mercredi, juin 25, 2008

Sojourners Still

"Children Playing London Bridge," William H. Johnson
It seems, we spend so much time, as a community, worrying about saving our young black males, that we often forget about the young black females. Many of them are just as angry as the young black males that everyone is focusing on. And many of them are being impacted -- greatly -- by the anger of young black males.
~Lynne d Johnson
I had to call attention to this important point, one of many, from Lynne d Johnson's recap of one of the panels in the to be aired as part of CNN's Black in America series. Black girls and women are persistently marginalized, even in their own minds, in public policy and public discourse for the hysteria over the very real threats to Black men. But what about the very real threats to us (some by them)?!?!

mardi, juin 24, 2008

Max Factor

So full disclosure: I stalked Maxwell for 5 minutes. I was on East Houston street. I spotted him in front of Indochine. Some chick he knew and her friend stopped to say hello. He stopped and greeted her. Her friend offered her hand in introduction, he kissed it. He's just that type of guy (he's also tall unlike your average celebrity). So I followed him down Elizabeth street and telephoned/texted many. I stopped around Café Habana when I regained my senses.

In the dry spell since his last release, I've heard rumors that he worshipped the devil and required all his dates to submit to tarot readings. I've also heard rumors that he was gay. Let it be known that whether he be gay or straight, a devil-worshiper, Christian, Sufi or Buddhist, folk are pining for good soul music. Compared to the staid and so so Rev. Al Green covers by Jill Scott and Anthony Hamilton, two talented performers in their own right, Maxwell murdered "Simply Beautiful" tonight on the BET Awards and reminded me so much of his absence. Cococure! More on the BET Awards at VIBE.

Update. The video of Maxwell's performance below:

Pic Source: Concrete Loop

dimanche, juin 22, 2008

The Purpose-Driven Loss

Having in one life quadrant learned little and known better, my mind clings to bold declarations: “My next move could possibly be the end of you”. “I’m gonna find you and make you want me too” was the puffed out tween iteration. History seems to have proven that Ms. Hill was faking it just long enough to collect a Grammy in loc extensions and hysterics, begging the question, who made it? But I’m not gonna call on Ma’at, oh or woa. Life doesn’t respond to query but action. I’ve been learned just loathe to apply, fearful, complacent.

That was yesterday. Today I'm stuck on the 8:00 AM service for which I was predictably tardy (second offering late, not benediction late). Pastor, not mine--I'm in limbo since Dr. Forbes retired at Riverside--had us recall those instances where we were pushed out, fired, dumped, vanquished. No hands were raised or heads nodded 'cause it's just not that type of borough, in the same way that passers-by don't smile or speak. But then he suggested that if not for the shove, for the door hitting what the good lord split, we wouldn't move. Thanks to the push out, we can press on.

vendredi, juin 20, 2008

Sweets in the Streets

Vegan brownie
Originally uploaded by Mitsooko has organized over 700 Bake Sales across the country this Saturday to help fund their efforts to elect Barack Obama, or as I like to call him Barry O. I am baking vegan treats for one of the Fort Greene Bake Sales. So come check it out. I or my sweets will be at the corner of South Elliott Place and Fulton Street, which is just a block down Fulton from Habana Outpost, from 11:30 AM on.

Since I'm a Francophile pining to get back to Paris, I must note how NYC has finally jumped on the Fête de la Musique bandwagon with its inaugural 2nd annual Make Music New York all day free festival happening SATURDAY as well. I've got a few acts I got to check out for work but intend to roam the city pretty willy nilly. Sadly, in Paris me and the crew decided to trail after our French/African homie who had a knack for leading us to parties/performances just as they were dissipating. So our fête was spent on the RER, and the po po's predictably acted a fool damn near hemming me up, thank God for the closing train doors, for taking pictures of them harassing coloreds.

Check the Calendar here. Maybe I missed it, but wouldn't it make more sense to offer the schedule in a matrix format and make it printer-friendly?

mardi, juin 17, 2008

Speaking Freely

"And that's when I knew I had transcended the peanut butter and jelly sandwich over to the Boston Celtics."
-Kevin Garnett tonight on ABC sports commenting on Ray Allen's adoption of Garnett's pre-game PB&J snack.
Garnett, God bless him, but I think he meant "transferred", "transported" even. He's still better than Jordan and certainly, an improvement over Magic "he thowed the ball" Johnson. I'd be willing to tutor NBA basketball players. I think I have unique insight as a recidivist and self-aware malapropper. I'd charge reasonable rates. I think speech coaches, or better yet a finishing school for athletic overachievers, are a much more valuable investment than Zegna suits for the league's image. I imagine even the athletes with sensible parents were so preternaturally successful as to preclude home training. Now, all I need is an audience with David Stern.

And I'm ecstatic over the Celtic victory. Who would have ever thought, late eighties/early nineties Lakers fan that I and my fam was, that I would ever root for the Celtics. Blame it on Kobe.


I've been googling for a few minutes and came up with nothing. Could anybody direct me to where I can report a triflin' landlord/management company and thus compel them to fix the problem? The wiring in our bldg has proved faulty and therefore in half my apt the outlets don't work and haven't since I left for Philly damn hear two weeks ago. (I swear if one more person tells me to fiddle with my circuit breaker it's gonna be some shit. It's NOT an issue that can be resolved by fiddling with the circuit breaker.) They are unwilling to address this issue and send an electrician. Cheap bastards! To whom do I report them? How can I get them to fix it? It has to be against the law to not provide access to electricity through faulty wiring. Right? Somebody help.

dimanche, juin 15, 2008

Duly Noted

Photo credit: J Dubbya

I was at Wonder-FULL. I jumped on stage with Stevie. Yes. Stevie. He was there as many of you may have heard. I sweated out my hair and danced barefoot even though I'm a germaphobe. Good shit. More on it over at VIBE. Also check my thought on Kells.

Pas une bonne idée

Photo credit: AP Photo/Bill Waugh

Coyle's rundown of Rock's act isn't any different from mine at the turn of 2008, still it's impressive that Rock rocked sixty thou at Bonnaroo (maybe next year) and depressing that he hasn't cut that dumb ass joke at which I took umbrage about Black women being too ball-bustingly aggressive to be first lady. The Tiger Woods reference is new though. Still love Chris.
Chris Rock performs for Bonnaroo masses


MANCHESTER, Tenn. (AP) — Comedians will often talk about "the room" — how it feels, whether it's good or not, how to work it.

Chris Rock played to a room Friday night that few comedians could command. Rock performed his act in front of tens of thousands on the main stage of the Bonnaroo Music & Arts Festival. Following him was Metallica, who had the benefit of screeching guitars, a dynamic light show and pyrotechnics.

Rock had only himself and a microphone, but nevertheless appeared to have the festival crowd hanging on his every punch line. Addressing the Bonnaroo crowd, which has traditionally been on the hippy side since it was founded in 2002, Rock mock-chastised them for taking what he called "performance enhancing drugs."

"You all should be ashamed of yourselves for taking an antidepressant to see a comedian," said Rock. "I am an antidepressant!"

For Bonnaroo, Rock didn't do much to tailor his act, which he's lately been touring. He recently took the "No Apologies" tour abroad where he in London set a record for the largest standup performance in the United Kingdom with a crowd of about 14,500.

However many were there for his show Friday it was surely more than the London audience; the festival typically draws nearly 80,000 and the majority of Friday's festival-goers watched Rock perform. Metallica's Lars Ulrich and Kirk Hammett introduced Rock while many of the other comedians performing at the festival — Zach Galifianakis and Brian Posehn among them — watched from backstage, naturally curious at how Rock would work the outsized room.

Rock quickly launched into politics and the presidential candidates' false claims of modesty.

"How many Kanye injections must you endure" to decide you should be president, Rock joked, referring to Kanye West, who was to perform late Saturday night at Bonnaroo.

Some of Rock's best material was about the presumptive Democratic nominee, Barack Obama, who Rock supports. The comedian said he was impressed by Obama's unmistakable blackness, joking that his name makes him sound like "the bass player for the Commodores."

Though Rock thinks America is "ready" for a black president, he doesn't think it's ready for a black First Lady. When the crowd oohed, Rock insisted, "Yeah, I said it. At Bonnaroo I said it." His reason? Rock believes a black woman could never be in the background of a relationship, and that Obama would have been better off marrying a white woman: "Look what it did for Tiger Woods," he said.

One of Rock's best bits came while discussing rising gas prices despite the war in Iraq, which some predicted would help keep oil under control.

"Let me tell you something," said Rock. "If I invade IHOP, pancakes are going to be cheaper in my house."

jeudi, juin 12, 2008

EXTRA Wonder-FULL Ticket

Got an extra one, message me if you want to buy.

mardi, juin 10, 2008

Vision Festival

These panels and performances look stellar. I was gonna see Thurgood tomorrow but might postpone to go to the panel tomorrow on New Orleans.
Vision Festival XIII: The Premier American AvantJazz Festival

At Clemente Soto Velez
107 Suffolk Street
between Rivington and Delancey
Take F to Delancey or J, M, Z to Essex Street

For more info visit Vision Festival
For advance tickets visit at Brown Paper Tickets
or 800-838-3006
To support our $100,000 matching grant visit our Contribution Page

Wednesday, June 11th at 5pm / Friday, June 13th at 5pm / Sunday, June 15th at 3pm

Wednesday, June 11th at 5pm
NEW ORLEANS: Culture, Crisis, and Community

Moderator:Larry Blumenfeld – journalist

Panelists: Kalamu ya Salaam - Poet/activist; Kent Jordan - Musician/educator; Josh Neufeld - Cartoonist/Red Cross volunteer; Emmanuel Pratt - Urban planning researcher/digital media artist

Friday, June 13th at 5pm

JAZZ FACTIONS: Exploring ways that we can build bridges and strengthen our creative musical community

Moderator: Michael Heller

Panelists: Onaje Allan Gumbs - Pianist; Christian Mcbride - Bassist; Craig Harris – Trombonist; Connie Crothers – Pianist; William Parker – Bassist; Jim Staley – Trombone; Pauline Oliveros – Accordion; Rick White - Producer

Sunday, June 15th at 3pm

NYC: Building Arts in the Community

Moderator: Taylor Ho Bynum – Musician and Organizer

Panelists: Paul Bartlett - Community board 3 cultural liaison; Esther Robinson – Founder of ArtHome, an advocacy group for artist housing; Patricia N. Parker – Producer of Arts for Art and RUCMA; James Keepnews - Arts organizer *Other panelists TBA


Day 1: Tuesday, June 10th
Main Stage 7:00 p.m.
Opening Invocation featuring Hamid Drake, Patricia Nicholson and William Parker

7:30 p.m.
Taylor Ho Bynum Sextet
Taylor Ho Bynum, cornet
Matt Bauder, tenor sax and clarinet
Mary Halvorson, guitar
Evan O'Reilly, guitar
Jessica Pavone, violin and bass
Tomas Fujiwara, drums

8:30 p.m.
Dave Douglas & Magic Circle
Dave Douglas, trumpet
Uri Caine, piano
Bryan Carrott, vibes

9:30 p.m.
The Nu Band
Mark Whitecage, alto sax and clarinet
Roy Campbell, trumpet
Joe Fonda, bass
Lou Grassi, drums

10:30 p.m.
Mark Dresser Duo
Mark Dresser, bass
Denman Maroney, piano

8:15 p.m.
Vision of New York: Projections of Vision Festival XII photos by Luciano Rossetti

9:15 p.m.
K.J. Holmes & David Moss (within "Lunar" by Kazuko Miyamoto)
K.J. Holmes, dance / David Moss, bass

10:15 p.m. "Untitled Durational Painting," video art projection by Bill Mazza

Day 2: Wednesday, June 11th
Lifetime Achievement Celebration of Edward "Kidd" Jordan

Main Stage
7:00 p.m. Jordan/Bluiett/Burrell
Kidd Jordan, tenor sax
Hamiet Bluiett, baritone sax
Dave Burrell, piano

7:45 p.m.
Billy Bang, violin
Kidd Jordan, tenor sax
William Parker, bass
Hamid Drake, drums

8:30 p.m.
Jordan/Fielder Ensemble
Kidd Jordan, tenor sax
Clyde Kerr, trumpet
Joel Futterman, piano
William Parker, bass
Alvin Fielder, drums

9:15 p.m.
New Orleans Pays Tribute to Kidd Jordan
Kent Jordan, flute
Marlon Jordan, trumpet
Donald Harrison, alto sax
Darrell Lavigne, piano
Brian Quezergue, bass
Alvin Fielder, drums
Maynard Chatters, piano strings

10:15 p.m.
Fred Anderson, tenor sax
Kidd Jordan, tenor sax
William Parker, bass
Hamid Drake, drums

5:00 p.m. [Free Admission]
Panel: The Role of Art in the Healing of New Orleans

7:30 p.m.
Projection of photos of Kidd Jordan by Michael Wilderman

8:15 p.m.
Spoken word by Kalamu Ya Salaam

10:00 p.m.
Projection of photos of Kidd Jordan by Michael Wilderman

Day 3: Thursday, June 12th

Main Stage
7:30 p.m.
Oliver Lake's New Quintet Project
Oliver Lake, alto sax
Peck Allmond, trumpet
Jared Gold, organ
Jonathan Blake, drums
Jahi Sundance, DJ

8:30 p.m.
James Spaulding's Swing Expressions
James Spaulding, alto sax and flute
Gregory Porter, voice
Richard Clements, piano
Eric Lemon, bass
Reggie Nicholson, drums
Sabor, percussion

9:30 p.m.
Bluiett's Bio-Electric
Hamiet Bluiett, baritone sax
Billy Bang, violin
Harrison Bankhead, bass
Hamid Drake, drums

10:30 p.m.
Ensemble of Possibilities
Whit Dickey, drums
Rob Brown, alto sax
Daniel Carter, reeds and trumpet
Jason Kao Hwang, violin
Eri Yamamoto, piano
Joe Morris, bass

8:15 p.m.
Steve Dalachinsky, spoken word; Tom Chiu, violin

9:15 p.m.
Dance by Kazuko Miyamoto (within "Lunar" by Kazuko Miyamoto)

10:15 p.m.
Louis Reyes Riviera, spoken word; Ahmed Abdullah, trumpet; Radu, bass

Day 4: Friday, June 13th

Main Stage
7:30 p.m.
Ullmann/Swell 4
Gebhard Ullmann, reeds
Steve Swell, trombone
Hilliard Greene, bass
Barry Altschul, drums

8:30 p.m.
Sonny Simmons/Bobby Few
Sonny Simmons, alto sax
Bobby Few, piano

9:30 p.m.
Wadada Leo Smith's Golden Quintet
Wadada Leo Smith, trumpet
Vijay Iyer, piano
John Lindberg, bass
Famoudou Don Moye, drums
Pheeroan akLaff, drums

10:30 p.m.
Connie Crothers
Connie Crothers, piano

11:30 p.m.
Sabir Mateen/Henry Grimes Quartet
Sabir Mateen, reeds
Henry Grimes, bass and violin
Rasul Siddik, trumpet
John Betsch, percussion

5:00 p.m. [Free Admission]
Panel discussion: Jazz Factions

8:15 p.m.
Yvonne Meier/Saco Yasuma (within "Lunar" by Kazuko Miyamoto)
Yvonne Meier, dance
Saco Yasuma, alto sax

9:15 p.m.
David Budbill, poetry
William Parker, bass

10:15 p.m.
Projection: Lili White video installation

Day 5: Saturday, June 14th
Emerging Artist showcase (1-6 p.m.)

Milagro, 1:30 p.m.
Poetry by Hila Ratzabi, Chaedria LaBouvier and RonAmber Deloney

Main Stage, 2:00 p.m.
Jeff Arnal Trio
Jeff Arnal, percussion
Godron Beeferman, piano
John Dierker, tenor sax and bass clarinet

Milagro, 3:00 p.m.
Nabaté Isles' Imagination
Nabaté Isles, trumpet
David Gilmore, guitar
Sam Barsh, keyboards
Jaimeo Brown, drums

Milagro, 4:00 p.m.
Wynn Yamami, Taiko, percussion
Ali Sakkal, saxes and percussion
Christopher Ariza, electronics

Milagro, 5:00 p.m.
The MazzMuse Trio
Mazz Swift, violin, voice and electronics
James Peter Lee, lap steel
Vernon Reid, guitar and electronics

Saturday Evening

Main Stage
7:30 p.m.
P Nicholson's Celestial Moon Beams Funk
Lewis Barnes, trumpet
Sabir Mateen, reeds
Rob Brown, alto sax
Jason Kao Hwang, violin
Todd Nicholson, bass
Gerald Cleaver, drums
Patricia Nicholson, dance
Miriam Parker, dance
Jason Jordan, dance
Julia Wilkins, dance
Amon Bey, dance

8:30 p.m.
Matthew Shipp Trio
Matthew Shipp, piano
Joe Morris, bass
Whit Dickey, drums

9:30 p.m.
Paul Dunmall, tenor sax and bagpipes
Henry Grimes, bass
Andrew Cyrille, drums

10:30 p.m.
George Lewis/Joëlle Léandre
George Lewis, trombone and electronics
Joëlle Léandre, bass

11:30 p.m.
Edoardo Marraffa, reeds
Alberto Braida, piano
Antonio Borghini, bass
Fabrizio Spera, drums

8:15 p.m.
Vision of New York: Projections of Vision Festival XII photos by Luciano Rossetti

9:15 p.m.
Spoken word by Bill Zavatsky

10:15 p.m.
Sanchez/Carr (within "Lunar" by Kazuko Miyamoto)
Dolores Sanchez, dance
Maurice J. Carr, drums

Day 6: Sunday, June 15th

Main Stage
6:00 p.m.
Lewis Barnes' Hampton Roads
Lewis Barnes, trumpet
Rob Brown, alto sax
Darius Jones, alto sax
Todd Nicholson, bass
Warren Smith, drums

7:00 p.m.
Roy Nathanson's Sotto Voce
Roy Nathanson, alto sax and voice
Curtis Fowlkes, trombone
Sam Bardfeld, violin
Tim Kiah, bass
Napoleon Maddox, voice

8:00 p.m.
Abdoulaye Alhassane Toure's Deep Sahara
Abdoulaye Alhassane Toure, guitar and voice
Kali Z. Fasteau, soprano sax, nai, piano and voice
TBA, bass
TBA, drums

9:00 p.m.
William Parker's Inside Songs of Curtis Mayfield with Youth Choir
William Parker, bass
Amiri Baraka, voice and words
Leena Conquest, voice
Lewis Barnes, trumpet
Darryl Foster, saxes
Sabir Mateen, reeds
Dave Burrell, piano
Hamid Drake, drums

1:00 p.m. [$10 Admission]
Youth Performancce Humanities Preparatory HS / Tompkins Middle School / H.S. student band at York College

3:00 p.m. [Free Admission]
Panel: Building Arts in Community/NYC-RUCMA

6:45 p.m.
Dance & Music Improvisations, Part I featuring Yoshiko Chuma and friends

7:45 p.m.
Dance & Music Improvisations, Part II (within "Lunar" by Kazuko Miyamoto)

8:45 p.m.
Video Projection: "By Night No Stillness"
Video by Katy Martin and Miriam Parker featuring Hamid Drake, frame drum

dimanche, juin 08, 2008

The Roots Picnic

Captain Kirk
More later...

Edit: I posted a review yesterday at VIBE. I'll add some more thoughts about Philly and fandom here later.

jeudi, juin 05, 2008

Pass the Al Dente Pigeon Peas

top chef

I finally posted a Black Music Month post I'd drafted this weekend over and then I hopped over to MAN's blog and he's got a great Black Music Month playlist, the first of a series he'll unveil throughout the month. Check it, check it out.

PS-Dale looked extra fly last night, n'est-ce pas?
PSS-I might be in Philly this weekend for the picnic and I'm not familiar with area 'round Festival Pier. Any insights?