Thoughts After Our Poland Tour: Color Can Be Discrediting

Polish People Love Hip Hop

Polish people love music and when communism fell they were bombarded with decades of amazing new music. My concerts were pretty high energy and the crowds danced, sang and had a good old time.

“Performed for a really fun group of high school students this morning in Psczyna. During communism in Poland a lot of music was not able to be celebrated; and now with younger generations they are reclaiming and learning how to love music freely. Was so incredibly blessed to be apart of this music party today with them and am so thankful for all the talented and enthusiastic students we were able to inspire!!” -Liv Roskos(Bandmate)

Color Can Be Discrediting

I knew this statement to be true when it came to black folks, unfortunately most of us will never know our ancestry pre slavery. After my set at the Blue Note Jazz Club an older Polish gentleman approached me. After some brief introductions I found out that he was a writer for the New York Post who happened to be on vacation in Poznan.

“Your music was powerful!” 

He said, as we talked for the next 30 minutes about his experience in America.  He shared how he was often only seen as a “white man” in a hurting black community during the 70s-80s. Having friends who were black prior to coming to the states was never an issue, he loved them, but the tone he received from his neighbors was different. In America his Polish heritage didn’t matter because he was just a white man, and white men weren’t popular in those communities.

This reminded me that we never know what a person’s background is or what their perceptions of us are. From the few polish people I met I experienced there unique heritage that welcomes community.  We can often look at a person’s skin and assume we know their story or intent. I was thankful to hear this experience over a nice cold brew.