“Before I die, I need to make sure I properly load the dishwasher, choose a stable career in something like insurance, and be in bed by 10pm every night.” SAID NO MUSICIAN EVER.
Goals like these, while perhaps completely acceptable for Arnold Accountant over there, lack a certain…je ne sais rah! for the discerning musician. I mean, sure, you’ve got aims. They’re just less…traditional. Writing hit songs and playing Wembley? Now you’re talking.
Whatever instrument you play – whatever your genre as an artist – you’ve invested a lot of time and energy already to get where you are. So the things that make your list are real-deal, life-is-short kinda things. Unless you’re writing the blues, there’s no time for regrets, and only one way to go, which is, of course, up.
Jim Priest (singer/songwriter):
1| Perform my musical adaptation of the Upanishads on a mellotron. (I haven’t read the Upanishads and I can’t play the mellotron, but this is about “before I die” so I think I still have time.
2| Make the bartender at The Viper Room cry with my music. Any bartender at the Viper Room. If I can wrench a tear from one of those heartless bastards, I’ll know I’m an artist of the highest calibre.
3| Busk on the streets of Hollywood. Oh wait, I’ve done that. Nothing says “musical integrity” like getting chased across Sunset Blvd. by a rent-a-cop. Before I die I’d like to busk somewhere less repressive – like Riyadh, maybe…
Hypnotic acoustic guitar meets wrong side of the tracks storytelling, leading us down a dark alley of spoken-word intrigue; it’s tangible, like a newspaper headline – we wonder where it all went wrong. Jagged harmonicas tear in, reminding us that we’re only listeners, but we’re involved, guilty by association. Jim Priest is not to be missed. For fans of: Tom Waits, Loudoun Wainwright III, Sage Francis
BJ Smith (singer, composer, soul man):
1| Motivate, encourage, and unite people across the world, on some level, through my music. You can be at a festival, a concert, a club, or just riding in your car, and whether you’re familiar with the material or not, masses of people will come together and unite, party, or groove to music. Music has been used throughout the history of mankind to bring us together. Whether it’s been to signal ancient tribes for war, a feast, or a celebration, music is a universal language second only to love! Our heart produces a musical beat as we live and breath; it’s within all of us.
2| I want people to reflect and give love a chance through our worldly camaraderie within music.
3| Hopefully I can become an “influencer” to future generations and gain acknowledgement and respect from my musical peers. Being able to inspire people to want to sing, make music, or at least respect and love each other a little more, can hopefully touch the mind, body, heart, and soul of others with my voice, my lyrics, and my message. To inspire something positive, or help someone get through a moment, or remember a unique moment creates infinite emotional connections. Any other rewards bestowed upon me and additional financial security are just extra blessings!
Cool, clever, and impassioned, the masterly BJ Smith has the kind of industry chops you hear whispered about across the bartop when he walks into the room. He produces. He sings and plays. He writes songs. He tours with top brass; picks his own band members; slides an R&B song your way like passing a love note. He’s impeccable. Don’t miss him. For fans of: Luther Vandross, Freddie Jackson, your own heartbeat
Victoria Scott (lead vox, The Blue Dolphins):
1| I want to play Glastonbury with The Blue Dolphins.
2| I also want to play some mega venues around the world, including Mexico City.
3| I’d like to be a part of a history or humanity-changing concert, like Live Aid in the 80’s. I would like to write a sweet and sensitive song that connects with a lot of people all around the world.
The once acoustic-driven sound of The Blue Dolphins has evolved, blending clear, pretty vocals with south-of-the-border, surfy sentiments, and something altogether harder to pigeonhole. Unabashedly succinct, feel-good tunes from a duo who, from the sounds of it, are just getting started seeing what they can do. For fans of: The Sleepovers, Yeah Yeah Yeahs, a sweeter, less fuzzy Mika Miko
Anthony Greene aka. Prada Gino (fresh rhymes):
1| I have always told myself that before I can even begin to look at success, I need at least three Grammys.
2| I need to have at least five platinum singles as well.
3| Major sponsorship from a leading company (like Nike, Adidas or Prada)
4| Perform at a major awards show and also host one as well!
5| Breakthrough artist of the year at least twice.
6| Be inducted into the Hip-Hop Hall of Fame!
Yes, I have lots of career goals, but they are all possible.
Sincere prose is woven through thoughtfully chosen samples and surprisingly sultry and classy beats. Belongs on a list of the top intellectual rappers in the game. Hometown Chicago oughtta be proud. For fans of: Kid Cudi, Illogic, Eyedea & Abilities
Matthew Irwin (rhythm guitar/lead vox, Foreign Affairs NI): My biggest musical goals are quite simple! I want to do this forever! I don’t care on how large of a scale! I want to wake up in the morning and the only thing I have to worry about is music. I won’t be happy until I’m at a place in my life where I can make enough to survive off (of) music alone!
That said, some nice things I’d like to happen:
1| I’d love to support an amazing band on a tour.
2| I’d like to play even more amazing festivals like SXSW and Reading and Leeds.
3| Finally, I’d like to record an album with a musical inspiration of mine, like Billie Joe Armstrong or Justin Pierre.
An ardent, sincere take on a well-loved genre. Sounds are clean and tight. There’s energy and storytelling in spades. Foreign Affairs NI show up with their hearts on their sleeves, ready to sleep on your kitchen floor if you’ll let them play a gig. This is how the best pop punk should be. For fans of: The Ataris, You Know The Drill, The Get Up Kids
Featured Artists from the youbloomLA 2015 Music Festival, hitting Northeast Los Angeles this Dec 10.11.12. Click the link for full lineup and ticket info.