mean that. Ironically, I am not too detailed of a person in everyday life – more of a big picture type person – but for some reason with listening to music, I am super detailed. I listen to every single lyric, I pick up on every instrument involved and listen for it, and I will repeat songs to make sure I fully take the entirety of it in while trying to place meaning to it throughout. If you notice on this song, there are moments when things are poignantly added in or subtly added in:

The ‘Candy Break’ scratching by DJ Kilmore for example in the beginning of the song is a poignant, right out in the open display of scratching.

DJKilmore.jpg

During the midpoint build up of the song, the instrumentals as well as Brandon Boyd vocally build up the energy to a peak only for the band to bring it back to earth like when you drink that glass of ice cold water after a hot day in the sun and soothingly release ‘ahhhh.’

Then come in the faintest, most subtle voice murmurs and someone quietly says – ‘That day I ate so much chicken’ around minute 3:18. Go listen for yourself, and you will hear it. That’s the kind of detail I’m talking about above.

From listening to this song hundreds, if not in the 4 digits (no joke) of times, I conjured up that this song was all about going with the flow, being down with the moment, staying open minded, not letting yourself be a sore thumb to what’s going on. Probably on the 10th time as a 10 year old I realized that, but still. Then, I read somewhere that the song kind of just started on a whim with someone playing a sound until everyone was in playing the song, creating the song on the spot. And after some additional research too, it seems that some may think this song is about being ‘in’ when it comes to Mary Jane or Swinging based on the music video they released to it. Interesting, and not surprising at all.

Whatever the case may be I’m all in on this song. Are You In?

– zimmertime

Epilogue:

‘It’s so much easier when sea foam green is in fashion.’ The band Incubus has been my favorite band long-standing. The reason why is because they are able to create sounds that literally span the spectrum of musical sound. The oriental string instruments that make up the all time most chill song ever ‘Aqueous Transmission’; Brandon Boyd essentially rapping in ‘Pardon Me’; Drive – one of their most popular songs – being an acoustic pop song; Wish You Were Here – a standard alternative rock song; The list goes on and on…

Incubus has been ahead of their time, and I think they always will be.

Musicians. Artists. Creatives.

Are You In?

Are You In Incubus.jpg

Advertisements

‘Smooth’ by Sierra Sellers

Today’s featured beat ‘Smooth’ is exactly that – Smoooooooth.

Sierra Sellers is looking out for her sistaaaas in this one warning them to be careful about smooth talkers. They aren’t playin’ a fool to the men trying to woo them over, so no wonder ‘he’ is smooth talking in the first place. Unless he’s a real one and her sisters stick around, they better earn the respect they deserve as she explains throughout the song.

Sierra2

It’s a straight forward message with a tone to match and display of vocal range that can’t be overlooked.

Act like you know, not like you know better.

– 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.

wizthrival

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

pleasuresT.jpg

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 !!

Miguel born and raised.jpg

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.

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.

Mars-Jackson-Stoop-Thought-

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

Louis the Child – Love is Alive ft. Elohim

louis-the-child-jump

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

 

image2.PNG

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.”

image4

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.”

image3

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:

 

fullsizerender-2

  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

fullsizerender-3

  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

fullsizerender-11

  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

fullsizerender-4

  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

fullsizerender-5

  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

fullsizerender-10

  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

fullsizerender-6

  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

fullsizerender-9

  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

fullsizerender-8

  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

fullsizerender-7

 

  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