SUPERNOVAS AND CHASERS
CRACKED OUT FACES AND POPPED GLOCKS PAGE 53
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ALL THAT GLITTERS AINT GOLD PAGE 46
ART 07 Goni Montes 12 Are Benard 15 Miya Bailey 63 Skydiving Roaches
WEED, SEX & ART
POLITICS + CULTURE 18 American Rebel 21 Homophobia in Hip-Hop 26 18 Things I Wish I Knew When I Was 18 28 Greedy Global STYLE 46 Melody Ehsani 52 The Fix MUSIC 53 Uffie 56 Mr. Hudson 60 Dev
SEX 64 What What (In the Butt) 66 Isabella Del Rio 68 We Loved Him
PHOTOS: MR. HUDSON BY DEAN ROGERS,UFFIE BY THE COBRASNAKE, MIYA BAILEY BY CARLA AARONLOPEZ, MELODY ESHANI BY PEP WILLIAMS greedmont park.com 5
Forgive us, Father. We have not only sinned, but our success is bent on our incriminating ways.
Most people try to live the most righteous lives they can live, as if their life is one big chalk-board and the less marks you have, the better. That’s unless you’re one of the creative. In the world of SEX, DRUGS and ART there’s always room for sin. A few deviant sexual acts and you’re Andy Warhol. A couple of over-doses and you’re Kurt Cobain. GREEDMONT PARK decided to spotlight the sins of this coveted world we live in, the vices that create the downfall and heavenly, high art. Daunting is the word that comes to mind when COREY DAVIS [Art Director/Founder] asked me to take on a bigger role in Greedmont Park magazine in the form of Editor-In-Chief. Formally, as Style Editor it was easier for me to maneuver. A celebrity interview with YELAWOLF here and a controversial piece on BISHOP EDDIE LONG there, and I was golden. I was never put in a position for responsibility, which led me clear of any real blame. That fear is where the work began, but the love of the multi-media platform we’ve built called Greedmont Park is what kept us up until 7:30 a.m. on design layouts and editorial ideas and being up a couple of hours later to attend Greedmont Park staff meetings or a photo-shoot. There was no font change or word written that wasn’t asked two questions; is this being true to Greedmont Park and will our readers enjoy this? Our second issue of Greedmont Park is exploring the VICES and SINS that we have all fallen victim to on this Earth. Corey and myself decided that there was no other artist that could explicate to our audience the Godly and devilish in all of us, quite like TUPAC SHAKUR. To our generation, Tupac Shakur is more than a rapper, but a Messiah, a prophet. Take this controversial trip with Greedmont Park through everything from WIKILEAKS controversy, the on-going trend of HOMOPHOBIA IN HIP-HOP, the taboos of sex, and everything in-between. We talked to artists like UFFIE and MR. HUDSON along with artists like Miya Bailey and Melody Ehsani who were brave and willing to confess all their sins and secrets to Greedmont Park, Catholic confessional style. MYLES E. JOHNSON, EDITOR-IN-CHIEF
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FOUNDERS Corey Davis, Aaron Ware EDITOR-IN-CHIEF Myles E. Johnson ART DIRECTOR Corey Davis PUBLISHER Justin Huff COPY EDITOR Naturee Wells FASHION EDITOR Destiny Manifest STYLE EDITOR Alicia Ball MARKETING + PR Lola Smalls TRANSLATOR Jayda B COVER ARTIST Corey Davis CONTRIBUTING WRITERS Rose Bellefleur, Corey Davis, Myles E. Johnson, Andrew Phillips, Noah Tafua, Andreas Tarazi, Austin Thompson, Elizah Turner, Mari J Brooklyn, Naturee Wells CONTRIBUTING PHOTOGRAPHERS Carla Aaron-Lopez, Corey Davis, Are Benard, Mari J Brooklyn, J. ‘Quazi’ King, Andrew Phillips, Mike Quain, Marion Robert, Brittani Sensabaugh, Andreas Tarazi, Elizah Turner, Naturee Wells CONTRIBUTING DESIGNERS AND ILLUSTRATORS Miya Bailey, James Daniel, Corey Davis, Alicia Ball, Joshua Hooper, Goni Montes, E.C. Okoigon, Goldi Gold ADVERTISING + SUBMISSIONS firstname.lastname@example.org
words by corey davis
art by go単i montes
What do you love about art? Making it. There’s these five minutes right after you finish a piece when you just love what you’ve created. Then it dies and you immediately hate it. I live for that five minute threshold.
have accidentally switched without noticing while in presentations and stuff, which in turn has led to some pretty funny stories.
Tell us what your life is like in Puerto Rico... Compared to my current home in Atlanta, it is hotter, louder, more crowded, and more humid. The people are much more intense about everything. Brutal honesty and unyielding opinions run rampant. And when you feel overwhelmed, you realize you’re never further than a 45-minute drive away from a beach.
What was the inspiration behind your piece called “Vessel”? Vessel was very sad. It is a piece for Designers Against Child Slavery. I was shocked by the statistics while researching for this project. Especially child slavery for pornography. And now that you know that, you can pretty much tell what the piece is about.
How does Puerto Rican culture influence your art? Print making is huge in Puerto Rico, and I’m proud to say that we have some of the most amazing print makers in the world. Through my love of Caribbean print making I also became infatuated with Asian print making, Korean being my favorite. Through an influence from Master José Alicea, I became interested in all kinds of paper textures. There’s also a certain dramatic element that I like to portray in my pieces, and although I’m not sure being Puerto Rican is the cause of that, it’s a potential nominee.
What is your ultimate goal as an artist? To pursue more and more of those five minute thresholds I mentioned. Getting paid is cool and all, but creating is satisfying in so many ways.
How would you define you style? Haven’t thought of it much. Thin linework, vibrant What affect did the Catholic church hold on colors? Meh, I’ve got nothing. your childhood? I was raised a protestant, which is not that un- Your illustrations have a surreal undertone to common on the island. Nonetheless, a lot of them, is this intentional? the good schools are Catholic, and of course, I This is not particularly intentional. It’s hard to admit, attended one. Every Wednesday they’d take us but my feet are not well planted on the ground. On from our classrooms into a weekly mass. Never the other hand, I’d assume my head would make a having experienced many Catholic services be- pretty interesting vacation spot. Everything I draw fore, the first few times I was fascinated by the has a different meaning. Except for floating penmysticism in the rituals. To this day, I am really guins, I just like floating penguins. attracted to every little detail with which every What is the significance of animals in your art? element in their churches are designed. I’m not very big on drawing animals. If you see Out of all of the seven deadly sins which them in a piece it’s because they were either requested by the art director, or the piece really needplagues you the most? It’s an awful combination of wrath and pride, and ed it, which happens more often than not. I can if kept unchecked, I can be a total... Well, you understand why; animals make for great symbols whose meanings surpass cultures. know.
Tell us about one of your craziest experiences... Both my wife and I were secretly hammered on our wedding day. I’m not talking hung over from the night before or tipsy with a couple of drinks. I’m talking shitfaced. We underwent a pretty heavy drinking session together right before the celebrations and although there are plenty of awesome stories involving my Puerto Rican Wife/Bodyguard, this one was one of the biggest blasts we’ve ever had. You wanna feel like your wedding is really How was the transition to America? Not bad, but there were some language issues. yours? Go to the altar with a newly acquired, deep, In Puerto Rico it’s okay to switch back and forth dark secret between the both of you... Boy, I hope between Spanish and English. Needless to say, I my overly religious parents never read this. more art from goni at greedmont park.com 9
Are Benard WORDS BY COREY DAVIS PHOTOS BY ARE BENARD
What is 335MM? A photography and video firm. We try to produce the coolest images possible. Tell us about your series for “Pour Vos Yeux Seulement.” It’s showing my progression as a artist. Different angles and such. I shot most of the images last year so it totally documents my time in New York and Miami. Which was a good year. There was a few girls I’ve wanted to work with for a while and finally got the chance to. Very stoked on the images I got. I couldn’t ask for any more. How do you choose your subjects? It could be anything from their style to their body language or just the look I’m going for at the moment. Do you prefer to shoot digitally or traditionally? Both, honestly. I hate digital though. Film gives you so much more feeling. It’s pure. How do you definite your style? I really can’t at the moment. Still trying to find it.
for the best half-naked pics of chicks go to greedmont park.com 13
WITH MIYA BAILEY
WORDS BY COREY DAVIS PHOTO BY CARLA AARON-LOPEZ
To tell Miya’s story I’d have to start off by telling my own. After concluding my freshman year of college with a half-decent grade point average and an unusual job at the mall doing henna tattoos, I decided I needed to find a new way to make money. It was a very unfortunate time for my employer in the temporary tattoo business because this was the very year that temporary, fake tattoos suddenly became less cool. I never understood the whole concept of being a “starving artist” so after taking the advice of a friend I decided I should get into “real tattooing” with actual needles. Later that week, I ordered some tattoo supplies off of the internet, and then found some random hood rat off the street and offered her a free tattoo. She came over to my mothers house the next day and I tattooed a “Tupac” cross on her arm in the living room. It came out terrible! The design was crooked, all the lines were blown out, it was just like completely fucked up. While tattooing her and undoubtedly knowing I wasn’t doing a good job, I started to think “This isn’t right, I have to find a way to be properly trained.” So after being shutdown by several tattoo shops, a young artist with a new style and a new shop named Miya Bailey agreed to take me under his wing as a tattoo apprentice. I spent years watching him tattoo, setting up his equipment, getting cursed out, breaking down his equipment, over and over again. A relationship similar to Daniel-San and Mr. Miyagi or Anakin Skywalker and and Obie-Wan, he taught me all of his secrets. Eventually, we would be traveling across the world together tattooing in Europe. on a kid we all knew didn’t sell dope. So the plan was Tell me a little bit about your daily routine I open my eyes and my first thoughts are “Thank you to throw rocks at the cop to make him chase us. When God”. I try to wake up early enough to see my son off to he starts running after us, one of my friends would school. My wife usually makes sure he’s up because he break into his car and rip the shotgun from the case moves in slow motion in the morning. Sometimes my between the front seats. The cops started chasing dog, Rabbit Bailey, jumps right in my face, I guess that’s us... Beforehand, I told this girl who was with us to his way of telling me to get up and take him out so he sit this one out, but you know women you can’t tell doesn’t drop one on the floor. He looks crazy when he’s them shit most of the time. We are all about 14-16 taking a shit. He doesn’t like people watching him, but years old... We’re all running and she ends up getting the look on his face be priceless! After walking Rabbit, caught. We weren’t going back for her until we heard I roll up a blunt to ease my mind before I start reply- her screaming. The cop had his stick out beating her ing back to emails. I get a lot of emails daily so I lay in pretty badly. Anybody who knows me, knows how I the bed and answer each email, which takes about two feel about men putting their hands on women. So we hours. I like to do that high because out of a 100 emails, turned around and tried to pull the cop off the girl. He tweets & facebook messages, you always have one or tries to pull out his gun, so we jumped him. But he two haters that will bring your happiness down to their was strong as hell, he wouldn’t stay down. Next thing sad level. I try to stay on weed so negative energy won’t we heard was gun fire. So we stop beating the cop and ran into the woods scared. The shots fired ended bother me. up being one of my homeboy’s. He ended up stealing What’s your relationship with Mary Jane? the shotgun and licked off a few shots to break up the Man, I think I’m bipolar or something, my temper sucks. fight. I wish he warned us because we was hiding in There was a time when I couldn’t walk away from a fight. those dark ass woods for about 6 hours like some I used to let words get to me. So Mary Jane is my mis- run away slaves. Ha, but I can’t front that shit was tress. When it feels like everyone is turning their back fun as hell. on you she mellows me out, keeps me from shooting a What’s your perspective on black art? nigga. I don’t want to relapse on my street shit. I don’t even know what “black art” is... What most When you smoke, do you prefer a blunt, bong or joint? people call black art is usually what I call stereotype It’s all depends, I like blunts but I know that paper is bad or cookie cutter art. Some naked girl with an afro and for me. Tuki just showed me how to roll joints and I’m a perfect body next to a buff warrior looking dude. liking them so far. I broke my bong a few months ago Or a black Jesus with dreads looking like model. Or after a meeting with my accountant. I can lose my tem- those jazz scene paintings, the classic b-boy hip-hop per. I’m missing my bong because I had it for 7 years. paintings. Black art to me is the same shit you’ve seen your whole life, the art overlooked by other races and That shit sucks! cultures, targeted right to the black consumer who You seem to become somewhat of a weed advocate, might be programmed to think they are really supporting “black artists”. It’s like listening to the radio, what sparked this interest.. One day, my mama said “You use to dog me out about they never play the real music people listen to, they smoking and now you smoking everyday.” I told her life just force you to listen to bullshit. That’s what black art is hard it’s stressful being a husband, father and busi- is to me right now, the same subject matter recycled ness owner. Then I thought about it, when I’m high I over and over again. never got into any trouble, it mellows me out. Just imag- What can we expect from your book? ine if other people were high I’m sure a lot of murders “Before I’m Gone: The Art & Life of Miya Bailey” is wouldn’t have happened. going to be 360 pages, a collection of almost every piece of artwork I have done. The oldest drawing is You grew up in the ghetto, tell us about one of your from 1978. It will feature article on me as a child dowildest experiences on the street. Me and my crew had this plan to break into a cop car ing art. Dark secrets I’ve never expressed to anyone, and steal his shotgun. The cop had planted some dope from robbery and murder to love, lust and even sexual abuse. 16 greedmont park.com for tattoos
I’m constantly hearing rumors about you retiring from tattooing after your book is released. How come you are so anxious to get out of the industry? To be 100% honest I feel like I’m trapped. I created a new style of tattooing that people love and I’m honored, but the con of that is I keep getting asked to do the same type of subject matter over and over again. How many different ways can I express the same ideas? So I want to retire from having to listen to those ideas. I will never stop tattooing ,that’s what got me to this point. I just want people to give me a chance and let me show them what I really can do. I feel like I have to dumb down to tattoo most of the time. I want people to see what I can create without listening to their ideas. So I’m taking a break from “business” tattooing to tattooing for free so I can build a brand new tattoo portfolio. Tattoo styles never seen before. Tattooing is commissioned art, I do what I’m asked to do, usually based off what they have seen me do already. I’m evolving and I want to show the new styles I have created, it’s time to change the game one more time in “urban” tattooing.
London inspired me to create art with an even more “worldly” appeal. I never followed stereotypes in art but London really made me focus on all races of people. I saw the beauty in all the different types of cultures there. I guess this is how Malcolm X felt after visiting Mecca. It opened his eyes and make him an even greater human being. It’s really one race, “human beings”. In Amsterdam I found my weed limit, I never tapped out before but there I did, it was amazing. And the shrooms, I think you made us all overdose! We ate too many! We all threw up and I wouldn’t change a thing, I loved every minute. The Louvre in Paris was another eye opener, it inspired me to paint more so I can live forever like the great artist in history do. To be an artist is to be immortal. Your body might die but the art, which is you, lives until the Earth ends. It makes me wonder if people will study my paintings, illustrations, or even my tattoo work after I’m dead and gone? Most artist’s work aren’t even understood or valued until after that artist is gone. That is the main reason I named my book, Before I’m Gone.
What defines your style? I define my style as “pure emotion”, most men have a hard time expressing themselves at times. Like, if my wife hurts my feelings in someway, I can’t tell her that. I would feel soft as hell. So I usually don’t have the right words to say. I use that pain in the eyes of my art, but I also use the love. Because love usually causes the most of the pain. These emotions are gifts from God to be used in someway. Humans aren’t supposed to be heartless. So my art is “Human.” Some people call it “soulful,” but I call it “honest.”
Tell the readers about your relationship with me... Corey, you are like my little brother. I love you like my own blood. We are both strong men who really don’t need each other. We both can stand on our own but what makes our brotherhood beautiful is that when we work together it feels like we are an unstoppable force. Like Andy Warhol and Basquiat. Since you don’t have any children I just want you to be able to see the world at a young age. You are one of the founding fathers of the City of Ink movement, so it was only right to make you a partner and co-owner the COI chain. I have made a few mistakes in my time, so I feel it’s my duty to make sure you never makes the same mistakes I had to make. But at the same time make sure you aren’t spoiled so you can make some mistakes on your own. You deserve to be a millionaire and one of my goals in life is to make sure you get to that point. So when I’m an old man, maybe you will make sure I’m okay.
What is your ultimate goal? My ultimate goal is to help build careers for other visual artists. I don’t want a dime of their money, I just want to see visual artist become millionaires. I’m curious to see what type of art the artists around me would create if they had a million dollars in their bank account, with no real money worries, no struggles. I dream of that daily. I want to see you, Tuki, Melvin, Sophie, and all rich. The art and products ya’ll could create for this planet could change a lot in the world. I also want to teach my children the business side so when I’m dead, they know how to use the art I left behind to make products like how Bob Marley’s family does and how Tupac’s mother did. In the spirit of Basquiat and Tupac let’s spark minds!
What’s your idea of the “perfect woman”? No one is perfect but I think any woman who love art, fashion, films, music, and nasty porno style sex. She would be able to inspire me with only a conversation. Deep convo is the most important thing to me next to untamed sex. And a major weed smoker, who could roll up blunts all day and keep me high. Plus cook and rub You just returned from Europe, what type of effects do you my back every night while talking about our dreams and think that will hold on your art in the future? desires. Okay, you got me back in dreamland... Ain’t no I feel the City of Ink Euro Tour was life changing. It made perfect woman! Just like there’s no perfect man. me see America for what it really is. Not a nation but a business. The job of America is to entertain and create products Favorite sexual position? for the rest of the world to enjoy. Music, art , fashion, our She’s on her stomach, back arched deep and her ass whole lifestyle. American culture inspired every country we up. I’m very visual, so I like to look. I want to see the visited, it amazed me how something like hip-hop created back of her neck. The back of a woman’s neck turns me in the ghettos of New York could travel across the world. It on like crazy. So I can grab her hair, kiss her and softly was amazing. But what really amazed me is how they knew bite the back of her neck. If she can keep that arch in her who you and I was already. They were real fans of our art. back, sometimes you might have to use a pillow, that’s The questions they asked me about my paintings were in- good for those slow deep strokes. I’m a pleaser type so spiring, things that Americans seem to never notice about I’m only turned on by how her body reacts to me. I like the City of Ink art movement. They honored and loved it. In sex to be sweet, passionate and soft, but towards the America they only focus on the tattooing side of us but in end I like it hard core, animal-like nasty and untamed. A Europe they wanted all our art. balanced lover. to check out art by miya bailey go to greedmont park.com 17
There is a long tradition in the United States of people rebelling against the powers that be. There were movements, educating, and agitating in the civil rights movement; women who burned their bras and students who brought the Vietnam war home. There were individuals like Muhammad Ali or musical icons like Bob Dylan who took major stands against a government disconnected from its people. However, that era has long passed and as today’s young people yearn for our next cheeseburger and reach for the television remote, the so-called Millennial generation has largely forgotten what it means to “rage against the machine”. Meanwhile, the machine itself has not stopped raging. The U.S government has 5,113 warheads in its nuclear stockpile, soldiers in more than 100 countries around the world and spends more money on advanced killing machines than all the other countries in the world combined. As Americans drown in a sea of college loan debt, underemployed in dead-end jobs with poor pay and irregular hours, the government spends billions of tax-payer dollars in support for wars in Afghanistan and Iraq as well as “foreign aid” to dictators like Hosni Mubarak in Egypt and narco-trafficking paramilitaries in Colombia. How do they get away with spending money that should be going for jobs and education for war and occupation? Easy. By keeping it hidden from the American public.
whistle blower website, Wikileaks. The video, which quickly spread around the world, shows a United States Apache helicopter shooting and murdering unarmed civilians in Baghdad, Iraq in 2007. Two children were also seriously wounded. The reaction to the classified video was quick and decisive around the world, propelling Wikileaks into an international household name. Manning was tipped off to the FBI by a hacker who gained his trust in an internet chat room. In the chat room, Manning discussed his role as a source for Wikileaks and his relationship to the sites founder Julian Assange. He also talked about the “Collateral Damage” video that he claimed he sent to Wikileaks. Manning ominously told the snitch hacker, “ I can’t believe what I am confessing to you.” According to Wired magazine, Manning confessed that he “listened and lip-synced to Lady Gaga’s ‘Telephone’ while exfiltrating possibly the largest data spillage in American history”. Manning is currently being charged by the U.S military with leaking classified information to the public. He has become a cause celebrity among freespeech advocates, anti-war activists and journalists who are frustrated with the cabal of liars and crooks who make decisions behind the scenes in the U.S. government. The Bradley Manning Support Network has rallied behind Manning with financial resources and political support. However, will it be enough? Manning has stirred the angers of the world’s only superpower and has proved George Orwell’s famous phrase that, “During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act.”
Ironically, it was the suspected actions of a single United States Army soldier, named Bradley Manning that may have helped finally tear down the walls of secrecy and revived a spirit of resistance again in the heart of American youth. After Wikileaks released 250,000 confidential State Department cables to Bradley Manning was a 22-year-old Army the public, the U.S military began to intelligence analyst in Iraq working crackdown even harder of Bradley Manfor the U.S. military when his life ning. Prominent politicians like Sarah changed forever. Sources say he was Palin, Mike Huckabee, and Bill Kristol a rebel from the start, getting into have called for the execution of Jualtercations with other soldiers and lian Assange and Bradley Manning, both disobeying authority. Compelled by his who stand accused of the leak. To be conscious and belief in transparency, sure, Manning has never committed a Manning allegedly did the unthinkable single violent act against the U.S. government. But his courage to tell and changed American history. the truth behind all the walls of ofBradley Manning was arrested in 2010 ficial secrecy has made him the most on suspicion for providing the now in- hated man of the American government and a terrorist to powerful interests. famous “Collateral Murder” video to for more on wikileaks go to greedmont park.com 19
The leaked documents connected to Manning caused a major diplomatic crisis for the U.S. government, exposing their connections with tyrannical regimes, embarrassing comments about foreign leaders and also a major spy ring on the United Nations. Many leaders and activists blasted the U.S. for the leaked information, some even called for the resignation of top government officials.
FREE BRADLEY MANNING
Bradley Manning has been a victim of human rights violations while in prison. Amnesty International wrote Defense Secretary Gates asking for a full review of Manning’s living conditions. The United Nations Special Rapporteur on Torture has even begun to investigate the situation. Manning is languishing in solitary confinement and confined to his cell for an outrageous 23 hours per day for 7 months. Over 50,000 people from around the world have already helped pay $110,000 toward Manning’s legal defense, while others are organizing demonstrations and petitions in support of Manning’s human rights. Bradley Manning is being treated as though he is guilty until proven innocent, turning a basic norm of civil justice on its head. Youth who have never been active in politics before are creating support groups through Facebook and Twitter. Others are attending rallies or writing letters to the U.S. military for Bradley Manning’s release. For a generation that has been condemned as apathetic and too busy to love, many are becoming more informed about our government’s out of control military spending and promotion of authoritarian regimes. On March 19th, scores of organizations are coming together to ask why the United States will spend $1 trillion for war, occupation and weapons in 2011, but 30 million people in the United States remain unemployed or severely underemployed, and cuts in education, housing and healthcare are hurting so many. There, in spirit will be the rebellious attitude of the young intelligence analyst who shook the foundations of the world’s lone superpower.
20 greedmont park.com for more info on Bradley Manning
ART BY E.C OKOIGUN
There’s no disenfranchised people, like Black people. Black people set the stage up to what a revolution might look like. In 1979, those highs and lows were recorded on the first Hip-Hop track and according to Hip-Hop historians its called “Rapper’s Delight” by Sugarhill Gang. The needle dropped and the world was never the same again. Hip-Hop was as youthful and rebellious as the ghetto chil- but Hip-Hop is still a homophobic bastard. The dren manufacturing it. It blew up in the 80’s along with argument that Hip-Hop is a straight male dominated crack-cocaine. Hip-Hop was everything that Black people society where a gay man just couldn’t thrive is harder to wanted to be in politics and business. Hip-Hop was ag- swallow (no, homo!) among further inspection and the gressive, progressive, bold, and everyone loved it. From progression of the art form. the militant sounds of Public Enemy and KRS-One, the fun of Salt-N-Pepa and Fresh Prince, and the raw nature of From Eminem and Elton John duetting to Kanye West Wu-Tang Clan and N.W.A., Hip-Hop has for a long time and friends with Louis Vuitton bags matched with been the haven for outcasts of society. Hip Hop is an in- Leopard print leggings and Nicki Minaj claiming she stitution where outcast go to prove their weight and be gets possessed by a gay man when she spits her fiery apart of a culture that promised that as long as you had a rhymes. Hip-Hop seems to have accepted everything mic, you had a chance at being king or queen. Well, that is that might come with being a stereo-typical gay man, except the man himself. “I feel like if the world can move unless you are a queen. to everything being gay in the world. If pop artists can That’s right, if you’re a sissy, queen, fairy, faggot, or queer be free, why can’t black males in hip-hop be free, also?”, you can’t dare be apart of this genre of music. No one answers Pat of Hip-Hop duo, Little Nicky. quite knows why this rule exists, but both the hetero and homo community (and everything in-between) abide by it Could I make a honest man of Hip-Hop? His heart seems to be in the right place, but the verbal jabs and accordingly, at least from the outside looking in. black-eyes might be intolerable especially on the brink of such a new world. Hip-Hop is 32. Hip-Hop should know better, but this seems deeper and is in need of I grew up listening to Hip-Hop. Pete Rock, A Tribe Called more than an infectious speech by Cornel West or a Quest, Wu-Tang Clan, Jay-Z, DeLaSoul, Digable Planets, plead of patience from Russel Simmons. Hip-Hop has N.W.A., and the list goes on. Hip-Hop was my first love, major issues, and like the nosy lover in that predictable where I found aggression met expression. I guess, I was movie, I’m destined to find it out with help of out musisomething like a battered woman in a relationship. I didn’t cians like Bryn’t and Little Nicky, as well as straight, inmind Hip-Hop punching me and calling me names, as dependent artist Dev Allen chiming in on why is Hip-Hop long as the metaphor was ill and the beat knocked. Emi- so damn homophobic. nem could say he hated me. Ghostface Killah could want me dead. The Game can think I was disgusting. I just loved the music, the culture, however the culture didn’t love me Not very surprisingly most artists have similar stories, back. they usually have a need for expressing their innerYears later, like the stereo-typical stupid bitch in the most feelings and have a pre-exposure to some kind ‘Lifetime Movie’, I find myself running back to Hip-Hop. of creative field either through their families, childhood Granted he got a bit of counseling, got some more under- friends, or some experience that just enraptured them in standing friends like Kanye West, the music. Such is true for Hip-Hop. “I can’t remember
Drop the beat and smear the queer.
Yes, yes y’all! And it don’t stop.
I DON’T GIVE A FUCK. DOMO OF LITTLE NICKY a time of my life when the music was off!”, says spitfire rapper, Dev Allen. For some sexuality is easy like for Dev, but people with preferences that aren’t embraced by society there’s a major battle to be had. Are you open or are you in the closet? The real question is more complex: do you want to be rich, famous, and respected or gay? Notorious out rapper, Bryn’t decided on honesty though it’s not the most practical. “I just knew I wasn’t going to be able to hide my sexuality. I knew I was going to have to create a new lane for myself. There are not any mainstream, openly gay rappers.”
me against a wall a few times, but homophobia has killed others. In the recent exposure of gay suicides you’d think that Hip-Hop might let up on his tight grip of my neck, but that wouldn’t be authentic to Hip-Hop. Nicki Minaj (emerging, gay Hip-Hop icon) recently did a song with Eminem where he freely uttered the word ‘faggots’. Though, not surprising that Slim Shady used the slur, it did take me aback that someone with such a large, gay supportive audience like Nicki Minaj would green-light the homophobic slur.
Sure, you could play the pronoun game like some closeted entertainers, but that seems like an unfair choice. MICs or dicks? No one makes Lil’ Wayne choose between pussy, money, or weed. Why is Hip-Hop so threatened if someone who is gay penetrates (no homo) the culture? Besides, Hip-Hop was founded on outcasts and expression, gay folks are the outcasts of the now and make for some impressive expressionists. Dev Allen explores further why queers have been boxed out. “There’s something about being proud of who you are [that people feel like] you shouldn’t carry your pride without carrying the pain. We don’t want anything that seems remotely negative to be apart of us as a people. When you combine that feeling with that there’s something negative about being gay, it’s a recipe for disaster. We need to take time off of figuring out what it is to be Black or Hip-Hop, but what it is to be me.”
What does this say about gay people? What does this say about me? I venture to think that it might insinuate that Hip-Hop, even the gay friendly rappers, will never truly take seriously the gay community or even put their feelings on the table if for no other reason, but to maintain good standing with the people who are filling up those duffel bags you go to your preferred bank with. Bryn’t has a common opinion on gay slurs used by heterosexual rapper, though he uses them freely himself. “As contradictory as it might sound, I don’t feel like straight rappers should abuse slurs. Most rappers come from a deviant lifestyle. You don’t care what you say. Even amongst gay people, it became something that we became comfortable with. It’s the same with ‘nigga’. If somebody outside the group says the word, they feel like they don’t belong.” The other half of Little Hip-Hop has a trail of blood behind it. I know Hip-Hop Nicky, Domo, is a tad more nonchalant, “I don’t give loves me because he might have shook me up or threw a fuck. I don’t care. I don’t have a reason to care.”
NOW, EVERYBODY! ANYBODY! SCREAM! for exclusive hip-hop go to greedmont park.com 23
See, this isn’t just a round-table conversation. This is a debate infused with artists and you know they’re sensitive about their shit. For someone to put their dreams and goals on the line to openly be who they are is intense, for a artist to do it, well, that’s a battle cry. Domo shares, “When it comes to music I never placed a sexuality on it.” Pat agrees and adds, “When it comes to music, it’s not explaining who you’re fucking, it’s about your music.” Just as the Spartans advance, there’s always something that pulls them back down into the depths of homophobic stereo-types, like a perverted bishop. Bryn’t speaks on Eddie Long and what exactly it has done to the black, gay advancement. “It made us look like villains, we don’t have a lot of positive reinforcement especially in pop culture. If this is the only image you see, you’re going to apply that to the rest of people.” You can’t blame it all on him, though, Hip-Hop hated us before the blasphemous scandal though it put a wrench in plans of maybe living side by side in the world of MCing, DJing, breaking and graffiti.
I DON’T FEEL LIKE GAY RAPPERS SHOULD CENSOR THEIR LYRICS TO MAKE ANYONE COMFORTABLE.
All of the artists interviewed believe that there will be a day when there will be a gay rapper, compromised and in the spotlight (two of the three artists, are bent that they will be said artist!). “If it really is in you to express that, then you should. I don’t feel like gay rappers should censor their lyrics to make anyone comfortable. Everyone adds a little something to the pot. You have a obligation to do something to whatever you add. There’s no reason to play the pronoun game, you are obligated to yourself and your art to do so,” Dev Allen declares in a refreshing perspective from the straight, Hip-Hop world. All of these progressive minds are working on projects to be released this year, and post-”Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell”, it will be interesting to see how exactly these efforts will do. Brynt’s “Bryn’t Park”, Little Nicky’s “Hungry”, and Dev Allen’s “The Feminine High” are slated for 2011 releases. Let’s see if Hip-Hop is a changed man and treats them right. All of this unity and hope is endearing, but Hip-Hop is still whooping my ass. Why can’t Hip-Hop show me the love I show it back? Maybe Hip-Hop can’t show love back. Perhaps, I’m just a masochist or a blind fool in love. Hip-Hop disrespects his women, ignores the generations before him, has no regard for his race or culture! Why would I expect such a culture to make a exception for gay people? Maybe, the fact that gay people are so disrespected in the Hip-Hop community isn’t a sign of segregation, but a sign that gay folks are poised in the same position as everyone that doesn’t fit Hip-Hop’s traditional criteria for acceptance. Maybe, us sissies, are more Hip-Hop than we gave ourselves credit for. Could it be the very position of ridicule and ostracization that gay rappers were put in by Hip-Hop is the exact position they’ll need to be in order to one day dominate the culture?
The beat goes on.
WORDS BY MYLES E. JOHNSON ART BY COREY DAVIS PHOTO BY NATUREE WELLS STYLE BY DESTINY MANIFEST COMMENTARY BY BRYN’T, LITTLE NICKY & DEV ALLEN
1. Commit yourself to making lots of mistakes. Mistakes teach you important lessons. The biggest mistake you can make is doing nothing because you’re too scared to make a mistake. So don’t hesitate and don’t doubt yourself. In life, it’s rarely about getting a chance; it’s about taking a chance. You’ll never be 100% sure it will work, but you can always be 100% sure doing nothing won’t work. 2. Find hard work you love doing. If I could offer my 18-year-old self some real career advice, I’d tell myself not to base my career choice on other people’s ideas, goals and recommendations. I’d tell myself not to pick a major because it’s popular, or statistically creates graduates who make the most money. I’d tell myself that the right career choice is based on one key point: if you catch yourself working hard and loving every minute of it, don’t stop. You’re on to something big. Because hard work ain’t hard when you concentrate on your passions. 3. Invest time, energy and money in yourself every day. When you invest in yourself, you can never lose, and over time you will change the trajectory of your life. You are simply the product of what you know. 4. Explore new ideas and opportunities often. Your natural human fears of failure and embarrassment will sometimes stop you from trying new things. But you must rise above these fears, for your life’s story is simply the culmination of many small, unique experiences. And the more unique experiences you have, the more interesting your story gets. 5. When sharpening your career skills, focus more on less. Think in terms of Karate: A black belt seems far more impressive than a brown belt. But does a brown belt really seem any more impressive than a red belt? Probably not to most people. Remember that society elevates experts high onto a pedestal. Hard work matters, but not if it’s scattered in diverse directions. 6. People are not mind readers. Tell them what you’re thinking. People will never know how you feel unless you tell them. Your boss? Yeah, he doesn’t know you’re hoping for a promotion because you haven’t told him yet. That cute girl you haven’t talked to because you’re too shy? Yeah, you guessed it; she hasn’t given you the time of day simply because you haven’t given her the time of day either. In life, you have to communicate with others. 26 greedmont park.com for more self righteous advice on life
7.Make swift decisions and take immediate action. Either you’re going to take action and seize new opportunities, or someone else will first. You can’t change anything or make any sort of progress by sitting back and thinking about it. Remember, there’s a huge difference between knowing how to do something and actually doing it. Knowledge is basically useless without action. 8. Accept and embrace change. However good or bad a situation is now, it will change. That’s the one thing you can count on. So embrace change, and realize that change happens for a reason. It won’t always be easy or obvious at first, but in the end it will be worth it. 9. Don’t worry too much about what other people think about you. For the most part, what other people think and say about you doesn’t matter. When I was 18, I let the opinions of my high school and early college peers influence my decisions. And, at times, they steered me away from ideas and goals I strongly believed in. I realize now, ten years later, that this was a foolish way to live, especially when I consider that nearly all of these people whose opinions I cared so much about are no longer a part of my life. 10. Always be honest with yourself and others. Living a life of honesty creates peace of mind, and peace of mind is priceless. 11. Talk to lots of people in college and early on in your career. Bosses. Colleagues. Professors. Classmates. Other students outside of your major or social circle. Teaching assistants. Career advisors. College deans. Friends of friends. Everyone! Why? Professional networking. I have worked for three employers since I graduated from college, but I only had to interviewed with the first employer. The other two employers offered me a job before I even had a formal interview, based strictly on the recommendation of a hiring manager (someone I had networked with over the years). When employers look to fill a position, the first thing they do is ask the people they know and trust if they know someone who would do well in the position. If you start building your professional network early, you’ll be set. Over time, you’ll continue talking to new people you meet through your current network and your network’s reach and the associated opportunities will continue to snowball for the duration of your career. 12. Sit alone in silence for at least ten minutes every day. Use this time to think, plan, reflect, and dream. Creative and productive thinking flourish in solitude and silence. With quiet, you can hear your thoughts, you can reach deep within yourself, and you can focus on mapping out the next logical, productive step in your life. 13. Ask lots of questions. The greatest ‘adventure’ is the ability to inquire. Sometimes in the process of inquiry, the search is more significant than the answers. Answers come from other people, from the universe of knowledge and history, and from the intuition and deep wisdom inside yourself. These answers will never surface if you never ask the right questions. 14. Exploit the resources you do have access to. The average person is usually astonished when they see a physically handicap person show intense signs of emotional happiness. How could someone in such a restricted physical state be so happy? The answer rests in how they use the resources they do have. Stevie Wonder couldn’t see, so he exploited his sense of hearing into a passion for music, and he now has 25 Grammy Awards to prove it. 15. Live below your means. Live a comfortable life, not a wasteful one. Do not spend to impress others. Do not live life trying to fool yourself into thinking wealth is measured in material objects. Manage your money wisely so your money does not manage you. 16. Be respectful of others and make them feel good. In life and business, it’s not so much what you say that counts, it’ how you make people feel. So respect your elders, minors, and everyone in between. There are no boundaries or classes that define a group of people that deserve to be respected. Treat everyone with the same level of respect you would give to your grandfather and the same level of patience you would have with your baby brother. Supporting, guiding, and making contributions to other people is one of life’s greatest rewards. 17. In order to get, you have to give. There’s no point in doing something if you aren’t going to do it right. Excel at your work and excel at your hobbies. Develop a reputation for yourself, a reputation for consistent excellence. 18. Be who you were born to be. You must follow your heart, and be who you were born to be. Some of us were born to be musicians – to communicate intricate thoughts and rousing feelings with the strings of a guitar. Some of us were born to be poets – to touch people’s hearts with exquisite prose. Some of us were born to be entrepreneurs – to create growth and opportunity where others saw rubbish. Whatever it is that moves you, don’t waste your life fulfilling someone else’s dreams and desires. greedmont park.com 27
PHOTO BY COREY DAVIS
My first trip overseas was to Africa, simply because it felt right. It was the first time in my life where I didn’t have hot water or a running toilet and it wasn’t a problem. I can still remember the chills I received from hearing a stranger tell me, “Welcome home.”
In one village all the kids began to follow us, yelling â€œTattoo! Tattoo!â€? We eventually stopped and they all ran up to take turns to touch my piece by Miya Bailey to see if it was real. Now that was surreal. -Elizah Turner
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While studying in Hong Kong, I would go out everyday and just looked at people and how they moved. Me being a foreigner and a black American, I always wondered how they looked at me. So the fascination of the gaze of the people, as I gazed upon them, drove me to create an entire series. I would like to further understand how as a society people go about their day. I want to see whom I saw more than once and I was excited to know that someone I photographed on a given day I most likely will never see again. I found that it is important for me to do this study because I am use to photographing in the studio doing portraits of those I encounter on a daily basis as well as hired fashion models. To evolve as an artist however, it is integral to move beyond the familiar, which is why I brought my work to the public through various ways such as catwalks and fashion shoots on the streets of Sham Shui Po, Hong Kong. I have found that by releasing control to the random spontaneity of my environment I have grown as a photographer and the experience has given me inspiration and renewed my passion. At this point I will continue to just go out and let the situations unfold except now I am back home on familiar grounds. 34 greedmont park.com
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PHOTOS AND WORDS BY MARI J BROOKLYN
for more on japan go to greedmont park.com 39
Translation: I was born and raised in Japan. I’ve always had an adoration to living overseas, so I left Japan to live overseas. Back then, I didn’t realize what Japan was really all about. After a year of traveling overseas, I returned to japan. Everything felt “fresh” or rather kind of “nostalgic.” The buildings the things, the people and the food around my house that always existed here since I was a child. Those things accumulated inside of me like it was supposed to be. Ordinary things, people, Fashion, even the font of letters are so adorable to me, so I want to save all of it in photographs.
The City of Ink Euro Tour was one of the craziest experiences of my life. Out of all of the cities we went to, I would have to say London was my favorite. There was beautiful women everywhere and everyone had their own style, it was dope. But what really inspired me was their appreciation for American culture. We talked to one black kid on the train, or as they call it the “tube”, who only knew about America through rap songs, he kept asking us if we was friends with all of these different rappers. Afterwards we went to meet this weed dealer who had a crazy collect of art and an even larger collection of southern hip-hop. He must have had a thousand CD’s neatly organized in alphabetical order, everything from Playa Fly and Koopsta Knicca to Field Mob and UGK. I also heard more one night stands happen in London then anywhere in the world, but I didn’t get so lucky... -Corey Davis
Welcome to Buenos Aires, Argentina, drink quilmes, eat empanadas. Repeat until passed out. -Andreas Tarazi
I fell in love. From the breathtaking views atop the Pompidou, where I was introduced to the destructive works of Arman and exhibits that celebrated female modern artists such as Frida Kahlo and Barbara Kruger to the stunning works of Takashi Murakami at the grandeur Chateau Versailles. I fell in love with the city, the arts, and of course the fashion. Paris enthralled me and provoked a spark in my creative mind. Fashion, art, and culture coexist elegantly in one place, a place that I cannot wait to return to. Until then... Paris, jâ€™ai mlle vous. -Naturee Wells
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WORDS BY MYLES E. JOHNSON PHOTOS BY MIKE QUAIN
I recall early mornings waiting on my mother to get ready to go to work and drop me off to school in New York. There, admiring my single, working mother I gained essential fashion rules. More times than not, I find myself breaking those rules like a true style renegade. I wear black with brown, I mix prints, and sometimes if the mood is right I stack on more instead of taking things off. However, some things have never been shattered by my rebellion. My mother told me that accessories are the cornerstone of any fashionista’s closet and shoes are the punctuation to every outfit.
a collection of women’s shoes. I was fortunate enough to have some friends overseas in Hong Kong at the time, so I moved there for a short time to be able to work with some factories and learn the process. After six months or so I came back with my first collection.” The birth of her jewelry was a natural development. “The jewelry followed about a year later, it was the result of me needing something to do in-between seasons and craving some sort of local production where I could be more hands on and creative.”
It’s obvious in Ms. Ehsani’s designs that there’s plenty of thought and intention put into every shoe and piece of jewelry. When asked what inspires her, she responds, “Life, culture, people, truth. All things authentic.” Along with authenticity, there’s a heavy influence of Persian and Egyptian culture in her designs. “I’m really into Melody Ehsani is the designer behind some history and the study of ancient civilizations. of the hot accessories you see being rocked Something about Egyptian, African, and Perby Beyonce, Jazmine Sullivan, Keri Hilson, sian culture is especially close to my heart. and Nicki Minaj. Her bold, imaginative accessories are also paired with equally breath- It’s very mystical and mathematical. The imagtaking shoes that balance beautifully between ery always makes me dream about what type feminine elegance and modern funk. It’s no of people were here before us.” Her dreams are surprise that Melody Ehsani is as sweet and not just her own, Melody divulges that there interesting as her designs. are a few design collaborations in the works, amongst them is Mata Hari.” I am in the proMelody’s upbringing was a kind of trail of cess of a couple different collaborations. I can’t traditional Americana living with some very talk too much about some of them, I don’t like heavy curve-balls. “I grew up in Los Angeles to talk about things until they are done. Howin a middle class family, to two parents that ever, one that is well on its way and will be in were both artists.” She continues, “My father the market in Spring is a handbag collaboration passed away when I was 10 years old. I was with a high-end line called Mata Hari. I designed immediately placed in a position where I sort 3 pieces that I’m very excited to release.” of became the glue in my family.” She grew up quickly into the role. ”I became the one that Melody describes style as knowing your true consoled my mother and raised my younger self and showing up as you without apology. brother, so I learned how to be practical at a She confessed the one thing she can’t live very young age.” It was this time in her life that without is sugar, you’d might forget that Ehsani shaped the woman we see before us. “I joined is design maven. She knows the love of having a dance troop when I was 12 years old and celebrities and artists like Mariah Carey, Kelis, it introduced me to Hip-Hop and many of the Patti Labelle, and Erykah Badu wearing her other cultures that ended up heavily influenc- items, but she addresses humbly. “It’s great, ing me to this day.” it’s a big deal to have another artist endorse your artistry. It’s very humbling.” She appreciFast forward and Melody Ehsani was interning ates each experience. “Every time it happens it at a sneaker company and awakened a spark creates a special and unique feeling for me, no inside of her. “ I realized that I had a passion one experience is greater than for footwear, and that I wanted to create With that being embedded in me as a child like the pledge of allegiance, it makes sense that designer and visionary, Melody Ehsani is someone who I had to sit-down with and get to know a little better.
48 greedmont park.com to see melody’s designs
“LIFE, CULTURE, PEOPLE, TRUTH. ALL THINGS AUTHENTIC.” the other.” She confesses that she would love to see Lauryn Hill and Grace Jones parading in her pieces sooner than later.
household across the world. Now, you can get a piece of Melody Ehsani at www.karmaloop. com, as well. “Karmaloop is definitely one of my favorite retailers. They carry a wide selecMelody’s down-to-earth disposition melts over tion of my items online, and they work very and it’s as endearing as it is comforting. Her na- closely with me to do limited edition pieces, ture is innate and nurtured by the people around collaborations and specialty items that are exher. “Actually, I’m very fortunate in having a clusive to their site.” group of very real, grounded people around me who constantly mirror back to me who I really Now, I’m no psychic and I don’t even own a am. By nature, I’m also very humble.” crystal-ball, but I do have a knack that in 10 years I’ll be reciting my own ‘fashion rules’ to Melody Ehsani insures her next collection will my off-spring and Melody Ehsani will be apart contain plenty of staple pieces and within the of every fashionista’s closet on this side of the next decade she will be somewhere in every moon. greedmont park.com 49
PHOTOS BY BRITTANI SENSABAUGH STYLE BY PAULA RENEE CLOTHES BY CRIS ARMIJO
WORDS BY ROSE M. BELLEFLEUR ART BY GOLDI GOLD
Before Nicki Minaj, there was Lil’ Kim. Before Lady Gaga, there was Madonna. Before Lindsay Lohan was taunting the justice system with ‘Fuck You’ nails and Ke$ha was shocking our ears with morning after stories of bottles of jack, and feeling like P.Diddy; there was Uffie. Not giving a fuck, desensitized,and partying until the sun comes up, let’s face it, Uffie is the mascot of our generation. With the recent turn of events concerning Lohan, the hipster and party scene has been in a sort of stand still. What better time to have a chat with the girl who started it all? From Pharrell, to baby Henrietta, to her latest album “Sex, Dreams and Denim Jeans”, this past week Uffie and I had a chance to reminisce about the recent turn of events that have occurred and are occurring in her life. Uffie’s debut album: Sex, Dreams and Denim Jeans, has been highly anticipated and for well reason. Although the Hong-Kong raised and Paris based rapper for the most part stuck to her hip hop roots, other genres such as pop, electro and house are meshed through out the album. While “Pop the Glock” is a laid back, let’s get blown type single, “MC’s Can Kiss” is a finger snapping tune, with catchy cocky lyrics such as “Yeah I got something MCs can kiss/ It’s a nice bum cheek and it goes like this”. When asked about the audience that she wanted the album to attract Uffie stated, “ The album crosses a lot of genres, so I think there’s a bit of something for everyone on there”. Still not satisfied, we probed deeper. If Sex, Dream and Denim Jeans was being played at a club, what type of crowd would it attract? To which she replied, “Many, many different people.” Being an artist, there has to be something that differentiates you from the rest. For Uffie that has been her attitude and especially her mouth. When all the world around her is labeling her as vulgar, we felt the need to get the stars perspective on the term. “I am vulgar for some people, for others I am just another typical youth. I am from a part of a generation that is incredibly desensitized, so to us it may not be vulgar”. Spoken sincerely, but the fact that the rebellious, misfit icon has just had a baby raises some questions. Is she going to soften her image? Are her lyrics going to be toned down for fear that when baby Henrietta grows up she’ll hear them? When asked if having a child has influenced her music or has caused her to feel the need to soften her image, she quickly corrected me, 54 greedmont park.com for new music by uffie
“No, it has caused me to grow up in many ways very quickly and brought a much needed balance to my life.” 2007, 2008, and finally 2010, the release date of Uffie’s Sex, Dreams and Denim Jeans, had been jumped around quite a bit. Some songs were recorded before her brief hiatus, and others at the albums completion. “Pop the Glock” was all about the nightlife, while “First Love” probed into deeper and more concrete elements such as love, and relationships. “‘Pop the Glock’ was the first song I ever wrote so, on ‘First Love’ I definitely had more experience to say things how I wanted. Also, I write about what I am feeling in the moment. If your feeling love or sensitive, then that’s what you write about.” One of the many reasons of Uffie’s breakthrough as an artist is the fact that she often collaborates with many astounding artist in the genres that her music meshes. When asked what genre of music she most identifies with, she was on the fence,” I’m a punk at heart, with a passion for hip-hop, and I’m surrounded by electro. So, that’s sort of how it comes out. I am definitely in constant evolution. I think the great thing about being an artist is getting to express what your feeling in a moment, so its always changing.” We began to talk about her recent collaboration with Pharrell for her “ADD SUV” song and video and their artistic relationship. “Having Pharrell in the video was really an honor. He’s an artist that I have incredible respect for, so I was really happy and excited to have him on the track and do the video together.” Ed Banger label mates Mr.Flash and former lover Feadz was mentioned, “I think living the life we do really cuts you off in a way from social interaction. You’re constantly gone and everything is about music, so you tend to become closer to people who share and understand this. My label mates Feadz and Sebastian are great friends.” The conversation drifted off to Steve Aoki and some his more recent projects which prompted Uffie’s acclamation, “Steve Aoki isn’t part of Ed Banger, he is Dim Mak. However he is one of my best friends and I love his spirit. When [as artists] you share so much, it brings you closer.” Boy is she in good company! She is surrounded by some of the most partied to DJs, producers and artist. The fact that she is so into the hipster scene affects what she writes about, “I write about my life experience and surrounding. You really just absorb what you’re around.”
Although it’s only July, fashion week is approaching. Many don’t know this, but Uffie studied fashion, but turned away from it when she and DJ Feadz began making music. Now that her album is out and she has had time to soak all the success in and reminisce, I couldn’t help but muse: Let’s say she had never met DJ Feadz, would she have been preparing for fashion week instead of being a part of the electro pop revolution? “Who knows! If you asked me where I would be in five years a few years ago, I wouldn’t say here.” I began throwing in numbers and mentioned the fact that it took a while for her debut album to come out. Sex, Dreams, and Denim Jeans has been highly acclaimed and her fans want more. Are there deals in the works for a sophomore album? “I am writing at the moment and I plan on getting into the studio ASAP. Never again will I be asked what took so long.” Greedmont fans in the UK have long been graced with her presence, but our readers in the states wanted to know if we would get out night with the star soon. Concerning the United States and tour dates and shows, she affirmed, “Yes, [I will have shows in the states], the tour schedule is endless.”
“I am vulgar for some people, for others I am just another typical youth.”
Being the fiery spirit that I am, I took the chance to ask Uffie what she had to say to those who have harshly reviewed her music. However, the spunky hipster, is a bit hesitant. “Nothing, everyone is entitled to an opinion. It would be boring not to stir things up enough that everyone loved you, wouldn’t it. Where’s the challenge in that.” It’s all in good fun. There’s never a dull moment with Uffie. Music critics have dubbed her, “Rebelliousness tinged with honesty”, “catchy fresh-sounding and brilliantly self referential” and even the art biters over Rolling Stone have fallen in love and stated concerning the MC: “Did Ke$ha bite her steez? Who cares? There’s always room for another party girl.” Whatever the case, Uffie is back. Is it safe to say that you’re back to take your throne as the electro pop queen and globe trotting party starter? I asked, half-jokingly. “My bags are packed, but I guess the crowd will have to answer that for you,” she responded all smiles. PHOTO BY MARION ROBERT
When you think of Western rap icons like Run DMC, Tupac Shakur, Kid N’Play, never in the same train of thought do you think of European pop stars such as Sting or U2. And Why not. 2Pacalypse Now was corrupting the kids around the same time that Sting’s pop rock “All This Time” was circulating European cafe shops. And let us not forget U2’s ”Achtung Baby” which was receiving acclamation and blasting reviews while Kid N’ Play threw out their platinum FunHouse album followed by Face the Nation, but still, never in the same sentence are these cultural icons intertwined. I guess at that time in musical history our musical palate was a little to similar too our literal palate; salt to salt, sugar to sugar. We adored our skinny European white guys who sung of Bloody Sundays and we loved our black men with high top fades who were doing the kick step, but sweet and sour, or the idea of sprinkling just a little bit of sugar in our grits was unheard. These days however, the tide has changed. Eminem hashing things up with Elton John for “Stan”, Jay-Z fans and metal head Linkin Park groupies agreeing when it came to “Numb”, Nelly and Tim McGraw giving you “Over and Over”. You see, musical artist aren’t so exclusive to their genres anymore. Mr.Hudson is no different to this new wave of musical perception. Having his Straight No Chaser album out in the USA this past week, you can imagine how stressful and hectic his schedule has been. However, between the late night recording sessions, impromptu performances, and the weight that comes with being an overly attractive lad with the most GQ and Tom Ford of accents, Mr. Hudson took some time to catch up with Greedmont. He told me tales of love gone wrong, but also threw in funnier stories, which consisted of Wimbleton tennis outfits worn at the most awkward social situations, and skinny men who sing in high pitch voices. Straight no Chaser was meant to be a cross between pop and hip hop. Mr. Hudson has stated that his musical heroes are of the Bowie variety, so all sorts of upbeat tempos and dance revolution tracks were in the works for Straight No Chaser, however titles like “There Will be Tears”, “Learning to Live” and “Everything is Broken” raises eyebrows because they juxtapose the Studio 54
rhythms that they’re laid with. On the feel of the Straight No Chaser album, Hudson states, “There’s two angles that I wanted to cover. One is to make an upbeat record that would represent different influences from hip hop, although I’m not a hiphop artist, but working with artist like Jay-Z and Kanye West am influenced. Right after working on 808’s & HeartBreak, I broke up with my longtime girlfriend. The reality of it affected my songwriting. So you see, you have this album with these upbeat sounds but miserable lyrics.” The stellar, mellow “White Lies”, even has tinges of consciousness in it. “The pain in the single “White Lies”…I guess it came from guilt. When you sometimes have to break a rule to get where you need to be, whether that justifies it doesn’t make it right to do it.” Some of the songs on the album are auto tune tweaked and at a time when Jay-Z had just released “D.O.H” and T-Pain was doing excess, I asked Hudson about the sounds and techniques that he had wanted to incorporate on the Straight No Chaser album, “Auto tune is only on one in four tracks. It is one of the different effects, or one of many toys that we play with and utilize. You use it when appropriate.” He goes on, “It’s funny, we released Supernova which had auto tune, and a few days later, Jay-Z came out with ‘Death of Auto tune’ and it was like ‘uh-oh,” he laughs. Hudson broke the scene with “Forever Young”, you heard a bit of him in “Say You Will” and although he is associated with Heavy acts like Jay-Z, Kanye West, Scott Mescudi, Calvin Harris, he is granted free name dropping rights, for the fact that he can stand alone. There Will Be Tears, features the rich, smooth texture of his voice and the Warhol reminiscent, acid trippy video shows the validity of those who champion him as being an icon. Kanye West once stated, “I believe Mr. Hudson has the potential to be bigger than me, to be one of the most important artists of his generation,” on this the humble Hudson states, “It’s terrifying. What do you say to that. He sees me as having a lot of potential.” On his slow encroachment of the music scene and his work ethic he used the funniest analogy, “I’ve always been a slowly, but surely kind of guy. I won’t crash on the scene like Lady Gaga. It’s not in my nature to break in, come crashing through the window in a red, leather jumpsuit.” for more on mr. hudson go to greedmont park.com 57
No, Hudson, is a more eclectic, willowy spirit. Before his rise to stardom, he states “I was doing things in London, pottering about. My dreams didn’t extend beyond London to save my life.” When he started doing impromptu performances with Jay-Z and became involved in studio sessions and producing for Kanye West’s 808, blogs, magazines, and music critiques were tuning their ears to his idiosyncratic tunes, Hudson was living a double life. In London, spending days and nights in his apartment writing and vomiting his soul into his music, but in the United States impromptu invitations from jigga man to take part in Saturday Night Live performances. “It really isn’t normal, it’s been sort of a religious experience. I’ve experienced the craziest of things. Jay-Z and I played at a wireless festival and Kanye West randomly came on. To go from my modest existence to a world of escalades, cold stones and unnecessary amounts of sneakers. Does a man really need six thousand pairs of shoes. But it started to become one lifestyle. However, I still like to preserve a corner of my life that is still pedestrian.” He went from writing lyrics in worn notebooks and humble pub performances, to excusing himself as he wedged his way into studio sessions with Plain Pat, Tony Williams, Young Jeezy, T-Pain. “You chip away and make music and then you get this call from Kanye because he wants to sign you to G.O.O.D. music. It’s amazing. He never told me what to do, instead he showed me how to work. I had all these guys, Tony Williams, Plain Pat, Big Sean, N-Dubz coming to the studio. I learned so much quickly. I got to work on other artists stuff, and some of my own” At this stage there are of course comparisons, but even they have been compliments, Sting being one of them. “It’s happened fairly frequent over the past year, it’s a massive compliment. But what other English men do you know of with blonde hair singing in ridiculously high pitch. It’s a compliment, but a big shoe to fill.” Speaking of shoes, Hudson has a Louis Vuitton shoe named after him. When you start associating with Louis Vuitton, style is a must. Hudson’s, is more of a simpler variety.
58 greedmont park.com for more interviews with g.o.o.d. music
“My whole thing is that clothes should fit your body and personality.” He then goes on to tell me the story of the first time he came to the United States and was invited to engage in one of our nations most popular of sports: basketball. “The first time I came to America they asked me to play basketball, and I arrived in a full Wimbleton tennis outfit and they laughed at me. But I’ll go on to tell you that I scored the final wining three points,” he tells me in a fit of laughter. At this point in the interview, all sense of professionalism cedes as I join him in laughter and seeing that his attempts of humor are proving valiant, he continues in this tone. When asked if his future is forecasted as being sex, drug, and money ladden as the ones that West, Jay, and Mescudi have lately been living, he is quick to reply, “Probably,” but then grows serious as he reflects on the question. “No, I try to call my mother and school friends everyday and I keep my feet on the ground. I have an American work ethic. In London it seems cool to not try.” He goes on to address the work ethic of the rap and hip hop industry, “In hip hop you work hard and you’re not ashamed. There’s a big psychological difference, I embrace hip hop for it’s value.” On projects that are coming up, albums, and tabs that Greedmont should be keeping, Hudson stated, “By the time records come out, we’re already listening and working on new stuff. I should be coming over to the states in a few weeks. I’m going to be in New York, going to some clubs. I think I’m going to try out dj’ing,” he laughs, “But I’m no A-Trak. You need to listen to Caspa, some guys over here in London that I’ve been getting into…also Nero-Innocence. If you come to my house that is what we play all day.”
PHOTO BY J. “QUAZI” KING JEWELRY BY NYNELYVES.COM
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60 greedmont park.com
It’s a cold winter night, liquor is keeping my body warm, and after a art-show my friends insist on raiding a party in Atlanta’s hipster-haven, Little 5 Points. Equipped with little to nothing, but a desire to dance, we walk in the house where it’s hard to even maneuver one foot over the other without stepping on a pair of Jeffrey Campbell’s, Oxfords, or Jordans. You look in front of you and all you can see is heads and bodies. You might confuse it with mass genocide a la the holocaust if it wasn’t for the disco lights and weed smoke. This was a party. My friends and I find a suitable dancing spot in-between the cool Asian and drunk, hot white girls. We’re in heaven! The beat drops and the house goes wild. Not a scary wild like when Wacka Flocka was chanting about how hard (in the motherfucking paint) he is, but a trance that can only take over people by a hit song. Que the track, “popping bottles in the ice.” It’s Dev on the Billboard smash hit, “Like A G6”. Foreign Exchange used her verse in “Booty Bounce” as the focal point of their hit song, and she naturally stole the show. Dev is garnering attention for her sensational style, party girl lyrics, and even Kanye West referenced her lyrics in his verse on the remix of Keri Hilson’s “Pretty Girl Rock”. For the lack of better words, Dev is the shit. Dev is the Mexican and Portuguese, 21 yearold that is set to own 2011. From her home-girl disposition, you might not think she was on the verge of super stardom. Don’t worry, that calm before the storm is called swag, lots and lots of swag.
Born in a small town in a traditional household with two sisters and a mother and father that had no idea they were raising a pop siren. “My family is a bit crazy. I never needed to rebel. I’ve always been a little left of center.”, she chuckles and talks about what music her even younger years were plagued with. “I grew up listening to everything from Nirvana to Britney Spears and everything inbetween. Eminem changed my life.” That eclectic groove brought the attention of rap and production team, The Cataracts. “The Cataracts do all my production, they found me on MySpace. I had a little song and they liked it.” The deadly twosome will be mostly responsible for Dev’s debut album slated for a April release (Title, TBA). “Me and The Cataracts are leaving in a few days for Costa Rica to record the rest of the album. I can’t place it in one specific genre a lot of bangers. I’ll be rapping, singing, a few ballads. A lot of sassiness.” That sassy spirit was land-marked in one of the biggest hits of 2010, “Like A G6” that landed her a mention by Kanye West that she’s absolutely stoked about. “Yeah, it’s crazy! Having him shout-out it out in the Keri Hilson song, all the hype has been very surreal. Three years ago I was just working a nine to five. It keeps me motivated, keeps me moving.” While nods from Mr. West keeps Dev moving, her party anthems keep us moving. She doesn’t shy away from talking about booty bouncing or how fly she is, the 21 year-old cutie is refreshingly honest on who she is. “Yeah, for sure. I be sipping, having a good time. everything I say in my songs, I say it because I live it.” greedmont park.com 61
It’s obvious from Dev’s cool demeanor and party-girl attitude that she is way more prone to living in the moment than anywhere else. “I don’t even want to think about that”, is how she responds when asked where she will be in ten years. “Hopefully, I’ll have a few albums under my belt. I’m going to grind as long as I’m on this goddamn Earth.” Dev makes it all look super easy from getting steamy in the “Bass Down Low” video to countless fashion wardrobe changes in the Ethan Lader-directed “Booty Bounce” video, fashions sponsored by designers extraordinaires Hell’s Bells, her style is something like Ke$ha’s chic cousin. Just as effortless, just as untamed, but easier for your average fashionista to swallow. “I’m into a little bit of everything. I’ll do some cool heels one day and sneakers the next.” Dev takes the same effortless approach to her competition as she does her closet, “I try not to think about other people’s stuff too much. I respect everybody [...] I’m too goddamn competitive to let anyone get in my way.” Dev’s tunnel vision over-rides her vodka goggles, the party kid is balancing having a blast with working her ass off. Her shows are gaining reputation for their high-energy. “My performances are fun. Thirty minutes of non-stop popping bottles and popping confetti!” Dev is perfectly positioned to own 2011 and years to come. She leaves us with a sentiment that is half joke, half threat, all promise. “You can expect a lot of swag in 2010”, she chuckles. That chuckle, at the time, seemed like a laugh between friends. In retrospect, that might be the laugh of a evil villain bent on world domination. Either way, the there will be a lot of bass, confetti, and alcohol, so I won’t be complaining.
Words by Myles E. Johnson
skydiving roaches invasion
by corey davis
for the skydiving roaches animation go to greedmont park.com 63
WORDS BY KITTY ST. VALENTINE ILLUSTRATION BY COREY DAVIS
Some of you might not remember this, but there was a time where Black women were known for not giving head. I believe it was thought to be nasty,“eww I don’t do that, white women do that.” That is now in the past; everyone gives head, and thanks to Superhead and books like Tickle His Pickle, some of us have become masters at fellatio. Now onto the 2011’s “so nasty” topic that people do, but don’t say they do until someone else says that they do it and like it too, topic – Anal Sex. I know especially in certain areas of the country anal sex is taboo – being linked to deviance and homosexuality. There have been many comedians to suggest that a man who likes too much ass action might be on the “down low.” I cannot tell you the motivations of men who enjoy anal sex, but rest assured if he is indeed gay, that won’t be the only tip off that you have. Instead, think of anal sex as another item on the sexual menu. Some people like it to have it every time, for some it’s a treat every now and then like birthday cake, and for some they tried it and wasn’t that impressed so they don’t order it. In any case, there is no need for judgment – especially if you have not tried it. Men, something that is honest that happens… you’re fucking, getting your groove in and then your dick slips out and into the wrong hole. In most cases, the woman will tell you “wrong hole,” “that’s not it,” or “up a little.” Just because in that moment she sounded like “what the fuck are you doing?” Doesn’t mean that she won’t be into it. But you gotta warn a bitch…don’t try to be slick or you’ll never get the opportunity again. Personally, I don’t think it’s that big of a deal. So I might get in trouble with some ladies about it, so ask while you are having sex. 64 greedmont park.com for more sex advice
There’s a joke that goes, “butt sex is just like spinach if you’re made to have it as a kid you might not like it as an adult.” You never know, some people have very good reasons why they aren’t into it, so make sure you ask. Painful sex is not good sex. Unless you’re into that kind of thing. If it’s a go, make sure you have some lubrication and go slow and gentle at first. When you are done with the ass it is so important to DISCARD THE CONDOM AND PUT ON THE NEW ONE. Remember one of my last article where I talked about the delicate balance of the vagina. Ass juice can cause a myriad of adverse effects in the vagina. For god sake if you’re doing it raw, just wipe it off, or something. Ladies, if you are going to have anal sex, might I suggest getting the Brazilian wax. If you aren’t into the waxing thing and are afraid that it hurts, which it does, except for the ass. Honestly! Also, you need to make sure you clean your ass well. A shitty ass is no one’s friend! As a side note: Ladies, for real, liking it does not make you a whore, not doing it doesn’t make you a prude. If you feel strongly about not doing anything that goes down sexually, let your lover know and be creative to find other things that you both can enjoy together. If it’s a deal breaker then you know you’re with a douche, let that deal be broke and find a new buddy. greedmont park.com 65
TheTwilight of Prostitution +Transsexuality Explained by Isabella Del Rio
WORDS BY MYLES E. JOHNSON ILLUSTRATION BY JOSHUA HOOPER
When worlds collide, there’s always a ruckus. This is no different. Lady’s man, part-time artist Corey Davis interviews notorious transsexual sex worker, Isabella Del Rio. Isabella Del Rio first started as a young prostitute on the streets of New York. She always knew there was something a bit different about her since growing up in the suburbs of Long Island, New York in a strict, Colombian household. How was your childhood? My raunchy childhood? These boys use to tease the shit out of me, call me a faggot, because I was always really feminine. But when I was by myself. They would put me on the bed and say “Let’s play superheros.” I remember them pinning me down and taking turns grinding on my ass.
in my pockets and I knew I didn’t want to go back home. [Corey’s jaw dropped.]
Isabella Del Rio was initially taken by a couple of pimps and introduced to a transsexual that initially sparked the idea that she could actually be a girl. An openly, gay man taught her all the ropes [Corey takes a deep gulp, this is going to be raw.] from where in East Village you can make the most money to what hookers to not fuck with, So, what role do you like to play in the bedroom? and eventually made her comfortable enough to You rather be “the girl”? realize she didn’t want to be a boy. I want to be a girl, so in my head, ever since I was little, I always felt like a girl. I always felt like I was trapped in the wrong body. I do like fucking, I do like Isabella Del Rio eventually moved to Queens, getting my tranny cock sucked, but I do always want New York with her aunt and balanced high school and prostitution when she first tried prostituting to feel like a girl. as a ‘woman’. Are the men attracted you gay? Gay men don’t like trannies. Gay men like men. How much do you charge? What’s the job like? Straight men like women, they like people that are There’s job where I can wake-up at whatever feminine, who look and act like a woman. If I go to time I want. There’s no other job I would make Manhattan and I’m going to a club, and I meet a guy $200.00 an hour. If they want more fetishes, like and tell him I’m a tranny, nine of ten guys don’t care. S&M, it’s $300.00. The ones that talk the most shit are the ones that are on our dicks the most. Are there clients who don’t ever want to have sex, but just want to talk? What type of guys are you attracted to? Definitely I have gotten it, back when I was 15 year-old, hoing, a guy paid me $900.00 just to [Isabella licks her lips and sighs.] talk as a boy. He didn’t even ask me to get naked, he just wanted to know about my life and how I The guys that I hook-up with outside of work are knew I was gay. usually thugs, guys that are Latin Kings. Mind you, if you’re a Latin King if they find out you mess with a How’s the escort business versus prostitution? man, you either get killed or get kicked out. A lot of girls been ruining the business by charging so cheap... Craigslist brought the escortHow did you get into the sex working industry? ing business down the drain... It’s like how you Ever since I was a little kid, I was intrigued by porn- charging somebody fifty dollars if they’re coming stars. I ran away from home, got off the train at 44th to your house? Those are like street prices. Street and walked to 42nd and 48th Street. This guy comes to me and asks “how much do you charge Do you attract a lot of stalkers? for a body rub?” I have attracted a few stalkers. When I first started my phone sex line and I was living in Queens. [The man offers Isabella $200.00.] Long story short one day he calls me and says that he can’t find my door number, he never met I knew I needed the money, I might have been naive me in person and he thought he could show up and everything, but I wasn’t dumb.I knew he wanted at my apartment! more than just a massage. I didn’t have any money
66 greedmont park.com for the audio interview with Isabella Del Rio
Do you get celebrities? I have celebrities call my phone sex line. I had a rapper when I was in Atlanta, Georgia. Ray Liotta(Goodfellas), he always calls me, talking bullshit, trying to jerk-off for free. This guy from HBO’s “Oz”, one of the main characters, is one of my clients. They’re actors, don’t get me wrong and they’re on T.V., but they’re not Brad Pitt. What’s your motivation for doing what you do? Money and not having a boss. I like being able to wake-up when I want to wake-up. I wake-up a 2 p.m. and go to sleep at 6 a.m. like everyday. What does your future hold? I don’t even know what my future holds. Eros.com has a tranny called Christy Love, she’s been around since the late 70’s and she’s still doing it and she’s crazy old. Could you turn back? I chose to do this, it’s not like I had no other option. My parents don’t know that I do this. I could just call my parents and they would pay for me to go to college again. If you could change anything about your life, what would it be? I would do anything to become a real woman that was gorgeous. Thoughts on straight women? If I were to tell them, they wouldn’t believe me. I laugh because I really have the upper-hand, usually I already had their man. Even if you don’t believe me and your man will probably never admit to it. Truth is, your man was probably sucking my cock. Misconceptions of transsexuals? People think we just get turned on by anything, like we’ll fuck a horse, a cat, anything! That’s a huge misconception about us. Do you believe in God? Yes, I believe in God. I think God has been very good to me in a lot of aspects. With no drug addictions or STDs through her whole career, Isabella Del Rio currently just has a fascination with 4’Lokos and making money. Corey Davis leaves with a new-found understanding for a world taboo, risque, and shunned by society. For Isabella Del Rio, it’s not a fetish, it’s a lifestyle. For more info on Isabella Del Rio visit www.thickiliciouz.com
We Loved Him (an excerpt from upcoming novel) by
ART BY JAMES DANIEL
I was aware of her. Always painstakingly aware of her phantom presence. It made me hesitant to touch, feel or love my confusion. My confusion was the source of my heartbeat. She was the source of my jealousy and sometimes my inadequacy. Maybe a part of me would feel better, justified even, if she was aware of me. If she knew that we were also lovers bound by the same man. We had shared the same intimacy, stole the same breath and drank the same sweet release from him. But only I was aware that we were stuck in a manage a trois, leaving me to hope that the three would eventually become two. I didn’t know if I felt empowered by the fact that he allowed me truth and fed her deceit. My analytical mind worked overtime to convince myself that I had the upper hand because I knew. While she lived in bliss, I was tortured. If only he could purge her from his mind, body, and soul. He told me he loved me. Sometimes he would say this as he broke the space between us, causing a fire to ignite between my thighs. I loved him in those moments. I loved the way we were in his bed. In those moments when the sun rested and the stars kissed the sky. But when sleep embraced my inevitable heartache, doubt crept in and my mind became restless, thinking about her. I knew I shouldn’t even worry about her because what we shared was not the same as what they shared and vice versa. But in those moments when my thoughts of how he touched her, if he caressed her, and if he really loved her came rushing forward, my moxie slipped and I was no longer confidant about what he and I had. This bed that I found solace in was also the bed I hated. A bed shared by three lovers. Sometimes my vulnerability would overcome me and I would attack him. I would ask him a thousand questions that caused me to die tiny deaths with each answer. But it was the masochist in me that wouldn’t let me stop until tears drowned my words. Or when I succumbed to the ridiculousness of my jealousy and kept pushing until I got the rise of a voice irritated. And even in those moments I loved him. At times, I wanted to tell her. I wanted to awaken her from her blissful reality, a reality he created for her. However, I would never trade places with her. I would rather live in the harsh brightness of truth than the cold darkness of the unknown. Because once you step out of that darkness nothing is ever really the same. I also knew that if she felt half the way that I felt she wouldn’t leave. I mean, after all, I was still here. I knew I could leave this ‘relationship’ and find someone who would invest his heart with me and only me but I couldn’t. I had tried and failed. I thought another man could erase the images of him. Neglecting the fact that he lived inside me, his spirit seeping into my pores. His essence had rooted itself within me and I could not eradicate him from my existence. Even when I was with another, it was he I thought of. He was never too far from my soul. His presence was so strong that it pulled me back every time. I was in love with this man. In love with his selfishness, his protectiveness. His imperfections aroused me. He was my friend, my confidant, my hurt and my joy. He was my fear, causing my words to tremble under the mere thought of him leaving. Strictly friendship would never be enough. And yet this is what he offered when he thought patience was a stranger in our path toward monogamy. The fear of losing this romantic agony and being forced to stay in a platonic hell caused me to slip into a frenzied state of insanity only to be righted by his reassuring words that promised we would take our time. Time became my enemy and my friend, but mostly my enemy. more short stories and erotica greedmont park.com 69
He was just a man. I reminded myself this often, but it didn’t matter. What mattered was that he was the man we loved. The rain fell softly outside his window. He looked at the woman sitting before him. So much love lived in her eyes. He was torn between his heart and his mind. In his heart he knew that he wanted her but his mind wouldn’t let him forget. He couldn’t forget the lies, the sneakiness, the pain. In the moments when he remembered, the hate he felt for her grew and all love was forgotten. He grabbed her by the neck. “How could you do that to me? Did you think I wouldn’t find out? Why should I believe anything you say?” He growled into her ear. He watched as the tears fell freely from her eyes. “I’m so sorry baby. You have to believe me. I love you so much.” He squeezed her neck tighter. “Don’t lie to me. Don’t tell me you love me.” He looked at her face. He wasn’t hurting her. Not physically anyway. She was crying from the pain she had caused him. He loved her so much. Not letting go of her neck, he kissed her. The feelings he had for her overwhelmed him and he couldn’t stop himself. He needed to feel her. He ripped her shirt open and licked her nipples. She moaned in pleasure. She grabbed his shirt and tried to take it off. He grabbed her arms, “Don’t touch me.” He took off her pants. He sat back and watched her. So many emotions ran through him. She was beautiful and ugly all at once. He didn’t understand it but he needed her. He wanted to hurt her like she had hurt him. He plunged his fingers deep inside her. In and out, out and in. The only sounds present besides the rain was the sound of his fingers disappearing inside her wetness and her soft whimpers. “You don’t love me. If you did, you wouldn’t have done what you did. You wouldn’t have given my pussy away. This. Is. Mine.” He emphasized each word with deeper thrusts inside of her. He ripped his fingers away. She curled into the fetal position and cried softly. “I’m so sorry baby. I do love you. I do. I don’t know why I did what I did.” “You did it because you are a whore! A fucking slut!” He yelled at her in disgust. She looked at the man in front of her. So much pain lived in his eyes. At that moment she hated herself for what she did to him. She wanted to feel his anger deep inside of her. She wanted to embrace his betrayal, kiss his pain and swallow his hurt. She wished she could feed him understanding so that they could move forward but she knew she’d pushed them far into this place. He moved closer to her. He hated to see her cry. Even when he was so mad at her that he didn’t know what to do. He pulled her legs toward him. Her cries quieted down. He laid his face on her thigh and stroked the hairs on her pussy. The thought of another man touching her, making her moan and bringing her to orgasm stopped the soft touches he gave her. He only had pain to give her. He began fingering her clit ferociously. As she tried to pull back he dug his fingers deeper inside her. She moaned loudly. In one swift motion, he dove inside her. The sudden entry made her gasp. He held her hips down and gave in to her. He stared into her eyes and whispered into her ear, “ I love you so much. Why did you do that? Your a whore. A liar. I hate you.” His words made her wet. She matched his pain with her own. “You left me before I did. You acted like you didn’t care. I never wanted him. I only want you. Please don’t leave me baby. I love you.” She whispered back into his ear. She grabbed his waist and pulled him into her. He moaned. He grabbed her throat and kissed her. Their tongues danced in heated torture. She didn’t want to lose him because of her mistake. She would willingly embody his pain if it meant he would stay. She needed him. He turned her around and took her from behind. He grabbed a handful of her hair. He was emotionless. If he gave into his feelings he would go insane. She touched him and screamed his name. He fell. He couldn’t take it anymore. He was in love with her but she had devastated his world. He turned her around and entered her again. He let go and gave in to insanity. She looked at him and understood everything. She opened her legs wider and surrendered to him. She was his and he was hers. He loved her at that moment without softness. He hated her with passion, but she understood it all, understood the love he gave her in pain. The pain that she created. They both came and fell into each other, their breathing labored from their lovemaking. She was nervous about would happen next. He lay on top of her silently. She raked her nails softly up and down his back. When his breathing slowed, he raised his body away from hers. His beautiful agony watched him. He took her by the hand and led her to his bedroom. They got into his bed and laid down. He pulled her close to him. They both fell asleep to the lullaby of the rain.
Yesterday, I had no heroes like me. Today, hereos are born...