Tag Archives: Pop Culture

re:verse : “The Siege of the Warwick” – Edie Sedgwick

I guess I should call this, “The Siege of The Warwick…”

but, left alone with a substantial supply of speed I forgot that I was heavily addicted to barbiturates and I started having strange compulsive behavior.

This was after I was done, well, I was shooting up every half hour, every twenty minutes on the half hour, thinking with each fresh shot I’d knock this nonsense out of my system, this physical disability I began to notice, namely convulsions, which lasted eight hours, during which I entertained myself while hanging on to, head down, hanging on to the bathroom sink, with my hind foot stomped against the drawer, trying to hold myself steady enough so I wouldn’t crack my stupid skull open.

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Vinyl Cut Prose: On the curious case of celebrity and contemporary culture…

 

Celebrity serves the purpose of highlighting otherwise opaque social relations, conflicts, concerns, and realities.

That which is the fueling, seemingly banal, everyday existence of the masses doesn’t manifest itself into anything of social significance, until an icon framed to represent and vividly portray the beautiful burden of an attributed demographic brings it into public discourse.

The celebrity brings with it an entire economy. It is the commodity, the product and property of a corporate entity, a media monarch within the greater sphere of private ownership of a public institution – a public figure within capitalist society. Money, power, and reference run through iconographies.

Equally, celebrity brings with it an entire ideology. It is the character, the product and property of a ruling class. It may reinforce, resist, reject, or repudiate the standing social order. It is also the product and property of the masses from which it emerged, and which it directly influences and impacts – it is the manipulated mouthpiece of an increasingly superficially divided monoculture.

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The Prophiles: Lily Allen

February 28, 2009

Chris Abraham’s sage advice on PR in the digital age prompted one key question: What is the prototype/blueprint for Digital PR? Essentially, who is doing it right and how are they getting it done? As a Public Comm/Sociology student and a twenty-something “Millennial” I would say Lily Allen, hands down. As the Wordsworth of the MySpace Generation, Lily is the very voice of the tomorrow’s Power 150 — today!


Lily Allen is a digital phenomenon. She propelled herself into a full-fledged entertainment career simply by utilizing the low risk/high reward method of uploading rough demo tracks on MySpace. After millions of listens, Allen was signed to Parlophone Records and so began the modern pop tale. Her original investment was digital, but the eventual outcome was very real. After selling 2.5 million copies of her album, getting a Grammy nomination, starting a clothing line, having David Cameron hand deliver her first album to President Obama, and hosting her own BBC3 talk show, among other endeavors, Allen returns to the music scene with a sophomore album, It’s Not Me, It’s You.

This career that began in the depths of cyberspace, that has seen such successes both on and offline serves as an ideal case study for the future of digital branding and audience analysis/targeting. Lily in and of herself is a blueprint for digital strategy.

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re:fresh : GREATeclectic’s “Want To See A Sad Boy Smile? Pay Him”

April 11, 2011

I’ve never met GreatEclectic, but I know him quite well. I’ve never felt more innately connected to someone with whom I’ve never shared conventional contact; but that is the beautiful mystery that is the Great Mister Daye. He conveys and connects with the world and the one individual alike, because he is his work; as with any masterpiece, that connection lives in the unconventional void – where authenticity cannot be barred by limitation, and catharsis cannot be marred by sterile sanity. He lives in his work – it is in that shared space where I feel, and it is in that shared experience where life is present.

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Read This Rainbow: “The Love Song of Jonny Valentine” – Teddy Wayne

Take a look, it’s in a book – not your Nook or Kindle #readthisrainbow

The Love Song of Jonny Valentine

The life and times of a modern day prepubescent pop star are the sardonic fodder for Teddy Wayne‘s new novel, “The Love Song of Jonny Valentine.” Written from the perspective of an 11-year-old singer, the novel jabs at the realities of the entertainment industry — its teen idol marketing machine and sale of wholesome romance to adolescent girls — and explores our culture’s obsession with fame. Wayne accomplishes this through his teen idol hero, who must handle his fame-addicted mother, navigate through a snarky media and deal with a record label in a manner well beyond his years.

– Megan Patrick, Arts Beat NPR

It’s sort of like if Jonny was an author, he’d have to do one of those internet videos in which the writer speaks directly to the camera about his book. Maybe some inoffensive music will play in the background, as he outlines the story, and its ‘themes’ and its ‘inspirations’ … Can you imagine James Joyce posturing himself?

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Keep Calm and Kari On … with Chester French

Skin… is a many layered thing; it is artistic, it is cultural, it is biological, it rests on the fragile fringe of one’s inner and outer space… not to be melodramatic, but we consider it an overlooked focus – an abstract opus – of cultural connective tissue.

So, for Art Nouveau’s Skin issue, we chose a duo who connected all of those elements in a most masterful manner: Chester French – black tears, faced fears, a pair so open-minded about the lovable future that their well-endowed brains have descended upon every listener’s ears. We had a chat with Max and D.A. to get an inside look at how they view those elements that make the epidermis so oddly endearing.

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When we come into this world, our skin is supple and soft, that unhindered remnant of divine design. For artists like Chester French, the first album is of that same fresh design. The label signs you because of that new-new you bring to this world. Musicians wear that skin like a manifestation of the self. Unlike the child though, an artist can craft their own primary skin; now more than ever though, it is getting harder to make that sonic aesthetic a signature different than all others.

KE: How important is it to build your own sonic aesthetic through your music, and what do you think your skin is in the industry?

CF: I think – to answer the first part of the question – I think for us it’s kind of important to try and carve out what is our territory creatively in terms of what we want to make and how we want it to sound. I think there’s so much music and so many people in music feel like they have to constantly be following, either super-new trends or really established ideas about how music should sound at a given moment. For us it’s way more important to find a sound that’s unique to us, than it is to “fit in” to any group, necessarily…

KE: Basically, my thing is this: skin is functional and fashionable. It is the first line of defense, but musically it is that very foundation of artistic identity which requires the greatest defense of all.

It’s one thing to look good, a freshman feat that Love the Future achieved, but it’s another entirely to make that good look last: enter Music 4 TNGRS.

KE: What is a TNGR, and what is this music you’re making for them from this standpoint?

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