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STOP BEING FAMOUS / by Victoria Ruiz

On the new Downtown Boys CD you will find something that is not on the album, that is a public secret. It is a clip of a speech from Yasiin Bey that he called, "Stop Being Famous." During the making of the Downtown Boys album we wanted to offer something that would be unique to the CD. We thought about various quotes from Angela Davis, Malcom X, and other political heroes. We were oddly emailing about our record during the peak of protests around the police murder of Mike Brown and the decision not to indict Darren Wilson. We realized that we needed to do something that expressed the current urgency and demand for relevancy of what is going on in respect to police violence against all people, especially communities of color. Yasiin Bey made this speech for the world. He imprinted something on our mind: that we hope anything we make or do imprints on the spaces we are in, which is that, "we are in a watershed moment." We acknowledge the pain and struggle in order to confront it. Yasiin is giving us that strength. In the words of Rich, who designed our album cover, we can "be the need we all wanted."

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