RAGGA NYC
 HOW HAS YOUR BACKGROUND AFFECTED YOUR LIFE/ WORK?:   My parents both came to this country, in that around the way immigrant style, to give me a better life. Now that I'm old enough to fully, and I mean fully understand what they had to do to get here, and then stay here - in order for me to be born, I'm can say firmly, without wincing, I was indeed born in America - though i have been resentful of this many many times in my life. Growing up I, of course, fell in with some of the black kids that were around me, and I loved it, and I loved them, but I was always, culturally, a step or two behind. I'm black, I would never deny this or mince words about this, I'm black, it's beautiful and I love it. But on that horrifying boat ride over here from the motherland my peoples were dropped off at a place other than the USA and that made a difference. Not all of it, but some. So yes, we eat black eye peas at New Years but you'll find green seasoning and a scotch bonnet pepper in there. Your Mardi Gras is our Carnival, but you'll hear steel pan in our streets instead of horns. I don't say these things, to be different, but just to expand the narrative of what blackness is, what it looks like, and where it lives.

Phyars Burgess Reppin Trinidad and Tobago

NAME: Sasha Phyars-Burgess
AGE: 28
ISLAND: Sweet Sweet T&T (Trinidad & Tobago)
CRAFT: Photography

 HOW HAS YOUR BACKGROUND AFFECTED YOUR LIFE/ WORK?:   My parents both came to this country, in that around the way immigrant style, to give me a better life. Now that I'm old enough to fully, and I mean fully understand what they had to do to get here, and then stay here - in order for me to be born, I'm can say firmly, without wincing, I was indeed born in America - though i have been resentful of this many many times in my life. Growing up I, of course, fell in with some of the black kids that were around me, and I loved it, and I loved them, but I was always, culturally, a step or two behind. I'm black, I would never deny this or mince words about this, I'm black, it's beautiful and I love it. But on that horrifying boat ride over here from the motherland my peoples were dropped off at a place other than the USA and that made a difference. Not all of it, but some. So yes, we eat black eye peas at New Years but you'll find green seasoning and a scotch bonnet pepper in there. Your Mardi Gras is our Carnival, but you'll hear steel pan in our streets instead of horns. I don't say these things, to be different, but just to expand the narrative of what blackness is, what it looks like, and where it lives.

HOW HAS YOUR BACKGROUND AFFECTED YOUR LIFE/ WORK?: 

My parents both came to this country, in that around the way immigrant style, to give me a better life. Now that I'm old enough to fully, and I mean fully understand what they had to do to get here, and then stay here - in order for me to be born, I'm can say firmly, without wincing, I was indeed born in America - though i have been resentful of this many many times in my life. Growing up I, of course, fell in with some of the black kids that were around me, and I loved it, and I loved them, but I was always, culturally, a step or two behind. I'm black, I would never deny this or mince words about this, I'm black, it's beautiful and I love it. But on that horrifying boat ride over here from the motherland my peoples were dropped off at a place other than the USA and that made a difference. Not all of it, but some. So yes, we eat black eye peas at New Years but you'll find green seasoning and a scotch bonnet pepper in there. Your Mardi Gras is our Carnival, but you'll hear steel pan in our streets instead of horns. I don't say these things, to be different, but just to expand the narrative of what blackness is, what it looks like, and where it lives.

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 WHAT’S NEXT FOR YOU (UPCOMING PROJECTS)?: FINISH GRAD SCHOOL!!!   Photo: Jerry Lim

WHAT’S NEXT FOR YOU (UPCOMING PROJECTS)?: FINISH GRAD SCHOOL!!! 

Photo: Jerry Lim