When shopping for shoes, we're typically attracted by appearance and, of course, price point. Human rights and sustainability don't enter the equation as much as they should. But that can change thanks to Nicora Johns, a spankin' new footwear company with both environmental and labor considerations driving its business. As a longtime cobbling connoisseur, 32-year-old founder Stephanie Fryslie decided to take matters into her own hands. Literally. Fryslie works alongside fellow shoemakers to create handcrafted footwear for her L.A.-based brand. Read More
I've had my share of intimate rendezvous with a not-to-be-named musician or two, but I didn't realize the intricacies of dating a rock star until I was actually in a committed relationship with one. The rock star relationship lifestyle ain't no walk in the park. Just ask the ladies of Rock of Love. Or don't... 1. They're not as cool as they seem.In fact, if you stripped away all their stage-cred and hype, they'd just be talented guitar nerds. And if you're actually in love with one, you adore them because they're not nearly as cool as people think they are. 2. Read More
The combination of electronic music and pop is a delicate one, carefully mastered by U.K. duo AlunaGeorge on their debut studio album, Body Music (out now on Vagrant). The partnership, comprised of Aluna Francis and George Reid, couples smooth vocals with diversely slick production that hardly errs on the side of cheesy, despite the fact that most of their songs are playful love ballads. As acts like Quadron and Jessie Ware make their way Stateside, they’re opening doors for groups like AlunaGeorge to make an equal (if not greater) impact combining soul and synth in harmony. Read More
   From Prince to Bob Dylan to Ray Charles, Mavis Staples has made music with a diverse array of great songwriters over the course of her 53-year career. She continues this tradition on One True Vine, her second collaboration with Wilco frontman Jeff Tweedy. The record is mix of covers and new songs, all performed with minimal instrumentation. Read More
She’s 27, she’s Jewish, and she wears Gucci: she’s Mindy Budgor and she’s the first female Maasai warrior in recorded history. For that reason alone, it’s important to read Warrior Princess, but that’s not the only reason. It’s also surprisingly funny; you will LOL a lot, probably very hard. Budgor hails from Chicago and, out of a hazy sense of purpose, was applying for a master’s in business when she heard the howling call of the Maasai, a semi-nomadic people in Kenya. Read More
Pop star Janelle Monáe is at once retro and futuristic, disarmingly down-to-earth and freakishly abstract. Here, she reveals the strategy behind her trendsetting look, the origins of her “divinely inspired” alter ego, and what it’s like to hang out with the president Janelle Monáe mayhave been born to sing, dance, and write some of the most creative pop albums ever to hit an iPod, but the world wouldn’t have known about her if it weren’t for the video for “Tightrope. Read More
  She's a multimedia artist, a musician, a vocalist, a staunch feminist, and a tireless activist. And Yoko Ono shows no signs of slowing down. Quite the opposite. Read More
[On June 30th], Ohio's budget was signed into law by Governor John Kasich. Ohio now has some of the strictest regulations on abortion access in the nation. Although Planned Parenthood will be losing over 1.4 million dollars in funding, the budget allows continued support for "Crisis Pregnancy Centers," which we've worked extensively to debunk and inform the public about. CPCs are dangerous and do not provide real, comprehensive support for women seeking out family planning resources, advice, or assistance. This personal story illustrates the importance of access to places which do. Read More
If you like to dance, Sónar is the perfect place for you to nod your head till it falls off. Also known as the Sónar Festival for Advanced Music and New Media Art, the electronic-dance fest is one of the most exciting music events in Barcelona. This June 13th-16th, Sónar celebrated its 20th birthday and it was no less than a complete success. Read More
They say that behind every great man, there's a great woman. And while that quote doesn't exactly sit well with me, it's definitely true in the case of the women profiled in the new documentary Twenty Feet From Stardom. The film chronicles some of the most frequently heard women in the music industry, though there's a solid chance you don't know their names or have ever seen their faces. Director Morgan Neville profiles the backup singers who've enhanced the work of countless major artists in the biz: the Rolling Stones, Stevie Wonder, David Bowie, and Bruce Springsteen. Read More