Meet The Driptones!

Xander Boggs (keyboardist, guitarist, vocalist), Zach Gerbi (bassist, vocalist) and Collin Fitzgerald (lead guitarist) met in high school in Space Coast Florida. The trio formed a band there after playing together in the pit orchestra for their school’s productions.

They then brought their connection up to Gainesville, where they met Tripp Jones (drums) through UF. From there, they formed Driptones (which is a spoonerism of Tripp’s name) in September 2019 and began playing around Gainesville. They have now played at events like TEDxUF and Dance Marathon.

Their upcoming release, titled “Getaway”, will be their fifth song on streaming platforms. The material is based on slowly finding out who you are as you grow up. It’s a indie alternative rock vibe and will be available to stream June 18th!

Campus Upgrades For Fall

The University of Florida campus is going to look a lot different in the Fall. Starting in August of 2021, UF will begin two picturesque projects from the Landscape Master Plan that will enhance UF’s outdoor spaces and create a more pedestrian-centered campus. In an effort to make campus more sustainable and safer, UF will begin its first steps in transforming the core of campus into an auto-free zone.

The Northeast Gateway at 2nd Avenue will center as a major connection to the Innovation District of downtown Gainesville. The creation of the Northeast Court will help expand the expand the impact of campus, welcoming visitors, and orienting guests to the parking facilities.

The Newell Gateway proposes UF will start restricting the use of motorized vehicles with the campus core, uniting the Plaza of the Americas and the Reitz Union Lawn with a curb less, brick-paved walkway that will replace the current roadways on campus now. UF will also eliminate some scooter and vehicle parking within the new auto-free core of campus, to help offset the construction traffic.

To find out more information about UF’s two gateway projects, read more here.

Local Artist Spotlight: The Housing Crisis

Starting a musical endeavor in a pandemic is not ideal. But for The Housing Crisis it has proved to work out just fine so far.

Dylan O'Bryan is a second-year student at UF. Photo by Julia Collins

Dylan kicks his shoe into the far corner of his childhood bedroom and agonizingly runs his hands through his hair. Glancing around his room as though looking at it from new eyes, he sees his guitars, a few potted plants, his trusty computer and a chemistry textbook strewn on the bed. Instead of getting more frustrated about the situation, he decides to sit down and write.

“It’s never been so clear to me

The truth, I never wanted to believe

I’m not what you want

So look for someone else.”

When listening to this song, “Someone Else,” it would seem as though it’s written about an emotional breakup. And it is — kind of. Dylan O’Bryan was an engineering major, but after he realized he’d rather be making music than studying chemistry, he changed his major to music composition.

“And so kind of saying like, “I'm not what you want, look for someone else,” that was me saying that, nothing against them, but it was me saying that to my professors. I'm not going to be an engineer,” O’Bryan said.

Making music during a pandemic is not easy, but O'Bryan is doing it. Photo by Julia Collins

The second-year UF student Dylan O’Bryan, 20, does not regret changing his major at all. In fact, it pushed him to want to make and release his own music, and thus his one-man-band, The Housing Crisis, was born.

Like Tame Impala or Panic! At The Disco, The Housing Crisis is one artist who chose a band-like name for his musical venture. O’Bryan says he chose The Housing Crisis as an homage to the 2008 financial housing crisis. Originally from upstate New York, O’Bryan and his family were forced to move to Florida with his grandparents when the crisis hit.

“That always kind of stuck with me as one of those moments that just completely changes the trajectory of your life,” O’Bryan reminisced.

That 2008 financial crisis shaped a generation. According to Richard Florida in an Atlantic cover story, “The crash of 2008 continues to reverberate loudly nationwide — destroying jobs, bankrupting businesses, and displacing homeowners.” Though that article was written in 2009, the same principle echoes eerily into 2021.

O'Bryan smiles at the thought of getting to perform music live again one day soon. Photo by Julia Collins

During his time as The Housing Crisis, O’Bryan has so far released one EP, one single, and has a new single "Thru My Mind" that dropped February 18th. O’Bryan writes, records, produces and masters all of his songs in his bedroom. When asked why he didn’t outsource any of the components, he said it’s partly because he likes the process of every element, but also because of COVID-19. According to a Rolling Stone cover story from May 2020, “Some artists, including Lady Gaga, delayed their album releases or announced suspensions of upcoming tour plans.” The coronavirus pandemic rocked the entire music industry, and people had to get creative. It’s interesting that O’Bryan chose to begin his music career, while most of the rest of the music world were putting theirs on pause.

Because O’Bryan began his individual musical venture during the start of lockdown and into the forthcoming months, he hasn’t had the opportunity to play his songs onstage yet. However, the stage is not unfamiliar to him. Being a former theatre kid, O’Bryan knows the rush of adrenaline performing on a stage can give you and is excited to experience that again when he can.

Until that day, he’s been performing with the popular music ensemble in the music school at UF.

O'Bryan shakes his head at missing playing on stage. Photo by Julia Collins.

Jason Mullen, 36, is a PhD student studying ethnomusicology and is also the director of the popular music ensemble.

“Dylan is an excellent musician and outstanding member of the ensemble,” Mullen said. “He contributes musically, but also contributes beyond music in a way. He helps to create a creative and open environment where people can bring their ideas and we can get the best work done together.”

Mullen says the ensemble is a time where, every Thursday, O’Bryan shows up to learn and share everything he can about music. With his solo The Housing Crisis endeavors, it seems O’Bryan craves the control and satisfaction of seeing every element of the song-making process come to fruition. But in the popular concert ensemble, O’Bryan appreciates the collaborative elements that come with playing in a group. O’Bryan joined the ensemble class in the Fall 2020 semester, the first official semester where he was a music composition major. Mullen has worked with O’Bryan since then and they’ve gotten to work together in a way they both describe as incredibly meaningful.

“It builds a level of trust to kind of put yourself out there and say, ‘Tell me what you think needs to change, so that way it can be better,’” Mullen said.

And O’Bryan does that. Not only during the ensemble, but for The Housing Crisis as well. When O’Bryan was just starting to tinker with the idea of making music, he sent some voice memos to friends to see what they thought of his early ideas. They assured him they all loved what he was doing, and that boost of confidence helped him decide to start learning how to produce and make songs.

O'Bryan sits outside his second home, the music school. Photo by Julia Collins

“We know that he has an attention to detail and we know that he takes it very seriously and puts a lot of work into his music,” Mullen said. “But music isn’t always in the sound itself, it’s also in what’s around it; and the people around it… And knowing Dylan and his music, he is a person that cares a lot about others.”

Being as he cares a lot about others, it’s fitting that O’Bryan said he occasionally challenges himself to write songs outside of his own emotions to try and broaden his songwriting skills. He says no two songs he’s made so far have been written the same way. O’Bryan wants people who listen to his songs to hopefully get some cathartic relief out of listening to them — he wants people to relate.

He’s just glad that he’s interested in music and not acting, as having the same name as the other Dylan O’Brien would’ve proved difficult.

Watch the on-air interview we also did below:

Julia interviews O'Bryan on her show The Friday Blend.


More Posts for Show: Julia

Gators Announce 2021 Football Schedule

Here is your 2021 Gator Football Schedule released by the Gators Wednesday. BIG game September 18th at the Swamp!

2021 Florida Football Schedule
• September 4 – Florida Atlantic (Gainesville, Fla.)
• September 11 – South Florida (Tampa, Fla.)
• September 18 – Alabama (Gainesville, Fla.)
• September 25 – Tennessee (Gainesville, Fla.)
• October 2 – Kentucky (Lexington, Ky.)
• October 9 – Vanderbilt (Gainesville, Fla.)
• October 16 – LSU (Baton Rouge, La.)
• October 23 – BYE
• October 30 – vs. Georgia (Jacksonville, Fla.)
• November 6 – South Carolina (Columbia, S.C.)
• November 13 – Samford (Gainesville, Fla.)
• November 20 – Missouri (Columbia, Mo.)
• November 27 – Florida State (Gainesville, Fla.)

2021 Ticket Information:
• Tickets for the 2021 season are now available, and fans have different options to purchase them:
o Visit FloridaGators.com/tickets
o Call the Gators Ticket Office at (352) 375-4683 Monday-Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
o Complete the ticket information form here to be contacted by a Gators Ticket Office representative.
Season ticket holders who chose to rollover their 2020 tickets to the upcoming season will be contacted directly by the ticket office.

27th Dance Marathon at UF Date Set

After a virtual event forced by COVID 19 last year, Dance Marathon at UF returns to the Stephen C. O'Connell Center with virtual engagement added April 10 at 8am to April 11 at 7:06pm. DM at UF is working with Dr. Cindy Prins and UF Screen, Test and Protect to make sure the event can safely occur following UF and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines.

This is all subject to change, of course, but for now the plan is to make sure students are in "cleared" status, with a recommended two-week quarantine leading up to the Main Event. Temperatures will be checked at the door as well and there will be required physical distancing and masks. The arena will also be cleaned regularly during the event.

To find out more about Dance Marathon at UF, visit FloridaDM.org and listen to GHQ!

Honoring the Brave: List of Veterans Day Deals and Freebies

7-Eleven

Active duty, retired, veteran, guard, reservists and family members get a free coffee or Big Gulp on Wednesday, November 11th. Dine in only.

Bob Evans

Veterans and active-duty military get a free meal from a select menu on November 11th. Dine in only, beverages not included.

Bonefish Grill

All service members, veterans and first responders can enjoy the ‘Heroes Discount’, 10% off their bill on Wednesday, November 11th with valid ID.

Buffalo Wild Wings

Veterans and active-duty service members get a free order of 10 boneless wings and fries on Wednesday, November 11th. This is available for dine-in or take-out.

Chili’s

Veterans and active-duty service members can get a free meal from a select menu on Wednesday, November 11th. You can choose from items like chicken crispers, Cajun chicken pasta, and an Oldtimer burger with cheese. This offer is only available for dine-in.

Cracker Barrel

Veterans and active-duty service members can enjoy a free slice of the Double Chocolate Fudge Coca-Cola Cake.

Golden Corral

Golden Corral is offering free meal and beverage cards to all active duty and veterans from now until November 30th. The card will be valid for one use from now until May 31st for lunch or dinner Monday through Thursday.

Hooters

All veterans and active-duty personnel can get 10 free wings with any 10 purchased on November 11th. Military ID or proof of service is required at participating locations.

Metro Diner

If you’re active or retired military with a valid military ID you can get 50% off of your bill on Wednesday, November 11th. Enjoy breakfast, lunch, or dinner in the diner.

Outback Steakhouse

Active or retired service members can get a free Bloomin’ Onion and Coke product on Wednesday, November 11th. Customers also have the opportunity to round up their check for Operation Homefront until the end of the year.

Also note that Outback Steakhouse offers a hero’s discount daily – all servicemen and women, police officers, firefighters and first responders get 10% off their bill all day, every day with a valid state or federal service ID.

Pilot Flying J

In celebration of Veterans Day, the Pilot Flying J will offer all veterans one free breakfast combo from November 9th-15th (valid at all participating U.S. and Flying J Travel Center locations). The breakfast combo includes a free pilot coffee of any size, one free breakfast offering, like a French Toast Sausage or Egg and Cheese sandwich. The Veterans Day breakfast combo is available on the Pilot Flying J app.

Red Lobster

On November 11th, Red Lobster will honor veterans, active-duty military and reservists with a valid military ID with a free appetizer or dessert.

Other Military Discounts

CVS

Join veterans advantage to save 20% and get free shipping.

Goodyear Auto Service and Just Tire

From November 8th-16th, Goodyear Auto Service and Just Tire locations are offering active and retired military members free car care checks and free tire installation. More information and to book your appointment: click here.

Great Clips

This Veterans Day, any customer who go to a U.S. Great Clips Salon will receive a free haircut card to give to any active/inactive/retired military member. Veterans can also visit any U.S. Great Clips salon on Wednesday, November 11th to get a free haircut that day or a free haircut card for later use. Haircuts will be redeemable until December 11th.

Harley Davidson

Harley Davidson is offering various military support benefits including special stateside military financing, including no down payment, reduced rates and flexible term options for active-duty military.

Home Depot

All military personnel can receive a 10% discount with valid military ID. 

Lowe’s

Lowe’s offers a 10% discount to veterans every day. Sign up for a My Lowe’s account to verify your credentials.

Rack Room Shoes

Military personal and their dependents can get 10% off their entire purchase on Veterans Day, Memorial Day and July 4th.

Target 

All military personnel, veterans, and their families can receive 10% their entire purchase through November 11th.

The GHQ Interview: Allison Talks to Pat Lavery

Allison Barkdull talks to Pat Lavery, Manager of the High Dive in Gainesville about the establishment and live music in the age of COVID.

Deals on Election Day

Everyone Loves A Deal!

Boston Market

Boston Market will treat voters to one free slider from 9 p.m. until close at all their locations nationwide on Tuesday, November 3rd, no purchase necessary. Slider Options include: Chicken Cheddar, Turkey Cheddar, Chicken Chipotle or BBQ Meatloaf.

Grubhub

Grubhub users can take advantage of all sorts of deals on Tuesday, November 3rd, with deals ranging from free delivery to discounts. Red Lobster will be offering free delivery on orders over $25, and 7-11 will have free delivery on orders over $15, same with BurgerFi. Burger King is offering $3 off $18 or more orders, California Pizza Kitchen fanatics can get $10 off their order of $30 or more. There’s other participating restaurants like Hooters to PF Chang’s, and many more.

Krispy Kreme

Visit any participating Krispy Kreme on November 3rd for a free original glazed doughnut. No proof of voting is required for the freebie, either, anyone gets to enjoy this sweet treat. Krispy Kreme will also hand out ‘I Voted’ stickers to honor those who mailed in their ballot this year.

Jimmy John’s

Jimmy John’s is offering BOGO 50% off 8-inch or 16-inch sandwiches through November 8th. Use promo code RMN at checkout if ordering online.

Chili’s

Chili’s is offering up $5 Presidente Margarita until November 3rd. This is available for dine-in or to-go and you’ll receive an Chili’s ‘I Voted’ sticker.

McAlister’s Deli

Join McAlister’s Rewards loyalty program and download their app for a ‘Buy One, Get One Free’ sandwich coupon that will be added to your account November 3rd.

Uber

While Uber’s ‘Get Out the Vote’ has been around for a while now, Uber is amping things up in 2020. Uber is offering 50% off round-trip rides to and from the polls – up to $7 each way or $14 round-trip for cars, bikes and scooters. Check out the Uber app to find your correct polling location.

Lyft

Lyft’s ‘Ride the Vote’ initiative offers riders 50% off one ride up to $10 to any polling location or drop box on election day. Use the code ‘2020VOTE’ when you request a ride.

Hertz

Hertz wants to help get you to the polls with their ‘Drive the Vote’ initiative. This promotion includes one free day when you pick up on either November 2nd or 3rd. At least a two-day rental is required at participating neighborhood locations. Use the code ‘210350’ when reserving your rental car.

Early Voting on Campus

With fewer UF students on campus for class, those students who are still on campus can hitch a ride to the polls Florida style: a golf cart courtesy of the University of Florida’s Hillel organization. Yes, UF students can get a free ride to the polls at the Reitz Union thanks to UF Hillel.

Hillel International, a worldwide Jewish campus organization, launched an education effort to get more students involved with voting, registering to vote, how/where to vote and how to get them to the polls.

“It’s a very Floridian kind of thing,” said Rabbi Jonah Zinn, executive director of UF Hillel. “I think we were brainstorming how we could mobilize more students, and this came up as a COVID-friendly option that would create some excitement.”

The pandemic made them rethink how of getting students to the polls safely.

 “We’re trying to remove barriers to early voting by giving students a lift to the polls.” Zinn said.

The Mitzvote program is a non-partisan campaign that aims at getting college students to vote, and to vote early. They have a fleet of golf carts to transport students to and from the Reitz Union throughout the duration of early voting.

This is nothing new to UF, UF Hillel has been offering students rides to Reitz Union polling location for years now. 

“The idea is to mobilize students to get out and vote early, to educate students about the opportunity, and finally to reduce barriers towards early voting by creating a way to get people to the polls more easily in a COVID friendly way,” Zinn said.

Masks are required per rider, and must be worn the duration of the ride. There is a limit to six people per golf cart.

UF Hillel has already given over 100 free rides to students already. The MitzVote Mobiles circulate two routes every 20 minutes or so, Monday through Friday from 11:00 A.M. to 5:00 P.M.

The west campus route stops at Fraternity Row between Village Drive & Fraternity Drive, in front of the Sigma Phi Epsilon Fraternity, on Stadium road, west of the entrance to Gator Dining, & the Reitz Student Union Early Voting Precinct.

The east campus route stops include the corner of West Panhellenic Drive & Southwest Ninth Avenue, the corner of East Panhellenic Drive and Southwest 11th street, the back of Broward Dining near the Broward Pool, & the Reitz Student Union Early Voting Precinct.

UF Creates Anti-Racism Website

The University of Florida now has an anti-racism website to keep the community up to date on the latest work "taking place at all levels across the university to understand our past, address racism and promote equity."

The site focuses on three central initiatives of education, history and representation. Students, faculty and staff are also encouraged to share ideas on the site.