The Odyssey, DC Chapter: Days 14-16

Day 14:

Sunday. I wake up and run errands. Although I’m a bit depressed to be back in DC,  I force myself to stay in the Odyssey mindset because it makes me hungry and motivated. Dance rehearsal in the Atlas district on H Street at The Joy of Motion with the Glade Dance Collective. We are gearing up for a show on Tuesday and we want it to be awesome. Good rehearsal and I ride home with my triongo with Emma. I link up with Hannah at her pad to say hi and welcome her back from London. We talk about XL Recordings, her London/NYC connections, and make a plan for how we are going to connect with Warpaint when they come to DC. Burns picks me up, I load up my drums and head to ESL. I’m sad not to be playing with Thomas Blondet that night, my musical husband, but DJ Smudge and I make it work somehow. DJ Rekha comes through with Robin Bell!! Sick!!! So rad!!! Robin is a videographer in DC who makes rad films and does the music videos/VJing for Thievery Corporation, Ancient Astronauts and DJ Rekha. He featured me in one of her music videos that she aired in Delhi last new years, and it’s amazing to actually get to meet her. She’s a baller. She sits confidently, calmly, interested. I get to chat with her and meet some of her friends and see some of her photos from recent gigs she’s done. For those of you that don’t know her, she is the leader of the NYC underground bhangra scene and started it about 14 years ago. Basement Bhangra at S.O.B.’s. She emails me the next morning to tell me she’s interested in speaking to me a bit about my thesis (how women nagivate misogyny in the music industry) and to tell me that she’s teaching a summer class at Clive Davis that I should take. I’m really down, and really excited that she was cool enough to email. I kept it as new for a while because it looked so pretty seeing her name in my inbox. Some girl wants to get in Burns’s pants really badly, but he is amazing and stays with me despite potential booty. We leave the lounge at 2am and head to The Diner for spicy chicken fingers and a rad feministy discussion.

DJ Rekha and I at the lounge

Day 15:

It’s Monday. Catch up day supposedly. I try to get my gmail inbox cut in half and I’m somewhat successful. Except that it takes me all day when I thought it would take me just the morning. I have another Glade Dance Collective rehearsal, this time at Yoga Chai in Adams Morgan. I head there around 9pm and run into Huda and Sitali on the street right outside the space on 17th and Columbia. It makes my night. They are awesome. They are headed to Pablo’s House, where else!, and I secretly want to ditch the rehearsal and join, but I stay responsible. There are rules incorporated into the Odyssey that must be respected. Wouldn’t want to leave my dancers stranded in pursuit of other endeavors. After the rehearsal, I get to see Nnenna and her boo Charles! Nnenna’s got family in MD so she comes down every couple of months and then makes it over to DC to check on me. It’s the best thing. I think she wants to go into entertainment law and move to LA…would be sick!! We meet up in Snap which recently opened a location in Adams right on 18th and we chill for a bit. We check in and give love to Sista Pat and Walter at Madame’s Organ since it’s Monday night. I head home and even though I thought I’d be able to finally sleep early, I get on the phone with various loves of my life and only fall asleep at 3am.

Day 16:

Math and Music starts my day. I have to present to Professor Eller about Bessel Functions and Fourier Series as applied to a vibrating drum head. It’s going to be a rigorous presentation but I have two weeks to get my act together so it should be ok. Karolos will present on guitar/violin. It’s good to see Somos too. I check my email after the meeting and Jody, Warpaint’s manager, writes back to me and says Stella Mozgawa, Warpaint’s drummer, is willing to do the interview for my thesis!!! Holy shit!! So excited!!! I’m on a high!!! Hannah and I draft an email to Julia Willinger at XL Recordings nonetheless to see if we can interview them in person for our radio show. Fingers crossed. I have an awesome meeting with Professor Velez, my advisor for my women’s studies thesis and she inspiring and excited about all the interviewees/material I collected over the past 15 days of the odyssey. When I tell her I love blogging but can’t get myself to start writing, she encourages me to start writing my thesis like a blog and it should flow more naturally anyway. Sick. I better try that soon. From there, running late, I head home, grab congas and catch a cab to The Sitar Center in Adams Morgan for the show with Glade Dance Collective. It is for children and the hour long show goes well. I play in the last piece called Voodouine, and afterwards we do a brief percussion workshop with the kids. I teach them about the heartbeat of AfroCuban music (the son clave pattern) and then solo over it while everyone plays it with their hands, feet, arms, shoulders, body etc and we dance and drum together. So fun! The kids loved it I think! From there I head to Tryst to get some more work done, prep for SXSW and meet good crew. The best thing is that EZ greets me there and totally takes care of me. He helps hide my congas away and I later meet with Jana, Liz, Angela, Thomas. Cioffi is on Skype. We stay there till it closes at Midnight. Thomas presses 100 Second Sky CDs in the nick of time so I have them for SXSW. 1am radio show! Mind Travel! I bolt back to campus with Jana and we air live with Hannah and Charlotte. Warpaint heavy. LA story heavy. I have no idea what to expect in the next chapter of the Odyssey, but I’m happy to say that a chapter that was supposed to be boring, ends up being just as exciting.