Friday, 2 October 2020

The Culture Rock Griot- New blog presented by Samantha Hollins

 We are all adjusting to living in a world that has been steam-rollered over by the Corona Virus. This disease has caused so much havoc that many of us are in the position of adapting and creating new ways forward.

Samantha Hollins, aka Ghetto Songbird, is an extremely talented artist who lives with her family in Philadelphia. I mention her family because this is fundamental to Samantha's lifestyle, having become a fantastic roll model not only to musicians and career people, but to anyone who enjoys witnessing a strong family foundation.   

Samantha is a Rock Singer/Guitarist whose presence on stage is extremely powerful and captivating; you can feel her vibes years later- I think powerful energy quite literally embeds within us. Returning to the Pandemic, one of the many issues is the decline in live performance; nowadays live performances across the arts are very few and far between. So many have moved online, including dance, poetry and other art forms. Sadly, I have heard that Facebook are going to stop these live streams. I don't know if this is fact or rumour, but, if it goes ahead, Facebook are virtually abdicating their moral responsibility towards contributing to improved mental health and people's general sense of well-being; when they really should be leading the way.

Lecture over, Samantha is very much a pioneer so instead of worrying too much about the present situation, she has taken a new direction employing her extensive knowledge of Rock combined with excellent writing skills to create her own unique platform:  The Culture Rock Griot Just to give you an idea, I'll quote Samantha's mission for you: 'All Hail the ancestral energy of Rock-n-Roll! My mission is to roll out the black-studded carpet and illuminate the smoke-eyed spotlight on African Diaspora Rockers' past, present and future. 

Now you understand, I'm not going to review the blog, suffice it to say, Samantha has many brilliant connections, she previously toured African and is more than qualified to present both artists and projects that will fill a void in many-a Rock fan's knowledge and pave the way towards a better future. I really hope you enjoy this 'magazine' and add 'The Culture Rock Griot' to your favourites!

Jaz McKenzie~ The Word Magician    Email:

Tuesday, 22 September 2020

SUMMERTIME by Clinton Rock Jones featuring Emiliyah

As we come to the end of Summer in what has proved the most unbelieve and life-changing year for the entire nation, I feel the need to share this fresh, new rendition of Summertime. I say fresh, but the reality is we are taken back in time by a somewhat bluesy/soulful interpretation of a well-loved classic.

Clinton Rock Jones is a world class guitarist who has reached a point where he choses to feature his guitar skills from a primary perspective, and, having worked extensively with highly talented vocalist Emilyiah, has chosen to feature her pure, agile voice on this single resulting in a recording of outstanding quality. 

Clinton has blown me away with his talents on several occasions in the past when playing live engagements and I'm pleased to see how he has carried the same feel across into his recording. Where Emiliyah is concerned, I found Summertime to be a real eye-opener, previously thinking of her as a talented Reggae artist. I clearly haven't paid enough attention to Emiliyah who has an outstanding vocal range! She brings undeniable passion and depth to Summertime, showcasing her vocal ability that takes you beyond the here and now. I really enjoyed this production which embodies the indescribable elements that carry you along with the music, leaving the here and now far behind.

As I post this blog, Clinton is Poland bound with Emiliyah and the MightyZ All Stars. They are embarking upon their latest tour. Once back, I am planning to bring you an interview with Clinton to find out more about this understated musician's journey and ambition, so there's something to look forward to!

Jaz McKenzie~ The Word Magician   email:

#summertime #clintonrockjones #rockguitar #jazzmusic #polishgigs #emilyahreggaesinger

Saturday, 8 August 2020

Guided Meditation For Strength- and a few thoughts!

Right now we are living in a world we barely recognise; a world in which we are severely restricted on many levels. Whatever the cause may be, we are left to cope with it and have to learn to operate in a new society that has stripped many of our freedoms and livelihoods.

So how can we go about re-asserting ourselves? The answer is always to look inwards before we turn outwards. Every idea that ever came into being started from within; the solutions to the current situation come from within; the solutions to your own peace of mind and future come from within.

Some of us have a full understanding of this process and practice connecting with our inner resources through prayer and meditation. When we are 'still in mind,' we become receptive to the true power of God, the Universe or however we choose to regard this amazing force, ultimate power and eternal vibration that helps us maintain a sound state of mind and offers assurance that all will be well.

There are so many meditations available but I have chosen to share this particular meditation which moves at a good pace, is well guided and allows uninterrupted space to go deep within and connect with the inner you. I try to meditate every day, and sometimes it's easy whereas, on other occasions, my mind is noisy and has difficulty settling. If you try to meditate and it's not working, don't waste your time. Find something else to do as you can always return to meditation later in the day. When the mind is anxious you may prefer to tune into music or the radio to create a different focus that actively occupies the space where your worries exist.

Over the years I have realised the importance of increasing my vibration, or current level of feeling, when I am in a low mood or feeling angry, anxious etc. You can hold onto bad feelings or acknowledge the depth of them, allow them to breathe and replace them with something better when you're ready. If you think- bad feeling- let's replace it now, you cannot process it and your body will absorb it, so you must allow yourself space to work through your feelings but do avoid over-analysing them.

I really enjoy meditation and often compliment it with candles and incense to create a special focused time. If you want to find out how to expand and gain more from meditation there are plenty of experts you can find on the internet. I haven't studied meditation at all and operate at a fairly basic level, however, I find I can still unwind and often receive ideas when in a meditative state.

If you haven't tried meditating before, have a go and be kind to yourself. Most of us find that our minds are inclined to wander but. like everything else, you will improve with practice. It is also worth checking out little 8 minute chakra meditations where you can just focus on the colour displayed- very simple and that's where I started. Whether you meditate or not, make time each day to enjoy something you like doing- me time is key time! Enjoy your day~ Jaz

Sunday, 7 June 2020

FONZi NeuTRON - Bounce Dat (Official Video) 2020

Oh My Word... I'm finally feeling summer's arrived! We've been confined for such a long time, so I wish I'd realised sooner that this fun-filled track from artist Fonzi Neutron has been up on YouTube since April. It's a fantastic workout video that we could easily use to accompany our daily exercise routine.

I particularly like the fun aspect within the video. It brings a little bit of quirky humour and we can certainly see the ladies getting jiggly to it! I think it's just what we need to lift our spirits during these uncertain times- let's skip the word unprecedented, it's been done to the point of boredom and I'm not a politician. I love the way Fonzi pokes fun at himself by wearing a blue wig, which instantly brought Andre 3000 to mind. In fact, this video generates atmosphere and energy in a similar way to OutKast's 'The way you move,' There is fluidity across the set and fitness elements exhibited from the humble hula hoop to push-ups. The fact that everything isn't executed perfectly is just so much fun- whatever you do to this song you will not fail! And please, observe people's expressions- priceless.

As a song, Bounce Dat certainly passes the test for a great summer tune. You can imagine it blasting from fast cars on a hot day and it conjours up the same timeless feel as 'Get Jiggy With It'- Will Smith. I think it's important to realise that the feeling a song generates is what makes that song memorable so that it sticks with you, especially where seasonal hits are concerned as they are often based on common familiar experiences, formerly beaches and barbecues to our current obsession with the gym.

For me, Bounce Dat has all the ingredients required for a hit record and this song can be found on Fonzi's latest album, DROP ZONE. Take a listen here on Fonzi's Spotify

Jaz McKenzie~ The Word Magician