IndieFest 9 2015
March 28, 2015
written and photographed by Natacia Manibusan
Yesterday, I spent an entire day in the neighborhood of City Heights during San Diego Indie Fest 9 listening to talented musicians and talking to people about upcoming projects, music and life. I had the opportunity to sit with several guests who reside in or near San Diego as well as the visitors who helped make this year jam packed with excitement
Actress and Director, Annika Marks stars on ABC’s Television Series, The Fosters. She was in town to promote the importance of water conservation and gave us quite a comedic performance while advertising her campaign, “Stay Filthy, Cali,” which has been turned into a T.V. Series. She had a unique delivery for the message expressed through a story that involved a friend of hers that is better suited for mature audiences than here in this article. However, it did provide for laughs among the crowd. Water conservation is an important issue we are facing in California as water levels are becoming dangerously low. Annika uses her platform as an entertainer to bring awareness in hopes we all take more precautions in our day to day activities.
Following Ms. Marks, remarks was Yolanda Ross from Lifetime Channel’s, “Whitney” Directed by Angela Bassett. Her upcoming motion picture entitled, “Lila & Eve” stars Jennifer Lopez and Viola Davis and was shown at this year’s Sundance Film Festival. Yolanda’s Directorial debut was made through the Short Film, “Breaking Night.” She brings together “Treme” Cast mates Clarke Peters, Otto Dejean, Kesha Bullard and Derrick Freeman.
I sat with several guests and musicians and asked them random Questions
Here is what was discussed
Q&A with actress
With several films in Post Production including the new T.V series called, “Happyish”. Pre-Production has begun for Yolonda’s next film where she will perform with Actors Jim Carrey, Diego Luna, Jason Mamoa, Keanu Reeves and Suki Waterhouse in a 2016 Romance called, “The Bad Batch.” The film tells the story of a Texan community of Cannibals.
Yolonda Ross interview
Natacia: Describe your best moment and worse moment, or something that stands out to you from any set.
Yolonda: The worst moment was having to do some fight stuff and the person I had to work with, their sweat smelled like Sulpher. So, if you were doing stuff and they are all over you, it was killing me. (motions with her hands over her body) it was not good. I know I’ve had some great moments. I mean, I would say anything with ‘T’ Hagans on, “Stranger Inside.” It was just straight up fun making that movie, period. Everything.
Natacia: Who is someone you’d like to work with that you haven’t yet?
Yolonda: Paul Thomas Anderson.
Yolonda: He’s my favorite Director.
Natacia: What do you think of Indie Fest?
Yolonda: I love Indie Fest. I mean the mix of film and music. I mean, that’s it. That’s everything that I do. Because, I create characters, Film, T.V stuff. There’s always music behind it. So, that’s my base.
Natacia: So, are you looking to maybe make your own film?
Yolonda: Yea, I have a short in this and then I AM getting ready to make my first Feature.
Natacia: Can you tell us a little bit about it?
Yolonda: It deals with a couple that’s in the theatre and it’s their relationship when one of them cheats on the other. And, how they deal with things publicly and privately.
Natacia: And, whose going to be attached to that?
Yolonda: Right now, myself, Clark Peters, Chomen Domingo, there are some others attached already.
Natacia: What is the major difference between San Diego and New York?
Yolonda: (laughs) It’s prettier here.
(we laugh together)
Q&A with the band
Tropo Musik interview
Natacia: What’s been great about the tour so far?
Tyson: Yeah, Adam
Grant: The weather, Del Mar.
Tyson: Yeah, what’s great is him.
Adam: Well, this is my fourth show.
Tyson: We got Adam, he’s our Drummer. We’ve been friends a long time. We jammed a lot in the past and it’s this thing that we wanted to make happen and we finally did. And, it’s really cool because we’ve been spending the whole winter recording an album and he’s the man.
Grant: It’s getting better every show and it already started good.
Natacia: What are your hidden talents, each of you?
Grant: Oh, I got pretty good at Hula Hooping for a while.
Tyler: He’s really good actually.
Natacia: The fire Hula Hooping
Grant: Yeah, sometimes.
Tyson: The thing I’m most proud of is I can sleep anywhere, any time. And, it really makes it so I don’t have to sleep.
Natacia: So, you become a night owl.
Tyson: Maybe, if I need to, or if I need to stay up for three days and then I have two days of sleep.
Natacia: (Jokingly) Oh, I thought that was called Meth.
Adam: I’m a bad ass Break-Dancer.
Tyson: Do it on the coffee table.
Natacia: That’d be talent. I’d like to see that. Okay tell us, a secret about a band-mate in front of them.
(Tyson and Adam look at Grant)
I like how you two just looked at Grant, let’s start with you.
Adam: They’re Brothers so.
Grant: (looking at Tyson) we got a lot more secrets, I think.
Tyson: (looking at Grant) I don’t know if we have any secrets, dude.
Grant: That’s a good question though. Oh! Well, that’s about me, I can’t tell secrets about me.
Tyson: We have an embarrassing share, but no secrets.
Natacia: Okay, go ahead.
Grant: We once had to take Tyson out of our practice studio out on a door because he seized up completely out the window. We were practicing on our way to something else and he couldn’t do it and we took him out the window on a door.
Tyson: It was awesome.
Natacia: Do you have any photos of that? Cell phone images?
Grant: It’s funny now, but it wasn’t funny then.
Tyson: Because of that show, my band mates started a band that was basically our band without me, called, “Children of naked hippies” and Grant was the Leader of that band.
Natacia: It’s a real band? Did you guys really do that?
Grant: It was a real band, for one show at least.
Tyson: It was more than that. It was a thing.
Indie Fest 9 is not the first time I was introduced to this band. I met them in 2013 when I ran into a friend who was and is managing them out of San Luis Obispo. This time, I spent more time with them both before they performed and after Indie Fest. Over the course of these past couple of years, we have developed into better acquaintances now turning into more of a friendship. Grant and Tyson’s Father is one of their greatest supporters and Tyson mentioned he even toured with them. Talk about supporting your kids! Thank you Papa Leonard for helping them along their musical course. There is a lot of great music being made by your boys and their friends. Folks, you don’t have to wait for them to come to a town near you. They will be performing soon in Mexico just across the border.
Singer, Songwriter, Entertainer Paige Bryan
Paige Bryan Interview
Natacia: Tell me your Best and Your Worst moment on tour so far.
Paige: Um, I don’t know that’s a good question. I did have like a mini breakdown in an airport in Japan just because I was very tired. And, like they didn’t give me a Customs Form and it caused me to like breakdown crying in the middle of the customs line. It was really intense.
Natacia: Were they at least sympathetic and helpful?
Paige: Well, there was a table just right next to me, to my left. If I would have turned, and looked, and saw, there were tons of Customs Forms there but it was just the fact that she asked me for one and I didn’t have one and I had not slept in two weeks so it just, it was just fitting for me to cry my way into Tokyo.
Natacia: You made your grand entrance.
Paige: I made my grand entrance. My best moment on tour? Honestly, I don’t know if I can just pin it into one. I get to share these experiences with awesome people. They’re not just like “the band,” we’re all just like a family. So, I think it’s just the experience itself as one whole best moment.
Natacia: Is there a city that you’re looking forward to? That you haven’t been to yet?
Paige: Well, this will be the first time that I will be in Canada so I’m going to perform in Toronto which will be fun and then really just anywhere overseas. I really love Italy and I’ve been a million times but I’ve never performed in New York so I really want to perform in New York.
Natacia: Do you have a Stylist or do you do your own hair?
Paige: I do my own hair. Well, I have my own Hair Dresser but for shows, I do my own hair. But, my hair dresser is named DaRicco Jackson and he is AMAZING!
Natacia: Have you ever thought of shaving your head?
Paige: About four or five years ago I had a really short Pixie Cut before I grew it all back out. That’s as close as I’ll get. So, shaving my head no.
Natacia: Do you have a bucket list and if so, what’s on it?
Paige: I don’t have a specific list per say more so than I love traveling and I love seeing all different parts of the world, experiencing different cultures so definitely in my lifetime, I would love to…I have this thing where I want to see the sun rise and set in every Continent. Then there’s a bucket list of people I would love to work with.
Natacia: Have you had time to explore San Diego?
Paige: No, not at all. Not at least this trip. I have been here before. One of my best friends used to live down here so I’ve been a bunch of times. The only place I can remember is Gaslamp District and I’ve been to Coronado Island. And, I can’t remember where else I’ve been.
Natacia: So, basically like Beach areas, you’ve been to the beaches?
Paige: Beach area’s yeah, and she got married downtown so I spent some time downtown.
Paige’s Manager was also very nice. I had a moment to speak with her about some additional ideas for touring and she mentioned entertaining the troops. Keep an eye out for Paige Bryan, she is a star on the rise.
Q&A with the actress and director
Annika Marks interview
Natacia: Cake, Pie or Brownie?
Annika: Oh, I love these questions.
(We laughed together)
Yes, oh this game.
Okay, brownie for sure.
Annika: Oh, because I mean, with cake there’s too much air. You know if I’m going to have a bite of something full of sugar and fat, I just want to have a bite of something that’s full of sugar and fat.
Natacia: So, if it’s a Brownie, do you have a nut allergy?
Natacia: Or do you like nuts?
Annika: No, I like nuts.
Natacia: If you could ride any wild animal, what would it be?
Annika: A Unicorn.
Natacia: How about any…. relevant wild animal (laughing).
Annika: Any wild animal? Ah, Giraffe. I saw Giraffe’s in the wild and they are really beautiful the way they dip down to drink water is so graceful and gorgeous it just feels like, I mean, like it would be a…
Natacia: Like a slide?
Annika: Oh yes, a slide. Exactly. Exactly.
Natacia: Do you like tats on a guy?
Annika: Yes, my boyfriends right there he has tattoos. He has tattoos that he got. (directing question to her boyfriend) What was it? It was a guitar (pausing for an answer)?
(Annika’s boyfriend answers out of range of the recorder)
(repeating what he says) A guitar string through a BIC pen with a VCR Motor.
Natacia: That’s the tattoo?
Annika: That’s how he GOT his tattoos, in a garage.
Natacia: Oh my…(laughing)
Annika: So, that’s my kinda guy
Natacia: Okay (laughing) So, I guess the next question would be irrelevant because it was about beards? But, he doesn’t have a beard.
Annika: Well, yeah it gets stubbly. It gets stubbly. I like, I don’t know, I like him so whatever he has I’m good with.
Natacia: Okay, that’s a good answer. And, when do you feel the most nervous?
Annika: Uh, doing interviews like this.
We laughed and ended the Q and A, both thanking the other. Annika and her boyfriend were incredibly down to earth. “Anguish”, a horror film is the name of one of her projects now listed as being in “Post Production” while another film project is currently untitled and so named, “Untitled Skypemare Follow-up Project”. IMDB currently has it listed as “filming.”
So ends another year of Indie Fest making this #9. The ladies behind Indie Fest, Danielle LoPresti and Alicia Champion worked very hard to put this and all previous shows together. I personally watched them and at least one band mate taking care of business and not only were they handling behind the scenes operations, they had enough energy to take the stage themselves as Danielle LoPresti and The Masses rocked out to screaming fans. Talk about commitment to your Art. Once again they pulled off a fantastic venue and I personally, am very happy to have been there. I cannot wait to see what’s in store for Indie Fest 10.
Anyone who is creative or a promoter knows how much work and organization goes into making productions happen.. So again thank you and please show support where you can
Executive Producer, San diego IndieFest CEO, Say it Records
Owner/Senior Producer, Durga Sound Studio
Danielle LoPresti is also in a band called Danielle LoPresti and The Masses