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Girl Fest Interview

October 28, 2011 at 04:50AM

Jason Tom featured in an exclusive interview for November's edition of Girl Fest Hawaii's monthly e-zine, "What's Going On." Sign up for the Girl Fest newsletter here.

Our Conscious Brothers
An Interview with Jason Tom
The "Human Beatbox"

Girl Fest loves its conscious brothers in the community working to equalize gender disparities between men and women as well as boys and girls. That's why we jumped at the chance to interview local Hip-Hop artist Jason Tom aka the "Human Beatbox." You may have seen him on stage busting out sounds that normally come out of machines, but you may not know that he also teaches his art to girls and boys-- not to mention he's our kind of man against violence!

GFH: Where did you grow up, what do you do (your passion), and who were your influences?

JT: I grew up in Honolulu's Chinatown on the island of Oahu since the early 80s. I believe we are the agents of change. Bay Area California beatboxer Elaine Chao indirectly influenced me to get into the beatbox performing after I caught her 2003 Showtime At The Apollo performance on television. My biggest beatbox influence to date is Rahzel. We met at the International Human Beatbox Convention in the Big Apple and I was at a complete loss for words.

GFH: You teach downtown. Please give details and highlight some girls you teach, if possible.

JT: I opened up the Human Beatbox Academy at the ArtSmith on Smith Street across from Little Village restaurant. Class is every Wednesday from 3:30pm-6:15pm and we welcome all ages and genders. The first class is free. My youngest [student] was 4-year-old Tinkerbell. Her older brother Chase was my most enthused student. Maylene is my current regular female student and she picks it up well. Her tempo is great and she's creative with the curriculum taught. 

Working with my students from scratch is exciting because they progress and develop and grow with the art of beatboxing. On occasion they even perform with me on stage. In 2010 my youngest was 7-year-old Pele when I taught at the Diverse Art Center on Queen Street and she had a lot of fun. Female enrollment for beatboxing was at a high [then], too.

I think some might have an impression that beatboxing is a guy thing. Some parents say they want to enroll their son but do not think it is for their daughter. As I mentioned, Elaine Chao (www.gotspit.com) influenced me to get into performing after seeing her rock the stage beatboxing on TV. I think if it weren't for her I do not think I would be performing as soon as I did as a beatboxer.

GFH: What kinds of things do you promote as an artist. What's important to you?

Expression, communication, encouragement, education, literacy, languages, tapping into creative outlets, perseverance, play, travel, the arts, faith, fashion, and [teaching] our youth. I believe that a teacher's number one priority and objective is to take initiative to be a leader of his or her community and positively impacting our generation. [Teachers] also should also value the students overall well being and concerned about their environment. Sexual harassment and domestic violence against women concern me. Human nature concerns me-- how people attack one another either verbally, physically or passive aggressively. Bullying and adult bullying at work is also a serious issue.

GFH: What do you know about the roots of hip-hop and how do you feel about how the Hip-Hop genre has changed?

JT: There is a lot I don't know that I'm consistently learning. Hip-Hop is recognized as having "four pillars" in the arts of writing (aerosol art), deejaying, b-boying/b-girling, and emceeing. There are also other elements that play into the culture such as knowledge, beatboxing, fashion, etc.

As with any art or culture, Hip-Hop evolves for the better, for the worse, and in between. There is a watered-down version that degrades and objectifies women in a light that does not honor females. However, I don't think Hip-Hop is to blame. "Mainstream media" is to blame for degrading our younger generation with messages to dumb them down-- distracting us away from the truth and good news. Hip-Hop that uplifts a community, with lyrical content of depth and substance at its core, still exists. There are Hip-Hop jams today that strive to stay true to Hip-Hop culture and I highly recommend it for anyone to check events like these out. ***


Jason with his hanai little brother, bringing up the next gen!

Girl Fest also recommends you check Jason's classes out at:
The Human Beatbox Academy (of the ArtSmith)
1116 Smith Street, #215
Honolulu, HI 96817

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Honolulu native Jason Tom, Hawaiʻi's Human Beatbox, is an American award-winning master beatboxer, TEDx presenter, speaker, voice actor, host, mathematician, moonwalker, and author of the Jason Tom Music, Hip Hop And Faith Life Blog that boasts 2.1 million views by 1.9 million unique visitors and adoring readers like you from around the world. Disclaimer: He is not a rapper. "Quality over quantity."

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God loves you too. His love for everyone of us is unconditional love. In math terms..it is limiteless.

Hello! Great dancer and beatboxer. Would be honored to cruise with this awesome guy.

Go Jason!!! Keep climbing that ladder and and make us all proud!!!

Congratulations!!!!!! Youpiiiii

Wow !! Congratulations !!! My friend from Hawaï !!! I hope to meet and work with you one day !! Peace and maximum respect !!

Congrats!

Congratulations Jason, you’ve worked so hard to get to where you are today and I hope you keep growing

Congratulations. Your very famous. Meet new people and let popularity grow.

Congrats Jason! Keep following your dreams & spreading those positive sounds & vibrations!

Wow! So awesome! Congratulations! This is God’s favor on your life. You are doing what God has called you to do. Continue to use the gifts & talents God has given you and may you give all honor & glory to Him. As God continues to anoint you with this amazing gift, He will increase your abilities, empower you and equip you for greater things. Enjoy this incredible journey He has for you. The best is yet to come!

Congratulations Jason!! You are a beautiful soul & very worthy of Oprah knocking on your door.
Your heart is unique in that one really doesn't have to have met you physically to feel your kindness & love. I have never physically met you, but I feel like I have.
Your love for people & God are truly felt. You are wonderful keep reaching for the stars.☝

Congrats Jason! You're truly blessed and God's best is yet to come. Alright!

Braddah Jason you are the man

Congrats Jason!! That's awesome!!

Hey Jason, congratulations on the views and feedback that your audience post on your blogs. God has blessed you with the talents and skills that you have to glorify Him.

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Jason Tom is an American award-winning beatboxer, speaker, voice actor, mathematician, and author of his Music, Hip Hop And Faith Life Blog.

Know the fruit of your labor is your labor of love. If you know that, no one can take that from you. When you recognize that, know your worth is eternally internal, not external. When we sow bountifully, we will reap bountifully and bear much fruit that is far bigger than ourselves, what is in our posessions. No earthly riches can fulfill what Father God can. When someone cannot see we are highly favored and the harvest coming our way, know that for him or her though seeing, do not see. Keep on moving and recognize we have more than enough. We need not another person's approval for the fruit of our labor that bears much fruit. Be glad and rejoice for this is the Day that the Lord has made called Today. Know that Father God approves of us, our work ethic and dedication. It is you who Father God is well pleased.
Jason Tom And Olivia Thai
We have to set a standard and raise it once we reach them. Sometimes well tell ourselves, \
The other night after a show I met an 82-year-old lady who is involved with helping communities and she invited me to join her for dinner. We reinforced things about one another. Some of the things she mentioned of me is that she said I have an \
The other night after a show I met an 82-year-old lady who is involved with helping communities and she invited me to join her for dinner. We reinforced things about one another. Some of the things she mentioned of me is that she said I have an \
Watch Jason Tom King of Pop Jam: Michael Jackson Medley on HI Sessions Acoustic Live! Filmed on location at Koolau Ballrooms in Kaneohe.
Watch Jason Tom play Tic Tac Toe on HI Sessions Acoustic Live! Filmed at Koolau Ballrooms in Kaneohe.
Watch Jason Tom's King of Pop Jam: Michael Jackson Medley on HI Sessions Acoustic Live!
Be bold! When a topic is controversial and you feel strongly about it, be unafraid to speak out in public even when in error. Most of us don't care about how politically correct a person can be over how authentic and real he or she is. It's how we learn from one another as long as we're appropriate to one another. Most of the time when we are in error we learn more. That does not mean to be intentionally in error like a troll would be, but it is good to give our best effort to speak out on tough and sensitive topics. No one cares if we are always right. Even a mathematically cannot always be right, but that mathematician will find a way to learn from his or her math errors. If you only spoke out when you are right, then you will not grow into tackling tougher topics. The moment you feel you need to stay silent on tough issues is the moment you've allowed yourself to be passive about an issue that does concern you. We have a voice for our generation. Be that voice. Use your voice. Be passionate and use your voice to advocate on the topics you want to be heard.

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Jason Tom is an American award-winning beatboxer, speaker, voice actor, mathematician, and author of his Music, Hip Hop And Faith Life Blog.

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