Thursday, March 13, 2014
If I mentioned all of my skeletons, would you jump in the seat?
My big multimedia project about Portland rappers came out last week. It's a package of four stories and three videos I made, along with black and white photographs from Beth Nakamura. I feel really grateful to have had the time to work with these musicians on telling their stories. NPR Music and Longreads both linked to the project, and it looks like the boys have sold some records in its wake. I went on Oregon Public Broadcasting this week, too, to talk about the stories.
Check out the whole project, called "Straight Outta St. Johns," for the full effect, but in the meantime, here's one of the videos.
Egbevado Ananouko’s family left West Africa banking on the American dream and found minimum wage jobs instead. Like other St. Johns teenagers, Ananouko saw hip-hop as a path out of the neighborhood. Rap music’s tales of gold chains and suped-up cars gripped Ananouko. But unlike his peers, the wiry, thickly accented Ananouko built his music studio hoping to secure something more pedestrian: acceptance.