Thursday, August 26, 2010

Pheaturing Alumni Joy Ike

Hello, welcome to the Phile, where we had the most phantastic summer ever. August is nearing the end, and you know what that means. Summer is over and you're still the best phans I could ever have. This is also the last entry for Alumni Month but there's still two more Alumni's lined up for the next few weeks. More on that later. So, how are you? Most kids in Florida went back to school this week. Unless you are Logan and you just went to the living room. Home School is the way to be. I told my cousins that 70% of kids in America are home schooled. If that was the case real schools would be closing down. What I meant was 17%, but I still think that is way too much. Anyway, Logan has the coolest and prettiest teacher ever! It seems New York City has a problem with bedbugs. When I checked into a hotel there a few weeks ago, I wore a flea collar so I was okay. Miss Mexico is the new Miss Universe, and today begins a grueling year of waving. President Obama went on vacation. This was his sixth vacation. He’ll have plenty of time for vacation when his one term is up. Osama bin Laden’s personal chef was arrested. His famous dish is Linguini al-Qaida. Have you heard there’s already a movie in the works about the egg recall. It’s called Eat, Pray, Vomit. Lindsay Lohan will supposedly get a million dollars for her first interview after prison. I need to start driving drunk into houses. I tried to get her on the Phile by offering her Soarin' Fast Pass tickets. A new poll found that 1 in 5 Americans believe President Obama is a Muslim. Remember during the campaign, when he was criticized for belonging to Reverend Wright’s church? What happened to that? So, last week I saw The Expendables which had pretty every action hero you can think of old and new. Take a look at this one cameo that was very timely.

Crazy, eh? Check out his new inspirational poster that made me laugh so much I almost shit in my pants.

Rogue CIA agent Eric Roberts muscles his way into a South American dictatorship to control the drug trade, which makes Bruce Willis (one scene, three minutes max, with about 60 seconds of that cameo devoted to sharing the screen with the Governor of California) hire Sly and his crew of professional snarling people to go in and make things explosion-y. They do quite a bit of this. There's nothing meta going on here. It's not an homage. It's simply a generic '80s action movie featuring several '80s action heroes, one former wrestler, one Jet Li, one ultimate fighter and the guy from "Everybody Hates Chris". It's got plenty of the stuff you want from this kind of movie... lots of shooting and stabbing and kicking and punching and exploding. And that's fine. It's enough. I'll even say there are isolated moments of exuberantly satisfying nasty violence. It's just not making me want to run around and destroy stuff right now. Statham is the star of this thing. It's technically an ensemble but in reality it's his movie. He's the baddest if not the biggest (although, if you're watching closely, the knives he's so expertly throwing into necks and guts get larger and larger as the film rolls on, which of course equals penis, don't pretend it doesn't) and he's the only one who can act. Stallone, with his highly unusual current face, is so busy making googly eyes at Statham and nursing a man-crush that he forgets that the goal of this movie is MORE KILLING. The problem with Jet Li, also the problem with Mickey Rourke is that there isn't enough of either of them. Li is third billed and used about as much as Randy Couture, which is not too much at all. And when he gets all martial-artsy on bad guys the movie forgets to stop waving the camera around long enough for him to show off what he does best. Meanwhile all Mickey Rourke does is sit around a tattoo parlor/motorcycle garage ad-libbing and wearing a really weird cowboy hat you know he brought with him from his house. From 1 to 10 I give it a 7 and would only rent it if there's a commentary on it.

Okay, today's Alumni guest was last on the Phile September 14th last year. She recently has a new album called "Rumors" that is really, really good and is available to download on iTunes. Tomorrow she'll be playing at Eastern University in St. Davids, PA. Please welcome to the Phile, the lovely and talented... Joy Ike.

Me: Hello, Joy, welcome back to the Phile for Alumni Month. It's a JOY to have you here. How are you? I think I started off with a corny joke using your name last time you were here.

Joy: I’m just peachy, Jay.

Me: Did you get good feedback last time you were on the Phile?

Joy: Unfortunately its hard to tell how people are finding out about my music… but I’m sure people read the last interview on your site.

Me: A lot has happened since you were last here, right? Are you still based in PA?

Joy: Yep, still in Pittsburgh, PA but I’m traveling a lot these days. Mostly through PA, DC, Philly, NYC and the surrounding areas.

You won the Pittsburgh City Paper's Best Solo Artist two years in a row, is that right? Do you get anything cool when you win?

Joy: No, you actually get a cheesy plaque and your name in the paper… but it’s a good resume booster which is primarily what I use it for.

Me: You play a lot of shows it seems, and you've opened for many national acts. Who have you opened for that you still can't believe you opened for that person?

Joy: Well, a few weeks ago I got to play Lilith Fair and share an event with Sara MacLachlan (did I spell that right), Sara Bareilles, Missy Higgins, Jill Hennesey, and Butterfly Boucher. But realistically, only Jill and Butterfly were directly on my stage. But it was cool to meet all the aforementioned ladies, and also be on a Q&A panel with them!

Me: I know you're a fan of Brooke Waggoner... she'll be on the Phile in September, Joy. That's cool, right?

Joy: Yes. Very!

Me: It's coo, you played Lilith Fair. You did mention to the other Fair performer's about being on the Phile, right?

Joy: Wink, wink. I sure did!

Me: Okay, let's talk about your new album. Well done on getting your fans to fund it. How did that happen?

Joy: Well, I knew I didn’t have a money and thought I’d take a chance in asking my fans. I was afraid it wouldn’t work out b/c the economy has sortagone to the crapper. But, people were really so excited to be a part of the project, get their names in the liner notes, and get wonderful incentives like advanced copies of the CD, “I Like Ike” t-shirts, a house show in their living room, a custom made song… etc. It was a really fun campaign that I hope to do again for my next album.

Me: If I tried to get my fans to fund anything I would maybe end up with just enough money to buy a cup of Starbuck's coffee. You must have a lot of cool and die-hard fans. That has to make you feel good, right, Joy?

Joy: It really does. I’ve come to realize that music doesn’t carry much weight if not for the fans who listen. This is why I’d rather do an intimate show with 10 solid listeners than a packed bar with 100 people. At small show I really have a chance to interact with people, spend quality time with folks and leave with solid fans who understand my songs (and the stories behind them) and will likely pass it on to their friends.

Me: The album is called "Rumors". How did that title come about, and are you a Fleetwood Mac fan?

Joy: No, the album actually doesn’t have anything to do with FM. I actually never listened to them growing up. The album is all about Rumors – like the ones school girls pass around even though they’re completely untrue. The CD is about fishing through rumors/myths/false information to discover truth. It’s a running theme through the album and its also the title of one of the song. I was fairly certain I had to name the album "Rumors".

Me: Did you write all the songs on it?

Joy: Yes, indeedy!

Me: By the way, I purchased the album off iTunes, Joy. It's your third album, right? How does "Rumors" compare with the other two?

Joy: The first one (the ep), we can’t speak of. Its from my beginner days and it will hopefully stay in the archives forever. *chuckle* "Good Morning", my first full-length album came out in 2008. This album is important because it marked the true starting point of my music career – an era where I quit my job, jumped fully into music, and started fresh (hence the title). At the same time, "Good Morning" is a young album. It is not well developed. "Rumors" is my baby. There are already things on it that I would change, but all in all, I am so very proud of it. It’s a heartfelt, honest, mature sound that reflects my live performance and I hope people like it more than "Good Morning".

Me: Any chance you'll be releasing a live album?

Joy: Probably one day.

Me: I saw a bunch of clip of you on YouTube, Joy. Is there any chance we'll be able to see you on "The View", or any other TV show performing soon?

Joy: God willing, Jay.

Me: By the way, you have so many websites, Joy. Facebook, Myspace, Twitter, and more. Does that help get your name out?

Joy: Yes, they all help immensely.

Me: Joy, thanks again for coming back on the Phile. Go ahead and plug whatever you want and I hope to see you on the Phile soon again, and hopefully on tour. All the best and continued success.

Joy: For all tour dates, visit See below for my other sites:,,,,

That's about it for this entry and the most phantastic Summer ever. If I am still doing the Phile next Summer we'll have another most phantastic Summer ever. Also, that's about it for Alumni Month, but not for Alumni's. Next Thursday Alumni Gabrielle Louise will be here, then on the following Thursday it's Alumni Ernie Halter, both who have new albums out. And then in three weeks it's Brooke Waggoner! Thanks to Joy for doing a great interview again. I will have her back when her next album comes out and thanks to Logan for letting me use his computer again. He is busy downstairs right now doing math. Until next week, spread the word, not the turd, don't let snakes and alligators bite you. Bye, love you, bye.

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