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Adult World Screenwriter Andrew Cochran On Millennial Disorders and Shitty Post-College Jobs

andrewcochran1.jpgAfter constantly hearing about how Millennials are so quick to assume they'll grow into fame without having to work for it, it's refreshing to meet a twentysomething taking risks and killing it. Andrew Cochran is a writer living in LA who contributed to MTV's Teen Wolf and Super Sweet 16: The Movie before selling his first attempt at a screenplay. That script became Adult World (out now), a new film starring our favorite witch Emma Roberts, her hottie boyfriend, Evan Peters, as well as John Cusack for the 'older' crowd. 

A fast-paced comedy that reflects our generation's fears of growing up in a post-9/11 world, the film sees Roberts playing an obnoxious but likeable post-college girl named Amy trying to cope with a mountain of debt and a degree in Poetry to show for it. Cut off by her disillusioned parents, Amy works at a sex shop managed by Alex (Peters), to pay back her loans. Cusack plays Amy's poetic idol, Rat but the most amusing scenes come from Armando Riesco, who plays Rubia, a trans man who befriends Amy at the sex store and whose scenes are worth the price of the movie ticket alone. We talked to Cochran about how Adult World came to be, shitty post-college jobs and what's next for the young screenwriter.

How did you get started as a screenwriter? Did you study film/writing in college?

No, I majored in English. I'm from Houston originally and moved to L.A. after graduating because I wanted to work in film, and then I started reading scripts that were selling and I thought, "These are terrible! I can write just as bad as this." And I sold my first script. Which is now Adult World.

Can you give us an overview of what the movie is about?

It's about how college doesn't prepare you for the real world. You spend your entire life in school and you're given this artificial structure and then you get out into the world and you have no idea what to do with yourself. And you think you've gone to a good school, but nobody honestly gives a shit. Just overall, it's about the expectation of a generation that the world is just waiting for you.

I'm guessing you had that experience yourself?

Haha yeah. I mean, it was very personal when I wrote it because I moved out to L.A. and was literally working as an assistant, buying this dude condoms and feeding his cat.

Adult World trailer

Emma Roberts is like the official face of this generation. Tell me about her role in the film.

I didn't really have anyone in mind when I wrote it honestly but she became what I had imagined. In the hands of the wrong actor, you'd hate the protagonist but with Emma, she's so naturally likable, you're on board with her.

What do you think is most unlikable about Emma's character?

It's not that she's unlikable, it's just that her personality is painfully disconnected from other people's perceptions and values. She's naïve to a fault and her aspirations are really counterproductive to her own happiness. She has that millennial disorder where we're taught to believe we need to be famous to matter -- and that's absurd. Ultimately that's the lesson I hope kids in Amy's place take away from Adult World...just relax and try to be happy before you shoot for fame and success.

What's next for you?

I'm writing a couple of features now, and a TV pilot. One of the features is for me to direct -- it's a dark indie comedy.

A Local News Station Accidentally Showed a Dick Pic on Live TV

OOOOOOPS. Watch as a Denver news caster accidentally shows a dick pic as he swipes through an iPad on live television. NSFW. [Uproxx]

In case you were wondering what Tom Hanks would look like as a rap star, here you go. [Uproxx]

Lena Dunham and Hugh Dancy played "Pyramid" on the Tonight Show last night with Jimmy Fallon and ?estlove and it was delightful.
What to do if your girlfriend is literally dying and can't even. [Jezebel]

Worth a try. [JuliaSegal]

 tumblr_lmzb0cLsmF1qjykxzo1_400.gif Oh hey splash! [JerseyDrag]

XYBW.gifToday, make sure to GET IT as hard as the drummer is getting it. [Mlkshk]

Oh god, this is the cutest. Check out the The Detroit Academy of Arts and Sciences children's school choir flawlessly performing Pharrell's "Happy." They are the best. [Uproxx]

Pennybirdrabbit Is Not Your Typical EDM Princess

pennybirdrabbit - main pub photo 1 - Angelo Kritikos.jpg(Photo by Angelo Kritikos)

It's always a little nerve-racking to look for the artist you're about to interview in a crowded public place. But it couldn't be easier when I go to meet Pennybirdrabbit at Swingers, one of Los Angeles' few remaining kitschy mid-century coffee shops, where the singer worked up until last year when she left to pursue music full-time. I find Penny slouched in a red vinyl booth, rubbing her stomach (she's pregnant) and wearing a spotted black maxi dress and red cardigan she keeps pulling over her shoulders. Today her hair is blue. "The trouble with my press photos is that I change my hair so fast," she says, scrolling through a photo gallery on her phone that shows her past shades of pink, green, and platinum.

As her name leads on, Pennybirdrabbit isn't the typical indie artist. Her big break came when her mentor Skrillex tapped her to sing on "All I Ask of You," from his career-spawning Scary Monsters and Nice Sprites EP, but Penny's musical tastes lean towards cabaret and Lady Gaga. As for her output, Penny makes theatrical, experimental doo-wop that muses on relationships. Her recently-released For Love EP came out on Skrillex's label OWSLA and Atlantic's dance imprint Big Beat, which places her in an unique space somewhere in between EDM and indie pop. Here, Penny shares on breaking out of EDM, being Skrillex's protégé, and her dream of working with Disney.

What's your favorite era of music?

I grew up in a pretty musically eclectic home and I was raised on musical theater. But I don't have one [favorite era] because I still listen to that genre as well as pop punk, James Taylor, the Eagles, Sticks, Journey, and Tracey Chapman. This morning when I was getting ready for my day, I put on Mozart.

Who are your music influences?

I remember the first time someone compared me to Björk, I died. I was writing with Linda Perry -- she's the coolest lady -- and recorded the song I wrote with her in one take and she listened to it and said it was "Bjork-meets-Judy Garland." I almost fell off my chair because those are the two influences. At the same time, I'm totally influenced by pop music.

Your EP is so sweet and bright. It's the polar opposite of EDM. Was your intention to move away from that world after your feature with Skrillex?

I don't think I had an intention. When I moved to L.A., I met Sonny [Moore a.k.a. Skrillex] and we got really close. I was there when Joel [Thomas Zimmerman] -- Deadmau5 -- asked him to do the Scary Monsters and Nice Sprites EP on Mau5trap and he was like, "Do you want to be on it?" I was like "yeah, absolutely," but I didn't even know what EDM was then. It was nothing like what it is now. Electronic music to me was like Aqua.

It's awesome that Aqua was your point of reference for electronic music.

Man, Aqua would be so cool if someone slowed down the BPM. Maybe one day I'll do it. But that was all I really knew. My sister knew who Deadmau5 was before I did. I remember the first dirty rave I ever went to -- there were kids sitting on the ground on drugs. We got into the big room and I saw the Deadmau5 head for the first time and was like, "This is so dark." I was terrified. I just sat behind his feet in the DJ booth and luckily there were technical issues so he just got paid and I left, which cracks me up because I know Joel and he's so nice.

I liked dance music but didn't understand what working with Sonny was going to mean to my life. He left for tour for a few weeks and by the time he had come back "All I Ask of You" had started rising. Then one day we were sitting and he was like, "Some of my DJ friends asked if you would do a feature and I told them 'no' because you were going to work on your record. My friend Zedd wants to do a song with you. Tell me if you're into it but you should work on your own stuff now."

So Skrillex was pushing you to start your solo career?

Yeah. We talked about it in length. I decided that I really wanted to establish my name as Penny and not "featuring Penny." Sonny bought me a laptop for Christmas in 2010 and put Ableton on it. I watched him produce so I knew basic things and I watched some YouTube videos and then I got better and learned to sketch out my songs. 

Where would you like to see your career head long term?

I want to write more stories and write zines. I've written a few things but I'm too scared to show people, which is stupid because that's how I felt about my music for so long until finally I showed my brother at the end of 2009 and he was like, "You need to do something with this." He was in a band called Saosin on Capitol Records. They're not a band anymore but at the time they were doing well and when I sent it to him that's how I got connected out here. I also want to work with Disney.

It's funny you say that. When I first heard your name, I thought it sounded like the protagonist of a children's story. What kind of collaboration with Disney do you have in mind?

You're really nailing it. In my head, the full-length record I'm writing is for Disney. One day, I would love to be the voice of some Disney weirdo but I'd also love to write the songs. What really killed me was Mandy Moore in Tangled. She's the voice of the character and does the singing. It was actually Sonny who was like, "You have to watch this movie. I watched it on a flight and I was crying." So I got it on Redbox and was balling watching it all by myself in the dark. I would die to be a part of the creative for that.

I take it that you like kids.

I'm making one. I'm more than half-way along. It's definitely the scariest thing that's happened to me in a cool way. I was really scared to tell my manager and the label because I thought they would drop me and I didn't tell them for awhile but I would have these nightmares that my manager was like, "I'm done working with you." He called me and was like, "I have the plan for the next year. We're going to release the EP and put you on tour." I was like, "Hey, you should know I'm pregnant." And he goes, "Congratulations you've always wanted kids." It makes me really excited because I'm just going to be a kid for even longer.

Have you thought about how touring will work?

I'm living the single mama life but I have support. I have family and people who would watch her if I had to go away or I could bring someone with me.

Beyoncé does it.

Yeah. It's so possible. I'm not a partier anyway. She's the classiest lady ever, Beyoncé. You see all of these young new artists getting into trouble and talking crap about each other and there's all this weird ego and then there's Beyoncé who doesn't get into it. That's how I want to be.

James Blake and Chance the Rapper's Remix Redux

Screen Shot 2014-03-19 at 12.59.41 PM.png(Photo via Instagram)

Back in October, we were treated to an awesome remix of James Blake's Overgrown track "Life Round Here" featuring Chance the Rapper and late yesterday the Chicago MC tweeted an alternate version (the "og idea"), dubbed "Save Yourself First." It's about half the length of the first remix and a lot more melodic and woozy -- Chance's frenetic rhyming on the first track is missing here. We hear the artists are holed up in a house in L.A. together working on a full-length album -- fingers crossed it features more tracks like these. Listen to "Save Yourself First," below.

17 Must-See Spring Art Shows

 27431-1394474518-Chris-Levine-Kate-NEW_72dpi.jpgShe's Light (Kate Moss) by Chris Levine, part of the RE: DEFINE auction

Beginning March 21st, you can go online here and bid on works by over fifty artists to support MTV's Staying Alive Foundation and raise money to fight HIV and AIDS.  The third annual RE:DEFINE benefit gala (and the final chance to place bids) takes place on April 4 at the Dallas Contemporary Art Museum.  The artist Richard Phillips is the events "music curator" and the Brooklyn-based band Starred is performing, plus Jennifer Herrema from Royal Trux will DJ.

Also online is Architizer's public voting in the Popular Choice categories for their second annual A+ Awards in global architecture.  Their awards gala is here in New York City during Design Week on May 15th.

1962267_691503134235576_1818164192_o.jpgFrom Lia Chavez's "Carceri" show at Two Rams

Back in the real world, a new LES gallery called Two Rams (215 Bowery) opened this week with a solo show called "Carceri" by Lia Chavez. The artist created the works "in a meditative state while blindfolded without sound."

LA artist Jeffery Vallance opens a show of new works at Tanya Bonakdar Gallery (521 West 21st Street) tomorrow, March 20th, from 6 to 8 p.m. Not sure what to expect here, but the guy has done everything from hosting an MTV show to teaching Regis Philbin how to make art, to burying a store-bought chicken in a pet cemetery, so you've been warned.

Graham_01.jpgSugar sculptures by Susan Graham

Susan Graham
has been busy this week constructing sculptures out of sugar that she will combine with several of her porcelain works in a giant site-specific installation at Mixed Greens (531 West 26th Street).  It opens March 20th from 6 to 8 p.m. and is up until April 19th.

Judith Charles Gallery (196 Bowery) opens a group show called "Visions" featuring four artists -- Henry Mandell, Cassandra C. Jones, Vahap Avsar and Garrett Pruter --  on March 20th, 6 to 8 p.m.

good-cheer-detail.jpg"Good Cheer" by Cassandra C. Jones

Over at the Derek Eller Gallery (615 West 27th Street) Brooklyn-based artist Rob Fischer built a colorful house/sculpture out of glass, steel and wood that opens Friday, March 21st, 6 to 8 p.m.  

Also on Friday, 6 to 8 p.m., there's an opening for a group show called "Food Show 2" at 3A Gallery  (179 Canal Street) with works by Marc Joseph Berg, Isabel Schneider, Dan Graham, George Skelcher and Mieko Meguro.

surf2_____1.gifOn April 3, the Venus Over Manhattan gallery (980 Madison Avenue) opens the first exhibition to focus exclusively on LA-based artist Raymond Pettibon's "surfer paintings."  Over 40 works will be on view until May 17th.

Gus_heinze_have_a_nice_day.jpgFans of "photorealism" (and its sub-genres) should check out the current shows at Bernarducci Meisel Gallery (37 West 57th Street) featuring works by Gus Heinze and Florian Thomas, up until March 29th; and also the new urban landscapes by Enrique Romero Santana called "Approach To Manhattan" on view at George Billis Gallery (521 West 26th Street) until April 12.

Rene-Smith_Studio-2014_www.jpgRene Smith's Nude Dudes

Storefront Ten Eyck
(304 Ten Eyck Street, Bushwick) -- a short pause here to explain that "Ten Eyck" is an old Dutch family name -- opens a show called "Nude Dudes" by Rene Smith on April 18th.

The annual RECESS benefit will be held at Pioneer Works on April 23rd. Get your tickets here


pawelalthamer.jpgThe Neighbors by Pawel Althamer

The New Museum has a great show by the Polish artist Pawel Althamer called "The Neighbors" that is up until April 13.  Be sure to check out the museum's fourth floor where the artist encourages viewers to write, draw, paint or do whatever to the blank walls. Since the exhibit has already been open since the beginning of February, the walls are no longer "blank," but that just makes for more to see. 

The last Whitney Biennale to be held uptown -- before the opening of their new High Line space -- is up until May 25th. They've given three curators their own floor to display works by over 100 artists, so there's lots to see this year.  The museum's new building, designed by the Italian architect Renzo Piano, is scheduled to open next year.

Another "last" group show is the fifth and final edition of the art-collective Bruce High Quality Foundation's Brucennial. It's still on view until April 4 at 837 Washington Street and, yes, that's right next door to the Whitney's future home.

Austrian artist Erwin Wurm has a cool show called "Synthesa" featuring new works at Lehmann Maupin (540 West 26th Street).  It's up until April 19.

Saul__Sonny__It's_Time_for_You_to_Leave_Home_(email)__2011-2012__acrylic_on_canvas__78_x_84_in._198.12_x_213.36_cm.jpgSonny, It's Time For You to Leave Home And.. by Peter Saul

Last chance to check out the group show called "Far Out!" down at Marlborough Chelsea  (545 West 25th Street).  It ends on March 22nd.

Heathers The Musical Opens Off-Broadway

(L-R) Jessica Keenan Wynn, Ryan McCartan, Barrett Wilbert Weed, Elle McLemore, Alice Lee

"Do you want some corn nuts?" asks Heather Chandler, the most popular girl in school. "They're really good." We're in what feels eerily like a high school gymnasium or cafeteria. The only giveaway that we're actually in a Times Square rehearsal space is that the four coolest girls in school are hanging out with the homicidal new kid J.D., a life-threatening faux pas in real life for sure.

Naturally skeptical of an off-Broadway musical production of the 1980s anti-John Hughes dark comedy classic, we've just watched the new cast perform a few convincing Disney-esque numbers from Heathers The Musical.

Afterward, director Andy Fickman tells us how the film kills off all the great characters way too soon -- but in the musical version, just because you're dead doesn't mean you're off the stage. Jessica Keenan Wynn, who plays "Mega-Bitch" Heather Chandler, the film's first victim, isn't giving up too much about what that might mean. "Her spirit lives. You can never really get rid of Heather Chandler."

"I am very haunted by Heather Chandler... tortured," offers Barrett Wilbert Weed, who plays Veronica, the role Winona Ryder made famous. When asked about her own high school experience, Wilbert Weed says, "I'm 5'9". I've always been this height, I've always been loud, I've always had a face that expresses itself like a Muppet, so people just beelined for that. They were like, 'She looks weak -- let's go for her!'"

"Look who's laughing now," says a surprisingly supportive Heather. After a moment she adds, "But there'll always be a 'Heather' around." Gesturing toward our auditorium-esque surroundings, Ryan McCartan, who plays J.D., the role Christian Slater originated, sums up what we're all thinking: "Because high school never ends."

Heathers The Musical is now playing at New World Stages, 340 W. 50th St., New York.

Stylist: Jessica Zamora-Turner / Hair: Kyle Malone for Moroccanoil at Artists at Wilhelmina / Makeup: Bruce Dean for Laura Mercier at Artists at Wilhelmina / Stylist's Assistant: Lela Maloney

(L-R) Jessica wears a dress and blazer by Moschino Cheap and Chic, shoes by Rachel Comey and vintage Moschino earrings. / Ryan wears a trench coat from What Goes Around Comes Around, shirt by Our Legacy, pants by Topman and sneakers by Cheap Monday. / Barrett wears a dress by A Détacher, shirt by Kora Rae and bracelets by Moschino and Erickson Beamon. / Elle wears a dress by Alberta Ferretti, a vintage Moschino blazer, shoes by Topshop and hat from What Goes Around Comes Around. / Alice wears a dress by Moschino Cheap and Chic, shoes by Robert Clergerie and earrings by Pluma.

Flume's New "Space Cadet" Video is an Outerspace Jammy-Jam


Super cool video for one of our favorite tracks, "Space Cadet," from Flume's debut album. Originally out in 2012, the album has already seen a re-mixed version and is now being released as a double-viny set on April 12.  If you're not already a fan, watch this fantastic animated video by the creators of the Nickelodeon show Sanjay & Craig, Jim Dirschberger and Jay Howell, and you won't be disappointed.  The track features Ghostface Killah and Autre Ne Veut (ne Arthur Ashin).

Watch This Guy Explain "Cockblocking" to His Grandparents


Here's a clip of a guy explaining "cockblocking" to his grandparents. His grandma takes it upon herself to chew out all of her grandson's friends who do this on the reg and the whole scene is super great. [via HyperVocal]

tumblr_n2a7te7VGq1rn7bzro1_1280.jpgErnie's kind of hot, no? [via Knusprig Titten Hitler]

Here's an insanely cute video of a baby waking up to Bruno Mars' "Runaway Baby." [via Tastefully Offensive]

tumblr_mysqes3YBx1qj47pqo1_500.jpgAdults are liars and they suck. [via Rats Off]

Screen shot 2014-03-20 at 8.32.20 AM.pngScreen shot 2014-03-20 at 8.36.05 AM.pngDaniel Tosh attempted to throw shade at Courtney Love for saying she located the missing Malaysia Airlines flight 370 but dude got served. [via DListed]

Jimmy Fallon got access to a secret convo between President Obama and Putin about the situation in Ukraine. [via Tonight Show]

tumblr_n1oxacwn021rpduwho1_500.gifIt's almost the weekend! [via Coin Farts]

BFFs Rita Ora and BBC Radio 1 DJ Nick Grimshaw Dish Up Some Real Talk

Rita wears a dress by Alexander Wang, crowns by Jennifer Behr and a choker by Eddie Borgo

I didn't really know who Rita Ora was when I first met her. It was 2010 and she was a guest on my BBC Radio 1 show. I'd done no research and there was nothing about her online. All I'd been told is that it would be a 10-minute chat with a new pop star signed to Roc Nation. Now, if you've ever heard Rita Ora talk, you know that 10-minute chats aren't in the mouthy pop star's framework. She arrived in the studio and was brash, yet angelic and hypnotizing with the presence of a mega star, bounding over to hug me and gush about her love of Kate Moss and Radio 1. She was open, funny and dorky, but most of all, she was real. Since then she's had five number one hits and a number one album in the UK, toured the world and become the superstar she promised to be in 2010. A lot has changed, but Rita herself is still all about real talk, full of love and somehow even funnier, sexier and dorkier than ever. Success has a strange effect on teenagers who dream of fame, but Rita has somehow taken it all in stride. She's dealt with criticism from the press, Twitter spats and actual real-girl beef but now she faces her biggest challenge, something every British artist dreams of: conquering America. With a Calvin Harris-produced single out in May and increasingly scary levels of fame and pressure to make album number two a success when it's released stateside this summer, I chatted with her about how she plans on doing it all while keeping sane.

ritaora_triptych1.jpgRita wears a top and skirt by Miu Miu, bracelets by Cartier, earrings by Laruicci and rings by Gold Philosophy and P1nk Noise.

Nick Grimshaw: You were just at Milan Fashion Week, walking in Jeremy Scott's Moschino show and performing at Philipp Plein. How was it? All I've seen is pictures of you becoming best friends with Naomi Campbell.

Rita Ora: Yeah, me and Naomi Campbell are like best friends... No, I'm joking. She's so cute. She was looking after me at the [Philipp Plein] show. I was really nervous because I felt fat -- everyone was so skinny and tall. So she gave me a pep talk and walked me in. Then we ended up having drinks by the bar and she was being really cool.

NG: She's so fun isn't she?

RO: She was being major, but you know what that's like. I'll talk to you about it later when we're not being recorded.

NG: So, you were in Milan, where I also saw you cavorting on top of a car in a bikini or
a bra top or something at the Philipp Plein show.

RO: Oh, it was a bra, yeah. I had nothing else so I wore a bra and some jeans. We had fun. It was a really sick show. It wasn't fashion-y, which was nice. It was just like a proper party.

NG: Were you always experimenting with fashion looks when you were younger?

RO: I was always messing around. I had everything at my beck and call in my mom's room, so I was playing dress-up all the time and putting on shows. My mom would tell me to shut up, already, and I would never shut up.

NG: I think the Oras need to have a reality show like the Kardashians.

RO: Yeah, we do need to do that. Everyone's going to see how absolutely gangsta we are.

_SP_1605_A_R_web.jpgRita wears a dress by Marc Jacobs, earrings by Deborah Pagani, rings by Deborah Pagani and Gold Philosophy, bracelets by Cartier and ribbons by Mokuba.

NG: So gangsta. That day we hosted the BBC Radio 1's Teen Awards together and I had to share... well actually I jumped into your room because my dressing room was awful, so we shared your dressing room and your mother was telling me that I looked stupid moments before I went on live television.

RO: I know, literally like three minutes before you were going on TV. I was like, "Mom, you can't say that to him."

NG: She was like, "You look stupid. That outfit doesn't suit you."

RO: And I was like, "It looks cool, it looks cool."

NG: I love her. She's a good woman. Would you say that she's one of your role models?

RO: Yeah she is. She's a very influential human being. She's friendly, fun and very honest. And she kind of came from nothing. She had so much shit going on in her life but now she's a doctor and also knows how  to have fun. She's never backed down from anything. I mean she's a mom, she's a wife, she's a doctor... She is. Everything. She's major.

NG: So Rita, now that you have reached your goal and you are an international pop star--in Milan one minute and New York the next--with an album on the way, what's the next level? What's the next goal?

RO: I would love to win a Grammy one day. And I want to go to India, China and Egypt. Places I would have never gone before. I want to live the world through music and perform for people. Music is so fucking fun and it connects people. And in all honesty, I never want to stop doing this. I would go on tour for the rest of my life if I could. So I don't think I've reached anything yet. I've got about 15 more years of goals to achieve.

Scan-140306-0003_A_R_web.jpgRita wears a dress by Alexander Wang, a crown by Dolce and Gabbana and chokers by Alynne Lavigne.

NG: I'm not just saying this because we are being recorded right now, but I've heard you moan about food or moan about drink, but I've never heard you say, "I'm tired, I'm not doing this, I can't do it." Are there any days where you're like, "I can't fly across the world, I literally can't do this"?

RO: I mean, yeah, but I just don't tell anybody. Why complain about something that you've always wanted? I know that you have to work hard to succeed and there are a lot of people who work hard around you. There are a lot of incredible, talented artists that you aren't competing with but you're kind of fighting up against because everyone wants to be the best, so I don't ever complain about having to work hard. I'd rather run around than sit around, you know what I mean?

NG: Why do you think that so many pop stars go off the rails? And do you ever feel like it's moving too fast and you could go off the rails?

RO: I think it comes back down to your morals and how you envision yourself and your goals and where you want to be when you're 70 years old. Everyone's different and everyone reacts differently, but I think that if you always keep good people around you then surely someone can remind you who you were before you did any of this.

NG: Let's talk about your new album. This is your US debut. How does that make you feel? When I am doing the radio show and I think of pop stars I think  of international pop stars,  like Rihanna, Beyoncé... and Rita! What's it like when you go to America?

RO: Ooh that's good because that's who I want to be whenI grow up. Conquering America for a UK artist is incredible because that's what everybody wants and dreams about. And  I guess it's the same for the  US acts; they'd like to crack the  UK. The accomplishment is dominating a market which you aren't familiar with. So yeah, I am a bit nervous. I am a bit scared, I'll be honest, but I am so fuckin' excited because the tour we're doing is going to be so fucking massive. I just can't wait for it because we have so much more to play with now. The first tour was obviously just me and the band and I was new and now I'm new again, but in another part of the world and we have dancers and loads of decorations and things you've never seen before. I don't want to give too much away but it's like a completely different planet.

ritaora2.jpgRita wears a dress by Alexander Wang, a crown by Dolce and Gabbana and chokers by Alynne Lavigne.

NG: What about when you see Jay Z now -- is it like, "Hov!" or is it like a work relationship? What advice did he give you on album two? Everyone says the second is always a difficult album...

RO: Yeah, it is. Now we're at a place where I've grown up a little bit; it's been two years since my last album. When I met him I was 17, and I am 23 now, so he's watched me grow and now it's about me having my own opinion and making my own decisions, which he understands. It's more of a brother-sister relationship really. He really cares about me and it's nice to see a boss who also really wants you to succeed and he's really doing everything in his power to make this perfect.

NG: We should also speak about this man called Calvin Harris, who just so happens to be your boyfriend, and who you worked with on this album. Is it different working with someone that you're dating rather than someone you've just met professionally? Is it easier or harder?

RO: It's easier actually, because you're in a comfortable environment but also you get a little bit shy. I got a little bit shy during our first musical bonding because he's seen me in everything else but he hadn't seen me in my work mode. So I was a bit shy at first, but not anymore. Now it's fine.

NG: How many songs did you guys do for the album?

RO: We've done four, but the people on this album are just so cool, Grimmy, I can't believe it.

NG: Hit me with it, come on.

RO: My single "I Will Never Let You Down" [produced by Harris] is obviously a very important song to me because it's a love song, but it reminds you of Whitney. And that was the vibe we were on. We just wanted to feel good. You know that feeling of "How Will I Know" with the synth? It just makes you feel happy; that's what I wanted to create. We have this amazing song "Young Dreamers" with Macklemore and it's so cool. It's for the kids, and it's liberating and so fun. I did some stuff with Prince. This album was just so...

NG: Hold on. Don't brush over Prince. Back up on Prince.

RitaOra-25.jpgrita4.jpg(Top and bottom left) Rita wears a coat and shoes by Dior, bracelets by Cartier and rings by P1nk Noise and Gold Philosophy. Rita wears a dress by Alexander Wang, a crown by Dolce and Gabbana and chokers by Alynne Lavigne.

RO: Yeah, we did a few tracks together. I flew to Minneapolis and went to Paisley Park, which is like his iconic studios and we just made music. I was there for a week. It was the best thing I have ever done in my life.

NG: Oh my God, I bet. What happened? Did you just start jamming with Prince? Was it easy? What's he like?

RO: No, it's so easy. He plays like 50 instruments so you could do anything and he'll fix it. He has an answer for everything. He's a genius. When we connected I basically got a call from my management saying, "Prince would love to speak to Rita." And I was like, "Wait, like the actual Prince? The Prince of Wales?" But I went that night and met him and we listened to music and it was amazing.

NG: That is so insane. And you never get freaked out? Because if my manager called and was like, "Jay Z's invited you over," or, "Prince has invited you over," I'd be such a weirdo. How do you do it? How are you not freaking out?

RO: You know why? Because I want to be like that one day. They started from nothing and now they are legends and they will be remembered. And I'm all about learning everything--like how they move, how they speak, how they act--and I am so distracted by all of that, by trying to read them like a book, that I don't think about who they are and I just take it in. I'm from West London and never thought anyone would know my name.

NG: Well they know now. I was looking at the pictures of us at Coachella last night because I was trying to convince my friends to go and I found the pictures of you getting ready for your performance in Frank Sinatra's bedroom.

RO: Oh yeah, we're doing that again this year. You went through all of my clothes. It was amazing.

NG: Yeah, there's a picture of me in one of your body-con dresses with one of Frank Sinatra's lampshades on my head. What's your favorite festival? Do you like British or American festivals?

RO: The weather is better at the American festivals, but I think the vibe at the British festivals is completely different. It's so  much cooler and so much more, I don't know, risky.

NG: I was thinking about this  and one of the main differences is that at Coachella we hang
out at a nice house that Frank Sinatra once owned, and at Glastonbury I remember us walking back to our Winnebago at six in the morning eating sweet and sour chicken.

RO: In the mud.

NG: That is the different vibe.

RO: Oh babes, I miss you!

NG: I miss you too. Stop being a pop star!

Screen Shot 2014-03-20 at 11.53.10 AM.png
Shot at the Diamond Horseshoe

Hair by Ursula Stephen for Motions/Epiphany Artist Group, Inc. / Makeup by Renee Garnes for Kevyn Aucoin at Artists at Wilhelmina Manicure by Dawn Sterling at Melbourne Artists Management using Chanel Le Vernis / Photographer's Assistant: Grady Corbitt / Stylist's Assistant: Tchesmeni Leonard / Fashion Coordinator: Kelly Govekar Fashion Interns: Lucy Bermudez, Gabrielle Obusek, Samantha Lewis, Irene Jaramillo.

(Left): Jacket by DKNY.

Alex Chilton, A Personal History

Screen Shot 2014-03-20 at 12.20.43 PM.pngAlex Chilton, Robert Burke Warren with Burke Warren's son, Jack, outside of Chilton's New Orleans home. (Photo by Holly George-Warren)
A Man Called Destruction: The Life and Music of Alex Chilton is the first biography of Chilton, a former '60s teen idol, genre-bending songwriter, and highly influential godfather of indie rock. Author Holly George-Warren will be at McNally-Jackson Books (52 Prince Street) on Monday, March 24th, at 7 PM, to sign books and discuss Chilton with Rolling Stone contributing editor Anthony DeCurtis. On Friday, March 28th, at 7 PM, George-Warren will read and sign books at Club HiFi (169 Avenue A) where her husband, the musician Robert Burke Warren, will also perform Chilton songs. Below, Burke Warren writes about how his wife came to be Chilton's biographer, and the effect it had on their family. A Man called Destruction will be published by Viking Press on Monday, March 24th.

Technically, my wife Holly George-Warren worked on A Man Called Destruction: The Life and Music of Alex Chilton for about three years, but she'd been talking about it for almost two decades. A fan since the '70s, she met Alex when he was washing dishes in New Orleans in the early '80s. He was in the "rags" part of his riches-to-rags-to-riches arc, scraping jambalaya off tourists' plates to make ends meet. Holly and Alex hit it off. A couple years later, he produced her band Clambake, an early step on his winding path back to musical activity. I came on the scene in 1987, when Holly's band Das Furlines and my band the Fleshtones shared a bill. All I knew of Alex was that he'd been the 16-year-old white singer of The Box Tops, a kid who'd sounded like a 40-year-old black man on the 1967 smash "The Letter." I'd heard-tell of his '70s cult band Big Star, but I'd not checked them out. I learned more -- a lot more -- via Holly's stories of Alex, and her expansive record collection, which included Box Tops LPs and the Big Star oeuvre alongside Alex's eclectic, occasionally slapdash, intentionally confounding solo work. Holly also possessed The Cramps classic debut LP, Songs the Lord Taught Us, which Alex produced. I am partial to Big Star, but Holly loves it all.

As Holly's writing career progressed, she and Alex remained friends, and I hung out with him a couple times. She interviewed him for various magazines, and while he loved talking about music in general, he consistently deflected praise for Big Star, his most popular stuff. Unlike most interviewees, especially in our compulsively confessional age, he rarely spoke at length of the odd circumstances of his unusual childhood, his participation in crucial moments of '60s, '70s, '80s, and '90s music history, and his personal life. That was not his way. He preferred talking about music, everything from Brownie McGhee to J.S. Bach to ? & the Mysterians.

Screen Shot 2014-03-20 at 12.19.02 PM.pngA Man Called Destruction

He knew his was a great story, though. In the late '80s and early '90s, Alex's surprise third act began; the Replacements' recorded their ode to him, "Alex Chilton," the Bangles covered his "September Gurls," and R.E.M. and other rising "alternative" acts cited him as a major influence. This must've emboldened him, because around this time he asked Holly to help him write his memoir. He wanted to title it I Slept With Charlie Manson, referencing a 1968 night of revelry, when the Box Tops partied with the Beach Boys and a teenaged Alex awoke beside the cult leader, then a kind of protégé of Dennis Wilson.

He was perverse like that. Gleefully offensive, elliptical, and unpredictable. The memoir didn't happen, of course, in part because Alex got busier and busier, and when he wasn't busy, he went off the grid. He once called our St. Mark's Place apartment from a pay phone in Tennessee, stoned, looking for Holly. She wasn't home, so we chatted about music in general, but not his. I asked him what new music, if any, he liked. With as much gusto as I ever heard from him, he insisted Holly and I check out The Country Rockers, who were playing that night at CBGB, and about whom he would give no details. He just said they were better than anything, anything he'd ever done. They turned out to be two old men from Memphis, touring with Alex's bassist. They looked like corn liquor drunk grandpas who'd stumbled on their grandkids' instruments and plowed through old C & W and rockabilly tunes, just screaming, and joking awkwardly between songs. It was money well spent. But yeah, Alex was perverse like that. A trickster.

About a decade later, Holly and I, with our infant son Jack, visited Alex at his lopsided Treme, New Orleans cottage, which he was restoring when not hitting the oldies circuit with The Box Tops, or barnstorming colleges and clubs with the re-formed Big Star. He was laconic and laid back, in shorts and T-shirt, his glasses on a chain around his neck, smoking incessantly. He really came alive when his neighbors -- salt-of-the-earth local folk -- walked by his crumbling stoop and shot the breeze. His story -- or what I knew of it -- hung about him like a multi-colored aura. Teen stardom, genius of oddball '70s pop band, NYC punk scenester, dishwasher, and elder statesman of alt rock. Also, a guy who'd danced with chaos, disappointment, and adversity, and made it back from darkness, a guy who'd conquered the demon alcohol, and never given up on music. He was living like a bachelor carpenter, his hands raw from work, which seemed to make him genuinely happy. And that's what we talked about: his house, and architecture. As a new dad, I recall thinking, "My son needs to know people like this." I knew it would take a village to help raise Jack, and I experienced a keen desire to populate his world with rare birds like Alex. Difficult people, yes, but worth the trouble. Artists.

Screen Shot 2014-03-20 at 12.16.56 PM.pngAlex Chilton and Holly George-Warren (Photo by Dan Howell)

Jack was 12 when I received a distraught phone call from Holly in Austin, telling me Alex had died of heart failure, a few months past his 59th birthday, and on the eve of a highly anticipated SXSW Big Star show. Over the years, Holly and I had lost several friends, and Alex's passing added to that widening pool of grief one simply learns to live with. Soon thereafter, Holly got the deal from Viking to write Alex's biography. Throughout her process of writing the proposal, honing it, pouring her broken heart into it, I knew she was the one for the job of telling Alex's story, and I said it aloud again and again. I enjoyed helping her, listening alongside her with a new openness, grappling with words to describe Alex's extraordinary life and music. That brought us back to an intimate place from which we'd strayed. And while Alex's music played nonstop in our house for a couple years, Jack and I often looked at each other, sometimes aghast, sometimes enthralled: "What's that?" "A cassette of a live show from Max's Kansas City." "That's awful." Or: "What's that?" "That, my son, is Radio City." "Mmm."

Jack's sixteenth birthday party coincided with the final stages of A Man Called Destruction. Our house in the Catskills was packed to the rafters with arty, flinty teenagers. Holly and I served cake and ice cream, patrolled our four-bedroom Victorian like hapless hotel detectives, and eventually took refuge upstairs. As the party was winding down, kids produced guitars and commenced playing in the living room. To Holly's and my astonishment, "Thirteen," Alex's ballad to a lost childhood, sung campfire style by our son and his friends, wafted upstairs. Holly wept. I almost ran downstairs with my iPhone to record it, but I restrained myself. I just listened, and was still. It was an unforgettable moment, one for the time capsule, a moment so filled with promise and hope it blots out all grief and struggle that has come before. It was a gift. Several folks Holly and I wanted to be part of our son's life were gone. But Alex, it turns out, remains.

Meet the Women Leading a New Movement In R&B

If there's one trend in music we've been consistently impressed with, it's indie's R&B moment. (Or maybe that's R&B's indie moment.) Guys like The Weeknd, Frank Ocean and How to Dress Well and DJs and producers like Sango, Kaytranada and Ta-Ku are bringing '90s sounds back to the future with innovative beats, arrangements and lyrics. But in 2014, we're most psyched about the ladies. There's a new crop of female vocalists putting their own twists on the genre; Elli Ingram (who made our list of "UK Music Acts to Watch"), Solange (who even founded a record label -- Saint Records -- and produced an EP, Saint Heron, dedicated to these new sounds and featuring musicians like Kelela, Jhene Aiko, and Cassie) and Jessie Ware may be some of the most recognizable names in the field but that doesn't mean they're the only ones shaking up the scene. Below, we round up 10 R&B up-and-comers who are poised to break out in 2014.

Screen Shot 2014-03-19 at 1.58.57 PM.png1. If You Like Macy Gray, Jessie Ware, LaToiya Williams...Mahaut Mondino
The Parisian singer first lent her powerhouse vocals to L'Oreal and Yves Saint Laurent in 2011, creating original music for their fragrance commercials (even covering an Etta James song), but it was her feature on two tracks from Supreme Cuts' 2013 album Divine Ecstasy that started the buzz. The slow atmospheric jam, "Gone," went on to become a lead single. Still, Mondino was a mystery even after she released her first official track, "Voodoo Me," earlier this year where she blends her soulful voice over a hypnotizing pop beat, and showcases her range. But last week, we got a little more of her: she gave her first U.S. performance at at SXSW and recently released a music video for "Voodoo Me." Directed by her father, fashion photographer Jean-Baptiste Mondino, the video features multiple Mondinos moving around in off-beat dance spasms, as if they are possessed. Well, she has us entranced. 

Screen Shot 2014-03-19 at 2.00.49 PM.png2. If You Like Amel Larrieux and Aaliyah...SZA
Solana Rowe, better known as SZA, describes her sound as "Glitter Trap," which perfectly alludes to the place that her music takes you -- a fantasy. Her airy, raspy vocals over trippy, bass-heavy production immediately creates a trance-like ambience that's best heard on her recently-released video and song, "Babylon." The New Jersey-native has been making music for over a year now, and while she's the first female (and only singer) to be signed to Top Dawg Entertainment (who reps Kendrick Lamar and the Black Hippy crew), she does freestyle -- her lyrics, that is. Currently, she has released two EPs, See.SZA.Run and S, and can be heard on her labelmates Schoolboy Q and Isaiah Rashad's album and mixtape, respectively. Expect some new jams from SZA with her new EP, Z, due out April 8th. 

Screen Shot 2014-03-19 at 2.03.03 PM.png3. If You Like Erykah Badu...Lion Babe
Lion Babe has kept us waiting for over a year. In 2012, the New York duo, singer Jillian Hervey (the daughter of Vanessa Williams) and producer Lucas Goodman, released their first, and currently only, track, "Treat Me Like Fire." Since then? Nothing. But the infectious beat, easy-to-chant chorus, and feisty '70s soul vibe shows Lion Babe knows the formula for a good song. And a silky, expressive voice (and awesome hair) like Jillian's is not something to be forgotten. Lucky for us, the wait seems to finally be over. According to their twitter, the duo are back in the studio and rumored to be releasing new music this year. Until then we'll be on the lookout for shows in Brooklyn -- they performed at the Brooklyn Bowl earlier this month. 

Screen Shot 2014-03-19 at 2.04.53 PM.png4. If You Like Janet Jackson and Portishead...FKA Twigs
FKA Twigs has got the full package. The 26-year-old British singer has been on the artist-to-watch lists for numerous blogs and was even nominated for BBC's Sound of 2014. FKA, which stands for Formerly Known As, Twigs debuted her first EP in 2012, but it was her second mixtape, EP 2, released late last year by Young Turks, that really sold us. Probably the most unique sound on the list, she layers her ethereal whispers over staggered dark synth-pop backgrounds.  While her lyrics are simple and usually repetitive, her eerie videos explore sexual themes like submissiveness and control as seen in the video for "Papi Pacify." Most recently, she collaborated with the left-of-center R&B duo inc. making their version of a twisted "love song." Her debut album is expected this year. 

Screen Shot 2014-03-19 at 2.06.26 PM.png5. If You Like Kelis...Mapei
The Swedish rapper-turned-singer described her feel-good track "Don't Wait," as "21st century gospel or doo-wop," but the song blends multiple genres, which is probably why it's so addicting. The catchy lyrics, minimal production and Mapei's unique vocal blend of deep tones and raspy finishes are what make the song a hit, and got her well-deserved attention from music critics. The Downtown Records singer has an album scheduled to be released sometime this year, but in the meantime everyone from producers Kingdom and Giraffage to Chance the Rapper are putting their own spin on the song and we're loving every one of them. 

Screen Shot 2014-03-19 at 2.07.47 PM.png6. If You Like Lauryn Hill and Lykke Li...Naomi Pilgrim
This half-Swedish, half-Barbadian singer started with her voice behind the scenes as a backup singer for Lykke Li and Agnes Carisson. Her breathy, soulful vocals got a solo turn with her single, "No Gun," and her 3-track self-titled EP, Naomi Pilgrim, released last month. She brings together R&B and electro-pop, most notably on her remake of Barrett Strong's "Money." We can't wait to see what else is in store for her this year. 

Screen Shot 2014-03-19 at 2.11.17 PM.png(Photo by Hana Knizova)

7. If You Like Sade and James Blake...Rosie Lowe
It was a cameo on "No Doubt" from producer Lil Silva's EP, Distance, that first gave us a taste of the London singer's vocals. But it's Rosie Lowe's 4-track EP of slow jams, Right Thing, released last December, where she really flaunts her silky, androgynous vocals. They're a perfect accompaniment for the minimal and sometimes experimental production, as heard on her track, "Me and My Ghost," which calls to mind some of James Blake's jams. She recently got signed to Paul Epworth's independent label, Wolf Tone, and is working to release her debut album.

Screen Shot 2014-03-19 at 2.12.35 PM.png8. If You Like The INOJ and Purity Ring... ASTR
With influences ranging from '90s R&B, house music and hip-hop to covering Drake's "Hold On We're Going Home," the duo ASTR, a.k.a. singer Zoe Silverman and producer Adam Pallin, make self-described "future electronic R&B." Adam has a knack for mixing Zoe's dark, seductive vocals over electronic dance tracks and together they fill a void R&B is otherwise lacking. If you need more proof, listen to the duo's Varsity EP, released just two months ago.  

Screen Shot 2014-03-19 at 2.15.16 PM.png9. If You Like inc. and Aaliyah..Jessy Lanza
She's just one album in, but we're quite impressed. The Canadian singer drew from her infatuation with R&B music and her hometown Hamilton's electronic scene to create her album Pull My Hair Back, which came out last September through her label Hyperdub and co-written and co-produced with Junior Boys' Jeremy Greenspan. Her steamy vocals and sensual lyrics perfectly compliment the electronic-pop flavors and deep bass vibrations. Tracks like "Pull My Hair Back" remind you of a futuristic steamy house party, while "Kathy Lee" samples a trip-hop vibe. Currently, she is on her first North American tour where she is opening up for Cut Copy and headlining some of her own shows. You can catch her in NYC playing Terminal 5 tomorrow and Saturday. 

Screen Shot 2014-03-19 at 2.13.30 PM.png10. If You Like The Weeknd.... BANKS
Perhaps, the best known New Wave R&B singer on the list, Jillian Banks, who goes by Banks, is one to watch. With relatable lyrics like telling a significant over not to overthink things ("Brain") and alluring vocals and top-notch production from  SOHN and Shlohmo, the L.A. native has quickly caught the eye of music media. Banks released her first EP, London, last September and is set to drop her debut full-length album sometime this year. She recently clocked in at #3 in BBC'S Sound of 2014 and she was also nominated for MTV UK's Brand New Award. She's already been on tour as an opening act for The Weeknd, now catch her at Governors Ball this summer. 2014 is hers to lose. 

Watch Kylie Minogue Get Physical In "Sexercise"

March 21st marks the end of sweater weather and the beginning of the mad dash to get fit for bikini season. Skip the juice cleanse because Australian pop goddess Kylie Minogue has transformed exercise into something much more appealing: sexercise.

Joining the league of DGAF, hyper-sexed pop singers (members include Miley Cyrus and Rihanna) Minogue, outfitted in a white-hot body suit and pointed-toe heels, rolls around on a core-strengthening ball, metal grates, and other women.

Flipping the original video on its head, VFiles x Cody Critcheloe attempt to define the male version of sexercising. In this remix, Minogue's men are doing yoga and square dancing in ass-less jean chaps.

What makes a man fit to sexercise? According to Minogue the key traits are skin, flexibility, sweat, artistic, fragile, curiosity, and being really good at doing laundry. 

If using the word "sex" as a prefix is your jam, head to sexercise.tv for things like "sextrology" and more visual remixes by the likes of Roman Coppola and artist Hattie Stewart.

Tiny Clean-Up Crew Attacks Urban Litter!


Too bad these miniature vehicles aren't real.  The tiny trio aren't working for the NYC Sanitation Department, they're from the brilliant minds of a UK visual effects/post-production company called Rushes. Watch them work hard to pick up old chewing gum, cigarette butts and matches -- stuff we casually toss away. This clever take on litter might make you think twice.

Fly Young Red's "Throw That Boy Pussy" Is Essential Viewing


Big fight in the editorial department today over who would get to write something about the ultra-refreshing "Throw That Boy Pussy" by rapper Fly Young Red, our favorite new gay anthem about eating ass (aka "boy pussy"). Despite the "Adults Only and "NSFW" warnings, we jumped right in and, in fact, were soon stripping down and twerking around the office in our 2(X)IST underwear. Sadly, Mr. Mickey was out of the office and missed out on the action. Eat your heart out, Miley!

Watch Bradley Cooper Totally Destroy Louis CK's 'Actors' Studio' Theory


Ahaha! Watch as Bradley Cooper gets the last laugh after Louis CK, in a 2009 interview, says that students who ask questions during Inside the Actors Studio rarely go anywhere. [Jezebel]

Y0DM.jpgA Little Golden Book we must have missed on our book case growing up. [Mlkshk]

Y0ED.jpgHow do we make this our career? [Mlkshk]

Boyfriends attempt to do their girlfriends' makeup. You are very bad at this, boyfriends! [Buzzfeed]

marathon-selfie-main.jpgThis woman ran the NYC half-marathon last weekend and took selfies with all of the hot guys she saw. She is our hero. [DailyDot]

 Screen-shot-2014-03-18-at-8.33.36-AM.jpg Whoaaa. [RatchetMessReturns]

Oh god, this is so good. Billy Eicher, Lena Dunham and a woman who will be most of us in 30 years play "Cash Cow" in the meat packing district. [BillyEichner]

tumblr_n22v2sFTvB1rggrn8o1_500.gif Have a great weekend! [TheRumblr]

Jason Schwartzman On His Teenage Years and Mozart In the Jungle

Screen Shot 2014-03-21 at 3.05.32 PM.pngPhoto by: David X Prutting/BFAnyc.com

He ambles into the miniscule lobby of Austin's San Jose Hotel on a cold and rainy day, his French Bull Dog Arrow waddling along beside him. Unmistakably, it's Jason Schwartzman as any fan of HBO's Bored to Death and Wes Anderson's would know. A familiar sight in Austin's hipster haven South Congress neighborhood, he's in town shooting 7 Chinese Brothers, written and directed by local filmmaker Bob Byington. (Arrow's in it too, playing himself.)

People are said to resemble their dogs and it's a helpful comparison. Sturdy and compact, with dark, round eyes, Schwartzman is enthusiastic and lively without being yappy and loud; He's curious and sweet with a comical personality, bright and easy going. Of course, there's more to Jason Schwartzman than what's on the surface, but you get the drift.

An LA native with familial ties to Hollywood Royalty -- son of Talia Shire (nee Coppola) and producer Robert Schwartzman, nephew of Francis Ford Coppola and cousins with Sofia Coppola and Nicolas Cage - he grew up unimpressed by a world he took for granted. His folksy, one-of-the-guys bearing speaks well of his upbringing, his dead pan manner matching up well with Wes Anderson's Texas-bred quirkiness.

We're here to talk about Teenage, the idiosyncratic movie based on the book by Jon Savage and directed by Matt Wolf in theaters now. A docu-collage, it includes rare archival material, filmed portraits, and voices lifted from early 20th Century teen diary entries, telling the story of the struggle between adults and adolescents to define a new idea of youth. Schwartzman, a big fan of Wolf's Wild Combination: A Portrait of Arthur Russell, jumped on board to executive produce and helped get the film distribution. Schwartzman also played drums with the indie band Phantom Planet and his solo project Coconut Records is ongoing. A bit of a music and movie geek, the two world's overlapped when he found out the movie is based on a book written the same man who wrote England Dreaming, a definitive history of punk, a book Schwartzman worships.

tumblr_ldtcn3tjcw1qfw1n6o1_500.jpgJason Schwartzman and Arrow in Band of Outsiders' 2009 F/W campaign.

David Hershkovits: What kind of teenager were you?

Jason Schwartzman: I started playing drums when I was ten. I was into sports too, I feel like that sort of gave me a focus. I was angry but in a more internal way. I had a rebellious feeling in me but I was afraid to get in trouble. I don't think I was into hardcore music, I was never that kind of angry..

DH: What were the big bands in LA like when you were growing up? Was it like Guns N' Roses or...

JS: Nirvana, Weezer.

DH: What about LA bands?

JS: LA bands? There were a lot of great LA bands. Weezer is an LA band. I like melodic music.

DH: Even then.

JS: I had lots of friends, my school was very small, but I was always feeling a little ... girls didn't talk to me, you know? I mean, I wasn't on a rock by myself -- there were those people at my high school, you know, sitting alone. Within that I had a hard time with girls. Specifically, I think of romance. I related to things like, "In My Room," by The Beach Boys, that type of music and to people who liked being alone. I feel like I did not have an abnormal teenage experience.

DH: You felt alienated.

JS: Yes, I had that. I wasn't necessarily angry, but moody, extremely moody. Quintessentially moody. Like. "What do you know?" and, like, "Mom get off my back!" And it's funny because, when you read the book and you watch the movie, it was interesting because at the time I remember my mom saying something like, "Oh you teenagers, trust me, you think what's happening is new, but this is not new and you'll get over this" and I remember thinking that's the last thing you want to hear, that what you're feeling isn't unique.
DH: So you'd be in your room listening to music. You didn't try to sneak out or go into clubs or that kind of stuff?

JS: Well, my band, we played a lot of clubs. Some of them were 21 and over, but we'd have to wait outside and then go in.

DH: And you didn't drink or act out that way?

JS: Maybe at 16 or 17 a little bit. But not really. There would be parties but I didn't really have a lot of fun in that type of situation. I had a problem with the group...

DH: Being in social in groups can be tough at that age.

JS: It's still tough. And I respect it, like my wife loves the idea of a game night with friends, and to me a game night is not fun. That's not my idea of a good thing but to each his own.

DH: Even music itself, was that a kind of rebellion -- to do music in the Hollywood world that you were from.

JS: Not at all. I think I was on a set maybe three or four times as a kid that I can legitimately remember and for not very long. My mom loves acting, but she has a very kind of apprehensive attitude towards the Hollywood mechanism in general.

DH: So she didn't buy into the whole thing.

JS: No. The '80s, that was blockbuster central. We would go see movies with Mel Gibson in it. I've read interviews with actors who describe watching a movie and saying, "Oh I'm going to be up there one day." I never really thought that.

DH: You started with music before acting.

JS: I got into music because that seemed like you could do that, in your house. I got into music and I loved movies. As a kid, we had cable so I saw a lot of really bad movies a lot. And I had a friend who now is one of the key guys at the Cinefamily movie theaters in Los Angeles. We would just watch movies, like Human Highway -- do you remember that movie, Human Highway, a Neil Young movie. I didn't really like "movie" movies. Of course I saw '80s movies that are now classics, I guess, like Ghostbusters, but my mom would aldo rent stuff like The Graduate, Harold and Maude, and Dog Day Afternoon. And I remember seeing those and thinking, "Where were these the last few years? I could've used these." I just know that when I would listen to music, I would get a rush and a feeling of like "Oh my god, I want to rip off my skin."

DH: So when you finally did start acting, was it weird?

JS: I think that in the very beginning I was like "Me? You want me for this audition?" What the hell's happening?

DH: So someone just approached you, you didn't seek it out.

JS: I was at my uncle's house in San Francisco at a hybrid party/ family occasion in honor of a piece of music that my grandfather had written, a score for [Abel Gance's] Napoleon. And there was a casting director, a friend of the family there, talking to my cousin Sofia. And Sofia said "What are you working on?" and she said, "Oh I'm casting a movie for the director Wes Anderson but we're trying to find a person to play the character and we've been auditioning lots of people." She described the character and Sofia said, "Oh, that sounds like Jason." And I remember saying "No... I'm in a band, you should meet the other guys they're great." She said, "No, no take my number" and I gave her my address and she sent the script. It was the first script for a movie I had ever read. And I went in and auditioned for Wes and I got a callback and another callback and I got the part.

DH: And it turned out to be this wonderful relationship.

JS: Yes. Beyond wonderful. He's my mentor and best friend.

DH: It seems to me like you're the reluctant actor.

JS: Reluctant in a good way or in a bad way?

DH: No, not in a bad way. It seems like you're not someone who's really out there trying to get the part, auditioning, working hard to be a star.

JS: I'm surprised that I've been in as many now that I've been in. It's very improbable. I went to the Critics' Choice Awards and I was looking around and I was like "All these actors, they all seem pretty comfortable here" and I'm wondering like, how do you get to that point, where this is not unusual?

DH: Bored to Death is one of my favorite shows. There's talk of a film version, right?

JS: We pitched a movie idea to HBO which they bought. But at the same time, I don't want to say that it's happening because sometimes they just don't happen. It's a combination of not wanting to get my hopes up too high and, in my mind, preparing for it because it was really heartbreaking [when the show was cancelled]... It would've been, in a weird way, less heartbreaking if I didn't know what the fourth season was going to be. Because Jonathan Ames told me the whole thing. I know what I missed.

DH: And now you're also in Wes Anderson's new movie, The Grand Budapest Hotel.

JS: I haven't seen it. I'm only in it for a few seconds. I'm probably in it longer in the trailer than I am in the movie.

DH: They're just using you for bait in the trailer.

JS: When you make a short trailer and you keep me in it for the same exact amount of time, it's great. It's like double spacing. I'm doubled spaced. I'm a longer essay.

DH: Any other projects in the works?

JS: Yes. The other thing that I'm waiting to find out about -- me, Roman Coppola, and this guy Alex Timbers. He did Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson and he directed the Rocky musical that's out now. He's a great director and writer in New York. And for the last many, many years, we created a TV show called Mozart in the Jungle: Sex, Drugs, and Classical Music. And it's all about the comings and goings and the various lives of the orchestra in New York. So we did it for Amazon and its going to launch in the fall. They have this system where they make, like, ten or twelve shows and then you watch them and vote on them. Based on views and likes and reviews of the viewers, that dictates whether or not you get green lit. So our show's up there now with Gael García Bernal, Lola Kirke, and Malcolm McDowell.

10 Etsy Finds: Sprang Break Edition

1. JoyToy - a novelty item about despair and an aid to finding your way out of it

il_570xN.534089801_7fnw.jpgGone are the months of blackest despair and abject misery (hopefully). After a hellish winter, 50 degrees feels like an absolute dream.

2. Camping Club Iron On Patch

il_570xN.507526464_lbvw.jpgMokuyobi Threads is ready to outfit your preciously twee, Wes Anderson-inspired outdoor adventures.

3. Wavy Chevron Dress

il_570xN.468753209_6qt9.jpgRegardless of whether its actually 40 degress outside, the spring equinox officially means that tights are now strictly for fashion, not necessity.

4. Lindsay Lohan mugshot pinback button set with special friend

il_570xN.447022962_moxn.jpgAs a wise man named Alien once said, it's Sprang Break. Time to get in some trouble.

5. I'm too cool for you brooch

il_570xN.575621017_kjf9.jpg"I'm too cool for you." - October through February

6. Spring Breakers Baseball Cap

il_570xN.542790724_12kp.jpgNow you too can own an official Spring Breakers baseball cap and live out your weirdest James Franco fantasies.

7. Ceramic Skull Planter

il_570xN.476348317_migg.jpgAs the trees are starting to regain their leaves, don't forget to give your indoor plants some extra love. Upgrade the houseplants to these sleek skull planters.

8. Peach Floral Crop Tank

il_570xN.508763105_mfu5.jpgO crop tops! How I've missed thee!

9. Unicorn Tote

il_570xN.442691546_a9af.jpg Warm days will no longer be as rare as unicorns.

10. Peaking Giant Hello Card

il_570xN.542339155_7xhc.jpgThe cutest way to say hello to spring!

T' Pau's Heart and Soul: Ode to a Spectacular Perm


Today's oldie-but-goodie video, "Heart & Soul," became the UK band's biggest hit after Pepe Jeans used the track in a commercial back in 1987. It made it up to #4 on the pop chart, but that was about it for the group, at least here in the USA. Fronted by the amazingly permed singer Carol Decker, they did have a couple more hits overseas and actually re-united last year for a 25th anniversary tour. So, WTF is a T'Pau? Sci-fi fans know that the name came from a character on Star Trek.

John Waters Catches A Ride With RuPaul, Talks Hitchhiking Across America and Growing Up Weird

Filmmaker and professional weirdo John Waters, is used to catching rides from strangers. Though he wouldn't be opposed to riding shotgun with Ted Bundy, this time around he's hopped in the passenger seat of the Drag Race queen, RuPaul, to talk about his new book Carsick: John Waters Hitchhikes Across America.

When two of the most fabulous living legends of counter-counter-culture get together, it results in a highly-quotable nostalgia trip. The pair discuss queerness, being outsiders, loving Howdy Doody and hating disco.

Some of our favorite quotes include, John Waters on his core audience ("Minorities that don't even fit in their own minorites. They can't even get along with their fellow lunatics! And people in prison with a sense of humor.") and 21st century rebels ("If you're a rebel today, you're living with your parents. They haven't seen you in six months, they put food outside your door, and you're shutting down the governments of different countries on your computer. That's how you'd rebel today. You'd be a hacker. I always say I want a hacker boyfriend -- except they have bad posture.").

Watch the full interview below:

Friday Superlatives: The Best, Worst and Weirdest of the Week

Kanye-West-Kim-Kardashian-Vogue.jpgMost Reassuring Sign That Anything -- ANYTHING -- Can Happen: Kimye made the cover of Vogue. Yes, Kim Kardashian of sex tape, reality TV and Paris Hilton BFF-fame is on the cover of Vogue. Take that, haters.  -- Maggie Dolan

"Most Impressive Celebrity" of the Week: Mary-Kate Olsen. Though it's taken her some time, the Olsen twin has finally figured out how to use a hairbrush. When Elle asked her to dish her beauty secrets she replied, "The truth is, I feel like I just learned how to brush my hair like last week." You go, girl. [Via The Cut] -- Gabby Bess

Best "Will Make You Cry in Under 40 Seconds" of the Week: READY, SET, GO NOPE I ALREADY LOST. --TCM

Best Spring Has Sprung Video of the Week: This one, by The Younger Lovers. Quintessential summer fun. This song is the JAM. -- E.T.

Rene-Smith_Studio-2014_www.jpgBest-Named Art-Show We're Gonna Check Out Next Month: "Nude Dudes" by Rene Smith, featuring nude portraits of... dudes and opening April 18th at Storefront Ten Eyck.  --E.T.

PAPER_C1_web.jpgBest red lipstick of the week: Rita Ora's on our April cover. Perfection. A+ 100% thumbs up. --E.T.

Best "How Old People React to this New Thing" Video of the Week:  Aww so adorable to see a grandpa looking out for his grandson's cock like this!!!! -- TCM

Best Use of #longhairdontcare: Madonna 'grammed a photo of her hairy armpit. (Except it looks drawn on, right?)  -- M.D

Best New Bar: Shop on every corner coffee chain, Starbucks is now selling booze. How convenient -- M.D. 

Best Foreign YouTube Video of the Week:  IT'S ITALIAN SISTER ACT, GIRLFRIEND. --TCM