Sunday, February 28, 2010

Love Helps Heal: Prayers to Guru

Lyrist [Guru] That makes me know that we we we we're doin

We had the right idea in the beginning

And and we just need to maintain our focus and elevate

We what we do we update our formulas

We have certain formulas but we update em (oh right)

with the times and everything y'know

So y'know the rhyme style is elevated

The style of beats is elevated but it's still Guru and Premier

And it's always a message involved

"The real... hip-hop"

"MCing, and DJing.. from your own mind, ya know?"

"I, I guess right now we should start the show"

[Guru] Who's the suspicious character strapped with the sounds profound

Similar to rounds spit by Derringers

You're in the Terrordome like my man Chuck D said

It's time to dethrone you clones, and all you knuckleheads

Cause MC's have used up extended warranties

While real MC's and DJ's are a minority

But right about now, I use my authority

Cause I'm like the Wizard and you look lost like Dorothy

The horror be when I return for my real people

Words that split wigs hittin like some double Desert Eagles

Sportin caps pulled low, and baggy slacks

Subtractin all the rappers who lack, over Premier's tracks

Severe facts have brought this rap game to near collapse

So as I have in the past, I will bash

Droppin lyrics that be hotter than sex and candlewax

And one-dimensional MC's can't handle that

While the world's revolvin, on it's axis

I come with mad love and plus the illest warlike tactics

The wilderness is filled with this; so many people

searching for false lift, I'm here with the skills you've missed

The rejected stone is now the cornerstone

Sort of like the master builder when I make my way home

You know my steez...

"You know my steez" --> Method Man

"Let em know, do your thing God" "Keep it live"

"To the beat y'all" --> Flavor Flav

The beat is sinister, Primo makes you relax

I'm like the minister, when I be lacin the wax

I be bringin salvation through the way that I rap

And you know, and I know, I'm nice like that

Work through worldly problems, I got the healing power

When the mic's within my reach, I'm feelin more power

Stealing at least three minutes of every rap radio hour

It's often easier for one, to give advice

Than it is for a person to run one's own life

That's why I can't be caught up in all the hype

I keep my soul tight and let these lines takes flight

The apparatus gets blessed, and suckers get put to rest

No more of the unpure I got the cure for this mess

The wackness is spreadin like the plague

MC's lucked up and got paid but still can't make the fuckin grade

How many times are wannabe's gonna lie?

Yo they must wanna fry, they can't touch the knowledge I personify

I travel through the darkness carrying my torch

The illest soldier, when I'm holding down the fort

("You know my steez" --> Method Man)

You know my steez...

"Let em know, do your thing God" "Keep it live"

"You know my steez" --> Method Man

*repeat 4X with very last line modified as follows*

"The mic..."

On the microphone you know that I'm one of the best yet

Some punks, ain't paid all of their debts yet

Tryin to be fly, ridin high on the jet-set

With juvenile rhymes makin fake-ass death threats

Big deal, like En Vogue, here's something you can feel

Styles more tangible, and image more real

For some time now, I've held the scrolls and manuscripts

When it's time to go all out you be like, "Damn he flipped"

Now I'm sick, fed up with the bullshit

Got the lyrical full clip, giving you a verbal asswhip

Don't trip it's the gifted prolific one

Known as Bald Head Slick -- why is the press all on my di-dick?

My style be wilder, than a kamikaze pilot

Don't try it, I'm about to start more than a friggin riot

Styles unsurpassable, and nuccas that's suckas, yo

Them motherfuckers are harrassable

For I be speaking from my parables and carry you beyond

The mic's either a magic wand

Or it gets tragic like the havoc of a nuclear bomb

Then I grab your palm, no pulse you're gone

And if you thought we'd lose our niche in this rap shit you way wrong

I stay up, I stay on, shine bright, like neon

Your song's, pathetic, synthetic, like Rayon

Fat beats, they play on, want dope rhymes, put me on

Word is bond... you know my steez

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Keeping it Simple in the Studio with the The Artist: J.Cole

Still holding on to reason he created his soul
in front of her
Inspired by his emotions illustrated by
every snare kick and melody
his body moved before he layed down the sound
as his soul created it made her heart pound--- NP in Studio 2009 ;)
(Mez you asked what I was writing in my notebook)

September 20th, 2009 the opportunity came up to kick it in the studio with J. Cole and the Homie Mez ( one of the talents behind the StartYourOwnRebellion project I posted a few weeks back) My motives were to talk to Cole about his experience growing up mixed race in North Carolina. But, there's something about being in the studio that's intoxicating. The creative energy and the focus on the art derrailed me from my mission and inquiry about self identiy, cause there it was, and I was just prompted to live in that moment.

Mez and Cole in the studio

Then, Cole was recently signed to Roc Nation, Jay-Z's new lable. But it the studio that night it was only 3 homies, time and creativity. Thanks for letting me capture the moment fellas.

Peace- Nina Parks.

Thoughts in Higher Education: Canibus Nigganometry


(scratching) N N N ... etc.


N I G G A nometry x3

(Nigganometry Nigga na na nometry)

repeat all x2

Verse One

Now if a bitch sucks yo dick for $5 per square inch

And gets $40 including a $5 tip

How big was the dick she just sucked? (say what?)

Said how big was the dick she just sucked? (wha...?)

If you a nigga with a watch

This iced style with enough rocks

To make the hottest room temperature drop

How long will it take for you to get robbed? (say what?)

How long will it be before you get robbed? (wha...?)

Now if your song played on the radio for the first time

Four days ago, now the shit is rotational

Who got paid off to play it? (I ain't scared to say it)

Said who the fuck got paid off to play it?

(I ain't scared to say shit)

If you sign a recording deal for less than a $250,000

And your advance is a $100,000 automobile

I know the vehicle was probably beautiful

But did you ask your lawyer if it was recuperable? It's nigganometry...


Verse Two

You had 5 shots of coke and vodka

Then you convinced your designated driver to

Smoke a pound of marijuana

How the hell you gonna get home?

Said how the fuck you gonna drive yourself home?

You gotta mansion, a benz, a bentley and a range

And ain't none of that shit in your government name

What pieces of property do you own? (you don't own nothin')

Said what pieces of property do you really own?

(you don't own a goddamn thing, nigga)

Now if you take a glass of water then add 2 cubes of ice

You should see the cup's water level slightly rise, right?

You need to watch what I'mma show you (watch this)

You need to look closely at what I'mma show you

(listen to this right here)

If you remove every living animal out of the sea

Then wouldn't the world's ocean water level decrease?

This means the planet wasn't 3-quarters water (that was deep)

This means the planet wasn't 3-quarters water (that shit was deep)

It's nigganomerty...


Hey, I've been sitting here trying to think of what we can do

With this here letter 'L'...

F-U-C-K L.L.

(music outro)

Nina Parks: Sexy Notes To Self: Part I

Monday, February 22, 2010

Why Haven't you Learned Anything???: Reflections on AFATAC's TRANSFERING KNOWLEDGE & INFORMATION

Dead Prez's song "They Schools," became an anthem to me in 2000, I was 15 years old, and still struggling in a school environment. The class rooms were crowded, my world outside of school felt unstable and chaotic, and the information I learned appeared to be inapplicable. Not to mention at 15 I was working with organization like Ella Baker Center for Human Right, who helped me to see that the structure of the system wasn't created to encompass the collective experience. The "Standardized Tests" were created by upper middle class/affluent class white men on the east coast, and collected no aptitude data besides multiple choice answers.

I spent a lot of my time in the street on public transportation, at Karate, and later in political youth movements that showed me that Hip Hop in every element could serve as the medium and outlet for life experiences and empowerment towards change.

At 13 It was difficult for me to sit in a class room for a block period while the teacher lectured and asked us to answer questions out of a book. Not to mention, there was only one week out of the school year where we could do interactive electives, I really did look forward to the photography program, or a theater group, it's where I felt at ease and able to interact and digest the world.

By nature I've always been rebellious, you tell me to sit I'd rather stand, you tell me that the sky is blue I would find a way to argue that it was purple. You told me that traditional education was the only way to be successful in this life, I'd stand on a bull horn and argue why it didn't work and give you examples of alternatives."

My education was very non-traditional even though I attended public schools for the majority of my life. I attended an art based public elementary school where interactive learning was valued as the standard. My martial arts training became a the foundation for my life and when I was sent to boarding school for the first time in 5th grade Applied Scholastic study skills became the foundation for over coming the barriers that kept me from accessing and digesting knowledge and information. Giving me the tools to remedy when I was feeling angry towards my lessons

Bored or not there with my studies or confused

As far back as I can remember my mom had made games to drill me on letters, and plant and animal names, I was reading by the age of 4. To her a Filipino Immigrant, going to school = freedom and opportunity. (but to me at 15 it meant conformity and lies) But Education would become a life long obsession.

When I attended the AFATAC's Learning circle the first time at the Women's Building is SF they presented me with Howard Gardener's Theory of Multiple Intelligence levels.

I was in awe happy to see that there was a body of knowledge that was advocating for the plethora of ways that people exhibit intelligence. So when I saw that they were developing a collective of youth workers to further the progress of youth development training I had to jump on board

I was blown away the acknowledgement of the different ways that humans process and interact with the world was reaffirming and made me hopeful for the progress that needs to be made.

Although I found that the trainings varied from the first one. In this past training on Transferring Knowledge and Information they only touched on :

Linguistic intelligence ("word smart"):

Logical-mathematical intelligence ("number/reasoning smart")

Spatial intelligence ("picture smart")

Bodily-Kinesthetic intelligence ("body smart")

Musical intelligence ("music smart")

Interpersonal intelligence ("people smart")

Intrapersonal intelligence ("self smart")

Naturalist intelligence ("nature smart")


Existential Intelligence from the list..... and I felt kinda short changed. Seeing how on the very first time AFATAC ran the workshop that's where I found myself standing at the end of the "gallery walk" exercises. Me and one other person...

But, I can see how incorporating "Existential Learning" in an academic environment could be tricky, seeing how it would have to go deep into world religions and spiritual existence, subjects that are difficult to manage, and would make many parents uncomfortable... for now. ;).

This information was vital to my expanding mind. The importance of integrating this information into the after school program development is key. California's public school system has been on the decline for the past 37 years, and with the elimination of interactive learning, no more shop classes, no more funding for classroom supplies, even Mission High School eliminated their JV football team!!!

We have over crowded classrooms, damn near 30-40 youth per 1 teacher in a classroom. So that means 30-40 HUMAN BEINGS with multiple life experiences and multiple ways of absorbing knowledge and information, trying to learn from someone who's curriculum is designed for Linguistic and Mathematical learners. (On a side note can I say how unfair to the teacher it is to have to be responsible and accountable for that many individuals education, no wonder the education is watered down).

As a Youth Worker I find it essential to help to create programing that reflects the collective human experience of the community, as well as assisting in finding support for the individual.

But this is a change that can only be made by the community, we need to take a stand against a failing education system, and as a members of a democratic government it's important to hold our Representatives accountable and encouraging them to correct the deficiency.

We gotta say "I'm a Human Being God Damn it! My Life has value." We need to stay well equip and competitive in this changing world. And the CA education system needs our assistance in bring about change.

Today is a big day.... Today at 6pm the SF board of education will be deciding if they will be adding ethnic studies to the curriculum, major steps forward in the realm of equity in education, proof that change can happen... next steps... I say integrate multiple intelligence theory into lesson plans.... but for now I'll do my best to integrate it into afterschool time.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Artist in the Renaissance: Amanda Lopez

For all of you who missed it, just like I did, here's a video from Miss Amanda Lopez's first solo show "Cali Love" at Upper Playground in Sacramento CA.

Amanda's imagery stimulate the imagination. The project itself is a collaboration between homies, Amanda Lopez, makeup artist JENNI TAY and hair stylist JUSTINA DOWNS. The team worked together to create a body of art, that is not only visually appeasing, but, it makes you think, as they take you on a journey of the somberness of Dia de los Muertos icons and the liveliness of the subjects being photographed.

I can't wait to see what she has in store next. 2010, this is just the beginning.

She also has a limited edition shirt that were made for the show. Available at Upper Playground Sac. or on her blog site, or just email her at:

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

New Moon Cycle

So in the last moon cycle almost everything that I wanted to have manifest in my life started to magically take root... Something about, vision, intention, and action works like a magic recipe to make dreams manifest. So, with my 26th BDay only 2 months away it's time for me to go hard. Let me put this out into time and space and hopefully this will feed what I've already planted.