Start your engines and grab your sunscreen because Friday Five is headed to South Beach! Volume 71 is heavily inspired by the Miami Grand Prix, but it's not all about the racing. We felt moved by beachy design and great, outdoor jams for the week, and that's what we brought to you. That didn't stop us from getting into a little true crime this week, though. So enjoy Friday Five, Vol. 71, because there's truly something for everyone.
F1 Miami Grand Prix
One of our favorite sports leagues - and maybe the fastest-growing sport in the US - is back on American soil this weekend. F1 makes its long-anticipated Miami debut this weekend with the Miami Grand Prix, and we're pretty amped about it. With Drive to Survive, Formula One is exploding in popularity in the US, so we're hoping that's going to mean more races in the States to come. We already have our eyes on 2023 in Vegas, but for now, South Beach is a great addition to the circuit. There's been a ton of great content coming out of the weekend even before race day, and celebrities like Tom Brady are flocking down to Miami for the race. It's going to be an absolutely massive event in a really gorgeous setting, so you couldn't ask for much more. Not to mention, we're used to having to wake up incredibly early for these races -- so the EST start-time is a blessing for us.
We're keeping it a little beachy with our IG design pick for this week, and highlighting 3D designer Josh Pierce. His Instagram bio reads "transcendental artist," and we definitely get that from the work on his profile. The work mostly consists of really cool 3D environments that feel very serene, and sometimes even supernatural. The one that caught our eyes this week was called "Outpost," and it's a little beach hideaway tucked into a remote cove. It's incredibly realistic, but like most of his work, there's an element of fantasy in there, too. All of the work on Pierce's profile has a great mix of color, sharp lines, and cool designs, often with a bit of neon mixed in. It all adds up to a nice breath of fresh air and tranquility on our feeds, and we highly recommend you bring it onto your feeds, too.
Jam In The Van
We have always made our love of NPR's Tiny Desk well-known on the Friday Five, but this week, we found a new place to listen to up-and-coming indie groups playing great, stripped-down shows. Jam in the Van is, among other things, a mobile recording studio that allows bands to play full sets in a unique, tiny space. Their lineup of performances from Austin during SXSW put them on our radar, and we especially loved Red Rum Club and Night Moves. But now, we can't get enough, and we've been going back through the archives to find more sets put on repeat. Jam In The Van market themselves as the "headiest source for music on the internet" and we might have to agree. There are tons of new performances uploaded weekly, so there's always something fresh to watch, and a lot of the recordings end up on Spotify, too. That means you can add any JITV performances you love to whatever summer playlists you might have cooking. We love fun, outdoor jams, especially as the weather warms up, and this channel just reminds us of a local band playing a great gig at a dive bar.
Trombone Shorty - Lifted
Speaking of jams, one of the kings of modern jazz is out with a new album, and it's pretty sick. Trombone Shorty's Lifted has a lot of great tracks on it, not to mention collaborations with some big hitters in the pop/blues/jazz crossover space, including Gary Clark Jr. The album's not just for jazz fans, and it would be hard for anyone keep their heads from bobbing along to some of these tracks. "Come Back" leads off the album with a really great groove, and Gary Clark Jr's performance on "I'm Standing Here" brings it back to the mainstream with a little bit of rock n' roll. And we love the way the title track "Lifted" meshes a great guitar riff with some killer horn parts. While it's a little bit of a departure from the music we normally feature, we always love tracks with great instrumentals and standout horns - and with Trombone Shorty, those things are the primary focus. Lifted will get you up and moving from your desk during the work week, and could fit on any weekend playlist, too.
The true crime genre goes meta with the newest HBO dramatic miniseries, The Staircase. The series is based on the investigation/murder trial of Michael Peterson, and the doc of the same name that followed along with the case in real time. So, for those keeping track at home, it's a fictionalized retelling of not just the alleged murder of Kathleen Peterson, but also the making of the documentary, as well as the court case to follow. There's huge star power in the cast, with Colin Firth and Toni Collette leading the way, and actors like Sophie Turner getting major roles. We are really interested in the genre as a whole, and even have some related work coming down the pipe -- but more on that later. The Staircase should be yet another weekly HBO show that captivates a giant audience, even though many viewers probably know how the story goes. Given the boom in the true crime genre, this feels like the natural next step in its evolution.