Underlab Studios is excited to announce our latest project currently in production - The Scene: 90's South Florida Rave Culture.
2 Years ago on my way to Candyland, one of the longest running parties in South Florida put together by Culture, I discussed with my long time pal David James about doing a documentary about the 90's rave scene we were both a part of. It turns out during the time David James had filmed notable parties such as Zen 96' and The 1st Ultra Music Festival.
When I got his footage and looked at it, I felt as if I was teleported to a period of time I thought was long lost. It was my Woodstock. It was my Studio 54. It was my Limelight. It was the time of my rebellious youth when I was engulfed in the life of partying hard and listening to music so far ahead of it's time it took this particular decade of the 90's to catapult it into the mainstream gargantuan it is today.
What I liked the most is footage of respected members of the scene - DJ Eclipse who passed away a few years ago after a successful career in music production and MC Hi-Fi, a drum and bass star in the making taken away from us way too early.
If you are a DJ, Performing Artist, Promoter, or True Old School Head with a story to tell about your experience during the 90's Rave Scene in South Florida, or if you have Photos, Video Footage you'd like to share please contact:
Executive Producer of "The Scene"
Associate Producer, Entertainment Factory, LLC
O. (877) 600-FILM (3456)
C. (954) 839-5158
INTERVIEWED THUS FAR:
DJ's / Performers: Scratch D (Dynamix II), Prizm, Johnny Dangerously, Hempey, Confusion, Bass Nacho, Justin Scott, DJ Trails, Audio Botz
Promoters: Jason Donovan (Zen Festival)
Party Goers: Lex One, Jodi Bass Monkey, Erika Kay, Sheri Bomb, Jay Bass, Lil Laz (Fever Crew), Yamin Pardo(rave encyclopedia)
As I walk up to the so familiar door with a stenciled "1835" imprinted on its face, I felt a bit of sadness as if I was walking into a funeral. See, this would the last time this small warehouse turned recording studio would ever be called Reverse Polarity Studios. You may have heard of the name, or perhaps some of the names that have branched out from this conglomerate family tree such as: DJ Immortal, The 7D, Underlab Studios, Hip Hop Elements, Renda Writer, Nocternal Music and so many more. All of these people have called 1835 Mears Pkwy in Margate, "home" or "office" at some point during its life.
f these walls could talk, they would say nothing because Reverse don't snitch. They will simply say "Shit went down, and great music was made."
I opened the door and was greeted by Flawless the MC as I walked right up to the middle of a blunt cipher and I just so happened to be NEXT. My timing is impeccable. Always. As we blazed, some still seemed in disbelief of this proverbial fork in the road. Was this DENIAL? Are we grieving? I pondered.
I looked around to flashing memories vividly embodying me as if it were a quantum leap to the days I watched DJ Immortal giving private DJ lessons (a precursor to his now heavy involvement with SCRATCH ACADEMY) while I sat on the couch sketching my next painting. I thought of Jared Cole and his guitar. I thought of DJ Reakt who tagged his name on the now visible hard concrete floor. I thought of the now defunct Mother's Pub (next door to Reverse), where Browards - and sometimes Miamis - top MC's like Raw Filth and Surgeon General constantly battled it out. I thought all the music videos, and short films I created there. I thought of my office and how for months straight 4 young graphic designers and animators sat together diligently trying to conquer the world, while listening to Moon Doggie create beats we felt at the time were epic. I thought of that dream ending with Hurricane Wilma. I thought of PR and J.Dot who also had a studio next door and my favorite line he quoted: "9 to the 5 to the 4, J. Dot Packs more lines in your nose." I thought of the devious debauchery that went on that will never be spoken or heard of again. I thought of meeting Canibus, witnessing a hip hop icon making music with my high school pal DJ Immortal and another one of my closest friends Chopp Devize right here in this now dismantled warehouse. Overwhelmed with it all, I bummed a cigarette from Eileen - as I always do because I think I am technically saving her life by sacrificing my lungs for my buddy Paul Raimondo's girl. I am just a good friend that way.
I proceeded to make my rounds saying hello to the people there. DJ Trails who I can attest to being one of my best friends greeted me with much love and proceeded to talk to Immortal on some business venture. I touched the walls as if absorbing it's last field of energy. I felt as if it touched back.
Chopp D soon arrives followed by Hugh Hayes, and Bless of Nocternal Music. Now what do you think is going to happen when you have the likes of Flawless The MC, Pilot Rai, Hugh Hayes, Bless, and Chopp Devize with DJ Immortal on the ones and twos? Perhaps the greatest fucking freestyle cipher NEVER to be documented. A few photos and slight iphone clips sure but not to the level Underlab always took it. It's all good because we were all there to give our last respects to an end of an era like only real hip hop heads know how to do. It was more about living the moment. Each MC took turns murdering the mic like a pack of hip hop Devils Rejects.
Yes, this was the last night at Reverse Polarity Studios, now Mars Auto Parts. It was glorious, but all good things unfortunately do come to an end, making room for greater things in our lives. When I spoke to Immortal, expressing my sadness he comforted me by saying that "this place had a great run. We are all headed towards a bigger direction this year. It's always for the best."
Perhaps. No use in dwelling on it, because fact is this place did have a great run. Over 10 years recording many locals and some mainstream artists. Nothing can explain the symbiotic relationship between Reverse and Underlab other than Ying and Yang. Now it is only Yang (rhymes with wang, so I went with it). I now realize that Reverse was like a springboard which we all jumped and are now diving into unknown waters, fearless, head first, no life vest but trust in the universe that great things will happen as we remember the platform from which we came.
To my Reverse Family - DJ Immortal and the whole Faderballistix crew, Mordechai, Colossus, HD Goodman (Good Music Makers), Chopp Devize (7th Direction/7D), Urban Rose(7th Direction), Pilot Rai AKA John Paul James (7th Direction/7D), DJ Trails (Hip Hop Elements), Moon Doggie (Nocternal Music) , Hugh Hayes(Nocternal Music), Bless(Nocternal Music), SonDay(Nocternal Music), The other PR, JDot aka John Paul, Diego Becerra (Underlab Studios) Stone Smith (Underlab Studios/Nocternal Music) Dwayne Adams (Underlab Studios / WEMERGE), Renda Writer, Dawn Dubriel (Underlab Studios/Redawn TV), The Architect, Flawless the MC, Skarlit Rose, Shawn W, Vibe One, and Kevin Keogh - One Love.
Fuck Paris, We will always have Reverse.
A sound analogous with a creepy journey to the boonies of New Orleans amongst the rattlesnakes, witches and vampires are the chords that splinter the air this night.Front center is the mysterious man with the voice of a musical ringmaster, who here commands a circus of rockabilly apparitions. His name is Tony Bones and his ribs make his guitar. His even more enigmatic companions - Percussionist Antoine Dukes, a squeezebox playing creature known as Paultergeist and Thee Scarecrow Jenkins on a bullfiddle - collaborate to release a soul long lost since the death of hip swashing skinny Elvis. Along comes the beautiful Audrey Rose of Shameless Burlesque sinfully moving in synch to the conjuring music which invokes a spirit gone astray.
This is a typical evening with South Florida's rockabilly sensation Viva Le Vox, who for the past year has been touring the SFL Coast in the fashion of spell casting gypsies luring us onlookers with their hypnotic sound. Their latest album Desperation Alley offers a great mix of roots rock delivered by an insane bunch of carnie types, reminiscent of Rob Zombie's Devil's Rejects. You can buy the album right now on ITunes, or you can actually experience this eccentric band for yourself this February 3rd and 6th at Miami's Church Hill's Pub 5501 NE 2nd Ave or at the Poor House - 110 SW 3rd Ave in Fort Lauderdale - on Feb 12th. The experience will be like a bottle of Southern Comfort, the 1st season of True Blood and someone sexy to enjoy it with.
While attending Fort Lauderdale Art Institute, photography students, Kim Drake, Jaime "The Mex", and Mike D realized their mutual pursuits also extended into Music, and the triad fused a brilliant alliance. They ignited City Link's Beerfest two years in a row, represented FemmeFest at Tobacco Road, released their self-titled album at Radio-Active Records, received an outstanding concert review in Miami New Times from Auteur Explosion XI @ Cinema Paradiso, and continue to bang out creative melodies interwoven with the pearls of wisdom that can only come from experience.
Front woman Kim Drake, is exactly who you want to see and listen to. The animal rights activist sings from the heart and voices her light to topics such as: the state of the world today, relationship break-ups, suburban life, frenemies, positive intentions, etc... that make you want to forget the dramas of everyday existence and roll out to the beach in her Camero.
The rocking triad also combines their visual creativity and shot their own music video for "Stolen Flowers" on Kim's Mark II that can be seen at www.theshuttermusic.com. Keep a look out for "The Shutter" at a venue near you.
â€œNice ink, whereâ€™d you get that it done??â€ Itâ€™s a sentence that hopefully all of us who have ink hear at least a few times in our body art careers. Since my first encounter with Rev. Fish, that question has become all too familiar for me. Working out of Whole Addiction (located in Coral Springs) the man has been using his god given gifts to paint up the town since February 2003. At the time the shopâ€™s owner, John Miller, won a legal tug of war with the city in order to open the first legitimate tattoo studio in the area. Reverend Fish hit the ground running, executing Coral Springâ€™s first tattoo with quickness and still going strong today.
When you think of a hardworking family man with a military background, this tattoo artist isnâ€™t what comes to mind. But donâ€™t let the ink fool you, underneath his tatted exterior lies an intelligent artisan whose dedication to his craft is peerless. While working full time in the Navy Fish became an apprentice in 1993 and continued his artistic education every way possible. Stored between this manâ€™s temples is the cumulative knowledge of 17+ years of attending seminars, workshops, and going over texts. His work station is a testament to his personal history, sitting next to his chair is a small personal library containing the most referenced works of his.â€œI love doing many different styles of tattooing including fine line Black & grey realism such as portraits, bold new school color work, and traditional Japanese-style tattooing.Although these are some favorites, I can do whatever you like, whether it is super-detailed biomechanical to super-simple traditional American tattoos.â€ Fish is the shit, if your considering getting a tattoo, it should be done by him. Nuff said.
I recently posted an article on the ARTISTOCATS forum asking Whats wrong with the south florida live music scene and what can we do to fix it. Too much can be said. Sure we can sit here pointing fingers saying it's so-and-so's fault, or we can make this a positive learning experience. I am writing this now to give some free pointers to you bands out there. Yes, some of this is obviously common sense, but believe it or not, some of you bands need this. So pay attention!
#1. Practice. If you have to play with sheet music on stage, you have no business booking a gig.
#2. Bring Someone. If you can't bring at least, MINIMUM, one person per band member to come see your band play live, don't bother booking a gig.
#3. Promote Yourself. If you think it's the promoter's job to promote your band, don't bother booking a gig. Yes, it is the promoter's job to promote the event, but would you really rely on someone else to do it all? Wouldn't you want the best show possible and to play in front of as many people as possible, including your own friends, family and fan base? Be your own promoter. Music is equally art and business.
#4. Style. Seriously. Put some effort into how you look. You might not be Brad Pitt, but you should respect your fan base enough to run a brush through your hair, at least. You can have style without looking like a poser. You don't have to be a model. but whatever you do, make it unique. Make it YOU. (Personal Tip- Guys with eyeliner=HOT. Guys with Glitter=HOTTER).
#5. Develop a stage show. Your front man should have charisma and the whole band should have a chemistry that shows. Anyone can stay home and listen to a CD or the radio. When they go out to see a live band, they want to see a SHOW. Give 100% for your performance, every time!
#6. Play and STAY. Shows are your best networking opportunity. Far too often bands show up right before they play and leave right after, giving no opportunity for people to come up and say "great job, when can I see you again, do you have a CD, etc". You might have lost a big opportunity with local media or a label scout. Plus, if you support the other acts on the bill, they'd be more inclined to stay and support you as well.
#7. Get involved in your local music scene. The more you know about what's going on, the more opportunities you will learn about. Make friends with other bands so they'll support you. It's very common at shows that the majority of the audience is made up of other local musicians. Make contacts and find out who the good people to know are and who you should probably stay away from.
#8. Know Your Fans. Pass around a mailing list at your shows. Keep in touch with people by sending emails announcing future shows. Include news about the band, picture's, maybe even a free download once in a while. Most importantly, make sure there IS news to announce. Make your band sound interesting by announcing newspaper or magazine articles, videos, awards, anything. If you have nothing to announce, no one will remember you or care about you after awhile.
#9. MERCH! Demos, CD's, T-Shirts, Stickers, and Buttons - Anything with your bands name on it. You are nothing until you have something tangible for people. You should really develop a recognizable logo. Free is always good for the crowd, but you should always give value to your product, so giving things away for free should be limited. How often have you been given something for free and just tossed it, figuring its crap? How often have you given away your CD's just to find that people leave them lying around? That's because they assume there's no value to it. Save the freebies for specials friends and fans who you know will appreciate it and to media who could help further your career. If you really want to give things away free, just to get them in some hands, do a CD release party or some type of special event for that reason. Got New Shirts? Make a deal such as "buy our CD and you get a free t-shirt!".
#10. Physical and Electronic Press Kits. You should have them ready to mailed out or emailed at any given moment's notice.
Stay tuned for next issue where I will discuss exactly what should be included in your press kits!
For More on Queen of The Scene -
~* www. QueenOfTheScene .com *~
South Florida's Local Music Scene Website
â€œColors of Mayvilleâ€ -
Uber conservatively raised Maytee Bringas, 36, did not bat an eye at 22 when she got her first tattoo. â€œIt was something off the wall but Iâ€™d been yearning for a tattoo since the age of 15,â€ recalls Bringas. â€œOnce I had it, I was hooked.â€
Fourteen years later and nearly fully tattooed, Bringasâ€™s enthusiasm for tattooing hasnâ€™t waned. In fact, her keen eye for design and color has led her to expand her tattoo skills to the world of art and fashion.
In 2006, Bringas launched Mayeville, a print collection of colorful and lighthearted girlish illustrations. These Sanrio inspired designs are both, irreverent and innocent, playful yet sexy â€“ qualities which are completely reflective of the artist.
â€œMy art is cute and bubbly,â€ explains Bringas. â€œMayeville is a delusional world full of sweet characters. I use simple bold lines with lots of color, like Hello Kitty â€“ I love to draw this type of art.â€
Through Mayeville, Bringas hopes to further develop the brand by developing a clothing and accessories line.
Bringas credits husband Phat Joe, of famed ink spot, Phat Joeâ€™s Tattoo Parlour, with encouraging her to explore her artistic instincts. As co-owner of Phat Joeâ€™s, Bringas honed the artistic inclinations long buried from her days as a youth at Hialeah Junior High School.
â€œI was surrounded by art and it re-sparked my need to draw,â€ says Bringas. â€œIâ€™ve always been an artist. I didnâ€™t do anything or pursue it until I met Joe because I didnâ€™t think it was hot.â€
Clearly, Bringasâ€™ playful illustrations are hot and in demand.
â€œI love what I do. It will never get old,â€ asserts Bringas. â€œThis is my lifestyle.â€
In Fort Lauderdale there is a sanctuary for artists lucky enough to survive a year long waiting list known as the Sailboat Bend Artist Lofts. In this low-rent "wonderland" (as this writer deems to portray it) lives a visual pop artist, who paints smirks on all who lay eyes on her witty candy colored images.Â Her name is Lisa Bulten Rockford, a graduate of the esteemed Art Institute of Chicago, who upon completing her Masters launched headstrong into the competitive arena of fine art. In prolific fashion she exhibited all across the nation before settling in South Florida as an instructor at Broward College in 2006.Â She draws inspirations from both her loving parents who in one way or the other, shaped her art today.
A series entitled "Barbie Magic Reveal" are humorous illustrations much in the style of your supermarket "Coloring & Activity Books" made for children (and some strange adults).Â It exhibits her playfulness yet engaging deconstruction, and reconstruction, of familiar pop images and content.
3 Floors of 1310 Gallery will be covered in her work from Jan. 16th - Feb.12th 2010.
2 Distinct Painting series will survey the portrayals of gender and romance.
Only 1 Twist - That it will be a TWIST.Â Yeah, that's the name of this wonderfully twisted exhibition of art coolness.Â You simply must put your mind in a TWIST @ the 1310 Gallery, Sailboat Bend Artist Lofts, 1310 SW 2nd Ct. (Middle St.), Ft. Lauderdale, 33312. Admission: Free & Open to the Public
There is an emerging Palm Beach collective of talented MC's that have been running musical mayhem. Dj Fono is the eye of this storm. His company Roundabout Records has been behind the production of many of our local talents including Dino Ferrari, J Saavy, Cat Shell and many more.
But Fono is not a just a DJ; he is a musical entrepreneur and has been blessed by a keen sense of the hustle. He makes his rounds down the east contour of our gun shaped state, lighting life on the dance floors of many of our favorite local venues. One may say it's in his blood, and one may be right. Fono's father was a DJ who passed down the finger cutting genes to his two sons. Early on in his childhood Fono was groomed for music. While most 16 year olds were scrubbing toilets at McDonald's, Fono was already getting his DJ career started working for an audio-mixing company in Boca Raton known as R&R Dj's. A lover of beats and sound, DJ Fono brilliantly pounds away silence with his repertoire of Hip-Hop, Dancehall Reggae, Drum & Bass, Electro-House, Dubstep, Funk and Soul.
CSKA, one of Fono's latest progenies has now hit the streets with a new single Drop Down which has the astute producer's electro funk grooves all over it like fingerprints in a crime scene.
And what good is a DJ without an online Mix Show? When the hour strikes 8pm, jump on to www.DJFono.com and catch Roundabout Radio where DJ Fono spins hits and features Live Guests from the local South Florida Music and Art Scene.
In South Florida there is very underground Horrorcore / Acid Rap music scene with a cult following, lead by popular local acts such as Web Three, Urban Horror Clique, and The J.Hexx Project. Square in the middle is a label on the rise ready to feed South Florida's as well as the entire globe's dark music appetites with a tantalizing smorgasbord of raw hip hop acts. E2DaP Records (pronounced "E to the P"), is headed by dark mind of Horrorcore MC Epitaph.
Recently his label delivered an onslaught of 3 professional releases. The first of which is a self titled LP released by Jersey's own Sullen Mc, it features horrorcore legends Mars and J. Hexx as well as a few other familiar faces (Dj Immortal, Randum Shotz, & Epitaph to name a few). Second up on the list is an experimental, horror themed, Hip Hop EP entitled, "There is No Rest..." all produced by acclaimed producer "J Nyce" of "Psychward". The pseudo-storytelling album revolves around Epitaph's retelling of a horrific sleep study supposedly done in Soviet Union years ago. The final release is the smash hit follow up to last yearâ€™s surprisingly successful volume one of the label's debut Horrocore mixtape. Volume Two is entitled "The Descent". It features many of last yearâ€™s favorites as well as some of the more established acts in the Horrorcore genre from around the world.
This yearâ€™s HC Mixtape murders mainstream instrumentals real Dexter style, with the sharp, edgy, and shocking lyrics spawned from E2DaP and their ever expanding network. You can interact and check out more music from many featured artists on the nefarious www.horrorcore.com.