2013 has been one of the most challenging yet – chalk full of self-reflection and relocation. So much of my memory is dependent on list/note-taking, melody and imagery. As I look back on 2013 I can’t help but recall those moments that marked the year. ***
1. A World Alone – Lorde
I’ve listened to this album inside and out, but keep coming back to this track – it’s become my anthem. I learned a lot about myself in 2013. More importantly the value of family, true friendship and client-ship. I’ve adopted Amber Rae’s philosophy as both my personal and professional mantra.
2. Genesis – Grimes
This track and video were on constant rotation.
3. Your Fine Petting Duck – Devendra Banhart
Lot of heart melting songs came my way this year - go figure. During my final weeks in New York this track, almost ironically, seemed to play each time I stepped outside. Despite its brutal lyrical tale, midway through it transforms into a German inspired dance track. It’s a lot like life, brutal yes, but not all that bad - so long as you keep dancing.
4. 3 Days – Rhye
I think Rhye found its way into everyone’s consciousness this year. Rainy days, hot summer nights or cold winter ones, the entire album permeates.
5. All I Know – Washed Out
What I love about Ernest Green is his ability to transport me to those dreamy, non-judging depths of my mind, often clouded by work and everyday life. Paracosm carried me this summer and helped me reconnect with my inner self. I learned a lot about love when I fell out of it, but I learned even more about myself in hours spent alone. Solitude is not to be feared, it is in that silence when you finally hear the truth and find solutions. Someone once told me, “If you can’t be happy alone, you can’t be happy at all.”
6. Salvation – Langhorne Slim & The Law
Some albums come into your life and refuse to leave. Langhorne & the gang put on one hell of a show, do yourself a favor and see them live.
7. Ride On / Right On – Phosphorescent
Logging over 4,000 miles behind the wheel in 2013, Muchacho was one of many albums that kept me company along the way. “Hand out the window, floating on air.”
8. Living Proof – Gregory Alan Isakov
I spent many a summer night gazing at the stars from the hood of my car, contemplating the “ness” of life, with this album blasting from the stereo - something about Isakov’s voice reminds me that everything is going to be alright.
9. San Francisco - Foxogyen
I came across this band thanks to a little film called Drinking Buddies. [Which I can’t recommend enough]. The entire album really captures the vibe of my summer in California.
10. Skinny Love (Das Kapital Rerub) – Bon Iver
I’ve savored this song from the beginning, but when I came across this remix I quite literally fell in love all over again.
11. Don’t Walk Away - The Chain Gang of 1974
Some days are more memorable than others – this was the soundtrack for such a day.
12. Telegraph Ave. – Childish Gambino
"Foot on the gas, I’m just tryna pass / All the red lights and the stop signs / I’m ready to go… / Before I get to the Bay, babe, that’s a problem / ‘Cause I’m way too scared to call / And you might get me in stay mode."
13 & 14. Own My Own (ft. Danny Pratt) & Don’t Call It Love – Zero 7
Zero 7 oh so casually released two tracks back in August, both of which have been on repeat since I left California.
15. Castle Went Dark (ft. The xx) – Craig Armstrong
Enchantment at its best.
16. The Wire – HAIM
"You know I’m bad at communication / it’s the hardest thing for me to do / And it’s said, it’s the most important part that relationships will go through / And I’d give it all away just so I could say that / I know I know I know I know that you’re gonna be OK anyway."
17. The Night Comes Down – Queen
And when all else fails, listen to Queen.
You can catch the entire playlist on 8tracks:
: : HIGHLIGHTS : :
> The first half of the year was kind of a blur…
> I traveled to Denver in April to witness Lucy & Tony tie the knot at The Grant Humphryes Mansion – we fancied ourselves a Gatsby wedding party. The following week I was on the road again to take part in another special day. Angela & Alex were married at the historic James Oviatt Building in downtown Los Angeles, simply stunning.
> For those of you who don’t already know, come Easter, my family takes egg-decorating very seriously. Case in point: muddeggs.tumblr.com. It’s highly competitive and a tradition we intend on keeping, so please come back in April and vote.
> Goodbyes are tough, but …even if your opinions on love & relationships differ from the rest, sometimes you have to take that leap and hope you made the right decision.
> When the flames ripped through Black Forest this summer, I feared not only for my hometown, but for friends and family in the area. There was also a good chance Abbey & Kyle’s wedding would have to be rescheduled, but thankfully the wedding site was spared and the ceremony went off without a hitch.
> I bought my first car in July. It only took me 29 years, but I’m proud to call her my own. Despite one minor hiccup in the Grand Canyon, she’s holding her own.
> Made to Disneyland after twenty+ years, thinking of you the entire time.
> Cause for a celebration: 80 years strong! / 55 photos for 55 memorable years
> After a four month absence I was able to attend not one, but two Creative Mornings in one month; Ian Kleinman, at the first ever Denver Creative Mornings [yay!], and Brad Ludden at Creative Mornings New York – my favorite CM talk thus far, second to Seth Godin’s back in May.
> Life’s too short to be cynical about the holidays so, go bowling, cook, take a walk, decorate a tree, spend more time with family and smile.
: : TOP OF THE POPS : :
Apps after my own heart: Cameo, Candy Crush [guilty], Circa, Definer, IG, Sunrise, Vine.
Films: About Time, American Hustle, A Place Beyond The Pines, Before Midnight, Blackfish, Drinking Buddies, Frances Ha, Much Ado About Nothing, MUD, The End of Love, The Stories We Tell.
Videos: 24 Hour Happy, Allie Pohl: Ideal Woman, Dove – Real Beauty Sketches, Greatest Contributing Factors To Happiness, I Forgot My Phone, Invention of Loneliness, Labels Against Women: Pantene, Lily Meyers - Shrinking Women, Mr. Christmas, Pep Talk: Kid President, Rouxby Films No.1, Worn Wear – Patagonia.
Reads/Casts/Books: 40 Days of Dating, Friends without Benefits, How Not To Say The Wrong Thing, I Want To Be A Millennial When I Retire, My Father’s Horniness, The Reason I Jump, The Seven Things You’re Not Suppose to Talk About, Things New Yorkers Do, What No Means, What Screens Want, Why Creative People Make No Sense.
TTT [Top Twenty Tweets]: arielfoxman, benkronberg, billmurray, bobulate, dcutris, ElonYouSoCrazy, GillianJacobs, ideal_woman, johncamalick, kellyoxford, lac_t, lenadunham, LisaFrame, LoveJMW, marcjohns, MeghanNeuringer, miss_moss, noahkalina, SgtFelicity, swissmiss, … and aten kicked of 2014 right!
After all the shit that came about this year, I learned one important truth: There will always be a handful of people out there whose sole intention is to hurt you or bring you down, and when someone hurts you [or your family] your gut reaction is to hurt them back. The reality is, we can’t control how people treat us or what they say about us – all we can control is how we react to it. So, I choose to proceed with gratitude for the renewed relationship with my family and let the haters continue to hate.
2013 wouldn’t be anything without all my amazing clients. To each and everyone, I am eternally grateful. Come January I will be retiring my current brand and launching my own design studio, The Mudd Shop, so keep an eye out. I look forward to the many adventures and collaborations 2014 has to bring.
LET’S DO THIS!
***I am a list–maker and if these year-end summations don’t suit your fancy then maybe this site will.