Why I love New York

Posted in Column, New York, Photography, Special Interests, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , on April 27, 2012 by itsokimwiththeband


By Eilene Rogers

New York, “the big apple,” the big city, “the city that never sleeps.” They say “If you can make there, you can make it anywhere.” Well I made it there. Now, I guess the rest of the world is just wide open for me. I had a love affair with that city and the definition of it for me came in the form of a man. After I got there, he pushed me away, leaving me alone in the big city to redefine it for myself.

And boy did I!

I experienced a lot on those crowded, yet lonely streets. I was driven around, pushed around, pulled around, shoved around and downright dragged around. I was hit on, spilled on, stepped on and led on. Yet I always came up with my “horns high.”

Yes, the city can be rough and annoying, and the people could be straight up rude at times.

They say that city can chew up and spit out a small town girl like myself but whoever said that… didn’t know me.

I have seen a softer side to New York. It’s the East River at the end of my street, staring out over the water at the Brooklyn Bridge, Ellis Island, the Statue of Liberty and the Empire State Building. It’s not just that though. It’s the beautiful antique buildings in the neighborhood I lived in, the historic district, otherwise known as Brooklyn Heights. It was watching the fireworks burst behind the Empire State Building from the top of a penthouse, on 4th of July.

New York is so many things to so many people. But what made it best for me? I was in it. I wasn’t just in it though. I was a part of it. It consumed me and devoured me. No matter where I go for the rest of my life, a part of me will always remain there, whether I like it or not.

You see the man I spoke of earlier, the one who forced me out on my own. He took a big chunk out of my heart and he will never leave New York, not for anyone.

Now, as I go out on my own into the big cruel world to see other places and do other things, I’ll always remember, a part of me remains in N.Y. It’s a piece of me I can never get back.



Posted in Uncategorized on December 30, 2011 by itsokimwiththeband

Ok, I know I need to start writing again but the end of this year has been really crazy for me… I promise to start writing again in the new year, I had much to get under my belt and into the past. I will start 2012 off with a bang! I will also start posting video clips again as soon as I get the editing studio set up. My video camera I do most of my interviews on is broken so it may be a bit before I can get up a new article. Happy New Year my loves… may it bring you all the joy, love and success you deserve

Setacide brining it… Atlanta, Texas style

Posted in Alternative Rock, Heavy Metal, Music, Music Features, Music Reviews, Rock N Roll, Southern Metal, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on November 17, 2011 by itsokimwiththeband

By Eilene Rogers

Photo by Eilene Rogers

Many people in the Greater Texarkana Area remember a band from Atlanta, Texas called Insinuwait.  They were local celebrities with plenty of talent to go around. Now, Drummer Bum White and bassist David Ainsworth have given birth to a new band hailing from Atlanta, Setacide. This band has already been winning the hearts of fans as their following grows. In fact, the one word they used to describe their fans was, “loyal.”

Doghouse Entertainment once again sponsored another great event at Hippy’s Night Life in Texarkana. The show took place on November 12, 2011, staring the bands Up From Under, Messer and Setacide. When the opening band canceled, Setacide was more than happy to step-up. And boy did they! They had the audience up out of their seats and rocking.

After Setacide finished the set, It’s Ok I’m With The Band caught up with them for an interview. Standing before the camera was an eager, lively bunch of guys ready to share.  The other members of the band are vocalist Adam Garcia and guitarist Jacob Domingue.  They let the two more seasoned players do most of the talking during the interview.

The band describes their sound as modern heavy rock and named some of their influences as Shinedown, Chris Cornel, Sevendust and Led Zeppelin.

“All of the greats,” White said. “There’s been so many over the years I can’t name them all.”

“I got my roots from a lot of jazz,” Ainsworth explained. “Now days, it’s just anything with a good heavy rhythm to back it up.”

White and Ainsworth have been in several bands together in the past. The list was long, so obviously these two enjoy working together, and they do it well.

Setacide is making plans to play outside of the area soon.

“We’re looking at everything from Mississippi or anything south of the Mason Dixon Line. All the way up to entertaining some New Jersey gigs,” White said. “We’ll go out to the west or the east, it doesn’t make any difference.”

“Anywhere they want us to play,” Ainsworth added.

The band has a self-produced and self-titled CD.  The members stated they would consider reproducing it if the right name came across the table.  White says that Setacide is always writing and just wants keep it new for the fans.

“It’s been a great ride for sure,” White concluded.

“Yeah, we’re just trying to get these guys out there now,” Ainsworth said in agreement.

“This is my first ride,” Garcia exclaimed.

For more info on Setacide and booking, visit them on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/pages/Setacide/290756420958616

It’s all about the wood, Holly Wood

Posted in Alternative Rock, Bass Guitar, Column, Heavy Metal, Music, Music Features, Rock N Roll, Southern Metal, Video with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on November 10, 2011 by itsokimwiththeband

Photo By Eilene Rogers

Love Stricken Demise’s Holly Wood talks about her preferences in a bass.

By Eilene Rogers

On October 22, I went to a gig sponsored by Doghouse Entertainment starring InGroundZero, Up From Under and Love Stricken Demise. During the show I discovered there were three of the members from my Facebook Bass Players Group; Jim Spiros, bassist of Up From Under; Billy Blair, guitarist of Love Stricken Demise; and Holly Wood of Love Stricken Demise.

As an amateur (hobby) bass player I started a bass group on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/groups/realbassplayers/ . Bass Players is an open group for bass players to network, share, collaborate and goof around. If you are looking for a bass player, this is the place to find one. It might take quite a few contacts to actually score one… because I’m sure you already know… EVERYBODY NEEDS A BASS PLAYER. Many of the bassists in the group are already playing in multiple bands, so happy hunting.  Feel free to join the group but if you are not a bass player, do not get offended by the things we say. It is after all our domain and bassists are a different breed.

During the show at Hippy’s Night Life in Texarkana, I began talking to Holly Wood about my Ibanez.

“Ibanez is too light,” Wood proclaimed.

I explained to her, that is why I like it.

“Try a heavier bass,” Wood said.

I continued to explain to her that I’m afraid a heavier bass will hurt my back. I really wish Ibanez still made the wafer thin.

“It’s worth it to get that heavier sound,” Wood continued.

My bass is my husband and it just feels just right. As I was explaining I thumped my hand on my chest.

“That is what it is all about right there,” Wood said. “That feeling your bass gives in your chest.”

Since I don’t get to speak with other female bassists very often, I began listening intently.

“It’s all about the wood,” she explained. “The heavier the wood in the bass, the heavier sound. Try playing some heavier basses. Just go around and try every bass you can.”

I explained to her I would feel like it’s cheating. But is it really cheating if you don’t plug in?

“You have to plug in,” Wood said. “You can’t really hear or feel the difference if you don’t.”

Since she has played more basses than I have, I am really considering taking her advice. Will it turn me into a collector?

“It’s all about the wood,” she repeated. “Basses that are made of one solid piece of wood have an even heavier sound. I guess because we play such heavy music, I feel the need to have a more low-end, heavier sound when I play.”

The other members of the Dallas band, Love Stricken Demise, include Nikki Mckibbin from American Idol on vocals, Billy Blair II, an actor and former bass player of Earshot, on guitar and Rîçô Gtž on drums. The band recently competed on the new reality T.V. competition “War of Rock.”

More on Love Stricken Demise along with a video interview with the whole band will be coming soon. In the meantime, visit their Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/Lovestrickendemise?sk=info , their Reverbnation page http://www.reverbnation.com/lovestrickendemise , download MP3s on Amazon and view the official video to “Celebrity High.”

The sweet side of Sweet Cyanide

Posted in Alternative Rock, Column, Heavy Metal, Music, Music Features, Music Reviews, New York, Photography, Rock N Roll, Video with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 25, 2011 by itsokimwiththeband

Photo by Eilene Rogers. Sal Scoca left, Angelo Fariello right

By Eilene Rogers

The night I met Sweet Cyanide they were playing a packed house as they opened for Mr. Big in Time Square. Sal Scoca called me just as I was buying batteries for my outboard microphone. The mic. ended up still not working but it was just as well.

When I got inside and met Angelo Fariello, I discovered it would be a double your pleasure interview, so the clip-on mic. was no longer necessary. I sat down at the table with two attractive Italian men, vocalist/guitarist Scoca and bassist Fariello. We began joking around right away. They were happy, fun and glad to be there.

Fariello and I bantered back and forth about “All My Exes” by George Straight and Sal seemed to be lost.

The band was touring on its own for quite some time and this was the first home-show in months. Opening for Mr. Big was not only a great opportunity to go home but was also a great experience for Sweet Cyanide.

When asked where their reception is best, the list was long. It turns out they are quite loved everywhere they go.

“The best thing about Sweet Cyanide fans,” Scoca offered, “is that most of them are ladies between the ages of 18 and 27.”

“Not true,” Fariello argued. “We have beautiful female fans of all ages.”

“That’s right.” Scoca said. “You had a 40 year old fan.”

Ok boys are we talking fans here or groupies? Because believe it or not, there is a difference between the two. After both of them acknowledged the difference we moved on, but make no mistake; the ladies do love Sweet Cyanide.

After Scoca exclaimed he had no friends, I had to include a picture of him speaking with a friend in the video footage, just to illustrate what a comedian he is. The humor you see peeking through in some of his lyrics is actually who he is in real life.

Fariello, who is equally the joker, chimed in and said, “Our friends are actually coming to see Mr. Big.”

Fan shouting #1

Horns & Fists

There was absolutely no lack of excitement for Sweet Cyanide, as the crowd photos demonstrate. New York was definitely happy to have the boys home.

I literally had to fight fans wall to wall just to shoot the photos, and all joking aside, even the men were screaming and applauding between every song while throwing up the horns. The entire crowd was in full appreciation. Undeniably Sweet Cyanide has a multitude of fans.

“We are influenced by everything,” Scoca said. “I watch other people and the things going on in their lives and I write stories about other people.”

He jokes around with journalists and claims to have no life of his own but nobody that talented is as uninteresting as he claims to be, just another testament to Scoca’s humor

“Sal is really into the 80’s,” Fariello volunteered.  “He loves all of that 80s stuff.”

“Oh yeah, Alice Cooper, White Snake, Def Leppard, Motley Crue… hair metal,” Scoca agreed.

I had to stop them to ask about the 60s. As I pointed out hearing some early 60s influence, especially Paul McCartney, Scoca blushed.

“I am influenced by the 60s” Scoca admitted.  “The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, The Doors… all that stuff.”

The distinct movements within the songs, the transitions between those movements and the variations of texture within, keeps the attention of the listeners. There is no time to get bored because no two songs are alike. The more times you spin it, the more interesting facets you find within the music.

Though Scoca is no doubt an excellent storyteller and lyricist, my love for the music goes beyond the lyrics. There is no lack of talent in this band. Every member of Sweet Cyanide has earned the title “musician.”

“Our fans are probably going to hate our next album,” Scoca concluded.

Somehow, I doubt that.

The fans who get angry about bands changing sounds, do not truly understand what music is about. It is about stimulating the mind and the emotions. It is the bands who challenge themselves to find new ways to do that, who are the truly talented musicians.

After we turned off the camera, we further discussed how some of the classic bands Scoca mentioned earlier had a different sound with each album. That’s what musicians in the 1960’s were about, experimentation, and Sweet Cyanide will no doubt keep that tradition alive.

As I have stated previously in a review; this band is my favorite up-and-coming band out there right now. If you have not checked them out already… you must.    https://itsokimwiththeband.wordpress.com/2011/09/27/who-knew-cyanide-could-be-so-sweet/

This video is not a completed product it is just temporary so I could get the feature story up. It will be replaced at a later date.

The other members of Sweet Cyanide include drummer Mike Bambace, guitarist Joe Salvatore and guitarist Tommy “sneakers” Sica.

They have two CDs out right now, the self-titled album Sweet Cyanide and Sweet Cyanide II. Both albums are available on iTunes and Amazon.  For band bio, music samples and booking info please visit their Website at http://www.sweetcyanide.com/current-site/.

Visit their YouTube channel at http://www.youtube.com/user/SweetCyanideNYC.

‘This is Gonna Hurt’ and then some

Posted in Alternative Rock, Death Metal, Heavy Metal, Music, Music Reviews, Rock N Roll, Special Interests, Thrash, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 19, 2011 by itsokimwiththeband

Album Art from This is Gonna Hurt

By Eilene Rogers

In March of this year Motley Crue made me aware of the Nikki Sixx photography project via Facebook by posting links to the documentaries on Hulu. I was touched by the project from hearing the stories of the lives behind Sixx’s photography subjects. All six episodes of the documentary are available at http://www.hulu.com/search?query=This+is+Gonna+Hurt%3A+The+Documentaries&st=0&fs=

While viewing the “This is Gonna Hurt” documentaries I learned there would be a book and an album soon to be released. The music from the album plays in the background during the documentaries, so I knew it was going to be good. I immediately pre-ordered the album and the book.

Soon after I received them, I hit the ground running and only had a quick moment to view and listen before I was off to N.Y. for the summer to perform two internships. They were pushed aside for the summer due to all of the music I have to listen to for work and the shows I had to attend.

When I returned to Texas I put the CD in my car and there I had more intimate time to spend with Sixx A.M.

The more I listen to the CD, the more I fall in-love with it. It is an all around great album. The production, the subject matters, the writing and the musicianship are all incredible.

I shared “This is Gonna Hurt” with my 14-year-old daughter and she too fell-in-love with it. I believe one of the reasons we both love it so much is because we have both endured bullying and so we relate to some of the subject matters, on-top-of the fact that we are both empathetic people.

As disturbing as some of the images are in the book, I felt it was important that I share it with my daughter as well. It had the profound effect on her I was hoping for. She now not only understands just how beautiful she is despite what other people tell her but is also grateful for her assets. It humbled her from the shallow beauty standards society sets on us as females.

Every time I listen to the CD I find something new as I dissect it. There are moments that are so grand which go completely over your head if you are not listening carefully. Then there a subtle nuances which you miss if you don’t listen to it again. Those who know me know I love the mixture of classical instruments and modern music. The use of classical instruments in Sixx A.M.’s, “This is Gonna Hurt” is nothing short of genius. The classical instruments add so much more emotion and dynamics to the already emotional subject matters. If you listen to no other song on the album, the song “Skin” is a MUST for everybody.

I encourage you all to watch the documentaries, buy the CD and at least give the book a look even if you do not read it. The book is autobiographical for Sixx. For more information about his photography watch the documentaries in the link provided at the beginning of this article. This project was absolutely an admirable feat on behalf of the boys in Sixx A.M. I have to say, I am absolutely proud of them.

The work of Sixx A.M. is completed by the three band members as follows; James Michael does lead vocals, rhythm guitar, keyboards and drum programming; DJ Ashba does lead guitar and backing vocals; while Nikki Sixx of course plays bass and does backing vocals.

“This is Gonna Hurt,” by Sixx A.M. is one of the best albums of 2011. Now available on Amazon and music outlets everywhere.

Watch out for the horns!

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 18, 2011 by itsokimwiththeband

Horns High


Now that I have most of the back articles up from the old site, I am ready. I’m getting to the grind of writing new articles. Of course I have plenty of material to work from already, but all of my video footage needs to be reloaded after the traumatizing p.c. crash in N.Y. over the summer.

Here is what we are looking at soon…

I want to grab some more of  The Inside footage and put up an interview with Barry Johnson with a video clip inclusive. https://www.facebook.com/pages/The-INSIDE/122147857799779

Tomorrow night, I am interviewing Barry’s other band, my Hazy Jayne boys (long time friends of mine). This will be my 1st interview with them after all of these years. https://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100002287391171

Next I want to go through some of my audio footage (of which I have much) from Mark Heylman of Suicide Silence. Of course we know Mark is just an awesome and interesting human-being.

I am hoping for an interview with a guitar legend this month as well at a show in the DFW area. More on that later… probably in the form of a fit…  if I don’t get the interview. Everybody knows it is NOT pretty when Queen Eilene gets turned down for an interview (DRAMA!).

Maybe when I am in the DFW area I’ll have time to interview some awesome bass players from my Bass Players Face Book Group. Dallas is FULL of great bands.  https://www.facebook.com/groups/realbassplayers/

I LOVE the new Sixx AM… so look for a CD review there.

I am also writing a full feature story my beloved Sweet Cyanide. https://www.facebook.com/sweetcyanideNYC It’s no secret I’m a big fan of their music. I have some great video footage from the interview I’m hoping to share as well. Also, check out their website because they have pictures and music up.  http://www.sweetcyanide.com/current-site/

For now… sit tight, keep your horns high and stay wicked & sexy always.

Love Always,
Queen Eilene

P.S. And Yes the long awaited Anthrax video is still coming. You didn’t think I forgot did ya? Who loves ya baby?