Filtering by Tag: creatives

(Almost) Nothing is Free

Today’s blog comes from the heart. Our goal, which we’d hope we’ve made clear, is to be a platform for all creatives from all artistic outlets. This platform, as many of you know, consists of different events throughout Miami and the greater Miami community.

Why are we telling you this? Because we heard a story (and have experienced multiple more) that we can’t shake off. It’s not like it’s a crime or anything, it’s just wrong. Here’s how it goes:

There was an event last week near Wynwood: 100-200 people. Nothing huge, just a nice get to getter with local musicians, artists, and the youth. From our memory the show started at 8 and went to 12. The details, to be really honest, are irrelevant. What we learned from being there is something that only made sense after the fact. Thankfully, we knew the event organizer and could ask him what’s up. Our question was simple: Why are there so many people without wristbands?

Like many events in Miami and the world, wristbands is the way to go. It’s easy to recognize who has a wristband and who doesn’t, it’s cheaper than printing tickets and more than anything, it’s effective. The event organizer told us something along the lines of “I don’t know”. Well, being investigative and all that, we searched for the answer.

There’s two possibilities. One, people walked right past the “host” and never paid the ticket. Two, people used the backdoor. Both instances are preventable and it’s the event organizers fault for not having security at the front and back door controlling the ticketing. Another pain point is (probably) that the “host” of the event knew many attendees, either letting them in for free or giving them the yes nod to proceed without paying.

What bothers us more than anything is not that people got in for free but that they didn’t try to pay. This is the time to tell you that the event (last week) was only $5! How could people not pay it? That’s the question we need to answer and together, we need to think about. More than telling you the answer we want to give you the facts. We’re event organizers, we talk events on a daily, maybe even hourly, basis. Events cost way more time and money than any attendee would ever expect. Here’s a list of some things that we keep in mind when forming a budget:

  • Permits

  • Insurance

  • Musicians

  • Artists

  • Marketing

  • Security

  • Venue

  • Bar

  • Staff

  • Production: Sound and Lighting

This is just the tip of the iceberg of expenses that event organizers have to endure in order to throw an event. Yes, we know, there are exceptions. Someone might know someone and get a hook up on a venue, someone might not pay musicians, artists, security, etc. The possibilities are, of course, endless. Speaking only on our experience and how we like to produce events, we like to pay everyone. In order to pay everyone, we need, more than anything, income.

Another story we’ve been throwing around in our heads is one an attendee told us at Dylan Hall’s E.P. Release Party last year. She said, and I quote, “If the event isn’t free for me then I’m not going”. Excuse me? Free for you? Why? Because you're a girl? Look sweetheart and all the other sweethearts in Miami that think it’s ok for men to pay $20+ cover and for girls to be free: It is not ok. It is not normal. It is sexist, and Miami is one of the only places in the world that allows it.

We can go on a rant about how sexist and condescending the idea of girls being free and guys having to pay at events is but we’ll leave it for another blog. This blog already addresses such a large stigma about events that we think we did our job. Now it’s your turn. When you go to the next event we want you to think about all the time and expenses put into it. We want you to imagine what the event organizer went through, from first finding the venue to forming the theme of the event, adding musicians, artists and most importantly, executing it. Have a great day and while you're going to your Spring Break events, whether it be this week, next week, or in a month from now, think twice before sneaking in.

Side-Note: This blog is meant to address an issue that happens all over the event world and will never be resolved. Specifically in Miami and with us, UMAMI, the problem is greater. People do everything they can to get around paying and were left to hire additional workers to take care of the perpetrators. Do we want to? Absolutely not. Do we want to loose money? Definitely not. All we want is for the Miami arts community to grow and prosper. That’s why we do it.

BALANCE

Hey fam!!

Hope you’ve all had a great week. As a salute to the winter break and holidays, this is our last blog of 2018. By Monday, our newsletter subscribers can expect a little love in their inbox and next week we’ll be on vacation, sharing a playlist that you don’t want to miss.

To take us into the new year, we want to talk about something close to our hearts. We decided that rather than summarize our year and what’s coming next (even though we’re about to), we should talk about something we’ve learned throughout this process. For those who want the visual summary of 2018 (visual is best), go check out the CONNECT and VENTURE after movie! Both are on our Youtube channel “UMAMI”.

CONNECT and VENTURE 2018 taught us a lot. CONNECT was a total success in terms of turnout. We struggled with having performers on time but overall, we felt as if it was a job well done. VENTURE brought us better management, organization, but lacked the crowd we needed. In both, we felt as if ALL attendees (besides the ones standing outside complaining about paying) had a great time. That makes us happy.

What we’ve learned most through working hard, being with creatives and all walks of life is balance. Balance in the professional sense, personal and in general, life sense. We can’t tell you how to live your life but we can help. At least we both agree on a couple things, we live in Miami and we aren’t going anywhere.

Living in Miami has its challenges. We face some crazy motherfuckas no matter where you look. Seriously, Miami isn’t an easy place to live. For us, it’s a daily struggle to go “out” or not. Another struggle? Where to go for dinner.

BALANCE has made, at least for us, Miami a lot easier to handle. In our daily lives, we have priorities. Girlfriend/boyfriend is up there, work, school, food, the list goes on and on. For each individual, our priorities remain different. Understanding and knowing this is key to finding BALANCE. And here it comes: UMAMI, what in the fuck do you mean? Chill fammm we getting there!!

Priorities are what gives us an organic schedule. Yes, I know you don’t need a schedule because they’re overrated. Fair point. Shedules are made to keep our lives somewhat in check. Without time, just like a schedule, the world wouldn't know what to do next. For example, if you didn't know what time it is how would you know when to have dinner? Ummmm when the sun goes down? It works, we guess, but it isn’t the best form of living.

At UMAMI, we want the best. Best of musicians, artists, and creatives in Miami and the surrounding neighborhood. To live the best life, we believe in organic schedules, in other words, priorities. Of course, having a paper schedule makes remembering everything a whole lot easier but we don’t need to get that extreme. We want you to start with understanding your priority and a happy life. Not as an individual in society, as YOU.

For example, our priorities circle around organizing the best local events possible in order to improve upon the art, music, and cultural scene in Miami, eventually going abroad. I’ll be the first to tell you that this takes a long time. It’s more than a 9-5 job, its a 24/7 one. In such a demanding environment (especially in Miami), we found three things we rely on to keep us sane. To keep me me and not another, nasty version of me I work out, make sure to chill before dinner and DJ. Sounds cheesy but it’s true, we out here trying to be balanced.

Have a great winter break and enjoy the holidaze with family and friends. Our New Years resolution is to bring events to you next year that’ll make your mind rattle, head shake and hips move uncontrollably. Stay safe, eat a hell of a lotta food and remember, stay balanced.

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Bansky and Basel

Basel is over, traffic died down, and the weather got cold. We guess it’s time to stay in and write a blog. Forget the guess, we know. It’s time to reflect on the craziness of Basel, looking at one person in particular: Banksy.

If you looked at our Basel plans, we were packed. I mean REALLY busy. By the time Rakastella finished, we could barely walk! Sunday we made it to a couple galleries before hibernating Monday. No excuse for not writing about Basel already, just explaining why we might sound a little slow this morning.

Even though we missed the Banksy exhibit (c’mon we can’t do everything), we’re familiar with Banksy and his work. Our IG post over the weekend made quite a statement. We told ya’ll to not attend the Banksy exhibit. Why? Because he didn’t authorize it. He’s not making money off it and the exhibit is produced by his former artistic director, not his current one. Wanna know who his current artistic director is? Himself.

For those of you who don’t know much about Banksy, we’ll give you a little insight. Banksy is an English-based street artist. No one knows his name or what he looks like (Lowkey people do, they keep it on the DL). His name has gained a huge amount of recognition due to his political as well as social values. Through art, mainly graffiti, he tells a story about his opinionated views on police and government, challenging society to think outside of the box.

Banksy is far from the average graffiti artist. He goes above and beyond to prove his point. One time, he printed fake money which was used by hundreds in shops around England. Another time, he destroyed his own work of art. In both situations, he faced a challenge. His opinion vs. the norm. Now, and during Basel in particular, he faces the same challenge, his art vs. the world.

In Banksy’s eyes, art should be seen by everyone. There shouldn’t be fees to see artwork and people shouldn’t buy street art (which is meant for the street). Its a very good point. You wanna know why? Fine, fine. We think that the artist has the decision in 1.) how they want their art portrayed and 2.) how the art effects the world. Art in galleries is seen by less than it being on the street. No matter what you say, it’s the truth. Throughout a day, more people walk by a busy street than pay money to go to an art gallery. Banksy is intent on spreading his message through art and therefore, it should be displayed the way he wants it to, on the street.

Private collectors put together a collection of art Banksy didn’t approve of. I mean, it’s his, so of course he loves it. He doesn’t love the way it’s displayed and due to it’s display, the way it’s perceived. We thought this was a good way to end the Basel season and start the Netflix and Chill. Reflect on Basel and what it does for artists. On one hand its great, it brings the spotlight to creatives who otherwise might’ve not had it. On the other, it hurts artists that don’t want to be displayed that way. Remember that artists don’t need to put together a showcase, anyone who has enough art can. We can’t wait to have our own Basel next year and show Miami the right way to showcase art. Hella love for Basel but we’re happy it’s over. Time to get ready for the holidays.

Talk soon

LOCAL VS GLOBAL

Our weekend was crazy. Friday’s festivities started with Dylan Hall’s E.P. Release Party and ended with INVT’s set at Little Spaiti. Saturday got us way too tired, football during the day and another local party at night. What better way to wrap up the litness than with a blog? Are we right…

Well, whatever you think you’re still reading. We’ll take it as a yes. The weekend brought an important point to all our eyes. By all we mean the UMAMI crew. After seeing multiple amazing performances from local talent, we realized we need to cover an issue that stands in the way of UMAMI, locals, and a lot of listeners, whether you listen to music on the daily or on the boat throughout the weekend.

What to listen to. It sounds simple but it isn’t. When we turn on the radio or we use the outdated but still very popular Pandora you get the hits. Billboard hits, radio hits, mainstream hits, all types of hits. Now imagine you’re in the car. You’re on your way to school in the morning and it’s a Monday. Fuck we hate Mondays.

Anyways, your on your way and you’re listening to music. If you aren’t, we’re sorry to say that you’re lame. What are you listening to? For most, hits. Again, hits on the radio or hits that Spotify and Apple Music want you to listen to. Is it bad? We’re not the biggest fans but no, it isn’t. Close to all Americans listen to them.

After the story there’s always a point. Our point is that A LOT of people listen to hits. Now our question: How many people listen to locals?

We got to give credit to Dylan Hall and his amazing performance to finish off an amazing event. After he rapped his last phrase, he made a speech in which he gave thanks to friends, family, his crew and said “I listen to locals on the daily”. We do too. That doesn’t make it amazing. The way he said it, the way he went about it really stuck to us. The people that were in the room listening to him felt his sincerity, his realness for the local community, and the want for locals to be heard. All in all, it taught us a lesson that even though we’re listening to locals, we’re also listening to the Migos, Travis Scott, Diplo, Flatbush Zombies and too many more. How do we find a balance between our city and the world?

Since we started with music let’s keep using music as an example. If you’re starting to catch onto our drift (and have hopefully dived into the deepness of our blogs) you’ll notice that this can be for any art form anywhere. Where does a person find the balance between giving to the local community while giving to the world? At what point does the artist give him/herself freedom to go outside of the local community? As a listener and observer, who should we listen to? Who should we support?

All of you won’t like our answer but we think it’s the truth. Listen, support, watch, learn from who you want to learn from. Yes, we support locals to the max but we’re all humans, you’re attracted to what you like. Someone who doesn’t appreciate FOOM! shouldn’t have to support them because they’re local. On the contrast, someone who loves FOOM! shouldn’t feel forced to enjoy the radio. We’re all different, we all like different things and, us included, have locals we aren’t real fans of.

Appreciate locals but you don’t have to love them. Support the people you think are amazing, not the ones your friend is always listening to. Do the extra step and immerse yourself in Youtube, IG, or any other platform. Find those people you like, even if they aren’t only locals. From a creatives perspective, we cherish 10 committed supporters more than a 100 bots. Keep it real Miami, not only for the creatives, but for you.

#SUPPORTLOCALS

VOTE MIAMI VOTE!

As many of you know, tomorrow is Election Day!! For us, it’s a chance to show our local community what voting can do. Data shows that early voting has doubled from last year, so we’re hoping to set records tomorrow at Election Day!

Rather than do our usual laugh and talk, we’re staying serious. Tomorrow’s vote is important for FL, but even more important for our Senate and House, which now remain dominated by Republicans. Many of us, UMAMI included, believe things need to change. Global warming, racism, gun policies, immigration, terrorism, international and domestic relations all need improvements, especially today, in not only a fragile social atmosphere, but a deadly one.

For the ones who already voted, thank you for doing so. Your gift is to go to Youtube and watch the VENTURE after movie. If you already did that, you get an A+ for effort and you’re off the hook till Wednesday (playlist day).

To get you through the ballot tomorrow, we have a couple tips, reminders, and motivation:

  • Know your path! We don’t care who you affiliate with, just know you do. Voting your party across the ballot isn’t a bad thing.

  • This year’s ballot is a long one, so we recommend you Google the Miami Herald’s recommendation for all those Amendments and Circuit Judge positions you know nothing about (print for cheat sheet in voter booth)

  • Leave your phone in your pocket! FL is one of the 20+ states to invalidate your vote if poll administrators see your best friend.

  • All you need is your license. No need to start searching for that voter card you long lost in a pile of papers.

  • Enjoy the unenjoyable. Yes, voting isn’t like going to Story. That doesn’t mean it’s like going to the doctor! Make the most out of the situation by hitching a ride with your fam, friends or our favorite, that special one you haven’t told anyone about ;)

We’ll say it again, tomorrow is the most important election we’ve had in over a decade. There’s a reason the news, your school, house, and work are filled with ads endorsing the candidates. Whether your democrat, republican, independent or other, your opinion matters for the future of Miami, FL, and the U.S. Go grab a coffee, enjoy a Dunkin’ donut and get to the polls. Polls are open 7 AM- 7 PM in Miami-Dade County (you can find your polling location on the Miami-Dade voting guide).

Fun Fact: While you’re at Dunkin’ Donuts, ask the worker making your coffee about their company name. Dunkin’ Donuts is expected to become Dunkin’ by the end of 2019. As they say, they serve more then only coffee and donuts.

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Change doesn't come quick

WARNING: This blog is about more than locals. We know, we know, the 305 is our world but if something applies to the world, it also applies to the 305. In the end, we’re part of something greater. Its like math: Miami is in Dade-County, Dade is in FL, FL is in the US, the US is in North America, North America is one of the seven continents of the world. Short and sweet, people who live in Miami live in the world.

Why the fuck do we need that explanation? Well because we act like we don’t live in THE world, we live in OUR world. You got your homies, some people you met at the club last night but in such a large city, knowing everyone is close to impossible. The action, the way we act with others is what gives us a doozy. People in Miami, specifically, make it a goal to top the next. Our new born example is Icy Narco. We listened to his podcast with “No Jumper” this morning and he goes on and on saying he doesn’t want to be labelled as the new Lil Pump. They’re both from SoFlo, have wild colored hair and honestly, look like each other. Their music is a little different, I’ll give Icy that, but from the get go you can see that Icy has made it a passion of his not to be Pump, but to be better than him.

We’ve taken the 305 globally to only take it back home (where else would we take it?). Icy Narco is like every Soundcloud rapper out there, trying to get the spotlight and be the best. No hate towards Icy (or the Soundcloud community) because he’s following the tradition, he’s a pawn in the social and emotional state this country (and many others) are in. Egos have taken us so far as a culture, that in almost every profession, the last employee wants to be better than the next.

Is this a bad thing? Absolutely not. It’s great to have competition and some form of ego. Some people even say that we as humans intuitively have this self-driven competitive aspect. On one side, it brings us to greater heights since we’re working so hard to better the last. On the other, and now we really come to the Achilles heel of change, egos cause people to be independent. Independent to a point that they see themselves as best and need no-one else since “they’re so amazing”.

Looking throughout history, we can safely say that change comes from more than one person. Martin Luther King formed serious idealistic change around racism. He was the leader of a movement with hundreds of thousands of supporters. If only he were alive he could say that he didn’t do it alone. I mean.. Rosa Parks, Malcolm X, the list can go on and on for days and days. These people all sought change independently and different but as a movement, they formed a consensus that brought all their independent change (and groups) together. Might as well bring one and one together to change the world instead of separately changing a community.

Again, and we’ll sing this throughout Miami: Change comes from people working together and agreeing on an issue. Obama was our president for eight years and wanted a lot of change he never implemented. Why? Because politicians didn’t agree in his alignment. We as independent people in this world must not grow away from each other, we must come together. Once we learn that working together accomplishes more than secretive working to one-up the last, we’ll be able to get more done, fix and change our local community, hopefully changing the world.

WORK TOGETHER, LOVE YOUR COMPETITION, AND FLOURISH. #umamiway

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INVT

INVT=Innovate. The meaning of innovate is to create something new. New doesn’t mean never created before. It can be pieces put together to make a new product, it can be a different sound with the same beat or fuck us, it can be a new car. Creating something new takes skill, talent, and the right mindset. INVT has all that and more.

If you haven’t heard of INVT, you better go listen to our playlist “INVT: The Collective”! Their a duo compromised of Luca Medici and Delbert Perez (we’ll stick to Luca and Delbert). Both born and raised in the 305, they’re locals. Performing at our last show, VENTURE 2018, and as part of the UMAMI fam, we’re showcasing them this week. It’s the week before Halloween, might as well get spooky.

Luca and Delbert both started playing music in their youth (orchestra, jazz band, metal bands, all that good stuff). Connecting over skateboards, they became besties and started to produce. Short but sweet, INVT was born.

INVT has grown a lot in their recent years. More then talking about their past, both went to NYC for college (producing) and have recently returned to Miami for a gap year, we want to talk about INVT itself. What makes it special? Why do they do it? Believe it or not, it’s similar to UMAMI’s vision. Let’s get into it.

In our opinion, INVT’s a multi-disciplinary art project. They produce and play music, have their own clothing brand, AND make films as well as cover art. Two people doing all that? We know. They’re going for it. On top of that they’re creating a culture. INVT is meant to be a local, real brand that they’re shaping everyday. Check out their website and you’ll see what we mean.

Seeing where they’ve come, we know these two are putting in work every minute of every day to bring their brand to life. Their music, as well as everything they do is exactly what they call it, innovate. It’s different, new, and it’s Miami with a twist. Let’s call it the new “underground Miami”. It has that down to Earth real Miami- MSG gang type shit- with that tropical coconut and palm tree vibe. The biggest shocker of them all is that these guys are barely legal!

The future looks mighty bright for the one and only INVT. They’re finding a new sector in Miami’s music scene thats going away from the norm. We’re motivated by what they’re doing, we respect, and fully support their movement. You should too.

FOLLOW @INVT305 AND @UMAMIMUSIC305 ON IG, FB, TWITTER, ALL THAT BULLSHIT.

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Events Are Different.

Events are made for people to come together, interact, and converse. People go to clubs and enjoy a couple (or more) drinks followed by dancing and the occasional hook-up. It’s nothing more than letting go, having a good time and for most, “relaxing”. The event world is a whole lot different. In the 21st century, there’s events for just about any specialty good on the market. Vegan festivals, potato festivals, yoga/meditation festivals to name a few. Events have a purpose that’s developed to cater to a certain market, in-turn bringing in a certain “crowd” of people. UMAMI accepts all crowds of people and makes it easy for people to share ideas. The philosophy I go by is as follows: Good vibes bring good everything. If we, as UMAMI, share positive ideas, values and generally maintain a good attitude towards any situation, we attract the same.

UMAMI’s presence was solidified with a statement an attendee made at the last event. He said, and I quote, “You’re making a community outta a (out of a to be classy) pile of individuals”. Miami has been known to be exclusive. Coming into the community, being part of it and contributing to it isn’t easy.

Through art, good vibes and creatives, we’re bringing together people that should’ve been together long ago. We’re using art as a medium for social inclusion, development and awareness for all types of social/global issues on a local and global scale, one thing this country definitely could benefit from.  

INVT @ VENTURE 2018! Shot by @apexvisuals. Background to our now infamous website :)

INVT @ VENTURE 2018! Shot by @apexvisuals. Background to our now infamous website :)

*Written by Dries Darrow, creative director and owner of UMAMI.*

Miami through music

Music tells a story. It tells the listener where the artist is from, why the artist made the music, when the music was made, the culture behind the music and the style the artist associates it with. Through a song, we can identify who the artist is, or at least make a good guess to his/her upbringing. 

What I find most interesting about music is it's cultural aspect. Culture is defined as "the ideas, customs, and social behaviour of a particular people or society." Through music, we can identify someone's culture, meaning where and what they grew up around. 

UMAMI's playlist, which we release every other Monday, is the definition of associating music with culture. Our goal is to identify the best artists in a certain community/city and put their music in a playlist. This playlist is found on iTunes, Spotify, and Soundcloud, in which the links are posted under the "Playlist" tab. 

Why is this important? We want to share Miami through music. By listening to music from each city in Miami Dade-County, we not only realize the amazing artists that either grew up or live/lived there, we understand that cities culture. With over 30 cities in Dade-County (36 if you wanna be exact), there's a hell of a lot of culture to understand (and make playlists for). 

To give you an example, we started our playlist idea with a place that has "talent that rivals any other neighborhood in the world", Carol City. Carol City is a neighborhood in Miami Gardens, known for importing crime and drugs to all of Dade-County. What we found, besides the obvious Carol City High School that brought together notable rappers such as Denzel Curry, Twelve'len and just about everyone, is the huge amount of rap "all stars" that came from this infamous drug community. I'm talking real all stars, not no TMZ bullshit. I'll put these guys up there with Eminem, Dr.Dre, Tupac and Biggie type deal. Rick Ross, Gunplay and SmokeGhostPurrp. If you haven't heard of these guys you need to crawl out of that rock you're living under and check out Carol City X UMAMI!

Digging just a little deeper, we wanted to know why this violent community made such great rappers. Listening to the rappers, their lyrics revolve around the crime they're associated with. Why did they start rapping? They were making money, doing what most to everyone does in poverty, sell drugs and just about anything else for money. Why would you go to making music, which has no guarantee for making money or success?

Bingo! I know why. Remember Carol City High School? Good. It's where all these amazing artists went to. Living in Carol City, the environment or the "hood" as Denzel Curry says it, makes amazing musicians. Since I haven't lived in Carol City, let me let the expert, Denzel Curry, take a swing at the question: 

What is it about the neighborhood that's led to so many musical artists?
I just think it's the environment. All of us went to Carol City High. Even Flo Rida went there. I think just by the programs that were there and the activities, and the outside activities, the hoods and everything—it just really made the people what they are today. - Vice.

Through music, we can understand so much about a city that we don't even have to visit it (even though we highly encourage it!). Go check out our playlist Carol City x UMAMI and let us know what you think, what we could/should change and if you feel you now understand one of the biggest melting pots in our county. 

*If you're interested in learning more about Carol City and it's rappers, Twelve'len recently released a great video with Red Bull entitled "Definition of a Florida Boy". Enjoy!*

                                                                                              Cover Art by Victoria Frank. 

                                                                                              Cover Art by Victoria Frank. 

Two hands is better than one

Hola amigos(as)!! 

Hope we've all had a great summer. Ours has been mostly work. Ok, fine. You got me. We've had a party here and there, but its mostly work. 

Before we get into it, I want to hear about your experiences this summer. Has summer 2018 been as great as you wanted it to be? We've been scrolling through those Instagram (IG) stories and some of you, I'm not gonna put you on the spot, look like you're having a blast. Comment and tell us what has been the best part of your summer! We want to know. 

Me and the crew have been as busy as ever. We're proud to say that UMAMI music is expanding to include a customized playlist, Youtube channel and the infamous Twitter. God I hope we get to tweet with President (or lack thereof) Trump. 

Throughout our journey, we've learned many, many things. One of the first lessons, which I'm sharing today with everyone, is that "teamwork makes the dreamwork". Yes, its corny as fuck, but its also the truth. Having a team to help you create your dream, in whatever field that might be, is as smart as apple pie.

I'm not here to bore you with a greater good lesson about how teamwork makes everything more feasible. That's for school. I'm here to share my personal experience on running UMAMI in the Magic City, the city that never sleeps, the 305, the orange capital of the US, Miami. 

Miami has two underlying factors that go into everything. Money and connections. Luckily for us, we have private investors that make the first one easy. The latter is a little more complicated. 

Being 3 months old, we aren't a household name (yet). Locals have no idea of what we stand for, what we hope to do and what we, ultimately, will do. As we expand, that'll change. This is where we're  having fun. Expanding and working together with people who share the same common goal. For us, that's UMAMI. Me, on my own can't reach the same people my crew can. I don't know how to design like my crew can, I can't make videos like my crew, sound, lighting, stage design, bla bla bla. Without them, I can't do much. Without me, they can't do much. With each other, we can do anything.

For my fellow creatives out there, I want you to turn off your "do it yourself" blinders and think about it. Whether you're an artist, musician, writer, dancer, actor, businessman/woman or anything in between, stop trying to do it all. I learned this the hard way. The fact is: you can't. 

Surround yourself with people who see your goal, look further then today and your idea that "what I think is best". Yes, it might be the best to you, but is it the best for your work, for your company, for your future? Find people who are experts in their field who can help you create. Miami is full of selfish bastards who don't stop cutting me off no matter what time it is, but there's also those great, amazingly talented motherfuckers who see the beauty in what you're doing!

Fuck I'm getting deep. My point stands, finding people to help you might not be the easiest, but it gives the best outcome. I love my crew and I thank them each day for their contribution to UMAMI. 

*If you wish to help out and be part of the crew, go to our "team" tab. If there's nothing there that tingles your senses, contact us through the contact form. There's all types of ways you can join the UMAMI Wave!*

Locals are life

What's up fam! It's been a hectic week. CONNECT, take-down, and getting ourselves out of sleep deprivation to planning our next event. Let's just say we're staying busy. 

Through the chaos, we keep being asked "UMAMI, what keeps you going?". Let's talk about what keeps the train from derailing. 

We love people. No, not you, you fucking tourists, we love people who are local. 305, 786, 954, that's us. Bringing together locals, helping locals, and seeing the work pay off makes what we do worth it. We don't care about money. Money isn't important right now. We're young, we're motivated for change and, to us, change is everything. Changing perceptions, opening up locals eyes to more than the Miami traffic and hot weather, it's a movement for embetterment. 

CONNECT saw many new faces, most of whom we had no idea would show. INVT, Chaoscanine, Pagoda Media, Rollingbliss fest and Miami New Times to name a few. We're blessed to have such influential and great figures already supporting our goal. Their similarity? Locals. Every single one of our 300+ attendees were Miami driven, either raised or living in. Bringing together these creative, innovative and multi-talented people who before our event, had no idea who the other was. THAT is what we do it for.

"Why though, UMAMI? Like, why, like, do we have to bring together locals?" - Attendee at CONNECT. Thanks attendee from CONNECT! Your single question just put us on a hunt for reasoning. Don't get me wrong, we know why, it's just great to hear the question that brings it all together. 

Bringing together locals is like making a soup. Yes, you can make a chicken soup with broth, chicken and some vegetables. But, a real chicken soup is more. Noodles, spices, herbs, salt and pepper. The best soup has it all. 

Miami is already a bitching good soup. I mean, we already got those little Jewish dumplings in there. What we're lacking is a great community to display this beautiful soup in. The amount of talented artists and musicians in Miami is gargantuant. We would go as far as to say that the pure talent outweighs Los Angeles. The biggest difference between the two? Los Angeles has the outlets for young creatives, Miami doesn't. 

UMAMI is an outlet for creatives, a place for locals to interact and, a beautifully directed and seasoned chicken soup. We're doing it for local talent, for Miami to be known for what we already have yet lack to show, and for Miamians to have a great night, realizing the artistry that surrounds them. The underground will rise out of UMAMI like the Phoenix rising out of the ashes.

Till next time.

Note from the Author: I brought up money for multiple reasons. Miami lives on money. Think about it, talk to locals and find out for yourself. If you're living in Miami, the first, or one of the first topics of conversation is, and will hopefully not be in the near future, your paycheck. It's sad to say that money determines what people think of you, their life choice and for UMAMI, their plans to slide to our next show. If you're reading this, I know I'll see you soon!

 

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CONNECT

Good morning, afternoon, and evening. I'm not sure which one it is. Time gets confusing. 

We've been working hard (or hardly working) for our first event July 6th. Our flyer has been released, we're twenty minutes from releasing the time table and things are looking a okay. Time to write a blog.

CONNECT was named connect for a reason. We don't do things just to do them. Actually, we do but that's mostly when we're either bored, fucked up, or something in between. Sorry mom and dad, its the way it is.

Connect is the basic idea of bringing together two things. You connect with people, with communities and, on the other hand, you disconnect from your phone when having sex. Well at least if you have a good sex life you do!

We thought of connect after multiple hours of brain storming. Connecting to my wifi, we realized the perfect name was right in front of us. Connect. It's our mission statement, our goal, and what we're doing all of this for. To connect people, locals and communities. Yes, we're doing it for the 305 but that's just the beginning. Cities across FL, the US, and the world need UMAMI to connect.

CONNECT is July 6th. We're bringing together the best of local creatives. I like to say creatives because it encompasses everyone. Anyone who starts a business, either as an artist, musician or entrepreneur has creativity. It's not all about having the best business strategy, knowing people, or the money to do so, its about having a creative idea and going through with it. Going through with it is a feat in its own that should be celebrated by all. 

Our flyer is under the "Events" tab. We hope to see everyone in the 305 there. To party, first of all, and, secondly, almost as important as the first, to connect. 

Wynwood has it all... right?

Good fucking Monday. I have this love, hate relationship with Mondays. Even though it doesn't get easier to wake my ass up, Monday has this "do nothing" aura that's great. We all know it yet don't admit it. Just one more of our social mysteries. 

We finished a week back with Wynwood, it's history, and how it's come to "Wynwood" today. Let's talk about Wynwood today, starting with what the hell it is.

Poppin'. All I got for Wynwood (today) is poppin'. Tourists have flooded the streets, artists have only added more to the already full murals and the shopping never (I mean never) stops. Our view on Wynwood is simple. Its become a tourist hotspot and we should feel honored. 

Before we get caught up in our favorite, trendy spots,  I'd like us to see Wynwood from two perspectives. 1.) as a newcomer and 2.) as a local.

Newcomer: As a newbie to the 33127, it can be a little much. There's so much art that most don't know where to look! We take this as a bad thing (all these fucking tourists with their cameras!!), but ya'll know I think it's great. What community has such a vast array of murals, stencils, graffiti and portraits? I'm not asking about Miami, I'm talking about the world. Wynwood is one of the most active arts entertainment districts, period. With the addition of shops and food, it's a beautiful maze you don't want to get out of. 

Locals: Miamians tend to complain a little. Hey, it's not against you. I'm born and raised here too! In general, all locals have a complaint about tourists busting into their home away from home. Wynwood has seen it's fair share of locals. We started what has grown to be an international hub for art, culture and creativity. Now we see Wynwood as South Beach. Let's remind you that South Beach 30 years ago was a shit hole. Past 16th street (Lincoln Rd) and you'd have a hefty risk of getting shot. 

So, what can we do but get this all straightened out! We made a beautiful community that other people want to see. Through the years, we added more art, more shops and developed something that's never been done before. Why aren't we proud of that? Why let tourists keep us away from home? I have no clue. Yes, Wynwood is becoming too expensive, overpopulated and saturated in business. That isn't an excuse. That, young madam or man, is Miami. We made it. 

PS: Stay on the lookout for our view of Wynwood in the next 10 years. If we've developed what we have now, who knows where we'll be in 20. God I love mysteries.