26 Aug 14


It negatively affects how you think and can ruin your life if you leave it untreated. Use the tips in this article if you need to break free from those chains binding you and holding you down.

Eating a balanced diet and making sure you take in the right amount of vitamins and nutrients is also essential to living a well balanced and healthy life. Fruits and vegetables are an essential part of one’s diet, and what you eat has been proven to have much to do with your mood.

Make sure to get a sufficient amount of sleep if you suffer from depression. Sleeping too little or too much can effect your mood and the way that you think. Try to set a certain time to go to sleep every night and try to wake up at the same time everyday.

Understand and know that you are not insane, but depressed. Depression is the way the body tells us that something is wrong or out of balance with our body. The world around us is an insane place and our bodies react to this insanity by making us depressed. This does not mean that we are insane, it just means that you are a natural being living in an insane world.

A good way to eliminate some depression is to listen to motivational speakers. Don’t try to do it all yourself, listen to others who can help inspire you and show you different ways to think positively. If you can immerse yourself in uplifting thoughts of others or read about their uplifting stories and inspirational activities, this can only help make you feel less depressed.

Avoid going out to social places alone if your depression is related to social things. This will only reinforce in your mind that you are alone or lonely, things that may not even be true. When you do go out make sure it is with a friend or two and keep the evening light.

A handy tip for depression sufferers is to eat a variety of healthy, energizing foods. Depression can be exacerbated by diets full of sugar and other empty calories. Choosing fresh, organic produce can help lift one’s spirits and can provide life-affirming nutrients that are vital for good, physical as well as mental health.

Depression is always a serious issue. If you or a loved one have fallen into a situation that goes beyond simply a bout of the blues, then seek help. Depression can lead to other health problems, and can affect a person’s job, family and friends. Thankfully, there is lots of help and treatment available these days, and there is a greater awareness of the problem than ever. A good starting point is to talk it over with your family doctor. Beware of doctors who quickly prescribe drugs however.

If you suffer from depression, try to avoid a diet with lots of carbohydrates. Studies have shown that too many carbohydrates can cause depression or make it worse. Instead, try to eat a diet that has a lot of protein in it and try to eat a lot of fruits and vegetables.

If you have depression but you do not want to take an anti-depressant, you may want to think of trying an herbal remedy, such as St. John’s Wart. Studies have proven that certain herbal remedies are just as effective, if not more effective than prescription anti-depressants. Consult with a doctor before taking herbal remedies.

A great way to deal with depression is to be physically active. Exercise is great for your body and mind because it releases natural chemicals in your body that are meant to help you feel better. The improvements in your body will also help you to feel great about yourself and boost your self esteem.

Develop a fun hobby. Depression can be caused by a lack of activities. Having varied interests and activities can help your mental health, happiness level and self-esteem. Staying active lifts your spirits, brings you a sense of accomplishment and positively occupies your mind.

Keep your spirits lifted. Negative thinking is a sign of depression. People that are depressed tend to not think about what’s good in life, while people that are happy accept their life as being normal and they fix things that go wrong. Staying positive can make people want to be around you more and reduce the chances of feeling lonely.

Seek the advice of a doctor if your depression is severe. You should not try home remedies and untested medicines for deep depression. You should waste no time if you have any suicidal thoughts or actions. Your doctor will be able to provide you with solutions for immediate relief from your symptoms.

Be realistic. Make sure you set attainable goals, expect reasonable outcomes, and prepare for the worst to happen. Adjust your expectations and priorities to actually suit your life, and work with that. Changing your outlook on your surroundings can easily change the moods you experience and the opinions you have concerning them.

Not being a part of the working community can make you feel depressed. Being the sole provider in your home can be tough, but losing your job can make it even more challenging. This positive outlook can help you feel less depressed about your loss of income.

Being depressed does not mean you are not sane. While many people may see this as an onset to a much greater mental illness, it is a normal reaction to the craziness that goes on around you daily. Your goal should be to accept and address the real concerns in your life, such as the symptoms of your depression, and forget tension about your mental state.

Anything negatively affecting your brain is ultimately going to have a negative effect on your life. This why it’s imperative that you act immediately, and use these tips to help cure your mood disorder. With the right information and the proper action, you can live a life free of depression.

Find More Online Tools Articles
Another
Houston
Volvo
Giant
Executivegraphic

Filed under: Online Tools

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26 Aug 14

Managing and Preserving Digital Images

Managing and Preserving Digital Images emphasizes the importance of good management and record-keeping when managing digital photographs, suggestions for eas…

Templates
Edinburgh
Suggestions
Amazing
Perceptive

Filed under: Digital Images

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26 Aug 14


Buying commercial property can be majorly rewarding for you or it can cause you a major headache. This kind of real estate buying is not rocket science, but it does require some knowledge so that you don’t end up losing money. This list of tips should put you “in the know” on how to be a smarter buyer.

Be patient when handling a deal with a commercial property. The initial legwork is more involved than buying a home. There are more inspections, more work to be done and more paperwork to do. Build this time into your investment plans so that you won’t be caught off guard.

When purchasing a house that you plan to rent out, be sure you know all of the local laws relating to rental properties. For example, you may need a minimum size for a room to count as a bedroom, or you may be required to provide a certain amount of parking.

Before you begin the process of purchasing a commercial real estate property, make sure you find a commercial broker who can help you with your specific needs. Some commercial brokers are not skilled in all commercial real estate areas, which could prevent you from getting what you are specifically looking for.

If you are buying rental units to turn into a commercial business, don’t be afraid to go big. In many cases, the minimum number of units per property that requires a commercial license is low enough that you will want properties with more units than that. It is only incrementally more difficult to care for 25 units than for 5 units.

When you are trying to consider which property to buy and you are having a hard time narrowing things down the best thing you can do is make a checklist. Review each property and the one that has the most check marks should be the one that you buy.

Even if you are very familiar with the process of investing in residential properties. Do not be overconfident in your ability to navigate through the complex and highly technical process and protocol of purchasing commercial properties as part of your real estate portfolio. This can save you thousands of dollars in legal or accounting mistakes.

Be sure to do research on commercial lenders. You may be able to find a great deal somewhere you were not expecting. Also note you will be required to put up a hefty down payment. Keep in mind that if the deal falls through there typically will be no personal liability and commercial lenders may be lenient if you borrow a down payment from a different lender.

Be sure to request and examine financial statements and tax return information for at least the past two years of any commercial property you wish to purchase. Investigate expenses such as operating costs as well. Make sure you understand all of the information presented to you and if you do not understand it, have your real estate attorney go over the papers with you so you have a solid, working knowledge of the expense and return of the property.

Remember to take everything your real estate agent says with a grain of salt. While they technically are on your side, at the end of the day they prefer to turn several quick purchases instead of making 0 extra by pushing for the absolute best deal for you. Listen to their advice, but remember to make your own final judgement.

Be sympathetic to the other party in the purchase or sell. While you don’t need to make concessions to them, sympathy in conversations is still required. Remember, even though this is a purchase, you are both still humans and a little politeness goes a long way. In some cases it can even help to seal the deal.

Be sure of zoning and deed restrictions before you make any commercial real estate purchase. These are serious indicators of the property’s benefits for your business. You have to be sure of whether your operations can be efficiently and sufficiently accommodated within those restrictions to ensure that you are making a wise investment.

Make sure the property you are interested in has access to utilities. Look for access to water, electricity, gas an a sewer or anything specific to what you intend to use this property for.

Before you negotiate a commercial real estate lease, you should be sure you have the ability to repair and rebuild the area. The reason is because this will give you the ability to do repairs on your own instead of relying on the landlord to do the repairing and rebuilding for you.

Negotiate the terms of your lease. If you are a small business owner, you should negotiate one or two year leases to ensure flexibility to grow your business. Have an option to renew your lease if you need to with a predetermined rent amount to avoid unexpected, usually catastrophic rent increase at the end of the term.

Having a mentor can be of tremendous help when getting into commercial property investment. A mentor can help save you from making mistakes. They will look to see if you have missed any due diligence items. A mentor can also connect you with resources you may otherwise not have.

Make sure the policy is completely sound when reviewing the policy for the real estate property you would like to buy! Make sure there is nothing hidden in the fine print that will end up costing you in the long run. Even though a place may seem perfect for you, it may be too good to be true.

If you plan on investing in commercial real estate, you must be sure you understand the risks involved. Even though the sponsor should disclose “risk factors” to you, you need to review them and understand the risks of different options before selecting one. There is a different risk involved when investing in real estate with a few tenants, as opposed to, one with ten or more.

As you can see, there is a lot more to buying commercial real estate than most people think. It requires research and common sense, but it will be worth it, in the end, to get the commercial property you want. By following the above tips, you are well on your way to buying your perfect commercial real estate.

Sell
Engineer
Templates
Live
Repair

Filed under: Digital Photography

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26 Aug 14

Photoshop World Conference & Expo 2014

Event on 2014-09-03 00:00:00

at Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino
3950 Las Vegas Boulevard South
Las Vegas, United States

Big Smo

Event on 2014-12-11 20:00:00

Thursday, December 11th
Doors: 7 p.m. || Show: 8 p.m.
: Advance || : Day of Show
href=”https://www.etix.com/ticket/online/performanceSearch.jsp?performance_id=1838435″ rel=”nofollow”>Big Smo

Website | Facebook | Video

“You can tell when something’s real,” says the man known simply as Big Smo. “You can tell when it’s true. And I think what’s made us successful and gotten us this far is that we’re just real people, down-home country folk who really love to make music, and people see that.”

That success has been as hard won as it is impressive. What began as two friends—Smo and Orig the DJ—experimenting with samples, beats and lyrics in a makeshift home studio has turned into four independent CDs and hundreds of tour stops before over-the-top crowds from mud parks in Florida to night clubs in Vegas. He and his band—Orig, vocalists Alexander King and Haden Carpenter, guitarist Travis Tidwell, bassist Eric Flores and drummer Ryan Peel—have opened for Brantley Gilbert, appeared at 2012′s Bamajam on a bill with Kid Rock and Jamey Johnson, and rocked the crowd at 2013′s CMA Music Fest in Nashville. Perhaps most impressive, though, has been the phenomenal success of their breakthrough indy hit, “Kickin’ It In Tennessee.” Its video, a slice of real life shot on a shoestring at Big Smo’s 32-acre Middle Tennessee farm, has earned well over five million YouTube hits.

Now, with the release of his major-label debut, Kuntry Livin’, the man known as the Boss of the Sticks is poised to take it all up a very big notch.

It was that homegrown video, “Kickin’ It,” that turned the tide, bringing Big Smo to the attention of Warner Bros. senior vice president and head of radio promotion Chris Stacey.

“The moment I saw Big Smo on YouTube,” says Stacey, “I knew he was something special. I grew up loving rap music and loving country music, and Big Smo is the first artist that I have ever seen that seamlessly combines the two. Big Smo is for the kids with the jacked-up trucks and camo hats that love Jason Aldean and Brantley Glibert—but also bump Lil Wayne.”

Big Smo’s growing legion of fans would agree. His is the story of a country boy catching fire in a digital age, where musical cross-pollination is everywhere, where Nelly teams up with Tim McGraw and Florida Georgia Line, and Ludacris joins forces with Jason Aldean, who’s “Dirt Road Anthem” was the best-selling country song of the year. Big Smo’s rise has been fueled by high energy and relatable lyrics, a band with the ability to rock a crowd, and the studio savvy to capture that lightning in a bottle. Big Smo owns that place where country, Southern rock and hip hop come together, where the beat rocks the story and the story rocks the beat. An early review put it this way: “If Kid Rock and Run D.M.C. had a love child, he would be named Big Smo.”

The added reach and clout of the label deal comes with something Big Smo values even more—freedom to do it his way.

“The most important thing,” he says, “is that when we went from being independent artists to being on a label, we didn’t want to lose control of who we are. That’s why the label called us—because of who we are, not because of what somebody made us. They said, ‘We’ll let you drive. We like the way you steer.’ I was like, ‘Cool. I won’t let you down.’”

Produced by Jon Conner and Orig, Kuntry Livin’ sums up everything that has brought Big Smo to the forefront. The beats are pulse-pounding, the vocals passionate, the guitars electrifying, and the subject matter—well, that’s pure back-country reality. It includes the boots-on blue-collar anthem “Workin’,” the country-as-cornbread celebration of roots, “Who I’ll Be,” the work-hard-play-hard life sketch, “Down in the Backwoods,” and the love-gone-wrong tale, “Cover My Eyes.”

Working with Big Smo on individual tracks are producer extraordinaire Michael Knox (Jason Aldean), songwriters Casey Beathard, Rhett Akins and Jim Beavers, singers Josh Thompson and Shelly Fairchild, and musicians including Charlie Worsham, Jimmy Stewart, David Yudkin and Lynyrd Skynyrd’s Peter Keys.

Big Smo’s story begins on the farm he grew up on—the farm that is still home. His first memory, in fact, is “sitting on the tractor with my father. I can still remember the smell of the fresh cut hay and how blue the sky was. I had a great life as a child and as a teenager. I had hard-working grandparents and even harder-working parents that had great family values. My father taught me everything it was to be a man and he became not only the best father to have but my best friend.”

He played drums and keyboards as a boy, took up trumpet in middle school and was part of the drum line in high school.

“I was always into music,” he says, “and on the side I was always writing, whether it was a short story or these crazy movie ideas.”

He began writing poetry in high school, “expressing the side of me I didn’t really want to share with everyone else. It was where I could put down how I felt inside. My thoughts, my feelings, my emotions, they would explode onto the paper.”

As with so many of his generation, he heard music from both sides of the fence, rural and urban, country (“with an outlaw vibe”) and hip-hop, and both stirred his soul, as did the Southern and classic rock he heard as a teenager.

“When I listen to the music we make today,” he says, “I see all those things in everything we make. The elements are all there and it’s working. People love it because they can relate to it.”

Not long after he got out of high school he met Ray Riddle, who was just learning to be a DJ and who would become Orig the DJ.

“He had this Technics turntable.” says Smo, “and he was learning how to sample pieces out of a record. I thought, ‘That’s so cool.’ I really dug this kid, his enthusiasm and where his heart was when it came to music. It was like watching an artist paint a picture.”

Soon, they were writing together, learning every aspect of the process from the ground up. They played an early song for some friends, who loved it, then started the long process of gathering and mastering equipment and writing and performing original songs.

“To this day,” he says, “Orig and I are in the studio working late all the time and we’re still as tight as ever. Our moms look at both of us as sons.”
The two began making the one-hour journey north to Nashville, paying for the chance to play in tiny clubs–Kung Fu Coffee was the first–and giving away CDs they made at home and labeled with Sharpies.

“People got into what we were doing and before long we had our first paid gig,” he says. “I’ll never forget it. We piled our equipment in the car and drove to Georgia and we got there and they gave us three hundred bucks and a case of water. We were like, ‘What? All we did was show up and they haven’t even seen us yet!”

Soon they were taking what they’d learned and the contacts they’d made and putting on shows of their own, with Orig as DJ and Big Smo as host. They learned Photoshop and other programs and designed their own flyers. They began producing their own CDs, which got increasingly sophisticated, and began touring all over the southern U.S., booking their own shows and traveling in a converted church bus.

They learned everything they could about the possibilities inherent in the Internet, and were off and running.

“YouTube became the place for seeing what was happening,” he says. “That opened the window for independent artists to share with the same amount of people that you had to wait on MTV or CMT or BET for in the past. This was your ‘reach out and touch somebody’ opportunity.”

They took full advantage, and that road, of course, led to Warner Music Nashville, where the back woods met the power of full-scale national promotion. At bottom, though, is the same wide-ranging love of music and the same bootstrap mentality.

“We were raised on Waylon and Willie, Johnny Cash and Jerry Reed,” he says, “and we were raised on the Beastie Boys and Dirty South, so it’s not a surprise that’s who we’ve become. And that’s the place a whole lot of fans are, loving not just country but hip-hop as well. They’re country people who love to party and have a good time, and love that hip-hop beat and that country story telling. I’ve always followed my heart about the music, and it’s connecting to a lot of people.
“I wouldn’t trade away anything about the way we did it, because we learned it from the bottom up,” he says. “We paid our dues. I enjoy knowing that’s where we started and here’s where we are today.”

All of it comes together on stage, which is where Big Smo says he is most at home.

“It’s the best feeling I’ve come across in my life,” he says. “When you’re on stage and your fans are in the crowd and they’re singing along and they know the songs and you’re there to give them the best you are, it’s an exchange of love and enjoyment you just can’t beat. No matter how chill I am backstage, when I hear ‘Dueling Banjos,’ it’s like a light switch. I’m like, ‘It’s time.’ I just go out there and unleash whatever that week held for me, taking all my emotions and fueling them into my show.”

It’s an approach that has thrilled countless fans who have followed Big Smo from the Internet to some of the music world’s most exciting live shows, creating back-and-forth energy he is as excited about taking forward as his fans are.

“I could play a show every night for the rest of my life,” he says, “and I’d be the happiest man on earth.”

at The Bourbon Theatre
1415 O Street
Lincoln, United States

Lecture
Pole
High
Security
Desmond

Filed under: Photoshop

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25 Aug 14

Pauly Shore

Event on 2015-01-30 22:00:00

For over two decades, Pauly Shore has been an iconic figure in show business in front of the camera, and for the last 10 years, behind the scenes with multiple producer, director and creator credits. He’s also recently starred in comedy specials and scripted films for the premiere cable networks Showtime and CMT. Independent films that enjoyed worldwide distribution include Adopted, Pauly Shore is Dead, Pauly~tics and others. Pauly can be frequently seen in on the popular comedy web site Funny or Die, where he has done several digital shorts that have gone viral. He is currently in post-production on a true-to-life documentary about his mother the legendary founder of The Comedy Store. When Pauly isn’t touring the country on his sold-out comedy tour, he enjoys hiking, cooking and connecting with his Los Angeles roots.
Reserve your discounted parking in advance: http://www.parkwhiz.com/wilbur-theatre-parking/lazparking-boston/?pwa=bf272332

at Wilbur Theatre
246 Tremont Street
Boston, United States

Granger Smith

Event on 2014-08-30 20:00:00

with Hailey Whitters, Jesse Allen Stewart
Granger Smith has been busy reinventing the face of traditional country music one chart-topping single at a time. By consistently providing blended hits that are well outside the realm of typical, Grangers music provides a refreshing and unique variation on the growing independent country music scene.Though he's been in the music business since he was a teenager, Granger doesn't always play by the rules, which he finds gratifying. "When I knew I wanted to be a singer-songwriter for a living, I never set out to be totally grassroots," he explains. "Probably no one does. At that time, there was a system and most people followed that system. Write a song, book a studio and musicians, play a showcase, get a record deal, get famous, request all green M&Ms."For Granger, a mixed bag has proven more his style. "I've taken a unique path, which has been partly unplanned, but very rewarding, he adds.Over a decade into his career, the former Texas A&M alumn has already checked several items off his bucket list. Played by invitation at the White House? Check. Paid his respects to American soldiers? Absolutely, both through multiple tours in Iraq and Kuwait and through his annual 100-mile soldier walk. This year, he was asked to partner with The Boot Campaign to further raise awareness of our troops needs as they return home from combat.The 'We Do It In A Field' hitmaker means what he sings, because he works on his own time and in his own way. He has created his own in-home studio and with every album uses his own players — his band members — who have essentially become his brothers when on the road. "Every album, every song, every drum beat that you've heard from me over the last 7 years has come from my home studio out of these little speakers and was edited by me until I've felt it was right to release," Granger says, ensuring that his music is authentic and from the heart.Juggling a relentless tour schedule, he essentially never sleeps. His blood is always pumping, his mind plotting the next calculated move.And that next move never seems to be very far away. In 2013, Granger released his 9th studio album since he hit the scene at age 19. The album "Dirt Road Driveway" debuted at #1 on the iTunes Country Chart and has proven to be his most successful release to date expanding his audience from a regional artist to a national touring act. Dirt Road Driveway went on to become the number one selling independent country music album in total digital sales for 2013.His game plan has been good to him so far. Granger has had 10 Top 10 singles on the Texas Music Charts including 4 Top 5's and the most recent singles Miles and Mud Tires and Silverado Bench Seat both landed at the #1 spot, the latter of which debuted on ESPNs Sports Center. He's even successfully launched a crowd-pleasing alter-ego, "country boy" Earl Dibbles Jr. The idea was born when Granger and his brother were having some fun with a camera on their childhood ranch. "Earl represents at least half of my family, so it was easy to jump in my old truck, grab my shotgun and slip right into character," Granger admits. They could never have imagined the viral success Dibbles has become, with his own singles The Country Boy Song and "Country Boy Love" with music videos, TV shows on CMT and CBS Sports Network, YEE YEE clothing lines and legions of fans all over the globe.It's clear that Granger is both serious and playful when it comes to his craft; he's humble enough not to take himself too seriously, but dedicated enough not to let his name slip out of mind. "Whether it was good or bad, that reality means the world to me," says of following his own path. "My team and I, we rise and fall together, but that rise feels so inspiring when we know we've created this momentum from the ground up. Everyday I'm thankful, everyday I'm excited. The world will always need new music and luckily, I can never get new music out of my head!"

at Wooly’s
504 E. Locust
Des Moines, United States

Things
User
Executive
Marketing/communications
Route

Filed under: Digital Camera

Trackback Uri






25 Aug 14


Las Vegas, NV August 25, 2014

Lynda.com, a worldwide leader in providing online training courses for business, technology, software, and creative skills that is available for everyone from beginning enthusiasts to busy professionals has caught the attention of Shane Michaels, prompting an investigative review.

?In today?s culture and professional realm, software is such an everyday part of life, and not having the necessary skills to navigate even the most basic programs can put people at a real disadvantage,? reports Michaels. ?With Lynda.com, attaining those skills aren?t out of reach anymore. What?s even better is that people can learn the skills they want on their own time and at their own pace for an extremely affordable price. This site truly is a leader in new-age education for the masses.?

Lynda.com was founded in 1995 and since then has become a renowned brand for providing the best in affordable, yet comprehensive online training for the leading software programs. Today, they offer more than 2,778 courses and 100,000 video tutorials for some of the most popular software programs such as Photoshop, Final Cut Pro, DreamWeaver, and more, as well as skills like photography, architecture, animation, and much more. Each course and tutorial takes students through step-by-step tutorialsLynda.com offers two tiers of membership to cater to both personal and professional users. Basic membership that includes unlimited courses and new courses weekly is available for either $ 25 per month or $ 250 annually. Premium membership that also includes project files to download is offered at $ 37.50 per month, or $ 375 per year. For a limited time, Lynda.com is offering a free 7-day trial so people can try the tutorials for themselves. The trial version provides full access to all courses available on Lynda.com.

?The great thing about the tutorials provided by Lynda.com is that they have something for everyone. Their courses are simple enough for the beginner to follow, but also comprehensive enough to be valuable for the experienced professional,? says Michaels. ?Lynda.com makes it possible for anyone who has the desire to expand their skills to do so, whether if it?s for their own personal fulfillment or to make themselves more valuable in the professional world.?

?This trial offer is a great opportunity for anyone who has ever wanted to learn a new software skill to discover really how easy it is to follow the tutorials on Lynda.com at no cost for a full seven days.?

Those wishing to purchase a membership to Lynda.com or for more information, click here.

To access a comprehensive Lynda.com review, visit their official site here.







High
Milestone
Exp700
Kodak
Wireless

Filed under: Photoshop

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25 Aug 14

Wacom Bamboo Pad Review September 2013

Wacom have released a brand new tablet in their lineup, the Bamboo Pad. Square take a look at this exciting new concept in our latest video review. The exact…

Video Rating: 4 / 5

Wacom Tablets: Photoshop And Lightroom

A quick overview to using a Wacom tablet or interactive pen display with Adobe Photoshop CS6 and Lightroom 4. Discover dozens of tools that take advantage of…

Nissan
Designer
Grove
Level
Consultant

Filed under: Wacom Pad

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24 Aug 14

Photoshop World Conference & Expo 2014

Event on 2014-09-03 00:00:00

at Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino
3950 Las Vegas Boulevard South
Las Vegas, United States

Big Smo

Event on 2014-12-11 20:00:00

Thursday, December 11th
Doors: 7 p.m. || Show: 8 p.m.
: Advance || : Day of Show
href=”https://www.etix.com/ticket/online/performanceSearch.jsp?performance_id=1838435″ rel=”nofollow”>Big Smo

Website | Facebook | Video

“You can tell when something’s real,” says the man known simply as Big Smo. “You can tell when it’s true. And I think what’s made us successful and gotten us this far is that we’re just real people, down-home country folk who really love to make music, and people see that.”

That success has been as hard won as it is impressive. What began as two friends—Smo and Orig the DJ—experimenting with samples, beats and lyrics in a makeshift home studio has turned into four independent CDs and hundreds of tour stops before over-the-top crowds from mud parks in Florida to night clubs in Vegas. He and his band—Orig, vocalists Alexander King and Haden Carpenter, guitarist Travis Tidwell, bassist Eric Flores and drummer Ryan Peel—have opened for Brantley Gilbert, appeared at 2012′s Bamajam on a bill with Kid Rock and Jamey Johnson, and rocked the crowd at 2013′s CMA Music Fest in Nashville. Perhaps most impressive, though, has been the phenomenal success of their breakthrough indy hit, “Kickin’ It In Tennessee.” Its video, a slice of real life shot on a shoestring at Big Smo’s 32-acre Middle Tennessee farm, has earned well over five million YouTube hits.

Now, with the release of his major-label debut, Kuntry Livin’, the man known as the Boss of the Sticks is poised to take it all up a very big notch.

It was that homegrown video, “Kickin’ It,” that turned the tide, bringing Big Smo to the attention of Warner Bros. senior vice president and head of radio promotion Chris Stacey.

“The moment I saw Big Smo on YouTube,” says Stacey, “I knew he was something special. I grew up loving rap music and loving country music, and Big Smo is the first artist that I have ever seen that seamlessly combines the two. Big Smo is for the kids with the jacked-up trucks and camo hats that love Jason Aldean and Brantley Glibert—but also bump Lil Wayne.”

Big Smo’s growing legion of fans would agree. His is the story of a country boy catching fire in a digital age, where musical cross-pollination is everywhere, where Nelly teams up with Tim McGraw and Florida Georgia Line, and Ludacris joins forces with Jason Aldean, who’s “Dirt Road Anthem” was the best-selling country song of the year. Big Smo’s rise has been fueled by high energy and relatable lyrics, a band with the ability to rock a crowd, and the studio savvy to capture that lightning in a bottle. Big Smo owns that place where country, Southern rock and hip hop come together, where the beat rocks the story and the story rocks the beat. An early review put it this way: “If Kid Rock and Run D.M.C. had a love child, he would be named Big Smo.”

The added reach and clout of the label deal comes with something Big Smo values even more—freedom to do it his way.

“The most important thing,” he says, “is that when we went from being independent artists to being on a label, we didn’t want to lose control of who we are. That’s why the label called us—because of who we are, not because of what somebody made us. They said, ‘We’ll let you drive. We like the way you steer.’ I was like, ‘Cool. I won’t let you down.’”

Produced by Jon Conner and Orig, Kuntry Livin’ sums up everything that has brought Big Smo to the forefront. The beats are pulse-pounding, the vocals passionate, the guitars electrifying, and the subject matter—well, that’s pure back-country reality. It includes the boots-on blue-collar anthem “Workin’,” the country-as-cornbread celebration of roots, “Who I’ll Be,” the work-hard-play-hard life sketch, “Down in the Backwoods,” and the love-gone-wrong tale, “Cover My Eyes.”

Working with Big Smo on individual tracks are producer extraordinaire Michael Knox (Jason Aldean), songwriters Casey Beathard, Rhett Akins and Jim Beavers, singers Josh Thompson and Shelly Fairchild, and musicians including Charlie Worsham, Jimmy Stewart, David Yudkin and Lynyrd Skynyrd’s Peter Keys.

Big Smo’s story begins on the farm he grew up on—the farm that is still home. His first memory, in fact, is “sitting on the tractor with my father. I can still remember the smell of the fresh cut hay and how blue the sky was. I had a great life as a child and as a teenager. I had hard-working grandparents and even harder-working parents that had great family values. My father taught me everything it was to be a man and he became not only the best father to have but my best friend.”

He played drums and keyboards as a boy, took up trumpet in middle school and was part of the drum line in high school.

“I was always into music,” he says, “and on the side I was always writing, whether it was a short story or these crazy movie ideas.”

He began writing poetry in high school, “expressing the side of me I didn’t really want to share with everyone else. It was where I could put down how I felt inside. My thoughts, my feelings, my emotions, they would explode onto the paper.”

As with so many of his generation, he heard music from both sides of the fence, rural and urban, country (“with an outlaw vibe”) and hip-hop, and both stirred his soul, as did the Southern and classic rock he heard as a teenager.

“When I listen to the music we make today,” he says, “I see all those things in everything we make. The elements are all there and it’s working. People love it because they can relate to it.”

Not long after he got out of high school he met Ray Riddle, who was just learning to be a DJ and who would become Orig the DJ.

“He had this Technics turntable.” says Smo, “and he was learning how to sample pieces out of a record. I thought, ‘That’s so cool.’ I really dug this kid, his enthusiasm and where his heart was when it came to music. It was like watching an artist paint a picture.”

Soon, they were writing together, learning every aspect of the process from the ground up. They played an early song for some friends, who loved it, then started the long process of gathering and mastering equipment and writing and performing original songs.

“To this day,” he says, “Orig and I are in the studio working late all the time and we’re still as tight as ever. Our moms look at both of us as sons.”
The two began making the one-hour journey north to Nashville, paying for the chance to play in tiny clubs–Kung Fu Coffee was the first–and giving away CDs they made at home and labeled with Sharpies.

“People got into what we were doing and before long we had our first paid gig,” he says. “I’ll never forget it. We piled our equipment in the car and drove to Georgia and we got there and they gave us three hundred bucks and a case of water. We were like, ‘What? All we did was show up and they haven’t even seen us yet!”

Soon they were taking what they’d learned and the contacts they’d made and putting on shows of their own, with Orig as DJ and Big Smo as host. They learned Photoshop and other programs and designed their own flyers. They began producing their own CDs, which got increasingly sophisticated, and began touring all over the southern U.S., booking their own shows and traveling in a converted church bus.

They learned everything they could about the possibilities inherent in the Internet, and were off and running.

“YouTube became the place for seeing what was happening,” he says. “That opened the window for independent artists to share with the same amount of people that you had to wait on MTV or CMT or BET for in the past. This was your ‘reach out and touch somebody’ opportunity.”

They took full advantage, and that road, of course, led to Warner Music Nashville, where the back woods met the power of full-scale national promotion. At bottom, though, is the same wide-ranging love of music and the same bootstrap mentality.

“We were raised on Waylon and Willie, Johnny Cash and Jerry Reed,” he says, “and we were raised on the Beastie Boys and Dirty South, so it’s not a surprise that’s who we’ve become. And that’s the place a whole lot of fans are, loving not just country but hip-hop as well. They’re country people who love to party and have a good time, and love that hip-hop beat and that country story telling. I’ve always followed my heart about the music, and it’s connecting to a lot of people.
“I wouldn’t trade away anything about the way we did it, because we learned it from the bottom up,” he says. “We paid our dues. I enjoy knowing that’s where we started and here’s where we are today.”

All of it comes together on stage, which is where Big Smo says he is most at home.

“It’s the best feeling I’ve come across in my life,” he says. “When you’re on stage and your fans are in the crowd and they’re singing along and they know the songs and you’re there to give them the best you are, it’s an exchange of love and enjoyment you just can’t beat. No matter how chill I am backstage, when I hear ‘Dueling Banjos,’ it’s like a light switch. I’m like, ‘It’s time.’ I just go out there and unleash whatever that week held for me, taking all my emotions and fueling them into my show.”

It’s an approach that has thrilled countless fans who have followed Big Smo from the Internet to some of the music world’s most exciting live shows, creating back-and-forth energy he is as excited about taking forward as his fans are.

“I could play a show every night for the rest of my life,” he says, “and I’d be the happiest man on earth.”

at The Bourbon Theatre
1415 O Street
Lincoln, United States

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24 Aug 14

GTA 5 Online How To Upload Pictures To Rockstar Social Club Crew Emblem Editor Tutorial/Guide!

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24 Aug 14

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