Thursday, April 5, 2018

Charlotte Singer and Rapper Raheeme Will Rock the Spectrum Center Friday Night

Posted By on Thu, Apr 5, 2018 at 6:13 PM

At just 20 years old, Charlotte singer and rapper Raheeme will be rocking the Spectrum Center Friday night along with rapper Genuwine, hip-hop R&B band Guy and other '90s music luminaries during Power 98's 90's Block Party.

In early March Raheeme performed outside the Spectrum during CIAA 2018. During his impromptu showcase atop a mobile billboard truck, he caught the eye of R&B singer Tank, who taped the performance and broadcast it on his Instagram live feed. Tank, who also will be on Friday Block Party bill, wound up inviting Raheeme to open the show — inside the arena.

"Even though I've performed on the same stage as Rick Ross, YFN Lucci, Boosie and Wale, I've never performed at a venue and stage as massive as Spectrum Center," Raheeme says. "I'm ready and excited to have a good time and give the audience a great show."

Raheeme's latest release is B!tch I'm Ra!, a 5-song mixtape of freestyling over Drake, Jaden Smith, Migos and more. Earlier this year, Raheeme released the 15-song mixtape Made It, and prior to that, the collection You Were Rite. Now, Raheeme is prepping for his first official album for Charlotte's BNR Records. "By the looks of it, it might get pushed back from the projected late July release," he says. "I need this album to touch as many hearts as possible."

You may know Raheeme best from his breezy single "Where You Been," which has gotten good play on Power 98. Watch the video here...

Follow @ImRaheeme on Instagram.

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Monday, February 26, 2018

Young and in the Way Faces Sexual Assault Allegations, Breaks up

Charlotte metal band in a swirl of controversy

Posted By on Mon, Feb 26, 2018 at 7:03 PM

Accusations of sexual assault following a 2014 show in Detroit swirled around the Charlotte crust-metal band Young and in the Way on Monday, prompting the internationally known act to release a somewhat confusing statement (posted further down in this report ) on social media.

In the statement, the band — whose hijinks with pig blood forced an Asheville brewery to shut down temporarily that same year — announced that it had been dropped from its label, Deathwish Inc., and will be breaking up. Creative Loafing will continue to follow this story, posting updates as they come.

The accusations came from the DIY collective Trumbullplex. According to reports, the band apparently had been invited to stay at a promoter's house, where several women were in attendance. Trumbulplex posted this detailed account of the incidents to its Facebook page just after noon today EST:

Trigger warnings: graphic details of sexual assault

The following post is from a member of the Trumbullplex booking collective pertaining to the sexual assault carried out by the band Young and in the Way. We aren't using the term “allegations” or “accusations” as the collective member was directly involved in the situation and knows for the account to be 100% accurate and truthful.

We're hoping for this to reach the promoters of
Psycho Las Vegas and 71Grind IV rather quickly, as the band's record label has already reached out to us.

“I'm sharing this information both privately and publicly knowing full
well that any misinformation could have severe negative effects on my business and personal life, and thus am choosing to do so knowing with full confidence that all of this information is 100% accurate. Myself and the victims involved were all huge fans of the band before this event occurred, and our only motive in sharing this information is to ensure that known sexual abusers are blacklisted from the community that supports them to send a message that these actions are not tolerated.

A little over three and a half years years ago (late summer 2014), the
band Young and In The Way stayed at my house after a festival in Detroit. I was a sponsor for the event, and had also assisted in a food pop-up during the event. Several friends came over afterwards, one of them being another band that had performed. (By the time these incidents occurred, the other band was already asleep in my basement, so I am agreeing to keep them confidential, as well as the names of two of the victims and any identifying information for their own safety.)

Late into the evening, several sexual assaults occurred between members
of YAITW and three different house guests. One guest was asleep. The other was cornered in a bathroom by multiple members.

#1: victim 1 had the door to the bathroom opened up on her by their front man while she was peeing. He pulled his dick out and told her "You know you want it, come on, suck the dick of a rock star. You already said we're your favorite band." Her and her friend left immediately afterwards.

Incidents #2 and three happened sequentially.
My then partner (Victim 2) was in the bathroom herself about an hour later when three of them walked into the bathroom and immediately shut the door behind them. One of them stood in front of the door so she couldn't open it and shut the lights off and she said she immediately felt several pairs of hands trying to go both down her pants and up her shirt. She had to physically fight them off and came running into my bedroom. I was already asleep and I woke up to her curled up at the foot of my bed and sobbing. I was asleep myself at the time and didn't know what had happened, so I lifted the covers so she could fall asleep next to me and spent a half hour consoling a crying woman who couldn't even form words.

Victim #3's account has been temporarily removed as she wants to add/modify information for accuracy.

While the entire incident was being discussed in the local community
afterwards, two feel event attendees privately contacted me as well who had stated that they left the festival early because the frontman had been aggressively hitting on them to the point of pushing one of them against a wall outside the venue and trying to kiss her, and they were no longer comfortable being there.

The manner in which it was
dealt with afterwards was rather confusing. Over the course of the next year, both myself, my partner, and the third victim talked to the band members first online then over the phone on several occasions. They started off saying that they had no memory of the night whatsoever but that they weren't denying our statements and that they wanted to resolve things. Their frontman had stated that he left work early when he found out what he had done and spent he next several days in a depressed funk. We conversed several times over the phone for probably close to seven or eight hours altogether, and then things came to a grinding halt.

After a statement from other members of the band to me
that they were going to have a band meeting about their future together, the incident as a whole, and how to handle things, phone calls suddenly stopped being returned. At that point in time, our lives were both becoming incredibly hectic as I was dealing with a struggling business and my partner was in the midst of moving back to Michigan from another state, so dealing with it got put on the backburner.

The next
time it came up was when the Taake/YAITW tour was announced in fall of 2015. Both my ex and I are huge fans of Taake, and seeing the tour being plastered all over Instagram and Facebook resurfaced the entire incident. I immediately contacted Taake with the accounts of what had happened in hopes that they might reconsider who they were signing on to tour with. Taake's response was "We don't care, keep this drama off theinternet." My ex then began openly posting about the incident on every post she could find related to the tour, and the responses from both bands were to immediately delete all posts.

That's when I got a
call from YAITW's frontman for the first time in months. He told me that we needed to stop posting lies in the internet because that's not at all what happened, implying that they remembered the entire night (which completely contrasted the statement that they didn't remember the night at all once they got to my house.) People began ridiculing my ex on the internet, telling her that she was "too ugly to be raped", sending her nasty messages, et cetera. At that point it was just getting ridiculous so we dropped it again in order to prevent any further emotional scarring.

It disgusts me that bands get away with this shit
because as a touring musician myself I know how rumors can ruin a band's reputation, but these aren't rumors. This is real life shit and I'm appalled at how it was handled and I'm further appalled at how it was swept under the rug and ridiculed. We've all seen this shit happen a million times in our life, and the metal and punk community is supposed to be small and supportive enough on the DIY level to keep people like this out of the community, but unfortunately it does happen. After seeing that the band was set to play multiple festivals this year, after having been loud about it time and time again only to be ridiculed and ignored, finally we've decided that since people's call-outs in this day and age are no longer getting ignored, it was the right time to nip this problem in the bud once and for all.”

Young and in the Way posted this response to its own Facebook page about three hours later:

As a band and as individuals, we are disgusted that someone was sexually assaulted at an event that we were a part of. We applaud the victim’s courage to talk about it and we support her decision (and right) to name her aggressors. We stand by what we said when we learned about this incident - no member of our band was responsible for this crime. Let us be very clear - our response to this accusation is not an attempt to discredit the victim, we believe her, we’re sorry this happened to her, and we support her. But it was not us.

Victims’ voices can and should be amplified, and we are not sure there’s any decent way to respond to an accusation like this without accepting fault. We can’t accept fault, but we also can’t prove our innocence. That we could even be suspected of such a crime brings us to the end of the road. YAITW is no longer on Deathwish Inc and will not be playing anymore shows. There is nothing left for us to say.

Lastly, do not attack the victim. There is no room for that here.

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Wednesday, January 17, 2018

VIDEO Louis Beeler Talks About Tiny Stage Concerts

Posted By on Wed, Jan 17, 2018 at 3:53 PM

We spent two Saturday afternoons at Louis Beeler's home to watch him tape a couple of episodes of Tiny Stage Concerts, his online series spotlighting Charlotte singer-songwriters. In this video, Beeler talks about why he started the series and offers an anecdote from his years living in Austin, Texas. Watch the video, read the story and, most importantly, go check out Tiny Stage Concerts at

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Wednesday, November 8, 2017

WATCH: Everybody's Loving the Groovy New Blame the Youth Video

Posted By on Wed, Nov 8, 2017 at 6:01 PM

Yeah, OK, so we're a little late with this one: Charlotte's Blame the Youth released their first-ever video last week for the combined songs "P.O.T.K./ABACA," from their 2016 EP The Hourglass. And we're finally getting it up for you right here on the "Vibes" blog.

Let's see now: What can we Blame the Youth for? We can blame them for making great new music. We can blame them for shaking up the Charlotte scene. Heck, we can blame them for those kick-ass election results last night that put so many young people on city council. Best of all, we can blame them for this new clip.

Blame the Youth, featured on the cover CL's August 23 Pride issue as well as a recent episode of our "Local Vibes" podcast, not only mesmerize on stage, they do good camera, too. Now, y'all enjoy this, hear?

Directed by Alexander, this video is A Grandiloquent Devise/RedBear Spirit Production. It was filmed at Camp North End in Charlotte. Listen to The Hourglass EP below or at Spotify or Pandora, then go purchase it at Bandcamp, Apple Music, Google Play, or Beats Music.

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Friday, October 27, 2017

VIDEO PREMIERE: Charlotte's Th3 Higher Share "Lessons" in Their New #1SongAWeekChallenge

Posted By on Fri, Oct 27, 2017 at 12:40 PM

Charlotte rap duo Th3 Higher have released a video centering on the life lessons the two have learned, not just as musicians, but as friends and fellow human beings, during their time together honing their craft from their teens to early adulthood. Produced by Shane Hush, the video for "Lessons" — which begins with the words "The woke must free the sleep" and "The conscious must enlighten" —  is part of the group's #1SongAWeekChallenge, in which they have released one song on Soundcloud each week for the past six weeks, and are currently at Song No. 11. "Lessons" was the first in the Soundcloud challenge, and this clip is the first video the group has released for the series.
"This song is a culmination of everything that we've learned over the years," says Th3 Higher's Tizzy Farragami, "and the video is the first of many [to come]. It symbolizes the time and effort we've put into developing our craft. We feel as though we've put in the hours, and now it's time to start harvesting the fruits of our labor."

Shot at a secret wooded area of Charlotte by @AntxShotit, and directed by @AntxShotit and Buddha the Shoota, the setting plays up the duo's nature-based worldview. In it, Tizzy wears an ankh — the ancient Egyptian symbol for life — around his neck as he and his cohort Kizzy slash their way through the woods with a sword.

"We know our time is coming and with this video we plan to take advantage of every resource in our network to reach our goals," Tizzy says. "Once we hit 50K [views], Part 2 comes."

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Monday, October 9, 2017

VIDEO: SunQueen Kelcey Says Recent Unrest is Why Now is the Right Time for a Black Alternative Music Festival in Charlotte

Posted By on Mon, Oct 9, 2017 at 8:00 AM

In the lead-up to the Black Alternative Rock Festival, or BLA/ALT, at Camp North End on Oct. 21, Creative Loafing has asked some of the artists to talk about why they're playing the event and what it means to them. Today, Greensboro-based SunQueen Kelcey, the front woman of SunQueen Kelcey and the Soular Flares, tells why she believes Charlotte is the right city for North Carolina's first black alternative music festival.

But first, watch Kelcey perform a solo version of her song "Thick Girls Do It Better."

Creative Loafing: Why do you think Bla/Alt is so important right here and right now?
This is the first festival in Charlotte created by a local black alternative musician just for the black arts and music scene. It will show the true variety of talent in the black community, making sure that people know that you cannot put black culture in one box. Black culture spans across many avenues including the social. political, musical, scientific and artistic realms.

Why are you and the Soular Flares playing it?
We are performing to be a part of such a groundbreaking movement. We are based in Greensboro, but we love the Charlotte music Scene. It's always so welcoming and feels like home to us. Given the recent unfortunate events that have occurred in Charlotte, it is everyone's duty to participate in something that uplifts and empowers the people of marginalized and oppressed communities in any way we can.

What are your hopes for the festival?
We want it to extinguish and overcome the negative stereotypes of what society deems as "black culture." In turn, this will provide a safe space for anyone to attend the festival for free and for black/POC artists and business owners to showcase their art, and network and sell their products to the public.

Hit up SunQueen on Instagram and Twitter (@sunqueenkelcey) and Facebook (SunQueen Kelcey).

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Sunday, October 8, 2017

VIDEO: Chócala Brings a Latin Tinge to Charlotte's BLA/ALT Black Alternative Rock Fest on Oct. 21

Posted By on Sun, Oct 8, 2017 at 9:00 AM

In the lead-up to the Black Alternative Rock Festival, or BLA/ALT, at Camp North End on Oct. 21, Creative Loafing has asked some of the artists to talk about why they're playing the event and what it means to them. Today, Chócala talks about the importance of bringing a Latin tinge to the black alternative rock fest in Charlotte.

But first, watch this live clip of Chócala performing "Rompecabezas."

"We're playing the festival because we believe in the organizers, artists and the values that BLA/ALT stands for," singer Liza Ortiz says. "If we hadn't been asked to join, we would have been attending and supporting anyways. The fact that we're performing is icing on the cake for us. It's also an honor for us to represent the Alt.Latino music genre."

To Chócala, whose members are also involved in expanding the Charlotte audience for Latino musical fusions, BLA/ALT represents the city's changing demographics in a way that directly combats bigotry in the larger world of divisive politics. "We think BLA/ALT is important because it enriches Charlotte's cultural landscape by showcasing everything this city's PoC artists and bands have to offer," Ortiz says. "We're excited because we're seeing independent artists and creators of several different cultures coming together and supporting each other in the music and arts community as a whole in Charlotte, which is invaluable given the current political climate. BLA/ALT is a culmination of all the growth, support and positive energy that LeAnna [Eden, BLA/ALT's organizer] has been able to focus into an entire festival. We think it's amazing."

Like other artists performing at the festival Ortiz says she hopes this will be the first of many BLA/ALT festivals to come over the next several years. "We want to see it grow," Ortiz says. "It would be fantastic to see events like this happen around the state and region. Afropunk only happens in New York and Atlanta, and there is a whole coast of states with independent black and other PoC musicians and artists that deserve being put on blast."

Follow Chócala — which also includes Ortiz's brother Claudio, as well as Michael Anderson and Davey Blackburn on both Instagram and Facebook: @chocalamusic

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Saturday, October 7, 2017

VIDEO PREMIERE: Cuzco Releases New Video Exclusively at 'CL' Vibes

Posted By on Sat, Oct 7, 2017 at 5:59 PM

Just before the final song of Cuzco's set Friday night at Snug Harbor, the band did what it had announced it would do: played the brand-new video for its song "Those Are Z's," from the band's 5-song EP A Medicine for Melancholy, released earlier this year. And just as Creative Loafing promised we'd do earlier this week, we're premiering the video exclusively here on the Vibes blog.

The video — directed by Mark Borja, Jake Rothwell and Tori Silinski — is a gentle and serene meditation on nature, melancholy and love set to Will Schoonmaker and Arman Serdarevic's delicate and precise guitar interplay, which often conjures the early-1980s progressive work of King Crimson guitarist Robert Fripp. As the musical and visual narrative unfolds, a love story emerges, and Cuzco's unconventional shifts in tempo follow the story's sometimes jarring twists and turns.

But the transitions flow smoothly and naturally, thanks to the spare yet complex playing of Cuzco's rhythm section, drummer Dylan Robbins and bassist Matt McConomy. And then there are sweet, aching brush strokes of saxophone, from sax player Kevin Washburn, driving home the sense of melancholy at the heart of Cuzco's sound.

Books and balloons serve as signposts in the video's narrative — and as part of the band's performance on stage at Snug Harbor Friday night.

"The atmosphere [at the show] was awesome —  we decked the place in purple balloons," Schoonmaker says. "Before our last song we premiered the video and everyone seemed to love it. It was a magical night and playing Snug is always a medicine to our melancholy."

Washburn, Schoonmaker and Serdarevic get intense at Snug Harbor on Friday. (Photo by Savannah Woodell)
  • Washburn, Schoonmaker and Serdarevic get intense at Snug Harbor on Friday. (Photo by Savannah Woodell)

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VIDEO: Favelas Talk About the Importance of a Black Alternative Rock Fest in Charlotte

Posted By on Sat, Oct 7, 2017 at 9:00 AM

In the lead-up to the Black Alternative Rock Festival, or BLA/ALT, at Camp North End on Oct. 21, Creative Loafing has asked some of the artists to talk about why they're playing the event and what it means to them. Today, Favelas tell us why a black alternative rock fest in Charlotte is essential.

But first, watch this clip of Favelas doing their song "Weedman."

"BLA/ALT is important to Favelas because we know the importance of making sure that everyone’s voice is heard," the band says.

"It’s imperative that artists get to properly express themselves in an environment like the one that’s been created here, especially for artists of color. We’re more than hopeful that this is the start of something revolutionary in our hometown."

Don't miss Favelas at BLA/ALT on Oct. 21. You can connect with the band on Instagram (@favelasoffical) or Facebook (Favelas Band).

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Thursday, October 5, 2017

AUDIO: Lofidels' Lenny Muckle Tells Why He Signed Up For Charlotte's "Unprecedented" Oct. 21 BLA/ALT Black Alternative Rock Fest

Posted By on Thu, Oct 5, 2017 at 9:00 AM

In the lead-up to the Black Alternative Rock Festival, or BLA/ALT, at Camp North End on Oct. 21, Creative Loafing has asked some of the artists to talk about why they're playing the event and what it means to them. Today, Lenny Muckle, the sole member of the punk/art project Lofidels, talks about what a black alternative rock fest in Charlotte means to him.

But first, listen to the terrific track "A Staccato Kid, A Missing Man," from Lofidels' 2016 album Glass Canon.

"I feel that the BLA/ALT Music Festival will be a place where artists of color will be able to shine without having to conform to, ironically, norms and requirements tacitly imposed on them for falling within the framework of being independent artists," Muckle says.

"I'm playing BLA/ALT because I want to be part of this new, local, unprecedented event," he says. "The lifting up of typically overlooked work is something we unarguably need more of. It'll be exciting to be part of [the festival] as an artist and as a fan, because the line-up is so wildly varied. My hope is that it's all a bit overwhelming."

What's more, Muckle adds, "I hope that as BLA/ALT grows, year after year, the festival manages to not only awe, but inspire — friends and strangers, former and would-be artists could all feel motivated by the uniqueness of the artists involved with the festival.

"My name is Lenny Muckle, sole member of the project called Lofidels, and I'll be performing at Bla/Alt."

And we'll be there watching Lenny Muckle, as well as following him on Bandcamp ( and Instagram (@lofidels).

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