Make Me Stronger

A call to action. A cry for help. An opportunity for you to realize your power to give strength to someone affected by a blood cancer (Leukemia, Lymphoma, and Myeloma). Get involved. Make someone stronger.




Dedicated to those with no more preset patterns and to those trying to catch their next pocket too. 


Remember the first time you heard one of these? A mechanical drum beat with an acoustic vibe, full of artificial handclaps, sprinkled with snares, cymbals, hi hats and more. Mixed with perfect timing, breaks and rolls. Feeling it in your bones when it’s just right, vibrating through your body as it stimulates your sensations beginning with your heart. On loop, so you can keep vibin’.

If you grew up in the 80s, you probably know what I’m talking about. We all have those 808 beats that to this day will make you move like the first time you heard them.

Warming your blood, making your heartbeat faster, the two together causing a chain reaction throughout your body, penetrating the brain, sparking memories, often bringing back familiar emotions relating to specific moments in time. As your heart beats faster, if you’re lucky, it catches the pocket, while your emotions feel the vibe of them both. Synchronizing and synthesizing the track with your body, pushing you into overdrive in the calmest way possible. Leaving me breathless just thinking about it. Now you hear the track from within as it beats inside of you, you feel it everywhere.

So raw you feel it in your soul. Like when you heard your first acoustic song, felt good news you heard or the moment when you realize you love someone more than yourself. It causes a chemical reaction, whether slow or quick, nothing can distract from it. Its instinctual, it’s natural, like your heartbeat. It just happens as things within you synchronize and synthesize.

The freedom to program your own rhythms instead of using preset patterns.

I remember when I first heard Planet Rock by Afrika Bambaataa and the Soul Sonic Force. My head was moving on the intro 5 beats, before the main track started! It’s like my body knew this was gonna be a dope beat before my brain had a chance to interpret what my ears heard. I was hooked. Those 5 beats, I felt them in my heartbeat, awakening my senses, starting a chain reaction…

As the song played, I felt the crazy sounding kicks, the perfectly timed and unanticipated hi-hats. The kickdrum now matched with my heartbeat, making me move in weird ways, translating the track movement. I don’t think I realized when the verse started cause that 808 spoke for itself.

Heart switching it’s beat, as mine often does these days for other reasons, switching it’s beat as it tries to catch the pocket and then changing with it, as if it was part of the mix. Working as one, as it does with our body. It’s no longer clear who’s leading who, but I know when they are in sync… and when they aren’t, it’s a dope translation providing the perfect compliment.

So perfect we may find ourselves chasing that feeling that takes over our body, spreading to our mind and heart, consuming us in a way that either makes everything flash before you or makes you forget it all so you’re simply in that moment, in that feeling.

But of course that’s not every 808 track, just like it’s not every heart attack. Some you’ll feel from the first beat, others it takes time to build as the track plays, sometimes getting you there, sometimes missing the mark. Nonetheless the chain reaction begins, but how far it goes depend on how that 808 hits you.

It can lie flat, it can take you up right away, it can ease you in and take you higher or it can take you high and drop without notice.

But if you’re like me, you’ll take that ride every time cause it’s worth it when it’s right. Over time you learn what hits your soul and know it right away, and hopefully you’ll also experience a pleasant surprise that opens soft or falls flat but then revives itself.

That’s how I try to feel about my heart these days. An 808, instinctual and natural, frequently looped and no preset pattern. Trying its best to synchronize as it’s influenced by its surroundings. Sometimes there’s a kickdrum thrown in paired with the perfect accent, other times it’s an increasing tempo followed by an unexpected [pause] break. One leaves you high, wanting more, the other leaves you hanging, feeling a bit unsure.

But like those 808s, I’d take this ride every time – complete with breaks and rolls. No more preset patterns, so I too am relying on my own rhythm. Tuning in as the trigger outputs try to synchronize with the synthesizer in me. Sometimes it hits, sometimes it skips… and honestly sometimes it misses too. So here I am, adjusting to new beats, trying to embrace new rhythms, hoping I can handle the misses cause like many of you, I’m trying to catch the next pocket too!

There’s something about those 808s…



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This entry was posted on June 15, 2020 by in cancer, Story and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , .

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