Kansas City’s Making Movies on the East Coast!

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Screen Shot 2014-09-30 at 12.19.22 PMI’m excited that Kansas City’s Making Movies is playing a few shows on the East Coast! They’ll be hitting Philadelphia, D.C., and New York City, in early October.

But first, check out this great blurb from NPR Music’s Heavy Rotation blog, which features “songs that public radio can’t stop playing.” Making Movies’ “Pendulum Swing” is one of the songs on the list. (You can download it for free here.)

The disparate musical influences of a childhood split between Panama and Kansas City only begin to explain the unique sounds created by Making Movies. The band’s bilingual album A La Deriva is a lyrically adept examination of the struggles faced by immigrant families. Producer Steve Berlin of Los Lobos, while working to capture Making Movies’ sound, also encouraged the group to not repeat itself. The result is a wholly original work that expands the rich heritage of Latin Alternative music. “Pendulum Swing” is just one part of a thoughtful record — a part best experienced on the dance floor.Jon Hart, The Bridge, for NPR music’s Heavy Rotation blog.

Before they hit the East Coast, however, the guys are hosting a very special event — the first of its kind — in their home city. Who says you have to travel to Latin America or the Caribbean to experience an epic party worthy of the title, CARNIVAL?

Making Movies' Carnval will be emceed by Pili Montilla!
Making Movies’ Carnval will be emceed by Pili Montilla!

CARNAVAL in Kansas City (tickets) is an inaugural music and arts festival hosted by Making Movies. It takes place on Sunday, Oct. 5, 2014, at Knuckleheads, and radio station, 90.9, The Bridge, is a co-sponsor.

Making Movies’ Carnaval is a celebratory block party, bringing Kansas City residents and their families together to share an appreciation for alternative Latino arts.

“Kansas City does not currently have any major outlet for fans of alternative Latin music,” says event planner, Diego Chi, the band’s bassist. “Carnaval allows us to fill that void and showcase the various cultures of all of Latin America, not just Mexico. We hope to make it a very rich experience, no matter what ethnic background the audience comes from.”

The lineup features Grammy award-winning group Ozomatli, a band that has largely influenced the alternative Latin music scene in the United States.

The event emcee is our friend, Puerto Rican entertainment media maven, Pili Montilla. An EMMY nominated TV host, actress, producer, blogger & social media expert in the bilingual entertainment world, she created, produces, and hosts, the Emmy nominated music show, ‘Té Para Tres con Pili Montilla,’ where she spends several days with up-and-coming musicians as they share their struggles and triumphs. The show’s next season begins airing nationally on Saturday, Oct. 11, on Mega TV.

Finally, those of you who are familiar with Making Movies know they make it a mission to have their music give back, in some way, to their community. A portion of special merchandise sold at CARNAVAL will benefit the Guadalupe Centers, a local non-profit organization serving the needs of the Latino community. Dollars raised will go toward supporting The M.U.S.I.C.A. Project at the Guadalupe Centers.

Check out this cool clip of Ozomatli and Making Movies inviting the public to the event:

Also view this wonderfully produced video (promoted nationally) about the band by restaurant chain, Wingstop:

Making Movies then travels to D.C., where they’ll play a string of East Coast dates:

Wed, Oct 8     Washington, DC     Bossa
Thu, Oct 9      Philadelphia, PA     Milkboy
Fri, Oct 10      New York, NY         Knitting Factory (*FREE show for CBGB Music Festival)
Sun, Oct 12     Winston-Salem, NC     Second Sundays on Fourth

About the band:

Making Movies is an internationally touring band whose bilingual music has been featured on MTV, NBC Latino, CNN en Español, NPR, and other national publications. The band is poised to re-release its second album titled A La Deriva, which was produced by Grammy Award-winning producer and artist Steve Berlin of famed rock band Los Lobos on Colorado based label, United Interests. Making Movies will embark on an East and West tour this fall.

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Bill Cosby (with a little Richard Pryor & Eddie Murphy thrown in for good measure)

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For decades, Cosby was America’s ideal dad. His real life was more complicated. CREDIT PHOTOGRAPH BY MILTON H. GREENE / ARCHIVE IMAGES

I consider myself a decent fan of Bill Cosby’s, but it’s in the fond-childhood-memories-kind of way because of re-runs of “The Cosby Show,” which I watched as a kid. I don’t remember his stand-up (before my time), and his ‘clean,’ storytelling type of stand up wasn’t exactly my cup for tea. Yet for his TV shows, it worked well.

Richard Pryor and Eddie Murphy, however, were my thing. Wild and potty mouthed, they made shitty days something to forget and laugh at. Still, as a comedy fan, I find him to be extremely important in the history of show business, African American history, and comedy, in the United States. And, truth be told, his recent notoriety for issuing respectability politics-laced tirades to (and about) the Black community, piques my interest. Why does he feel this way? What’s his deal?

This New Yorker piece gives great insight to a man I’ll always associated with Jell-O Pudding Pops. But this excerpt is THE BEST. I can hear Pryor’s voice and delivery(via an impeccable Murphy impression) as if I were right there:

In the 1987 concert movie “Raw,” Eddie Murphy told a story about Cosby calling him up and urging him to use less profanity in his act, for the sake of his young fans, including Cosby’s own son. Murphy recalled being so offended that he telephoned Richard Pryor, who offered some defiantly un-Cosby-like advice: “The next time the motherfucker calls, tell him I said suck my dick.”

Hahahahahaha. Now that’s funny.

It’s a long read, but worth it. Check out “The Real Cliff Huxtable” via The New Yorker.

 

A brilliant Latina law scholar

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Tanya Hernandez

I was writing to an editor at a magazine this evening about an opinion piece one of our law professors is going to write for them, and as I was going through her credentials, I thought, “She’s one brilliant Latina!”

An alumna of Brown University and Yale Law School, Tanya Hernandez is a professor of law at Fordham School of Law. Her expertise centers on discrimination; Latin America/Latin American law; and employment.

In 2013, she was selected by a Manhattan Federal Court judge to sit on a council that would weigh in and advise on New York City’s controversial Stop & Frisk policy.

She penned this opinion piece for the New York Times about civil rights: affirmative action, voter rights, and same sex marriage rights.

And in this piece she penned for the Huffington Post (before the Supreme Court ruled on Affirmative Action), she covered one of my favorite things to bring up when debating matters of race with friends: implicit bias.

The thing is, once I bring it up, it usually shuts the (Facebook) discussion down. The person feels I’ve insulted them, when in reality, I haven’t, because I’ve had implicit racial biases as well. We all have! And as Hernandez explains, they can be overcome:

As a decision is expected within the next two weeks, one thing I hope the Court will consider is that research in the field of cognitive psychology reveals that we all harbor biases and that affirmative action policies assist in addressing those biases.

Part of the reason for enduring social hierarchies is that individuals rely on stereotypes to process information and have biases that they don’t know they have. These implicit biases, as psychologists call them, are picked up over a lifetime, absorbed from our culture, and work automatically to color our perceptions and influence our choices.

Over a decade of testing with six million participants of the collaborative research venture between Harvard University, University of Virginia, and the University of Washington, called “Project Implicit,” demonstrates pervasive ongoing bias against non-Whites and lingering suspicion of Blacks in particular. Some 75 percent of Whites, Latinos, and Asians show a bias for Whites over Blacks. In addition, Blacks also show a preference for Whites.

In the educational context, studies of school teachers indicate that teachers generally hold differential expectations of students from different ethnic origins, and that implicit prejudiced attitudes were responsible for these differential expectations as well as the ethnic achievement gap in their classrooms. This is because teachers who hold negative prejudiced attitudes appear more predisposed to evaluate their ethnic minority students as being less intelligent and having less promising prospects for their school careers.

The pervasive existence of implicit bias in society and its manifestation in the educational setting, strongly suggests that the selection of students can be similarly affected by unexamined stereotypes and implicit biases. Bluntly stated university Admission Offices are not immune from the operation of implicit bias.

But we are not slaves to our implicit associations. The social science research indicates that biases can be overridden with concerted effort. Remaining alert to the existence of the bias and recognizing that it may intrude in an unwanted fashion into judgments and actions, can help to counter the influence of the bias. Instead of repressing one’s prejudices, if one openly acknowledges one’s biases, and directly challenges or refutes them, one can overcome them.

Read the rest of that piece here, and then check out this sampling of academic articles she’s written on a bevy of important topics:

  • Defending Affirmative Action: An International Legal Response, in vol. 29 Civil Rights Litigation and Attorney Fees Annual Handbook (eds. Steven Saltzman & Cheryl I. Harris 2013).
  • Racial Subordination in Latin America: The Role of the State, Customary Law and the New Civil Rights Response (Cambridge Univ. Press, 2013) (https://sites.google.com/site/racisminlatamerica/)
  • HATE SPEECH AND THE LANGUAGE OF RACISM IN LATIN AMERICA: A LENS FOR RECONSIDERING GLOBAL HATE SPEECH RESTRICTIONS AND LEGISLATION MODELS, 32 U. Penn. J. Int’l Law 805-841 (2011) (http://scholarship.law.upenn.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1103&context=jil).
  • “What Not to Wear” — Race and Unwelcomeness in Sexual Harassment Law: The Story of Meritor Savings Bank v. Vinson, in Women and the Law Stories 277-306 (2010 Foundation Press book chapter, Elizabeth Schneider & Stephanie Wildman eds.).
  • Afro-Latin@s and the Latino Workplace, in The Afro-Latin@ Reader: History and Culture in the United States 520-526 (2010 Duke Univ. Press book chapter, Juan Flores & Miriam Jimenez Roman, eds.).
  • Latino Anti-Black Violence in Los Angeles: Not “Made in the USA,” 13 Harvard Journal African American Public Policy 37-40 (2007).
  • A Critical Race Feminism Empirical Research Project: Sexual Harassment & The Internal Complaints Black Box, 39 U.C. Davis L. Rev. 1235-1303 (2006).  Available online at: http://lawreview.law.ucdavis.edu/issues/Vol39/vol39_no3.html.
  • Sex in the [Foreign] City: Commodification and the Female Sex Tourist, in Rethinking Commodification: Cases and Readings in Law and Culture 222-242 (Joan Williams & Martha Ertman eds., NYU Press 2005) (book chapter).
  • To Be Brown in Brazil: Education & Segregation Latin American Style, 29 N.Y.U. Rev. L. & Soc. Change 683-717 (2004-05).   Available online at:http://www.law.nyu.edu/journals/reviewoflawandsocialchange/issues/ECM_PRO_065694.