Monday, June 27, 2011

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Tuesday is the new Thursday

Greetings peeps!
Next week, I'm looking forward to the Grand Opening of Tuesdays at Skyroom, NYC's hottest and highest outdoor rooftop lounge.

Expect an enchanting evening of live music, art and my mixing. Party starts after work, but I start spinning at 12am-3am.

No Cover Just Bring Good ENERGY!!!!!! All the info is below

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Thank You (again)

Last year around this time I thanked the people that were reading my blog because I had received over 4K visitors, and this year that number has almost doubled with 7K visitors and over 3K new visitors.

I have to admit, I am surprised because I neglected this blog in many ways over the past year with only 2-5 posts a month. Regardless, it is really nice to know that my little rants are being heard, or in this case, being read. I have even received quite a few emails not all of them have been very positive including a few that criticize my grammar. My father always told me to always accept any and all criticism as a lesson and all lessons are gifts. So, thank you for the feedback and I will try to improve my grammar though sometimes I write these posts pretty fast. I think it might be time to upgrade to a video blog, but not sure how I feel about talking to myself on camera but knowing me I'll get use to it.

Happy Summer my peeps, and if you're in NYC come thru to Empire Hotel this Friday I will be spinning on their glorious rooftop lounge from 7-10pm.

and Thank you for taking the time to check me out:)

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Remembering a Martyr

The first time I heard of Gil Scott Heron was when I was in High School and I was at a Summer Stage show. I don't think I actually heard him perform. All I remember was there was this poet who opened for him and he literally got booed off the stage. It was sad, and I was probably stoned and I think we (my friends and I) wandered off to sheep's meadow to smoke more pot. I didn't really hear his music until I was working in the marketing dept at Giant Step. TVT had re-issued "The Bottle" 12" and Giant Step was hired to promote and market the 12" to DJs and tastemakers. It was almost ironic as the song was pretty much an "anti-drinking" song that we were trying to push in clubs, bars and lounges. Regardless of it's message, I found the content of the song to be quite compelling and I was at an age where my musical taste had evolved and become a lot more sophisticated. I eventually listened to a lot more material by Gil Scott Heron and found ways to mix his songs into my DJ sets.

I can't say that I ever really became a huge Gil Scott Heron fan, and I feel the need to clarify that because I know a lot of people who really connected with his music. I always had a deep respect for him. He is one of the most socially responsible musical artist of all time, and the passion he felt for creating change within his community was painfully and remarkably real. I use the word painfully because he encountered a great deal of hardship in his life. I feel no need to describe the difficulties that GSH endured but sometimes I believe that life can be just as if not more tragic than death. Gill Scott Heron is a name that will always be synomonous with social justice and equality. He dedicated his life to this struggle, so now at last, he can finally rest in peace.

Monday, June 6, 2011

Coming Out of the "Justin Beiber Closet"

Of course it is not a surprise that almost everyone I know thinks Justin Beiber is a joke. In fact I use to think the same thing and I made up my mind about who he was before I even knew anything about him. I hated him before I even heard any of his songs, and truth be told I still hated him after I heard a few of his songs.

As human beings we seem to be wired to "hate on" successful people and Justin Beiber is probably the most hated individual in the music business. The music business was literally destroyed over the past decade by digital media. As illegal downloading was demolishing the industry like an atomic bomb, Justin Beiber, a 'youtube' phenomenon, was starting to go viral. Of course we hate him, his tremendous success was created by the same deadly ammunition that was and still is shattering the music industry.

What makes it worse? Justin Beiber is actually very talented, and his rise to fame and fortune is soley based on his talent alone. His Youtube videos went viral because people were amazed. Amazed to see the same 8yr old boy playing drums in a jazz band was also playing the guitar while singing Ne-Yo songs. His talent and success has superseded all of our expectations of today's "teen pop star". He is not just some kid that was put through the "tween dream machine". He has been studying music since he was old enough to walk, he is a gifted drummer with skills on the guitar, bass and vocals.

I would love to HATE Justin Beiber, but I can't because I know that it would be for all the wrong reasons. I don't like his music, I don't like his haircut, I don't give a crap about who he is dating but the one thing that I simply can't and won't deny is this kid has more talent than most of the artists that are in the charts today. If you don't agree with me than maybe you haven't checked out the following Youtube videos.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

When the Blues Make Me Angry

Something happened the other day that made me really angry but I just haven't had the chance to write about it.

A couple of weeks ago I was spinning at a certain live music venue (which will remain nameless). I was booked to spin after a performance by this jazz trio w/vocalist. It was a fairly busy night due to the fact that there was a pretty large birthday party in the crowd and the people at this party requested hip-hop. I started my set with some oldschool r&b and mixed in some oldschool hip-hop. The people at the birthday party were feeling it, everything was great when the singer of the trio came up to me and told me that she needed to go back on. I was fine with it, but since I had to leave within the next hr to head to another gig, I just asked if it was alright if I played a few more songs. This singer is really cool and nice so we agreed that I would spin for another 10-15mins. What I didn't realize was that it was actually an angry customer that had asked her to start singing again. This customer was an older man well into his 60s who was with a bunch of friends around his age. A lot of people in the crowd were into the music I was playing. Suddenly this angry customer came up to me and told me that what I was playing was just "noise" and if I would be so kind to stop playing so that he could listen to some "real music".

The first thing that came to mind was Thelonious Monk. Random? Not really because the Jazz that we know today, the Jazz that we honor and celebrate at lincoln center, carnegie hall, tanglewood and just about every other "refined" concert hall was once described as "noise". In fact it was even stated that this "noise" was "not music" and these types of statements were even published in some of the most “prominent” and “respected” music publications of that time. Not to mention the fact that Thelonious Monk, Charlie Paker, and numerous other pioneers of jazz were scrutinized then ridiculed and completely ostracized by the same institutions that are celebrating and venerating their legacy today.

It’s almost as if we (meaning people) never learn. You don’t have to like hip-hop, you don’t have to understand it, you don’t have to buy it, believe in it, in fact you are completely and totally entitled to hate it. BUT, in my opinion, only a total and complete douche bag would ever compare hip-hop to Jazz (of all genres) and claim that hip-hop is just “noise” and not “real music“. If you believe that Juilliard and Lincoln Center are the only types of institutions that can validate the integrity of “real music” than I honestly believe that you have no business expressing your opinions on music at all.