The Goldilocks Enigma – “Free Will Isn’t Free” – carved out of hope and revelation

The Goldilocks Enigma is made up of an experienced husband and wife singer/songwriting team whose first and foremost mission is to worship Jesus Christ, God, Elohim, El Shaddai, Jehovah Jirah in the midst of present day America. They claim to not seek fame or fortune, and are trying to steer clear of the vanity that can be found in music. “We hope our music will land in the ears of those that find themselves in a position to allow it to prick their heart and point them to Christ,” says the duo. The Goldilocks Enigma are currently working on the

Jim Wyly – “Wildman Of The Thicket” – both infectiously laid back, yet energetically ominous

After having spent 40 years honing his craft in the Austin are, born and bred Texas musician and singer, Jim Wyly has been labelled a “Texas Songwriter”, though his creative talents take him far outside that box. For years a member of several bands including Movin Target and The Lunar Rollers, Wyly has finally decided to take the solo route, at the tender age of seventy something. His first work – the album “The Artisan” – is already up on the shelves. On his latest voyage the tempered craftsman has filled his baggage with the soul, country, folk and rock

Dubgee – “Truth” is a prime example of how much of a dedicated artist he is

Doug Tree better known as Dubgee is a rapper, producer, beat maker, and label owner, from Vancouver, Canada. As an old school hip hop head, I’m so thankful that I stumbled on to his latest album “Truth”. Dubgee is a genuine artist and a true musician. Whether the media pays attention or not, at this point there are enough people who can hear the truth – we are witnessing one of the more versatile artists in the genre. Dubgee’s inner confessional memoir style is reminiscent of Eminem. A style that creates descriptively terrifying wordplay, but refrains in his subtle and

Juan Sánchez – “Rebirth” – everything is cohesive and emotionally riveting

Composer Juan Sánchez, started taking piano lessons at the conservatoire at only 14 years old. During the 80’s and 90’s he played keyboards with different bands, before going on to study music and technology in London. In 1999, he started to make instrumental ambient electronic music, and since then he has been creating music for multimedia and sound libraries for music producers. But Juan dreamed of becoming a professional pianist, all he lacked was the confidence to pursue his dream. However, soon he discovered artists such as Max Richter and Ludovico Einaudi, as well as a handful of neo classical

Plastic Barricades -“Optimist” is all about seeing the way forward, through what may seem like a hopeless situation

Based between London and Paris, Plastic Barricades are Dan Kert on guitars and vocals and Paul Love on drums. They have released “Optimist”, the second single from the upcoming LP “Self-Theories”. “The song is accompanied by a truly DIY music video, featuring 8 houses, 8 cars, plenty of glassware, some benches and trees, a crowd of exactly 300 cast members and around 20 buckets of water,” explains the duo. And if you find that slightly out of the ordinary, wait until you see the video clip created by PB art-director Elina Pasok. “Australia is on fire, the Amazon is burning,

Tommy 2 Fly – “I Walk Carolina” – The supreme confidence of quality music

Melvin Thomas Young stage name (Tommy 2 Fly) is a rapper, songwriter, producer, based in South Carolina, United State. Tommy 2 Fly is the owner and creator of the 2 Fly Podcast, has rights to his own publishing, his own record label called Rapyd Fire Entertainment LLC, and has currently signed a distribution deal with Bentley Records. He grew up listening to R&B & Hip-Hop music and started nurturing a love for writing lyrics. Eventually his passion for music led him to get a Music Business Degree from Full Sail University, Florida. Aside from recording and performing music, Tommy 2

MOSTLY EMPTY Release the Official Video for “After Life”

MOSTLY EMPTY is a musical act from Pittsburgh, PA, created by Nicaraguan-American musician Mariano Torrez in 2018. The name came at a time where the artist felt he had not much left to give and was willing to put it all out there to express himself freely. Deeply personal experiences have allowed the artist to voice personal feelings through these songs. His songs evoke feelings experienced over multiple stages of his life, ranging from deep anger, doubt, regret, and hopefulness.  MOSTLY EMPTY’s latest track, and video clip, “After Life”, tells a story of confronting the bad in life and

ELEPHANT HEART RELEASES NEW SONG AND ACCOMPANYING VIDEO FOR “LOVE IS THE WEAPON”

Embodying a genre-inclusive approach, Elephant Heart emits an inimitable and irresistible frequency tuned in to electro, world music, and pop, creating music that delivers a bright sound with their melodic choruses, multicultural influences, musical builds and heartfelt lyrics. Their new song and accompanying video, “Love is the Weapon,” is out now via their independent imprint, Chumba Music via BMG. See the video for “Love is the Weapon” premiering now:  https://youtu.be/5b6OMi-y0pk Stream it:  https://elephantheart.ffm.to/loveistheweapon  Elephant Heart is a musical collective started by married couple Jason and Victoria Evigan. The two express their music and its message through various collaborations, a

Defalva – “Energy – On the Voyage Through Life” is certainly a ground shifting album

Per Defalva, simply known as Defalva started up as an artist in Sweden with several exhibitions. Per later turned towards music to expand his artist expressions. During the last 20 years he has released several records of original music. Most of them featuring the collaboration of producer Andreas Hedberg. In 2019 he released the 10 song concept album, entitled “Energy” – the sixth album in the series “On the Voyage Through Life”. “The theme is about the good or bad that fills people with energy,” explains Defalva. “This time the sound style is influenced by synth, electronic dance music, techno

Japanese Singer Yukiya Endo Releases “Deep Blue” Song & Video!

“Deep Blue” the song and video by Yukiya Endo, is the love story between a being from the sea and a girl met at the aquarium. He however later discovers that she had eyes not for him but for the world extending behind the glass, and ends heartbroken, his first love being also his last love.  About Yukiya Endo: Born: August 1 / Origin: Philippines / Blood type: unknown Height: 180㎝ / Weight: 73㎏ / Shoe size: 28 (Japan) Hobbies: novels, games / Special skills: BreakDance, improvisation freestyle In September 2014, Yukiya Endo performed at Mesellba Grand Prix, where

Twice The Holiday Feel-Good Vibe From NYC Indie Rockers

The Baghdaddios Celebrate Homeless Benefit’s 20th Anniversary – and Release a Brand New Holiday Single!

For 25 years The Baghdaddios have churned along, trolling the seedier dive bars of New York City that were fortunate enough to have a sound system and a cabaret license.  Occasionally they graced the spotlight of some higher profile venues (including their third-ever show at iconic punk birthplace CBGB).  Somewhere along the way, between the indie CD releases, music videos, trips to other countries and criss-crossing various part of the U.S., they got a bright idea in their 5th year that resulted in the proverbial ‘gift that keeps on giving’.  They founded a musically-themed benefit for their home City’s homeless………Blank-Fest.

“We were a lot younger and naive back then”, remembers front-man and Benefit founder Kenn Rowell.  “We didn’t even have plans for a second-year show until the very last moments of the first one, when I just looked at the few people who were left in the club and said ‘See you all next year’.  I remember walking off the stage and thinking to myself ‘Uh-oh, what did I just promise’?”

But here we all are, 2 decades later and the little-Benefit-that-could is still rolling along, spawning satellite shows and still marshalling the best of the City’s indie and unsigned talent to bring a diverse audience together at The Hudson House, a friendly little club in the New York City suburb of Nyack on Sunday, December 17 for what will be the twenty-first consecutive year for a worthwhile cause.  When Rowell booked the first 5 acts back in 1997 there was no real blueprint, no primer – Hell, there was barely an internet – to lead the way.  It started as a late-night post-gig barroom convo between he and fellow Blank-Fest founder (and fellow performer) Chuck DeBruyn where they hit upon the idea of mini-set performances by themselves, along with some of their friends.  The price of admission?  Just a blanket, any condition.  These blankets, in turn, would be handed out directly to the City’s less fortunate, spending Christmas Eve on the cold, dark streets.  No middle-man, no huge organization (or red tape) to slow down their efforts and (here’s the cool part) NO money involved.  “We reasoned that if we made dime one, then we had failed”, explains Rowell.  “It was kind of a real hippie-type thing; we felt money corrupts – so let’s dispense with that.  Just give us the blankets and we’ll get ’em to the people”.

Growth was near-exponential in the early days.  Blank-Fest’s inaugural show netted 40 contributions – 20 of which came from DeBruyn’s mother’s home.  Blank-Fest II in ’98 yielded 70 donations.  By the early 2000’s the Benefit was pulling in over 600 donations for what was by now the flagship show.  Early attempts at City-based shows, while well-intentioned didn’t come close to matching the main event.  That all changed after a full-page feature in the New York Daily News in 2006.  New Jersey rocker Rich Kubicz approached Kenn about developing a Garden State-based Blank-Fest and within a few years was outperforming the original venue.  A tour of England for The Baghdaddios the following summer inspired a few enterprising rockers in Nottingham to organize the first Blank-Fest UK, soon to be followed by shows in Canada, Virginia and Florida.  Today Canada boasts Blank-Fest shows in multiple major markets and there are talks of pushing the show onto the mainland in Europe (Germany is one such-rumored locale).  All-in-all the organizers have estimated that Blank-Fest has been responsible for raising over 15,000 total donations, the vast majority being blankets, since its inception, 20 years ago.  As always, Blank-Fest XXI will be featuring the best of NYC and the surrounding area’s indie talent including ex-Misfit and current Undead frontman Bobby Steele along with EMI-alumna, singer-songwriter Patti Rothberg.  The rest of the lineup is rounded out by some great local and regional acts – including a few surprise entries.

For Rowell, it’s been a fun – if sometimes crazy – journey.  But he’s used to the up-and-down micro-dramas that come with the turf considering that The Baghdaddios – his band, the band that’s hosted this show every year since it’s founding – has had an even crazier up-and-down history.  Despite only releasing two full-length albums and a handful of EPs, music videos and online-only efforts, the group continues to record new material and play shows, albeit not as many shows as they were accustomed to ‘back in the day’.  “We’re all older now and a lot of the places we used to practically live at are gone”, says Rowell.  “CB’s, Kenny’s Castaways, Wetlands, Continental – now even Hank’s Saloon in Brooklyn is closing.  It’s just not the same anymore – and even if it were, the crowd we grew up with got older too.  They’ve all moved on, gotten married, raised kids, moved away………or died.  It’s sad but it’s the circle of life.  That’s why we love it when we can bring our show to a new audience.  We sometimes wonder if they’re going to be able to relate to what we’re playing up there but in the end it’s just three chords, a lot of feedback and some good ol’ sweaty rock ‘n roll – and that never goes out of style!”

Which brings us to their latest release: a punked-up Holiday bauble called “Let It Be Happy”.  Written on Christmas Day, 2015, the song started as an acoustic encouragement for Kenn’s partner, celebrated Lower East Side bilingual poet Yvonne Sotomayor.  “She had just reached out to an old grade school friend on Facebook who didn’t remember her and then blocked her.  She was a bit bummed out like ‘what did I do to her to deserve that?’ so I said to her ‘FORGET her – it’s Christmas, let’s just be happy for what we’ve got and to Hell with her – if she doesn’t want to be your friend, screw her!’ and I started playing the chords and singing “Let it be happy – let it be merry – let it be happy, it’s a Merry Christmas” and it all grew from there!”  In fact, they even recorded a homemade iPhone video of him singing the tune in front of their Christmas tree, the next day.  With encouragement from bandmates and friends the group decided to electrify the arrangement and see how the recording would go.  “It went a lot better than anyone expected.  We were in-between drummers at the time so Count of Nine’s drummer, good friend Joe Dugan sat in for the session.”  The rest of the band gelled behind him quite convincingly and Alice Donut guitarist Michael Jung lent his touch as co-producer/mixer to push the two minute and eleven second gem’s final mix to release-worthy status.  So buoyed by the final product, Rowell pulled together what was left of the band, along with some good rock ‘n roll friends to produce a fun, festive music video.  That video – shot mid-January of this year – is finally seeing the light of day with its recent Holiday Season release.  The timing of the release is two-fold in its intention.

“We’ve been dying to drop this on an unsuspecting public for almost a year, now”, relates Rowell, “but we also figured that with Blank-Fest coming up this gave us an extra incentive.  Any buzz we could get from the video – which is pretty damned catchy, don’t you think? – We could use to hype our latest edition of our homeless Benefit.  We saw it as a win-win!”

Available as a YouTube-only release, the music vid is the latest of similarly-themed Holiday fare that the band is known for.  Starting with the underground classic, “Christmas At C.B.G.B.’s” – complete with cool cartoon music video – in 2002, The Baghdaddios have not been shy about shamelessly combining their flare for punk rock bombast with Yuletide imagery.  Their 2008 “Season’s Beatings” Holiday EP featured such hummable staples like “Christmas Ain’t For Lonely People”, their high octane take on Feliz Navidad and their mosh-pit ready version of the Robert Burns New Year’s traditional, “Auld Land Syne”.  Their 9-second oft-bootlegged outtake, “I Want To Kill Paris Hilton’s Dog And Eat It For Christmas Dinner” found it’s way to YouTube where it actually garnered 700-plus views despite no official release, promotion or even mention in band circles.

Meanwhile, Kenn and the rest of The Baghdaddios hope “Let It Be Happy” will exceed all past efforts: https://youtu.be/aTkGquFwgWQ

When pressed for a preference as to which vehicle he had higher hopes for, Rowell merely shrugged.  “Look, in a perfect world I’d like to see both get the monster hype, but if you’re going to ask me to choose then I’d say ‘show up for Blank-Fest and help the homeless – we’ve got the rest of our lives to promote a Christmas song’.  Bottom line: it’s there when you’re ready for it – IF you’re ever ready for it?”

And if they’re never ready for it?

His answer pretty much summed up his punk rock philosophy on life: “F it, man – at least we had fun!”.

(You can always write to Kenn and the rest of The Baghdaddios at SurfVietnam@Hotmail.com – info and history for Blank-Fest can also be found on www.blankfest.org –  Happy Holidays, one and all!)

About The Author

Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.