Sunday, May 1, 2011
SP Feature in City Arts
A while ago I was contacted by one of the followers of this web log, thus 'an Ishmaelite', a writer named Jonathan Zwickel who wanted to interview me as part of the background research he was doing for a feature on Shabazz for City Arts magazine. The feature has just been published and it's probably set a new benchmark in terms of writing on Shabazz, and is one of the best things I've read on Ish generally. Nuff respect due JZ. The fact that he went the extra mile by talking to his high-school basketball coach, checking out the yearbook, talking to about twenty people, these are all things one would normally expect for a biography as opposed to a magazine article. But it's right here in the new issue of City Arts. Now don't be put off by the uninspired cover design - the article is a gem. The quote chosen from myself was included unaltered as I think were all of the quotes, letting everyone speak for themselves which I'm a big fan of. I wouldn't have included all the personal info about myself but that's a minor quibble. Reading that I'm 31 reminds me that the next time I read about myself it has to be for my own artistic accomplishments (as self-important as that phrase sounds). Anyway, it's just a joy to read and nice to see someone really giving the respect SP deserves. When I was 14 I knew that Ish's music came from a place unparallelled in specialness. Like Doug Collins said of Michael Jordan: "He's so good he's literally embarrassing the league", that's exactly how I felt about Digable and all his subsequent projects. But people are slow to catch on and it's only now almost twenty years later that I have the satisfaction of seeing the wider public waking up to one of the most under-appreciated voices in art. This article will contribute to that.
Shabazz Palaces by Jonathan Zwickel (City Arts Magazine)