Tag Archives: Corina Baltz

The RITZ Ybor Photos: Machine Gun Kelly

MGK 2014 A MGK 2014 B

Machine Gun Kelly at The RITZ Ybor
on Saturday, July 19, 2014
Photos by Nicole Abbett

Check out more photos online RIGHT HERE.

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The RITZ Ybor Photos: Phantogram + Shaun White

There’s something to applaud about Tampa when a concert rightfully sells out!  It restores my faith in this city having exceptional taste in music, and gives me hope that other fantastic artists and musicians will take note and head down this way to perform.  Last night’s SOLD OUT Phantogram wih Bad Things concert at The RITZ Ybor was simply put… FUCKIN’ AWESOME!  An even bigger bonus when the music artists are just as cool and genuine as you would hope them to be.

Phantogram 2014 Shaun White 2014

SOLD OUT! Phantogram with Bad Things at The RITZ Ybor
on Sunday, June 29, 2014
Photos by Nicole Abbett

Check out more photos online RIGHT HERE.

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The RITZ Ybor Photos: Neon Trees

When a band you admire is playing in your town, you get excited.

When that same band you admire is playing at your job, you get super excited.

When that same admired band playing at your job are friendly, super cool, and genuine individuals, you take a photo with them.

But what happens when that same admired band of friendly, super cool, and genuine individuals just put on a show at your job that knocked your socks off?

…you first buy new socks, and then you relive the experience through their music and the evening’s photos.  WHAT AN AMAZING SHOW Neon Trees put on at The RITZ Ybor in Tampa last Wednesday!  Don’t miss their Pop Psychology Tour on the road this summer.

Neon Trees 14 A Neon Trees 14 B Neon Trees 14 D Neon Trees 14 E Neon Trees 14 F Neon Trees 14 H Neon Trees 14 I Neon Trees 14 J Neon Trees 14 K Neon Trees 14 L Neon Trees 14 M Neon Trees 14 Okie A Neon Trees 14 Okie B Neon Trees 14 Staff A Neon Trees 14 Staff B

Neon Trees at The RITZ Ybor
on Wednesday, April 30, 2014
Photos by Nicole Abbett

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Pride & Passion 2014: an avant garde wedding

Yet another Pride & Passion event gone by!

In its 8 years, the event has slowly transformed into a fashionable night out downtown to dress up and party.  This year’s theme was an avant garde wedding celebrating the union of art + community + diversity.  I decided to play with the theme, and turned the pimp factor level up a few notches when dressing as my interpretation of an avant garde groom.  And that’s one of the many things that I love about Pride & Passion: how one can be decked out in leather and fur with opera goggles in Florida during the summertime, and not one person bats an eyelash at the ridiculousness of it all.  Pride & Passion is a night to play dress up, and an evening to play with one’s Uncle Karl Lagerfeld André Leon Talley Okie Fierce alter ego.

However, the true importance of this event is the $75,000.00 net that was raised from just one evening for the Tampa Museum of Art, its exhibits and community programs.  As an avid supporter of the arts and of Tampa raising its profile, I applaud this year’s Chairs Kevin Reder and Rick Scherer, the Museum staff, and the Pride & Passion steering and host committee for a spectacular event.

P.S.  Next year, I plan to dress even more ridiculously!

Photos courtesy of Nicole Abbett, Owen Hunt Photography, Todd Montgomery and Nicholas Cardello.

PP2014 Group 02PP2014 CrowdPP2014 ModelsPP2014 Okie GroupPP2014 Rick Crystal Kevin#PP2014TampaPP2014 Okie Aneta Jose 02PP2014 Areis GroupPP2014 GroupPP2014 Uncle KarlPP2014 Okie NicolePP2014 Wedding ModelsPP2014 Okie Kevin JessPP2014 Jaime Jaden 02PP2014 Mike Neil DancingPP2014 WindowPP2014 Museum Lights#PP2014Tampa#PP2014TampaPP2014 Okie ShanePP2014 Okie Jocelyn Jose#PP2014TampaPP2014 Okie KaliPP2014 Okie KristinPP2014 Corina
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“I Can’t Keep Up” by Tourist featuring Will Heard:  There’s just something in the way that Will Heard sings SANGS this song that does something to my soul.  When the frenetic pace changes up at the 3:00 mark, the song becomes pure, unadulterated audio ecstasy.

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The RITZ Ybor Photo: Mogwai

Mogwai 2014

Mogwai at The RITZ Ybor
on Wednesday, April 30, 2014
Photo by Nicole Abbett

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GIFF it to me

Another year, another Gasparilla International Film Festival (GIFF).  This year’s Closing Party FINALLY took place at The RITZ Ybor historic theatre, where I’ve always said that it should take place since I attended my very first one four years ago and not because I work there.  It only makes sense that Tampa’s independent film festival kick off and conclude at this city’s oldest theatres that are still in operation: the historic Tampa Theatre built in 1926 and the historic Ritz Theatre built in 1917.  Hats off to GIFF for making that magic happen this year!


GIFF14 Pre Party GIFF14 Group 01 GIFF14 Photo Booth 01 GIFF14 Photo Booth 02 GIFF14 Venue 01 GIFF14 Venue 02


“Artifice” by SOHN:
  My latest song obsession is “Artifice” by British singer-songwriter-producer Christopher Taylor who performs under the moniker SOHN.  One listen to SOHN’s gentle, delicate vocals singing the chorus lyrics “Somebody better let me know my name, Before I give myself away… Somebody better show me how I feel, Cause I know I’m not at the wheel…” gliding across a lush, layered electronic backdrop, and you’re instantly hooked.

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Bow Ties & Clutches 2013

BTC13 Okie Corina Jess Areis

Earlier this month, I attended the 2nd Annual Bow Ties & Clutches event at the Florida Museum of Photographic Art (FMOPA).  It was my first time attending the Best of the Bay Award-winning event (which required all guests to either sport a bow tie or clutch) and stepping foot inside the FMOPA downtown.  Bow Ties & Clutches, presented by a local fashion events and marketing company The Fashion Movement was an enjoyable evening of fashion, cocktails and mingling.  Proceeds from the event benefited the Friends of Joshua House Foundation, Inc., an organization that provides a safe haven for abused, abandoned and neglected children.

BTC13 Okie

For the fashion event, I channeled my inner Lexx Miyake-Mugler and went for a K.Pop boy band meets Rhythm Nation look.  And YES I sported a bow tie… conveniently pinned to my coat.

Bravo to The Fashion Movement for hosting a wonderful event that benefited such a valuable cause.

BTC13 Group 2BTC13 Group 1BTC13 Xmas Tree 1BTC13 Xmas Tree 2BTC13 Okie Rod AreisBTC13 Jocelyn 3BTC13 Okie Girls 2BTC13 Okie Jess AreisBTC13 Okie Jocelyn 1BTC13 Jocelyn HairBTC13 Okie Jess 1BTC13 Okie Rod



“Drunk in Love” by Beyonce with Jay-Z: Despite her obvious Rihanna impersonation in the music video, I just cannot get enough of Mrs. Carter’s new single. In fact, I cannot get enough of BEYONCE, her surprise album and music video collection that was quietly released to iTunes last Friday without any announcement or promotion. Love her or hate her, you have to bow down to Bey’s marketing genius behind this album’s surprise release. She relied on word of mouth buzz to spread the word of her new album’s availability, gave fans no option but to purchase the ENTIRE album, ensured that her entire album was listened to by releasing an accompanying music video to every single track, and sold nearly a million copies in a mere three days.

In today’s social media era of creating gargantuan hype around a project with trending hashtags, teaser photos and videos, release date countdowns, and “surprise” album leaks, Beyonce’s risky gamble of no promotion paid off BIG TIME. BEYONCE: The Visual Album sold more in its first three days than the COMBINED first-week sales of superstar Miss Spears’ Britney Jean, Katy Perry’s heavily-hyped Prism and Lady Gaga’s overhyped ARTpop , proving that you don’t need a golden semi-truck, a helicopter dress, or numerous “personal” Twitter Q&As to sell quality music.

To you Beyonce Giselle Knowles-Carter, I gladly bow down.

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Jessie Ware + Mikky Ekko concert @ The State Theatre

Jesse Ware Mikky Ekko

I first fell in love with Jessie Ware after listening to her critically-acclaimed Devotion album.  I first fell in love with Mikky Ekko upon hearing his silky-smooth voice gliding across Rihanna’s blockbuster single “Stay” (that he also co-wrote and produced.)  What a thrill it was to see both of them perform live at The State Theatre in St. Pete this past Wednesday.


Jessie Ware B 2013 Jessie Ware A 2013

Mikky crooned his way through current single “Kids” and of course the #1 hit “Stay” which he reminded the crowd that he performed at the Grammy Awards earlier this year…. and rightfully so since it was hands down the performance highlight of this year’s Grammy night!

Jessie kicked off her set with a cover of Martika’s “Love This Will Be Done” and kept the cover train going with Bobby Caldwell’s “What You Won’t Do For Love” and Marvin Gaye’s “I Want You,” the latter perfectly interlaced with her debut single “Running.”  I can forgive her for not performing the heavenly”Taking In Water” because the rest of her set which consisted of staples “Wildest Moments” and “Imagine It Was Us” along with a brand new song were just as divine.  I remember once trying to describe Jessie Ware’s sound to a friend of mine, and could only remark that she is this generation’s Sade… classy, sophisticated and just cool.

It was a welcome embrace to witness two newer artists in today’s crowded music scene solely rely on genuine talent and artistry rather than gimmickry and media stunts to entertain a crowd.


Mikky Ekko Okie

Working in the concert industry, one thing that I love and admire is when an artist emerges from backstage to mingle with the crowd and their fans.  I was able to meet (a very friendly + laidback) Mikky Ekko who mentioned that he is still working on his album which should see a release date sometime early next year.  He was also a good sport for allowing Rod, Shane O’Neil and I to sing our song that we wrote together in front of him.  Granted, Rod sorta ambushed him with this spontaneous performance, but he seemed to find the intended hilarity in it all.  (SEE TWEET EXCHANGE BELOW)


Mikky Ekko Tweet

DEFINITELY take a listen to Jessie Ware’s soulful debut album Devotion, check out Mikky Ekko’s catchy “Kids” music video below, see them both on tour while you can, and read my friend Carole’s review on tbt Soundcheck that perfectly sums up the night (and where I “borrowed” two of the above photos from for this post.)



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The RITZ Ybor Photo: ZZ Ward / The Silent Comedy

ZZ Ward The Silent ComedyZZ Ward and The Silent Comedy at The RITZ Ybor
on Wednesday, June 5, 2013

“Her energy evokes Tina Turner’s, her chops Aretha Franklin’s and her soul Etta James’s.”The New York Times on ZZ Ward

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