I Heart Indie 184

Because I’m not self-obsessed, I won’t tell you that I dig Indie 184 because she’s Dominican. Or a single-mother of three children with crazyfresh names: Cairo, 5; Samira, 3; and Samara 1 and a half. Or that she’s from Washington Heights. No, kind sirs and B-girls. Indie is, to me, a consummate artist dedicated to maintaining her integrity as the …

remixing new york…read between the lines

I did a double take when I came across this sign in the Lower East Side. We’re all angry over the  state of affairs in this country: guess this is one positive way venting  the frustration. snapshot by Raquel Cepeda

Outtake » Talking Gender Violence with Joan Morgan

My homie→author→cultural critic Joan Morgan coined the term “hip-hop feminism.” I recently asked her a few questions about teens attitudes towards gender violence and female misogyny for a feature I wrote. Below are snippets from our conversation. ~ By Raquel Cepeda What do you make of the rancor Rihanna’s been receiving after Chris Brown assaulted her? Unfortunately, It’s not really …

Village Voice: "Another Love TKO: Teens Grapple with Rihanna vs. Chris Brown"

An unsettling conversation, to oft-disturbing and potentially lasting effects. By Raquel Cepeda It’s hard to tell, but maybe she’s pursing her lips at me. Or, like any other eighth-grader, maybe she’s just irritated about having to spend a whole period with a bunch of seventh-graders-and in an advisory class, no less. After all, what’s left to talk about, especially after …

up in the bronx

I love trekking through Fordham Road in the Boogie Down Bronx where the people are fresh, especially now that my own Upper Manhattan neighborhood is experiencing a serious Taking Over of the most aggressive kind. (I couldn’t resist referencing my dear friend and hermano from another madre Danny Hoch‘s latest one-man show.) People of color, specifically, and real New Yorkers …

Bling: A Planet Rock: Frequently Asked Questions

“Open your arms to change, but don’t let go of your values.” ~ His Holiness the Dalai Lama I’ve compiled  some of the frequently asked questions about Bling: A Planet Rock, a feature documentary film I slaved over—”slave” being the operative word here—from 2001, when I started drafting the idea, all the way through its completion in ’07. The experience …