Tag Archives: youngstown ohio music

YOUNGSTOWN HATES YOU: AN INTERVIEW WITH JUSTIN ARROYO

INTERVIEW BY MATT GREENFIELD
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THE HUMAN BEINZ WERE A 1960S ROCK N ROLL BAND FROM YOUNGSTOWN

The history of Youngstown music is largely undocumented. Part of my job is to put the amazing sounds of the Mahoning Valley into the public eye. It’s my duty to present The Human Beinz. They started in 1964 and released their last album in 1969. Human Beinz music has appeared in Quentin Tarantino films but is largely unknown compared to other bands of the groovy 60s. The songs range from psychdelic and garage rock to protopunk. Chances are you have most likely heard “Nobody but Me” and never placed a name to the song. Please enjoy these tunes and notify a friend. Youngstown rock n roll is here to stay.
-MATT G

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FEDoxZ2Y8U4 Continue reading THE HUMAN BEINZ WERE A 1960S ROCK N ROLL BAND FROM YOUNGSTOWN

BANNED IN YOUNGSTOWN:THE INDUSTRIAL NOISES OF GREENLANDER

Greenlander has produced a ton of music and is a hot name in the noise/underground electronic scene of Los Angeles. In his hometown of Youngstown, he is widely ignored when it comes to the raw sounds he makes. I even saw him get kicked off the stage at the Lemon Grove once. A place that was supposed to be a hub for the artsy and weird was kicking a man off the stage that was perhaps TOO artsy and weird for a baffled audience of hipsters and dinner goers. Greenlander doesn’t care though. He doesn’t need acceptance and largely creates music for himself, locked away in a dungeon of solitude. This video was created using his music set to visuals by artist Cristopher Sea, a man whose art has been featured in such magazines as Juxtapose.

Greenlander – Vast Empty Landfill from Negative Flesh on Vimeo.

http://sweatingtapes.com/greenlander/ for his label’s page. 12 inch LP out soon.

WHAT DO YOU KNOW ABOUT A PLACE CALLED YOUNGSTOWN,OHIO? (FREE DOCUMENTARY LINK INCLUDED)

What do you know about Youngstown, Ohio? Perhaps you read that it was the murder capital of the United States at one point? Maybe you heard Bruce Springsteen’s song about the area’s plight. It has been referred to as “Murder City” and referenced on HBO’s The Sopranos. The mob ran this city for a long time. Congressmen Traficant is both arrogant, troubled, and humorous. He spent time in prison for corruption charges yet some still applaud him. Forbes Magazine called Youngstown one of the “most miserable cities” in the country. I have seen it on lists of terrible cities to live in, next to isolated and uninhabitable places in the Ukraine. I am not going to deny the decline. The steel industry is gone and most of the cities population followed. It turned into a mass exodus. Some though are tough as the steel that was once produced here. The brave and prideful have stayed and I wish them the best. Most of my close family and friends still live in Youngstown today. Neither one of my parents have ever left. It’s a place that builds character. That much is absolutely certain.

I heard about a documentary on my home city and was aching to watch it from that minute on. The work put in to the production is valiant. I commend Ray Mancini and everyone else who put a much appreciated effort into this film. The history on our mob activity is almost unfathomable. It’s both fascinating and horrifying simultaneously. Our mascots are Ed O’Neill, Boom Boom, and Kelly Pavlik. Arby’s was founded in Youngstown. The first malls were designed here. Phantom Fireworks is headquartered in the heart of the city. The Warner Brothers were born in Y-Town. Remember before Walmart was a huge retail monolith? The nation had Phar-Mor, which was based in Youngstown. It was rocked by scandal and slowly went the way of the buffalo.

While I find the documentary entertaining and insightful, I don’t find it to be a definitive statement on Youngstown and it’s historical significance. So much was omitted or sugarcoated. It’s a bit ridiculous that Staughton Lynd was completely left out. He is a radical peace activist who fought to keep the steel mills open in the 1970s. Also, the discussion of race in the film is pretty light fare. There is no talk of the economic and racial inequalities that Youngstown faces. The inner city schools of Youngstown are behind the times and in desperate need of revitalization. Many places in the area need to be restructured with passion and intelligence for modern times; until then a dark cloud will cover the city and penetrate it’s inhabitants.

boomboom

The dark side is something that can’t be avoided for Youngstowners. Many people in the area struggle with depression. I guess it’s hard not to feel down when the weather is bone chilling for seven months of the year. Even our heroes aren’t invincible. After an epic battle with Ray “Boom Boom” Mancini, South Korean pugilist Duk Koo Kim tragically and unexpectedly died. Ray is a strong man but that fight will forever haunt his entire being. Kelly Pavlik was WBC and WBO Middleweight before succumbing to the demons of alcoholism. Some people in Youngstown treated him like a piece of dirt after that. It really saddened me to hear people badmouth someone that was a world champion and always represented his city with grace. You don’t have to love the man but respect his work.

I don’t want to delve too far into negative thought because Youngstown has much to brag about. I’ll keep our Brier Hill pizza a secret and instead talk briefly about the arts. If you are over the age of twenty six but under the age of fifty, you most likely went to the Nyabinghi for concerts. Gil Mantera’s Party Dream and Grand Buffet played some of the most epic and absurdly funny shows I have ever seen in my life. Nyabinghi also hosted “Emissions of the Monolith” which at one time was the world’s biggest stoner/doom/sludge metal festival. Youngstown’s own Rebreather played the Nyabinghi and “Emissions” with regularity. It feels weird to even be typing this sentence but Youngstown was a hotbed for metal music.

Like many, I moved away from Youngstown. It’s something I personally had to do for many reasons. I see both the positives and the negatives of a place whose landscape quite shockingly resembles Gotham City (but with more abandoned buildings). I could write so much more and hope to in the near future. The city and it’s history are quite rich and unique. In the end, I will always call myself a Youngstowner.

-MATT GREENFIELD
FOLLOW ME @RUSTBELTHAMMER ON TWITTER AND WWW.FACEBOOK.COM/RUSTBELTHAMMER

PARTY AT THE 456: A HIDDEN HISTORY OF YOUNGSTOWN DIY MUSIC

“There was promising life in Youngstown hidden under a rock that every DIY scene would envy. People were making things happen, everyone had positive creative outlooks. It was outrageously diverse and collective, and the best part was it seemed like it was all done for our friends. I can’t get over how respectful everyone was with all the music being completely different. Always a good crowd of people who actually listened to the music. Now it’s a ghost town when it comes to tunes and venues. Too many people gave up or quit making things happen. Stofko’s house was a well kept secret.
I can’t believe how all the music disappeared. Like not just Stofkos, but in the area in general.”
-Zach Lovitz

Continue reading PARTY AT THE 456: A HIDDEN HISTORY OF YOUNGSTOWN DIY MUSIC