inktober 2016 Tag

Inktober 18 – ESG

Emerald, Sapphire, and Gold is a band of sisters, there was a brother in there too. They are from the Bronx, NY and to stay out of trouble their parents got them musical instruments and encouraged them to play. They released a record in the early 80s which bent genres of funk, rock, techno, and some sounds that couldn’t be described as anything but new. I wrote about them for Muphoric Sounds back in 2011 for the “In the trunk” series and the thing I love about them is that they’re a family, the are still playing and recording new music, and their style was striped down and to the point. No extra BS on top, just raw music. In some ways discovering them and listening to their sound through samples first, then through the original songs is quintessential New York because it is about dancing and having a good damn time. Shout out to Mister Bouncer who played songs like “Erase you” and “Ufo” for me first.

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Inktober 17 – Sheila-E

Born and raised in Oakland and one of the best musicians to come out of the Bay, Sheila has recorded many albums as a band leader and as a collaborator with other musicians. She has been performing since she was in elementary school and has toured the world playing music that is influenced by funk, jazz, salsa, country, and hip hop. She is a treasure to the Bay Area and is not only still playing, but is giving back by mentoring younger musicians and giving to music programs in schools. Some of the notable artists she has worked with are George Duke, Herbie Hancock, her dad Pete Escevedo, Marvin Gayem Gloria Estefan, Prince, and Beyonce. She is one of the best drummers in the world and plays multiple instruments. This is one of her playing the “timbales”.

Dig this? Check out this one of Dorothy Ashby

Inktober 16 – The Royal Jesters

The Royal Jesters I found through Madlib. Chicanos have always had soul. Influenced by African American musicians of the 50’s and 60’s many Latinos (men and women) began to form groups in California and Texas. One of the gems of the 60s is the “Royal Jesters” a band from San Antonio Texas. Some of their hits in english and spanish are “I won’t love you”, “Wisdom of a fool”, “You succeeded” and “Yo Soy Chicano”. Check out the reissue of their works on the Numero Group label called “English oldies”.

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Inktober 15 – Indigena

Indigena, meaning a woman who is indigenous to the land. I guess it could be a woman from any where in the world. But I’m referring to women from the Americas, Las Indigenas.

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Inktober 14 – Raza

EDIT 2020 


New sticker with the phrase “RAZA” which means meany things to different people. Simply put, it means “The People”, gente, your folks, your family, and for many people it means a mixture of races/peoples that make up one. People who come from Indigenous, African, and European blood-mixed together through conquest, slavery, and some many other factors. I first heard the term “La Raza” from MC Kid Frost from LA, then from my Chican@ studies teacher Maestra Luna in high school. Often in protests or you’ll see the term because this is a group of people who both know their whole identity and have had it erased. Some people call themselves Indigenous, Hispanic, Latino/a, Spanish, or Latinx. Whatever term you use just know the story behind it.

José Vasconcelos came up with this term in 1925 in his piece “La Raza Cosmica”. What I wrote below is not actually correct. But I keep it on here because…growth.

Raza. Simply or more complexly meaning “the race”. The human race? Not really. More like the race of Latinos, the mixture, pride, love, and history all in one. I don’t know the root of the word and where it came from but I remember the first, second and most recent time I heard it. The first was from an MC known as Frost from L.A. (I grew up in Northern Cali-hanging mostly w/ African American kids until jr. high and high school) The second was from a beautiful teacher that I had a crush on in high school named “Ms Luna” who described it with a smile. Mot recently I heard it in the lyrics of Bay Area MC Deuce Eclipse in the song “Que Pasa?” Can you remember the first time you heard this term? I know its more of a west coast thing, but I’d call myself Raza any day over “Spanish”. I might have some traces in my blood but I am not Spanish.

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Inktober 13 – Mestizo

Mestizo is a word that was created to describe the mixture of Native indigenous peoples from the Americas and the caribbean and Europeans. Most of the time this was done through rape figuratively and literally. Some people use the word to mean a mix between black and white, or dark and light skinned Latinos. I just take it to mean “mixed” because Latinxs come from African, Indigenous, and European roots and traditions; some more than others. But its all mixed in there.

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Inktober 12 – Idalys Ortiz

Idalys Ortiz is an Afro Cuban Judo practitioner who has not only competed all over the world, but has either won or placed in over 20 championship matches including the Rio, Beijing, and London Olympics. She was 18 in the 2008 Beijing Olympics and is one of the youngest fighters to win.

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Inktober 9 – Janel Martinez

I relate to Janel a lot just hearing about the mix of cultures she grew up with and having to “explain” to people who you are w/o constantly getting asked “what are you”? For those that are not up on her work, she is a young Journalist out of the Boogie Down who works in culture, current events, tech, etc. She writes about her culture too making it more possible for other young brothers and sisters too identify with both their African and Latino roots and to be damn proud of it. The difficult part of this is not just explaining it to white people, it’s breaking it down for Latinos and for African Americans and getting a better understanding of who “Afro-Latinos” are. Self love first. Check out the work she does with her business and blog “Ain’t I Latina?” On the social media platforms and blogs she not only talks about her experiences but highlights those of other Afro-Latinas in the world; past and present. This is dope because it lets everyone know that folks have so many more dimensions and complexity to them. And it allows people to follow many more change makers and successful entrepreneurs. Right on Janel.

Want this original drawing? $60 or Print? $20 (includes shipping)  
Got an idea for an org to donate 30% cost to? Email me info@robdontstop.com