Facebook was set aflame last week when local DJ Kirsten Azan posted a question on the event page for a show at Kensington venue Double Double Land called Awesome Tapes From Africa Returns, named after the L.A.-based blog and record label that collects obscure music by African musicians and uploads it to the internet. "Are any of the DJs actually African?" Azan asked.
The answer was no, which prompted a passionate debate about cultural appropriation, colonialism and racism in hundreds of posts and quickly led to some major ugliness. By Thursday morning, the day before the event, organizer Daniel Vila cancelled it, saying he was "appalled by the racist, sexist and violent comments." In lieu, he plans to host a community talk in the coming weeks.
But that hasn't stopped the conversation - clearly one that's needed airing for a long time.
Chilly Gonzales, Grammy Winner
Canadians didn't make much of a showing at the Grammys on Sunday night, January 26, though Toronto-reared, Cologne-based musician Chilly Gonzales was named as one of the many collaborators on album of the year, Daft Punk's Random Access Memories. The busy pianist, solo artist and producer played piano on it - for just one minute, though it was culled from a six-hour session, and he was one of the only instrumental contributors the French duo named on the nomination.
Toronto Raptors shooting guard DeMar DeRozan sprained his left foot/ankle on Saturday, January 25, against the L.A. Clippers. It's a huge bummer for the Raps' captain and leading scorer, especially this close to what could be his first all-star game. On the bright side, he didn't travel to Brooklyn to play the Nets, which allowed him to stay in Toronto with his fiancée and baby daughter to take in the king of BK's ACC show on Monday night. Jay Z smiled big as he posed for snaps with baby Diar. Aww, Blue Ivy must be turning him into a softie.