The Great Canadian Road Trip: Song #49/250: Let Your Backbone Slide by Maestro Fresh Wes

In 1989 the album Symphony in Effect dropped authoritatively into a Canadian music scene that was unprepared for its arrival. The artist in question was named Maestro Fresh Wes. The lead single was “Let Your Backbone Slide”. Before the dust settled, Symphony In Effect went almost double-platinum in Canada. “Let Your Backbone Slide” went Gold, making Maestro Fresh Wes the first Hip Hop star from Canada to have a Gold record. The song and album even charted south of the border, too. In 1990, “Let Your Backbone Slide” won the Juno award for Best Dance Recording. There is a lot of significance to the song winning that particular award because “Let Your Backbone Slide” is not a dance-oriented song (although the video does feature dancing). “Let Your Backbone Slide” was Canada’s first bonafide Hip Hop hit. When it went up for consideration at the Juno Awards, there was much embarrassment on the part of the music industry because the Junos did not have an official Hip Hop category. Thus, Maestro Fresh Wes won for Best Dance Recording because that was the category that organizers felt was the closest thing they had to Hip Hop.  In 1991, the Junos rectified that mistake by creating a category known as Best Rap Recording of the Year. Just let this all sink in. Before Maestro Fresh Wes released Symphony In Effect, the official music industry in Canada did not recognize Hip Hop as an official music genre worthy of merit. After Maestro Fresh Wes released “Let Your Backbone Slide”, the Canadian music industry was changed by its impact. Hip Hop took its place on the national stage and has grown in scope ever since. One need look no further than to the careers of The Weeknd and Drake to know how important Hip Hop has become in Canada and around the world. As with many genres of Canadian music, we are now a force to be reckoned with internationally when it comes to Rap and Hip Hop. Canada can hold its head up high. But in order to appreciate where we are as a Hip Hop nation, we first must know from whence we came. This is the story of how it all started. This is the story of Maestro Fresh Wes and a song that changed Canadian music forever. Enjoy.

As much as Maestro Fresh Wes is responsible for introducing Canada to the kick-ass rhyming schemes that came to characterize Hip Hop as a musical style, his ascendance is more accurately the result of a number of factors that had to appear first. Initially, Hip Hop was a musical phenomenon that was restricted primarily to areas such as neighbourhoods and smaller community settings such as community halls, local parks, school yards or street corners. In the 1970s, Hip Hop as a culture and rapping as a musical style began to coalesce around certain regional areas and the personalities whose skills seemed to be a cut above the rest. In New York, those names included Afrika Bambaataa, Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five, along with DJ Kool Herc *(who was just inducted into the Rock n’ Roll Hall of Fame this past year). Rappers like Kurtis Blow and groups like Run-DMC began releasing tracks. As a result, even though it remained very much a fragmented, niche market, Hip Hop started to grow in scope and in influence as a style or genre of music. Even in those pre-Internet times, word began to spread across the border and into various neighbourhoods in Toronto which were demographically suited to embrace this new form of music. But even as Hip Hop took root in areas such as Jane and Finch or in Scarborough, there was no centralized or organized movement. As the 1980s dawned, Hip Hop in Canada was only a reality in isolated neighbourhoods. That all began to change with the launch of a community-based radio show in Toronto called Fantastic Voyage that was hosted by Ron Nelson. *(I have written about Ron in a previous post that you can read here. In order to appreciate the rest of today’s post, I think it is important to re-read my previous post so you can know more about my university classmate and the enormous impact he had in the world of Hip Hop in Canada).

A photograph of Ron Nelson smiling at the camera.
Ron Nelson

Ron and I both enrolled in the Radio and Television Arts Bachelor of Arts programme at Ryerson Polytechnical Institute (now called Toronto Metropolitan University) in 1982. The 1982 cohort was organized into groups of twenty. Ron and I were in the same initial group of 20. While I was figuring out how to do my own laundry and cook my own meals, Ron Nelson was applying to work at the Ryerson community radio station CKLN. Like most college radio stations, CKLN was a not-for-profit organization. It got its budget from the university and from public fundraising campaigns. Its mandate was to broadcast programming that reflected the multi-cultural character of Toronto. The vast majority of the people who worked at CKLN were Ryerson students who volunteered their time. Ron Nelson was one of those volunteers. He showed up at CKLN during his first week of school because he had an idea. He wanted to broadcast his own Hip Hop radio show. By the time 1982 rolled around, Ron had been introduced to some of the artists who were beginning to make waves in the world of Hip Hop in the US. But as he surveyed the musical landscape in Toronto at that same time, he saw none of that emerging culture reflected in on-air television or radio programming. So he took it upon himself to fill the void, as it were. Ron Nelson launched his radio show called Fantastic Voyage and turned Saturday afternoons into must-listen-to programming. Initially, his show was listened to exclusively by those in the small neighbourhood enclaves that had already embraced Hip Hop. But soon, by word-of-mouth, the news spread across Toronto that this new, seemingly exciting and exotic music called Hip Hop was being broadcast on air for real by a young man filled with knowledge of and passion for his subject matter. Ron used the success of Fantastic Voyage to branch out into the world of concert promotion. Because of Ron’s efforts, Toronto saw bands such as Public Enemy come to town. It should also be noted that in addition to the pioneering efforts of Ron Nelson, a second very important factor in helping to launch the Hip Hop movement in Canada occurred when Much Music began broadcasting across the country. The 1980s saw the emergence of music videos as a way for artists and bands to reach a much wider audience than they ever had access to before. In Toronto in particular, the TV station that housed Much Music’s studios, CITY-TV, also ran its own music programmes. One of those programmes was a Friday night televised dance party hosted by a lady named Monika Deol called The Electric Circus. On EC, new and emerging musical talent often appeared live. This show was modeled after the successful U.S. show Soul Train. Like its U.S. counterpart, The Electric Circus proved to be one of the first public entertainment environments to open its doors to acts from the world of Hip Hop in Canada. One of those acts who appeared in 1989 was a young man named Wesley Williams, aka the Melody MC, and now known as Maestro Fresh Wes.

A photo of Monika Deol during the taping of the CITY-TV show The Electric Circus.
Oh My Goodness! It’s Monika Deol and The Electric Circus!!!

At age fifteen, Williams began listening to Ron Nelson’s radio show. Like many young black men, Williams heard his own life experiences being reflected in song for the first time in his life. It is impossible to underestimate the impactful nature of what the Fantastic Voyage radio show meant for young black people in Toronto during the 1980s. Aside from a cultural perspective, one of the most noticeable consequences of showcasing Hip Hop music was that it inspired an entire generation of young kids, like Wesley Williams, to believe that their own poetry had merit, that there was a way forward for them to express themselves and that, perhaps most importantly, they were not alone in experiencing the world in which they found themselves and were, in fact, part of a larger like-minded community. So one day Williams arranged to meet up with his hero, Ron Nelson. In turn, Ron Nelson introduced Williams to a fellow rap artist who went by the stage name Ebony MC. Together, Ebony MC and Melody MC (Williams) formed a collective named Vision MCs. Vision MCs were promoted by a man named Farley Flex *(who some of you will know as a judge on Canadian music talent shows such as Canadian Idol). In a few short years, Melody MC left his musical collective and branched out on his own as the newly minted Maestro Fresh Wes. His debut album was called Symphony In Effect. Hip Hop’s incubation period in Canada was ending and a new era was beginning with the declarative words:

“This is a throwdown, a showdown, Hell no, I can’t slow down!” 

And just like that, the door opened for people like Drake to walk through. 

A photo of Maestro Fresh Wes holding the Juno Award for Best Dance Recording of the Year for his song "Let Your Backbone Slide".
Maestro Fresh Wes wins the Juno Award for Best Dance Recording. Oops!

However, as much as this is true, the fact remains that Hip Hop struggled to garner much airplay in Canada beyond that of “Let Your Backbone Slide” and a few other hits by groups like Dream Warriors. In fact, in the previous post linked above, much is made of the fact that almost a full decade after “Let Your Backbone Slide” hit the charts, Hip Hop was still not all that respected by the Canadian music industry. Once again it took an embarrassing series of moments at the Juno Awards for the next phase of Hip Hop’s Canadian evolution to occur. In 1998, Vancouver based Rap group Rascalz won the Juno for Best Rap Recording of the Year. However, much to their surprise and dismay, when Rascalz arrived for the live broadcast, they were informed that their category had been already handled, along with the technical awards, and that their segment was held during the non-televised portion of the show. The members of Rascalz were outraged and claimed racism was at play in segregating the only “Black music” award of the night. Consequently, they refused to accept their award. Much debate ensued across the country regarding what had happened. The following year, the Best Rap Recording award was moved into prime time and Rascalz was on stage to give it away. When the winner didn’t show up to claim the award, the members of Rascalz launched into an a-capella rendition of their previous year’s award winning song, “Northern Touch”. Watching all of this at home was a teenage boy named Aubrey Graham. Aubrey, whose middle name is Drake, was already starring on the TV show Degrassi Junior High. Because of the trailblazing efforts of Maestro Fresh Wes and Rascalz and other rap stars like Kardinal Offishall, Saukrates, Choclair, Jully Black and many others, Drake saw people who looked like him sing songs that reflected who he was and how he felt about navigating through this world as a person of colour. Watching Drake take his first steps into the world of Hip Hop (of which he is arguably the biggest star of them all in the world) was another young man of colour named Abel Tesfaye who is currently taking the world of music by storm as The Weeknd. And on and on it goes.

CKLN.FM logo

After the success of “Let Your Backbone Slide”, Maestro Fresh Wes had some minor hits of his own, but for the most part, he has recognized the value of who he is as a role model and has developed secondary careers as an actor and as a writer of motivational books, as well as children’s books. Wesley Williams is most appreciative of the opportunities that he has had thanks to people such as Ron Nelson and Farley Flex. In turn, he knows that lending his presence to projects with visibility may help others to find inspiration and the courage to spread their own creative wings. In the end, the entire history of Hip Hop in Canada has been predicated on the belief that representation matters. 

Rap scholar, soul like a Dominican

 But like I said before, “I’m not American.

 It’s who you are, not where you went, we all originate from the same descent“.

The link to the video for the song “Let Your Backbone Slide” can be found here. ***There doesn’t seem to be a lyrics video for this song. Sorry. 🙁

The link to the official website for Maestro Fresh Wes can be found here.

The link to the official website for Ron Nelson can be found here.

The link to the video that shows the band Rascalz at the Juno Awards can be found here.

The link to an interview with Monika Deol, host of The Electric Circus on City-TV can be found here. She talks a lot about representation and the importance for the growth of Toronto’s culture to have so many musicians from previously under-represented demographic groups perform on the show.

***As always, all original content contained within this post remains the sole property of the author. No portion of this post shall be reblogged, copied or shared in any manner without the express written consent of the author. ©2023

The Great Canadian Road Trip: Song #20/250: Northern Touch by Rascalz ft. Checkmate, Kardinal Offishall, Choclair and Thrust

My eldest daughter has really begun to show an interest in our family history. She has become quite adept at going online and locating documents such as birth certificates, marriage licenses and records relating to military service for our relatives from three, four and even, five generations ago. She uses this information to tell us all stories about the people whose decisions influenced how our own lives turned out. However, one of the areas of her family history that she finds to be a source of frustration centers upon me. She is constantly encouraging me to tell her the stories of my own life. I have not ever been someone who tooted his own horn so, for that reason, I guess I have not been as open about the stories of my past as she would like. So, let’s remedy that a bit today. To my darling daughter, Leah, here is a true story about a man who has gone on to be known as the “Godfather of Canadian Hip Hop music” and how his example helped me decide to become a school teacher. His name was Ron Nelson and this is the story of a time when our divergent paths crossed.

Morrison Glace Bay High School: my academic home from 1978-82.

When I was in high school I began to find out what kind of person I was going to be as an adult. One of the things that happened was that I developed a reputation for being a writer. In those days, I was more apt to write plays or poetry than I was to write commentary, as I do now. I always used my friends as characters in these plays that I would write. Every spare moment of class time that I could wrest away from my studies was spent writing in my notebooks or scribblers, as we called them in Cape Breton. Fast forward to the end of my final year of high school, one of the traditions there was that every graduating class would have a story written about it that would be read aloud at the graduation prom during the dinner portion of the evening. I didn’t write the story for my class but I was one of the very first people mentioned when it was read aloud. In the story, it was being predicted that my future included becoming an author. When that was said aloud, many of those in attendance nodded their heads in agreement that this prediction stood a good chance of becoming true.

Ryerson Polytechnical University (now called Toronto Metropolitan University) and photographed from the roof of the building in which I lived. I lived on the 8th floor and faced this same direction. What a view of downtown Toronto I had for three years!

I enrolled in the Radio and Television Arts Programme at Ryerson Polytechnical Institute in Toronto (now called Toronto Metropolitan University) in the belief that I would one day become a professional “script writer”. Because of the joy I got from writing plays and the positive feedback I received from everyone in high school, it seemed logical to my eighteen year old self that writing for a living was the way for me to go. I was one of only 100 applicants selected (out of 1200 who applied). At the time, my ego was such that I expected to be selected so when I was, I didn’t take it for the compliment that it was, I took it more as confirmation that I had what it took and that my experience in Toronto would mirror my experiences in high school. Oh boy! Was I ever in for a surprise!

I graduated from high school with a mark of 99% in English. So, I went into my first university writing class with much confidence. Our introductory assignment was to go to a movie theatre in Toronto, watch any movie our little hearts desired and then write a professional movie review (as if we were writing for one of the local Toronto newspapers). I went and watched a screwball comedy called, “Stir Crazy” that starred Richard Pryor and Gene Wilder. It was not the greatest movie ever written and I wrote my review accordingly. When I got my assignment back during the next class, I was shocked to see that I had been given a mark of 69%. That was a full thirty points lower than my high school English average! I had never received such a low mark in my entire school career! My head was swimming as I looked my assignment over and tried to distinguish my typewritten words amid the sea of red ink marks that littered my page. It turned out that I had tied for the top mark in the class for that assignment. That made no difference to me. My confidence was completely rattled right out of the gate. With that one assignment, I suddenly realized how out of my depth I really was and much harder I was going to have to work just to avoid failing.

As with many such things in life, I began to adjust and things settled down a bit. I developed a better study routine. I made connections with the new folks who were now my classmates. My professors got to know me better and I did likewise with them. However, I never quite shook off that initial feeling that I didn’t belong or that I wasn’t really good enough to warrant being there. What confirmed that for me was a second assignment (this time is audio class) that actually had nothing to do with how well I did or didn’t do. In fact, to be honest, I was relatively pleased with my own effort in my first audio assignment. But, what happened was that I was given the opportunity to see how high the bar was really set, as far as skill levels went. It was the day that a young man from the Caribbean named Ron Nelson chose to reveal himself as someone who would end up changing Canadian music history. It was also the day that I decided to become a teacher. Here is how it all happened.

Just one example of a K-Tel compilation album. There were hundreds and hundreds of them in the 1970s and 80s.

In our audio course, we were not yet working in a digital media field as we would be today. Back in the early 1980s, everything was still recorded and played on audio tape. So, one of the first lessons we were given in the audio course was how to record ourselves onto an audio tape and then how to make seamless edits. Making edits required us to use a razor and physically cut the audio tape and then tape it back together. Our first editing assignment was to create a 30-second “K-Tel” audio commercial. For anyone unaware of what I mean by a “K-Tel” commercial…back in the 1970s and early 80s, there was a record company called K-Tel. Their thing was releasing compilation albums. Thus, whenever there was an advertisement for the latest record they were releasing, they would play thirty seconds or so of music composed of short segments of some of the songs appearing on the album, with an hyped up announcer speaking over top of it all. For our assignment, I had to use 6-8 songs, edit them together in some coherent fashion and then lay down a voice-over track on top of the music. I was able to do this and was fairly pleased with my product which I called, “K-Tel presents: Rock of the Commonwealth”! It was music from the British Commonwealth of nations. It started off with “Everything She Does Is Magic” by The Police (out of England). I followed that with “Cuts Like a Knife” by our own Byran Adams. I remember using “Six Months In a Leaky Boat” by New Zealand’s Split Enz somewhere in there, too. I think I got a B- for it and I was ok with that as it was the very first time I had ever worked with audio tape and the editing process.

As we went through the class and listened to everyone’s “K-Tel” effort, all were reasonably good. Some were a little better than mine. Some were not quite as good. But all were satisfactory, at least. Then it came time to listen to the tape from Ron Nelson. Ron was a quiet, unassuming kind of guy when we first met. But he was friendly and willing to work with anyone. That was important to a shy guy like me. While we were never best friends or anything, he was one of the first people to willingly sit beside me and talk with me, which meant a lot. So, anyway, we were all sitting in class listening to these K-Tel tapes when the professor came to Ron and asked for his. As shocked as I was when I received that 69% in writing class, I was just as shocked now in audio class but for the opposite reason. Ron’s K-Tel tape was brilliant! It was stunningly good! In fact, there were so many things going on in the foreground, the middleground and the background of his thirty-second tape that we actually listened to his tape multiple times just to try to catch everything that Ron had done. When it was finished, the professor asked Ron to walk us through how he had created such a masterpiece. So, I sat there, slack-jawed, as Ron Nelson began to reveal his magic. His tape turned out to be a forerunner of Hip Hop sampling which was to explode in popularity as the 1980s rolled along. But, at that time, it was relatively unheard of in Canada and it completely blew our collective minds! I still remember listening to Ron dissect his tape and re-assemble it. There was an “aw-shucks” aspect of his presentation but there was also a glimmer in his eyes that I will never forget. The only time I can recall anything like it was when I watched the movie, Amadeus and, in particular, the scene toward the end of the movie when a dying Mozart asks his rival Salieri to record his Requiem March for him because he is too weak to do it himself. In agreeing to do so, Salieri is given a peek inside the genius that was Mozart’s mind. *(You can watch that scene here). I felt that way as I listened to Ron Nelson speak that day. I felt as Salieri must have, too. For I knew after listening to Ron Nelson that I could never do what he had just done. His skill was at an unobtainable level for the likes of someone like me. It was a moment of reckoning.

I remember returning to my dorm room that night and realizing that I would never be a star in the broadcasting business. I had just witnessed a real star in action and the only future for me was to strive to be competent at best. To be, as Salieri lamented, a mediocrity. That was not an acceptable life goal for me. So, at that very moment in my first year of the Radio and Television Broadcasting course, I decided to switch to Plan B, which was to become a teacher. I decided to stick with the broadcasting course and see it through because having a degree was a prerequisite to get into Teachers College. In some ways, tempering my broadcasting ambitions made the next two and a half years more tolerable and enjoyable. The pressure melted away. I learned a lot. I kept up my marks and, lo and behold, a few years later, I was accepted into the Education Programme at the University of Western Ontario. Many of the skills I learned at Ryerson translated well to the classroom. Consequently, I was always comfortable being in front of a classroom filled with children. As life has turned out, I believe that being a teacher was my true calling after all. I am very proud of my career and of being able to spend time with so many incredible children, families and staff over the years. But, no matter how far from the world of broadcasting I strayed, I always kept an eye out for my pal, Ron Nelson. For, unlike me, Ron had a lot of ambition when it came to his future. He ended up achieving a form of greatness that I am happy to acknowledge. Here is his story and why it matters.

My Ryerson classmate Ron Nelson.

When I was in my first year of university and was learning such life skills as doing my own laundry properly and being able to cook basic meals, Ron Nelson was creating his own radio programme called Fantastic Voyages that aired weekly on the Ryerson campus radio station, CKLN. This radio station was more than the usual campus radio station because of its geographic location in the heart of downtown Toronto. So, even though it was primarily run by Ryerson students such as Ron, it broadcast to a potential audience over one million people. Fantastic Voyages was a radio show that was dedicated to the emerging genre of Hip Hop and, as such, it was the first show of its type anywhere in Canada. In order to provide some context as to how fresh and original Ron’s idea was…this was a full three years prior to Hip Hop supergroup Run-DMC teaming up with rockers, Aerosmith, to record a funked up rap version of the song, “Walk This Way”. That video gained lots of airplay on music video stations such as MTV (in the US) and Much Music (in Canada) and really helped introduce Hip Hop into the mainstream of the music world. But, years earlier, my classmate Ron Nelson was introducing Hip Hop to Canada’s biggest city while I was learning how to not burn my Kraft Dinner. The response to Fantastic Voyages went through the roof. For a while, ratings for Ron’s show were strong enough that they showed up with those of existing AM and FM stations throughout the city. That had never happened before to CKLN nor has it happened since. Buoyed by the positive reaction his programming was receiving, Ron began extending his reach by organizing local Hip Hop concerts and “Battle of the Bands”-type affairs. In a world where representation matters, Ron Nelson was giving people of colour in Toronto a chance to listen to their own history being put to music, to see successful people of colour singing songs about their own struggles and aspirations and, most importantly, he was giving wannabe rappers a venue for them to practice their craft and refine their skills. In doing so, Ron helped launch Hip Hop as a musical form in Canada. Not long after graduating from Ryerson, Ron opened his own recording studio. The first Canadian HIp Hop stars such as Maestro Fresh Wes and Dream Warriors recorded there. As the 1980s and 90s rolled on, Ron worked with everyone involved in Canadian Hip Hop, as well as many huge US acts such as Public Enemy, Salt-N-Pepa, Eric B. & Rakim, Ice Cube and Queen Latifah. It is not for nothing that many people refer to Ron Nelson as “The Godfather of Hip Hop” in Canada.

The talented rappers behind the song, “Northern Touch” with their Juno Award for Rap Song of the Year.

This brings us to today’s song, “Northern Touch” by Vancouver-based Hip Hop stars, Rascalz. I have often been critical in my music posts about modern Hip Hop being needlessly explicit (in a sexual sense), often times profane for the sake of being profane and also being steeped in misogyny. As the new century dawned, Ron Nelson, too, grew disillusioned with the state of Hip Hop (especially in the US) and allowed Fantastic Voyages to come to a close. He kept his hand in the game by producing a radio show dedicated to reggae music, which was also close to his heart. But, for a while, the Canadian Hip Hop scene grew quiet. Almost a decade or more went by between the original hits of the Dream Warriors and Maestro Fresh Wes and the next wave of Canadian Hip Hop artists to emerge. Of those who did, most were Vancouverites or else, they hailed from the Greater Toronto Area. The song, “Northern Touch” was written by Rascalz but was always intended to be a collaborative effort between as many of the main players in the Canadian HIp Hop scene as was possible. As a result, verses were personally written and performed by artists such as Choclair, Thrust, Kardinal Offishall, as well as Checkmate. The result is the banger track, “Northern Touch”. This song ended up winning many Rap-oriented Juno Awards. It was also used as one of the theme songs for the Toronto Raptors basketball team the year before they won the NBA Championship in 2018. *(Watch the Kardinal Offishall remix here). For many, “Northern Touch” has become the official anthem of Canadian Hip Hop and has been widely praised for its swagger and positive energy.

Ron Nelson had many methods of creating a market for Hip Hop in Canada. One was through the creation of compilation mix tapes such as the one above.

You never know when a moment is going to come along and change your life. For me, one of the most significant was Ron Nelson’s little K-Tel compilation tape and his explanation of the creative process behind it. His genius allowed me to quickly see that my own creative talent and passion would be better served elsewhere. I do not take that as a failure on my part. Instead, I am grateful to Ron for allowing me to pivot early enough in my life so that I could start helping children sooner. Ron Nelson has no idea that he had a role in the direction of my life but he did. We don’t always get to choose our own destiny; oftentimes it is destiny that chooses us. I was destined to help children and tell stories that bring pleasure to others. Ron Nelson was destined to change the face of Canadian music in a culturally significant way for so many people who had been under-represented before his arrival on the scene. Yet, for a short time, he and I sat in the same chairs in the same rooms working on the same assignments. Whenever I hear from a former student about something special going on in their lives, I smile and feel as though I traveled along the path that was meant for me. Whenever I hear a great song like “Northern Touch”, with all of the confidence and pride and swagger it entails, I believe that Ron Nelson traveled down the right path for him, as well. To do so is about all one can hope for in life. Congratulations, Ron, for everything you have accomplished in life. For what it is worth, I am proud to know you even in the small way that I do. Thanks for bringing your best to all that you have done….starting with that K-Tel project for Professor Keast. 🙂

The link for the video of the song, “Northern Touch” by Rascalz, Checkmate, Kardinall Offishall, Choclair and Thrust can be found here.

The official website for Rascalz can be found here.

The official website for Checkmate can be found here.

The official website for Kardinal Offishall can be found here.

The official website for Thrust can be found here.

The official website for Choclair can be found here.

The official website for Ron Nelson can be found here.

The official website for radio station CKLN in Toronto can be found here.

Finally, the song, “Northern Touch” namedrops the city of Vancouver so, the official website for the city of Vancouver can be found here.

***As always, all original content contained within this post remains the sole property of the author. No portion of this post should be reblogged, copied or shared in any manner without the express written consent of the author. ©2022

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