Warped Forever and Forever Warped by Josh Custer

Warped Tour was created in 1995 by Kevin Lyman. It is the largest and longest running touring music festival in North America. Warped Tour has always featured a diverse range of artists. Touring across the country for the last 24 years and expanding into previously putting on shows in Australia, UK, and Canada.

It was announced late last week but after 24 years of touring the country the 2018 vans warped tour would be the last full country run of the festival.   Kevin Lyman sited a few reasons for the decision. Increased cost of bands, increased cost of travel expenses, and even a shift in the demographic age of attendees.

I personally have attended work to her every year since 2002. 15 years of attending this festival, some years multiple dates.  I’ve been just an audience member, I’ve worked with vendors on different dates for a couple years, and I’ve done press  for the last eight years running. Through this time I met some incredible friends, worked with some incredible organization’s, and had conversations with musicians and artists that have impacted my life. 

I've worked with a lot of bands that shaped who I am now. I've had talks with some of the most humble down to earth people. I've been able to see artists that nobody really knew grow and become household names. I've talked to artists that went on to perform on The Voice.

Warped Tour will always hold a special spot in my heart. It helped me escape some rough times in my life. It helped me find people with a similar story. It allowed me to pursue my passion in the music industry. It gave me a safe space, where I knew it was ok to not be ok. Most of all it gave me resources for my bad days, friendships to lean on, and opened my eyes to see life is worth living. 

From the bottom of my heart I want to thank Kevin Lyman and the entire Warped Tour family for the community that you created and giving so many people the things they needed most.  

 #warpedforever #foreverwarped

World Suicide Prevention Day by Josh Custer

Today is World Suicide Prevention Day. Depression and suicide carry a nasty stigma thanks to the media. The truth is that more people struggle with depression and feelings of inadequacy than most even realize.

Many of your friends and family I have went through periods of depression. For most people however it is not as simple as a one time event for a brief period of sadness and then everything is fine. A large number of people battle depression daily. It's not something easily shaken. Some times you can't even tell what's going through their minds.

One misconception about depression/people that battle depression is that they are always sad. It's simply not true. Some of the happiest people still fight depression. Many times it's not a feeling of sadness, rather it's a feeling of inadequacy. They try very hard to be good enough, to be strong enough, to be enough in general and they don't feel the acceptance that they seek.

This can take many forms from work, relationships, friends, families and more. Unfortunately they can't or won't say what it is they are looking for, sometimes they don't even know what that is. But it weighs heavy on them to hear words of acceptance, gratitude, or recognition.

Many people that battle depression are very active in sports or group activities. It's why they push and perform so much to hear good job, great game, and you were a big part in that. They know they will get recognition, even if it's generalized around the team or group.

Many people think that people with depression don't care about anything. That's the stigma that media has put on it, "oh they are always like that", "they're never happy". The truth is that most people with depression feel too much. It doesn't take much for them to start slipping. Most people with depression are truly caregivers. They are your friends that constantly are helping out, offering to do things, and checking on you. They know what it is to want/need so they try to take care of everyone around them so they never have to feel that way. Often times when they check on you it's to get out of their own head, it's to distract them from what they are feeling.

When someone asks how you are doing , ask back. Mean it. Don't always accept their first answer. Many times "I'm fine" means anything but I'm fine.


Chester Bennington loses mental health battle by Josh Custer

News broke about the passing of an icon. Someone who positively impacted everyone they were ever in contact with. Chester Bennington of Linkin Park was found to of hung himself. "Artists are ppl compelled to bring beauty into a world that can be so dark. makes sense then that artists are always conscious of darkness..... & maybe at times made more vulnerable by it? i don't know. life can be relentless."-- Hayley Williams of Paramore. 

There is so much about this that doesn't feel real, and needs to be talked about. Chester was always someone who talked about reaching out when you need help. He was always there for those around him. The music  that he helped to create has influenced, and it impacted so many lives. He battled mental health problems such as depression and being abused for so long. I won't damn him I won't speak negatively about him or the choice he made. None of us know the battles he was fighting, none of us can even pretend to know what was going on in his head. 

 Mental health needs to be talked about. Depression needs to be talked about. Our society has put such a stigma around mental health, depression, and suicide that so many people are afraid to ask for the help that they need, or the help that they want.   We as a society need to be more open about our communication regarding mental health.  The truth is that everyone is battling issues that many of us have no idea about. But we need to be able to talk about these things. It's OK to not be OK. 

 You are not alone. Others have fought the same battles.  You are more important than you know. You are not replaceable.  Whether you realize it or not your life impacts others. 

 There are some amazing organizations out there to help you figure out what you're going through, to walk you through your problems, to listen without judging. Below are a few of the organizations that we have worked with and believe in the work that they do.  

To Write Love On Her Arms- They have been helping people deal with depression, self harm, addiction, and suicide for more than a decade. They have a list of phone numbers to call or text depending on your battle. And they've even made a database of help facilities. Check them out. https://twloha.com/find-help/local-resources/

 HeartSupport- Founded by August Burns Red frontman Jake Luhrs. They are working towards providing a community that is a safe space. A place where you can talk about your problems and not be scared. http://heartsupport.com/about/#story

 Hope For The Day- They are working on getting more open communication flowing around mental health. They are working towards getting rid of the stigma about mental health. http://www.hftd.org/

Remember. It's ok to not be ok. It's fine not being fine. You are not alone. There is help. There is light in the darkness. And you're story could save someone else. 

Modern Baseball cancel tour. Announce "break". by Josh Custer

In an unexpected post today Modern Baseball have announced they will be canceling their upcoming tours and be taking a break from being a band.  

Major advocates of mental health, the reasons sited were immense anxiety and emotional deterioration. Needing to take time to reevaluate their own health and friendships. 

The full post can be read here. https://m.facebook.com/story.php?story_fbid=1361998430488487&substory_index=0&id=220257697995905

Lady Gaga's Super Bowl performance by Josh Custer

The one and only Lady Gaga performed with 300 drones at the Super Bowl.  A lot of people had questions as to how this performance would go, who she would bring out, and if it would be politically motivated. 

The performance was executed expertly, from the drones that were used to dance in the sky and even form an American flag at one point to fantastically choreographed dances. With no other artists joining her on stage it was a great mixture of songs old and new. Flying around on guide wires, a few costume changes, she presented herself masterfully.

The thing other than her vocal presence that really amplified my respect for her as an artist was the fact that she did not go on any sort of political rant or statements. Instead she knew that she had the opportunity to perform and really bringing people together allowing them to forget about their issues if even for just one night.

By far, hands-down, the best halftime show in recent memory. 

Photo by Christopher Polk/Getty Images Entertainment / Getty Images
Photo by Christopher Polk/Getty Images Entertainment / Getty Images

Where did this come from? Where are we going? by Josh Custer

The name You Make The Scene originally came up interview with Ryan Key of Yellowcard A couple years back. We were talking about the pop punk scene and how the fans have always kind of evolved with the music that was emerging and really help to keep it alive. So from that I came up with the idea that while the scene is bigger than any one person each person contributes to it and with that they are able to make their music scene something they can be proud of and a community that people want to be a part of.

The vision for the brand is to be a resource for fans to come to to see what's going on with their favorite band, to see photographs from those shows, to read interviews with their favorite artist. Ultimately I don't want to restrict it to a single genre of music, but instead be all inclusive. The long-term goal with it will be that we would even have a entertainment side where there will be a discussion about movies and ideally getting to the point where there would be interviews with actors and directors and things of that nature both on a small local scale and major Hollywood as well.