Posts Tagged ‘aj rafael’

We Own the 8th Surprise

It’s the 8th of the month and today is the day that our Asian American arts collective meet’s in downtown LA in at The Great Company. Now every month, there’s a different event that takes place, from open forum meetings to talk about issues effecting the community, to keynote speakers and workshops, and live performance nights. Now, tonight was supposed to be a performance night where some of the founders including myself we’re supposed to perform from the group at large. The whole evening was hosted by Beau Sia, also one of the founders and was supposed to be us and others just performing for everyone… as I was introduced and took the stage to begin my set, the screen come down and a video starts to play… it’s a tribute video… to me! Friends and colleagues and fellow members of the 8th wishing happy birthday.

Beau really got me, I took a seat in the front row and after this wonderful video of well wishes, Beau began to bring on friends and family to honor me. It was funny and emotional and people talked of how I may have impacted them and the community. You know, the funny thing is, of course as performer, I’m comfortable in front of an audience to act or talk, but as the center of attention otherwise, it can be a little uncomfortable for me, I much rather lay low and fly in under the radar. But brothers hit the stage and told stories, roasting me a bit, a lot of laughter, then other stories which filled my heart up, I love those guys, songs from friends Olivia Thai and AJ Rafael, AJ even got me to join him for a duet… that was pretty crazy. I poem from my sister.

And the other crazy thing is, Beau, within planning for the show, asked me to write a new poem, talking about age and also becoming the leader of this group, “We Own the 8th.” It was to be apart of my set… although, ultimately there was no set to do. I was up all last night writing this new piece. Lucky for me, or I guess it might of happened how Beau planned it, this new poem I wrote was the perfect poem to end the night. So I read it to thank all those in attendance. (I’ll probably post the poem on my youtube later)

So my actual birthday is on the 29th… but this was a special night, to celebrate and honored by my peers and family, I appreciate everybody that came, everyone that took time to send in a video, everyone that performed, the poets, the singers and of course Beau. I am truly proud to be a member of the crew, #WeOwnThe8th!


What a night! I just got home from a crazy dope meeting. AJ Rafael came to meet me at Laurel Tavern (great food by the way), to discuss and help me with, what I guess I can say is my online presence. For those of you that read my blog, you know that I don’t blog that much, or at least with any consistency and I haven’t even logged onto my youtube page in forever… not even sure if I remember the password (I’m going to have to figure that out).

But I just had a 4 hour talk with AJ and my sister Arianna about this whole online thing… blogs, youtube, twitter. Later we were joined by Kevin Wu (who some may know as “kevjumba”) and they just blew my mind. The conversation started out as one thing, helping me establish my self more online which will help promote anything and everything I do as an artist and in business, to we started discussing the amazingness of what’s really going on online, how they created their online world, which consist of millions of “hits” and “followers”. They really educated me on the importance of what the internet has become. I mean, we all know how important it is, but we all don’t use it the same way. It’s really crazy, just in the short time between my generation and their generation I can really see the difference of how we view the internet. What do I really do on the internet… shop, look for movie times, google something. They’re communicating… and not just to their friends on facebook, no, their communicating to the masses… I mean, seriously, they have millions of people who watch them and follow what they do. It’s one thing to know that cats are getting millions of hits on youtube and its another thing to be sitting in front of two dudes that are doing it.

What can I say… they guys really taught me a lot tonight and just blew my mind. More then all that, they really inspired me. The conversation went on and we talked about the new generation of Asian-American artists and where we all stand and what we can do in the future. If these are the cats that are coming from this new generation, I can’t wait to see all they can achieve and I’m definitely excited to work with them.

I hope the world is ready, because its about to be our time…