I had mentioned a story I wanted to share with you all…
This Sunday (12/30/12) I joined my father, DJ of 31years, Chaz Millionaire on his show, JazzReflections on 89.9 KMOJ from 2-4pm. It was nice being back at the radio station I’d grown up on. We played music, talked about what I’ve been working on, gave away tickets, and played my first single “DOLO” for the first time on the radio. It was such a fulfilling experience, one, being on the radio and playing my track for the first time in my hometown, and two, being able to connect musically with someone I love but have had a rocky relationship with. (Music and fishing have been our saviors.) After his show, the next few hours are pre-programmed and no one’s at the station. We stayed about an hour after, burning the recorded show and burning CDs for my father’s dear friend who’s in the hospital. Around 5pm we began packing up. The phone board lit up. I asked if I could answer it and did. It was an older gentleman who had called earlier thanking KMOJ and the DJs because he “listened to KMOJ 24/7 and loves the station” I went on to thank him and before I hung up, noticed another call was lit up on the board. Since I had answered the first call, I figured why not take the second. As soon as I picked up the operator got on saying “This is a collect call from an inmate at Ramsey County, to accept press 5, to hear the charges for this call press 2” – I looked at my father and told him we had to take it. I pressed 2, and it was $2 for the call. I proceeded and pressed 5. As soon as I accepted a brother came on “Thank you SO much for accepting maaan, I can’t believe I got thru. I’ve been calling family all day and my OWN family hasn’t even accepted my calls. This is crazy. I never thought I’d have to call KMOJ to do what I’m about to ask…” My father responded, “What’s good man, we all family, how can we help you?” The brother replied, “Maan I can’t believe this. Man, my girl’s pregnant at the crib so, I went out last night to pick up some subway for her and on my way back I get stopped in my Cadillac on deuce deuces by the police. They check my L’s and I was driving on a suspended license. I had all the money, both our cell phones, the keys – everything with me in the car. They handcuff me, tow my car and take me to jail without letting me get my keys or anything! I can’t even call my girl and let her know what’s going on. It’s been a day and she ain’t got shit at the crib cuz we just moved in. I’ve been tryna call my relatives to have them go over and tell my girl what’s goin on but no one’s answering. If you could call ma dukes and let her know, I’ll be forever indebted to you. I’ll hit your hand man, I owe you on everything I love.” My father replies, “You don’t owe me, this what family does. And I don’t asnswer the phones after 4, so really it’s my daughter. And yes, I can do that. But what you rollin round on damn near New Years with a suspended L’s for?! You know whiteys out here to get you! Get your shit together they out here bored and gonna get you for all you got.” We get the number, call his mom and try to explain who we are and why we’re calling. We hold the phone up to the mic so he could tell her personally, but the operator detects the 3-way call and hangs up on site. I’m not sure if the mother thought we were fucking around, she couldn’t hear or a mixture of the two but she hangs up. He calls back. We call her back and a man answers talking crazy and hangs up again. We let the brother know and ask if there’s another number we could call. “There’s not,” he says. I ask him if there’s an address we can go to let his girl know. There is. He gives us the address and says, “Maan if y’all could swing by whenever you’ve got time and let her know I swear when I get out I gotchu. This is crazy.” We assure him that we’ll get the message to his lady. In all the years my pop’s been on the radio, he said he’s never gotten a call from jail. My first time at the new station, we just happened to be at the station past 4, I answer the call – DIVINE INTERVENTION. My father and I go out to eat and have a long talk about our relationship and get a lot off our chests. I grew up a Daddy’s girl, but somewhere along the way, that changed drastically. The moon was shining beautifully, and for the first time in a long time I knew he was sincere in his speaking and forgave him for the past. It was almost 2013 and I knew I had to be open to change and new beginnings. We called the brother’s mom again and left her a voice message. My phone died at dinner. After dinner we were going to go our separate ways. Me, back to my Ma’s crib and him, to the hospital to deliver the CDs we had burned to his good friend. My phone then vibrated. I was shocked because I’d seen my phone shutoff but answered it nonetheless. It was my grandma. I thought to myself, “She WOULD be the one who’d be able to get thru on a dead cell. LOL” She suggested we stop by the brother’s woman’s crib since we were already in the neighborhood. So I followed my dad to the address we’d gotten earlier. He had told us it was the apartment on the top left, but there were two sides to the building so we weren’t sure which one. We tapped a window that was lit up and asked if they could open the door for us. A man came the door and let us in. I looked at the mail box and saw the brother’s last name…apartment #7. We knocked on the door. A pretty face poked her head thru a crack in the door and asked who we were. We told her we were there on behalf of her man and she replied with a kind smile, “Oh! Let me get some pants on so you can step in.” LOL. She let us in and we told her the story. She was shocked and very very thankful for us. We asked if she had any food or money she replied, “No.” I had my dad get our leftover Chinese food from the car and some homemade cookies we’d picked up before going to eat. While he was outside I told the sister that I’m rarely in town and that all of these things that leaded up to answering the phone was NO coincidence. And if she or he wants to repay us, just PAY IT FORWARD if she sees someone in need, help that person. He returned with the food and gave her $20. She was almost in tears. It felt so good to have helped this beautiful couple under such weird circumstances with my father. At that moment, I knew I was exactly where I was supposed to be, with exactly who I was supposed to be there with. The brother, his woman, being able to patch things up with my father, the beautiful moon, ending my 2012 year in such a way, all touched my heart. I know we helped him out in a way he’ll forever be thankful for. But he helped me as well. Music is what brought this about. Community is what brought this about. We ARE our brother’s keepers. I want to wish you ALL a wonderful 2013 and many years to come. Be aware of your surroundings and be mindful of the little miracles that happen in your life. Everything is perspective and things could ALWAYS be worse. When you’re down, know that you are STILL lucky to be in the position you’re in because there’s always someone who has It worse. STAY UP Y’ALL.
With Love, M.Lovejoy