Archive for the NYC Bands Category

Walking Through the Mine Fields w/ NC Shuva of PUi

Posted in Fashion, Interviews, Music, NYC Bands with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on January 10, 2011 by thefrogge

Sitting down with NC Shuva of PUi, is somewhat similar to walking through a field of mines. For real. This is because when you are with NC, you never quite know what you are going to get. He alludes to somebody who has two conflicting personalities, somewhat similar to Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. It almost sounds as if I am insulting Mr. Shuva, but what I just said about NC is something that he would most probably admit about himself. In fact, I am not insulting NC at all. He is one of the most interesting people I’ve ever met… And I wouldn’t be surprised if the whole world way feels the same way very, very soon.

I’ve been sitting on this interview for a while now, but the past two months have been incredibly exciting for the band. On Saturday, December 11th PUi sold out The Gramercy Theatre as they headlined Gotham Rocks presented by Live Nation. Friday, January 7th was their big west coast debut as they played The Troubadour, the famed rock n roll venue in Los Angeles. To top it off, they have been in the studio recording their new tracks (which are awesome.) It seems to me there is no better time to post this interview… Enjoy!

The Prince of PUi: NC Shuva

The Frogge: So here’s a question everyone is just dying to know… What in the world does PUi mean?

NC Shuva: It means Chinese-albino-midget!

TF: No it doesn’t…

NC: I can’t tell you what it means, but it’s the hardest question that people ask me…

TF: Why is it a secret?

NC: Because it shouldn’t matter to you what it means! It means something to me. What should matter to you is how the music sounds.

TF: Correct me if I am wrong, but I feel, music is all about sending messages, and sometimes before people actually hear the music itself, they hear the name of your band… So if they can’t understand what it means, what message is that sending?

NC: You’re right. The songs are about sending messages… The name of the band is completely selfish… It is a message, but an introverted message.

TF: Are you a selfish person?

NC: Horribly yes! Very, very selfish.

TF: Well, at least you can admit it. Are you doing anything to try to become a “better” person?

NC: Better? Hmm, I think I am just trying to become more selfish…

TF: Not really sure what I am supposed to say to that… Moving along… Who is PUi?

NC: PUi is a collection of very handsome gentleman trying to make fresh sounding, edgy, heavy, yet melodic, and at times, soft music… We are very eclectic. The members include, Leo Henry (vocals) Brain Hosey (bass) Ory Baum (drums) Tunc (percussion) and myself (guitar, vocals.)

TF: That sounds like a big feat! To be heavy, yet to be soft…

NC: English is my second language… I don’t know what that means…

TF: It means, that it sounds like a large goal to accomplish, in a good way.

NC: When you say you are an artist, you have to create something new… Because if you are doing what someone else has done 20 years ago, you are not an artist… You may be a “performer,” but you are not an artist. When you first see an artist, you should be scared. That’s what Elvis did, that’s what Madonna did. People didn’t know what to do with them, they didn’t understand them at first. I am not comparing myself to Elvis or Madonna because I am not that cocky, but they are my inspirations.

TF: Are you sure that you are not cocky?

NC: I am selfish, but believe it or not, I’m extremely honest with myself. I’m not cocky because I can always admit to my shortcomings. I am the first person to say that “I’m not good at this” or “I can be better at that.” I have to be that way because if I wasn’t, there would be no room for self-improvement.

TF: What do you think PUi does better than anyone else?

NC: That’s a hard question to answer. I think PUi does PUi better than anybody else. I can’t say that I’m the best guitarist, because I’m not. I can’t say that I’m the best singer, because I’m not. But I do think I’m a good performer. PUi does PUi…

TF: I could be wrong, but I feel you are influenced by System of a Down, Metallica, maybe even Tool

NC: In a very general, broad sense, yes. Those are bands that I personally like. When you like something, of course it is going to come into your own music. But, comparing PUi to System of  a Down or Metallica is very general. I guess if I absolutely had to compare us to someone, that would make a little bit of sense.

TF: Do you know what Keith Haring said about influences?

NC: No, what did he say?

TF: Keith Haring said, “I’d like to pretend that I’ve never seen anything, never read anything, never heard anything and then make something. Every time I make something I think about the people who are going to see it and every time I see something, I think about the person who made it.” I just think that idea is so interesting… It’s like, what would you, NC Shuva, make if you never heard music before?

NC: You know it’s interesting, I went to art school, and I heard many ideas similar to that the whole time I was there… I actually had to write an essay about this once. Is influence stealing or is it influence just a reference point? I think you need a reference point at some point in time, or your art may be too experimental. That’s the thing with having influences, it’s things that people have early on and you take them… Because if you look too far out, which I’m not the judge of what that is, if you don’t care about selling your albums, if you don’t care about money… Go on your own journey! Go all out! Don’t have a chorus to the song, don’t have a verse, make the song 20 minutes long… Those are all interesting thoughts, but it isn’t the reality.

TF: So are you saying that you care about “money” and “selling?”

NC: No. I don’t care about money.

TF: Really? So what do you care about? What is the goal? If you are not interested in money… are you interested in fame?

NC: I am interested in satisfaction. Because, money, what is money? Money is just paper.

TF: I agree that money is just paper… But I am not talking about the money itself… I am talking about what money can do for you… For example, let’s say you really wanted to go to Thailand… Money can take you there…

NC: I am happy here, doing what I am doing.

TF: That is beautiful. Speaking of “beautiful” I think one of the reasons that I enjoy watching PUi so much, is you are a really great visual band… Tell me about your visual style…

NC: It’s hard for people to believe when I say, and I really mean this, that I am not cocky. I just think confidence is the only way that you could do anything! Even if I fail at something, I want to fail with confidence. If I do fail, I am the first person to turn around and say, “Man, we fucked up,” but let’s try that again! It may look like I care about things that money can buy or that I’m a shallow person, but most of the things I buy are $10 or $20… unless it was a gift from someone or from a very special occasion. I guess I know how to make cheap things look expensive to other people, but they are always very cheap. I love making clothes by just wrapping a piece of cloth around my body.

TF: I did not know that you made your own clothes. Is this something that you learned in art school?

NC: I’ve always had a very visual mind that goes along with the music. Most of the time, I just get these ideas. We have a band stylist, her name is Angella, and she is a lot more talented with making things, so she makes a lot of our clothes. Conceptually, I come up with a lot of the ideas, about the clothes. I know how I want to look… For me, the visuals go hand-in-hand with the music.

(SIDE NOTE: For a closer, more intimate view on NC’s unique personal style, check out his interview on! For those of you who are not familiar with StyleLikeU, they are an online style site dedicated to finding extraordinary & inspiring individuals who tell the story of who they are through the clothing they choose to wear. They recently featured NC and you can catch that HERE!)

NC Shuva of PUi says he's a man who isn't afraid to wear a skirt & F you if you have a problem with it! Photo taken from

TF: So, let’s talk about the music… How do you start writing?

NC: I usually come in with an idea, or a concept, and then Leo will come up with the vocals, then Ory will come up with a beat. So, it starts out with me bringing in something and then together we develop the idea further.

TF: Do you consider ‘For the Gods’ PUi’s single? Ps… it’s my favorite PUi song… And also the new one Maara!

NC: I think ‘For the Gods’ represents us very well because we’re the type of band that has range. We can be angry, but at the same time we’re soft. At times it’s very violent and primal, so it feels basic, but then there are parts that break-in that are more complex.

TF: Do you consider yourself a musician, a performer or both?

NC: I think it goes hand-in-hand. I am a performer, but I am also a musician, I’ve had a guitar in my hands since I was three years old.

TF: Who gave you a guitar when you were three?

NC: My father, who is also a singer in Turkey.

TF: Is your mother an artist as well?

NC: Actually, both of my parents are doctors but my father is a classically trained Turkish singer who happens to be pretty famous. We recently had an honorary concert in his name and the president of Turkey gave him an award. Of course my father’s music is a lot different from what I do…

TF: It seems to me that PUi has a really good support system. I don’t want to use the word “fans” because it seems like the people who support you are more than just fans… But more of a core group of individuals who come together and really get what you are doing… It’s pretty exciting…

NC: I never liked the word “fans” either  because it’s really the people who make the history…

TF: PUi has moved people to the point that quite a few individuals have tattooed the bands symbol, the Crescent, on their body…

NC: Yes, we actually had to tell a few people not to get the Crescent tattooed on themselves! Of course, I want everybody to listen to our music, but if I don’t see you as my family member, I would rather be honest with you and say please don’t get that!

NC's Crescent Tat! Large & In Charge!

TF: So why did you choose the Crescent?

NC: It’s a very nice story actually, and it’s quite meaningful! It goes back to the moon. The moon is very primal, before there was anything people gauged everything by the moon. Batman used the bat symbol because he is afraid of bats. So, if I use the Crescent, I can conquer my own fears. For example, in Nazi Germany, they used pink triangles to label homosexuals, so, what did the gay community do? Instead of being held down by that label, they adopted the color pink as their own. If somebody tries to push you down with a symbol, the best way to not be afraid of it is to adopt is as your own. Now, I am not religious at all, and I do not support religion, in fact, I do not support any form of fanatical nationalism (basically, anything authority based, any organization, I do not support) because at this point, everything is meaningless, it’s like Coca-Cola. There’s no difference. So, I took a symbol, a symbol that labeled me as I was growing up [in Turkey] and I gave the symbol the exact opposite meaning. I have freed myself.

TF: That was beautiful, so I think we should end with that… But, is there anything else that you would like to say to me or tell me??

NC: If I wrote you a symphony, just to say how much you mean to me, what would you do?

TF: Hmmm, probably melt.

People of the Moon! Unite March 18th @ The Highline Ballroom!

P E O P L E   O F   T H E   M O O N !

U N I T E !

March 18th @ Highline Ballroom


Love your friend,

The Frogge ❤

PS… Tweet at me HERE! No Twitter follower gets left behind 🙂



Kelle Calco & The Colored Boys… Debut Show @ Don Hill’s!

Posted in DJ's, Fashion, Music, Nightlife, NYC Bands, Parties with tags , , , , , , , on November 6, 2010 by thefrogge

It all started last winter on a very cold day, curled up on a red velvet couch in the back of The Belmont Lounge. I was introduced to Kelle Calco, who was probably wearing Paisley, a year later at this point, I don’t remember. We were at his beloved Rolling Stones party drinking rum and listening to DJ Ian El Dorado‘s favorite song Can’t You Hear Me Knocking… We became instant friends as we somewhat see in the world in the same way and are concerned about the same things…

Kelle, it seemed, came out of nowhere… but quickly found his place among the Rock n’ Rollers… the Dreamers, the Merry-Makers, the Creatures of the Night. Wherever he went, he brought the good vibes, his peaceful, loving energy, his entourage of peacocks, as he calls them, and a very large bottle of rum.

The Rolling Stones party was the start of a new beginning… New friends, new faces, and a new scene to play in. The Belmont Lounge quickly became The Royalton Hotel, and red couches were replaced by fire places and platters of oysters… And then one day, Ladyland was born… A party dedicated to Love, Light, Laughter, Ecstacy, Inebriation, Grit, and Glamour.. Spreading and celebrating the spirit of a real and infectious musical sound which christened a lifestyle of liberation, libation, and celestial satisfaction.

But this coming Tuesday, November 9th, Kelle has another gift in store for us… His music… Which no one has heard… yet. There have been whispers in my ears saying very good things… very, very good things… And I can’t wait to heart Kelle Calco & The Colored Boys for myself.

Please join StyleLikeU as we invite you to experience the music of Kelle Calco & The Colored Boys for their Debut Show! Come show your love on Tuesday, November 9th at Don Hills … 511 Greenwich Street… 8:30 PM Sharp.

StyleLikeU invites you to experience the music of Kelle Calco & The Colored Boys

For more information, click here!

Love your friend,

The Frogge

PS… Tweet at me here!

Meeting in the Middle…

Posted in Fashion, Music, Nightlife, NYC Bands, Parties with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 7, 2010 by thefrogge

It’s been almost a week since Tommy Gunn‘s return to New York City’s Rock & Roll scene. His new debut took place at Bowery Electric last Thursday night… Why is The Frogge posting this article 6 days later, you may ask? The answer is simple. I originally wrote this article for a different publication, not for The Frogge. However, when they received my article, first the editor said, “This is too long.” So I said, “Well, a lot happened.” Then they said, “Your point of view is too strong.” So I said, “I am a Frogge and I have a brain. Clearly, I am going to a have a point of view, and I intend on using it. There are enough so-called writers out there who have no voice. I don’t intend on being one of them.” Then they said, “If you want us to publish this article, you have to take out all the content about the bands.” And thats when I got pissed off. We were at Bowery Electric for Pete’s sake… The venue has a stage… TEN bands played at the party… This was an event BASED ON THE MUSIC. There was no way I was taking that element out. So I said, “You know what, forget it. It’s fine. I’ll post this article on The Frogge, where it won’t be butchered and shredded to pieces. Have a nice day.” 6 days later, here it is babies…

(All photos courtesy of Deena Cavallo)

Thursday April 1st, 9:45 pm: I get an ardent text message from my good friend, rock & roll promoter and host, Samuel Valentine. “Get over here quick,” he writes me, “The line is insane. It’s halfway down the block!” “I’m on the list,” I write back, as I laugh at myself to myself. Did I really just say that? Well yeah, I did, because it was true. “List smhist,” he replies, “If the place reaches capacity, the place reaches capacity, and it’s filling up pretty quickly.”

What was the cause of all this commotion? The answer is simple. For the first time in 20 long years, legendary rock & roll promoter and A-List-party-thrower Tommy Gunn held his reunion shebang this past Thursday night at Bowery Electric on the LES. Apparently, in the 1980’s Tommy Gunn was the go-to-guy for the grandest of times. So the story goes, it was Tommy Gunn who bravely held the blazing torch that paved the path for the rock & roll scene that was known for dominating the 80’s and is still remembered, respected, and revered till this very day.

The Man Himself: Mr. Tommy Gunn

I arrived at the venue in my best rock & roll attire; lace, leather, dark lipstick, and a decent amount of hairspray. Having zero patience for lines, I walked right up to the front. “Hi, I’m on the list,” I said very politely to a woman that I have never seen before.

I took in my surroundings. Who were all these people? What hole did they crawl out of? Was the reappearance of just one man from more than 20 years ago really causing this much chaos? My gosh, the scene at the door was a complete collision of the old-school & the new-school, each category thinking they are more important than the other. The old-schoolers from 20 years ago were thinking, “Who the hell are these pip-squeaks? When they were in diapers, we were at The Limelight, Palladium, Webster Hall and The Tunnel! What could these kids possibly know about The Nightlife… About ‘real’ rock & roll?” And of course, the new-school kids were thinking, “Shouldn’t you be at home with your kids? Your grandkids?? Who authorized you to wear that outfit??? For Pete’s sake, you’re over 45 years old, take off the leather corset!!!!” The unnecessary tension between the old-school and the new-school kind of made me feel like I was back in middle school, but I guess you can’t expect anything different when a massive amount of people are trying to get through one little door with the supposed promise of paradise inside.

Certified New School Scenesters Leo Henry & NC Shuva of PUi

However, once we were all inside, or rather, once those who made it inside were inside, I felt the tension slowly begin to melt away. In the end, it didn’t matter which school you were from. We were all there to support the same cause. We all love, live for, eat, sleep and breathe rock & roll. Now that we were inside, it was time to party like it was 1989!

The party kicked off with a fashion show by ex-Project Runway contestant Stella Zotis. The designs were not my cup of tea, but my wanting the fashion show to end just made me more excited for the bands to come on! There were ten bands on the bill: Natasha Komis (Who you may know from Paris Hilton’s My BFF on MTV and some HOT American Apparel billboards,) Ray West, Wild Street, Brad Factor:10, Dirty Penny, Attention Deficit Society, The Party Death (You may know lead singer Joshua ‘London’ Lee  from VH1’s Daisy of Love,) Electric Mary, The Mighty Pragmatics and Flesh Gordon. Natasha Komis, the only lady on the bill, boldly took the stage first and opened the show with a bang! She looked super hot in her barely-there-see-through-tights, black bra, huge silver cross and teeny-tiny leather jacket.

Rock & Roll's First Lady Natasha Komis opening up the show!

Each band got to play a set of three songs as we listened to DJ Dan Pyro and DJ Supermorgan in between sets. The most memorable bands, in my opinion were Dirty Penny, The Party Death & Brad Factor.

Dirty Penny is comprised of four Young & Reckless boys from Santa Cruz, California; Binge Daniels, Jonny Prynce, Spanky Savage and Tyno Vincent. Watching Dirty Penny is sort of like witnessing a tornado. They blow in, wreck a lot of crap, turn your world upside-down, and then blow out; leaving you paralyzed in your place wondering, “What the F just happened here!?” I absolutely loved their endless supply of energy, beautiful-brother-like-chemistry, and super-catchy-sing-a-long-songs. In my opinion, they are the ultimate “let’s have a sick time and party band.” If you share that attitude, you must check them out when they come to your home state, or better yet, take a road trip to see them!

Mr. Spanky Savage of Dirty Penny. Go check out this band... now!

The Party Death is also comprised of four guys; Joshua ‘London’ Lee, Nathanial John, Jack Nightrain, and Dave Dynamite. They took the stage, asked us if we were “ready to die,” causing the everyone to go crazy, pushing each other (in a loving way, of course,) rushing the stage, fighting to be right up front. Some people even made pretty valid attempts at crowd surfing, including The Party Deaths drummer, Nathanial John who jumped onto the crowd at the end of their set.

Joshua 'London' Lee from The Party Death wanting to know if "We're Ready to Die??"

Brad Factor:10, “The Yuppies from Hell,” (the 10 being silent,) is composed of five guys who used play a lot back in the day at Danceteria and other venues in NYC circa1991. I have no idea where they have been or what they have been doing for the past 19 years, but they came back with a vengeance! They took the stage as if they have never left in their preppy clothing clearly mocking the 9-5er’s in this world making me wish I was around in 1991 to see them rock it back then. They were a blast from the past, and caused everyone in the room to beg for more as they closed out their set.

Brad Factor:10. I don't know where the hell these guys came from, but I hope they come again. I loved these guys.

The party was a great success. The people who attended were truly there for the music, and in return they dressed up to the nines and played the part. After all, isn’t that what ‘a scene’ truly is at its core? A group of people who are passionate about a certain type of music and in return dress the part to express their passion physically? I think that now-a-days certain people in ‘the scene’ are too concerned with seeing and being seen that they forget what its really about. Thank you to Tommy Gunn for coming back from the past to remind us, please don’t wait another 20 to do so!

Love your friend who will not compromise,

The Frogge ❤

You Can Hate My Heart & Chain My Soul… BUT…

Posted in Music, NYC Bands with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 30, 2010 by thefrogge


I am excited to report that my very good friends The Dirty Pearls have very recently returned home to NYC safe & sound. Thank god that their plane didn’t crash as they flew back home from their journey to SXSW. As I have said before, There’s something happening here, and what it is… is becoming more and more clear every day. The R&R scene is building, slowly but surely the snowball is getting larger and larger. It’s only a matter of time before it takes off and gains tremendous speed… And when it starts to fly down the mountain at full force, if I were you, I’d either join in or get the F out of the way. I know a lot of us kids are feeling this vibe, and if you aren’t… You need to open up your eyes, but more importantly, your ears, or start hanging out in new places (which reminds me… I FINALLY found a new party that I genuinely like a lot… it could, quite possibly, be my new home… definitley more about this later… but in the meantime, I’ll give you a hint, it involves The Stones. YAY!)

The Pearls played two shows at SXSW. Gaining new exposure to a fresh market & fan base. Unfortunately, I was unable to attend SXSW (maybe next year I will make it a point to go) so I don’t personally know the outcome of the shows, BUT, if they were anything like the March 16th show at Irving Plaza or the March 3rd show at Santos Party House, the boys shall be in excellent shape. Both NYC shows were sold out (which is really impressive since the boys sold out The Gramercy Theatre in December as well.) Apparently the show at Santos was COMPLETE chaos, with a line outside that went around the block and a room so packed on the inside that you couldn’t walk. I was unable to attend that show, as my wisdom teeth were pulled out on the day before (yes, Frogge’s have wisdom teeth too!) and unfortunately, I was more of a chipmunk than a Frogge. So, I am going to tell you a little bit about the Irving Plaza show, in case you missed out on all that groovy action.

As Guitarist Johnny B would say, "This pic is THE TITS!" Literally & Figuratively...

March 16th, 2010: The Dirty Pearls opened for culty-fav Andrew WK. I am not into A-WK, but apparently, this was a big deal because this was A-WK’s first show in 5 years and people were freakin’ out. I ran like the wind to Irving Plaza, straight from an audition, since the Pearls were scheduled to play at 8:30… However, in true R&R fashion, they did not grace the stage until about 9/9:15 (I really should know better by now, and just come later, but I hate the idea of missing the opening song.) The first thing that I noticed was that I barely knew anyone in the audience… which is always a great sign because not to sound obnoxious, but I usually know (mostly) everybody in the audience. I think it is really important for a band to play in front of different types of audiences, if possible. Not only is it great to expose your band to new faces, but it keeps things fresh. I found a nice, cozy spot close to the front, right of the stage next to a group of very rowdy boys from… I believe, Indiana…

The lights went down, Rich Russo from 101.9 XRP took the mic, introduced The Pearls, and it was on. The Pearls opened the show with “Whether You Like It Or Not” followed by their two newest songs “Outrun The Sun” and “Caffeine & Gasoline,” which I believe will be their new single. Even though most of the people in the audience were seeing them for the first time, by this point, The Pearls had won them over.

Mr. Marty E... Banging Away Like There's No Tomorrow... Photo By Coco

The band seemed to have a new energy… Something was somewhat different… It was as if they had slightly altered themselves in a new and exciting way… We could all tell that they were super psyched to be there and play for us, which in return, made us psyched to be there and watch them. The exchange of energy was really flowing, especially when guitarist Johnny B played the guitar with his teeth; this made the audience get very excited, especially the girls. Even though this was only Tommy Mokas‘s 3rd New York show, it seemed as if he had been with the band forever. He is a perfect fit into the puzzle that makes up The Pearls, and his level of energy, enthusiasm, and adorableness compliments this quintet quite nicely.

Johnny B & Marty E... Photo By Coco

I know that you are probably very upset if you missed this show, but have no fear. Lead singer, Tommy London‘s birthday bash is coming up soon and The Pearls plan to make a show out of it.

Don't Miss The Pearls! Tuesday April 15th @ The Mercury Lounge!

Tuesday April 15th at The Mercury Lounge! Be there, or… You know the rest. My friends The Party Death are also on the bill… they have never played with The Pearls before, so this is a new combination you don’t wanna miss…

Love Your Friend,

The Frogge ❤

RIBBIT OF THE DAY: The ROTD goes to Johnny B… Quite a few days after The Pearls got home from SXSW, I got the following message on Facebook from guitarist Johnny B… Here it is, directly from Facebook, copy & pasted for your enjoyment:

Johnny B Azari March 23 at 8:07pm Reply: I just now finally shit out the pig I ate Salt Licks BBQ on sat night – can that go in the blog?

The answer is Yes, Dearest Johnny. It can go in the blog 🙂


Posted in DJ's, Fashion, Music, Nightlife, NYC Bands, Parties with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on December 6, 2009 by thefrogge

Dearest readers… Happy Sunday! Today is a very special day for The Frogge and I would like to share it with all of you. The Frogge is so pleased and proud to announce that she has been mentioned in the December issue of Blackbook Magazine (page 99 to be exact!) as a nightlife blogger, New York based actress, club kid, and overall important contributor to the New York City nightlife scene.

The article was written by NY nightlife legend Steve Lewis… The man who was behind iconic clubs such as Palladium, Limelight, Tunnel, Danceteria, The World, Red Zone, Club USA, Plaid, Spa, Butter, Marquee, Aspen Social Club and many, many more… (Oh, and did I mention he is in the process of designing 8 new clubs?)

The article is called “The Kids Stay In The Picture” and was inspired by a photo that was taken in 1989 at infamous Michael Alig‘s annual party called The Changing Of The Guard… And here it is…

Michael Alig's 1989 Changing of the Guard Party @ The Red Zone

Exactly 20 years later, Steve Lewis wanted to make it a point that the scene has not disappeared. In fact, it is alive and well. He explains in Blackbook that, “Back in Alig’s day, the annual ‘Changing of the Guard’ party and group photo announced a who’s-who of upcoming club kings and queens. To usher in the new decade, we’ve done the same with the classiest crop of pleasure junkies.” And without further adieu… Here we are…

Club Royalty: The Class of 2010

In case you are wondering just who is in this picture… The Frogge shall explain…

(From left to right in the back row) Mr. HUNTER THOMPSON: Stylist, professional crumper & dead animal collection/ DANZIE: DJ, music specialist & blogger… Check her blog out at Mr. SAMUEL VALENTINE: NY nightlife promoter, event host & band booker/ THE FROGGE: writer of THEFROGGE.COM (obviously) & actress/ Mr. PATRICK DUFFY: Owner of Serpentine/ Mr. YING CHU: Fashion designer/ KENDRA MARTYN: Door girl @ The Tribecca Grand Hotel/ AXEL KOHLER: Menswear designer/ EPIPHANY GET PAID: Performance artist/ LAUREN DILLARD: DJ, NY nightlife promoter, event host, musician, member of the band Creep/ APRIL CHALPARA: Band member of Figure Study/ NADIA KOCH: Co-Owner of Home Sweet Home/ ALEX CHAPMAN: Stylist & clothier/ LIBBY BROOCKS: Jazz singer & photographer… Check her pix out on (From left to right in the front row) Mr. JERMAINE JAGGER: Designer & DJ/ WILLIAM MERRELL: Bartender & tooth-and-bone collector/ DJ NITA AVIANCE: DJ at Mr. Black/ ONE-HALF NELSON: Designer, host & overall eccentric/ JAMES COPPOLA: Promoter, event host & founder of…and last but not least… LADYFAG: Performer, writer & nightlife personality.

To quote Lewis in his article, “With Alig tucked away in an exclusive venue with a very tough door: the upstate prison where he remains incarcerated today, a new generation of style-savvy merrymakers has risen to carry the torch.”

NYC nightlife, the real nightlife (cause you know that I am definitely not talking about the dive bar on the corner of 33rd street & 3rd ave.) is more than just “going out and getting some drinks.” (If you treat it that way… well, that’s exactly why  you aren’t in this picture.)

What you have to, need to understand is that nightlife is a place where artists of all kinds (actors, actresses, DJ’s, musicians, writers, designers, stylists, photographers, ect) come together and exchange ideas, exchange creative energy… Whether its hearing a new great song, discovering your new favorite band, seeing a piece of clothing that you just need to have, meeting your new best friend, seeing something that you have never seen before, doing something that you never thought you would do… The nightlife is our perfect fantasy land where we go to escape the mundane… It’s where we go to let our alter egos play with all the other alter egos… To grow, to learn, to see, and most importantly to push the boundaries… to defy normalcy… because nothing is more boring than being normal.

We know that carrying the torch is a tough job, but someone’s gotta do it, and I couldn’t be more honored that its us.

RIBBIT OF THE DAY: I gotta give the ribbit to Marilyn Monroe when she said, “Imperfection is beauty; madness is genius. And it’s better to be absolutely ridiculous than absolutely boring.” I think this quote perfectly defines the nightlife, the kids, and the beautiful movement that we are a part of.

Love your friend,


*A big thank you to Mr. Steve Lewis for writing this beautiful article and giving us kids the recognition that we deserve. Check out his column GOOD NIGHT MR. LEWIS and get your very own copy of Blackbook magazine at a magazine stand near you! (Mila Kunis is on the cover and she looks F’n HOT!!)

Rock N’ Roll Is In Our Souls…

Posted in Interviews, Music, Nightlife, NYC Bands with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 26, 2009 by thefrogge

The Frogge loves NYC nightlife for lots & lots of reasons… but one of the main reasons is, there are so many different scenes all packed onto one relatively small island! With so many different spots that you can choose from each and every night, you’d have to be crazy to think that there is only just “one scene.” In fact, there are quite a few, starting with the hipster scene, the rock n’ roll scene, the gay scene, the model scene, the house/techno music scene, the list can go on and on, ect…

However, I think this is a really important moment in time to give specific mention to the rock n’ roll scene because lots of exciting things are happening within it… Bands that are now considered “NY local bands,” will not be considered local bands for much longer… For example, Hypernova (one of my favorite NY bands) just got signed (congrats boys!)… The Dirty Pearl’s newest single New York City Is A Drug is being playing on 101.9 WXRP, The Sex Slaves just returned home from their European tour & Wild Street (as well as The Party Death) both just returned home from touring the U.S.

So what did The Frogge do? The Frogge sat down with the one man in NYC who loves and supports the rock n’ roll scene most… Mr. Samuel Valentine

There he is... Mr. Samuel Valentine

There he is... Mr. Samuel Valentine

The Frogge: I am here with Mr. Samuel Valentine outside of the Vains of Jenna music video shoot. Hi Samuel! How’s it going?

Samuel Valentine: I’m cold!

TF: Yes, it is very cold out… which is annoying because I think someone told me it was going to be 76 degrees today, but whatever… We have more important things to talk about than the weather. Tell me a little about this video shoot that we are at… This band is called Vains of Jenna…What song are they shooting the video for?

SV: The song is called Mind Pollution… It is Vains of Jenna’s new single!

TF: How did you get involved with this video shoot…

SV: I helped the director with the casting and brought over most of the people. I figured that I’d bring all my people here to be a part of the video and it would be a great way to promote the show that is coming up this Tuesday.

TF: Well you did a good job… The people look hot!

SV: Really hot! Especially the girls…

TF: Rarrr! I know… there are like 5 guys here… they are having a field day in there! So, tell me a little bit about yourself… Do you consider yourself a host? A promoter? A band booker?

SV: Everything… It’s all in one… anything that I can do that involves music and great people…

TF: How did you originally get involved with nightlife and the NYC rock n’ roll scene?

SV: When I first moved to New York, I had a really crappy job! But I started going out to a bunch of parties and getting involved in the NY scene… One day, I went to an after hours party and when I left, I got mugged on the street. The next day, I went back to the same party and showed up all f**ked up! The guy that worked there asked me what happened… He felt really bad, because he knew that I had been there the night before… So we started talking, and I told him about my crappy job… So he asked me if I wanted to help him out promoting his party to make some extra cash… So I did it, and it started to catch on… I got good at it… And now 5 years later, I am still doing it…

TF: What are some of the places that you have promoted for?

SV: Lots of places! I started with an after hours party at a place called Remix… but I have done Snitch, Marquee, Greenhouse, Cain, Hudson Terrace, The Gates, Pop, Highline Ballroom, The Studio at Webster Hall… too many to mention, pretty much every club in town…

TF: Now, you are still promoting clubs, but you also are booking bands and putting together your own rock shows, which is awesome! Do you think your involvement with the club scene helped get you to where you are now?

SV: Oh yeah, definitely. When I was working at Snitch, they had bands performing live almost every night… I realized that I could help out some of my friends by getting them shows there… When I moved to the States, I wanted to be in a band myself, but it didn’t happen for various reasons… But I knew I wanted to help bands out, so I started booking shows of bands that I wanted to see. Nobody was putting on the shows that I wanted, so basically I started doing it for myself. If there is a band that I want to see play live, I book them a show… I end up booking my dream shows that nobody else is doing…

TF: We will talk about Big City Rebels 2 in a second, because that coming up this Tuesday, but first I want to talk about Big City Rebels 1 because that was the gateway to BCR2… Who played at BCR1?

SV: The Sex Slaves, Wildstreet, Hypernova, BM Linx, and The Party Death…

TF: That’s a hot line up… I love Hypernova… (but that’s old news… everybody knows that The Frogge loves Hypernova.) When you book a band, what do you look for?

SV: First of all talent… kids who are young, who have style, who put on a great live show… I don’t like booking some guy who only plays in jeans and a t-shirt, because it’s boring. I think music is attached to fashion… they go hand in hand…

TF: Well, you must have done something right because BCR1 had a great turnout, I was there myself… I thought that every band did a great job… especially BM Linx and The Sex Slaves… They both played great sets…

SV: Yeah, it was awesome. About 250 people showed up and we were also broadcasting live on a website called Over 400 people logged in to watch the show live from all around the world… 13 different countries tuned in…

TF: So due to the success of Big City Rebels 1, BCR2 is coming up this Tuesday! Are you excited?

SV: Yup, yup!

TF: Who is playing this time around?

SV: Vains of Jenna, Wild Street, Dirty Penny and Natasha Komis.

TF: Since Vains of Jenna is headlining the show; let’s talk about them first… How did you first discover them?

Vains of Jenna

Vains of Jenna

SV: I first listened to them when I was living in Puerto Rico, their band started in Sweden… I really liked them, and I became a fan of their music. It was funny because after Big City Rebels 1, their manager actually contacted the singer [Eric Jayk] from Wild Street to do a show with them. The next morning they called me and asked me to put it together and I was like, “Are you serious?!” I had to do a double take. I was super excited about that.

TF: This band is under Bam Margera’s record label, Filthy Note Records, correct?

SV: Yup… They are one of the first bands that Bam signed…

TF: Nice. I actually Wikied them and found out some interesting info… like how Gilby Clarke (former Guns N’ Roses guitarist) produced their demo, they also have appeared in a bunch of big magazines like Spin, Blender, and Hustler… So they are doing big things. It’s rad that they are going to play your show! Tell me about the other bands that are playing BCR2… I know that Wild Street is one of your favorite bands in New York…


Wild Street

SV: When I first moved to New York, Wild Street was the only band that I knew that was playing 80’s influenced metal… Since that’s the kind of music that I really, really like, I fell in love with them the first moment I saw them…

TF: Aww… that’s kind of sweet…

SV: I have been booking them now for about three years, and I really believe in them. I think they are going to make it…

TF: Okay, next up… Dirty Penny… Who are they?

SV: Dirty Penny is a band from Santa Cruz, California… I discovered them through MySpace… They also are an 80’s influenced band, but with a modern twist. They aren’t cheesy, they are just bad-ass. They are sleazy, 80’s, rock n’ roll, big hair, tight pants kind of guys… they play a great live show. High fuel rock n’ roll! They are starting a new movement that is influenced by the 80’s but coming back with a new modern twist for our generation. It’s very exciting to see this new movement happening again.

The Boys of Dirty Penny

The Boys of Dirty Penny

TF: Last up, we have Natasha Komis… the only lady in the line up!

SV: I met her hanging around at clubs, and her band is more like electro-rock, but they still have a little of the 80’s influence as well. I think they are one of the better bands here in NY. Their live show is insane… they have a great sound, a great look… they are exciting. She is also known for the big billboard campaigns that she has done for American Apparel and for the MTV reality show Paris Hilton BFF.

Natasha Komis for American Apparel

Natasha Komis for American Apparel

TF: Yeah, I have seen those America Apparel ads… I like ’em… BCR1 was at The Studio at Webster Hall… but now BCR2 is at Santos Party House (96 Lafayette Street between Walker and White.) May I ask why you decided to switch up the venue?

SV: It really just came down to space. Vains of Jenna is a big band, and we needed a place to have the show that had a larger capacity. The Studio at Webster Hall would have been too small. Plus, Wild Street had already played that venue, so I wanted to switch it up. Hopefully the next BCR will be at an even bigger venue.

TF: So tell the people when and where they can catch Big City Rebels 2!

SV: This Tuesday October 27th at Santos Party House, doors open at 7 pm! 10 bucks at the door… You can also buy tickets in advance on…

Big City Rebels 2! This Tuesday 10/27!

Big City Rebels 2! This Tuesday 10/27! 7 pm!

TF: I will see you there…

SV: Sounds good! Get your party pants on!

TF: Oh, they are already on!

~          ~          ~          ~          ~

So come out and support some NYC local bands that won’t be local bands for much longer and someday very soon when these kids will be selling out shows at Madison Square Garden, you will be able to say that you knew them way back when…

RIBBIT OF THE DAY: This is random and doesn’t have very much to do with this post but, I just want to make a point that jealousy will get you nowhere in this life. Neither will talking crap about other people. Of course this is obvious, but I feel that sometimes we need to be reminded of these kinds of things. Always remember, you catch more flies with honey than with vinegar, so go out there and be the sweet piece of sugar that you are.

Love your friend,

The Frogge ❤

PS- I know that a ton of people are reading THE FROGGE! (WordPress allows you to check your stats… Pretty cool, huh?) So I just wanted to say THANK YOU for your support! It really means a lot! Also… don’t be shy to leave your comments! Tell me what you liked, what you didn’t, what you want more of, & if there is anything that you think I should write about, ect… I’d love to hear from you, you, and yes, YOU!

A Very Mad, Mad Hatter’s Tea Party!

Posted in Do-It-Yourself, Food, Music, NYC Bands, Parties on August 5, 2009 by thefrogge

I know, I know!! I have been a bad Frogge!! It has been exactly one week since I have posted last and I don’t even have that good of an excuse as to why I have been so M.I.A. (Except for the fact that there was a four day period where I literally just did not go home… and therefore was not by my computer.) Anywhoo… Let’s not waste time, let’s get down to business… 

The Frogge thinks that parties are very important. Especially because you only live once, right? And in these times of ‘economic unrest’ or whatever you want to call it, there is nothing better than getting together with some of your friends and having some good, old fashioned fun. Sadly, summer is almost over (boo)… Today is August 5th, and  The Frogge doesn’t even know where summer has went. So what does that mean? It means if you haven’t thrown a summer celebration yet you have about four weeks left to throw the most kick butt Mad Hatter’s Tea Party E-V-E-R… and for those of you who aren’t natural hosts… The Frogge will tell you exactly how to do this! Don’t worry, its easy… and… your friends will love you (more than they already do!) 

Why a very mad, Mad Hatter’s tea party, you may ask? Because everyone loves Alice in Wonderland… Plus! The new Alice in Wonderland directed by Tim Burton is coming out (kind of) soon… sooo this theme is highly appropriate… (Let’s just hope that Tim Burton does not mess up Alice in Wonderland like he messed up Charlie and the Chocolate Factory… because that was just creepy and Johnny Depp seemed more like a pedophile than Willy Wonka… strange since normally JD can do no wrong.) 

No one is cooler than the Mad Hatter! And The Frogge means no one! (Okay, maybe Alice... but that's it!)

No one is cooler than the Mad Hatter! And The Frogge means no one! (Except maybe for Johnny Depp as the Mad Hatter... we will find out when the movie comes out!)

The first step to throwing a really great party is making a guest list. This may sound obvious but do not invite people who suck. People who suck will ruin your party. Only invite people who you really want to invite, people who have good energy, people who will add something to the atmosphere, people who will bring a bottle of champagne! 

After your guest list is complete, I suggest sending out real invitations in the mail. Why? Because facebook invitations are lame-o. They are boring, impersonal, and since most people get a few of them a day… they kind of get disregarded or not taken very seriously. On the other hand, snail mail is awesome! Think about it, when was the last time you got a real letter in the mail? A year ago? 5 years ago? In 1994? Getting a real letter in the mail is pretty much as exciting as Christmas morning… so send out real invites! Common sense suggest that If people get excited about the invitation, it will make them more excited for the actual party. (If you want to get really into the Mad Hatter’s theme, there is a company called “All Things Alice.” They make really nice blank note cards … you can order a box of them on for $11.70. They look like this… 

"All Things Alice" die-cut note cards

"All Things Alice" die-cut note cards

Okay, moving along, once you have picked out your invitations you need to write them (duh!) This is what The Frogge would say in her invite: Dear (Insert name of guest here)… The Frogge cordially invites you to Wonderland conveniently located at (insert address of party here) on (insert date and time here.) “Do not be late for this very important date,” as the White Rabbit said! Please RSVP at (insert phone # here) or OFF WITH YOUR HEAD! 

I would “strongly encourage” that everyone wear some kind of a hat… after all this is a Mad Hatter’s tea party! I suggest to have this party on a Sunday afternoon, around 3 p.m. works nice… and I also suggest having it outside in a garden, if you can. If you don’t have a garden or access to an outdoor space… maybe a park would work? Being outside always adds something nice to any party. 

There is nothing cuter than cute girls in cute hats... or bows!

There is nothing cuter than cute girls in cute hats... or bows!

Okey dok… let’s talk decoration. Decoration is highly important because it reinforces the theme of your party and also sets the mood and creates atmosphere… I think there are mainly four elements to a party (1. the food and drinks 2. the people at the party 3. the decoration/location and 4. the music.) That said, 25% of the success of your party relies on decor! So I am just going to throw out a ton of ideas and you can pick and choose, mix and match as many of them as you want…

1. You need teacups and saucers! This is a tea party, so teacups are pretty key. Whether or not they are a set, or completely mismatched is up to you. Personally, I like when all the cups and saucers are mismatched… because this is a Mad Hatter’s tea party… we are not having a high tea with the Queen of England. If you do not have any teacups and would like to make this type of a party and are on a budget check out the salvation army stores, thrift stores, vintage stores, TJ Max, Marshalls, Century 21… all those places have cheap teacups… throw ’em in the dishwasher, and you are good to go!  

2. If you have the party outside, bring out furniture… couches, tables, chairs, lamps, mirrors, candles with candle holders, a hat rack (if any of your guests want to take their hat off.) This furniture is a reference to when Alice is falling down the rabbit hole… there is a ton of furniture in there… Also, when Alice has tea with the Mad Hatter, they are sitting outside in a garden, but at a long table… 

See! Lots & lots of furniture!

See! Lots & lots of furniture!

3. You can put out red roses… real ones, fake ones… whatever you like… or! You can buy white roses and paint them half red… this is a reference to when the cards are painting the roses red… Whether you put them in vases or scatter them around, it’s up to you… 

The Queen she likes 'em red!

The Queen she likes 'em red!

4. Get a pack of cards and scatter them around… put them face up… this is clearly a reference to the cards pictured above… 

5. You can get a croquet set and play croquet… You would be surprised as to how many places sell croquet sets including the Sports Authority… but also try ebay for a better deal. It’s also always nice to have some sort of activity at a party as well… everybody loves a little friendly competition… think beer pong, but classier… 

Who wouldn't want to spend a nice Sunday afternoon playing croquet?

Who wouldn't want to spend a nice Sunday afternoon playing croquet?

… When The Frogge had her own very mad, Mad Hatter’s tea party… she also set up a badminton net… SO FUN!

A little friendly competition can get intense... especially when you are playing in sundresses!

A little friendly competition can get intense... especially when you are playing in sundresses!

 5. Skeleton keys are everywhere now… they are easy to find… put skeleton keys all around as a reference to when Alice is locked in the room and talking to the doorknob… remember…  first she is too small to reach the key, then she is too big to fit through the door…

Alice: I simply must get through! Doorknob: Sorry, you're much too big. Simply impassible. Alice: You mean impossible? Doorknob: No, impassible. Nothing's impossible.

Alice: I simply must get through! Doorknob: Sorry, you're much too big. Simply impassible. Alice: You mean impossible? Doorknob: No, impassible. Nothing's impossible.

6. Put little tags on all of your food that says “Eat Me” & put little tags on all of your drinks that say “Drink Me.” 

"There seemed to be no use in waiting by the little door, so she went back to the table, half hoping she might find another key on it, or at any rate a book of rules for shutting people up like telescopes: this time she found a little bottle on it, ('which certainly was not here before,' said Alice,) and round the neck of the bottle was a paper label, with the words 'DRINK ME' beautifully printed on it in large letters.

"There seemed to be no use in waiting by the little door, so she went back to the table, half hoping she might find another key on it, or at any rate a book of rules for shutting people up like telescopes: this time she found a little bottle on it, ('which certainly was not here before,' said Alice,) and round the neck of the bottle was a paper label, with the words 'DRINK ME' beautifully printed on it in large letters.

7. Get a hookah! This is a reference to the caterpillar! And smoking hookah is really fun… I suggest apple flavored tobacco, it is a neutral flavor that most people like… 

Caterpillar: Who... are... you? Alice: Why, I hardly know, sir. I've changed so much since this morning, you see. Caterpillar: No, I do not C, explain yourself. Alice: I'm afraid I can't explain myself, you see, because I'm not myself.

Caterpillar: Who... R ... U? Alice: Why, I hardly know, sir. I've changed so much since this morning, you see. Caterpillar: No, I do not C, explain yourself. Alice: I'm afraid I can't explain myself, you see, because I'm not myself.

Those are some ideas that I came up with… I am sure there are more and if you want to come up with some other ideas yourself, buy a copy of Alice in Wonderland and skim over the pages to get inspired… you never know what you will think of… But moving along, lets talk about the food and drinks…

Drinks: Cleary, you need tea, but since it is summer, it is hot… for obvious reasons go with iced tea… put fresh slices of lemon inside a pitcher of iced tea. You can also mix iced tea with lemonade to make an Arnold Palmer (yum!)… I like variety so I would also have a strawberry lemonade in a pitcher with fresh slices of lemon and strawberries… you could also go with something a little bit less traditional like limeade… which is so good… PS- strawberry lemonade with vodka is amazing… as is limeade. If you have this party on a Sunday afternoon, you could also have “brunch” drinks such as mimosas and bloody Mary’s… don’t forget the celery stalk! 

Food: It is a tea party, so you need to have [some of] the traditional tea party foods such as… scones with jams, butter,and Devonshire cream, little sandwiches… especially cucumber sandwiches… smoked salmon sandwiches are popular too, breads, cakes, tarts, and little delicate cookies… 

Yum... The Frogge likes to cook... And then eat... Who doesn't?

Yum... The Frogge likes to cook... And then eat... Who doesn't?

But because this is a Mad Hatter’s tea party, I think you need to add in some untraditional tea party foods as well… just go with things that people love… go with whatever you love… pick stuff that you are really happy to give to people… I would suggest making a mozzarella caprese salad (don’t forget to garnish with basil!) Maybe some guacamole! Everyone loves guacamole (don’t forget to get some chips to serve it with.) For the skinny bitches, put together a vegetable platter with some dips… you can have a cream based dip like ranch if you want… but also have hummus incase any of your guests are vegan. Speaking of hummus, you can make a nice platter of hummus garnished with olives and paprika served with pita bread or pita chips… If you want to do this party but have a question feel free to email me at… I would be glad to help you.

Lastly… don’t forget the music (and avoid top 40 songs!) People hear that crap all day, everyday… when they come to your party, put on something different… It should be like, “Wow… I love this song and I haven’t heard it in so long!” or “Wow, I love this song… what is it?” During my Mad Hatter’s tea party I put on Morcheeba… they are amazing… specifically their album called Big Calm… it’s addictive. 

That’s about it… I think I have told you everything you need to know to be a successful host… now go get ’em tiger!

RIBBIT OF THE DAY: Cirque Du Rock is tonight at the Highline Ballroom! Tickets are $12 at the door and it is hosted by my lovely friend NC Shuva… it is going to be nuts… Come check it out… Doors open at 8 p.m. 



This is what Cirque Du Rock has to say about itself… “Imagine the wildest night you’ve had in your life – go ahead, take a minute. Got it? Clear in your mind? Now multiply that into an infinite loop and you might understand a tenth of the essence of Cirque du Rock. It is night of complete extravagance, where music and visual arts are combined to leave you dizzy, spellbound, and thirsty for more. Every sort of genre of music is fused together under the umbrella of heavy rock: it IS self-willed chaos. The bill is packed with amazing stage performers and sideshows including magicians, belly dancers, stilt walkers, fire eaters, and LIVE tattooing and piercing. All these elements come together to create a carnival-like atmosphere, a turbulent ride for all five senses. This is about raising questions, turning heads, and daring to blur social values. Looking for an average night on town? Go somewhere else. Want to experience a typical rock show? Can’t help you. Cirque du Rock will definitely get some people worried and some people charged. Where will you be when the debauchery goes down?”


Love your friend,

                              The Frogge ❤




Posted in Interviews, Music, NYC Bands on July 24, 2009 by thefrogge

As I have said before, the Rock N’ Roll scene in New York City is alive and well! There are tons of new bands out there running around the streets with flyers and CD’s promoting themselves to no end. Just ask my friend NC Shuva of the NY based band PUI… he was carrying quite a large bag last night… I said, “NC… what’s in the bag, man?” He said, “It’s the flyers… it’s the flyers…” I said, “You go get ’em tiger!” 

Last night all the rock n’ rollers were down at Santos Party House (100 Lafayette Street at Walker) for The Dirty Pearl’s new single release party! The single is called “New York City Is A Drug” and was produced by Daniel Ray who has worked with legends, such as, The Ramones and The Misfits. The song is also being picked up by Sirius radio… the Octane channel, to be exact. (For your listening pleasure, The Frogge has included a link to hear “New York City Is A Drug” at the end of the post.)

After the show, I got to sit down with The Pearl’s front man, Tommy London… check out this interview for all the juicy details… it covers a lot… and ranges from informational to downright inappropriate! 

Tommy London and Johnny B of The Dirty Pearls

Tommy London and Johnny B of The Dirty Pearls

The Frogge: I am here at Santos Party House with Tommy London, the lead singer of The Dirty Pearls!

Tommy London: Hey, hey, hey! How are you?

TF: I’m good… how are you?

TL: I’m very good…

TF: You should be very good! You guys just played a great show.

TL: It was a great show, the energy was great, the crowd was awesome, they fed off of us, and we had a blast!

TF: You guys always have a blast…

TL: We always have a blast, just playing and drinking, even if nobody is here…

TF: What do you mean if nobody is here? There are always people around you guys, you have very loyal fans…

TL: We do have a very loyal fan-base, and everybody in the band is very grateful for that. To be honest, the success of the band is based on the response of the people, and we have had a great response. We are a peoples band! Is that cliché to say?

TF: No! You guys are like a grassroots rock n’ roll band born and raised on the streets of New York City! Okay, so what was the song you opened with? I didn’t recognize it. Is it new?

TL: It’s a fairy new song called “Whether You Like It Or Not.” We haven’t recorded it yet. That song came out because there were some people hating on the band, so we were like, whether you like it or not, were gonna rock it, so go fuck yourselves!

TF: I think it’s a good sign when a band has haters. What it really signifies is jealousy of your success. Nobody wastes their time hating things that aren’t important…

TL: I agree with you 100%. I guess it’s a sign that we’re doing something right…

TF: One thing that I really love about The Dirty Pearls is, when I watch you guys on stage, I really get a sense of the camaraderie between you guys… You are the front man, but when the guitar solos come on, you really know when to step back and give Johnny B (guitar,) Richie (guitar,) and Dougie (bass) the front.

TL: The lead singer is kind of like the quarterback of the team, but the quarterback is nothing without the receivers who catch the ball. The one thing about this band is, it’s pretty much five front men on one stage… Have you ever spoken to Marty E?? (Marty E, drums)

TF: Umm, have I ever spoken to Marty E? Let’s see… Yes.

TL: So, as I am sure you know, its pretty much five personas on the stage and everybody gets their chance to shine.

TF: For tonight’s show, how did you come up with the order of the set list?

TL: We always try to make each set list different. We know what songs are the crowd favorites so we like to plug those into different spots. Lately, because of “New York City Is A Drug,” it’s become such an anthem song, so we have been closing with it. It just works because we are a New York City band.

TF: You are a New York City band, but you also have a large fan base in California… I hear you guys are going out there to play some shows soon?

TL: We’re gonna go out to LA… we go out there a few times a year. We do well on the west coast. Of course we are a NYC based band, but when we go out there, they welcome us with open arms.

TF: Are you originally from NY?

TL: Yes, I was born in Queens, but raised outside of Philly.

TF: I think that one of the reasons The Pearls are having a lot of success is, you guys are really personal with your fans. But, as your fan base grows larger, how do you keep up those personal relationships?

TL: I think when all of us are not playing; we are just very personable people. When I am out promoting the band, I can get into a twenty-minute conversation with a person…

TF: But you understand that being personable works, and I think you are successful because you understand that.

TL: I agree. It’s funny because when I am on stage, I look out, and I pretty much know all the faces in the audience, not because I grew up with these people or anything like that… it’s more like, “Hey, I hung out with you at the bar!”

TF: Where else do you make more acquaintances besides the bars?

TL: Uhhh… the bars, and then the bars… I don’t know, where else would I make a new acquaintance?

TF: I don’t know, maybe like the public library or something?

TL: I am pretty much either at the bar or at home.

TF: Well, you’re in a rock n’ roll band, so I guess that’s an appropriate response… Tell me how you got the idea to incorporate Johnny B’s voice in songs like “Ventilator Avenue.” I think his voice is a great asset to the band…

TL: A lot of people have said that to me. People notice how we use different voices in different songs. Sometimes Marty will sing with me… Johnny co-sings with me on some of the songs… One day I just thought that our voices would sound great intertwined… We first did it in “Hollywood La La La,” and it was money. So we did it again with “Ventilator Avenue.” Johnny brought that song to the band and it worked out great.

TF: I also really like the song “Gimmie Gimmie,” it may be my personal favorite. When I first heard that song I thought you were saying, “Gimmie gimmie, gimmie some of your heart, yeah!”

TL: Hah! That’s kind of lame!

TF: So I asked Marty, and he was just like nope, we are just saying, “Gimmie gimmie, some of your uhh, yeah, uhh, yeah!” He was like, “We are not that deep, honey!”

TL: Haha, it’s true, we are not that deep.

TF: When you guys played LuvSikLuv tonight, I felt the crowd click in with you guys… everybody loves that song… and the crowd loves to sing it with you… but are you sick of playing it?

TL: Ya know, we have played it a lot. It’s a fun pop song, but the funny thing is, it has a hidden meaning about drugs…

TF: Yes, when I first heard it, I thought it was about a lady…

TL: That’s what’s great about it; it’s the kind of song that could be on pop radio, but its really about drugs…

TF: How does it go again?

TL: What ya doing… What ya doing…
Alone in your room…
What ya sniffing… What ya sniffing…
It’s not your perfume… So come a little closer…
I got something for you…
Feels like a roller coaster…
Inside of you…

TF: Right! See at that moment, I definitely thought you were talking about a penis…

TL: Well, of course!

TF: The fans always sing along, they just love it… I also really like your ballad, “Don’t Say A Word.” Is that your only ballad?

TL: Yeah, we knew we needed a ballad, or something close to it… we needed one song where we could slow things down a little bit on stage…

TF: So Dougie broke his bass? What happened with that… does that happen a lot?

TL: No, that’s the first time that ever happened on stage, and Dougie didn’t bring his spare bass.

TF: What does it mean to break a bass? Was it the strings or what?

TL: Yeah, it was the strings, and he didn’t bring his spare bass, so it was a good thing that there were four other bands here tonight… I believe Eve To Adam gave him their bass…

TF: Oh, that’s nice. Thank you Eve To Adam for enabling the show to go on! So, what is Johnny B doing when he looks like he is eating his guitar?

TL: He says that… he acts like… he is eating pussy.

TF: Is that really what he said?

TL: That’s what he said!

TF: Interesting… but, musically, what is he actually doing to the instrument?

 TL: I don’t know but it fuckin’ looks cool on stage!

TF: But is he playing the strings with his teeth?

TL: Yes……………. yes.

TF: Because someone once told me, and I want to know if this is true, they said, if you scream into the pickups of your guitar, it makes some kind of interesting sound effect?

TL: You would have to ask Johnny B about that one…

TF: Okay, so we have to talk about how tonight is the release party for your new single “New York City Is A Drug,” and I heard you worked with some really amazing producers to make this song…

TL: Yes, we got Daniel Ray because we felt that this is a New York song, and we are a New York band, so we wanted a New York Producer. Daniel Ray worked with a lot of New York bands, such as, The Ramones, The Misfits, and a few others… it sounds great, its really just a rockin’ anthem song…

TF: And I heard that Sirius XM radio is picking up the song… True or false?

TL: True…

TF: So, is the song “New York City Is A Drug” going to be on a specific channel of Sirius radio? How does it work? 

TL: Yes, I believe its going to be played on the Octane channel… which is the most popular rock channel… Kayla, who was hosting the show tonight, is going to start spinning the song…

TF: That’s great… Did you hear what she said? She called you guys the most rockin’ band in New York City…

TL: That was great of her to say… it was just awesome.

TF: So… if there is a secret… whats the secret to rock n’ roll?

TL: You always gotta throw the scent off the dogs baby!

TF: Okay, were going to end on that. You hear that people? You gotta throw the scent off the dogs! 

I need a fix in a bad way!

I need a fix in a bad way!

So there you have it people! Listen out for “New York City Is A Drug” on Sirius’s Octane channel… or of course, the whole album is available on iTunes…

The Frogge will post more photos from this show on The Frogge’s fan page on Here is the link… THE FROGGE ON FACEBOOK! 

That leads me to THE RIBBIT OF THE DAY… and I am going to let The Dirty Pearls give it to you! Get your fix of “New York City Is A Drug” by clicking HERE!

Love your friend,

                               The Frogge ❤

Bringing the A-Game…

Posted in Food, Interviews, Music, Nightlife, NYC Bands on July 21, 2009 by thefrogge

Of course The Frogge was out on the town last night as there was a lot to do! The Frogge loves Monday nights in New York City. Contrary to what you may think, Monday really is the best night to go out for a few reasons… 1. There are no weekend warriors (people who wait all week to party and only come out on Fridays and Saturdays, drink way too much, can’t handle themselves, act really annoying, and then vomit on your new shoes.) 2. There is a minimal amount of B&T (this means Bridge & Tunnel… and it DOES NOT literally mean people who live in Brooklyn, Long Island, New Jersey, ect (because The Frogge would never judge anybody based on where they live… B&T is more of an attitude… think, The Real Housewives of New Jersey… no one wants to party with that… I mean, can you imagine drinking a mojito next to those tacky women who tawwwk like thisssss andddd onlyyy tawwwwwk about their [fake] “boooooobbies.” Enough said.) And 3. Monday night is industry night… its the night when people who know how to go out, go out. Its the night when all the artists are out… which brings a creative twist to the party… and creativity always equals fun.

The Frogge started off her night with an accomplice at High Bar. It was a beautiful night in NYC and there was no better place to be other than a breathtaking rooftop drinking mojitos and frozen passion fruit cocktails.

High Bar

High Bar

But The Frogge could not stay and lounge around High Bar for long because she had to run downtown to Greenhouse to meet new Indie band on the scene, The Click Clack Boom.  The Frogge had never seen The Click Clack Boom play live before so she wasn’t quite sure what to expect, but they were great. The whole band brought the crazy energy and super cool vibes into the room as soon as they started their performance. Of course, the interview is below. 

The Click Clack Boom at South by Southwest

The Click Clack Boom at South by Southwest

The Frogge: I am outside of Greenhouse sitting in the middle of the sidewalk with The Click Clack Boom. And you are?

Nathaniel Hoho (lead vocals & guitar): Nathaniel…

The Frogge: And you?

Will Markley (guitar, bass, keys): Will!

The Frogge: Tell the people a little bit about The Click Clack Boom.

Nathaniel: The Click Clack Boom is a five-piece Indie rock band based out of Central, Pennsylvania. Some of the members have been living in NY since September. Right now we are recording our national debut album due for national release in the next couple of months… and we just played at Greenhouse and had a really great time thanks to Samuel Valentine.

The Frogge: Did Samuel Valentine book you?

Nathaniel: Yes.

The Frogge: While you were singing, I loved it when you jumped off the stage and plowed through the crowd and went over to Samuel to hug him. I think it shows that you are a very humble person and that you have a lot of humility. The Frogge appreciates humility in artists.

Nathaniel: Without the promoters to bring us here, we would be out of business. It’s nice that somebody like Samuel took the time to find us.

The Frogge: How did he find you?

Nathaniel: We used to have a 6th member of The Click Clack Boom, who is no longer with us.

The Frogge: Are they dead?

Nathaniel: What? No!

The Frogge: That’s how you made it sound, you said, “They are no longer with us!” What am I supposed to think that means?

Nathaniel: Let me rephrase, they are no longer in the band.

The Frogge: Ohhh… I know who it is… it’s the girl that is in the picture on your myspace page, correct?

Nathaniel: Yea, that’s her…

The Frogge: Why did she leave the band?

Nathaniel: She moved on to other endeavors with her solo project and it was hard for her to travel with us because she is in fashion school… so there were just a lot of conflicts…

The Frogge: That is not what I heard… I know the truth! Don’t lie to The Frogge… The Frogge knows all…

Will: I dropped the bomb earlier! I dropped the bomb!

Nathaniel: F**K!

The Frogge: Will is Gossip Girl over here! He told me everything! Will, can you just say, XOXO Gossip Girl?

Will: I can’t say that… I apologize… I can’t say that…

The Frogge: We need to put the truth in this interview because the truth is what’s cool… its what people are interested in. I mean, we can sit here and pretend we’re all cupcakes… and be all frosted… but that’s not real… that’s not what people are interested in… do you really think my readers care if that girl went to fashion school? No! They don’t…

Nathaniel: No comment.

The Frogge: Clearly, Nathanial Hoho is a very nice gentleman. But the truth is, that girl and Nathanial used to be in a relationship and she cheated on him… but you know what? It’s her loss… it really is.

Nathaniel: Well thank you.

The Frogge: You’re welcome. Moving along… tell me about the array of instruments you guys use…

Will: Well, everybody in the band plays everybody else’s instrument…

The Frogge: Wait! Time out! That’s amazing… you all play the guitar, bass, keyboard, drums, and sing?!

Nathaniel: Definitley…

The Frogge: Wow…

Will: We also all have solo songs that we have written…

The Frogge: What a talented bunch…

Will: Well, thank you… so yeah… we all write music for the different instruments… like for example, the bass player Newman (Billy Newman) wrote some of the guitar lines…

The Frogge: I liked his fedora… very stylish…

Will: It was given to him compliments of Andy Hilfiger.

The Frogge: Oh, funny that you bring him up Andy Hilfiger because I actually saw Michael Hilfiger (he goes by Michael H) sing here not too long ago with Sami Yaffa (of The New York Dolls & Hanoi Rocks,) Earl Slick (of David Bowie,) and Steve Conte (of The New York Dolls.) It was amazing…

Will: Michael H is a great guy… and Andy has helped us out a lot.

The Frogge: Who is Andy?

Will: Tommy’s brother…

The Frogge: So many darn Hilfigers! Okay… Nathaniel, when I was watching you sing, you reminded me of Jason Lee’s character Jeff in Almost Famous… he was the singer of the band Stillwater… and at one part in the movie he says, “You know what I do. I connect. I find the one guy in the room that is not getting off, and I make him get off.” Watching you run through the audience and put your arm around people… you have such a great energy… I thought to myself, “Yeah, he is finding the one guy who is not getting off, and making him get off!”

Nathaniel: That’s a nice compliment… I have fun with this… I love playing music… and I feel like other people should have fun listening to music. I try to include everybody into the show. I mean… if we are playing by ourselves…

The Frogge: That is called a rehearsal!

Nathaniel: Right, so when the audience is there, they need to be a part of it.

The Frogge: I have to say, you are very shy off stage… especially compared to how you are on stage… would you consider yourself a shy person?

Nathaniel: No… (We all laugh at this, because it is a blatant lie!) I am just Nathaniel…

The Frogge: Its ironic but some of the best performers are incredibly shy off stage… Its like they use the stage… and the bedroom… to unleash their alter ego out into the world…

Will: There ya go! Nathaniel… she is reading your mind!

The Frogge: Alright, moving along, I wanted to ask your tambourine player (Jeremy Mertz) some questions, but he isn’t here… can you answer for him?

Nathaniel: We can do our best.

The Frogge: The tambourine is probably one of the most underrated instruments in the whole world…

Will: But he rocks that shit! He rocks it!

The Frogge: That’s what I was going to say! He does… 

Nathaniel: The tambourine is actually my favorite instrument… when I listen to records, it is the first thing I listen for… it’s my favorite thing to hear… and we love Jeremy, he brings the energy… and additional percussion to The Click Clack Boom.

The Frogge: I think you need to also get him a triangle…

Nathaniel & Will: I agree!

The Frogge: And… a cowbell! Because The Click Clack Boom has a fivvver and the only prescription is more cowbell!

Nathaniel: All day. Every day.

The Frogge: Tell me about your song that goes… OoOoOoOoOhhhh AaAaAaAahhhh… What is that… its so catchy… is it your single?

Will: We nicknamed it The Chant Song… it has the Hey Jude affect (Na na, nah nah nah nah)…

Nathaniel: It’s the single…

Will: Can I interview you?

The Frogge: Sure…

Will: What did you think of The Click Clack Boom?

The Frogge: I was very pleasantly surprised. I hadn’t see you guys play live before, so I really didn’t know what to expect… but I thought you brought it, you played a great show, and you guys have a great chemistry… you seem like you all are friends… that is really important to me, I always look for that. If I don’t see a great chemistry in between the band members, I don’t like that. For example, I saw Weezer play like two years ago… and they were good of course, but they didn’t seem connected with each other… they didn’t seem happy to share the stage with each other… it was sad to watch, it changed my opinion of them a lot…

Will: I love Weezer…

The Frogge: I love them too, I have been listening to them since I was eight years old… I have The Blue Album on tape for god’s sake… but they were not feeling each other… they are the kind of band that its better to listen to them on your Ipod… not see them live…

Nathaniel: It’s hard to work closely with really creative weirdos sometimes…

The Frogge: So is that what you guys are, creative weirdos?

Nathaniel: We all have our strange quirks…

The Frogge: Oooh, like what? Tell me…

Will: Well, lets see… Newman…

The Frogge: Newman, the bass player with the fedora…

Will: Yes, he is a really anti-social drinker… Grant (Grant Wilson) the drummer is obsessive compulsive… he is obsessed with perfection… and Jeremy he is just quirky in a lot of ways, we can’t really classify him into one category… and Nathanial has a really strange tendency to get himself into really awkward situations at any given moment…

The Frogge: Oh wow… look who is here! The other members of The Click Clack Boom! Get the F over here… lets expand this circle of love… Jeremy… I want you to talk about your tambourine playing, because it really interests me!

Jeremy Mertz (auxiliary percussion aka the tambourine, bass, keys): I shake it, and I hit it, and then I choke it, and then I suck it…

The Frogge: What does ‘choking a tambourine mean?”

Jeremy: It means you wrap your hands around it’s throat… because a tambourine has a throat.

The Frogge: Does it really? Or are you being fresh?

Jeremy: What do you think?

The Frogge: Well, I think you are lying, because the tambourine is shaped like a circle, so I don’t know which part would be considered the throat… but then again, I am not super familiar with tambourines… I mean, now that I think about it, I have seen tambourines that have one flat side…

Jeremy: I milk the funk out of it.

The Frogge: Wait… who are we missing? Everyone is here except for… Grant… where is he? Grant get over here!

Grant Wilson (drums): I need to take my pants off…

The Frogge: Well, I took my shoes off so, whatever makes you happy… So you are Grant… How did you feel about being separated from the rest of the band tonight while you were playing? (The stage at Greenhouse was too small to fit the drum kit along with all the other instruments, so Grant and the drum kit were on the upper stage while the rest of the band was on the lower stage.)

Grant: Was I separated from them? I don’t know, I play the drums with my eyes closed…

The Frogge: How did you not realize you were on a different stage? That’s kind of cause for concern…

Grant: I couldn’t see! And when I do open my eyes, I can’t see anyway because of all my damn hair!

The Frogge: Who writes the lyrics and who writes the music?

Jeremy: I write EVERYTHING!

The Frogge: You do? (everybody laughs) Are you lying?

Grant: Nathanial always comes up with the lyrics.

Nathaniel: True.

The Frogge: Who writes the music?

Grant: We all do, a lot of times Nathanial will come to us with a chord progression to a song, and then we will all come up with it together. It’s definitely a group effort.

The Frogge: That’s nice… which song means the most to you guys? I don’t mean your most popular song… I mean which song do you connect with the most on a personal level?

Will: Ghosts, for me personally…

Billy: I personally like The Negative…

Nathaniel: I like Knots, or Watch Your Eyes… that will be on the new album…

The Frogge: And what’s yours?

Grant: Narcism by Ghost Music…

The Frogge: What? Who is Ghost Music?

All: It’s his side project!

The Frogge: Excuse me, this is not the time to promote your other band, okay? This interview is about The Click Clack Boom! Geez!

Grant: If you were in Denmark and you were to wear a picture of me on your shirt, people would bow to you… its crazy over there in Denmark.

The Frogge: Is this fact or fiction?

Grant: You guys tell her… 

All: No, he really is huge in Denmark…

The Frogge: Interesting… my grandmother tells me about the Lego Land in Denmark everyday, she is obsessed.

Jeremy: I love Legos. I have a lot of them.

The Frogge: So is there a song you wish you never wrote?

Will: No comment.

Billy: I would say Howling.

The Frogge: Why?

Billy: I guess I am just sick of playing it that’s all…

The Frogge: Was that your old single, before The Chant Song?

Billy: No…

Will: A lot of times its just difficult to play a song over and over again. Its not that we dislike any of the songs, but when you play a song 200, 400, 6,000 times… its like, well lets move on and play something new, interesting, and fresh.

The Frogge: Nathaniel, what’s it like for you when you are walking through the crowd singing?

Nathaniel: It’s nice to meet a lot of new people at once.

The Frogge: You guys played for a packed house tonight…

Grant: It was a great show…

Nathaniel: Its always fun to play for a packed house…

The Frogge: So tell the people when you are playing next!

Nathaniel: Tomorrow night actually… we are playing a free show! At Piano’s… 7:45… be there! 

The Frogge: And where can people check you out?


Nathaniel Hoho singing his little heart out at Greenhouse

Nathaniel Hoho singing his little heart out at Greenhouse

The Frogge would write more but she is seriously exhausted and can not look at the computer screen for another second, it took her pretty much all day to transcribe the interview. The Frogge is in serious need of an intern. 

RIBBIT OF THE DAY: Transcribing interviews is the devil. But check out ClickClackBoom… they know how to bring their A-Game.

Freedom, Glory, Be Our Name!

Posted in Interviews, Music, NYC Bands on July 20, 2009 by thefrogge

Last night The Frogge went out to support a very important cause. That cause is freedom in Iran. Unfortunately, freedom is not always free, and the people of Iran are paying dearly. There are many Iranians living in America who feel helpless as their brothers and sisters in Iran are fighting with all their might for the basic right of freedom. That said, instead of sitting back and doing nothing here in America, as countless, innocent people lose their lives in Iran, four Iranian musicians who now reside in New York City have formed The Freedom Glory Project. (More information available at

The members of The Freedom Glory Project include Johnny B Azari of Electric Black (also a member of The Dirty Pearls,) Raam of Hypernova, Ali Eskandarian, and Esfand. The purpose of the Freedom Glory Project is to raise awareness in America about the situation in Iran and to show our support and solidarity with the Iranian people.

I was fortunate enough to have the opportunity to interview Johnny B of Electric Black, and this is how it went… (Normally, I would have written a much longer introduction but I really feel the interview speaks for itself and covers all bases… I hope you enjoy reading it as much as I enjoyed being a part of it.) 

Johnny B of Electric Black

Johnny B of Electric Black

The Frogge: I am here, sitting in a very shady room in the basement of The Mercury Lounge with Johnny B, the singer of Electric Black… now you also play the guitar for The Dirty Pearls, correct?

 Johnny B Azari: That’s right…

 TF: Why do you go by Johnny ‘B’ when your last name starts with an ‘A?’

 JB: Because ‘B’ is the first initial of my first name, my real name…

 TF: And that is…

 JB: (Johnny says the name but I have no idea how to spell it! I will find out and get back to you!)

 TF: Very Persian… Does it mean something?

 JB: It means… distinct color… but everybody who translates it says something different, so I stick to my father’s translation, which is… a splash of red paint on a white canvas.

 TF: From what I know of you that seems very fitting. You seem to live up to your name, do you not?

 JB: I leave that for other people to determine for me. I try to keep opinions of myself small.

 TF: Very humble of you, that is a nice quality to have. Okay, so tell me a little about Electric Black…

 JB: Electric Black is the most ‘punk-rock-country-blues-chamber-orchestra on Earth.’ We had our debut show on March 26th of this year. In four months we have sold out that show, The Delancy, got a full page review in the Brooklyn Rail, appeared in the NY Times, the Brooklyn Vegan, played in front of 900 people at Irving Plaza… we pretty much shot out of a cannon.

 TF: That is unbelievable.

 JB: Yeah, I am pretty frazzled. I was talking about it with my manager yesterday, about what we have accomplished in less than four months… and now we are taking August off, but in the fall its going to all start up again… and we are going to go for bigger and better things.

 TF: Why are you taking August off?

 JB: Because I need a goddamn break! And everybody in August needs a goddamn break, so there is no point in working through a dead month. August is vacation time.

 TF: I thought you had some shows scheduled with The Dirty Pearls in August?

 JB: Nope, The Pearls are taking August off too… I am going to take August to travel a bit, and I haven’t had an opportunity to be an artist in a year or so because I have been working so hard on this band that the songs I get are just like a… ‘spiritual enema’… for lack of a better, prettier description… they just come out, because I haven’t had a chance to sit down and create anything… so I really just want to sit down with my pro-tools and be an artist instead of a manager, business man, tour manager…

 TF: That’s how you feel? Like a manager?

 JB: That’s what I am… I mean, I have my manager, but we split the workload, and it’s a lot, we need like seven or eight more people to help us.

 TF: The Frogge will help you if you need help.

 JB: Alright, then… it’s a date.

 TF: High 5!

 JB: That was a low 5…

 TF: It was actually a medium 5, but ANYWAY, I’d love to sit here and argue with you about high and low 5’s all day, but we have important things to talk about because we are all here for a very important cause tonight…

 JB: We’re here for, not for Freedom Glory Project specifically, but everybody came out to show a sign of solidarity with the people of Iran who are struggling for their independence from despotism and fascism right now. All Iranians outside of Iran are very, very heart broken and left in a state of paralysis because they have no access to actually do anything that would directly affect the turn of events in their country. So me, alike them, we have the same feelings, so I got together with Raam from Hypernova, Ali Eskandarian, and Esfand… it was very organic. We just decided to do something with our art. And you may ask the question, does this really have any kind of an impact…

 TF: No… I will not ask that question! Because I do think it has an impact.

 JB: I think so too, the emails we are getting are very, very touching. And also, the other thing is, its about participation, not perfection. The only way you can deal with these sick tyrants is in a mass, a tidal wave, a tsunami of love, hope, and solidarity. When they have the whole world against them, there is no way they can stand. The Green Movement [the color green is the official color of the resistance] just needs to get bigger, and it will get bigger, we are helping it get bigger. I know a lot of non-Iranians who didn’t know about the situation and specifically because of Freedom Glory Project, they are now informed and coming to protests.

 TF: That is exactly why I wanted to sit down with you and do this interview. Because I would imagine that most of the dear people who read The Frogge are Americans and I want them to know about what is going on in Iran, if they don’t already know. Even though I am not Iranian, I am with you on this cause, because as a human being, I think we all, no matter what our ethnic background may be, need to get together when a whole country of people are being denied something as basic as freedom. It disgusts me when freedom is treated like a luxury, instead of a necessity… because it is a necessity.

 JB: Its very touching to hear you say that, and your motivations are definitely coming from a place of love and decency, which unfortunately, I hate to say, is a rare quality in people these days. The fact that you care is really beautiful, and I think more and more people are starting to care… and I think when people realize how easy it is for them to participate, even though we are not in Iran, I think we can get a lot more people. All it really is… is keeping Iran in the press…you have to tell your news stations to keep Iran in the press. That is the role of the west, because if the west stops watching, there will be a complete massacre and slaughter.

 TF: For those people that don’t really know what is going on in Iran, can you explain the basic situation?

 JB: Well, it’s very hard to get accurate information about what is going on [because the media is controlled by the government and clearly, they do not have freedom of speech] but the basic situation is, there was an election and it was rigged. After that the people… but this is difficult to explain in a few sentences because it doesn’t start there… this is thirty years in the making! For thirty years there has been unrest, and the people have been brutalized and oppressed by the government and this is the spark that set off the powder keg that is the Iranian people. The election is what set it off and now it turned into something way bigger than the election. But my role and anybody else’s role in the US is to show solidarity for the people of Iran…

 TF: Why is the official color of the movement green?

 JB: I believe that it was originally Mousavi’s color… and it just turned into something way bigger than that. It is the color of freedom and resistance to the tyranny.

 TF: How did it feel to collaborate with other Iranian artists? Unfortunately, I missed Esfand and Ali Eskandarian, but I caught Hypernova… they did a great job. What was it like working with them?

 JB: Oh, I love working with Hypernova, and Ali, and Esfand. One of the nicest things about this project for me personally is the spirit. I have lived outside of Iran since I am two years old…

 TF: You were born there?

 JB: Yes, but we moved when I was two, so I haven’t felt Iranian in a very long time. And I am really feeling Iranian again for the first time.

 TF: I actually know a lot of people from Iran, and I have people from Iran in my family… and I think that the Iranian people are very special, they have a very big passion for life… But moving along, this is the question I have been meaning to ask you the whole time… What is the difference for you, when you are playing music just for yourself verses when you are playing it for the political cause… for The Green Movement?

 JB: I can tell you a nice little story, I have this song on my record called Weary Path [it’s available in Itunes, by the way…] the verses are very introverted, but the chorus is, “I’d rather die on my feet, than live on my knees.” When we were doing the first Freedom Glory Project show at The Delancy, specifically for the Green movement… it really hit me what that song was about… the spirit of it, and I just howled it, “I’d rather die on my feet, than live on my knees.” When you are trying to get your voice to go to the end of Tehran [the capital and largest city in Iran,] it helps, its beautiful, its very rewarding. This is the most rewarding thing that I have ever been involved in.

 TF: I am very young, and being that I am very young, I think this is the first time in my life that I have ever seen ‘strife.’ Also, because the economy in America has always been so strong, and now we are in a recession… it just seems like we are all living in very turbulent times, but even though it can be scary, it can also be very beautiful because our generation can be responsible for a lot of metamorphoses… It reminds me of the 1960’s, and how I always used to think to myself, “Man, I wish that I could have been at Woodstock! I wish I could have felt what it feels like when the art, when the music has a political purpose… when that purpose is anti-war… when that purpose is peace, when the purpose is freedom!” I think this is like our generations version of that struggle and it’s really amazing to be a part of it…

 JB: The guy from CNN said it very nicely, he said, “NO REVOLUTION CAN SUCCEED IF THE ARTISTS DON’T GET BEHIND IT.” And I feel it’s very true. No revolution will succeed if the artists do not embrace it.

TF: I couldn’t agree more and that is why we were all here tonight in the name of The Green Movement.

Freedom Glory Project: Raam of Hypernova, Johnny B of Electric Black, Ali Eskandarian & Esfand.

Freedom Glory Project: Raam of Hypernova, Johnny B of Electric Black, Ali Eskandarian & Esfand.

The Freedom Glory Project show had a great turn out; The Mercury Lounge was packed, solidarity and support were shown, and awareness was spread. There were many photographers and videographers present to document this event. CNN also came to interview members of the bands as well as people who attended the show. You can check out what CNN had to say by watching the youtube video I have posted below…

Normally I would talk about the show and how great the different bands were, but today, I do not feel that is appropriate. These musicians played last night in the name of freedom for Iran. It was not about them, it was bigger than them, and they would be the first ones to agree. That leads me to…

THE RIBBIT OF THE DAY: Lets all just take a second to appreciate how lucky we are to live in America. Yes, we have our problems too, as every country does, but we are fortunate enough to have freedom… so lets all stop complaining about the economy for one second, and look at the silver lining… we are free. 

Love your teary eyed friend,

                                                 The Frogge ❤