Thursday, March 27, 2008

Workplace Equality

Hi Ya'll:

I'm working on a campaign called Clock In which works to ensure that LGBT folks and folks with HIV can work free of harassment and discrimination. Do you care? I hope so. What can you do? Sign this little pledge. you can do more as well.


Friday, March 14, 2008

Friday Bliss

One of My Cute-as-Heck Nephews

This is Kaleb Hermes Caraballo Smalls having his first taste cereal. I hope that's some organic,wheat-free, gluten-free, taste-free flax and prune cereal ya'll feeding him!!

ha ha!

Happy Friday!

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

Calling All Black Star Fans!

I remember my first Black Star show: it was the Malcolm X Grassroots Movements Black August show at the Bowery Ballroom. Those were the days. Common was still a homophobe. No one but the NYC underground kids had heard of dead prez, The Roots were blowing up,Sarah Jones was giving true hip hop feminism, and Erykah was still wearing her headwrap. Well, now you TOO can "reminisce over you my god," and submit your thoughts, theories, poetries, music, etc to Proud Flesh's call for papers honoring the 10th Anniversary of Mos Def and Talib Kweli are Black Star. (thanks Alena for alerting me to this!)

"Brown skin lady, how you doin'? Brown skin lady, how you feeeel? I like the way you walk when you walk on by..."

Call for Papers: Black Star’s 10th Anniversary

In honor of Black Star’s ten-year anniversary, Proud Flesh is calling for
works that speak to the impact and legacy of their masterpiece album, Mos
Def and Talib Kweli are Black Star, for an upcoming journal

Released in the fall of 1998, Mos Def and Talib Kweli are Black Star
re-energized the b-boy and backpacker face of Hip Hop with a heightened
analytic and deep consciousness of self and community. Taking their name
from Marcus Garvey and the UNIA’s 1920s shipping company (established to
move Black Americans to a Black state located in Liberia), Black Star,
conceptually and sonically, presented a wide and colorful depiction of
Black life and Black identity.

In contrast to much of the mainstream Hip Hop of that period, they
stressed that life should be more about “the struggle” than “the hustle,
”and critiqued viewpoints that conceived of Black culture in only singular
terms. On “Definition,” Mos Def raps: “Manhattan keep on makin it,
Brooklyn keep on takin it, so relax we're takin it back, Redhook where
we're livin at. Plenty cats be struggling not hustlin and bubblin, if it
ain't about production and -- what else we discussin?” Black Star
chronicled Black folks’ ability and tenacity to produce via work,
language, the arts, communal culture, and cultural production.

A decade has passed since the release of this monumental album. More than
a hot album, this thirteen-track masterpiece continues to offer a
theoretical and practical analysis of urban Black culture and politics,
and a grass-roots base of knowledge that is not adequately engaged. By
stating in their album’s introduction that their music was not meant to
“stand still,” the group signaled that their conception of time and space
did not adhere to the linearity of common epistemological standards.

Acknowledging their point that the music cannot and should not stand
still, Proud Flesh is calling on writers, academics, artists, community
activists/organizers, and fans to submit essays, poems, prose,
photography, graphic artwork, etc., detailing how this album has impacted
your work and your life. Included in this are critical analyses of the
album and/or individual songs, works that place the album and/or songs
within a broader context and legacy (historical, political, social,
artistic), and works that speak to the album's continued relevance.

We are asking that all works be submitted by May 1, 2008 to:

Visit Proud Flesh at for more information.

Tuesday, March 04, 2008

Tonight! Tonight! Tonight!--Kung Fu Blaxploitation!

Me and Tavia be pre'sen'in'



THE DEADLY ART OF SURVIVAL (dir. Charlie Ahearn, 1979)/
80 BLOCKS FROM TIFFANY'S (Gary Weis, 1979)

WHEN: Tuesday 4 March 2008, 6pm
WHERE: 53 Washington Square South, Room 428
All Welcome. Refreshments provided.

“They think they’re outlaws. I think they’re bums.” The late 1970s witnessed the first trickle of films to look at the battered housing projects, block parties, ghetto self-fashioning, MCs language, and joyous, fugitive sounds and textualities that birthed what later came to be known as hip hop culture. THE DEADLY ART OF SURVIVAL by Charlie Ahearn, director of the celebrated ‘Wild Style’ (1983), is a no-budget, Super-8 martial-arts epic, influenced in equal parts by ‘The Harder They Come’ and Andy Warhol, in which black and Puerto Rican kids from the Lower East Side ninja-fight and karate-kick their rivals, some of them belonging to the magnificently titled ‘Disco Dojo’ crew, across local rooftops and handball courts.

Ahearn’s film was later projected at parties and shows around NYC where its Bruce Lee creolisations went down a storm. They represented a caperish counterpoint to the more solemn flexings and macho struttings of the gangs depicted in Gary Weis’s documentary 80 BLOCKS FROM TIFFANY’S, a look at the Savage Nomads and Savage Skulls gangs that competed for ascendancy in recessionary, quasi-apocalyptic Bronx. Sporting Nazi regalia and fiercesome moustaches, brimming with near-psychotic violence, they come on like a real-life version of The Warriors. The Colloquium for Unpopular Culture is delighted to present a very rare screening of these two hugely evocative and enjoyable time pieces that spotlight an all-too under-recorded segment of recent New York cultural history.

The films will be co-presented by Tavia Nyong’o, Assistant Professor of Performance Studies at NYU, and author of ‘Punk’d Theory’ in Social Text and ‘Do You Want Queer Theory (Or Do You Want the Truth?)’ in Radical History Review; and by Shante Paradigm Smalls, an emcee, singer, poet, events producer, writer, and PhD student in Performance Studies at NYU.

Saturday, March 01, 2008

Check out Invincible!

My homegirl, Invincible, has a new label and website up. Please check her out. I met Invincible in 2000 at a GLAAD panel on Homophobia and Hip Hop. There were two of us artists on the panel, as well as James Earl Hardy. GLAAD wanted us to talk about how horrible hip hop was and why we as black folks was 'shamed of it. Well. We were having none of that.

At any rate, I met her and we ended up vibin', staying in touch and building together over the years. She is also a part of an incredible group, called The Anamolies, an all-female, multi-racial/ethnic hip hop group filled with emcees, DJ, breakers and poppers.

Independent Hip Hop Forever!

How To Read This Blog

I realized some of my readers are less tech-savvy than others ("hi mom!") and since I changed my site design, I may have overlooked some key information about reading this blog. It's simple really: all hyperlinks are in bold, um except that one.

Enjoy reading, linking and having fun.

OH! And if you have personal blogs or websites that you'd like for me to put on my Friends list to the right, please send them on to me.

Enjoy the Spring-like weather!

New Queer Female DJ Party

My research comes to Life!! Ha ha ha. Seriously, my homegirls are throwing a new part in LES.
They'll be spinning hip hop, R&B, House, Old Skool soul and hip hop. Good times!