barack obama inauguration, daz i kue bugz in the attic, dj ian friday, dj spinna, inauguration 2009, inauguration day, inauguration parties, inauguration stories, inauguration weekend, manifest hope exhibit, wonderfull party
As I’m writing this, it’s been about 48 hrs since the end of an error. And the beginning of an era of change. I’m realistic and don’t expect the man to walk on water. But I know we have nowhere to go but up from here!
To say the energy is DC was at an all-time high is a understatement. There is absolutely no other place you could have paid me to be in the entire world. I was supposed to have two different people come stay with me but I ended up with no guests. And to be quite honest, as bad as it may sound, I am glad things worked out that way. I was able to move when I wanted to move and the entire weekend went remarkably well for me, despite worrying myself gray about logistics in the weeks preceding.
Call me crazy but I was not pressed to attend any of the official events or balls. That’s just not the way I chose to spend the weekend. I requested tickets through my job to several events, particularly the swearing in ceremony. I rarely talk about the 9-5 on here but just know that I work for an organization that has been extremely influential in this whole election cycle. So much so that Obama and Biden have both visited our building to meet with our big wigs and will likely return. However, the pickup times for the tickets were very inconvenient for me and honestly, I would likely have ended up keeping them as souvenirs. It was probably best that I let them go to someone who was going to make use of them.
Instead, I chose to attend a few off the radar parties and concerts where I knew I would be in the company of progressive and culturally minded folks that wanted to move their bodies in celebration of Obama and real music.
Friday night, I attended the Chocolate City Cultural Alliance Inauguration Party where Soul Controllers (featuring my favorite DJ Stylus) and Daz-I-Kue of Bugz in the Attic, a collective of UK-based DJs and producers who make the broken beat music that I so love were spinning.
I’m very ashamed to admit that I’m just getting up on them. And that’s why I’m glad I was there! My heart was too because that was the first event at which I got more cardio in than I probably have in the last few months.
Listen to a clip from his set. I say listen because none of these parties were video-friendly but that wasn’t going to stop me!
The next night I set out on the historic U Street to see what I could see and take in some more of that electric feeling. The vendors had everything from blinged-out Obama shirts to Obama waters to Obama “Jordans.” Anything to stimulate to economy – I guess. You can see random pictures I took throughout the weekend here.
Through a series of events, I ended up having the best evening with nOva of Soul Bounce and DJ Stylus at a spot called Almaz where NYC-based DJ Ian Friday was on the wheels.
Trust me, it was as good to him as it was to us.
When we were with him outside afterwards, I promised to be a stan for life. I think this might be the year I start really building my collection of music from DJs and producers such as Bugz in the Attic and DJ Ian Friday. This is good music folks.
Sunday evening I actually skipped the concert on the Lincoln Memorial (if you can believe it – although I heard it was great! Stevie? Nuff said) and went into Georgetown. I wanted to feed other cultural love -of art- and see the ManifestHope exhibit of Obama inspired pieces. My heart was full as soon as I walked into the gallery. It was truly something to behold and I captured just about every piece of art in there via photo and on video. You can take a look at the pictures here. You can view the video from the exhibit here: pt 1 | pt 2 | pt 3 | pt 4
Along with the visual art, the music also played an important part in this exhibit. I had to go up and give DJ Troublemaker out of LA major props for his selections, particular after a HOT mix of Santogold’s “You’ll Find A Way.” He gave me one of his CDs and I will be checking for him as well.
Later that evening, I attended the Eric Roberson concert where The Revelations featuring Tre Williams opened. I’ll report more on that with a review next week. Meantime, for your comic relief, I’ll share the video of Erro confiscating my camera and recording himself performing “Softest Lips.” It is truly a comedic tour de force. Such raw emotion.
Monday evening was the event before the main event: the Wonder-Full Party. All Stevie, all night long. Can it get any better? As far as I’m concerned, he could have been the only one performing the entire weekend at every event. But they didn’t ask me.
This event sold out leaving many people out in the bitter cold unfortunately. I would have considered it the FAIL of a lifetime if I wouldn’t have been able to report about this party here. I can’t describe the feeling of exhilaration as Obama chants broke out over Stevie’s music. People dancing with joy and abandon. I wish all of you could have experienced it.
Wonder-Full wrapped up around 2:30 am and then Rich Medina took the wheels pitting James Brown versus Fela until about 5am.
I stumbled up the street to Busboys and Poets where I remained until about 1pm when all of the ceremonies were over. I was exhausted, but never closed my eyes. I didn’t want to miss a thing. Silly me even recorded his whole speech and various entrances onto the dais. I wanted my own copy.
I shared a table with some cool folks I’ll probably never see again but we’ll always remember that we shared that historic day together.
Now there was one FAIL I’m kicking myself over.
This is St. John’s Church where the Obamas attended service Inauguration morning. See that white building on the left of the picture….DIRECTLY next door to the church. THAT’S MY JOB AND THE BUILDING WAS OPEN! I COULD HAVE BEEN THERE. ARGHHHHH! Sorry, was screaming at myself. I don’t know how I missed that one.
In any event, it was a great weekend for me but I am glad it’s over so we can get down to business. While we were here living it up, people are still contemplating suicide as they face foreclosures. Millions are still unemployed. We’re still a country at war.
But now I can rest a little easier because we have the right man for the job.
Let’s get busy.
Note: As always, there is a bit more video on my You Tube channel. I’ll be adding more over the coming days. So be sure to subscribe so you don’t miss a beat!