Over the recent recent years, our friends have taken to calling us sOLStarr*. I can’t recall how or just when it happened, and yet I’m happy the celestial name stuck . . . but all that was about to change. Almost one year ago to date, my love, Sol, and I found out we were going to be padres. Soon to be cradling our very own beautiful black/brown child, we were (still are) beaming.
Me: So we need a new name, sweetie.
sOL: What do you mean, what are you talking about?
Me: We won’t be sOLStarr* anymore. We’re growing, we need a new name that includes all 3 of us, sOLStarr* plus 1.
sOL: (nodding in agreement) Yeah we do. Let’s see . . . (dramatic pause) A Tribe Called sOLStarr*.
Me: Yes! It’s settled.
sOL: I’m nice like that.
Me: Sho you right.
So in love with the name, I needed to do something to celebrate the new us. The visual arrived, completely clear. The Low End Theory. As much as this piece would commemorate our tribe’s first born, it would also embody an undeniable homage to one of the greatest musical collabs of all time, A Tribe Called Quest. As for the mode and medium, I had the perfect artist in mind for my commission. We met last year when my husband and I bought one of his pieces at a local showcase. I described my vision to Jack Stricker (also ATCQ admirer), mirroring that life altering jazz infused hip hop album cover . . . with a few word substitutions and image modifications.
*Our ‘baby‘ figure was swapped for the original b-boy figures ( . . . well, at least that’s how I like to think of them).
*Our ‘womb‘ was shifted to the belly (from the ‘low end’) encircled by ‘A Tribe Called sOLStarr*’.
*’A Truly Embryonic Star‘ was swapped for the album title.
*Message behind the meaning: A Truly Embryonic Star is the title of an article published in Nature (a weekly science journal). Included in this article are freakishly gorgeous photos of the birth of a star. I know, kinda perfect, right?!
Click here to peep the original album artwork and reminisce about the good old hip hop days.
Starr Lopez is Co-Creator of The Happy Black Girl
You can contact her directly at firstname.lastname@example.org