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Soccer Mommy’s Art Directors Reflect On Their Grammy Nomination For The ‘Color Theory’ Deluxe Packaging

Last week, Soccer Mommy announced a new record, Sometimes, Forever. Produced by Oneohtrix Point Never, the LP is the follow-up to 2020’s Color Theory and came with a typically evocative new single, “Shotgun.” However, the Color Theory era isn’t over quite yet. Lordess Foudre and Christopher Leckie, the art directors responsible for the album’s deluxe packaging, are up for a Grammy Award this weekend in the category of Best Boxed Or Special Limited Edition Package.

Neither were expecting the nod. In fact, Foudre says when the nominations came out, she was in a place with “absolutely ghastly internet” and so her phone had dodgy service. She saw that Soccer Mommy had received a nomination — but didn’t realize right away it was for her own work. “I was telling people, ‘Congratulations!’ and then, an hour later, they were like, ‘No, it’s Chris and you.’” Leckie happened to be at home watching the nominations reveal, but he too was also surprised. “It’s very exciting, but also shocking, because you don’t expect it. It’s such a wonderful thing, and it’s so nice to be recognized by your peers as well in that way.”

The Color Theory deluxe packaging is indeed Grammy-worthy. On the front is the dreamy photo of Soccer Mommy’s Sophia Allison found on the regular version of the album, along with the band’s name in a similarly space-age font. However, the package design is meant to resemble a Trapper Keeper, the school binder popular in the ’80s and ’90s. Open up the binder and you’ll find a pouch with Soccer Mommy-branded pencils, a ruler, stickers and an eraser; flexi-discs in a rainbow of colors featuring song demos; lyrics handwritten on notebook paper; and Color Theory itself on translucent pale blue vinyl, tucked into a pouch in the back. For any kid who grew up loving school supplies, it’s a perfect blast of nostalgia.

“We really wanted to do something fun and retro for the deluxe Color Theory set,” Allison says. “Everyone had a lot of cool ideas to choose from for different inserts and parts [and it ended] up looking really cool together.”

Foudre — who was hired to work on the Soccer Mommy single and album artwork during the Color Theory era (“It’s sort of creating the entire world that all the products would swim in”) — says “nostalgia” was the vibe she and Allison hit upon when dreaming up the idea for this packaging, the idea of rediscovering something from a previous era.

“Sophie made it easy,” Foudre says. “She’s great at writing lyrics and is a fantastic musician. [And] she speaks very evocatively. When I talked to her, it was very easy for me, on an emotional level — [ideas] easily popped into my mind after talking to her.”

A brainstorming session with Soccer Mommy’s label, Loma Vista Recordings, was even more fruitful. “We were thinking of different ways to convey that [nostalgic] feeling, not just through the artwork, but through the packaging. And so the Trapper Keeper was something that hit me like a lightning bolt,” Foudre says, referencing as other touchstones the colorful ’80s stickers produced by Lisa Frank. “Because when you think about coming of age, [your mind] automatically [goes] to school. And so that was something that popped in my mind. They were all for it.”

Foudre initially wasn’t sure if her ideas were physically feasible to even produce, but Leckie said the production side of things was a breeze. “There weren’t a huge amount of hurdles,” he explains. “There are technical things that were different about it, like the custom dyes for the Flexidisc pieces. They are custom shapes that fit into the binder. [But] we’d done some stickers already for the standard version, so that was included in there. And then everything else was totally organic — [like] the writing, the doodling of the lyrics and stuff. We knew we wanted it to feel like you’d been at school taking notes. That was the idea. And it came together quite organically.”

Leckie is also currently working on the Sometimes, Forever artwork, although fans shouldn’t expect a redux of the binder when the album is released in June. “When you start a project again, even if you’ve worked with the artist many times, you want to start with a blank slate and never want to come in and do something similar,” he says. “I never want to do the same idea twice. I want to tease out something you’ve never seen before.” This idea is often in sync with where the artist is going next, he adds. “Every time you get a new thing, you have to approach it with whatever the person’s trying to say the next time around,” he says. “Obviously they’re not trying to regurgitate anything on their end anything. They have a new idea of what they’re trying to communicate.”

Leckie too can’t say enough good things about Allison, and her role in helping the deluxe Color Theory packaging come alive. “She knows exactly what she wants to do,” he says. “And when artists come in and have such great vision, you’re there to help them execute that and make it be as good as it can be. And have fun, too. If you’re not having fun, it’s no good — especially with something like this, in terms of the nostalgia and everything. If you’re not having fun making it, how are you going to make anybody else have fun experiencing on the other end?”

Win or lose at the Grammys, Foudre is certainly proud of the packaging and the collaborative process that brought it to life. “Even though I came up with the Trapper Keeper idea, the whole thing came from them,” she says. “Yes, we did that thing. But if not for Sophie, none of it would have happened.”

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The Latest In A Long Line Of People To Be Brazenly Scammed By Trump Is His Own White House Photographer

Donald Trump’s post-White House tenure still never shows a shortage of dull moments. From him putting out an actual press release about hitting a hole in one to sending out self-interested suggestions to Putin, it’s all Donald Trump looking out for himself. That’s nothing new, but hey, a faux-billionaire also has to make a buck. And since his social network is flopping, he’s decided to cash in by ripping someone else off.

That person would be his chief White House photographer, Shealah Craighead, who duly followed him around for four years, which really couldn’t have been the most leisurely gig in the world. And when she planned to do what is customary for White House photographers to do — compile the best images for a coffee-table book — Trump was like nah, hold off. As the New York Times reports, Trump first asked Craighead to pay him (with a chunk of her advance book payment) to write the (again customary) forward for the book. Then Trump decided to circumvent the whole subject by taking Craighead’s photos and publishing his own book (which he supplement with other White House photographers’ snaps), selling it for up to $230 per copy, and pocketing the dough.

Not only that, but Trump was apparently a major pain in the butt to Craighead over the course of four years, frequently belittling her and (unsurprisingly) acting obsessed with pictures of himself:

Mr. Trump at times would say insulting things about Ms. Craighead, telling other White House guests that he questioned her skills as a photographer, surprising other White House officials and photographers present.

Mr. Trump, former White House aides said, was intensely involved in selecting photos of himself that would be released to the public, with Ms. Grisham recalling how during long flights on Air Force One, he often set aside time to review folders of photographs, after demanding that they be first printed so he could hold them, and pick winners one at a time.

As the New York Times points out, there’s unfortunately no law that explicitly prevents Trump from taking the photos, assembling them, and publishing them, but it’s something that most presidents haven’t chosen to do, especially after asking the photographer to not publish her own book and cutting in line to do so himself. Craighead, for her part, declined to talk politics but indicated that she’s shut down the idea of going forth with a followup book of her own. And the Trump monetizing train keeps on going.

(Via New York Times)

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Why this simple finger trick forces your foot to change direction

Our bodies are so amazing and weird. The fact that human beings have gone from banging rocks together to creating the most intricately detailed works of art is a testament to what our bodies can do. Just think about the kinds of physical feats we (well, some of us, anyway) have mastered, from brain surgery to playing musical instruments to Cirque du Soleil-style acrobatics.

Humans are marvels. Through coordination and balance and muscle training and practice, there are so many incredible things our bodies can do.

But honest to goodness, I cannot make my foot not change direction while doing this stupid physical trick.

It goes like this:

Sitting in a chair, lift your right foot off the ground a few inches and rotate your foot to the right (clockwise), making a circle in the air. While making that circle, use your right finger and draw the number “6” in the air.

I tried this a dozen times. A full 12 in a row. And every single time, no matter how hard I would concentrate, my foot would change direction as soon as I started to draw the “6.” I tried it fast. I tried it slow. I tried concentrating only on my foot or only on the “6.” It didn’t matter. My finger influenced what my foot was doing no matter what.

It’s not a new trick, but it was new to me and to the people who responded to a tweet sharing the trick with various iterations of “What is this sorcery?!?”

If you are one of those people who were able to do it without any problem, congrats. You have some kind of superhuman coordination.

That’s what I’m telling myself, anyway. My teen and young adult children were somehow able to keep their foot going clockwise. One of them is a musician and one is left-handed, so maybe that’s why? Drummers and ballet dancers in the comments said they didn’t have any problem with it.

As it turns out, there is a scientific explanation for why it’s pretty much impossible for most of us.

The Curious Crew folks at Michigan State University explain why it works:

“The cerebellum part of the brain manages body movements, like the circling of the foot or the drawing of the number 6. However, the nerve fibers from the right side of the body cross the brain stem and connect with the left side of the brain, just as the fibers on the left side of the body connect with the right side of the brain. When you try to draw the number 6 with your right hand, those signals are coming from the left side of the brain. Even though circling your foot is easy to do in either direction, you cannot rotate your foot in the opposite motion of the drawn six at the same moment. The left side of the brain cannot manage two opposite movements in the same moment, so the brain combines the movement to a similar motion. When you switch to the left foot, there is no problem because the right side of the brain controls your foot movement, while the left side can focus on drawing the number 6.”

So there you have it. The old brain controlling the two sides of your body thing. Clearly, there must be a way to train yourself to not have your foot wig out when making the “6” in the air, so pardon me while I spend the next six hours trying to make my body do my bidding.

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There are actually 5 different types of imposter syndrome and each one feels a bit different

The term “imposter syndrome” is pretty commonplace in mental health circles. At first glance, the concept is simple: it’s that super fun (not) anxiety you get when success knocks at your door. You know, when someone tells you “good job!” and what you somehow hear instead is “you’re a fraud and I see right through you!” Just a bout of low self esteem, right? Eh, not so much.

As it turns out, imposter syndrome is a lot more complex and nuanced than that.

In her book “The Secret Thought of Successful Women: Why Capable People Suffer from the Imposter Syndrome and How to Thrive in Spite of It” Dr. Valerie Young uncovered that when it comes to feelings of inadequacy, there isn’t one-size-fits-all. There are actually, five, count ’em, five, different types of imposter syndrome … ready to knock us down a peg in the blink of an eye.

While it might be overwhelming to discover your “competence type,” as Dr. Young calls them—or hey, maybe you’ll be like me and realize you’re a bit of all five—recognizing it can be really helpful for identifying what’s holding your mojo back. As they say, knowing is half the battle.

Something worth noting: Despite the (very long) title suggesting that this is primarily a female issue, the author herself notes that men also come up against imposter syndrome. In fact, though experts formerly believed it was experienced mostly by women, that has proven to not be the case. In fact, under some circumstances, men might be more likely to feel it. Long story short: Everyone can benefit from this information.

Let’s break down those five types:

1. The Perfectionist


Can the Type A, Overachiever, Micromanager Control Freaks please raise their hand? It’s OK, you’re welcome here.

For the Perfectionist, life is about setting excessively high, next-to-impossible standards for themselves. And then when inevitable failure comes along (again, impossible goals), that leaves the Perfectionist beating themselves up. Even the smallest error in a performance can suddenly morph into something huge. And from that point on, it’s the only thing that matters.

Perfectionism is its own brand of double-edged sword, as the fear of failure causes a hyperfocus on what might just be small details. And that can go one of two ways: overworking or procrastinating. Neither are very fun. And neither build confidence.

2. The Superwoman/man

Just listen to the lyrics of Encanto’s “Surface Pressure” and you’ll get a quick understanding of what this one means.

To be a Superwoman/man means feeling like you must excel in every role of your life. Having to be the best spouse, the best parent and the best worker—all at the same time. Cause, who needs a healthy work-life balance? Not Superhumans!

People pleasing and Superhumaning go hand in hand, because the need to impress and “do good” is of the utmost priority. A day in the life of a Superwoman/man might involve saying yes to every request, neglecting hobbies and juggling plates to the point of burnout. But, of course, this comes at a cost, because at the end of the day no matter how super we are, we are still undeniably human.

3. The Natural Genius

If at first you don’t succeed … then don’t bother trying again because clearly you don’t have a natural gift for it.

Those who believe in Natural Genius subscribe to the idea that if something isn’t easy, then it isn’t a natural talent. And therefore, if you must work hard at something, you must not be very good at it. People must be born talented or skilled. Setbacks aren’t just setbacks, they’re bona fide stop signs. This can make life very frustrating, as hobbies keep getting switched, a scroll through social media thwarts all hope and opportunities for growth are missed simply because they are challenging.

The Natural Genius type might look like a symptom of laziness at first glance, but really, it’s another form of judging ourselves harshly. With such ridiculously high expectations, our confidence has nowhere to go but down.

4. The Soloist


There’s no “I” in “TEAM,” but that’s OK because you don’t need a team anyway. You’ve got it all covered and don’t need any help. After all, needing others is clearly a sign of weakness … right?

Where independence is a valuable strength, the Soloist takes it to the nth degree. When you turn down assistance as a means to prove your worth and refuse to take any credit if you did receive any assistance … then you, my friend, might be a Soloist.

5. The Expert


To the Expert, there is no greater defeat than having to utter those three little words.

I. Don’t. Know.

Because to this type, self-worth is directly linked with having as much knowledge and as many skills as possible. Learning as you go? Nah. Feeling ashamed when you come upon a question you can’t answer? Yes, please.

For the Expert, life is about striving for more. More courses, more training, more certifications. And yet still feeling like you just don’t quite have a handle on it all yet. Often Experts are held back from going after jobs they are already well qualified for, simply because they’re convinced they haven’t learned enough.

How to Overcome Imposter Syndrome

If imposter syndrome comes in many shapes and sizes, then it’s no surprise there’s no be-all-end-all solution for it. A lot of it comes down to directly facing your fears and taking small steps (baby steps, even) toward a different outcome.

Here are a few ideas:

Celebrate any and all wins. Even the small ones.

Take a piece of paper and write it all out. Did you move at all today? Check. Brushed your teeth twice? Gold star for you. Writing out small successes might give you the validation kick that your little heart has been seeking.

Use your words.

Are you a perfectionist? Try the affirmation “Done is better than perfect.” A Soloist? How about “Receiving help allows me to be the best version of myself?” It’s a small gesture of self-love that really can help reframe our thoughts over time.

Stop scrolling.

If you find yourself looking at influencers, celebrities and teenagers showcasing their best moments and suddenly feeling inferior, then give yourself a digital detox. You might find a lot of extra time on your hands to put directly into building yourself up.

Seek the help of an expert.

This could be a mastermind group, a career coach or a therapist. Or, it could be delegating a certain task to a professional, such as hiring a housekeeper or accountant. This is a great way to ask for help (you’re welcome, Soloists) in a way that’s constructive.

At the end of the day, it’s understandable that many of us feel like frauds. But this feeling can be alleviated through a little honesty, some self-care and allowing ourselves to be both flawed and deserving all at the same time.

If you’re interested in taking a quiz to further dive into which type best fits you, you can check that out here.

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Were Taylor Swift’s Grammy Losses Snubs Or Justified?

It’s no secret that the Recording Academy looks favorable on Taylor Swift. Is it because she deserves it? Absolutely yes. But let’s be honest, the Grammys are so fickle, and have such a strange track record when it comes to their winner picks that fans can have quite a discussion reflecting on back on wins and losses, with the test of time as a barometer for their fairness. Since she came onto the scene back in 2006 with Taylor Swift, the singer-songwriter has been nominated a whopping 42 times (!) Out of those nominations, she’s won 11 Grammys so far, including three for the coveted Album Of The Year award, becoming the only woman who has ever done that in 2021.

So, since Taylor’s only won about 1/4th of her nominations (keeping in mind the potential 2022 wins haven’t been added yet), which of those losses were justifiable, where she was beaten out by another strong contender, and which were outright snubs that Swiftian scholars all sagely agree she should’ve won? That’s exactly what this list is going to set the record straight on, going through every single nomination from each year one by one. Read on, Swiftie, and see whether you agree or disagree with my judgments.

2008: One nomination for Best New Artist

Verdict: Lost to Amy Winehouse
Snub or Justified: Justified

While the Recording Academy might’ve ignored Taylor’s debut self-titled, two years later, they were definitely aware of her growing potential. Taylor was nominated in this category along with future powerhouses like Amy Winehouse, Feist, and Paramore. Amy winning is a justified victory, though, and not a snub of Taylor at all. Actually, in retrospect, it’s nice that Winehouse earned this honor before her untimely death.

2010: A whopping eight nominations, most notably for Album Of The Year, which she won, along with Best Country Album, Best Female Country Vocal Performance and Best Country Song (“White Horse” winning in both those song categories).

Nomination: “You Belong With Me” for Record Of The Year
Verdict: Lost to “Use Somebody” by Kings Of Leon
Snub or Justified: Justified

This might be an unpopular opinion, but I think “Use Somebody” is absolutely an all-time banger. It’s hard for me to ride for “You Belong With Me” over this tune, though I’m very tempted to suggest that “Love Story” or even “White Horse” would’ve had a much better shot.

Nomination: “You Belong With Me” for Song Of The Year
Verdict: Lost to Beyonce’s “Single Ladies”
Snub or Justified: Justified

After Kanye’s mind-boggled response to Taylor besting Beyonce in a battle between these two songs at the 2009 VMAs, it was probably the safer choice for the Grammys to pick Bey. And let’s face it, “Single Ladies” is an iconic bit of pop culture that will be enshrined forever because of the dance alone, and “You Belong With Me” has become one of the far lesser songs in the Taylor canon. The Grammys got this right.

Nomination: “You Belong With Me” for Best Female Pop Vocal Performance
Verdict: Lost to “Halo” by Beyonce
Snub or Justified: Justified

Well, “Halo” is just a better song in this case. And since Beyonce lost out on the Album Of The Year award — an honor she’s still never won — this feels something like a consolation prize.

Nomination: “Breathe” (with Colbie Caillat) for Best Pop Collaboration With Vocals
Verdict: Lost to “Lucky” by Jason Mraz and Colbie Caillat
Snub or Justified: Justified

Colbie Caillat was having a massive moment at that time, so she deserved to win off one of her nominations, and “Lucky” deserved the nod over her song with Tay.

2012: Three nominations, but all within the Country genre and no Big Four looks. Two wins for Best Country Solo Performance and Best Country Song (“Mean” winning in both those song categories).

Nomination: Speak Now for Best Country Album
Verdict: Lost to Uncaged by Zac Brown Band
Snub or Justified: MASSIVE SNUB

There’s a large faction of Swifites who swear up and down that Speak Now is Taylor’s best album, and honestly, I really see their point. We have “Sparks Fly,” “Back To December,” “Speak Now,” “Mean,” “The Story Of Us,” “Enchanted,” “Long Live” — the list goes on. So many absolute classics that illustrate Taylor’s songwriting at the top of her craft. And can anyone name a single song off this random Zac Brown album? This isn’t even the one with “Chicken Fried.” The only thing I will say in defense of the Recording Academy is that Speak Now definitely doesn’t feel very country, so maybe that was part of it. Still, we need justice for Speak Now when Taylor’s Version comes out!

2013: Three nominations, since some of Red’s singles fall into an earlier eligibility period. One win for Best Song Written for Visual Media for “Safe & Sound” (with The Civil Wars).

Nomination: “We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together” for Record of the Year
Verdict: Lost to “Somebody That I Used To Know” by Gotye and Kimbra
Snub or Justified: Justified

That song was everywhere in 2013. It’s fine, this loss was nothing personal.

Nomination: “Safe & Sound” (with The Civil Wars) for Best Country Duo/Group Performance
Verdict: Lost to “Pontoon” by Little Big Town
Snub or Justified: Justified

Little Big Town is one of the best modern country groups on the planet, and “Pontoon” is a little down-home fun. Clearly, Taylor didn’t take this one personally, because she later gave this group “Better Man,” an unreleased song from the Red era, that won the group yet another Grammy.

2014: Four nominations, zero wins. It was a Very Bad Year for the Swifties and their fearless (heh) leader

Nomination: Red for Album Of The Year
Verdict: Lost to Random Access Memories by Daft Punk
Snub or Justified: SNUB

You know that phrase about Helen Of Troy, “the face that launched a thousand ships” aka caused a war? That’s essentially what happened here. Taylor losing this massive award for what is the best album in her discography — folklore would like a word, but Red lasted in that position for almost a decade — essentially fueled her writing sessions for 1989. It drove her to seek out Jack Antonoff and go full-blown stadium pop, a totally different direction for her. And in the end, as it always is with the Grammys, it didn’t really matter if they gave Tay an award or not. Red was the Album Of The Year that year. The winner was a late-career album from a waning musical duo who had to tap a huge host of collaborators to even be relevant, and the hype around Random Access Memories quickly turned a few years later. Meanwhile, Red lives on.

2015: Three nominations, another strange year with zero wins

Nomination: “Shake It Off” for Record Of The Year
Verdict: Lost to “Stay With Me” by Sam Smith
Snub or Justified: Justified

This year felt like the Grammys trying very hard to support a queer artist, which is definitely not a bad thing. What can you say? When someone has such a ubiquitous hit, the Grammy’s commercial performance reward system kicks in. Sam deserved this, even if their career fell off hard later.

Nomination: “Shake It Off” for Song Of The Year
Verdict: Lost to “Stay With Me” by Sam Smith
Snub or Justified: Snub

A treacle-y ballad begging someone not to leave you shouldn’t best a peppy empowerment anthem in my book. Let Sam have a few and Taylor have a few… the commercial success of 1989 was pretty significant, and partially due to lead singles like this one. Since this award is about the writing and less about the performance, I think Taylor would’ve made way more sense here.

Nomination: “Shake It Off” for Best Pop Solo Performance
Verdict: Lost to “Happy (Live)” by Pharrell Williams
Snub or Justified: Definitely a snub

At this point Tay is losing to elevator music. I mean, “Shake It Off” isn’t my favorite hit from her ever, but it’s definitely better than “Happy.”

2016: Seven nominations, three wins, including 1989 for Album Of The Year. 1989 also won for Best Pop Vocal Album and her “Bad Blood” remix featuring Kendrick Lamar won for Best Music Video. Arguably, this was the year that changed everything.

Nomination:”Blank Space” for Record of the Year
Verdict: Lost to “Uptown Funk” by Mark Ronson and Bruno Mars
Snub or Justified: Justified

This was a tough call, but Mark Ronson is a true genius and deserved the look.

Nomination:”Blank Space” for Song of the Year
Verdict: Lost to “Thinking Out Loud” by Ed Sheeran
Snub or Justified: Snub

While Ed is deep inner circle when it comes to Taylor Bestie Rankings, I find it hard to argue his song was better than “Blank Space” in any conceivable way. But then again, it’s not fully a snub, because Taylor and Ed would always be happy for each other winning.

Nomination:”Blank Space” for Best Pop Solo Performance
Verdict: Lost to “Thinking Out Loud” by Ed Sheeran
Snub or Justified: Snub

If Ed is going to win in the Big Four, give someone else a chance in the genre-specific category. This is a general rule I tend to stand by, but the Recording Academy hasn’t consulted me about it yet. Clearly. And, “Blank Space” is way more traditional pop than “Thinking Out Loud” which is like… almost adult contemporary. With that 1989 win this doesn’t sting as much though.

2018: Three nominations, zero wins

Nomination: ”Better Man” for Best Country Song
Verdict: Lost to “Broken Halos” by Chris Stapleton
Snub or Justified: Justified

Considering this wasn’t Taylor’s Version (yet!) and Chris Stapleton was Having A Moment, this genre loss for a song she’d written and given to another band didn’t sting at all. Plus, Little Big Town would go on to pick up a win anyway that night, just for Best Country Duo/Group Performance instead.

Nomination: ”I Don’t Wanna Live Forever” for Best Song Written for Visual Media
Verdict: Lost to “How Far I’ll Go” by Lin-Manuel Miranda and Auli’i Cravalho from Moana
Snub or Justified: Justified

Taylor, I love you so much that when we met my mouth couldn’t form any words… but this song sucks. Moana got some shine it rightly deserved.

2019: One nomination, zero wins

Nomination: Reputation for Best Pop Vocal Album
Verdict: Lost to Sweetener by Ariana Grande
Snub or Justified: Justified

Though I ride a lot harder for Reputation than plenty of other fans, Sweetener is an all-time classic. And, Ariana doesn’t tend to get all the Grammy looks the way Taylor has, even nominations-wise, so it was nice to see her get honored. Not to mention, after the year she’d had, Ari really needed the pick-me-up.

2020: Three nominations, zero wins

Nomination: ”Lover” for Song of the Year
Verdict: Lost to “Bad Guy” by Billie Eilish and Finneas
Snub or Justified: Justified

There was only Billie, and she was everything. *Billie Voice* DUH.

Nomination: Lover for Best Pop Vocal Album
Verdict: Lost to When We All Fall Asleep, Where Do We Go? by Billie Eilish
Snub or Justified: “Justified”

Considering Billie was breaking records previously set by Taylor when she became the youngest female artist to hit certain milestones at the Grammys, you have to imagine Taylor was pretty proud of her. A mid-career album from Taylor losing to a rising star’s debut record, it’s not a snub, it’s just how the industry works.

Nomination: ”You Need To Calm Down” for Best Pop Solo Performance
Verdict: Lost to “Truth Hurts” by Lizzo
Snub or Justified: Justified

Once again, unlike many detractors I absolutely loved Taylor going balls-to-the-wall for the queer community as she grew past her fear of openly speaking on political issues. But “Truth Hurts” beats “Calm Down” handily. No snub here.

2021: Six nominations, only one win, but it’s her third Album Of The Year award for folklore, which puts Taylor in a category unto herself

Nomination: “Cardigan” for Song Of The Year
Verdict: Lost to H.E.R.’s “I Can’t Breathe”
Snub or Justified: Justified

This song was part of an important moment of racial reckoning in American history. It absolutely deserved the nod.

Nomination: Folklore for Best Pop Vocal Album
Verdict: Lost to Dua Lipa’s Future Nostalgia
Snub or Justified: Justified

All of Taylor’s losses this year were to emerging new voices in pop who were doing something completely new, while Lover tended to rehash old ground for her. Dua earned this win fair and square.

Nomination: ”Cardigan” for Best Pop Solo Performance
Verdict: Lost to “Watermelon Sugar” by Harry Styles
Snub or Justified: Justified

C’mon, I mean, “Watermelon Sugar”? It’s a banger and a half. Harry wins, no hard feelings.

Nomination: “Exile” with Bon Iver for Best Pop Duo/Group Performance
Verdict: Lost to “Rain On Me” by Lady Gaga and Ariana Grande
Snub or Justified: Justified

“Rain On Me” is perfect, and we needed an anthem like this in the early days of lockdown more than a sad sack ballad from Tay and Justin.

Nomination: “Beautiful Ghosts” from Cats was nominated for Best Song Written for Visual Media
Verdict: Lost to “No Time To Die” by Billie Eilish and Finneas
Snub or Justified: Justified

Do I even need to explain this one?

So in reality, Taylor’s Grammy career only has six major snubs. That’s really not that many, considering how artists like Beyonce, Jay-Z and Kendrick have been treated. Here’s the Grammys Taylor’s nominated for this year: Album Of The Year for Evermore, and as a writer on Olivia Rodrigo’s Sour, which is also nominated for Album Of The Year. So if either of those two wins, she’ll be picking up another hefty award this year.

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Spring Is The Perfect Time To Make A Caipirinha — Here’s Our Recipe

There are few cocktails that scream “beach vibes” more than a caipirinha. The drink is a classic Brazilian concoction that’s way easier to make than it looks. It’s bright, refreshing, and very boozy, which is kind of perfect as spring break rolls us toward the warm days ahead.

The modern classic has its roots in both Portuguese and Brazilian cocktail/medicinal history. There’s an old-school cold cure in Portugal that’s very close to this, made with sugar cane alcohol, lime, honey, and garlic. But that’s more akin to a hot toddy than the now-classic Brazilian variation. Basically, the modern version tosses the honey and garlic and adds in sugar and ice, creating one of the most refreshing cocktails there is.

For our version below, I’m leaning into the classic iteration you get on the streets of Brazil to this day. It’s an easy shaker that just needs a little muddling and that’s about it. Let’s get to it!

Also Read: The Top Five Cocktail Recipes of the Last Six Months


Zach Johnston


  • 2 oz. cachaça
  • 1 lime (cut into five or six wedges)
  • 2 barspoons demerara sugar
  • Ice

When it comes to cachaça, you want the white or unaged version. Ypioca, CanaRio, and Pitu (which I used) are the classic bottles you’ll see at most bars around Brazil. You really need cachaça and not white rum with this drink. Cachaça is made from sugar cane juice (not molasses) and carries a much brighter and grassier nature, with more tropical fruit notes built into the distillate.

As for the rest, you should be able to get good limes and sugar from any grocery store.

Zach Johnston

What You’ll Need:

  • Rocks glass
  • Muddler
  • Pairing knife
  • Cocktail shaker bottom
  • Jigger
Zach Johnston


  • Add the lime wedges and sugar to the bottom of the rocks glass. Muddle the lime into the sugar until a light syrup forms on the bottom of the glass.
  • Add a few cubes of ice and the cachaça to the glass. Pop on the cocktail shaker bottom onto the rocks glass and shake for five seconds, until the shaker gets cold.
  • Remove the shaker and pour the cocktail back into the rocks glass. Serve.

Bottom Line:

Zach Johnston

“Summertime… Is here again!” This feels like spring/summer in a glass. It’s fruity, citrusy, and just. sweet enough to really hook you in. It’s also nicely light while still carrying a small boozy punch.

Overall, this is a pretty easy cocktail to make, even one at a time. It’s also a crowd-pleaser. If you’re in a situation where you need to make more than one at a time, line them up. That is, muddled the base for four at a time. Give each glass six good muddles. Then top all of them with ice and cachaça. Then go down the line, shaking each one for five seconds. You should be done in under 60 seconds if your skills are dialed in (and your bar set up is able to accommodate that).

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Craft Beer Experts Tell Us The One Beer They Look Forward To In Spring

What’s not to love about the ending of one season and the beginning of another? This is especially true when the season that’s finishing is winter with all of its blustery cold, gray, sunless days. Spring, on the other hand, is a time of rejuvenation. It’s also a great time of year to get into beer. There are countless darker beers to drink in March and April, while the lighter easy-drinking beers of summer also start to make an appearance.

Chris Collier, the brewer at Biggerstaff Brewing in Atlanta, believes that there’s no beer that better encapsulates spring than the bock (a type of dark lager). “When I think of spring, I think of classic bocks,” he says. “Traditional bocks were brewed in the cold winter months and lagered until the spring where they were celebrated as a symbol of better times to come as spring approached”

But bocks aren’t the only great spring-centric beers, there are tons of other styles well-suited for this time of year. To find some of the best options we asked some notable craft beer experts, brewers, and beer professionals to tell us the one beer they most look forward to as spring kicks into full gear.

Ayinger Maibock

Ayinger Maibock

Greg Deuhs, director of brewing, batching and quality at Sprecher Brewery in Glendale, Wisconsin

ABV: 7.5%

Average Price: Limited Availability

Why This Beer?

I like bock beer in the spring, so I like Maibocks. One I really like is the Ayinger Maibock, which is very similar to the Maibock we make here at Sprecher. I like the malt flavors myself, I’m a malt person. Ayinger Maibock ticks all the boxes with bready malts, sweet honey, and light floral hops.

Saison Dupont

Saison Dupont
Saison Dupont

Mike Kelly, senior brewer at Harpoon Brewery in Boston

ABV: 6.5%

Average Price: $7 for a 375ml bottle

Why This Beer?

Saison Dupont is my favorite spring beer. When the weather starts to warm up in the spring and drinking outside becomes a little easier, Saison Dupont is a great beer to reach for. The aromas of hay and clove with a little barnyard funk pair well with the changing of seasons.

Cooperage Hop Drip

Cooperage Hop Drip

Mark Hughes, specialty brewing manager at Lagunitas Brewing Company in Petaluma, California

ABV: 6.5%

Average Price: Limited Availability

Why This Beer?

Spring comes early here in California, so I’ll shout out the always interesting San Francisco Beer Week beers in particular. This year’s Hop Drip from two of my favorite Sonoma County locals — Adobe Creek Brewing and Cooperage Brewing Co. — is a standout. I’ll admit to wanting to call a beer Hop Drip for a minute now.

I’m also a big fan of tart beers paired with complementary hops and fruit, and apricot/strawberry with Mosaic and Galaxy can’t fail.

Collective Arts Guava Gose

Collective Arts Guava Gose
Collective Arts

Marshall Hendrickson, co-founder and head of brewing operations at Veza Sur Brewing in Miami

ABV: 4.9%

Average Price: $13 for a four-pack of 16-ounce cans

Why This Beer?

I love the Guava Gose from Collective Arts. It’s very well balanced, and not too tart. It’s easy to put down two or three of them without wrecking your pallet, which isn’t true for a lot of sours. It’s definitely a great early spring beer that you’ll continue drinking well into summer.

Kannah Creek Maibock

Kannah Creek Maibock
Kannah Creek

Matt Simpson, head brewer at Tennessee Brew Works in Nashville

ABV: 7.1%

Average Price: Limited Availability

Why This Beer?

I have not had a really good Maibock in a long time. Unfortunately, my favorite does not even exist anymore. I can say for sure that Kannah Creek Brewing Company out of Grand Junction, Colorado makes a solid Maibock. It’s rich, malty, and has a nice hop presence.

Notch Loggerhead

Notch Loggerhead

Dan Lipke, head brewer at Clown Shoes Beer in Boston

ABV: 7.5%

Average Price: Limited Availability

Why This Beer?

Notch Loggerhead is a favorite. Bock is one of the few traditional spring beers, often associated with monks drinking it during Lent. If you’re lucky, like me, a local brewery will make a good one. Notch’s Loggerhead is only brewed once per year for a spring release. Dark amber in color and oozing with complex malt character, toasty caramel, and dark fruits, it is a great way to toast the end of winter.

Founders All Day IPA

Founders All Day IPA

Nancy Lopetegui, taproom general manager at Wynwood Brewing in Miami

ABV: 4.7%

Average Price: $8.50 for a six-pack

Why This Beer?

All Day IPA by Founders Brewing is my go-to when it’s unbearably hot in Miami in the spring. It packs a punch of hops and flavor, but the low alcohol content in this session beer allows me to throw a few more back. It’s hard to beat.

Cannonball Creek Netflix and Pils

Cannonball Creek Netflix and Pils
Cannonball Creek

Chris Bell, founder of Call to Arms Brewing in Denver

ABV: 5%

Average Price: Limited Availability

Why This Beer?

Netflix and Pils by Cannonball Creek. That beer to me is the quintessential pilsner. It has incredible balance with great German Noble hop aromas, a light bitterness without astringency, and it always leaves you wanting another. It is a beer they commonly have on, but when it warms up, that is the beer I am most likely going for.

Bierstadt Tmavé 13

Bierstadt Tmavé 13

Ryan Pachmayer, head brewer at Yak and Yeti Brewpub & Restaurant in Arvada, Colorado

ABV: 4.3%

Average Price: Limited Availability

Why This Beer?

Bierstadt’s Tmavé 13 is smooth and has a pleasant milk chocolate-type flavor going on. It’s less roasty than many of the other American versions of this beer and very drinkable. It’s definitely a great early spring beer and one I look forward to every year.

Writer’s Pick: Bell’s Oberon

Bell’s Oberon

ABV: 5.8%

Average Price: $20 for a twelve-pack

Why This Beer?

This might seem like a cop-out because it’s so popular, but it’s hard not to be amped for spring when Bell’s releases Oberon. This American wheat ale is fruity, hazy, and has just the right amount of spice to remind you it’s not summer yet and you still need to wear a light jacket. No beer tastes more like spring than this one.

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Alex Jones Is Being Fined $25K Per Day He Continues To Hide From The Court In An Apparent Attempt To Evade The Sandy Hook Defamation Case

A Connecticut judge is ordering Infowars host Alex Jones to put his money where his mouth is.

A recent ruling handed down by Connecticut Superior Court Barbara Bellis called out Jones for his “bad faith” attempt to avoid sitting for a deposition in the ongoing Sandy Hook lawsuit. Jones spent years peddling baseless conspiracy theories about the tragic school shooting of 20 children and six educators that happened in 2012. Among his claims, Jones said the shooting was staged by the government as an excuse for Democrats to confiscate citizens’ guns and that the families of the victims were paid actors. After years of threats from Infowars listeners, the families of some of the victims banded together to bring a lawsuit against Jones, one that’s dragged on for years thanks to his attempts to avoid turning over documents and evidence requested by the court.

He recently tried to get out of sitting for a deposition by having his lawyer tell a judge that he was “too sick” to sit for a two-day deposition but was caught in the lie when he broadcasted a new episode of his conspiracy theory peddling show from the Infowars studio. Now, it seems the courts are fed up with Jones trying to weasel his way out of any responsibility related to his damaging misinformation campaign and they’re ready to make him pay … literally.

Judge Bellis has ordered Jones to cough up $25,ooo for the first weekday he fails to appear for testimony in the case. For every day after, that fine will increase by $25,000. If Jones fails to testify before April 15th, the judge has threatened further sanctions that would seriously damage his ability to defend his case in court.

“The plaintiffs subjected themselves to hours and hours of painful questioning by Mr. Jones’s lawyers — and Mr. Jones plays sick when it is his turn to tell the truth under oath,” the families’ motion for contempt, which led to the judge’s decision, read.

It’s clear that Jones has the money to pay too since he apparently offered to pay a settlement of $120,000 to each plaintiff if the case was dropped. Clearly, the victims’ families aren’t interested in a pay-out, but we’re pretty sure the Connecticut legal system will happily take Mr. Jones’ “hard-earned” cash.

(Via The New York Times)

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John Travolta Sends Well Wishes To Bruce Willis After His Brain Disorder Diagnosis: ‘I Love You Bruce’

Celebs have been sending well wishes to Bruce Willis after it was revealed that the Die Hard actor was diagnosed with a rare brain disorder called aphasia, which affects a person’s ability to communicate.

In an Instagram post, friend and multiple-time co-star John Travolta shared photos of the two actors from back in their younger days. The two had starred in numerous movies together, and recently shot the upcoming film Paradise City in Hawaii, which is expected to be released sometime this year.

Alongside the photos, Travolta said: “Bruce and I became good friends when we shared 2 of our biggest hits together, Pulp Fiction and Look Who’s Talking. Years later he said to me, ‘John, I just want you to know that when something good happens to you I feel like it’s happening to me.’ That’s how generous a soul he is. I love you Bruce.”

The two starred in Pulp Fiction and the Look Who’s Talking franchise together. Travolta isn’t the first actor to send well wishes to Willis, with many others taking to Twitter to share stories and send support to Willis and his family. Recently, The Razzies also rescinded their Worst Performance By Bruce Willis In 2021 award, which was announced earlier this week.

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Rapper Rob49 Shares Where To Eat, Shop, And Explore In New Orleans, Louisiana

New Orleans, Louisiana is a top touristed destination for a multitude of reasons. Of course, there’s the annual debauchery that is Mardi Gras. Then there’s the abundant supply of gumbo, po-boys, and jambalaya. But it’s New Orleans’ music scene that proves to be one of the city’s most magnetic draws.

New Orleans just hosted the BUKU Music + Art Project, an annual two-day music and arts festival that showcases local and renowned talent, on March 25 and March 26, 2022. One of the event’s New Orleans born-and-bred performers included rapper Rob49, who recently collaborated with Kevin Gates, Lil Baby, and Hotboii for his latest music video shoot.

As a passionate NOLA native, Rob49 has the expertise to give us the inside scoop on the city’s most noteworthy restaurants, neighborhoods, and small businesses. If you’re in the market for a trip to the nation’s most eccentric destination, Rob’s sharing his top five piucks for where to eat, shop, and explore on your next trip to New Orleans below.


New Orleans Restaurants

Morrow’s is one of the most popular New Orleans Restaurants right now. This should be your first stop if you’re looking for real “New Orleans” gumbo, chicken, and red beans!

Nestled in the historic Faubourg Marigny neighborhood, the local hotspot was founded by mother-son duo Chef Lenora Chong and Event Curator Larry Morrow. Together, they serve a mouth-watering mixture of classic New Orleans cuisine and authentic Korean dishes.

Browse through the full Morrow’s menu here.

Dee’s Xquisite

Dee’s Xquisite is THE BEST seafood you will find in New Orleans. Dee is known as “The Crab Man Of New Orleans” and is well-deserving of that name!

“Dee” is a self-made chef and the creator of the NOLA Chargrilled Snow Crabs and Dungeness crabs. AKA, if you’re craving some intensely flavorful, thoughtfully made seafood delicacies, you should look no further than this local New Orleans gem.

Get a peek at the savory Dee’s Xquisit dishes here.

Made In The Hood

Made In The Hood is at the forefront of New Orleans street fashion! With their own designs, they have become one of the most embraced clothing lines here!

With a diverse collection of bold graphic tees, trendy joggers, hats, hoodies, and more for both men and women, Made In The Hood is athleisure at its finest. Shopping here is a great way to embrace the local NOLA style (and look good doing it).

Shop Made In The Hood’s street-ready garments here.

JetLife Apparel

JetLife Apparel was founded by one of the biggest rappers to come out of New Orleans. This is where you’ll find all of the coolest clothing pieces.

JetLife was founded by Shante Scott Franklin, better known by his stage name Curren$y. The line perfectly embodies the vibrant culture and eclectic style that oozes through the streets of New Orleans. Located on the historic Canal Street, shopping here combines local fashion with city sightseeing.

Get your fix of JetLife by shopping online here.

Jackson Square

Jackson Square is in the middle of New Orleans. While in this area you will run into everything that is New Orleans!

Jackson Square, located in the French Quarter of New Orleans, was declared a National Historic Landmark in 1960 and it remains a central location for the city’s bustling lifestyle today. Between festivals, weddings, local events, and curious tourists, the 2.5-acre area is visited by more than 2 million people each year.

If you want to be where much of the action happens in New Orleans, then Jackson Square is well worth your time.

Learn more about Jackson Square and its iconic history here.