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Philly Show NOT to be missed: Hippo Campus at The Barbary in Philly TONIGHT!!!!!

12 Nov
Hippo Campus play a sold-out show at The Barbary tonight!

Hippo Campus play a sold-out show at The Barbary tonight!

Earlier this year, we caught Hippo Campus in Philadelphia on tour with Night Riots and The Mowgli’s at Union Transfer. Since then, the band has had a busy summer playing festivals like Lollapalooza, Summer Set and The Great Escape Festival in Brighton. Now, they are headlining a Fall Tour which stops in Philadelphia tonight for a sold-out show at The Barbary. Read our interview below and don’t miss their show tonight!

You all went to Performing Arts High School together. Is that how you met and formed the band?

Zach Sutton (bass): “Yeah, well we all met at a performing arts High School, like you said, in St. Paul. It’s called The St. Paul Conservatory for Performing Artists, David, our designer as well. We all met there. Jake and I were in one band and these guys in another and there was sort of a rivalry between the two. That was going on for two years and then at the end of our high school career we’re like ‘Hey! I like what you’re working with. Let’s team up!’ Put the guns down, so to speak, and work together. Bing Bang boom! Almost two years later, here we are.”

What was it like to start writing together at first? How do you write together now?

Whistler Allen (drums): “I don’t even remember the first time we practiced. I think it took a while for all four of us to end up in the room together. But, Zach, Nathan and Jake all live right next to each other and I kind of live in the outskirts. Actually, they live in the outskirts of the city and I live in the city. But yeah, it took a little while for all four of us to get together, but once we did it was really easy to write stuff. It was not difficult. It just clicked. That’s kind of how it’s been ever since then. We’ve had our struggles in the practice room but usually it ends with something cool coming out.”

Do you guys just jam and see how it goes?

Nathan Stocker (guitar): “Yeah, sometimes it’s a jam. Sometimes one of us will have an idea then bring it to the table and then we all work on it together. It’s very collaborative.”

How did you get discovered/signed?

Jake Luppen (vocals): “We actually got ‘discovered’ if you will at this weird, sort of, I mean it’s a cool venue in Minneapolis. But it was kind of a weird show. I’m pretty sure it was on a Wednesday night or something like that about a year ago?” The boys chime in the date. He continues, “December 14! The lighting guy for Trampled by Turtles, they’re a band from Minnesota who’s done very well. He was there, just happened to be running lights and he saw us and really had faith in what we were doing and really loved what he heard. He kind of passed our name along to our managers now, Jeff and Christian and they heard it and they flew out from New York to talk to us and it was a good relationship. Ever since then it’s been steady up and up. Everything’s been great.”

When you put the album together did you already have songs already written?
Jake Luppen (vocals): “Yeah we probably had, at the point of writing Bashful Creatures, I think we had about 20 songs that we’d written? Probably around 20. ‘Bashful’ was like the newest songs that we had written. We wrote those very shortly before going into the studio, over the course of that summer, then we recorded it in September.”

Zach Sutton (bass): “Little Grace” was the first single off [Bashful Creatures] was the only one that was written about a year before we recorded it. That one just happened to stick with it and fit in.” 3:40

How has tour been so far?

Nathan Stocker (guitar): “Some say it’s been like a rodeo/circus combo. Shark week…sort of vibe. It’s been a blast and a half. Really busy, really fun. Hard to sleep, hard to eat. But you know, we ride the ups and downs as if this were a roller coaster.”

What do you guys do for fun on tour?

It’s unanimous. Jake Luppen (vocals): “Sleep. We sleep.”
Zach Sutton (bass): “Professional sleepers over here.”
Nathan Stocker (guitar): “Oh yeah, actually Jake and I are really good at sleeping. If you want lessons, we do those…$20 a minute.”

Hippo Campus play an early show tonight at The Barbary with Bad Bad Hats. Don’t sleep on this one! Doors are at 6:30PM, this is an early show with two incredible bands playing, don’t be late.

To find tickets and more information about when Hippo Campus is playing a city near you, click here! If you go to a Hippo Campus show, make sure to tag us in your photos and videos [at]mylifeinsound!

Check out Hippo Campus’ new single “South” and photos from their show at Union Transfer below:

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xx Cher

For more new music follow mylifeinsound on Facebook and Twitter!

Less Than Zero: An Interview with ZouZou Mansour from Soraia Part II + Show At Milkboy Tomorrow!!!

1 Oct

Soraia TBird and ZZ (Beth)

Back in January, I heard a song on Little Steven’s Underground Garage that rocked so hard I stayed in the car until it was over even though I arrived at my destination. I took a picture of the band’s name to remember to look it up later, somewhat ashamed. How have I never heard of this badass babe from the 70s named Soraia covering The Kinks song “(I’m Not) Like Everybody Else”? To my surprise, when I googled the musician, it turned out to be a band, and a current one, from my hometown of Philadelphia. I immediately found out who was singing and reached out to ZouZou Mansour the powerful, earth-goddess vocal machine who sounds like she’s from another time. We soon met at a coffee shop for an interview. I wanted to know everything about her life and her band, and I was pleasantly surprised at how raw, honest, and open she was. ZouZou’s story not only moved me, but it ignited the fire and passion I have for music talking to such a strong, influential woman in the industry.

In honor of Soraia’s album release show and music video shoot at Milkboy in Philly this Friday, I am releasing our interview in three parts over the course of this week. Read part two below and buy your tickets to this Friday’s show and music video shoot now here! Tickets are only $10 and with The Good Excuses and The Droogettes opening, you do not want to miss this epic night of pure rock’n’roll. Didn’t read Part I yet? Click here.

Soraia Instagram

“I went to jail once. I was arrested on my 21st birthday. I remember that the woman that was checking my hair was checking my hair for drugs. She said, “Honey look I”m really going to have to mess up your hair, mess up your clothes, I am really sorry,”. She was apologizing to me and I’ll never forget that because I got this sense that I didn’t belong in the life I was living. I didn’t think I was better than or worse than, I knew I didn’t belong there. That wasn’t what I was supposed to be doing with my life, and I had that feeling the whole time. I didn’t understand with all the suicide attempts…I’d be like why don’t you just take me? Just take me. I think there was a point where I was living with a dealer and his girlfriend. She’s dead now, most of the people I used with are dead. Where I was shooting and I had one day away from them but they’re so paranoid that they thought I went to the cops or something and they started beating me up and I knew I was going to get killed and I jumped out of a window and ran.”

Throwback Thursday photo instagram and fb-002

“I didn’t want to, I wanted to stay there and keep using and keep- you know, I lived to use. I didn’t live for any other reason, but something in me pulled me out of it that was bigger than me and got me out the window and I didn’t stop running. That moment I knew that there was something. I had to stop at some point but I couldn’t imagine not doing it. I continued for a while after that but it was never the same. Finally, I did go to rehab. I did relapse after that and then I got sober. I’m clean and sober a while now but it took a few tries for me. But that moment when my body did what my mind didn’t want to do I knew there was something- that all those thoughts of I don;t belong here I shouldn’t be doing this, there’s something more for me kind of came to fruition slowly but there wasn’t one epiphany, there was just a bunch of small ones. My drinking and drugging career didn’t last long, it didn’t last long at all. It didn’t have to. But it was enough. As soon as I got sober I went back to school and it took two and a half years to finish college because I was an overachiever in everything…I was an addict in everything. I went right to teaching and I taught for a few years. In the second year I knew I wanted to be a singer because I started singing. I knew I wanted to do that full time. A friend of mine said to me you can be an old teacher but you can’t be an old rocknroller, so if you want it go after it. Which is not true, but I needed to hear it at the time. So I quit my job and put a band together and eighteen drummers later,” she laughs manically, “I’m still in the same band. With everyone different except one guy. Basically the songwriters stayed, I stayed. It’s built around that energy. People come and go but it’s a good group that I have now.”

Soraia_2178

“The last record Soraia Lives was a reaction to the record before, called In the Valley of Love and Guns. That record took about three years to make. Not because anyone in the band wanted it to take that long. But at that point we were getting the help of really big people like Jon Bon Jovi helped us. This guy Billy Falcon, I co-wrote with them great songs, great songs. We were in the studio all the time, but I was just looking at something today we had like 20 or 30 vocal takes on each track, it was crazy. More than that, but it was a really long process. At the end of it there were a lot of promises. Just not from anybody in particular but a lot of promise for that record. The promise that we thought it was going to have didn’t come through. So we kind of sarcastically called the next record Soraia Lives because we should have been dead a long time ago,” She laughs. “Same thing in my life. We thought b-movie kind of thing because we loved that stuff. We did a live show in November of 2013 in New York City at The Bitter End. Little Steven Van Zandt and his wife came to our show because they loved “Voodoo” off the last record.”



“They loved the show and Steven said, “Let me work with the band on your live show”. So we went into his studio just for three sessions and changed some things we didn’t like about the songs, added some parts, took some songs out, and ended with a live set of really great songs that were really Soraia. They weren’t trying to sound like anything but us. It fit our live show, everything we did. So we decided last summer to record them, with the new songs we were coming up with. We started following what we decided to do without this thought of writing a song for an audience, we just did what came to us. Very poetic kind of stuff and some stuff very song oriented and we went in and we already had the songs down. So we went into the studio and recorded them. Didn’t take long, maybe two or three days to do ten songs. We recorded in Philly, we consciously decided to go to a studio that was- we just wanted to get the songs banged out. We didn’t need a big drum room, we didn’t care what kind of mics it had it was like the first time we just didn’t care.”

Soraia Dobbs 8-001
“We just went in, we were like, ‘We are just going to record us as we are’, overdubs minimal, mostly just us. One vocal take, one everything. We didn’t know what would come of it and I didn’t have any pressure on us to be anything in particular. I just wanted to have fun. It was really important to us to have fun this time and we did. Out of it I knew there were two songs that really floated to the top one was the cover of The Kinks “I’m Not Like Everybody Else” because it’s such a statement of who we are. The second song was “What Imagination?” both of those songs I wanted to spend more time with in the final mix and mastering and we did. The one song, “I’m Not Like Everybody Else” is the one that got picked by Little Steven [Van Zandt] as the “Coolest Song In The World” and I knew it! I knew as soon as I heard it I got goosebumps listening to my own band, and just being like ‘That’s us!’ finally we captured us. Raw, non-apologetic, not perfect, not polished, but just who we are. And if people can’t hear the magic in that, shame on them. But also shame on us if we don’t put it out or we’re scared to. Because the record before that was so well done and so polished that I was afraid to put out something that was too raw. But I really loved this record. Everything that it says is really us. People responded so much to that song, and so much to that version of it that was just us being us, [and it] is so joyful. I am so grateful for that because that’s who we really are. And they loved us for who we really are more so than they loved this polished, pretty made up version of who we are- which is also is who we are. But this time we took off all the makeup and were just like, ‘here’s what I look like, do you still love me?’ and we got a good response!”

Stay tuned for part three of my interview with Soraia tomorrow and listen to a two new tracks from their upcoming record Less Than Zero “Beggar” and “Paper Man” below.

Come out to Milkboy this Friday for Soraia’s Less Than Zero record release show with The Good Excuses and The Droogettes opening at 8:30 PM. Tickets are $10 and you can get them here.



xx Cher

For more new music follow mylifeinsound on Facebook and Twitter!

Less Than Zero: An Interview with ZouZou Mansour from Soraia + Album Release Show this Friday at Milkboy!!!!

30 Sep

Soraia Instagram

Back in January, I heard a song on Little Steven’s Underground Garage that rocked so hard I stayed in the car until it was over even though I arrived at my destination. I took a picture of the band’s name to remember to look it up later, somewhat ashamed. How have I never heard of this badass babe from the 70s named Soraia covering The Kinks song “(I’m Not) Like Everybody Else”? To my surprise, when I googled the musician, it turned out to be a band, and a current one, from my hometown of Philadelphia. I immediately found out who was singing and reached out to ZouZou Mansour the powerful, earth-goddess vocal machine who sounds like she’s from another time. We soon met at a coffee shop for an interview. I wanted to know everything about her life and her band, and I was pleasantly surprised at how raw, honest, and open she was. ZouZou’s story not only moved me, but it ignited the fire and passion I have for music talking to such a strong, influential woman in the industry.

In honor of Soraia’s album release show and music video shoot at Milkboy in Philly this Friday, I am releasing our interview in three parts over the course of this week. Read part one below and buy your tickets to this Friday’s show and music video shoot now here! Tickets are only $10 and with The Good Excuses and The Droogettes opening, you do not want to miss this epic night of pure rock’n’roll.

Soraia TBird and ZZ (Beth)

“I grew up in an upper middle class family. My father was Egyptian and my mother was Belgian, so they were both from other countries. I remember very early having the idea that I couldn’t tell people about my family life because it was very secretive. There was a lot of domestic abuse, a lot of yelling, a lot of uncertainty, a lot of adjusting to people’s moods from an early age and sensing people’s moods. Which I think helps me- it’s a gift and a curse. You know, because in relationships- not so good, in music- great. It’s a good way to work with an audience and change their mood. But several suicide attempts as a young person, just feeling hopeless, and never really telling anyone about them. But I remember when I found music: it saved my life. It absolutely saved my life so many times. No matter what happened or what was going on at home, this all happened through high school into when my mother died. I was seventeen. Music was my way of detaching from the pain of watching people I love self destruct. I always had this feeling that I could control them in some way and fix them. Music was the one thing that I did for myself that I found joy and solace in and always gave me a sense of hope. So music to me is something I not only honor, but I always hear Joan Jett say, ‘it’s like a religion’. For not many people it is, but for me it’s absolutely a religion. It’s the one thing that made me feel safe, made me feel joy, made me feel every mood that I would squelch in every other way. You know, songs have done that for me.”

soraia-offstage

“I’ve always been attracted to female artists more so, even though I listened to a lot of male artists I was always a fan of songs more than bands. Though in high school I was very attracted to a certain type of band. I loved raw bands. I loved melody. It’s like what I liked hearing was the opposite of what I liked seeing musically. I loved melody. I loved melody (she emphasizes). I loved stories. I loved all genres. I just loved songs. There wasn’t many artists I didn’t like growing up. I did listen to popular radio I would say until…I remember Nirvana being so big at one point and all those bands of that ’92, ’93, ’94 period being such a big influence on me. Because it was so different than what had come before it and I remember just thinking, ‘I found something that spoke to me’. There were so many great female fronted acts like The Breeders at the time, the song “Cannonball” I’ll never forget that song. Just great music in the early to mid 90s and that’s kind of been my biggest influence on my writing and on me getting in touch with a lot of things that are darker inside and accepting those parts. I don’t have to be happy all the time. Its okay. But I never really thought of music as a career except I always was a drummer. In high school I started an all girl band and it was ‘we were going to be famous, we were going to be huge’ we just learned cover songs constantly. I played drums because I wanted to be a singer, but I had this belief which I thought you were either born to sing or you weren’t. My voice was so masculine was so low, that in my high school it was considered not a very good voice. I don’t know if that message was said to me or if I just thought that because all the girls who got the parts had those ‘high voices’, she sings out before joking, “I can’t even reach that note. So I thought well I’m never going to be a singer but I still want to be in music so I’ll play drums, I loved playing drums. That’s how I started out and it was until a birthday I had I remember I was playing drums for a band and that’s when I started singing because their singer didn’t show up. So I just jumped.”

Soraia

“Growing up music always gave me comfort, but there was a period where I got really lost after my mother died. At 17, I made a conscience decision the day of her funeral that I was going to stop doing the right thing and doing anything good and if there was a god in the world it wanted nothing to do with me. So I was going to do everything to destroy my own life. It was a very conscience decision on my part to pick up drugs and alcohol. When I picked up I picked up hardcore. I didn’t pick up and dabble. I wasn’t there to experiment. I was there to get lost. Because I felt so much. Most artists feel very deeply and most humans do but especially artists. I think they tend to feel weird about their [sensitivity], because it’s not the common sensitivity. It’s hard to deal with life on life’s terms often, but at that point I didn’t want to feel anything because everything I felt was pain. So drugs and alcohol helped me to squelch that. But it also led me down a lot of bad roads. That part of wanting to die and everything, I felt bad and it kept following me around. The people I got involved with and the things that happened to me have made me into the singer I am today. It’s a blessing, first of all that I survived it, and second of all, I have a message, and it’s a strong one. I think it comes through when people hear my voice, they hear it and they’re either attracted to it or repelled by it,” she laughs. “Hopefully attracted to it and it’s just a deeper [meaning] when you go through stuff. That’s why I that lotus. It grows through mud and becomes beautiful. I feel like you can take anything that happened and make it into beauty.”

Stay tuned for part two of my interview with Soraia tomorrow and listen to a new track from their upcoming record Less Than Zero “Radio Sister” below.

Come out to Milkboy this Friday for Soraia’s Less Than Zero record release show with The Good Excuses and The Droogettes opening at 8:30 PM. Tickets are $10 and you can get them here.

xx Cher

For more new music follow mylifeinsound on Facebook and Twitter!

Philly Shows this week: Don’t miss Courtney Barnett, Bombay Bicycle Club, or The Kills!!!

19 Oct

This week is a great week to see live music in Philly! Start your week off right and see Courtney Barnett at Union Transfer on Monday, Bombay Bicycle Club at Union Transfer on Tuesday, and The Kills rock The Troc on Wednesday!!!

court

If you haven’t had the chance to see Courtney Barnett live yet, this Monday is going to be a wild ride for you. The songstress has been touring non-stop after releasing her A Sea of Split Peas EP and rightfully so- her and her band deliver live. Between her storytelling lyrics, explosive guitar playing, and the radiating energy exchange between her and her bandmates, your Monday night will come alive. Her show will give you the energy to get through your Monday and leave you inspired to see the other incredible shows happening this week. Tickets are only $20 and you can get yours now here or at the box office. The show starts at 8PM so make sure you get there on time to see San Fermin supporting. I recently caught up with Courtney Barnett about this US tour, her label Milk! Records, and new music you should listen to! Read it on blahblahblahscience here.



Bombay Bicycle Club

I’ve loved Bombay Bicycle Club for some time now and have actually lost track of how many times I have seen them live. But one thing is always certain, I will never miss one of their shows in my town…ever. These boys make such incredible music and are constantly stepping up their live shows. The band is currently touring their new album So Long, See You Tomorrow which has yet to leave my record player this year. Bombay Bicycle will play the perfect mixture of your favorite new tracks along with your favorites from their other brilliant albums. The band will have the whole room moving, smiling and forgetting that it’s only Tuesday, so make sure you are there. The show starts at 8PM with Milo Greene and Luxley supporting. Tickets are $25 and you can get them now here or at the door. Until then, read my interview from the last time they were in town on The Waster here!



equipment-febrero-the-kills6

What better to get you through your mid-week blues than some badass rock’n’roll? The Trocadero has you covered as The Kills are scheduled to blow your eardrums and your mind with their addictive and seductive songs live. The energy transferred between the duo live is so electric and raw you will find yourself moving, sweating and mesmerized. The show starts at 7:30pm with Moon Duo and Nuns opening, you can get your tickets now here!



drowners

NYC rockers Drowners are also in town Wednesday to play Boot & Saddle on their Dr. Martens Stand For Something tour. The band will also be stopping at the Dr. Martens store on Walnut St. for a meet and greet with their fans at 6pm. You can get tickets for their show after here!



xx Cher

mylifeinsound chats xx: Elephant Stone Interview

20 Sep

elephant stone

Elephant Stone, one of my favorite psych rock bands from Canada came to Philly to play Kung Fu Necktie. After playing a killer show, I got to chat with Rishi Dhir about their new self-titled record, playing sitar for Beck, and what music they are listening to right now. They are currently touring Europe with The Black Angels, so make sure you see them live by checking out their tour dates here!

xx Cher

lovelovelove: Firefly Music Festival Day 2

21 Jul

It’s Firefly Music Festival day two and I cannot wait to see Ra Ra Riot, Imagine Dragons, Polica, Grouplove, Graffiti6, Cake, Modest Mouse, Yeasayer, and of course The Killers!!! Today I will be mix and matching with a tie dye top in honor of Graffiti6’s rad album Colours out now!! I will be interviewing Jamie from the band today and I am so stoked to hear what the band has in store for the rest of the year. Check out what I am wearing and some tracks I am excited to hear live and remember to follow me on @Mylifeinsound twitter and CherylDunnisFun on Instagram for photo updates throughout the weekend!













Enjoy the festival if you are here! Stay safe, dance, have fun, and take care of each other!
xx

Philly shows NOT to be missed xx: Beat Connection, Teen Daze, and White Arrows at Kung Fu Necktie // Tanlines at Making Time TONIGHT!!!

3 Jul

God Bless America!!! Beat Connection is in Philly tonight at Kung Fu Necktie, and I couldn’t be more excited to see/hear them perform songs off their gorgeous follow up to Surf Noir called The Palace Garden out now! Beat Connection are a dreamy bunch of boys that make beautiful, fun, dance music perfect for your summer and life soundtrack. Started by Jordan Koplowitz and Reed Juenger in 2008, the boys brought in more members to really see this project through. When they played Philly at First Unitarian Church, they had added drummer Jarred Katz who brought an incredible energy and sound to the live show. At SXSW this March, I got to see them with their final full band which includes vocalist/guitarist Tom Eddy. I had the incredible opportunity of interview these hilarious and rad dudes, and can’t wait to be reunited with them tonight at Kung Fu Necktie. The show starts at 9pm tonight and you can buy tickets for only $10 here.







Make sure you get there right at 9PM to see the stellar opening bands White Arrows and Teen Daze!

Vancouver electronic dream TeenDaze has a brilliant debut album All Of Us, Together and it’s out now so make sure you get your copy if you don’t have it already.


Los Angeles foxes White Arrows also have an epic debut album out now for your absolute listening pleasure. Dry Land Is Not A Myth dropped on June 19th through Votiv. Another incredible album to dance the night away to, including two of my favorite tracks “Get Gone” and “Roll Forever”.





Needless to say, tonight is going to be an absolutely epic and dreamy dance party at KFN due to all parties involved. I CAN’T WAIT.



After the show I am heading over to Bamboo Bar to catch TANLINES at Making Time’s You’re Welcome America RAD-BQ!!!! That’s right!! To ring in the 4th of July Tanlines are playing tonight in Philly at Bamboo Bar at 11pm. I already told you how obsessed I am with Tanlines new record Mixed Emotions which is out now, and now is our chance to see those songs performed live and dance away into the early morning hours of everyone’s (at least America’s and my) favorite holiday! You can get advance tickets here for $10 or get your tickets at the door for $15! Check out the Facebook event for more info on the RAD-BQ and specials, and I will see you on the dance floor tonight!!






xx

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