I’m back!

Hello Everyone,

I have to apologize for the major delay in writing. I know it was been almost a month, but I must start by saying that during that time I was down and out with a nasty cold/possible swine flu situation. All of my fun activities had to be missed mostly because I didn’t want to spread the disease and also because I felt more like lying around than doing anything else. Regardless, I am now back and have so much to tell you!

To begin, I had my last DJ class on Monday night. I’m so sad that it is over, but all good things must come to an end as they say, whoever they is. I made a final mix of 6 or 7 songs and got it on cd, as well as a tshirt with a wicked turntable sketch on it and a certificate saying I completed the program. We had a great last night of music, mixing and laughing. I can’t say enough good things about this program because it really was so different and fun. Anyone who is 23 years of age or younger should really check it out. Here is the link again for anyone is interested: Rhythm

Spec mixing it up

To show you just how awesome it all was, here is a photo of me mixing followed by a group photo from a couple of Mondays back. The photos are courtesy of the Rhythm FB group.

The Group

So as sad as it is that it is over, I had to move on. On Tuesday I was back at African Dance and was super happy that I went. This past week, Mufaro, I believe she is the coordinator of the Maritimes Centre for African Dance, taught us half the class and Vickie, my regular instructor, taught the second half. Mufaro was great, had so much energy and showed us a style of dance from the Congo, if I remember correctly. After, Vickie went over a Ugandan dance that I had learned before I got sick. This week was fun because there was another person who showed up so I had another person to dance with!! Hoorah!

In case anyone is interested in what music we are dancing to, I managed to snatch the songs from Mufaro and Vickie. Mufaro’s song is by Koffi Olamide – Danger de mort and Vickie’s song is by Karim Saava and is called Engoma.

Ok I will be back with more updates and fun stuff that is happening this coming week for you to check out!

Thanks for bearing with the break, but I assure you I will be updating regularly again. Also, I am looking for new things to start up as most of the classes I am taking are ending. Please submit any suggestions in the comments. I am thinking kickboxing and knitting maybe for the new year. What do you think?

Spec

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Holy update Batman!!

Hey guys!

So, it has been several days since my last post, and I assure that it is unintentional, I have not forgotten about you. I have been working away at training for my new job which is going great. So let me see, what can I  tell you about the week. I had my second hula hoop class on sunday which was great. This time we received our hoops and mine is a delightful red and pink hoop. Note to those who eventually get a hoop, don’t take on the bus at a busy hour, I was in everybody’s way. The class was different because we practiced hooping, obviously but she also added some new and more complicated hooping tricks to our repertoire.  Two of them involved leaning back or forward and having the hoop rotate on an angle around your body, which looks super cool, but is a lot harder to do than it sounds.

On Monday night I went to my DJ class and it was awesome. I can’t ever explain how much fun I have there to people because I just can’t find the words. It is such a great bunch of people. This week we reviewed beat mixing and then moved onto baby scratching, which is basically what it sounds like. It’s making little scratch sounds and working them into other songs. This week we just played around with it to get a feel for the process. It was soooo wicked.

After the class I went to the King’s pub, the Wardroom, for Moosehead mondays, where I drank no Moosehead. Skyler and I enjoyed a delicious raspberry Garrison brew while hanging out and listening to a DJ pump out some old school hiphop. It was great.

Despite being a little tired on Tuesday I still made it to work in good time, sort of, and then attended my Uganda dance class that night. I was the only one who showed up for the class which was too bad but I still had a great time. I got to do a lot of the dance on my own and was starting to remember some of the steps,although that is not where my strengths lie. Even when I think back to my days of the Martha Hicks Ballet school, and how I was always one step behind everyone else, I think about how I usually need a person in front of me to guide me. Regardless, I had a great time and was really enjoying the music. It’s the kind of dance that lets you put your own body into it. Even when I feel like I look silly I take a quick peek at myself in the mirror and notice that I actually look like I am feeling the music and interpreting it in the right way. Next week there will apparently be more people and a new dance on top of that! How exciting!

The centre is always accepting new people so if you want something new and really different you should come join me!!!

Since then, my week has been filled with work training, getting to know all the cool people I will be working with and random trips to the bulk barn and home outfitters with Amanda, Adam and Tyler.

On another note, the rain in halifax this week has been torrential. To say it was raining sideway is an understatement. I think all of my jackets have been soaked at least twice through to the liner. It is out of control.

This weekend is Thanksgiving and I am going to Amanda and Adam’s a big vegan Thanksgiving feast. I can’t wait! I am in charge of garlic mashed potatoes. I will let you know how it goes. I’ll also try and post any good recipes that get tested out at the feast tomorrow evening!

I’ll talk to you all soon! Happy three day weekend!

Spec

Beat Mixing!

Hey guys!

So this week is going to be a crazy one, and I am so pumped. It’s only Wednesday and already it’s been nutty. This week I had my second DJ-ing session/class, whatever you want to call it. To give you a little bit of background on the program, it’s called Rhythm and it is run by REACHability, which is an organization primarily for helping people with disabilities obtain skills and jobs and helps them become involved in the community. The great thing about them is that they have programs available to everyone, like the Rhythm program, which I think is great, because it brings all different people from different walks of life together. Anyways, check out their site linked above if you are interested in what they do.

The first week was mainly an overview with our two DJ instructors, DJ Atmosphere and DJ Trixxx, where we met them and were introduced to all the wicked high tech gear that we were going to be learning to use in the coming weeks. I have a teeny bit of experience from several years back at camp, where i learned to do basic beat mixing on older turn tables, but this equipment is pretty far ahead of that. It uses cds and mp3s and  probably other things that I am not slick enough to remember. Regardless, it is high end nice stuff that I am so pumped to know how to use.

Anyways, so after our brief intro to the equipment last week, we got right into beat mixing this week, which turned out to be really great. We took two separate songs and mixed them together, working with pitch, bpms, and cue points. I sound like I legitimately know what I am talking about, and I sort of do, but  I’m still learning.

The class is two hours long and there are only four of us, so we really get to participate and try things. It’s very hands on and the instructors are really awesome, not to mention the program coordinator, Sandy, who is really sweet and is always keeping everyone in check and taking care of everyone. The environment is really cool, and there’s no pressure. It’s a good place to be.

I have this image of myself as looking somewhat cool standing behind a set of turntables or mixers (Whatever the cool industry term is), but then I think about how I think I look cool when I’m dancing, but then catch myself in a mirror and see that I actually look like a three legged cat wearing pants doing the chacha. What.

Now I’m being the preverbial dork, listening to all my music and counting out the beats and whatnot. I can’t wait for next week when we might get into a little baby scratching. This class is totally wicked and a real hidden gem. It’s one of those things that so few know exists.

Also, if you are interested in the DJs that are teaching, I found a couple of links to stuff they are involved in. DJ Trixxx can be found spinning at The Palace on Thursdays and the middle deck or the Beer Market, on Sunday nights, where it was apparently packed to the brim last week. I’m planning on hitting up the deck this Sunday to see what its all about. Care to join me!?

And Now some links:

http://www.lowerdeck.ca/beermarket/default.html

http://halifaxdjs.com/blog/

Stay tuned for a post all about Uganda Dance… it’s gonna be great.

Spec