"I met Donald (DJ) in 1981. I was a transfer student from Los Angeles Harbor College. I was studying computer science in pursuit of an undergraduate degree at the University of Southern California. I saw DJ zipping across the quad under FULL POWER AND CONTROL in his electric wheelchair. An African American as I am too! After my flagging him down and exchanging our greetings I asked, "What are you doing here?" My level of ignorance forced me to conclude that he not only could not being going to school here but I could not understood at all that he was a graduate student and had already earned his undergraduate degree from U.C. bERKELEY IN sOCIALOGY!!!


Donald, Edua and mACK

Donald Riley W/Two Student Friendz

  "While acquiring my masters degree in Public Administration, a very good friend of mine from school who lived (and still lives) in Watts told me about the Jazz and Drum festivals. Festivals like these helped me to pursue my love of jazz and drum.

  I have been coming to the festival since 1985. I am from Long Branch, New Jersey. I came to Los Angeles by way of U. C. Berkeley and took up residence at the University of Southern California.

   My degree focuses on Community Activism and Advocacy with an emphasis on minorities and the disabled. People seeing me at these festivals and accommodating my physical requirements for attending them makes both myself and them more aware of what actually constitutes a physical challenge.

  I can hear the delicious music. I can taste all the beautiful and uniquely stimulating things that there are to see. And I can smell and feel the vibrations of kindred spirits as they listen and feel some of what I do..."


[Updated 10/11/2017]



Watts Towers
Day of the Drum
Watts Towers
Simon Rodia Jazz Festival

Coming Back...


;Harry Brashear

H. Land Jr