Sunday, July 20, 2003

Hanging With The Anti-Clique

Work Is Love Haiku

Four foot eleven
I love her like few others
Ishle is the bomb!

Ishle's CD release party for Work Is Love was a lot of fun. It was the first time I'd hosted something at the Bowery Poetry Club and a nice turnout (Ishle's always had a strong following, though the crowd was a bit light on, um, slam scenesters; short memories, I suppose) caught Edward Garcia, Taiyo Takeda, Bassey and Ed Bok Lee open up for an amazing set by Ishle, with musicians backing her up on most of her pieces, adding another dimension to the more familiar work. One of the new pieces she did, a poem about her father, was one of the most heartbreakingly sincere poems I've heard in a while. Ishle's appeal lies in the unadorned vulnerability she shows in her work. Even in the seemingly lighter pieces, like the Pussy poem (never one of my favorites but something about her delivery worked for me last night) there's a raw honesty that takes it to another level.

The CD itself looks and sounds great, so its no surprise that Mas Yamagata had a hand in its production. He's the next Russell Simmons, an intergral part of some of the best spoken word CDs of the past few years, including feedBACK poets and 5 PAST 13. A cool guy on top of being a talented producer, technician and musician. He apparently DJs, too! Much respect to him.

After the show, Bassey, Lenny and I headed over to Two Boots to eat and talk and chill. Bassey leaves for Europe with Def Jam next Sunday! Ed, Helen and Omar met up with us a little later and we all sat in Two Boots til after midnight, talking mad shit. At one point, I was telling Helen about Isaac's new imaginary friend, Steve. She suggested it might be a result of him wanting something of his own as he has to split everything from toys to our attention with India. Considering he doesn't like us to talk to Steve, it makes sense. Having grown up in a haunted apartment, though (long story for another day), part of me is still expecting to find out that somebody died in this apartment recently. After all, it WAS empty for five months before we got it.

Fun night hanging with "the anti-clique." Hopefully the planets will align again soon and we can do it again.

VICE NOTE: No cigarettes last night - despite a momentary temptation from Helen - continuing my current quitting streak at 62 days!

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