“When life gives you lemons, make grape juice. Then sit back and watch the world wonder how you did it.” – Christian Farelove
This mantra perfectly encapsulates my next guest on this conversation series. Christian Farelove is an artist, entertainer, chef, activist, motivational speaker (or should be) all perfectly packaged into a hard-working, passionate human. Within his many pursuits, music is always there influencing his many creative outlets. Whether it’s his favorite song inspiring his next dish or favorite singer preparing him for his next drag show, music will always be included in his art.
On this episode of Disco Chats (hear the previous episode with Brooke Ryan here), we dive into Farelove’s passion for melodies and rhythms and the influence it has on his cooking and his alter-ego, Melody Lucas. He exercises extreme precision with his song choices, dance moves, and outfits; because of his thoughtful selections, it makes him stand out above his counterparts. During my research of Farelove, I came across this eight-minute video of his 2018 Charleston Pride performance to a Janet Jackson’s song medley and it provides an example of the kind of performer he is…a fucking great one.
Listen to our conversation below and learn more about the music that guides this soul on and off the stage. You can see Farelove live tomorrow, May 15, for the Black Girl Magic Showcase at El Jefe. If you’re not able to make the show, follow Christian or Melody on Instagram.
I started my Saturday morning with Pass the Peas a 4-course brunch. I tagged alongside the Le Creuset team to partake in the flower crown making, imbibing, and scent-sniffing from Candlefish candles. The meal was served family style on long tables allowing for us to mingle with newly-made friends. All of the meals were served in Le Creuset dishes, perfect for cooking serving, and dining. The gorgeous decor, people, and food inspired me to create a playlist that would be perfect for any dining setting. Give it a listen here. As for the food, chefs Jacques Larson of Wild Olive and The Obstinate Daughter, and Shuai Wang from Jackrabbit Fillycollaborated alongside Cappie Peete of Ashley Christensen Restaurants and Craig Nelson of Proof for an amazing menu. Check out the sample menu.
The afternoon was filled with music from The War and Treaty, Mitski, Lord Huron, Leon Bridges, and so many more. The park is divided by two stages where acts play asynchronous making it easy for concert-goers to hear and see each performance. The landscape made it convenient for large groups and families with children to spread out. Something I noticed was the large number of families and individuals with children. This festival was perfect for such a demographic. Another aspect of the festival which stood out to me was the lack of a local stage. Charleston has a plethora of musicians that would help draw a crowd from nearby neighborhoods or assist with pulling a diverse audience. The inclusion would make this homegrown festival even truer to its roots. The Charleston-based band, Shrimp Records Family Band, had a spot in the lineup but perhaps securing a dedicated stage/area would help show off the local musical talent in a more effective manner.
This was my first time attending High Water and overall it was lovely. What’s not to enjoy? You’re sitting on the Cooper River overlooking the water while listening to live music. It seems this festival keeps getting better with every year that passes. I look forward to seeing what’s in store for 2020.
In an effort to get back to the roots of Disco Teepee, I’m starting a series where I can connect with people about music. I will investigate how music plays a role in their life and get inside people’s heads and hearts about their relationship with music.
My first guest, Brooke Ryan, is 1/3 of the morning show, Two Girls and A Guy on Mix 95.9. As a radio personality, her livelihood is dependent upon music. She’s been working in this industry for over 20 years and I turned the mic around on her to get down and dirty about radio and why she will forever be faithful to music that creates a sense of nostalgia. Listen to our chat below and let me know what you think. What’s your relationship with music? We’ve all got a story to tell so let’s share it together.
We’re starting off 2019 with a full dose of adventure with your two favorite blondes on another installment of Two Blondes Travel. This time our travels take us to Columbus, Georgia, a little town with big adventure (perfectly worded tagline thanks to Jenna), just 100 miles outside of Atlanta.
Since Columbus is just “down the road” from Atlanta, Jenna and I left after work and arrived around 7:30 pm. We were pleasantly surprised that the Columbus Marriott placed us in their presidential suite. Now I refuse to stay in any other room 😉 This two-story room was outfitted with a kitchen, two baths, a large living room, and a king bedroom. This was just enough room for Jenna and me to spread out our things and get to work planning for the following day’s adventure. Before we got down to business, we walked next door to Houlihan’s for dinner, which is conveniently located adjacent to the hotel making wine time quicker and easier.
Jenna and I suited up in our Fabletics, and met our guides, Jacob and Wren, at 9:30 am. Now, for the sake of transparency, I’m not a fan of heights nor not having control. So this was going to be a challenge for me, but after hearing everyone speak so highly of the ziplining experience I was giving it my best positive effort. However, I was a bit overzealous by offering to go first without asking what the first experience/challenge was…jumping off of a 64ft + building. Do not fret, Jenna caught the whole meltdown on camera. Hopefully, this never sees the light of day, but I’m certain this will come back around as blackmail one day.
Here’s the rundown of the course:
64 foot jump STRAIGHT down
Zipline across the Chattahoochee River into Alabama
Aerial Course, a treetop obstacle course with a total of 10 obstacles
A final zip line back across the river into Georgia
Now, you will be able to see the course and zip lining in greater detail in our recap video below. After all of that adventure, which I cannot say enough nice things about our two guides. Ren and Jacob were patient, kind, and easy-going which are necessary qualities for others that must endure Jenna and I’s hijinks. They were super accommodating providing us assistance whenever we needed a photo taken, a shoulder to cry on, or even encouraging words to reinforce the fact that you are NOT going to fall to your death.
After working muscles I didn’t know I had, nourishment was required. After a quick change at the hotel, Jenna and I headed to the downtown area and stopped at The Black Cow. Between the lobster tots, chicken lettuce wraps, and a signature burger we were two happy gals. We were off to roam the happen’ side of downtown on Broadway Street. This street runs for several blocks and is packed with restaurants, bars, shops, and a portion of the local college, Columbus State University. Obvi Jenna and I would find a vintage jewelry and record shop, Broadway Estate Jewelry. This place is a real-life treasure trove of records, hats, jewelry, home goods, and the list continues. Definitely, a must stop!
As for our nightlife portion, the weather wasn’t in our favor this weekend. Heavy thunderstorms rolled through sending Jenna and me back indoors for the evening. We hated to miss out on the nightlife scene, but even more of a reason to come back.
While we stayed in Saturday night, we decided to put back on our Fabletics attire and snap some photos around the hotel. Naturally, I chose the Demi Lovato jacket and Kelly Rowland pants. This was my first time trying out Fabletics workout gear, and I was pleased with the quality and design. Fishnet sleeves…yes, please! The pants have a leather panel that suits my rocker style while still practical allowing for ease of movement, which will come in handy for those box jumps.
We were up early to snap some pictures of our hotel before heading to brunch at Ruth Ann’s. Jenna swore that this place wouldn’t disappoint and my girl came through. They are famous for their Capt’n Crunch and red velvet french toasts so we decided to get both and share…alongside a side of hash browns and bacon. We worked hard Saturday and deserved every delicious calorie. 😉 This charming diner has been a staple in the Columbus community for many years; serving a full gambit of eaters from church-goers, college kids, to Fort Benning recruits.
As our third TBT trip came to a close, I was especially thankful for this one. This adventure required me to step out of my comfort zone and challenge myself. Who willing says, “Sure, I’ll do something scary today??” A statement not heard enough, so a huge thanks to Columbus GA Whitewater for allowing us to take a big leap into an unknown adventure.
Make sure to watch our recap video below with an amazing song by musician, Daphne Willis. Her song “Out of the Black” is gritty and ballsy, a tune that perfectly encapsulates this experience.