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Interview | Questions & Answers With Karen Atkins

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Interview | Questions & Answers With Karen Atkins

In the last few years, Singer/Songwriter Karen Atkins returned to the world of music with a renewed vision of life. She still has a special love for guitars and everything associated with New Age. With this interesting interview, she gives full details about her new song “High On Love (Can’t Get Too)”, which comes in the form of a spaced-themed clip. I highly recommend you to watch it!

1 – First of all, how would you describe your music style to new listeners?

Soulful indie pop-rock influenced by 70’s R&B and 90’s alternative rock flavors with Conscious/New Age themes. Others have likened my music to singer/songwriters like Sheryl Crow and Juliana Hatfield. My biggest influences are Stevie Wonder, Jim Morrison, the Beatles, Led Zeppelin, Simon & Garfunkel and Billy Joel.

2 – Is your music a job, a hobby or something else?

Music is my spiritual sustenance and deepest passion. It is certainly more than a hobby or just a job. It is the way in which I connect to the deepest part of my inner world and a way to express that to the outer world.

3 – How long have you been working in the music industry?

On and off for over 20 years. I had an active career back in the 90’s and built a solid following in NYC. After the musician lifestyle of constant travel, late-night gigs, poor nutrition, and smokey bars took a toll on my health, I quit and delved into the world of alternative health. In 2011, after regaining my energy and moving to California, I reconnected with my creative passions and literally felt summoned by the mountain where I live to start writing music again. I recorded a 12-song album in 8 weeks called The Vibration Project and created a book of photographs and stories to accompany it. I struggled internally with whether to engage in music professionally and finally made the decision to come back fully last year with the release of my album In My Room.


4 – Why did you call your new single “High On Love (Can’t Get Too)”?

Just on a very simple level, you really can’t have too much love! That’s pretty much what we’re made of, that’s what this universe is all about as far as I’m concerned.

I had a pretty profound experience a number of years ago, where I had this feeling like there was actually nothing but love and the only thing I needed to do was let it radiate through my pores. And I didn’t have to actually accomplish anything, I didn’t have to do anything.

That was a really big revelation for me. That I could just let love be with me and let it radiate.

Many things may look bleak, but I believe there’s something happening above the apparent bleakness. My life’s work is to tune into what’s happening on the channel above. What does the channel of love have to say about this experience right now?

It may sound kind of Pollyanna, but it’s actually very practical. It’s very tangible to be choosing the frequency that you want to vibrate in. Ultimately, we all have a choice.

And that’s really the main message of the song.

5 – Can you name some songs or artists that have influenced this new single?

Earth Wind and Fire, Stevie Wonder and the Jackson 5. This song, in particular, is centered around the bass line, which was inspired by the fact that Reggie Hamilton (known for playing with Seal and Mariah Carey) was going to be playing the bass on the recording. His bass playing blows me away and when we decided to work together, I was determined to write a bass line that was going to be fun for him to play!

6 – Why is the music video related to the SpaceX Rocket Launch?

In the music video, I’m flying around space in a red Tesla Roadster, in search of a backup planet. We filmed this video in May of 2017, and with various delays in the post-production, decided to release it at the beginning of February 2018. Little did I know that CEO of SpaceX and Tesla Elon Musk announced in December that he was going to be launching his own cherry red Tesla Roadster in the Falcon Heavy rocket aiming for Mars! We ended up “launching” the music video on the same day the Falcon Heavy launched – with Elon Musk’s dummy “Starman” flying through space in the red Tesla, which looked so much like scenes from my video!

7 – Do you believe there is life out there?

I think it would be pretty narrow-minded of us to think that there isn’t life out there in this vast universe. It’s only been 400 years since Galileo was exiled for saying the earth revolved around the sun, which is now considered factual and common sense. There’s so much we still don’t know, and it’s exciting to think about the possibilities. I’m all about keeping my mind open to new information.

karen atkins high on love
8 – Is playing live something you like to do or is it just an artist’s duty?

I enjoy playing live, but I feel that I can connect more deeply to the meaning and feeling of the music when I’m in the studio, so I prefer the process of recording more than playing live. The part I love about playing live is the connections I get to make with people. But I did burn myself out when I focused on gigging and touring – it was hard to manage my health through it.

9 – We are sure all your songs are special to you but do you have a favorite one?

I generally tend to prefer the more soft-spoken, introspective songs, but sometimes one of my upbeat songs has a melody that just pulls me in. That’s the case with my song “Julian”. It’s also a favorite of a lot of my fans, especially because the music video for “Julian” features 2 adorable kids who come together to create a machine that turns garbage into energy. It’s a sweet story and we had such a fun time making the video. A brilliant artist/inventor friend of mine even created a life-size garbage to the energy machine for the video! 🙂 here’s the video if you want to check it out:

10 – Finally, what’s next for Karen Atkins?

That’s not a short answer because I’m a pretty active woman!

Musically, “High on Love” is the first single for my new album that I plan to release this summer and I’m working on my next music video for a Paul Simon Cover, “Slip-Slidin’ Away”. We’re adding a little optimistic twist to the video and some cool visual effects!

In the wellness space, I’m launching an “Inner Circle” program where I will share very simple tools, practices, and resources for succeeding in living a healthy, balanced, creative and fulfilling life.

And of course, I plan to continue sharing the lifestyle practices that I’ve been living and sharing for the last 20 years.


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Hi, my name is Erick Ycaza. I have a BA in Advertising & Graphic Design. This blog is to provide you with daily music news and share my personal style.

Interviews

Interview | Questions & Answers With Cultural Vultures

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Cultural Vultures

Danny Schneider aka Cultural Vultures is hoping to become the opening act for Coldplay and Black Eyed Peas via Audacy’s new competition. The winner will perform in the biggest concert of the year at the Hollywood Bowl. Get to know the artist better through this interesting interview.

1 — Did you begin playing drums or guitar just as you hit your teens?

Guitar has been my go-to instrument of choice, although I love the piano as well. Drums have always been intriguing to me and love beats and movement. Music takes me to a different place. It opens up parts of my brain that normal thought can’t access.

2 — How have you changed musically over the years?

Well, when I was younger I would listen differently than I do now. I would definitely not overthink or overcomplicate a song and just love it for what it was. Now I’m listening to all of the delicate intricacies that make a song. The arrangement, the melodies. Figuring out the key by just listening. I try to pick out all of the subtle instruments in the songs that you don’t know you are hearing. The melody in a lyric, etc.

3 — What do all your songs have in common?

People have gotten away from albums. Now people listen to a single song because of the platform they are on. I’ll write an entire album and although each song is separate there is a flow and they are all connected by sound. My songs as a whole usually tell a story collectively throughout the album. I will also use the same theme musically. For instance, in my songs, I have a huge orchestral element that I wrote for each song. All of the songs on the albums will have this because even though it’s a Rock song, to me it has to flow with the album. Like a DJ in a club, the transition from one song to the next should be seamless.

4 — Which musician other than yourself have you ever wanted to be?

I don’t think anyone wants to be someone else. There are musicians I admire Like Brian Eno, Trent Reznor, Bjork, and Tricky. I’d say in my opinion Prince was the greatest guitarist the world has seen. Even better than Hendrix. Prince’s biggest downfall was he was brilliant in every instrument so it overshadowed how incredible a guitarist he was.

5 — Is “Catch Hell For Comfort” your all-time favorite song from your catalog?

I am proud of that song and it’s been the one most people know me for. It’s not my favorite though, there are a few I’ve written but haven’t released yet which inspire me and make me giddy at times. As far as ones I’ve written and released I’d say “Time”, or “Surreal Sister” would be my favorites. Time builds on itself like you are walking up a mountain, then in a moment it’s like you are caught in an avalanche and you are falling. “Surreal Sister” to me is a beautiful yet fast-paced song that I love.

6 — Who would you dedicate these lyrics to?

There are those in my past who’ve moved me or made me feel certain ways. I’ll just say they are real truths I’ve experienced in my life and leave it at that.


7 — Are you currently signed to a record label?

I was the first artist signed to WatchMojo’s new record label SoundMojo. They primarily released my music videos though not my albums. So I would say as far as that is concerned I’m not signed to a label.

8 — We know you’re running to open for Coldplay and Black Eyed Peas at the Hollywood Bowl. Please tell us more.

Well, I was picked with several other bands to open for both of those bands but it’s a voting thing. I would need my fans to vote on Theopenact.com for it to happen. We will see what happens. I just love performing and getting lost in the music on stage.


9 — Do you have any special ritual to prepare your voice before performing live?

Haha, usually I’ll sing loud in my car trying to stretch those vocal muscles. Typically I’ll sing a lot of Mad Season songs, I’ve always loved Layne Staley’s voice.

10 — What else can we expect from Cultural Vultures for the rest of the year?

Well, I’m doing a couple more music videos, a live studio performance, and working on the fourth album. We will see what’s next, I’m always ready to keep working and living this adventure.


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The Two Fake Blondes Drop A String Of Hot Remixes, Full Interview Here

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The Two Fake Blondes

The Two Fake Blondes is a husband-and-wife duo based in Seattle, Washington. Since the release of their debut album ‘Out Of The Darkness,’ they’ve been gaining momentum across the electronic music scene. In this interview, we discuss their recent remixes and much more…

1 — Why did you decide to release a string of the remixes?

We really wanted to continue to breathe life into our album, and we thought – what better way to do that than calling up a few of our awesome friends and asking them to offer their own interpretations to songs off of our album via a remix?!

2 — How did these collaborations take shape?

When ‘Out Of The Darkness’ was released last fall, we already had three out of the four artists in mind that we wanted to get involved on remix duty. So in that process, we reached out and asked them to choose a song from the album that stuck out to them. Each of them came back with a song choice and really meaningful reasons on why they chose the song that they did. On the fourth remix, Sherm actually reached out to us explaining how much “Alone” spoke to him on a personal level and how instantly he knew he wanted to remix it.

3 — From a production standpoint, were things done drastically different with each remix?

Yes, each remix was drastically different from the original, which we loved! The most consistent aspect was Hannah’s vocal, but otherwise, everyone tapped into their own magnificent creative workflow and delivered remixes that blew us away. We couldn’t be happier with each one.

4 — All of them sound pretty dope, which one is good for clubs and festivals?

We’ve got Sherm’s Tech-House remix, which is guaranteed to go off at the clubs. Yabe’s Deep House would be a sick poolside party track. Deadman’s Future House remix would surely blow the speakers out on a festival stage and finally, you’ve got Neon Feather’s epic Synthwave/House track that you could listen to literally anywhere. It’s such a good range!

5 —How would you describe your role during the creative process?

When it came to these remixes, we just took our hands off the wheel and handed the keys over to the remixers. Because we were fans of each of their music already, (and had already worked with some) we knew we wouldn’t be getting anything less than fantastic from each of them. We did make tweaks for the final mixes, but otherwise, it was all them.


6 — What philosophy guides your music career?

Hard work and joy. We love to hustle and work hard, it’s literally in each of our DNA – it’s so fun for us! We love seeing results, we love reaping the rewards BUT at the end of the day – are we healthy? Are we burnt out? How is our marriage? We also try to see everything we do music-wise through our fans’ points of view. There’s nothing that makes us happier (when it comes to music) than being up on stage sharing incredible moments with the audience and getting to chat with them after. We’re here to give them an escape and hopefully enhance their lives in some way, big or small. We try to recreate that with our social media experience as well. We love our music fam!

7 — Do you believe being a husband-wife duo makes things easier while working together at the studio?

We’ve built our relationship on mutual respect, trust, and communication. We had no idea how much these traits would translate into the studio! We both also know each of our strengths so we don’t need to step on each other’s toes. We take credit for everything together equally, even if at the end of the day we know who did what. Haha! Ego is always left at the door when we head into the studio.

8 — Have you ever worked on solo projects separately?

Yes, Pete was just Petey Mac for a long time, producing House and Tech-House. Hannah was actually a Country music artist (Hannah Michelle Weeks) for almost two decades!

9 —So far, what’s the best feedback you’ve received about your debut album ‘Out Of The Darkness’?

Besides the positive comments from our fans on social media and personal stories from our remixers, I think the coolest thing has been seeing how many “saves” the songs are getting on Spotify. We all know, you really really have to like a song to make the effort to hit that heart! We’ve had so many amazing blog write-ups as well and feel so abundantly grateful for our supporters in the press.

10 — Musically speaking, what are your plans for the upcoming months?

We are actually having a baby in about 6 weeks! We are going to take some time off of social media and really soak up these last few weeks before parenthood begins – we cannot wait to meet our baby boy! For the rest of the year, we will be writing and working on brand new music for 2023 and working on booking our Summer tour for 2023 as well.


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Exclusive Interview: Echo Xray On New Melodic Gem, “Last Time (VIP)”

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Echo Xray

Phoenix-based producer Echo Xray talks with Electro Wow about his latest gem “Last Time (VIP).” Featuring irresistibly melodic production, this track gives you strong Seven Lions and Crystal Skies vibes. If you’re curious to learn more about it, read our exclusive interview.

1 — How would you describe your signature sound to someone who has never heard you before?

My signature sound is ethereal, emotional, and climactic. It’s definitely cathartic. I try to make your heart explode out of your chest in a lot of the songs I make. I usually like to blend vocals, a big wall of sound drops, and heavy basses to achieve that.

2 — What message is your song “Last Time (VIP)” passing to listeners?

I think everyone can interpret art in different ways but when I listen to “Last Time” the message I get is, “just fucking go for it.”

3 — Would you say lyrics are more important than the music?

I never really listen to the words and what the vocalist is saying. I always hear the notes they sing, how they sing them, and how the tones of everything together make me feel. I feel like that probably makes me a better writer but I definitely don’t pretend to be a lyricist haha. So my answer would be that music is more important.


4 — I would like to know the meaning of the cover art. What are your thoughts on it?

The cover art is amazing and one of my favorites I’ve ever put out. It gives that feeling of looking out into the world and feeling small against the grand scale of nature. It gives a sense of wonder and adventure which I feel always makes the music sound better when experienced from that perspective.

5 — Can you reveal the name of the vocalist behind this great tune?

She’s pursuing a solo career so we agreed she won’t be named for this track!

6 — Do you have any dream collaborations in mind?

The first artists that come to mind would be Seven Lions or Crystal Skies. I think they’re both great and we could tell an amazing story together for sure. My fingers are crossed that I one day get that opportunity! Also for Drum & Bass, I would love to work with Metrik or Sub Focus one day. They’re both artists I think are really killing it in DnB and do it in a way I can really appreciate with challenging production and great writing.

7 — Do you think you’ll stick forever to Melodic Dubstep and DnB or go into a different direction in the near future?

I definitely want to stick to mostly Melodic Dubstep and occasionally DnB. Those are the genres that really resonate with me and I love exploring them. I’ve always wanted to genre blend some Pop-Punk or Metal vocalists into DnB because I think it would sound amazing. Hopefully, I get that opportunity one day.


8 — Are you still inspired by Seven Lions and Crystal Skies? What makes their music so special?

I’m still very much inspired by Seven Lions and Crystal Skies. I think they’re the best at telling a story that’s similar to what I like to tell. Emotional, powerful, with challenging production, and with great melodies. One thing I also really like about Seven Lions is the darkness he has. I think it’s incredibly common for Melodic Bass producers to start putting out some cheesy Pop songs but his stay pretty dark and gritty and that’s another reason he’s one of my favorites.

9 — What do you miss the most about your time in the Air Force?

Anyone who has seen what I look like knows that a career in the military is not for me haha but the cool thing about the military is that it’s tough times for everyone but it brings everyone together. I went through a lot of crappy times but when you go through them with awesome people you never forget friends like that. You end up having a special lifelong friendship with these people, especially people you deploy with.

I’d say that’s what I miss the most for sure.

10 — Is there anything else you would like to share with us?

Hey everyone please support me and stream my music so I can hopefully one day quit my day job.


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