826CHI is kicking off Summer 2019 with the release of our collection of music journalism: Submerged in Euphoria. A compilation of interviews and reflections written by the high-school writers of the 826CHI Teen Press Corps, Submerged in Euphoria invites us to lose ourselves in the music we love, debunk every urge to hide from our emotions, and find comfort in a sea of strangers.
Last summer, the Teen Press Corps went to Pitchfork to see concerts, interview artists, and then reflect on their experiences through essays. As Jill Hopkins states in the book’s foreword, “Being young is having the freedom, the bandwidth, and the passion to let the music you’ve discovered wash completely over you. Allowing yourself to get completely, unhealthily obsessed with a band, with a song, with a single lyric is a luxury of youth. Being young means every day brings a first: your first band, your first guitar, your first concert, your first festival. In this volume you’ll read many young people’s firsts.”
“Any sense of misplaced dignity was long gone by the time I was jumping up and down hollering about how there wasn’t anybody that could treat me better, moving in rhythm with (as far as I could tell) everyone else in a 50 yard radius.” -”Do You Want an Encore” by Enrique, grade 12
Though the moments that captivated them most are unique, each of the students find themselves mesmerized by their feeling of community. Kyla, grade 12, observes Moses Sumney perform for the first time and writes “we are taught that sheltering ourselves from our emotions will keep us safe...Sumney, although unintentionally, debunks [it]...It was almost magical. The audience...all joined in and submerged themselves in the euphoria…We all became what we tried to abandon: a ball of feelings.”
Mercury, grade 11, also relishes in the community of the festival. “I still feel comfortable with myself around hundreds of strangers...being in the Pitchfork crowd felt good…In more ordinary circumstances, I would find myself invalidating my own masculinity as I pass by anyone with a flat chest or even a slightly overpowering appearance. Instead, I stand up a little straighter, engage myself a little more, and choose to have fun in my current state of being.”
Celebrate with these high-school writers as they discover new artists, interview some of their musical inspirations, and learn how to let go of their insecurities. This energetic collection of essays, interviews, and poems is perfect for music lovers and anyone who wants to relive the magic of their first concert. Submerged in Euphoria is available now for purchase in-store at the Wicker Park Secret Agent Supply Co.