Sunday, June 30, 2013

Wheelin' Towards Willie Part 2 - Clarksville, TN

One of the coolest things about traveling is finding random slices of life and meeting new folks on the road. We headed out of Chattanooga around 5pm as Husky Burnette had to boogie to a local acoustic show. After backing up the film footage and rolling through the hills and river valleys, Clarksville, Tennessee was beckoning us. The ride north by north west on 24 is an easy haul with some beautiful pasture land to cruise through. Rolling to the gig right around sunset with a thunderstorm upon us was a great site to see. Thankfully the last minute show at the Poorman's Country Club put on by Angie Clark turned out to be an amazing night. Jake, JB and I cannot thank her enough for the hospitality and good times, that lasted til' sunrise.

Quote of the day:
"Damn it Clarksville, y'all are conspiring to fuck us up bad..." JB Beverley

This is relating to the first bar we have been to where its BYOL, hahaha.

Long nights and early sunrises in Clarksville, TN
Maybe a new website should be started, People of Waffle House
Jake is eyeing up our new favorite mixed drink Jim Williams
This here hotel room is protected by .40 cal's and cold beer
Beauty is where you find it
JB Beverley, local dude in Clarksville and Jake Cox after the show
Kara Clark joined in on the jam session
Jake Cox and JB Beverley getting into the groove
Rollin' through Nasvhille on the road
Gotta love random graffiti in bathrooms
Honey, I have a new love and her name is Yella!

Saturday, June 29, 2013

Wheelin' Towards Willie Tour Part 1 - Chattanooga, TN

Yesterday we embarked upon the Wheelin' Towards Willie Tour. The entire goal was to set up key interviews that we need to help capture who is Billy Don Burns as an artist and individual, on the new documentary film in production. Billy Don is a prolific songwriter and a stand up dude, that has been working for four decades now. People love his music far and wide, yet on a larger scale he is still relatively unknown. 

Throughout tour stops we will be speaking with a variety of folks, such as today with Roger Alan Wade. JB Beverley and Jake Cox are doing nightly gigs to cover gas and travel costs, so come on out to shows and link up with us. Some of the highlights include hanging with the Mayor of Chattanooga, Husky Burnette, interviewing and meeting Roger Alan Wade, along with a 3 am ghost tour or drunken waltz through the Hales Bar Dam that is featured in numerous ghost hunting shows.

Check out JB Beverley's page on Facebook for tour stops

Quote of the day part 1:
Roger Alan Wade - "Honesty trumps everything when it comes to songwriting."

Jeremy, JB Beverley and Shannon
JB Beverley and Jake Cox joining Husky Burnette on stage
Jake Cox hopping up on harmonica with Husky Burnette
Ol' Jeremy saying the hell with the bathroom I am giving the catfish something new to drink
Husky Burnette is channeling some Jeff Healy and Voodoo all at once for guitar magic
Late night 3am ghost tour of the infamous Hales Bar Dam, famous from ghost hunting shows
We set up a chair and doll in the middle of one of the tunnels
Interviewing Roger Alan Wade for the Billy Don Burns documentary
On site for the interview with Husky Burnette, Roger Alan Wade, JB Beverley and Jake Cox
Double Your Meat!
JB Beverley explaining the virtues of Coors Light

Thursday, June 27, 2013

The Sensual Mallory Knox

Music by CONVERGE (song "Worms Will Feed")
Performed by Mallory Knox
Directed by Berzerker
Improvised short movie with the amazing Mallory Knox.

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Keep The Hardcore Flame Lit With These Bands

Hardcore is just part of my blood. From being an early teenager and finding all the bands to check out in the back of Thrasher Magazine to being in band for a number of years and causing as much of a ruckus as we could, this type of music truly resonates with me. Positive anger is indeed a well of inspiration and the notion of using it to further yourself is always present in much of hardcore music. Enjoy these tasty cuts from Trapped Under Ice, Rise Of The Northstar, The Greenery and Incendiary, the bands that we cannot get enough of as of late.

Brand New Carolina Still and Kara Clark Shirt Designs

Check out the brand new shirt designs for Carolina Still and Kara Clark. Click the links to pick up one for yourself.

Brand new tshirt designs for Carolina Still and Kara Clark
Kara Clark shirt detail
Carolina Still new shirt design
Carolina Still illustration on the drawing table
Kara Clark raven illustration on the drawing table

10 Best Skate Videos With Great Music

Having posts such as this pop up in our inbox truly makes the morning quite special. Not only do many of these videos churn up a lot of memories of skating throughout the years, but also serve as a reminder of how fluid a skate video and the music paired with it can be. Paste magazine hit the nail on the head with this post, but they forgot a few crucial videos that we will gladly add below.

Check out Paste Magazine

Music and skateboarding have always shared a strong connection, and the overlap of the two cultures is most prevalent in skateboarding videos. While skating is clearly the most significant aspect, a great soundtrack can take an average skate video and make it extraordinary. So many incredible bands have been featured in high-profile skate videos through the years, and in honor of National Go Skateboarding Day, we’ve compiled a list of our 10 favorite songs used in skate videos.

10. Band of Horses – “Funeral” and “Is There a Ghost”

After a drug-habit induced hiatus from skateboarding, veteran Guy Mariano was ready to make a comeback. Everyone was excited to see his return in Fully Flared, but few expected Mariano to put together one of the greatest parts in recent history. That’s exactly what he did, and the Band of Horses sound track said a lot about his state of mind. “Funeral” starts slow and the part feels like an homage to the legendary skater’s past and comeback. But then the song kicks into gear and so does Mariano, as if to say “enough reminiscing, let’s get to work.”

9. Rush – “2112 Overture/The Temples of Syrinx”
If Jaime Thomas hadn’t already solidified his title as “The Chief”, his part in Zero’s Dying To Live etched it in stone. Thomas’ part is epic from start to finish and perfectly edited to the dynamic “2112 Overture”.

8. Santo and Johnny – “Sleepwalk”

Nick Trapasso was relatively unknown before the release of Toy Machine’s Suffer the Joy, but his debut was one of the most talked about parts from the video. Trapasso has one of the most relaxed styles in skateboarding (it doesn’t hurt that he skates in pajama pants half the time). Santo and Johnny’s “Sleepwalk” is one of the most apt song choices ever.

7. Metallica – “Orion”
A video that begins with a helicopter shot of Danny Way introducing the MegaRamp to the world requires a big song, and Metallica knows big. “Orion” sets the tempo for The DC Video perfectly.

6. Notorious B.I.G. – “Let’s Get It On”
Antwuan Dixon has had some problems as of late but his part in Baker 3 will always be remembered as a classic. Dixon is considered by many to be one of the most stylish skaters of all time. The big man effortlessly floats before stomping his tricks with conviction. Dixon flows through his part just as Biggie flows through “Let’s Get It On”.

5. The Killers – “All These Things That I’ve Done”
Daewon Song is one of the technical geniuses of skateboarding. Song put together an amalgamation of ridiculous manuals, grinds, and roof gaps deserving of The Killer’s anthem. His part in Almost Round 3 is also an instant classic.

4. Arcade Fire – “No Cars Go”
Lakai’s Fully Flared had a lot of hype to live up to after a nearly two-year delay of its release. The video exceeded expectations and after one of the most intense and expensive intros of all time, young Mike Mo Capaldi took the first spot of the video. Capaldi was only 16 for most of the filming and represented a new crop of young talent. Arcade Fire’s fresh sound and prominent percussion provides a perfect soundtrack for Capaldi’s technically absurd part.

3. Joy Division – “Love Will Tear Us Apart”
Girl’s Yeah Right! raised the bar for skate videos. The project was a massive undertaking and is known for its soundtrack. Marc Johnson’s part is a constant barrage of technical manuals, grinds, and gaps and the Joy Division soundtrack serves as a means to mellow out the part and make it flow perfectly. Ian Curtis’ haunting baritone voice is a great match to Johnson’s smooth style.

2. Dinosaur Jr. – “Kracked”
Starting off a Toy Machine video entitled Good & Evil with a Dinosaur Jr. song seems like a no-brainer. “Kracked” is a spot-on compliment to the illustrations of boss man Ed Templeton and the huge gaps, rails, and slams that kick off the video.

1. John Coltrane – “Traneing In” *
No place better to end than the most influential skater of all time. Mark Gonzales has shaped modern street skating and his part in Blind’s Video Days (arguably the most influential skate video of all time) is legendary. The Gonz has a style that can best be likened to Jazz music, riffing and improvising every chance he gets. John Coltrane couldn’t be a better fit for this part.

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Josh Homme Shows Off His Guitar Moves

In the third episode of Guitar Moves, we sat down with Queens of the Stone Age's Josh Homme in a sweltering Los Angeles garage to talk polka guitar and make fun of solos.

Guitar Moves, hosted by Matt Sweeney, is a show where the viewer gets an opportunity to sit in on a private, interesting, and hilarious conversation about guitars, music, life, and craft. During the season, Sweeney and his guests play through licks, riffs, and solos that inform their style, influence their playing, and define their sound.

Presented in partnership with XL Strings by D'Addario.

Spark Plug Keychains By Rusty Knuckles

A friend of ours asked if we could make some spark plug keychains. How could we say no. Pick up yours on our Etsy page.

Autolite spark plug keychains
Spark plug keychains

The Iron Sheik Reigns Supreme In Wrestling History

As a kid growing up in the 1980's, wrestling was king. There were always other sports such as baseball and football, but pro wrestling captured the imagination of a world filled with tough dudes that had huge character and better one liners than most comedians. My brother and I were addicted to the sport and became life long fans of the squared circle.

The article below caught my attention and made me read it immediately as the Iron Sheik was one of the best heels in the business. His rants about America and how great Iran were classic. One of my favorite feuds of his was with Dusty Rhodes and some of their legendary matches. It could have been the blood shed or the pure athleticism, but what got me the most was his character. The timing was perfect for his schlocky approach to foreign interest via wrestling and from a country aligned with Russia in the time of the cold war. Gotta give huge props to the WWE for creating such a great batch of characters that continue to live on, even though all those years of body slams and choke holds have taken their toll.

Check out original article on Yahoo

The Iron Sheik, one the best heels in wrestling of all time!
"His voice was instantly recognizable, like that of a long lost friend. But it was a joyless voice, and sounded a bit feeble.

Hossein Khosrow Ali Vaziri, is 73, and is in pain. He badly needs knee surgery that he can't afford, but if the truth is to be told, every joint on his body could use fixing.

A lifetime in wrestling, amateur and professional, will do that to a man.

So Vaziri, better known as the evil pro wrestler, "The Iron Sheik," would on this day rather sit in his chair and let the hours pass by than talk about his life.

He aches all over, he's not making a lot of money and he wants to be left alone.

"Bubba, please, I will talk to you and answer all of your questions," he says, pleadingly. "But let's do it another time. Now is not good." 

Nikolai Volkoff and the Iron Sheik
Now, though, is the time. At least that's the view of Page Magen, who along with his twin brother, Jian, serves as the Sheik's manager. The Magens are attempting to raise funds through crowd sourcing to produce a documentary on the Sheik's life.

It is an incredible life, one well worth documenting. He was born in a small village near Tehran. His childhood home had no running water nor plumbing, but he worked hard and became one of Iran's most popular athletes. He competed in the 1968 Olympics in Mexico City on its Greco-Roman wrestling team, and served for a while as a bodyguard for the family of the Shah.

He fled the country, though, when his friend and idol Gholamreza Takhti was, he believed, murdered by the government. He feared he might be next, so in 1969, he headed for the safety of the U.S.
The official version of Takhti's death, released by the government, is that he committed suicide. But Vaziri and many others believe Takhti was executed for his anti-government views.

"He was so popular in Iran," Vaziri said. "He was like the Michael Jordan. Everyone loved him. And I was No. 2. I thought, if they got him, they're probably going to get me, too. I knew I had to leave."
And so he set out for the U.S. Though he spoke only Farsi when he arrived, he quickly became immersed in amateur wrestling in his new country. He won an AAU championship in 1971 and was presented his gold medal by Muhammad Ali.

Later, he served as an assistant coach under the legendary Alan Rice on the 1972 U.S. Olympic wrestling team before he went on to stardom as a villainous professional wrestler.

But he became addicted to crack cocaine during his wrestling career, then suffered through the 2003 murder of his oldest daughter, Marissa.

Page Magen knows that for Vaziri to raise the money he needs for the documentary, he has to tell the story of his life to drum up interest in the project, so he patiently prods Vaziri.

"Sheikie baby, listen to me," Magen says, gently. "You need to focus. This is important. Can you do this for me, Sheikie? Just focus for a few minutes."

Vaziri agrees, but he speaks slowly, in a monotone and without passion.

Later, his wife, Caryl, says she's not surprised. It was not a good day, for the Iron Sheik, she says.
"He's in such great pain, almost all the time," Caryl Vaziri said.

The Iron Sheik poses for a picture during his younger days as a wrestler. (Courtesy: Hossein Vaziri)
The Sheik walks with the aid of a cane, but even with the cane, he moves slowly, unsteadily, and with great difficulty.

"He's such a big, strong guy, and he hurts so much, it hurts me to see him," she said. "He had operations on both of his knees about 10 years ago, and they failed. He hurts everywhere, but the knees are really painful. He told me, 'Caryl, I hurt from the top of my head to the bottom of my toes.' It breaks my heart. He can withstand a lot of pain, but this is too much for him."

His left knee is particularly painful, and gruesome looking. A bone protrudes out. The bones, Caryl Vaziri said, are out of alignment and "don't come together." It makes it torture to walk.

He loved his job, and wouldn't trade his years as a pro wrestler for anything. He won the WWF (now WWE) world championship on the night after Christmas in 1983 when he beat Bob Backlund. He then went on to have a lengthy feud with Hulk Hogan. He might have become the greatest heel – pro wrestling parlance for a bad guy – in the sport's long history.

But being a pro wrestler means days and weeks on end on the road, away from family and friends. Addictions are common. And though the results of a pro wrestling match are predetermined, that does not mean it's not physically taxing.

"Being a wrestler is not an easy life," he says. "It's very hard on the body. I loved it, but it is a hard life to live."

Josip Peruzovic is now 66, and lives in Baltimore. He used to work for the city doing code enforcement, but now works for the Police Department with its kids programs.

During his younger days, Peruzovic was known as Nikolai Volkoff, and teamed with the Iron Sheik to win the WWF tag team titles.

Volkoff and the Sheik played off the anti-Soviet, anti-Iranian mindset that was prevalent in the U.S. in the late 1970s and through the 1980s.

The Iron Sheik would routinely grab the microphone from the ring announcer and shout to an enraged crowd, "Iran, No. 1! Russia, No. 1!"

Hossein Vaziri is presented with a medal for wrestling accomplishments. (Courtesy: Hossein Vaziri)
At that point, he'd say "USA!" and then spit on the ground. Volkoff would then take the microphone and sing the Russian national anthem as the crowd booed mercilessly.

Peruzovic recalled his time as Vaziri's tag team partner fondly, and said Vaziri was great to work with. Vaziri, he said, loved the fans, particularly children, and would sign autographs for them for so long, he'd miss his plane.

But it wasn't long after they teamed up that Peruzovic began to worry about his friend.
Vaziri was becoming addicted to alcohol and crack cocaine, and Peruzovic feared for his safety.
"My God, I think at one time, more than 90 percent of the wrestlers were taking one drug or another," Peruzovic said. "I was fortunate that I never got mixed up in that. I don't drink, and I don't smoke and I never was fooling around with drugs. I thank God for that. But I know that the Sheik had a lot of problems with it.

"I'd say to him sometimes, 'Man, you have to be careful, and be good to your body. You're going to kill yourself.' He's a beautiful person with a big heart, but he didn't listen to me. He loved those drugs."

Caryl Vaziri said that when she met her husband in Minnesota in 1971, he didn't drink, smoke or fool with drugs. But once he hit the big-time and was traveling more than 300 days a year, the peer pressure on him was intense.

"It was horrible," she said. "It just got so bad, and it puts such a strain on your family and your relationship and everything. It's bad enough that he was gone on the road so much, but to know what he was doing to himself, it was very painful for the whole family."

On Oct. 7, 2005, a little more than two years after his oldest daughter was murdered, Vaziri was arrested near his Georgia home and charged with two counts of possession of cocaine and one count of possession of marijuana.

Not long after, Caryl Vaziri had had enough and left him.

"I never stopped loving him," she said. "Never, not for one minute. But I just had to get him to stop [using drugs]. [Me leaving] and getting my own place shook him up and straightened him out and he has been clean the last couple of years, three or four years now."

Several years ago when the Magens started working on the documentary, Vazir

I came to Toronto where they live to make an appearance at a baseball card show.

Vaziri took a cocktail of drugs and fell into a drug- and alcohol-induced stupor. The promoter who'd brought him to Toronto dumped Vaziri on the Magens.

Page and Jian picked him up and tried to bring him to the airport for his flight to Georgia.
"But someone had just given him a pile of drugs, and he was crazy, out of control, and was completely wanting more," Jian Magen said. "He didn't want to leave. We were fighting with him, but he wound up missing his flight."

They put him into a hotel and booked him on another flight. Vaziri was getting out of control and someone from the hotel phoned the Magens to come do something about him.
Vaziri wound up having a mild heart attack that night.

"The doctor told us, 'You know, he's pretty fortunate that whatever happened, happened, ' " Jian Magen said. "If he had gotten on that plane, he'd almost for certain have had a full heart attack and who knows what would have happened. So he was here for about four or five more days and, in a way, he was detoxed. And honestly, he's been pretty straight since.

"He'll buzz a beer here or there, but he's been clean for the most part since that time."

Some of Vaziri's later drug use was probably as a result of depression about the May 3, 2003, murder of his 27-year-old daughter, Marissa Jeanne Vaziri.

Charles Warren Reynolds, her boyfriend of several weeks, was arrested and later convicted for strangling her to death.

Caryl Vaziri said she believed her daughter was breaking up with Reynolds, which is why she thinks he killed her.

Hossein Vaziri was crushed by his daughter's death.

"That was just the worst year of our lives," she said. "He'd just had his knee surgeries, and had just gotten out of the hospital, when Marissa was murdered. It was devastating. No parent expects to bury their child. It tore us apart.

"[Vaziri] was distraught because he couldn't do anything to help her. He was this big strong guy that everyone had relied on for so long. And in this situation, there was nothing he could do to save her. It devastated him that he couldn't have been there and tried to save her."

At his peak as a wrestler in the early-to-mid 1980s, Vaziri was earning as much as $500,000 a year. But the travel was incredibly difficult, he had to pay all of his own expenses and there were crazy quirks to his job.

His gimmick as an Iranian bad guy raised passions among the audience who attended the wrestling matches. Vaziri forbade his family from traveling with him for fear someone would hurt them. At several stops, fans came out of the stands and attempted to stab or assault him. Several times, he was stabbed, though only in the upper arm.

But the family car had its windshield broken, its tires slashed and sugar put into the gas tank. Vaziri sighs and said he was never all that concerned for his safety, though he said it was another example of the difficulty of life as a wrestler.

"I love wrestling and I would do it all again," he says. "But it is a very, very hard business. There is nothing about it that is easy.""

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Cold Beer and Burnouts At The Smokeout

There are a multitude of reasons to enjoy the Smokeout. Our favorite aspect is just to hang with friends we only get to see a few times a year and to talk shop about all things motorcycles and music. The Smokeout could do ten times better if they got a good variety of bands instead of the same stuff every year, but maybe that is what they enjoy. Was only able to stay for one night at this year's rally as too many projects required attention elsewhere and with the Buckeye Bash coming up, can't wait to roll with the bro's to Ohio in July and do it all over again.

Brad's new mistress, sweet 1968 Shovelhead
When you arrive with cold beers people swarm ya
My sexy Dyna and I put a lot of miles together down the road
As soon as the silver festivus pole went up the ladies jumped at the chance to start stripping
Need to heat up your pipes, well do a burnout and turn them this orange
Dialing in the burnout through all the gears
While doing a good burnout a beer is required
With a freshly blown tire from the burnout pit we are greeted with a ton of smoke and a glorious salute.

Friday, June 21, 2013

Husky Burnette Album Illustration

On Husky Burnette's new album, we spoke on taking a really illustrative approach and one in which it would feel a bit gritty and real. The one aspect I dig so much about his music is how raw the songs feel. I knew that the illustration style had to match the vibe of the songs. Creating a black and white sketch style portrait is step one in making the album cover happen.

Husky Burnette's album illustration is coming together
Sketch portrait of Husky Burnette

Thursday, June 20, 2013

ANTiSEEN 30th Year ANTiversary Show - BE THERE!

30 Years of ANTiSEEN along with the Meatmen and the Hookers
SAT. OCTOBER 5th at Tremont Music Hall:
Three Decades of Destructo Rock!!!

Helping to celebrate this historical event will be:


There will be a meet and greet with past and present ANTiSEEN members, plus lots of other surprises!

There will be a pre-show party at Tremont on Friday, October 4th (open to the public).....details coming soon.

Admission: $15
Plus $3 surcharge for those under 21
All Ages

For hotel information contact Ramada Hotel & Conference Center: (704) 688-9977. Ask for the "Tremont Music Hall rate" and pay $60 flat!

Tremont Music Hall
400 West Tremont Ave., Charlotte, North Carolina 28203
View Map · Get Directions

Dan Auerbach of Black Keys Showing His Guitar Moves

"In the fourth episode of Guitar Moves, we sit down with blues rock god Dan Auerbach of the Black Keys and learn the secrets of slide guitar.

Guitar Moves, hosted by Matt Sweeney, is a show where the viewer gets an opportunity to sit in on a private, interesting, and hilarious conversation about guitars, music, life, and craft. During the season, Sweeney and his guests play through licks, riffs, and solos that inform their style, influence their playing, and define their sound."

Check out more Guitar Moves on Noisey

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Motorcycle Helmet With Fully Integrated Navigation System

The future is limitless with the possibilities of fusing technology within our daily construct. With Google Glass now a reality and with a dash of Top Gun, you can now purchase a motorcycle helmet with a fully integrated navigation system. The project has been given a million dollar grant for research now they need to make it a reality. For extended road trips, this is something we could enjoy for sure.

Link to post on Mashable 

Check out their Indiegogo page

"Using high-tech dashboards, drivers can reference navigation systems and voice control in the comfort of a quiet car, but motorcyclists still don't have an effective, high-tech solution. Referencing maps requires a roadside stop, and GPS systems can be distracting.

Now, the team at LiveMap is looking to fund a project that would bring built-in navigation and augmented reality to helmets. Think Google Glass in helmet form.

The motorycle helmet, which is currently listed on crowdfunding site Indiegogo, comes with technology and features so powerful only fighter pilots currently have access. The project already has the financial backing and support from the Moscow Department of Science and several other Russian organizations, but LiveMap is looking for additional funding to get it up and running.

Similar to F-35 fighter jet helmets, a colorful, translucent picture would project onto the visor and create a clear, unobstructed view. It would come with its own interface — not iOS or Android — and prevent users from watching videos or playing games while riding.

The view inside of the helmet using technology for real time driving navigation akin to fighter pilot helmets
For long drives, the motorcycle helmet features two 3000-mAh batteries, a microphone for voice control that keeps both hands focused on driving and a digital compass for head movement tracking. In case a motorcyclist runs into trouble, the command "help" will notify local authorities.

LiveMap plans to ship the helmet in August 2014, with a price tag of $1,500 for devices purchased in June and $2000 for those purchased afterward. If you don't want to fully invest in the technology but still want to give it a try, you can donate $100 to the fund to try on a head set at an upcoming LiveMap promo party in the future."

Digital rendering of motorcycle helmet with fully integrated navigation system

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Brand New Carolina Still Tshirt - Runnin' Moonshine

Somedays there is nothing better than letting a pencil and sharpie work their way out of my system. For the longest time I worked on "art" that was perfect. When I say perfect, what I really means was that I was all about trying to achieve the perfect human form and line work within my illustrations. The biggest thing it did was to kill any fun I was having while drawing.

Spend a long time drawing hands, faces or body gestures and you either get really good at it and can do it in your sleep or you just get burnt out on it. As of late, these looser illustrations have been a lot more fun and I can knock them out in a few hours. Really enjoyed this one as the car is one that my buddy Mopar Rob just got back on the road and it's also for the fellas in Carolina Still.

Process drawing as a photo on
Final illustration and rendering for Carolina Still's new hot rod tshirt - Runnin' Moonshine

Monday, June 17, 2013

Samsung to Give Away 1 Million Copies of Jay-Z’s New Album, Say What?

Jay Z's new album went platinum before ever even going on sale.
Did you read that headline correctly? Yep, it's true and now that is going to be just another tactic as a well to help sell music. Prince has included a cd in the ticket price of one his tours to push huge sales, Radiohead famously allowed for fans to name their price on the album and now Jay Z has partnered up with Samsung to leverage his new album as a free download to their smartphone users. 

Gimmicks will always be a part of the advertising landscape but here is one thing that lasts, great music. For five weeks now, Carolina Still has been a featured album on Itunes. We aren't selling in the hundreds of thousands of copies nor have we moved more than 10,000 just yet, but real music fans are listening. No matter if you like Jay Z, Samsung or any of the bigger corporate entities involved in, take a play out of their strategy book and use it in your own way. 

Carolina Still, featured right up there on New & Noteworthy with quite the contemporaries
There is no safety net in rock n' roll nor are there any rules. Create your own future out of the vision you see as reality. Five years ago I would never have thought we would have gotten this far as an indie music label. Now I am looking forward to where we are in ten years when the great bands we get to work with have exploded onto the world market. As the second half of 2013 rolls around, we have some damn great albums yet to come!


Read the original article on The Wall Street Journal

"As the Miami Heat faced off against the San Antonio Spurs in Game 5 of the NBA finals Sunday night, a curious TV ad aired near the end of the second quarter featuring rap star Jay-Z in a studio, riffing with a cast of characters including producer Rick Rubin and artist Pharrell Williams. At one point, a member of the posse is shown taking notes on a tablet device. More than two minutes into the three-minute video Samsung Electronics Co. 005930.SE -0.15%’s tagline flashes across the screen: “The Next Big Thing.”

The connection: Samsung has purchased 1 million copies of Jay-Z’s coming album, entitled “Magna Carta Holy Grail,” slated for release July 4, and plans to give them to Samsung Galaxy smartphone users for free – 72 hours ahead of the release. The users are to receive the music through an app they’ll receive later this month. (Recipients won’t be able to share it until the official release date.)

Samsung paid $5 apiece for the albums, according to a person familiar with the matter. It wasn’t immediately clear if Nielsen SoundScan will count Samsung’s purchases in its sales tallies.

The partnership could help Samsung compete with Apple Inc. AAPL -1.36%, which recently announced the launch of iTunes Radio – an online radio service bundled onto Apple devices that promises to offer listeners access to certain tracks before they’re available elsewhere.

For Jay-Z, the deal is a precious advertising opportunity and gives him $5 million in sales before the album is even released. The agreement signals the increasing importance of corporate sponsors to the music industry, which has seen sales tank over the past decade.

Jay-Z hinted at the partnership on Twitter two days ago with a photo of a Samsung smartphone displaying text telling fans to “tune in” to the game.

Neither Samsung nor Jay-Z could immediately be reached for comment."