The Hails, High Dive, And The Hunt To Revive Gainesville's Local Music

The Hails, High Dive, And The Hunt To Revive Gainesville's Local Music

"All hail The Hails"

Gainesville has proven repeatedly to be a hub for artistic talent spanning across all mediums. One of the landmark locations to take in some of the finest local music is High Dive located downtown. This week I had the opportunity to see The Hails perform live and to sit down with front man, Robbie Kingsley, for an interview following the show. The Hails epitomize the undeniable talent embedded within Gainesville and why local artists should be more actively supported by the community.

Band members Dylan McCue (guitar), Franco Solari (guitar), Matt Glover (bass), Zach Levy (drums) and Robbie Kingsley (vocals) have been performing on a regular basis at High Dive for over a year now. Their sound is a fresh cross between the grit of classic rock with the smooth undertones of new age alternative. When asked how the band decided on the sound they wanted to convey, Kingsley said, “We all share similar tastes…we all love old rock and roll and we all love contemporary stuff too.” This was very evident as they covered artists such as Frank Ocean and The Strokes, as well as showing off some of their original music.

The concert venue itself was the embodiment of the intimate experience that music should be enjoyed in. You could tell that everyone there was proud to support the talents of their friends and family. The intended effect of music is to make listeners feel something and you could tell the whole bar was filled with that emotion. Kingsley agreed that Gainesville has been the perfect atmosphere for them to develop as musicians. He claimed that this city is a “big art center” with a surprising amount of history and has allowed The Hails to do a lot with their music. He continued and said that there are a lot of great musicians here that they have been able to meet and form a “tight-knit community.”

Recently, The Hails took a trip to Miami, Florida to record their EP that we anticipate to be released within the next few months. This recording will include 5 original tracks that I was able to experience live at their recent gig. A major step for the band, Kingsley hopes this EP will be a way for them to gain a larger fan following and expand beyond the Gainesville area. Even though the members of The Hails are college students, the ideal lifestyle for them would be able to do music full-time. Playing on major circuits and on acclaimed tours would be the perfect scenario according to Kingsley.

Such large aspirations are fitting for a group with as much natural talent and stage presence as The Hails. Nevertheless, it takes the support of a community to get them the recognition they deserve. Society as a whole has turned away from supporting locally based organizations, whether it be music, art or shops. This has made it increasingly more difficult for individuals to act upon their ambitions. That is why it is imperative for us to revive the appreciation of local culture. Everything we know today originally stemmed from local culture and it is due time for us to return to these roots. Native flair shouldn’t be overshadowed by the draw toward commercialized entertainment. Everyone must start somewhere, so why not support talent from the very beginning?

With that in mind, I urge everyone to gain a similar experience to the one I had seeing The Hails. You can learn about their upcoming shows and the release of their EP on their Facebook page. There is no greater way to show appreciation for where you live than to embrace the many talents of the residents. For all, you know the band you end up paying hundreds of dollars to see in an arena could have started in a local bar right where you live charging $8 for the same experience.

Cover Image Credit: Madison Florence

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A Poem To Art Saving Us

Art is what you need it to be.

“Youth is wasted on the young”, I know, and I am trying. So desperately to ensure that my odyssey is a chest of memories that will never diminish.

I find myself staring at the bottom of empty coffee mugs, caught between the backwash of coffee tainted oxygen molecules and morning delays. These cells are nothing but pixilated facades.

Nietzsche says that art does not need to be truth, but isn’t that what it is all about? Is that not what makes it so raw? Making the intangible, tangible? But the only thing true of art is that art saves us. And if that means that what art is made of is not truth; that art is the outcome of a survival mechanism to compose and convince ourselves to feel something so that we do not fall into the black hole of nihilism then so be it.

Because I won’t know any other way. All I know is that I am breathing and thinking and just being.

It is kind of ironic that we depend on each other’s defense mechanisms to live, to prove that our existence isn’t just some fucked evolutionary step. We are so desperate and so in need to find ourselves, to understand that we need to be here that we also begin to see ourselves in the art works. In the brush strokes of Van Gough; in the not so irregular and not so misplaced lines of Picasso’s works. This is both comforting and scary.

Some days it is hard to differentiate yourself from all the art that is surrounding you and I; sorting through all the pieces that are spread along the sunrises, book stores or through the numb vibrations of the rain. Art does not have to be true, but it does have to be a series of releases.

We spend our whole lives breathing in and attacking notes, but we always forget that we can breathe. That in our composition of life we can add our own breath marks. It is okay to release. To breathe in and to stop your tune when needed.

Cover Image Credit: Unsplash

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The 7 Best Pieces of Drag Race Lingo Ru-vealed

Werk it, queen!

Season Three of "RuPaul's Drag Race: All Stars" just wrapped last week, but season 10 of Drag Race is scheduled to premiere on March 22nd. You might’ve turned on your TV and thought, “what the heck are they talking about?”. Some of the lingo is confusing and unclear, so here’s a guide to just some of the key catchphrases.

1. The library/Being read

The name of the mini challenge is “Reading is Fundamental, in which queens take turns reading each other. When it’s their turn, they “enter the library”, which just means putting on goofy glasses. Reading is pretty much pointing out flaws but in a funny or over the top way.

2. Shade

Throwing shade is similar to reading someone, but I think of shade as usually more blunt, insulting and less clever.

3. Tea

Derives from the letter “T” standing for truth. Tea refers to gossip, news or information. Commonly used in the sense of “So, what’s the tea?”, which means “girl, what’s the gossip?”. It’s commonly combined with shade, as someone might say “No, tea, no shade, but…” which is a preface saying “no disrespect”. Conversely, someone might say “all tea, all shade” meaning that they know exactly how they sound and don’t care if you’re offended.

4. Fish

A queen is said to be looking fishy/serving fish when they closely resemble a woman. Some of the fishiest queens include Tatianna, Courtney Act, and Farrah Moan.

5. Back Rolls

An insult used in season 5 when Jade Jolie told Alyssa Edwards: “Girl, you had rolls all over the place in the back, it was disgusting!” To which Alyssa responded

6. Snatch Game

A parody of the 1960’s celebrity game show “The Match Game”. On the original show, contestants write in answers to questions, hoping to match the guest judge. Snatch Game operates in the same way, but the contestants have to impersonate a celebrity. This is a challenge that has taken place every season since the second one, and it’s probably the most highly anticipated. This is one of the challenges that really establishes the top queens, as they’re judged based off of likeness and humor. Celebrities that have been impersonated range from Dame Maggie Smith to Britney Spears, Judge Judy, Anna Nicole Smith, and even RuPaul.

7. Comedy vs. Pageant Queens

This is pretty much exactly what it sounds like. Some queens are more specialized in makeup, costumes, and overall pageantry. Others are more campy and over the top. Comedy queens are usually stronger in acting or comedy challenges, but pageant queens have the upper hand in design focused challenges.

So there ya have it, a short list of Drag Race terminology. I RuPaulogize if you got a little lost somewhere, but if you managed to make it through this article….


Cover Image Credit: Daniel Dudek-Corrigan

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