For those that are concerned about the housing crisis and changes in local San Francisco, check this out: In the 1970s the SF neighborhood Manilatown went through urban renewal and was basically destroyed to make room for expansion of the Financial District. The Filipino residents and business owners of the community tried to save it, the pinnacle of that effort being organized protests against the demolition and eviction of elderly residents of the International Hotel. After almost 10 years of this struggle, it came to an end when 5,000 protestors were broken up by police and the last residents of the I-Hotel were finally evicted. The building was demolished in 1981 and was a vacant lot until 2003. To me this says that the main priority was not expansion and urban development, but rather it was all about the removal of lower-class people of color. Sound familiar? If this story and today’s current events in SF are bothering you, I strongly encourage you to come out to this free event at TONIGHT at 6:30pm at the I-Hotel Center located at 868 Kearny St. where a forum of myself and other community activists will be discussing solutions to gentrification in SF.
 https://www.facebook.com/events/395951760507428/
For those that are concerned about the housing crisis and changes in local San Francisco, check this out:

In the 1970s the SF neighborhood Manilatown went through urban renewal and was basically destroyed to make room for expansion of the Financial District. The Filipino residents and business owners of the community tried to save it, the pinnacle of that effort being organized protests against the demolition and eviction of elderly residents of the International Hotel. After almost 10 years of this struggle, it came to an end when 5,000 protestors were broken up by police and the last residents of the I-Hotel were finally evicted. The building was demolished in 1981 and was a vacant lot until 2003. To me this says that the main priority was not expansion and urban development, but rather it was all about the removal of lower-class people of color. Sound familiar?

If this story and today’s current events in SF are bothering you, I strongly encourage you to come out to this free event at TONIGHT at 6:30pm at the I-Hotel Center located at 868 Kearny St. where a forum of myself and other community activists will be discussing solutions to gentrification in SF.
https://www.facebook.com/events/395951760507428/

Anonymous asked:

Can I just say that I love what you do? You are such an inspiration and a great man! You truly are a hero Reza :-) Happy 1st of January

Thank you so much those are very kind words and i’m humbled… just kinda wish I knew you who were since you seem to know me on a 1st name basis! haha. peace

This beach is very special to me. I wrote about it in the song “playa del rey” off The Inspiration mixtape. The very first time I came to LA, I only had 1 night in town & I wanted to see the beach. I couldn’t get directions so I just followed the sunset & it took me to this beautiful spot. A few months later, I moved to SoCal for school & fell on some hard times. I was broke, living in low income housing, & even went to jail for some BS. I ended up bouncing back, getting a job in North Hollywood, and moving into a luxury apartment that happened to be just 2 blocks from this very same beach. I would come here everyday & spend the weekend here with my girlfriend. Things went bad again & I lost my job & got kicked out. I ended up homeless & having to crash with her. Soon I had to move back to the Bay & leave her behind. But every time I’m in LA I come back to this spot to reflect on how far I’ve come & how far I have left to go. I’m still riding towards the sunset, looking for the perfect beach… (at Playa del Rey, Los Angeles)

This beach is very special to me. I wrote about it in the song “playa del rey” off The Inspiration mixtape. The very first time I came to LA, I only had 1 night in town & I wanted to see the beach. I couldn’t get directions so I just followed the sunset & it took me to this beautiful spot. A few months later, I moved to SoCal for school & fell on some hard times. I was broke, living in low income housing, & even went to jail for some BS. I ended up bouncing back, getting a job in North Hollywood, and moving into a luxury apartment that happened to be just 2 blocks from this very same beach. I would come here everyday & spend the weekend here with my girlfriend. Things went bad again & I lost my job & got kicked out. I ended up homeless & having to crash with her. Soon I had to move back to the Bay & leave her behind. But every time I’m in LA I come back to this spot to reflect on how far I’ve come & how far I have left to go. I’m still riding towards the sunset, looking for the perfect beach… (at Playa del Rey, Los Angeles)

Manifest Destiny / Making Dreams Reality

At age 26 and about 7 years of independently putting out music I think it’s safe to say that I’ve pretty much abandoned the idea of a career as a full-time musician. Since I was a kid that has been my dream but things change. Now I realize that even if I achieved that goal it might not necessarily make me happy. This industry is full of snakes and pitfalls. Your future as an artist is never guaranteed. To keep it 100, I probably make more money pear year with my day job as a youth counselor than most established independent rappers. And I got benefits, son. Finishing school and working with the community, that’s what’s going to keep my family fed. Not only that, it gives me so much satisfaction seeing the impact my work has on the lives of the kids I work with. Which brings me to my next point.

By no means am I quitting music, nor will I ever stop making & releasing music. This has been my hustle for my entire adult life and not only does it pay some of my bills it often brings as much joy into people’s lives as my work with the kids. So now the main goal isn’t a music career, it’s simply to inspire people to live their lives to the best of their potential. So many of us are trapped in our dead-end jobs, our hoods, and our own mentalities. Hip-hop is a way out and I want to show my people the way. Let’s be honest, we don’t need more rappers we need doctors, educators, architects; we need our people to gain understanding of the technological, political and economic systems that control our society so we can bring some of that control back to our own communities.

It’s unfortunate that in the world of hip-hop today, a goal like that is less respectable than the rewards of money, material objects, sex, and drugs. So that’s another goal of mine: respect. I want to build a legacy strong enough that one day my grandchildren can look back on what I’ve done and feel proud, and be motivated to continue in my footsteps. Through the creation of timeless music from the soul, these dreams will become reality. As G.U.R.U. once said, “These are the words that I manifest.”

Peace

Last month, a young black man was brutally beaten by plain clothes SFPD officers in Valencia Gardens for riding his bike on the sidewalk. 3 of his cousins were beat for trying to help, as officers terrorized the entire community who saw & videotaped the whole thing. I strongly believe that we need to come together on this issue & the very least that I or anyone else could do is let it be known that we won’t tolerate this brutality in our communities. Shoutout to @takingastandsf & thanks to @nina_parks for her hard work & including me in this campaign. #takingastandsf

Last month, a young black man was brutally beaten by plain clothes SFPD officers in Valencia Gardens for riding his bike on the sidewalk. 3 of his cousins were beat for trying to help, as officers terrorized the entire community who saw & videotaped the whole thing. I strongly believe that we need to come together on this issue & the very least that I or anyone else could do is let it be known that we won’t tolerate this brutality in our communities. Shoutout to @takingastandsf & thanks to @nina_parks for her hard work & including me in this campaign. #takingastandsf

Thanks to all my folks worldwide who bought copies of “the STYLE tape.” This mixtape was only available on CD, and now I’m all out. I’m not going to print up anymore so for those who have a copy, make sure ya take care of it. I wanted to see if I could push a project that way and it worked out. So, for everyone who slept on it or was too lazy to gimme a dollar for a CD, now you can stream the mixtape online and download it- still for just 1 dolla. Hope you enjoy.