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Bjorn and The Sun: Twenty Five // From Los Angeles to Nashville

Bjorn and The Sun is the soulful duo that we've had blasting through our speakers for the past few months. This dynamic couple have an inescapable synergy and lyrics that sing to the soul and they recently released a music video for their songTwenty-Five. Get lost in their cross country journey and hear what Amanda from Bjorn and The Sun has to say about the experience. 


I look over my shoulder one last time to say goodbye to LA, right before it disappears behind the freeway tunnels lined with Wednesday evening traffic. Now, the sun begins to fall as we inch closer to the Arizona desert. Dinosaur mountains to our right and left, my feet up on the dash.

David bobs his head, calm and composed with cool uncertainty and then stokes his beard as he turns up the volume for Levon's solo. The sun is softer and gentler now making our ride already seem nostalgic, romantic. We pass Sore Finger Road and a pickup truck sides up next to us, honks a hello and kicks up dust behind it. I make eye contact with the friendly driver and nod as he smiles and continues to eat his sandwich.  A good omen if I do say so myself.     

Packing a few essentials into a car, partnered by a person I love, and exploring my world. I am breathing this very moment. With my arms wide, I will surrender and be open to all that I may see. Twenty-five years old and this dream's got me on my knees. 

 


Amanda Bjorn and David Donaldson, Bjorn and The Sun, made this music video while traveling across the country from Los Angeles to Nashville.  They are happily writing and playing music, meeting many talented, inspiring artists, and will begin to record their next EP this upcoming January with Andrija Tokic (Alabama Shakes, Hurray for the Riff Raff) at the Bomb Shelter in East Nashville.

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WildSpotlight: Natalie Carol of Valley Queen

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WildSpotlight: Natalie Carol of Valley Queen

Six years ago, Valley Queen’s front woman Natalie Carol drove to Los Angeles on a whim, looking to expand her musical horizons. After a lonely and frustrating year, she was on the verge of returning home when she happened upon an acoustic jam session where she met guitarist David Donaldson.

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You Oughta Know: BLKKATHY

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You Oughta Know: BLKKATHY

This Brooklyn based duo will have you swooning over lovers you never knew you had. Their eclectic sounds embrace the best parts of electronic R&B and indie pop twisting together heavy bass and sultry lyrics that sing to the soul.  Their newest single, Rob You has us anxiously awaiting their newest album that we'll be sure to have on repeat. 

What does BLKKATHY have to say about their latest single? They shared the inspiration behind "Rob You" with us. 

"Rob You" is basically about how crazy absurd it is to date a stranger and think you'll be safe (emotionally). It's based on another song by Curtis Cook and Elise Silver. 

We are certainly not cynics about love, sometimes it's awesome, but it's rough too. Every time I break up, I'm like "Damn! It's like that?! I thought you cared about me." Then I remember that dating for a few weeks or months doesn't really make someone any less of stranger to me or me to them. 

It's a total miracle every time we trust someone new. I'm so grateful for the capacity to do that. But I still feel like a dumbass for doing it sometimes." 

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Hear more of BLKKATHY on Soundcloud and be sure to like them on Facebook for updates on their latest album and more. 


Sienna Brown is Communications & Marketing Director of WildSpice Magazine. She is constantly on a journey to inspire and be inspired while engaging in different methods of creation. Follow her on twitter and instagram | @siempregirando

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You Oughta Know: Laura Mvula

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You Oughta Know: Laura Mvula

Laura Mvula is an artist whose voice will have your heart pounding and emotions flowing. Her music will make you dance, cry, gasp for breath. Her words and harmonies seamlessly touch a part of you that you forgot existed. After seeing her live at the Williamsburg Hall Of Music, she's been on repeat for weeks. 

Ms. Mvula seamlessly creates soulful memories and her string accompaniments encompass you, from the deep cello vibrato to the delicacy of the harp. Hearing her live will make you fall even more in love...you can thank us later. 


Sienna Brown is Communications & Marketing Director of WildSpice Magazine. She is constantly on a journey to inspire and be inspired while engaging in different methods of creation. Follow her on twitter and instagram | @siempregirando

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WildMix: Risky Revamp

It was the kind of romance that lingered. Couldn't get it out of your head. Fixated on the spot it filled in your life where gaping silence used to dwell. Some of these songs were recorded on cassette, purchased at Virgin Records, illegally downloaded on Napster... or maybe their still in heavy rotation on your various music apps.

Above Artwork by Kelli Rad

Point is, now you can take them out of hiding again. Allow them a noble exit  from your "guilty pleasures" list and be at peace with putting them on high volume once again.

Feast your ears on these risky revamps of your old obsessions... soon to be your next steamy aural affair. 

Track List:

1. Say You'll Be There (Spice Girls): MØ 

2. Birthday Song (2Chainz): Kali Uchis

3. Crush (Jennifer Paige): Jai Paul

4. My Neck, My Back (Khia): Elle King

5. Wicked Games (Chris Isaak): Washed Out

6. Suit & Tie (Justin Timberlake): Jeni

7. If (Janet Jackson): Kaytranada Rework

8. Lovefool (The Cardigans): The Morning Benders

9. Once Upon A Dream (Disney): Lana Del Rey

10. In Your Eyes (Peter Gabriel): Banks

11. Love Will Tear Us Apart (Joy Division): Nouvelle Vague

Featured artwork by Kelli Rad


About the MixMaker

Alyssa Aparicio is Creative Director of WildSpice.  She is a visual artist and wordsmith. She is COO of The Carnavalesque Beauty Movement and a Co-Creator of Sensual Sundays. As a dancer she performs samba, belly dance, burlesque, and hip hop. She dedicates her movement to empowering the pussy, and all those who have one between their legs.  @Starspicy  GIF by The Current Sea, You Are The Prism... series

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Aural Fixation: Something About Social Media

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Aural Fixation: Something About Social Media

Photo Source: Tumblr

Photo Source: Tumblr

'Galwonder' Corvaya Nygira transforms a personal reflection of social media's influence on the millennial generation into this thought provoking spoken word piece. Dubbed over Lauryn Hill's "Doo Wop (That Thing)", you'll find yourself reflecting upon how you allow technology to influence your sense of self worth. One question remains: "Whatchu gonna do?"

Sound production by Nii Yeboah


About the Artist

 

'Galwonder' Corvaya Nygira is a force to be reckoned with. She dedicates her voice to reminding young women everywhere that they were born Queens. Check out her official website Corvaya.com which features her work in television, radio, and service to female youth. Connect with Corvaya via her Tumblog, Twitter and Instagram.

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WildSpotlight: The Tontons

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WildSpotlight: The Tontons

The Tontons, a funky, sultry, jazz-inspired rock ensemble from Houston, have spent the past year mastering the art of the open road while playing shows left and right along their tour across the country. They’ve played cozy venues and stages at major festivals like Austin’s South by Southwest (four times, actually), Fun Fun Fun Fest and Paste Magazine’s Untapped Festival in Houston. They’ve opened and played alongside other incredible artists like ishi, P. Diddy and Dawes--and been the featured act.

The band performed its last show of 2013 at Houston's Warehouse Live alongside Dallas’s ishi and two of Austin’s favorites, Wild Child and Quiet Company. Soon, they'll be embarking on their first-ever European tour in April 2014. In fact, Asli Omar, the band’s lead vocalist, says it’s her first trip outside the continent. And she couldn’t be more eager.

Photo Credit: Julie Worsham

Photo Credit: Julie Worsham

In the meantime, The Tontons will be touring with Bright Light Social Hour in February, and are already a part of the Official SXSW roster. While it’s still on the down low, the band will also be on the lineups of a few (yet to be named) summer festivals.

The timing couldn’t be more perfect. For the first time, Omar said the bandmates have been able to give up other work in pursuit of this--their dream. “We’ve had so many jobs,” she said. “For the first time in our career, we’re seeing the fruits of our labor. We don’t have to work outside of the band. Making music is now our luxury.”

Photo Credit: Megan Tipps

Photo Credit: Megan Tipps

Omar is beautiful to speak to--both physically and spiritually. She’s poetic by nature and speaks just as eloquently. And that inner-outward beauty is as vibrant as the colorful foremothers of sultry soul music like Erykah Badu and Lauryn Hill. She gracefully carries notes you can hear and feel; and you can’t help but sing along. She’s a vixen. Collectively, those qualities adhese the group in a way that produces sultry, funk, rock--all infused with a little experiment and surprise.

The band has been intact since 2008, with a handful of EPs and LPs under their belt, including their 2008 debut EP Sea and Stars. But, the upcoming tour is in celebration of their new album, Make Out Stories and Other Stories of Love, scheduled to be released February 18. The album was mixed by Dave Boyle who’s worked with solid musicians like Robert Plant and Black Joe Lewis. The band released a single in November from the album--“Veida”--which was first released via Paste Magazine, while the official video premiered on the Wall Street Journal. With all the buzz months in advance, a successful album release and fan-growing world tour is certainly on the horizon.

After a Sunday afternoon chat, there’s no doubt the band is ready for the [international] road. Omar, along with Tom Nguyen (bass), and brothers Justin Martinez (drums) and Adam Martinez (guitar) have zigzagged across the country for months facing both crises and strangers, new vistas and sounds. Their American tour has challenged them, shaped them and inspired them. Omar gives kudos to that open road for exposing them to so many life lessons and inspiring the band beyond belief. “I’d never seen a mountain before this band,” she said.

They were on a self-described “spiritual journey” that entailed, among many other experiences, a particularly challenging day after their van broke down near D.C. The group crossed paths with a local police officer who offered no aid; so the band trudged forward, walking to D.C. through “woods and stuff.”

There’s no doubt they’ll continue to trudge onward in pursuit of their next big thing. Omar did say they missed the privacy of sleeping in and (in her case) having only a limited wardrobe while on the road, but she can’t wait for “more of this.”

While the latest album and upcoming tour is the next big opportunity for The Tontons, the band has high hopes to continue fostering relationships with artists who’ve inspired them in their musical endeavors. They’d love to share a tour or stage with artists like Dr. Dog, who Omar describes as “champs,” and Phoenix.

But their inspirations extend beyond the obvious. As our conversation ended that sunny Sunday, Omar expressed her excitement for the final headliner at Fun Fun Fun--Slayer. “It’s an excuse to crush some skulls without repercussions.” Here’s to crushing the upcoming album release and European tour with the same vigor they’ve given the past year.

 

Photo Credit: Megan Tipps

Photo Credit: Megan Tipps

Check out their charming EP, "Magic Hour", here: 


About the Author

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Ashley M. Halligan is a storyteller, wanderer, and lover of music, hailing from the Appalachian foothills with a degree in Journalism and has found herself in Austin where she writes, explores, and backroads with her nomad dog, Timber. When she isn't in the middle of a crowd dancing her ass off, she can be found on the open road with her dog, sunhat, and camera, or, sometimes, vino drunk and booking international flights. She recently founded her own site, Contemporary Pilgrim, covering all things music and travel. Follow her mischief and {mis}adventures on Twitter and Facebook.

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WildSpotlight: Laurence Falconer: "The Yellow Jumper"

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WildSpotlight: Laurence Falconer: "The Yellow Jumper"

Photo Source: Tumblr

"Being fucked around the pub by strangers with faces that make a lotta noise but say nothing of note... staring into the black hole in my glass kinda wishing it could suck me in and spit me out in another time and place-- a different life with different thoughts and more space to move and be free, think and just be me...and maybe love."

Listen as Dubliner Laurence Falconer sinks his tongue into the moment of blissful suspension in love when eyes lock across a crowded pub upon an otherwise desperate night.


About the Artist

Laurence Falconer attended the gaiety school of acting in Dublin and started writing in the school's manifesto class. He wrote a short play called "Self Portrait" that was performed in a smock alley theatre in 2013. The Yellow Jumper was a performed during the run of the "Gaslights Cabaret" also in 2013. The poem was recorded as an audio drama presented by Rise Productions Audio Drama Series. Laurence is at present engaged in the writing of two upcoming plays and continuing to break through in the world of acting.  

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The Do Lab's Great Convergence: Podcast Series Premiere

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The Do Lab's Great Convergence: Podcast Series Premiere

It used to be that the festival experience meant strictly mindless indulgence. But at the forefront of broadening our horizons remains The Do Lab.  Responsible for the production of life transforming events the likes of Lightening in a Bottle, their foundation is built upon the power of communal conscious experience.

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One year ago, on a date that was expected to potentially end our civilization as we know it, The Do Lab ushered in a new era with The Great Convergence 2012. Hosted at the Pyramids of Giza in conjunction with a mindful cruise along the River Nile, The Great Convergence united the curious and established minds with an opportunity to embrace this powerful moment in history and acknowledge the changes that lay ahead. 

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Released exactly one year after the initial event on December 21st, 2012, we share the recorded evidence resulting from this remarkable event. This podcast series allows us to listen in on the conversations that transpired and the music that powered this transformative moment in time. With presentations from director Carmen Boulter, author Hugh Newman, geophysicist Robert Schoch, and percussionist Jamie Janover, we are given an ear into the paradigms of how we think about the Earth and our place upon it. From expertise on the mysterious Great Sphinx and rethinking the paradigms of antiquity, to the continuing impact of the Great Pyramids, we are gifted insightful lectures from those who have dedicated their lives to exploring the mysteries of ancient civilizations and the continuing importance of their legacies. 

Uniting education with the pleasures of musical rapture provide two complimentary realms of this prismatic experience.  Listen to live performances from Random Rab, Beats Antique, Desert Dwellers and more...

Open your ears:

The Great Convergence Musical Performances

The Great Convergence Presentations & Talks

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WildSpice On With Omari

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WildSpice On With Omari

Check out Creative Director of WildSpice Magazine, Alyssa Aparicio, as interviewed "On With Omari".

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Listen in to hear more about our "an art gallery mixed with an online blog", the creation of WildSpice, and get the answers to those burning questions you have for us.

EG: Exactly what is a YAWP

Tune in at 14:00 to find out!


Omari Bailey is an actor, radio and tv host, model and generally awesome person. After graduating from the University of Richmond, he moved to LA to pursue his dreams of acting and working in television and radio. Omari was born knowing that entertaining was his purpose. Upon meeting Brooke and Spencer, an insatiable chemistry developed into the hilarious dynamic you now hear on this weekly radio series. As a team, their natural flow and energy has listeners hooked on tuning in. Hear more "On With Omari" and follow him on twitter

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WildSpotlight: Memoir "Who I Am"

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WildSpotlight: Memoir "Who I Am"

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 Check out the latest track from Memoir, "Who I Am". In the words of lead singer, Dena Deadly,

“I wrote this song for a little girl who was born a boy, but always knew that she was a girl inside and out. This is her story, of courage, in expressing that truth to the world. It is also just an effort to celebrate each one of us on this planet. Many of our youth grow up in a culture where they either "fit in," and/or "measure up" to their cultures norms and expectations of them and when they do not, become marginalized and disregaurded by their communities. Of course, the beauty inside this struggle is that, for those of us who don't quite "fit in" or "measure up," we are afforded a unique gift, or rather, an opportunity to look around at the rest of the "wounded" or "disregarded" and see that we truly are a kaleidoscope of diverse thoughts and perspectives on this planet and that, that diversity can either be addressed in fear and judgement or embraced completely and celebrated. So we celebrate YOU!

You are who you are.

I am who I am.

Lets search for the courage to allow each other to express that truth!” 

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WildSpotlight: Roman GianArthur

Janelle Monae’s performance at Los Angeles’ Club Nokia on November 2nd, 2013 was nothing short of spectacular. The ‘Electric Lady' took us on a melodic journey to the futuristic, alternate reality of android, Cindi Mayweather. However, before we could jump on that imagined space ship to the land of 'Metropolis,' Roman GianArthur, Monae’s opening act, captivated the spirits of all. His intergalactic, funkadelic, soulful tunes made us feel like we were flying through the clouds with the musical lovechild of Jimi Hendrix and Donny Hathaway. We have been hooked ever since. 

Photo Source: Tumblr

Photo Source: Tumblr

Although virtually unheard of in the mainstream before touring with Monae, GianArthur is no stranger to the music biz, having produced and written tracks on Monae’s debut album, ArchAndroid, and sophomore album, Electric Lady. GianArthur is also a member of the Wondaland Arts Society, a collective founded by Monae for “inventors” who wear “tuxedos everyday” and “believe truth can be broken down with the following formula: Truth= Love x Imagination.”  

We have high hopes for GianArthur and believe he should be a part of your sonic reality.

Check out GianArthur’s ‘I-69’ single:

Listen to him wickedly weave together the likes of Radiohead and D’angelo:

Text by Indiana 

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We Hear You, M.I.A.

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We Hear You, M.I.A.

We Hear You, M.I.A.  

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In her recent interview, “On Being Heard” for NPR radio, M.I.A speaks to engaging with the power of her platform. After all she’s conquered, how could she bite her tongue? Fleeing from Sri Lanka, getting sued by the NFL for giving the Matangi mudra the middle finger at the Superbowl -- she’s no stranger to real life controversy. An active participant in social discourse fuels her creative infamy. “Infusing her music with politics” is an active choice -- evidence that music with a message is more fun than bubble gum.

“Got to a microphone myself… got nominated for a Grammy and an Oscar in the same month to make the biggest platform possible in America. Then I told the story…”

In her earth-shaking new album, this brazen icon belts out her beliefs and challenges you on yours.

Check out “Matangi” here.

Photo source: MIA x Versus Versace

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Aural Fixation: Brian James Griffith

Aural Fixation: Brian James Griffith

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Where music motivates the mind to wander towards wondrous worlds, Brian James Griffith swirls symbolically beyond the semantics of sound clouds.

"In this landscape we can create whatever we want," he promises. So delve deeper into the knowingness that exists and is ignited by the world as wide as it extends within. He invites us into the swell of significant otherness -- the brink of beyond that lasts in a moment of mere mindfulness. 

Hear more experimental melodies that induce deep meditative states from the sonic sorcerer himself. 

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WildMix: Back 2 STKLHM Part II

A Word from the DJ:  

For the second part of this series, I wanted to bring it back to the heavy bass music that's been coming up for the past two years or so. Some of the tracks included are more than a year old, but I've kept them in my sets and they're still killin' it! A lot of it was kinda tricky to mix since the BPMs usually range a bit. In this set I think I started around 120 and brought it all the way up to 200.

Hope you liked this series. (New originals on the way!)

<3 MK

 

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WildMix: Devon James | A WildSpice Exclusive

WildMix: Devon James | A WildSpice Exclusive 

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In this exclusive WildMix, Devon James premieres his latest track "Still in Love" and keeps our pulse thumping with seductive rhythms taking the international party scene by storm. Fresh off tour with Felix da Housecat, Devon's mix has that luscious taste of vacating the norm in the name of unadulterated good times.

In Devon James' own words: 

I've become a bit frustrated with the American music scene and my Chemicals of Creation project over the past year and so I have slowly been shying away from the popular sounds and songs that other DJs are playing. About a year ago, I decided to start making and releasing underground house music under the name Devon James. I'm not interested in loud, aggressive sounds right now, so I wanted to put together a mix that included some of my favorite producers as well as a few bombs that I had heard while in Ibiza this past summer. I couldn't stop shaking my booty while I was putting this together, so I hope that translates into the listening process as well. I want to make people dance and feel sexy.

Check out more Devon James:

Facebook | Soundcloud

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Aural Fixation: Sean van der Wilt

Aural Fixation: Sean V

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Sean van der Wilt is a performer on every level. Music as dynamic as his charisma, magnetic as the chorus that carries this track well over the top. 

He lives by the motto that "you should always dance like everyone is watching and save sleeping until you die. And last but not least, Sean abides by eating 5 Oreos every other day (with milk, of course) to fuel creative energy. 

No time for Shoulda Woulda Coulda, you CAN check out his Aural Fixation for SWC right now. Be prepared to start dancing in your underwear.

 

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WildMix: Symbiosis Gathering

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WildMix: Symbiosis Gathering

  The Best of Symbiosis Gathering 2013 as featured in "Empire of Love": Elite Daily's recap of this life changing festival experience.

 

"You’ll want to remember what happened there. And I will attempt to recap it to you. But to best transfer this experience, I must tell you to close your eyes and imagine your wildest dreams of what freedom looks like…. Now you’ve officially seen a slice of what we were out there living in the flesh at Symbiosis Gathering 2013..."

Read full article here.

 

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WildMix: CL Shuffle

City Lights is not just another place to lay your weary head. It was “conceived with one mission: to offer São Paulo a truly authentic hostel.” The culture surrounding this traveler's oasis involves citywide essential dance parties and Flower Power Alternative Trips beyond the chaotic city center. Lima Flores, founder and on-site DJ, collects musical masterpieces from around the world to share with his guests and Paulistas citywide. Check out his latest playlist "CL Shuffle".

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