It's Your Anniversary

After a decade, they are still SUBMERGE’d in the heartbeat of Sacramento

Did you know that the traditional gift for a ten year anniversary is tin or aluminum? Not to be that person, but how on earth do you give someone something of tin/aluminum for a present?

“Here honey, I bought you this vintage oil can! It’s just like the tin man used to use!”

“For you my love, I give to you on this momentous occasion….. a bag of crushed aluminum cans. Turn them in and buy yourself something pretty. You know. Because love.”

Traditions can sometimes be a little strange. On the tail end of strange though, there are some amazing and wonderful traditions. One of mine has been and will continue to be the age old tradition of finding my local Submerge stand and grabbing the newest issues fresh off the printer.
I first picked up a copy of Submerge after I had moved back to California from the East Coast. I had been gone since 2001, as I had moved the literal MINUTE I got out of high school — I didn’t even stick around for the graduation because I hated Sacramento that much. When I jumped on that Amtrak to Colorado back in 01, I had no intentions of ever, ever, ever coming back here. Ever.

Life, as it turns out, has a funny way of telling you and your well laid plans to go fuck themselves, and the universe brought me back about a decade later. When I returned I assumed that Sacramento was going to be the same good old fashioned cow-town that I had known and hated from the teenage years, with two malls, one train, and a partridge in a pear tree.

Okay maybe not the partridge, but still.

When I first came back, I ended up out in North Natomas because it was new and inexpensive. I did not know where anything was, I didn’t know what had even happened since I had left. Who were the new local bands? What about the bars? Restaurants? I was lost in a city I had lived in a majority of my life, and I almost immediately went back to hating it.

Then I found Submerge.

News Boxes-Submerge

It helped me re-connect to Sacramento in a way that I desperately needed at the time. If I hadn’t, I might not still be here, and my life might not be as amazing as it has turned out to be. Which is why I wanted to get the chance to talk to Jonathan (one of the editors at the magazine) about the past, the present, and the future of the magazine. Read below:
Resident Stoner: Wow! Ten years! That is such a monumental achievement so first off, let me say congratulations! Did you ever think ten years ago that this is where you would be?

Jonathan Carrabba: Thank you! To be honest when Melissa and I first started Submerge I don’t think we thought we would be around five years, let alone ten. Most small businesses fail. That’s just a fact. Running a business is an insane amount of work. It’s all consuming. We feel super fortunate to have carved out a niche here in Sacramento and we truly owe everything to our advertisers and our incredible team of contributors.

RS: What was it that first gave you and the rest of your team the courage to start Submerge back then, and especially with how things have been for news outlets, what has kept you going?

JC: Back when we first started we had this perfect combination going for us of being young, super hungry, very passionate and just crazy enough to dive in and start a business. Now, all these years later, we’re still just grinding away constantly trying to put out the best possible content that we can to showcase all the rad-ness happening in and around the Sacramento area.

RS: What was, and is the mission statement of Submerge? Has it changed at all over the course of the last ten years?

JC: The last year or so we’ve been using this little slogan that I think sums it up pretty well, and that is: “Read. Learn. Do rad things.” Since day one up through now it has been our mission to highlight cool stuff happening in the Sacramento area in hopes that our readers will get out there and fill the local venues, galleries, restaurants and more to experience the rich culture our region has to offer. I’m sure you know this, as I see you out at like every cool show or event in town, but, we live in an amazing city with incredible music, art, food, theater, and especially comedy! I’ve always said that Submerge is just basically a mirror of what’s going on in Sacramento. People tell us stuff all the time, like, “Man I didn’t know there was so much cool stuff happening here until I flipped through Submerge.” When we hear that, it’s mission accomplished.

RS: Especially in a time such as this, where often time print publications are struggling to stay afloat and keep in circulation, Submerge has managed to keep it’s price completely free, and still push out quality articles on the art, music, and cultural scene that continues to grow in Sacramento — pardon my language, but … how the fuck do you do it?

JC: We’re very lucky to work with enough amazing advertisers that we can keep our magazine and our content free, which is very important to us, because everyone deserves free access to a local resource like Submerge to help them stay in the know about what’s going on in their community. So we work closely with a lot of local venues, event promoters, business owners, etc., as well as a number of national companies who are looking to reach Sacramento. What our advertisers have grown to love and appreciate is that when they place ads in Submerge, when they promote their brand through ours, they are directly helping to keep local arts journalism alive, which is important. So it’s a win-win, really.

RS: What is next on Submerges vision board? What is it that keeps you motivated and inspired at the paper on a daily basis?

JC: We’re just going to keep doing our thing. We’ve got some cool stuff in the works for the next year or so. We want to throw a few events scattered throughout the year to continue to celebrate our 10 year anniversary. So hopefully we’ll be able to do a comedy show, an art exhibit, another concert or two.

Submerge Various Issues

RS: How did you choose the lineup for the show at Holy Diver? (Happening tomorrow, Feb 3rd) Were you going for maximum mosh-pit-madness ? (bonus points if you were, because you achieved it)

JC: We just booked some bands that we wanted to see! Screature has a sick new album out called Old Hand New Wave that just dropped a couple weeks ago and they’ve been steadily killing it for years, so we thought they deserved to be on the show. We’re thrilled they agreed to play. Horseneck is one of our favorite heavier local bands, their 2017 album Heavy Trip is a must-listen. Destroy Boys are one of the more promising young bands to have come out of Sacramento in the last few years. They are so raw. Also Sam I Jam, who is known for his always amazing Le Twist events, is going to be playing some tunes at the show, too. It’s going to be a rager!

RS: Do you have any advice for anyone out there who may be interested in trying to get into the field, whether it be writing or starting their own publication, whether in print, online, or whatever form of media distribution occurs in the future.

JC: I would say just work hard at perfecting your craft, whether writing, design, photography or whatever. Write a lot. Take a lot of photos. Keep creating. Also, always strive to keep things as professional as possible when pitching ideas to editors, publishers, or possible employers. So, like, send a well-written email instead of commenting on their Instagram with, “You guys hiring?” Also, get to know the outlet that you’re pitching. We get pitches all the time to cover things that are happening out of town or way out of our wheelhouse of what we normally feature. So just do your research and don’t give up, be persistent.

RS: Ok just for fun… If you had to pick ONE group, band, artist etc to have on your cover — if you could wave a wand and land anyone — who would it be?

JC: Oh, wow, that’s a tough one. Kendrick? Dave Grohl? Over the years we’ve interviewed countless famous musicians and artists, so those are just a couple that come to mind who we have not had the opportunity to speak with… YET!
That last “YET” he utters, is highly factual. The first ten years have been amazing, and somehow this feels like only the beginning for what Submerge is going to accomplish. With continued love and support from the local scene, they are unstoppable.

Make sure you bring yourself, your cousin, your mama, whoever you can to the Feb 3rd show at Holy Diver — though it is technically a free show, they are suggesting a $10 donation.

Thank you Jonathan, Melissa and all of the amazing staff at Submerge for an amazing ten years. Here is to ten more. Their new issue is out on stands now so go grab a copy and find out about all of the amazing things going on in Sacramento this month.

Do rad things.

Submerge Issue 258-Jan29-Feb12-2018 (1)
Support local
Support the creatives
Support Sacramento.

Its a very different tune than I was singing many years ago, and Submerge was a major part of that. Thank you.

You know where to find me.

Olivia Monahan — Facebook
@thelivstyler — IG



Olivia Monahan

February 2nd, 2018

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