‘Don’t Worry’ by Chalk Dinosaur

Follow That Feeling.

Don’t Worry.

Can’t stress enough how chill the vibes are in this tune and the sheer creativity and quality of production on this track and all Chalk Dinosaur’s tracks.

Their music is introspective, thought provoking, and evokes emotion that leaves the listener willingly vulnerable to the emotions they’re feeling, yet yearning for more of that feeling.

– zimmertime


‘One Piece’ by BBGuns

A house like beat with a fruity tooty flute typa twirl in the background keeps this single fresha than a muhhfugga 🤘🏼

Bass slappin’ with strung out guitar vibes brings the sounds altogether.

Come Together. Right Now. Let’s Unify.

And give BBGuns a listen would ya – their indie hip hop sound is crazy unique and hella good different than what I’ve been hearing anywhere lately.


‘The Fool’ by The Hills and the Rivers

A sweet melody opens up with guitar, followed by timely violin and banjo.

The three instrumental pieces combined with double vocals makes this such a memorable piece.

I’d rather be the magician than the fool, but this song was too good not to highlight for today’s beat.

The Hills and the Rivers (Pittsburgh ya dig) released their latest album The Fool and The Magician on May 18, 2018.

Love the truth as much as you love yourself and others, and you will no longer be the fool.

OR to continue NOT being a fool, check out The Hills and the Rivers on all streaming platforms and check out ‘The Magician’ – a song and music video below!

‘Funeral’ by Forget Brennan

This song makes me think. About everything and nothing at the same time. I had listened to it prior to hearing it live on Mod Sun’s tour in Pittsburgh but Forget Brennan’s performance kept me listening long after.

Are we desensitized by everything from our phones to our TVs to this digital world we live in?

“My iPhone says what my TV says, and the texts I sent are all left on read.”

At points in the song, I find the somber guitar sound of it all linking me to skepticism, perhaps cynicism, about the future of this world. Yet, at points in the song I feel a sense of individuality and optimism with who I can be, who we can all be as humans.

“The joke is you, the joke is us, the joke is everybody anywhere.”

“The box is you. The box is them. The box is everybody anywhere.”

If I take this song literally as in “no one goes to funeral anymore” then maybe foolishly I find happiness in the hope that it means we have become a generation participating in celebrations of life. Or maybe it means that we are unphased by all the loss and tragedy the world is constantly throwing in our face on every screen every day.

In my life, I want to hold conversations with people that are thought provoking, meaningful, and deep. The same goes for the music I listen to.

Maybe Forget Brennan had specific meaning and intention for this song…maybe not.

That’s the beauty in it.

– zimmertime

‘Buffalo Rose’ by Buffalo Rose

“I’ll be your Soldier and you’ll be my Buffalo Rose.”

I recently gave Buffalo Rose a listen and I immediately jumped in. Long car rides with soothing sounds are meant for each other.

A unique take on folk and bluegrass, I am making it a point to see Buffalo Rose early in 2019:

Artist Spotlight: Jeremy Rosinger



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.”


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.”


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,


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:



  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


  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


  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


  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


  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


  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


  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


  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


  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



  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


  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

What It’s Like For A Rising Band in Today’s Music Business


I spoke with lead vocalist and side hustle manager of the badass Pittsburgh based band Unparalleled Height about life as a rising band on the cusp of making it to the show and the challenges that they have faced so far in their journey:

What do you find more challenging, crafting your vocals skills or managing the business side of the band? 

  • That is an interesting question that no one has ever asked. I would say they both bring about their challenges. I would have to say that managing the business side of the band is more challenging. The reason for this is because when I am working on my skills, it’s solely up to me to see how good I can become. When dealing with business, there are multiple factors that can halt progress. I would definitely say that the business side of the band causes more headaches and frustration for sure as well haha!
If you had advice for bands just starting out what would it be? 
  • Everything takes longer than you think. To reach the skill level you want to be, to get good shows/tours, to get in contact with the right people to help further your career, etc. Even when the label, agent, or manager becomes interested in you, the final signing of the contract is usually much later on than you think!
  • My other piece of advice would be to listen to your own heart and mind. Don’t let people external to your band influence the decisions you make, the music you write, or deter your from doing what you love. Believe me when I say it will happen, and those closest to you will be the first to criticize or try to deter you.
Do you see yourself one day working hand in hand with a big label or traveling down the independent road? 
  • That’s a great question. I would say we would like to work with a big label. Actually, over the past year, our ex-manager had us in contact with a few that were interested in us! However, they were not a fan of our image… Big labels have a bad reputation now largely but there is a lot they can do for you. There’s a very strong correlation with the growth of metal band’s and their labels. The biggest metal band’s in the world have good labels, plain in simple. There are several labels that have a bad reputation in this genre, and rightly so, but there are also many that have done a great job with their band’s that we would love to work with!
What types of things have you done as a “good businessman” for the band that you are proud of?
  • That’s really hard to say. In our band every decision we make is voted on. I can’t directly take credit for anything the band has done. I am very proud of the amount of growth that we have experienced over the past year in maturity and confidence in ourselves. We’ve had many revelations in the past year and the strongest one is that my passion for this only grows with each day.
Is there ever any tension between the band on who calls the shots on the business end or is it always a community decision? 
  • Of course! Band’s are so unique in today’s world. No one is anyone’s boss, yet everyone has to keep one another in check. Yes there are those in the band who have more of a leadership role. As I mentioned before, we vote on everything.  I always stand by a decision we make even if I am in the minority vote. I used to be really bad at that haha but that’s part of growth as an individual.
What’s next for UPH? 
  • Oh man… A LOT. Label signing, album release, touring, writing, etc. Throughout the rest of this year we are doing some regional dates on the weekends. We will also be signing with a label that we cannot announce until after the signing unfortunately haha! Longer stints of actual tours will start hopefully early next year/spring of next year. I assume that the release of our album, that was recorded in May of 2015 will be released then too. There has been a ton of hold up for releasing it because of some things that have happened over the past year. I am very excited and only looking forward to all the positive things that we will experience!

Check out their music here:

Music is life,


Diplo and Friends Mix: Gryffin Flight Log 004



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



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,