A lot to remember (Cityscape) Photo mix)

  • If you like this post, leave a like and hit the follow button so you can stay up to date with my future posts. As always, peace and keep it real.

Title: Salutations Waltham 

Location: Waltham, MA

Photo description: On the Moody Street Bridge to the south of the picture is the Waltham town center.

Title: A Red Mouthful Submersion 

Location: Somerville, MA

Photo description: To me, this was basically GIF sphere.

Title: In Memory 

Location: Veteran Circle of Remembrance, Waltham, MA

Photo description: This statue is one that commemorates and remembers veterans.  

Title: The Jungle Duets

Location: The Jungle, Somerville, MA 

Photo description: A great duet by a talented duo that sang an array of songs from different genres from the blues, rock, soul, etc…

Title: A reminder to remember (Ghost Bikes)

Location: Cambridge, MA 

Photo description: These all-white bikes symbolize the lives lost on the roads. Cyclists in Boston/Greater Boston area are remembered at locations where accidents occurred and it is a way for families to remember their loved ones with something tangible. 

Who got next? Untold: The Rise and Fall of And 1 (Summary and review)

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Welcome readers,

If you’re a hooper (a great basketball player) then you’re familiar with And 1 streetball and its significant impact on street basketball and even the NBA to a certain extent i.e “Skip to my Lou” (Rafer Alston). The And 1 brand compared to its major competitor Nike didn’t have the manpower when it started, but the founders had a shared mission to introduce streetball to the mainstream and it became a prominent basketball brand that was on the level of Nike. In this blog post, I will summarize and review the latest documentary I watched Untold: The Rise and Fall of And 1. 

The And 1 brand began in August 1993 by three college students Seth Berger, Jay Coen Gilbert, and Tom Austin. These three basketball enthusiasts wanted to create a brand that exemplified their love for the game but catered to the streets. Furthermore, the brand wanted to have a demeanor that reflected the toughness of streetball. Before And 1 came out with sneakers, they tested the market and designed T-shirts that resonated with streetballers. Arrogant disses on t-shirts like, “Go to church. Pray you don’t guard me”, and “What’s wrong? “Momma forgot to pack your game”? This captivated consumers and the brand built momentum. Moreover, And 1 was cultivated with a grassroots movement mindset where the mission was to remain loyal to the streets and thus street ball became synonymous with AND 1. In addition, it was a way of life for a lot in the hood. And 1 reached its pinnacle when it started its And 1 Mixtape Tour which consisted of games being played nationwide and globally. Additionally, players would make media appearances to increase exposure for the brand. The testimonials from And 1 players were intriguing to learn about, such as winning was secondary because the performance was everything. From that standpoint, I perceived that sentiment to be comparable to the ostentatious Harlem Globetrotters or the extreme airborne version of basketball, Slamball. The latter was an exaggerated version of basketball that appealed to a casual fan that didn’t know much of the fundamentals, but And 1 streetball was an on-the-ground game that incorporated the culture of Hip Hop and gravitated to the streets. In regard to this, Rucker Park is considered to be the Madison Square Garden to Streetballers and the crowd there and many venues during there And 1 mixtape tour was their music, the court their canvas, their playstyle their ink, and the artist was the type of player they were every game. Even with the instant success And 1 enjoyed, its downfall was unfortunate because it could have been prevented. After the mixtape tour, consumer interests began to decline and players became aggravated because they weren’t being compensated fairly. For example, one of the players “The Dribbling Machine” expressed the discontent that the And 1 roster had with the company’s founders as “Poverty Pimpin’. His indignant disposition regarding how the players were treated in terms of financially is understandable and valid. They were the golden geese that would continuously lay their efforts on the blacktop only for the founders to exploit them. One of the founders of And 1 regretfully expressed that they should have looked at the players more like employees as opposed to brand endorsers. And 1 could have given them stock options and the profits could have been divided up fairly and evenly amongst the players. This poor display of business management was one of many reasons for the demise of the original And 1 brand’s success. As of today, the company is still active but under a new parent company. 

All things considered, And 1’s repute was strong in the early 2000s and that gave them the confidence to take on a juggernaut brand like Nike, but they lost momentum after the mixtape tour and it was unfortunate because And 1 is still a brand that is respected but not to the extent when it was in its prime. I would have liked to see more insight on the mixtape tour, how And 1 helped contribute to the popularity of mixtapes in the early 2000s, and the process it took to revive the brand under new management. All in all, it was a satisfying documentary. If you’re a basketball fan and remember the phenomenon of And 1 then definitely check this out.  

I’m Out Here (A Boston/ Greater Boston Photo Mix)

  • What’s good everyone, I haven’t done a photo mix in a while, so here is the latest collection I’ve taken in the last month. I hope you enjoy checking them out. Leave a like and hit the follow button so you can stay up to date with my future posts. As always, peace and keep it real.

Title: Giving ‘em the smoke

Location: Franklin Park Playstead, Boston, MA 

Photo description: Inglewood Hip Hop artist D Smoke performing at the 3rd annual Boston Arts Music Soul Festival aka BAMSFEST. 

Title: College days revisited 

Location: Boston, MA (Dorchester) 

Photo description: I made a return visit to collect something at my Alma Mater and the campus looked vibrant. There were some new additions that caught my attention, but overall the school had the same look and feel. 

Title: Festive Bridges 

Location: John W. Weeks Footbridge, Cambridge MA 

Title: This photo was taken during the annual Boston Dragon Boat Festival. 

Title: A Village Visit 

Location: Brookline Village, Brookline, MA 

Photo description:  I went to get buy something at Brookline Villiage. It’s a great-looking neighborhood. 

Title : Esplanade Ensemble

Location: Hatch Shell Charles River Esplanade, Boston, MA

Photo: It was a beautiful day out at this concert series.  

Strut your stuff (The Struts Live in Concert, Boston, MA)

  • These photos were taken during a concert I attended this past Monday by a British rock band called “The Struts”. I was gifted the tickets, and I didn’t want to pass up on the oppruntutiny, so I jumped on it, and man what a performance they put on. They’ve gained a new fan out of me. I will link a music video so you can check them out.

Title: Struts Encore

Location: Paradise Rock Club, Boston MA 

Photo Description: This was taken during an encore session from The Struts Tour. 

Title: Blue Light Stage 

Location: Paradise Rock Club, Boston, MA

Photo Description: Balcony view of The Struts performance.

Title: Red Light Stage 

Location: Paradise Rock Club, Boston, MA

Photo Description: Balcony view of The Struts performance.

Get festive (Oktoberfest 2021, A photo mix)

Title : Mariachi Madness 

Location : Harvard Square, Cambridge MA

Photo Description : Veronica Robles and her Mariachi band sing great tunes in Oktoberfest 2021 and energize the crowd to participate in dancing. It was an absolutely lively experience. 

Title : Watch me bust a move!

Location : Harvard Square, Cambridge MA

Photo Description : A street performer whose name I forgot put on a great break dancing performance. He danced to Michael Jackson’s “Rock With You”. In addition, he included the crowd in his act. 

Title : Bullock Brothers Gospel

Location : Harvard Square, Cambridge MA

Photo Description : Bullock Brother Gospels” , a Gospel band from the south, giving the northeast that southern gospel. 

Ignite (A Photo mix)

Title : Ignite 

Location : Union Square, Somerville, MA

Photo description : A fire performance at the Ignite Food and Fire Festival 

Title : Mariachi Madams 

Location : Union Square, Somerville, MA

Photo Description : These lovely Mariachi singers sang nice tunes in Spanish and interacted with the crowd in English. In between songs they would encourage the crowd to get moving to the music. 

Title : Their Hips Don’t Lie 

Photo Location : Union Square, Somerville, MA

Photo Description : These ladies put on an elegant show that included belly dancing and performance art. 

Title : Mariachi Madams (Part 2, Side Angle) 

Location : Union Square, Somerville, MA

Photo Description : A side angle of these lovely Mariachi singers who sang interesting tunes in Spanish and interacted with the crowd in English. In between songs they would encourage the crowd to get moving to the music. 

Title : Escalating

Photo Location : Porter Square, T Station Cambridge, MA

Photo Description : Do you see anything unusual on these escalators? 😉

Title : Faneuil Hall 

Photo Location : Faneuil Hall Boston, MA 

Photo Description : A day out in Downtown Boston and the streets were busy.  

Title : Moonlight Walk 

Photo Location : North Cambridge, MA

Photo Description : A night walk 

Welcome to Hempfest a.k.a The boston freedom rally

This past Saturday I attended my fourth Boston Freedom Rally Aka Hempfest, an annual Educational Cannabis and Music Festival held in Boston Common, Boston MA. Massachusetts Cannabis Reform (MassCann) is a non – profit public education organization working for the moderation of Marijuana laws. The event happens annually on the third Saturday in September and it’s a festival that’s been happening for the last 30 years. Moreover, MassCann advocates through their campaigns for Cannabis reform laws and social justice for minorities communities who are unjustly incarcerated for the usage of the plant. Furthermore, MassCann also campaigns for the legalization of hemp agriculture expanding medical marijuana programs and moving the regulation of the herb out from under the drug war armory of mandatory minimums, asset forfeiture, license confiscation, urine testing, and so on (Cited from MassCann site). This is a succinct explanation of the event background, for more information check out the website link below.

Title: Chillin’ Monument Side 

Location: Boston Common, Boston, MA

Photo description: People on top of Soldiers and Sailors Monument, enjoying a beautiful day out while smoking herb.

Title:Vendors

Photo Location: Boston Common, Boston MA

Photo Description: People and I walking through the cannabis vendor.

Title: Vendors Part 2

Photo location: Boston Common, Boston, MA 

Photo description: Walking through festival vendors 

Title: Grass Seats

Photo Location: Boston Common, Boston, MA

Photo Description: Looking at the main music stage. Some people and I were listening to keynote speakers talk about MassCann and Cannabis information.

Title: Dire Sloth

Photo Location: Boston Common, Boston MA

Photo Description: I’m not familiar with the band Dire Sloth, but I did enjoy what I heard and will look more into them.

Title: Hilltop 

Photo location: Boston Common, Boston MA

Photo description: On top of the Boston Common hill, next to the monument 

Title: Main Stage 

Photo location: Boston Common, Boston, MA 

Photo description: Looking towards the main music stage 

Title : Hazy

Photo Location : Boston Common, Boston, MA

Photo Description : Looking down at the smoke filled festivities.

Entering Events (City Mix Photos)

  • This city mix of photos are all events I went to in the past weeks. I hope you enjoy this post and hit the follow button so you can stay up to date with future posts.

Title : Summer Set 

Location :  Cambridge Crossing, East Cambridge, MA
Site Description : When I took this photo it was my first time attending CX Summer Nights which is an outdoor entertainment gathering that happens a few times during the summer in Cambridge MA.

Title :Moving Elements 

Location : The Phoenix Landing, Cambridge MA

Site Description : The Phoenix Landing is a restaurant and music scene in Central Square. I’ve walked past The Phoenix Landing for years every time I was in Central Sq (Cambridge) and never had the reason to go in there, until an acquaintance recommended me to attend this spot with him and take in it’s scenery. 

Title : 1,2,1,2

Location : 7 Hills Park, Somerville Park 

Site Description : I was at the Artbeat Somerville Festival in this photo, a festival created by Somerville Arts Council, and as you can see, the performers are jammin’. This was the last act (Hip Hop) on an incredible lineup of artists. 

Title : Rock on

Location : The Jungle Music Community, Somerville MA

Site Description : I was stage side at this great rock performance at the famous, The Jungle Music Community in Union Square Somerville MA. 

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