Ansar’s voice is amazing. It’s as rich and dark and bold as his black as night skin. It makes you tremble. It freezes you. Only after the initial shock of its strength can you begin listening to it.
I can faintly hear his voice at the top of the staircase, where the sounds of urban street sprawl mix with the sounds of urban underground transportation. With every step downward, his volume increases – I’m getting closer.
At the bottom of the staircase you feel the ground shake.
It’s probably the subway, but maybe it’s the slapping of Ansar’s right hand against his guitar. Maybe it’s his right foot pounding the 30 year old commercial grade linoleum, it’s only color coming from what soles of shoes have carried in from the streets.
I still can’t see him.
After the staircase is a couple of regular beggars, a soft turn right, then Ansar, like a fresh oil stain on concrete. His teeth and eyes are yellow. His shirts are almost always white; today is no different. It is drenched in so much sweat it’s thinning, starting to show the color of his skin. His white shirt is now gray.
He IS slapping his guitar.
He IS pounding his foot into the linoleum.
He sees me and rotates his body in my direction, turning his “whoever’s watching” performance to my performance. I throw my arms in the air and dance towards him. He sings, belts, bellows, “Where you’ve be-en girr-RRRLLL?” in between lines.
I need to catch my train and his song is too amazing to interrupt. He’s singing like I’ve never heard him sing before. I do not stop and chat as usual, even though it’s been months since I’ve seen him last.
Ansar sang at our 10th anniversary party a couple of years back. His voice represents everything we are. Listening to him does incredible things to my body. It makes me want to create and love and record.
I get home and watch the same handful of youtube videos of him throughout the night. Searching “Ansar bart” and “Charles T. bart” always brings and gives the same results. Ansar ♥.