Joshua “Chino” Zhou

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Some things are not fully understandable.
When the good die young we cannot help but wonder what kind of
world it is that we walk in.
Joshua “Chino” Zhou was a good friend of mine since the early high school days.
We made music,
formed a strong friendship,
and more importantly formed a brotherhood.
I always wonder what could drive a man to murder.
Why must the good face gunfire and malice?
I knew Chino as a man free of all ill intention,
without a violent or malicious bone in his body.
Cold blood and heartless trigger fingers robbed my town
of one of it’s most genuinely good people.

Upon learning the news of his murder last night, I froze.

Frozen in disbelief, confusion and anguish.
Social networks saturated with love and remembrance of the man.
For many of us, it still feels surreal.
We awoke to dark clouds and rain.
I have never lost a close friend,
it’s an experience that begs for support and togetherness.
Josh, you were loved and will remain loved.

He was chasing his dreams,
cut down before his visions could come to fruition.
We all have a new perspective on vitality,
life truly is fragile.
We must continue to support each other,
be there for each other
and keep Josh in our hearts and minds.
He will live forever in his music and within us.

Friends and family will continue to dream chase on behalf of the man known by many as Chino.

We love you, fam.
We will celebrate your life.
Fly high. Golden halo.

The Morning After

 

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-Written from a lost girl’s perspective

“The Morning After”

I feel like throwing up,
my hair, I’m holding up.

Can you please pass the bucket
and tell me “fuck it,
baby you’re still beautiful”.
Like how you did last night,
unless it was a lie
I’ve been lied to.
The dealer told me half a pill, why’d I try 2?
Call me crazy but I like you.
Last night I know I said things
But its hard hard to tell what’s real and what’s not while my head rings.
 
I can’t hear a thing, baby
The music was too loud, baby
The high had my whole body in a cloud, baby
I’m starting to come down, baby
Maybe…
…I’m starting to fall now, baby
(Fall where?)
Fall in love.
But I’ve never had the feeling,
I’m just guessin’.
Got some questions,
I know men that have used the word as a weapon.
They say they love me,
then they fuck me,
then they duck me.
He didnt want me.
 
I’ve got stains in my new dress.
The burn of vodka and cigarettes in my chest,
the smell of vodka and cigarettes in my hair, 
and you still hold me close up against your bare…
…skin
We got lost in the sin,
spilled liquor on my chin,
drip down and I’m drugged up,
was fucked up.
Too much sun coming up
through the blinds, no time.
I miss our night together,
last night I thought about spending our life together
Be on this flight forever.
 
Forever together,
I know I’ma mess but
you make me feel better
whenever
you talk,
I really wanna get involved
but it is your call
Maybe we should pause…
 
Slow down.

Student Artist Finds True Passion in Music – An Article by Victoria Aronson

I was featured in the campus paper. Very well written article by Victoria Aronson.
Shouts out to the supporters. Read the full article below.
 
Student Artist Finds True Passion in Music

By Victoria Aronson 

August 31, 2012 
Section: FeaturesTop Stories

 

Far from only labeling himself a rapper, Osaze Akerejah ’14, a philosophy major who is more recognizable by his stage name Saz.É , identifies himself first and foremost as an artist.

Rebuking the pressure merely to conform to what is deemed popular by mainstream artists or society, his creative passion becomes evident as he adamantly proclaims the desire to convey emotional experiences and musical quality through his work. In an interview with The Hoot, Akerejah revealed the personal struggles that have served as a source of inspiration to his work, and the redeeming effect that music had in his life.

Akerejah is originally from New Jersey, and released his first mixtape, “DjFreeez Presents … Saz.É’s The Little Black Boxx ,” in 2010, and a second tape, “DjFreeez Presents … Saz.É’s Invincible Tomorrow,” in February 2012.  Akerejah is currently collaborating with producer Dom? Beats on the upcoming release of the project “One Hell of an Internship.”

One of his most popular songs, “Dear Daughter,” which he performed on campus last year at Culture X, expresses his desire to raise a black daughter, as evident through the lyrics “I am a black father / or soon to be a black father / can’t help but want a pretty black daughter.”

As Akerejah spoke, his passion for music became evident. “I feel like above all else music should be very emotionally connective as well as thought-provoking,” he said.

Akerejah traces his love of rap to his youth, and he recalled initially falling in love with rap at age six, when he would listen to records with his brother. Despite exploring the possibility of becoming a zoologist in subsequent years, Akerejah once again became enraptured with music in seventh grade while experiencing the emotional turbulence accompanying his parents’ divorce. Calling music his savior, he said that music was a “mean to channel negative energy in the household and give me a space to talk about it and express myself.”

Rather than narrowing the scope of his music to a certain audience,  Akerejah said, “I don’t make songs for specific people or groups, I make music for specific emotions and feelings.” Akerejah also uses lyrics as an outlet not only to express his own emotions, whether it be heartbreak, depression or even elation, but as a means to channel the struggles  and experiences of those around him as well.  While discussing his passion for music, he simply stated, “I always said that it saved my life, because it’s been the thing where when I was suicidal, I thought ‘well man, if I’m dead I couldn’t write songs anymore.’ I always say music is my ground.”

Akerejah continued to explain that he idolizes musicians and artists such as Kanye West, Lupe Fiasco, Jay Z and The Beatles. “Rap is very musical,” he said. “The way they put together their verses is like putting together an arrangement for any instrument.” In terms of his own personal style, he labels himself as a conscious rapper, meaning his lyrics focus upon real issues, reflecting the personal ties in his music.

Despite the overwhelming number of individuals hoping to pursue careers as artists, Akerejah distinguishes himself through his unique sound. When questioned as to what he will contribute as an artist to the blend of music that is already produced, Akerejah referenced his background in poetry, a factor that lends itself to his distinct writing approach and complex lyrics.  He explains, “I don’t get too caught up in trying to do what’s hot, I just try to do what sounds good musically.”

Beyond the individuals he idolizes in the musical world, Akerejah continues to look up to other prominent figures, including President Obama. He also has very personal idols, including his deceased brother Nelson, who was autistic. “In his silence, he taught me a lot. He taught me strength,” Akerejah said.

Utilizing this strength, Akerejah remains driven to continue pursuing his musical career post-graduation, confessing, “I will either succeed in music or die trying. I really feel like this is what I am best at and what I was put here to do.”

During his classes at Brandeis, Akerejah said the most rewarding compliment he has received was from a fellow peer who confessed, “You made me appreciate rap. You showed me how it can be an art form and how it can be poetry.”

Akerejah appreciates support from his family and friends, and wishes to perform at SpringFest this year, saying that “Brandeis is the place I really want to love my music. If you don’t have support from family, and I consider Brandeis family, you have nothing.”