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Fine Print — Tell Me

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Eventually the love letters stopped showing up in my mailbox, and her replies slowly disappeared. And my tears would dry up and evaporate and float away onto some comet into the cosmos some ninety trillion miles away, and I would feel all alone once again.

I imagined that some other caught her heart like a wish flower and forgot to blow it away so that his wish could be granted. She imagined that I had found an endless field of dandelions and stood there for decades trying to count them all before making unlimited wishes, blowing each one away softly in order to make every single one of those wishes become a reality. We would both be left waiting at our doorsteps for the other one to come riding down the road.

Eventually, I found another star who would allude me whenever I tried to grab it and who would taunt me from whatever opposite side of the universe I would rush to in order to grasp her. And that star would give me life, and that life would show me that true love is eternal, and that eternal true love would make all other past loves obsolete. And those obsolete loves would fade away into the darkness, and only the three of us were left.


Disclosure ft. Sam Smith — Omen [Filip Flip]

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Very few songs make the cut for me when it comes to music that feels the way New York City does at night. I’m not talking about the NYC that you hear about from your friends who moved over to Williamsburg after college, because that New York City isn’t the same one I know. I’m talking about the NYC that has its best nights on the evenings where everyone else stays in; it’s those random Mondays and Wednesdays of the week when you can catch me shifting through the town, hopping from some underground grotto of Mexican delicacies and mezcals and into some private rooftop parties full of foreign models and the local cool kids who have the entire city in the palm of their hands via Samsung, Apple and the occasional Blackberry. That NYC is hardly seen by most and super elusive to the many, and it is kept that way on purpose.

When people move to NYC they tend to meet some cool promoter in town who hosts them for free at his or her parties (especially if they are hot and young) and who will show them a lifestyle that they could never have experienced anywhere else. But what people fail to realize is that this is just a facade to a business that generates billions yearly, and that the relationships they think are golden are also just business to these promoters, even when they appear to be your bestest friend ever. That’s what top 40 music is like to me and reminds me of: the business of being in the business and maintaining that relevancy. And then on the other hand, you have those super cool tunes that never make it to radio because they’re just not for the masses either, and that’s precisely what I dig about this Filip flip (edit) of Disclosure‘s “Omen“—its ability to take us to a part of the song that many others will never get to see.

Tonight I’m heading over to Chinatown for dinner with few friends to sip on some delicious Mezcals while we discuss new partnerships, the upcoming preparations for Fashion Week 2015 in a month, and to simply just kick back and chill out from a weekend of hardcore partying out east. Afterwards, we’re heading to Tribeca for a private pregame party until about 1am when we head off to dance to a song or three with some of the have nots in Bushwick, and then the real partying begins at the after party to it all—location undisclosed, but it’s the elephant that flies.

Oh, Tuesday nights.

Disclosure ft. Sam Smith – Omen [Filip Flip]

Elohim – Xanax

This song is literally bursting at its seams with a bunch of tightly packed little truths fighting to be heard. I mean really, no matter how at peace we are with our lives in general, don’t we all deal with countless little anxiety-producing moments all day, every day? I’m one of the happiest people I know, and I’ll be damned if I don’t have to work through 20 seconds of dread every time I have to do something relatively benign, like talk on the phone or choose what to eat for dinner. The key is to make sure the more complicated things only bring the same short burst of dread, at worst. It’s when those bursts of dread last days, weeks or even months that we find ourselves in need of help.

What’s so beautiful about this song is Elohim’s honesty. It’s like she’s testing the waters with her questions…asking for friends…for reassurance…while at the same time boasting confidently that she deals with crippling anxiety every day of her, day of her, day of her life. Revealing painful weakness in one thought and completely owning it in the next is as real as it gets and it’s super appealing. I’m pretty sure that’s what being human is all about.

Hearing Elohim deal with her anxiety this way is purely inspirational. It’s common practice to bury these feelings under layers of crap (I recently read that only 30-40% of people with chronic depression seek help), but she comes right out wearing them up and down her sleeve. Like Kramer’s lawyer Jackie Chiles infamously proclaimed about public bra-wearer Sue Ellen Mischke, “She’s flouting society’s conventions!!” And in this case, that’s a wonderful thing. Flout away Elohim, flout away.

And the trap hats and “ho’s” in the chorus don’t hurt either.

Invite Mara To Tea

Our breath is our most precious asset—when the breath goes, life goes. What a beautiful thought that is because short of someone killing you, no one but the creator himself can take your breath. Sit there for a moment and think about the miracle you are—out of all the planets, all the galaxies, all the dimensions and all the shit we don’t even know, here you are on earth breathing. I never understood why meditation advice always says that if you lose focus, return to the breath. I still don’t know shit about anything, but I like the grace I’m finding in being grateful.

Yet the gift and the curse is always in the same sentence. As humans our ambition leads us to wonderful achievements and progresses, yet it also makes us for get our fundamentals. Close your eyes, take a deep breath, enjoy that sensation and be mindful of what it means to be able to do that. Now realize that no one can take that from you…

Perfection is Achieved Not When There Is Nothing More to Add, But When There Is Nothing Left to Take Away.” – Antoine de Saint-Exupery

That is by far my favorite quote. Nothing material, nothing external can add to that experience of gratitude. No batteries, Ferrari or mansion required. I’m a miracle, a living manifestation of creation, I’m literally freestyling every moment of my life like a master artist – and so are you. What then can be bad under that God level perspective? If they can’t take your breath, your ability to create, what can they take from you? The answer is nothing, no one can take anything from you.

So when the curve balls come or when Mara comes knocking you don’t stress, you invite him to tea.

This being human is a guest house.
Every morning a new arrival.

A joy, a depression, a meanness,
Some momentary awareness comes
as an unexpected visitor.

Welcome and entertain them all!…

The dark thought, the shame, the malice,
meet them at the door laughing,
and invite them in.

Be grateful for whoever comes,
because each has been sent
as a guide from beyond.” —Rumi

These thoughts were inspired by Tara Brach’s Radical Acceptance, J-Lewis’ Soulchild and Ekali’s Gemini Remix , enjoy.

Julia Holter – Feel You

This is what, at last,
it is to be
a human being. – C.K. Williams

For the past year, I’ve been changing. Every fiber of me has been calling for it to happen. Because I live in LA, and we are prone to following anything astrological, metaphysical or transcendental, I’ve been told that what I’m going through is my Saturn return, and apparently I’ve got a whole other year or two before I’m through with this stage of my life.

In an effort to let go of all the mental and emotional residue that’s been holding me back, I started to rip apart and rebuild a huge portion of my life. Mostly the difference between my life now vs. my life last year is my willingness to be a little more honest with myself. Which is incredibly hard and still something I’m struggling with. What I want and expect out of life is maybe more complicated than what I thought, but I’m filled with nervous excitement at figuring out what that is.

I’ve been listening to this song on repeat for the past few days because I hear in Julia Holter someone else who’s reaching out for something indefinable. It’s ethereal and radiant, and an incredible new direction.

A sea of flashing light
I’m blinded by it –
the possibility.

EZRA – Crine

A certified banger in honor of another HARD Summer this weekend, rock on.

Swim Good x Merival — Since You Asked (Star Slinger Edit)

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What can you really do if someone doesn’t like you? Do you melt away like the wicked witch of the west, or do you just simply die because of it? Probably not, and who gives a fuck anyway because life is too motherfucking short to respond to text messages from wack people and not spam those emails in your inbox from the pathetic souls spewing nothing but shitty nonsense. At the end of the day, ignoring the fuck out of someone drives them nuts, and I for one get the biggest laughs out of doing it. It is our flat out and most basic human right to do so.

Anyway, this next track is something to listen to that will help you ignore the haters and just go on about with your day in the most carefree way. It’s a quick three minute and eighteen second ride of cool vocals and fun instrumentation with the perfect bpm to get you through the rest of this Thursday and carry you way into a sassy summer evening, wherever in the world you just might be.

Fuck the haters, press play and let the rest of this day bring you nothing but good times, perfect smiles and infectious laughter.

Enjoy amigos.

Paper Giants — Low

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Cruising the boulevard with Steve and Matt one sunny California afternoon, the world seemed like one beautiful slow motion film as I stared out from the back window. At La Cienega we made a quick left and then another left onto Santa Monica. I was leaving LA for NYC that night and I just wanted to take in the day and forget everything that had happened before then and not think about the things that were coming right after. It was that day that I learned how to fully take in the beauty of wherever I stand at the moment.

Earlier that morning, I had gone for my last hike on Runyon with Will and Nick. We walked our normal long-path and jogged a bit, as usual pausing and taking a deep breath of despair at the foot of the dirt steps that always managed to defeat us under the warming morning sun. After our hike we headed back to NoHo to grab the last of my luggage, and then Matt and Steve picked me up for lunch. That was when it hit me like the recap of the previous episode of a TV show plays at the start of the newest one right before it begins. I wasn’t going to see LA for some time again, and then all of the dope memories and images with music from my time there came crashing into my mind like someone had just plugged me into the matrix and overloaded me with the instant ability to know Kung Fu.

That day we had lunch at Urth and then drove out to Venice to smoke a j, walk the boardwalk and say my goodbyes to the Sunshine State. It was such a bittersweet day because I was saying goodbye to a mistress I kept denying, but I was still there with her watching to see if she would turn around to leave me instead.

In my time with LA I learned that she had the chillest drumbeat I had encountered out of all the states. California feels like reggae music with rock & roll guitar licks and the grittiness of the old Skid Row. A tattooed, statuesque beauty sultrily two-stepping in the middle of the boulevard under giant palm trees. That’s exactly what I can explain that Low by the Paper Giants feels like to me. The gritty drums that mimic a sunset stroll through the dangerous streets that Skid Row (downtown LA) used to be, mixed with those guitar licks echoed by the countless rockstars that have graced its (LA) airs and a coolness to it all that’s like pure naked sex with a beautiful model after listening to vinyl records all night, drunk off of bourbon.

“yea I’m already gone.” -Paper Giants

Sunk Cost Fallacy / “Where We Going For Breakfast?”

This last weekend I went on a wackness elimination purge like never before. Going through my apartment with the truth or naw googles on and trashing anything and everything that didn’t make the cut…

The two most dangerous words in the English language are: ‘Good Job.’”
– Whiplash

My twist on that this weekend was – good enough. What have I allowed in my life simply because it was good enough? I literally deleted my entire iTunes library because a large portion of the songs were me reaching to like something instead of my usual ruthless dedication to only the flyest shit, to only intaking and keeping things I’m truly in love with. So I asked myself, why am I holding on to this mediocre crap? Why am I allowing it to take up space on my hard drive? That’s when the metaphor hit me and I realized that we do this all the time. Ruled by our cognitive biases we hold on to things for reasons we’re totally unaware of, one of the main reasons is a thing called Sunk Cost Fallacy. You may not know it but it’s something we all fall trap to almost every day. How many times has this happened to you?

This TV show is starting to suck but I’ve already watched half of the season, I might as well finish the rest.” (AKA another 5 seasons)

You know it sucks, you know it will suck but our emotional investment traps us into believing we should continue doing something when it’s clearly against our best interest. Combine that with fear, marketing, the matrix, social influence, hype, biological programming, crazy people and you’ve got yourself some thick waters to navigate on your journey to maintaining and cultivating ultimate flyness and love.

If you want to live your life in a creative way, as an artist, you have to not look back too much. You have to be willing to take whatever you’ve done and whoever you were and throw them away. The more the outside world tries to reinforce an image of you, the harder it is to continue to be an artist, which is why a lot of times, artists have to say, “Bye. I have to go. I’m going crazy and I’m getting out of here.” And they go and hibernate somewhere. Maybe later they re-emerge a little differently. – Steve Jobs

My flyness was at a record high at about the time I started EMPT. I looked back for a second this weekend and saw that in between then and now I’ve accumulated a lot mediocre shit and now it’s time to axe it all and set a new record. The only thing I’ve ever been is an artist, everything outside of that has been problems dealing with people who don’t love that about me or me forgetting it myself. But it’s all good and I’m just about done resetting, the me who gave into good enough and good job is dying and when he’s gone a new me will come from the ether…

Sorry boys, all the stitches in the world can’t sew me together again. Lay down… lay down. Gonna stretch me out in Fernandez funeral home on Hun and Ninth street. Always knew I’d make a stop there, but a lot later than a whole gang of people thought…

Last of the Moh-Ricans… well maybe not the last. Gail’s gonna be a good mom… New improved Carlito Brigante… Hope she uses the money to get out. No room in this city for big hearts like hers. Sorry baby, I tried the best I could, honest… Can’t come with me on this trip though. Getting the shakes now, last call for drinks, bars closing down…

Sun’s out, where we going for breakfast?” – Carlito’s Way

Starling — Misfit


It was a Friday and Vanessa had just left for work. We had not been talking all week after her birthday dinner at home that Sunday. Every morning she would go to work and every morning I would wake up on the couch as soon as I would hear the door slam. I guess I was tired of the silent treatment, but maybe it was just being tired of being in a relationship that I knew wasn’t good for either one of us. The argument had just been an excuse to have a reason to leave, so I packed all my shit up on that Friday morning, put it in my car and left, never looking back.

We had met almost a decade before that and it was such a pretty love story when you cut out all the bad shit that happened in between. I guess that’s what our minds do in retrospect of our lives, and so the world calls us delusional when we choose to forget the worst parts of our existences and just focus on the positive. But that’s our right the same way we have no idea if the histories we are taught even occurred because we just have to take some books word for it, and so our minds are like these history books that we continuously edit, and then the stories we tell from these books become the only truth we know.

She was a homebody and all I wanted to do was go out and party and eat at a different restaurant every night and dance on a different dance floor until every morning. I wanted to explore the foreign countries we just landed on whenever we were on vacation and she just wanted to bask under the same exact sun we had back home. Love made us blind to our own misery with one another, until that misery was too much for the bridge to hold, and then it was a feather from a dove that flew over that bridge and landed on it that made it collapse, and then I found myself in supermarket aisles shopping for groceries all alone, and wondering if I would ever find another love again.

Starling says of the track:
Driven by such a hunger to be understood or accepted that most of my life has meant a kind of compromising. Anything to be loved or liked, leaving myself behind,” Starling said of her inspiration behind the track.

“I wrote ‘Misfit’ in an instance. Guess it was like an emotional sickness, a turning point inside, and I hope that if this sounds familiar to you, that you, like me, will fuck it all off and just be you, no compromise.”