Entertainment

Music’s New Three-Headed Monster

Few of us know from a young age exactly what we want to do with our lives. We may have dreams and aspirations, but there is always an uncertainty in the back of our minds about exactly where we’ll end up. However there are a few amongst us that are born with not just a talent, but a gift that is quite evident from an early age. Meet Darion Javon, the triple faceted musician that is a drummer, producer, and songwriter. Darion has been playing drums since the age of two and he recalls banging on anything in his way, whether it was his mother’s pots and pans or the pillows in his bedroom. His parents bought him his first drum set at the age of four and Darion hasn’t looked back since.

In his very young career, Darion has already shared the stage with legends such as Patti Labelle and Stevie Wonder and has also went on tour with rapper Flo Rida; his first major mainstream gig. Darion is currently on tour with Tinashe where he not only serves as her drummer but musical director. To see where he is today doesn’t come as much of a surprise once you learn of his upbringing. His father was a singer/songwriter and he frequently remembers both of his parents playing countless records as an adolescent ranging from gospel to Cab Callaway and Aretha Franklin.

He credits his high school jazz band director, Mr. Thomas, with teaching him so much about music and pushing him to take his craft seriously. This push by his band director is what led Darion to perform at a jazz festival where he was discovered by a scout from Berklee College of Music where he would go on to study for three years. Traveling and seeing the world is one of the greatest blessings that comes with his career. His craft has given him the opportunity to travel to places such as the UK, Australia, and Dubai. Through his music, Darion wants to touch as many lives as he can, both on and off stage, by being a “reachable and relatable musician”, a trait he didn’t see in musicians he grew up admiring. In the future, Darion aims to have is own studio, create jobs, and “open doors for others” that look to follow in his footsteps. Get to know Darion a little bit better in the video below and be sure to follow him @IamDarionJavon to stay updated on his endeavors.

 

 

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Written By : Julian Kimble “I wish I had someone to tell me this when I was your age.” This statement has followed a glut of guidance bestowed upon me by older friends through the years. As I’ve gotten older myself, I realize that their advice—and, in some cases, simply their presence in my life—has […]

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Meet Julian Kimble

Thanks to technology, we have access to information 24 hours a day and everybody has the power to voice their opinion. The way we consume news and discuss our point of view is what has driven social change and influenced the democracy of this country. Unfortunately, with access comes “noise” and how do we know what sources to trust? What identifies a source as credible? With so many different outlets to receive news, how do we know when we are getting the full truth? Whether you’re an analytical thinker, or conspiracy theorist, having both sides of a story is important in order to develop a sound conclusion.

Fortunately for us, we found a writer that not only makes it his duty to get the full story, but also put the story into terms we can understand and relate to. Meet Julian Kimble, accomplished writer and the newest member to our Sophistocrat team. Julian, a Philadelphia native, went to Howard University, or as he would call it “the real HU”, where he was a Radio/TV and Film major with a minor in Business. While he was a student at Howard, Julian wrote for The Hilltop, the institutions school newspaper. Today, Julian currently writes for Complex magazine and Washington City Paper in areas of pop culture and music. Despite his success, Julian doesn’t believe you have to be an English or Journalism major to be a successful writer, “you just need to have the ability to write with a clear voice. You just have to be 1. Reliable and 2. Good”. Julian credits his growth as a writer to “working with multiple editors” and understanding writing is “100% a business and you’re a walking brand”.

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Julian’s interest for writing and journalism came from “growing up a fan of hip hop and music magazines such as Vibe”. As for what drove his intent to become a writer, “Feeling like parts of the story were left out” and “I found myself disagreeing with a lot of what I was reading”. He draws inspiration from one of his favorite books, The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald, because it showed him that we have the ability “to create whoever we want to be…the American dream, that’s the definition of our generation”. As for his future, Julian wants “to be like Bill Simmons. I would like to be an author and most of all creating content that penetrates and influences culture and resonates with people. I truly want to have an impact so I’m swinging for the fences”.

For The Sophistocrats, Julian won’t be writing for any specific category (entertainment, style, etc.). Instead he will have his own section, “The Stories Julian Tells” where he will completely write compelling and provoking pieces that will force you to think and analyze the information in front of you. Although we love to entertain you and show you the latest and greatest products/services, we also are here to stimulate you mentally and feed you spiritually. Check back often for Julian’s content and be sure to give Julian a warm Sophistocrats welcome!

 

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The Stories Julian Tells: Don’t Take Your Older Friends for Granted

Written By : Julian Kimble

“I wish I had someone to tell me this when I was your age.”

This statement has followed a glut of guidance bestowed upon me by older friends through the years. As I’ve gotten older myself, I realize that their advice—and, in some cases, simply their presence in my life—has been crucial. Experience is the best teacher, but I definitely believe that hearing the stories of people who have done it all before you is invaluable.

A great anecdotal example can be found in Richard Linklater’s seminal ode to growing up in 1970s Texas, Dazed and Confused. The film follows the parallel story lines of rising high school senior Randall “Pink” Floyd and incoming freshman Mitch Kramer. After Pink and his friends beat Mitch with a paddle as part of a fraternal hazing tradition, he took a liking to the kid. In talking to him, he realized that he reminded him of himself at that age.

 

As a result, Pink took Mitch under his wing, introducing him to a world of insight and older girls. Along the way, he received guidance in the form of good-spirited ribbing from Pink and company.

 

Although their knowledge was ripe due to their own youth, it was useful to young Mitch. Those scenes resonated with me because I found myself in a situation similar to Mitch’s at my first job out of college. I wasn’t wide-eyed and eager, but, as a rookie, I still needed counsel. I got it from three older co-workers. Following a few days of hazing (no paddles; they just ignored me), they finally invited me to lunch and proceeded to break down the office dynamics with striking precision. Not only was I floored, I appreciated their honesty. That’s all I wanted: Someone to keep it real with me.

I began absorbing their knowledge instantly because they had already been in my shoes. They had already made the youthful mistakes I was bound to make, and looked to warn me against falling victim to the same blunders. More important, they wanted to do it because nobody had done it for them when they were my age.

Receiving wisdom from people older than you, but not that much older is nearly as priceless as the gems you receive from your parents. Generational gaps can be a communication obstacle, so proximity in age makes the advice more relatable. During an impromptu ratchet night from my first year out of college, we all somehow transitioned from the office to the strip club. I’ve been the financially responsible type since my days of hoarding money to buy Playstation games, but one of my elders gave me some sound advice after my second trip to the ATM. (Strip club ATM fees are no joke.)

“Stop wasting your rent money,” he told me before paying for my drinks. My father could’ve (and definitely would’ve) told me the same thing, but this mandate held a different, immediate weight coming from someone five or six years my senior. That’s what I appreciated more than the invitations to parties with older women, or the coaching on how to succeed with them—it was the willingness to steer me away from missteps they were familiar with.

As another one of them told me, “We could just hang out with you and take all of you and your friends girls without a second thought, but we wouldn’t do that to you. You’ve earned your stripes.” They actually cared. That’s key to receiving mentoring via friendship: Finding people who are genuinely interested in seeing you do well. Some people will hang out with you, buy you drinks and the whole nine, but don’t want you to shine brighter than them. They want to be Ricky Bobby. You, at best, can be Cal Naughton, Jr. It’s like having a jealous boss who always wants to keep you at least a step beneath them out of insecurity. The quality of an older friend or mentor and their intentions is just as important as having one altogether.

Eventually, the day will come when you’ll look around and realize you aren’t the youngest on the block. It happens to everyone, and, to be frank, it sneaks up on you. At my old job, I remember meeting an intern who was green in the same ways I was just a few years before, but he also carried the same perceptive edge. What’s more, he was searching for someone to show him “The Way,” which is what one of my elders and I did. He confided in us, explaining—just as I did when I was roughly his age—that he just wanted people to be forthright with him.

At that point, it dawned on me: I had experienced life’s cyclical nature. This kid was the new me, and I, the perennial surrogate little brother, had graduated to OG. It was like the series-ending montage on The Wire where you see characters become the new versions of other characters. But above all, I realized that the cycle never stops.

To this day, I’m still friends with the three guys gracious enough to play older brothers to a brash runt just a few months removed from earning his bachelor’s degree. I’m about as old now as they were when they met me, but I still reach out to them to make sure I’m approaching situations from the right angle. Meanwhile, that former intern is about to graduate from college himself, and he knows he can come to me for enlightenment in the same way I go to them. That’s why it’s important to keep older, smarter people around you: The lessons are continuous. Conversely, what good is knowledge if you don’t share it?

Interested in hearing more of Julian’s stories? Follow him on Twitter.

 

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Thanks to technology, we have access to information 24 hours a day and everybody has the power to voice their opinion. The way we consume news and discuss our point of view is what has driven social change and influenced the democracy of this country. Unfortunately, with access comes “noise” and how do we know […]

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