Candor is a concept emphasized in Creativity, Inc., a fascinating book written by Pixar co-founder and president Ed Catmull where he dissects the standards and practices that make Pixar a creatively rich work environment. Catmull posits that candor is “the key to collaborating effectively.” One way of ensuring candor from collaborators is by taking the power to enact change on a project completely away from the one doing the constructive criticizing. In other words, the people offering advice on your project have no say over what changes are implemented. The original content creator maintains full creative control over their work. Candor also requires an openness from the person receiving the criticism. Remember: they are critiquing the work, not you as a person. Ideally, the people offering their candid suggestions are creative problem solvers whom you respect.
Expanding this idea, I would argue that relationships are a form of collaboration, and therefore, candor is essential in any healthy relationship (romantic or platonic). This requires an openness from both people. The problem is that we don’t talk to each other’s faces anymore. We talk to our phones. It is often much easier to chuck your phone in disgust and never respond to someone than actually face an unsavory text head-on. The artists on this tape do not mince their words. It begins with Kelechi offering sage advice on “Advice,” works its way into some mysterious singer feeling sexual on NEIKED‘s “Sexual,” and finally, Brad Bonds avoids getting too involved on “Too Involved.”
Girl you crazy like Harley Quinn, I’m just joking babe, you a ten
Note: This is basically a Tape Tuesday, which is a feature I ended two months ago. The main distinction is that there is no “free download” option, out of consideration for the artists. That is something that wasn’t sitting right with me and felt unfair to the mostly independent musicians being showcased. More generally, music consumerism is shifting away from downloads and ownership into the exciting (and scary!) realm of cloud streaming services. Also, now I have the surprisingly liberating freedom of putting out SoundCloud playlists on any day of the week — not just Tuesdays.
I have been a Spotify user for quite some time now, but just recently I have realized the power of Spotify playlists, particularly the Discover Weekly feature. The issue I have with Discover Weekly is that it is too good. It is so accurate that it doesn’t offer those completely left field selections that surprise me and get me excited about music. To counter this, I had the idea for Spotify Spotlight, a new feature that will highlight playlists by Sunset writers, fellow tastemakers, and artists. These are playlists that I follow that hopefully can inject an element of randomness back into the music discovery process.
The first playlist of this feature is SAD SUMMER SIXTEEN by… me. These are the songs that I am listening to this summer, featuring everything from “Sad Summer” by Yeek to “Summer Sixteen” by Drake. I sequenced the 80+ tracks but would not judge if you throw it on shuffle, especially during long drives or in the shower. I will continue adding to and changing the playlist because much like The Life of Pablo, SAD SUMMER SIXTEEN is a “a living breathing changing creative expression #contemporaryart.”
We’ll keep it short and sweet. Chance The Rapper made his solo return with Coloring Book. It was pretty hard to not just link to Coloring Book for Best of May, but we still have some gems for you to throw into your rotation! Link, and stream below.
PS: Go Cavs!
Keeping the momentum rolling on his latest mixtape Coloring Book, Chance The Rapper has shared the visuals for his summer anthem “No Problem,” which features 2 Chainz and Lil Wayne. Both featured artists make an appearance in the fun-filled video, with numerous other cameos including Young Thug and DJ Khaled.
Watch Chance and company drink, smoke, and dance their way through the video for “No Problem” below. Rap along to the lyrics as well!
Life can change in a blink of an eye. It’s astounding, really. One day you’re living a certain way, and then your life took a complete 180 degree turn, hopefully for the better. People will come. People will go. Shit happens, but we evolve. We adapt to what’s thrown our way. The one constant we have is music. Check out Best of April below. Go out and try something new in May, and see you back in a month. Thanks for reading!
These days everything’s in constant motion. Music, technology, and culture are moving furiously at breakneck speeds, which is equal parts frightening and exciting. Locked inside the echo chamber, it can be easy to feel lost, depressed, or lose sight of your goals, as you are constantly informed of other people’s achievements. In two weeks, I graduate college, and suddenly even life seems to be moving at a rapid pace. My friends are preparing to move on to the next stages of their careers, most following the path paved for them the day they chose their majors. I am taking a different route. And even though everything will likely work out in the end, I am scared. For practically the first time in my life, I have no real plans: no school after summer, no shitty internships, no job. So, with the last Tape Tuesday ever (!), I am asking: what now? And if someone has the answer, please let me know in the comments.
Thank you to everyone who has ever listened to a Tape Tuesday over the years. It has been a great honor to have a platform to put out these personal projects. If you ask me, that is all anyone could ask for, and if people listen, it is an added bonus. <3
And we can turn back the clock, making moves that I thought I wanted back at 21, 22, 23, 24 / Never wrong, thought I was never wrong and better off just wanting less but I knew all of me wanted more. -”Untitled” by Matthew Chaim
- Sway Clarke – Champagne Supernova
- Matt Champion – Punks
- Asaiah Ziv – Here (ft. SPZRKT)
- Alex Young – yrstruly
- Rostam – Gravity Don’t Pull Me
- Tunji Ige – War
- Broderick Batts – Fuck the New Kids
- Matthew Chaim – Untitled
- Richie Quake – Irresistable (Ice Cold)
- Mndsgn – Camelblues
- Rome Fortune – All The Way
- DJ Dodger Stadium – I Don’t Love You
- Ny Shallah – #PassOut
- Elijah Fox – Komodo
- Lil Uzi Vert – 1987 (Edit)
- Ricky Anthony – GHOST
- Babeo Baggins – Things I Forgot to Do (ft. Drake)
The crew over here at SITR put together quite the unique playlist this month. It’s my understanding that we have a lot of new talent on here, but that’s why you’re here. You want to hear the best there is, the best there was, the best there ever will be. So you keep coming back for more, and we keep giving you exactly what you need. Download link, and playlist below. Hit the jump for full list of tracks!
Gypsum may be fresh to the music scene, but the LA-based post-rockers have plenty of promise. They’re sharing their art with the world today by premiering their soul-stirring debut track “Follow Me”. The song opens up with a mystical sound and continues to build with a pure and mesmerizing darkness. It has a haunting, eery feel to it, which is no surprise when discovering what the song is about. As the band’s drummer, Jessy Reed, explains, “The song is about running from something that’s hunting you. Something that’s hunting you just for existing.” This track is just one of many in the works for the Gypsum ladies, so it’s only the beginning of what’s to come. For now, check out the premiere for “Follow Me”, the debut track from Gypsum.
What’s so special about this February compared to the rest of them? We had one extra day. This is the Leap Year edition! This was a busy month for us music fans. I guess, in a way, it was Kanye West’s month, and we were just apart of it. What’d you think of The Life of Pablo? Worth the hype? Worth the wait? That’s a conversation for another day. For now, enjoy our 20 picks from February filled with a wide variety of genres…even genre bending genres…crazy, right?
Hit the jump for the tracklist!
Vanbot is far from typical, with a sound that’s unique and genuine. The Swedish artist brings a fusion of electro-pop that has brought in many new listeners in the past year. “The Way You Say It” is one of the many tracks that blossomed as a single for Vanbot’s latest album and now it’s gotten a new treatment from Superwalkers. This remix gives the track a lighter, upbeat feel that is impossible to deny. It’s a tune that would fit perfectly during those spring/summer days (which hopefully come to us sooner than later). For now, we can just dream of those moments and enjoy some catchy sounds. Check out the Sunset in the Rearview premiere of the Superwalkers Remix of Vanbot’s “The Way You Say It” below.
New year, new music. All new. Everything new. Everything is always new in our monthly “Best of” series, so nothing has changed there. Who will be the next breakout artist this year? Will Chance The Rapper finally release his next project? Will Kanye West’s newly titled “WAVES” be the greatest album of all time? So many questions, so stay tuned…2016 is here.