Bonjour Dollface

My Life

Euro-trip Journal Entries : Day 7 (EIFFEL TOWER & MY ROMANCE)

Hey Love’s!  So OBVIOUSLY I missed a coupla journal entry days. I’ve been hangin out with mom n dad looking for vacant taxi’s in NYC.  There’s no gas in NY if you haven’t heard and half the cities lights are still out. But, I’m cool. God’s good.

Anyway, back to my journal entries:

So if you can recall, the last entry, I had just arrived in Paris.  I’d fallen in love with a DJ and a coupla new friends. 

I spent day 7 with a group of beautiful people I’d met in Paris called “Kuduristas” from Angola.   They were in Paris filming dance off’s all throughout Paris.  Todays stop was “THE EIFFEL TOWER!”.  I went with my new bestie Lafayette (who I introduced you to in my Amsterdam entries).  We had to run to the phone shop first. She needed a new phone and guess who we saw at the phone store just buying a phone?!!! The guy who married Charlotte in Sex And The City!!!! Yes!! So I took a pic with him like SUCH A FAN. I’m so embarrassed. I kinda never do that… but what ever.

Anyway, skip ahead to the Eiffel Tower.  Its everything it’s s’pose to be… darling tourist walking around speaking every language.  And the crepes.  Not the best in Paris but EVER so yummy… Nutella flavor, always.

Now it’s time for the dancers to get it poppin.  Their crew set up the “stage” and cameras and the people began to gather around.  I’m not sure if its okay to say who I was hanging with… They’re kinda famous in their country so I’m leaving their name out BUT, we were sitting together watching as the dancers began to warm up.  

Now in NYC we have all types of dance. Break, Pop & Lock, Tap, Broadway style, Ballet, Modern, Afro Brazilian, Salsa… Just come hang with me for a day at any dance school in Manhattan (try googling “Broadway Dance Center”) and you’ll be exposed to most dances under the sun.  With all I’ve seen, I’m not easily moved.  Today when those dancers began to move their bodies they whined their hips, popped ALL their joints, broke, VOGUED (YASS HONEY!),Hypheed, and even impersonated ANIMALS, I cried.  Yep, camera in hand, I cried. They were triumphant.  I knew many of their stories.  Some of them had no real bed to sleep in. Some were hungry.  But they were so proud.  So beautiful.  One was a beautiful dark skinned young man with Chris Brown blonde hair.  I was so impressed with each of them.  One was a beautiful chocolate hued diva with gold sequined shorts and a black fitted with metal spikes all over it (Very Opening Ceremony … google it).

They had a little segment where they teach you what’s called “ The Family Dance”… of course I joined the stage to learn it… Kinda remniscent of the Electric Slide. Super fun.  I cried again… Maybe it was the sun. Maybe it was the Eiffel Tower. Maybe it was the fact that countries joined together to dance underneath one sky when some countries have war, some have famine, some have black, brown, yellow or white.  It was unity and laughter.  That always makes me emotional.  Art brings people together.  I pride myself in being some sort of a contributor to that fact. (By The Way, speaking of foreign relations, Vote For Obama tomorrow).

I fell in love with the Kuduristas.  As soon as I was done with the day, I wrote a song called “Kuduristas”.  We later videoed them dancing to the beat of the song I wrote. I’ll share it with you later…

We all went out to eat at a super fancy restaurant.  It was dope to see a bunch of blue hoodies and tims seated around a long table with real silver forks and knives, china and the most DELISCIOUS Turkish food I’ve had since my trip to Berlin a liitle while back with mom.  We had rose water ice cream for desert.  I cried again.  If anyone was interested in falling in love with me at that moment, they could have.  My kind of romance looks this way.  Brown skin, Hip Hops finest gear, Miguel playing in the background and some fancy candle lit ish. Wale and the Ritz.  Nas and a jet to Dubai. That beautiful contrast.  Dreads and crystal.  Denim and marble.  Diddy called it Ghetto Fabulous.  Paris calls it Favela Chic. I call it #RichHipster .

I have the words “Hopeful Romantic” tattooed at the top of my shoulder blades (I don’t talk much about my tats but I have a point).  There are two love birds underneath them.  Maybe my idea of romance doesn’t always involve a boy. Romance is the life I live.  Daring to imagine that everyday is purposed and full of meaning.  There’s a great story being told at the end of every road.  Everyone has beauty somewhere if you just look for it.  I’m a little naïve.  It’s true.  But I’m in love.  All day long. Constantly dreaming.  Constantly believing and always experiencing “Love Moments” like this. 

I say “XO” on Tumblr and Twitter all the time.  And I really mean it.  Why not?  We all get hurt.  Enjoy the good parts.  They happen.

Inspirations:

  • The Eiffel tower – I imagined for a moment being photographed in an aline dress like Audrey Hepburn
  • The Kuduristas
  • THE GUY FROM SEX AND THE CITY
  • Those crepes…
  • The #RichHipster experience at the long table at dinner time
  • Dancing with a hundred strangers.  Everyone’s sky is blue… We can dance under it, or fight under it.  No matter what we do beneath the sky, the day belongs to us and we choose how to live it. Unified, or at war.  Lets dance together.

XO

-Chris (That’s how I usually introduce myself.  Chris. Most people don’t know my name.  So, hey, my name’s Chris. It’s good to meet you.)

euro-trip Journal Entries : Day 6 (PARIS BAYBEE!)

OMG I’m going to Paris!!! On A Train! JUST LIKE THE DIDDY ALBUM!!!! (OK well maybe I’m not that cool, but KINDA!!!)

Beware – this journal entry is a lil long…

It was a sad morning’s farewell saying goodbye to my homie Amaru in London.  He and his darling father picked me up from Londons sexy “W” hotel and drove me to the nostalgic train “station”.  I had a coach seat, but a darling girl who worked there escorted me to the “VIP” area and got me snacks n a comfy couch to chill in… She told me she loved  my music.  I’m ALWAYS grateful for moments like these.  It reminds me that I’m a hard worker and it isn’t un-noticed, even far away.

Antyways… So I’m on the train sitting next to this SUPER HOT GUY who speaks German. GOOD GRIEF was he gorgeous.  I made up in my head that he was a supermodel on his way to Paris for fashion week (It was fashion week in Paris at the time.).  I videoed a ton of footage from the window… It was so cool.  I ADORE graffiti from different countries.  It’s like cool underground art.  Graffiti artists are like these indie artists who gain notoriety solely from the beauty they spray on concrete.  Never going un-noticed, but never paid for the art they create.  (Well actually…. Uhmm… Nevermind.)

Skip ahead to Paris.  HOLY EFFING MOLY!!!!! (Mind you I’m totally, literally ALONE… I know NO ONE. And I can only say Bonjour and Au Revoir… but I’m an adventurist and fearless.)

First stop taxi stand. Two HUGE suitcases… Taxi line.  I smile a lot.  My philosophy is “smile often, be a lone a little less”, it works.  I’m world travelled and it’s never steered me wrong.  (That and always charge your iPhone… it works EVERYWHERE dawg!)  So, I try telling the taxi cab driver where to take me and finally resort to just showing him the friggin address.  He can read. “Leggar!” He says (I thought he was saying “Leggo” like Chris Brown… nope. Leggar… I think its like the same thing just in French… It’s my new favorite word.  That and “Se bonne” – I think that’s how ya spell it? Like if I say “You comin?” then you say “Se Bonne”… like “Its cool” or “Yeah man”.)

We take off. I’m already in tears. I LOVE this place.  I already know, I DON’T WANT TO LEAVE EVER!  My heart stopped at every tall building… at every statue… at every glorious Burberry trench coat wearing, chic man… the amount of style was sickening and no one seemed to notice my mouth dropping at their sight.  I think the French know they’re sexy and fly and they’re just cool with it.

I get to my telly, and remember how I told you in my other entry that I met my new bestie “Lafayette” in Amsterdam and that she’d be in Paris when I was?  Well she was at the hotel and left a little note for me at the front desk!  She told me to come to the bar and meet her there.  I went.  She was there with a crew of brown skin folk all in hoodies and J’s, Iphones in hand and low fades, a coupla long weaves, a coupla Timberlands.  I’ve seen this before! It was looking like a Two chainz music video in the very sexy “W” Hotel lobby.  I was feeling right at home. One problem… Ummm… they were all speaking French. Actually, that wasn’t a problem at all.  It sounded beautiful. 

Anyways… my French Hip Hop video came to life when everyone began to greet me like we’d been peeps since forever.  They were all from an African country called Angola.  They told me that I was family.  They said to run up-stairs and freshen up and when I came back down in my lil leather jacket, rag and bone for  Intermix jeans, Ruby Woo and Loub’s they had cars waiting outside for me and my new family.  We were headed to dinner.  My fearless self… I prayed and asked God to walk with me. I was in the company of strangers, possibly angels, but strangers non-the-less. 

We went to Favela Chic.  A sexy tiny spot in an area reminiscent of  New Yorks Meat packing district.  The spot reminded me of a place in NY called La Esquina… the downstairs part where its dark lit with a ton of candles and tall sexy people. Yeah, I was the only fat vegan in the room.  I fell in love with my new friends.  I fell in love with the waiter (who laughed at my French) and I fell in love with the DJ.  (I tend to do that often.)  I fell so in love with the DJ that I walked up to him and introduced myself.  I told him I was a singer from the states… I told him about some music I did and pulled my Jay Z card (I do that when I’m in places like Tokyo and I need a foot in… thank you Mr. Carter, you’re a LIFESAVAH!!! No really.  – PS, I’ll be at the NETS game on SATURDAY! CAN’T WAIT! Courtside seats!).  Anyways, back to the DJ booth.  He was spinning all TYPES of sexy mayhem, from Big Sean to Billie Holiday and it flowed SICKYLY.  My new Angolan friends were teaching me how to dance like a Kudurista…  More on that later!

A lil inside info:  This night inspired 2 songs on the up-coming Audrey Project. One song called “Favela Chic” featuring Kenneth Whalum and another called “Kuduristas” featuring one of my new Angolan friends as well as my bro Lem Payne.

I got the DJ’s info… I asked him if he’d mix my mixtape. He vowed yes and promised a coffee somewhere in Paris the next day… I was in heaven… or that place in-between. But I certainly wasn’t on earth.  Oh wait, I was in Paris!  I could feel my project coming together.  Yes it was inspired by Audrey Hepburn, but it was taking a life of its own.  It was a life of love, fashion, Hip Hop, dance and a sexy fusion sound of Jazz, Hip Hip and R&B all thanks to my new Angolan family, my new DJ friend and Paris.  I’m not afraid to call people friends.  I may seem naïve, but one thing I know is if you approach life with love, it’ll approach you the same way.  Smile often, meet people often. Love and keep. Love and lose.  But at the very least love. (just made that up… I like it)

It’s late.

I’m train lagged.  (a paupers rendition of jet-lagged).

Leggar!!! Off to the telly.  Off to bed. Off to the SICK VIEW outside of my bedroom window… a monument that took up the entire sky line.  I ADORE Paris.  I’ve never felt this way before.  I’d cry, but I’m way too sleepy. 

XO

-Chris

Inspirations:

  • Man… I can’t even count ‘em.
  • Life’s good. God’s kind.
  • The tattoo’s on my waiters arm
  • The black leather skirt Lafayette was wearing
  • Hoodies and Tims in the W lounge
  • Hip Hop, Jazz and R&B lit by candles, played by a French speaking DJ
  • Those Mojito’s… they were amazing
  • The name of the spot “Favela Chic” it means Ghetto Fabulous… sounds sexier in French right?  

Euro-trip Journal Entries : Day 5 (LAST DAY IN LONDON)

Euro-trip day 5 : London’s Splendor

It was a nice day in London. I purposed in my heart to try “blood sausage” even though I’ve a fat vegan.  It wan’t good but I had the perfect breakfast and caught up with my twitter followers DM’s.  One darling fan let me know that she would come to the part of London I was in to have lunch with me.  Now, she was a high schooler so I knew I had to make sure her mom knew and also that she didn’t miss any class.  She’s a bright gem and I wanted to be responsible.

Any who, I went to photograph all the cool theatres where Audrey Hepburn performed.  Then later Amaru and I took the “Tube” to ummm… (ok, Is it called Spittal Fields?). Well were ever it was, it had super cool outdoor shopping and local boutiques.  I always rather find cool local digs than big name pieces you can find in any big city.  The coolest thing in the world is to find “exclusive” pieces all your very own. I’m a shade collector and an accessory maven so I purchased a little more then a few of those items.  I also found a Little Black Dress that went perfectly with my Audrey fashion theme. 


 (Audrey was here!)

(Here’s what train station (Tube/subway/whatever) signs look like in LONDON!)

Lots of photographing and videoing later, I made it back to Leichester square were my friend/fan Elisha and I had lunch.  She was so beautiful, waiting for me in the sitting area.  Super model height with long limbs and the biggest smile, long dark beautiful hair.  I could’ve cried.  I’m always overwhelmed when I meet fans I’ve only talked to on the phone or twitter. Truth is, I’m as excited to meet them as they are to meet me.  I fall in love with you guys.  You’re the reason I sing.  Know that.

 (Headed over to lunch with Elisha. I USUALLY have on black skinny jeans and converse. It’s kind of my uniform. She couldn’t believe I was in Converse. Do I really come  off as such a sophisticated person?  Oh dear…)

She’d come with her “granny” who looked young enough to be her mum.  We had a fun little eclectic lunch and took a bunch of pics.  I had to leave right after because I was meeting up with a famous UK rapper in just an hour.  London was turning out to be an incredible meeting of minds.

So, I get to this little studio where Amaru and Jerry took me. I hang out with some producers that Jerry introduces me to.  One of them played me a track and I fell in love.  His name was Wizzy Wow.  Google him should you have the chance.  I was so impressed by his music.  We all converse about the state of Hip Hop music and culture in general. Indie media and self promo (conversations I tend to be in quite often these days). 

Skip to the next moment… In walks the incredibly cool UK super star “Wretch 32”.  If you don’t know, now you know.  His aura was great. Smile. Positive energy and just as HAUTE in person as he is in all his video’s and magazines (I pray he doesn’t read this). 

Anyway, so we start chatting about the “mixtape” ideas and I gave him a list of Audrey movie titles.  He stopped me at “How To Steal a Million”. 

We pull out our iphones and start writing over the looped Wizzy Wow beat. Somebody orders curry chicken and some other stuff… I get behind the mic… Wretch gets behind the mic… Everybody’s having a good time.  Song’s done. Nights over.

We were supposed to go out and party after, but I wanted to stay and hang with the engineer.  I LOVE engineers, and this one was special.

Cut to way after midnight.  Everyone’s tired.  I still wanna party but instead I go home (to my telly) check out the lobby party (THERE’S ALWAYS A PARTY AT THE W HOTEL, DJ’s stilettos, hot boys and all) and hit the sack shortly after.

That’s day 5 in London.  Nothin’ too crazy.  Kinda chill.  Tomorrow? PARIS!

Inspirations:

  • My darling fan Elisha who I adore
  • Wizzy Wow’s crazy tracks
  • The crazy amount of findings at the outdoor shops
  • The super cool theatres I photographed
  • Wretch 32’s art.  He’s so cool.

XO

Chris

(PS… sorry for all the typo’s ITS A HURRICANE IN NYC AND I’M A WRECK!!!… Actually I’m at moms house cooking dinner…)

Euro-trip Journal Entries : Day 4 (OFF TO LONDON)

It’s a sad day in Amsterdam… I’m leaving. No more pancakes. No more Rudi.  No more dams. And no more Koffie.  Audrey’s ballet school wasn’t found, neither was one of her many homes. BUT!!! I did tons of shopping (had to get an extra bag!). I saw Lady Gaga in concert! And, I made a bunch of new pals. Double AND… I’m going to LONDON!

I had a really cool hotel booked for a few days in super cool London.  I was meeting up with a pal named Amaru. He’s a publicist friend of the family who would be making sure my stay in London was fun, full of shopping, and that I met as many cool people as possible. Oh and also, he’d be sure to get me to all the theatres in London that Audrey Hepburn performed in.

First stop? Red Bull Studio’s! Amaru set up maybe a dozen interviews with Londons finest bloggers and cool magazine editors.  I’ll share the links to the interviews with you on my twitter feed. While in the studio I met the kindest Chick Photographer.  She was super cool and we did an awesome lil photo shoot… Those pics are coming soon…

Around 8 or 9 we checked me into my cool telly which actually was RIGHT ACROSS THE STREET from where Audrey was a chorus girl at the famous Hippodrome. I was in Leichester Square. (Similar my my city’s Time Square… except for the fact that it was LONDON!)

I had one more interview with London’s hip hop royalty DJ Woody.  He had an overwhelming love for Hip Hop and R&B and was around for the days when Def Jam’s street team was the nostalgic peddler of rap posters, demo’s and t-shirts.  Back when vinyl was gold and Timberlands were part of the club uniform. Now of course these things still exist. Shout out to Def Jam’s street teams that meet me with love (and often pizza or chicken wings) all around the country and even the world. I adore you. But the 90’s glamour of street teams and hip hop entourages isn’t what it used to be. I miss it. Streets.  New talent from the underground.  Cold chilly nights at Hip Hop open mics.  Am I getting old?

Anywho… Woody walked with me and my new crew back to the hotel and talked to me about hip hops good old days. I was incredibly inspired. I’ve always wanted to contribute to Hip Hop comradery and I’ve made a few musical contributions with its finest poets (Nas, Jay Z, Ghostface, Wale, Ross, Black Thought, Talib are some, and a few more are on the way… You wont believe who’s next! – actually I can’t either.). 

Back at the telly, I changed out of my stilettos and into some gold cigar shoes.  I headed to a little cheap Italian spot and had THE BOMB dinner n wine.  It was ‘round midnight, so I soloed my way home (Hotels are my home, I live like a new-age nomad often.). I stayed up for a couple of hours and researched where Audrey performed. I made a nerdy little map of where I needed to visit and photograph the next day. I watched Breakfast at Tiffany’s and then one of my FAVORITES “A Nun’s Story”, two of Audreys movies you should totally take a look at to see two TOTALLY different sides of her contributions to fashion and then society.

Why did I feel jet lagged?  So confused.  The flight wasn’t even three hours.

Sleep.

Inspirations:

  • A CHICK Photographer!                                                                                           
  • The love that was shown for my music by the interviewers.  It’s an honor to be appreciated in a land you don’t actually live in.
  • Woody.  I LOVE Hip Hop and I STAN for true Hip Hop heads.  They are some of my favorite people.
  • Breakfast at Tiffany’s – Netflix it
  • A Nun’s Story – Netflix it
  • The grandeur of the Hippodrome
XO
- Chris

PS… I didn’t have time to upload pics today. NYC is about to receive a HUGE storm and I gotta go get water, flashlights, fruit n cash for tonights big sleepover!!!  PICS tomorrow. Promise!

Euro-trip Journal Entries : Day 3 (AMSTERDAM)

Last day in Amsterdam. Last day to find something about Audrey’s life while there! Something about where she danced! Something to bring back to tell my fans!

I searched and Googled and read and asked strangers about where Audrey Hepburn might have studied ballet as a young girl while living in Amsterdam.  My research lead me to the “Hortus Theatre”. The hard part about looking for info in Amsterdam is that a lot of the info I googled was in DUTCH!!! I’m no google pro, so I didn’t know how to hit the TRANSLATE button! (Is there one?  There should be.)

I found out how to take the “tram” thingy and get a “Metro-card” (that’s what we call it in NY).  I took the tram to where this theatre was (or so I thought) and guess what?! It was a freaking GARDEN (or something). I TOTALLY SUCK AT TAKING RESEARCH TRIPS!!! Should’ve hired a tour guide.

The Tram “stop”….

…which led me to the garden.  (It was a beautiful garden, by the way, just not what I was looking for.)

I resorted to shopping. Always an appropriate option. 

Then I had little dutch pancakes. (One must have pancakes and waffles and/or crepes in Amsterdam. MUST!)

I head back to my telly and Rudi, (my friend I told you about yesterday) puts together a SURPRISE show for my fans in this little darling spot called “House Of Rising”.  She pulled together a tiny house band and before we even got there, it was packed.  I tweeted it maybe once or twice. The amount of love Amsterdam shows me on the fly is overwhelming.

Anyways.  I get in the room and lounge for a bit with a few new friends.  Watch all the beautiful people dance to the music. (I LOVE WHEN PEOPLE DANCE! ITS ONE OF MY FAVORITE THINGS.)

 The veiw from “upstairs” in the “House of Rising”.  See that big beautiful fro?  And that girl looking up at me was singing the most lovely tunes.  Jadore.  If I was rich, I’d totally sign her.

Singing time came around and I had a blast on the little bitty stage. The audience sang along. I even got to freestyle a record about some of the audience members along with a few local superstars.  It was so fun. I didn’t wanna leave the stage.  Black, White, Indian, Asian, so many colors and shapes and sizes. 

Wanna know what was so cool? All the beautiful, proud, natural hair divas in the room. I took  a ton of pics with them.  Some girls dyed their kinks blonde, some girls had streaks. Some had fro’s. Some had box cuts.  There was so much hair inspiration that I vowed to one of the beauties that as soon as I got home I was totally stealing her do! (I sorta stole it, and mixed it up a bit with what I saw later in London and then in Chicago.)

The craziest thing about this trip is, the more I looked for Audrey, the more I found myself. I found my face, my hair, my music, my culture, my hip hop, my fashion and my spirit.  I was overwhelmed with the connection I felt to complete strangers in completely new territory.  (Well, I’ve been there before, but you know what I mean.)

Anyway. After the show (to make a long nights story short)  I met my new bestie.  Lafayette and her friend Coreon, 2 of the greatest fashion stars I’ve ever met. They were at my show.  They are from a part of Africa called Angola.  It was love at first sight.  Coincidence had it that they would be traveling through Paris the same time as me and we’d be at the very same hotel! More about these two loves later. I will say however, they inspired MOST of the music I’ll be sharing with you on the Audrey project.

 My new Bestie Lafayette and I both had on leather jackets and MAC lipstick!  Instant BONDING!!! (You’ll hear me sing about it in a song I’ll share with you later called “Favela Chic” where Kenneth Whalum plays the sax!)

Isn’t she such a fashion-diva?  Oh the laughs we shared later!  She’s like the Parisian version of June Ambrose. (She lived in Paris for years, Portugal, hosted MTV. I’ll tell you more later.)

The night was getting old, so I tried to leave. I ended up falling in love with so many people on the way out that I took pictures with nearly everyone there and shared a kiss with an Aussie (a beautiful red headed Aussie)… RELAX it was just my cheek…

Skip to moonlit cobble stone, a Mercedez Benz taxi ride home. (Oh did you know the taxi’s in Europe are Benz’s? Yup!)  Perfect day. Perfect night. Audrey ma’am? Where dost thou hide?

Inspirations:

  • All the beautiful natural hair styles
  • The beautiful French accent of my new best friend Lafayette
  • All the love in the House of Rising that made me wanna stay in Amsterdam for ever
  • Singing duets with totally beautiful strangers - The fact that you can meet someone from a far away land and have the same love always overwhelms me.
  • The sexy Mercedes under the starlight softly bumping down the cobble stone
XO
-Chris

Euro-trip Journal Entries : Day 2 (AMSTERDAM)

Day 2 :

So, here I am in Amsterdam, and I’m supposed to be looking for where Audrey Hepburn studied ballet as a young girl in Amsterdam. It’s now day 2 and… I slept in. Woke up SUPER late like 10! (I’m an early bird. I’m usually up by 7, 8-ish… That’s early for an artist.)

What actually woke me up was my phone. It kept going “bing”! Again and again “bing, bing, bing”. Finally I rolled over and took a look at it… My email was exploding. Apparently someone had me on their heart. I opened up my email and out of no where there were all these tracks!

Now mind you, I NEVER listen to music sent via email. EVERYBODY who knows me knows I’d rather fly across the country to hear music face to face. And besides, the worst feeling in the world is to be in a great space and then hear music that ruins it and I was HIGH from all the wonderfulness of yesterday.

I was feeling open. Gaga and Spanky had me open, so I pulled out the Bose Dre Beats, plugged in the red cord and pressed play. HOLY FRIKKING MOLY!  The joints were bananas! “J J J J Jayyyyyyy Roooob on daaah traaaack….” Started every striking track and HONEY, they were (in my humble opinion) FIRE!

I started recording melodies in my iPhone.  I emailed the lover who sent me these gifts.  I told him I was working on a presentation for my beloved fans who so kindly await my next offering. I asked him to gift my fans with this art work and he so humbly granted my wish.

Koffie and toast with strawberry jam for breakfast.  They didn’t have soy milk…Actually, I’m not sure if they did… I was scared to ask.  Sometimes I feel a little awkward when I’m the only black person in a room… so umm… I kinda just “took a seat”, Tamar style.  PS… in Amsterdam, people kinda just sit at your table and eat with you and they may even start a conversation. I take the subway in NYC daily, so I’m used to close proximity, but conversations with strangers? Very not New York-ish.  But it was cool.

 Nearby where I had my Koffie and toast… A beautiful scene on another cobble stone street. I advocate bike riding! It saves the world!

Shopping trip!!!  My intention was to find Audrey inspired pieces.  Perhaps, black skinny jeans. Maybe a black fitted tee… a little black dress… you know…

I found a super cool vintage Army jacket that a local studded out with big gold thingies…

 

Can you see the gold studs? (PS, my hair was braided of course. The black girls go to vacation hairstyle) Those jeans are from Diesel’s gifts! And life isn’t complete with out a vintage Cazal. Ummm? Me and Elle Varner should do a shoot together. Just a thought. 

I found the coolest gray flowered skinny (thicky) jeans by these Amsterdam girls called “Good Morning Universe” (my version of Audreys black skinnies). Snagged an adorable sweater with bright orange stars by “numph” (with the two little dots over the “u” (how do you do that on my Mac?)… “Floris van Bommel”, a darling colorful German brand, gave me LIFE with these super cool army fatigue kicks with gold chains…

Rudi took me to Deisel Amsterdam who hosted a shopping spree and gifted me with 4 bags of incredible denim and dresses! Black skinnies in tow!

Later, Rudi and I met up again for a film premiere where RUDI!!!! Asked the bartender for wine and the bartender gave us AN ENTIRE BOTTLE (inside joke).  So, of course we stayed late and told each other our life stories.  When you have international friends you don’t always get to chat on the phone, (can you say expensive?) so you have to steal every moment as if it’s your last.  Great conversation inspires my art.

We continued the night by heading out for some falafel. One of my Fat Vegan faves!  We then headed to a cool club where new rappers were performing. I took this time to bond with locals and have more Koffie with new friends.  Such a fun night.  Great energy.  I love the underground hip hop scene in Amsterdam.  It’s honest and raw.  I was reminded of the nights I’d spend at open mic nights before I was signed to Def Jam.  I’d begin my set always, by spitting a 16 and I’d always perform at least one song with a rap verse. I HATE that my truest fans don’t understand how much I love Hip Hop. It resides in my soul. I don’t do it for radio spins. I do it for love.

Standing outside the club feeling “ALIVE and LIBERATED Mon”.  We were so loud in the streets that night.  We laughed till we cried.

Super fun day. Totally didn’t get enough Audrey work done, still didn’t find the place she studied ballet. That’s actually the REASON I’m in Amsterdam!

Inspirations:

  • The colors in the film – lots of bright yellows and orangey reds
  • The kitchy “pop-up-shop” vibe of all the shopping boutiques
  • Talking life with a pal
  • Hip Hop - as usual
  • NEW MUSIC to write to!  So many melodies in my head!

I love you

From my Art to Yours, 

-Chris

Audrey Hepburn : An Audiovisual Presentation - Eurotrip Journal entry Day 1

Euro-Trip

Wassup ya’ll! I been gone for a MINUTE! I’ve been working on a fun little art project I wanted to give you. It’s called “Audrey Hepburn : An Audiovisual Presentation”. I start releasing it on November 3rd but I wanna share my journal with you so you can see exactly what went down and what I really experienced while I was away.

I took a trip to Amsterdam, Brussels, London and Paris to retrace the footsteps of one of my fave’s, the late and great Audrey Hepburn. It was my intention to find out more about the incredible icon. The crazy part is, I found way more about myself, my culture and my art & music.

I carried my Cannon 60D and a coupla other little cam’s. I am a TOTAL amateur, but, with a little IMovie, IPhoto, my Cannons and love, I’m sure you’ll at least get the idea when I share the visuals.

Day 1:

Day one I flew from NYC to Amsterdam. I had a friend, Spanky, who was playing the drums for Lady Gaga that night, so I figured that would be the best city to begin my trip in. 

I arrived and my doll faced little friend, Rudi, greeted me at the airport to make sure I was safe. Thank God for Rudi. I’m so grateful to have friends in different country codes.  I checked into my hotel.

(Outside my telly window. So sweet, cozy and warm.)

It was cute and quaint on a little darling side street where dams had little boats parked. I’d see the boats pass beneath little bridges and I’d, like a corny tourist, wave to them from under my umbrella (eh, eh, eh).  It rains and then brightens up several times a day in Amsterdam.  I always carry an umbrella just incase of a beautiful sun shower.

After settling in I called my homie “Spanky”, which, by the way, if you haven’t heard him play, YouTube him.  He told me and my boy Jerry (God bless Jerry) where to get our show tix for the Gaga show. 

Skip ahead to Gaga… OMG!!!! FRIGGING LOVED IT!!! Crazy thing is, the man next to me had white hair, the man in front of me had dyed blonde hair and the girl behind me was like 11… EVERYBODY WAS IN THERE!! Like 10,000 loving humans of all colors, shapes and sizes. The show was BANANA’S! I’d be writing till tomorrow if I went into detail.  What I’ll say now is, I was blessed to be inspired to express myself freely and vulnerably. I’m so glad the 1st night of my trip included that experience. It built my courage to share with you, my innermost art.  Xo Gaga. 

Headed over to the tour bus later… A police lead me across the street to the “back area” where the double decker tour buses where and the bus took us back to the telly where we um… had Koffie?   The whole crew (INCLUDING HER AMAZING DANCERS!!!) went to a little late night spot for falafel (my “fat vegan” FAVORITE!) and had a lil more “Koffie” and called it a night around 2.  

Pretty fun day. 6 hour flight, 6 hour time difference, high heels on cobble stone = SLEEPY GIRL!

Inspirations:

  • Gaga
  • Spanky’s cool hair and kicks
  • The Boats in the dams
  • THOSE DANCERS!
  • The browns, navy’s and reds, dark greens and clear rain water along with the sunshine that made the cobble stone streets glisten

(Standing on a little bridge.  The night sky… Oh Amsterdam how I love thee…)

  • Koffie

XO

From my Art to Yours

-Chris

#3LL yeah… Awlright… Uhh…

Sitting cross legged in the gym after a long work-out with my Beats on in front of a big sunny window. I’m Meditating to Drake’s “Take Care”.

I love when rappers sing.
Truth is they are these poets, just like Maya, or Langston… Unlike many “singers” they actually write their own lyrics and so, when RAPPERS sing, it hits me in a different space. I relate to it in a more eclectic way.

Having hung with so many rappers, I’ve found them to be some of the most cultured people. They’re really just super cool poets. They often have big art collections, (or eclectic sneaker collections) they eat at the best restaurants and have a most incredible understanding of fashion, the most beautiful cars and architecture.

So shout out to all the rappers I’ve been inspired by. I love chilling in my Jordans in an eclectic whip, blasting the latest Mix-Tapes with u. You all know who u are. IJS

XOXO

-Chris

Quick matinee before todays studio session. THE VOW. I’ll tell u how I liked it later :)

Quick matinee before todays studio session. THE VOW. I’ll tell u how I liked it later :)

Sometimes I get nauseous when I think about how much money I spend on me and my 12 people staffs hotel rooms and flights. Having a band is EXPENSIVE!

Sometimes I get nauseous when I think about how much money I spend on me and my 12 people staffs hotel rooms and flights. Having a band is EXPENSIVE!