Audio from The Art of Chess and Business given at San Jose City Hall to more than 300 teens in the silicon valley:
Here is a video Mike and I have been working on for a while. It fuses Hip-Hop, chess and jiu jitsu. Its called the Opera House Massacre. We hope you enjoy it. Please share far and wide.
Live the Game: National Experts Convene in St. Louis
to Highlight the Powerful Fusion of Chess, Hip Hop, and Martial Arts
March 4, 2013 (St. Louis, MO) -- Look closely and you’ll see it at the beginning of the new Justin Timberlake video featuring Jay-Z. Read the lyrics of “General Principles” by GZA. Check out the album cover for Pawns in the Game, the 1990 album by Public Enemy emcee Professor Griff. It also shows up with RZA in scenes featuring hip hop characters on the hit TV show Californication.
It’s chess. And at first glance, it doesn't appear to have a link to hip hop. Throw martial arts into the mix and you really have to have your finger on the pulse of popular culture to know about the connection.
A group of national experts who really do know do “have their finger on the pulse” – and know the impact that this combination can have on young people – will meet in St. Louis on May 8 to present to students of the Innovative Concept Academy. A second session with local leaders will be held at the Schlafly Branch of the St. Louis Public Library.
“These presentations will illustrate how chess and martial arts have been woven into the history of hip hop. Further, it will show how the blending of art, logic, and physical fitness guide young people to self-discovery, self-mastery, and nonviolence,” said Adisa Banjoko, journalist and founder of the Hip Hop Chess Federation.
Banjoko, who has been tapped to present at institutions like Harvard University and Brown University, assembled the group and will moderate discussions. Panelists include Dr. James Peterson (founder of Hip Hop Scholars, LLC, and director of Africana studies at Lehigh University), Mike Relm Youtube video remix icon and co-founder of Bishop Chronicles podcast show, Asheru (Peabody Award-winning journalist, creator of The Boondocks theme song, educator, and youth activist), and Alan "Gumby" Marques (Black belt in jiu-jitu and founder of Heroes Martial Arts).
The presentations are sponsored and coordinated by The World Chess Hall of Fame.
“Our focus at the World Chess Hall of Fame is to show how the game of chess has an impact on society. The work of Adisa and the other panelists has been life-changing for many people. The examples they will share will show how this change can happen in St. Louis as well,” said Susan Barrett, executive director of the World Chess Hall of Fame.
Date: May 8, 2013
Presentation 1: 10 am, Innovative Concept Academy
Presentation 2: 3:30 pm, Schlafly Branch of the St. Louis Public Library
About Adisa Banjoko
Adisa Banjoko is a respected journalist, lecturer and the founder of the Hip Hop Chess Federation. His organization has appeared in the New York Times, San Francisco Chronicle, Washington Post, and Vibe magazine. He’s also been a guest on NPR and Good Morning America.
About Dr. James Peterson
Dr. James Braxton Peterson (Duke ’93, UPENN 2003) is the Director of Africana Studies and Associate Professor of English at Lehigh University. He has been a visiting lecturer and preceptor in African American Studies at Princeton University and the Media Coordinator for the Harvard University Hip Hop Archive. He is also the founder of Hip Hop Scholars, LLC, an association of Hip Hop generational scholars dedicated to researching and developing the cultural and educational potential of Hip Hop, urban, and youth cultures.
About Mike Relm
Mike Relm is a pioneer video remix artist who has toured with The Blue Man Group, Tony Hawk and rocked stages at Coachella, Bonnaroo and The House of Blues. He has more than 13 million hits on Youtube. Notable remixes include Iron Man 2, Old Spice, Scott Pilgrim Vs. The World,Doctor Who, and Harry Potter. His Punisher/Spirit/Transporter remix won the 2009 Webby Award for Best Mashup/Remix.
Asheru, born Gabriel Benn, is a hip hop artist, educator, and youth activist. He is widely known for performing the opening and closing themes for the popular TV series, The Boondocks, as well as his pioneering and innovative efforts to forward the Hip Hop Education movement.
About Alan “Gumby” Marques
Gumby is a second degree black belt in Jiu Jutsu and is best know as the co-founder of OTM, one of the world’s leading sources for Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. He is an author, commentator, coach, referee, and instructor.
About the World Chess Hall of Fame
The World Chess Hall of Fame (WCHOF) is a nonprofit organization committed to building awareness for the cultural and artistic significance of chess. It opened on September 9, 2011, in St. Louis’s Central West End after moving from previous locations in New York and Miami.
The WCHOF is housed in an historic 15,900 square-foot building that includes three floors of galleries, the U.S. and World Chess Halls of Fame, and the stylish Q Boutique. It provides visitors with a unique opportunity to use chess as a platform for learning, exploring, and seeing their world in entirely new ways.
It is the only cultural institution of its kind in the world and the only solely chess-focused collecting institution in the U.S.
For more information, visit www.worldchesshof.org.
Since the year has just begun and people are super focused on new goals, I wanted to share something. I wanted to talk about the importance of making positive daily actions toward your goals. Having a goal is essential! If you are unsure about what you want to do with your life, that’s ok- everybody goes through those phases. But you must remain in constant search of taking in new experiences and information (never stop reading!) in order to see what your future options. If chess helps you learn one thing in life, its always take time to properly weigh your options.
More than ever, this planet is moving at a tremendous speed with constantly evolving technologies, political systems, social systems and economies. Even the way art is made, distributed, and sold is also in transition. It’s a beautiful time to be alive and there are amazing opportunities to learn from and grow through all around you. But without a clear goal, you might find yourself overwhelmed by it all and before you finish smiling, it’s over. Life really moves that fast.
Part of it is the intensity of the unstable economy and our broken educational system. It can leave you feeling unprepared at best and extremely stressed and depressed at worst. Negative thoughts can be crippling to the mind, body, and spirit. Sometimes negative thoughts are fed to us from our family, friends and the media. Despite meaning well, it’s common that those who love us mislead us. Not from a place of hate, but more often than not, it’s just a transfer of fear that they carried and put onto you.
Regardless of their intention these negative thoughts can invade your head like a virus and alter the normal function of your brain. Your sense of self worth and ability become distorted. Soon your bad habits and negative affirmations lead you to assured failure and unhappiness.
To free yourself of this virus you must first decide that your mind, body, and soul are sacred. The word sacred comes from a Latin root word sacrare mean “to devote”. One of the definitions of sacred is “properly immune from violence, interference etc. as a person”. After you recognize your inherent sacred nature, you quickly understand that anything sacred is worthy of defending. The easiest way to defend yourself against any threat (physical, mental, economic, etc.) is to keep yourself consistently in tune with the true current state of the world. You need to be clear on your place in it and where you are headed.
After many years of living a very distracted life, I recently developed a methodology to combat consistent distractions. I write is as 3PA > 1NT. Meaning three positive actions are greater than one negative thought!
The next time you find your mind idle on the couch or in front of the TV and a negative thought enters your mind you must first get up (if you are lying down, sit up, if you were sitting stand and if you were standing sit). Change your physical posture as you adjust your mind. No thought is stronger than action taken. Now we begin.
Example #1 : If you are worried about the big test, take three positive actions against that fear. Read 3 pages on the subject that were giving you the most trouble. Or you could read one page, look up an article on the subject online and call a mentor to ask a specific question you lack clarity on.
Example #2: If you feel out of shape when you look yourself in the mirror, then right there drop and do ten push ups (or as many as you can do) ten sit ups and ten minutes on the jump rope.
Example #3: If you want a new job, go sign up at 3 new sites online or dig deeper on the sites you prefer and send no less than three resumes out.
Those are the simple examples I can give but the equations are applicable to many more situations. To get started, write 3PA > 1NT in big letters on a piece of binder paper and place it on your favorite mirror, on your fridge, or make it your screen saver. Say the equation and its meaning when you look at it. As you do that, you’ll begin to slowly implement it more and more when obstacles clutter your path.
One of the best things about this method is that you will quickly learn how little effort it takes to take three positive actions. In no time at all you will be taking six, ten and twelve actions to breakthrough to the next level. Using the 3PA > 1NT will give you a much greater sense of peace in your personal, scholastic and professional world.
You will sleep better and worry less because you will make taking action your core instinct. In chess playing defense too long is always fatal. At some point you must commit to moving forward or die exhausted from reactive moves dictated by outside forces.
In order to ensure its full impact, you must use the 3PA > 1NT for 21 days straight. Studies show it takes 21 days for a habit to set into your mind. Allow this to become a part of your daily mental regimen and you will be unstoppable in any arena you walk.
Happy New Year! We are excited to share with you a show that is exciting to us. If you know rap history you know that there are a few rap crews who get named off top: Run DMC, Public Enemy, NWA, De La Soul or A Tribe Called Quest.
Tajai L and Adisa R
Another one of those crews, is the mighty Hieroglyphics crew from Oakland, CA.Hieroglyphics is a collective of MC's. Their members include Del, Souls of Mischief, Casual, Pep Love, DJ Toure and Domino. They burst onto the the scene in the early 1990's and were revered and feared for having the ability to do what very few could. They could make amazing songs, plus battle anybody and come out on top. In 1993 the Souls of Mischief Crew dropped the album " '93 Til Infinity" and made the most hardcore critics of rap take note. Even within rap, many east coast magazines were snobbish of West coast rap crews. Hiero pretty much shut them all up. Especially "'93".
The album was visual, the beats were warm and jazzy. It had very street but also comedic without being clownish. Above all, it was original beyond measure. I was pretty shocked to see that no song from the album made it to the Rolling Stone Top 50 Rap Songs list ( they disrespected the west coast on that list). But that will be an entirely different show!!
This show- is all Hiero. 2013 is the 20th anniversary of the release of '93 til Infinity . I'm proud to say that I am the first journalist to feature Del for The Source and shortly after I did a feature on Hiero for RapPages.
I watched these guys build an empire. I watched them be one of the first rap groups to use the internet and start touring, selling merchandise and move units. In fact, for the next few weeks, we will have one member a week on the show. Each member is worthy of their own time and they will get it here on The Bishop Chronicles.
First up from Hieroglyphics, we have Tajai (follow him on Twitter @TajaiMassey) . In this interview we talk about the culture of Oakland rap prior to the rise of Hieroglyphics. We will set the stage for you and show you where people got their records, did shows, ate, went to school, and how they recorded music before the age of protools.
We also talk about Tajai's first experience looking at the politics of the rap industry and how he balanced going to Stanford University as he wrote classics as well as how he feels college affected the future of his own life and the group. He is currently attending a Masters program at UC Berkeley.