What I find inspiration in. (If you’re having trouble being inspired)

I find inspiration in flirting with a cute girl and her responding
in a sappy commercial
a heartfelt movie, coming of age, independent comedy, drinking wine and watching a french nouveau.
a new local band playing awesome
a national new band that is groundbreaking and original.
going to the park
riding bikes
meeting new people who are assholes and who are not.
seeing homeless people downtown be nice and ask how my day is
being able to interview a band.
Not succeeding in Cincinnati at all, and saying that’s o.k.
picking up an electric guitar and playing some punk rock!
My family inspires me, my mom just finished college and is a nurse, my brother is about to finish and be an electrician.
being stoned downtown by the river
being stoned on my fire escape in the summer drinking good beer looking from high atop my perch.
Talking to new people who have never seen music hall.
Feeling like I’m somewhere exciting.
Eating a salad from a vegan place that sells t-shirts and compost bins.
eating a huge sausage with sauerkraut from a vendor and a wet bun and sauerkraut mix I feed to my dog.
Walking my dog from my place to the river and seeing a smile on his face.
Meeting a person from my past stopping me to say hello and NOT gloat.
Sitting on a bench in Washington park, talking casually to a stranger, about nothing more than dog toys.
Being destitute.
Being conscience of my ignorance, and my passion for casual nuances and obscurity.
Never being crushed, but always very close.
Never being too amazed by impossible hurdles, but always by small miracles.
Going out with a friend who has rallied my war cry for finding a wife but like me secretly seeks more beforehand.
Telling girls they are my wife, or girlfriend, randomly, jokingly, but kinda meaning it for that moment.
Having a guitar with my face painted on it, and playing in an open tuning.
Ultimately being able to not settle.
Going camping in the wild, find a cool waterfall and smoking pot there.
Having a dog that insists on sleeping between my legs every night.
Meeting a girl and finding out she’s a teacher.
Meeting a girl and finding out she’s a rebel.
Meeting a guy and finding out that he has no direction, and wants to be friends with me.
Scotch drinkers.
Finding people who are passionate about their art, yet are still unsuccessful.
Taking a long warm shower.
Waking up drunk to make sure the lights and radio are off.
Sleeping in with not anything at all to do and plenty of coffee, eggs, bacon, and toast.
Waking up with a beautiful girl next to you.
Buying nerdy watches.
Wearing red low tops.
Doing molly and listening to records.
Organizing shelves.


The Halvsies


Location: The Comet

Band: The Halvsies

Tues, Jan. 29th @ The Comet w/ You, Your Awesome

I went to see the band, You, Your Awesome, I was stoned. I hadn’t been stoned in awhile and wanted to go see some weird electronic music. I saw this band (The Halvsies) and was so full of music (like ya get after eating skyline and can’t eat anymore and just want to sit on the couch and watch Netflix, or like you feel after waking up from a nap and you got that perfect amount of sleep), that I had to leave shortly after they finished to go explore Cincinnati.

They have a girl singer that I like! Maria Seda Reeder. Don’t get me wrong and pigeon hold me as sexist just yet. I typically enjoy male singers more I guess because I am one. I love The Dum Dum girls and love female back up singers but this night I saw a person who was actually pretty calm and comfortable looking on stage and enjoying it.

Yusef fronts You, Your Awesome and plays guitar and back up vocals in this his new project. In You, Your Awesome Yusef plays behind the keys and computers and he and drummer play upbeat electronic music. I’m guessing some of the weirder pop melodies and vocal harmonies are his doing, thank you.

The Halvsies can kick your ass a bit, I like things with a groove but if its all about the groove it gets boring, I have a short attention span,  it’s not my fault. No worrying about falling asleep to sappy folk melodies sung in a pretty voice here, there is a pretty voice and the melodies can slow a bit but they kept my attention and with songs like “All our friends” they may even command it.

I am excited about this band so much so that I’ve been talking about this band to every musician i’ve see since I saw them a week ago at The Comet.

Playing @ Northside Tavern on 3/14/13

Check out photos of the band and more @


The Toasters


Location: MOTR

Band: The Toasters

The Toasters have some great fans everyone out to see them at MOTR pub in OTR seemed to be pretty big fans. I was a little clueless of them, my ska reference is only Tony Hawk Pro Skater video game songs in that genre (Suicide Machines, Goldfinger), and the few that got onto MTV like The Mighty Mighty Bosstones, No Doubt, and Sublime and also a few skater punk videos I’ve seen. In preparation for the show I was forced to watch a few of their music videos, and at the time I still didn’t get it. I watched another video of how to “skank” and variations of “skanking”. I thought skank was a slutty girl. I was to scared to try it at the show but I was glad see other people doing it.

The Toasters fronted by Robert “Bucket” Hingley got their start in NYC in ’81 and released their sophomore album a few years later in ’85 with the album “Skaboom!” that is credited with being the origin of “third wave ska” in the U.S. Most of their albums being recorded in the 90’s and most of their success was found in that era including a theme song for the Nickelodeon show Kablaam.

It was really fun to listen to this band and have a few beers, I enjoyed it. It’s really good for me to, as well, to check out something refreshing like “ska” music. Back to the people though, everyone seemed to be in the same gang, the same style of shoes and hats and I kinda secretly wanted in if only for the night. The dancing at the show was also very prevalent. I saw a rash of nerdy cool people that seemed be having the time of their life. I mean that in a good way. It seemed like the lineup has evolved into what appear to me as being younger guys probably fans of the original music but they bring a nice energy to the music and maybe a freshness that Bucket needs.

I met one guy with huge spiky hair (in one of the photos) and he told me he loved this band, they were legends, and how much fun he is having watching them tonight. He also gave me a little more history and relevance of the band.

Check out photos of the band and more @


French Horn Rebellion

Location: New York, Brooklyn Bowl

Band: French Horn Rebellion

Robert Perlick-Molinari (younger brother plays french horn)
David Perlick-Molinari (younger brother plays bassoon)
Paul Hammer- (drummer, half of the shows) also in Savoire Adore
Deidre Muro- (back up singer) also in Savoir Adore

French Horn Rebellion are a duo of brothers that infiltrated the Brooklyn indie dance rock scene in 2010 and produced the “Time to Pretend” album of MGMT. Younger brother Robert wished to start a new direction as a musician by incorporating his classical music instrumentation of the french horn with dance music. Recruiting brother David the duo goes on the road and adapts their set to a club environment or a live band environment. Although it seems they prefer the latter as they can play heavy dance songs and penetrate the dance floor even more. They work out of Brooklyn currently but hail from Milwaukee, Wisconsin. They also perform on soundtracks for film and do a lot of remixes for other artist’s as well going on tour with the likes of Cut Copy, MGMT and Yelle.

I waited in line to see the one show I could find that seemed reasonably priced ($10) and was in Williamsburg, it happened to be at The Brooklyn Bowl.
As I went inside I was corralled by the winding entry that led to a huge 70’s western disco looking place. I had a stuffed back pack with everything I needed for the day so I when I went in I had felt a little strange about that. The next room showed the bar and to the right, a big dance floor with a stage in the back. To the right of the stage there actually was a bowling alley that reminded me of “lunar madness” where bowling alleys use neon lights and drink specials and play “party music” to get people in the doors on Saturdays but was a little classier. My eyes were a little too wide open to shrug it off as a place that was cheesy, I thought it was a weird, cool place. The bartenders were really nice too.

French Horn Rebellion were booked that night to open for Capitol Cities. I watched them as they fine tuned their instruments before starting. When they did start, they had a dancy jam intro song and the dance floor started to move. There is a dynamic between the brothers as they have little bits of the show where they talk to each other or playfully attack the other or swing a keyboard at the other. I have a brother about my age and one can only imagine that having your brother with you in a van or on a plane all the time for months and then give a performance on stage could be a bit tricky. Although the feeling of accomplishment though they both feel and see in each other is worth any bickering or arguing that inevitably happens on the road i would imagine. This night they’re joined onstage with Deidre Muro, who performs back-up vocals occasionally. I recognize the song “Up All Night” off their e.p. of the same name. There stage show shows the FHR dayglo stickers on their laptops with them dancing and singing behind. Robert plays a few french horn solos which seems appropriate tonight also because Capitol Cities features a trumpet player who performs solos over dance music.

I guess I can see some MGMT in their music or what they’re doing and that’s all good with me as I like them as well.

check out photos of the band and more @

Call of the Wild

Location: MOTR

Band: Call of the Wild (Brooklyn)

I think it was a Tuesday night. I found a band on MOTR’s website that said essentially “rock band from Brooklyn” so I went to check it out. Even from walking up the sidewalk I heard a loud, fast, rock band. I went inside and felt horrible after about 5 mins because it wasn’t as packed as I would’ve liked. Granted it was a Tuesday night and, not even necessarily for the benefit of the band selling merch or anything, I was actually more concerned that there was an awesome band that everyone was missing that you couldn’t go see next week. I was practically lifted off my feet with all their energy and a little mesmerized; they all were moving around and giving a show. I got a MC5 or Stooges vibe from it.

I talked with Johnny, the lead singer, after they finished and told him I had some really cool pictures. We met up later when I joined him and the bartender for shots of something clear that turned out to burn and taste like tequila.

COTW has a girl drummer!, Allison, who seems like a girl who might be able to kick your ass and give you a talking too based on her hair flailing hard hitting drumming, but she is actually very much a sweetheart who listens to what you’re saying.

Max, the bass player who looks like Fabrizio Moretti from the Strokes, is a good dresser and reserves his words and I might add I think he fell asleep pretty early. He seems to be the protector of the group, having a good time but calm and collected, always having his friends’ backs.

Johnny is the classic rock star “Ozzy Osbourne” kinda fucked up guy who’s got a lot of balls and might be the most interesting guy you’ll ever meet and is serious about his music. Even though Max and Allison can hold their own, it seems Johnny is the tiger that leads the pack to their next kill.

We met up later at another OTR bar and had a few more drinks before they came back and crashed at my place. Johnny and I stayed up pretty late chatting., I don’t remember ever talking about my band which is weird because typically that’s the first thing I do when talking to another musician, like “my band tooo! I’ve played there, we’ve did that!” We talked a lot about life, touring, and their home base, Brooklyn. I had just visited Brooklyn my first time a week or 2 prior, so it was cool to relive a little bit of the fun I had there.

The last thing I remember of the night was the mistake I made, chugging a bottle of peach schnapps as a glory howl to the night, a bark at the moon, a call of the wild, I felt the next morning. The sugary sweet mixture was clinging to my insides and living with me the whole next day. I woke up the next morning to find their blankets perfectly folded and a note from them saying thank you. They also left us a vinyl copy of their record, which I thought was very nice of them to do and added to their charm.

check out photos of the band and more @

Chicago’s Zamin, in their own words.

Location: Northside Tavern

Band: Zamin

I went to Northside Tavern to take photographs of The Happy Maladies, who were once neighbors to my good friend Alex Baker. I simply went to take some shots and to get out of my comfort zone of downtown and OTR. I arrived around 11 and saw that the band wasn’t playing so my girlfriend and I did our usual tirade of ordering a beer and immediately going outside to smoke our initial  “ease into the initial shock and anxiety of going into a public place with other cool people” cigarette. I think we all kinda do that really, whether its checking your phone, or putting on your lipstick. While we were outside I heard music starting to play, it was in the front room on a Tuesday night by the way, reserved mainly for the weekdays when they only have the one bar open. I heard no applause to speak of, no Cincinnati whoopin’ or yelps or yeahs, just some faint music. Now, I’ll be honest with you: I can’t remember if I’ve ever seen The Happy Maladies before or if I had even heard their music conscientiously, so when we went back inside I assumed it was them for a split second (it wasn’t). It was Chicago’s Zamin.

I noticed the Indian rhythmic drumming and tambourine and vocal melodies, and THEN I noticed it wasn’t English the frontman was singing in, which was pretty amazing because at that point it was already a pretty crowded room. I’m giving some credit here to the people that came out for digging something left of center. At that point I knew we’d missed the first band, but were both interested in seeing what this band that was playing was all about. I shoved myself through the crowd to the back of the room and got out my camera and shot some pictures after hearing a few songs. The girl beside me was sitting in the window looking to the patio with her legs on both sides, one in and one out. It was a nice night, not cool or warm, the kind where you immediately appreciate it and savor it and breathe it in deeply, the kind I can taste in my mouth right now as I’m typing this because it’s rainy and cold outside and I can either plug in my heater or the computer. Their music was a mix of electronic Kid A- Radiohead with Sigur Ros with a Bali beat and an Indian Sufjan Stevens singing (some of that description taken from their website).

It was about 4-5 songs in that I noticed everyone was quite enthralled and their interest was as peaked as ours was. Everyone clapped with enthusiasm and yelped louder after each song. Again this is the room where you see singer songwriters, solo artists, or jazz artists, it usually doesn’t get too crazy in there. I guess sometimes in certain situations people take notice or even relish something unique, or are even temporarily bored with distorted vintage guitars through Mesa Boogies and 16 guitar effects pedals. Don’t get me wrong, my band The Dust Feel probably falls into that category a bit, although I use 2 pedals! But, I felt myself smiling and thinking yeah these are young people playing who obviously are musicians, so the music was pretty but there was also a nice dancy beat that kept my attention. I met up with my girlfriend in the front near the entrance closer to the band and noticed a few people sitting on the floor just looking up at the band like kids which I thought was cute, I shot a picture of that as well. The band said they have one more song and took a second to tune up or fidget around for a sec.

The band plays the last song of the night and I could feel the crowd’s energy and was blown away by how everyone loved this band. I’m kicking myself now for not switching my camera to video earlier in the song but I managed to capture a beautiful outro in which they were all singing together. The video at the top of this page is the video from that night. I’m not quite sure if it was the gratefully unique band combined with the wonderful night, the U.C. students that were there, the thought of enjoying some different music, or the 3 Hudy’s I drank but there was a spontaneous acceptance of this weird creature named Zamin. I walked away feeling great to be a part of something special and also that I may live in a city with a Toby Keith bar but people here still knew good music when they heard it.

check out photos of the band and more @