Riffs & Rhymes is a multi-faceted music blog dedicated to making quality conversation to enhance everyone’s experience with the world’s most universal language.

This site was created as a community for exploring and discussing essential topics in music and taking a comprehensive look at some of the sounds and voices responsible for giving the world its good vibrations. Here, you will find a steady stream of reviews, lists and think pieces created for your daily music consumption. We’re fans first and writers second, so rather than true criticism, we like to think of this site as an extension of our thoughts and conversations over the years as music appreciators.

Between the blog, our upcoming podcast and each Riffs & Rhymes social media channel, it’s our goal to connect with music fans of all kinds on as many fresh and wide-ranging perspectives as possible. Whether it’s discovering new sounds or reconnecting with vintage records of the past, we’re here to document and share that experience with you. Cheers.

Meet the Team

Alex Johnson

Creative Contributor

Born and raised in San Diego, Alex currently resides in sunny Phoenix, Arizona, where he studies at Grand Canyon University. When he’s not waiting tables to earn some extra cash, you can find him in the gym pumping iron, in the kitchen making breakfast at all hours of the day or sliding on a pair of boots to channel his inner cowboy.

Get to know me in three records: Eagles – Eagles, John Mayer – Continuum, Midland – On The Rocks

Ellie Burleson

Creative Contributor

Ellie is a self-proclaimed coffee addict from Santa Barbara, California. While music is one of her biggest interests, film is her real soft spot. On her days off, you can find her binging whatever new show she’s on, spending way too much money at Target, taking photos or enjoying a nice meal while drinking a good beer or cocktail with her boyfriend.

Get to know me in three records: Beach House – Bloom, Nilüfer Yanya – Miss Universe, Tyler, The Creator – Flower Boy

Max Pugh

Staff Writer

A bit of a black sheep, Max spends most of his time in the dark with his hand in a box of honey nut cheerios. Similarly to a Gremlin, when Max touches water he multiplies into several smaller and more mischievous versions of himself. He dreams of one day playing in a successful rock band but is studying computer science until he gets his big break. Overall, Max is a gentle-souled, wannabe rock star with many things to say about music.

Get to know me in three records: Ozzy Osbourne – Blizzard of Ozz, Rush – 2112, The Velvet Underground – The Velvet Underground

Mike Flores

Staff Writer

Mike was born and raised in Fresno, California, eventually making his way down to So Cal to play baseball collegiately.  His hobbies include writing, reading, Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, and sparking up a fat one and listening to music. His love for music sparked at a young age, playing piano, drum kit and saxophone, and his love for hip-hop started when he got his hands on the first album he ever bought himself, 50 Cent’s Get Rich or Die Tryin’, forever sending him down the rabbit hole.

Get to know me in three records: Marty Robbins – Gunfighter Ballads and Trail Songs, Three 6 Mafia – Most Known Unknown, 50 Cent – Get Rich or Die Tryin

Roberto Johnson

Creator and Editor

Roberto is a San Diego native, aspiring vinyl hoarder and lifelong sports fan. His hobbies include writing, coaching baseball and downing tacos and cerveza, usually at the same time. Other dreams of his entail learning the guitar and starting a Gram Parsons tribute band, after he learns the guitar.

Get to know me in three records: Beach House – Teen Dream, Danny Brown – XXX, The Flying Burrito Brothers – The Gilded Palace of Sin