This past Memorial Day Weekend, Bradley, California was the temporary home to thousands of people attending Lightning in a Bottle 2018. Being my second year attending, LIB is officially one of my annual staple events to attend like many others since it proved to be a revolutionary one. The Do Lab team once again brought forward everything we love about the festival, but also introduced new elements exceeding our expectations. It’s easy to say that the music is what makes a festival outstanding, but in reality, LIB goes beyond and provides more than just gems to the ears. This year LIB offered activities and classes around Learning & Culture, Interactivity, Art, Yoga & Movement, Community Crafted Goods & Conscious Cuisines, Families at LIB, The Great Outdoors, and of course, music. LIB 2018 is a conscious community that proves and thrives to make a better tomorrow for our future generations. Photo by Aaron Glassman Connections and ideas that bloom within these grounds has endless potential… After personally experiencing the four-day weekender, I believe everything it conveyed was only to improve ourselves and those around us. LIB had loads of classes and workshops led by teachers and speakers guiding us for a better self. The Learning & Culture element involved talks about plant medicine, relationship advice, the learning kitchen to feed the soul, water & fire prayers, and including crystal activation classes. Mario Covic Photography The Interactivity pillar was a definition of an adult playground. Throughout the entire weekend, there were immersive games and activities to partake in. These include the Must-Dash 5k Run, 3rd Annual Invitational Soap Box Derby, Pots & Pans Parade, Do-Over! Beauty Salon & Barber Shop, Fire Flow Zone, The Hideout, and Rink-A-Dink Rink. There was also Interactivity options available all day and night for anyone like the White Library, The Zoa, Boogaloo City and much more. A limitless experience. Photo by Janet Jaimes Photo by Janet Jaimes Photo by Jessica Bernstein The musical element of LIB stood out the most out of all the particles of the festival. photo credit Watchara Phomicinda It welcomed once again the Lightning, Woggie, Thunder, Grand Artique, Pagoda and Favela Stage. The Lightning stage invited live performances of various genres like Zhu, Monolink, Anderson .Paak & The Free Nationals, Sofi Tukker, and The Glitch Mob. The Woggie stage included acts from house to techno like Will Clarke, Purple Disco Machine, Yotto, Nicole Moudaber, Rampa, and Partricio. The Grand Artique had live instrumental performances and acts like The Herbert Bail Orchestra, Dragonfly, Sur, The Dragon Lights, Con Brio, and The Talent Show. The Pagoda Bar invited acts like Kraddy, Volo, Mansion, Ethan Glass, Pigeon Hole, The Librarian, and Gladkill. Lastly, The Favela Bar included artist like Patrik Zhack, Armen Miran, Enzo Muro, Lovecraft, and two surprise guests of Zhu and Sacha Robotti. Sacha Robotti – ‘Melato Nina’: Photo by Jessica Bernstein Photo by Jessica Bernstein Photo by Jessica Bernstein Art is undeniably Lightning in a Bottle’s backbone since it existed at every corner of the festival. There was live painting & art-walk, creative workshops & classes, art installations, structures & stages, and performance art. This year there was the Artclave that was designed to wake the inner artist of each one of us by taking lessons that were offered at different skill levels. The stages either music or interactive ones were carefully designed and curated perfectly becoming orgiastic to our eyes. The Yoga & Movement classes were offered in three tiers including yoga practices, meditation, and dance & movement. Every day at almost every hour there was a class held providing you an option to unwind in various ways. Classes involved included acro-yoga, ecstatic dancing, astro-flow, earthing, and so much more! The meditation point was located on the outside rim of the festival providing quiet and peacefulness atmospheres for your own meditation sessions. photo credit Get Tiny Photography Hailley Howard Photography The Community Crafted Goods & Conscious Cuisines included the marketplace, eats & drinks including beer, cocktails, and wine. There were options available for the health heads and those who wished to get wild with some sweets. This was considered as conscious eating and assisted on fueling our souls. Besides the food vendors, LIB provided three sit-down restaurants for either a date night or brunch with friends. Great place for a first date. ]]> LIB welcomed all ages to the festival and for this, families at LIB was crucially important. There was a set time and list of activities for the youth. These include games, exercise & play, freestyle flows, sound bath meditation, story time, face painting, and more. The parents had an option to sit in also on talks led by knowledgeable teachers in the Parent Portal in the Kids Village. Even us adults could sit in to really feel like a kid again. The location of LIB is truly one of the favorites. Having the option to camp by the lakeside made it a peaceful and pleasurable environment. Everyone brought their A-game by converting the campgrounds to their temporary homes. From decorating their tents and hosting parties to having cook-outs with new neighbors. Phones & Tops off fun! ]]> Photo by Jessica Bernstein Photo by Jessica Bernstein Photo by Jessica Bernstein Enjoy the Lightning in the Bottle 2018 announcement video, while waiting on the official recap. With all the components involved above, it’s obvious that Lightning in a Bottle stands out so different from other festivals. Everything that it conveys proves it wants to make history by being a conscious community making an impact for the generations of tomorrow. Follow Lightning in a Bottle:
The Dead & Company opened their tour last night at the Xfinity Center in Mansfield, Mass., the first of about two dozen dates they’ll play throughout the U.S. this summer. You can check out the set list and video below. According to JamBase, they opened their first set with “Shakedown Street” and closed with “Bird Song,” which dovetailed into “Loose Lucy” before heading back to “Bird Song.” The second set began with a medley of “Scarlet Begonias,” “Fire on the Mountain” and “Althea,” and ended with “Touch of Grey.” Because of the 11PM curfew, there was no encore. The Grateful Dead offshoot band formed in 2015 when former members Bob Weir, Mickey Hart and Bill Kreutzmann recruited singer-songwriter and guitarist John Mayer to join them along with former Allman Brothers Band bassist Oteil Burbridge and keyboardist Jeff Chimenti, who has played with various Grateful Dead spin-offs over the years. The band has toured extensively since its founding three years ago. In late 2017, Dead and Company postponed three shows after Mayer underwent an emergency appendectomy. They’ll play two nights in Camden, N.J., on June 1 and 2. The tour will wrap up in Boulder on July 14. Dead & Company, Mansfield, Mass., May 30, 2018First Set1. “Shakedown Street”2. “Alabama Getaway”3. “It’s All Over Now”4. “Brown-Eyed Women”5. “Tennessee Jed”6. “Bird Song” / “Loose Lucy” / “Bird Song” Second Set7. “Scarlet Begonias” / “Fire on the Mountain” / “Althea”8. “Estimated Prophet” / “The Other One Jam” / “Eyes of the World” / “Drums / Space” / “Stella Blue” / “Touch Of Grey”
Get Down, an album by ShaQ:Muzik on Spotify
‘Get Down’ by ShaQ:Muzik is a summer hit waiting to be discovered by the world. Its infectious melody will have festivals and beaches in party mode for years to come. If you like what you hear follow ShaQ:Muzik on twitter!
Let Me Fall, an album by M3XX D4MIAN on Spotify
Music Producer Maximilian Damian, alternatively known as M3XX D4MIAN has recently released his latest single ‘Let Me Fall’ on 23rd March. The single fuses contemporary beats with the soulful lyrics of singer/ songwriter ‘Eden Knight’. His soul-touching hooks and brain-nesting melodies inspired by artists such as David Guetta create a danceable vibe within his music.
Another astonishing Electric Daisy Carnival Las Vegas has come and gone leaving us in complete awe of just how over the top the festival is, and how even at the 22nd edition of the festival, it keeps getting better every year. Just a few weeks ago we were packing up our outfits, furs, sequins, and camping gear, while full of excitement and wonder of what the epic weekend had in store for us. Now that it’s passed, it almost seems like a dream, quite possibly the best dream of your life. photo credit Jake West for Insomniac After our long (but worth it) awaited entry into the campgrounds, we settled our belongings and headed to wander the Mesa and find our friends. As we approached, the Mesa was already filled with vibrant energies from beautiful like-minded souls ready to take on the auspicious weekend ahead of us. The Mesa was a treat; blessed with the presence of the Parliament Art Car for the Kick-off Pre-Party. photo credit Skyler Greene for Insomniac photo credit Skyler Greene for Insomniac We ‘banged the night away to some of the filthiest drops from Habstrakt, G Jones, and Excision, with surprise sets by NGHTMRE b2b Slander and Wavedash. The Mesa offered everything from transformational classes and goat yoga (yes, yoga with goats), bumper cars and a roller rink, food and a bar, vendors, and a sandbox, along with a stage in front of four pools for us to splash in. Our experience was beyond pleasant, and those of us at thatDROP will definitely be camping in the coming years. Our entry to the festival on Friday was nothing short of breathtaking, as it is every year. Skyler Greene for Insomniac You immediately become a kid again, this rush of excitement takes over you and you are so happy to be home after another long year. The music was sensational, feeling the bass vibrate through you at the front of Basspod definitely set the tone for bass filled weekend ahead. Some of our favorite moments of the evening included Yheti throwing down an unreleased remix of ‘Ichabod Crane’, G Jones B2B Eprom under the fireworks was a memory to never forget, and Flux Pavilion B2B Doctor P throwing down bangers that broke our necks. photo credit Jake West for Insomniac We also stopped by Tiesto’s beautiful tribute to Avicii at Kinetic Field to check out the new stage design that held two towering majestic beings which showed the meaning of Kinetic Love while guarding the heart of the festival. The 405-foot wide by 98-foot tall structure spanned over 350,000 square feet, the stage featured 427 moving lights, 44 flame units, 40 lasers and eight confetti blowers. photo credit Jake West for Insomniac photo credit Ivan Meneses for Insomniac While wandering we stumbled upon a LED attraction that resembled that of a flower hanging upside down, as we approached it, we were pleasantly surprised to hear classical music such as Bach and Beethoven, which made it the perfect place to lay down and enjoy the light show, meditate, or just take a breather. I actually spent a lot of time here, it was one of my favorite spots of the weekend. Julian Cassady for Insomniac photo credit Jake West for Insomniac While here we also learned about the 80-foot high, installation by Kevin Clark – Flower Tower – making it the largest installation brought to life as the pillar of flowers sat high above crowds, amazing us with its volcanic eruptions from 31 pyro locations hidden within the tower. Enjoy a playlist based on our favorite sets: Gorgon City, Green Velvet, Modestep, G Jones, EPROM, Detlef, Ekali, Rezz, Excision and Shiba San. aLive Coverage for Insomniac Saturday we were so excited to see Modestep after waiting many years for their return to EDC. The last time Modestep made an appearance was 2012. Having been a huge fan for a very long time, this was my favorite set of the weekend. We also noodled hard to the killer sounds of Ekali at Cosmic Meadow; Space Jesus, who brought out Champagne Drip for an unreleased banger called “Screwup”; Zeds Dead, who had us in a hypnotic state as usual; and Green Velvet at Neon Garden, who happened to throw down our second favorite set of the weekend in the new open-aired nightclub in the desert. The 28,000 square-foot dance floor generated an intimate space for fans to dance under the giant disco diamond while they enjoyed substantially groovy beats by world famous house and techno artists. Jake West Photography for Insomniac aLive Coverage for Insomniac Sunday came so fast it was almost nostalgic. There came a moment when I sat back and took it all in while looking at all of the euphoric activity happening in front of me. The lights, the energy, the infinite number of sound waves bouncing off the inner walls of the speedway, and right then, I realized just how fortunate we are to be able to be a part of something so special and grand. We made the most of the final hours as we watched them pass; Sunday’s are always a little bittersweet. We grooved out to Big Wild, as he put us in a trance of good vibes, we let our inner Rezzbians run wild while we threw ourselves around at Rezz’s hypnotizing set, Spag Heddy came threw with solid wubbs, and we got our final noodle in with The Binches. The Holy Mountain for Insomniac Slowly making our way up the stands and back out to camp for the after party with CamelPhat and Solardo, hosted by Bunny Eachon from Rabbit in the Moon, I sat for a moment to give my exhausted legs a break and took in one last glance of the ordinary speedway that was transformed into our paradise for just three short days. I watched the sun peak through the gray clouds as the final beats boomed inside. aLive Coverage for Insomniac The after party was poppin’, literally, it seemed like everyone was there. The energy was high, and it seemed no one wanted to quit as we grasped onto the last of the music to be played before heading to pack up our camp. For many of us, EDC Las Vegas is Home. Year after year, Pasquale and his team come back bigger and better, all for us. Insomniac never falls short in creating an oasis where we are free. We are beyond grateful to have been able to be a part of this beautiful community and history in the making. Thank you Insomniac for having us, we can’t wait to be back next year. Check out our EDC Las Vegas Photo Tour HERE. Follow EDC Las Vegas:
UFO frontman and sole original member Phil Mogg announced his retirement from the veteran British band after their 50th anniversary tour next year, bringing with it the expectation that they’ll split as a result. He revealed he’d been considering the move for some time and described it as a “bittersweet” decision. “I’ve considered stepping down at the end of UFO’s previous two tours,” Mogg said in a Facebook statement. “I don’t want to call this a farewell tour as I hate that word, but next year’s gigs will represent my final tap-dancing appearances with the band.” He added, “2019 marks UFO’s 50th anniversary, so the timing feels right. There will be a final tour of the U.K. and we will also play some shows in selected other cities that the band has a strong connection with. But outside of the U.K. this won’t be a long tour. Being out on the road isn’t always tremendously luxurious and although the playing is as great as it ever was, the stuff that surrounds it becomes very tiresome. I always told myself that when I reached that stage I would step down, and that’s what I’m going to do. This is the right time for me to quit.” Mogg, 70, added that he’d have “no problem with UFO continuing with a replacement” although the statement also said that it “seems almost certain” the band will split. He was sure there would be no new music from his lineup, noting, “I’ve told the guys that this is how it is. They know it’s my time to go and they know that they can do whatever they want to do without me but I don’t want to play live or make records anymore, though having said that I might go on and do an album of my own. I’ll have to see how I feel about that.” He concluded, “Maybe the best word to use is ‘bittersweet.’ But my time has arrived and all that remains is to make sure that we have a good tour.”
NGHTMRE Turns the Bass Up on Remix of Flosstradamus’s “MVP” ft. Smokepurpp – EDM | Electronic Music | EDM Music | EDM Festivals
Quickly finding fame after attending Los Angeles, California’s noteworthy music production school ICON Collective, Tyler has been travelling the globe, headlining music festivals under the moniker NGHTMRE. 2017 was quite an exceptional year for the artist, playing the world’s largest stages at iconic festivals like EDC in Las Vegas, Orlando, & Mexico, Lollapalooza in Chicago, Paris & Berlin, Coachella, Mysteryland, Electric Zoo, Shambhala, Ultra Music Festival, Creamfields, and Holy Ship! ~ && that’s just to name a few! photo credit NGHTMRE Though he rose through the ranks alongside his fellow ICON colleagues, SLANDER, in 2017 he demonstrated his ability to shine on his own in strong solo releases, in addition to holding down a residency at Hakkasan Las Vegas, all while staying busy creating hot collaborations with artists like Wiz Khalifa, Ghastly, and Dillon Francis, amongst others. NGHTMRE Flips Flosstradamus & Smokepurpp’s “MVP” [Out Now via Ultra Recs] MVP feat. Smokepurpp (NGHTMRE Remix) Listen to NGHTMRE’s Remix of “MVP” by Flosstradamus below: Fresh off that fantastic 2017, NGHTMRE continues making crowds go insane with his signature wonky trap sounds and bombastic basslines. Reflected in his work, NGHTMRE regularly puts his own spin on different genres, earlier this year fulfilling his remix duties with an interpretation of Ekali and ZHU’s “Blame”, and now his latest work taking on “MVP” by Flosstradamus. Released via Ultra Records, this past April, Flosstradamus had teamed up with Miami rapper Smokepurpp for their crossover track “MVP.” In NGHTMRE‘s version, he maintain’s the original track’s hip-hop vibe, but amps it up with his signature style, unleashing soul-shaking synths and reverberating bass throughout the track. BONUS TRACK: NGHTMRE remix of Ekali and ZHU’s “Blame”: With a busy 2018 ahead of the young producer, you can catch one of NGHTMRE‘s earth-rattling, bone-shaking, spine-tingling sets at just about any of the massive festivals coming up, the likes of which include Electric Daisy Carnival in Japan and Las Vegas, Spring Awakening in Chicago, Ultra in Singapore, Salt Lake City’s Das Energi, Gud Vibrations at the legendary Red Rocks Amphitheatre, as well as both Lost Lands and Bass Canyon, specially curated by the bass-lord himself, Excision. Having amassed such a reputation as being quite the bass manipulator himself, NGHTMRE will be playing the back-to-back set with Excision as an extra special treat for Bass Canyon Music Festival attendees, finishing off the Summer proper at The Gorge. Check out NGHTMRE’s Upcoming Tour Schedule below: DATE VENUE LOCATION TICKETS 5/12/2018 CREAMFIELDS BEIJING BEIJING, 24 BUY 5/13/2018 EDC JAPAN CHIBA, 04 BUY 5/17/2018 LIQUID POOL LOUNGE LAS VEGAS, NV BUY 5/17/2018 JEWEL NIGHTCLUB LAS VEGAS, NV BUY 5/18/2018 EDC LAS VEGAS LAS VEGAS, NV BUY 5/19/2018 EDC LAS VEGAS LAS VEGAS, NV BUY 5/26/2018 SUNSET MUSIC FESTIVAL TAMPA, FL BUY 5/27/2018 OMNIA SAN DIEGO SAN DIEGO, CA BUY 6/5/2018 OMNIA LAS VEGAS, NV BUY 6/9/2018 SPRING AWAKENING CHICAGO, IL BUY 6/15/2018 ULTRA SINGAPORE SINGAPORE, SINGAPORE BUY 6/16/2018 ULTRA SINGAPORE SINGAPORE, SINGAPORE BUY 6/29/2018 GUD VIBRATIONS BOAT PARTY BOSTON, MA BUY 7/1/2018 HAKKASAN LAS VEGAS, NV BUY 7/4/2018 BALATON SOUND ZAMARDI, HUNGARY BUY 7/12/2018 HAKKASAN LAS VEGAS, NV BUY 7/15/2018 AUDIOTISTIC MOUNTAIN VIEW, CA BUY 7/20/2018 TOMORROWLAND BOOM, BELGIUM BUY 7/29/2018 HAKKASAN LAS VEGAS, NV BUY 8/4/2018 VELD MUSIC FESTIVAL TORONTO, ON BUY 8/5/2018 VELD MUSIC FESTIVAL TORONTO, ON BUY 8/11/2018 MOONRISE BALTIMORE, MD BUY 8/12/2018 MOONRISE BALTIMORE, MD BUY 8/17/2018 DAS ENERGI SALT LAKE CITY, UT BUY 8/18/2018 DAS ENERGI SALT LAKE CITY, UT BUY 8/24/2018 BASS CANYON QUINCY, WA BUY 8/25/2018 BASS CANYON QUINCY, WA BUY 8/26/2018 BASS CANYON QUINCY, WA BUY 9/14/2018 LOST LANDS THORNVILLE, OH BUY 9/15/2018 LOST LANDS THORNVILLE, OH BUY 9/16/2018 LOST LANDS THORNVILLE, OH BUY 9/16/2018 GUD VIBRATIONS RED ROCKS MORRISON, CO BUY Follow NGHTMRE:
Joan Jett and the Blackhearts’ sixth studio album, Up Your Alley, was responsible for once again solidifying the determination of one of rock’s most resilient bands. Jett’s rise out of the Runaways’ ashes and celebrated come-up, despite doubts by major record labels, showcased her intent to persevere and thrive. Similarly, after the critical and commercial appeal of 1981’s Bad Reputation and I Love Rock ‘n’ Roll, and 1983’s Album, Jett and the Blackhearts’ hits suddenly stopped. This departure from the upper reaches of the charts would become an additional hurdle within the band’s adamant stride toward success. From 1984 to 1987, Jett and the Blackhearts released two albums, Glorious Results of a Misspent Youth and Good Music, neither of which resonated much. Jett also spent some of this time costarring with Michael J. Fox in the movie Light of Day, which was met with a varied range of reviews. Due for a musical comeback, Jett released Up Your Alley on May 23, 1988. In typical Blackhearts fashion, Up Your Alley featured an array of Jett originals, as well as a couple of choice covers: Chuck Berry’s “Tulane” and the Stooges’ “I Wanna Be Your Dog.” The album’s hit single, “I Hate Myself for Loving You,” featured guitarist Mick Taylor and was co-written by Desmond Child, the songwriter who helped bring hard rock into the Top 40 in the late ’80s, thanks to radio staples from Bon Jovi and Aerosmith. Watch Joan Jett and the Blackhearts’ Video for ‘I Hate Myself for Loving You’ Reaching No. 8, “I Hate Myself for Loving You” became Jett’s first hit single since her cover of Tommy James and the Shondells’ “Crimson and Clover” made it to the Top 10 in 1982. The song is also notable for being Jett’s only Grammy Award nomination for Best Rock Performance by a Duo or Group With Vocal. The song was later included in the Guitar Hero video game, in the Rock of Ages Broadway musical and then reworked for the opening theme for NBC’s Football Night in America. It’s also showed up in several movies over the years, including an appearance 30 years later in 2018’s Ready Player One.
Christian Löffler puts on a spectacular live set within ruins of a castle South of France. Traveling from Germany to put on this extra special performance, Christian Löffler sets up a sound studio high up within the hills south of France. With stunning views looking out to the world, Christian Löffler goes in on this 1 hour and 15 minute special minimal techno performance. Christian Löffler has his own unique signature style, playing organic minimal techno music, with his sound combining melancholy with euphoria. The minimalistic techno vibes echoed throughout Löffler’s temporary venue within Fontaine de Vaucluse, carrying over the cliff, high and mighty, of what once stood as the Château des évêques de Cavaillon. Video credits:Artist: Christian Löffler ~ Venue: Château des évêques de Cavaillon (Fontaine de Vaucluse)Produced by Cercle Executive producers: Philippe Tuchmann & Derek Barbell ~ Directed by: Derek Barbell ~ 1st assistant: Pol Souchier ~ Live Editor: Pol Souchier ~ Directors of photography: Houssam Omar & Haytham Omar ~ Sound Engineer: Aurélien Moisan ~ Drone: Cercle Technical partner (truss, sound, lights): FL Group Check out the Tracklist to Christian Löffler’s set within Fontaine de Vaucluse below: 00:00 Christian Löffler – Neo 08:20 Good Guy Mikesh – Spare (Christian Löffler Remix) 17:00 Christian Löffler – A Hundred Lights 21:08 Christian Löffler – Beirut 27:34 Christian Löffler – Blind 34:40 Christian Löffler – A Forest 41:26 Christian Löffler – Haul (ft. Mohna) 47:30 Christian Löffler – Field 52:55 Christian Löffler – Athlete 58:05 Christian Löffler – Licht 1:04:10 Christian Löffler – Mt. Grace 1:11:30 Christian Löffler – Tausend Believe it or not, he does play at other locations besides in ruins, so check out the Upcoming Tour Dates of Christian Löffler. This summer he will be bouncing around Spain, Germany, France and Switzerland. Also, be sure to catch more amazing sets brought to us by Cercle. Follow Christian Löffler:
Experience, star power and the ability to speak to young people in a language they understand have made certain rockers a powerful draw to colleges during commencement season over the years. They’re often brought in to deliver these addresses to graduates from a viewpoint you usually don’t get with more traditional speakers. Some have shared advice, some dazzled with their one-of-a-kind stories and some went down more humorous paths. Here is a sampling of some of Rock’s Funniest Commencement Speeches. Bono, University of Pennsylvania, 2004 “Hi, my name is Bono and I’m a rock star. … I don’t think there’s anything certainly more unseemly than the sight of a rock star in academic robes. It’s a bit like when people put their King Charles spaniels in little tartan sweats and hats. It’s not natural. And it doesn’t make the dog any smarter.” “Elvis said to me, ‘Hey, man, you’re that cat with the makeup and the snakes. That’s cool, man. I dig that’ … So there I was with a loaded snub-nose Smith & Wesson 38 aimed at Elvis Presley. The little devil on my shoulder said, ‘Kill him.’ The angel the other shoulder said, ‘No, just wound him …’” Paul Marotta, Getty Images“I’ve got something here which could be reasonably called a speech. After the experience of listening to the concert last night, this speech is rendered useless. So here I am; I’m a sort of a busking musician trying to busk my speech.” “During one of our expeditions on the backstreets, a kid comes running up to [John Lennon ] and says, ‘Are you John Lennon?’ And he said, ‘No, but I wish I had his money.’ Which I promptly stole for myself. ‘Are you David Bowie?’ ‘No, but I wish I had his money.’ It’s brilliant. It was such a wonderful thing to say. The kid said, ‘Oh, sorry. Of course you aren’t,’ and ran off. I thought, ‘This is the most effective device I’ve heard.’ I was back in New York a couple of months later in Soho, downtown, and a voice pipes up in my ear, ‘Are you David Bowie?’ And I said, ‘No, but I wish I had his money.’ ‘You lying bastard. You wish you had my money.’ It was John Lennon.” “Be Santa Claus when you can. Being a graduate of this great university makes you luckier than most. Don’t ever take this opportunity as something you deserve. Think of it as a gift you can repay going forward. Trust the universe and fins up!” “I’m here as a cautionary tale. I am the world’s greatest adviser, not because I’m smart, but because I have screwed up in every way possible. So, when I suggest something, I can speak with real authority because I most likely did the opposite with a not very good result.” Sting, Berklee College of Music, 1994 “I began to aspire to the piano and would spend hours hammering away at atonal clusters in the delusion that if I persisted long enough my noise would become music. I still labor under this delusion. My mother cursed me with the fine ear of a musician but the hands of a plumber. Anyway, the piano had to be sold to help us out of a financial hole, and my career as an atonal serialist was mercifully stunted. It wasn’t until an uncle of mine emigrated to Canada, leaving behind an old Spanish guitar with five rusty strings that my enormous and clumsy fingers found a musical home, and I found what was to become my best friend. Where the piano had seemed incomprehensible, I was able to make music on the guitar almost instantaneously.” “What I do, in my opinion, is by no means extraordinary. I am, as I’ve said, merely competent. But in an age of incompetence, that makes me extraordinary. Maybe that’s why I’ve been able to last in this crazy business. I actually know how to play my axe and write a song. That’s my job. So when are you going to get a real job? When are you going to get serious about life? I have news for them: When are you going to get a real job? This is a real job — as real as a doctor, a teacher or a scientist, and just as important as and very similar to healing, teaching and inventing. But even more fun because we have that wizard and sorcerer bit going for us. I have said before to those who have expressed doubts and misgivings about their ability to live this kind of life, maybe they shouldn’t try, because being a musician is not something you chose to be. It is something you are, like tall or short or straight or gay. There is no choice, either you is or you ain’t.”