So, after a small hiatus (it seems), Umojah Nation hit the stage this past weekend at Jilly’s in Akron and we had an amazing time. I have so much fun with my band mates, we are such a family, and in many ways this has helped sustain my inner being. I have had periods of severe creative droughts, usually due to drastic changes in my environment, like when I moved to Cleveland from the mid-south.
Admittedly so, I was lost for a while and wasn’t creating much of anything. This went on for a while until I began working at the Solon Branch of Cuyahoga Public Library. There I worked side by side with my supervisor who played guitar and allowed me to bring in small hand drums to play for children at various programs. From there, I was introduced to a couple of playwrights and got involved in a stage play called These People out in Chagrin Falls, OH. After that, I began to get that hunger back. And now, the creativity flows daily and I am so excited to be alive and in these moments, surrounded by wonderful people who nurture me in the arts and also allow me to be myself.
With Umojah Nation, I feel the reggae music from a deep spiritual place. The heartbeat that drives the music automatically puts me in a place of connection with the ancestors, with the struggle and hope of the Diaspora, as well as that of humanity. I am blessed, and I am thankful.