Sikes | Pittsburgh Indie Hip Hop & Podcast News

Sikes is an Indie Hip-Hop artist & producer from Pittsburgh, PA. He also hosts a weekly podcast focused on the Pittsburgh Music & Entertainment scene called Start The Beat with Sikes.

JUNE 2K18. It's the most busiest time of the year.

JUNE 2K18. It's the most busiest time of the year. Stuff is crazy but a good crazy. Not a bad crazy. I haven't been sleeping well. I don't mind. Let's talk about it. 

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Played a really awesome Sikes set over the weekend in Pittsburgh and met lots of awesome people. Huge thanks to the promoters, artists and everyone who came out sang along to my shit. That was really cool. 

My next show will be with The New Violence behind me on June 23rd at the Get Hip Records Warehouse! We're playing with this insanely rad band from Mexico called Decartes A Kant. They are so fucking good. If you're in or around PGH this weekend you should seriously consider coming out to this event. My buddies in Felipe Pupo (Philly) and Cody Cody Jones are on the bill as well. Shit is nuts. Seriously.

TICKETS FOR DESCARTES A KANT - 6/23 @ Get Hip Recordings are available HERE!

Sikes&TNV recently got to play with a cool band from Brooklyn called Spirit Animal. Here's a little evidence from that.

Also, if you can't make it to the show on June 23rd you'll be able to catch us on July 14th at the Deutschtown Music Festival. We're scheduled to play 9:00pm - 9:45pm
Pittsburgh Winery at James St. - Ballroom 422 Foreland St, Pittsburgh, PA 15212, USA
This space is ALL AGES!


In Greywalker news we are less than a month away from dropping our new album! We have a couple events coming up to celebrate. The first being our Dinner with Greywalker event this Thursday - June 14th at The Pear and The Pickle and the second being our Album Release Party on July 7th at The Rex Theater. Flyers and more info below! 

Join us for a night of local heavy metal, independent film, delicious food and craft brews!

Pittsburgh headbangers Greywalker will be in the house giving a sneak preview of their new album "Without Control" along with an exclusive premiere of a short film made for the albums title track directed by Nathan King. Be one of the first people to hear the new album and see the video!!The kitchen will be open so come hungry. Beer from Penn Brewery and Rock Bottom will be available for all the grown ups. Open to the public. All ages welcome!

Mr. Smalls Presents
Greywalker “Without Control” Album Release Party
With Blackmarket BodypartsThe Breathing Process & Victims of Contagion

Saturday, July 7, 2018 · Doors: 6:00 pm / Show: 7:00 pm · Rex Theater Pittsburgh, PA

Tickets: $12 - $14 · ON SALE NOW · This event is All Ages


In case you missed it we dropped a new Greywalker song and music video last month that you can check out now via YouTube and Spotify. We'll be dropping lots of more stuff very soon so be sure to subscribe/follow/whatever to keep posted with updates!


On the most recent episode of One Minute Or Less I put myself on blast a little bit... You see, I like a lot of music. This isn't a secret. However, theres still some stuff lurking in my record collection that might surprise you... Let's talk about a few reasonably embarrassing albums I own (and don't feel bad about) in ONE MINUTE OR LESS!


The past few weeks have brought us a few new episodes of Start The Beat. Check out some clips and links to full episodes below! 

Start The Beat 169: Jamie Fadden-Cannon | We Are The Weirdos

On Episode 169 I sit down with Jamie Fadden-Cannon for a talk about the recently launched women's storytelling series she runs called We Are The Weirdos. WATW is a a platform for women and those who identify as women to come and share their stories inspired by other story slams such as, NPR’s the Moth and RISK live. Sit back, relax and let's START THE BEAT! 

On Episode 170 I sat down again with Mike Hitt for his 3rd appearance on the show. Mike is a musician, songwriter, producer and one of my favorite people on the planet to talk to. This time we get DEEEEP into conversation about the creative process, marketing, branding, self-discovery and so much more. Sit back, relax and let's START THE BEAT! 

On Episode 171 Brendan Cope returns to the show for a talk about his new music project FOR REST and the artistic transformations he has made since we last spoke back on Episode 102 back in October of 2016. He is getting ready to drop some new material really soon and we dig deep into the creative process and the constant evolutions that exist within the mind of a hungry artist. Sit back, relax and let's Start The Beat!

START THE BEAT with SIKES is available on iTunesStitcherGoogle PlayLibsynEpicast or wherever else you get your podcasts!


Last thing I wanna talk about is that the next Myspace Nite is just around the corner! 

Emo Night PGH presents:
Myspace Nite - Dance Party
with DJ's SIKES and Wyatt

FEATURING SPECIAL GUEST HOSTS & PERFORMERS!!!
Bambi and Company | @bambiqween

at brillobox (Pittsburgh, PA)
Friday, June 15th 2018
10PM / $5 Cover / 21+

Dance, dance all night to your favorites from the “Myspace era” including: Fall Out Boy, My Chemical Romance, Panic! At The Disco, Katy Perry, From First To Last, Gorillaz, The Used, Rhianna, Taking Back Sunday, Chiodos, 3OH!3, Paramore, Say Anything, M.I.A., All Time Low, Cute Is What We Aim For, Kanye West, Motion City Soundtrack, Soulja Boi, New Found Glory, LMFAO, Mayday Parade, Metro Station, Gym Class Heroes, Cobra Starship, AFI, Good Charlotte & more!

CLICK HERE FOR MORE INFO ON MYSPACE NITE! 


I'm sure I'm forgetting something. Oh well... If you wanna keep up to date with whatever I'm doing on a more frequent basis for whatever reason you can find me across almost all social media @therealsikes. Later gators.

MAY 2K18. Sex, The News and Violence.

MAY 2K18. Sex, The News and Violence. I'm changing my band name. More on that below. ;-)

Here's everything I did in the past month or so that you might have missed and some more stuff coming up that maybe you won't miss now that you're reading about it. Let's dig in.

Photo:   Nick Prezioso

Photo: Nick Prezioso

Millvale Music Fest came and went. We played outside in the rain. I got very wet and I ruined a nice pair of shoes but the set was tight and it felt really good to be back on stage with The New Violence behind me. The new songs sounded killer and I can't thank everyone enough who toughed it out with us to watch the set. It meant a lot to see people sticking around and a few homies even managed to capture some footage on their phones which was nice since everyone with the fancy cameras ran for cover once the rain hit.

Photo:   Megan Maureen

Photo: Megan Maureen

Also, THIS happened...

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Sikes and The New Violence will be performing again this Month on May 29th in The Club at Stage AE supporting Spirt Animal. Tickets are only $10 so if you're in Pittsburgh and want to see us in a very comfortable, awesome sounding environment with some great bands come on out! This is going to be a really awesome night. Respond to the Facebook event page HERE and I'll personally nag you about coming. ;-)

Currently, the main focus with Sikes and The New Violence  is getting the new album finished so expect to see some more live action from us in the Fall. In the meantime though we do have a few dates scheduled throughout the rest of the summer. You can check them out below. More will most likely get added but this is it for now. :-)

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In other news my other band Greywalker just dropped the first single / music video from our upcoming album Without Control. The song is called "Pity Capsule" and the video was directed by Nick Prezioso. You can check it out below.

The self-produced album was recorded in part by Matt Very at Very Tight Recordings and was mastered by the legendary award winning engineer Alan Douches (Cannibal Corpse, Dillinger Escape Plan, Every Time I Die) at West West Side Music. 

I mixed the album if that counts for anything. Just saying. :-P

The album is going to be released on July 6th and the on the following day July 7th we will be having an album release party to celebrate with some super awesome bands and friends. We really busted our asses on this release and I'm super proud of it so mark your calendars and come party with us on July 7th! It will mean the world to us to see you all there. Seriously.

RSVP on Facebook
BUY TICKETS ONLINE


On the most recent episode of One Minute Or Less I took another audience request and decided to try and answer a question that I have no business really answering. What's the difference between Emo & Pop-Punk? Watch me pretend to know what I'm even talking about in ONE MINUTE OR LESS!

CHECK OUT THE FULL PLAYLIST OF ONE MINUTE OR LESS VIDEOS HERE!


The past few weeks have brought us a few new episodes of Start The Beat. Check out some clips and links to full episodes below! 

Start The Beat 165: Bengt Alexsander of Action Camp & St. Dude

!

On Episode 165 I sat down with Bengt Alexsander of the bands Action Camp & St. Dude for a talk about his personal experiences as a musician & sound engineer, the PGH scene so much more.

Explore the wide world of Action Camp & St. Dude and on their Facebooger pages. Links below:
facebook.com/actioncamppgh
facebook.com/stdude
 

On Episode 167 I sat down with Ryan Postlethwait aka Mega Beardo for some super laid back talk about Beer, Video Games, Horror Movies, Heavy Metal and everything else worth talking about. Ryan specializes in original compositions and metal arrangements of retro video game music under the name Mega Beardo but that's only scratching the surface. Sit back, relax and let's Start The Beat!

www.megabeardo.com

On Episode 168 I sat down with Brenda and Thom from the band Old Game. They make really good music and they are nice people to talk to. We had quite the hoot. Join us for a talk about the history of the band, the PGH music scene and plenty more. Sit back, relax and let's Start The Beat!

www.oldgamemusic.com

START THE BEAT with SIKES is available on iTunesStitcherGoogle PlayLibsynEpicast or wherever else you get your podcasts!


I think that is plenty enough for now. If you wanna keep up to date with whatever I'm doing on a more frequent basis for whatever reason you can find me across almost all social media @therealsikes. Later gators.

APRIL 2K18. This time it's PERSONAL.

APRIL 2K18. This time it's PERSONAL. I have no idea what that is supposed to mean. I just wanted to sound intense. Deal with it.

Photo:   Nick Prezioso

Photo: Nick Prezioso


First order of business: Just an important reminder that SIKES AND THE NEW VIOLENCE has a NEW lineup, NEW songs and a NEW live show that we will be debuting at the Millvale Music Festival 2018! We play at 6PM on the Gap Park Main Stage. Check out the video for more info and mark those calendars. We're less than a month away! OMG!
 

Check out a full list of SIKES shows below. Note: April 23 and May 1 are BOTH solo performances.

Here is a list of upcoming GREYWALKER shows too in case you're curious.


Second order of business: A friend asked me to make a video talking about what social media platform is best suited for bands nowadays and why. My answer is none of them. Find out more about that in ONE MINUTE OR LESS!

CHECK OUT THE FULL PLAYLIST OF ONE MINUTE OR LESS VIDEOS HERE!


Third Order Of Business: MYSPACE NITE is back this Friday once again at Brillobox. Doors open at 10. Me and Wyatt are spinning all night. $5. You know the deal. 

Check out this gallery of photos from some previous events taken by Nick Prezioso.

RSVP TO MYSPACE NITE HERE!


Last order of business: Episode 163 of START THE BEAT w/ Michael T. Nolan of VENUS IN FURS is now available! Check out this clip about the importance of a good live show. 

We also talk about his long history in the Pittsburgh music scene, the importance of putting on a real "show" and all of the creative forces that have been driving him along the way. Sit back, relax and let's START THE BEAT!

Listen to the full episode using the player above or find it on whatever other platform you prefer. START THE BEAT with SIKES is available on iTunes, Stitcher, Google PlayLibsyn, Epicast or wherever else you get your podcasts!


Episode 164 w/ Silence is also available! Check out this clip regarding the Pittsburgh scene and some thoughts on one of the most beloved DIY spots in the city. 

We also bout the history and message behind their band, touring the country, the PGH DIY scene and so much more. From playing paintball and making movies, to running a record store and trips to the hospital this conversation goes all over the place but it's really tight. Sit back, relax and let's START THE BEAT!

Listen to the full episode using the player above or find it on whatever other platform you prefer. START THE BEAT with SIKES is available on iTunes, Stitcher, Google PlayLibsyn, Epicast or wherever else you get your podcasts!


I think that is all for now. I'm sure there is more but whatever. I'll update it later. Stay tuned. Love ya. XOXO.

March 2K18 Update PART TWO: You WON'T BELIEVE what happens next!

March 2K18. The month so nice I blogged twice. Let's dig in.

Photo:   Nick Prezioso / Let's Be Animals

Photo: Nick Prezioso / Let's Be Animals


First order of business: WE'RE BACK! SIKES AND THE NEW VIOLENCE has a NEW lineup, NEW songs and a NEW live show that we will be debuting at the Millvale Music Festival 2018! We play at 6PM on the Gap Park Main Stage. Check out the video for more info and mark those calendars. We'll see you in May!


Second order of business: I got a new episode of ONE MINUTE OR LESS available for your eyeholes. If you're a rabid fan of old school horror movies chances are you've already seen and love this movie. However, when looking at the big picture and discussing great 80's classics this movie is way overlooked and way underrated by way too many people. Some people don't even know it exists! I can't live in a world like that. 

If you're looking for a good time and some truly classic 80's horror nostalgia The Gate is a film you should not miss. Me and Killer Wolfson of Just Buried Productions are here to tell you about it in ONE MINUTE OR LESS!


Third order of business: THE FUTURE IS WILD! Especially for music producers like myself and Buscrates who have been in the game since the early 00's and have watched all of this technology develop around us. On Episode 162 of START THE BEAT me and Buscrates talk a lot about these developments and how he has adapted some of them into his personal setup to expand his sound libraries and streamline his workflow.

We also discuss a wide variety of topics from the first pieces of gear we ever purchased, to our love of all things music and being a couple of old heads trying to navigate social media to get our sounds heard. Sit back, relax and let's START THE BEAT

Listen to the full episode using the player above or find it on whatever other platform you prefer. START THE BEAT with SIKES is available on iTunes, Stitcher, Google PlayLibsyn, Epicast or wherever else you get your podcasts!


If you missed my original MARCH 2K18 blog post you can click the image below to give that a read to see what else is going on. I talked about some other events and things coming up that may tickle your fancy. Check it out!

Be awesome to each other. See you next month! 

March 2K18 Update: The end of the F$%KING world.

JK. Everything is fine. Here's what I've been up to the past few weeks. ;-)

One week ago the Pittsburgh music community was in a total panic attack mode after news broke out about the Pittsburgh Music Ecosystem Project's Town Hall Meeting that happened last Tuesday at the Kelly Strayhorn Theater. A lot of people had a lot to say.

One of the most prolific sources of generating public commentary came via the Pittsburgh Post Gazette and the article written by Scott Mervis. It was shared around on Facebook by quite a few people the day after the event and the conversations that developed from all of this were rather interesting to follow. Personally, I couldn't even put my thoughts into words so instead I yelled at my camera for an hour and tried to make sense of it all.

If you want to know my uncensored, unapologetic thoughts on some real shit regarding the Pittsburgh music community here's my two cents. Enjoy. Feel free to leave your thoughts in the comments.

NOTE: This was supposed to go up last week right after I filmed it but I had some unanticipated issues with the video files and no extra time to fix them properly over the past few days so I decided to upload it "as is". It's just me talking a bunch of shit anyways. I wasn't planning on this being in an IMAX release. It's fine.


Greywalker - 12/25/18 @ Cattivo (Photo: Nick Prezioso)

Greywalker - 12/25/18 @ Cattivo (Photo: Nick Prezioso)

We finished recording the new Greywalker album last month and I've been taking whatever free time I have in between other obligations to finish mixing it so we can send it off to the magical land of mastering. We're hoping to have the album out this Summer but we'll see how it goes. These things always take longer than you want them to. Sometimes being "DIY for Life" is literally just a consequence of the reality that doing everything yourself takes forever. The album sounds really good though. We're super proud of it. You'll be hearing it as soon as we can wrap it up! 

If you want to hear some new jams LIVE and come support a great cause our next show in Pittsburgh is a Cancer Benefit Festival at the recently opened Stage At Karma located on East Carson Street in the Southside. If anyone is interested, we have tickets available and all of the money from the sales are going straight to the benefit. Hit us up!

For more info on this event and some other upcoming shows check down below.

We are gonna help a local girl with her 2nd battle with cancer. All money from ticket sales go directly to offset the enormous cost that comes with the disease. Let’s do what we can to change a life.   Entertainment from:  Improvidence (Pitt death bois)  https://www.facebook.com/Improvidence/  Outcast (Kentucky fried riffs)  https://www.facebook.com/outcastkyhc/?fref=mentions  Greywalker (Steel city thrashmen)  https://www.facebook.com/greywalkermusic/  156/Silence (Dollar Store Norma Jean)  https://www.facebook.com/156Silence/  Hymnless (Sad dads w/ attitude)  https://www.facebook.com/Hymnless/  Nullity (Soundcloud rappers but w/ metalcore)  https://www.facebook.com/NullityPA/  AROSEATHORN (Indy PA Noise boiz)  https://www.facebook.com/AROSEATHORN/  Bury Thy Kingdom (Pittsburgh Prog-men)  https://m.facebook.com/BuryThyKingdom/   No outside beverages/Bar for 21+ with ID/ No drugs or drama or you’ll be ask to leave 12$ presales 15$ at door BUY TICKETS FROM LOCALS. AN ADDITIONAL GOFUNDME WILL BE POSTED SOON SO IF YOU CAN'T ATTEND YOU CAN STILL MAKE A DIFFERENCE.

We are gonna help a local girl with her 2nd battle with cancer. All money from ticket sales go directly to offset the enormous cost that comes with the disease. Let’s do what we can to change a life. 

Entertainment from: 
Improvidence (Pitt death bois)
https://www.facebook.com/Improvidence/
Outcast (Kentucky fried riffs)
https://www.facebook.com/outcastkyhc/?fref=mentions
Greywalker (Steel city thrashmen)
https://www.facebook.com/greywalkermusic/
156/Silence (Dollar Store Norma Jean)
https://www.facebook.com/156Silence/
Hymnless (Sad dads w/ attitude)
https://www.facebook.com/Hymnless/
Nullity (Soundcloud rappers but w/ metalcore)
https://www.facebook.com/NullityPA/
AROSEATHORN (Indy PA Noise boiz)
https://www.facebook.com/AROSEATHORN/
Bury Thy Kingdom (Pittsburgh Prog-men)
https://m.facebook.com/BuryThyKingdom/

No outside beverages/Bar for 21+ with ID/ No drugs or drama or you’ll be ask to leave
12$ presales 15$ at door BUY TICKETS FROM LOCALS. AN ADDITIONAL GOFUNDME WILL BE POSTED SOON SO IF YOU CAN'T ATTEND YOU CAN STILL MAKE A DIFFERENCE.

In other news, I completed a little project I had been working on originally for One Minute Or Less that turned out to be a much bigger project than I originally expected. In full transparency I was drunk and on vacation when I decided to do this (If you can't tell already in the video) but it turned out really great and I'm super stoked on it.

If you haven't checked this out yet and you have a few minutes to spare DO IT! There are 2 different versions available online now. Links to both below! :-)

I have some new episodes of Start The Beat available as well featuring Lazy JP of the Hip-Hop duo BBGuns and indie horror filmmaker Todd aka Killer Wolfson of Just Buried Productions. Check out some short video clips and links to the full episodes below! 

I think that's everything worth mentioning for now. There is lot's of other cool stuff coming up. Especially with the new Sikes and The New Violence related stuff. I may not be talking much about it online but it's all happening behind the scenes. Some cool announcements coming soon. Yep. Stay tuned!

Be excellent to each other and don't let the fuckers get you down. Peace!