5 Ways to Check…Your Life Out of a Creative Slump

Let’s spill about that not so elusive creative artistry life for a moment, shall we? (to those who of you out there in Philly who are just straight up living it…werk).

Oh, how it can take you to the highest of all highs when you’re getting the fucking job done one moment, and then make you feel like Amanda Bynes, Linsday Lohan, Paris Hilton’s DJ career and “Gimme More” Britney rolled into one Helen Hunt worthy tornado of creative destruction the next….and it’s the fucking worst thing that could ever happen…to your life. 

Ask anyone who’s owning their creative life who’s been through “the struggle’ (if you’re a creative artist out there right now who’s too proud to admit a “slump,” admitting it the first step (and you’re also not perfect either so you can cut that fucking shit out, too) and it feels their world is quite simply….done. 

But don’t you dare throw in the artistic towel just yet, because if there’s one thing that creative artistry lets us know is that it loves when we come back for more abuse. So, whether your an artful businessman finding many useful ways to use #BBHMM, a stay-at-home mom who dazzled the family after she added her own special “Mom Seasonings” to that recipe she snatched up from, a teacher, an engineer, singer, writer, screenwriter, songwriter, drag queen, actor, actress, diva, rapper, or any other career where you have to legit use your creative well being, you are well in the game. And oh, yes, how there will be days where it’s just fucking amazing to be the creative you and then there will be those days where it just… fucking…isn’t. 

For those of you haven’t gone through “it” yet, it’s coming (see–not perfect), for those of you who thrived through it, let’s go, and for those who are just starting to feel the Courtney Love “Doll Parts” creative angst, they still really do want you, you just have to get through this fucking annoying creative slump first, so here are five ways you can get over yourself like Eden’s Crush right now because you have a weirdly wonderful creative life to live and you most certainly motherfucking can. 

Hey, there’s just no sugar coating it when it comes to this…stuff. 

1. Recognize it, you stupid hoe… Not to go all Gwen from the get go, but perhaps the fucking worst part about being trapped on the creative struggle bus is not actually recognizing that you’re all up in it Bon Qui Qui style. Those beats just don’t match, that power point just isn’t on point, those designs just aren’t graphic enough and them words just ain’t flowin’ they like used to. Then for days, weeks (hopefully not years because that’s some electroshock therapy shit that we’re not even going to get into here), you’re trying to figure out just what the fuck the issue is. But no need to go out and poke a bitch with your broken umbrella, it’s just a creative slump taking over...your life. However, now that we’ve recognized it, you may now proceed (yes, indeed) to number two. 

2. And then, own it, bitch, because you’re certainly not the only one who’s been through “the struggle” Another big ol’ shitty part of that Ms. Jackson-if-you’re-nasty slump is that it can make you feel more left alone than Ciara on the album charts. You feel like your child has abandoned you and how dare “your baby’ (because, like, it is) deceive you, especially when you thought things we’re all peachy fucking keen together? 

Well, unfortunately, Mean Girls style rainbows and smiles filled days are never guaranteed in a thriving creative life, mostly because the brain controls every part of it and sometimes Ms. Brain acts like Ms. Diva and just wants to take a little rest every once in a while…and it’s all fucking good. Do you think creative moguls like the dearly departed Steve Jobs and the legendary Ms. O didn’t have slumps where they just didn’t fucking want to anymore? They most certainly did and in fact, it in was times of said slumps that brought them to be the icons they were and always will be until the very end of creative time. So, now that you’ve owned and recognized “it” keep that head up like 2pac because the best is yet to come, just ask Ms. Winfrey as she’s rolling around in her Scrooge McDuck style money pit as we speak. 

3.Call yourself Rupaul, because you betta…get back to those creative roots. Rooted inside the foundation in any creative field lies plenty of delicately ( my case..the messier the better at times..whatever tickles your creative fancy) planted seeds that eventually grew into shady redwood forest trees on the the creative path through it all.

However, since those creative folks work so hard at their craft at all hours of the day and night, there’s sometimes,err, always, a tendency to dive in deeper than the deepest deep house groove. That’s like really fucking deep, and in turn, those beloved roots feel like escape from us during our hour of creative need and we forget exactly what we came here for. Right, RiRi?

But perhaps another silver lined part of your creative slump is that it’s now officially time own your slay as Ms. RuPaul and get back to those roots, not just a reminder of those seeds you worked hard to plant, but as a reminder as to why you’re here in the first place. If you’re a singer on the scene whose struggling to smash that performance, go back to that concert where you grabbed every soul in the venue. If you’re a drag queen who feels like they’re wig isn’t on as fierce as it should be, check your purse first back to the performance where you snatched all the damn wigs in the motherfucking place. And if you’re a DJ whose struggling to catch that groove, sound check it back to sets where you had the crowd building those beats until the Molly wore off. It’s all still there. 

A little Mary J. reminiscin’ certainly goes a long way, so don’t you ever think that the foundation you built up doesn’t exist when you’re lost inside the slump, because the truth is, its always there and will never leave your delicately fragile creative side that’s sometimes like a lion, sometimes like a lamb…like mother fucking March…everyday. However, as long as we’ve got those roots, it’s the safest place to explore while you’re going through your Amanda Bynes right now. Now, dance and get back to those roots because they make you (yes, you) what you are…a god damn creative superstar. 

4.Pass it to the creative left, now… Anyone who’s, like, anyone in this sometimes (okay..all the time) fucking bat shit crazy world has that one vice that they go to when they just need to make it through it all. Whether you lie to your friends about how many hours of Netflix and/or Hulu you really binge watch, head to the bars after your 9-5 creative hustle and live that thot happy hour life, or crank up that teacher’s life a lil’ bit by sneaking a little wine into your coffee cup, hey, whatever helps get you through the second, that moment, handling that bratty kid who your just trying to find creative ways to teach the fucking alphabet to and he or she just won’t stop….there’s absolutely no god damn judgment here…trust me. 

Okay, on a personal life, um, twist, and I’m not condoning anything here in anyway…ahh, fuck it, we’re in a crisis here, right? Your creative life is ending. Truly, there’s nothing fucking better than slipping on a pair of headphones, diving into those grooves and hanging out with two good friends–Dutch Master and Mary Jane. When that creative coherent to Iggy Azaeala’s career path kicks in (eek!), there’s nothing better than a little keepin’ it to myself action with MJ (sorry, Bey) and within an instant (aka..three puffs) that Mizz Grande style focus takes over and that creative light (literally) finds its way back into your universe. Like the fucking Elle Woods created “Bend and Snap’ it works every god damn time.

Certainly that chronic life is not for everybody, so to each his own and never any shade to how you get yours, so here’s something we could all chillax to together. The next moment you find yourself in no time Jessi Spano mode, hop on Spotify, dig through them crates, that old school CD Logic case or wherever you keep your most precious music gems (just put down those fucking deadly caffeine pills, please!), pick out your top five favorite albums, puff, puff or straight up glug, glug that special vice, press play on those beats and just..enjoy. 

Here’s a few from the personal vault, and there’s sure to be one or two of these records on the lists of other creative kids out there, because at the end of the day, we’re all in this together. Now, chill the fuck out, god damn it, and let the music and your personally wicked ways do their almighty jobs…to bring the creative you back to you…and that means you, Slater. 

5.Realize that it just might be the best thing that could ever your creative life. Okay, so if you’re just in the beginning stages of the “struggle,” this theory may not seem fathomable, but the deeper your creative despair is, in a bizarre fucking turn (because…this life) it just might be the best thing that could’ve ever happened to you. While indeed “it” (like Stephen fucking King) makes you feel more confused as to what Lindsay Lohan actually does these days, but if you just pick apart those pieces and slowly rebuild to fit them all (and there really is sooo god damn many if you’re really in it) for what it truly is–just your stupid fucking brain telling you to take a creative seat, bitch. And you should absolutely listen to it…right now. 

Any creative person deep in the game is always very protective of their craft, and when a slump strikes, the drama queen enters and we wish we were Claire and Leo in Romeo & Juliet and will take a bitch doooown if they even attempt to come after our creative child in any way. The fucking worst. But truly, all you have to do is dive a bit deeper into the truth within it all–that’s  your creative style is your very own and no one can take it away from you, not even “Mariah’s Theme,” and that’s saying a fuck of a whole lot. 

Now, take some time to get over your shit, but not too much, because you need to get that head back in the creative game, put in more god damn motherfucking work than RiRi….and then shut the fuck up and just…drive. 

Check your creative lifestyle right here so much god damn more….

Facebook     Twitter    Tumblr   Instagram 






Groove of the Day/Deee-Lite/”Groove Is in the Heart”

Which classic ’90s flow still has the ability to funk you up all night long and is just all wrapped up in liscious? That would certainly be NYC based psychedelic dance group Deee-Lite’s retro floor filler, “Groove Is in the Heart.” 

Consisting of Supa DJs Dmitry, Towa Tei and funkdafied and fabulous lead diva Lady Miss Kier, Deee-Lite first came together in the late ’80s and instantly created big beat buzz on the NYC underground club scene, thanks to their one-of-a-kind life ready flair and Ms. Lady’s undeniable sass, which instantly made her an icon among all the queens, honey. A title she certainly still owns today. 

Once “Groove Is in the Heart” was served to floors around the world in 1990, the groovy group took over the Billboard charts taking the number four position on the Hot 100 and making it–as well as the rest of us–their dance floor bitch. But the real truth in what makes this jam so incomparable (besides Bootsy Collins giving us straight up life on bass) is just how many classic samples are laced throughout.  

On the esteemed list of timeless tunes sampled on “Groove” is Bel-Sha-Zaar with Tommy Genapopoluis and the Grecian Knights, “Introduction,” which gets the party started right from the top by letting us know “we’e going to dance…and have some fun.” There’s also record scratch maestro Herbie Hancock’s “Bring Down the Birds” stopping by, and is that the dearly beloved Eva Gabor lending her lungs from the Green Acres theme song? Yas, it is, you dancing kween, you.

We also must show our dance music love to A Tribe Called Quest’s Q-Tip who spits it out with his mic checked and ready on the gasoline induced middle breakdown, which gives “Groove Is in the Heart” the perfect blend of every single kind of music flavor you could ever ask for in a track. Even a quarter-of-a-century later (pass the Botox, now), Deee-Lite’s romp sounds just as funky fresh and so clean as it did back when Casey Kasam was showing it love on his American Top 40 radio show. Sigh…those were certainly the daze, weren’t they? 

Music time certainly flies, kids, but it’s grooves like Deee-Lite’s effortless thunder that make it stand still for a little bit longer and simply takes us there. And if you’re a music lover who understands just where there is, you know just what the f#$k Im talking about when it comes to “Groove is in the Heart.”

Now, dance…bitch, because Lady Miss Kier and her Deee-Lite crew are waiting for you on the dance floor…of life. Go. 

Philly Mixtape is getting soooo big and you wants you to be a part of it like Ms. Katy Perry, so check these out. 

Facebook   Twitter  Tumblr Instagram 







Music Tea w/DJ Robert Drake

If there’s one entertainer in the entire tri-state area who knows more about ’80s music than your mother, your brother, your grandma and your third cousin twice removed put together, that esteemed honor would go to iconic Philly DJ Robert Drake.

Whether he’s testing your ’80s music knowledge, musically chatting it up as host and producer on WXPN, snatching up Peabody Awards, spinnin’ those cuts at his sexy Sex Dwarf soirees, there’s nothing that Mr. Drake can’t accomplish, and it’s more than abundantly clear in his three (!!) decade spanning entertainment career in Philly. 

In fact, those undeniable skills will be put to the music test when he takes opening DJ reigns for The Go-Go’s as part of their farewell tour, which makes its fabulous way to The Fillmore tonight for a show that will be just as much fun as it will be (yet another) legendary live music moment for Philly this summer. 

However, those that are either familiar with Drake’s work or are friends with him on social media (he’s got quite a few of them, kids), they know he’s got the confidence, the craft, and of course, that music collection to back it all up. 

Before Robert opens up…for his music life…for Ms. Belinda and her gaggle of Go-Go’s at The Fillmore tonight, he was gracious to take a little time out of his f#$king bonkers schedule to take a seat at Philly Mixtape’s music tea table, breaking all sorts of mugs about the city’s red-hot live music scene (seriously..we’re like, on fire right now), the summer songs he simply can’t live without and exactly what he personally does to get ready for a gig….especially this one. 

If you haven’t snatched those tickets up yet for tonight’s show (you really should), go right here, right now. 

And for much, much more local entertainment truth on Mr. Robert Drake, go right… for his official website and groove on. 

Kicking our spillage off, shout out for me five summer singles that are absolutely rockin’ your DJ world right now…Well, as one who lives squarely in RetroWorld, my summer singles are ones that celebrate the season–“The Girl From Ipanema” & “Summer of Love” by The B-52’s,Sunset People by Donna Summer,”Cruel Summer” by Bananarama and “Walkin’ On Sunshine” by Katrina and The Waves.

How do you personally prepare yourself for a gig (besides making sure you have every damn piece of equipment!), especially one of The Go-Go’s caliber?  Spinning the Rock of the 80s is what I enjoy most – whether it’s on the radio [Land Of The Lost, WXPN] at my monthly 80s dance party Sex Dwarf–celebrating our 13th Anniversary this Friday--or at a concert gig, the main difference for these events is to stay a bit broader than I do at my monthly gig or on air. The concert-goers want to hear the hits!

What does opening for The Go-Gos mean to you personally in your standout career? I’ve been lucky to have shared the bill with some of my favorite artists: The B-52’s, Gang Of Four, Psychedelic Furs, OMD, Berlin, so adding The Go-Go’s to the list is a great addition, but also a full circle as I first saw [them] way back in the summer of 1980, deep in the bowels of North Kensington section of Philly at a punk club called The Starlite Ballroom – they opened for X.

Any favorite concerts you’ve attended this year? One of my favorite concerts this year was watching the legendary soul artist Mavis Staples perform at our annual XPoNential Music Festival last month. She performed one song – Freedom Highway – a song written by her father Pops Staples for the March from Selma to Montgomery, Alabama. What a powerful, and empowering musical moment for everyone there!

Speaking of live shows, Philly has certainly been continuing in making strides in their live music A-game, but, of course, there’s always room for improvement. What is one thing you would like to see more–or maybe less–of to keep the movement nice and steady? Actually – if you got me a year ago, I’d say a balance of venue sizes and pop-up performance locations. But Philly has met that bar and surpassed it. Right now is the Renaissance Era of live music in Philadelphia … there are venues of all shapes and sizes along with free music performed outdoors in all the various corners of the community. Add to that the outdoor festivals which have matured into fun events for all – I really think we’re where we should be right now – Philly Rocks!

One last sip, what are some words of advice you would give to someone who picked up their very first pair of headphones right this very second? Before you do anything – make sure they are plugged into a quality record player – and then grab yourself some vintage, pristine albums and enjoy the bass, the mid-range and the ride! Don’t limit yourself to an Mp3 universe – you’re missing so much if you do!