Angie Martinez: How the Voice of New York Found Her Voice

The book begins with a foreward by rapper J. Cole and while some criticized Angie’s decision to have a relatively new artist open up the book I can understand why she chose to go with J. Cole rather than with someone more seasoned. Through his perspective, Cole looks to Martinez as the hip-hop icon she is. He recognizes her contribution to the culture describing her as being “cut from the original cloth”, a cloth that was “more honest, more curious, more genuine.” He refers to a time when hip-hop was brave and fearless and not at all consumed by first week album sales. A stark contrast to the big business money machine it has become. It is a description of an era that made Angie, myself, and many other inner city kids fall in love with hip-hop. Continue reading Angie Martinez: How the Voice of New York Found Her Voice

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Que Bonita Bandera: The History of the Puerto Rican Flag

The month of June is always full of many events celebrating the Puerto Rican Culture. There are various street festivals along with the National Puerto Rican Day celebrated this month. In honor of these celebrations and of my culture I am providing you all with a brief history on our beautiful bandera.  Back in October 2010 I had the pleasure of attending an exhibit at El … Continue reading Que Bonita Bandera: The History of the Puerto Rican Flag

Latino Theatre: We Need More

This past weekend I had the opportunity to see the off Broadway production of “They Call Me La Lupe” starring Brooklyn born actress and fellow Latina, Lauren Velez.  The story is about the life of the dynamic, freewheeling, uncontainable, but brilliant Cuban singer Guadalupe Victoria Yoli Raymond, the original Queen of Latin Soul.  It was a remarkable depiction of one woman’s desire to sing and not let anything … Continue reading Latino Theatre: We Need More

Spotlight Latino: Arturo Alfonso Schomburg

The modern school without systematic lectures turns out many graduates who lack retention. No sooner has the sound of the word left their teacher’s lips, the subject has been forgotten. . .   –Arthur Schomburg It was more than a century ago that a young man arrived in New York on a mission that would bridge two cultures, span several centuries, and provide a lasting structure … Continue reading Spotlight Latino: Arturo Alfonso Schomburg

Spotlight Latino: Puerto Rican Writer Rosario Ferré

As I begin my first post of the Spotlight Latino series, I decided to put the spotlight this week on prolific Puerto Rican writer Rosario Ferré.  As a member of the upper class, Ferré was born in Ponce in 1938 to a family influential in business and politics. Ferré is the daughter of one time Puerto Rico governor Luis Ferré and while born into wealth and privilege, Ferré … Continue reading Spotlight Latino: Puerto Rican Writer Rosario Ferré