Sabrina Fallah

“Do what you love and never give up!”

Women rock, and in Sabrina Fallah’s case, she actually does rock. Her guitar-driven melodies might remind you of P!nk or Avril Lavigne, but Fallah’s sweet soprano adds a unique twist.

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Her EPs, a self-titled debut and follow-up album “Kiss Is a Killer,” show that she’s been at this for a while. In the 10 years she’s been performing, music has become her full-time work. Her first hint that she wanted to be a singer was at age 14 when she won her first singing competition, but she’s been surrounded by music since childhood. Her cousin would play his guitar and let her hear the new bands he was listening to. Some of her favorites now are Green Day, Bon Jovi, and Billy Idol. This exposure, along with her love of writing short stories and poetry, led her to becoming a singer/songwriter.

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Alone in a Crowd – Part 2

Read part one of Alone in a Crowd here.

“Happy birthday! Love, your favorite and only sister.” The closest most of us probably come to any handwritten confidence these days is signing a birthday card. Despite all the blank space inside enveloping a pithy sentiment, I don’t know many people who actually fill it up. Outside of Hallmark, parents don’t describe line by line how baby Tony tried to walk for the first time and biffed it on the coffee table. The photos are on Facebook. Friends don’t rehash last week’s party through long wine-stained scrawls. The rose got drank, and it was live tweeted.

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Alone in a Crowd first looked at the piling on of social media and how that rapid but detached pace can contribute to loneliness. The responsibility falls heavier on us to reach below the harping statuses and Tweets to sustain meaningful connections with people. Malcolm Jones, a writer at Newsweek, observed, “The problem is not that there is not enough information about what we think or how we live. The problem is sifting through that sea of data. The most common complaint of our time is that we are overwhelmed by information, unmediated and unstoppable.”

For better or for worse, digitization will only become further integrated into our day-to-day life, so how can we embrace both the convenience and keep a grasp on mindfulness? How do we slow down? One reader, Naomi, tried something most of us probably haven’t done since grade school: pen pals. Jones also writes in Newsweek that “…if you do [write letters] enough, you begin to put your essential self on paper whether you mean to or not. No other form of communication yet invented seems to encourage or support that revelatory intimacy.” Below, Naomi describes why she decided to try pen palling and what she’s experienced as a 20-something exchanging letters around the globe.

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Allison

(b.)

Interview by Mo Fink.
Photography by Amara Hartman.

You can’t walk by (b.) Resale without going in. Even when you’re short on cash and time, you make it work, if for nothing else than to catch up with the genuine staff running it. Allison Bross-White, the owner and visionary behind it, proves that every business is a pulpit, and her message is one of inclusion–and she means it.

From the bathroom stalls-turned-dressing rooms sharpied up by any person with a thought to share, to the pictures hanging behind the counter of Minneapolis natives of every color and background, her aim is to allow self expression in whatever freaky or vanilla form. We caught up over donuts and launched right into how her shop started.

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Capital “E”

Written by Katelyn Brunner.

Epilepsy can mean a lot of things, but mostly it means that you have seizures. Unprovoked seizures, due to abnormal electric activity in the brain. It means that you probably have a stockpile of pills and band-aids in the bathroom. Epileptic, too, means a lot of things. Epileptics are comatose, they’re celebrities, they’re office workers, they’re teachers, they’re students, they’re dead. They’re people, with a dangerous variation. I am one of them.

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Roxane Gay

Written by Amara Hartman
Photography by Lindsey Miller

Roxane Gay made a lasting mark on the essay scene with 2014s Bad Feminist, a New York Times best seller. Readers were sat down and schooled on Gay’s fair-minded but specific and entreating observations about womanhood and pop culture.

 

Her recent memoir, Hunger, deals rawly with her relationship with food and body image. In June, she came to Magers & Quinn Booksellers in Minneapolis to talk about the book. The space was packed–anyone who hadn’t been there at 7PM sharp had no choice but to pile between the looming aisles and eavesdrop. “I curse like a sailor,” she aplombed as we arrived. That candor continued throughout the hour-long sitting as she fielded questions on her writing process and her books. Commentary and anecdotes about women in publishing, of color and queer representation, and society rounded out the well of introspection she draws from.

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Wonder Woman

Hollywood Doubles Down on Preserving Male Identification in Film

Written by Simone LeClaire.

Wonder Woman, Movie, Gal Gadot
Image via Newsweek

Wonder Woman correctly predicts the novel existence of female protagonist is beyond enough to satisfy female audiences.

Let me first say, I came out of this film laughing and rolling my eyes a little, having went in with little expectations and seen basically exactly what I would expect to see from Hollywood. I was much too unsurprised to be disappointed or mad. So I would not be writing this review if not for my dawning, incredulous realization of the outpouring of starry-eyed wonder at this flick.

People. Slow. Your. Roll.

If you enjoy the film, great. I’m not trying to take that away from you. If you appreciate the historic milestone of a female director in a blockbuster superhero movie breaking all financial success expectations–you’re right, great.

But to wildly herald Wonder Woman as some sort of catch all “answer to feminism” does such incredible violence to the filmmakers–women and men–who have actually striven to put powerful, authentic characterizations of femaleness on the screen and to build stories around them in unafraid ways. Wonder Woman is a textbook example of how far Hollywood will go to preserve male identification on screen. Everything “feminist” about this film is apparent in the most basic elements of the plot itself–a powerful woman exists and tries to save the world. Go any deeper, and the cinematic execution of the piece clearly & immediately reveals the familiar, deep maleness of the system that made it and how terrified they are to touch this kind of story.

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