Monday, March 20, 2017

JaFleu on BECON TV's "The New Haitian Generation"

To whom it may concern... last week I got an opportunity that I was eternally grateful for. I was able to do a sit-down interview with BECON TV'S "The New Haitian Generation".

The New Haitian Generation has been on television for 20+ years. Focusing episode after episode on highlighting Haitian-American's making big waves in the community. Over the years in my youth I've sporadically caught episodes and would think to myself it be cool to be relevant enough to be featured on there. Watching athletes, entertainers and much more shared their stories and gifts inspiring the future.

So you can only imagine what was going on in my mind when the official invite came through my email. Thanks to my brother author, poet and much more Yanatha Desourve who was also just featured on there telling them about me.

Hats & Facemask/Headband Courtesy of ZOE MFG

Fast forward a few emails and a dope Haitian Art exhibition that I curated, here we are sitting the headquarters of Zoe MFG. An up and coming Haitian clothing apparel company that allowed for us to shoot the interview in their venue. Special thank you to Rennette Fortune for working so hard behind the scenes to make it all happen.

Zoe MFG took it to a whole other level by hooking myself up with some of their treal products.

James R Donohue, the host/interviewer was amazing and made me feel comfortable with the big ass camera and super bright lights. Even being given an email days in advance with all the questions I still wasn't prepared. Especially for "plot twist" questions that weren't part of it.

Things felt so surreal when the lights got dim and all I could see pass the lights and camera was shadows. The nerves were crazy, trying not to stumble over words or come off crazy. First impressions are everything right?

With my painting "The Birth of Treal" behind me...  I spoke about art, my role in it, curating, my career til this point, growing up Haitian, poetry even being asked to perform on the spot. There was a moment where my emotions got the best of me when the conversation got to about my parents and I spoke on my father (RIP Papi) who passed Aug 2013.  By the end of the whole experience (which went into just over a hour) I was feeling more comfortable, All though I kept messing up the promo lines, it took me over 20x to say two lines... yikes.

Being able to be apart of this program meant a lot to myself, as an artist but mostly as a person. A person who has dedicated the years since 2010 to pursuing the Art Life but always representing for my fellow Haitians. The episode doesn't air till May, just in time for Haitian Heritage Month which to me is perfect!

What's Next?
Catch me performing at MIAMI LIVE Next Monday hosted by DJ Smokey

For Art/Booking Inquires:

Thursday, March 9, 2017

Miami Live Performance, Muses + Bruises Interview & More

Performing at Miami Live

As an artist, the goal is to always give all of you when given the opportunity to present the world your gifts. Last night I got to follow through on that once again. As one of the performers at Miami Live Open Mic, hosted by 1035 The Beat's very own DJ Epps.

One thing about performing is you can't just stay in your hometown. You've got to expand and make the people aware of who you are. And so Visualist and myself set out to do so. Taking the ride down to Miami for me to touch the stage and hopefully leave an impact. The venue it's self was fire and as we chilled, waiting for the to start the nerves began to flood.

On the outside I'm trying hard not to show it but inside I was going crazy. I'm looking around and I'm feeling completely out of my element. Considering the room was filled with Trap/Swag rappers and singers and here I am the one poet. The poet whose content I wasn't even 100 % sure would connect. I even considered leaving... all this in my head of course.

But as performer after performer goes... I think to myself "Nah fam, you here. We came from West Palm Beach... you got to at least get up there". And then the time comes... I make my way to the DJ Epps' booth as he begins to introduce me. Here I am now, standing on the stage, looking at the crowd waiting on what this big dude bout to do....

To break the tension sorta speak I rely on that tried and true call and response.... "Sap Pase?!!!"

The crowd responds as expected, I mean we are in Miami and I'm wearing a big thing round my neck with the image of the Haitian Flag... I start my piece holding the mic and not liking the feedback from it and holding it I decided to do something that later everyone I spoke to or overheard mentioned as being the moment that caught everyone's attention....  I put the mic down.

I put the mic on the stage and proceed to go for mines as I have countless of times rehearsed. I proceed to use my voice to snatch the ears... and what was most crazy for me was realizing... people came to the stage. Suddenly I'm seeing everyone crowded around the stage, listening... reacting to my words... my voice. No music... no mic... no dances or hooks just my words and passion. And it connected in a major way with the people through out the night. An honor and a blessing. A lot of dope connects and conversations were had. I couldn't begin to express how dope it was.


Muses + Bruises Podcast Interview

Back in February, I sat down with my good personal friend Jenn La Reine for a great conversation on her podcast "Muses + Bruises". Check out Episode 15, where we talk art, the journey and much more.  I had a great time and was honored to be one of her guest!


What's Next?

Well.... so I'll be on an upcoming episode of BeconTV's "The New Haitian Generation" which spotlights Haitian-Americans in sports, entertainment etc. They'll be shooting during The Blueprint Gallery x Exhibit Treal "Haitian Heritage" Art Exhibit  I curated for The Milagro Center. I'll also will be performing there.. and look forward to the interview. Stay tuned for that!  I remember watching NHG a few times as a kid thinking how cool it would be to be on there one day and now here we are!.