Monday, May 8, 2017

Pheaturing Sleeplust

Hey, kids, welcome to the Phile for a Monday. How're you? I am pretty good myself... kinda. I ate for breakfast a packet of Skip's Prawn Cocktail. If you don't know what that is you don't know what's missing. I have to tell you this before I continue... across the street from my apartment complex a British restaurant opened called The Friar Tuck opened and it's my new favorite place to go. I am so happy I don't have to travel far to get British food.
Alright, let's start off with a funny story, shall we, as I am in a good mood... which is rare. Ha. A suspicious husband in Wyoming, Minnesota made a very concerning concerned call when he found something in his wife's purse. First red flag: why was he looking through his wife's purse?

I might be naive, or just super out-of-touch with what the kids are smokin' these days but... what? The Wyoming police had to confirm that the man had never seen a cocktail umbrella, which is kind of sad that he had never experienced a sweet, tropical beverage. Even if it turned out to be something, it's cold to call the police on your wife. The call raises many questions: 1. Exactly how did it seem drug-like to him? 2. Is it possible that he knew it was a cocktail umbrellas, but was jealous that his wife was having cocktails with somebody else and called the police to scare her? 3. Was he, himself, on drugs? Did a psychadelic psych up the site of a mini umbrella?
At the highest level of politics, you never know when a seemingly friendly citizen is really just trying to make you look stupid. Just ask Kellyanne Conway, who once posed for a video selfie with a guy who smilingly instructed her to say "I'm ruining America!" We really hope he didn't get deported for that. The deserving victim this time out is House Speaker Paul Ryan, who led the charge to pass a bill that would dismantle our existing healthcare system and establish some kind of Hunger Games-type dystopia. The Republican talking point on this, for years, has been that they'll "repeal and replace" Obamacare. But if you take a closer look at the shirt the guy next to Ryan here is wearing, you'll get a more brutally accurate idea of their pitch: "Repeal and go fuck yourself."

Classic oversight by Ryan, who was probably just happy that any human being is still willing to stand next to him in public at this point. The shirt-trolling is a victory, to be sure. And you can buy this tee for yourself right here: ( before your congressman's next town hall meeting. But is it enough? To bring down the GOP establishment, we have to think bigger. Much bigger. Whoever scores the picture with Trump wearing a "I'm with stupid" shirt wins the Internet. Game on. Ha.
At 2am in Lexington, Kentucky on Wednesday, college student Henry Lynch II embarked on a hardcore heist. WKYT reports that University of Kentucky junior climbed through the ceiling ducts in the school's Multidisciplinary Science Building to sneak into his stats professor's office and steal the exam, thinking this action hero move would be easier than just studying. Even more amusing is that it wasn't the dude's first time crawling through air ducts for a great test heist. Unfortunately for Henry Lynch II (what a name), his professor was working late that night, and while the prof had stepped out to get something to eat at the precise time of the burglary, he returned and noticed that something was wrong. The professor returned and caught lynch and sophomore Troy Kiphuth running out of the office, and when police arrived, the students returned to the scene and confessed. The kids were cited for the burglary-3rd degree, which is a full-on felony (!!!) and will face a judge in June. This is a good lesson, kids. It's easier to just study statistics than to conDUCT an illegal scheme.
Being a new mom has lots of challenges, and trying to balance your baby's needs with your own errands and responsibilities has never been easy. So it's pretty dumb that we continue to stigmatize something as common and natural as breastfeeding. Nevertheless, as Ana Davis of Centerville, Utah, found out, even going out of your way to breastfeed in private isn't enough for some people. Davis was shopping at a Nordstrom Rack when her baby daughter Mia started making noises about a meal. Not wanting to attract any unwanted attention or complaints, Davis took her into a bathroom. Not a few minutes later, she was approached by a store employee "who had said a complaint had been made that somebody was feeling uncomfortable to... doing their business while there was a nursing mother in the restroom," Davis said. Yeah, because breastfeeding is so much grosser than sitting next to someone while they take a huge dump. "I didn't feel like I was doing anything wrong by nursing," Davis said. "We as a society are okay with, you know, low-cut shirts or advertisements of underwear models and that's okay, but a nursing mother to a lot of people is just very offensive." Nordstrom, for their part, released a short statement, saying, "We want every customer to feel comfortable while they're shopping with us, particularly nursing mothers." Well, they have a funny way of showing it.
I think it's funny this story was took place at Nordstrom Rack. Get it?
Work stressing you out? Well, boy oh boy, do I have a solution for you, and it's not even day drinking. Apparently, if you want to make your work day better, happier and more productive, all you have to do is something that you usually do at home: masturbate. And this is according to actual trained psychologists, not your creepy co-worker Seth, Metro UK reports. It's true. A recent article in Ravishly claimed that "fapping is the new smoke break." Only, unlike smoking, masturbation won't do irreparable damage to your lungs and teeth. Yay! And psychologists actually agree. Mark Sergeant, a senior lecturer in psychology at Nottingham Trent University, told Metro UK that a masturbation break would be "very effective at work," and a "great way to relieve tension and stress." He also thinks that "masturbation breaks" would provide a "self-motivational reward," giving you something to look forward after a long day of hoping your boss doesn't catch you reading the Phile at your desk. A masturbation break could have other benefits as well. "I would expect a masturbation policy to result in more focus, less aggression, higher productivity, and more smiling," psychologist and life coach Dr. Cliff Arnall told Metro UK. As if "more smiling" isn't enough of a perk, he added, "Certainly taking a masturbation break for boredom or an escape would increase work focus." As great as this plan sounds in theory, however, there are some, err, holes. For example, Dr. Arnall expressed some concerns about "timing" and "whether or not you’ll be able to orgasm" on your 1/2 hour lunch break while your boss is in the next cubicle. He also points out that if you try to achieve orgasm and don't succeed, this could lead to increased frustration, which would pretty much negate all the positive effects of masturbating at work, including the smiling. Also, there's the question of comfort and safety. Speaking of your creepy co-worker Seth, bringing sexual gratification into the office could "blur lines" and "open the door to inappropriate behavior," Metro UK warns. "Introducing any form of sexual behavior to a workplace could be seen as a slippery slope that makes people think that other forms of sexual behavior, such as those linked to harassment, are more acceptable," said Dr. Arnall. He recommended that employees not use their masturbation breaks to fantasize about a co-worker, because "this is likely to result in cognitive impairment." So, basically, if you're attracted to any of your co-workers, this plan is off the table (sorry, creepy Seth!).
Alright, so, over the years people have made fun of my name "Peverett," calling me "pervert." I always said it's "prevert"... I already did it while the pervert os thinking of it. That's actually not true. Ha. Anyway, some people have a worse case of a name problem than I do.

Hahaha. Hey, I think President Trump has written a new executive order, kids.

Ummmm... never mind. See you see the new trailer for the new Spider-Man movie? I looks so good and Iron Man is in it, even though I don't exactly think he's gonna make a difference.

Do you kids like Pop Tarts? I don't, but thought you might be interested in the new kind that just came out.

What the hell? So, I saw this pic the other day of Trump...

And I thought where have I seen something like that before. And then it hit me...

It's close, right? So, did you see Trump has a new toad tattoo on his face? No?

Hahahahaha. as I said on Saturday that is so stupid. As stupid as...

Okay, that's a stretch. So, I don't know if you know this about me but I love Funko Pop Vinyls. Well, there's this new app where you can turn yourself into one and I just had to share this...

It's me! Hahaha. I'm sucha geek. Speaking of geeks, I love it when geeks protest.

Science and Star Wars in one protest sign? It's perfect! So, as you probably know I pretty much just wear t-shirts and shorts every day. But if I was this age I am in the 1970s I might of dress different.

"Yeah, I'm looking for underwear that will visually overwhelm a woman. Maybe something with triangles?" Hahahahaha. And now from the home office in Port Jefferson, New York, here is...

Top Phive "Improvements" Made To The New Trumpcare Bill
5. Being poor will now be considered a pre-existing condition.
4. Anyone denied coverage may select any waiting-room magazine to take home, free of charge.
3. Happily, insurance premiums will be dramatically reduced for all Congressmen.
2. All hand-enlargement surgeries will receive full coverage.
And the number one "improvement" mede to the new Trumpcare bill is...
1. All coverage will be retroactively denied to fans of Jimmy Kimmel and Stephen Colbert.

Ha! If you spot the Mindphuck let me know. Okay, I'm British as you know, and you probably know how I feel about the French. Ahem. Here's a pheature simply called...

Heads up: you might want to start taking public transit or driving yourself to your mistress's place, because Uber is bad at keeping secrets. BBC reports that a businessman in France is suing the app for tipping off to his wife the fact that he's having an affair. Boo hoo! The suit alleges that the man once called an Uber using his wife's phone, and despite logging off, the app kept sending her notifications, revealing his travel history and making her suspicious of extramarital activity. "My client was the victim of a bug in an application," his lawyer said. The couple has since divorced, and the lawsuit is reportedly worth up to $48 million in damages. Forty. Eight. Million. Dollars. French newspaper "Le Figaro" reports that other users have been exposed to the same bug that could have exposed their affairs. They carried out an experiment, logging in and out of Uber on one iPhone and ordering the driving on the other, and the app sent notifications to both phones. Android phones don't appear to affected by the bug, making it the official new phone of cheaters. To all the cheaters out there: Stay safe and switch to a 'Droid. I recommend the Samsung Galaxy Note 7.

The 59th book to be pheatured in the Phile's Book Club is...

Jack will be the guest on the Phile a week from today... next Monday.

Today's guests are the kids that make up the Los Angeles based band Sleeplust, whose new single "Over" is available on iTunes right now. Please welcome to the Phile Amber Ruthe, Michael Pepe,  Sarah Luffred and Joseph Pepe... Sleeplust.

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

Amber: Fantastic!

Michael: Hey, man! Doing great, stoked to be chatting today. Thanks for the interview.

Me: So, Michael and Joseph, you are twins, right? Which one is older?

Joseph: I am older by about a minute and I have yet to let him live that down.

Michael: Joey is actually older by like a minute and he constantly reminds me that he’s the "older" brother.

Me: Did you talk about being in a band together when you were growing up?

Joseph: It has always been our dream we’ve been chasing to be honest. We’ve been playing in bands together since we were in high school, as soon as we graduated we started touring with our old pop/punk band and that has lead to where we are today.

Michael: Yeah, we definitely grew up on the same path loving and learning music together; a really special bond to share. We picked up our respective instruments the same summer. Joey picked up bass and I picked up guitar so that we could start a band. After we heard Blink-182 in ’99 it was ON! 

Me: Were you both musically inclined all your life?

Joseph: Honestly… No! Haha. We don’t come from a musical family but we had the passion and dedication to learn the craft of songwriting and playing. It first clicked when I heard Blink-182 and looked up the chords and I was like “Hey this is easy… I could do this!”

Michael: Hard to say, haha! That may be a question for our parents. I know I loved Elvis from a very very young age. There are home videos of me doing shows for my family of his songs.

Me: So, whose idea was it to form Sleeplust? Or was it both of your ideas?

Joseph: Sleeplust was a sound we had been forming for a while before actually entering into the band as a real endeavor. We had been playing in rock bands and after our last band broke up we decided to really start using our talents in marrying electronic music with rock music into one idea. 

Michael: I don’t know if there was a pinpointed moment per say. After being in and out of a few bands together I think it was just a natural progression in our music.

Me: What does Sleeplust mean and who came up with the name?

Jospeh: I can't quite remember who came up with it, I think it was myself possibly. But it is derived from a Jack Kerouac quote that I love.

Me: The band is based in Los Angeles, right, but you are all from different places?

Jospeh: Correct, we all met in L.A. but are from different parts of the country. We were lucky enough to find each other out here on the west coast.

Michael: That’s correct; we met in L.A. after Joey and I moved here for music. Amber and Sarah also moved here for music!

Me: Michael and Joseph, where are you two from?

Joseph: Mike and I were originally born in New York and raised there until 2nd grade and then we really grew up in Charlotte, North Carolina.

Me: Did you both move to California at the same time?

Joseph: Sure did! We knew it was the next phase in our music careers and where the opportunities we wanted lead. We came here within about two weeks of each other.

Michael: Essentially, yeah! We planned it that way. I was a couple of weeks behind just because of scheduling and stuff but for all purposes yeah we moved out at the same time.

Me: Amber and Sarah, where are you two from?

Sarah: Cleveland, Ohio.

Amber: I grew up in Illinois, Chicago-land area. Moved to Milwaukee for three years and now I'm here in beautiful, sunny L.A. writing music with these fine people.

Me: Amber, you're the singer from the band... but weren't the original singer, am I right? 

Amber: Correct.

Me: Did you replace somebody or was the band a three piece in the beginning?

Amber: I replaced a former singer.

Me: Didn't you see the band in concert before you were a member, Amber? You must really liked the band.

Amber: I did! It was that show that prompted me to search for a band of similar likeness and low and behold it was the same band to kickstart my search that ended up answering my post. Truly a small world.

Me: So, how did you get to be in the band as the lead singer?

Amber: After a few emails back and forth with Joey, we set up a meeting at this place called Joe's Coffee in NoHo and began writing songs together shortly after that. We all seemed to be pretty in tune with each other and it just kind of grew from there.

Me: Sarah, you're the drummer... did you always play drums?

Sarah: I actually learned how to play saxophone as my first instrument in the 3rd grade. My parents wouldn't let me play drums. Finally in the 6th grade after multiple box and bucket drum sets being made and getting in trouble for drumming on my desk at school, my parents gave in and bought me a drum set. I just had the natural ability to play and taught myself. I continued with saxophone in concert band all through middle school and joined the jazz band playing drums.

Me: Do you have a favorite drummer that inspired you?

Sarah: I grew up listening to a lot of Broadway show tunes and Frank Sinatra so unlike other drummers I don't have any old school drummer inspirations. My inspiration was Travis Barker from Blink-182.

Me: So, how did you meet the boys, Sarah?

Sarah: Good old Craigslist, ha!

Me: I have to ask you about the tattoo on your arm... what is it?

Sarah: I actually have three. It's the start of my half sleeve, but I've hit a slight dead end at the moment. One is a rose (my birth month flower), a tiger’s face (Chinese animal birth year) and a silhouette of a drummer boy.

Me: Okay, so, who does the songwriting in the band?

Joseph: We all are writers to be honest and we all bring ideas to the table. We pride ourselves in being a diverse bunch with a lot of musical tastes that can live under the umbrella of Sleeplust.

Michael: The songwriting is a very collaborative process; I think any great band has to be able to bounce off one another and collab well together. We all pitch in on writing and ideas. Typically we like to start with an acoustic guitar or piano and a vocal and go from there. Arrangement is so important to us. Before we start adding all the fun stuff we like to sit down and write a song in its most honest form.

Me: What comes first, the music or lyrics?

Joseph: You know it really depends. Pretty much 100% of the time we start the songs on acoustic guitar or piano and build it from there. But many times Amber will have a melody line or hook that inspires us and we’ll start finding the chords and fleshing out the idea. It’s the most exciting part, to start with nothing and then in a few hours be so proud of what we all did together.

Michael: Typically, they’re kind of happening at the same time. I think they each feed into one another and lead the song to the place it should be. Very often we’ll be writing chords and Amber will be giving melody and lyrics and that’ll make us change courses a bit and then maybe I’ll add an extra chord in and that’ll make her engage in a different way, etc. It’s a very natural process I feel.

Me: Let's talk about "Over," the new single... it's about the end of a relationship, right?

Amber: That is correct.

Me: Can you all relate to the song? I can.

Michael: I feel like one of the things that connects about the song is that everyone can relate to it on some level. I think it has that special metaphoric attitude where a listener can kind of apply it to their life or what’s going on in their world. I think that’s very special when a song can be interpreted by the listener and applied.

Me: This is not your first release... as you have other music out. How has the music in the band changed over the last few years?

Michael: It definitely has. I think the last year or so we’ve been able to bridge our gap between rock and ambient/electronics. Now there’s much more string instruments and when we first started it was an experiment to see if we could NOT use guitars... haha. The songs lately I think are zeroed in on what the band is; a great blend of rock and electronic.

Me: Are you gonna be making a video for “Over"?

Joseph: You know we’ve talked about it but I think we might be doing a video for the next single instead! However I think it’s a very cinematic song so the visuals for the track could be very moving. 

Me: You kids are working on a new album for this summer... what can we expect from it?

Michael: I think it will be the most honed in Sleeplust has ever sounded. I think it will define what the band is and show all angles of what we can do. Some rock, some pop, some electronic, some upbeat, some sad, some acoustic. We’ve worked so hard on attacking all angles of what this band is and how we want to present it and this record I know really shows that off.

Me: You had some song placements in TV shows... that's always cool I know. If your music can be put in any TV show of your choice what would it be?

Joseph: All the shows I adore are off air right now, haha. I would’ve loved to seen our music synched in the show "Entourage" though!

Michael: "Seinfeld" or "Breaking Bad"… Since both of those shows are done and over though I’ll take "Shark Tank." I’m legit addicted to that show, haha.

Me: So, are you gonna be touring at all this year?

Joseph: We will be playing mostly the L.A. area and spreading out from there. We really are focusing on building the band up in our now hometown of Los Angeles. With that being said we are open to play anywhere, we just love to play live shows.

Michael: Yes! We have a lot of shows lined up in the L.A. area and it’ll be so exciting to show off this EP live; we’ve started to already at the recent shows and it feels so great.

Me: So, I am guessing you all get along... but I am sure there's a few debates and stuff you kids don't agree on... what was the last fight the band had?

Michael: I honestly can’t think of a band fight? Probably a disagreement on where to eat, haha. I probably wanted carbs and more carbs. Strictly carb diet for me.

Joseph: I think Mike is right about the food, haha. I can’t remember a big band fight or anything in this particular outfit. We’re all really passionate about what we do but we are also very levelheaded people and know that playing in a band is a democracy. I’m sure if there was a disagreement we would just talk through it, I tend to think communication is one the strongest things we have as a team.

Me: I am glad you guys could be on the Phile. I hope you'll come back again soon. Go ahead and mention your websites, kids.


Me: I hope this was fun. Take care, and I am looking forward to the album. And I hope to have you kids back on the Phile then.

That about does it for this entry of the Phile. Thanks to the kids from Sleeplust for a great interview. Alright, I quickly have to mention something... in two weeks I was supposed to have as pheatured guest Michael Packer from Michael Packer Blues Band to talk about his CD "35th Anniversary" but sad to say he passed away from cancer yesterday. Fucking cancer. Anyway, as he won't be on the Phile I still wanna plug his great album. Here it is...

RIP, Michael. Okay, so, the Phile will be back next Sunday on Mother's Day with Phile Alum Doris Brendel. 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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