It is a great pleasure to share with you all the freshly produced short documentary, Beat a Pan, Not a Man that I have worked on for UNICEF Belize together with the much talented producer Brent Toombs.
The production is a journey through emotions and an insight into the lives of young people living in the very violent parts of Belize City – and shows us how a UNICEF Belize supported initiative, implemented by local partners Restore Belize and the National Institute of Culture and History, helps these children get out of their violent environments and instead focus on learning how to play music and having fun.
The video producer prepared a cool 1 minute trailer for the video, and then we released the full length 10 minute documentary last Friday. Enjoy!
I shared a video of my Belize City home when I first moved in, with the furniture that is included in my rent and the otherwise empty spaces and big empty white walls. I can’t do much to the place other than putting some stuff up, and I haven’t been wanting to invest in it as I’m moving out in a couple of months. But I moved the furniture around a bit, bought some Mexican blankets and colourful carpets – and this is what it looks like today. I really like my place, I love the breeze, I like that it’s airy and clean, and I love that I have an extra room to host friends. And as a cherry on top – I have free wifi from my very kind neighbours (a company) who don’t mind passing me their password, which is an amazing deal in Belize where wifi is ridiculously expensive.
As I said in my last post, this is a tradition that I wish I had started already when I started moving around, because the place you live in is a very nice memory to keep. Here’s a nostalgia tour of my previous homes, since I started doing this in 2011:
You know when you decide you’ll probably just have a quiet evening and then something beautiful happens unexpectedly? Well, on Friday, a friend called and suggested a spontaneous hangout session at my place. I didn’t see any issue with “can I bring a friend along?” – which is how this new person, Corey, found his way to my balcony.
Bliss! People who want to share their talents and skills make me so happy.
Marvelously sexy discoveries and obsessions. Music, baby!
The funk and high pitched voice of this guy are a real treasure. And this tune – the complete adoration of a woman in the smoothest cheesiness that gives you the proper Maxwell/Van Hunt/Bilal/Marvin Gaye kinda’ feels – and the bass line..! Ay, no no no no!
Listen, kids and fellow soul junkies. Do it.
(But please do so through proper speakers so you don’t miss out on the bass)
Chris Turner – Liquid Love
From Love Child EP(2012)
And guess what.. there’s a completely kick ass drum n bass version of this (which is how I was introduced to this talent) but the drop is so damn hot that I can’t even share it. I’m keeping that baby to myself.
I’ve had a beautifully calm weekend on my own here in Belize City.
On Friday afternoon, my yoga studio, Om Shanti, had arranged a Himalayan Singing Bowls meditation with Taunya Laya Rivera, a master harmonic meditation practitioner from New York who had brought her bowls to share her good vibes and play for us.
Feeling the vibration from the bowls was a beautifully calming experience, and while I didn’t really meditate but rather listened to the tones (because I’m a sound addict), I went back home super relaxed and fell asleep. On Saturday I decided that I would make it a day where I did nothing at all. And so it progressed. I listened to music, watched a movie, cooked, read and called my grandmother. And in the evening I realized I didn’t have to go to work the next day either, so I drifted off into dreamland listening to ambient tunes and being magically calm.
Today I woke up and made myself a big breakfast and have since been enjoying the Belizean summer rain while working from home. It’s been shifting from beautiful sun to clouds bursting and warm rain cleansing the air. All so soothing, I’m still vibrating beautiful stuff. Thank you Taunya.
Here’s an example of what celebrating life is all about. A video I made last month trying to summarize the fun we had when Avina was here visiting me in Belize and we spent Christmas and New Year’s Eve in Mexico. A beautiful couple of weeks in the best kind of company – a friend that you can relax and be yourself around, and dive straight into total euphoria with. Ella Eyre was our soundtrack for the trip, joy and spontaneity were our rushes.
Soundtrack: Rudimental – Waiting all night featuring Ella Eyre
Avina on CC Island
Christmas on the beach – thank you, Tulum!
Playa del Carmen is for Dancing, and Surprise Cabaret
Cancun Beach Fun
Counting down to 2015, celebrating New Year’s Eve in Mexico
New friends, wine, a boat, and yet another beautiful sunset
Life is a Cabaret – last night in Playa del Carmen
Tulum stories: The Moon is full and life is yours to enjoy, now come – dance and love.
Turtle photobomb in Gran Cenote, Tulum
Day trip to Altun Ha
This was a trip that will stay in my mind as a cherished memory for a long time ahead. Tack älskling!
Pharrell just dropped a tune rocking a very important message, an beautiful video, and of course his indisputable super talent in lyrics, vocals and dancing. The voice, the man, freedom!
Pharrell Williams – Freedom
Released 22 July 2015
Hold on to me
Don’t let me go
Who cares what they see?
Who cares what they know?
Your first name is Free
Last name is Dom
We choose to believe
In where we’re from
Man’s red flower
It’s in every living thing
Mind, use your power
Spirit, use your wings
Hold on to me
Don’t let me go
Cheetahs need to eat
Your first name is King
Last name is Dom
We choose to believe
When a baby first breathes
When night sees sunrise
When the whale hides in the sea
When men recognize us
We are from heat
Does it shock you to see
He left us the sun?
Atoms in the air
Organisms in the sea
The sun and, yes, man
Are made of the same things
Spending a couple of days with Chema in Mexico was as always a submersion into a world of instruments, beats and musical talent. We like to show each other tunes we think are extraordinary. I gave him Alina Baraz and some other gems, he showed me these crazy geniuses with their drums and voices and quirky solos.
Dirty Loops is a Swedish 3-man band that has been active since 2008. They started out by making really fun interpretations of famous pop songs and released their first album with self composed tunes in 2014. It’s fun, it’s catchy, the drumset guy is a genius, the bass guy is a funny emo and the singer has really cool kick and soul in his voice that reminds me of RnB singers from the early 90’s. Most importantly, they seem to be having the time of their life when playing and you just want to hop in there and dance along.
Snarky Puppy is a fusion band from Brooklyn that does an incredible job mixing a variety of instruments and merging their improvisations into a constant flow, they are more than 15 people playing together and often back other artists in concerts – if you have a moment to watch the video, listen, and feel the music – it’s like sitting first row in a top notch jazz/fusion/magic concert. Don’t miss the sick keyboard solo, these guys are very good.
Dirty Loops – Rolling in the Deep (Adele Cover)
Snarky Puppy – Lingus