Dark Was The Night
What album would you direct people to that represents perfectly your ideal music? Not your favorite song, or artist… I think that is an impossible question to answer for most people. But what’s the style that you are into.
I found mine yesterday thanks to my buddy Scott of Surly Birds acclaim. He heard just a snippet of the the compilation album Dark Was the Night and was on a mission to get it to me. He had a feeling that I would geek out about it, and I have to tell you that he was absolutely right. I am in his music sharing debt for at least a year.
I had read about this album back in February on a few blogs, and seen it on iTunes as well. I even downloaded a few tracks from it randomly, with out knowing their original source. But I passed it up, didn’t pursue it. I missed out on some amazing music on account of it. Til’ now.
Check out the artists featured on this two disc compilation:
Antony (of Antony and the Johnsons)
Cat Power & Dirty Delta Blues
Aaron Dessner + Bryce Dessner
Kevin Drew (Broken Social Scene)
Ben Gibbard (Deathcab for Cutie)
Iron & Wine
Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings
Stuart Murdoch (Belle & Sebastian)
My Brightest Diamond
My Morning Jacket
The New Pornographers
Dave Sitek (TV on the Radio)
Yo La Tengo
If that list doesn’t mean anything to you, I’m sorry. You are missing out on some tremendous musical forces dominating the ears of the world for the past few years, and the years to come.
These some 31 tracks are a part of an ongoing project from Red Hot, who describe themselves this way:
The Red Hot Organization is the leading international organization dedicated to fighting AIDS through pop culture.
Since 1989, Red Hot has produced fourteen groundbreaking albums, related television programs and media events incorporating the talents of leading performers, visual artists, producers and directors to raise funds and awareness for HIV and AIDS.
To date, these efforts have donated nearly 7 million dollars for AIDS relief around the world.
So, in essence this auditory bliss of a project is some of the best artists of today and tomorrow performing everything from original music to covers and remixes in order to raise awareness about and money to fight the AIDS virus.
This isn’t your standard charity song project. We’re not talking Springstein, Wonder and Jackson in a recording boothe here. These are amazing songs with powerful writing, playing and arrangement. Awesome original music written by the performers or amazing covers of underground classics.
Many of these tracks also offer unexpected but obvious musical pairings I haven’t heard before, but hope the colaboration continues. For example, check out the song Train Song featuring Feist and Ben Gibbard of Death Cab and Postal Service fame.
Check out these songs, but please, consider buying this amazing album which goes to support a really good cause and other musical projects hopefully just as good or better than this one.
So next time you ask me what kind of music I am into, I will direct you immediately to this album. Hopefully you will like this enough to do the same when you are asked.
AT&T Education Solutions
Great photo shoot and concept came together here for an immersive walk through in AT&T’s ethernet services for their education customers. Technology is a mandatory for success in school districts around the country, and we wanted to relay how AT&T’s reliable services and network of possibilities facilitate eLearning in the classroom. Check it out.
World Class Medicine from MoBap
Missouri Baptist Medical Center, or MoBap as we like to call it, has had a long and successful relationship with RodgersTownsend. So in 2011, when it was clear that the MoBap web experience was not living up to the standards of excellence they demanded for patients and the community, they looked to us.
After a long discovery phase, extensive content audit and thorough wire-framing we had an intricate road map from which to create the UI. Where we landed not only pushed MoBap’s digital presence to a level on par with the reputation of their medical center, but ahead of most of their regional and national competition.
I’ve never had a design recieve so much praise and so many dissenters. At least not in a public way. Its a testament to how much St. Louis, especially the creative community, has embraced Loufest.
Loufest is two days of music, food and fun in Forest Park here in St. Louis. Acquired by C3 (of Lallapalooza and Austin City Limits fame) in 2013, they were looking for a bold new look without the nuances of a particular genre or lifestyle. In layman’s terms, they didn’t want a hipster logo or a strictly Rock’n Roll vibe. They were looking for something generic enough to appeal to a broad audience, but bold enough to make a statement and have staying power.
I’m not sure I accomplished it, but this is where we landed.
After the rebrand Loufest more than doubled their attendance and had their most successful year to date. Some might attribute that to a vastly improved line-up compliments of The National, Alabama Shakes, The Killers and others. But I think, deep down, we all know what really caused the surge.
ATT New Business
A responsive site for ATT that adapts to fit screen size and resolution through a seamless and fluid dev.
Smart Grid Technology from AT&T
This was a nice HTML5 parallax website we did for AT&T’s Smart Grid Solutions. The target here was high profile civic and private utility companies. Experts in building and maintaining the smart grid, but not experts in communicating between the various elements of the infrastructure. We gave them a step by step breakdown of AT&T’s services and how they would benefit the target, but did it in a way that told our story in a simple, seamless and scrollable way. Excuse that alliteration (and the Dev of this live site).
Martin Luther King Tribute
I wanted to attempt this style in February, and being Black History Month I chose the Rev. as my muse.
His face is made up of the words of his epic Lincoln Memorial “I have a dream…” speech.
Take a look. I am having it framed as I type.
Smoking Goat Branding
I like beer.
Beer high in flavor, alcohol and price. I brew at home, but wouldn’t consider myself very good at this point. I’m working on it.
We have friends in Louisiana who I would consider really good. I designed some branding for their forthcoming brewery down there.
The Smoking Goat will hopefully be amazing, especially if I get some good beer out of the deal.
Have a look. Then drink a beer and have a look again. Continue this process until the logo looks awesome.
This is a poster I made for my buddy Dustin.
A classic quote from him as we drove by Effingham, IL’s infamous and huge cross.
I thought it would look good in his new apartment.
I recently got the chance to work on a project for the Humane Society. Given the fact that every time I walk into an animal shelter I have to be talked down from taking home every animal in the place, I was happy to help in anyway I could.
With the majority of pet buying in the United States coming from breeders, mall pet shops and unfortunately mills, animal shelters (specifically the Humane Society) are left overflowing with pets that need loving homes. They are running into a perception problem however, and many misconceptions about shelter pets are accepted as fact, and often repeated as such.
To get past this, we decided to take the problem head on, and address the most common misconceptions individually.
Here is where we landed:
Lauren and Dan sit’n in a tree…
My good friend Lauren is getting married in July, and though I am extremely jealous of her fiance Dan (don’t tell my wife), I made their save the date cards.
I use VistaPrint to print these types of things. Though the quality suffers, and the rumor is that they are destroying local community printers nationwide, for the price they can’t be beat. Check them out next time you want to customize your own holiday card or invitation.
Here’s how Lauren’s STDs turned out: