Q & A with the Artist

(Interview is with Jamie Laurie from the Flobots.)

Good Soldier
White Flag Warrior

Where did you grow up?

What high school did you go to?
East High School

What was your high school mascot?
What music are you listening to these days?
Lots of psychedelic world music, especially the Siblime Frequencies and Ethiopiques collections. And DOOM

What did you listen to in high school?
They Might Be Giants

What was your favorite class in school?  Least favorite?
I was good at math and bad at Science. Go figure....
If you could pick a "most likely to" for yourself, what would it be?
Most likely to become myself
Did you have a particular teacher that was inspirational in your life?  If so, tell us a little about him or her.
Ms Rhone, my African-American Studies teacher, helped encourage me to be a peacemaker and to help bridge communities of people. I ended up going back and working at my high school as a coordinator of a peer tutoring program. They gave me the classroom right next to hers!

What advice do you have for high school students today?
Be yourself!
What issue affecting young people concerns you the most?

What happened in your life that made you realize that this issue was important?
Working for a few years at my old high school and also at an organization called Youth In Action in Providence, I've seen how young people get caught in between systems. The rules of the street vs the rules of the school. I think it's important that adults help them navigate those conflicting sets of rules in an honest way. Really, that should be a part of our educational system. Young people could become powerful peacemakers if given some guidance!

What organizations do you know of that address this issue?
There's a group in Denver called The Barrio Warriors that works with young people in gangs, and another called the Prodigal Son Initiative which intervenes at a much younger age. In Providence, Youth In Action is still doing an amazing job at developing leadership skills in young people, and the Institute for the Study and Practice of Nonviolence sends trained peacemakers out onto the streets to prevent acts of violence.
All of these groups are incredible!


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