Tuesday, July 28, 2015

some leon bridges for your afternoon!

Stop what you're doing right this minute, and start listening to this acoustic version of Leon Bridges' "Coming Home." Caveat: there's about a minute's worth of politics at the beginning, so if you're offended, fast forward to 1:27. I think it's worth a listen, though.

Now repeat until you get to go home from work.

{CREATIVE} andrew markowitz

This Is Our Jam is so inspired and in awe of creative individuals and their endeavors. We want to find out how music goes hand in hand with that creativity. This series of interviews with cool and creative people looks at how they view creativity, sources of inspiration, and, of course, the most inspiring music for creative endeavors.

To kick off our series, we chatted with TIOJ Photographer Andrew Markowitz about his creative process, his surprising sources of inspiration, and what makes a good band to photograph. 

Who are you and what do you do that's cool and creative? 
I'm a photographer in the DC area that shoots fashion, concerts and sports. I'm not sure if that makes me cool or creative.

How do you define creativity?
I think creativity is defined by pushing limits and exploring new things, especially trying things you've never tried before. It's very easy to get stuck in a rut of "I know this works, this provides good results, I'm going to stick with this because I know it'll provide a good outcome," and it's hard to look past that. Getting trapped in that mindset, for me, makes things old and stale after awhile. Sometimes it's hard to push past and force yourself to try something you've never attempted before or even try something that you'd told yourself you'd never do. I know when shooting fashion and working on model portfolios I've tried to do things I told myself I wouldn't initially try or wouldn't do. But that's how you grow and that's how you create. Sometimes it comes out bad just like you thought it would and you wasted a few minutes, other times it comes out amazing and you're glad you tried. Most often it comes out alright and you can look at things from a different perspective and go down another avenue.

Click ahead for more!

Monday, July 27, 2015

benjamin clementine is so fine

Benjamin Clementine may sound like the name of a character from Downton Abbey, but that's not the (only) reason I'm enamored with him. This Brit's voice is so deep and smooth, and I've been listening to his song "London" on repeat. The young (he's only 26!) singer is greatly influenced by poets and writers, from William Blake to C.S. Lewis and his fantastical inspiration can be seen so clearly through his lyrics and arrangements.

"lose my mind" vs. "lose control"

This latest game of Compare and Contrast may not be the most authentic, since the songs technically have different titles. But things are being lost, and those things are essential to being a human (being in control and of sane mind). But let's look at these anyway. Brett Eldredge's latest song is called "Lose My Mind." And there's the Missy Elliot classic "Lose Control."

Do you have a preference? Nostalgic value winning out? Can't get behind the brief sampling of Gnarls Barkley in a country song? And let's get to my real question -- is this compare and contrast still valid even though the songs have different titles?

Saturday, July 25, 2015

{WATCH} "austin to boston"

Communion Music has been a long-time favorite of TIOJ as they support many of our favorite musicians including Ben Howard, Michael Kiwanuka, and Bear's Den. So it was with such delight that we recently discovered a documentary put together by the UK label The documentary "Austin to Boston" follows four bands from the end of SXSW in Austin through a maze of cities in the U.S. The journey, traversed in five VW vans, is peppered with beautiful scenery, quiet moments, and a feeling of nostalgia captured in moments shot on Super 8 film.

The documentary, narrated by Old Crowe Medicine Show's Gill Landry, follows Ben Howard, The Staves, Nathaniel Rateliff, and Bear's Den as they get to know each other and engage in many a late night singalong.

Stream "Austin to Boston" on Netflix
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