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Last week of posting til 2019; let’s do some ‘greatest hits’ of the year before I talk about everything this year has been for me.

Can’t talk about videos this year without starting here.  Just can’t.

Enjoy!

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The weekend is upon us.

One of the little homies told me this morning, he’s about the positivity now, and I half jokingly told him, ‘Like Father, Like Son.’

But not joking at all, it made my day.  

Spread love people.  It’s the Brooklyn way, and it’s my way.

Have a good one folks.

Still in my karma.  Spotify put me into old school, so this one brought make me memories.

Besides the obvious later ‘ice cold’ allusions for me personally, I always wanted to be one of the brothers in the back dancing all goofy while Erick and Parrish flowed.

WHO ARE THOSE BROTHAS?!?

Enjoy!

Is today a good day to post some EWF?

Yeah, I know… everyday is a good day to post some Earth, Wind and Fire.

This song is eternal.  I don’t regret being too young to have missed most of my chances to see the original lineup live, but thank you YouTube.

The obvious love between the guys here gets me more than this performance.

Enjoy!

I was muted this weekend and I thought, ‘My God, I haven’t been to the movies in a month!’

I went to the calendar to double check how long it had been…

It was Thanksgiving.  

Film geek season does that to a man.

So how about we start this week with music? It’s definitely been a while.  

Hype Williams at his peak.

Enjoy!

A few weeks back, my Twitter feed went nuts with black film geeks famous and not famous all saying Netflix dropped a series called ‘Pioneers of African-American Cinema’ that is mandatory viewing if you’re a student of the history or the artform or the culture.

And they were all right.

Streaming on Netflix, twenty episodes total.  A few shorts in there, but mostly features, none over 100 minutes I believe.  Most everyone who knows their history has heard the name Oscar Micheaux; off the top of my head there are four of his films here.  Paul Robeson makes an appearance in one of the features.  If you’re any type of black film geek, it’s the best kind of homework.

Now, a few notes from me as an observer:

It’s to be expected I guess when you know how historically expensive filmmaking is as an art form, but as far as the stories here: it’s almost exclusively from a ‘Talented Tenth’ point of view.  If you’re hoping to see some pre-cursor to ‘Menace II Society’ or ‘Boyz N Da Hood’… nope, this ain’t the place.  I believe it was in one of the Micheaux films that a fast light skinned woman was repeatedly referred to as ‘that yellow hussy’.  That tickled me good, but be ready for a lot of that.

In terms of things off the beaten track, there’s a black Western(!) in the later episodes.  That’s the good.  The bad?  Shockingly, there was a blackface preacher who showed up in one of the more musically inclined films (in front of a black choir, which made it extra jarring.)  There was also a yellowface character who briefly showed up as a minor character in one film.  I’m not even going to psycho analyze that, I’m just telling you it was there.

But this is still mandatory viewing as a historical document if nothing else.  (I want to say the National Film Archive and the Library of Congress were the two DC groups most responsible for preserving these films, but don’t quote me on that.)  

Streaming on Netflix.

Word got to me that Sir Paul is playing Dodger Stadium next year.  Against all realistic and biological odds, it looks like the stars will align for me to scratch ‘see a Beatle in concert’ off my bucket list.

Besides being one of my favorite songs he wrote, this particular arrangement is incredibly beautiful.

Enjoy.

OK, yesterday was a day.  Let’s find something to get back to being a little bit more relaxed.  Silly even. Maybe seasonal.

Perfect.  This is perfect.

Enjoy!

So, I could have very, very easily been murdered today.  

I found myself Downtown this afternoon.  Not L.A. Live, more the residential neighborhoods.  I was wrapping up my affairs as a nearby high school was letting out.

One set of boys walking down the street I was on starts shit talking another set of boys passing by.  The first reaction is of course, ‘Kids.’

The conversation gets a little more heated.  I start paying closer attention.  The instigator in the first group keeps saying over and over, ‘But you ain’t gonna do nothing!  But you ain’t gonna do nothin!’

There was a Mexican cat around my age in the parking lot as well.  We caught each other eyes; it was a telepathic ‘Oh shit, I know where this is heading.  I hope I’m wrong but…’

We turned back around in time to see that silver in the other boy’s hand briefly shine in the sunlight…

I yelled ‘GET DOWN’ and instinctively grabbed the two women nearest to me and pulled them to the ground.  People started scattering. And running.

Today, the gun ‘worked’, in the sense that seeing it was enough to make the first boy and his crew run out of shooting range and make the obligatory ‘wait until next time’ threats.  No shots were fired.

When the adrenaline rush died down, there wasn’t much hanging around to take a second chance on being innocent bystanders in someone else’s beef.  The shock of it is worse than anything else.

This wasn’t Friday or Saturday night.  This isn’t ‘running with the wrong crowd.’ I’m not afraid of death, but this, in no way shape or form, was my fight.  This is just being in the right place at the absolutely worse possible time.

I’m fine, truly.  But tonight, again, I say the things I try to live by:

Make sure your family knows you love them.

Make sure your people know you’re down for them.

Chase your passions.  

Be your authentic self.

Live your life fully.

Love.

Because you have NO idea when your time will be up…

My goal this year was to line up the rest of my life, the rest of my long term goals, that’s been done 11 months. I’m in a good spot.

A few of you know I’ve been thinking more this year about working again behind the camera; my specific ‘voice’ can be as strong of an asset to my goals as my face.

The last thing I directed, as most of you know, was a ‘Love Actually’ spoof (or correction) depending on your point of view.  

So the timing is right on all fronts to repost this.  

Enjoy!