Friday, I attended my good friend Paul West's holiday R&B showcase. My girl Denna Greer (What Goes Around)
was in the house, as was my good friend Damarico Fowler (www.blacksupervillain.blogspot.com
). I chatted with this singer Thomas Spurlock. We talked about writing and lyrics. I also ran into a guy named Pee Wee who's a member of Closed Kaption, the band fronted by Latoya Baker-Smith (Just the Two of Us)
. I also chatted with Chandra, a poet/singer. My god buddy Bryan Newcomb (Just the Two of Us, Divine Manipulation)
took photos. Thomas Spurlock was joined by Kimberly Slater, also known as Whisper, and a woman named Syreeta. The first set was classic, soulful Christmas tunes, such as Donny Hathaway's "This Christmas" (Best Christmas song ever!), "Merry Christmas Baby", and an arrangement of Winter Wonderland that was very funky! They incorporated the melody from Kanye West's song "Heard 'Em Say" (the one from his Pepsi commercial), and it was great. One of the band members started doing Tribe Called Quest lyrics near the end. The hip-hopper in me was very pleased. The second set was covers and an original song by Thomas Spurlock, "Infatuated". This song is freakin' excellent! I am telling you now, Spurlock is going places. You heard it here first. They covered Kindred's "Far Away from Here", OutKast's "Prototype", and Erykah Badu's "Didn't Cha Know". Very, very soulful. The third set was spirituals. It was cool. Bryan and I helped the band break down the equipment. It was a good turnout and excellent performances. Syreeta's voice was like a precision instrument. Whisper was very warm and a little sultry. Okay, I'll say it. I have a crush on her now. She might get chosen to join the "harem". Just kidding...kinda. Overall, it was a triumphant performance and a great rebuttal for all those who think my city is just crunk music , twenty-inch rims, pimping, and the whooping of tricks. Craig Brewer showed one side of Memphis, the side that he could identify with. It is up to us to show our sides, our voices, and our visions. Okay, end of sermon. Send checks to: The Good Reverend Doctor Seaberry through paypal at Salvationaintcheap.com. That's a joke, don't go typing that into your address bar.
Saturday, I gave my good buddy "Angry" Nick Jones his gift; I bought him Saul William's book-length poem Said the Shotgun to the Head.
I put it in the brightest, happiest gift bag I could find just to mess with him. If you can't prank your friends, who can you prank? After that, I attended a family function. My family decided to do the united family thing on Christmas Eve while reserving Christmas for individual celebration. It was cool, I threatened my little cousins and beat them up. Hey, it'll make them tougher. It's not like I left scars or anything. My cousin Kamaria said that I was a "JJ", and proceeded to make the "Dynomite!" hand motions that Jimmy Walker is famous for. I was offended and amused at the same time. At least the little girl is exposed to the quality TV of my youth. Very cute girl. May have to use her in something down the line. I chilled with my cousin Archie, in from New York. He is a recent Dartmouth grad and, like myself, had adopted the bougie lifestyle. Of course, our family teases us about this. I teased my cousin Lanelle about her new braids. I accused her of being a Rastafarian and insinuated that she had marijuana in her pocketbook. Ah, nothing like family togetherness! My only real gripe is that my one-year old third cousin, Kelbe, dances to "Laffy Taffy". My cousins started humming this very vulgar hip-hop song and Kelbe was shimmying. I was outraged! Of course, no one cared but me. I think music effects people, even if they are too young to understand the words. Everybody said, "she just liked the beat, Markus." I wasn't feeling that. I eventually got my fill of "family togetherness" and got out of there.
Sunday was Christmas. My brother and I made our way out to the country. To say Moscow is rural is like saying that Hulk Hogan gets a little excited when he does interviews. Nevertheless, we hung out with the parental units for the majority of the day. I received clothes, my brother received tools, and leisurely time was had by all. I showed my Christmas gift from Rod entitled "The Seaberry Experience". It is like a DVD retrospective of my work with Pittstop Productions. It has the trailer for What Goes Around,
my best scene from What Goes Around,
the short The Survivor
in its entirety ( I am the silent orderly), my dramatic reenactment of Ed Norton's "F**k you" monologue from The 25th Hour
, a trailer for my documentary about my career, King Indie,
and footage of me attempting to freestyle rap. Hey, nobody's perfect...wow! I can't believe I admitted that! Mom liked the work, but hated the profanity. Based on my film work, we'll be having this conversation frequently.
Monday , Bryan and I went to the very crowded Oak Court Mall so I could give Ken Hill his gift. I bought him the first Tomb Raider
movie on DVD because he's a diehard Angelina Jolie fan (and what re-blooded American male isn't?). We then moved downtown to the Peabody Place. We saw The Ringer,
the movie where Johnny Knoxville impersonates a mentally challenged person to fix the Special Olympics. This movie is wrong, very wrong, but very hilarious. I felt guilty. I felt as though God himself would appear in the theater and condemn my wretched soul to Hades, but it was funny! Afterwards, I went to Wet Willy's for karaoke. I had an off night. My first song was Stevie Wonder's "All I Do", and, well, I didn't DO so hot. I improved with Barry White's "Practice What You Preach", and I struggled with Jay-Z's "Excuse Me Miss". I had no idea that I would have to do the rapping and singing. My brother sugggested that I may need a break. I should take some weeks off and start fresh. Good suggestion. Every so often, inbetween our testosterone-filled conversations about the female physique and crazy episodes of Nip/Tuck,
Big Bro drops a gem. Well, I am now easing back into the work grind. Hopefully, we can resume production on Just the Two of Us.
Boy, movies really are a collaborative process. A lot of pieces have to be in place for a shoot to even occur. It's a pain, but when it comes together, it's beautiful. Be easy, readers. Live your dreams.