10 Songs You Should Hear – Part II

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I had a lot of fun writing the first installment of 10 Songs You Should Hear, so I wanted to write a follow up – and here it is, in no particular order, 10 more songs out of Long Island you should listen to:


1. Quiet Storm: 24

I heard of Quiet Storm through my buddy Justin at Revolution Athletics and quickly became a fan after listening to a bunch of his tracks on Reverbnation. QS reps Suffolk County and dropped his debit album Bad Decisions in July of 2013 – it’s encouraging to see another talented rapper coming out of LI, and especially great to have him repping Suffolk. Storm’s got a slew of tight music videos as well, be sure to check him out on YouTube and download Bad Decisions on Audiomack. Stand out song for me is 24 – check out the video for it here.


2. Ant Matos ft Reek Da Villian: Money Over EverythingAnt-Matos-2

Psyched about this collab – two of LI’s best, Ant Matos and Reek Da Villian come together and deliver Money Over Everything, the first single off Ant’s upcoming mixtape. Reek is an established rapper out of Roosevelt – a Busta Rhymes protégé signed to Flipmode Squad at 19, he’s performed and Recorded with the likes of Busta, The Game, Tre Beatz and more. Reek recently left Busta’s label and signed with Birdman’s sub-label Rich Gang. This is an impressive start to Ant’s sophomore effort – looking forward to what else homeboy’s got in store.


3. Warden and Fame: Puff Puff Passwarden-fame

Warden and Fame is a six-piece Hip-Hop Reggae Rock band based out of Bay Shore. I’ve seen these guys perform multiple times and had the pleasure of working with them recently on a little collab project. They’ve got plans to release a full-length album in 2015 and just released their first official single Puff Puff Pass, which they’ll be shooting a video for as well. Download the single on iTunes and stay tuned for the music video.


4. The RBC: 5th Base

I got to see The RBC play Beerfields Music Festival in 2013 just after the release of their debut album When Is Now. Rick Eberle told me I needed to check them out earlier that year and I’m glad he did – they’re a great reggae band, but with a strong punk rock influence that comes out in a lot of their music, which produces a really unique and totally awesome result. I believe they’re currently tracking for their follow-up album, but no word on when that’s coming out yet. My favorite track on When Is Now is a song called 5th Base, give it a listen.


5. Oogee Wawa & Sun-Dried Vibes: Late Night Oogee-Sundried

Oogee Wawa and Sun-Dried Vibes collaborated on a sweet party anthem which they released over summer called Late Night – dropping a video for it on YouTube in August. Sun-Dried is based out of Rock Hill, SC – they we’re up playing a bunch of shows with Oogee here on Long Island over the Summer which is when Late Night was recorded. I got to catch one of their shows at Dublin Deck in May – check out the photos here.


 6. Number F: CadiaCatyclismnumber-f

Number F is a very new band based out of Lindenhurst. They released their first (and currently their only) song CadiaCatyclism in December of 2013. I saw them perform at the Nonstop Summer Party this past August and got a chance to hear some of their new material in the works and I’m looking forward to some future releases – for now, give CadiaCatyclism a listen.


7. Dr. Baby: Spit Take

Members of Lost Kindgoms and Code Anchor come together to form the hard-hitting rock group Dr. Baby. If you were a fan of Code Anchor, you’ll love this new project – it’s got the same tight progressive rock sound with a bit more of a punk vibe. They dropped a four song demo in November, my favorite of the four is Spit Take, have a listen.


 8. John Von Braunsberg: The Haunting Chapter VJohn-Von-Braunsberg

Former Whiskey Hotel guitarist John Von Braunsberg has been working on a pretty sweet little side project called The Haunting – a series of heavy, electric guitar driven instrumentals that he records in his home studio. JVB recently joined established post-hardcore band A Crowd Like You (another LI band worth checking out) – looking forward to keeping an eye on what he’ll be up to in 2015.


9. Frank Bones: Ambulance

I saw Frank Laudicina (aka Frank Bones) perform an acoustic set opening for Oogee Wawa last February and picked up his seven track EP Just Enough To Be Dangerous which had just been released. A really nice effort overall, with the standout track for me being Ambulance.


10. Dune Local: No MoreDuneLocal

Dune Local is a hybrid rock, blues, reggae and hip-hop band out of Hampton Bays – they dropped their debut self-titled seven track album this past May. I got to see them play over the Summer – they opened their set with a Rage Against the Machine cover of Bulls On Parade, so naturally I fell in love with them immediately. They just released a music video for “No More” – a track off of their debut, which also happens to be my favorite.


And that’s the list for now – thanks for reading, be sure to visit stayloose.net and keep up with us on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter.

– Chris

New Oogee Wawa Logo Design

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I just wrapped up another project for Oogee Wawa – the guys wanted a new logo design for a shirt they could add to their merch collection for this Summer. I’ve designed for Oogee a few times previously – one of my favorites is the Tiki design I drew up for them last year – they have a really fun brand to work with.

I sketched a few ideas in my notebook to start:

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I like to keep my sketches pretty simple a lot of the time and then get into more detail in Illustrator. The band was looking for an urban graffiti feel with the lettering, and it also needed to work with their surf/reggae vibe. Although I liked the sketch on the top right, it didn’t really fit what they were looking for so I moved forward with one of the rough sketches on the left side, and the sketch on the bottom right.

The sketch from the bottom right turned out pretty nice, and the guys were happy with it. As you can see there are a bunch of different color combinations/options and it can also work as a one-color illustration:

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The second illustration came out a bit better – they both work, but this one’s cleaner and easier to read:

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Same as the first illustration, we can play around with different color combinations, or just leave it as a simple one-color graphic.

In the end, the band agreed and went with the second version and we could always go back and revisit the first option down the road – I’d probably make a few adjustments to clean it up and make it easier to read. I think they both work well with the band’s vibe.

I think they’ll get some good use out of it and it was a fun project to work on. I’ll be sure to share pics of the shirts once they’re printed up – thanks for reading and #stayloose,

– Chris