this happened so that it will never happen again

Every once & a while I reach what feels like a breaking moment in my life -- change is going to come. I'm going to be one step closer to my dream. Even if I don't know what exactly that goal is, I know I'm getting closer. Getting to that point can be pretty tough, but actually executing these plans can be near impossible. But then you hear about those who actually have done it. Or others who have overcome tremendous hurdles & set back after set back after set back...

These are the stories that are so powerful, inspiring, & sometimes exactly what you need to hear in order to make that next step. If Michelle from Armas Design's story doesn't encourage you, I don't know what will. It's a little bit of a read, but is very honest & certainly puts things in perspective.

Here's a summary of her advice:

- Get over your fear (yourself)
- Hone in on what you're really good at
- Fucking make it happen
- Gather creativity
- Use tools
-Have motivation
- Set goals & manage time

Now lets admire how her courageousness & hard work (& some costly mistakes) have paid off ...
The Truth About Lies
Secret Garden


on track

There's something about the Spring that just makes me want to get my life back on track. To be honest, sometimes I need that little extra push to get the things I want to accomplish crossed off my to-do list. I really liked this idea of having a weekly set of goals as a reminder of the things you want to get done. 6 tasks doesn't seem too tricky...

(DIY from Cornflower Blue Studio)


break their hearts

"Break their hearts my pride & hope. Break their hearts and have no mercy!"
-Great Expectations

Miss Havisham might be one of my favorite book characters.


festival fashionistas

Lollapalooza early bird tickets go on sale today at 10am, which means I better get a jump start on planning my wardrobe. While Lollapalooza is no Coachella in terms of fashion, I do love the ease of outfits at any outdoor festival. I wish I could dress like these ladies every day:


i don't know if it's real, but it's how i feel

"Runner Ups" - Kurt Vile & the Violators

Tickets for his May 20th show at Lincoln Hall are still available HERE.


only sparkles + sweat

"Reunion" - M83 (remixed by Mylo)

What a great mix of musical geniuses. But Mylo, enough with the remixes -- I want an album!


What's your biggest fear? Aside from snakes, mine might be being burned alive. For others, it's the fear of being buried alive. I don't know, doesn't sound so bad to me...
"Bury Us Alive" - STRFKR 


a little bit of luck

While I'm only 25% Irish, I think that part of me might be my favorite part. Entshuldigung, to my German ancestors, but Irish car combs? Corned beef? Leprechauns? It's really quite hard to top being Irish. Unless of course you consider the pale skin, or god-forbid you're like me & you got stuck with an apostrophe. While being an O'Connell can feel pretty special, that apostrophe really is quite the silent killer.

Happy St. Patty's Day, my little leprechauns!




"New France" - Orbital (featuring Zola Jesus)

If this track is any indication of what the rest of the Wonky album by Orbital will be like, then I think we can all get pretty excited. After eight years they're about due for a great album, right? I'm also really loving Zola Jesus' contributions to albums (like this) lately. That chick is a power house.


speaking in code

"The White Flash" - Modeselektor (featuring Thom Yorke)

A little over a year ago I recommended checking out the documentary Speaking in Code which was featured on Pitchfork. This documentary took a deeper look into electronic music across the world & Modeselektor was one of the bands features in the film. Modeselektor, out of Berlin, has been on the electric scene for quite some time now. Their sounds are very interesting & I can only imagine that their shows are like nothing you will have ever experienced before. Luckily, I was hit with some good news earlier this week that they would be coming to Chicago in a little over a month. This is going to be a great act to cross off my must-see list. Get your tickets Saturday!

where i want you to be

"Seraphim" - Simian Mobile Disco

"Seraphim," or celestial beings, is a perfect name for this new song from Simian Mobile Disco because the song is pretty heavenly. I like this song.

Sometimes life is all about editing down. I guess that's why I love music so much.


true statement

Who felt like this yesterday?
It looks like we've got another blustery day headed our way. I guess that's why they call it the Windy City...

(photo taken of doorsixteen's super adorable dog, Bruno, by Daniel Kanter)

nothing is more powerful than an idea

The last couple of days I've been noticing posters & wondering what all of this Kony business was. Then finally, I happened upon the video above. I credit my parents & their kind & generous hearts for my personal interest in causes for the greater good. And while no one cause is necessarily better than the next if it's end goal is to do good, the Invisible Children campaign for Kony 2012 really struck a chord with me for several reasons:

1. The power of social media has always been of great interest to me, that's why I do what I do. I do, however, see social media as both a blessing & a curse. A curse, because I think of school children & the fact that over 40% of teenagers with internet access reported cyber bullying in the last year. In 2011, Facebook was cited in one third of all divorces. 8% of US companies have fired employees for  inappropriate social media behavior. These are scary statistics, but Invisible Children reminds me that it can be used for good. Exceptional good.

2. Any organization that seeks to punish those that murder, rape, kidnap, & mutilate young children is well deserving of all of the support they can get. The name says it all; these children are invisible. They don't have the education or voice or resources to protect themselves. If you're reading this, you're probably more than capable of donating a few dollars, or at the very least, helping spread the word.

3. I don't want this to fail. I want Kony arrested. When you really wrap your head around things, this is HUGE. It's true that there is now the potential to change the hierarchy. We are all now connected & we can reach out & help. Already, I have seen this message spread like a wildfire which means that the government & those with the money & the power will be forced to take notice & will be forced to take action. Things like this couldn't have occurred with much impact 10 years ago. I love that my meager little voice can help save the underdogs.
For more information, visit the Invisible Children page & sign the pledge. While you're at it, visit their Facebook page & make Kony known!

Also, I have 2 extra Kony bracelets coming my way. Leave a comment & I'd be happy to give one to you (& maybe some stickers too!).


today is your day

I'm a little late to the party, but this past Friday was the fabulous Dr. Suess' birthday. Dr. Suess is just magical & has only done great things for the world we live in today. He added a much needed bit of whimsy that few have been able to emulate. Few, with the exception of those at Burning Man. 


carved in walls

"Lover's Carvings" - Bibio

These days I'm all about finding interesting music. I don't want to listen to things that sounds like everything else.  As a result, I've been pulled back to Bibio a bit. His music is pretty dynamic. Take a listen to Anything New & Fire Ant if you like what you hear.


i was there : porter robinson + ingrosso

Show: Porter Robinson + Sebastian Ingrosso

Location: The Congress 

Date: 2.25.12

Favorite Song: "Calling" is a pretty good tune

Memorable Moment: I've been a little bit slow through the starting gates with concerts this year. I feel like I'm in a weird transition stage between what I used to like & what I currently like. I'm also trying to be more cognisant about mostly seeing people I've never seen before or haven't seen in a while. Still, walking into a concert venue is something I always look forward to & never say no to.

Biggest Letdown: I was not a fan of Porter Robinson much at all. Just because you remix Daft Punk + everyone loves Daft Punk doesn't mean you're a good DJ. I really hate to bad mouth up & coming artists, but I saw nothing extraordinary from his performance & the transitions from song to song were sloppy. I will not need to see another performance from him again.

This Show: Made me... Sad? Confused? Angry? I had a good time at the show, I just don't really like this EDM "scene" anymore. Maybe it's the hipster in me that feels the need to be somewhat progressive & unique, but to me, dance music is starting to lose it's appeal. I've thought a lot about why this might be & I guess my strongest argument would be that when anything gets too popular (like EDM has), it becomes less about the actual art & appreciation & more about it being the "cool" thing to do. Now, it's cool to give drugs to 17 year olds & let your daughters show up to concerts in lingerie (not an exaggeration). I guess this part mostly makes me sad ...& makes me want to move on to other things.



love fest (continued)

To continue on with The xx love fest (really, I could keep this up forever), I wanted to share a few additional songs from The xx's inspiration board. These both shocked & intrigued me, but are both songs that have had a special place in my heart over the years.
"This Love" - Chris Armstrong (featuring Liz Fraser)

"Everybody's Free" - Quindon Tarver

Anyone else remember these songs from Cruel Intentions and Romeo & Juliet? LOVE.


When I think of a perfect pairing, The xx & SBTRKT just might be it. As a music lover, I feel like I've hit a bit of a lull lately in terms of new music, but two that I just keep going back to are The xx & SBTRKT. It came as quite the pleasant surprise when my Facebook feed was filled with SBTRKT postings from The xx Facebook page.
The xx are back in the studio for what I can only imagine will be the best junior album of all time. They've been posting songs that have inspired them in this record-making process to Facebook, so seeing SBTRKT as a prominent influence only confirms my suspicion about how truly great this album will be. Jamie Smith, of The xx, has also revealed that club music was also influential to development of the album. The album is likely to come out in the spring.