Rising Voices note: This is the first of monthly blog posts that will be written by each our 2014 grantees . This post is written by David Escalante, one of the coordinators of the South of South project based in Mérida, Mexico.
We started the month with a re-organizational meeting. Part of this first activity involves activating the necessary networks to begin the recordings and the workshops of the project “South of South.” Before organizing our work, we started to think about virtual networks and hashtags, we designed a communicative image (see right), analyzed the recording tools, designed the transportation routes that we'll use, and above all, we thought about how to share what we know and how to be ready to learn from others.
Our meetings are a blend of seriousness with moments where we have the freedom to smile, as we talk about the Rizoma Community , a collaborative space for the recording, editing, and production of sound recordings with social or community content.
In the photograph appear several team members who are giving life to the project. From left to right are Raúl Escaroz , guest at the meeting. Through his work on networking initiatives, we have been tying up some of the loose ends, especially creating those community connections important for the project. One one side, Iván Chan Cortazar , agro-ecologist, will help us plan the necessary routes when we set off from the Rizoma Community (our house/studio) in order to visit various communities to record with the musicians. We have thought about the routes and the time needed to reach the communities. He has a mini-van, and surely we will have a lot of fun during these travels.
On the other side is another collaborating member, Lorenzo Itzá Ek . Lore is a programmer, who is sensitized to social and community work, and together with him, we are designing our strategy to share our information to be more dynamic and have the greatest reach. We also decided to document the strategies that each musician uses, as a way to create a manual that can help us all. At his side is Guillermo “Memo” Gorocica , a social worker and musician. He will be in charge of creating compositions so that the musicians that need a foundation that he or she can develop. And next to him is me, David , and my job will be to be the link between the musicians and conducting the workshops on the use of technologies for recording.
The challenges that we are facing include the fact that many of the musicians travel, so our initial schedule will be modified over the course of the next few moments. There will be times were we can move activities up and other times where we will have to postpone activities to respect the time of the other collaborators.
Something that we would like to highlight about the workshops is that they will be based on community co-existence. We want to learn about music and collaboration while we eat, while we improvise, and while we laugh.
Finally, we are waiting for a technological tool in order to begin the recordings and workshops. The first participants will be “Ruido Social” (Social Noise), musicians from a community called Komchen  in Mérida. And we are close to confirming the participation of two more musical collaborations.
The first results from the workshops will be online for free download in late July and early August!
* This first post is dedicated to the memory of MC Maya Cima Atte: Your seed will only grow in all of us :