CHAMP CHUCK

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Champ 1

Champ Chuck

In a small bed room, where CD covers, vinyls, and cassette racks cover the walls, a dresser is topped with trophies, a Boombox and tapes, Champ Chuck clears the remnants of an earlier Dab session to interview with Mixture Magazine about his inspiration with hip hop and his radio show, OverDogRadio on WEMF internet radio.

Champ how did you get into radio?

Two things happened actually, I was at a stage of my life where I was just beginning to record. I was doing music, and I was rapping, Making tracks and just being in the studio for the first time. You know, it was just someones bedroom with a mic and a laptop and all… and this dude got me an interview on UnregularRadio.com. It was awesome! I went on the show, I gave a good interview; I rapped and they loved it!. They were like “Yo come back next week” and sure enough, for like eight months, I was on that show every Wednesday night. Eventually I went on 4 other shows, after that I ended up getting my own show.

What got you into Hip Hop?

Overdog Radio

Overdog Radio Show

Actually Beats got me into Hip Hop. With Hip Hop I could understand what those cats were saying. With Rock there is just too much gong on for me! I could understand what DMX was saying and I liked it. I really like every type of of music in some way or another, its just that Hip Hop really does it for me. Where do you find inspiration for your shows? Actually it’s being in the city and seeing young cats making amazing rap. Everything has been local for me. Listening to music is like a drug to me! Sometimes its bad (Used as a crutch, or a numbing agent)… but I think its a great thing! I would never want to be without it. I’m at a lot of shows nowadays, honestly I like seeing the bigger names but I’m more excited to see the new up and comings. My man Seti threw a show a show called “The Art Of The Cypher” at Oberon. We had the local DJ Vet, DJ Reel Drama, live cyphers, live artwork and burners from Brian Life and another artist. It was REAL Hip Hop, DOPE for the culture. When did you last sing to yourself? I’m not gonna lie this one’s for my ex… she took my heart and I wrote a song for her. I sang to her and it was the first time I ever wrote a song for someone I thought that was pretty cool but I sing to myself all the time. I love that shit. I love free-styling and all that.

When in life do you feel most grateful?

I feel most grateful when my family is doing good. You know, when my niece gets good marks on her report card (She is actually a grade A student who inspires me every day of my life) , or when my nephew rode his bike for the first time. I get to reward them for doing something awesome. When I see someone smile that makes me smile.

Is there something you have dreamed of doing for a long time?

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Champ Chuck and Uncle Sam of http://livefreeordieradio.com/

Man I give so much respect for women because they see long term so much better than guys. Guys suck at that! My dreams change constantly… I once wanted to own a club. There is so much going on all the time for me that it is hard for me to pin down one thing. 5 years ago or ten years ago I couldn’t even tell you what I wanted to do… I didn’t know I even wanted to rap or have a radio show. I have always wanted to own multiple businesses and have my good friends working with me making lots of money! To be able to put people positions where everyone eats is the dream.

Would you rather play a game with someone who is more talented than you and would it matter who’s watching?

No, I love doing any type of exhibition or sport where the opponent is more skilled than me because I get to learn things from that. It doesn’t matter who’s watching. If folks want to clown me step right in! If you think you can do it better than me…first wait till I’m done than step up and try. At the end of the day I don’t give fuck who’s listening, I’m not shy at all. Have you ever disliked someone for being better or more successful then you? Yea… when I was in wicked and weak mind-state! Now you know we’re all one energy under the sun and Karma balances me now. I try to look at it like yea some people are born into money and some people are not but you know… I’m on my own path! If I don’t got the girl I’m not going to go chase her I’m going to so make it so she will just fall into my lap! We all have our own lane, and I should never compare myself to anyone else, and I don’t.

Are there people you envy enough you would want to trade lives with them?

No, because when I meet someone who has something appealing to me I look at it like how am I going to put myself in that position. How can I add his arsenal of weapons to mine. When I met these dudes at the radio station it was like the first time I was on I said to myself “I want my own show!” I’m a sponge, that soaks up the knowledge around me. I learn from my mistakes and triumphs, and yours as well.

What would constitute a perfect evening for you?

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Champ Chuck

One where I get paid, make sure my bills get taken care of and my family is safe, secure and ready for success.. One where I know that I have money coming in the future, go host OverDog Radio and then go see a show. There is no place in this entire world I feel more at home then a Boston Hip Hop show/event because I consider the people in the scene to be family. Big shout out to the boss Mark Merren for providing the city Motivate Monday. That’s also where I first performed with N.B.S. When they asked me to perform “The Come Up” with them. Dorchester legend Akrobatik dapped me up and said I did good right after too (I was esctatic.)

Who do you admire? Who inspires you?

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Champ Chuck

I couldn’t even tell you… I look at a cats like DJ premier doing his thing and being just the greatest of all time I really look up to a cat named Scram Jones he’s phenomenal he’s one of the best MCs of all time, plus he DJ’s great and has produced grammy nominated records. He wears many hats but wears them well. But in all honesty, my mother and father have inspired me more the I could ever say. I do everything I do, with them and their legacy in mind. I go by Champ Chuck, but I just see myself as the son of Thomas Welch (R.I.P.)

OverDog Radio is LIVE from 9PM til 11PM every Tuesday night on WEMFRadio.com, hosted by Champ Chuck.

Carolyn’s Inspiration

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CarolynCarolyn is the Hostess at Club NAGA in Cambridge MA.  One of the hippest clubs in Boston, amazing food, and great atmosphere, Carolyn shares some inspiration on what creativity means for her.

What gives you inspiration?

I think from a early age both music and being outside gives me inspiration for everything.  I go crazy if I’m not able to explore outside or do anything outside.  I wouldn’t be able to write if I were not outside at all.  I do mainly creative non-fiction.  I’m very wordy and verbose.  Dancing also gives me inspiration.  A lot of times solitude gives me inspiration.  I’m really a secret introvert and people would never suspect that.  That’s why I always live near an ocean.  I grew up in a land locked state so I enjoy the ocean a lot.

Are you a musician?

I used to play piano a lot when I was younger and I quit cause my mom forced me to take lessons but I wish I never stopped cause I was so stubborn! I still have a huge appreciation for music

What brought you to Club NAGA?

I really love to dance and I love house music so I came here about a year and a half ago and I thought I would really love to have a job around these people and to be a part of something cool and what I like to do.  To be in a place where I can meet different people and creative artists so I had applied and I got the job!  I really love everyone here and It’s amazing working at NAGA.

Can you give our readers anything inspirational thoughts?

I think the key thing for me to finding any kind of inspiration, when its for writing or anything I want to pursue in the future, is meeting strangers.  I think I meet 4 to 5 new strangers a day.  Even on days where I’m off work.  I really get life from having those vulnerable and very raw conversations with strangers and its always unexpected.  My father was always like that, my mom would have to drag him through stores so he wouldn’t talk to strangers.  He was always very personable like that.  Even though I can be introverted and in solitude at times,  I really get life from hearing other peoples stories if they are comfortable enough to share them.

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In The Bean With Film Maker Todd Anthony Walker

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Todd Anthony Walker also known as Todd the Director, or The Indie Professor is an Independent Writer / Producer / Director turned visionary / entrepreneur in Boston.   Todd has worked at every level in the industry and he brings a lot of experience to film making.  His creative vision is to bring together creatives and enable people to produce projects and make a living doing it.

Mixture Magazine sits down with Todd to talk about DSC_0889new projects and to seek some inspiration.

Tell us what projects your are working on currently.

Basically I have grown in a lot of different ways over the past 12 years.  Writing producing and directing films has become a small part of what I actually want to do.  I am more focused on the visionary entrepreneurial aspect of writing producing directing and what I am building right now will be the nations first transparent unselfish life changing network. And it’s about to launch.   I have been writing this 50 page business plan for the last 12 years, and its a component of the master plan.  This is only like a rib-child to the overall big picture however this here in and of itself is just beyond words.

What is the premise behind the program?

It’s called “InTheBean”.  It is a self propelled catalyst that will promote creative people like yourself and myself to across the globe.  It creates jobs and opens opportunity for millions in its residual sharing network.  It has four principal companies within the network which have their own streams of residual income and ultimately will pave the way for creatives and companies to be able to brand themselves, keep their own independent companies and grow with us in the process.  Our motto is ” Come grow with us as we help you grow”   The Unselfish Transparent Network.   That’s it in a nutshell.  Its definitely something different and its ahead of its time right now.  There is no collective networks right now that foster independent growth and allow you to eat off of what you do.  Every media company right now wants you to stop what your doing , jump on their ship, add to their creative brand and receive minimal if not any fruits of your labor or creativity.  We are building a nation of media makers, editors, designers, photographers, you name it.

Todd & Camera photos 035Is there a demand for this type of network?

Yes.  There are many models out there now.  The Lawrence community works are using commercial buildings putting a little money into them and re-purposing them into multi-use facilities where people can pay for classes without going through all the red tape of going through a university.  I saw one pop up in Lowell as well… revitalizing spaces for arts and media uses.

Have you started to implement this program?

I have initialized the process.   The business plan will help get me the resources I need to get to a level where it is going to live at its full potential.  So I am in a hold pattern right now … its launched I just wentIMG_0721[1]back underground for a little while to organize and hone down the components.   I am looking at acquiring a building where I can operate out of.  Its a huge part to have a space where we can work out of.  I am looking at properties right now.  I travel state to state and I create media all over the US, Ive also been a consultant and worked on projects with other networks.  For me, having a home base is important.

I got smart real quick and put my interest in myself realizing my own self worth and what I was capable of and G-D has given me natural born abilities and talents that can create do and build just about anything that has to do with my hands.  I’ve been doing since I was a kid way before I got into the Industry.  If I see it I can build it, fix it or make it work!  That’s what catapulted me along applying that to my natural ability to be in the community and my ability to create write direct and produce content from start to finish from script to completion and this has allowed me to actualize my own self worth to be able to train and educate and build people and give my knowledge and talent away across the globe to share that with people ….  nobody is doing that right now.  People are selfish about these things.  I already have the talent so I can only get better at it.  That is the premise of my network.  It’s a free media network.  State to state city to city its beyond what people think.   I am not waiting for Hollywood,  I am not waiting on the industry, I have so much content.  I shot a project in Georgia where my relatives live.  I have stuff that’s ready to go so I’m ready.  I don’t have a regular job this is what I do so if I don’t do this I m not doing anything.  Its that serious for me.

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See some of Todd’s work on his Youtube channel  –  https://www.youtube.com/user/PertinentPictures

Faith Verill – RAW Artists

Faith VerillFaith Verill has been organizing the RAW arts programs for quite some time and now it has expanded to several cities.  Her success with the program has demonstrated that a platform for showcasing artist is well received by fans and art lovers alike.

Faith, Tell us a little about yourself,

I am a producer and I started out producing a lot of theater productions.   Managing musicians in LA and Portland OR.   I moved back to Boston about 6 years ago to pursue producing theatrical event and such.  I worked with Boston Ballet and BalletRox, and was producing The 24’s (24 Hour Plays!  I started my own company FV Productions.  I started with RAW 4 years ago, and Boston was the 23rd city to become involved with RAW.   I produced the Boston shows and it became an instant success.  Bostonians really loved what we were doing.  I ended up after three shows taking over the Manhattan division.   I owe a lot of that success to my team.   We have this family and have done about 30 shows together.  The organization is now international, 60+ cities in the US Canada, Australia, London, Tokyo.  Its been really fun watching this company grow and expand.   We started off with small shows and since have moved to bigger venues.  We have over 40 artists showcasing fashion, music, visual arts and we even have a drag queen show in the RAW Boston COMMUNIQUE Showcase tonight. Tonight’s show has a cast of 50-60 people including all the models.  It has really evolved from being a bunch of visual artists to 4 bands 5 fashion shows… it’s a huge event that 500 – 600 people come to see.  It’s been great for us, and great for our artists to have a platform to showcase their work.

RAW Boston COMMUNIQUE Drag Queen

You are a creative yourself.. tell us about your work.

I used to be an actress and a dancer and got a scholarship to a college to act and dance.  I also taught acting and dancing for a while.  I really loved that.  I found my heart was in producing.  I felt it was more of my niche.   I love being the center of attention and I always get to on stage to introduce my shows and I love that.  Being the creator of an amazing show and the “painter” of the scene I was producing is very gratifying to me.  My twin sister is an actress in LA and I let her do all the acting.  I really love surrounding myself with artists.  If I could spend my life surrounding myself with artists all the time that would be amazing.

RAW Boston COMMUNIQUE Fashion

How do you keep yourself inspired?

My team inspires me.  They constantly remind me to keep going.  It’s hard to balance everything, we’ve worked with over a thousand artists and I have 10,000 contacts so my team is integral for me to balance everything out.  They also remind me to be humble too. Just because were doing real well doesn’t mean my ego should be inflated as well!   My artists also inspire me.  Whether it is in Boston or NY, working with these talented people, watching them grow and encouraging them has been a huge inspiration for me.

RAW Boston COMMUNIQUE Art

What have been some of the challenges for you?

There is always challenges with live performances.  People late… Dropping out…  we had two RAW babies in Boston.  One girls water broke during the set up and we had another man whose wife went into labor while he was setting up.  I’ve had Megabus break-down on me, snow storms, sickness, exhaustion, homeless for the night because there was no hotel and you know… the show must go on regardless!  I kind of laugh about it because in the end were not doctors, were not saving lives here were just putting together a cool show.   I have to always remember that every hurdle is not the end of the world.  We always have to remember to just have a really good time and not to let all these things stress us out.

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Whats a typical RAW show like??

RAW is an amazing show.  It can be whatever you want it to be.   It is a way for many different types of creatives to show their work, to be creative and be inspired.  And not just limiting ourselves with just one genre. It’s many different things…dance , music, visual, audio, video, and performance. Every show is always going to be different.  It will always be a collaboration.  Our host Cousin John who used to have a blue mohawk and tattoos everywhere, and Shannon our other host introduces all of our artists who get to go on stage and tell people about themselves and there work.  We have bands who play 20 min to half hour of original music.  We try to stay away from cover groups to keep the theme of originality.   We have dance pieces, a fashion show runway, a makeup show, and we also had amazing body-painter do a show kind of like a walking canvas.  We have short films and then it changes to another band.  Every hour there is something different.  We usually end it with a finally fashion show.  This year we are working with a couple of different companies, Project Mix which is a DJ group.  We work with Boston Blend, Future Boston, September we are working with Art Week in Boston.

RAW Boston COMMUNIQUE music

What is something unique that inspires you other than RAW?

My passion and my enthusiasm to work with artists.   I love traveling.   Getting out there and being in the public and seeing other events.

RAW Boston COMMUNIQUE Dance

Who are your heroes?

My sister, Tori Amos,  Gary Cole with COHO Productions is a mentor to me, he taught me the ins and outs of being a good producer.   He’s the one who started letting me produce my own 24hr plays and really took me under his wing.  I really wouldn’t be here without Gary.

 For more  info and to see more work with RAW arts see the web below.

www.RAWartists.org 

email – Faith@RAWartists.org 

Faith Verrill
RAW: Boston and NYC Showcase Director
RAW:natural born artists
We Dig the Underground //www.RAWartists.org
t. @RAWBoston, @RAWNYC

f. @raw.boston, @RAWnewyork

Fernanda Presa – Graphic and Web Design

04Fernanda Presa is a Graphic and Web Designer in Buenos Aires, Argentina.  Her range of style and capability is amazing.  Fernanda combines visual cues with whimsical illustrations, and a bold use of color, typography, and interesting design.  The Editors noticed Fernandas work and were inspired to uncover some insights and inspirations behind Fernanda’s Work.

What inspired you to be a creative artist?

Since I can remember I always enjoyed the arts and communication.
My dad has a theater for children since 1978 in Argentina (La Galera
Encantada) and that brought me to the creative world. The theater and
the visual arts were a very important part of my childhood. I was
seduced by this universe and surprised by the creativity of human
beings.

How do you keep your inspiration up in a very competitive Industry?

I’m very curious, never stop looking, I always try to be aware of what
is happening around me, there are so many stimulation all the time
around us that nourish the creativity of the designer. I think the key
is encouraged to do anything beyond the pre set, look for
alternatives, think outside the box, not to keep it safe, but also do
not forget to respond to what the customer needs.

Who are your heros? Who do you look up to and who are your mentors?

I studied at the University of Buenos Aires (UBA. FADU) and I was
lucky to have very good teachers who approached me to design in an
interesting and motivating way.
I have many heroes and I’m still discovering new ones, I think there
are very talented and creative people around the world. Today internet
brings us and lets us know designers work from everywhere.
If I have to name some references could be Javier Mariscal, Paula
Scher, Saul Bass, Stefan Sagmeister, Michal Batory (among many more!)

 What gives you the most inspiration for creativity?

I think it’s a set of things, music, art, literature, film, theater,
illustration, design, architecture, technology, nature, people,
travel, culture … is a whole which includes all these things …
what I try to do is be alert, with a notebook and pencil always close
to me so that when the ideas come up not let them escape.

Any advice for young creative?

My advice would be to never lose the curiosity and desire to learn.
Keep moving, discover new things, do not lose the sense of wonder and
play and above all enjoy what you do.

Check out Fernandas Work at the link to her website below

Diseño y comunicación visual / estudio: 2061-3046 / cel: 115 958 4058
contacto@fernandapresa.com    http://www.fernandapresa.com

Ya tenés tu ejemplar de Isla, un cuento para dibujar?
Conseguilo en www.facebook.com/islauncuentoparadibujar

fer

Fernanda Presa

 

 

Big Polo – The Fur King

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Big PoloPolo, also known as ‘The Fur King’ is a dominate trendsetter.  He has single-handedly built three companies from the ground up.  Polo is the CEO/Founder of Exclusive Fashion and Furs, Dessalines Clothing, and Bosses that Meet Bosses music group. Either himself or his designs have been in mutliple magazines, including E2K , and 5 Star magazine.  He has also graced the cover of Against The Grain www.againstthegrainmag.com, Looters magazine (in stores now), Rapfanatic , and most recently he was featured in one of the most influential online magazines Obvious magazine .
The fashion Mogul has partnered with several major companies to expand his brand. He also has a sneaker deal with Game-Time athletics.  Polo, along with Chase Million, has produced back to back fashion shows in Providence Rhode Island where he showcased several of his furs.  He has dressed the R&B group Metro-city for their opening performance at Keyshia Cole’s show at the Roxy in Boston.  Polo has been known to be called “P Diddit” and often has been compared to P. Diddy, whom he greatly has respect for.
Big PoloPolo also credits Chase Million (Chasemillionent@gmail.com), President of the company with being an instrumental and major contributor in its success.  In addition to Chase Million, the team consist of Ms. Prina Jackson (PR), Fallon Seaborn (stylist), The beat makers Billy Blass & Maggbeatz, Stephanie Renee’, Mr. Keys, Prolific, and Ray Blass.  He would also like to give a special thanks to Steve, Mike Jr, & staff of Fur Warehouse. Exclusive Fashion and Furs is not only a clothing label it is a movement. Often you will hear the mogul say ‘If you are exclusive, rock with the best, if you can’t do it big, rock with the rest and If it is not exclusive, it is not fashion.’ Fashion and Furs provides clothing for a lifestyle.
They have all of the Fine Furs, Minks, Fox,Chinchilla furs, whatever suits your individual taste. The clothes speak for themselves.  To place an order call 617-444-9547. Serious inquiries only….

Big Polo

You can see Polo’s work on his facebook page

https://www.facebook.com/thefurking

Fine Artist – Ivor Scott

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ivorscott MM – What made you become an artist?

Scott – It all comes back to high school where art is the escape for me.  The problem I had been battling at the time around when I was thirteen was a back injury.  I was diagnosed with scoliosis and I had a 55 degree curve on my back and I had to get surgery immediately before it got worse.  I had surgery freshman year the first day of classes.  After that I could not do sports so I was in a spot where I needed to do something that I was passionate about that wasn’t going to mess up my body.  So I went to art because I was always good at drawing.  So when I got to school I took an art class and I did a lot of drawings of anime characters and the teacher said  “This work is great and all… but let me teach you how to really draw.”  So that progressed, and I went to MICA pre-college fire-in-the-holesummer camp and after connecting with the faculty and being on an art school campus, I decided that is what I wanted to do.

MM – Whats the inspiration behind your new work?

Scott – In my new work that I’m doing is basically staying true to the person I am.  I played a lot of video games back when I was in high school.  Playing Counterstrike since I was 10 years old.  I was real competitive and I was always interested in the “first person shooter”  kind of environment.  Now that I’m older,  its interesting because I look at it differently now.  I am not playing as much that I am looking at it as kind of a strange world where you are enjoying this fantasy which is something that you would not really want to do in real life at all.  Its violent, but you nice-shotcome there for the violence and you come to that place with the appreciation of it as an exhilarating experience.  I am trying to explore this in my work.  I am playing on the attraction to this kind of role in gaming and what it is that attracts us to it.  What I’m doing now is seeing it as an ugly image but then trying to appeal to everyone, especially other gamers,  through these images.   I feel like if you are not a gamer you might not actually appreciate and understand this world.  To give this experience to non-gamers who don’t relate to it,  through my perspective, will still be able to enjoy the art.  I’m trying to transform this ugly image into something beautiful.

GravityMM – Tell us about your painting entitled “gravity”

Scott – There are two concentrations that I have.  One that shows figures and one which is just about the architectural aspects of the video games.  I’ll take screen shots and filter the ones I like and paint them.  The bus piece called gravity is part of the architectural side of things.  I am really interested in being the photographer in this space and looking at areas in the video game you don’t normally pay attention to.  Especially in a first person shooter game you don’t necessarily see all the background it is so fast paced and the only goal is to shoot.  I think it is interesting because the game developers made this map of the entire environment where you are able to move around and be a spectator and it is so detailed.  I was interested in being that spectator and checking out the environments I was in during these games.

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Ivorscott’s website,

http://ivorscott.com/

Free and Elevation Theory

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Free

Free in the rehearsal studio warming up on the drums. Photo by Jaymes Leavitt

Free is the founder of the Elevation Theory band.   We met up to talk about inspirations and insight into the beginnings of what has grown to be one of the most talented leading bands to come out of Boston.

MM:  Free, How did you first get into music?

FREE:    Amazing question,  I was introduced to music of course though as every great music legend well… lets not say every but close to it,  started playing in a church band when I was 7.  I got my first drum set when I was 7 too so that was cool too.     I was playing on pots and pans so much my dad just decided to do it before I tear up the whole house so he got me a drum set.    Upon getting the drum set I was able to not play in church.  from 7 going on to 9 I didn’t have a lot of patience.  I  thought that if you weren’t learning you weren’t growing so either you are playing of you are not.

Free

Photo by Jaymes Leavitt

MM:    Where do you get your inspiration from?   Who inspires you?

FREE:    My inspiration comes from John Roberts who is by far the biggest musical inspiration in my career.  I met him at the age of twelve   I was able to go to Atlanta and He was playing in a church.   To actually meet him was something.  One thing he told me…”Never forget your identity, never compromise your sound, and believe when no one else does.”   From that day, that inspirational speech has forever stuck with me.   I pay homage to him every day.

MM:    When did you first start elevation theory?

FREE:    I started Elevation Theory in March of 2007.  The idea came in around  2007 before I got into Boston I was in South Carolina.  The name of the band was B Free and it was me, my best friend Brandon Williams.  I knew it was kind of weird because B was for Brandon and Free was because everyone calls me free so it was a little weird. I was telling him I was planning on moving to Boston and in 2008 I had gotten accepted to Berklee College of Music.    I knew I had to change the name of the band, and Believe it or not I came up with the name of the band from watching ET the movie.   Its true!  A lot of people don’t know that but its true.   I was sitting home with my Brother watching ET the movie so I was watching it,  from top to bottom because I had never seen it.  And I thought…. ET… Extra terrestrial and I was moved by the whole theoretical part of the movie.  Part of me knew I was going to Berklee and I was about to study the theory of music and that’s where the word Theory came in.   I saw ET and I thought of the word Elevation.  When I thought of Elevation thought to be big to be higher to be stronger and above the norm.  When I put the words together Elevation Theory it just stuck.   The logo,  I have to give credit to my room-mate Robert Jordan, My Marketing Director who came up with the UFO thing.  Everyone looks at it like “Yo! That’s a crazy logo!” .. and it just spring boarded.   Right off that movie.

MM:    How do you warm up for a practice session?

FREE:    Its a matter of coming in with a mindset.  Having mental preparation is the first thing I do.  Coming into the studio with the right frame of mind is important.  The first part of rehearsal is getting the programing part of the show together.   Then we get into the records and putting the arrangements together.  then comes the practice part.     Learning the material and retaining it are huge factors.

I don’t do anything particular with my hands, but I do a technique I learned from a good friend.   Its a technique of stretching while holding the drumsticks in your hands.  From your right hand to your left hand, you stretch your arms around the sticks.  That’s a real good start up.  I tune the drums making sure the drums sound right and I go from high hat, to toms, to snare, and the rest of the kit.   One by one, all the time carefully making sure the sound is right.

MM:    Whats a typical rehearsal; like?

FREE:    Hell!   Really.  H-E-L-L And I mean…  We say ET Boot Camp.  And when we say that Be prepared for 12 hours of just hell.  Blood, sweat ,tears and cuss words, just everything!    I say that with so much sincerity.  I  give credit to my band member my bass player Keithen Foster.   I call him the anchor of Elevation Theory.  He came in as my musical supervisor and just anchored everything in together.     Keithen sets the tone and is consistent which is the best part of elevation theory.  Keithen brought in my music director Mathew Johnson he’s really the sergeant.   Matt is more like a coach than anything.   He puts together the show and we have a phrase we say before every show.  He says  “When Matt presses pay on the pro tools, we’ll see you at the end!”   See  you at the end means I don’t care what happens or what you do I will see you at the end.  Meaning If you make a mistake, make it big and keep moving on.

Elevation Theory’s website…   http://elevationtheory.org/

Kayla – Breaking into the world of Modeling

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KaylaKayla, How did you get into modeling?

I started modeling just as a hobby.  I was about 13 years old and it was my father that suggested I go into modeling. I have always been on stage singing and acting since the age of six doing local community theater and singing at nursing homes for one of my former voice teachers. Everyone used to tell me how I would light up the stage and had great presence . I started doing photo-shoots with local photographers in somerville, and then progressed on to other photograpers. Once my braces came off at 14 I went to Barbizon to learn modeling. I was invited to go on the Barbizon Passport to Discovery Cruise which is a big competition and includes runnway, talent, jeans, swimsuit, cold read and commercial competitions. The cruise has many representatives from different agencies and once all the competitions are over, the agencies that are interested in you send you notification for callbacks. I did really well in the competitions I placed top five in my age category for the Jeans and the Swimsuit competition. I signed with one of the agencies from NJ called Drakebook.

Photograph - Illana Szwarc

Photograph – Ilona Szwarc

I came to do some work with Ilona Szwarc and The American Girl Doll project by my mother and I responding to a casting we saw on-line for a photographer doing a series about the American Girl Look-A-like Dolls. We did a photo-shoot that took place in my house. Ilona Szwarc is a photographer from Poland and she had moved to New York a few years ago. She was doing a project on American Girl Dolls. She was fascinated with the dolls which are made to look like the owner. A looks-like-me doll. My mom helped me submit my photos for the project with my personal story about myself, that I have a language based learning disability and even though I perform and sing and model, socially I have a very hard time when it comes to socializing amongst my peers so I do not have many friends. I was selected for the project and she came to my house and took pictures of myself with my doll. It was amazing. I was standing by my radiator, above me was a picture of my grandparents, and I was holding my doll. She noticed that I played with the dolls eyes a bit, and then told me to do the same thing over again. That was the image that was selected for the world press photo of the year award. The selection was in Amsterdam and it was amazing to see the judges comment on my image. It won 3rd place out of 100,000 photso submitted!

How do you find pojects and photographers to work with?

So far a lot of my modeling has been either through various networking sites like Facebook and Model Mayhem. As I have been getting more experience, as more and more photographers have been contacting me for shoots.

Who do you look up to in modeling?

I like Tyra Banks because she is a good business woman and I like heidi Kloom because she worked so hard to get where she is today.

What are some of the challenges getting into modeling?

KaylaThe biggest challenge I had was mostly my height. Agencies are concerned about height and in my age range it calls for taller girls so I wish I was a little taller. It’s much harder to get represented without the height they require. It also seems like my age range, 15-17 is very hard to get work, a lot of the castings are for 18 and over.

Where do you find your inspiration for modeling?

I like doing my hair and makeup. I love looking beautiful! I especially like the comments on the photos when people say things like … “Kayla you look so grown up!” It is gratifying to do something creative and get a lot of good response from it. What inspires me as a model is seeing how creative everyone involved is. It is amazing how the Hair, Makeup Artists and photographers come up with so many different types of inspirations.

Johnny Voltik

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Johnny Voltik

Johnny Voltik is a hip hop artist in NY who has been recognized by the underground music scene as one of the most innovative performers in his league. Constantly pushing the edge in music, Johnny Voltik has made an incredible mark in his field with boldly crafted songs, a highly unique style and powerful, energetic performances.  Johnny currently has been re-inventing himself and is putting out a new release called THE LEGENDARY MISFIT.  We met Johnny at Video Producer Roman Bodners apartment and spoke about his work.

Johnny tell us… How did you first start getting into music.

Well ever since I was a little kid, music has always been a part of me.  Before I could play instruments, I imitated and acted like I could.   My sisters bed room was where I started.  I used to get on her bed, take all her stuffed animals and put them around the floor.  I would pick up a baseball bat and a belt and that was my guitar! Then I would play her cassette tapes and imitate the artists.  My pops got me a guitar when I was 8 or 9.  From then on, I knew I was going to do music.

How do keep yourself inspired?

I think changing locations has been really inspiring.  I moved from Boston to NY and that has been a real inspiration.  I get inspired by everyday things, sometimes small stuff.   Lately I have been sampling and I have not done that in a long time.   I have been inspired by watching youtube videos and I would be inspired by the music that I hear and I would sample that.   I think the person I am now, Is that the music I do is authentically real.   Every song I have on the THELEGENDARYMISFIT has something real about it and if you ask me something about any of the songs on that project I could tell you something that is real about it.   I get inspired about all types of stuff.

Johnny VoltikHow do you prepare for a creative session?

It just hits me.   I don’t even know how to prepare because I just write music whenever I have time it is not just a preparation thing.  Sometimes influences just come.  I prepare for shows by practicing…I mean to write songs.   Life just happens and I create songs around that.  That’s how I prepare.

Who are your heroes?

I look up to prince, Bob Marley, and Hendrix.  I look up to a lot of artists.  I think one of my favorite artists is Bruce Lee and he’s not even a musician.  To me he has the ultimate discipline.   I think that as a musician I want to approach my work with the same caliber as Bruce Lee.   Us doing this interview right now has me inspired!  I look up to a lot of film-makers.  I look up to people who are doing things that go above and beyond .

Whats in your CD Player right now?

My own new project!  I have also been listening to a lot of Bob Marley right now.   Ive been listening to Thundercat, JJ Doom, J-Tronius, Sky James,  I listen to all types of music.  Vince Guaralde is one of my favorite Jazz artists.  I like to start my day listening to jazz and that starts my mood off right.  I listen to all types of stuff.  I listen to old school stuff all the time as well.

What makes you creative?

I’m just doing me.  Unapologetically!  I try to bend the mind musically.  One day I tweeted  “Anything could happen within the drop”.  (Clapping rhythm)  Any thing can happen within these notes.  So in between the rhythm, I like to stretch things.  Say you have a 4/4 beat which goes into a certain pocket, people will say you have to quantitize your music.  Sometimes I don';t like to quantitize the music because I like to have that pull.  That helps people expand their minds.  When the fourth beat happens, your back at the beginning again and anything can happen between that moment.  Inside that constant rotation, that’s how I make music.  I can do something within the beat and it might not be right on that beat but it makes sense creatively.  That’s what I like to do.  I want to challenge the listener and myself to think.

Are there any other artists you have been working with?

I’m looking forward to working with a lot of cool people… I don’t want to say just ye!  I work a lot with Oa IM   I am working with J-Tronius and hope to work with Nick Brewer who is in the band By The Bull.  He is a close friend and I look forward to working with him.  I am currently doing a lot of collaborations and I am not going to say anything yet until those projects are completed.

Johnny Voltik

http://www.johnnyvoltik.com/

http://johnnyvoltik.bandcamp.com/

twitter @johnnyvoltik

instagram screen name – voltikgram

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