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Music Uncategorized

3 Artists, 5 Questions Each: Get to Know Pierce Fulton, Kember & Cobi Mike

June 10, 2015

With so much impressive new music and so many rising artists today, it’s becoming more and more difficult to keep up! Because I know how tough it is for the average person to read up on every emerging act, I am giving you the Cliff’s Notes – so to speak – on three talented musicians with fresh material. Get to know their sound, their background and what they stand for in just a five-question skim for each.

Read on to learn about and listen to Pierce Fulton, Kember and Cobi Mike

PIERCE FULTON

Photo credit: Meredith Traux

Photo credit: Meredith Traux

Hailing from Vermont, 22-year-old DJ/producer Pierce Fulton is an EDM star on-the-rise with the success of his latest single “Kuaga (Lost Time).”

Although the currently touring artist has been producing music for several years, this is considered his most notable track to date. In less than two weeks since its release, Fulton garnered nearly 600,000 plays on Spotify, he currently gets more than 40 spins per week Sirius XM and he is set to perform at a handful of summer festivals, including New York’s Electric Zoo.

An added bonus? He’s pretty tight with Ansel Elgort, who – under the actor’s musical alter ego Ansolo – launched the song “Shirts & Skins” with him.

1) Describe your sound in five words:

Stuff I make when I’m bored. That’s technically six words, but whatevs.

2) Which of your songs has the most personal meaning to you and why?

I always talk about my song “West Egg” because I made it in an afternoon and it was just so quick and natural that it still sounds fresh to me. Sometimes I listen to it now and think like, “When the hell did I make that sound?” I just love that feeling. Sort of disconnecting from the ol’ brain while in work mode.

3) Describe your fan base:

The coolest cats in the world. I love everyone who takes part in my life. They’re literally the coolest and kindest people ever. The Tweets, Snapchats, Instagrams and Facebook posts I get make my day every day. Y’all rule.

4) Name 5 artists from any genre/time period you are absolutely smitten with:

Paul KalkbrennerBathsEgbertSteel PulseAmerica

5) What is your motto to live by?

Do weird stuff and just have fun.

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KEMBER

Photo credit: Kristy Benjamin

Photo credit: Kristy Benjamin

Kember is still basking in the joy of being recognized as a new artist worth knowing by Jay-Z‘s Tidal app. And one listen to his Love EP, released on May 7, you’ll understand just why he’s getting such recognition. The 28-year-old resides in good ol’ L.A., and just played a successful show at The Mint.

1) Describe your sound in five words:

PunchDrunkLoveFueledFun.

2) Which of your songs has the most personal meaning to you and why?

I write a lot! This whole EP is an embodiment of how love has affected me over the past few years. But if I must pick one I would have to say, [the Outro, “Nana’s Curtain Call”]. As funny as that may sound, reenacting those phone calls to my Nana as I once did when she was here brings me so much joy I can’t replace that feeling with anything.

3) Describe your fan base:

Underground lovers and dreamers of all ages who enjoy riding wave after wave of happiness.

4) Name 5 artists from any genre/time period you are absolutely smitten with:

MJ and Prince – The immortal gods who can never be dethroned.

Bill Withers – The greatest song writer of my world.

2Pac – His aura: bigger than life.

Rage Against the Machine – They taught me to question everything, and their amazing collaboration of hip hop, funk and rock fueled me daily.

N.E.R.D. – Being a biracial child, Pharrell [Williams] and Chad [Hugo] showed me how important it is to simply be yourself. Everything else works itself out. #OTHER.

5) What is your motto to live by?

Your body is not a temple, it’s an amusement park. Enjoy the ride. – Anthony Bourdain.

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COBI MIKE

Photo credit: Steven Sewell

Photo credit: Steven Sewell

Cobi Mike – formerly the lead singer of Boston-based indie-pop band Gentlemen Hall – made a recent decision to leave the award-winning band to rediscover his voice and share his personal message. It has seemingly been a wise decision thus far, because “Walking Through Fire,” the first single from his four-song self-titled EP, charted #1 on Hype Machine. He also just performed at last weekend’s Make Music Pasadena festival.

1) Describe your sound in five words:

Alternative, rock, pop, electronic, psychedelic

2) Which of your songs has the most meaning to you and why?

“Walking Through the Fire” has a very significant meaning to me. I think the music video for it explains it better than I ever could.

3) Describe your fan base:

Free spirits

4) Name 5 artists from any genre/time period you are absolutely smitten with:

Kendrick Lamar, Little Dragon, Miike Snow, Son Lux, Toro Y Moi

5) What is your motto to live by?

“I will never betray my heart” – D’Angelo 

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Music

Former ABC Family Actors Allie Gonino & Adam Brooks Tell Skyelyfe All About Their Band, The Good Mad’s New EP and Why They Don’t Mind Being a Little ‘Crazy’

February 4, 2015

TheGoodMadCoverYou may have heard The Good Mad perform on former ABC Family show The Lying Game, but if not, the trio – which is formed by the program’s actors Allie Gonino and Adam Brooks, along with Andy Fischer-Price – just released their third EP, Face Your Feels, with five new alternative-folk tracks to get familiar with.

The trio, which hails from Dallas, Nashville and Seattle, respectively, chatted with skyelyfe, sharing insight into the songs on their latest effort and their thoughts on pop music and the possibility of breaking into the mainstream.

skyelyfe: How does this EP differ from the others you guys have released?

Allie Gonino: There’s more production with this EP. It’s not just us playing the instruments. We have two producers who we worked with, who are collectively known as Yell for Help. They produced it and made it feel like a meatier, bigger record. I wouldn’t necessarily say it’s more overall upbeat, it’s just fuller.

SL: What is the influence behind this EP?

Adam Brooks: Mike and Fann Pappas (Yell for Help) approached us. They had studio time and we were all in town together. They work in a studio and they had a studio open and the stars aligned. We were all kind of ready to go. It was definitely time to record something new for The Good Mad.

Andy Fischer-Price: A lot of the time we recorded, I feel like we were all listening to a good amount of Father John Misty. I don’t know that [our EP] sounds like Father John Misty, but –.

AG: We all kind of wrote the songs separately except for “No Time to Talk.” Andy and Adam collaborated on that one. The inspiration came from I think a bunch of different things, but specifically for “Dark Waters,” I just had a conversation with Adam about getting outside your comfort zone. To live means to take risks and shake things up, move and break your patterns. It was also inspired by swimming in the ocean for the first time in 10 years and being scared of sharks. But [overall], because we did the songs separately, they kind of came from different nucleuses.

thegoodmad

SL: Do you guys want commercial pop success, or do you want to keep your fan base more indie?

AB: We want to stay authentic to ourselves, so if that includes some cool pop success, I think we’re all for it. But I don’t think we want to sacrifice anything by going for it.

AFP: We definitely want to sell records. If we made it into the top 40 due to record sales, that’s not a problem. But I don’t think we want to [alter our sound].

SL: And as far as your sound is concerned, do you want to keep things folky-alternative, or would you ever go alternative-pop?

AG: I think we’re trying to create and establish our own thing. The important thing is to write a good song. If you write a good song, you’ll have a better chance of it becoming popular. But at this point, I still love playing the violin, and I’m playing the autoharp on this record as well, and we have the yuke. Our base is still folk, but we’ve definitely pulled in some electronic influence, if you will. We’re trying to blend the two together in a way.

AB: But in the same way, we’re not aggressively trying to sound super pop. I don’t think we’re trying to sound super folky either. That’s just sort of a niche that we had been in. I’m not afraid to write songs that fit within it, but at the same time, we’re just enjoying expanding creatively and using the influences of everything that is current and past to come up with our own cool, fun, authentic stuff.

SL: When you think of music on the radio right now, who do you respect as artists, whether it’s songwriting, producing, singing and so forth? 

AG: I really like and respect Bruno Mars. I think Sam Smith is just a phenomenal talent. I love Pharrell [Williams]. I love Lana Del Rey.

SL: How did you guys end up with your group name?

AFP: We were trying to come up with a name and we saw something spray painted on a bridge in Austin that said “The only ones for me are the mad ones,” and I know that’s a quote from [Jack] Kerouac‘s On the Road, and it’s always been a cool book to me. I thought about that and it led to The Good Mad, the good kind of crazy. Like Alice in Wonderland, we’re all mad here!

SL: How did you guys end up forming your trio?

AG: We were in a different band in L.A., but it didn’t last, and pretty much all of the other band members from that band moved back to their hometowns and we were the three remaining pals. We continued to write and play together.

AG: Chet Pratt, the creator of The Lying Game, asked if I had any music I wanted to play on the show and I told him my friends and I were making music. Adam auditioned for the role of Baz and booked it and then they came to Austin and that’s where we came up with the band name. That’s the basically the genesis. We are a real band!

AB: We’d be making music even if it were just in a living room. So the fact that our music has an audience is an awesome thing, and we’re grateful.

AG: And we’re also trying to plan a tour for later this summer.

AFP: We’re going to be touring with a cool soul singer Molly Durand, who we’ve all been friends with for a long time in L.A. in the music scene here. She has a single right now called “You Can’t Hide” that was featured on the The X-Factor. And we’re also touring with Yell for Help, the same guys who produced our new EP.

Check out the group’s new EP, including its debut single “Adelaide:”

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Music Uncategorized Featured

Electronic Duo Cazzette Dishes to Skyelyfe on the ‘Problem’ with ‘EDM,’ Who They Think Will Be the Next Big Thing in Music and Why They Miss the Old Stuff!

November 4, 2014
cazzette

Photo Credit: Alex Wessely

Cazzette has made 2014 their year! The Swedish duo, consisting of Sebastian Furrer and Alexander Björklund, are fresh off the heels of releasing their new melodic dance track “Blind Heart,” and they feel like they’re in a great place.

The lovely lads, who are under Avicii‘s LE7ELS label and are best known for 2012’s “Beam Me Up” and this year’s “Sleepless,” recently sat down with skyelyfe on the picturesque rooftop of Sixty Beverly Hills to talk about being more in control of their sound now than before, why they refuse to be classified as “EDM” artists, how they are “down to earth guys who don’t do crazy stuff” and why Flume is going to take over the music world.

SL: What do you guys think of L.A.?

Sebastian: We love L.A. It’s a very nice city and obviously the weather is very nice. There are very good vibes here. It’s obviously a big city to music and film and we’ve been meeting people here. It’s so easy to meet people in the music industry. Everybody’s here basically, so it’s nice. I wouldn’t move here because I’m still in love with Sweden and I’m a big New York guy more than a West Coast guy, but I love it here for work and for a short amount of time to hang out.

SL: You guys recently performed at Avalon in Hollywood. What was that experience like?

Alex: Avalon is great. It’s a big venue, which is cool. It has that theatre vibe, which we like. And this time was the most fun we’ve ever had playing there because we’ve changed a lot over this past year. I feel like we’re way more honest to ourselves now and with the music that we make and play. It’s more exciting to play now because we’re playing 100 percent what we like. We slightly try to educate the crowd a bit with playing the music that we grew up on even though it doesn’t sound like the typical Top 40 for music. We play tracks from 2004-2007, like old Axwell, all old stuff.

SL: Going off of that, who are some more artists whose old style of music you miss?

Alex: Laidback Luke. I miss his old stuff.

Sebastian: Yeah, he was great before. I mean I haven’t heard his [newer] stuff that much. I just love his older stuff. Everybody has to evolve in a way, so I get it, but his old stuff was incredible. As producers, we were like, “Whoa, what’s this?” It was so interesting at the time.

SL: What’s your take on this whole “EDM” craze?

Alex: I think there’s a problem with that word “EDM.” I mean, sure, it’s electronic dance music, but I’d rather it be “EM,” electronic music. You can’t compare dubstep and house. They are two completely different things.

Sebastian: I think they misuse the word, and that’s the problem. This became a big term in America. It probably will never be a term in Europe. I’ve never heard anyone use it there. I think when people got educated here, they put it on blogs and they were [labeling] a dubstep act with EDM. I’m not saying not saying it’s the blogs or anyone’s fault, I just think it’s been misused. People think everything is EDM and it’s the same stuff. If you compare rock music, it’s very broad. There are tons of stuff within rock music. There’s indie rock and there’s pop rock, but you can’t put them in the [exact] same category. And that’s the same here. Dubstep is completely different from house music. House music is completely different from electro and techno. Of course they have the same elements, but it’s still different vibes.

SL: Do you guys classify yourself in what’s considered “EDM” or in some kind of sub-genre?

Alex: It’s a problem for us because we’re like so many different kinds of genres, but right now I would say house.

SL: Congratulations on “Blind Heart.” Tell me about the inspiration behind that song

Alex: The inspiration was from just listening to the acapella. That’s usually how we work if we receive an acapella. When we hear something, it’s like, what kind of vibe does this track have? How are we going to capture what we fell for in the acapella?

Sebastian: It was a very long process to make because we were changing our minds all the time about arrangement. We were discussing what the chorus is, but then we decided, fuck it, there’s no chorus. Let’s just go with vibe and people can decide what the chorus is. The song is very specially structured. It’s not the typical verse-chorus.

SL: Aside from people you’ve worked with, who do you admire in the music scene in general?

Alex: Kanye West.

Sebastian: Pharrell Williams, Moby, Justin Timberlake, obviously. From the hip-hop and trap stuff, we like Flume. He’s incredible. There’s a guy from Sweden called Skogsrå. He’s a new guy. There are so many people who inspire us in general. We love rock, we love hip-hop. Sometimes we listen to jazz.

SL: Any predictions on who’s going to be the next big music thing in the states?

Sebastian: I think Flume is just going to get bigger. What he does is incredible and he’s just going to keep growing.

SL: What’s something about you guys that your fans don’t already know?

Sebastian: [laughs] We have no dirty secrets at all. We just want our fans to hear our music. Our personal life is kind of irrelevant because at the end of the day, it’s about the music. Of course it helps if you have  a personality. I wouldn’t say we’re boring, but there’s not too much to know. I think we’re very calm. We’re down to earth guys who don’t do crazy stuff. If there’s something people should know, we work a lot. We always spend time in studios. That’s our crazy life [laughs].

cazzette2

Photo Credit: Alex Wessely

cazzette3

Music Featured

O-Town Is Back After a Decade, Dishing to Skyelyfe on Ashley Parker Angel’s Sexual Selfies, Their ‘Liquid Dreams’ Past and Much More!

October 9, 2014
OTown

Photo credit: Nick Caster

More than 10 years ago, O-Town won over tween girls’ hearts with “All or Nothing,” while sharing what was on their dirty little minds with “Liquid Dreams.” All this time later, Erik-Michael EstradaDan MillerTrevor Penick and Jacob Underwood (sans former member Ashley Parker Angel) are here to prove they’ve still got what it takes to dominate the Top 40 charts. The boys-turned-men, whose pop group was originally formed from MTV‘s Making the Band in 2000, recently released their new album Lines & Circles with its debut single “Skydive.” The guys spoke to skyelyfe exclusively this week about fitting in with today’s sound, why coming out with “Liquid Dreams” was such a challenge back in the day (for those who don’t remember the song, read the risque lyrics here) and why it is “upsetting” to see Ashley posting sexy selfies! And of course it wouldn’t be a proper chat if they didn’t provide a playlist of their top 10 boy band songs of all time!

SL: A decade later, you’re still going in the pop direction? What made you guys decide to continue in that route?

Jacob: We’ve always been pop. We didn’t try and rewrite the book there. But we did want to hone in on a sound that was more O-Town. This album has 70 percent or more written by us, the art done [by us], we edited, we played the instruments. It’s really been like the first O-Town record. That’s how we feel about it. But obviously we’re pop … we just want the sound to reflect where we are today and what we’ve learned in the last 10 years.

SL: What do you want fans to know about your journey in the last decade?

Erik: We got a chance to do a lot of different things after the hiatus. Jacob moved to Nashville, then he went and got his business degree. He’s managing the band. I did some songwriting, as did Jacob. We just wanted to contribute in ways that we didn’t really get to the first time around because the process was so convoluted by so many obligations with the television show and everything. We just didn’t have the control that we have now.

SL: Who are you fans of these days and is there any chance of any upcoming collaborations with artists who are big right now?

Dan: Pharrell [Williams] is collaborating with everybody right now and he can’t write anything that’s not a hit. It would be awesome to work with somebody like that, but more producer collaboration because we are four artists – four very different artists. So we honestly feel like every song that we do is a collaboration. We listen to and write different things, but when we come together … our differences create a sound that we would have never had as individuals.

Erik: I think there is room for a collaboration besides a producer. I think it would probably be a female singer, so like maybe [working with] Demi Lovato or Taylor Swift would be something we would all have fun attempting.

SL: What is your take on your fanbase? Do you feel like you have to start from scratch or do you feel like you’ve held on to the fans you’ve had in the past?

Jacob: We’ve definitely held on to fans from the past. That’s one of the biggest reasons why we came back together. When we went to Europe for the first time, we actually had the same fans who would meet us at the airport when they were 13. They were now 25, 26, and retaking pictures that we had taken. I think [our] music, being where it is now, we’ll be able to reach out to a new fan base who didn’t like or didn’t know O-Town before. [Our new] music is current.

Eric: The music’s different and we’re a different band than we were the first time around. We’re four different individuals and we’re minus an individual, [Ashley Parker Angel].

SL: Speaking of Ashley, have you seen his sexy photos on social media?

Jacob: [laughs] What do you think of those photos?

SL: Hey, I asked you first.

Jacob: We saw them. What do you think of those photos?

SL: It’s a little different than what I used to seeing years ago, but hey, coming from a guy who sang about “Liquid Dreams,” anything is possible, right? But are you guys proud of his modeling career or whatever you want to call it?

Jacob: I don’t think anybody should be proud of a selfie, period. The only time I take a selfie is when I’m trying to show people what’s behind me, like where I’m at. You may find half of my face. It’s just to prove that I’m there. But this whole posing and jaw-locking and sucking in is just upsetting all across the board – guys and girls alike.

SL: Now back to “Liquid Dreams.” Did you guys ever hear from any of them women you referred to in that song?

Jacob: The Destiny’s Child crew and Janet Jackson gave us some love. And Tyra [Banks], I remember Tyra.

SL: How was it coming out with a risqué song like that during a very bubblegum era?

Jacob: Our hardest task was trying somehow to explain the song without completely explaining the song. We had to come up with a story that people would buy that wasn’t about what it really was.

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