If wild, crazy and freaky genre movies are your thing, then boy do we have a film festival for you!
Fantastic Fest, which takes place every September at an Alamo Drafthouse in Austin, Texas (it has since branched out to spread the fest love to other Alamo locations around the country), is one of the world’s most sought-after genre festivals. And when we say “genre festivals,” we mean that the majority of movies screening there are in the realm of horror, sci-fi, dark comedy…
Amusement parks and carnivals are great settings for horror movies. Visitors are already vibing on the excitement of the attractions; past fright flicks like Final Destination 3, Zombieland and The Funhouse added layers of extreme anxiety — and fear of death! — to the adrenalized experience.
Tapping into that anxious feeling, the upcoming horror thriller Hell Fest is set at an amusement park where the scares become real. Read onward to learn all we know about the film and then watch two…
On July 28, the LoveLoud festival, successfully raised $ 1 million for LGBTQ youth in Utah, reports The Daily Universe.
Alfonso Ribeiro, who plays Carlton on Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, was a fan-favorite guest speaker at the event. “I look forward to the day this festival isn’t necessary,” he said. “Love strong, love proud and love loud.” Ribeiro also entertained the crowd with “Carlton’s”, signature dance move.
July 5th, 2018 – San Diego, CA – On Saturday, June 30th, Grammy-winning rock band SWITCHFOOT celebrated the 14th annual SWITCHFOOT BRO-AM at Moonlight Beach in Encinitas, CA. The annual community celebration and charity event gathered over 15,000people for the free Beach Fest and Surf Contest, which raised over $ 250,000 to benefit local youth initiatives through VH1 Save the Music Foundation, Feeding San Diego, Challenged Athletes Foundation, A Step Beyond, StandUp for Kids, and Rob Machado Foundation. Since the inaugural BRO-AM in 2005, the event has raised over 1.8 million dollars for San Diego youth programs impacting homeless, at-risk and disadvantaged kids.
The beachfront concert included performances from SWITCHFOOT, Colony House, Sure Sure, 91X Battle for the BRO-AMwinner Inspired And The Sleep, and a very special appearance by local youth musicians from VH1 Save The Music Foundationwho performed on stage with SWITCHFOOT.
In addition to charitable giving and musical performances, the diverse and exciting event included a variety of surf contests. Team Surfin Fire, which included professional surfer Damien Hobgood, took the win for the BRO-AM Team Surf Contest, where a four person team competes riding one wave regular and one wave switch (keeping it more “bro” than pro). Other competitors included three time world champion Tom Curren, world renowned local surf legend Rob Machado and other professional surfers such as Josh Kerr, Timmy Curran, Yadin Nicol, Brett Simpson along with numerous up and coming young surf stars. The CAF Elite Surf Team took third place showcasing that their physical challenges don’t hold them back from competing with the best. The winner of the Rob Machado Bro Junior Surf Contest, a contest that judges kids on who has the most fun, was Toby Dussalt. One of the most inspirational moments of the day is the Challenged Athletes Foundation Kids’ Adaptive Surf Series where kids with physical challenges are given the opportunity to compete with surfers from the team contest supporting them in the water and thousands of spectators cheering them on. First place went to Landis Sims. BRO-AM’s surf events wrapped with the hilarious Surf Joust Expression Session, complete with battle armor and nerf weapons on soft surfboards, with Kieran Anderson taking home the top prize.
Over 200 volunteers supported the event with many of them participating in waste diversion efforts to educate attendees on proper sorting of compost, recycle and landfill in partnership with the City of Encinitas and the Solana Center (a local environmental innovation organization). BRO-AM uses solar energy to power their stage and sound avoiding approximately 1400 lbs of CO2. And partnering with the Rob Machado Foundation, free refills of cold filtered water were provided to all attendees to host an event free of single-use plastic water bottles.
The BRO-AM kicked off with the BRO-AM Benefit Party hosted by Viasat on Thursday, June 28th, gathering philanthropists and friends for an evening of local food and drinks, silent/live auctions and live performances.
“The BRO-AM is bigger than a rock band trying to do some good. It’s a community of givers and doers who know that collaboration produces exponential impact. It’s the idea that giving can be fun and meaningful. It’s incredible to see our dream become bigger than we could’ve imagined. Surfing, music, raising funds for the next generation.” – Jon Foreman
In 2005, after traveling the world, SWITCHFOOT dreamed up an idea to give back to their hometown that supported them as both surfers and musicians, to rally their great community and to invest in kids who might need a hand up. Fourteen years later, the BRO-AM has grown in impact and size gathering over 17,000 people to the beach for surf contests, free beach concert and numerous vendor booths. The SWITCHFOOT BRO-AM Foundation grants focus on initiatives that create a thriving future – Physical and community well being along with opportunity and empowerment through music, art, surfing and education.
Beyond their career achievements and creation of BRO-AM, SWITCHFOOT has also maintained a deep commitment to a variety of humanitarian causes, lending their support to such worthy organizations as Food for the Hungry, CURE International, DATA, the ONE Campaign, Habitat for Humanity, and To Write Love on Her Arms.
For More Information on SWITCHFOOT and BRO-AM, Please Visit:
Known as a launch pad for fright flicks, sci-fi adventures, thrillers, intense dramas and all types of weird comedies from the U.S. and abroad, Fantastic Fest kicks off tonight in Austin, Texas. Here's a preview of what's on tap.
The Wild, the West, the Women, the Rap Battle
Let's start with several international stunners that we have seen and can recommend highly.
Visually striking and profoundly unsettling, The Square is an act of…
Live Nation put on a huge music festival knowing it would become a drug-fueled rave — caring more about money than attendee safety — and now a 22-year-old girl is dead because of it … according to a new suit. The parents of Roxanne Ngo, who…
Rejoice Musical Soul Food Radio Network CEO Mike Chandler has been working in every aspect of radio for over 30 years. His wife, April Washington Chandler, launched her career as a marketing manager for major record labels such as Warner Bros. and Sony Music in the 1990s. This dynamic duo has pooled their resources to put the state of Virginia’s Hampton Roads region on the map as a family-friendly vacation mecca for gospel music lovers through their second annual Musical Soul Food Festival, which takes place this Saturday, June 24, at Chesapeake City Park in Chesapeake, Virginia.
Mike and April Chandler of Musical Soul Food Festival. (Image: Courtesy of Brand X Media.)
Music, Games, and Great Food
Last year, over 12,000 people participated in the daylong games, contests, and enjoyed the fresh seafood and barbecue from various food vendors. The other big draw is the music. A seven-hour, soulful music concert kicks off at 2:00 PM with gospel stars such as Anthony Brown & group therAPy, Dorinda Clark Cole, Bryan Andrew Wilson, Jekalyn Carr, Melvin Williams of The Williams Brothers, Kurt Carr, VaShawn Mitchell, Earl Bynum, Jermaine Dolly, Dottie Peoples, Zion’s Joy, Chrystal Rucker, Earnest Pugh, Damon Little, Troy Sneed, Lucinda Moore, TaMyya J, Ruth La’Ontra and The Virginia Aires, among others. Dr. Bobby Jones of BET’s “Bobby Jones Gospel” fame will host.
Mike Chandler, Dr. Bobby Jones, and April Chandler at 2016 Music Soul Food Fest. (Image: Courtesy of Brand X Media).
Musical Soul Fest is a culmination of the years of work the Chandlers invested into the music industry. “What a lot of people don’t know is that Mike is a skilled engineer who can build a radio station from the ground up but you wouldn’t know it because he’s so humble and approachable,” says April.
NASA Training by Day, Radio DJ by Night
Chandler’s career began in 1979 when he was an engineering student at Florida State University where he also had his own WFSU TV show, “Black Expressions.” At the time, NASA was under fire to employ more black engineers so they went to FSU in pursuit of gifted students with strong math or science skills.
“I always loved math and science,” he says. After his morning college classes, he spent his afternoons getting his NASA training and finished his evenings by hosting an evening R&B radio show on KRT 1350 AM, a country station, in Cocoa Beach. “We were playing Barry White and Al Green,” he laughs. “I know it made those country music lovers throw up.”
Singer Earl Bynum performs at the 2016 Musical Soul Food Fest and will return for this year’s event. (Image: Courtesy of Brand X Media).
Chandler stayed with NASA until the Challenger space shuttle explosion in 1986 when the agency laid off 1,100 employees. He moved to Jacksonville, Florida, where he worked the afternoon drive at an R&B station and the night shift at an ABC TV affiliate before he met the late Bishop Levi E. Willis. “He had a vision of developing a national gospel radio network,” Chandler says of Willis. “When he learned that I had engineering experience, he asked if I could help him build his network so he moved me to Norfolk. When I got there he had eight stations and when I left in 1996 he had 72.”
A lively crowd shot from the 2016 Musical Soul Food Fest. (Image: Courtesy of Brand X Media).
Chandler then made a ransom of money in the cell phone industry before buying the Rejoice Musical Soul Food Radio Network, which boasts 38 affiliates, in 2006. The Virginia Beach, Virginia-based network is one of the leading 24/7 hubs for gospel music airplay and it has built a stellar reputation for its quality faith-based and inspirational programming. It also syndicates nearly a dozen radio shows, including comedian Jonathan Slocumb’s forthcoming weekday and weekend radio programs.
Taking the Church Convention to the Next Level
The idea for Musical Soul Food Fest developed in 2011. “I was sitting on the sofa one day talking to Mike,” recalls April Chandler who owns HBK Media, a marketing firm. “Every summer, there are several big church conventions that people attend and it’s nothing but church all day. I thought it would be nice to have something for families to come together, reverence God and fellowship outside of the four walls of the church.”
Dr. Bobby Jones watches as legendary gospel singer Dottie Peoples belts out a song at 2016 Musical Soul Food Fest. (Image: Courtesy of Brand X Media).
It took five years to pull the festival together but eventually everything gelled. Cracker Barrel Old Country Store signed on as a title sponsor and one by one, top recording artists began to sign on to perform at the inaugural event in June 2016. “It was a huge success,” says Damon Little, a veteran recording artist best known for the song, “I Won’t Be Defeated,” a Billboard No. 2 hit. “I was surprised myself. I came just because I’m friends with Mike and April. I didn’t have high expectations for the crowd size because it was the first year but I was pleasantly surprised. There were people as far as my eyes could see and we had a good ole time.”
The Chandlers expect to duplicate last year’s success and build upon it for the years to come. “This is such a beautiful area of the country with the beaches and nature,” says April. “It’s the perfect place to bring your family to relax, have fun, and to enjoy some good gospel music.”
Nothing validates a claim quite like hard facts from a scientist, which is why Fun Fun Fun Fest, Austin’s popular cross-genre Indie music festival, hand-picked Bill Nye to announce the 2015 lineup and provide evidence that this fest is, in fact, the most fun in all the land.
Although The Science Guy clearly has the chops to crunch the numbers and appears to be all up in pop culture these days, how exactly did he end up as an ambassador for this fest?
“About 2 years ago, I wanted to find a better way of showing folks that FFF was different than other festivals, because I really believe that it is. It’s not a very credible thought coming from me though,” explains co-founder James Moody. “So we decided to work with a scientist to basically prove, through science, that FFF was special… and scientifically different from everything else out there. Thankfully Bill Nye agreed, likes tacos, and loves Wu-Tang, so here we are. Because science.”
To slam-dunk the case, Nye employs all the tools in his arsenal such as a Wu-Tang Periodic table, a mind-blowing fun equation and “Quantitative Bummer Observation” metrics to explain his conclusion. With the comedy lineup yet to be announced, it wouldn’t surprise me at all to see him show up on the Yellow stage come November but I don’t have the science to prove it yet.
Check out the video for this year’s lineup and the full demonstration.
— This feed and its contents are the property of The Huffington Post, and use is subject to our terms. It may be used for personal consumption, but may not be distributed on a website.
The New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival 2015 ended its first day with a bang. And a series of lightning flashes. Then torrential rain, but not before headliners from Wilco to Keith Urban to Jimmy Cliff worked in as much music as they could before the weather shut down their respective stages.
My first stop-in-your-tracks moment was the Kambuka African Dance & Drum Collective thanks to the kind of serendipity that Jazz Fest specializes in providing. You don’t know what’s just around the corner, but it’s always worth making the turn.
Kambuka African Dance & Drum Collective
“I will rise again, through rain and flood and wind,” Sean Johnson & the Wild Lotus Band sang just before the heavy weather arrived. “The clouds will pass, the sun will shine and I will see again.” The band has a loyal following that ends the set with a sea of waving hands in an annual moment of Zen.
Transitioning from trance to dance, we caught Royal Teeth, newly signed to Electra Records. Guitarist / vocalist Gary Larsen says that after their third year performing at fest, “Each year gets better for us. There’s always a familiar connection we have with the crowd at Jazz Fest because they are our friends and our neighbors. The crowd is there for the dancing and the energy you can only find at a New Orleans festival, so we try to bring out all the stops each year. They welcome us with open arms. It’s an honor to be able to play such a great festival at home and feel the love from our city.” Exuding positivity during their set, Larson told the crowd: “You look beautiful, New Orleans!” Since I had eaten a beignet covered in powdered sugar while wearing black, I resembled a speckled trout but appreciated the sentiment.
Next, we headed to the WWOZ Jazz Tent in case of rain and because New Orleans native son Nicholas Payton nearly blew the tent-top off with his Nicholas Payton Trio featuring Vicente Archer on bass and Bill Stewart on drums. Payton’s new album is titled Numbers, and #5 was a triumph. Payton refers to his genre as Black American Music (#BAM) rather than jazz. Since the state of jazz ends up hotly debated before, during and after Jazz Fest every year, what it is called may as well be part of that conversation.
Nicholas Payton Trio
David Fricke, marking 30 years at Rolling Stone Magazine, is one of many writers whose festival interviews have given audiences a look behind the scenes over the years. After one of Wilco’s previous Jazz Fest appearances, he interviewed bassist John Stirratt and asked what new albums were inspiring him. Stirratt mentioned legendary songwriter Bobby Charles’ new release. When my husband told Dr. John about the shout out, he called Bobby to pass along the compliment. Their phone conversations were always long and legendary. At one point Dr. John clarified to Bobby: “Wilco … No, NOT a washing machine!! …” Once that was cleared up, Bobby was happy to know he was remembered and we got to tell Stirratt that Bobby Charles thought his band was an appliance. Bobby died later that year, so it was meaningful that he had the chance to hear the praise from a fellow Louisiana native.
Wilco remains as popular at Jazz Fest as they are in their hometown of Chicago, and after today the band has four Fest appearances under their belt. Jeff Tweedy told the crowd: “I don’t know how many times we’ve played here but this feels like the best.” He then gave a shout to an audience member whose sign read: “It could be worse” and said: “That’s our motto. Did you know that? On our guitar pics it says: “It could be worse. We wanted to send a message that hopeful, but not TOO hopeful.”
The band then launched into “Secrets of the Sea” while the crowd watched the clouds gather. It felt just hopeful enough.
Photos by Jeff Beninato
— This feed and its contents are the property of The Huffington Post, and use is subject to our terms. It may be used for personal consumption, but may not be distributed on a website.
There’s sometimes a common theme or recurring character that threads through a film festival. This can be especially striking in a fest as tightly curated as the New York Film Festival. Such convergences usually happen by accident, according to Kent Jones, director of programming at the NYFF.
Often… what it has to do with is the time. Obviously, when people are all making movies at the same time, it’s inevitable that some of them are going to be responding to similar events, occurrences… what’s happening on the horizon… you get movies that talk to each other and that’s always great.
I’m not sure how it’s related to the times, but the 52nd New York Film Fest abounds in characters who make art — on the page, in a concert hall, in movies and theater, or on a canvas. Why so many artists inhabit the fest lineup in this supremely materialistic age I’m not sure. Like most everything, it’s likely connected with the modern plague of economic inequity. Yes, the folks who increasingly own much of the planet can “buy” an artist. But no one can buy talent. Thus the artist’s become a sort of unlikely hero for our times.
Top ranked among these artist-centric films is the not-to-be-missed Mr. Turner by Mike Leigh. It resurrects JMW Turner, the English Romantic landscape painter (late 1700’s to the mid 1800s) known as “the painter of light,” along with a supporting cast of eccentrics to delight Dickens. Awarded Best Actor at Cannes, the superb Timothy Spall captures Turner in his last 25 years in all his curmudgeonly glory. The film departs from Leigh’s trademark loosey goosey accounts of Britain’s working and underclass, harking back to the meticulous period recreation of Topsy Turvy and Gilbert and Sullivan’s creation of The Mikado.
Some will find Turner plotless — but in fact, Turner offers a deep-in plot, as Leigh traces an artist’s inner journey to push his gift to its farthest limits. And going the distance means, for Turner, to hell with everyone else! Leigh’s portrait is unsparing in its revelations of Turner’s odious treatment of a cast-off wife and daughters, as well as a devoted woman servant he occasionally humps like a beast.
This sorry business is leavened by an interlude depicting Turner’s rather charming romance with his landlady at the seaside town of Margate, the inspirational site of much of his work. Leigh drenches the screen in images that arguably make Turner the most gorgeous film of the year. On display are not just the glorious landscapes — Leigh and his brilliant production designer and DP Dick Pope have bottled and put up on the screen nothing less than the palette and light of Turner’s paintings ; the viewer is literally bathed in them.
There are brief, throwaway images — Turner sitting in a boat on a shadowed pond amidst shafts of light, anyone? — that will make you sit up and gasp. Timothy Spall’s ingenious arsenal of grunts seems the perfect “language” to convey his unique style of courtship, dismissal of critics, struggle to surpass his own art — and the sheer difficulty of living.
Featuring Jason Schwartzman as a Philip Rothian-type novelist, Listen Up, Philip offers a way less illuminating portrait of the artist’s swollen ego. Much of Alex Ross Perry’s film tracks the interaction of the writer as self-centered shit with his live-in girlfriend Elizabeth Moss (miscast and misused). Jonathan Pryce, an older, once-eminent writer who has equally alienated most everyone, invites Philip to his upstate country house to write and regroup. This leads to a college teaching gig that gives Philip a fresh opportunity to play toxic boyfriend.
The film’s fearless display of metastatic ego and satire of things literary is, I suppose, good for a few hollow laughs. And a drunken bacchanal involving Schwartzman, Pryce, and two game women they’ve picked up at a singles event is shot in lurching, tipsy verite. But the treatment of the women as mere furniture in a male escapade — they literally get tossed out into the night — leaves a sour taste. And if I never see a woman tearing up over some asshole behaving badly, even if he is a literary genius, it won’t be too soon. Perry’s quirky, off-balance style offers a welcome antidote to canned studio fare. Even so, how did his minor effort make the fest’s main slate?
Musical artists take center stage in Damien Chazelle’s Whiplash. Anchored by Miles Teller and his awards-fodder turn as a jazz drummer, this may just be the feelgood film of the year. This despite the suffering the artist-musician undergoes in his drive for perfection. I have nothing to add to the glowing reviews, except: great screenplay, great acting, jazz to die for — what’s not to love? It’s in theaters. Go see it.
Then there’s the curious case of NYFF closer Birdman. A departure in style for gloom mongering Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu, it’s an antic, literally high-flying account of a former iconic film star’s attempt to make a comeback by mounting a Broadway play. Given all the buzz and plaudits from the Venice Film Fest, I came with high expectations. Just think: Michael Keaton in a barn burning role that parallels his own Batmanic past as a movie franchise star; Edward Norton as a loose cannon of an actor intent on screwing up Keaton’s production of a play based on a story by Raymond Carver; and presiding over it all, the genius of D.P. Emmanuel Lubezki (Gravity, The Tree of Life).
The seamless sweep of the camera tunneling through the backstage corridors and planing over the great old theaters of Broadway — not to mention Keaton taking to the sky, birdman style, in cunning CG segments — gives the illusion of a film created in a single take. But will the average moviegoer get that? I doubt it. They’ll get the adrenalin rush, but not the technical leger-de-main. Sometimes programmers paint themselves into a vacuum.
As Keaton’s strung-out daughter, Emma Stone uncorks an impassioned monologue about how the viral world has made old dad obsolete (a highlight, though her features are so harsh they belong on Mount Rushmore). Stone’s tirade echos and “talks to” a similar one by Kristen Stewart giving Juliette Binoche the news that she and her ilk are old school, over.
Less riveting is the ego battle between Keaton and Edward Norton, the latter scampering about in his skivvies, displaying a gut in need of gym time. Birdman unwittingly betrays a disgust with human bodies; Norton’s come-on line, “play with my balls,” stands in for witty repartee. The women revolving around the two alpha males, including an ex wife, abandoned gf, and hot-to-trot daughter, are too carelessly drawn to engage us. Given the many challenges of life in 21st century America, it’s no wonder that Birdman takes to the skies. Entertainment – The Huffington Post
Entertainment News-Visit Adults Playland today for the hottest adult entertainment online!
Robert Plant was in fine form closing out the stage at Saturday’s New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival, with Phish jamming across the track for hours. From Led Zepplin classics to thoughtfully curated covers, he did not disappoint. AXS Review: Here.
Big Freedia, a force of nature if ever there was one, performed before Robin Thicke’s set but it won’t be long before the New Orleans native is closing out a Jazz Fest stage while bringing down the house. She bounced through a sizzling set in honor of her mother. AXS Review: Here.
New Orleans native Kermit Ruffins was full of Kermitude, advising fellow trumpet player Irvin Mayfield to “stay well away from my wife,” and joking that “he follows me everywhere. With a trumpet as smoking as Kermit’s, you can stay as unfiltered as you like. He shared with the audience that he was only half stoned on account of the Jazz Fest gig.
Jazz Fest is saluting the music and culture of Brazil this year and, as ever, you never know who or what may be coming around the track. The samba beat goes on.
The New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival day one wrapped with a combination of die-hard Carlos Santana fans one of which is festival Executive Producer Quint Davis who ended up playing maracas with the band; and The Avett Brother whose fans cleared a path as Seth Avett jumped from the stage to the crowd and jammed while strolling, in an interesting Mosesish maneuver.
Ticket prices are up to $ 70 at the gate this year, and some press coverage asked in advance how the crowds would bear up with the cost. They apparently bore up just fine. The first-day crowd that felt more like a Sunday to this local. The sandy racetrack was lined with kids making sandcastles, as always. Food lines snaked further out to the track as patrons lined up for their favorite seafood combo, as always. And THAT GUY, the one with hair that’s business in the front and party in the back as he rocks his unbuttoned vintage red bean Bayou Wear shirt and boogies through the artist entrance was there, as always.
I’ve been thinking of what it is that draw the crowds back to the festival year after year. The writer I was standing next to at the scorchingly wonderful Reubén Blades set has been coming to Jazz Fest for all its 45 years. There she was, stage-side, waving at Quint as he introduced the band. As always. And that’s what brings the crowds back. There’s not a lot of As Always to depend on these days.
Yes, there are more Coachella-styled teens with flower wreath headbands spinning along the track. Hippies may eventually give way to hipsters and it’s going to be fascinating to see where they go with Jazz Fest as it strides through middle age. But the music will still be there, no matter what turn the granddaddy of music festivals takes.
Shamarr Allen with his music students (guest John Popper sat in next)