I’ve teamed up with the fabulous people at La Coupe ORGNX Haircare to give away a basket FULL of their amazing products. Perfect timing to use their treats (which I’m addicted to) to get you ready for party season.
The Basket Includes
- Keratin Complex Shampoo & Conditioner
- Coconut and Macadamia Oil Shampoo & Conditioner
- Coconut and Macadamia Oil Intensive Repair Treatment
- Moroccan Argan Oil Complex Shampoo & Conditioner
- Moroccan Argan Oil Complex Leave-In Styling Creme
- Moroccan Argan Oil Complex Leave-In Styling Oil
Total value is $100!
Great for a personal pre-Xmas gift or to give to someone you love over the holidays.
There are four ways to enter.
1 - Regram through Instagram with #withelyse and #orgnxholiday
2 -Retweet through twitter with tag #withelyse #orgnxholiday
3 - Share through Facebook with #withelyse and #orgnxholiday
4 -Reblog through Tumblr with #withelyse
Each one equals one entry. Do all four for four entries and a better chance to win!
GOOD LUCK TO EVERYONE
YouTube sweetheart and American Horror Story Soundtrack star, Lauren O,Connell talks covers, Coven and connecting with an on-line audience.
A lot of people know your music from your eerie rendition of House of The Rising Sun featured in the soundtrack of the new season of American Horror Story: Coven.
How did you get involved with the cult TV show? Were you inspired by the New Orleans storyline?
I actually recorded the cover almost two years ago, so it was a pleasant surprise when the folks from AHS got in touch this year. The song obviously suits the New Orleans setting and my recording has kind of an eerie vibe, so it ended up being a great fit.
Why do you think YouTube has worked so well as a platform for what you do? Is it harder or easier connecting with an audience separated by a web presence?
It’s definitely easier to connect with people via a web presence and that’s why it’s worked for me. It’s not the same connection as playing for a live crowd, of course, but the sheer breadth of it makes it easier for you and your ideal audience to find each other. There’s a lot of luck involved there, too.
Making VideoSongs and vlogs on YouTube pulls back the curtain a little bit on artists as working musicians. I think people appreciate that. It makes music seem a little less disposable and that goes a long way in the age of piracy and short attention spans.
What us the most important tool to take advantage of when creating an engaging live webcast?
"Engaging" is the key word there. I think it’s important to treat it like a live show as much as possible. The format takes some getting used to, but I do my best to take requests and respond to people in real time. If there are no surprising moments or audience participation, people might as well be watching a recording or listening to an album.
Recently you talked about the power and intention of covering a beloved song. Do you think covers are still the fastest way to connect with people or is it fighting an uphill battle?
Covers of well-known songs are definitely an effective way to reach new ears. It feels like an uphill battle sometimes because new listeners are going to include new detractors, no matter what you’re doing. Covers not only reach people who wouldn’t normally seek you out, but also tend to be more polarizing (for better or worse) because people have emotional histories with the songs. You just have to be okay with that and remember that if everyone likes what you’re doing, it’s probably not very interesting.
The Toronto International Film Festival (or TIFF if you’ve opened any type of publication for the past month) is known for being the yearly Toronto hot spot for star watching even in the daytime, artistic luxury and if you’re very lucky - the lounges.Invite only VIP events to sample cutting edge brands, get pampered and mingle.
This year I was invited to the Premiere Celebrity Gift and Style Lounge.
Held over a course of three days, the lounge was hosted in the heart of TIFF madness at the stunning Ritz Hotel.
When I arrived, I was ushered into the suite by an attentive PR staff and a view that could make P Diddy’s bank account blush.
True to its name the event hosted an array of VIPs coming through including Canadian funny man Colin Mochrie, Matt Letscher of The Carrie Diaries, Academy Award Nominated Damien Bichir and the multi-talented Cory Lee to name a few.
As an invitee to the lounge, I was treated to styling, makeup, hair, massages from The Massage Lady as well as high-end gel manicures by Seaweed Bio Gel. All necessities to guests running off to a day full of busy events and red carpets or as a reprise for those in need of some downtime.
To keep everyone hydrated and delicious, We Bake in Heels and Barefoot Wine provided bubbly and cupcakes galore. Add in Awake Chocolate’s tasty caffeinated treats whose Dragon Den’s backer and supporter, Dave Chilton made an appearance and you have a content crowd.
Pampered and at ease there was a relaxed excitement in learning about all the companies showcasing.
Familiar loved brands like ORGNX Hair Care matched with companies presenting upcycled TIFF themed products like TOTEM Bags grounded an eclectic mix.
Skincare and hair demos from Pretend Tan, Ms Hair Extensions and Face Addiction kept the whole vibe very Hollywood in a quality way.
VENAO Swimwear, Ferknot, Moose Knuckles, Shoelery, SERENDRA, Fiori Fashion all showcasing clothing or accessories each representing individual styles to cater to a wide array of guests. Some poshly classic (Ferknot), some lavishly unique (Fiori), some exotically sensual (VENAO), some secretly beneficial (SERENDRA), it seems personality was the name of the design game.
However the niche standout of the day was Jarrell Guitars whose carefully crafted work of well balanced standout instruments and presence alone brought in high lister Tom Felton of the beloved Harry Potter series.
With so much to see, good spacing and great room flow, a change of lighting would help to capture these moments. Though understandably a challenge with such gorgeous wide span windows.
In the crazy days that make up TIFF, the mix of good company, variety, luxe delivery and style at The Premiere Celebrity Style and Gift Lounge is a definite destination next year for those who like to be deeply spoiled.
Company : Awake Chocolate
Background : Three friends meeting while working at Pepsi Co connected to create the only caffeine enriched chocolate bar
Claim to fame : After officially launching in 2012 Dragon, Dave Chilton of CBC’s Dragon’s Den invested in the caffeinated chocolate company
"Not recommended for children". That alone upgrades the image of your 5 year old self at the check out counter of bugging mum for a candy bar to a now adult who eats adult chocolate…like an adult…
Wonderfully quirky in their promotion approach with videos, photos and packaging in gorgeous warm, rich earthy colors plus a charming owl mascot peering out at you.
Photo by Taylor Brockelsby
I skipped my morning coffee for the sake of testing (brave ambition for someone who lives on an average of 6 espressos shots a day) Awake’s bite size piece. Not sleeping well and urges to crash were bringing me down prior to indulging, but 15 minutes later I felt alert and of course awake. The difference in energy level was really pleasantly surprising.
This is not mocha chocolate. Despite the Cup of Joe content, it tastes like regular milk chocolate. I personally think this is lovely since I’ve never been keen on mocha.
The caramel is like a friends with benefits version of your run of the mill Caramilk. Silky filling plus your pick me up for the day.
This is your cravings and addictions bundled into one little package.
Photos by Taylor Brockelsby
I look hopefully to the future for a dark version of these and maybe even latte inspired flavours (Green tea? Cinnamon Dolce?) to touch more on the coffee infusion.
A wonderfully smooth transformation of addiction on addiction to satisfy your adult needs and your childhood sweet tooth.
All Products Pulled are available at Awake Chocolate online
For more photos of the Products Pulled visit the With Elyse - Instagram @withelyse
My piece on the Yves Saint Laurent Resort ‘14 Collection featured in the Resort Report article in the July issue of Dalliance Magazine
Photo by Diego Guijarro
On a Friday night in the city, for live show options you can get lost in a sea of genres. Rock, alt, dance, trance, rap, folk, country on and on but rarely does the opportunity come to go see a modern string quartet whose members have backed the likes of Kanye West, Feist and Peter Gabriel.
Comprised of Emily Hau - electric violin, Sharon Lee - electric violin 5 string hybrid, Moira Burke - electric violin 5 string hybrid and Liza McLellan - cellist and song writer, the foursome plus add on drummer Mack Longpre released their debut EP last night at The Tattoo Rock Parlour in Toronto. The San Jose recorded EP was funded through a Kickstarter Campaign.
From just moments into sound check each member’s comfort and command on their instrument is obvious but could this keep a Friday night crowds attention?
Listeners filed in eagerly watching albeit a little intimidated. The unexpectedness in the genre and pure power in their stage presence had the crowd captivated but keeping to the back corners of the room.
Gritty, melancholic and cinematic. Cycling through songs both on and off the EP, moving excitedly around the stage, each trading off the spotlight position.
Not to have their clothes outdone by the music the four girls were clad in ripped corseted Nordic punk attire and wonderfully edged shoes. Mismatched but perfectly placed within their sound.
The seriousness of the strings were cut with disco beats and raunchy feminism. Although entertaining, wishes for unexpectedly arranged covers, considering their resume working with large artists, were left unanswered.
Winding down the 45 minutes that flew by, leaving stage the group was thrown back in by anxious shouts of encore from the crowd.
Maybe Friday night isn’t usually filled with female Gregorian chant type vocals and rock string arrangements but making your way to see Devah Quartet should definitely find its way to your night life to do list.
Devah Quartet Upcoming Dates:
The Boathouse: Kitchener - July 5th
Corktown Pub: Hamilton - July 12th
Fort Erie: Sessions on the River Showcase - July 20th
Inter-Provincial Music Camp: Camp ROCK special guests: Aug 20-23
Buskerfest: Toronto - Aug 23rd and 24th
Music on The Verandah Music Festival: Mississauga - Aug 30th
The evening’s performance was filmed by The Crew (Taylor Brockelsby, Chris Greef, Blake Hannahson, Diego Guijarro, Adam Griffiths),
Australian based brand building engaging experiences by providing platforms for a creative collective connecting through fashion, art and design
Claim to Fame:
Carefully curated stores showcasing exhibits of artists and photographers including KATSUTOSHI YUASA, NENAD SALJIC, LISA ROET and TERU KUWAYAMA
Burlington Jacket, Wool Crepe and Cotton Lining. 200AUD
I love color as much as the next person but I really do love my monochromatic. As Morticia Addams said “black is such a happy color”
Apparently Australian brand Saxony is very aware of my weakness and that of many others.
The basic frame is a pullover vest with an open back and draped cowl button front. It mainly functions as a cap sleeve or halter jacket but opens up possibilities to be worn differently by everyone.
All black. The tag, the jacket, even the wrapping tissue.
The emphasis is on the shape and texture. The quality in the way it’s made comes through in its versatility, details and high end construction.
A tighter fitted bottom and spacey pockets enhance the draping in the front. It’s this balance of structure and the wool finish that allows an all black piece to confidently but effortlessly stand out. The open back makes it unexpectedly sexy but also perfect for travel with no unnecessary bulk to keep you from reclining and getting comfortable.
As wool you’d expect the jacket to be seasonal specific, heavy and itchy. This couldn’t be farther from the truth. Cozy, lightweight, think the wardrobe of a Swedish version of Starsky and Hutch but still set in a breezy slightly cool Californian climate.
It does require a bit of fussing. Adjusting and readjusting to get that perfect drape opposed to a fabric kangaroo pouch. The distinguishing feature that balances this out, similar to a good pair of jeans, the more times you wear it the better it looks.
The size and amount of fabric is never overwhelming or clumsy but lends itself to define a piece standing on the line between Australian boho and Japanese new age.
It’s a statement, a simple statement but still a statement.
It’s a staple.
Something to spill into and still know you’ve struck the enviable limit of relaxed Avant-garde.
All Products Pulled are available at Saxony online or by request.
For more photos of the Products Pulled visit the With Elyse - Instagram @withelyse
My FULL album review for CONFRONT Magazine of the NEW album produced by Danger Mouse went up today!
The review features a TRACK by TRACK breakdown, star rating and a comment section to hear what you think about the highly anticipated release.
Read it here
Thanks to Warner Music Canada and CONFRONT Magazine, yesterday I got my hands on a advance copy of Portugal. The Man’s much anticipated 7th studio album - Evil Friends produced by the one and only Danger Mouse.
The full review will be up in CONFRONT Magazine this coming week before the official release on June 4th. Until then here’s a teaser of whats to come.
This time round with the Alaskan natives we are seeing more distortion, an expanding range of instrumentation, swearing and echoes back to Satanic Satanist.
Lyric highlights include “Just because I lost it doesn’t mean I want it back” and “I can’t keep my head up, I like to step on my friends, step on my friends”
It rounds out to a 12 tracks in total and despite it’s position as the title track, Evil Friends is not the standout.
For the album rating and entire break down head to CONFRONT Magazine.