Due to a lack of pigment in her eyes caused by albinism, eight-month-old Louise suffers from nystagmus, a condition that results in poor vision. Until two months ago Louise was never fully able to see her own mother, but that all changed when she got her first pair of glasses.
I have to say—I got a feeling I am going to win in the long run, but I want to be part of the zeitgeist, too. I want to support young girls who are in their 20s now and tell them: You’re not just imagining things. It’s tough. Everything that a guy says once, you have to say five times. Girls now are also faced with different problems. I’ve been guilty of one thing: After being the only girl in bands for 10 years, I learned—the hard way—that if I was going to get my ideas through, I was going to have to pretend that they—men—had the ideas. I became really good at this and I don’t even notice it myself. I don’t really have an ego. I’m not that bothered. I just want the whole thing to be good. And I’m not saying one bad thing about the guys who were with me in the bands, because they’re all amazing and creative, and they’re doing incredible things now. But I come from a generation where that was the only way to get things done. So I have to play stupid and just do everything with five times the amount of energy, and then it will come through.
When people don’t credit me for the stuff I’ve done, it’s for several reasons. I’m going to get very methodical now! [laughs] One! I learned what a lot of women have to do is make the guys in the room think it was their idea, and then you back them up. Two! I spend 80% of the writing process of my albums on my own. I write the melodies. I’m by the computer. I edit a lot. That for me is very solitary. I don’t want to be photographed when I’m doing that. I don’t invite people around. The 20% of the album process when I bring in the string orchestras, the extras, that’s documented more. That’s the side people see. When I met M.I.A., she was moaning about this, and I told her, “Just photograph yourself in front of the mixing desk in the studio, and people will go, ‘Oh, OK! A woman with a tool, like a man with a guitar.’” Not that I’ve done that much myself, but sometimes you’re better at giving people advice than doing it yourself. I remember seeing a photo of Missy Elliott at the mixing desk in the studio and being like, a-ha!
It’s a lot of what people see. During a show, because there are people onstage doing the other bits, I’m just a singer. For example, I asked Matmos to play all the beats for the Vespertine tour, so maybe that’s kind of understandable that people think they made them. So maybe it’s not all sexist evil. [laughs] But it’s an ongoing battle. I hope it doesn’t come across as too defensive, but it is the truth. I definitely can feel the third or fourth feminist wave in the air, so maybe this is a good time to open that Pandora’s box a little bit and air it out.
Via Pitchfork, an absolute must-read interview with Jessica Hopper
It’s no secret I’m a fan of Taylor Swift, especially because she truly cares about her fans. This morning, a fan made a Tumblr post explaining to her that he was being bullied at school because of his name and his body, Swift sprung into action, writing a sincere note giving him some tips.
Here’s her response, in full.
I was really shocked to hear you say that you’d been bullied because of your name because the first thing I thought when I saw it was ‘woah, Caillou is such a cool name’. Honestly. I thought it was so cool because it’s different, and herein lies our issue: you will always be criticized and teased and bullied for things that make you different, but usually those things will be what set you apart. The things that set you apart from the pack, the things that you once thought were your weaknesses will someday become your strengths. So if they say you’re weird or annoying or strange or too this or not enough that, maybe it’s because you threaten them. Maybe you threaten them because you’re not the norm. And if you’re not the norm, give yourself a standing ovation.
Now I want to tell you that I think you look great the way you are. No one has the right to criticize you for how your body looks, but they will. One thing I’ve learned from experiencing this exact kind of criticism is that no one else can label your body except for you. No one gets to have a place in your mind if they weren’t invited there by you. So please do me this one favor: Don’t let their ugly words into your beautiful mind.
And if someone punches you again, call the police and report them because that is assault. I’m serious. There’s no direct penalty for bullying with words (except karma) but no one is allowed to hit you. Ever.
Thanks for telling me your story and for being so strong.
Proud of you, Caillou Pettis.
D.J. wears hearing aids, but doesn’t want to pigeonholed as the “deaf comic.” I can relate to all of these views he talks about, and I have found my new best friend who doesn’t know I exist.
Success, how’s it measured? That’s a silly question. You guys are business people. Success to me is happiness. Having a still seat. Being comfortable in your seat is success. The more you can do that the more successful you are. Happiness. You’re only here for a short time, so I measure success by the level of happiness one has. Money can’t make you happy. But happy can make you money. – Russell Simmons via Hip Hop DX
“Speechless,” the newest domestic violence and sexual assault PSA series from the NO MORE movement, is a raw, unscripted and powerful video collection featuring more than a dozen celebrities and athletes, including this one from Oscar-winner Hilary Swank. They urge viewers to start a conversation about these issues with friends and loved ones.
“Did you know that Pete Tong is a father of six? Have you ever wondered if Jackmaster is thinking about having kids one day or how Diplo manages his work/life balance now that he’s a father? Do you think Tiësto ever gets asked how he feels about being a man and a DJ? I’m guessing not.
Recently I did an interview for a reputable dance music magazine in which the journalist asked me what it was like to be a mum and a DJ. Then he asked me what it was like to be pregnant and a DJ. Then he asked me about an outfit I wore to the Brits and asked me how I DJ in a dress and heels? Finally he asked me for two music recommendations for 2015. I recommended a female artist and a female DJ, so he asked was this me doing the “supporting women” thing?”
– Annie Mac, in Vice
A lot of times in interviews, people ask me things like, “How does it feel now? What have you bought your mom and your pops and family?” Nobody ever really asks about what it’s like trying to adapt to fame and money and how much of a depression it can make for you. How much of a depression it could put you in knowing that so many kids hang on to your words. I can’t make a song like “i” without being in that dark place. “i” comes from going overseas, going to New York, being in L.A. and hearing kids saying, “Kendrick, I was gonna kill myself last week. Section.80, good kid, m.A.A.d city saved my life.” Or “I was gonna kill myself tonight until I came to your show.”
I believe that they are telling the truth. At first I wasn’t so sure, maybe it was just they were excited to meet me. But then they showed me their wrists and had all these different scars from when they tried to take their lives but failed. Or I look into their eyes and their pupils are dilated and they on all these types of meds and drugs, it’s a whole different story to me. That’s when I learned that while I’m making music for myself, drawing from my own experiences and conflictions and battles within myself, this teenager listens to every word I say. And that’s spooky.
I think one of my biggest battles within myself is embracing leadership. You always grow up and you hate the term “role model.” You would say, “I don’t wanna be a role model. I don’t want none of that.” But in actuality, you are the biggest role model. It’s impossible to fight the title of role model. Especially when the type of music I make is so personal. People feel like they can relate to me or that they are me. They feel like they know my whole life story even though we from different worlds. So when I go out and meet them in public, I don’t get a response like, “Kendrick, will you sign this real quick?” Or, “I wanna just take this picture with you.” No, they want to have full conversations. I find out that they live their lives by my music and that right there is something.
Via XXL Magazine
It’s about the experience, not fame.