Sunday, February 12, 2017

Pheaturing Spencer Anthony

Hey, kids, welcome to the Phile for a Sunday. What's up? Let's start with a funny story sorta about Trump...
The fact that Trump cannot stop himself from hate-watching Alec Baldwin's impression of him on "SNL" is probably a sign that it's a great impression. In fact, it might be too good an impression. Because on Friday, a newspaper in the Dominican Republic, "El Nacional," accidentally used a picture of Baldwin as Trump instead of the actual Donald Trump, Buzzfeed reports.

Oops! The article was a serious piece about U.S. relations with Israel, but this mistake made it hard for people to react with anything but giggles. In January, a Scottish newspaper described Trump's inauguration as if it were an episode of the "Twilight Zone" in its TV Guide section. Not sure what is funnier, that intentional gag or this honest mistake, but at least the world hasn't turned its back on America entirely. That being said, there's never been a better time to pretend you're Canadian while abroad.
The spectrum of online challenges ranges from inane to entertaining to baffling to dumb to dangerous. The mannequin challenge was kind of fun. The no hands challenge shattered a lot of phone screens. The duct tape challenge put a kid in the hospital. The #KylieJennerLipChallenge made everyone lose faith in today's youth. The ice and salt challenge? Not much to say about it except DEAR GOD, WHY. The ice and salt challenge is a social media trend in which teens pour salt on their skin and then hold ice cubes on the salt, which creates a burning sensation. Teens try to see how long they can withstand the burning feeling, which is caused by a chemical reaction between the salt and the ice that produces extreme cold temperatures and can result in frostbite, open wounds, and extremely dangerous infections. Teens post photos of their wounds as part of the challenge. Scarring and skin discoloration can be permanent. The challenge originated in America (USA! USA!) in 2013, but appears to have migrated abroad as British police departments have issued warnings to parents about the danger of the trend. One boy in Swansea sustained such a horrific burn that doctors considered giving him skin grafts. It's unclear how many teens are actually taking part in the challenge, but let's hope this trend doesn't go viral anytime soon. Ideally teens will pioneer a new social media trend called the "keep your body safe from physical harm until you reach maturity challenge," but unfortunately, I wouldn't bet on it.
Although she lost to Donald Trump in the general election, Hillary Clinton just proved that she still can take down the president with a single tweet. On Thursday, the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals voted unanimously against reinstating Trump's travel ban that withheld people from seven Muslim-majority countries from entering the United States. The decision led to Trump tweeting out this all-caps threat that sounds more like something a super villain would say than a U.S. president.

Uh, no one tell President Trump that the 9th U.S. Circuit is court. Anyway, Hillary Clinton responded to Trump's tantrum with a simple, glorious subtweet.

Of course, Clinton is referring to the unanimous decision of all three judges not to reinstate Trump's unconstitutional ban, and the three little characters spoke volumes. Damn, there hasn't been an HRC clap back tweet this iconic since "delete your account."
At least two New England Patriots players are vowing not to go to the White House, as is customary, following their Super Bowl win. Both Martellus Bennett and Devin McCourty plan to skip the festivities, because they don't like President Trump. Martellus Bennett, the Patriots' tight end, has said in the past that he "[doesn't] support the guy in the [White House]," so it's no surprise that he won't go after the Super Bowl win. Right after the game last Sunday, Bennett told the "Dallas Morning News," "It is what it is. People know how I feel about it." The Patriot's defensive back, Devin McCourty, doesn't want to go either, telling "Time" on Monday (via text message), "I'm not going to the White House. Basic reason for me is I don't feel accepted in the White House. With the president having so many strong opinions and prejudices I believe certain people might feel accepted there while others won't." Not all the Patriots feel this way about President Trump, though... owner Robert Kraft, head coach Bill Belichick, and quarterback Tom Brady are all good friends with Trump. This isn't Martellus Bennett or Devin McCourty's first time at the political rodeo. Both of the men expressed solidarity with Colin Kaepernick, the San Francisco 49er who protested police brutality against black people by kneeling instead of standing during the National Anthem. In a match up between the 49ers and the Patriots, both Bennett and McCourty raised their fists to show support during the song.
Actor Shia LaBeouf had planned on keeping his #HeWillNotDivideUs protest/art installation going for the full four years of Donald Trump's presidency. Unfortunately, the Museum of the Moving Image in New York where the protest was taking place decided to shut off the 24/7 web camera that was broadcasting Shia LaBeouf's protest. Too bad, Shia... almost made it! Shia LaBeouf started the protest on Inauguration Day. The decision to turn off the camera came after the museum called the spot a "flashpoint for violence," according to TMZ. LaBeouf himself was arrested on January 25th after he got into a physical fight with a Trump supporter who showed up to protest his protest. So, as far as we know, Shia Labeouf may still be protesting/arting, it's just not being broadcast. If you go to LaBeouf's website, this is what you'll see...

Shia LaBeouf's revolution will not be televised.
Okay, so, in the last entry on Thursday I showed a very funny upside pic of Trump that still makes me  laugh. This is in case you didn't see it...

Hahaha. I said to turn your computer upside down. That's easy of you have a lap top, or are reading this blog on a smart phone or tablet but some of you wrote to tell me you have a desk top and couldn't  turn it upside down. Alright, so for you people here is what you would've seen...

That's so fucking scary! So, Trump has written a new executive order again. Let's see what this one is...

Damn, that's harsh. Have you seen the movie La La Land? I have no intention of seeing it... I love Emma Stone but if I wanted to see her I'd just look at this pic...

Anyway, someone is cashing in on the movie La La Land... and I think I wanna see it.

It looks good. Hahaha. So, I saw this pic the other day...

It reminded me of something and then it hit me...

Haha. I think I liked Kellyanne Conway better when she was the lead singer in Hanoi Rocks. I have to show this... this is a real ad for Hot Wheels cars.

You're welcome, fellas. So, there's a lot of Trump products out there and not all are flattering. Like this one for instance...

Artist Fernando Sosa has found a novel way to protest Donald Trump's comments about Mexican immigrants... he's turned the Republican presidential candidate into a butt plug. Sosa used 3D printing technology to create the decidedly unofficial merchandise, which he is selling from his store for $29.99. The plug is made from full-color sandstone, promising “a coarse finish and a delicate feel." Valentine's Day is around the corner and you might either want to get those butt plugs for your loved one or this...

If you're searching for a devilishly naughty gift for a loved one then you can't beat these couple “Sexiest number of all time!” pillowcases! You can both have a piece of the naughty number 69...  extremely fun and hilarious to show any guests, yet excellent to show your partner the devil in you! And here's a real vintage, and creepy, Valentine's Day card you can print out and give someone...

A steady diet of love via human flesh. Okay, so, you know I live in Florida, right? Well, there's some crazy things that happen here in Florida that happens no where else. That's why I have a pheature called...

Courtney Barnes is a former economics student and current cam girl and model from Miami, Florida. She’s 32-years-old, and has a 59-inch butt. I don't usually introduce people by citing their ass measurements, but in this case it's highly relevant to the story. Barnes' bountiful backside has catapulted her to fame and fortune as a butt model, but it hasn't all been fun and games. For one, she risked her life, using highly dangerous and illegal silicone injections, to get her butt to 59-inches... which, as it turns out, is bigger than she wanted. Six years ago, Barnes aka "Ms. Miami" was working as a dancer when she opted to get her butt enlarged at a “pumping party" where injections, which often contain unknown substances, are administered by people with no medical experience. She told the "Daily Mail, "These are very dangerous products that are being injected. I don't know for sure what they injected me with. But when I got it, she said it was like some hydrogel, some kind of silicone that they normally put in gummy bear implants. You don't know how your body is going to react. It is still something foreign that's in your body. It's a gamble." Luckily, Barnes experienced no medical complications from the procedure, and her gamble seems to have paid off. She and her 59-inch gummy-butt immediately soared to Internet fame, which she figured out how to monetize. "One thing that I did learn in economics is that it's about having a product that people want... and my product is myself right now," she told the "Daily Mail." "I want to show men, women, and children that it is possible to be beautiful, smart, and have a big ass." See?? Who says college is a waste of money?? Her butt is basically just a diploma that you take everywhere. But despite being an inspiration to the youth, having such a big butt also has its downsides, apparently. Barnes describes herself as a "shy person" and said "being looked at constantly can make me feel uncomfortable sometimes." She also has a hard time getting people to take her seriously or respect her. "People stare at me everywhere I go and not every reaction is positive," she said. "I feel like women are intimidated by me and men view me as a piece of meat." So remember, pervy dudes and judgy Internet, just because a woman has a 59-inch butt does not mean she isn't a person who deserves kindness and respect. Just like you and me. Only with way more success, money and Instagram followers.

Haha. If you spot the Mindphuck let me know. Okay, now are you ready to really laugh?

An Atlanta lawyer went duck hunting in rural Tennessee. He shot and dropped a bird, but it fell into a farmer's field on the other side of a fence. As the lawyer climbed over the fence, an elderly farmer drove up on his tractor and asked him what he was doing. The litigator responded, "I shot a duck and it fell in this field, and now I'm going in to retrieve it." The old farmer replied, "This is my property, and you are not coming over here." The indignant lawyer said, "I am one of the best trial attorneys in Georgia and, if you don't let me get that duck, I'll sue you and take everything you own." The old farmer smiled and said, "Apparently, you don't know how we do things in Tennessee. We settle small disagreements like this with the Tennessee Three-Kick Rule." The lawyer asked, "What is the Tennessee Three-Kick Rule?" The farmer replied, "Well, first I kick you three times and then you kick me three times, and so on, back and forth, until someone gives up." The big-city attorney quickly thought about the proposed contest and decided that he could easily take the old codger. He agreed to abide by the local custom. The old farmer slowly climbed down from the tractor and walked up to the city feller. His first kick to the shin had the lawyer hopping around on one foot when suddenly the farmer planted the toe of his heavy work boot into the lawyer's groin and dropped him to his knees. The barrister was flat on his belly when the farmer's third kick to a kidney nearly caused him to pass out. The lawyer summoned every bit of his will and managed to get to his feet and said, "Okay, you old coot now it's my turn." The old farmer smiled and said, "Naw, I give up. You can have the duck."

Just add this to the long list of crazy things Donald Trump has said... He believes that Barack Obama actually likes him. During an interview with Bill O'Reilly for Fox News that aired last Monday, Trump spoke about his relationship with former president Barack Obama, and though Trump has long waged war against Obama by insisting that he was not a citizen, critiquing his leadership skills and often tweeting ill of the former President, he swears that the two men actually like each other. "I don’t know if he’ll admit this, but he likes me. I like him," said Trump.“How do you know he likes you?” O’Reilly asked. "Because I can feel it," Trump replied. "That’s what I do in life. It’s called, like, 'I understand.'" That's what you do in life? Okay. It is very possible that Trump is mistaking Barack Obama being a grown-up for him "liking him." After all, President Obama understands that you can disagree with someone and refrain from tweeting insults about them. “He was vicious during the campaign toward me, and I was vicious toward him." Trump went on to say during the interview. "We said horrible things about each other, and then we hop into the car and we drive down Pennsylvania Avenue together, we don’t even talk about it. Politics is amazing." Yep. Politics sure is.

The Oscars is a few weeks away so I thought it would be fun to give you some Oscar facts so you'll have something to tok about if you go to an Oscar party. The Turning Point and The Color Purple hold the record for most nominations... 11... without any wins. But the biggest loser of all times is Kevin O'Connell, a sound re-recording mixer who holds the record for most Academy Award nominations without a win at 20, having originally set the record in 2006 with his 18th nomination and loss, making him the "unluckiest nominee in the history of the Academy Awards."

Today's guest is a singer/songwriter who has a new single called "Monsters" that is really good, and is available on iTunes. Please welcome to the Phile... Spencer Anthony.

Me: Hello, Spencer, welcome to the Phile. How are you doing?

Spencer: I am doing fantastic! Thanks for interviewing me.

Me: You're welcome. Where are you from, Spencer?

Spencer: Born and raised in Cincinnati, Ohio. An awesome place to live.

Me: Ever listen to the radio station WKRP? Haha. Have you heard of it?

Spencer: Funny that you ask that, never listened to it myself but my mom sings the “WKRP in Cincinnati” jingle all the time.

Me: You're so young. Hahaha. Man, you look so young. How old are you?

Spencer: Really? Most people tell me I look a lot older, haha. I actually just turned 18. I was at a high school football game a few months ago and the student section thought I was in my 20s. Guess it depends on what I’m wearing.

Me: Okay, so, I read you moved from Cincinnati to Los Angeles when you were 15... you didn't move by yourself, did you?

Spencer: Actually, I was 16 and I moved out there with my mom, couldn’t imagine being there by myself at that age. L.A. is a crazy and crowded place, and I’m Mr. Suburbia, so I don’t think I would have fared too well.

Me: What did your family think when you moved?

Spencer: They were really supportive! My mom and I still switch off between L.A. and Cincinnati, so I get to see my extended family quite a bit. My family is extremely close, so it helps that we’re not always gone.

Me: You did some acting, am I right? Was this originally why you moved to California?

Spencer: Yes, I moved out to L.A. for acting, but I also had music in mind. I balance both now, and I’m really lucky that I am able to do both.

Me: What kinda acting work did you do... TV, movies, theatre?

Spencer: I was really focused on sports until late 2014. In January 2015, my mom signed me up to audition for a play without telling me. It was called “Into The Woods," I played the part of Cinderella’s prince. Chris Pine plays that character in the movie adaptation. At the time, I was not with it (haha), but I ended up having the time of my life, and since then I've done four more plays. It's been so much fun, I got to be Troy Bolton in a production of "High School Musical 2," that was such an awesome experience. I've had some of the highlights of my teenage years being in the theater. Then I started taking acting workshops, and my agent encouraged me to go to this acting, modeling, and singing expo in Dallas. My mom and I went, and I was lucky enough to generate interest from people in the entertainment industry. Through that we ended up going to L.A. and interviewed with agents and managers, and I was blessed enough to be signed.

Me: Did you take any acting lessons?

Spencer: Yes, still do actually! Acting is a hard thing to master on your own, it’s really important to have feedback and someone to guide you.

Me: Are you planning on going to college or just working on your musical career?

Spencer: Right now, the plan is to work on my career. I’m lucky enough to have this opportunity, so I think my time would be best spent working towards being as successful as possible.

Me: Have you been writing songs and performing a long time?

Spencer: Absolutely, I’ve been writing and recording songs for several years now. I’ve been performing since I was about 9 and around that age I played “Wake Me Up When September Ends” by Green Day at an outdoor open mic. When I was 11 or 12 I started playing live with my guitar teacher at his shows, he would have his students come up and play a song while he sang. I would play a lot of rock and metal, Metallica, Soundgarden, Coheed and Cambria, Velvet Revolver, etc. Those shows were so beneficial because they gave me a crash course in performing.

Me: When did you realize you wanted to be a professional musician?

Spencer: I’ve always wanted to be a professional musician, but singing didn’t peek its head out until just over a couple of years ago. In late 2014, I started a band with my buddy Noah and some musicians that I had met. I had always wanted to be a front man since I was a kid, idolizing lead singers who played guitar but I just never had the confidence to sing. When we started the band I finally decided to do it and started taking vocal lessons.

Me: Alright, being so young, who did you listen to growing up music wise?

Spencer: I loved rock n’ roll but I was also a fan of whatever was on the radio. One of the first bands I was really invested in was the All-American Rejects. In 2005, they put out their single “Move Along," and that song was a huge deal for me. I remember finding out the singer’s name from my sister, and getting the "Move Along" album from the library. I also was a huge fan of Simple Plan when I was about 5-years-old because they put out a song on the Scooby Doo 2 soundtrack. It was called “Don’t Wanna Think About You” and was probably the first pop-punk song I really loved. I grew up in that “radio pop punk” era with bands like the All-American Rejects, Fall Out Boy, Boys Like Girls, and Paramore all getting a lot of airplay. The band that changed everything for me though was All Time Low. My sister’s friend had a song of theirs on her iPod, “Dear Maria Count Me In.” I was really into the song and the artwork so I looked them up and saw a music video for one of their songs, which was the video made me want to be in a band. The way that those guys were rocking out on stage, and the funny, lighthearted nature of the video was so inspiring to me. It just seemed so awesome, and it still does! They are definitely one of my biggest inspirations; their music was the soundtrack to a big part of my childhood.

Me: What was the first concert you ever saw, Spencer? How old were you?

Spencer: I went to a few concerts growing up, the first one I was really excited about was the Bamboozle Roadshow in 2010 when I was 11-years-old with my dad. I originally just went for All Time Low, but that day I saw Good Charlotte, Simple Plan, and Boys Like Girls too. I didn’t really realize how cool it was to be seeing those bands at the time. I was just so excited for All Time Low, haha. Looking back, I realize how lucky I am to have seen all those bands in one day, they definitely don’t have tours quite like that anymore.

Me: So, you play guitar... Do you play any other instruments?

Spencer: Yeah, I’d say guitar is my main instrument. I also play bass, piano, a little bit of the drums, and a touch of recorder. I have the 5th grade to thank for that.

Me: So, in L.A. do you get to perform many shows?

Spencer: I actually haven’t performed in LA yet, but I am looking forward to it! I have played all of my shows in the Cincinnati area.

Me: What's your favorite thing about living in L.A.?

Spencer: Definitely the opportunities I’ve had in the music and acting business. I’ve met some amazing people as well. It’s also really cool to me that there’s vegan restaurants everywhere. There's a vegan donut shop called Donut Friend. It's owned by a music producer, Mark Trombino, who has produced some bands I absolutely love. He names the donuts after the bands he works with, for example, the "Bacon 182" haha.

Me: Do you miss back home?

Spencer: Yes, for sure! It’s tough being away from family and friends, and kind of weird not being in school and seeing the same people everyday. But, I’m really lucky that I can still stay super connected back home, and be there a lot.

Me: Okay, let's talk about your new single "Monsters." Is this your first release?

Spencer: Yes, it’s my debut single and I’m so excited for people to hear it!

Me: Did you put a band together for it?

Spencer: For the live performances, yes. We actually just filmed a live version of the song with a full band at a show a couple of weeks ago and it should be online now. In the studio I played all of the bass, acoustic, and electric guitar parts.

Me: I have a screen shot of the video here, Spencer...

Me: Did you write the music first or the lyrics?

Spencer: The music, for the most part, came first. I started with a piano riff, and then thought of that bass groove. Most of the electric guitar parts came later, once Mike Pepe (the producer) and I had the song structure nailed down.

Me: So, what is the inspiration behind the song?

Spencer: “Monsters” is about anxiety. It’s a subject I wanted to cover in my music because I myself have dealt with it a lot in my life, and I know of so many people that constantly struggle with it. It’s something that can’t be overlooked or ignored in the modern world. With this song I tried to drill specifics and metaphors into the lyrics that explain how I have dealt with anxiety, and how I have seen other people deal with it. I’ve noticed that something like anxiety or depression can really negate someone’s potential to be happy, and it's a terrible thing. I also was really inspired to give the song a bit of a positive spin and that is where the acoustic ending came from, where the chorus lyrics are changed. That's one of my favorite parts of the song.

Me: I love the singles cover... those monsters are very Monsters Inc. or Muppet looking. You are a fan of the Muppets, right?

Spencer: Thank you! I love the artwork as well. I really dig how the monsters ended up looking; it feels really cool to look at, filled with detail yet really simple in black and white. I did watch the Muppets a bit growing up, but it’s been a while. I think I was more of a "Sesame Street"/"Teletubbies" kid. I want to see the most recent Muppets movie though, with the dude from "How I Met Your Mother."

Me: There was another Muppet movie since then. So, who did the artwork?

Spencer: A very good friend of mine, Noah Kohl (@njkohl_art). He’s a prolific artist, the dude has a gift! He’s also working on the EP art.

Me: You're working on an EP called "Words to Hide Behind"... where did the title come from?

Spencer: The EP will be out soon, I’m really excited to see what people think! The title came from the masks we all wear everyday, figuratively of course. Unless you’re a bank robber, a clown, a horror fanatic (I have this friend…), or a Stormtrooper, in which case you literally wear a mask everyday, haha. I think we all hide what we really want to say in everyday life. It’s not always a problem, but it can definitely hold us back. "Words to Hide Behind" is ultimately a play on how we hide our emotions, and how they come out when we’re alone.

Me: Are all the songs on it gonna be as catchy as "Monsters"?

Spencer: I hope that people will feel that way, my parents definitely think so, haha. There’s an acoustic pop song called “Chase” that’s super catchy, I’ve had the chorus stuck in my head for 15 months, no joke. Another song called “Happy Pill” has some really catchy parts in it as well.

Me: So, when are you planning on coming out with the EP?

Spencer: It will be out early this year, in March on iTunes, Spotify, etc. I’m already excited just thinking about it!

Me: When it comes out can you come back on the Phile?

Spencer: I’d be more than happy to! It would be an honor.

Me: How many interviews have you done, Spencer? This has been the best one, right? Hahahaha. 

Spencer: This is the first, and it has been so much fun to answer your questions! It has definitely been the best, so far.

Me: Yay! You'll always remember your first. Alright, my friend, mention your websites and stuff.

Spencer: For updates on “Monsters” and my EP "Words to Hide Behind" visit me on the following pages... Website:, Instagram: @spenceranthonymusic, Facebook:, Youtube: Snapchat: Spence_Anthony. Get “Monsters” on iTunes Spotify, and other music downloading/streaming services.

Me: Come back again soon. All the best. Be good.

Spencer: You as well! Thank you so much for having me, it was an absolute pleasure.

That about does it for this entry of the Phile. Thanks to Spencer for a great interview. The Phile will be back tomorrow with the kids from the band Primal Static. Spread the word, not the turd. Don't let snakes and alligators bite you. Bye, love you, bye.

Not if it pleases me. No, you can't stop me, not if it pleases me. - Graham Parker

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