Cincinnati's Budding Music Scene

Cincinnati's Budding Music Scene

Support the ones up there for fun.
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The murmurs and mumbles coming from around the bar slowly quiet down, just low enough to not cover up the announcement. You turn to see what is happening as you see the announcer talking about a local band coming on. You turn to face the stage; you’ll give them a listen. They’re here, you’re here — and you’re not moving so you’re going to hear them regardless. You see a handful people walk out onto stage, taking a seat at the drums, strapping up their guitars and preparing to perform.

Now, try and switch roles. The band meets behind stage to have a pep talk prior to the start of the show. The guitarist exercises his fingers, popping his or her knuckles in preparation for what is to come. The singer of the band has rested his or her voice for a week prior to the show to make sure it's in top shape. They hear the announcer call their name, and after one more high-five and fist bump, they walk out onto the stage, overlooking the crowd. There is a lull, a sharp breath in and the band starts to perform.

Depending on your venue of choice, this could be a normal Friday night out. You look up every now and then to see an unknown band playing, but it’s typically ambient to you. Just background noise. Meanwhile, they see their crowd, their potential fans. They’re up there playing their hearts out for you. It may not seem like it, but that’s the glory of local musicians — yeah, of course they want to make it big and get signed, make millions and retire.

However, that’s not why they do it. They do it because they love it, they love the rush of that moment right after the sharp breath in and before they start. The nerves, the hope of touching someone out there with what they’re doing and saying. They want to show people that big plans and big dreams can come true, and they aren’t being paid to sing about certain topics or play a certain song. These musicians are the truest form, and they give the music scene a good name.

Cincinnati’s music scene has always been around, but right now it’s blasting forward with huge force. Alternative, hardcore, acoustic acts, electronic — there’s a band to fit every palate. Much like the different areas of the Queen City are developing, as is the music scene. Venues like The Underground, The Thompson House, The Tin Roof and others are hosting shows full of local talent going in and trying to perform like they’re in front of thousands, despite the fact that it’s fifteen people and they know ten. These are the musicians that are going to be on the radio twenty times a day in a few years. Break Up Lines, Settle Your Scores, Danger Monkey, Friday Giants, Forgery At Best — rock and hardcore bands that are picking up a lot of steam or have already made a name for themselves. They are the ones clawing up the ranks to try and get their name out there, giving their all at every single show no matter how small or large. Some travel already, and have a great fanbase.

Others like Kyle Hackett, an acoustic act, pull in a crowd present to see hardcore bands and sing along with the lone man on stage, drawn in by his fantastic singing ability and stage presence. Cheating Paisly, with an eclectic jazz influenced alternative rock.

There are so many bands trying to make it, and you shouldn’t wait until their big to back them up- do it now, while it counts. Walk The Moon, twenty on pilots, they both blew up and both from areas near here. Go out and support the talent that the city holds, explore what’s around. Some of the most fun I’ve had has been photographing a live show of high energy bands up there having a blast, screaming and jumping and getting the crowd involved. They don’t have to be rock stars to be talented, but they do need support to keep going. So next weekend, go check out a local band. Go jump around or chill out with friends and total strangers in a small venue. You’ll hear more passion and see more energy than a lot of people in stadiums and arenas, and you’ll give those bands the recognition they deserve. After all, you have to start somewhere, so let’s make Cincinnati one of the best places to do it.
Cover Image Credit: Chris Hughes

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5 Perks Of Having A Long-Distance Best Friend

The best kind of long-distance relationship.
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Sometimes, people get annoyed when girls refer to multiple people as their "best friend," but they don't understand. We have different types of best friends. There's the going out together best friend, the see each other everyday best friend and the constant, low maintenance best friend.

While I'm lucky enough to have two out of the three at the same school as me, my "low maintenance" best friend goes to college six hours from Baton Rouge.

This type of friend is special because no matter how long you go without talking or seeing each other, you're always insanely close. Even though I miss her daily, having a long-distance best friend has its perks. Here are just a few of them...

1. Getting to see each other is a special event.

Sometimes when you see someone all the time, you take that person and their friendship for granted. When you don't get to see one of your favorite people very often, the times when you're together are truly appreciated.

2. You always have someone to give unbiased advice.

This person knows you best, but they probably don't know the people you're telling them about, so they can give you better advice than anyone else.

3. You always have someone to text and FaceTime.

While there may be hundreds of miles between you, they're also just a phone call away. You know they'll always be there for you even when they can't physically be there.

4. You can plan fun trips to visit each other.

When you can visit each other, you get to meet the people you've heard so much about and experience all the places they love. You get to have your own college experience and, sometimes, theirs, too.

5. You know they will always be a part of your life.

If you can survive going to school in different states, you've both proven that your friendship will last forever. You both care enough to make time for the other in the midst of exams, social events, and homework.

The long-distance best friend is a forever friend. While I wish I could see mine more, I wouldn't trade her for anything.

Cover Image Credit: Just For Laughs-Chicago

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8 Old Katelyn Tarver Songs You Probably Haven't Heard

None of her new songs will ever go as hard as "Chasing Echoes" and that's a fact.

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Years ago, I found (through iTunes recommendations) a pretty cool female artist. Later found out she was on "Big Time Rush", and then I found out she had some new songs out. I decided to give her new songs a listen, and they're good. However, I prefer some of her older stuff, which sadly isn't on Spotify. Fortunately, YouTube exists, and I'm here to share the best ones.


1. "Wonderful Crazy"

This is just a fun, upbeat song for when you're having a good day. Would recommend playing in your car with the windows rolled down.

2. "Rain"

I have a very specific memory of a time when this song blessed my life, but for all intents and purposes, it is a beautiful and happy song.

3. "I'll Make It Real"

This is a beautiful song with a wonderful message about staying true to yourself. I used to listen to it on the way to school every day my senior year of high school.

4. "Something In Me"

Featured in the greatest show of all time, "South of Nowhere" season 1 episode 6. A very relatable breakup mood.

5. "Love Alone"

This is definitely the second-hardest-hitting song she's ever released. The fact that this is not on Spotify or even iTunes anymore is just not fair.

6. "Favorite Girl"

This one's cute and upbeat, a definite crush mood. Not on the same level as "Love Alone", but it's still underrated.

7. "Closer to My Heart"

Another cute love song. I'll tie it with "Everything" for cutest love song on her first album. Highly recommend both.

8. "Chasing Echoes"

Facts are facts and the facts are that Katelyn Tarver's new stuff could never go as hard as "Chasing Echoes". I can't even begin to explain how deeply these lyrics cut through me when I was fifteen. Even now, this song can take me all the way back. She is robbing us by not making this available on streaming services (or even to purchase). Katelyn, bring this song back, I am begging you.

Anyway, I'm still enjoying the new stuff and am excited to see what's next.

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