Archive for 'music'

~R.I.P. Adam Yauch — of The Beastie Boys Dies at 47~

Written by on 4th May 2012 in Art, Icon, Lifestyle, music, News, People, Ride with 0 Comments

Adam Yauch, better known to some as MCA of the Brooklyn rap group The Beastie Boys, passed away today after a long battle with cancer, reports Mr. Yauch was a founding member of the group, along with Mike D (Michael Diamond), Mix Master Mike (Michael Schwartz), and Ad Roc(Adam Horovitz).

Mr. Yauch’s cancer was first diagnosed in 2009, with a tumor in his Parotid gland in his neck, and was reported in The New York Times after he created a video for his fans with the announcement. Mr. Yauch was also a noted film producer, gaining recognition with his company Oscilloscope Laboratories, which distributed such films as Burma VJ, about the uprisings in Myanmar.

He is survived by his wife and band-mates.

The Beastie Boys have to be one of my biggest inspirations growing up here in L.A. . Rock and Roll, Hip Hop, Skateboarding and Art was encompassed by this group and spoke to a generation of kids trying to find an outlet. Thank You Adam for being a great influence on the culture and a great role model for the kids. R.I.P.

Imani Lanier Publisher WesternCiv Mag.

Read More →

~The Hardest Working Man In No Business~

Written by on 21st March 2012 in Lifestyle, music, People with 0 Comments


Winging It: The Icarus Line’s Joe Cardamone is the hardest working man in no business.

Joe Cardamone, leader of the LA-based rock band The Icarus Line, has been working in music for over a decade now. Fiercely independent and original, The Icarus Line has made a career churning out incendiary performances around the globe, dropping brilliant albums and offending record label executives. Currently Joe is doing a mix for Jesus and Mary Chain and producing bands The Shining Twins and Stab City at his studio Valley Recording in Los Angeles. With 12 years, four albums (two for major labels), over a dozen world tours and more than 20 tours through the UK under their belt, The Icarus Line has pretty much seen it all and apparently it isn’t getting any easier. Western Civ sits down with Joe and talks about the financial state of independent creative life.



WC: Joe, your band is about to go on a six week major european tour playing for thousands and you are planning on losing money. Sleeping on floors. This is not normal. Where has all the money gone? Is the internet gutting independent music?
JC: The money was never really that great, but there was always gonna be more of it. You know? Now that’s all gone. Now that I am making records for other people to make a living too, I see the industry from a whole different angle. Any creative content that can be stolen is stolen and put on the internet, and somebody besides the creator is making money off of it. So it is getting harder and harder to survive when you are the one making the original. People are saying “You need to adjust and find a new way” and we’re doing that. We’re still here. But the new way is actually putting people into dangerous situations with their families and their futures. So if there has been a new business model developed that doesn’t include stealing, somebody should let us know about it. Spoitfy? That’s not the answer. Stream my records, fine, but if you want to listen to it in your car later you should probably buy it. If you work on something and you own it you should get paid for people using it. If people were looting in stores they would be arrested, but for creative content there is no line of defense.



Touch and Go went out of business last year. They had a solid back catalog, at least enough to sustain a company, but they just evaporated. You just can’t make money as a record label anymore. People are like, “Oh well boo-hoo put out your own stuff”, but maybe people who make music aren’t supposed to be PR people and salesmen and bookkeepers and designers. We aren’t putting together tables that just sell themselves, it’s a process. The things that the public expects independent artists to do to make a living are just insane. They want them to do it all, all the jobs. For me thats cool, I’ve been doing it all myself for a decade but for people like Annie (Joe’s best friend Annie Hardy of Giant Drag), all she knows how to do is write songs. Especially people who have had a career before, and now their industry has disappeared, what will they do now? A lot of them will just give up on life and, oh well, we won’t hear music from those people anymore.



WC: Then are we hearing fewer bands?

JC: No, we are hearing a lot more bands but way less decent music. There used to be a process of weeding out. When there was money involved you had to do something to inspire someone make an investment in you. These days the internet has leveled the playing field-which is supposed to be great for the everyman, like, “Your voice will be heard!”. But the everyman isn’t David Bowie, so now there’s a whole forest of Rebecca Blacks to wade through. There will always be great artists, but the tools for them to create their vision will be less and less. No one will ever be able to make Dark Side of the Moon again. Is that a tragedy? I don’t know, but it’s happening.



WC: That sounds like a nightmare. So, why are you still doing this?
JC: I don’t know how to do anything else. I’m a high school drop out. It’s over. Haha. No. I don’t know. Most people would have given up by now. But why should I stop? Because there’s no money? That would be the only reason. I have invested so much of my life into this, it’s hard to stop. Especially when it’s still so fun, when I believe I still bring something original to the table and make some people happy, it makes me keep going. I’m gonna keep going.



~ Story and Photos by Ward Robinson

Read More →

~2.22.2012 favorite images for the day~

Read More →

~Jackson Browne headed a hootenanny at Mollusk~

Written by on 22nd February 2012 in Art, Lifestyle, music, News, People, Ride, Surf with 0 Comments

Jackson Browne headed a hootenanny at Mollusk Surf Shop in Venice Beach Sunday night. Among the participants were Charlie Sexton (Bob Dylan), Billy Gibbons (ZZ Top) and Benton Trench (Tom Petty). Much of the Venice surf community was there enjoying the tunes. Westernv Civ spotted Jon Rose and Mike Piscitelli in the crowd among many others.

Photo’s and Text by: Ward Robinson ( WesternCiv Magazine )

Read More →

~Untitled by NOTHING AT ALL~

Written by on 14th February 2012 in Art, Lifestyle, Motion Picture, music, Photography, Ride, Skate, Skateboarding with 0 Comments

Bill Strobeck: Directorial Fundamentals

You wouldn’t have seen Bill Strobeck in a skate video, because he would have been the one behind the camera. But the chances are, if you’ve seen edits with Mark Gonzales, you’ve probably already seen his work and just not known it. There is a certain poetic warmth and emotion in the rawness of his work, without ever coming off as contrived or unauthentic. This is mostly due in part to his innate ability to remain remarkably true to the whimsical characters and subjects he portrays. We were recently given a chance to pick the brain of this uniquely authentic filmmaker who has made his name photographing his friends, and staying true to the distinct ‘feel’ and flow of his Super 8 lens.

Maybe a little too predictable, but with all the time you spend shooting skaters, do you still find time to get out and skate yourself? Do you have a favorite spot?
Well, I’m just going to be honest — I don’t skateboard really at all anymore. I use a skateboard to film but that’s about it. Sometimes I use it for transportation, maybe to move furniture or big objects, but yeah my skateboarding days are pretty much over.

Your work has an extremely distinctive aesthetic to it – do you use specific exposure methods or filters?
No I don’t do anything other than use settings that I feel look the best. I don’t color correct or use filters at all — if it looks right to me I’ll leave it.

What is your favorite subject to shoot? And where do you do your editing?
I’ve worked with skateboarders for years. I think working with my friends and especially women these days are really fun to work with. That’s something that was lacking in skateboarding, being on tour with sweaty kids. It was fun, but I wanna go into a new chapter in my life. It’s funny you should ask where I edit — I don’t sit at a desk, usually I lay in my bed and edit. That’s where I feel is a comfortable place to be creative.

So do you typically find more inspiration for your work through imagery or in music?
I get inspiration from older movies I’d say. People were creative in the way I liked, when they didn’t have much to work with. Like for instance, any old Joe Blow can get on iMovie or use an iPhone and make a video and put it online within seconds. The hard work of making a film in the late ’70s and ’80s really shows to me visually when I watch it. As we all know there is too much to see these days with everything going online. I personally can’t tell if I’m used to it yet or not. Guess I’m just going with the flow. I do get inspired by music actually more than anything else. Certain music causes emotion and that emotion allows me to be creative.

Do your prospective projects find you, or do you typically seek out your subject matter?
I usually ask my friends to be in my projects. If anything at all, I want to look back when I’m older and see all the people I was close with in my work. Also what’s better than looking back at an old photo of someone you know? So that’s the vibe for me. I’ll get to look back on everything I did, in the future.

You’ve worked with Jason Schwartzman’s band Coconut Records before – what other bands have you worked with?
Yes, I did work with Jason, he’s a sweet guy. Anyways Mark Gonzales and I are the ones that made the “Any Fun” video. Jason only had a couple of hours the day we filmed him but it was real fun. Mark and I also did a couple of low key videos for this DJ in Paris named Pepe Bradock. You can find them somewhere.

You do a lot of traveling, but if you could only skate, and shoot one city for the rest of your life, where would it be?
I quit skating right this second, during this interview. But if I could be anywhere I ever went for work, it would be San Sebastion, Spain. That place is the “easy life.” My personal paradise.

Do you approach a project with a distinct structure and timeline in mind, or do you let things just evolve from your lens, and edit accordingly?
I think I usually pick people with big personalities to work with. I need that to feel titillated and feel like it’s worth it to put the energy in. I mean I hardly even have to direct anyone most of the time. Even visually, I’m into all these people. How much better does it get than to travel around and work with your friends all the time? I think I point the camera, they do their magic and then I go home and make something out of it. A full collaboration between us.

You’re heading out the door to link up with Chloe Sevigny to shoot the video for “Any Fun” – what’s in your backpack?
What was in my bag was a poncho – the one that she was wearing in the video. That was Mark’s by the way. Also was two Super 8 cameras and 3 rolls for each of them. Maybe a bottle of water. Had to keep her hydrated from doing all the skating as it was actually very hot out that day.

Did you make any New Year’s resolutions this year?
I actually didn’t. Can you make one up at anytime of the year? If so I’ll do it this week.

Read More →

~C.R. Stecyk film ” Fin ” Debut February 8th at H Space.

Film to Debut at Hurley’s H Space Galleries in Costa Mesa, Bali, & Japan

COSTA MESA, CA – January 12, 2012 – Hurley has announced that they will partner with iconic artist C.R. Stecyk III to debut his new short film FIN on February 8th at Hurley’s H Space Gallery in Costa Mesa, CA. Taking inspiration from the film, Hurley is also creating a limited-edition printables collection featuring art and photography captured during the film’s creation.

“Stecyk is both a celebrated chronicler of the art, surf and skate cultures as well as a longtime friend to the Hurley brand. When he told us of his plans for the film, we couldn’t pass up the opportunity to work together to bring his vision to life,” states Jason Maloney, Hurley’s Director of Art.

FIN, the first installment in an evolutionary series of digital film shorts, details Stecyk’s method of working with a wide variety of creative minds in the Southern California region over the past 40 years. Some of these noteworthy characters include Von Dutch, Ed “Big Daddy” Roth, Evel Knievel, Dave Sweet, Julian Ness, Tom Blake, Dale Velzy, Tyler Hatzikian, Scott Anderson, Mitch Abshere, Scotty Stopnik, Mike Ness and Roland Sands. The featured soundtrack is also a nod to West Coast visionaries, with Social Distortion, Breakdown, Tommy Guerrero and Steve Alba and the Powerflex 5 contributing to the project.

“FIN investigates artisan garage culture. It will offer insights into an assortment of individuals who incorporate traditional do-it-yourself garage methodology into differing pursuits such as traditional modified vehicles, surfboards, skateboards, art, music and communications,” states Stecyk.

The subsequent printables collection will feature a series of 4 t-shirts showcasing exclusive artwork and still photography captured during the making of FIN. The printables collection will be available for purchase beginning January 25th on in conjunction with the film’s Costa Mesa debut on February 8th. The film will then travel to Hurley’s additional H Space galleries in Bali, Tokyo and beyond for international premieres.

C.R. Stecyk III is an artist/curator who has participated in over three hundred international art exhibitions. As a longtime chronicler of the California scene he has written for a variety of publications and authored a number of books, and catalogues dealing with contemporary culture. Stecyk was also the production designer and co-writer of the documentary film Dogtown and Z Boys which won major awards at Sundance and other festivals.

“Hurley is a company based on inclusion,” says chairman and founder Bob Hurley. This philosophy applied to Bob Hurley’s early years as a Huntington Beach shaper, working with friends alongside the world’s best athletes to make a better surfboard. It applied to the company’s launch in 1999, when Hurley decided to start a brand that was a true microphone for youth. In 2002, Hurley was acquired by Nike — the largest and most influential sporting brand in the world. Inclusion remains a guiding principle of the company today, where innovative products like Phantom Boardshorts and game-changing events like the US Open of Surfing continue to redefine what is possible in our world. Hurley headquarters are in Costa Mesa, CA with international offices in Sydney, Tokyo, Barcelona and Bali.

Read More →

~CBNC for Rudy’s by ace carretero~

Written by on 29th January 2012 in Bicycle, Customs, fashion, Lifestyle, Motion Picture, music, Product, Ride, Skate, Skateboarding with 0 Comments

Read More →

~The Racing Machetes~

Written by on 18th January 2012 in Art, Customs, Motorcycles, music, Ride with 0 Comments

Read More →

¤ RIP Jimmy Castor ¤

Written by on 17th January 2012 in Motorcycles, music with 0 Comments

Read More →

It’s a Bad Brains Christmas Charlie Brown

Written by on 15th December 2011 in Art, music, Skateboarding, Surf with 0 Comments

Read More →