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Flatbush On Fire

soca mcby guest correspondent, Mrs. Manicotti. It’s a tale of two cities—three really— told with allspice, curry & … airhorns. Airhorns? Honk! Honk! Honk! While nine out of ten WWIB correspondents were at 1) Rockaway Beach 2) a Mott Haven block party 3) reenacting the Peach War at Old Town Park on Staten Island, I, along with BZA, was zigzagging Flatbush, trying to answer the musical question Reggae versus Soca: who will win? With less than a week before the West Indian Day Parade, partisans of both sides made their presence known. Myself, zouk!I have no horse in this race but it’s interesting to compare displays of people’s loyalty. My mother’s family was pure Italian Bushwick, who, for whatever reasons, listened to June Christy, Dean Martin & Harry Belafonte records— the last named being why Mama loves to mambo, tho’ I’ve gotten much closer to Mother Africa in years since.

Mama also loved the recent interview with Greenpointers doyenne Justine Carroll & while it’s too late to name her Grand Marshal of the West Indian Day Parade, I’m hopeful someone can get Justine a spot on the WWIB float. While those negotiations continue, perhaps there is some amusement in these previous features:

writer Nick Tosches interview & profile (available in Stop Smiling #35)

writer Jim Knipfel interview

writer Ed Park interview

actress Meital Dohan interview

writer John Strausbaugh interview

artist & barkeep Donald O’Finn interview

sociologist Nicole P. Marwell interview

writer Meredith Brosnan interview

Mrs. Manicotti (ASC) is Brooklyn as fuck. She grew up on Mill Street, Red Hook & is a proud graduate of Lafayette High School, where she “went punk” and reggae with Linton Kwesi Johnson & later accepted calypso into her life with the Mighty Sparrow. A former President of the South Brooklyn Camera Club, she lives in Marine Park with her teenage son & three cats, Mango, Percy, & Kingfish.

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