just back from a quick visit state-side, too much fun (not what i’d usually say). fallen arrows, a direct-to-garment printshop out of atlanta, was throwing their inauguration party and maseo, from de la soul, was scheduled to spin. being close to fallen arrows and a big fan of nineties east coast hip hop made the sounds of getting down to maseo in a low key environment something i couldn’t miss. fallen arrows was celebrating the opening of their new space and demo-ing the new printer they’d recently bought. i arrived wednesday night after a near empty flight- nothing like a private jet across the atlantic. the company’s founder and owner, tito sands, picked me up at the airport in a beat-up gmc van. he looked about as frayed as the van, but was optimistic about the party. “hurricane season is almost over, so that’s good,” we laughed together. it sounded as though it had been a long month of preparation. he described lots of to-do lists, but it seemed as though almost everything was ready. all the booze and bartenders had been organized. most of the decorating was done. the neighbors had all been given a head’s up. he had his permits and had hired the necessary security. but whenever preparations for a big event seem like they’re going good there’s inevitably a glitch. “the fucking printer isn’t working,” tito sighed as we exited the highway. he explained this was a big bummer given that the idea was fallen arrows would do free demo prints, a really effective way to get potential clients excited about the company. but sometimes technical difficulties are just unavoidable.
friday the last touches were put on the space and the parking lot. and then rain clouds rolled in. then hail, followed by sleet, and then some sun, and then some more sleet. we all started hitting the kegs early it was hard not to get a little down. but the fallen arrows’ crew weren’t about to let a little bad weather ruin their inauguration. they were determined to have a good time. and as the night set in the clouds melted away, leaving a clear brisk fall night. there were three fire pits outside and the food truck was selling all kinds of goodies. inside the new space a steady stream of people checked out merchandising and enjoyed the bar and some projections. at 8 dj double dutch (atl) opened outside spinning lots of dirty south. she was followed by dj lil ray (nyc) who mixed it up with her new york styles. there was lots of head bobbing and hula hooping. lil ray handed over the turn tables to maseo around 10 and the night didn’t stop again until 4am. outside maseo spun nineties and early 2000’s hip hop classics. i’m no expert by any means… couldn’t tell you the discography of anyone, but somehow maseo spun everything i like about hip hop. the popular culture without the bling. it was as if he had my playlist. and apparently i wasn’t the only one. at 12 the party moved indoors and got all kinds of good. maseo seemed to be having a blast! he just kept spinning. and mixing all kinds of shit from eighties tv show soundtracks- nightrider or the a-team, to fela kuti’s afro-funk, back to some nineties hip hop, and then on to eighties glamour. all kinds of sounds and everyone dancing away. there was more than enough alcohol and the music just didn’t stop.
fallen arrows scored a handful of new clients and they recuperated the money they’d put down. there was no extra cash but it didn’t seemed like they minded, the night had come off with out any scandals and the hang overs were bearable. “it was the best kept party secret of atlanta,” someone had told me the night before and it seemed true. if fallen arrows proves to be half as good at printing as they are at organizing underground parties they’ve got a prosperous future ahead. word is maseo was so stoked he wants to do it again, i’m looking forward to it and would hop across the pond for another fallen arrows get-down- without thinking twice.
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