Staff Picks : November 2018

Nov 2018

This November the ZUMIX Staff is cooking up all types of musical treats and being inspired by some amazing musicians, including Massachusetts based artists like Token and JonVair to newcomers with big buzz like Koffee and Cuco. Take a listen below and enjoy!

“thank u, next” by Ariana Grande

“She’s really out here being graceful in spite of everything… so, this one is for Gordon.” – Julianna Quiroz, Administrative Assistant

“Lamp Lit Prose” by Dirty Projectors

“Interesting sonic textures and intricate harmonies down every isle of this ear candy store – and Dirty Projectors now feature Kristin Slipp of Boston’s own Cuddle Magic (one of my faves)!” – Daniel Fox, Director of Creative Media and Tech.

“Goodluck” by Meernaa

“These are my homies from California. Love the slow, greasy tempo, beautiful vocal performance and production, and the Gibson SG guitar riffs/sound, all recorded to tape! They’re playing the Dorchester Art Project on Tuesday, Dec. 4 – check em out while they’re in town!” – Avi Salloway, Z-Tech Live Sound Coordinator

My Mind” by YEBBA

“I have watched this video 30 times this week.  It’s not often that someones technical capability matches their passion – YEBBA has got it all.” – Ali McGuirk, Play It Forward Instructor

“Toast” by Koffee

“Total fire. An anthem of gratitude.” – Brian Paulding, Brass Instructor

“Treehouse” by Token

“This local young man from Salem, MA is displaying technique, style and great work ethics. I can appreciate it, Go Token!!” – Corey DePina, Youth Development and Performance Manager

“Lo Que Siento” by Cuco

“I haven’t had Cuco on repeat all month you’ve had Cuco on repeat all month. ” – Sarah Saydun, Pathways Coordinator

“Life Jacket” by JonVair

“Local artist JonVair has made a real gem with this song. Between a booming baseline and some epic vocals it’s worth a listen.” – Rene Dongo, Radio Program Coordinator

“Heavy Pop” by WU LYF

“The lead singer’s raw and energetic vocals paired with the somewhat soothing, melodic instrumentals is incredibly satisfying for me. In finding that this song was a product of WU LYF’s only full studio album before the band’s unfortunate split, my obsession with it grew. I cling to the small remnants of unique sound that this band created, and will likely never create again. ” – Nikala Pieroni, Development and Communications Associate 

Listen to the Spotify playlist here

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Staff Picks : October 2018

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October, what a nice month to enjoy the fall! So many wonderful things happen in moments of transition. Boston is celebrating a big win, the colors of the trees are swelling with new looks and here at ZUMIX we’re bumping music that from all types of folks. Check out some great picks below from Empress Of and Lizzo to Helado Negro, enjoy!

“Are I Here” by Helado Negro 

“I love the way many of Helado Negro’s songs walk the line between dark melancholy and lighthearted playfulness. This whole album gives me that feeling of waking up from an intense dream that you’re relieved is over, but that you also don’t want to slip away from your memory. Definitely a good soundtrack for this autumn month.” – Sarah Saydun, Pathways Coordinator

“I’m Just Snacking” by Gus Dapperton

“There’s a music video, but my focus is on the lyrics for this one. An exercise in active listening, the song offers so much more in its verses than just a deliciously sensual groove. Check out the storytelling found around its catchy chorus with commentary from the guy himself on Genius, and maybe come away with a deeper appreciation of the tune.” – Julianna Quiroz, Administrative Assistant

Coconut oil ” by Lizzo

“Forget all the drama and pass me my coconut oil” – Corey DePina, Youth Development and Performance Manager

Walking on a Dream” by Empire of the Sun

“Because after almost ten years I still loooooovvvveeee it.” – Kim Dawson, Director of Advancement

“There Will Be Sunshine” by Snoh Aalegra

“This halloween, I’m dressing up as Ms. Frizzle in her weather outfit — rainbow dress, cloudy earrings and a generally stormy vibe. This song’s meteorological metaphors are a good match: ‘there will be sunshine, though the forecast is grey.’ It’s mixed precipitation, a little spooky, a little hopeful.” – Brittany Thomas, ZUMIX Radio Station Manager

“Everything to Me” by Empress Of

“Empress Of is one of my favorite acts in music right now. Her new album is breathtaking and I’m in love with everything about this song. I’m swimming in the lyrics and the flutter of the chorus, just great things :)” – Rene Dongo, ZUMIX Radio Program Coordinator

“Chateau (Acoustic)” by Angus & Julia Stone

“The plucky, simple instrumentals make this song a bit addicting to me. It’s incredibly satisfying. ” – Nikala Adele Pieroni ,Development and Communications Associate 

Jolene” by Dolly Parton

“I heard this song in a snowboard video when I was a teenager, and always strangely associate it with snowboarding, but I was in Nashville the past four days and had it on repeat as it’s one of the biggest hits ever recorded there. Love this song!” – Jacob Gilman, Events Coordinator

Listen to the Spotify playlist here

Staff Picks : September 2018

Sept 2018This month we’re taking a look at what folks are listening to sans theme, check it out we have a variety of tracks from Noname, Kadeem, Lightfoot and live concerts from Mac Miller and Erica Falls. Take a listen below:

“710AM” by Kadeem

“Kadeem is a talented rising Boston artist with a lot in store! He beautifully captures the duality of a bright early morning, feeling motivated and creatively empowered, but nonetheless coping with the struggles of everyday life. (I also make a cameo :))” – Jacob Gilman, Events Coordinator

“Tiny Desk Concert” by Mac Miller

“Mac Miller was a great poet who used words and stories in a way that seemed truly natural and effortless. Sometimes making things look easy is the hardest thing to do. Rest In Paridise, you will be missed” – Corey DePina, Youth Development and Performance Manager

“LMF Jazzfest 2017 ” by Erica Falls

“I just saw her for the first time last night at d.b.a. On Frenchman Street in New Orleans and she blew me away! A vocal powerhouse ala Chaka Khan and musical inspiration ala Irma Thomas. Her band was on point, and she was so good I would travel to see her!” – Madeleine Steczynski, Director of Advancement

“Hypnic Jerks” by Spirit of the Beehive

“This definitely isn’t the first time I’ve chosen Spirit of the Beehive and it certainly won’t be my last. Hypnic Jerks clings to my brain from the very first chord progression but the monotonous vocal melody that instantly jumps in was something very unique to them and I couldn’t get enough of it. Modulated guitar kicks in quickly enough to remind me who i’m listening to.” – Ramsel Gonzalez, Program Manager

“After the Storm (ft. Tyler, The Creator & Bootsy Collins) ” by Kali Uchis

“First off, Bootsy Collins is the man. I love this modern interpretation of classic funk and I think it’s a really good blend of old school and new school production.” – Ali McGuirk, ZUMIX Play It Forward Instructor

“Don’t Forget About Me” by Noname

“Noname finally released another album, and it’s everything. This track particularly hits me hard, with contemplation on death, family, and the grey, heavy feeling of existence.” – Sarah Saydun, Pathways Coordinator

“Elephant Woman” by Blonde Redhead

“Listened to this orchestral, emotional album on an important road trip this summer and haven’t been able to get those memories or this first track out of my head. Writing after her severe horse accident, Kazu and the group built this gorgeous, philosophical masterpiece exploring what it means to recover after loss. Still not sure what it makes me feel but I do know why.” – Julianna Quiroz, Administrative Assistant

“Shower Jams” by Lightfoot

“Shout outs to Lightfoot, he’s a local beat maker and I got to see him do a live set a while back and he had a great vibe, this track is my fav off his ‘Momentum is Fleeting’ record. Give it a listen!” – Rene Dongo, Radio Program Coordinator

Check out the playlist on Spotify here: https://open.spotify.com/embed/user/0bgekk8z2hayvax11nj6tw5co/playlist/0iTpu07w8oecUcXRtRNDsH

 

Staff Picks : August 2018 *Summer Nostalgia*

August 2018

Summer is never really over. Just believe in it and it’ll linger. While labor day weekends are like a last hooray the summer memories stay forever and for this months picks the ZUMIX Staff have dug far into their minds to embrace those. Take a listen below to hear them flow back out in the form of music with a mix of Aretha Franklin, Skabetty, Sly & the Family Stone and Porches. Enjoy!

“Don’t Tell” by Eleanor Elektra

“I listened to this album a lot during my commute to work and this song was one of my favorites.” – Jireh Calo, ZUMIX Play It Forward Instructor

“I’m Still In Love” by Marcia Aitken

“Every track off the Jonny Greenwood is the Controller album (+Draw Your Brakes by Scotty) evokes nostalgia from every summer I’ve had since 2007 when I was introduced to it. Radiohead’s guitarist Jonny Greenwood made a compilation of his favorite reggae selects, some more known than others. My connection with “I’m Still in Love” goes back further to being on summer vacation and dancing with my mom to a live band’s cover. The joy I saw across her face during that makes this song dear to me and deeply nostalgic. I also vividly remember the feeling of being 15 with my best friends, blaring the rest of album outside on a hot summer day by the pool. It’s the perfect soundtrack to span the range of summer emotions, from carefree chilling, summer romance, ongoing reality of world issues and the potency of life when the weather is hot. Other favorite tracks are Dread is the Controller, Let Me Down Easy, This Life Makes Me Wonder, Dreader Locks… actually every song is my favorite.” – Jacob Gilman, Events Coordinator

“Young Blood” by Naked and Famous

“This song was released the summer I fell in love with my partner in life and love. Every time I listen to it, I go right back to the beautiful feeling that everything is vibrant and beautiful, which comes with the excitement and possibility that falling in love brings.” – Kimberly Dawson, Director of Advancement

“I Never Loved A Man (The Way That I Love You)” by Aretha Franklin

“Every song by Aretha Franklin makes me feel lots of strong emotions, but this is one of the first ones I put on repeat in college when I was experiencing unrequited love, so that’s why it’s my “Summer Nostalgia” pick. Queen Aretha forever!” – Ali McGuirk, ZUMIX Play It Forward Instructor

“Saturdays” by De La Soul

“This song hits the summer nostalgia hot spot, It talks about love, work, play and anything else you could do on a saturday during the summer. it also has a funky beat thats perfect to set the mood “mr.sprinkler mr.sprinkler” always makes we want to tap the fire hydrant” – Corey DePina, Youth Development and Performance Manager

“Mass of the Fermenting Dregs” by Skabetty

“While this song doesn’t bring me back to a specific Summer in my life, I did discover this song this Summer and the general warmness of the song makes me yearn for something happy that never truly existed.” – Ramsel Gonzalez, Program Manager

“Daylight” by Matt and Kim

“This song is the embodiment of many outdoor summer memories, and was solidified as one of the most glorious summer songs after seeing it performed live in 2013. Kim put her trust in the audience, and “crowd surfed” standing (with multiple people holding her feet and ankles) while doing a little dance. What a summer rockstar!” – Nikala Peroni, Development & Communications Associate

“Hot Fun in the Summertime” by Sly & The Family Stone

“A nice warm, nostalgic hit with a just a hint of musk — A classic by the first truly racially and gender integrated American band.” – Mr Ed, Teaching Artist

“Good Good” by Saweetie

“The vibe on ‘Good Good’ evoked so many memories for me of college travesuras, running around on hot summer nights shooting music videos, evading mosquito bites and getting lost in thunderstorms. ” – Rene Dongo, Radio Program Coordinator

“Ce Jeu” by Yelle

“This song brings me back to summers in high school, yell-singing while jumping around my room in my PJs or driving to the beach with a car full of my friends. It gives me that young, butterfly feeling of playing silly hard-to-get games with a crush. Very summer nostalgia :)” – Sarah Saydun, Pathways Coordinator

“Goodbye” by Porches

“Melancholy & maudlin. Languid & lavish. Fresh, free, and fervent. Makes me want to cry as much as this summer has.” – Julianna Quiroz, Administrative Assistant

Listen to the playlist on Spotify by clicking this link: https://open.spotify.com/embed/user/0bgekk8z2hayvax11nj6tw5co/playlist/28JN1DwI40zxxJ6Ba8vW94

Staff Picks : July 2018 *Karaoke* Edition

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Karaoke is simultaneously embarrassing and super fun; singing into a blaring PA system alongside shiny lights and friends. Karaoke brings people together to celebrate and let loose and this month the ZUMIX staff have made their picks and who knows maybe under the right circumstances you might see us belt these tracks out in public but for now you can check out the picks below!

“You Know I’m No Good (Remix)” by Amy Winehouse & Ghostface Killer

“I find a person who can sing the Amy part and the crowd never expects me to come in with the rhymes, this joint always turns the party out” –Corey DePina, Youth Development and Performance Manager

“Dead or Alive” by Bon Jovi

“I mean, it doesn’t get much more 80s hair band than this…and who doesn’t love an 80s hair band for karaoke.” –Kimberly Dawson, Director of Advancement

“Golden Years” by David Bowie

“Not the easiest song to sing but it sits well in my vocal range, chest voice, head voice, and break(!) fun to navigate—especially if I’m ‘warmed up’ and lubricated.” –Mr Ed, Teaching Artist

“Mr. Brightside” by The Killers

“This was actually the first song (and the last) I ever sang at a public karaoke bar. I did a duet and we nailed it. The song’s melody is easy to remember and all of the long drawn out words in the chorus and outro make it the perfect karaoke track.” – Ramsel Gonzalez, Program Manager

“I Will Always Love you” by Whitney Houston

“Has a better, more powerful or more nostalgic song ever been written? I think not.” –Ali McGuirk, ZUMIX Play It Forward Instructor

“Don’t Stop Me Now” by Queen

“Because this might be the funnest song ever and I like to sing like Freddy.” –Jenny Shulman, Director of Operations

“Genie in A Bottle” by Christina Aguilera

“Struggling with self-discipline, contemplating hedonism, and prioritizing self-respect and enthusiastic participation when the opportunity presents itself? Come on– it’s the pre-2000’s empowered pop star ballad of my dreams. I’ll sing this song like I wrote it.” –Julianna Quiroz, Administrative Assistant

“One Way or Another” by Blondie

“Fun driving vocals, with modulation – yay!” – Madeleine Steczynski, Co-Founder & Executive Director

“You Learn” by Alanis Morissette

“It’s hard to pick just one from this album, and if I could go sing karaoke thirteen weekends in a row, I’d pick a different ‘Jagged Little Pill’ track each time I step to the mic. ‘You Learn’ is just a great message to belt out with a bunch of people as your backup singers in a crowded room. ” – Brittany Thomas, Radio Station Manager

“Freak On a Leash” by Korn

“Last time I did karaoke this was the easiest song for me to get through and it also made people leave the room. Which makes it very clear that my high school days of listening to Nu-Metal has left it’s mark on me that is beautiful, kinda ridiculous and at times a bit scary” – Rene Dongo, Radio Program Coordinator

Listen on Spotify:

https://open.spotify.com/embed/user/0bgekk8z2hayvax11nj6tw5co/playlist/77t3NY0dcAstiTUWd5jQxN

Staff Picks : June 2018 *Joy Ride* Edition

June 2018

Joy rides are great especially when it’s nice out, you’re in good company and the music is on point. At ZUMIX this month we picked our jams for the long drives, the beach trips and the cross country road trips. If you’re enjoying the summer vibes and are looking for some new tunes to play in the car, we’ve got you covered! Check out this months picks below.

“One Day” by Matisyahu

“No matter what, when I put on this song it makes me happy and hopeful…plus, my daughter and I love to sing it together in the car :)” –Kimberly Dawson, Director of Advancement

“Biggy” by Warpaint

“Aside from having one of the grooviest contemporary rock drummers, Stella Mozgawa, Warpaint’s tunes are big favorites of mine for blasting on long summer drives with the windows down because I feel like I’m swimming in their ethereal sounds!” –Nicole Pompei, Teaching Artist

“Not For Radio” by Nas

“So much truth in 1 track. NAS is truly a poet and master with words, his delivery is straight forward and unapologetic. Its refreshing to hear such raw reality from one of the greatest to do it.” –Corey DePina, Youth Development and Performance Manager

“If It Feels Good” by Leon Bridges

“This track makes me think of my friend Caroline, who introduced me to Leon Bridges on a summer night when he covered Ginuwine’s Pony in front of a bunch of screaming fans. It embraces being mysterious and low-key, and is best when turned way up — all qualities of a good joy ride.” –Brittany Thomas, Radio Station Manager

“Sunshine” by Atmosphere

“A classic. This song perfectly emulates the mellow joy that can come from a slow drive on a sunny day, singing along to your favorite song (which just so happens to be this one).” –Nikala Peroni, Development & Communications Associate

“Strange Mercy” by St. Vincent

“This is one of those songs that brings me right to a specific moment every time I hear it… Road tripping from California to Montana in the summer of 2011 – windows down, rolling hills, endless blue sky.” –Sarah Saydun, Pathways Coordinator

“Evergreen” by YEBBA

“I love this song, this singer and her arrangement – it makes me so excited about music and life!” –Ali McGuirk, ZUMIX Play It Forward Instructor

“Hunnybee” by Unknown Mortal Orchestra

“This is what the wind sounded like as it flew by me in my imaginary baby blue hatchback the day before I got my license whispering lil summer vibes into my dreams. This song is so sweet, its lovely to hear over and over again.” –Rene Dongo, Radio Program Coordinator

“Glowed Up” by Kaytranada feat. Anderson .Paak

“Super fun “celebration of life going well” song and Andy brings the high vibrations!” -Jake Gilman, Events Coordinator.

“Gypsy Woman (She’s Homeless)” by Crystal Waters

“I’d hop in a car and drive for miles just to hear this song blast good vibes at me a couple times. But don’t sleep on those socially-conscious lyrics; homelessness can happen to anyone. In that condition, our title woman still considers herself beautiful as she busks on the street after losing her job. Confronted with extreme loss, what would you preserve to live on proudly?” –Julianna Quiroz, Administrative Assistant

“Ride On Shooting Star” by The Pillows

“I first heard of The Pillows, as did many people, from the anime FLCL (Fooly Cooly) which released in America in 2003. The story revolves around a 12 year old boy and a ‘Vespa-riding maniac’ woman from outer space. The Pillows did the soundtrack to the short 6-episode anime and I was a young 10 year old kid with no real music taste. However, this specific song was the credits sequence track to each episode and I actually would sit through each episode’s credits sequence just so that I could listen to this song. I think it’s where my love for alt-rock and j-rock was subconsciously being bred. The credits featured a montage of one of the main characters riding around on her vespa… which may be why I associate it with joy riding!” – Ramsel Gonzalez, Program Manager

Listen to the playlist here on Spotify:

Staff Picks : May 2018 *Spring is Here!* Edition

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It’s springtime! Here at ZUMIX we’ve been wrapping up classes with graduations and performances over the last couple weeks and we’ve been bumping music to get us going in this shift over to springtime. Take a listen to the music below and see what ZUMIX Staff picked to highlight as their jam to groove to.

“This is America” by Childish Gambino

“This song is one thing and then the video takes it to another level. I love how this piece brings up questions, dialog and feeling about content, race, media and our country.” –Corey DePina, Youth Development and Performance Manager

“Como Siempre Soñé” by Javiera Mena

“Spring is perfect for dreamy electro pop that gives you that soft, falling asleep next to your crush feeling.” – Sarah Saydun, Pathways Coordinator

“Good Kisser” by Lake Street Dive

“Nope it’s not Usher, it’s Lake Street Dive with a recent release that screams new beginnings! Video director Bianca Giaever is a master of quirky and fun, and she shows us all the ways we could be delivering messages in this playful al maximo video, beyond the realm of the phone. ” – Brittany Thomas, Radio Station Manager

“Colors” by Beck

“It’s retro, it’s futuristic, it’s serious, it’s fun, it’s mindless pop, it’s intellectual psychedelic pastiche. While we could criticize Beck for some questionable choices on this album (rapping over a trap beat for example), there is no doubt he is one of the most versatile, fearless, and prolific songwriters of the last 25 years.” – Daniel Fox, Director of Creative Media & Technology

“Hoo La Hoop” by System Band

“What an amazing horn arrangement! ” – Brian Paulding, Brass Instructor

“Year Round” by HighKey Random

“For me everything goes into slow motion when this bumps; mosh pit shoves, ice cream drips, hair in the wind, running for the train, flashing lights.” – Rene Dongo, Radio Program Coordinator

“It Was Not Natural” by Wye Oak

“Jenn Wasner and Andy Stack (the duo behind Wye Oak) are not only incredibly skilled musicians and highly knowledgeable about music production/music tech, they were a true pleasure to meet and share the stage with at Brooklyn Steel. Wye Oak tunes are some of the grooviest out there — perfect for blasting during long spring bike rides!” –Nicole Pompei, Teaching Artist

“Lion’s Jaws” by Neko Case

“This song reminds me of both the comfort and discomfort of Springtime and it has a cool 50’s vibe to it.” – Jenny Shulman, Director of Operations

“Maria Tambien” by Khruangbin

“I just like it. The guitar player gets cool sounds out of the instrument.” – Omar Sosa, Administrative Assistant and Teaching Artist

“El Jornalero/”El Hijo de Tuta” by Lisandro Meza

“¡Wepaaaaa!” – Julianna Quiroz, Administrative Assistant

Listen to the playlist here on Spotify: