saturday jan 9 | sala

Happy New Year, All! Let’s all put good energy and intention into manifesting a really good 2021, despite all the madness and bad juju that the world is hungover with after the worst year in modern history.

To that end, I went out today and bought a new 2021 planner. It’s now sitting atop my desk, clean and shiny with all the optimism I can currently muster, ready for the Universe to fill it up with good things that allow good people to gather around, just like all my pre-2020 planners did.

So far so good. It felt great to enter my first public (though still virtual) event in the Saturday, January 9th block. It’s the first SALA of the year and it’s going to be a great one, coming right on the heels of our most well-attended event last month. I even got to experience the thrill of watching legendary labor and civil rights activist, Dolores Huerta, dance to my deejay set. She tore up and closed out the dance floor–as many have said she does every time!

The Beloved Party Crew (BPC) and I are overjoyed that she has agreed to return as the keynote speaker for this weekend’s event, set to make opening remarks on the timely theme of ‘new beginnings’, as well as her thoughts on the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. in advance of the national holiday in his honor.

I’m also thrilled that my pal, Latin reggae artist Tone Irie, accepted my invitation to come and sing some songs for us between the poetry and dance party portions of the night. AND…if that weren’t enough, my amiga, Pilar Castillo, has been booked as the featured visual artist. I can’t wait for everyone to see her recent reinterpretation of the U.S. Passport book.

Be sure to grab the Zoom link from the SALA Facebook event page spread the word and be ready to keep up with Señora Huerta on your living room dance floor!

Saturday January 9, 2021
9pm – 12am PST
Online via ZOOM

saturday oct 10 | sala

As we all learn to adjust, pivot or bust through the rubble of the arts and culture industry left by the coronavirus, I jumped at the invitation to be part of this new series virtual gatherings, which also entails reuniting with my old deejay partner, Reyes Rodriguez. We’re teaming up on the decks once again, though from our own rigs at home, to revive SALA.

SALA, a Spanish term signifying ‘home’ or a communal space, hopes to tap back into the energy of cultural gatherings, of communing with friends, family and neighbors in person, as we currently struggle for connection from afar during this pandemic. As throughout time, we look to stories, poetry, art, and music to bind us to one another.

Back in 2008, Reyes came up with the event series SALA Lounge, where he invited guest deejays, including me, to spin records with him in the beautiful back courtyard of his art gallery, Trópico de Nopal in Los Angeles’ Echo Park neighborhood. The events were marked by the easy, home-like atmosphere at Trópico, and the good vibes of the music and guests in attendance.

Here, in 2020, the format for SALA’s new incarnation will be based on a Zoom birthday event that both Reyes and I deejayed for a few months ago. Beyond the dance party for which we were tasked with sparking, it included a schedule of short readings by both new and established poets, storytellers, and performance artists. The event was so well received that the birthday girl, a mutual friend of ours, has spearheaded a reprisal. So, SALA is back. Here’s Saturday night’s lineup:

• 9:00pm – Muralist Jamuna Priti; Writers Aida Salazar, Peter Harris, Briza Covarrubias & performances by The Digital Sandbox Playuz and Martha Gonzalez (Quetzal)
• 10:00pm – Resident DJs Glenn Red and Reyes Rodriguez • 11:30pm – After party

Please visit our Facebook event page to get the Zoom link. We’d love to see you there!