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.


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".


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".


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.


Inktober 14 - Raza

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.


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.

Speaking on a panel-Berkeley Public Library

So as part of a series of panels, I will be speaking alongside artists Liz Mayorga (above art), Avy Jetter, Thi Bui, and Kayan Cheung-Miaw. I had the chance to speak with Kayan who organized the panel a earlier this year and I had the pleasure of meeting several comics artist. I recently started on a graphic novel project and now understand the huge challenge that comes with writing or illustrating a comic or graphic novel. I will be there talking about my work, self publishing, distribution, race, and more.  Come check it out on November 13th from 2-5pm.


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.


Projects worth supporting-Comics & Children's Books

EXO is on their third project!!So cool to see this brother continue to make more comics from a Nigerian American perspective
Maya Gonzalez is an OG in the game and was one of the first people I asked advice from over 10 years ago. Her and her partner Matthew have succeeded in not only making books themselves, but nurturing many authors to do the same. This is your underground, bubbling up movement. Please share and support.
So Blood Orange Press is re-launching this project campaign. I did not receive enough funds on kickstarter, but we are confident we can reach the $15k goal here to get one diverse children's book made. If things go well and the project is over funded they can make more. Please support this project here and if you already dontated, please consider re-donating here on Indiegogo.

Inktober 11 - Mariana Pajón

Mariana Pajón is a BMX rider/racer from Colombia. She's 25 and she's a gold medal winning rider who has competed internationally in the US, Brazil, London, and Denmark!