I am Oaklandish // 23 // Lukas Brekke-Miesner, Writer

Posted on September 23, 2011

Jean Grae, the under-appreciated lyricist, not the one of X-Men fame, dropped an mixtape once. It was called “The Bootleg of the Bootleg EP”. That shit got me through tough times at NYU. That’s not what this post is about, but I think it provides the appropriate context for the meta-meta-ness that’s about to happen.

Today, my blog is going to cover another blog. Well, one of the writers of another blog. The blog in question is 38thNotes . The contributor highlighted is Lukas Brekke-Miesner, Oakland resident his whole damned life.

Well, I suppose he did do a brief stint in SoCal. While attending UCLA to get his B.A. in Education, no one worked harder than Luke to spread the gospel of Oakland throughout the world. That lay a perfect foundation for his blog, built in collaboration with his closest friends (I see you, Niema). 38thNotes is easily The Bay Area’s finest source for happenings in music, art, history and sports. In addition to featuring pretty much anyone who is anyone in the young Oakland arts scene, 38th Notes is also one of the major organizers of The Bay Abridged, a seasonal mixtape highlighting music you would’ve missed if not for reading their blog. Potentially balancing out the iconography of Moneyball, which is out in theaters today (will let you know what I think when I see it) — The current “The Bay Abridged” has cover art that makes me want to pull out my old green and gold jerseys.

Running the blog requires Luke to be present at nearly every event that happens on either side of The Bay. I’m not sure how he does it — especially considering that he’s also a full time educator at Oakland High and a regular contributor to Hovy-Hov’s latest effort Life + Times. That makes sense, since Luke is constantly rubbing elbows with world famous producers like Alameda’s own, Jason “Trackademicks” Valerio

I am also reminded that Luke and I met nearly a decade ago while cutting our teeth in the youth poetry slam scene. Always gifted with word, Luke recently posted this poem “Remembering Raymen Justice”. A sobering, honest and accurate look at the untimely death of one of his closest friends and students, perhaps this video best reflects Luke’s way of being in the world: focused, poignant, humble and probing.

As a writer, caring educator, historian and man about town, Luke Brekke-Miesner is the epitome of Oakland. Thickwit applauds his efforts and those of 38thNotes. Reader, don’t be scared to click on through to see what they’re about. Luke, what size you want your t-shirt to be? I’m trying to get a picture with you at Oaklandish’s October 7th function — and I want to make sure you and I co-ordinate in our limited edition “I am Oaklandish” tees.

This blog is brought to you, in part, by local textile and cultural purveyors, Oaklandish. Oaklandish will be throwing a party on the 1st Friday in October at their new Downtown Oakland store. Everyone I profile is invited to attend as an honored guest and will receive a limited edition “I AM OAKLANDISH” t-shirt. In a city of roughly 500,000 residents, there’s no way I can cover everyone or everything, but I’ll do my best to rep a cross section of folks that reflect our city’s varied perspectives and populations. Also, it is important to note that none of the honorees know that they’re being highlighted until the blog post is up, because surprises are sometimes fun, cuzzo. This means that some folks profiled might not closely align themselves with Oaklandish — and that’s fine by me — I mean no ill intent, nor make any assumptions — just want to shout out some folks who make a real impact on the world, from this pearl of a city on the East Side of the Bay.


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