Sunday, 27 November 2016

SMITHRADIO | Gilmore Girls Actor and SMITHRADIO frontman Scott Patterson debuts 'HA HA' and its a NUMBER ONE hit!

SMITHRADIO frontman and Actor Scott Patterson behind the scenes on The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon November 22, 2016
By CA Marshall

When he isn’t ‘Luke Danes’ from the epic new original Netflix series Gilmore Girls (GG), Los Angeles, California Based Actor Scott Patterson is the frontman for his own band, SMITHRADIO, (previously GORDON), a band he formed in June 2016 who have been blazing a trail of success ever since. Following their live benefit concert performances in West Virginia and New Jersey, the band headed back to LA anxious to begin recording tracks for what will be their upcoming debut album. Since, there’s been a pandemic among SMITHRADIO fans clamoring to hear even the tiniest sneak peek and their wait is over with the recent launch of HA HA, the band's debut single.

Before we get into the review, let’s back up a little and look at the chronological timeline of how this has all unfolded:

At the time of our last interview in September, Patterson was meeting only a few days later with the producer for the album. A few weeks later, a photo emerged on the SMITHRADIO facebook page featuring the frontman with Composer and Music Director Michael Nomad Ripoll (known for his work with Kenny Babyface Edmonds - “Playlist”, Celine Dion - “Loved Me Back to Life”, Justin Bieber - “Believe”, Colbie Caillat - “Gypsy Heart”, Barbra Streisand - “Partners”, and Aretha Franklin - “Sings the Great Diva Classics”) and Steve Ferrone, Drummer for the rock band Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers (Ferrone is a former member of the Average White Band and has recorded and performed with Duran Duran, Stevie Nicks, Christine McVie, Slash, Chaka Khan, Eric Clapton, Bee Gees, Scritti Politti, and Johnny Cash). The quote on the photo simply read:

“With #SteveFerrone and #MichaelNomadRipoll Recording EP! #Epic! #RockBand #RockAlbum #Nomad #ScottPatterson #DebutAlbum #Pumped”
Then, on October 20th, Patterson again posted a second studio photo of himself with Producer Rich Mouser at ‘The Mouse House’ Studio in LA. This time the message read:

"Zoux Magic! Trax Magic! @nomadsplace @RichMouserMusic @zouxmusic #RockAlbum #GilmoreGirls #ScottPatterson"

Mouser’s client credentials include: Robert Trujillo (Metallica, Ozzy Osbourne); Chris Vrenna (Marilyn Manson, Nine Inch Nails, Tweaker); Joe Holmes (Ozzy Osbourne); Tears for Fears; Chris Cornell; Dream Theater; Transatlantic; Oleander; Weezer; and Spocks Beard. It is clear that Patterson has carefully chosen to align SMITHRADIO with some of the industries finest for the world debut of HA HA.  

Following the recording photo posts on social media, Patterson announced that SMITHRADIO’s debut single HA HA would drop on iTunes, Google Play, and Amazon November 23rd, 2016, only two days before the world release of Gilmore Girls: A Year In The Life on Netflix sending fans into a frenzy. On November 22nd, Patterson appeared on The TonightShow with Jimmy Fallon alongside his GG alumni, Sean Gunn and Liza Wiel. Along with discussion about the new original Netflix series, Fallon also took the liberty of expressing his keen interest in the new single. (see below).

The timing of the HA HA song release (by Patterson’s newly formed label ‘Blind Horse Records’) in conjunction with the Thanksgiving holiday and GG Netflix release was brilliant planning on his part, because it currently sits at number one on the iTunes Indie Rock Song Top 100 Chart making it the best selling single for 2016 on iTunes in that genre. This has been much-anticipated from the band’s fans on a global scale. In fact, during a recent interview with Patterson (for our Spotlight series - see here: GORDON No. 1 and GORDON No. 2), he admits that the band’s international fan base response has been incredible.

Upon listening to HA HA for the first time, I could immediately identify with Patterson’s writing style: he admits that Musician Patti Smith is a muse for his compositions and the classic Punk Rock vocals and instrumentation you hear in HA HA is reflective of this fact. This is an extremely heart-pumping raw number infused with creativity unheard of in today’s music industry and I must say, it’s about time! This is the kind of sound reminiscent of the early 80’s Punk Rock scene with an original twist of its own. Patterson is very serious about demonstrating his ability to bring his years of collective artistic creation (he’s been writing since third grade!), vision, and passion for Punk Rock music into fruition and he has achieved that in the form of HA HA.

When interviewing Patterson last, he mentioned that HA HA 'wasn’t like anything anyone has ever heard before', and he is correct in this claim. This is a song that enters with drums pounding at mach speed followed by intense guitar riffs that will blow your mind! The lyrics, a mix of emphatic anger and excitement, are something you can easily imagine on the CBGB stage back in it’s hey day. 

HA HA is the perfect song to debut SMITHRADIO because it shows exactly how far this band is willing to stretch conventional ‘debut’ boundaries both lyrically and instrumentally onto the indie music scene. I find that often, bands will come in with something a little more timid and cautious and this finds them often overlooked when it comes to serious radio play. HA HA breaks this mold: it is a song that breaks out of the barn gates kicking, screaming, and waking up the neighbors. To be perfectly honest, it wouldn’t surprise me if it were picked up by every major radio station on an international level. HA HA is a crash-course for GG fans who more than likely wouldn’t expect something like this from the seemingly reserved, introverted, and grumpy ‘diner owner’ in Stars Hollow. In fact, I could easily envision Patterson performing HA HA at full on intensity then dropping his mic, walking off the stage elated, dripping in sweat, and leaving his audience jumping up and down shouting for more.

Now that SMITHRADIO has spread its wings with the ‘HA HA’ debut, we are looking forward to seeing how high the rest of the album can soar. There's already tour talk slated for early 2017 and an appearance on the TODAY show November 29th. We are confident that we are witnessing the beginning successes from a band that will absolutely go the whole distance. 

SMITHRADIO, you are bookmarked and in our top ten and your fans are ready for more – now, BRING IT! 


SMITHRADIO Social Media Links:

Saturday, 26 November 2016

Gilmore Girls: A Year In The Life - SMC Editor-in-Chief's ode to Writer/Producer Amy Sherman-Palladino

by Editor in Chief: Candice Anne Marshall

Fans of the original Gilmore Girls (GG) series know now that the writing and production of American born Director/Producer/Writer Amy Sherman-Palladino as of late has come full circle with the recent launch of the new original Netflix series 'Gilmore Girls, A Year In The Life' (November 25th, 2016). I can speak from experience when I say that we writers create our best work from our most emotive state and our best writing comes not only from a place of passion for the subject, but also from a place of feeling connected to that subject as well. I knew that after watching these series I would be writing the review from an emotive state because that’s just how Sherman-Palladino managed tore-connect to fans after the shows abrupt end in 2007. (A decision that the writer clearly has stated in countless interviews wasn’t one she was involved in making) I am certain that she achieved satisfied victory in the hearts of all GG fans when she created this four-part series titled: Winter, Spring,Summer, and Fall focusing on the lives of three beloved women/icons they have all come to know and love: Emily, Lorelai, and Rory Gilmore. Sherman-Palladino went beyond our expectations and extracted the very essence of life by touching on matters of the heart, sarcastic humor, real-life situations, and our own purpose here on earth through these characters. She writes with absolute intention knowing full well that the execution of the Gilmore Girls story will ultimately connect true fans, friends, family and lovers of the show to one another for life.



The Cast of Gilmore Girls at the Netflix Premiere of 'Winter' last week

Well, let's stop for a moment to talk about our beloved Richard Gilmore, a magnificent and powerful presence in the series regardless of his physical absence in the show. Indeed, fans of the late Actor Edward Hermann  mourned greatly upon his passing on December 31st, 2014, less than a year shy of the filming of these new episodes. There isn't a fan on earth who knew his importance throughout series as the powerful patriarch of the Gilmore family. We mourn again in 2016 via the cleverly written script (balanced evenly throughout each episode) lending a true ode to just how deeply Hermann  is honored not just among fans, but also the cast and crew. There is no doubt that the 'acting' and references of how profound his absence is missed comes from an honest place in the hearts of Kelly Bishop, Lauren Graham, and Alexis Bledel, who knew him as husband, father, and grandfather both on screen and off. Their tears in these episodes were real, as are ours.

But let's remember just how long it's really been.....

Our beloved characters have aged (very gracefully!) and circumstances in their lives have changed as a result of father time.Sherman-Palladino has respectfully picked up at present day by not dismissing these important details: Rory is no longer the young woman venturing out into the world we remember and Lorelai is no longer the feisty young mom with a side of 'hip and happening'. These actors have come into their own so to speak: Rory is 32, has come to a crossroads in her life by making the decision to become a serious writer, and is on the precipice of motherhood herself. Lorelai is now settled and at peace with her decision to (finally!) marry Luke and settle into a more secure place in life by understanding her own mortality after the loss of her father. All are a little wiser to the uncertainties that life brings and they embrace these inevitable changes with grace, openness, sarcastic humor(why should that ever change? That is Gilmore after all!), and dignity.

I would be amiss if I didn't also touch on the final and most anticipated scene of this new series: the wedding. of course it was going to be Luke and Lorelai! This has been a moment that fans have been waiting for since the series ended abruptly in 2007 and there is no doubt in my mind that the long standing on again, off again deep friendship of Luke and Lorelai should end in marriage. Again, this demonstrates Sherman-Palladino's understanding of just what closure true Gilmore Girls fans deserved eight years ago by solidifying this matter of the heart and Actors Lauren Graham and Scott Patterson executed this seamlessly. Sherman-Palladino went a step further demonstrating the true character of the rebellious Lorelai we have come to know and love by having she and Luke elope in a deeply moving, magically infused,private, and spontaneous ceremony on the eve of their actual wedding day. This was better than we could ever imagine (seeing Lorelai walk down the aisle in a formal ceremony would have been very un-Gilmore-like. After all, she did runaway from home being 16 and pregnant in the beginning....). Although the scene lasted no more than ten minutes, it was all that GG fans needed to feel completely at peace with the ending of this magnificent series. The moment was made even more intimate by having Sam Philips' song 'Reflecting Light'resurface once again for this special occasion. True GG fans will remember that this song was played during the first intimate moment that Luke and Lorelei shared way back in season four of the series during the dance at Liz and TJ's wedding (reference: 'Luke can waltz!'). There is no doubt that these best of friends were meant to finally unite one day and that day is now. (see below)

Appearances throughout the four-part series by all cast members were perfectly placed throughout the show and as quickly as they entered, they exited, reminding us of our own truths in life: people come and go. Some stay and are in our lives forever. Some are only there for a reason, a season, or a lesson. What Sherman-Palladino achieved through the final execution of this Gilmore Girls story is truth: we honor the people in our lives and our memories of/with them by holding them in the deepest recesses of our hearts always.

I couldn't write this review without also giving ode to the dear people in my own life who have come to mean so much to me during the same time that this series began in 2000 to its final famous 'last four words'(don't worry, I won't spoil it in here, you'll have to watch!). It would be a disservice to this exceptional writer and the actors in this series to focus solely on the fiction of their characters; I believe the intention of this series is for all of us to remember, honor, respect, and connect to what is REAL in our own lives and the similarities in circumstances. There isn't one part of this show that any one of us couldn't relate to: there will always be deep joys and sorrows we come to experience in this lifetime. My hat's off to all the cast and crew who were able to take what Sherman-Palladino wrote and bring us that deeply personal connection in our own lives through their exceptional acting. Therein lies the magnificence and meaning of Gilmore Girls.

Amy Sherman-Palladino with husband Daniel Palladino
From one writer to another, and on behalf of all the fans of the world: thank you Amy,it was perfect.

Smell that?That’s my coffee brewing. I am about to watch it all over again…….

Enjoy the ATX Festival Panel: "Gilmore Girls" 15 Year Reunion presented with Entertainment Weekly (2015) below!

Monday, 21 November 2016

Louder Than Life Festival 2016 | Intimate interview with Them Evils by Arica Waters

Them Evils with Contributor/Photographer/Music Journalist for Starlight Music Chronicles Arica Waters

by Arica Waters
photography by: Arica Waters

By the line-up alone, I knew that the Louder Than Life Concert was going to be a hit. Names such as Korn, Ghost, Disturbed and two back-to-back headliners such as Avenged Sevenfold and Slipknot was easily going to be the best festival of the year. Immediately upon arrival through the gates we were surrounded by metal heads, rock n roll fans and even small children. The atmosphere was phenomenal. 

I was lucky enough to interview Them Evils, a rock and roll band from Huntington Beach, California, on the first day. Here's what they had to say:

Arica Waters: Where are you guys from?

Jordan: We’re from Orange County, California which is where we started but we (Jake and I) are from Las Vegas. Nothing was working out for us out there.

Arica Waters: How did you all meet?

Jordan: Well Jake and I grew up together.
David: We met through a mutual friend who I went to high school with. I was in the middle of looking for a band and right when I was about to drop everything I got a call that these guys were looking for a drummer. They sent me some music and we did some covers like Alice and Chains.

Arica Waters: So you guys headlined the pre-party, how was that?

David: It was at the 4th street live venue which is like in the middle of the street so there was a lot of foot traffic.

Arica Waters: Who are you guys looking forward to see?

David: SLAYER!!
Jake: Slipknot
Arica Waters: Slipknot is sooo good and just insane.

Arica Waters: Since this is you guys’ first time at Louder Than Life what do you expect to see?

Jordan: I expect craziness from the crowd.
David: We play at 11:00 so we hope to set the mood for the day.
Jordan: We are gonna wake everyone up.
Arica Waters: Just run through the campsite and yell “We go on in ten minutes.”
David: Well he (Jake) has a wireless bass.

Arica - So you guys have a tour coming up yeah?

David: We are actually in the middle of tour right now.

Arica - What’s a tour tip you guys would give?

Jordan: Bring wipes
Jake: Wipes and a shower
Jordan: Be prepared to put up with each others shit.
Jake: You just gotta be comfortable with each other.
David: We are on the road for three months like these are my girlfriends.
Jake: I’ll get bitchy, he’ll get bitchy.
Jordan: When we get mad at each other we will get naked and cuddle each other.

Arica - So that’s how you solve you guy’s problems (laughs)?

Jake: They’ll tell me I’m an idiot and I’m like take your pants off.

Arica - Who is the craziest on tour?

Everyone: Laughing and looking at Jake.
Jordan: There’s this thing called Shadow Monster where he takes his clothes off and climbs on everything. He’ll rub his junk on everything and its horrible but it’s hilarious.
Jake: We were in a van last tour so it’s more awkward when you take off your clothes because in an RV I can just stand up naked. I just like to push the limits.

Arica - On a more serious note I know you guys dropped everything and made the decision to join the band can you tell me more about that?

Jake: We in a sense dropped everything to move but we didn’t drop everything because we still had our jobs but we couldn’t pass up the opportunities.

Arica - Now I want to talk about Rock n Roll. I am from Cleveland and there is a very big metal scene. We do have the Rock n Roll Hall of Fame but not too many bands. The bands that are a part of that genre have been around and established for years so why that genre?

Jordan: We play what we love to hear. We love rock n roll.
Jake: I’ve been in many different kind of bands rock bands, metal bands and hardcore bands and rock n roll was just something we loved to play and write.

Arica - How long have you guys been playing your instruments?

David: 12 years
Jordan: 11 years. As soon as I picked up a guitar I stopped skateboarding and became anti-social and would listen to AC/DC.

Arica - Thank you guys so much I can’t wait to see you perform tomorrow!

Them Evils was a blast to interview and they impressed me even more with their performance on Day 2 on the Zorn Stage at 11am.

  Pictured: David Delaney II
Pictured: Jordan Griffin
 Pictured: Jacob Massanari
Even though it was 11 o’clock in the morning Them Evils started off the day right: they had high energy which had their audience headbanging and engaged. Jake even came into the crowd with his wireless bass. This is a band that leaves a powerful impression and I look forward to seeing them in the future!

Monday, 7 November 2016

How To Make It in the New Music Business | by Ari Herstand

Practical Tips on Building a Loyal Following and Making a Living as a Musician
By Ari Herstand

Release date: December 6th, 2016

Praise for How To Make It in the New Music Business:
“This is the single best book on the current music business. An absolute must-read for every musician.” -Derek Sivers,, founder of CD Baby

"Ari is at the front of the front. He gets it. I've read a hundred how-to-make-it-in-the-music-biz books, and this one is today's definitive, comprehensive manual." ―Jack Conte, 150+ million YouTube views, Pomplamoose, CEO of Patreon

“There is a great divide between what the young musician thinks being a rock star is and what actually working as a musician entails. Ari fills in the blanks with his light hearted yet blunt demeanor. He's the informed older brother most of us never got in this crazy, confusing industry.” -Andy Grammer, chart-topping singer/songwriter

"Incredibly valuable. Not just for musicians, but for entrepreneurs and anyone else wanting to succeed in the music business. Ari has written the ultimate guide on how to make it in the music business. Incredibly detailed yet fun to read, this is the book that generations of musicians will rely on to build their careers. One day, all these quotes will be replaced by quotes from A-list rock stars who got their start by reading this book.” - Philip Kaplan, CEO and founder of DistroKid, Fandalism

“Ari understands this space. He gives a tremendous amount of information. Anyone wanting to make music for a living should read this, period.” -Peter Hollens, 150+ million YouTube views

How To Make It In The Music Business is the one book I wish I had when I started doing music 4 years ago. It is now the book I emphatically recommend to all my musician friends in any and every stage of their career. Ari, through his personal experience as a musician and research curated from industry experts, breaks down a myriad of topics and concepts that are crucial to independent music success. One of the best investments you can make if you are serious about your independent music career. It’s the new Bible for independent musicians.” -Gospel Lee, Billboard charting hip-hop artist

“There are few careers more difficult than being a professional musician, but How to Make It in the New Music Business will absolutely increase your chances of success. Ari Herstand is a fresh, emerging authority on a music industry that is just taking shape, and a fearless tour guide in a brand-new jungle. I highly recommend this for your music career.” -Paul Resnikoff, publisher, Digital Music News

“There are a lot of books that attempt to describe how to make and do ‘it’ in the music business. What sets Ari apart is his not only his insatiable curiosity, research and conclusions but also the fact that he is a musician that has actually done the very ‘it’ he writes about. Reading Ari’s book teaches you what the music industry actually is, not what others think it should be.” -Jeff Price, founder of TuneCore, Audiam

“No one has ever laid out a roadmap to a successful music career in today’s world as Ari has in his book. Covering things like proper etiquette when emailing promoters to getting your songs placed in film and TV, Ari expedites the sometimes tedious process of learning what it takes to be a professional musician. If you want to take your career seriously, read this book.” -Andrew Leib, artist manager

“Ari Herstand tackles the complexities of the music business in a way that any indie artist or songwriter can understand. He’s got deep sympathy for music creators who want to make a living from their art―and a ton of practical advice on how to do it.” -Etan Rosenbloom, director and deputy editor, Marketing & Communications, ASCAP

“At a time when everyone is complaining about how the music industry is not supporting artists, Ari offers hope in the form of practical, usable advice. I know that his DIY-with-a-team approach works, because he, like hundreds of others who follow a similar path, are living their dreams as working musicians.” -Bruce Houghton, Skyline Music/

“Every time Ari Herstand writes about a topic in the music industry, he absolutely nails it. Plus, being a full-time musician himself, his insights are that much more valuable to aspiring artists. Couldn’t recommend this book highly enough.” -Dave Cool, director of Artist & Industry Outreach, Bandzoogle

“Ari is the first person I turn to for advice on anything music business related. It’s especially wonderful because his advice is coming from a place of actual experience. He’s living it.” -vōx, chart-topping artist

“Ari Herstand is a leader in the DIY music movement and has written the perfect recipe for success." -Patti Silverman, SF MusicTech Summit, SXSW

Forget everything you think you know about the odds of “making it” in the music industry. Today, odds mean nothing and success is not about lucky breaks. It’s about conquering social media, mastering the art of merchandising and simply working harder and being smarter than everyone else. We are living in the midst of an industry renaissance, one that has left the record companies desperately struggling to maintain their prominence, as a subculture of dedicated, DIY (do-it-yourself) musicians have taken over. These days talent is a given and success has to be earned.

In 2008, Ari Herstand boldly turned in his green Starbucks apron to his manager, determined to make a living off his craft as a singer/songwriter. Almost a decade later, he has become a founding member of the new DIY movement and a self-sustaining musician, all without the help of a major label. Now, drawing from years of experience, Herstand has written the definitive guide for other like-minded artists, the ones who want to forge their own path and not follow the traditional markers of success, like record sales, hits on the radio or the amount of your label advance. Incredibly comprehensive and brutally honest throughout, How to Make It in the New Music Business covers every facet of the "new" business, including how to:

  • Build a grass-roots fan base―and understand the modern fan
  • Book a profitable tour, and tips for playing live, such as opening vs. headlining etiquette, and putting on a memorable show
  • Become popular on YouTube, Spotify and SoundCloud
  • Get songs placed in film and television
  • Earn royalties you didn’t know existed and reach your crowdfunding goals

Musicians will not only be introduced to all the tools available today but will be shown how to effectively leverage them to actually make money. More important, they will develop the mindset to be aware of new advancements both online and in the real world and always stay in tune with a constantly evolving landscape.

There has never been a better time to be an independent musician. Today, fans can communicate with their idols by simply picking up their phones, artists are able to produce studio-worthy content from their basement and albums are funded not by "record men" but by generous, engaged supporters. As result,How to Make It in the New Music Business is a must-have guide for anyone hoping to navigate the increasingly complex yet advantageous landscape that is the modern music industry.

Foreword by Derek Sivers:
SINCE THE 1980S, I’VE READ EVERY PUBLISHED BOOK ABOUT THE MUSIC business. Every single one. And there have been some good ones. But never before have I seen one book that sums it up so perfectly and

helpfully as Ari Herstand’s How to Make It in the New Music Business. It’s so brilliant I feel like doing personal house calls to every musician on earth to make sure they read it.

Now let’s clarify a term: The music business is different than the musician business. The music business is covered by Billboard magazine, and talks about label executives moving from Warner to EMI, or this year’s top-grossing stadium tours by classic rock acts from the 1970s. You don’t care about that. The musician business is how you make a successful living from your music. That’s what you care about.

Even the better music business books are usually written by consultants, executives, lawyers and journalists. Well intentioned, but missing one crucial thing: knowing what it’s like to be you—to pour your soul into a song, the terrifying excitement of uploading it for the world to hear, the disgusting discomfort of self-promotion, the devastating disappointment of an indifferent world.

Ah, but Ari gets it. He’s you. He’s out there promoting his own music right now. He’s sharing lessons he learned firsthand. (And lucky for you, he’s keeping this book focused on you and your success, not his.)

They say the best teacher is someone who’s just learned it themselves, because they still remember what it’s like to not know, and how to explain it in a way that gets you from here to there.

I’ve never met Ari and I’ve never even heard his music, but I’m a superfan of what he’s done on and now this book. Because I’m a superfan of musicians getting successful, and I think this book is the best in the world right now at helping you do that.

Ari Herstand Bio:
Most musicians now know Ari Herstand (pronounced Ar*ee Her*stand) as the guy who has helped them fly with their instruments, book national tours, get songs placed on TV and make more money with their music career - without the help of a label. Herstand’s music business advice blog, Ari’s Take, was nominated by the LA Weekly as the best music blog in Los Angeles and has become a go-to resource for DIY musicians worldwide.

He will be releasing the preeminent book on the new music industry entitled, How To Make it In The New Music Business (Norton/Liveright Publishing), December 2016.

Ari Herstand is a DIY musician who has played over 600 shows around the country, has opened for or toured with Ben Folds, Cake, Matt Nathanson, The Milk Carton Kids and Ron Pope, has performed on Ellen, and has had his music featured in countless TV shows, commercials and films. He currently fronts the funk band Brassroots District and is a member of the acoustic trio Young Canyon.

Herstand is a staff writer for Digital Music News and has also written for many of the top musician trade magazines and websites including Music Connection Magazine, American Songwriter, Playback Magazine, CD Baby, Tunecore, Reverbnation, Roland, Discmakers, ASCAP, Hypebot and others. He has been a featured speaker at SF MusicTech, SXSW, ASCAP Music Expo, CD Baby's DIY Musician Conference and in music business classrooms worldwide.

As an actor, he has co-starred in TV shows including Transparent, Aquarius, Mad Men, 2 Broke Girls, The Fosters, Sam & Cat and Touch.

Sunday, 30 October 2016

The 1975 | Unforgettable Performance at Shaw Conference Centre in Edmonton by AB Marshall (Solace)

By Austen Blake Marshall (Solace)
Photo Credit: Austen Blake Marshall
Photo Edit: CA Marshall
CONDITIONS OF USE: Photos remain ©Starlight Music Chronicles 2016 Strictly no re-use, cropping, editing or publishing without prior written consent. Sharing 'as is' is always welcome:)

English based, Pop/Punk/Rock band ‘The 1975’ brought more than just "Chocolate" to "The City" this time around at Edmonton, Alberta, Canada’s Shaw Conference Centre on Monday, October 24th, 2016. Followed by an eerie ambiance at the start the show, highlighted by vapour clouds and pink lighting (suggestive to the band's latest album, "I Like It When You Sleep, For You Are So Beautiful Yet So Unaware Of It"), the band emerged onto the stage to an eager crowd in front of them, ranging anywhere from preteens to senior admirers of their art.

The band first lit up the stage with one of their latest hit singles, "Love Me", delivering an unforgettable performance bringing more fire to a venue that has 'seen it all' in previous years. Speaking of which, The 1975's own Matt Healy, has seen quite a bit himself: having been in and out of numerous bands before finally settling with The 1975, (previously named, "Drive Like I Do", "Bigsleep", "The Slowdown" and other various unique names), he's experimented as a solo artist in the past and had quite significant success on his own. He brings passion for music into his stage performance through both the emotion expressed physically and vocally during live shows and this was very apparent during this show.

Though, Healy isn't the whole show. Drummer- George Daniel, Bassist - Ross MacDonald & Lead Guitarist - Adam Hann formed The 1975 together with Healy in 2004, covering punk-rock and pop songs during their high school tenure before eventually moving on to create their own material; further rising to the level of success they're at today.

The band has performed in prestigious festivals such as Lollapalooza, Coachella & England's own, Leeds Festival. Spreading their name worldwide for hipsters to enjoy.
Their performance at Shaw Conference Centre was their second time in the capital city, as they've also brought their talents to Jasper Avenue's, 'The Starlite Room' three years prior after their breakout debut album, "The 1975". For the Shaw Conference show, fans waited in line for upwards of eight hours to see their beloved British heartthrobs take to the stage. It was the first-time experience for most (The Starlite Room is an 18+ venue), and the band came through delivering an unforgettable musical experience for their fans to remember years to come. Within their target demographic, The 1975 bring more than enough to the table and keeps their pop-punk followers intrigued at all times.

The 1975 continue their world tour for the final leg before heading back to England for a much-deserved break. Until then, Edmonton fans will await the next album and show by this iconic band who know how to make 'their sound' (and mark), just right! 

Friday, 14 October 2016

Mint: Looks to Break the Mold and Rise Above - Oxjam Leeds Takeover Festival October 22, 2016

By Rebecca Singer

Let it be said, Mint is a band that knows how to have a good time. From what I can tell, a concert with the Grimsby, England band is more like a giant party -- the more out of control, the better.

Featuring Zak Rashid on vocals and guitars; Adam Shaw on guitar; Andy Maidens on bass; and Sam Chapman on drums, the music of Mint is loud (with quiet sections too, it should be noted), rambunctious and entertaining.  It's perfect candy floss for the ears. Their new EP, "Happiness is Heroin," is filled with four quality songs.

"Elise" is a lively, brilliant tune, with a great sing-song chorus and melody -- it's hard not to get sucked in to this delight. "Living And Dying For" starts off with manic notes, then settles down before taking a manic tone again. "Wolves" is a high-strung cracker that dances around the room in wicked spastic grooves. "Wonderland" is an autobiographical tune about their hometown -- more on that in a bit.

After finding out the lads would be playing at the Oxjam Leeds Takeover Festival on Oct. 22, I couldn't wait to have a chat with them about the band and the show. Zak Rashid was able to chat recently with me.


RS - Great, so tell me about this band you are in ... When did Mint start?
ZR - Mint started around a year ago? Maybe a year and a half? Three of us met at college and we met our guitarist at a party and just went ahead and did it!

RS - Did you just instantly click with each other?
ZR - Kind of … We are all dead similar people really, but at first, we all come across dead different!

RS - Explain ... Do you have similar taste in music? In fashion? Etc.?
ZR - We all are dead similar people, but we all like different stuff. We don't particularly dress similar or listen to the same stuff, we are all just mates.

RS - A variety of tastes brings a lot of diversity to a band, for sure ... What kind of musical influences do you have?
ZR - Personally, I love so much music, like one minute I'll be listening to Simple Minds, and then I'll have Bieber on. I just don't discriminate where a song comes from -- if it's a good song, it's a good song. I guess that's probably cause I'm the song writer. But my biggest influences are always old, they're what started me off!

RS - Oh, I'd never be one to judge ... So who did you first listen to? The Beatles? The Rolling Stones? T Rex?
ZR - Surprisingly, I only got into that gear at about 12 or 13. I started off with AC/CD and Queen. Just for their frontmen! They did it for me. But, as I grew up, I never started to dislike anything I previously liked, I just listened to more and more.

RS - Haha, wow ... There is a big difference between Brian Johnson and Bon Scott and Freddie Mercury ... What struck you about these frontmen -- what did you learn from them?
ZR - Freddie just didn't give a fuck. He proper owned every stage he got on, I loved that. And Bon Scott and Brian Johnson just had them voices that could just make a bloke go gay!

RS - Hahaha! That's awesome ...So you've just put out your debut EP, Happiness is Heroin ... It is a brilliant cracker of a debut too -- how long did it take to record?
ZR - Time spent in the studio was about two weeks, but we did it over the course of the year so we could gradually build a fan base.

RS - How did the song writing go? Is it as a group, or does someone take the lead?
ZR - I write the chords, lyrics, melody and structure, then the guys rip it to bits and we all rebuild it. But generally, it's a group thing.

RS - Do you get to play live a lot?
ZR - Yeah, we try our hardest to either be on tour, or in a studio or rehearsal room all the time!

RS - How is the music scene in Leeds? It looks to be a very happening place, based on the number of quality bands I keep discovering ...
ZR - We love Leeds loads. There's loads happening there and we tend to have a decent following in Leeds which is a bonus! Great venues, good food, it's all we like!

RS - I am excited that you are to play the Oxjam Leeds Takeover on Oct. 22 -- and I will be there to see it! What can I expect to see and hear?
ZR - A guess -- just us? Us being us? I don’t know, I think we have a few new tunes in the pipeline for next year and I reckon we may play ‘em just for you!

RS - Oh, that would be wonderful! I would love to be among the first to hear future hits. Have you played many festivals this summer?
ZR - Yeah, we did a few actually! Our favorite so far, we think, was either Tramlines or Party in The Pines. Both we spent thoroughly drunk with our friends’ bands all just being brotherly!

RS - Sounds like a great time was had by all. I've got to ask about “Wonderland” ... It was written about Grimsby? What prompted it?
ZR - The thing is, no band from Grimsby has REALLY done it, a few did okay, but there isn't a "Grimsby Band" to make Radio 1 consistently. We get told what it used to be like all the time, we get told how great it used to be and how it's a shithole now, but you can't ever leave because it's too hard, to give up. So “Wonderland” is just about that -- how no Grimsby band will ever make it if they don't leave and travel and graft. So I want Mint to do just that. We should be allowed to dream and do cool shit!

RS - Well, I think you lads are well on your way to shattering that myth and doing just what you want. What is next for you?
ZR - Touring all November with a few different bands we are into, and just before that, we are releasing a music video for our new track "Elise" from the EP.

RS - "Elise" is a wonderful tune. Actually, I can't find a fault with any of the four! I liked the "fly on the wall" style of your video for “Living and Dying For” ... what will “Elise” be like?
ZR - It's going to be a live kind of feel to it! That's all I can say.

RS - Oooh, sounds good! So to wrap up, I asked a big fan of yours (Faith) if there was anything I should be sure to ask .... So ... Tell me why you are such a cool dude? Enquiring minds want to know ...
ZR - Hahahahahaha, been working on my perfect personality for years now, Rebecca, so it's nice that it's finally getting the recognition it deserves! I'm obviously joking. Hahahahaha … I don’t know, I'm just dead simple. I like food and wine and sleep. Keeps the mind clean.

RS - But you really do seem like a lovely bloke, very friendly and easy to get on with ...
ZR - Yeah, I'm not dead hard to get along with I guess. I hate talking about myself.

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Star Studded Guest Appearances at Jasper Canada 'Dark Sky Festival' | October 14th - 23rd 2016

George Takei - photo courtesy Tourism Jasper
By CA Marshall

It comes as no surprise that have recently opened up our website ( to many facets of the entertainment industry and felt that a 'travel' component was missing. Over the course of a couple years, we have networked with many world-known and seasoned individuals on social media (such as Mr. Scott Eddy - who we feel are the connection between the SMC platform and the destinations that our readers and followers love. We are excited to open this door in order to connect with many celebrity travel bloggers in effort to build the bridge between entertainment and amazing destinations/venues, etc.

We begin our Starlight Travel component by diving right into The Dark SkyFestival in Jasper, Alberta, Canada that kicks off today, October 14th and runs all the way until October 23rd 2016. (see the website to find out more about the festival here: This annual event has been attracting people globally for three years and this time around, there's a star studded line-up which includes: Bill Nye (The Science Guy), George Takei (celebrating Star Trek’s 50th Anniversary), Jeremy Hansen (Astronaut), Alan Nursall (Canadian Scientist), Nadia Drake (Science Journalist), Bobak Ferdowsi & Ross Lockwood (NASA). With a star studded cast of guest speakers, this is an event Tourism Jasper can proudly boast about!
We recently interviewed Lauren Graham, Specialist/Media/Public Relations for Tourism Jasper for this event and here’s what she had to say:

Bill Nye (The Science Guy) - photo courtesy Tourism Jasper

Dark Sky Festival
Lauren Graham | Specialist, Media & Public Relations | Tourism Jasper

SMC - Lauren, can you tell us what your role is for this event?
LG - I work for Tourism Jasper, the destination marketing organization that has helped organize and facilitate the Dark Sky Festival since its inception.

 SMC - There are a lot of big names attending as speakers for this event (October 14-23, 2016)! How were you able to acquire their presence for this magnificent event?
LG - We work directly with a speaker’s agent or through partnerships to help bring our line-up to Jasper for the festival.

SMC - Which guest speaker are you most excited to see?
LG - It’s impossible to pick one! With Bill Nye, astronaut Jeremy Hansen, George Takei, Canadian scientist Alan Nursall, science journalist Nadia Drake, NASA’s Bobak Ferdowsi and Ross Lockwood each event is going to be amazing, yet different.

Jeremy Hansen - photo courtesy Tourism Jasper

Alan Nursall - photo courtesy Tourism Jasper
SMC - What can one expect from their stay during this festival as far as accommodations and bookings? I would say it's safe to assume Jasper would receive and influx of visitors for this occasion! Is it too late for people to book now?
LG - Definitely not too late to book! There are still accommodations and tickets available for both Dark Sky Festival weekends. has a list of accommodations and activities in the area to assist with this planning process.

SMC - What is the long-term vision for this annual event say, 5 and 10 years from now?
LG - We want to continue to inspire explorers of all ages to power down and look up. It is our intention and mandate that the Jasper Dark Sky Festival continue to grow for many years to come, attract visitors to experience a true dark sky, learn about the universe, and visit Jasper at a time of year they perhaps hadn’t considered before.

SMC - Who are your sponsors for this event?
LG - We’ve been extremely lucky with businesses being interested in participating in the Dark Sky Festival this year. Rocky Mountaineer has joined us as Official Festival Partner and Subaru became our first even Exclusive Automotive Sponsor. CN came on board as Official Tent Sponsor, and CTV joined us as Exclusive Media Sponsor. The Official Festival Sponsors are: Sundog Transportation and Tours Ltd. and Servus Credit Union. But there are many businesses who have helped create the Jasper Dark Sky Festival Presented by Rocky Mountaineer. For a full list of sponsors, please check out

SMC - I have personally been a frequent visitor to Jasper since I was a teen and there's no doubt that our National Park is one of the most beautiful places on earth! What makes it so different/special to be there at this time of year as opposed to the summer and winter months?
LG - As a dark sky preserve, Jasper National Park offers a special experience to those visiting in the fall. With night falling a bit earlier each night, visitors are invited to power down and look up at the sky to experience the awesome power of the universe in a way that is only possible in one of the world’s largest dark sky preserves. With hiking and some summer activities still available (like hiking, camping, etc.), fall in Jasper offers both an opportunity to venture beyond and explore as well as to sit back, cuddle up with a warm blanket and hot drink and revel in the natural beauty of the night sky.

Bobak Ferdowsi - photo courtesy Tourism Jasper
 SMC - We are happy to post your advertising on our website over the course of this event on our event calendar as well as help promote it further in this feature on 'The Chronicles', our latest 'news' blog that is the origin of Starlight Music Chronicles. How do you feel about the media reception to this event such as we are offering?
LG - The media reception for the Dark Sky Festival has been increasing every year as the festival continues to grow. This year, we’ve seen media interest from across Canada, into the US and even overseas into the UK. The Dark Sky Festival is spreading out and reaching new audiences each year, and we couldn’t be happier. Tourism Jasper is so grateful to everyone who has helped and continues to help us share the Jasper Dark Sky Festival Presented by Rocky Mountaineer.

SMC - Lauren, can you tell us about the kinds of other community events that will be hosted during the festival aside from the guest speakers?
LG - It’s definitely a jam packed weekend with something to do at any time of day. There are numerous stargazing events to consider with the Jasper SkyTram, Sundog Tours, and the Jasper Planetarium, brew tours at the local brewery – Jasper Brewing Co., photography workshops, fireside yoga, the Edmonton Symphony Orchestra at the Fairmont Jasper Park Lodge, the Big Bang Expo where there will be hands on scientific demonstrations and experiments to explore.
For a full list of events, please visit

Nadia Drake - photo courtesy Tourism Jasper

SMC - We would definitely be interested in running a segment on our website for next years’ festival in 2017! Where can media partners register for this and what are the kinds of credentials that they require?
LG - Media can submit themselves for consideration for next year’s Dark Sky Festival HERE. Because of the increasing popularity of the festival, we’ve already begun receiving requests for 2017. We’ve realized that it’s most effective to organize full media weekends with a coordinated itinerary to ensure that our visiting media experience everything that the festival has to offer.
We encourage any media interested in the festival to submit a request for consideration, our recommendation is to submit all information possible. Give us specifics about your interest in the festival, your media platforms and your following on each. The more information we receive for your request, the more we have to consider.

SMC - Lauren, I would like to thank you for taking the time to answer these questions. Last question: how do you feel having this event featured on the same website where many entertainment industry high caliber profiles globally have also been featured? This will be our first ever travel feature too! What are your thoughts on that also?

LG - Thank you for the opportunity to share the Jasper Dark Sky Festival Presented by Rocky Mountaineer. We’re thrilled to be included on your website among various high caliber entertainment profiles and we are honoured to lead the travel feature.