Archive for the ‘cre-a-tivity’ Category

Trends repeat themselves. We all know this. We try to hold on to things that seem classic and may come back with full force in the future but marked up in price x10. (Beanie babies never got there and never will) Some things I question. Like overalls. I was a real overall girl in the 90s. I had corduroy overalls for the winter and denim overalls I wore to death that my mom put star shaped patches in to cover up the holes. I was even in the trend of not fastening one of the straps and letting it flop around. If you wore both straps buttoned, you were unfashionable. How ridiculous!  Now, they are charging hundreds for a pair of overalls and adults are wearing them! Okay. This isn’t a post about overalls. This is a post about music, so how is this all relevant?

The line between creativity and “genius” and “copying” or having been influenced within music is a thin one. It’s hard to be really creative with music. It’s easy to say ‘Oh this sounds like this band or that band.’ If a band sounds similar to another band does that make them unoriginal? Should things we once like be repeated and proliferate?

Popular music these days sounds like ___(you fill in the blank)___.

So when we hear music that doesn’t sound like today’s music we get a little shocked. It’s original for mainstream, but in the scheme of things, its kind of been done before.

Lately I have been listening on repeat to two artists who sound “old.” I’ve also been listening to Fleetwood Mac and the Beatles as per usual, but I still go back and listen to these two songs because although they sound familiar and like they could’ve been written in the 60s, they’re different.

Here’s a brief background on each:

Foxygen:  This is a band that started in 2005 out of Westlake Village, California by two guys–Jonathan Rado and Sam France. The song I’ve been listening to is called “San Francisco” and it comes from their album fittingly titled: We Are the 21st Century Ambassadors of Peace & Magic. I really like the chorus.

Tame Impala: Kevin Parker from Perth, Australia leads this band, and although I like the whole album Lonerism, the song “Elephant” is probably the most accessible. By the way, fun fact of the day, Impala is a medium sized antelope.

overalls in middle school

overalls in middle school. not repeating that trend.

“Light Side of the Moon” is the third track on Luna Achiary’s, or as I like to call her Miss Moon’s, newest album, More Human Than God. It’s certainly a play on words of Pink Floyd’s “Dark Side of the Moon” and later on we get another track title that mimics the English band’s– “Breathe.” But it’s not just the similarities in the words. Luna’s entire album lends itself to being the centerpiece at a vibey party where some hip chick wearing a full length skirt and a second-hand plaid button-up resides. There may or may not be drugs at this party. The girl has just removed a Pink Floyd LP (you choose)…next up, Luna Achiary’s More Human Than God. 

You’ve got to listen to this album from head to toe…no bathroom breaks. Ok, go ahead and go if you drank too much. This album flows; it transitions nicely, yet you never know what you’re going to get in the next 15 seconds. It’s an ocean. There are lulls and gentle waves and roaring tidal waves. The thing has you on the edge really. That’s what I love about Luna’s music. At the tender age of 24, she’s not afraid, and you can tell that through her music. She is experimental. She is the female Pink Floyd. I just looked up a female version of the name Floyd, and it doesn’t exist. Anyway. Pink Luna Achiary. Also, what the heck is she singing about?? She’s got a real nice boyfriend (who, by the way recorded and mixed this album, Johannes Raassina), but she’s talking about all this cray stuff in her lyrics that I’m pretty sure isn’t about him. 

Luna also has a pretty unique music video for her song, “Friends”. The video really captures the message she is singing. If you don’t listen to the lyrics you might not understand it. And thank goodness she’s not following trend and attracting attention with #twerking….but instead this

If you live in LA, make sure you come see her performing More Human than God live at The Joint. Judging from the last live performance of hers, this one is sure to be explosive. If you’re not in LA, support her creativity and get her album (link at the top).





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Picking a name for your band

Posted: August 13, 2011 in cre-a-tivity, Music

I don’t have a band, but I think one of the hardest things would be figuring out what you would name it. Unlike the easier task of naming a dog, a band’s name is going to help set it apart from the rest and a thorough search of the name desired will probably be needed. Two Fidos in the dog world wont be too harmful unless they are in the same dog park, but two bands named “Pulled Out of A Hat” is going to be an issue. Side note: Never name your band “Pulled Out of A Hat.” People are going to hear a band name and it has to be able to roll off the tongue easily. The acronym for that would be POOAH and that’s not very flattering, so if you choose a long name, make sure it has a nice acronym like “Black Rebel Motorcycle Club” become “B.R.M.C.” Once you pick a band name, you’re kind of stuck with it unless you’re The Grateful Dead who were once The Warlocks. So, you can change your name, but do it before you get too big. Also, like members of a family asking why they named their child ‘Stella’, members of the press are going to want to know why you chose that name for your band. What is the significance of your band’s name? It better be a good answer or a secret. Those are your two options.
Bottom line: Choose wisely and avoid using (but have fun playing around with) this

Stolen from
Q: Why do people steal ideas from other people?
A: People steal ideas because they are lazy, uncreative, and lack the aptitude to dream and act on their own dreams. It is much easier to copy that to rationally think of something on their own.

“I object!” –that’s the lawyer in me speaking.

Did you see Beyonce’s performance of ‘Who Run The World Girls’ at the Billboards? Old news. (But, I’m just getting around to writing about it. It’s been a busy couple weeks.) It was a pretty crazy cool performance, though, right? I know some people are up in arms about her copying off of this 2010 performance by a woman named Lorella Cuccarini, but I’m arguing that it goes back further than that (see below)! Okay, I’m not arguing. I don’t really care to argue about where someone gets their inspiration from; after all, “imitation is the sincerest form of flattery” (cliche vomit). C’mon folks…it’s not like there is any unprecedented form of art left. We are mimicking others (that we admire); more importantly, we collage multiple artists, add a twist and ‘voila!’ our recipe for fame and the wow-factor (a.k.a Beyonce at the Billboards). The most important part of “stealing” is grabbing the entire concept fully, so that you can mold it into something that you believe is better.
You may not like them as much as “the original,” but here are are some famous copy-cats:
Mr. Brainwash copies Banksy
Shakespeare copies commonly told stories
Windows Vista copies Mac OS
John Williams copies Stravinsky, Holst, etc…

T.S Eliot says it best:

One of the surest tests [of the superiority or inferiority of a poet] is the way in which a poet borrows. Immature poets imitate; mature poets steal; bad poets deface what they take, and good poets make it into something better, or at least something different. The good poet welds his theft into a whole of feeling which is unique, utterly different than that from which it is torn; the bad poet throws it into something which has no cohesion. A good poet will usually borrow from authors remote in time, or alien in language, or diverse in interest. “Philip Massinger,” The Sacred Wood

The original…or maybe not.
Fred Astaire

Lorella Cuccarini

Beyonce (OMG. She not only stole from Fred Astaire but also a major part of the song is Major Lazer’s!!)

Gasp! The Italians do it, too. Stealing it and taking it to another level

p.s I didn’t write this post. I stole it. ;]

I have alway had an interest in studying people’s hands and was drawn to a bunch of Stieglitz’s photography at the MET when I discovered his obsession with Georgia O’Keeffe’s. Maybe it’s because I’m a musician, and my hands have always been integral to my everyday/I’ve been very protective of them since the age of 6 that I’ve taken such a keen interest in other’s hands. Anyway, I found that his photograph below seems reminiscent of some of her very own artwork.

Georgia O'Keeffe (Hands) by Alfred Stieglitz

Iris by Georgia O'Keeffe

Fast Walker

Posted: May 6, 2011 in cre-a-tivity, NYC

My mom arrived in NYC yesterday, and I have realized that it’s official; I have become

I can’t slow down even if there is no rush to be somewhere.
She lags behind and says “there’s no hurry.”
But I step into the road like a true New Yorker
and wait till there is a lag in traffic, so that I can move
efficiently and quickly to the other side of the street.
I realize she isn’t next to me and that I am 4 paces ahead.
My legs want to bound forward.
Horizontal gravity pulls me.
I want to feel freedom
to zig zag between slow sidewalk blockers
which mother has become.
My metronome feet are presto con brio
while my mind tells me to ritardando, but I see no ending to this music.

knit beard in shades of blue

Posted: March 21, 2011 in cre-a-tivity, Music

keeping fingers busy
hiding behind my knitting
in new york city
listening to music
that was sung before I was born

what I’m listening to

Posted: February 14, 2011 in cre-a-tivity

and the day came
when the risk to remain
tight in a bud was more painful
than the risk it took
to blossom

soft as snow (but warm inside)

Posted: January 26, 2011 in cre-a-tivity

white feathers falling from the sky
I remember a year ago when we had this
pillow fight
I was laughing in amazement
and you were grinning because you won again