A few months ago I discovered San Fermin as part of the lineup at Austin City Limits (I didn't have the chance to go, but one of my good friends did). San Fermin, a Brooklyn-based band, is the brainchild of Ellis Ludwig-Leone (pictured center above). Ellis, a classically trained graduate of Yale spent six weeks writing the band's first album and describes it as the tale of interactions between a male and female character "filled with blustery, unpredictable, avant-garde arrangements and rooted in the preciousness of indie pop."
Note, while I haven't looked into this I'm pretty sure Ellis named the band after the Spanish city of San Fermin. San Fermin is world famous for its running of the bulls event. Ellis references San Fermin on his album during the song Torero (Spanish for Bullfighter).
Sonsick was one of first singles released from the album before it's debut.
Instantly I enjoyed the sound of their first self-titled album, San Fermin. The album has about twenty-two musicians who deliver a truly unique masterpiece. Allen Tate, the bands lead male vocalist and longtime friend of Ellis, introduces the album with powerful vocals that instantly captures listeners attention. The album was written by Ellis right after college in what he describes as a period of trying to figure life out while the rest of his friends are moving on with their lives and making life decisions.
I put together this playlist featuring the full first album mixed with commentary from Ellis:
Sitting at under an hour, it's worth listening to the album from start to finish. If you're looking for some good storytelling, treat yourself to the commentary from Ellis as well as he guides you through his work. You can listen to this album over and over again and each time you'll be able to catch things you didn't notice before.
One of the things that struck me while listening to this first album are just how simple yet powerful Ellis' lyrics and arrangements are. They don't come off as trying too hard to be grandiose but serve the purpose of telling a moving story of the main character coming to terms with his life. Many of the songs on the album, such as Methuselah, Casanova, Daedalus contain literary references that help tell the album's story.
The band's second album, Jackrabbit is a satisfying followup. I've been playing the The Woods and Emily on repeat the past few days. Altogether, I consider Emily to be my favorite track from both albums; if you see me singing in my car in traffic it'll most likely be that track.
Take a listen to the second album, Jackrabbit here:
I'm really hoping these guys make their way out West soon so I can see them live. I can only imagine their sound being that much better in person.
If you want to check out some more of their work, click the social media buttons below.
I'll wrap up this post with the Daedalus music video. If you don't know the Greek mythos behind Daedalus, do yourself a favor and look it up. Ellis describes this track as "the most personal song on the record for me. The male character's voice I think has a lot in common with my own..."
Thanks for checking out this Sunday's Artist Spotlight.
The Beatles are one of my favorite artists of all time. This YouTube video really showcases the raw emotional talent of the group.
Take a listen:
If you don't feel like reading, just scroll down to the picture. That's the message I want to share.
Well, tonight's workout was a little rough. I was relaxing at home on my off day when I thought to myself "man, I could sit down and try to find something to watch on Netflix or I could get off my ass and go feel better about having done something productive." So, I put on my shorts and tee, grabbed my keys, and headed off to the gym. Now, I've recently started coming to Carson City Crossfit and the love, support, and passion of the people there make me excited to come.
Here was the work out of the day (WOD) when I got there:
500 M Row / 400 M Run
21 KB Goblet Squats (35/53)
Now, nothing really jumped out and scared me. I was pretty excited to do some running (I'v never been a runner and my small improvements have made me feel better about my fitness). The moment I realized things might be tough for me tonight was when my legs started feeling like lead during the warm ups (damn you wall balls). Well, here comes the Metcon. Decided to do one round running, one rowing, and the last running, While time certainly wasn't my biggest concern (although I didn't want to keep anyone waiting) finishing was. On my last round it was time for the final run.
Here's where I struggled. The rowing from earlier had absolutely killed me and I hit a wall halfway through the run that made me grab the fence trying to catch my breath. Honestly, at this point I didn't know if I was going to be able to finish and I mentally prepared to tell everyone back in the gym "well, I'm not going to be able to finish." Right before I completely accepted my fate, a small passage of reading from one of my college courses ran across my mind.
For those of you who don't know, Marcus Aurelius is one of my favorite philosophers and inside his Meditations (specifically book ten), is this nugget of advice:
I'll transcribe it below
Everything happens in such a way that you are by nature either able or unable to endure it. If it happens so that you can by nature endure it, do not complain but endure it as you are by nature able to do. If it happens so that you cannot endure it, do not complain, for it will anticipate your complaint by destroying you.
And my favorite part...
But be sure to remember that it is within your power to endure anything which it is within the power of your thought to make endurable and bearable by representing it as to your advantage or as your duty
And so it goes, I started running, got back to the gym, and thanks to the the wonderful support... I finished that damn workout.
Whether physical or emotional, if you're facing a struggle in your life just remember: you have it in you to endure anything you set your mind to.