Tuesday, 21 February 2017

Kareem Shabazz and the Ryddim Kings- poem- The Real Deal by Jaz McKenzie

I was very impressed by Kareem Shabazz and the Ryddim Kings Friday night, so am posting a poem I wrote the following day. I will write my review soon however this poem sums up the essence of this fantastic evening

Kareem Shabazz and the Ryddim Kings
Your voice melts the blood in my veins
I’m in awe! Hearing strains of artists
Who sang those songs before
A timeless voice, skittering so high
If you had wings you would orbit the sky
With the masters of song
Whom you clearly admire
Al, Marvin and Curtis
Have set you on fire
True flames of success
You were born to impress
I can only express how I feel
Kareem and the Ryddim Kings
Rocking Jazz, Reggae, Soul
It’s surreal! And thanks for playing
My favourite song
Kareem Shabazz
Let’s get it on!

Jaz McKenzie ©2017

The Word Magician contact: itsbraap@live.co.uk

Time for an update!

I have had a very busy year so far and without the internet at home, and additionally,being unable to tether to my current phone have been posting infrequently. The good news is that home internet has been booked for the beginning of March, so I hope to be up to speed shortly with more posts linked directly to entertainment. In the meantime I will post a little relevant something in a sec from Friday night. Have a great day~ Jaz

Thursday, 9 February 2017

The Lady In The Tutti Frutti Hat- Carmen Miranda

What a fantastic title to acquire- The Lady in the Tutti Frutti Hat!! Imagine how great it would feel if you had this vibe every day when you wake up; wouldn't life be great! Carmen Miranda, Brazillian dancer, actress and radio personality exudes that all important quality- JOY. To be joyful ultimately leads to being successful yet joy is really an end in itself. Carmen Miranda has filled so many people with pure ecstasy as they attend her shows where she revealed Samba in all its glory, the vibe swaying the audience to the peak of emotion as she dances with a fruit basket on her head- skills!

Today Google is paying tribute to Carmen with specially designed artwork which portrays the fun factor, her legacy. I am definitely going to check Carmen out in much greater depth,but for now will leave you with her glorious smile and a few moves!

Jaz McKenzie~ The Word Magician Contact: itsbraap@live.co.uk

Saturday, 4 February 2017

A Change is Gonna Come- Poem by Jaz McKenzie based on the title song, + 'I Have A Dream'

My soul flies free- Yesterday, Today, Forever
Whilst society imposes physical bounds
Designed to shrivel every ounce of my individuality
‘And Still I Rise;’ pride and power bleeding in my bones
Every day’s a challenge, frequently embracing tragedy
Whilst my brightly lit spirit outshines the sun for I know
After dusk and after darkness a new day is born.

A Change Is Gonna Come Brother.
No more running like the river-
Within circles created by imposed captivity
Rise up Sister- I have a message to deliver;
It is time to set the essence of our people free
Time to stop doors slamming in our faces
As we did with the lashings, and hangings from a tree

Martin Luther Jnr said, ‘I Have A Dream.’
‘Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness’
Are every American’s promised way of being
We cannot be satisfied until our portion is aligned
Until justice and righteousness take centre stage
Quenching the flames of withering injustice
And engulf us; immerse us, in their tsunami powered wave

A Change is Gonna Come some day
The flames of injustice eternally quenched
And I’ll replace my tent by the river of youth
With an inner city penthouse apartment
Proof of the new truth- there are sufficient funds
To support the whole American society!
And live free of persecution and the winds of brutality

A change will come when you:
Believe in the power of dreams
Remain constant as time
Be patient, Be Strong
Cultivate love, hope and unity
Momentum spurs everything on
Ultimately you will rise
And the world will see you live the prize
Rest Assured;
The Change is Gonna Come

Jaz McKenzie~ The Word Magician ©2017

I wrote this poem in response to a request from Murray McAllister who is compiling a book of poetry to based on songs from the 60's and 70's reflecting the times. I was thinking Nina Simone however, suddenly recalled Wayne Marshall's rendition last year of, 'A Change Is Gonna Come.' Wayne sang the song with such a passion, capturing the deep rooted injustice of the souls that have passed who battled for the liberty and equality of the negro race.

For many years I have thought about writing a poem based on Martin Luther King JR's, 'I Have A Dream' speech. It is an absolute masterpiece and lays out his case before the world court with an incredible musicality behind the forcefulness. I aimed to re-iterate his main points, using some of Martin Luther's phrases and included the key reference to the American Constitution- alongside the emotions and circumstances referred to in Sam Cooke's song, 'A Change is Gonna Come.'

I believe that there is no point looking at the world and simply saying- we were one step forwards and now takng two steps backwards under the presidency of Donald Trump- by doing this we give power to his thinking. What we should be doing is going back to the root of hope and faith as stated in different ways by Sam Cooke and Martin Luther King JR. Sam Cooke wrote his song in response to the racist treatment he received; in turn serving the aims of the Civil Rights Movement who adopted it as their anthem. Wikipedia entry. Sam Cooke wrote his song in 1964 following 'I Have A Dream,' delivered in 1963.

In addition, I found it fitting to pay tribute to Maya Angelou, poet and social activist, by referring to one of her most famous works, 'And Still I Rise.' 

We need fearless charismatic leaders as much today as ever to tackle the injustice of our world. We may not put the world to rights today or tomorrow, but when we believe in change, everything is possible.

Jaz McKenzie~ The Word Magician   Contact: itsbraap@live.co.uk

Monday, 23 January 2017

Emeterians - Just Money

Today I'm sharing one of my favourite bands-Emeterians on a subject that's close to nearly everyone's hearts, MONEY! So often people hold the belief that they'll be happy once they have more of it but sadly this is rarely the case. More money tends to be a novelty to begin with but unless you are used to large amounts of money it's easy to spend it quickly and return to square one. Money isn't the prize, it's an enabler. We can have so much more when we have money however what we really want isn't money or what it can buy, what we all crave for are love and happiness; the pure joy that comes with a life well lived.

Happiness can be found in the moment and if we have enough happy moments our outlook will change and prospects improves. Why? Because we attract from our current position so if we are miserable the happy people will stay away, after all, they don't want their bubbles burst! When we are happy we are far more likely to attract love, opportunities and all sorts of good things. Being thankful for what we have rather than desiring the things we cannot currently have, or worse still, complaining about things, helps lift our spirits and acts as a magnet for good.

Once you realise that money really isn't everything you will probably attract more of it and the lifestyle you desire will turn from dreams into reality. There is nothing wrong with having money, the fault often lies in our attitude towards it; resentment of those who are richer and appear to have it all. Also, the more we have the more things including experiences we want in life, so the average person rarely has enough at the outset to meet their desires.

So the key point is to focus on every good thing and appreciate it fully. The more happy moments you create, the better your future and eventually the money will come.

Jaz McKenzie~ The Word Magician Contact: itsbraap@live.co.uk

Saturday, 14 January 2017

U.D.E- hitting the DADARAS Studio in Bristol!

Norris B, Macky and Jaz
Macky Mcpherson, Leah Williams and myself recently went on a trip to Bristol representing Urban Delight Entertainment. There were three main purposes:

  • To listen to Norris B's album pre-release
  • Meet producer Uri Green and other members of the Yam & Banana record label at Dadaras Studio
  • Speak about U.D.E's the operation with a view to Uri Green joining Team Urban Delight
We had a fantastic and fruitful time once we conquered the traffic pile up on the M4- luckily it didn't come to a halt so we arrived at our destination in daylight! I have to say that it's always a joy seeing Norris who has such a broad smile permanently plastered across his face. You just have to feel good!

Macky with Uri - Yam & Banana single
Dadaras studio has a really good vibe about it and clearly is first and foremost a place where good music is generated. Just a nothing fancy, down to business atmosphere in which music can easily be created.

Shortly after arriving and taking a quick peep in the sound boothe, once we were settled Macky went into detail regarding Urban Delight Entertainment's ethos and operation. I have to say that the business is based on a solid platform and Macky is very astute when it comes to identifying artists' needs and providing a full service that will help artists achieve their potential. U.D.E. also enters into partnerships that are designed to help associated businesses to expand.
Macky, Jaz, Leah & Simba
On to the music. Norris's album is quite a gem and I was surprised to hear just how versatile he is. I will review the album on a different occasion however will say that Uri has done a wonderful job with the production; and the musicians who contributed to the album have definitely been a great asset, helping Norris to create a top quality product- another tick on the dream list!

As yet the album title has not been confirmed and is currently open to discussion. Art work is ready to go and we're in the final throes of preparation and selecting release dates. Macky will continue to visit Bristol and explore further how the businesses can work together and benefit one another.

I must say, it is very interesting following the development of U.D.E. and we have far more to bring you throughout 2017 and beyond.

Jaz McKenzie~ The Word Magician Contact: itsbraap@live.co.uk

Tuesday, 3 January 2017

Happy New Year!!

Happy New Year- those three little words that fly around the world on the stroke of midnight once a year- and for a few days either side! We embrace huge hopes at the beginning of the year whilst having absolutely no idea as to what will materialise. 2016 was very challenging and upsetting with political changes creating worldly turmoil, natural disasters leaving destruction in their wake and, unusually, the loss of so many much loved celebrities; making the world a very different place for individuals and especially those who love popular music. 2017 will probably be equally challenging but let’s hope it takes a different turn and will be a year to embrace despite the current reservations harboured by many.

Ultimately each year will vary due to individual expectations and achievements combined with natural occurrences and world events. Whilst we must be concerned with other people’s plight and the horrors that have arisen, particularly in relation to hatred and poverty, we still have to pay attention to ourselves. It’s a well-known fact that we need to care for ourselves before we can look out for others. Obviously when disasters occur help is needed therefore we need to be compassionate and spend time in prayer, make donations and do anything else within our power. The same applies to all causes or situations that touch our hearts, but the more we grow the more we have to offer.

My experience found 2016 to be a year of great learning curves that ended extremely well as I finally moved into my new home which in itself was highly rewarding. 2016 provided valuable lessons building on the previous 3 years which has helped re-mould certain personal characteristics. I have a much deeper understanding of patience and timing, realising that we can easily apply expectations where we should simply be stating our dreams and leaving the rest to the universe- whilst going about our daily business. Must add, I haven’t actually conquered the ability to be patient however I can look at situations with a deeper appreciation for the way they unfold. Also, if we were given everything we want on demand we would be spoilt and unappreciative; we may also not be ready and could end up worse off!

The New Year tends to be the time when we look at the past and plan for the future, but let’s not forget the present. Ultimately living in the moment is very important and we need to grasp the full meaning and feeling of this rather than paying lip service to such a statement. Enjoy as many moments as you can, relishing the fun and excitement of life, building up your memory bank. During times when we're facing upsets, pain or fear, we need to grasp that life is always a matter of moments. 

We can help ourselves to cope better by recalling our good memories for little bursts of happiness to support us through the bad times and build up our endurance. Working through these difficult moments is easy to say and yet may feel impossible when faced with sudden loss or other major upheavals. So often we are faced with the unexpected, but sometimes even when we know huge life changes are on the cards it’s difficult to accept when that time comes. 

People are creatures of habit on the whole, often finding change difficult, so it is good to regularly challenge yourself even in small ways by stepping into the ‘uncomfortable zone.’ I think a good resolution for 2017 is to make more of yourself; grow in thought, ability and expand in as many ways as possible. I say this because it is hard to make the best of yourself- in fact, it’s impossible! People are works in progress and if you don’t wish to be a work in stagnation or decline, push those boundaries and most importantly, have fun doing so.

Jaz McKenzie~ TheWord Magician  Email: itsbraap@live.co.uk