Sunday, January 27, 2013

St. Lucia and Ellie Goulding-best side salad ever

By Angela Thomas

Opening acts to me are like side salads to Italian dinners-I can take ‘em and I can leave ‘em. (nice analogy, har har)

However, St. Lucia proved me wrong to the point where I didn’t want them to leave the stage.

St. Lucia. Photo credit: Angela Thomas

On Jan. 25, British pop-singer, Ellie Goulding, came to the Electric Factory in Philadelphia. I’ve been a huge fan of Goulding since my WCUR days when her first album was on the shelves on WCU’s radio station.

After standing in the snow for a mere hour and a half, fans rushed in the building, eager to get front row seats while my friends and I opted for the “21+” section where we ultimately had the best seats in the house.

I am normally impatient with opening acts. I just want them to get over with. However, when St. Lucia came on stage and started to play their first song, it was a jaw-dropping, holy shit experience. I don’t think I have ever seen a group of fans dance so hard in my life. I think the best way to describe their sound is ethereal, ’80s-like but not in the “ohmyGAWD this is like sooooooooooo 80s” kind of way.

Side note: Check them out on Itunes and I highly recommend “We Got It Wrong”, “Closer Than This”, “All Eyes On You” and the sickest beat you will ever hear, “September.”

Get ready for your mind to be BLOWN.

Anyways, after fan-girling over St. Lucia, our girl Ellie came on (ya know…after 20 minutes)
That moment when every lesbian's heart exploded

And let me tell you…

I am still recovering from the show.

Ellie Goulding gives her fans the ultimate satisfaction of attending the best-concert-known-to-EVERYONE feeling.
Meaningful eye contact moment #3 ladies and gents (and everyone in between)

The thing about Goulding is that she writes songs about heart-break, about disappointment, about hopes and dreams and everyone can relate to that. Everyone has had their heart broken by someone or something and everyone has had hopes for their future.

And the other thing about Goulding is that when she performs, she relives the pain over-and-over again and you can see it in her face and her fans are right there with her, every step of the way. We are reliving our own memories and we are relating our experiences to her songs.
Girl knows how to play her drums

Also, Goulding has dance moves that could make the straightest girl turn gay and the gayest man turn straight.

So cheers to you Ellie, for making me lose my voice, making my legs wobbly and putting on the best concert I have seen in a long time.

Friday, January 18, 2013


There is this one community member in Philly that always asks me this: “So…are you getting your feet wet?” It is the most adorable thing and I can’t help but think about how much this job has submerged me in the queer community—and has helped me “get my feet wet.”

I interviewed a young woman the other day about her new position for a youth-oriented program. She described how her new position was her “dream job” and I could not help but smile at that notion—basically because I could relate.

It has been three months since I started this job and in those three months, I have done more than I could ever think possible and it has lead me to the most amazing opportunities.

Throughout these months, I have come to this one conclusion: never listen to anyone’s doubts.

Whatever career path you choose, someone will always have doubts. Specifically in journalism, you will always hear the phrase “oh it is impossible to find a job in journalism. Good luck!”—Or something along the lines of a smart-ass comment.

The great thing is when you prove them wrong. When your passion and talent is recognized, when someone decides to take a chance on you.

And sometimes those chances can lead to bigger change.

Just recently, I had received the opportunity to talk with Israel’s top LGBTQ group, The Aguda. I’ve had the opportunity to interview Pennsylvania’s first Democrat and female Attorney General, Kathleen Kane. I get to work under the nation’s leading LGBT journalist and activist and I get to be a part of the best team.

I’m getting used to the community. I’m getting used to Philadelphia. I’m getting used to the names and the faces and quite frankly, I think they are getting used to me (or at least I hope so).

I love that everyone’s birthday is celebrated here. I love that I can eat at my desk. I love that I can listen to music while I write. I love that I can be a WCU grad and make a difference in the LGBT community (Ty Gloria Casarez for that inspiration!)

I also love that so far, in my personal community, being LGBT is not so much a bad thing. I am getting more comfortable talking about my work place. I hope to gain more comfort in writing about it too.

Through this experience, I have the opportunity to open that can-of-worms in my hometown. I am able to write about the LGBT community that exists and to shed light on small-towns and their LGBT residents. From my research and my observations, it is not as bad as I thought it would be.

I’m not really sure what this blog post is about—but I thought I would share these things. Maybe it is about not giving up, not listening to the negative people in your life. Maybe it is about embracing your community and finding rolemodels. Or maybe it is about looking deeper into your life and your own community and finding the positive.