Omer Hagomer is an aspiring (and inspiring) sports journalist and wheelchair basketball player in Cardiff. Tom Speller of Tom Talks Rubbish sits down with Omer to discuss moving from Sudan to the UK, the challenges of growing up with Spina Bifida and so much more, including the future of Wobbling About and Rocking Out’s Podcast.
Santos Escobar gives WRESTLESPHERE an insight into his background and his legacy as a luchador and with the LWO.
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WWE’s Bayley talks to Dom and Sam at Wrestlesphere about how she practices good mental health by not overusing social media!
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“This is a message of power – taking it back and standing up with your chin up. Getting stabbed, beat up, humiliated, jumped, ostracized … many tried to ‘beat the gay’ out of me – you know what? It didn’t stick,” says guitarist Steve McKnight of Los Angeles-based band GAYC/DC about their new song and video “HOLD YOUR HEAD UP.” A defiant cover of the 1972 Top Five hit by English rock band Argent, the all-gay band who pays unwavering tribute to AC/DC shifts the song about a battered woman into a song of LGBTQIA+ and anti-bullying empowerment.
This cover’s origin was born of tragedy, not from within GayC/DC’s realm but from the acclaimed producer Timothy Eaton (En Vogue, The Allman Brothers). “Seven months ago at midnight on a Sunday night, I received a call from a photographer friend, Ward Boult, who suggested that I contact the band GayC/DC, as he felt that I might be a perfect fit to produce them,” recalls Eaton. “[Boult] ended the call by telling me he loved me and I returned the warm salutation. A mere few hours later, I got a call from a Nashville detective who informed me that Ward had killed himself and, in fact, I was the last call on his phone.” The message that was said to Eaton didn’t fall on deaf ears, and, in fact, became a mission. In order to pay proper respects to his late friend, Eaton contacted GayC/DC.
“We met through a tragic experience but once Timothy saw one of our shows, he was smitten and asked us for a meeting,” explains vocalist Christopher Freeman. “He proposed an idea that he had to create a music video around the old Argent hit from the early ’70s, ‘Hold Your Head Up,’ but putting it in a new context: a video about bullying. All of that would promote a nonprofit of the same name that would help to fund efforts to combat bullying and violence in the LGBTQIA+ community, like Inside Out Youth Services in Colorado Springs.”
The powerful accompanying video, directed by celebrated photographer Robert Sebree, is an age old tale of high school bullying. But instead of the standard trope of the nerd bashing, the camera is turned to a harrowing tale of transphobia within high school hallways.
“This song, like the very moving accompanying video, is a journey,” explains drummer Brian Welch, “and like what our current climate is for the LGBTQIA+ community, the scary part passes and Hope swells again. We’ve been down this road before, and we know that love will always win.”
Adds Eaton, “Much like Haley’s Comet or a Blood Moon, an artistic force of nature such as this band seldom manifests itself in the music industry anymore, fearlessly cutting a path through all the amateur artists and their congestion. The band recorded a riveting song and video entitled which is a clarion call to young and old to do just that, be brave in the face of adversity and prejudice.”
A step beyond their standard songs of spot-on tribute to AC/DC, GayC/DC glitter-hugged the Argent song and made it their own, not just in honor of the greatness of the original but also because of the message of strength and perseverance in the face of homophobic, anti-trans and anti-other adversity and violence that is pervasive in the divisive current political environment. “It’s said that sometimes good things can come from a tragic event. In our case with Timothy, this is absolutely true,” says Freeman.
“Proud to be a part of this project, and GayC/DC, and gay, Gay, GAY,” shouts McKnight proudly and in agreement. “I earned this spot! Holding my head and chin up even higher!”
“The response so far to Hold Your Head Up has been incredibly touching, and we’re very grateful for all the heartfelt messages and everyone who has shared this campaign further,” says bassist Glen Pavan. “Only together can we make lasting change for future generations of queer and marginalized youths.”
Concludes Welch, “Now, let’s do something about all this bullying!”
“Hold Your Head Up” is available now via DSPs.
Leeds Beckett University will host the 11th annual conference of the European Society for Periodicals Research (ESPRit) at Leeds School of Arts on 27-29 June 2023.
Researchers from around the world will come to Leeds next month for an international conference looking at how magazines, newspapers, zines and other periodicals make readers feel included or excluded.
Approximately 100 academics from universities in the UK, Europe, North America and Asia will come together for the ‘Periodicals and Belonging’ themed conference, focusing on the unique power of magazines and newspapers to bring people together and make them feel part of a community of readers – or feel rejected as outsiders.
Dr Mary Ikoniadou, Senior Lecturer at Leeds School of Arts, said: “We are grateful to Leeds Beckett University, and to the University of Central Lancashire, for their support in putting on what promises to be an important conference.
“In an age when many are growing concerned about the role of a “partisan” media in creating opposing camps, we wanted to look at how print periodicals, in the past and the present, can make people feel like insiders and outsiders. we look forward to welcoming so many guests from around the world to Leeds School of Arts later this month.”
Conference delegates include experts on football and punk fanzines, teenage girls’ magazines, reader communities, why so many 19th-century newspapers failed after a few issues, French Resistance newspapers, digital research techniques, regional newspapers and local identity.
Keynote speakers include Cambridge professor Clare Pettitt, who will talk about how nineteenth-century ship passengers created their own shipboard newspapers, and Professor Samuel Etienne of the Ėcole Pratique des Hautes Ėtudes, Paris, who will show how digital research techniques can reveal networks connecting punk fanzines.
The event begins with a training day for PhD students, followed by two days of presentations by academics from 22 difference countries.
To book your place, visit the Leeds Beckett University website.
Tyson Fury talks openly and honestly about his mental health struggles, check it out below!
Usage courtesy of Warner Music
Dom Smith talks to Al Chambers (Phoenix Counselling and Training in York, UK) to discuss the positive impact that fitness training (and boxing) can have on mental health.