Episode 58 – Bilphena Yahwon

I’ve been taking some time away from the podcast to work on myself and practice self-care. Now that I’m back, my focus is renewed and I’m working on a collaboration with a local organization to continue the podcast and make it more community oriented. On to the show!

Bilphena Yahwon is a writer and activist, the latter title being something that runs in her blood. A refugee of the Second Liberian Civil War, Bilphena’s grandfather defied a government that persecuted its own people. However, Liberian/Americo- Liberian relations also contributed to tensions in her home country. As Bilphena’s family fled, she settled in Ivory Coast, then they emigrated to the United States. Listen as we discuss Bilphena’s crash course on American identity politics, finding herself in womanist theory, and the work she does with Restorative Response Baltimore!

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Barbara Kanam – Jardin damour
Ikebe Shakedown – Penny the Snitch
Tchakare Kanyembe – Track 09

Episode 57 – Andrea Boston

Andrea is that one friend that’s always down to explore what life has to offer. Aside from starting her own pop-up happy hour event with fellow Baltimorean Nia Johnson, Andrea has contributed to the social and creative fabric of Baltimore City. Listen as Andrea talks about finding a creative outlet independent of her siblings, travelling from the Midwest to the East Coast, and still finding purpose even when your life’s vision takes a left turn.

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JBlanked – Never There (Instrumental)
JBlanked – smoooooth
JBlanked: Many Blessings (Instrumental)

Episode 56 – Dominic Nell

Though I missed the opportunity to participate in Red Bull Amaphiko when it came to Baltimore, I did get the opportunity to interview one of its 2017 fellow, Dominic Nell (aka Farmer Nell). Other fellows of the program include past guests C Harvey and Walker tha Urban Farmer. Farmer Nell has his feet planted in two worlds. The first is the world of photography and videography, which is his bread and butter. That hustle and a joke he made while on the job for a client allowed him to step into the world of urban agriculture and found City Weeds. Listen as Nell explains how he got started with City Weeds, how he uses his day job to push his passion project forward, and what he wants the urban youth to take away from his social programs. Follow Dominic on Instagram, @nellaware.

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Episode 55 – Darren Rogers

Darren’s path to I Am Mentality and following his personal legend was a long, windy road. Darren grew up crack infested 1980s Baltimore City, and even moving out to the county didn’t give Darren peace. Darren knew of his father growing up, and it wasn’t until later in life did he develop a solid relationship with him. Listen as Darren talks about his struggle with religion, starting I Am Mentality, and why he wants to give today’s children the tools for success he didn’t have growing up.

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Letmeknowyouanatole – Good Night
PC_III – Exit Exit
Ryan Little – Falling Down

Episode 54 – Erin Baynham

Youtube has taught me a lot about makeup. Baking, contouring, highlighting…it’s amazing to see what people can do with it. Social media has become an incubator for the multi-billion dollar industry, giving amateurs the chance to have their artwork on the same platforms as the pros. Amidst the beauty blenders and Urban Decay, my guest Erin Baynham thinks we may be going a tiny bit overboard. Erin’s the host of the Scandalous Beauty podcast, where she interviews world-renowned makeup artists and skincare professionals. Listen as we talk about makeup as a rite of passage for young girls, why Erin and a well-respected MuA think we’re in the dark ages of makeup, and social media advice from a professional. Did I mention Erin’s also MICA’s social media strategist? Find Erin on IG: @erinbaynham.

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Ryan Little – Silver Surfer
Nctrnm – Blonde, Golden
Nevermore Eleanor – Invitation
Mystery Mammal – Nothing Else Matters

Episode 53 – Megan Lewis

Megan’s got murals all around Baltimore, and to have her art as part of the city is an honor in itself. But Megan wasn’t always a muralist; there was a point in her life where she may not have picked up a paintbrush at all. A chance encounter with Dr. Joann Martin, co-founder of the Great Blacks in Wax Museum gave Megan the push she needed to get where she is today. Listen as we discuss the pitfalls of pride, not being recognized for her work, and watching other people run with her ideas. Follow Megan on IG: @urbanhipsta. You can look at more of Megan’s art here.

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Kick, Push – Ryan Little

Sweet Me – Loyalty Freak Music

Blonde – Nctrnm

Cosmic Kitten – letmeknowyouanatole

Episode 51 – Creative Mornings Panel

Happy New Year! If you follow me on IG you know I’ve been quiet because I’m working on a new project. Something very personal and unfortunately very common in the black community. Follow @absentsireshow and bookmark absentsirepodcast.tk to stay updated (email newsletter may be coming). Now that I’ve a second to breathe, here’s the audio from my first ever panel where I’m the moderator!

I sat down with Montier and Chavon of SVNCRWNS along with Nicolas and Chris of Noisy Tenants to discuss how both camps are using their creative juices to control the context of Baltimore’s neighborhoods and its people. A quick note, in the beginning I reference the movies Dope and Straight Outta Compton but never tied the two together. What I wanted to say (but didn’t because I was nervous) was how two movies can put one neighborhood/area in different contexts, and you get different stories. But you knew that already because Local Color listeners are smart. Enjoy! (P.S. follow Creative Mornings on IG, @baltimore_cm) Pics of the event below, courtesy of Laura Ferrara.