Its been quite a whirlwind as of late between my music and film workshops with the street children at Darna in Tangier, my music workshops for the heroin users at the ASCMP Clinic, and my band, Zerobridge who played some shows for MTV and released a new record last week as well. Here are some quick blips from what’s been going on:
REST IN PEACE OULIA
Oulia, (pictured in far right w brOwn skin) worked at the Dar Lekbira, where I currently spend time and work with street children. Oulia dedicated her life to caring for children. She always greeted with a warm smile, was ever cordial, and put the kids first. She passed away last week unexpectedly. I will miss your smile and I will miss your grace. The children of Darlekbira will miss you. You were a light in thier world so poor. Keep her spirit in your prayers.
MUSIC WORKSHOPS W/ DRUG USERS AT THE ASCMP CLINIC TANGIER, MAROC
-I’ve been conducting music workshops at the clinic with the heroin users, an association called ASCMP. I am writing music for the drug users who then come up with lyrics of their own for the music I write. The lyrics are based on their experiences in the streets. In July, my brother Din and I wrote a song with Hicham and Hana and Mohammad. Mohammad rapped a poem about his experiences as a user. Hana sang the chorus. She has an Incredible voice. Hana, one of the users I been working with on a song, relapsed so we still looking for her to continue more tunes. Despite the set back, last week I wrote a new song with the staff and the drug users at the clinic about thier lives as addicts. It came out pretty well. I am recording the work on my computer using Garage Band. During my workshop, I met a morocccan heroin addict who became addicted when he was in NYC in the 1970s. Intense. He told me stories of NY at that time and of how a bag of heroin only cost 5 bucks. He took my guitar and relayed stories of how he could play any Dylan song. I later found out that he went to America to study bio-chemistry, before falling addicted to heroin. Here are ROUGH CUTS of the songs my brother and I wrote with ASCMP in July and the one I wrote last week w ASCMP. I will be posting more songs as they become finished. CLICK ON LINKS BELOW TO HEAR THE DEMOS, SO FAR. Stay tuned:
MY FILM + MUSIC WORKSHOPS W/ STREET CHILDREN @ DARNA CENTER TANGIER, MAROC
Another round of workshops with my students at the Darna Center for street children in Maroc. Finally got some coordination and order b/w the staff and the kids. Up until now, I have some how manged to produce 8 shorts written and directed and starring the children but the system of being given a random group of children each week has been taking its toll. Now we are at a level where this chaotic set up of classes will not suffice and it has proven too difficult and very frustrating. But we hanging in and the creativity of the kids is coming alive and they are growing in their confidence and most importantly, they are having a good time. My fav moment last week was after I taught, a young student from the center named Raeda follwed me out and I inivited him to tag along. I gave him my camera and we walked around the Casbah and Gran Socco where he took 80 pictures and he had biggest smile on his face, saying ‘ I love this.’ Raeda started out in my workshops being very shy and quiet and he is often picked on by other kids. But when behind a camera he displays a passsion and confidence that keeps growing and growing. Here are some of the pictures last week that he and some other students have taken in my photo demos w/ them:
Above: Me and Raeda
Last week we wrote and shot a short story about things a bad father does. Crazy day. * 8 films made by the kids so far. Here is one of the earlier films we have finished. In this short film, (written and shot by my students), a boy falls asleep in class and has a dream where he is kicked out of his home after fighting with his mother. Instead of staying in school, he gets sucked into the troublesome lifestyle of the streets. **This is a rough cut. More to come, so stay tuned:
MY BAND ZEROBRIDGE HAVE RELEASED OUR LATEST ALBUM OUT ON I-TUNES AND CD BABY NOW.
Here is footage of our latest show for MTV Iggy. What a night. Our song ‘Havre De Grace’ is also in a major motion picture in theaters across America. The film is called ‘The Messenger’ starring Woodey Harrelson, Ben Foster, and Samantha Morten, directed by Oren Moverman. Please check out our new E.P on i-tunes!
Info on zerobridge music and shows: http://www.myspace.com/zerobridge
UPCOMING SCHEMES 🙂
I plan to start a modest scholarship for 2 promising artists I encounter at the various centers where I am doing workshops. Upon returning to the States, I hope to compile the best short films by the kids, the music by addicts at the drug clinic and from the Single Mothers Association. From the content, I hop to create an Art Package of sorts showcasing the work we have produced. The discs will then be sold and all proceeds from the art package will go to the scholarship. Inshallah.
So, intense times. But inspiring nonetheless. Much love .
-Mohsin Mohi Ud Din
U.S Fulbright Fellow:https://dangerville.wordpress.com/
Founder of Lollipops Crown Music and Arts Initiative: Morocco
Drummer of Zerobridge: http://www.myspace.com/zerobridge
Huffington Post Blogger:http://www.huffingtonpost.com/mohsin-…