Hey, I’m Isaiah Valdes and this is my new column, “Rock Your World.” In this column, I combine my roles as journalist and singer/songwriter to bring you stories about some of the greatest musicians and artists of all time. With detailed biographies, smart editorials, and fascinating features, I present my take on the music industry from the past to the present. Through “Rock Your World,” I hope my readers gain knowledge about and a greater appreciation for all kinds of music.

I’d like to thank a number of my peer student reporters and staff editors at Simpson Street Free Press for contributing to and helping me with my column. And thank you, readers, for checking out my work!

“All I can do is be me, whoever that is” – Bob Dylan

Ali Tomineek is an American hip hop artist, producer, actor, and writer. With just a keyboard and single song verse, he launched his career when he was only 13-years-old. [read more...]
The “Godmother of Punk” and feminist icon, Joan Jett, worked hard for all her accomplishments. Born Joan Larkin, she took on the stage name Joan Jett along the path to her dream of starting an all-girl band. [read more...]
Eleanora Fagan, commonly known as Billie Holiday, was an entertaining international jazz singer. She was born on April 7, 1915, in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania to her parents, Sarah Julie and Clarence Holiday. [read more...]
Singer and actress, Selena Gomez was born on July 22, 1992 in Grand Prairie, Texas. Her parents are Amanda Cornett and Ricardo Gomez. [read more...]
CNCO is a Latin American boy band with five members: 21-year-old Christopher Velez (Ecuadorian), 20-year-old Richard Camacho (Dominican Republican), 19-year-old Zabdiel De Jesus (Puertorican), 18-year-old Joel Pimentel (Mexican), and 16-year-old Erick Brian Colon (Cuban). [read more...]
Justin Drew Bieber, known simply to much of the world as Justin Bieber, is a pop superstar who was first discovered via YouTube at age 12. Born on March 1, 1994, Bieber was raised in Stratford, Ontario by a single mother. [read more...]
The question “is music poetry?” crossed my mind on a Tuesday afternoon at the Simpson Street Free Press newsroom, when I stumbled across a news release my editor Aarushi Agni had placed inside my folder. The release, a recent article from The New York Times , explained the reactions of the literature community after the iconic Folk singer/songwriter Bob Dylan was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature for his songwriting work. [read more...]
Ella Fitzgerald, also known as “The First Lady of Song,” was an astonishing singer. Born to William Fitzgerald and Temperance “Tempie” Williams Fitzgerald, in Newport News, Virginia on April 25, 1917, Fitzgerald lived solely with her mother. [read more...]
A big-time star with an attitude, Selena Quintanilla Perez was born in Lake Jackson, Texas, on April 16, 1971. She began performing as a child and, by age of 10, became the lead singer in her family band, "Selena y Los Dinos". [read more...]
Who revolutionized jazz music and created some of the most well-known songs in history? Louis Armstrong, that's who. Though Armstrong passed away 45 years ago, his legacy is just as prevalent as ever. [read more...]
The roots of blues music run deep. This rich history can be traced along major highways running south to north through the American heartland. US. Route 61 is one these roads. It is known as the “Blues Highway.” [read more...]
I have always been a big fan of music. In my free time, I enjoy listening to Latin pop, Bachata, Reggaetón, hip-hop, and salsa. My dream is to become a professional singer just like Justin Bieber or Bob Marley. A couple weeks ago, I was at Simpson Street Free Press’ South Towne newsroom when I shared my dream with Mckenna, an assistant editor. She responded, “don’t quit your day job.” [read more...]
Tyga is an American rapper, best known for being signed by Lil Wayne’s Young Money Entertainment Management Company. [read more...]
La danza folklórica méxicana representa la cultura de varios siglos. Cuando llegaron los españoles en el siglo 16 trajieron muchos bailes al estilo europeo como el vals, la polka y el chotis cuales infuyeron las danza indígena. [read more...]
A biopic based on the memoir of rock and roller Cherie Currie; The Runaways is a thrilling film directed by Floria Sigismondi about the rise and fall of Joan Jett’s teenage band. The Runaways stars Kristen Stewart as the legendary Joan Jett and Dakota Fanning as the seductive Cherie Currie. The storyline takes place in California during the mid 1970s, when Joan was just 17. [read more...]
Have you ever wondered how Drake became one of the most famous artists in the music industry? Well here’s the story of how Drake went from “0 to 100, real quick,” to quote one of his songs. [read more...]
Celeste Curiel empezó a cantar a los cuatro anos de edad. Desde pequeña le encantaba la música de mariachi y tenía ilusión de ser cantante. Ahora, Celeste estudia en la universidad Texas State University, donde está estudiando para obtener su maestría de canto y de ópera. [read more...]
One of the many joys of music is its many different styles and genres. Just like there’s a book for everyone, there’s a musical style for everyone. Some people prefer jazz, others like rap. Artists like John Mayer and Jamie Cullum are adored by some, while others would much rather jam to Green Day. Unfortunately, today’s big retail stores are limiting the variety of music offered to the public. [read more...]