The latest bi-weekly lyrical ambush was among the strongest weâ€™ve have had since the weather turned last fall â€“ despite the continued cold. On the first day of spring, we dragged out the big sound system loaned to us by the D.C. Anti-War Network (DAWN) and encountered a small army of people that coalesced around us. By 7:30, we had the area of the Circle near us filled with people, and while the numbers slowly declined over the rest of the evening, the energy remained formidable.
A number of new faces came through and graced the mic. Against-the-MegaMachine from Contraband Records came through to add a few hard-hitting rhymes, and Joe Kennedy backed up everyone who hit the mic with a skilled mix of flute, scat and Bobby McFerron-style beat-boxing. Allanâ€™s enthusiasm was infectious, with his stints on the mic (in Spanish!), drum and dance floor each elevating the energy of the group one notch higher. Finally, Godâ€™s Son, a seemingly low-key brother walking through the circle wearing headphones and a long black leather trench coat, hit the mic three times â€“ slinging tremendous conscious freestyles each time off the top of his head. He apparently holds down a solo guerrilla gig in Judiciary Square with a megaphone, and suggested that our finally having crossed paths is hardly coincidental.
A number of folks rolled back to the Belmont House for the after-party, including Mary Shymanski, Ellie Walton and Sam (visiting from London, and who captured footage in the Circle for a documentary project through which they hope to capture the real voice of DC), and Ethan from Philly, who’s in town organizing for some culture change events in May. We dropped a few ciphers, traded a few stories, and spent a few hours shooting the breeze. Powerful forces are at work in the nationâ€™s capitalâ€¦with a counter-culture emerging to challenge the prevailing political paradigm and its iron-fisted grip on the planet.
Word up to Gary (whose birthday is this Wednesday!), Joe, Johanna, Fadi (who offered the rhythmic backbone for the rest of the artists), Mark (who rocked out with both his guitar and drum machine), Laurie, Jess, Shahid, Jeff, Damian, and Gustav.