Monday, May 10, 2010

Eye Of The Creator....Monstah Black

I love this monster of a Monstah. Fuck you Lady Gaga he isn't one of your little drab soulless "art" pop monsters. This monster, Monstah Black, is pure art submerged in Blue. Monstah Black is a local engine of the stage, performance is his sustaining fuel. Continually creating and crafting the monthly event Cabaret Cataplexy, along with the talented purveyor of stage antics Ashley Brockingham and a whole host of other players, Monstah Black steps out on his own for his current project along with the Sonic Leroy work known as Submerged In Blue.

I took a second to open up Monstah's Cassy to see the inter-workings of the cogs, pulleys and sequins belt straps.

Kaos Blac: Who are you?

Monstah Black: I am Monstah Black, a multi-disciplined recording artist who can't stop singing, moving and delivering messages through song and dramatic content. I do this by creating music that uses elements of Punk, Funk, Soul, House and Disco. This creates a safe environment for me to wave my freak flag in. Freaks unite!

Kaos Blac: How long have you been dancing?

- Young Monstah Black
Monstah Black: I've been dancing since the moment I was able to stand. Mom has the photos to prove it. Me standing on my head in diapers with my ass in the air. Look at what I can do:)

Kaos Blac: Why is the piece called submerged in blue?

Monstah Black: This show is called Submerged In Blue because It's my attempt to honor the creative spirits that surround me, not letting negativity from un-informed members of society to get me down. It's a vow I made following Huricane Katrina. She helped me realize how important it is to live today. So I got a tattoo on my skull, as a reminder. My skull tattoo is really the beginning of Submerged In Blue. It's the moon with a star around it and the sun around the star. The sun is a spiral that turns into the ocean as it cascades down toward the right side of my neck, ending with Hei Matau. A hei matau is a bone or greenstone carving in the shape of a highly stylized fish hook typical of the Māori people of New Zealand. They represent strength, good luck and safe travel across water.

I have a feeling that at some point I will be moved to have it (the tattoo) extend down my neck and into a sleeve. That will turn my right arm into the ocean. Swimmingly. I should swim more often.

It's important for me to remember that most of the degrading comments (especially when I am moving about within all of my "fluidity"/"Gender Fuckery") is based on a fear of light that people don't understand. Most often they label that punk, fagget, sissy or botty(sp?) boy, but what they don't realize is that the fluidity they are picking up on is the fluidity they fear inside. Like when boys are taught not to cry. That is one of the first mistakes. Another one is deciding what color a child wants to associate with before the child is older enough to make decisions of their own. Aren't most parents disappointed when they find that their little girl doesn't want to be "Submerged In Pink". What's even more ironic is if a little girl doesn't like pink and realizes she's a Lesbian, she still ends up enjoying being "Submerged In Pink". Life is funny that way.

Kaos Blac: So when did you take steps out of the blue, sort to speak, to emerge yourself in the possibilities of other colors/ gender expression?

Monstah Black: It started at the age of about 12 when I began to explore elements of Punk and dance music as visual expression. There was foreshadowing of this moment happening @ a younger age as well. My mother was amazing @ sewing costumes and outfits. Things that were not readily available for little brown boys to wear she'd sew them for me to play in or perform in as a child. I was the kid who was always a couple of years ahead in style in comparison to other 5 year olds. I also had insight into styles outside of my small town. My older sister would fill me in on what was going on in bigger cities. Being a few steps ahead of the game, kids would respond with negativity because they didn't understand what I was wearing. 2 years later they'd be wearing what I'd already done. The names they were giving me back then were just for my conditioning to become. I assume they were casting spells on me, to give me super powers. Kind of like Beetle Juice, Beetle Juice, Beetle Juice. It still happens today, like when someone calls me Botty Boy, it gives me super powers. Maybe I should start saying thank you to those people who feel like they need to express in that way?

Any negativity from childhood was really a blessing in disguise because I've been able to take it all and turn it into a positive. This is why it strikes a cord in me to hear when children commit suicide. If they just had more possitive role models opening up the gateway to self expression in their minds and souls they might also find a way to turn the negative into a positive with creativity "turning it inside out". My use of blue in this project is in many ways. It's such a play on words because of "The Blues" as a genre. Without knowing or seeing the show people may think it's one thing or the other. Either way, they are probably wrong, so come hear and see the show.

Kaos Blac: Can you give me some hints as to what to expect.

Monstah Black:
Expect the un-expected.
And honey,
And candy,
Safety Pins
Amazing Musicians, performers (check for details) and Rich Medina spinning the hottest music to top off the party!
And moments that tip our hats to some of the greats like Prince, Fela Kuti, James Brown, Donny Hathaway, Sylvester, Grace Jones, George Clinton, Rick James, Larry Graham, Flip Wilson, Michael Jackson, Legba, Oya, Yemaja, Olokun, and a hint of my baptist upbringing, because "I'm Black Like Jesus".

Kaos Blac: What else is there to Monstah Black besides dance?

Monstah Black:

Music, Music, Music and more Music!
Costumes, Painting, Drawing, Skating, Roller Coasters
I like to swing from vines.
Jump over streams
I like spinning around and getting dizzy
I like a sense of danger
I love comfort
I love spoiling myself
I love confusing peoples assumptions.
I love food
I love to have a good time
I love seeing live music
But, I'm easily bored.

Kaos Blac: What are your other creative outlets?

Monstah Black: Some other creative outlets would be:

Skipping Backwards
Deconstructing the norm
Magazines Museums
Making Mud pies (in that order)
Busch Gardens
The Old Country

Submerged in Blue is Sunday May 16th @ Littlefeild 622 Degraw St. Doors are 7pm show at 8:30pm. You can purchase advance tickets, for 10 bucks at, or at the door for 12.

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