terry lynn live -

Outside the bar, perched on a ledge is a thin frame under a lowered fro. She is casual in jeans, heels and sunglasses - i suspect it's 'her,' but I'm unsure, so I go inside (she's can't possibly be on time, can she? is that her? isn't she taller?) and wait for the show. Of course, it was Terry Lynn; I know this when the same solitary woman saunters on stage, peers into the crowd, stretches out one hand and proceeds to rock tha mic.

With support from Toronto's own Ro'Dolla, Terry Lynn dropped her original style on an entirely unsuspecting crowd - little do they know this female, jamaican act is about to blast through the industry's sensibilities, beat down the audience's median expectations and blow up the international music scene.

Remember when we first heard grime? The newness of the beats with the heavy speed of the lyrics disturbed hip hop heads - showed 'em how across an ocean a completely different context can breed equally ingenius music - this is it all over again, but better because there's no genre yet, just terry lynn, standing alone between electronic sound and JA DJ flow, holding the two together with everything she's got.

And she's got it all. you know that 'it' they talk about? terry, with her hard chat and delicate features, with her dark shades and broad smile, with her waterhouse broughtupsie and worldly sense is bringing kingston logic hard - shut your mouth and listen, "dream it, plan it, chance it, risk it, bring your guns, machete, ratchet..."

Don't be afraid, fusion is the future.


say what raul?

i love castro... when i say castro i mean fidel.

and this makes me think he's really dead.
doesn't matter how many times chavez claims it ain't so.

remembering medgar evers

On this day in 1963 Medgar Evers was shot dead by the white citizens council -

canada cuts checks to residential school survivors

harper signed off on some big dollars and
stood up in the front of the house and
talked for ten plus minutes...

a step forward for repatriations?
a sign of change?
a show of lipservice?
a strategic move in the game?

i can't sleep anymore

i can't sleep anymore...

dammit. shit. f*ck me.
i shoulda never said a word
should've just sent off my
application -
now i wish you never heard
I wish i never told you
just how bad i wanted it.
I wish i never got so excited.
I wish I never wished for it.
cause now i cannot
look you in the eye
"any news?" you ask
i know i'll cry if i sigh
so instead i smile and laugh,
"nothing yet,"
and traipse away
leaving a faint trail
of everything i couldn't say -

"no i didn't make it,
well, i haven't heard back,
it appears my application
wasn't quite right
wasn't entirely on point..."

here's where you jump in
with what you think is a
helpful suggestion -
something about eggs and a basket
something about endless potential
but i'm tellin you now
i can't handle it!
dammit please just be gentle!
cause your kindness is killin
it's stealin and robbin
any glimmer of hope
left in my heart, in my head
i just feel trashed, thrashed and
left for dead
so, now is when
you tell me again,
something about
there's always
a next time


queen ifrica - reggae raising issues

Salute to Queen Ifrica for releasing singles that create conversation around practices that are widespread and taboo, namely skin bleaching and child abuse.

Now, bleaching or lightening skin is common practice from asia to africa. In the west indies, all that cultural mixing has made for a color scale that is embedded into society. My aunties give me bleaching cream both because and inspite of the fact that they love me.

In Jamaica there is an interesting twist; "homophobic" sayings are littered throughout dancehall music and particularly at a dance there is a certain amount of related audience participation (flash you lighter if yuh no battiman or lesbian, etc.) BUT there will invariably be present a few groups of young men dressed in flashy jewelry (fake diamond earrings and rhinestone beltbuckles), tight pants (acid wash, tapered perhaps), sunglasses (bejeweled maybe,) stylized hair in patterns or designs and nasty, patchy, blotchy bleached out skin - standing around sipping guinness looking like strange, iffeminate, freaky ghosts ("gay" by western standards - true, our norms are pretty limited; in cuba heterosexual men can sit on each others laps). Either way, their dress is a little incongruous to "burning down" or "burning out" gays. Note that I love dancehall and have spent a post explaining the cultural context that could breed anti-homosexual attitudes. Check out the video

The next video is more self explanatory - there have recently been more and more reports of child abuse across the west indies. When I was last in Trinidad a mother and her boyfriend were arrested after it was found that both were running a sex operation with her young daughter for years including male family members and men in the neighborhood. Child abuse is especially taboo - the explicit nature of her lyrics and the video is all the more outstanding - good works, Queen Ifrica, good works.


impeach who?

kucinich, take him down!!

i want to explode, burst into invisible fragments and disappear

i turn to myself and i ask myself, i say, 'self'
then i turn to myeslf and i answer myself, i say, 'what'
i say, 'i can't love you any better than this...'
-Languid Libretto, Carl Hancock Rux


genius and truth (as spoken by friends)

"you know TO media is anti heat, right?" - Nikkhil. local news and radio stations put the fear of god in city-dwellers when the summer finally arrives by (a) exaggerating the forecast; i swear to god some days they claim it's 23C and it can't be warmer that 15C (b) broadcasting heat and smog warnings that effectively demand you remain indoors from sunrise to sunset... ("uh, excuse me, sorry, what? you musse mad. kiss me backside an' g'way." Jamilah)

"the history of music is the white man stealing the black man's sound but it started much earlier than elvis, jamilah, we began with the 4x4 beat - this originally african beat provided the musical basis for all classical music, the waltz..." - Warren. check warren and his lovely band at Not My Dog (Parkdale, TO) open mike nights most every wednesday.

"in alota ways, the planet still operate on some the-world-is-flat type philosphy; dated and plain wrong..." - Moses. i'm paraphrasing slightly here but you get the gist.

"Stick with me, kid." Nehal. nuff said.

good people party

well you can't deny it sounds like a good time. let me confirm formally - it was.

imagine a steamy saturday night on queen street west
imagine a room full of beautiful, familiarish faces
imagine a roster one dozen plus strong

some belong to the honour rebel society
a relation of the district six family
zaki opened with improvisational soul
tanika held it down - she ain't back up no mo'
boonaa - wow. straight blew my mind,
obie dropped something new inna reggae style
kush stayed low key on the bass in the back,
grimace love's flow remains tight on the track,
nana kept the vibes all night
brendan demanded silence and he was quite right.
to those i didn't mention, thank you - the night was a delight
too many acts to name and not a single fight
but Theo 3's bag stolen meant no USB
hope you get it back, still the acapella was a treat
on the whole no ill words, just love in the room
if you saw the ladies, oh, they'da made you swoon
i'll tell you it was the evening of the long dress
betcha didn't know ankle length could make a man sweat...

going back to cali

often flabbergasted by new hip hop,
i am glad to find that the west coast
continues to represent -

U.N.I. and Pacific Division are worth checkin out


in a handbasket

how can we
be blind
to the signs

under no circumstances -

do not curse the heat
do not sigh or mutter
do not hem n' haw
do not curse the heat

i have survived the winter
i have been submitted to the cold
i have decided to leave
bag lady

so i will stay the summer
but leave before the winds return
and i won't have you disturbing
the heat that i have earned