Sunday, March 19, 2017

Last February We lost Al Jarreau.

I'm not sure if I even blogged about it, but this man's passing was a major one for the marching band community.I was thinking about posting about this Friday. It's wild to me that Chuck Berry Passed today (yesterday). As for Al Jarreau, there were numerous songs that he sang which were made signature tunes by many marching units. Many marching bands play Black and Blues. Murphy's Law was one of my high school Band's signature tunes. I love his music. In my opinion, Al Jarreau was the embodiment of musical expression.

Legendary!

The Legendary King of Rockabilly Chuck Berry has passed away!

I was introduced to Chuck Berry's music through Movies like "Back to the Future" which used "Johnnie B. Goode" as a signature tune.
If you remember the scene from the dance when Marty plays it. "Hey Chuck, I think this is the sound you've been looking for!"

There was also My Ding-a-Ling. I grew up thinking it was a Christmas song due to it always playing around Christmas. It was Hilarious yet explicit, yet also clean enough for children to sing without consequence. LOL! It was our Alma Mater LOL!

When I was a little bitty boy,
My grandmother bought me a cute little toy
Silver Bells hanging on a string
She said it was my Ding-a-ling-a-ling!

I know his catalog of music goes way beyond that, those are the ones that stand out to me due to my upbringing. I've his videos and things over the years. I've even seen Mos Def portray him in a movie.

Thank you, Chuck Berry, for your contribution to Music in the 20th Century!

- Book!

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

It's Been A Minute.

So much has happened and I've been Absent. Absent from blogging due to distractions. There's lots of work to be done. I've got photography work which hasn't been completed. There was an event in February, as well as Mardi Gras. On my part, I've wasted time playing Xbox. Ever since I got the online subscription, I've been on Gears of War & Borderlands 2. Time-consuming distractions! I need a balance.

I've been getting things prepared on the front of my Organization too. We've got two new board members, I'm excited about that. I mainly deal with the internal, not the external business for the group. My Niche is Technology, though. My purpose is to maintain the matrix. It's less than what I should be doing. I've got to step up my game.


During parade season I did some walking with the bands. All of them! On Endymion night, I got some bad news. Someone from my old neighborhood, who also attended Texas Southern as well. Chyna, Known to many as a drag performer, was a transgender woman. I knew her as a male form as Walter. Chyna moved back to New Orleans just last year to be with family. I was at her grandma's birthday, Hired to video the event. In that video, there was a clip of Chyna dancing. I posted it just a day after I heard about the Murder. It was something that came as a shocking to everyone that knew her. My College crab sister (band mate) was very upset. Her and Chyna were close. What was worse is, She came to N.O for Zulu Ball and didn't get to see Chyna. Such a Tragedy.

That isn't the only Murder that shook the city. There were 2 other Transwomen killed. There has also been a host of women killed since January, Not only in New Orleans but in the State of Louisiana. I hate that this city is so violent. I hate to hear of all these women and children are being killed. Last week a woman and her 3 kids were shot, one child survived. I found out later that day that I knew the father of the 2 children that were killed, He's distraught.

Personally, I try to live my life based on the biblical commandments, I do this without condemning everybody. At most I can pray for the family and try to be of some kind of comfort if I can. I hope this violence is suppressed somehow. Way too many people have died in this short time of 2017. I hate it.

- Book

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Reflecting On Stupidity from September of 2005

About a day after Katrina, I sat in the Astrodome typing without thinking. I was in the midst of getting things off of my chest when I mentioned something that I now feel was offensive. I don't use profanity, But I regret the use of specific terminology.

During the first week of my stay in the Astrodome, I received an email from a Journalist covering personal survival accounts. She found my blog and was interested in my story. In response, I mindlessly wrote whatever what on my mind. Even worse, I didn't get to see the report. Reading the emails I sent makes me cringe.

In 2015 I found myself in some news publications again. This time for my contribution to a book called Please Forward. The Journalist gave me a shout out via her personal page. I replied thanking her, while also apologizing for my statements from the interview. She replied back saying, there was no reason to apologize for it. Sometimes we get that way while expressing ourselves.

You're probably wondering what it was I said, Right?
I made a direct reference that folks were uncomfortable with showering among gay people. Then I wrote: "We Call Them Bird Watchers." To make It worse, before making the statement I said; "Not to be rude." Even with the accounts being facts. I shouldn't have mentioned gays as the target demographic responsible for the actions.

Bird Watcher is a slang term for Peeping Tom. The word Bird is slang for penis. When Mentioning it, I wasn't thinking about the perception of my character, I was only stating what I had been hearing. Today I'm disgusted that I wrote it. I don't want to come across as a homophobic person.

Showering Truth:

This caused many of us to bring family with us just in case anything goes wrong. Of course, showering and dressing among other people are uncomfortable to those who normally do so in private Therefore to fear being watched or inappropriately touched just makes sense.

With the dome open to the general public, we didn't have a clue who was in the building. Adults monitored their children due to the reports of Peeping Toms and sexual misconduct in the showers and restrooms.
I recall a man being arrested for peeping in the ladies room. He was not a Katrina victim. The man was arrested while in the women's restroom.

There were also accounts of LGBT harassment in the restrooms.
As mentioned in This article. A transgender woman was arrested for while attempting. According to the article,, She was informed to not enter because police were in there and would arrest her, It happened. Less than 20 years later and This subject became a major concern all over America.

Personally, I don't think it's fair to screen someone before they enter a restroom. If that person is a child or transgendered, they should be given the same privacy space as anyone else. That would prevent them from being harassed as well.

My personal experience using the astrodome's showers. Almost every time I went to the shower, I went with my cousin, or my Brother-N-Law's little brother because they were afraid to take showers by themselves.

The first time I took a shower in the dome, I walked into the locker room area, there were women and men among each other awaiting an open shower. There were attendants in place to assist everyone. While preparing to enter the shower, a guy walks out making loud outbursts about how he's a real man and can shower without shame.

The weirdest thing I experienced happened while I was leaving the dressing area. A naked man began talking to me. There's nothing worse than holding a one on one conversation with a naked man. Otherwise, I showered while both male in the same shower room. No Curtains, just open showers.

With that said, we had just survived the biggest national disaster in the United States history. Showering should have been the least of our concerns, Right?

EXACTLY!

- Book.

Saturday, January 14, 2017

The Status | The Value | The Bandhead.org

Below are my thoughts as written on bandhead.org as of today:

I've been very lenient with my moderating of the things here on bandhead.org due to past complaints. I've added moderators over the years to assist me in making things better. The way I see things is, It could be worse. The dance forum has been our strongest asset, but it's also one of the reasons the band community isn't here.

I moderate on basic forum etiquette, conduct, and appropriation but since 2012, I made a decision to let you all have your freedom. The Moderators have come and gone, the ones I have now are okay. I'm unsure how they do their duties because we have no rules to moderating. Generally, I've asked our moderators to be the judge. It's Them who decide what's appropriate for bandhead.org.

We haven't had any major issues beyond personal attacks. Arguments get that heated, but of course, there are limitations, we can't allow those to remain, Whether we do or don't members complain about what the moderators are doing. Personally, I am a fan of the images, smack talk, clap-backs, etc. but there's a point where it gets distracting. That's when we have to shut it down.

These days, Nobody follows the standards of netiquette/forum etiquette/ we treat everything as a blog post with a comment section, rather than a mass discussion. What we fail to realize there is, as members, we are contributors. We contribute to this site's image and perception.In my opinion, going back to the using old standards of etiquette on forums would be a great thing from a member and moderating stance. Do I have that kind of time? No, but I can make It work.

We've had recent highlights in two publications. One of them was the Smithsonian magazine. The other highlight was an NPR article which highlighted member commentary from a post regarding Talladega's decision to march the inauguration. Although this is great, It's a clear reminder that we have an influence in our online presence. We also an audience, and we shouldn't ignore them. We represent The HBCU marching band community both internally and externally.
Ultimately, I ask of you all be mindful of the things you share. Also, please be sure to cite your sources. It's important for reference purposes.

It is fair to say that we need to reevaluate how we post, This is a forum full of opinion, but we as members do have a responsibility, It's to make this site a community worthy of visiting, and joining. We don't want to scare people away by trolling them etc. Our goal has never been to be the most credible source, but, to be a reliable source of information and for entertainment for our band community.
The many groups on other social media platforms don't equate to bandhead.org. We view this site as a service to the community. We greatly value your membership. It's up to you to make this site great again.
Book,
Bandhead.org Administrator.