Andrew Bayer Andrew Bayer

Andrew Bayer Discusses Mentors Above & Beyond And His Kanye West Fascination

After the global launch of his sophomore album, If It Were You, We'd Never Leave, on Anjunabeats in April, rising progressive house-trance producer-DJ Andrew Bayer sits down with VIBE to discuss his journey through electronic dance music. It began in his preteens when Bayer first left his hometown, Washington D.C. for a trip overseas that would forever change his fate and continues to evolving and diversify by the day.

VIBE: Describe your sound at this very moment compared to six months ago?
Andrew Bayer: I'm currently promoting my sophomore full-length album titled If It Were You, We'd Never Leave. Since it is a concept record, it's intended to be the soundtrack to your day, as opposed to my clubbier offerings in the past. I like to focus on one thing for a bit of time, then move on to explore other pastures to keep things interesting, and to keep learning.

What or who influences evolution in your sound?
Entertainment, films, TV shows, other music, art: anything can be an influence. As I said earlier, I will definitely delve into a certain thing for a few months and really dig my heels in to learn as much as possible about something before jumping in headfirst elsewhere. The same goes for inspiration. Sometimes I'll draw a lot of inspiration from films I watched while I was growing up, and sometimes I'll just listen to a bunch of music from a different genre and try to fuse it with my sound to create a new style.

We've read you first got into electronic music during a trip to Germany when you were 12. Which artists made the most impact on you at that time and why?
I was super into trance when it got pretty big back in late '90s, early 2000's. I was absolutely enamored with everything Ferry Corsten, and Ranked number 1 at the time. I still love those "old school" classics!

How did your parents react when you came back from Europe and wanted to be a producer?
They were very supportive, but just wanted to make sure I was well rounded, and not just putting all my eggs in one basket, which was great advice and smart.

What makes Anjunabeats stand out as a label?
Their willingness to branch out, try new things, and the diversity on their roster. Also, internally they're the best people I've ever worked with in the industry, and we are all like a big (ridiculous) family. That is really important to me.

What has been the greatest lesson you have learned working with the label and Above & Beyond?
Communication is king. Collaborating is so fulfilling, and especially working with Above & Beyond is amazing. We are constantly teaching each other things, which really makes for a healthy and creative environment.

As a producer who is finally starting to get his name across the "EDM" community, what is some advice you have to offer to today’s struggling DJs-producers?
Never stop trying new things. Doing new things teaches you how to do the things you already know how to do better, and will give you a unique identity in the sea of new producers that have emerged over the past few years since the EDM boom.

I’ve read that your dream collaboration would include Chris Martin, Tom Yorke and Bon Iver. Are there any hip-hop or R&B artists you would want to collaborate with as well?
I think Kanye West is a really interesting person and I love reading about how he's collaborated with Justin Vernon (Bon Iver). I am super into Hudson Mohawke as well - I think he is phenomenal. I love a lot of the artists on Ghostly International's roster, which includes left field hip-hop like Mux Mool, and Dabrye.

You dropped your second album in back April. Have you had time since then vacation, or is it straight back into the studio producing new tracks?
Vacation? What's that???!

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Merriam-Webster Dictionary To Add Eminem's Version Of "Stan"

Out of 640 words added to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, Eminem's everlasting interpretation of the word "stan" is among the litany of terms. On Tuesday (April 23), the company tweeted the news with a gif of Beyonce's Homecoming documentary that premiered on Netflix (April 17).

Putting Slim Shady's "Stan" video into literary text, Merriam-Webster defines the title as "an extremely or excessively enthusiastic and devoted fan" or "to exhibit fandom to an extreme or excessive degree: to be an extremely devoted and enthusiastic fan of someone or something." In 2017, the Oxford English Dictionary also added "stan" to its pages.

'Stan' has been added as both a noun and a verb. https://t.co/Dal0N79sAU pic.twitter.com/q1kBkKR1rn

— Merriam-Webster (@MerriamWebster) April 23, 2019

In a lyric annotation for Genius, Eminem broke down the latter part of the chorus ("And even if I could it'd all be gray/But your picture on my wall/It reminds me that it's not so bad, it's not so bad"), performed by Dido, and shared how those lines set the stage for the rest of the song.

"When I heard 'your picture on my wall,' I was like 'Yo, this could be about somebody who takes me too seriously.' So I knew what I was going to write about before I wrote it," he said. "A lot of times when I'm writing songs, I see visions for everything I'm writing. This was one of those."

Revisit the 2000 video below.

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Jamie Squire

Prince's Half-Sister Fears Estate Will Go Bankrupt Over Mishandling Of Finances

Prince's half-sister, Sharon Nelson, has accused Comerica Bank & Trust, the administration that is handling Prince's estate, of mishandling the late artist's finances, Billboard reports. Her family's fight against Comerica has now resulted in thousands of court filings and millions of dollars in legal fees. She predicts that if the company is not stopped, Prince's estate will soon go bankrupt.

"Prince’s estate will be bankrupt by the end of the year," Nelson predicted. "Prince is not resting in peace while this is going on. He's very upset what these people have done to his estate. It's really sad."

After Prince's death in 2016, Nelson and her siblings – the singer's full sister Tyka Nelson, his half brothers Omarr Baker, Alfred Jackson, John R. Nelson and his half-sisters Sharon and Norrine Nelson – became sole heirs of the estate that is said to be valued between $100 million and $300 million. The family was forced to hire their own attorneys to defend their interests after 45 people claimed to be heirs of the "Purple Rain" singer's estate.

Due to nearly $3 million in legal fees, Nelson said her siblings are not able to afford a new attorney. Although she is able to get by because she is a "senior citizen and I have worked all my life," she said her other family members are barely scraping by.

The family was each awarded $100,000 following Prince's 2016 tribute concert, but Nelson said they have not received any more money from Comerica although the bank continued to receive $125,000 a month for administering the estate.

Additionally, Nelson told Billboard that Comerica continued to make poor financial moves such as paying $90,000 a month to store Prince's unreleased music in a vault in Los Angeles.

There are reportedly more than 2,700 court filings regarding this matter. The court documents include motion, affidavits, memos, and depositions that support Nelson and her family's complaint about Comerica's representation.

In Oct. 2017, Nelson and two of the others heirs filed to permanently remove Comerica from the estate after an allegedly heated meeting. They accused the bank of being verbally abusive and threatening Nelson.  In Dec. 2017, a judge denied their petition to remove Comerica, ruling that it would not be in the best interest of the estate.

Comerica has denied the allegations against them. Bank officials explained in the court filings that the heirs could not receive a dime until a tax bill from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) was settled. Nelson said she found that reasoning odd since Prince died with $97 million in cash and $30 million to $40 million in real estate holdings.

Comerica released a statement to Billboard regarding Nelson's claims. "The estate of Prince Rogers Nelson is a court-supervised estate, which places strict reporting and judicial oversight requirements on Comerica as the Personal Representative," the statement read. "Comerica has complied with all legal and ethical requirements during its administration of the estate. Comerica’s fees and those of the estate’s attorneys are filed with and approved by the Court every four months with complete transparency to the heirs. The attorneys’ fees paid by the estate have been court-approved as reasonable and necessary for the benefit of the estate."

Prince's siblings are currently asking a judge to permanently limit the Comerica's powers as the estate’s personal representative. A hearing is scheduled for May 20.

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Texas Department of Criminal Justice via AP

Second Man Convicted In The 1998 Death Of James Byrd Jr To Be Executed

In 1998, Jasper, Texas became the epicenter of the nation when James Byrd Jr's dismembered body was found outside of a predominately black church. The rest of his body was found about a mile and a half away.

Byrd was beaten by three white supremacists men and tied to the back of a pick-up truck and reportedly dragged three miles. All men were found guilty for his brutal murder. One was sentenced to life in prison, one was executed in 20111 and another will be put to death today (April 24).

According to CNN, Jon William King, 44 who's been on death row for 20 years, will die by lethal injection.

King has long maintained coconspirator Shawn Berry was solely responsible for Byrd's death. King has appealed his conviction, alleging ineffectiveness from his defense team. The U.S. Supreme Court declined to hear his case last October.

In 2011, Lawrence Russell Brewer was executed and Shawn Berry was sentenced to life. While murders are devastating, Byrd's dragging death placed a blinding spotlight on the racial tension in America. The fallout from the case helped to pass the nation's hate crime bill, named after both Byrd and Matthew Shepard, a gay Wyoming teen who was viciously beaten to death.

Byrd's family, however, have opposed the death penalty and made it clear they would prefer that King be sentenced to life in prison. Byrd's son Ross has been quoting saying, "You cannot fight murder with murder."

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