From a legendary hip-hop group to an experimental film about the unconscious world, a glance at what we stuffed our craniums with this month. Plus, an extended Don Henley metaphor.
The sun is Southern California hot, the smell of exhaust and dirt and metal hover vaguely in the air. Sara Price is there, not even old enough to walk, but soaking it all in, infant synapses connecting.
An 8-year-old Sara Price is there too, finding her balance on a mini-bike while her brother practices on the larger track, her parents hoping the bike will at least keep Price’s seemingly boundless energy focused.
And more than a decade later Sara Price is there in Toronto. She’s the one controlling a few thousand pounds of fuel and steel as she crosses the finish line, becoming the first woman to ever compete in a Stadium Super Truck race.
Without exaggeration Price’s entire life has orbited around the racetrack, but that often obsessive drive has come at a cost. Her parents attempt to simply keep a young Price occupied during her brother’s practices quickly exploded into a dream that would shape the course of her life.
“I won my first [motocross] race and never quit,” she told me. “I only wanted to race more and more. My dream was to become a professional motocross racer, it’s all I wanted.”
And so while the kids she grew up with were going to the movies and dancing awkwardly at middle school dances, Price was crossing the country on the national amatuer circuit, quickly amassing a litany of victories and national champions. And while her classmates were hunkered over desks, watching the clock tick second by agonizing second, Price was racing lap after lap after humid lap, unstoppably magnetized by visions of turning pro.
At the time Price didn’t care in the slightest that she was outside of the teenage world her peers were so immersed in, but in retrospect there was a kind of loneliness haunting her, a loneliness known only to musicians, comics, athletes and all those who spend more time in hotel lobbies than their own beds.
All that sacrifice seemed to have paid off when Price raced in the X-Games, but soon after the women’s motocross event was cancelled, snatching away her dream at the exact moment she had finally achieved it.
The blow was far more than professional for someone for whom the difference between life on a bike and living was paper thin. Price was suddenly forced to confront a future without the one thing that had defined her every waking, and dreaming, moment.
“Everyone knew me as Sara Price the motocross girl,” she said. “They didn’t really know me as a person. I didn’t know myself as a person. I didn’t really have a life without racing, that was my everything. So when I didn’t have racing, I was soul searching and trying to figure it out. Am I even a cool person without racing? Am I a nice person?”
And so Price returned home, back to the beginning, back to her family’s auto business. But while she began to rebuild all the parts of herself that had gone unfinished in her headlong rush through adolescence into professional racing, the itch to race still ran bone deep.
She sioib began racing street cars, and then because Sara Price has never driven something that she didn’t want to drive bigger and faster, she began driving trucks. “I chase what’s cool, I don’t stick with one thing,” Price explained.
In short order racing legend Robby Gordon saw her driving and began talking to her about racing for him, but when that deal fell through in echoes of the X-Games cancellation, this time around Price had been through too much, had built up too much of herself, to be devastated.
The seed has been planted, she was now determined to race trucks, and so when Gordon’s Stadium Super Truck series eventually got off the ground and running, Price was there with Gordon serving as both the owner of the series and a mentor, a situation she calls “insane.” (For non-racing fans, picture being drafted by Michael Jordan, or being signed to Jay Z.)
While Price is certainly making history as the first female driver to ever race Stadium Super Truck, and she has been dealing with an amount of “Look at that girl!” since her childhood days, once her helmet goes on she’s a racer just like everyone, and as a racer she’s poised to become of the best. She had a lot to prove in that first Toronto race, and she proved it.
Sara Price has a plate holding together her left collarbone, there are seven metal screws inside her. She’s had two shoulder reconstructions and endured concussions and whiplash. She’s pushed on through parents telling their sons they better not lose to a girl and had her dreams yanked away just as they moved within reach.
Throughout it all Price has pushed on because she’s a racer and that’s what racers do. They keep going. She knows that, she’s known it from her earliest years, and now she also knows herself.
[By Nathan Slavik, @RefinedHype]
Because one thing is for certain: the future of art is not ‘content’.
Last December, we asked independent artists to weigh in on the present and future of creative sustainability. Not surprising, creators identified direct-to-fan distribution as most significant digitally-driven change. 59% of artists said getting their work discovered is the biggest challenge they face in their own career, followed by fan outreach. Digital distribution lives and dies by discovery, which often leaves fresh stories untold.
Today, we’re announcing The Discovery Fund, our latest (and perhaps most exciting) commitment to the independent community. Over the next year, BitTorrent aims to partner with 25 creators by providing cash grants and promotional support to build impactful releases and discover new fans. We are looking for artists, musicians, filmmakers, designers and other creators working on uncompromised projects representing a diverse, original perspective seeking global distribution. This open, international initiative has a rolling call (so you can apply when your project is ready) and provides $2,500- $100,000 in marketing and distribution funding to use at your discretion.
We’ve worked with some of the most bold and talented artists today (Major Lazer, Thom Yorke, Lucy Walker, David Cross, IHEARTCOMIX, Penny Lane, De La Soul, Pretty Lights, Yung Jake, Lily Baldwin, Frances Bodomo, Daniel Patrick Carbone, Josephine Decker, and Lauren Wolkstein just to name a few) and are looking to incubate the world’s next wave of awesome, straight-up brave storytellers and outside voices.
If that sounds like you, we’d love to hear what you are working on and invite you to apply here.
Missy Laney will be speaking at Sundance Next Fest on Saturday, August 13th. Come learn more about how creators are teaming up with BitTorrent.
A few of our favorite gems from the past month.
YOU ARE ALL FUCKED is a bizarre, mind-numbing new addition to the Demonbabies legacy. This lo-fi visual trip leads us through a chaotic mash-up of media and textures, burning unforgettable imagery in your mind to the soundtrack of Morricone’s dirty jazz meandering along in the background.
Last summer, Pretty Lights brought his electronic, genre-bending live performance to the secluded town of Telluride, Colorado. Backed by a full band and next level production, the energy oozing from this 13-track live audio will have you experiencing a true case of FOMO.
REESE is a rapper from Atlanta. Historically known as a breeding ground for innovative Southern hip-hop, the city has morphed into a place known for having no musical or style boundaries - enter REESE. He reached back in time, took a few of our favorite rock songs, and made them his own.
Sara Price is a competitor. After winning multiple national titles and X Games medals in motocross, she made the transition to the Stadium SUPER Trucks series and became the first woman to compete in the sport. Sara Price inspired us, and she should inspire you.
A man sets out to raise his children as “philosophers and kings” in his own little utopia. Tragedy strikes, and he’s forced to bring his family into the real world earlier than planned. Captain Fantastic was an official selection of Sundance and Cannes film festivals, so check out a few clips from the movie of the summer.
Over the course of one month, Josh Young - one half of Flosstradamus - made one beat per day. This project turned into me2, and now its packaged together for us to enjoy at high volumes. Me2 flexes his ability to combine the muscle of trap music with the subtleties of his Chicago DJ roots which creates a high energy uniquely his own. Steal this mixtape below.
Nate Norman is a bit of a legend. He’s the badass entrepreneur we all envision becoming, or wish we knew. Kid Cannabis is the story of this multi-millionaire drug dealing dropout. Get a glimpse of what goes on behind the scenes through an interview with the film’s director, John Stockwell, as well as trove of photos from the set.
This bundle is great - and also random AF. The minds behind Pizza Slime gave us a look into their inspiration - sharing their favorite new artists, Dream Panther and Jeron Braxton, packaged with a smattering of random things that trigger personal inspiration for them, while also gifting us the resources to create our own art. Pizza Slime is for the people.
An anthology film focused on five individual filmmaker’s dreams, and how they adapt what happens behind each others eyelids for the screen. The full feature isn’t out until August 9th, but these exclusive clips and photos have us ready and yearning for more.
Sara will be the first woman to compete in the Stadium SUPER Trucks series, starting at the Honda Indy Toronto July 15-17 in Toronto. We’re stoked to see what she can do.
BitTorrent Now is the first step toward creating an ever greater direct-to-fan platform.
BitTorrent Now, streaming on a new app for Android, coming soon for Apple TV & iOS.
Streaming the internet’s awesome, original, and outside voices.
The short list of what we love this June.
30 days in 10 downloads, featuring BOSCO, Prodigy, Karma Fields, and more.
New Co-CEOs Jeremy Johnson and Robert Delamar will lead the growing BitTorrent media platforms. David Chidekel joins to support content acquisition, with Straith Schreder as VP of Creative Initiatives
Sundance Institute veteran joins BitTorrent as Director of Creative Initiatives focused on film.
From backseat drumming to touring at age 13, the Philadelphia-based artist on breaking down, breaking stereotypes, and the power of sound to bring you back home again.
Everything we had on repeat this month.
The revolution will be distributed.
A guide to the ten best releases of 2016. So far.
The inaugural print edition of SMASHD comes to BitTorrent Bundle, with stories on Nas, Nasty Gal, John Legend, the Dalai Lama, and many more
From Ratking to Rubble Kings: how DIY scenes and outside voices shaped pop culture in 2015.
From Heidecker & Wood b-sides to Joywave’s secret mixtapes : your unofficial guide to November’s best releases. Read up.