I’ve been talking about doing this for the longest time and now here it is. This isn’t my first blog though. I had a brief stint on Blogger for a while and I found out the hard way that I wasn’t ready to put my thoughts out on prime time Internet, when a psychologist tried to repair a rift in an old wound that opened up between me and an ex-girlfriend after she had read one of my posts. I had to shut it down.
Three years later, I am compelled to bring life as I live it to the screen once again. I want to thank Antioch University’s MFA Creative Writing Program for giving me the heart to write once again. Wait…I take that back. Going to Antioch got me back into the habit of writing again. I lost the heart to write ten years ago, after another ex-girlfriend read my journal. She read all the things I wrote about how angry I was about her calling me excessively and somehow always figuring out my email passwords and pager codes. Did she have reason to be snooping? Of course she had her suspicions, but all her fears of me cheating stem back to the woman I started seeing after one of our breakups, and of course there is more to that story than I care to get in to right now, but anyone who keeps a journal knows the feeling of violation when our thoughts are read by the uninvited. I stopped writing altogether. There were some rotten stakes in our dilemma, and I couldn’t risk sharing my soul on the surface of the page, as I’d done most everyday since I started journaling in 1983. Five long years after she’d left the picture, my most trusted companion sat abandoned in the bottom of a box packed after she and I split.
I need to make this relationship right again. I need to write again. I need to get that passion to write reworked into a frenzy, and I need a million ideas to come flying out of the whirlwind of words that I once used, and I want again to become acquainted with the feeling of power that those distinct elements of language induce.
I was blessed enough to have been able to use my word force to contribute to the excellent journalism of hip hop during the Golden Era. I used the pen name Loupy D for a dozen years to sign off on all the interviews, record, book and DVD reviews, and other commentary I wrote for independent and national magazines from 1991 to 2003. Before the Internet took over, we read magazines and newspapers to be informed. The title of my blog – Loupy D in the 21st Century – is purposed to bring my analog insistence into this digital existence and see what it do. Life is interesting again, and I feel like I need to share it with everybody. I invite you to comment, share and just come say hello. There’s a lot more to come. I don’t know what the next day might bring, but I’ll do my best to keep it interesting and keep you coming back…I promise you!
By Loupy D
Lawrence Evan Dotson was born in Los Angeles, California. He decided early in life that he wanted to tell stories. He was a character who could entertain his two older sisters by staging his own version of a church radio broadcast that they would listen to on Sunday nights. His desire to perform followed him through grade school, and in his senior year of high school, a UCLA professor scouted and urged Lawrence to major in theater. Lawrence felt convicted to follow in the footsteps of his father, so instead of declaring Theater Arts as a freshman, he went in undeclared to sit out for a spot in the highly competitive Engineering Department. It only took one calculus class to convince Lawrence that Theater Arts was his calling and that he was going to achieve his goal of being recognized for his talents. While attending UCLA, he combined his interests in art and music and was one of the founders of the UCLA Jazz and Reggae Festival. He was on the Student Committee for the Arts, which put on the Jazz at the Wadsworth Series in conjunction with KKGO FM.
Lawrence became more aware of social justice issues affecting the African American community on campus and became active in organizations that promoted positive change. He collaborated with students from other majors and formed the African Theater Collective, which promoted and produced plays from the African Diaspora. That action inspired a performance protest demanding the hiring of more black professors in the Theater Department, and tenure for longtime Professor, Dr. Beverly J. Robinson. The performance was based upon the subject matter that Dr. Robinson taught: the procession of the Black Theater experience in America as depicted through the development of the African slave from the plantations, to the pulpit, to the stage.
Blessed with a wealth of knowledge and a rich experience from the University, Lawrence graduated and landed a job as an actor with University Express, an outreach program managed by a former student of Dr. Robinson. The troupe performed plays at Middle and High Schools that stressed the importance of continuing education. The job allowed him enough time to go on auditions, but after a year Lawrence burnt out on the acting treadmill. He met an editor for an underground Hip Hop magazine called No Sellout in 1991. Lawrence had his first article published in the second issue, an interview with L.A. DJ Michael Mixxin Moor. Lawrence began writing under “Loupy D”, coined from a childhood nickname. He wrote articles, reviews and commentary, and conducted interviews with some of Hip Hop’s top entertainers like The Notorious BIG, Wu Tang Clan, Erykah Badu and many others until 2003.
In 2015, he earned an MFA in Creative Writing, after submitting a draft of a memoir based on his experiences growing up in post-Civil Rights Era Los Angeles. He's published an academic article, “Persona in Progression: A Look At Creative Nonfiction Literature In Civil Rights and Rap,” in Assay: A Journal of Nonfiction Studies. He also served a brief stint as the music editor for the online writing journal Drunk Monkeys.
In between writing stints, Lawrence has and continues to be an avid amateur photographer and independent film professional. He will be releasing books and videos of his work over time, just as soon as he figures out how to balance work life with the life of single parenting two sons.
View all of Loupy D's posts.