Thursday, April 20, 2006

April> Prepping to leave, Semana Santa (Easter Week), New music

For Easter i shot out to San Fran, to meet up with my sis-in-law's parents. It was a blast, even just to be able to communicate better than i could the last time i saw the San Fran fam, for New Years. Lots of food, drinks, and of course the Dominican tradition of Habichuelas Dulce (Sweet Beans). Its a concoction that tastes better than it sounds. Its more like a drinkable desert, but i dont want to call it soup, because its sweet as hell, like instant oatmeal with sugar.

The week before i went there, i bumped up with an MC named Levi (Leh- Vee), who had a very good music voice and enough Hip-Hop songs and videos on his PC to classify him a Hip-Hop head. He lives in Maranata, the south part of Sosua, and is the neighbor of A. Summaz. A. actually lives with a Dominican family who have become my second fam away from home. More on them later. So Levi, A. Summaz and I headed out one Sunday to Monte Llano to a guy named DJ Anthony's house. To my surprise he had FruitLoops, a PC program i'd recorded on in NYC. He threw on some beats, a few hours later we emerged with a new song. It came out good and even A. had to rap on it after he heard us all. 2 other guys, Nata, and Aridi-O hopped on the track and so its a lot of English and Spanish thrown together in a hot way. The producer wanted to mix it down, so i hadnt had a copy. When i got back from San Fransisco, i went to Summaz crib and as i walk down the block, what do i hear, none other than our song basting at club level in the hood. Felt good. Especially now that the kids over there are singing it like its on radioplay.
Recording in another country has now made me feel officially official in this rap ish and i can't wait to get back and knock out some new material.

The reverse countdown begins...


March> I know u hate me/On stage with a mayor/Capoiera/Final Exams

I have no excuses.....

Well, the PC's at my school were acting up in March and i just didn't find the time to pay and blog out for you guys but....

March week 1:
I'd started to hang out with a fellow student from Boston (A. Summaz) and my other professor, Johan, who are both 19. Summaz is a kid who was born in Peru but brought to the states at a few months old, so he's one of those latinos who'll scratch their head if you talk to them in spanish. We got cool because he's the only student other then me to take this stuff seriously and so we both got pretty good spanish skills in under 3 months. He got here a few days after Xmas. Apparently the school may want us for testimonials and blah blah. Johan also happens to do reggaeton in a duo called Mas Flow and goes by the name Joe MC, so of course being that I'm the Trifle MC, we hit it off.
We shot out to Caberete on a Friday night in a jeep we all rented. Nothing much there but a more "Gringo" type of crowd. Think spring break on crack. Things were going great, considering we seemed to be the only people who could dance that night, when a fight broke out between these 2 white guys.... So being from NY of course i'm in the front rooting it on like its Judah vs. Mayweather. Well apperently one of the blows struck a random Dominican guy and an old "friend" from an NYC house party popped up- a gun. Needless to say we Jesse Owen-ed it outta there and headed back to Sosua.
The following day we still had the jeep, so we went to Sosua Beach for some sun and fun. Johan and i got going on some flips and after a few homemade backflips on my part, this guy approaches saying maybe he could help us. Turns out he was a former Martial Artist on an olympic team and also had done about 15 years of Capoera. He needed some English so we got to planning and for a few day we met up to exchange skills. I could always do a side flip to a backflip with hands but he got me to wear I'm doing a few no handed now, so that was wassup. But moving along...

Week 2 - The Mayor
I'd networked myself around how i do and eventually met a former NYPD detective who's spanish and crazy as hell. They have carnival here just around the same times as Trinidad *but sorry no comparison on the JUMP UP and outfits) so one day i get home around 5pm and there's like 400 people on the street starting at my corner. I walk over and see the Carnival lines heading out in single file, dancing. There was a stage and people crowded around it so i sneak up on the side to see whats up. Lo and behold my NY officer friend is up there grinding some chic like he's making cornmeal. He sees me and pulls me up literally, on the stage. Now i have like a couple hundred eyes on my like "who the f"- but no sweat, i rap, i'm comfortable here. I took a seat behind the band where there were like 6 other heads sitting. He leaves shortly after but i decided to stay and enjoy the show. All of a sudden the sides of the stage are being gaurded by 4 guys with AK 47's and I'm thinking "What the %#^$ did i get myself into". Funny thing is, no one asked me to move. In this country, when you end up somewhere you shouldn't, everyone assumes you know someone BIG, and pretty much leaves you be.
A chuuby looking guy enters with an assistant (think Smithers) and proceeds to sit in the aforementioned group. Bottles of Dewars Scotch Whisky begin being sent up, along with like 8 boxes of pizza and i'm like "ok!!". So i start talking to the guy next to me, a Dr. from Argentina who speaks English and German like a native. I talk to him about EMT stuff and how i might find work in that out here with my NY certs and blah blah. Finally i ask him who is this bigwig at my side. He tells me in a whisper"This guy right here is the Mayor of this town, and i just happen to have stumbled up here, so dont say anything and let's just enjoy!". Needless to say we both did it UP like Dewars was out of style, chatting with the mayor dude, and enjoying 2 different Merengue bands for like 3 hours. It was the ish. A night i surely won't soon forget. The plus side is all those who saw me are still treating me with an undercover respect, and police too. The downside.... the mayor guy lost in an election a few weeks later.

Week 4
So after studying my arse off in week 3, i had my final exam at school. Ended up getting a 94, which i'm happy about, but i changed a couple answers that turned out to be right, so for that i was mad at myself. Sorry i'm a perfectionist with tests. So i'm just awaiting my certification for Intermediate level Spanish cuz they sent it to be signed and pretty up by the school prezi, etc. and generally feeling gleeful, because i came to the school for the Beginner Certificate. I cant wait to return to NY and try to apply it to a job now, phew. Mission accomplished.