Short and sweet. Here are the goods! Thank you so much for coming out and listening to what I had to say. Here's some more cool stuff if you're still in the listening mood!
As long as I've been doing music, I've not been too heavy on the political content. I think the main reason was that most of my days were spent actually doing politicized work all over the place. So, when it came time to let loose and express myself, I chose to go lyrical...to go silly...to go absurd, but never really political.
Well, since I've gone back to school, I've spent less time in community meetings and at protests. In exchange, I've spent more time around books, around paper, around laptops, around scientists. The spreadsheets that I look at now don't have voter turnout demographics for thousands of Angelenos within them anymore. Instead, they have 3-point coordinate information for thousands of points of light.
With those changes, I have noticed that there is more room in my creative space for political content. As such, you get tracks like this one that I just released today:
....and I released a bit of a mixtape a few weeks ago on the topic of Geek Identity Politics. (You can find it below.)
It's funny what can happen when you are given the opportunity to take a step back from the grind that you find yourself in. It's probably a bit of that as well as the fact that, as much as I enjoy not being in the non-profit world 24-7, part of me definitely misses the work.
Either way, the world is probably going to get more content like this for a while. It'll be sprinkled in with all the usual fun stuff from me. :)
Putting together this website has made me realize that I've made a lot more music than I thought. A considerable amount....literally dozens of released tracks. Of course, that's just the tip of the iceberg of all the unreleased work that I have over here at the AfroPhysics Lab. I've been putting in work pretty consistently since I picked up the pen and pad. Sometimes, I get down on myself and think that I should be producing more but I think this is a sensation and emotion that is shared by every artist on Earth, regardless of their medium or genre.
You always want to do more. The problem isn't always coming up with the ideas but manifesting one good idea and birthing it into the world before the next great one pops into your head and wants to be birthed, as well. It's been a struggle to create time and space to make all these things happen, but it's a beautiful struggle; one that I'm actively engaging in each and every day.
My track record shows that I've produced things on a regular basis
...but, I didn't make hardly any music in 2014.
2014 was the funny odd year. In all, I think I only released 3 tracks and 2 of the tracks just had one verse on it. The other was a mash-up remix that I did one weekend. These weren't music projects as much as they were small blips of thought and activity on the radar screen of my music navigation system.
I've been sitting back and trying to parse through that year, hoping to come across some sort of reason why things slowed down so much. 2014, I remember, is the year of the Horse In the Chinese Zodiac. It resonated with me since my very first song was "Iron Horse". I even made "Part 2" to that song. (Scroll to the bottom to check it out.) (Side note: I believe last year was actually the year of the *wooden* horse, not the Iron Horse...maybe that explains everything lol jk)
I look back at last year as a time of a big shift. I've changed many things from the beginning of 2014, ranging from relationships to where I live. The change that had the biggest impact on my life would definitely have to be my change in career path, though. Changing from the non-profit world to that of Academia and the Sciences is a significant shift. Wouldn't necessarily say it was a 180, but it is most definitely a sharp left turn from the trajectory on which I was at the time.
After really thinking about it all, the big takeaway that I got from it all is that *change itself* is what slowed down productivity during 2014. Change is good but change takes its toll. Nothing is free. Sometimes, you have to sacrifice one thing to gain another. The change in my life was needed. I'm happy with the sharp left turn that I made. Yet, I doubt that I could have made that turn in the manner that I did it if I continued to do things the exact same way.
Also, looking back at it, music was just one of an assortment of things that fell to the back burner during my sharp-left-turn-metamorphosis. I talked to friends and family less. I went out less. When I did go out, I didn't go to the places I used to always go. A lot of new things were happening at the sacrifice of the things that I've done for so long.
But not everything that I left behind with that sharp left turn should've been left behind. Some things needed to come with me. One of those things is definitely my music. I've recently realized two things: A lot of you who know me don't know that I do music (which is WEIRD) and, secondly, those that do know my music have told me that you like and respect it. That I should be doing more of it.
So, I'm working on ways to keep it going, especially whilst I'm fully engaged in the horrors and wily ways of Grad School Physics. On keeping it all going. Not just the music. The friends. The ideas. The spirit. The essence of what I was doing before I made the sharp left turn. Some things are left behind. But the lessons, the experience and the accomplishments are coming along for the ride.
So, I've decided to create a website for all of the fine citizens of Nameless Nation who have all been asking for this for oh-so-long. I'm so glad to let you all know that your wait is over and this fine day has finally arrived!
All jokes aside, I'm gonna be beefing up my online presence with this website here and coordinating it with my social media. I've been giving a lot of content to Social Media (Facebook, especially) for free and haven't really done anything to capture it for myself. So, you'll be seeing more of these posts here.
In the meantime, here is a link to an oldie but a goodie I did a few years back. I'll be posting more music shortly! (This will have to tide you over until then.)