Happening in Kansas City
Trending around OUTvoices
Musical creative Taylor Hughes formed pure xtc during an extremely isolating period. In 2019, she packed her bags and moved from Baltimore to the New York City metro area, living on her own for the first time. Time was spent crying on subways, climbing rooftops, meeting and avoiding new people, feeling extremely fulfilled to feeling like a hollow empty shell. Thus sparked the inspiration behind Taylor Hughes’ debut single, “Ghost,” a haunting electro-pop track inspired by her experience with isolation in a new environment, Taylor aka pure xtc explores the sensation of feeling like a ghost amid the excitement and people of a bustling city.
Then, pure xtc found herself relocating from New York City to Kansas City during the pandemic, and here she dived headfirst into the music scene. As a member of the LGBTQ+ community, she strives to gain visibility and representation through her music.
Her latest single “Bad Dreams,” a haunting track with booming vocals, is a preview of what’s to come for pure xtc’s upcoming EP, Nobody’s Home.
“Bad Dreams” is the late-at-night realization of the ending of a toxic relationship, and reliving all of its negative aspects.
“‘Bad Dreams’ is here to hold your hand while you’re lying awake at night, replaying the worst break up of your life. You’re finally waving goodbye to red flags you blindly ignored for years," says pure xtc. "The gaslighting, the guilt, the betrayal. The truth twisting into your back like a knife. You can retrace the steps, fantasize and recreate the outcome, but you can’t change it. This song is about that moment of acceptance when you’re not sad anymore, you’re just pissed.”
Intrigued? We are, and so we caught up with pure xtc to find out more about her work.
So great to meet you pure xtc! So, can you tell us how you identify?
pure xtc: She / her — lesbian.
National Coming Out Day was on October 11. When did you come out and what was that like?
pure xtc: I’ll start this off by saying I was a very late bloomer, haha. I was all about music. Aside from obsessively watching Blue Crush in middle school, I’ve always liked women. It just took me a while to grow into myself and understand exactly what that meant. I lived in a very conservative country town in Northern Maryland and I was one of the few Black kids in my class. I was deep in my Hot Topic phase and already felt “different” enough. I came out post-high school. I was in my early 20’s when I had my first girl-on-girl experience. After that I immediately came out. It’s like I was just waiting for that hands-on experience to validate something I already knew. Most of my friends and family knew before I told them and they were really supportive and not shocked by any means.
You're from Baltimore but moved to New York and then KC?
pure xtc: I’m from Baltimore, MD and moved to NYC and lived there for a few years. I miss it dearly. The scene there is incredible and it felt so safe and normalized. I particularly miss Henrietta Hudson and Booby Trap, two of my favorite queer bars there.
I mainly moved to KC for safety during Covid and my fiancé is from here originally so it just fell into place. I have to add, I love the sense of community the KC LGBTQ+ scene has. Everyone I’ve met so far has been very kind and welcoming to me. Especially at and during my Pride performance!
When did you become a musician and why? Any influences and experiences you care to share?
pure xtc: I asked my parents for a drum kit when I was 5, they got me a Fender Stratocaster instead. It was bigger than I was at the time but I was obsessed with it and took it with me everywhere to show everyone I could play "Smoke On the Water."
My parents are musical and I was always surrounded with music. My dad would take me to local record shops on the weekends and my mom had me in piano lessons around 4th grade, it was really important to her that I learn how to read music.
I finally had the chance to play drums at 15 and that was a huge life shift for me. I spent the last 15 years touring with different bands across the US and Canada, growing more in love with music. During the pandemic I started relearning guitar and singing for the first time ever and that’s how pure xtc formed.
I don’t think I’ve ever really had a choice in the matter, music is what I’m supposed to be doing. It’s all I know.
Nobody's Home is out on November 12. Watch the trailer here.
After the last 2 years of dealing with the pandemic and packing on those COVID pounds here are some motivational quotes that can be the spark plugs to our wellness engines. You can have a full tank of gas, a clean carburetor, all the fluids topped off, and 300 horsepower of Detroit’s finest under the hood, but you’re going nowhere without that initial spark. In your quest for well-being, you need a catalyst to move you from idle to ideal. Here are some motivational jolts to inspire you to get your health and fitness vehicle moving.
Make time for exercise each dayPhoto by Victor Freitas on Unsplash
Thomas Paine said, “The harder the conflict, the more glorious the triumph.” You will have conflicts with making time for exercise each day. The treadmill will conflict with your enjoyment of the living-room couch and its fluffy pillows. Your body will engage in conflict with dumbbells and exercise balls as it seeks better health. Embrace these conflicts with excitement, and walk through the smoke and fire. Triumph is waiting on the other side.
Marathon runnersPhoto by Miguel A. Amutio on Unsplash
John F. Kennedy said, “Things do not happen. Things are made to happen.” The firefighter’s 55-pound weight loss did not just happen one day on a call. The computer programmer’s success in the Chicago Marathon did not just happen on a Sunday in October. The 4th grade teacher’s significant drop in cholesterol level did not just happen the day before spring break. These people made things happen…and it took time.
Ralph Marston of The Daily Motivator website, wrote, “What you do today can improve all your tomorrows.” Let today be the first day in 28 years without a cigarette. Stay an extra five minutes on the recumbent bike at the gym today. Start training today for the three-day breast cancer walk that is scheduled for the fall. Tomorrow is always waiting to see what you put in your piggy bank today. Invest wisely and watch the dividends grow.
Full MoonPhoto by CHUTTERSNAP on Unsplash
Jill McLemore once said, “Shoot for the moon. Even if you miss, you will land amongst the stars.” Set that goal to trim 75 pounds from your body. Only losing 42 pounds puts you way out there with the North Star. Aim to run 750 miles this year. Coming up 68 miles short will still put you past that former planet Pluto and on your way to the Orion constellation. Dropping eight waist sizes by Christmas instead of the projected 10 will let you glow with the luminescence of several brilliant wonders in the sky. By the way, I think there’s a full moon tonight!
Zig Ziglar stated, “You don’t have to be great to start, but you have to start to be great.” Tom Cruise was another aspiring pretty face in Hollywood about 30 years ago before starting to audition for parts in TV shows. Jared Fogle was a morbidly obese college student at Indiana University in the 1990s before beginning his Subway diet. Mark Zuckerberg was just another starry-eyed Ivy Leaguer until he began to implement a social network idea. They all have that common bond: They started something.
These motivational quotes should help get your wellness engine running and once your car is started there’s no telling where your health and fitness can go. Don't forget to end me a postcard when you get there!
This health and fitness article is brought to you by that guy who’s sneaky like a black hole and bright like a nebula. My name is Ron Blake and I can be found playing with my telescope at email@example.com.
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Stay safe and get tested!
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Is there any cost?
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How soon do I get the results?
Curative provides results within 24 hours of arrival at our lab (if not sooner). We pride ourselves on our ability to distribute tests rapidly, test patients easily, and send them their results quickly. Other highlights include:
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Curative believes that communal well-being is fundamental to individual health.
Curative is building infrastructure to make essential health services easier to access for everyone. Their infrastructure is designed to change as the world does—offering nearby access, affordable services, and science-based guidance.
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“I wish I could work out, too, but I just don’t have the motivation!”
Give me a dollar for every time I’ve heard that and I’d be in Cabo San Lucas with an umbrella drink right now. Let’s identify a few of your motivations to get you on the right path. They are there … you just need to realize them so you can make it a great 2022.
How about getting healthy so you can be at that Christmas celebration in 30 years with all the family gathered around and exchanging presents? There will be nieces, nephews, brothers, sisters, children and maybe some grandchildren, all enjoying the sounds and sights of the season. That would be amazing!
How about being healthy so you can watch the first man land on Mars in 2030? You hear all the talk about preparing for a mission to Mars, but it will be a long time in coming. Just think if you were alive and well to see it happen!
How about being healthy so you can attend that 60-year class reunion? It might even be nice to walk into the function with a spring in your step and a glow of health about you! Many of your classmates will have walked past St. Peter and those pearly gates by that time, but you can give yourself a chance to stay here with some proactive measures.
How about being healthy so you can spend more time being relaxed and retired? It would be awesome to just not have to do anything you didn’t want to do! Get up every day and use that watch they gave you as a fashion accessory only. With a healthy body, you can spend ample time in the lap of leisure well into your 90s.
How about being healthy so you can walk your dog with your grandkids or great-nephews after that Thanksgiving meal many years down the road? It will be so cool to have that turkey dinner with all the relatives, but it’ll be even more fun to be able to move around without having to catch your breath between steps.
How about being healthy so you can continue to enjoy vibrant sunsets, thrilling football games, colorful leaves in the fall, summer barbecues, or birthday cards in the mail?
Everyone can find the motivation to work out! You just have to identify which motivation will get you to your starting line each day and which will help you get to your daily finish line.
There are plenty of great things to enjoy in life. Find your motivation and start earning your frequent flyer miles for your healthy life. Then soar into the future with excitement about what will be!
This article of motivation is brought to you by a guy who knows a good thing when he sees it. That guy of good vision is Ron Blake, and he can be spotted on that bright horizon at firstname.lastname@example.org.