Jazz in the city

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

MUSIC is the key...

I LOVE MUSIC !!! all kinds of music and I particularily enjoy seeing live music at small intimate clubs, concert halls, outdoor festivals, street musicians, you name it. I have been blessed recently to have checked out some outstanding live jazz and that has made me very, very happy. Big shout outs to Robert Glasper Experiment and Christian Scott...y'all did your thing !

Watching the passion of the musicians brings out an emotional response in me that can't be duplicated from listening to my extensive Itunes library or the radio.  I enjoy the interplay between the musicians, who are performing for the audience, but are clearly in their own little world with the music and are merely sharing with us.

April is Jazz Appreciation Month and I appreciate JAZZ so I'm all about that. It is a great American artform that is appreciated all over the world even more so than here in the states, which is a shame.

Also the weather is starting to break and that means great lunchtime concerts and the Spring and Summermusic festival season. I can not wait ! 2010 has been a great year for new music already from Sade, Maxwell to Badu and the aforementioned gentlemen - Glasper and Scott. I look forward to want else comes down the pike and to being there in person as they do what they do.

Enjoy the photos of some great performances from last year and get ready for more to come.

Support Live Music !!! See you at the show.

         Terrance Blanchard
                              Esperanza Spaulding                                    
Drum Circle - Malcolm X Park - Washington, DC

Saturday, March 20, 2010

A taste of the Big Apple...

I took a mini "budget" trip up to New York midweek and remembered why I Iove that city so much. Energy. Diversity.Style. I covered a lot of ground, perused neighborhoods I used to live in and visited places where I spent plenty of time. I met with some friends and unfortunately didn't hook up with others. Fortunately there is next time...

I also took a lot of pictures of my favorite things. Nouns :people, places and things. There is so much to see and do in the City and just thought I'd share a few snaps of some of what I saw. From Harlem to Brooklyn and many places in between. New York City makes you feel alive !

Monday, March 15, 2010


Busboys and Poets
Sitting in my favorite coffee shop/bookstore,community gathering spot Busboys & Poets which has nothing to do with this photograph, but then again maybe it does. This is a very unique spot and has a very diverse crowd and I really enjoy vibing off their energy. The people here are in small groups discussing things or are individually tapping away on their laptops.I have no idea what type of projects they are working on,or  if they are merely websurfing, but I hope that they are passionate about whatever they are doing.

I have been playing around and quite frankly only following my passion passively. That is not going to get it done. I need to "go for it" whatever that means and putting these words on the screen is a first step. Being passionate about something or someone does not necessarily mean taking drastic steps, or not being afraid of the consequences but means accepting the consequences of anything that brings you joy.

One of the many definitions for the word Passion is: an intense desire or enthusiasm for something. I have that for taking photographs, travelling and writing. Currently economic concerns may be preventing me from jumping in with both feet, but I have realized that slow and steady progress towards a goal is a viable option. It is not always important to get there quickly, but more important to get there. Period.

Well enough about me :) Now to this photograph. I do not  know the circumstances of this gentleman but what I do know is that he is passionate about playing his music. It is obvious by the way the background is moving forward that he is content to live in the moment and do what he loves.

I too, am ready.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Daylight Savings Late night vibe

I just decided that I don't always have to have something smart or witty to say on my blog. It is called soulfotography for a reason and sometimes the photos will speak for themselves. I might add a caption sometimes and other times I won't. Hopefully the images I post will work your imagination all by themselves.

I must say, that even though I will be hurting in the morning missing this "lost" hour, I do look forward to more sunlight in the evenings.


Monday, March 1, 2010

Inner City Blues...

I spent a Saturday driving through NE Washington,DC in the neighborhoods and also headed back downtown.I was on my usual quest for interesting images to photograph and one thing that caught my eye was the preponderance of small inner city neighborhood grocery stores and liquor stores.Now I'm sure you can find bread, milk, OJ, etc. inside these stores but they are a far cry from the suburban, or even better city neighborhood, food emporiums like Whole Foods, Giant or Trader Joe's.

The signage on these "stores" always list beer, wine, liquor, lotto and check cashing. Not quite the five daily food groups but unfortunately, it seems in the ghetto, that is what is being told...and sold.

It is unfortunate that this exploitation has been going on for decades and it does not appear to be ending anytime soon. In addition to the glut of liquor stores, the inner city neighborhoods have excessive amount of fast food restaurants. The lack of quality produce
and better dining choices contribute to a long list of ills including heart disease, hypertension, diabetes, etc. which adds to our nation's health care crisis. That is for another blog post.
Even when construction is going on and a neighborhood is changing, one constant in the inner cities across America,are liquor stores and churches. I'd rather see more recreational centers and libraries but then that's just me. Something has to fundamentally change in each and every neighborhood and until it does we will continue to have major problems as a nation.