Susan Surftone, who’s real name is Susan Yasinski, was one of the few female surf rock guitarists in the music industry during what many considered the “third wave” of surf-revivalist bands in the 90’s. She led a band called Susan and the Surftones that toured all over the world and received airplay on radio in the U.S. and abroad before going solo as a singer-songwriter and guitarist. However, this was all after she graduated from law school, passed the Bar, and worked as an FBI agent who monitored KGB agents assigned to UN headquarters in New York.
Jasmine D. Lowe sits down with director, William Clift and producer, David Millbern to discuss the documentary, A Long Road To Freedom: The Advocate Celebrates 50 Years, which debuted at the 2018 Outfest LA festival.
Jasmine D. Lowe sits down with California-based indie band, Kittenhead, to discuss their passion for music, self-expression. and their sense of responsibility to use the platform of the musical stage to be advocates for the disenfranchised and a voice in the movement for more social justice.
I have always been familiar with mid-century architecture and design. As a former architecture student I was made aware of Palm Springs, CA’s significance to the modernism movement and its impact on design, architecture, art, fashion and culture. However, even with my interest in architecture and design, I had never attended Palm Springs’ Modernism Week celebration.
We ended up accidentally finding the infamous and highly disgusting gum wall in an alley that we thought we were going to be mugged in, finding the house that they used as the Intern house owned by character, Meredith Grey, in the television show Grey’s Anatomy, and the building that they used for the front of the Grey-Sloane Hospital before hopping on our late flight back to California. My sister had to dodge crazy looks from the residents of Queen Ann Hill to snap a quick picture of the house that has been repainted by the current owners.
The four of us stared down at the black sludge bubbling up from the short blades of green grass that had been blocked off with black iron gates. A small gust of wind had picked up a smell, of what seemed like burned tire rubber, and found its way into our nostrils. I instinctively moved my feet around a bit as if to sidestep the process that was taking hold underneath my boots.
One of the strangest feelings in the world for me has to be the time I watched a group of young artists paint the logo, that I had designed and come up with in my head. Watching the sign that they painted being mounted on top of an art gallery store front is also right up there with the painting. I watched as they printed a copy of the image out on sheets of paper and carefully took their time with every stroke of their brushes to perfectly capture the original doodle I made for Create To Learn, and couldn’t help but be surprised out how everything turned out.
I was amazed at the level of care and talent they had in mixing their paint colors to match the bold child-like hues I selected for the finished logo. They kindly told me that they enjoyed my work and that they were having fun painting the drawing that had once just been an idea for a grad school project.
I ended up getting the chance to sit down and speak with a professional contact, whom I met while working on a research project for graduate school, on her online podcast, “Operation Community Stimulus.” The show takes the time to interview community nonprofits and business owners who give advice to college students and young working professionals, and regularly airs live from 5:30pm to 6:00pm on Fridays.
The show gave me another chance to give one of the most important pieces of advice I tend to give students hoping to enter the job force for the first time. I speak with individuals all the time who wonder how young professionals, such as myself, enter into the job force with “entry-level” job requirements that ask for years of experience. They scratch their heads and wonder how it’s even possible to some how have experience before not really having any experience, to which I always reply—internships.
There were moments, however, where we would run into people from various countries, which didn’t always quite know English, and still have lovely conversations with them. We understood them through their body gestures and smiles, and we learned more about them from the food and culture they decided to share with us. Those strangers were the ones who made us felt a little more at home in a place that was far away from the home that we have always known.
My last weekend abroad ended with me traveling by myself on a train to Pisa that Friday, on a train to Venice on Saturday with a group of fellow students, and by bus and train to Cinque Terre with a cheap tour guide group. I snapped a lot of pictures, got soaked to the bone standing in the rain waiting for a gondola ride in Venice, and hiked from the town of Vernazza to Monterosso al Mare.
The glaring spots from street lights flew past me at a momentous speed. I was barreling into the darkness with a concerned look on my face. “Had I gotten on the wrong midnight train to the Pisa airport for my flight to Paris?” I had seen no one that I was supposed to be traveling with and, I was traveling to a foreign country alone, again.