you'll never be walking alone

"Walking Alone" - Dirty South & Those Usual Suspects

Dirty South was awarded the highly coveted Essential New Tune award a few weeks back when Swedish House Mafia took over Pete Tong's Friday afternoon radio show. No surprise there. This track it hot!

the stars are the sky sent to me

For the past year or so I've fallen totally in love with Villa Nah's "Emerald Hills." It reminds me of summertime, being in love & looking up at the night sky. A little hokey, I know, but you can't deny that that is a great feeling. 

Here in Chicago, star gazing is pretty limited. Until now. Obviously it's not quite the same thing, but for $25, you can bring the stars directly to you with this star projector.
And that's exactly what I did. I'm sure the usage will be limited, but $25 seemed like such a small price for such a beautiful effect. I think I will especially love it when I take my weekly bubble baths.

Purchase one for yourself here.


i was there : empire of the sun + miami horror

Show: Empire of the Sun & Miami Horror

Location: Congress Theater

Date: 9.14.11

Favorite Song: I hate to be cliché. I was really hoping it would be "Standing On the Shore" or even "Half Mast," but I can't deny how perfect "Walking On a Dream" was. That is a magical song.

Also to note, Miami Horror was pretty awesome as well. It was pretty easy for them to be overshadowed by Empire of the Sun, but "I Look to You," "Holidays" + "Sometimes" were among my favorites of the entire night.

Memorable Moment: Empire of the Sun can only be described as theatrically fabulous. They put on on a serious show ...+ don't even get me started on Luke Steel's costume changes.

Biggest Letdown: Absolutely nothing. I had so much fun.

This Show: Made me feel like everything was perfect in the world if only for those few hours. Another cliché, but true.

i was there : north coast music festival - sunday

Show: North Coast Music Festival - Sunday
Benny Benassi
Thievery Corporation

Location: Union Park

Date: 9.4.11

Favorite Song: Bassnectar's remix of Ellie Goulding's "Lights" was a special moment for both me earbuds + me personally. It was beautiful.

Memorable Moment: Not only was this the last day of my favorite festival, but it was filled to the brim with good people, good beats + good feelings. I left that festival happier than I had been in a while.

Biggest Letdown: My sub-par attempts at hooping. (See below).

This Show: Was indeed Summers last stand, but it was really the most perfect way to go out. I'm going to be counting down the days until NCMF 2012 (+ crossing my fingers that I get Underworld).

i was there : orchard lounge

Show: Orchard Lounge

Location: Smart Bar

Date: 9.3.11

Favorite Song: I'll be honest, I wasn't too familiar with Orchard Lounge prior to this night, but Smart Bar seemed like a good option post North Coast. 

Memorable Moment: Orchard Lounge was not at all a letdown. They had some great electrofunk sounds + I love to give it up for the Chicago locals.

Biggest Letdown: I'm not as young + virile as I used to be. The set was great, but I had some major bedtime cravings + might night ended early (or as early as an after party can end).

This Show: Made me want to go to Smart Bar more often. I love that dance floor.

i was there : north coast music festival - saturday

Show: North Coast Music Festival - Saturday
Big Gigantic
Future Rock
Major Lazer
Carl Cox
Fatboy Slim

Location: Union Park

Date: 9.3.11

Favorite Song: There is something about Rusko's "Hold On" that just does something special for me. It is a pretty sensual song, so they hip gyrating comes quite naturally. I say that's a good thing.

Memorable Moment: Who knew that Fatboy Slim would be the one to steal the weekend? It reminded me of last year when Moby was one of the acts to dominate North Coast. These guys might be older + somewhat out of the game, but they for sure know how to bring it + get the crowd going.

Biggest Letdown: Not sticking it out for more of STS9. Like I said, Fatboy Slim put on a show + it was hard to pull myself away. I only hope STS9 makes the rounds back to Chicago soon.

This Show: Was more high energy than Friday night. I had never before seen Future Rock, STS9 or Fatboy Slim, but I was quite impressed with all 3. That's the sign of a successful night.

i was there : north coast music festival - friday

Show: North Coast Music Festival - Friday
Wolfgang Gartner
David Guetta

Location: Union Park

Date: 9.2.11

Favorite Song: I called it prior, but "Illmerica" from Wolfgand Gartner was my top pick of the night. What a dance party.

Memorable Moment: I love going to festivals with newbies, especially when they have a great time.

Biggest Letdown: No matter how hard I try, Guetta just doesn't do it for me. I even left a little early

This Show: Was just the start of my truly favorite weekend of the year. Bring on Saturday & Sunday!



Sometimes a hefty (or small) dose of perspective can be one of the greatest gifts one can receive. It always seems to happen that when I'm feeling down or stressed out something always pops up to remind me how lucky & loved I am. And then I feel silly for the way I reacted.



renegade rundown (pt. deux)

I walked away from the Renegade Craft Fair in Chicago without making any purchases, but I did snag a handful of business cards for consideration.  The 2011 Renegade Craft Fair brought several of the same vendors from the previous year, including: Uncommon, Hip Huts & Bettula, as well as some other goodies that I didn't remember from the previous year. The list is a little longer this year, but here are my favorites:

Yellow Lion
I most certainly foresee one of these prints in my future. They tie into my Western theme & the cool colors fit my color scheme perfectly.

I especially love Bekerman's use of both silver & gold in her pieces. Having both makes adding other accessories easier to do.

Shapes & Colors
Shapes & Colors produces some fantastic Navajo-inspired prints. This navy pillow is my favorite.

I thought this was so clever - morse code jewelry! The necklace above spells out "Lover," but you can create custom pieces as well.

The Elizabeth Element
I really wanted to snag one of these stools, but nearly all of them were sold out. I'm going to keep checking the shop regularly though because there really is a difference between a good cut of wood & a great cut of wood.

I'm not sure I have the best home for these prints, but I thought there was something pretty awesome about these vintage mugshots.

Lucius Art
Again, I'm probably not the target audience, but these animal prints made me giggle. This shop is a must for hipster cat owners.

Zero Bird
What a great gift idea for any young, urban Chicagoan.

Baumbirdy was one of my top picks for invitations & paper goods. The calligraphy is superb.

Lauren Haupt
What I love most about Haupt's pieces is that they are so simple & delicate. These are pieces you could wear every day.

The one item I seriously considered purchasing (& am kinda bummed I didn't) was this print from the lovely Debbie Carlos

I originally had my eyes on another one of her prints, but I am now about 99% positive I will pull the trigger on the one above instead. She had a framed version at the tent & it looked really nice in a frame.

i heart art : bucktown art fest

I checked out the Bucktown Art Fest at Senior Citizen Memorial Park back on September 28th. A lot of the booths felt a little old for my taste, but I did stumble upon a few vendors that were pretty great.

Not only was this artist super friendly, but she had a lot of talent too. All of her artwork is hand-painted on salvaged windows. These pieces would make such a unique addition to any home.

Hamilton's mixed media artwork was beyond gorgeous in person. It looks like dripping paint, but the finish is like porcelain. I am for sure keeping his work in consideration when my budget allows for an artwork indulgence.

I've been following Ariyama's talents for a couple years now & I am never surprised to see his booth overflowing at art festivals. He offered something new at the Bucktown Art Fest with his wood panel prints. 


how deep is your love?

"How Deep Is Your Love?" - The Rapture

I'm never surprised to hear an awesome song & then learn that the artists belongs to DFA Records. They sure have an ear for talent.

here in your arms

"Here In Your Arms" - Hellogoodbye

(via Le Love)

the dog days are over

"Dog Days Are Over" - Florence & the Machine (Yeasayer remix)

Sad, but true...


i'd rather be thrifting

I'd rather will be thrifting this Sunday at the Vintage Bazaar pop-up shop at the Congress Theater. This flea market is featuring 70+ vendors with all sorts of vintage clothing, home decor & furniture. The best part? All donations at the door go to One Tail at a Time, an animal rescue organization. There will even be some pups around for adoption. Doors open at 11am so be sure to get their for first dibs on the goodies!



missoni madness

I couldn't allow myself to miss out on the Missoni for Target madness, & seeing that my options of non-sold out items were very limited, I deemed it chance of fate that this perfect pouf was still available at 12am this morning. Not only does it fit perfectly with my home aesthetic, but I have a certain corner in my room that was requiring an armchair or ottoman of sorts. This item fills that need perfectly & keeps me an active member of the "it" crowd on top of that.

I only wish I had been quick enough to snag some of these items as well:


hurry up, we're dreaming

"Midnight City" - M83

I bought tickets for the M83 show at Lincoln Hall on a whim & now it has turned into one that I am most anticipating. I'm quite optimistic that Hurry Up, I'm Dreaming will translate into a phenomenal live show. The first single, "Midnight City" is undoubtably awesome, but the intro, "Steve McQueen" & "Wait" are my additional favorites.

I know I've already played "Midnight City" here, but I couldn't find the "Steve McQueen" track on YouTube. Take a peak around the web & try to find it though. It's a great listen.

While you're at it, check out this M83 & Kanye mash-up, "Midnight Life," by White Panda

this is not the end

"This is Not the End" - Gui Boratto (featuring Luciana Villanova)

Gui can do no wrong in my eyes ...except, perhaps, when he cancels two shows I have tickets for. You can't hide for long; our paths will one day cross.

puppet to the man

"Puppet to the Man" - Kurt Vile

This always feel like the most appropriate song for the start of the work week, but I propose taking it a step further & listening to the whole Smoke Ring for My Halo album by Kurt Vile to start your day. I'm definitely on a Vile kick.


stay hungry, stay foolish

Steve Jobs is where he is now for a reason. Few could argue that he is not an admirable person & the empire he has built is quite impressive. Jobs' life is an interesting tale as well. He's experienced loss & embarrassment & he's stared death right in the face.

It's a bit of a long speech, but this story is worth 15 minutes of your life. You cannot walk away from this video without feeling inspired...
Thanks to my brother for sharing.

summer's last stand

It's that glorious time of the year -- North Coast Music Festival is upon us.

I've been looking forward to this festival all year & I just know that the team & the artists going to put together something special. I also have few tips that I think might make the weekend enjoyable:

- Have a really tall friend wearing a neon colored hat.

- Bring emergency toilet paper.

- Don't forget the glow sticks. This.

Okay, okay. Now some more important tips...

Festivals can be a big overwhelming, but one of my favorite things about Union Park is that is fairly easy to navigate from stage to stage if you set up a good campsite with your friends. I used this trick at Pitchfork -- pick an exact spot at each stage as your home base. That way, if you want to wander off to get beer, go to the bathroom, or take a gander at one of the other artists you will know exactly where to return. In order for this to work best, you can't plan to be front center. Usually staying back a bit & keeping close to the parameter works best. 

Finally, here are some of my top picks for the weekend:

Wolfgang Gartner - "Illmerica"
I hate to use this word, but honestly, I think this might be the most epic song of the weekend. 

STS9 - "Scheme"
I can't believe this will be the first time I'll be seeing one of their sets. It might even be the set I'm most excited about.

Rusko - "Sunday Girl"
I had so much fun seeing him at the Metro last year & I know this set will be great. If you like what you see, this kid will be playing NYE at Congress Theater.

Even though the seem to play every festival under the sun, I have yet to actually see them live. If my Turntable points are any indication, I would say that this song would be another huge hit of the weekend.

ATB - "Ecstacy"
This song title pretty much sums up how I expect to feel this weekend. Ecstatic, that is.

Benny Benassi - "Cinema"
His Ultra set was super fun & I don't expect this to be any different.

Mash-up Hood Internet is a good time

Thievery Corporation - "Take My Soul"
I have heard superb reviews of their concerts. The craziness that ensues on stage is a must-see for me.

Fatboy Slim - "Weapon of Choice"
Fingers crossed we get a Christopher Walken appearance. A girl can dream.

Major Lazer - "Pon de Floor"
These guys are certainly entertainers. I don't think seeing the whole set is necessary, but "Pon de Floor" is a must see.

Big Gigantic - "Get Em High"
Rumor has it they have a killer "What's Your Fantasy?" remix.

Gotta give love to some Chicago boys.

David Guetta - "Little Bad Girl"
For some reason I want to hate Guetta, but who am I kidding? I will for sure be dancing to this one & a lot more.

Did I miss anyone? I know I'll probably be castrated for leaving out Common & Wiz Khalifa. I'm sure they're great artists, based on their following, but it's just not for me. I will never try to defend the music  I like & I will never apologize for not being particularly drawn to something else. Anyone who does otherwise probably lacks self confidence & originality.

HAVE FUN THIS WEEKEND! And please say "hi!" if you see me :)