All posts by Omayra Lopez

About Omayra Lopez

Omayra is a Florida girl, mother of three, and visual artist sharing all things art, fun and the beautiful things in life. She firmly believes that one creates their own reality and applies that to her own life by marching to the beat of a different drum, using her camera as a tool for that purpose. Omayra is a jack of all trades and masters them all. When she's not behind of the camera, she's in front of it. Her experience as a model, helped her develop her eye as a photographer.

Catching Up With Ballyhoo! At The Detonate Tour

2018 has been a busy year for Maryland based, Ballyhoo!( and on September 28th, they released their latest album, Detonate which is a return to the punk-rock and ska style that they’re well known for. With such an accomplishment, comes another cross-country tour. Our team got to catch up with the band in St. Petersburg as they passed through Florida.

When asked about the writing process and production of the album, lead singer, Howi Spangler stated,

“It’s been really great, it’s nice to rock the fuck out on stage! These songs mean a lot to me because I’ve been through a lot these past couple of years and this music is a reflection of that.“

Beyond another signature-style album, this compilation is indeed more open and personal, as it relates to the frontman’s personal struggles, from his relationship with his late father (“Detonate”, “Barnabas”). while also bringing awareness to anxiety and depression (“I Don’t Wanna Go”, “Maryland Summer”, “Bruce Wayne”).

Howi went further on to state that the production of Detonate wasn’t a point to do another punk-rock record, it just “came out the way it did.”

While “Detonate” has quite a bit of relatable angst, there’s a bit of relief with the sweet, light-hearted “Can’t Hardly Wait”, dedicated to his fiancée, Danielle.

The band’s intentions with the album was to further connect with their fans. They have accomplished that connection on this current tour by drawing in thousands of loyal fans of all ages who travel hundreds of miles to jam out, singing along to every memorized track.

They’re still currently on tour and in 2019 they’ll be joining Badfish – A Tribute to Sublime, Reel Big Fish and The Expendables. This is an epic lineup that no alt-rock fan should miss so make sure to catch a show at your nearest city!

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[AltWire Interview] Mike Loy of The Penny Serfs

Alt-Rock band, The Penny Serfs have released their latest LP, Politics in a Time of Heroin.

Their lead singer, Mike Loy, took the time to speak to us about the writing process, his recovery from a near-fatal fall, and the future of the band.

Omayra Lopez [AltWire]: This is Omayra with, thank you so much for taking the time to do this interview! For our readers and those who haven’t yet heard of you, could you please tell is a bit about yourselves and the history of the band?

Mike Loy [The Penny Serfs]: Hi Omayra, this is Mikey Loy the singer of The Penny Serfs. I have been working with Kyle, Stu & Aiden on The Penny Serfs since around 2013. I have been involved in groups and solo for sometime now, most noteworthy being the guitarist of the band Chronic Future in the early 2000s. When I met Kyle we were techs for Regina Spektor and hit it off immediately and made a commitment to be in a band together, the rest is history.

Omayra Lopez [AltWire]: What was the writing process like for Politics In The Time of Heroin? How did you decide which tracks went into the LP and which did not?

Mike Loy [The Penny Serfs]: We had some rough ideas together on voice notes and we had little rehearsal. We then went to Atlanta and tracked a record in a week with my friend and genius producer Rick Beato. I wanted to keep us on our toes and really naturally capture the band developing the song in the studio. By the third take it seemed that we had fully came up with our parts and we feeling really cohesive. I think really just going for it and keeping it spontaneous helps us keep the band fresh and on the same page.

Omayra Lopez [AltWire]: Mikey, what can you tell us about your recovery from your accident so far, and how has this return to music been treating you since? What advice would you give to anyone who may be facing what you have, leading up to this release?

Mike Loy [The Penny Serfs]: I am very fortunate and grateful to be alive. I’m also very humbled by the support from my family, friends, other artists i work for and our fans for helping me get back on my feet. My recovery was very quick for all of my broken bones, about six weeks and I suffered a massive concussion but did not have any long lasting brain damage.  I can still sing and play and dance around just fine, my right wrist is about 60 percent of what it used to be with strength so I am fortunate that I am left handed.

Advice from me about my fall… I know it isn’t easy.. but please, make sure to have healthcare. Of course I did not so it was a fundraiser situation until we could figure out an emergency insurance situation.

Second. If you are going to climb up high, always make sure to wear a harness and stay cautious and safe minded. I let these precautions slip from my mind.

Omayra Lopez [AltWire]: As this year comes to a close, what does the future hold for the band?

Mike Loy [The Penny Serfs]: In February 2019 we will be releasing a limited deluxe vinyl of the Politics Record, as well as a new EP in March, and then wrapping it up with an extensive tour to hopefully start around Sxsw time. Hopefully we will have some dates to post very soon. We are very excited for 2019 and can’t wait to keep playing together and breaking stuff 🙂

Omayra Lopez [AltWire]: What message would you like to send to your fans and our readers?

Mike Loy [The Penny Serfs]: Always stay positive because within sufferance sometimes magic can occur. We are all lucky to be alive and I’m very happy and lucky to still be playing guitar and singing in a band with my best buds.

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[AltWire Interview] Zach Fowler of Sun Dried Vibes on ‘Stay Hopeful’

Sun Dried Vibes ( recently released “Stay Hopeful” around Labor Day weekend, and this album goes to show that summer isn’t over just yet!

Their lead singer and guitarist, Zach Fowler took some time to talk about the album as the band celebrated their release at the Surrounded by the Sound Music and Arts Festival at beautiful Longcreek, South Carolina.

Omayra Lopez [AltWire]: What was the writing process like for this album, are there any tracks that are particularly meaningful?

Zach Fowler [Sun Dried Vibes]: The writing process for me is always different. I don’t like to keep my process limited to any one style, so I keep it open in order to keep the songs fresh every time. There were a lot of collaborations on this album, so it was a great pleasure to work alongside a lot of my closest musical friends. It was incredibly cool to have Eric Rachmany of Rebelution, a major influence on me personally, want to be a part of the song “Smoke Session.” I didn’t write the song and then solicit him to be on it. Rather, we were hanging out at his house in San Francisco a couple years ago, jamming in his backyard when he asked me to show him some stuff I was working on. I played him the song and he was really into it. He said then and there that he wanted to be a part of the track when we started recording it, so for me that was a pretty major milestone in my musical career.

Omayra Lopez [AltWire]: How did this year’s Surrounded by the Sound Festival compare to previous ones for you?

Zach Fowler [Sun Dried Vibes]: This years’ SBTS was extra special because the festival was sort of like our Album Release Party for Stay Hopeful. We spent so much time on this record and it was an incredible feeling to see it debut at #1 on iTunes the first day of the festival. I couldn’t think of a better place to drop an album that has meant so much to me. We also debuted our new line-up at SBTS this year, as we lost our founding bass player, Evan Tyler, but added three new members, making us a five piece band – Tyler Vickery on vocals and guitar, Cliff Bundick on bass and Kody Farris on auxiliary percussion. These three guys are a major addition to the SDV line up and I think people are going to be even more impressed with our live sound now with these guys in the band.

Personally, my favorite track so far has been “Hopeful”. It’s that perfect song to help you rise above any tough situation and an awesome reminder that tough times don’t last forever.

“Smoke Sessions” is another great gem, which features TreeHouse as well as reggae stars and the mentioned, Grammy nominees, Rebelution! This track is pretty self explanatory in that one of the most therapeutic things one can do is introspect over a smoke session.

Overall this is a great album to celebrate the end of summer. Currently on tour, catch their vibes at a city near you!

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2018 Angry Orchard Rock the Roots Tour Recap

The 2018 Rock the Roots Tour by Angry Orchard kicked off on June 30th, covering 11 cities across the country and I had the privilege to catch it in my hometown of Orlando, Florida!

This year the tour was headlined by Sublime with Rome, along with Lupe Fiasco, New Politics, Pepper, Collie Buddz and many more while in addition to local and regional artists.

The Orlando, FL stop of the fest did not disappoint. Its family style atmosphere made for a very pleasant experience where those who just wanted to relax while enjoying some great music could sit on the lawn, play some games, or enjoy some delicious food and Angry Orchard Cider.

Naples, Florida based SOWFLO, opened up the night covering classic reggae hits, whilst also showcasing some of their originals. They truly showed us what Florida reggae is all about!

Collie Buddz, contributed to the tour in support of his latest single, “Love and Reggae.” He brought his good vibes to the set including classic hits like “Gimme Love” and “Blind to You”, which he closed his set with.

New Politics was a personal highlight for me as their set included their hits “Dignity”, closing with “Harlem” and  “Yeah, Yeah, Yeah”.

Lupe Fiasco reminded the fans of the responsibility that comes with purchasing their ticket. He performed some of his hits which included “Outta My Head” and just before he was about to close his set with “The Show Goes On”, we were once again reminded that we were in Florida, as a thunderstorm approached. While this was a rain or shine event, safety precautions were taken by pausing the show until the storm passed. Lupe prompted the hesitant fans to leave while security led everyone indoors for about 20 minutes or so.

Once the storm passed the show went on as planned, with the headliners, Sublime with Rome. The highlight for me was their tribute to the original frontman, Bradley Nowell by performing Sublime classics “What I Got” and closing with “Santeria”.

With this incredible atmosphere and putting the safety of the fans first, this for me will be the first of many more Rock the Roots Fests.

If you’re a music fan who enjoys Angry Orchard hard cider, this is not a fest you want to miss, so catch the next one at a city near you, however, drink responsibly!

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Artist Spotlight: Brother Mikey

Michael Reyes, known artistically as  Brother Mikey is a singer/songwriter Born in Bayamon, Puerto Rico and raised in the Bronx, N.Y. Currently living in Orlando Florida, he’s  dedicated his music to help heal others through vibration and awareness.

Brother Mikey’s musical influences are Nahko and Medicine for the People, Michael Franti, and Trevor Hall.

Currently on a journey of spiritual growth, Brother Mikey has crossed paths with Mauna Kea protector and educator, Pua Case.  Through this process, he has lent his voice to “Like the Mauna.” a tribute to the Mountain and Hawaii’s sacred land.

Listen to “Like The Mauna” here:

Follow Brother Mikey on Social Media






From Prison To Paradise: A Chat With Miles Galli of Dub-321

After a small break from the scene, Florida based Reggae/Ska-Punk band Dub-321 have begun to make their comeback. Just recently during Slightly Stoopid’s summer tour, the band played at their Official After Party in Cocoa with with St. Petersburg-based band, Summer Survivors and California-based, Tunnel Vision.

We recently caught up with lead singer Miles “Ras” Galli, for a brief chat on how he’s moving the band forward:

AltWire [Omayra Lopez]: How has your transition been from your time in prison to your release?  

Miles Galli: It was a little strange at first and took some adjusting but I was blessed to have found these guys that I am currently working with so soon. The supportive reception we have received since returning to the scene by both fans as well as other bands has been unbelievable. We just picked up a keyboardist, which has really elevated our sound to another level. All in all the transition has been amazing and I couldn’t imagine all this happening any more perfectly.

AltWire [Omayra Lopez]: What’s in store for the band at this moment?

Miles Galli: We are definitely excited to see what the future holds. Right now we are booking more and more shows and expanding our territory systematically. We just got done playing an awesome show with Kash’d Out! We’re also currently working on a new CD titled Braving Babylon that will be finished and released by the end of the year.

AltWire [Omayra Lopez]: Thank you again, Miles for sharing your story with the Altwire family! 

Dub-321 just recently released their live recording, From Prison to Paradise, which was recorded at Captain Hiram’s Sandbar in beautiful Sebastian, Florida. The performance in it’s entirety can be found and downloaded here.

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[AltWire Interview] Up From Here @ Vans Warped Tour

Vans Warped Tour is the largest traveling music festival in the country, and a platform for some of the greatest names in the rock scene, as well up and coming local and regional bands, to get their music heard. Among them are an incredibly talented band called Up From Here. The Tampa, Florida based punk-rock band took some time to talk to Altwire about what’s ahead for them and their thoughts on the Final Warped Tour.

AltWire [Omayra Lopez]: Would you please tell us a little bit about yourself, and the history of Up From Here?

Up From Here: We are a 4-piece pop-punk band from Tampa, Florida consisting of vocalist Danny Anderson, bassist Bern Mustian, guitarist Tyler Houser, and drummer Alex Boeving. We formed in January of 2015 after all of us meeting on Facebook. We’re surprised it has worked out as well as it has.

AltWire [Omayra Lopez]: What was the inspiration for the name of your band?

Up From Here: “Up From Here” comes from a lyric in a song called “Same Thing We Do Everyday Pinky” by the band Broadway.

AltWire [Omayra Lopez]: What’s your writing process like, and how do you decide which songs you release to the public?

Up From Here: The progression and lyrics of the song, or “skeleton” of the song, is written pretty much entirely by our vocalist Danny. After that is made he presents it to the rest of the band and then all four of us make it into what ends up getting recorded. We have written many different songs that haven’t been released or didn’t make the cut for a release. Once we get ready to record we take every song we’ve written and have a voting process between the four of us to decide what makes it onto the album.

AltWire [Omayra Lopez]: What has it been like to be a part of Vans Warped Tour and how do you feel about this final tour?

Up From Here: All four of us have grown up going to Warped Tour and it has played a crucial part in the evolution of our band considering we’ve played the Tampa stop of the tour three times. All of us are extremely sad to see the tour go. We’re a little disappointed that we never got to play the entirety of the tour before its end, but we’re extremely grateful for the opportunities we’ve been given to play the Florida dates.

AltWire [Omayra Lopez]: What are your best memories from previous Warped Tours? 

Up From Here: We’ve all been going to the Warped Tour since we were probably all in middle school, but we’ve played the Tampa date of it three times: 2015, 2017, and 2018. The first time we played it in 2015 we played the Ernie Ball stage after winning the Ernie Ball Battle of The Bands competition. That year all of us were ecstatic about playing the music festival that ultimately got us into this scene of music. However, in 2017 we got to play the main stage (Journey’s Left Foot) after winning the Ernie Ball PLAY Warped Tour contest. That was an unreal moment for all of us as we got to play a set on the biggest stage any of us have ever played on in front of the biggest crowd we’ve ever played for.

AltWire [Omayra Lopez]: How has this tour compared to the first time you played? 

Up From Here: When we first played in 2015 we had a pretty decent draw to our set but it was mostly our family and friends. When we got to play this year we were greeted by not only our family and friends, but also Up From Here fans that traveled from all sides of Florida to catch our set. We probably had the biggest crowd all day on the Full Sail stage.

AltWire [Omayra Lopez]: What advice would you give to new artists coming into the scene?

Up From Here: Keep working, don’t give up, don’t cut corners, don’t be petty, and be the best band you can possibly be.

AltWire [Omayra Lopez]:Is there a message you would like to send to your fans and our readers before we close?

Up From Here: We’re releasing a new 7-song EP in about a month-ish that was produced by Rian Dawson from All Time Low. Stay tuned for that as we’re all very proud of it and stoked to release it to everyone.






Tour Preview: Nahko and Medicine for the People

On October 20th, 2017 Nahko, front man of Nahko and Medicine for the People, released his solo album titled, My Name Is Bear, launching his tour in support of that record shortly thereafter.

This coming of age album is his most important one to date, as the album highlights many major milestones in his life leading up to his early adulthood. For many listeners, his life story can be seen as an inspiration for survival, the search for true identity and the healing one can experience through forgiveness.

What truly brings Nahko’s music to life is the work that he and his tribe have done off the stage as they’ve advocated for the preservation and welfare of our planet and our Native American tribes and culture.

This summer he’s once again touring with Medicine for the People supporting Dispatch on their America, Location-12 tour. Make sure to get your dose of their musical medicine at a city near you!

Official Website:



Photos: Slightly Stoopid, Stick Figure & Pepper @ Cocoa, FL

Slightly Stoopid have officially announced that “School’s Out For Summer” by kicking off a tour celebrating the release of their latest album “Everyday Life, Everyday People.” For this year’s tour, they’ve brought along  two very special guests, Stick Figure and Pepper.

For myself, a major highlight of this tour has been the awareness of the welfare of shelter and rescue pets, a cause brought to the forefront by Stick Figure who brought Cocoa The Tour Dog along ( for the tour. While the band lineup was truly epic, it was this 6 year old female Australian Shepherd who truly stole the show.

This tour has indeed has something for both music and dog lovers and for the Cocoa, FL show I attended, tickets sold out fast!

This is a lineup you do not want to miss and you should catch them at a city near you!

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