I arrived in San Francisco for my first journey to the Outside Lands Music Festival. Having been to Coachella the past seven years and Lollapalooza last year in Chicago, I was excited to see what this bad boy had to offer. Considering I’m doing this from my phone, I’m going to keep it short and sweet. Here are my five observations from day one of Outside Lands:
1. The Layout of the Festival is Different and Great- Golden Gate Park is massive and a great place for a festival. Huge trees everywhere, nice grass and scenic. The festival itself, is laid out really well the stages aren’t super far from each other but every area is pretty unique and separate. Beer and bathroom lines are really chill which is always huge and unlike Coachella, you can drink anywhere which is fan-fucking-tastic.
2. The Weather is Crazy- thank god my friend told me to dress warm because it is cold as shit in the SF. Apparently, that area in particular is especially crispy. It was so foggy you couldn’t see shit, cold as balls, windy and it started drizzling at the end of the night. I dug it and prefer it to the scorching temperatures of Coachella but plenty of people were not prepared. It was easy to spot the d bag so cal dudes wearing tanks, shorts and backwards hats, trying to play it off that they weren’t freezing their ass off.
3. Transportation Situation is Dog Shit- biggest glove slap about outside lands is the transportation. We couldn’t get a cab to save our life to the venue and all the buses were so full they wouldn’t even stop. We had to bribe a cab $40 to get to the show and when we left, more drama. We dipped out thirty minutes before the show ended in an effort to beat the rush but got no love. There were no cabs really to speak of and once again the buses were packed. We ended up walking for 45 minutes, fighting our way on a bus that wasn’t really going where we needed it to and then finally scored a cab after walking an additional twenty blocks. Shitballs.
4. Onto the music. Since we got up here later than we wanted to and it took us forever to get into the show, I only saw the following four bands:
Of monsters and men
MSTRKRFT killed it. That being said, when the hell are they dropping another album? Kinda weird that they are on the festival circuit without one but I’m not complaining. I really love Washed Out and wasn’t sure what to expect live since its so chill and background music-y. I was really impressed, they sounded great and played all the jams. It was my favorite show of the day by far and the time in the evening was perfect. That being said, the energy wasn’t great for everyone and people started leaving halfway through. Their loss. Bitches.
5. Early End- Not sure if it’s a park deal or what but the show gets out at 10 every night. I actually kinda like it cuz you have your whole night ahead of you which we used to our full advantage.
I got some good sleep last night, am staying at a great house overlooking Alcatraz in the city and I’m ready for day two. Let’s dance.
We went into Coachella with the best of intentions. Shoot a bunch of footage, put together an awesome video we could share with everyone. Well, that didn’t really happen. What did? Well, I got some awesome dance footage. Enjoy!
While I’ve been an Odd Future fan for a while, never thought much of Hodgy Beats. That is until I got my hands on his EP. There are some serious bangers on here and this track could be the best of them all. Move over Tyler and Earl, Odd Future could now be the Big 3:
I’ve lived in LA for over ten years and for whatever reason, I am just unlucky when it comes to celebrity sightings. Maybe I’m not hanging out at the right places or it would help if I didn’t have a day job so I could slum around town with all the out of work actors and writers, but I don’t get lucky very often. Today though, I got a super random and awesome sighting. I live in Silverlake and when I find the motivation (which unfortunately, is not as often as I’d like), I’ll head to the reservoir to go on a 2+ mile jog.
On two separate occasions, I’ve seen Chris Parnell, in little running shorts humming along the path. For those who don’t know who I’m talking about, he’s been on SNL forever and has a funny bit role on 30 Rock as Dr. Leo Spaceman. Now Chris isn’t all that famous, so that’s not why it put the smile on my face, it was just so funny seeing him in his little get up hauling ass around Silverlake. I kept thinking about the US Weekly section called “Celebrities are Just Like Us” (or whatever) and I could just imagine the editor looking at an image of Chris running around Silverlake and deciding to toss it aside cuz he’s just not famous enough. I have no idea where I’m going with this blog but big ups to Chris Parnell. Keep rocking those short shorts, keep wearing those oakley shades and keep getting your fitness on, player.
I can’t say that I know a ton about Etta James. I don’t own all of her albums and I’d be lying if I said I’ve listened to her anytime in the past couple of months. One of the most beautiful things about music though, is that regardless of how much you listen to a particular artist or how well you know their body of work, that they can still hold a special place in your heart. My love for Etta James revolves around one song. While she’s had plenty other great songs, songs that I do listen to, it’s one song in particular called “I’d Rather Go Blind” that I will always associate with her. The first time I heard this song was in 8th grade. My good friend Manuel Martinez had a four disc box set called Chess Blues and he played this song for me. I remember that day like it was yesterday. Both him and I had just broken up with our girlfriends and were pretty damn depressed as we dealt with deep (or so what we thought at the time) guy / girl emotions for one of the first times in our lives. Before we knew it, this song was on repeat and we listened to it in his room about 20 times in a row.
To this day, it evokes emotion in me as a truly deep and touching song about heartbreak. I just found the song on youtube and as I’ve been writing this blog post, I’ve played it about five times already. As always, it not only brings me back to that day, but it also shows me how much music can resonate with you and channel emotions that we deal with in our day-to-day lives. So yeah, in tribute to Etta James, please enjoy this song and may she rest in peace.
Unlike my personal account, we’re friends with tons of people we don’t know personally on our Kid D facebook account. I’m always entertained by crazy posts I see on a daily basis that include: trashy girls taking pictures of themselves in the mirror, random pictures of people shitfaced and funny shit people find on the internet. When I stumbled upon this image, I thought, “Damn, that’s a nasty ass.” After closer examination, I was impressed by how many likes and comments there were. It wasn’t until I started reading some of these comments, that I had realized I stumbled upon comedic gold. I did a little ghetto photoshop in Powerpoint (don’t make fun of me, I’m the President of a graphic t-shirt brand and don’t know how to use Photoshop) to highlight some of my favorite comments. Honestly, there had to have been at least twenty more gems on here but I can only dedicate so much of my day to stupid shit that has no real benefit to Kid Dangerous. Enjoy Kiddos!!
So, normally, I don’t air Kid D’s dirty laundry, because it’s immature and truth be told, nobody’s business. But today is a different day and my frustration level has reached a boiling point and the company in question has pissed me off so bad, that I view bashing them via blog as a form of therapy.
Unless you’re Forever 21 or H&M or a handful of other lucky brands / retailers, the economy has been tough on fashion. Department stores aren’t buying as much, boutiques are closing down left and right, consumers aren’t spending their money, which all together, creates a domino effect that I like to refer to as “the vicious circle.”
It’s crazy to see how much each problem compounds and affects something else. Take us for example. When we sell our clothes to retailers, we try and get as many of them to pay upfront as possible. The alternative is to give them terms. An industry standard one is Net 30, which means, you ship them the goods and they have 30 days to pay you. The thinking behind it is, if you give them 30 days, they can sell a bunch of the gear you shipped them and improve their cash flow so they can pay you with money they’ve made on your product. The problem is though, it never works like that. As any entrepreneur knows, it’s really hard to quantify the reasons behind the money coming in versus the money going out and as great in theory as it sounds to be paying the people that are helping you make money, you usually just end up paying out money to keep the business running. Making rent, paying your employees, paying for even older invoices you have with other brands.
When the economy was in much better shape, the Net 30 mode l worked a lot better. Stores were selling more so they had money to pay you. Now, I would say only 1 in 10 accounts that you give N30 to, actually pay you on time. The rest of them will come up with excuses, avoid you, string you along, etc. to buy as much time as possible to pay you, or even worse, they’ll just decide they’re not going to pay you at all. Because of how shady the game has gotten, we basically refuse to give terms to anyone that isn’t named Bloomingdales or Nordstrom. With these bigger companies, they might string you out a bit on payment, but at least they are big, reputable companies and will pay you.
The only real big risk we take now is with our distributors. For those who don’t know, distributors work as sales people for your brands in different countries. Typically, they’ll have a showroom in that country and team of people who will work to get a bunch of orders for you from the boutiques and stores in their territory. Once they’re done pooling orders, they’ll then submit you one big order. You ship them the goods and they’re responsible for distributing it to all of their stores and collecting money from their accounts. Due to the role that they play, they really need 30 days to try and pool money together so you give them terms. It’s a big risk though, because if one of them is going through major shit, it’s next to impossible to collect money from them being that they’re on the other side of the world.
That’s the situation we’re in right now. The distributor is in Switzerland and for the purpose of this blog, we will call the distribution company Ghost and the person I’m dealing with Perry. Ghost has been constantly writing us fat orders for the past two years and we’ve established a good business relationship. Perry sometimes waits past the N30 to pay me, but typically, it’s not much past 30 days and I’ve never had a reason to not trust the guy. That is, until now. he owes us a lot of money and he’s now delinquent over 30 days (meaning we shipped him the order over 60 days ago). I’ve sent him countless emails, left several voice mails with no response. I actually caught him on his cell phone last week and it was hilarious. Dude sounded like he was talking to a ghost on the other end of the phone he was so shook. After exchanging pleasantries, he informed me he had to “double check” with his accountant to make sure that the wire was going out and that he’d get back to the following day. I haven’t heard from him since.
I have now upped my stalker game. Emails every day and phone calls as well. I actually got his receptionist on the line who informed me that Perry was there, but after I told her who I was, she tripped up in her speech, put me on hold and stated shortly thereafter that he was in a “meeting” and that he would call me back. The funny thing is, I know how small his business is. I know that it only takes two minutes to process a wire, one phone call to get a hold of your accountant and 30 seconds to type a quick update on the payment. I can also imagine that this Swiss receptionist had her hand over the phone while Perry danced around her desk whispering that he isn’t there.
At this point, I’m going to step up my antics. Shortly after posting this blog, I’m going to send him a 20 page
fax. Cover sheet, invoice ten times in a row. It’ll be a nice reminder when they come into the office tomorrow and I wasted a bunch of their paper and ink. I’m also planning on having my girlfriend call next and state that she has a clothing company and is interested in having Ghost represent them, and when Perry gets on the line, I’ll step in and get up in his shit. I’m also contemplating other tactics, like emailing him a picture of my ass, fedexing him a box of shit, or prank calling him the middle of the night.
The final step, if my good buddy Perry decides to not pay me, is to fly to Switzerland. The amount he owes Kid Dangerous would warrant the trip. I can only imagine if that happens. It would be the most surreal trip of my life. I want to bring a camera crew with me just to video tape the look on his face when I show up in his office. When I see him, I plan on responding to everything he says to me with “Fuck You, Pay Me.” Or maybe I don’t say anything, jump on him, proceed to give him like ten dead arms in a row, put him in a headlock and give him a noogie for the ages and finish it off with reaching into the back of his pants and grab a hold of his cheesy euro banana hammock and give him an atomic wedgie, the likes that have never been seen before in all of Switzerland. Lot of different ways to go here.
I really hope this article was all for not that and that my good buddy ol’ pal Perry pays me my mothafuckin money. If not though, things are going to spice up really quick so I’ll make sure to follow up with a blog update. Hopefully, it won’t be from a Swiss prison cell! hahaha.
The title was me trying to sound out that classic Prodigy line from Mobb Deep. I’m too lazy to look up the song title, you know what I’m talking about, right? So, over the past two or three weeks, I’ve been listening to a steady dose of hip hop which is a nice change of pace from my increasingly indie rock playlist. Big ups to Cheech for sprinkling me with a BUNCH of new music to keep me entertained at the Kid Dangerous Head Quarters. Most of these guys are pretty under the radar and have little to no chance of ever blowing up, but so much great hip hop never does. You gotta dig in the crates a little bit to find some gems. Of all the songs I’ve heard, these ones have stood out the most:
Skyzoo- Rap Like Me (album: the Great Debater)
Never heard of this dude before I got his CD and a couple things jumped out at me about the album. Sick, sick beats. Solid voice and solid flow. That’s all you need for a good hip hop CD. Here’s a thumper to get us started:
Curren$y & Alchemist- BBS (album: Covert Coup)
I’ve heard a lot of Curren$y and while I respect his game, it never got me hooked. This collabo with Alchemist is different though. Alchemist has been around forever and is responsible for countless Mobb Deep / East Coast underground rap anthems. I feel like he’s kinda fell off lately and I always wish he got a chance to work with some bigger rappers because he deserved the shine. Well, it’s good to see he’s back on this song and on the whole album. This song is so fucking gangster it’s a joke. Makes me want to roll around LA in a drop top bumping this shit while smoking a blunt and I don’t even smoke weed.
Evidence- The Red Carpet feat. Raekwon and Ras Kass (album: Cats & Dogs)
Cheech loves this album, I like it. Evidence is from Dilated Peoples and while he doesn’t have the best raps or flow ever, he’s pretty good at both. This beat, which happened to be made by Alchemist, is so hot it’s a joke.
J. Cole- Nobody’s Perfect (album: Cole World)
I fucking Love J. Cole. Love him. Have every mix tape he’s ever made and I listen to all of it religiously. I feel like he’s the next great rapper in the vein of naS, Tupac and Jay-Z. He can go from top 40 to gangster to introspective in a way that truly separates him from the pack. This approach might limit his immediate mass appeal (even though he’s doing pretty damn well already) like a Drake or a Lil Wayne, but he’s built for a long long career. He’s gonna go down in the history books. I love this jam. I actually like Missy Elliott when she sings and even though her lyrics aren’t great, the hook is catchy as shit.
Game- Born in the Trap (album: The R.E.D. Album)
So the Game isn’t exactly underground but he has fallen off quite a bit. I had basically written him off until being very pleasantly surprised by this album. Lot of great west coast bangers but it was this track with the legendary DJ Premier that caught my ear. Dope Primo beat and Game rips it like he was from the Bronx or something. Great combination here:
Blu- What if I Was (album: Jesus)
I fucking love Blu. If you’ve never heard the Below the Heavens album with Blu & Exile, download that shit and enjoy. He’s got a great voice, great flows and a great style. He’s candid about how broke he is, mixes in the topic of love really well and can even sing a bit. He’s been dropping these weird, kinda half ass EPs ever since Below the Heavens though, so I’m not sure exactly what’s happening with his career. If I ever get the chance to work on producing some shit, which is a dream of mine, I’m going to drive to his house in LA and get him to work on it with me. This song has a sick beat and shows you what I’m talking about rap wise. It’s definitely rough around the edges but still a banger:
Skyzoo- Test Drive (album: The Great Debater)
Another jam from this album. Enjoy.
Evidence- Late for the Sky (album: Cats & Dogs)
Featuring my boy Slug and Aesop Rock, this is such a jam. Be patient, the beat doesn’t drop until the 50th second but when it does, it’s totally worth it.
J. Cole- I Get Up (album: The Warm Up)
This song is a bit older than the rest but really shows J. Cole’s lyrical range. He hits racial, socioeconomic and gender topics in a way that I could only compare to Tupac. The dude is the truth and this song shows he’s more than just a top 40 rapper.