Just As I Am: E. Lynn Harris

" 'You know I love you . . . that I believe in you. You know what's in my heart. I'm sorry I was hiding. I was hurting. I'm not going to do that anymore. I'm not going to let the people who claim they represent you take away my faith. I won't let them do that. They can't have my faith. But can't there be joy in faith, joy in love. I know you love me. I know that one day I'll have love right here,' Sean said as he punched his fist toward his heart. 'I love you, Lord, and I know you love me. If I have to be alone here on earth, then please don't let me be lonely. Show me the way and I will follow. I won't hide anymore. And when it hurts, I'll know that you're there, ready to soothe me, when soothing is what I need. Thank you, Lord and tell everybody, hey. All my friends. Tell Zach hi and for him to give Zurich a clue. Okay . . . I love you. I believe in you and I will talk to you again real soon. Peace out, God!'"

"Tears began to roll down Sean's face, and the cool wind dried them. Talking to God made Sean feel strong, sure of himself. He took a deep breath of the cool air, and suddenly, he knew who he was and what he wanted. He felt cleansed by his talk and wind seemed to vitalize him with a surge of hope. He had the feeling of satisfaction that came from making a positive step in life, a big step. Sean blew a kiss toward the sky and moon and went back to his apartment and slept."

Source: "And This Too Shall Pass" (pg. 335-336)

When I had heard of E. Lynn Harris' death, I didn't even know what to think. I was doing my usually "boredashell" web surfing and I caught a glimpse of a news headline that said E. Lynn Harris had died. When I found the website, I thought, "What in the world is going on". It seems like all the good ones are being taken away from us and too soon at that. Then I thought back to my favorite E. Lynn Harris' book "And This Too Shall Pass". I remember reading this book when I was living in Houston, Texas a couple of years ago. I was working as an intern then for an HBCU. Anyways I was in the medical Library and as I was reading the passage above. I couldn't help but shed some tears. Books made me laugh, made me angry but I have never read a book that made me cry nor made me feel that my sexuality wasn't something ugly but a treasure to be cherished. Like I said in a comment on a fellow blogger's blog. "For me he (E. Lynn Harris) bridged the gap between me, being gay and my relationship with the Lord". I'm going to miss you E. Lynn Harris. And I thank you for breathing life into a sexuality that seem to be looked upon as something dirty and transforming it into something beautiful.

Jaspects: "Making Music Mean Something to the World at-Large"

These days it seems that the music that is out today seems to be losing its meaning. Mainstream music has become nothing but hot beats and catchy phrases to go a long with it. My friend and I were talking about this and he gave me a link to Al Sharpton talking about how music should be up-lifting and that....well I let you view the link lol. But I digress...

Without further ado, I would like to present...

Jaspects...A group that has something to say to an up-lifting beat.

I first heard of Jaspects while I was in college and felled in love with them when I first heard "My First Love feat. Janelle Monae" (I'm sure most of you have heard of her) Unlike Ms. Janelle Monae very few people have ever heard of the group Jaspects. This group has successfully blended Jazz music with that of R&B, and Hip-hop. The vibe of this group is addicting. I find myself relaxing to their infectious beat (The music that is playing in the background is Fallin' by Jaspects from there new Album
"The Polkadotted Stripe" which came out in April of this year. Another song that I happen to love from "The Polkadotted Stripe" album has to be "Find My Way to Love feat. Chantae Cann" (I love her voice on this track) which makes me feel some type of way.

Here is some background information I found that I think you may find interesting.

"Born during the hip-hop movement, Jaspects integrates their youthful skill to progress music and build a bridge between musical genres. Formally trained alumni of Morehouse College’s music department, Jaspects’ goal is to produce an exhaustive musical experience that involves TRUE freedom of expression via musical and lyrical creativity.

Jaspects’ latest album The Polkadotted Stripe embodies Jaspects’ thesis as it interrogates the idea of musical, social, and political freedom. The concept of the group’s fourth effort procures from the world of fashion. Delving deep into research, Jaspects learned that the fashion truth bastardizing the marriage of polka dots and stripes is man-made. Therefore, Jaspects’ The Polkadotted Stripe inquires: “What is truth?” Upon much discussion and studying, Jaspects recognized that in most instances reality is well, relative. With that in mind, The Polkadotted Stripe defined is someone or something that debunks the notion of social standards.

Jaspects works to rescue the concept of musicianship while breaking down the structural constraints of hip-hop. The band promotes the idea that the culture of hip-hop can support an entity that focuses on musical depth without ostracizing the mainstream fan of the genre. Jaspects uses music as a change agent in ways pioneers such as Public Enemy, Erykah Badu, and Marvin Gaye have. The message conveyed by Jaspects remains consistent, "make your music mean something to the world at-large."

The collective operates out of Atlanta and consists of T. Brown (Memphis, TN), Jon-Christopher Sowells (Dallas), drummer Henry “HC3” Conerway, III (Detroit), Dwayne “Spacey” Dugger (Queens, NY), Stagolee (Aniston, AL), and King James (Stamford, CT). In addition to PDS, Jaspects has released three other independent albums: In ‘House’ Sessions (2005), Broadcasting the Definition (2006), and Double Consciousness (2007).

Individually, Jaspects’ works have appeared in the 2005 major motion picture “Hustle & Flow,” on Chamillionaire’s platinum albums “Chamillitary” and “Sound of Revenge,” on Carlos Santana’s “All That I Am,” and with platinum recording artists David Banner, Wyclef Jean, Big Boi (“Kryptonite”), and Mary J. Blige (“Just Fine”). Collectively, Jaspects has shared bills with: Dwele, Bilal, Mike Phillips, Herbie Hancock, Eric Roberson, Stevie Wonder, Brian McKnight, and rap phoneme Drake. Jaspects has also collaborated with Grammy-nominated artists Janelle Monae, PJ Morton and Anthony David, in addition to Kedar Entertainment act Algebra, and Good Music’s Fonzworth Bentley."

Source: http://www.myspace.com/jaspects

Now before you go, I just have one more thing to show you ;0)

Jaspects presents: Unifunk from Jaspects Music on Vimeo.


Hard to explain,
Try to keep quiet.
Hard to comprehend,
Try not to understand it.

Assured yet doubtful,
Benevolent, yet cruel,
Simple yet convoluted,
Is this feeling I have for you…

About The Writer

My photo
A young brother working on his craft. In this blog you will see everything from stories, poems to random stuff. I think its important that every one just keeps writing what ever it may be, just keep writing we all got a story to tell. So why not let people hear your story. Plus you will hear some of my favorite music.