Archive for April 2012

An Orlando Tribute To Soul Train’s Don Cornelius

April 29, 2012

Last Friday night, I cruised the automobile to The Orange Studio, an Orlando spot known to host DJ and art events.  Tonight, it hosted a tribute to the late Don Cornelius, creator of syndicated TV show Soul Train.

Internationally known artist Andrew Spear, one of the show’s creators.

One night at another spot, he personally invited me to come. I  accepted his offer.  When I arrived, Andrew told the door man to let me in free.

Andrew and me.

DJ Nigel John, another creator of the show.  He invited me on Facebook.

Oh yea, the artwork on both Andrew and Nigel’s shirts are Andrew’s.

I ain’t gone lie. I thought the sista on the right was fine as hell. That’s why I took the photo.

Greg Hayden (left) and a friend as Greg Longbranch and Dave Dangle of the movie Disco Poon.

(Incidentally, after posting these photos on Facebook, the movie Boogie Nights came on HBO.  Boogie Nights centers around 70s porn.)

Amanda and Nayjee.  That ain’t a wig.  That’s his real hair.

Tommy Mott, owner of Spacebar, an Orlando art gallery and bar.

Seeing the hat and assuming I was dressed for the occasion, someone complemented me.  Actually, this is how I roll for real.

How I Perform DJ Gigs

April 27, 2012

A reader told me he learns about DJing from reading my blogs, a big fuckin’ surprise to me.  Because of this, I shall inform people how I perform my DJ gigs.

First, I prepare playlists using iTunes.  Most of my music is set-up by decades and genres.  Therefore, I have 80s pop, 80s hip-hop, 90s rock, 00s hip-hop and so on.  Sometimes, I break the lists into specialties like Funky Lounge and Old School Drum-N-Bass.  At the gig itself, I use my playlists in Virtual DJ.

I do my playlists at home before I come to the gig.

First thing I do at my gigs is observe the people.  During the early hours, usually older people attend bars and clubs.  Around this time, I play older and slower music.  I usually start with music around 80 BPM and slowly move up.  As the current song plays 85 BPM, the next song may be 86 or 89.

At this time, I never play the current hits unless asked.  Rock the house too early and things burn out quick.  Before you know it, after one drink, patrons are gone.

During my music selections, I use harmonic mixing.  Every song has one main note.  Some notes mix well with others and some clash.  People usually associate harmonic mixing with electronic dance music.  Yet, I use it with all genres of music.

Warning: harmonic mixing is a blue print.  You don’t have to follow it.  Also, it won’t transform  a shitty DJ into an awesome DJ.  Also, software sometimes gets the notes wrong.

As I observe people, I look for signs.  I look for toe tapping or heads grooving to the beat, indications folks  are enjoying the music. Also, I watch drink consumption.  If people are buying more than one drink, that definitely is a good sign.

When someone criticizes my music, I always point to the grooving heads and feet tapping, an effective way of showing the critic they don’t know what the fuck they’re talking about.

When it comes to requests, I rarely play the requested song next.  If people can’t wait, the hell with them.  Especially when they don’t tip.

What I try to do is find the appropriate spot for the requested song.  If it does fit next, I’ll play it.  If not, the person requesting the song is going to have to wait…especially a non-tipper.

Any DJ using YouTube should be slapped.

In past blogs, I’ve mentioned the next subject plenty of times.  STAY OFF THE FUCKIN’ INTERNET!!!  I do not play requests from YouTube or Grooveshark.  As the house is rocking, having my computer freeze is not a wonderful experience.  Also, folks run the internet requests in the ground.  Soon, I’ll be playing a bunch of shitty songs I hate with extreme passion.

When I bring up freezing, some folks tell me I should buy a Mac.  Mac or PC, I still am not playing requests from YouTube or Grooveshark. I’m a DJ not a goddamned jukebox. If someone personally buys me a Mac, my mind MIGHT change.  If not, suck my dick.

Current hits usually gets played after twelve, mainly because younger folks are the majority.  Still, don’t get it twisted.  Sometimes, the younger folks requests the classics, meaning older music.  I’ve had younger people ask for music dated two decades before their birth.

At the end of the night, I end with songs like Biz Markie’s “Just A Friend” and T-Pain’s “Buy U A Drank”.  Sometimes, I might even end it with Frank Sinatra’s “New York, New York.”   The object is ending the night with a feel good song.

So, that’s how I usually operate.  I don’t always go this route.  Yet, I use it most nights.  If this helps someone, I’m thankful for it.  If not, so be it.

Garden Shop Onion

April 23, 2012

Shopping in store’s garden area.
Spotted a nice juicy onion.


Not the vegetable.
Talking about a female’s wonderful posterior.
The kind that inspires black-on-black violence.
So round and juicy.
Fingers itching for a pinch,
a squeeze,
a hand full of ass.

Read somewhere the more ass,
the more intelligent a woman may be.
Brains and booty.
I can dig that.

Almost forgot I came to buy a gardenia shrub.


Went home thinking about that onion.
Went to bed thinking about that onion.
Next day, told everybody on Facebook
about that onion.

Might write a blog about it.
Might write a poem about it.
Going to fantasize for days about it.

Onions one of main reasons I DJ.
Wanna see them shake and wiggle to my nasty song selections.

Going back next week for another gardenia.
Wonder how the onions would look.

A Sanford Hoodie Project

April 21, 2012

Some weeks back, I asked folks to show up wearing a hoodie to Little Fish-Huge Pond, my Sanford DJ gig.  When they did this, I photographed them.  For those who didn’t have one, I provided a hoodie for them.  First, I wanted to show the diversity during my gigs.  Due to the Trayvon Martin incident, some non-Sanford folks may assume all of the city’s racial and ethnic groups do not get along.  Second, I sincerely believe stereotyping over a hoodie is bullshit.

I claim sole responsibility for this artistic expression.  It is  not necessarily the bar’s views.  Yet, it definitely is mine.

Cheap Drinkin’ Hipsters

April 14, 2012

Two Saturdays ago, I played an 80s set at SIP Orlando. Despite the small crowds, I always have a good time. One time, as I played Real Life’s “Send Me An Angel”, some dude did some kind of choreographed dancing . Tonight was my third time playing here.

Among tonight’s small crowd, five twenty-somethings sat at a table, three white guys and two white females. They weren’t very friendly. As I raised my beer in greetings to them, they didn’t respond. Yet, they seemed to enjoy the likes of Prince and Ricky Astley.

Rick Astley

Towards the end of the night, I noticed one of the young guys handing another one money. Then, that guy put the money in his pocket and walked up to me.

“What’s up, buddy?” I asked.

“Playing some eighties music?“ he asked in a friendly tone.

“Yep.”

“You have any house?”

He mentioned a name I didn’t catch at first.

“Who?” I asked. “I can play house but it has to be eighties house.”

The guy then walked away.

At his table, I noticed him handing money back to his friend. At first, I thought this was tip money for me. Now, I realize it may have been payment to get me to change the music.

After looking at their drinks, I walked over to the bartender.

Nodding my head towards the twenty-somethings, I said to the bartender,” I bet they bought the cheapest drinks all night.”

“They’re broke,” said the bartender. “They don’t have any money.”

“They were trying to get me to play some modern house music.”

I forgot what the bartender said. Yet, as a dude who loved eighties music himself, he definitely didn’t like what I told him.

How did I know they were buying cheap drinks? Past experience. Cheap drinkers own the nasty habit of trying to control the night for themselves.

I later realized who the kid was asking for, Swedish DJ Avicii. Any other time, I would have played him. Yet, because this was a theme night, I wasn’t changing jack shit…especially for cheap drinkers.

Don’t get it twisted, this isn’t a race or generation issue. I just find broke hipsters annoying, big on the ordering around but small on the money.

Next Saturday, I do another 80s night at SIP. Slowly, the night is drawing more and more people. Seeing some folks anticipation for the night, it might draw even more. If not, that’s okay. I’ll still have fun.

Somebody Told Al Sharpton On Me

April 12, 2012

I’ve known Matt Cooper since the mid-nineties.

Back then, he was roommates with Skip Evans, a good friend of mine.  Now, he’s a regular during my Wednesday night DJ gig at Little Fish-Huge Pond in Sanford, Florida.

This is the first drawing he did of me.

Last Friday was Sing-a-long night, a disaster because my laptop kept freezing.  (Fuckin’ spyware!) Still, because of Sanford’s current environment and my bad choice in music that night, inspiration hit Matt.

 

Ha ha, very funny, muthafucka!  Gotta love my friends.

Sharpton and Jackson Leads Sanford’s Goldsboro Rally For Trayvon Martin

April 2, 2012

On March 31, a rally for Trayvon Martin took place in the Goldsboro section of Sanford, Florida.

The second established black city in the nation, Goldsboro is my home neighborhood.

 

Crooms Academy was the starting point.  It’s an integrated academy now.  Yet, during segregation, this is where my mother and other “colored” kids went.

 

Leading the rally was Ben Jealous of the NAACP, Reverend Al Sharpton and Reverend Jesse Jackson.

The march itself happened on 13th Street.

I didn’t catch the woman’s name.  Yet, she’s the head of a NAACP Florida chapter.

The rally stopped in front of Sanford Police quarters.  The fire station is located here too.

Free water was passed out.

Speakin’ of passed out.

This was my first time seeing a black nationalist flag in my hometown.  Red stands for the blood. Black stands for the people. Green stands for the land.

The guy on the far left is Mariel Reed, today’s DJ.  I’ve known him since 5 years old.

I see more black bikers in Sanford than the rest of Central Florida.

Marcus on the left. Me on the right.  Marcus was in my second grade class at Pine Crest Elementary.