My hate to love relationship with EDM

Music

“It gives me a headache.”

That was my first impression of EDM. It just sounded like uncorrelated banging bass beats. I didn’t get it. But it’s so popular — all the festivals, especially. I wanted to understand.

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In LA there are tons of concerts constantly going on, so my friend — a self-professed EDM junkie — dragged me to see Carnage last September. Before this, I had never heard of Carnage and I hated EDM. But the openers started mixing in Drake and Kanye, so I bobbed to the beats. When Carnage came on, the crowd went WILD, and I was swept up in the madness — as simple as that.

The experience of having everyone around me so invested in the sound engulfing us had me sold. After that concert, I wanted more. I was down with this.

Next up, we went to see the Chainsmokers. The only thing I knew about them prior to this was that they did the “Selfie Song” (I’ve never listened to that song all the way through, even to this day). That same friend, though, sent me this song:

DONE. IT IS OVER. I LOVE THIS. The concert was dope. Now I’m addicted.

Although, I feel like it’s only acceptable to be into EDM in your 20s and maybe early 30s (correct me if I’m wrong). I’ll enjoy it while it lasts. If anyone knows any cool EDM spots in NYC, let me know.

Also, read this awesome post by Rembert Browne: “EDM is Dead. EDM Will Live Forever; One Man’s Dance Floor Confession.”

Sorry I Couldn’t Concentrate During Church Worship This Morning

Life, Sports

Hillsong LA

A tall guy in a backwards snapback snuck into the Belasco Theatre from the left of the stage in the middle of the opening worship songs during the 11 a.m. Hillsong LA service. He was non-disruptive, no one noticed.  But I did. This guy was towering over the two other men that walked in with him.

Then, I caught a side profile of him, and he really looked like Kevin Durant — as in 2014 NBA MVP Kevin Durant. I kept glancing over to the front row where he stood, each song passed and I tried to catch a better look.

Hillsong is similar to most Christian churches in that there is a point in the beginning where you’re urged to introduce yourself to those around you. Finally, the mysterious tall guy turned around, and surely it was Durant. While no one around me seemed to realize the great baller standing smack dab in the middle of the front row, I could recognize that face from a mile away. He left in the middle of the closing worship songs, the same way he entered. He swiftly and quietly hugged and fist bumped a few guys as he passed while exiting.

I’m guessing he was there to support the guest pastor from the New York City Hillsong, Carl Lentz. The two have photos together on both of their Instagram accounts. In the following snapshot, KD writes, “Shoutout my bruv @carllentz ! Happy birthday, love u man!”

And here’s one of the two catching some breakfast together with KD smiling.

The first reaction you may have to those photos is that this pastor is working for the wrong reasons, and that there is no way he’s a real pastor. Anderson Cooper touched on those skeptical views in a segment he did for Anderson Cooper 360º called, “Inside Hillsong’s ‘hipster’ church.” 

I challenge you to think otherwise. The way I see it, Lentz hanging out with the likes of Durant, Carmelo Anthony, Tyson Chandler and Landry Fields (I’m sure there are more athletes/actors/etc.) demonstrates that these big names are human. They need spiritual guidance as well.

To those who say that flashy pastors and concert-like worship sessions shouldn’t count as “church,” I ask, “Why not?” Matthew 18:20 says that God is present where two or three gather in his name. If the pastor happens to be tatted up, an NBA All-Star happens to drop in, the service happens to be held in a theater, that’s all circumstance. The truth lies in the motives, as it does in everything in life.

Anyway, Lentz gave an incredible message about Psalm 23 titled “Like it or not,” I caught a glimpse of Durant. I’m overly excited for the next NBA season, despite the fact that the 2014 NBA Draft hasn’t even happened yet. And I highly recommend Hillsong if you’re interested in checking out a church.

 

 

Let the trash talk begin

Sports

Nash and Sacre

I know, I know. It’s the preseason. Only 21 games that don’t really matter have happened. I told myself I wouldn’t get too excited.

But then I turned on the tail end of the Brooklyn-Wizards game yesterday. And then Glen Rice Jr. had a dunk at the buzzer to send the game into OT. After that I watched the Lakers take on the Nuggets, and barely recognized their roster (I’m all caught up now).

So now I’ll dedicate my life to the NBA, once again, as I do every year come fall. The battle between game times and homework assignments begins, usually resulting in late nights; sometimes from busting out papers or cramming for tests, other times they’re from being too pumped up off a close game to sleep. Heat-Spurs Game 6, I was buzzing well past 2 a.m.

From the two preseason games I’ve seen thus far, here’s my quick take in seven sentences:

The Lakers show promise. I’m sad Metta is gone. Purple and yellow has given Nick Young superpowers. Xavier has a cool name pronunciation. Sacre has cool tattoos. Chris Kaman defied my expectations. Jason Kidd looks weird as the head honcho in a suit.

As far as I’m concerned, the NBA season is officially underway.

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