15 August 2010

hear ye! hear ye! i got the dream job!

snapped on the roofdeck at fenway park yesterday before the j. geils band/aerosmith concert by the lovely jsutt. (more on last night later.)


HEY FOLKS.

I'M THE NEW ARTS + ENTERTAINMENT EDITOR

you can read the official press release here. [disclaimer: olde english abounds. i love this paper so much.]

to say that this is a dream come true is, well, completely accurate. i feel like the luckiest little journo in the world. (not to get all cheesy and everything.)

so, with that said, i'm gonna be maaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaad busy for the next couple of months. david - who was promoted from a+e editor to editor of the dig - put it pretty perfectly: "you're not gonna hit the ground running. you're gonna hit the ground FLYING." i. cannot. wait. to. get. started.

so yeah. if you guys weren't picking up the weekly dig every wednesday before, you sure as hell better be now ;)

X H

04 August 2010

Hil in the Dig this week: Newport Folk, Ladies Rock and more...


that's l'il ol' me interviewing taylor goldsmith of dawes and mr. john shade at newport folk 2010. photo: jess hodge

today, i ran out, bought a baguette, a hunk of manchego and a chocolate bar, and sat down on my couch with the fan pointed directly at me for a day-long Top Chef marathon. why the laziness/comfort food? after this past weekend, which was filled with the music festival of my dreams, quality time with best friends/partners in crime and some good ol' fashioned late night debauchery, i. am. beat.

it's cool, though, because i spent all day writing yesterday and today. what have i been working on? The Newport Folk Festival Run-Down, Day 1 and Day 2 for the Weekly Dig.

covering newport folk this year was inspiring and enlightening, to say the very least. i saw one of the best live sets of my life courtesy of Dawes. i hung out along the waterfront with Christian Letts of Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros after their set that nearly had to be cancelled due to the insane crowd that swarmed the stage. i got to catch up with the Matt the Ice Cream Man and see how his road trippin' series is going.

to single out one moment of the weekend would be tricky. OH WAIT. no, actually, it wouldn't be tricky at all. i got to sit down with my favorite band, the Avett Brothers, and talk about their music and their contribution to the Newport Folk legacy before their set on sunday.

i gush about them in the second day of the Dig's Newport Folk blog writeups, but there's really so much more that could be said for these guys. maybe i'll post the transcript from the interview here eventually. in the meantime, i'll let you look at jess' absolutely phenomenal photographs [PLEASE look at her tumblr, by the way] that she snapped during the interview and the avett brothers set on the fort stage:

scott avett backstage. swoooooon?


seth avett backstage.
this man singing "the ballad of love and hate" brings me to tears, always.


JOE MOTHERLOVIN' KWON ON THE CELLO, LADIES AND GENTLEMEN.
this dude is a four-stringed wailin' wonder.


bob crawford, aka one of the best bass players in existence.


can we talk about seth's hair here, please?


aaaaaand a banjo-gasm from scott avett.
please and thank you.

in addition to my newport fangirly glee, i also have a piece in print making the rounds this week - a lady rock showdown for an upcoming show at the middle east! if you pick up the dig this week, you'll find my feature on women in boston rock in the arts & entertainment section. this was one of the most fun photoshoots i've ever worked with mikey (mad props for such a stellar photo, mr. basu) and hanging out with the girls of this blue heaven, the downbeat 5, the sun lee sun beam, st. helena, do not forsake me oh my darling and naked on rollerskates was great great great. also, can we talk about this photo?


so, folks, that's what i've been up to :) pick up the dig or check it out online, but either way, you'll be reading some stuff of mine!

now, it's off to family dinner at dalí and hopefully a pimm's cup this evening or something. august, how did you show up so fast?

X H



30 July 2010

NEWPORT OR BUST (2k10)


a'right, kids! jess and i are awaiting the arrival of mr. ryan and then the lot of us are all roadtripping it down to the happiest place on earth (aka newport, rhode island) for the 51st annual Newport Folk Festival.

i am excited for the following reasons:

1) i am officially interviewing my favorite band of all time.

2) i am going to dance like a crazy person to the sounds of my newest favorite band (dawes) and another tried and true favorite that i'm so stoked to see again (sharon jones and the dap kings).

3) i am going to somehow find a bonfire dance party tomorrow night. this will happen.

4) quality time with partner-in-crime jess hodge and cristina (who will be working the festival on behalf of honest tea! yeeeeah!)

5) peach cream cheese muffins; fried clams.

6) REALLY GOOD MUSIC, YOU GUYS.

i'll be blogging the big show all weekend at WeeklyDig.com and Jess' photos will be up there too, so bookmark it and come along with us for the ride, kids.

see you monday.
X H


29 July 2010

dream interpretation, anyone?

image: greenweddingshoes. (this website makes me want to get married. it doesn't necessarily make me want to BE married - it just makes me want to have a beautiful, ridiculous wedding.)

okay. so, this morning, i woke up thoroughly confused/freaked out. see, i rarely dream, and when i do it's usually in black and white, and last night i had a DOOZY. granted, am i overwhelmed a bit at the moment and falling behind on the current piece i'm writing for the dig and trying to pack for newport and therefore stressed? sure. but hey, i'm always stressed by normal people standards, so this shouldn't be affecting my REM cycle, right?

anyways. the dream:

don't remember when the dream kicked off, exactly, but we were in a huge, fancy hotel in what i assume was boston and i was getting married to one of my good guy friends, let's call him bob. (bob and i have no romantic history and i've never had so much as a crush on him - no offense to bob as he's wonderful - but we don't really hang out as much as we used to, so this is also weird. also, i guarantee you that my subconscious doesn't want us to fall in love or anything.) so in the dream, i spend the morning getting ready for this wedding in this huge embarrassingly fancy looking hotel with my mother and the other women in my family. these women, in real life, don't necessarily get along and have a history as such, but they're all working together to get me pretty for the wedding. don't recall much about the dress, besides it's strapless, big, and my veil is huuuuuge.

bob comes in while i'm getting ready and i get upset (the whole "you're not supposed to see the bride before the wedding!" shabang), and then the next thing i know it's wedding time and bob is up front with all his groomsmen (including my brother) and then i get up there and notice that my bridesmaids are only my stepsister and alanna (my cousin) and then i freak out when i realize that my friends are missing. where's marcy and maya and jen and karen and everybody else? and, most importantly, where's los? (common knowledge: los is my best friend and has been since we were kids. obviously, should i ever get married, she'd be my maid of honor.) i get pushed through the wedding, bob looks all excited, and we go to exchange rings and i don't have one, only he does - i just have my engagement ring (which was huge in the dream) and i give him his wedding band. when i ask where mine is, he just says, "oh, you forgot to get it ahead of time, remember?" .... weird?

anyways, reception happens and i'm upset because my friends aren't around and i ask my mom about it and she tells me flat outright that my friends aren't coming and that they weren't invited. this shocks me for multiple reasons. it'd be one thing if my mom didn't like my friends/los, but that's ridiculous - she loves los and she loves my friends - and i get upset and my mom gets visibly angry and walks away. i can't find bob anywhere, and then i woke up.

so,

a) WTF

and b) HALP. what does this mean. someone point me in the direction of a dream interpretation website or something because i don't get it. i'm 100% sure i don't want to get married right now so that can't be it, and i know that this isn't a YOU AND BOB SHOULD BE TOGETHER! dream because that's just absurd. this is just bonkers. anyways, glad i got it off my chest because now i have to go transcribe an hour of tape and whip up a good feature for the next issue of the dig. ah, life.

X H

27 July 2010

"do you want me to come over?" the answer is always yes.


this lady has the right idea. bed, paris, gazillion thread count sheets, bliss.
(photo courtesy of one of my favorite blogs on the planet, so much to tell you. (hey, girls - if you want a pen pal in boston you got one!))

has your body ever just given up on you? lately, i feel like it's absolutely the hardest thing in the entire world to just get out of bed. i just want to sleep and sleep and sleep and sleep. maybe it's the heat, and maybe i'm not getting enough nutrients, and maybe i'm not working out as much as i should be, but whatever it is i'm just tiiiiired, man. the past couple of days have just been about tea and naps and getting work done on upcoming Dig features, so maybe i just needed a little down time in order to recharge my batteries and get centered.

on a high note: THE NEWPORT FOLK FESTIVAL IS THIS WEEKEND! old school favorite/photographer extraordinaire jess hodge and i will be heading down to newport friday morning for three days of beach, spooning with my aunt's puppies and music music music music. i'm excited for folk festival #51 for the following reasons:

+ saying hey to the festival/fort adams staff. they're all awesome and in such a good mood.

+ seeing edward sharpe and the magnetic zeroes, dawes, the low anthem, the david wax museum, sharon jones and the dap kings and, obviously, the Avett Brothers (duhz all around) right on the waterfront. absolute heaven.

+eating my weight in peach cream cheese muffins from the ocean breeze cafe. these muffins are magical. i kid you not. they are the most delicious breakfast pastries known to man.

+quality time with some favorite people. i'm thrilled that jess and i will be teaming up on this one, but i'm also stoked that ryan, sean, schluter, cristina and a few other friends will be either covering/working/attending newport this year. shenanigans on thames st should be plentiful indeed.

in other news, i've been listening to that black keys album and florence + the machine like crazy. i don't even care that that godawful lookin' eat pray love trailer yoinked the single from flo's debut, that album is glorious. and hey, it's been making me feel better lately. that's something!

05 July 2010

back to new york? back to madrid? back to changes.

(oh, ps, spain totally won the world cup. called it from the beginning. just sayin'.)

serious chat time, guys!

so as many of you know, i was laid off just before memorial day. this also happened about a month into my new lease in an apartment where nothing, and i mean nothing, had gone right since we moved in. (my roommate continues to be awesome. she's pretty much the only good thing about this place.) the long and short of it is this: for the first time since moving back to boston in june of '08, i'm ready to get going again.

i'm applying for jobs in boston like crazy still and i'm absolutely loving where i'm at on the music/lifestyle writing front here in town, so staying put isn't entirely out of the question. i would be lying, however, if i said that i wasn't seriously considering the following plans of action:

1) Move to Madrid, try to score an internship at El País and teach English on the side to pay rent (or try to). i'm one of those weirdos who actually prefers madrid to barcelona - everyone goes gaga for parc guell and las ramblas and the ocean and all that, and don't get me wrong, it's a fucking spectacular city (which i absolutely plan on visiting once my brother moves there in january for his semester abroad), but madrid and i just click. we get along famously and i could see myself living there in 2.5 seconds. with that said, the unemployment rate in spain is something absurd like 21% right now, it's the most expensive spot in the country to live in and i wouldn't necessarily be able to make rent just teaching english. as far as the internship/international journalism thing goes, it's always, always something i've wanted to do and i always said that if i were to get my masters in journalism i'd want to get it in london or madrid and i want to see if i can hack it on the bilingual front as a writer. huge leap of faith (and a costly one), but the payoffs? yeah, the payoffs could be pretty epic.

2) Head back to Granada and open up my restaurant with Andy. andy was one of my first friends in spain, and he's been dating one of my dearest friends for nearly four years now. i worked at andy's tapas bar in granada while i was studying there, and i had a pretty decent idea to open a particular kind of spot in the university town. andy's all about it, too, and can feasibly go in on a restaurant with me. we've only begun talks about it, but this is one of those "this would be a scary, terrifying, expensive and potentially life-changing experience in all the good kind of ways" kind of deals. i could run a restaurant in spain and live there for a year to get it off the ground. could i sink thousands of dollars into it and lose it all? sure. but yeah, currently i'm weighing the pros and cons of doing just that. i figure if there's any point in my life to gamble like this, it should be now. (oh, something to consider: this move would absolutely unequivocally piss off my family more than you could possibly imagine. i don't know if they'd calm down from it. they'd view this as pretty irresponsible, so that's weighing in pretty heavily here.)

3) Return to New York. i'm going to be 25 in january and i've always said that i want to be out of boston and either back in new york, madrid or buenos aires by 26. why not get a head start on it, if i feel like i'm hitting a rut in boston now? oh, the whole "hey let me move to a city full of people who work just as hard if not harder than i do who are smarter than i am and better at what i do than i am" thing? yeeeeah. starting over is tricky no matter how you slice it, but it would prove for a good challenge and i think i'd be able to run with the big dogs eventually. i hope, anyway. [gulp]. also - huge pro - I ALREADY HAVE A LIFE IN NEW YORK. i basically just picked up and left when i graduated, and all of my favorite people, places and things in the city are still very much so there. it's alarming to think how easily i could just fall back into old habits, but there's also comfort in that. moving there seems like the least traumatic/least costly of the options yet.

4) Look for gigs/apartments in Chicago when I'm there this week. i love chi-town, man. i'm going out there for a week to hang out with amy, help her pack up her gold coast apartment, and check out some shows while i'm in town. i get to meet nico's beautiful girlfriend (!) and frequent favorite haunts, and i get to go running along the coast of lake michigan every morning. that's swell. hopefully this trip will offer some perspective, and if anything it gives me a chance to head out of the city for a second and recharge my batteries.

phew. anyways. i feel better. thanks for listening. (or reading.) if you've got insight, dispense it, please.

X H

28 June 2010

una memoria del verano porteño.

[this photo's actually from my friend tony's roof on charcas, which is a few blocks away from where i used to live. same idea.]

on a sticky, steamy night in buenos aires, my host family and i were finishing up with a late dinner when the power went out. as summertime in argentina can reach scalding temperatures (compared with boston, anyway) and the rio de la plata doesn't do much in dragging the humidity out to sea, power outages during heatwaves aren't all too uncommon. i mean, think about it: refrigerators, air conditioners, fans, you flick one switch too many in one of the most densely populated cities in the world and you're bound to exhaust some power lines.

the lot of us - mariano (host dad), ines (host mom), andrés y francisco (host brothers) and i were finishing up the wine and starting to clear the plates when all of a sudden the room went dark. mariano started grumbling, ines went to the kitchen for candles and andrés, francisco and i threw open the door to the balcony and shuffled outside. our apartment was the penthouse in a nine-story building, and though nine flights of stairs doesn't seem that high up compared with the sky scrapers i've previously known, the traffic from below was muffled and far away and an eerie calm settled over our corner of palermo viejo.

andrés and francisco, both lanky and at least a head taller than their father, leaned over the edge of the balcony and were looking out below when someone started banging a pot against a railing a few blocks away. andrés and francisco started laughing and shaking their heads, with francisco pounding his fists half-heartedly against our railing as andrés explained that this happened during el críses when people would lose their power on a regular basis. within minutes, that one resounding CLANG CLANG CLANG-CLANG-CLANG was joined by leaden thuds and aluminum refrains as the neighbors broke out various kitchen utensils and took to their doors and rooftops as we had. everything for the long length of our street, was pitch black - no street lamps, no illuminated locutería signs, just the occasional headlights from cabs creeping onto our side street in the middle of a cut through. mariano and ines joined us on the balcony, mariano chuckling at the ruckus echoing around us, and the five of us stood sweating nine stories up until the streetlights came on street by street and the dining room lights glowed behind us. just as quickly as it had started, the balcony railing clamor subsided and everyone went back to their TVs, their dinners or their bedrooms, and mariano and ines went back to clearing the table.

andrés, francisco and i stayed outside for a minute or two longer than our parents, and i stayed out for a minute or two after andrés and francisco got bored and moseyed back inside. i spent a solid fifteen minutes hanging over the edge of the balcony looking up and down my street to make sure that it wasn't a fluke, and i went to bed that night completely in love with a power outage and everything about my neighbors and my home.

maybe it's the world cup madness and the fact that argentina is kicking SERIOUS ASS right now, but i find myself missing buenos aires and my host family more than i have since i left.

(if we lose power in this crazy humidity, i think we should start bangin' our pots and pans together.)

X H

14 June 2010

back on the grid! and back to june.



¡SHALOM FRIENDS!

i've left oh hey! in the dust this spring and that's just SAD. basically, i've been up to a lot of ridiculous life changes, including another layoff and another move, and both of them have left me picking up the pieces and putting my life back together (in a good way. i think.) here's the basic gist of what's going on:

I MOVED! my last landlord, who essentially kicked me out of my one-bedroom in porter because his brother moved into the apartment underneath me and wanted an upgrade, wasn't the nicest dude ever. unfortunately, this new guy, who lives in the second story of the house alaine and i have moved into, is much worse and the apartment was in such a state of filth and disrepair when we moved in that we freeeeeaked out. six weeks later we're still sorting everything out, but it's a livable space now and the place has definitely benefitted from a woman's (or two women's) touch(es). with that said, alaine is awesome, the neighborhood is fantastic (i can literally throw a rock at dalí and the wine and cheese cask, not that i'd want to) and we're trying to make this place a home. so far, so good. progress is the name of the game here.

I GOT LAID OFF! that's pretty much self-explanatory and my feelings about it are pretty mixed - liked the job, but am always up for new changes and challenges. (and let's be honest, my last commute was absolutely terrible courtesy of the ever-failing MBTA.) i've got a few interviews/prospects lined up for the next couple of weeks, which is encouraging, but in the meantime it's back to Funemployment for your favorite Gonzette. everything at the Dig is going great, though, which brings me to my next point -

I'VE BEEN WRITING TONS AND TONS OF THINGS FOR THE WEEKLY DIG! since SXSW, my editor at the Dig has been super benevolent with the story handouts and i've had the chance to interview and write up tons and tons and tons and tons of fascinating and fiercely talented artists. i wrote my favorite piece ever last week (it's coming out this wednesday so PICK IT UP) and i had the chance to write a Boston Pride profile on MEandJOANCOLLINS and MRS DANVERS, AND i got to do a hefty feature on Nathaniel Rateliff, who's my new obsession. long story short: Weekly Dig, I love you, thank you for reminding me why i love what i do on a daily basis.

I'VE BEEN HANGING OUT WITH ESME! my favorite Brit hopped across the pond about two weeks ago because she's got an internship in Deval Patrick's press office, and she's shacking up with me for the month! SO. MUCH. FUN. i love this girl to pieces. we've had a blast so far, she's met nearly all of my crazy, crazy friends and she fought jet lag like a champ on her first night out at zuzu. i'm a proud american mama.

I'VE BEEN PLOTTING THE REST OF MY ENDLESS SUMMER! the Newport Folk Festival is coming up in 6 weeks (AHHH!) and i have a slew of weekends blocked out at the lake house, so i'm a little too excited about what the rest of the summer has in store.

I'VE BEEN HANGIN' WITH THE GIRLS OF NEW BRAHMIN! so, i'm one of the newest contributors over at New Brahmin and i can't quit with the gushing about 'em. (granted, half of the ladies over there were friends of mine to begin with, but still.) my beat at NB is The Dressing Room, a column i contrived that raids the closets of boston's rock goddesses and discusses the difference between donning a costume for performance and rocking hoodies and jeans on the regular. mikey takes the photos, i do the interviews, and we walk away with some style insight from some of the most inspirational women in town. yesterday we had a shoot over by the train tracks off the mcgrath highway and some uninvited guests showed up (like gigantic mutant raccoons and people who live in bushes) but we came out unscathed. look for the next installment of TDR on thursday!

I'VE BEEN TAKING PHOTOS WITH PHOTOBOOTH! ok. so this last one happened during an unforgivable bout of writer's block at Sherman Cafe the other day. colors are fun, ok?

also, oh hey friends: I NEED NEW MUSIC. lately, my inbox has been jammed with press releases and album downloads, which is AMAZING, but I WANT MOOOOORE. if you've got a record, band or song that you've been blasting nonstop, leave it in the comments. i think i'm going to be making a few mixes in the near future...

X H

19 April 2010

hello and goodbye from portland.


this is what my morning looks like right now (albeit far more calm and less shaky; forgive the impromptu Photobooth shot.) it's calm, cool and bright in portland.  i'm packing up the last of my stuff, heading down the street for some breakfast at the bread & ink, and then hopping on a bus and beginning the looooooooong (way longer than i thought) journey back to boston.  i'll be back in town tonight around midnight, if anyone wants to fetch a fair damsel from the airport :D

this trip was lovely and full of food and friends and beach and GREEN. this city is LUSH. natalie took some beautiful pictures i'll share with you once she gets 'em up on the ol' flickr.  we had three days of the definition of goooooooood.

oh, and we went to the sleepy beach town where they filmed The Goonies.



more later.

X H

13 April 2010

spring fever.



(photo ganked from ringo! have a banana, aka one of the most adorable blogs in existence.  
she's got the right idea with these lilacs, here.)

GUYS.

I REALLY CAN'T CONCENTRATE. like, REALLY REALLY can't concentrate. like it's writer's block and daydreaming about spring and portland this weekend and picking out what color i'm going to paint the walls of my new room next week and...... other things. all combined. in mah skull. i'm staring at four open word docs at my desk, i'm caffeinated, i have clients calling me every five seconds and i can't seem to just simmer down and get to work.  i would so much rather be in my bed with my laptop and some tea with the windows open doing my work from there, especially if my window had some beautiful flowers in it like the lilacs above.  a girl can dream, right? that would fix this crazy creative slump, right? GYAH!

this is for a multitude of reasons, but i think it just wittles down to the fact that it's been rather pretty out, it's finally time to tune up the bike and that my absolute favorite time of year in boston is here.  i'm missing my favorite holiday (marathon monday) in favor of exploring one of the best cities on the "best coast" for the first time, but i'll be celebrating the unofficial kickoff of spring with one of my favorite people in a place i'm bound to love, so it's ok.

for those of you with any portland (OR, not ME) advice to impart, out with it.  never been, so stoked to be there, and i want to make the most of my weekend!

oh, and while we're on the topic of procrastinating/not concentrating - i have to find a dress to wear to my dear friend erin's wedding, as the one i ordered on sale from anthro is hilariously small.  the wedding's in the afternoon and the reception is in the evening at the biltmore in providence at the end of june - how do we feel about this one, or too casual?

ok. need to buckle down and write some stuff, the next installment of defend yourself! that's getting published in the weekly dig next week.  did y'all read my feature on freelance whales? if not, go put on "Generator ^ First Floor" and start scrollin'.

X H