Since I didn't post five things for the past couple of months, I have a huge backlog to share with you! I could easily give you ten today, but where's the fun in that? Here it is, my current must-list. And this is a really good one.
It's a little bit ironic that the best college radio station I've found, I found in my mid-thirties. But this one is special, because the DJ is someone very special to me, the one and only Bella, my former intern and one of the most talented students I've had the pleasure of working with in my career. Bella is many things, not the least of which is a talented musician and artist, and she has a fantastic ear for the next big thing. Her show is a range of all the best ear candy: think new and awesome acts like CHVRCHES, Tove Lo, Purity Ring, Grimes, alt-J and Best Coast; but with a healthy mix of Death Cab, Lana Del Rey, Lorde, Tegan and Sara, The Strokes and Sleater-Kinney. Give Bella a listen on Wednesdays from 8-10, streaming live on KXSU. Note: KXSU was formerly KSUB, which is a student-run radio station out of Seattle University. KSUB is transitioning to KXSU and in 2016 will be on the air as well as streaming online.
Kurt Cobain: Montage of Heck
I almost don't know what to say to explain how moved I was by this documentary about the rise and fall of Kurt Cobain. I'd heard great things about it, and being both a Nirvana fan and a total documentary junkie, it was high on my list. If you are into either one, or music in general, you should watch this sooner rather than later. I loved the way the filmmakers interspersed interviews with Kurt's bandmates and family with quasi-animated sketches and doodles from Kurt's journals. And the definitely-animated sequences served as much better reenactments than anything with actors ever could. Also, some of Kurt's best-loved music is adapted in a wonderful, slightly creepy child-like soundtrack that really gives the entire documentary a wistful, melancholy mood, a whisper of what was lost and what might have been. Watch the trailer here.
It's not too often that a book comes highly recommended from a wide swatch of people with tastes ranging from literary fiction to sci-fi and adventure. Station Eleven was one of those books, and its praises were sung by brains, athletes, basket cases, princesses and criminals (bonus points if you get that reference!), so it eventually piqued my interest. This is not your everyday future dystopian novel. The story takes place now-ish and twenty years from now-ish, after a flu epidemic so huge it wiped out most of the world's population. (Is this a cry for renewed public commitment to vaccinations? Just a thought.) I can't possibly recap this one better than Goodreads did, so, in their words, it's "the spellbinding story of a Hollywood star, his would-be savior, and a nomadic group of actors roaming the scattered outposts of the Great Lakes region, risking everything for art and humanity." Move it up to the top of your list. You're welcome.
Sound Bath with Daniella White
By far the hippiest of hippy things I've done lately was a really cool once-a-month special "class" offering at one of my favorite yoga studios (where you really want to take a class with Natalia, Zak or Betsy) - a sound bath. For those of you who don't know (and I was one of those people until very recently), let me break it down for you. A sound bath is a healing experience wherein you lie down on the floor in whatever is comfy with whatever you need to be comfy, and a fabulous artist plays crystal bowls to heal and restore your chakras. Yes. Your chakras. Are you confused? Is one of your eyebrows raised? Trust me, it's fantastic. Local vibrational healer Daniella White is amazing, and I highly recommend her sessions.
Grace Potter | Midnight
I've been a fan of Grace Potter and the Nocturnals for several years now - such a great blend of rock and blues! Grace reminds me a little bit of Janis Joplin and Melissa Etheridge with her powerful voice, and her talents don't stop at vocals - she plays piano and guitar. She also has a kick-ass style and stage presence, and oh yeah, she's drop-dead gorgeous to boot. So you know, her life doesn't suck. Her recently released solo LP Midnight is fantastic. Start with this track.