We had a long and luxurious drive back from Detroit, Michigan and we made it back about an hour ago. Laundry is going and I’m excited for a morning and afternoon spent preparing for the Heiruspecs scholarship show that evening at the Turf Club. I sincerely hope you can make it out tomorrow. Lots of special guests including Aby Wolf, Dessa Darling, Zach from Kanser and Carnage. We will see you tomorrow at the Turf Club.
Will there be any repercussions for First Avenue/Triple Rock/Danny Brown for hosting a show that I’m sure they don’t have a license for? Bravo for folks being about that life. But I’m also about safety, respect and folks getting what they paid for and knowing what to expect. Seems like a bad deal for any concertgoers who didn’t want to see a sex act on stage at the triple rock last night.
I have been grinding like crazy trying to tie up some loose ends at McNally Smith before I head out for a 3 week tour with Dessa. And in the middle of all this I’m getting really close to finishing up that solo record of mine thanks to the motivation and focus of my mix engineer Aaron Hodgson which has been awesome. And it’s my birthday on Sunday I think. I’ll be turning 32. My birthdays since 30 have all been spectacular and I’m looking forward to celebrating with music and merriment.
Here’s an unrelated photo. It’s me at fat camp in upstate new york with my then girlfriend Grayson. And yes, she was way taller, older and cooler than me. Little dude below’s name was Jeremy, he was from Texas. So many thin people went to fat camp, kind of weird.
Toki Wright, my friend and colleague is playing on Tuesday February 5 at McNally Smith College of Music as part of the Live at 5 Series. I’ve known Toki for about 13 years (my first vivid memory of Toki is him shouting out a gig at Artist’s Quarter while he was hanging out for an Oddjobs show at Bryant Lake Bowl in about 2000). We’ve worked together a lot and we’ve worked closer than ever in the last 4 years on the Hip-Hop Studies Diploma. For a long time Toki has been incredible on the mic, but no one in my circle has expanded their skill set in the past couple years with quite the same intensity as Toki. At this point when Toki’s phone rings someone could be asking for an: instructor, DJ, emcee, host, producer, vocalist, speaker, organizer and more. His affinity for fearlessly dropping himself into a new side of the industry and delivering on the goods at a professional level. In addition, his last couple projects as an emcee have been excellent. Come see him stretch out with his new live band, This Debris, at the Live at 5 Series on Tuesday. I look forward to seeing you there. Here’s a link to recent video of Toki’s. Below that I’ve dropped the key elements of the event.
Here is the info:
Toki Wright - Live at 5
McNally Smith College of Music
19 Exchange St E
St. Paul, MN 55101
Free and Open to the Public
Event is located in the auditorium and it starts at 5p. Toki goes on at 6p.
I do a lot of work for a college I’m very proud of in St. Paul, MN called McNally Smith. On Saturday we have our Open House from 10a-2p. Even if you have already completed college or know that this isn’t the fit for you the Open House is a great way to see a lot of great young artists doing their thing. Stone Cruz, Markus Blex, and Le’Mar ChrissieDenise are all putting down stellar hip-hop performances during the day. In addition the Composition ensemble does an amazing job showing what they are up to with a string arrangement. And Toki runs a production demo on Ableton while Freddy Fresh shows students how to use turntables. There’s certainly a reason I like working here and you can see a lot of it on Saturday. So come on roll through and see what it’s all about. If it’s not your cup of tea: no worries. Here’s a pic from a recent one. This one features Forecast, an up and coming rapper playing some upright. How could I not love that?
The genius of Public Enemy’s sampling ethos never ceases to amaze me. The first time I read this paragraph I got chills. The student ensemble I work with at McNally Smith is working on duplicating the sounds of this song with a hybrid of live and sampled performance. I give us a 75% shot at succeeding but the process is super fun. The sound of our first rehearsal sent Ryan McNally, an amazing sound person, out of the room to get a respite from the meaty tenor sax squeak that was filling the room. But check out the paragraph about this from Jeff Chang’s book, Can’t Stop Won’t Stop.