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Showing posts from February, 2015

Song of the Month: March 2015

Anyone familiar with Kylie Minogue's "Get Outta My Way" from 2010 will notice that it has been sampled in Alesso's "Cool," featuring Roy English (above, right). And, believe it or not, it works wonderfully, especially with English's vocals, allowing the track to slightly rise above the standard EDM fare that's flooding the airwaves. That, and it's a perfect song to get me pumped for my birthday at the end of the month. Give it a try: And because I can't make up my mind and choose one song to dominate my month, I'm just going to drop this right here, the latest from British songstress Clare Maguire. Ladies and gents, introducing the infectious, sass-filled "Don't Mess Me Around": @TheFirstEcho

The Only 'Black and Blue' That Matters

Screw your white-and-gold nonsense. #TheDress @TheFirstEcho

'Clue' Turns 30: Let's Celebrate With Some GIFs, Shall We?

Clue , the 1985 movie adaptation of the popular murder-mystery board game (written by John Landis) that sparked a humongous cult following, is celebrating a humongous anniversary this year. And yours truly, who has attended several midnight screenings of the film and watched it dozens of times on VHS, DVD, and Netflix, plans to celebrate alongside all of the quote-spouting die-hards who are just as obsessive as I am. Has it really been 30 years? Let me count... Well, either way, the geek out is real. I'm so excited! There isn't enough exclamation points to express my excitement! I'm so... To those who don't understand the comedic brilliance of this film, which stars a venerable who's-who of the comedy world -- Brennan, Lloyd, Mull, to name a few --  or don't even realize that this movie exists: I literally can't right now. This movie taught me how to be an optimist, to look on the bright side of things... ...and educated me o

Oscars 2015: The Best GIF of the Night

NPH did a great job last night -- as did Common, John Legend, and Gaga, who took all of us to church with their standing-O performances -- but it was Meryl and J.Lo who provided a gif that keeps on giving: their reaction to Patricia Arquette's you-go-girl acceptance speech: In short, this is to be saved and utilized for every "Yaaaassss" moment of 2015. Thank you ladies. @TheFirstEcho

When Bad Music Videos Happen to Great Pop Songs: Calvin Harris & HAIM's "Pray To God"

"I've got it!" cried the music video director. "Let's have these Wilson Phillips wannabes stand still and give us their best Morticia Addams. And we'll throw some animals in there. And then they're on horses! With mist!" Sheesh. @TheFirstEcho

Why 'Jupiter Ascending' Matters Despite Its Glorious Mess

Call me crazy, but the Wachowskis' Jupiter Ascending , despite its ridiculousness and not-so-great execution, is the kind of movie we desperately need in Hollywood. The big-budget sci-fi epic represents something that rarely happens at multiplexes across the country in the 21st century: a original piece of work widely distributed and put on the big screen. The word "Marvel" isn't attached to the opening credits (or any comic-book label for that matter). There's no YA novel from which it was adapted. Heck, there isn't even a cheesy 80s TV show that inspired a big-screen reboot of the property. And that, ladies and gentlemen, is a glorious thing. Yes, it's about Mila Kunis playing a cleaning lady who finds out she's a powerful descendant of an intergalactic dynasty. Yes, Channing Tatum plays a half-wolf hybrid who has a cool pair of gravity-defying rollerblades that makes the hoverboard in Back to the Future Part II look quaint. Yes, some of th

'The Breakfast Club' Turned 30, And This is How I Celebrated

With the one and only Lea Thompson ( Some Kind of Wonderful , Back to the Future ) February 15 marked the 30th anniversary of one of my all-time favorite movies, and I couldn't have imagined a better way to celebrate the milestone. The Breakfast Club was just one of the many movies gloriously retold through song in For The Record 's Dear John Hughes , a musical tribute to the director who gave an entire generation an unforgettable oeuvre and the rest of the world The Brat Pack. I was honored to be invited to the opening night of this spectacular show. (It was my fifth time attending the troupe's showcase, so you may have heard me rave about them before.) Needless to say, the 80s nostalgia was in full effect. Evan Rachel Wood gettin' some in a nod to Some Kind of Wonderful . And yes, there was cake at the afterparty where I got to meet Lea Thompson. (Quick story: Last year  Bello Mag  had done a spread on her daughter, Zoey Deutsch, and she thanked me fo

GOLDEN: The 2015 Winter Playlist, Vol. 2

2015 didn't start quite as expected. January was a challenging month, to say the least. Many of my loved ones experienced all kinds of loss, myself included. And since I'm a strong believer in music therapy, I want to share the songs that continue to help me get through this proverbial rough patch. After all, music is what brings us together, right? So let us all gather together. And listen: *NOTE: Since Spotify doesn't stream some of the songs I have in my library (probably because they're not yet available in the States), I'll have to make due and include them below. For instance: @TheFirstEcho

When Bad Music Videos Happen to Great Pop Songs: Taylor Swift's "Style"

The one song I was actually rooting for on Taylor Swift's 1989 , "Style," officially became the third single off the mega-selling album, and we've finally been treated to a music video that is quickly being slotted in my "When Bad Music Videos Happen to Great Pop Songs" file. First of all, there's no indication that this thing takes place at "midnight," and there's hardly any reference to T-Swift being picked up in a car with "no headlights." (In fact, in the last 5 seconds of the piece, we see a car roll up, headlights ablaze.) Secondly, I don't see her suitor slicking back his "long hair." Granted, he is wearing a "white T-shirt." And when the actual James Dean daydreamed, did each one of his eyes change colors? Why do I get the feeling that director Kyle Newman (this is his first time helming a music vid - shocker) didn't listen to a single lyric of this song, and instead, used this as a

Last Night Jennifer Hudson Wanted Me to #TurnItUpForChange

Last night, on behalf of Bello Mag and Hotter In Hollywood, I had the wonderful opportunity to experience my first vogueing ball at the W Hotel in Hollywood. (If you don't know what that is, go stream the documentary  Paris Is Burning on Netflix.) Jennifer Hudson, who's one of the founders of the marriage equality initiative known as Turn It Up For Change , opened the show with some killer numbers, including this one: If you want check out what went down at the event, go HERE . @TheFirstEcho

2 Years Without Cable: The Journey Continues

I was a cord cutter before I knew what a "cord cutter" was. Back in February of 2013, when I was unemployed and uninspired, I made one of the toughest decisions in my life (for me, at least): I cancelled my cable TV service . I wholeheartedly became a part of a generation that has plenty of alternatives to choose from when it comes to television viewing. (Thank you Internet!) I joined the trend that once had advertisers shaking in their boots. I say "had" because, after working in this industry for the past 17 months, I've witnessed the innovative ways those ad people have created to sell products to a group that has shunned traditional broadcast commercials. Words like "experiential," "social," "viral," and "media buyers" are typically tossed around in my everyday worklife now. Where there's a stream, there's a way . This week marks 2 years of me being cable-free. And. It. Is. Glorious. It's been