Michael Jackson Remembered

Today marks the second anniversary of Michael Jackson’s unexpected death at age 50. A memorial for MJ is being held this evening at his childhood home in Gary, Indiana with a candlelight vigil, and another at Forest Lawn Cemetery in California where he was entombed in September of 2009. Here is a mini-celebration of MJ’s through his music, dances and work with this tribute video:

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Hyped in the Morning

I have recently changed my sleep schedule, and for about 2 months now as an experiment, I’ve been going to sleep early and waking up early – but still getting exactly 7-9 hours of sleep and using the Sleep Cycle app to monitor it. I’ll be up at 7, shower, make/eat breakfast while updating HeavyHittas, go for a morning run from 7:30-8, or just a long walk to the “No Name Deli” to pick up a perfect $.75 large coffee. Sometimes I’ll bring my camera and shoot some photos, like the one above, or shoot video, like the new Spring in Brooklyn montage I put out. I’ve noticed that my mind is always consistent sticking with this routine. I feel completely different during the day as apposed to when I would stay up til 3 to 5 AM, or even pull all-nighters working on shit. I’m hyped on this new lifestyle and will continue it for as long as possible.

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Hyped on Spring

So hyped on Spring and the perfect weather we’ve had lately. The past few weeks I’ve been getting up at around 6-7 am to wonder around my neighborhood of Greenpoint and film the sunrise with a perfect 50 cent coffee to collect footage for a Spring 2011 sunrise montage. I’ve even made the soundtrack for it.

I’ve been biking into Manhattan to get to class and to film the kooks in the Union Square area in between classes. Skateboarding a lot more as well of course. Finals and shit have been occupying most of my time so it’s been hard to balance everything and finish putting together any montages, but I have been collecting footage and I when I have free time I’ve been slowly working on a bunch of bombs that will explode on Jonney E TV in the next few weeks.

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Hyped on PF Flyers

I’ve been hyped on PF Flyers ever since Benny slipped them on before he fuckin murked the beast in The Sandlot. So the entire month of February I was on a mission to find them as a birthday present to myself. I went to every shoe store in Manhattan, and if they even sold PF Flyers at all, they had corny color ways. I was tryna get the O.G. black/black Center Hi’s. So I took a risk (not knowing if they’d fit) and resorted to ordering them online. One week later (today) they perfectly arrived! Killed! Now all I need is a fuckin LA Dodgers jersey & fitted, roll up my Levi’s, grab a baseball signed by Babe Ruth and run everywhere I go in slow motion…

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Hyped on Christmas

Classic Christmas Morning Photograph

To some, the true meaning of Christmas is far removed from what it used to be; like the kooks who instantly tear an iPad out of its’ package without considering giving anything thoughtful in return – and how the holiday is a clear money-making scheme for retailers (Christmas music/selling decorations the day after Thanksgiving). But it’s nice to see family, friends and even strangers come together and celebrate the holiday traditionally. Today I witnessed a man hand a bum some cash who wasn’t even asking for it… He was hyped. I smiled as I walked into Starbucks, where the cashier handed me a huge box of coffee cakes and cookies for no reason. Christmas holds a lot of memories as well; like waking up to my first (Toys ‘R Us) skateboard under the tree. There are some enjoyable Christmas songs, and of course those classic Christmas films like It’s a Wonderful Life, Miracle on 34th Street, etc. I still leave cookies, milk and a note to Santa (written like an infant) by the fireplace every Christmas Eve…

This is why since 2006, we have been creating Christmas-themed montages featuring typically everyone in our crew called “A Killa Cam Christmas.” They are kind of like a way of showing my appreciation for the holiday, my friends and our many followers. Check out the last four: “Ballin on Xmas” 2006, “Christmas Rapping” 2007, then I started to get more serious with the popular “Silent Night” 2008, and “Santa Baby” 2009 Montages. Dannay Zay even showed his appreciation for the holiday, singing his heart out in “The 12 Zays of Christmas.” Despite the frozen New York City iceberg I live in, it is cool to check out the festivities at least once during this time. Last week I went to Rockefeller center, shot a bunch of scenic clips and time lapses to mix with recent winter skate footage – creating the all new (and first HD) “Killa Cam Christmas 2010” montage.

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Hyped on Michael Jackson

Michael Jackson is one of the greatest singers/songwriters/entertainers ever. I have been a fan for years. I still bump his music every day, I’ve used it in montages, and made a tribute for him after he died. I also knew a lot about the unheard library he left behind and his over-recorded songs for albums. In ’08 I bought his Thriller 25th Anniversary album, which had his most recent songs, but he was working on a new album before his death, and I am so hyped a release date has finally been announced; December 14th.

Over a year after he died, Epic Records and the Estate of Michael Jackson are releasing his highly-anticipated new album “Michael” composed of newly-completed songs. The cover artwork is an oil painting by Kadir Nelson, and it displays some of the key moments and important people in MJ’s life.

In anticipation of the project’s December 14 release, a teaser will appear tomorrow on MichaelJackson.com, while fans can hear the first single “Breaking News” on Monday, November 8. The never-before-heard song, recorded in New Jersey in 2007, will stream on the site for one week. So hyped!

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Hyped On Gil Scott-Heron

I am a huge fan of Jazz music, and one of my favorite artists of all time is Gil Scott-Heron, the godfather of rap. A poet, musician and author. He’s known primarily for his late 1970s and early 1980s work and his collaborations with musician Brian Jackson. He’s often associated with black militant activism and has received much critical acclaim for one of his most well-known compositions “The Revolution Will Not Be Televised” and for having Martin Luther Kings birthday made into a national holiday. If you haven’t noticed, I have used a lot of his music in my videos such as the Day in the Life of Anwar Tripp Part 1 and Part 2, Day in the Life of Joe Brown, and the Chronicles of Joe Brown. He has been around for so long, and his lyrics were mainly about social and political issues of the times that influenced a generation of hip-hop artists. He has released his first album in 16 years called “I’m New Here” and is touring to promote the album and his past works. I have missed out on his performance last November of ’09, but I will be attending his concert on Thursday, October 7th at BB King in New York City and it’s going to be so sick. I spend a lot of time walking around the streets of New York listening to his music and it’s going to be amazing to see him in person.

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Hyped On Skating With The Homies

I’m hyped that a lot of my closest friends are hyped on skateboarding again. Though I have recently made some drastic changes in my life growing up, I have always found time to skate, using my move to the city to my advantage by skating more and different things. After high school, I have realized some of my friends have either skated less, or quit altogether for reasons like injuries, work, college, partying…or all of those. I felt the only thing that kind of kept my friends skating together was Killa Two, the full-length video we have been working on since 2007. But this past and current year, my closest friends have been really hyped on skating. Cody Benesta, Andrew Kennelly, Jon Wagner, Sebastian Pedrick and I all live in the city. Dan Zambrano is only a path ride away in Hoboken, Dylan Hoffman will be here soon, and so many others have made day trips up to skate like Joe Brown Phil Clark, and Brian Tober to name a few. There have been a lot of recent times we all skated together like the old days, but better! I’m so hyped on this upcoming fall 2010-2011 year, a lot will go down and Killa Two will soon be finished!

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Hyped On Adidas Sambas

The Adidas Sambas are so sick. They are one of the original Adidas soccer shoes ever created, and I have been hyped on them ever since I got the Dennis Busenitz pro Adidas shoe, which are a mix of the Gazelles and the Sambas. I have also noticed a few friends had them, and I realized I needed them. I finally got them after selling a pair of corny ass Etnies I got for free at the Alien Workshop Mindfield premiere in NYC in 2008, and sold them on eBay recently for $45, only having to pay $10 extra for the Sambas. Killed! I’m so hyped I can now rock these fresh ass Sambys every day.

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Hyped On Night Footage

I have just purchased a Sony light at B&H, now enabling me to get perfect night footage/photos. Throughout my skateboard filming career, I never owned a camera light, I would just borrow them from friends for the night. The first time I have used one must have been in the Sayreville Flats & Park 2/12/06 montage, and the most recent times I’ve used one was in the the Silent Night montage, and in Phil Clark’s Nollieflips trick tip in Brooklyn. The same night I made this purchase, Cody Benesta and I filmed 2 lines under the BQE bridge at night in the rain. I have the most fun during night sesh’s, and as you may have seen in classics like the Slave montage, the Murder In My Dreams montage, or the Foodtown 10/24/08 Montage, I was filming without a light, which looks alright just using the natural street lights. Now that I own a light I don’t have to rely on street lights. About the kill like the midnight marauders. So hyped.

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