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Melissa Barrett

Anonymous asked: I really loved your rookie article! it was really eye-opening, I'm really thankful for people like you and magazines like rookie etc that allow me to actually see and notice things that I haven't been informed/ been too ignorant to notice before, so thankyou x

Glad to hear that. Thank you for reading! 

Valentino Fialdini’s miniature Lego room

I wrote my first essay for Rookie on soul nights, Chicago, gentrification, music, race, and consumption. I mean, that’s a long list, but it all comes together, I promise. You can read it here

If you go back far enough into these archives, you can see my thoughts as I struggled with this. This tumblr began when I was a junior in college and it was during this time that I felt what would be the peak levels of my cultural gaps.

College was the first time in which I felt confronted and judged for not knowing or understanding aspects of mainstream white culture. I understood that as a young, Black woman, my life experiences would be different than many people around me. However, I didn’t realize the popular culture I consumed – things that on the surface felt so common and universal and small – would be so markedly different than the (usually white, often male) people around me. 

I was thinking about this too during the St. Vincent concert last Saturday. She played a cover of a Nirvana song and I felt like the only person in the room that didn’t know the lyrics. At 19, I would have panicked. At 26, I just appreciated being there to hear her perform something that wasn’t her own. 

It took me years to accept that I have cultural gaps and that is okay. Likewise, other people (like those who think I should have seen all of the Star Wars movies but have never seen Friday) have cultural gaps of their own. I am at a place of acceptance. I know what I know. If I want to know more, I will. And also, your experience is not more valid or more relevant or more normal than my own. It is your own, shaped by the people and places and time of your youth. You can not take that away from me. I will not do the same. 

Filming with @smc_2178 directing


UPDATE: Found her! Thank you for your recommendations and signal boosts!

This is last minute, but I’m looking for a woman with a unique (meaning cool, fun, not basic) look to act in a short film I wrote (It’s super super short and should not be a long shoot). The film will premiere at 20x2 later this month at Schubas.

Also, she (you?) doesn’t have to be a professional actress. Actually, a NON-PROFESSIONAL would be preferred. Should be in her 20s, around 5ft to 5’8. No physical requirements except for height. We’re filming on Saturday morning (like early).

Hit me up ( if you’re interested or you know someone who might be interested! There is no pay, but I’ll take you out for brunch afterward :D

Council of Feminist Thought: Male and Female Perspectives on Street Harassment

I was a guest on Vocalo’s The Morning AMp on Wednesday and we talked about street harassment in reflection of International Street Harassment Awareness Week. On the show, I shared two stories and we discussed the prevalence of street harassment toward young teens and women (most likely due to their vulnerability of age). Above is our long, but worthwhile segment. 

Here are a couple of things I’ve written about street harassment in the past:

nonchalantjon asked: Every time my brother comes home we have a "Show me what you been listening to" stand off and 90% of the songs he likes when it's my turn to play stuff are songs I discovered on your blog. Dance music is really the only thing we bond over and I guess this is a thank you cause if it weren't for those songs we'd just end up arguing more

Dance music is the great uniter! It brings souls together unlike any other. It is on the dance floor where we are free to let go of the pretenses of the outside world and bond with each other soul to soul. 

Anonymous asked: beautiful photos! visual snapshots into your life. very king b (as in beyoncé, but also as in brit). big hug !

I don’t know who this is, but I love you!

“I think dancing is one of the best things anyone can do for themselves. And it doesn’t cost anything.”

Frankie Knuckles’ remix of Michael Jackson’s “Rock With You”

RIP Frankie Knuckles

I can’t even articulate the ways in which Frankie Knuckles changed my life and the lives of so many millions of people across the world. He changed Chicago forever and for the better. He changed music forever and for the better. What has house music meant to me? Everything. It is my heart and soul and home. It is coming home. It is the truth and the gospel. It is the language I speak, the language millions of House Heads speak across the world. Thank you for the gifts and the light you gave us, Frankie. 

You should listen to this entire Tomas Barfod mix. A couple of reasons why:

  • It’s only 22 minutes. That’s like an episode of a boring sitcom. Dedicate your time to this. 
  • It features a number of new Barfod tunes from his upcoming LP, Love Me. If this mix is any indication, the new album will be sharp, full of longing, and the perfect accompaniment to late summer nights. 
  • You like good music and this is full of good music. 


Tomas Barfod feat Nina K - Aftermath

Dog Bite - Lady Queen (Botany remix)

Beverlay - Typically Her (Kaytranada remix, Tomas Barfod edit)

Tomas Barfod - Happy feat. Eddie Chacon (Acapella)

Solar Bears - Interzone 

The Do - Slippery Slope (Tomas Barfod edit)

Tomas Barfod - Chimera 

Tomas Barfod - Pulsing feat. Nina K

Tomas Barfod feat Night Beds - Wont Tell You

"The Malady of Death" by Marguerite Duras

PREVIOUSLY: Lost Mixicisms #1

(I am posting some of my “lost” mixicisms in anticipation of a new one that is all fancy and glossy.)

See, what had happened was: I ended a relationship. I was ready to create a playlist that was anti-love, anti-romance, but then I realized that was a worthless pursuit. Because that was never really a reflection of what happened or what went wrong. It was dishonest to myself and what we had. After crying, I soon got over myself. 

What it’s about: See the above. But also, mood, regret, depression, longing. 

Download MORE Valentine’s playlists: I Want You (a 2013 romance mix)

Tracklist and DOWNLOAD

"Are You Leaving Me (Demo)" by Aretha Franklin

"I Can’t Wait Until I See My Baby’s Face" by Baby Washington

"He Hit Me" by Anika (cover)

"Band Of Gold" by Freda Payne

"Thank You For Nothing" by Kleerup

"Faithful" by Jacques Greene

"Now U Know Tha Deal 4 Real" by Machinedrum

"All U Need" by Aashton

"All Good (Mj Cole Remix)" De la Soul

"Golden (Kaytranada’s Life Extended Living Edition)" by Jill Scott

"Black Water" by Tinashe

"Policy Of Truth" by Depeche Mode

"Happy Be Fine" by Poliça

"So This Is Goodbye" by Junior Boys

"Hunter" by Bjork

"Climax" by Usher and Diplo

"I Get Lonely Too" by Drake (cover)

"Into Dust" by Mazzy Star