My To-Read list is currently off da chain but I wouldn’t have it any other way.
Here are the latest (slightly used) additions to the book shelf:
Fiesta In AztlÃ¡n: Anthology of Chicano Poetry (Tony Empringham, Editor)
– First off, I love the title. What’s a revolution without a good party, ya know? Also looking forward to reading the literary/political concerns, circa 1981, of these respected writers.
Merchurochrome: New Poems by Wanda Coleman
– What really sold me on this was the “Retro Rougue Anthology” section of about 30 poems written after various poets. Mind you, this volume also has four other sections plus an “American Sonnet” section. Ah yeah!
City of a Hundred Fires by Richard Blanco
– Love this book! I read it maybe three years ago and instantly fell in love with Blanco’s take on Cuban-Americans.
Transcircularities: New and Selected Poems by Quincy Troupe
– I can read Quincy’s stuff all day which is a good thing since it will probably take at least a solid three days to make it through this expansive collection.
The Inner City Mother Goose by Eve Merriam
– Can this be the book that finally gets me to learn some meter? With dittys like Sing a song of subways/Never see the sun/Four and twenty people/In room for one/When the doors are opened/Everybody run, I really can’t go wrong.
And just so we can have a soundtrack for all this fly lit–
The Very Best of War
– A few weeks back I heard the “The World is a Ghetto” and knew I needed that kind of anthem in my work.
Our Latin Thing 2 — A Sampler Of Boogaloo, Latin Soul & The Roots Of Salsa (Various)
– I hated salsa music as a kid since it always signaled the end of the kid party and the start of the adult’s fiesta. Now that I am trying to find my way back to El Bronx of the 70s, I need some of that good Fania All Star ritmo to bring me back to the living rooms of my childhood. And, oh yeah, I now love me some salsa.
Don’t Mess With The Dragon by Ozomatli
– Ozo keeps it movin in every kind of language and instrument they can get their hands on. Holler.
The Best of Joe Bataan
– I only found out about Bataan a few months back at an I-Hotel event where they highlighted Filpinos in music. Bataan gets mad props for not only leading the way in salsa and boogaloo but also laying the groundwork for what would become hip-hop.
Power to the People and the Beats: Public Enemy’s Greatest Hits
– Speaking of hip-hop, it doesn’t get better than this snapshot of what rap was like when it had ideals and a plan. Makes you almost forget about Flavah of Love, almost.
Fania: NYC Salsa (Various)
– Fania music equals my father in big aviator shades, bigger lapels, a whiskey and a smoke telling the best cuentos possible in the living room/dancefloor to the smiles and cheers of assorted familia as his son sneaks in between his legs to try to share in some of that good story-telling glow.