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Interview with Earl Rush 

Part 2 of interview at the botom of the page

 

 

Sheila McNeil goes 1on 1 with Earl Rush

 

PART  ONE  OF THREE PART SERIES

Asking all the tough questions

 

Sheila McNeil: Everybody goes to your site to see what's happenng in the DC Area . Are you illiterate? You cannot spell to save your life . Do you need me to show you how to use spell check?

 

Rush: I know it's a problem,  I am not illiterate, I am just lazy.

 

 

Sheila McNeil: I have provided a lot of photo galleries,  saved your tired little web site with my Betcha didn't know column and I am a  all around ambassador for StuckOnSalsa . I know you are very tight with your cash and I don't know about any body else but I want to know when are you going to start paying me?

 

Rush: That' s too tough a question can I get back to that one?

 

Sheila Mc Neil: Wow a week before the StuckOnSalsa All-Star Salsa Cruise www.allstarsalsacruise.com Are you excited ?

Rush : I am extremely excited about the cruise and about the Pre -cruise Pre Salsa Rueda Congress party at the Radison Hotel in downtown Miami. My people tell me the electricity will be back up by next week and if not,  it is going to be electric anyway  with all of the people coming down early for the cruise the night before and looking for something to do. I think it was great for Billy Fajardo to ask   StuckOnsalsa to be a part of the biggest party in Miami this year. It will be a chance for people who are there for the Salsa Rueda Congress and those of the All Star Salsa cruise to meet and greet.

 

Mc Neil : How did you go from having a 4 week stint at Maxim's to having a party with Billy Fajardo, Henry Hererra, Katy Marlowe, Renee Gueits and Albert Torres the number 1 salsa promoter in the world?

Rush : Billy Fajardo asked me to participate and he along with the others are associated with the Salsa Rueda Congress. It's not like Albert Torres picked up the phone and said  yo GoGo Earl we need  StuckOnSsalsa to throw a party. I don't think he has  ever heard of StuckOnSalsa

McNeil: Okay enough of the infomercial about the cruise let's get to the  tough questions. I promised my readers some good stuff..

Besides yourself and Maribel Soto who would  you take from DC to go into a  salsa battle with ? I will give you 5 to 7 names

Rush: Kara Cheatham, Cecilia Villallobos, Karen Aguilar, Rona LeBlanc,  PsyonMauricio, Shaka Brown. Orlando  Machuca. Kelvin Harris and Rukus Esi of Clave Kazi in  no particular order.  I know  that's  9 but you already know that I cannot spell  but  now  you know I can count. Also I would take Stracy Diaz and Tony Hernandez but  they are not from DC .

McNeil:What  about your top 5 to 7  Djs.

Rush : Again in no particular order here we go , Dj Emily  DJ Bruno,  Dj Elvira , Dj Andy , Dj Nancy Alonso, Dj Azucar, Dj Mike Morales , Dj Chris. He no longer plays but when he  did Piero Gonzalez of S.C.A.M was my favorite. He was a great dancer and he knew how to play for a dancer crowd. I miss him terribly.

McNeil : I see you know a lot of of  the Djs but you don't use some of them a lot , What's the deal with that? There are a couple in particular that I know you are good friends  with but they don't play at your gigs ?

Rush: First of all Kelvin and I have to have a certain kind of DJ to play at the StuckOnSalsa parties and we cannot have any one that has off and on nights. We have worked hard to build our reputation of always having a slamming salsa Dj  that plays great salsa consistently. Our crowd is the hot dancers and we cannot afford to have some one play some obscure old shool song that no one can  dance to.  Sometimes some people who you don't see play a lot at our parties have other engagements that night. So it's not like we have not tried to get certain djs. But to be honest with you Sheila if I may, I personally don't like the same thing all the time so I try to steer away from some of the djs that play weekly and try to use Djs that you don't hear on a regular basis, that keeps it fresh. There are some places that you know everybody is going to during the week , they might not be inclined to go out and hear the  same dj on a weekend , they may or they may not , I don't think I would. But that's just me.

McNeil: Who are some of your favorite groups in the area? You know me,  who ever is hot ,   that's who I roll with.  Right now I am definitely rolling with Stracy Diaz and Tony Hernandez,  PsyonMauricio and Suzanne Swadner,  Azucar Moreno, and ClaveKazi is scorching right now.

McNeil: Better than the Karate ClaveKazi group?

Rush : Two different types of groups . And again honestly you cannot ask me anything like that because the Karate group was particularly special for me. It was a special group of people at a special salsa time for the city. I am too involved with everybody in that group to not be biased.. My  boys Tracy and Terrence were in that group   The ClaveKazi  out right now  is very tight and can certainly  hold their own . They are very classy. Shaka and Irene Holtzman  have done a tremendous job with the group We are  giving a  DVD  release party with Shaka , and Ismael Otero on December 10, 2005  Maybe we can get Shaka to hold a ClaveKazi reunion ? Maybe we can have a dance off with the Karate routine and the current routine and then  Shaka and PsyonMauricio the original ClaveKazi can do to their thing. Wow that would be hot ! I would pay for that and everyone knows I don't pay to go anywhere.

McNeil : What happened at Club Mate "

Rush : Obviously nothing. We could not overcome the location. Every one thought the neighborhood was too dangerous. . We didn't have any pull over in Baltimore so we had to get support from elsewhere . The opening night  Gardel's  had  1,000 dollar dance contest and TriniJungke juice in Philly had a big affair . The opening night was light and I decided just like in poker you have to know when to hold them  and when to fold them

Mc Neil: What happened to The Music Box ? I thought that was going pretty good

Rush : Every body thinks I shut down the Sunday social because I did not get any support the weekend of the DC Salsa Congress? That was not the case at all. , the management at the Music  Box wanted to change the agreement of our deal in mid stream and that is not the way I roll. I told her she could go from having 1oo  people to back to having her regular 8 people she usually had on Sundays .

McNeil : What dancers are up and coming in your opinion ?

Rush: The Azucar Moreno girls Janice Woodward and Kim Yates are both up and coming . Christina Chauca , Socorro Reyes, Stephanie of Tumbando , Lonny Bramzon and Rukus Esi of ClaveKazi  actually these two guys are not up and coming they are there already .Tony Nardolillo and Ronald Rios have improved a lot. . I think too many guys and gals spend too much time trying to be like some one else instead of developing their own style.

 

Tomorrow Part 2

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Sheila Mc Neil Interview  with Earl Rush Part 2

 

McNeil: What is your best asset as far as a teacher

Rush: I have a uncanny ability to break down steps in the simplest form. I can teach almost any body the basic steps of salsa and mambo within a hour

 

McNeil : What is the high light of your dance career?

Rush : Performing with George Clinton and Parliament Funkadelic  on stage at Howard University

 

 

McNeil: Why do you think everyone goes to Stuckonsalsa.com?

 

Rush : That's easy there are 2  reasons , the site is the only up to the minute salsa news source in the area and everyone loves the photos.

 

Sheila McNeil: How long have you been a promoter ?

Rush: I have been promoting salsa for 2 years. I have been promoting parties ever since I was 16 years old. I used to do a happy hour at a place called Friday's where Nancy Alonso was my Dj and about 6oo people a week would come right after work. The format  was house and Rand B.   That was about 2o years ago. I have not had as much success with the Latin Happy Hours.

McNeil : What was you favorite salsa party that StuckOnsalsa has been a part of?

Rush:: Up until now it was the "Party " at Zanzibar last November , it was electric .and I will never forget it. That party was off the hook.

McNeil : You are always crying about how you don't make money on your events If that is the case why do you do it?

Rush: Why does any salsa promoter do it? They all have addictions and they want people to be around them while they go through their addictions. A drunk doesn't want to drink alone. A smoker doesn't want to smoke alone.

McNeil: I know you well  and you are very  spoiled and at times you can be difficult if things don't go your way. How has Kelvin and you gotten  along for so long and not had any arguments?

Rush : We did have one argument once but it was about one of our girls , Bernie Rosada in Philly. She introduced us to the Philly scene and she is like a sister to us. Kelvin is very protective of her and I had a run in with Bernie and Kelvin took her side.  I got upset for a day but Kelvin didn't even give it a thought. Other than that  there has been no static and I have known Kelvin for about 20 years. Kelvin and I have one thing in common and it is the reason we get along so well . We have a no drama policy when it comes to salsa.. Because salsa is supposed to be fun.

McNeil " Any advice for up and coming salsa promoters?

Rush: Yes keep it simple, Wood floor , Good DJ and advertise, advertise , advertise. A lot of promoters don't realize it takes more than a email list to get people to come out. Go to as many events as you can , especially if you want people to support you. If it's salsa night then play salsa not everything else and a little salsa. Don't get into it for the money because trust me there is none.

McNeil: What is one thing you don't like about the salsa scene?

Rush : That's easy every body wants to get in for free and no one wants to spend any money when they go out to support the venues . Salseros think because they are good dancers everything should be for free. But they don't realize the promoters have expenses and if they lose money they will stop having events.

McNeil: Your 5oth Birthday is coming up on Friday December 9, 2005 anything special planned?

Rush : Yes

 

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