August 2011

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I love Bank Holidays in the UK. It motivates me to

stop and smell the roses and savor the beats. There’s a slew of good tunes peaking me out so might as well post them up. First off, I’m psyched to be sharing Groove Armada’s new track RJ’s Theme from their new EP Redlight Trax:

 

 

You can  or right below on my blog. It releases September 5th.

 

Working with Groove Armada is an honor for me as they’re one of my favorites. There’s one Groove Armada song in particular that is a gem on my all time list of musical classics. The song is Mary, and it’s a bonus track on the Japanese import of Vertigo. I searched far and wide for it, as it was not on iTunes or Amazon. I finally found it on eBay and had it shipped over for over $40. Truth is I would have paid a lot more. It shows what a fan will go through in pursuit of music: the power of a song combined with scarce supply. Upon writing this I was still unable to find a place to buy that Japanese import online, but I did find it on YouTube! Thank God for YouTube.

Another band I’ve been waiting to see take on the world is the Scams. I’ve been working with Graham Filmer for over a year and think this band will be one to watch very soon as in right now. Check out the song Young Blood, one of my favorite. I wish I had that song when I was much younger to lose my shit to.

I’m also psyched to see Sub Swara’s live set with their new visual set-up. Killer!

More awesome tunes from Sub Swara here — some of my favorites tracks of theirs too. Lucky us!

And to leave you with a smile or rather a big hearty laugh, I give you a legendary get down session in the fields of England. Big Chill Raver, I salute you.

 

There’s no question about it. The awful attack earlier this month by a Mississippi group of teens on an innocent black man was absolutely, positively a Hate Crime. Watch the video below, and there should be no doubt. Then why on Earth would CNN put a question mark after the title term Hate Crime in their video? I just don’t get it. It’s unequivocally a Hate Crime, which frankly should be spelled out in all caps. I had just written a post about another racist incident in India a few days ago, and I mentioned how that episode didn’t move me to anger because it was rather harmless in the grand scheme of things. This one, however, moves me through intense anger through to deep sadness as I struggle to come to terms

with how this behavior can still exist in this world. As most people do, I like to wax poetic on how information technology is bringing us all together and inspiring us to love one another, but the truth is we have a long way to go when middle-class teenagers are murdering people based on the color of their skin.

My friend Anand Subramanian shared this Gawker article on the gaffe of an American diplomat calling the Tamil people “dirty and dark” as a joke. I’m from Sri Lanka, not too far from my fellow South Asians (note: there’s a significant Tamil population in Sri Lanka as well) so I’m close to the target group that was insulted. I racked myself pretty hard to feel the indignity of it all couldn’t muster it. I wanted to rage against my oppressors, but I didn’t. There have been times, of course, that I have felt the bigoted spears of nescient assholes.

I guess the lack of impact may be due to the source of the article (Gawker) and the funny vitriol in its sensationalist delivery style. I found it more entertaining than anything. I also felt pity for my fellow humans on both sides of the spectrum. It’s a reminder how some have been treated unjustly because of skin color, and how some can be persecuted so intensely for what are ultimately innocuous remarks in the grand scheme of things. Yes, those remarks were unbelievably ignorant, another case for pity, but we have more important issues to unify ourselves on than focus on superficial divisive distractions like this.

This is all an interesting interlude, but what really motivates me to write a blog post are the comments in the article. One of my favorite effects of the Internet is the running dialogue after the initial article. So much insight, humor, and passion is displayed. For the most part, the phenomenon of “Comments” in web posts helps to progress our society rather than retard it. With the good and the bad, comes the ugly of course, but I find our collective wisdom and humor more enlightening in general. In their way, people’s comments in posts across the Internet give me faith in humanity. This article in particular is a good example. I learned quite a lot about skin color in the comments section. I also cracked up. Rock on Internet commenters.