10 Jun Don’t Say Mans Never Put You On
FWDD FRIDAYS: A Weekly Party You Don’t Wanna Miss
Toronto locals and tourists alike are always on the lookout for a party with great music, drinks, and a carefree space where you can dance however goofy you’d like to. Every Friday for a year now, FWDD (FAH-ward) is held in Kensington Market, which is located in Toronto’s downtown core. The venue, (Socialite Bar), quickly fills up as people gather to watch the Raptors game tonight. Soon as the Raps win against The Warriors with a score of 105-92 the party start. “Ah, ah, ah’s” and other Toronto adlibs fill the air. Feet are stomping, smiles spread across faces, and waists are moving. The flash from phone cameras brightens up the room as women sing along to Drake to their Instagram and Snapchat followers. It’s close to 12:30 A.M and the line to get is getting longer, full of small groups of friends ready to dance their week off. The variety of durags, crop-tops, bottom grills, and some formal fits with heels are what surround you at FWDD; there is no dress code.
Photo credit: @Visualsbyvon
14 young men from Scarborough who are rappers, DJs, and photographers grouped together to created “STUHQ ENT” which is the collective behind FWDD Friday’s. Soca, dancehall, afro-beats, and hip-hop are the main genres played at FWDD, which is refreshing because while Toronto arguably has the best DJs, the clubs in this city that have weekly parties usually drop the ball when it comes playing music one can actually dance to. Photographer Von, DJ North English, and rapper Deqwi answer a few questions about their movement tonight.
StreetsOfToronto: What does STUHQ mean?
Von: Standards that uphold high quality, STUHQ.
Deqwi: It’s even a flip on being stuck.
Von: That’s why we have FWDD, if you’re moving forward you’re never stuck.
StreetsOfToronto: One year of anniversary of FWDD was just last weekend and you’re back at it again this weekend. A year ago, did you think you’d get this far?
Von: Yeah, we’ve been planning this from time. We sat down and planned these years ago.
Deqwi: We’ve been throwing different types of parties, like house parties, warehouses, and basements. It’s just in our veins to throw something big.
StreetsOfToronto: What has the support been like?
North English: Ever since our first party we noticed there weren’t any fights happening. We took in there wasn’t any bad energy- great energy follows us.
StreetsOfToronto for North English: What’s it like DJing for FWDD compared to other gigs?
North English: These are my friends, I know what they like and they let me mess up. Everyone is gonna have a bad set, and I feel like FWDD is the place to get through that because people can see your progress.
StreetsOfToronto for Deqwi: What are some projects you got going on?
Deqwi: Afro Ignorance, I’m aiming for a mid June release. I’m also having a tasting party on Father’s Day.
StreetsOfToronto: What is your creative process?
Deqwi: It waivers between being inspired by my people versus actually getting the energy to create. I been doing this since I was a kid. I used to perform in front of my mom doing Fugees renditions.
StreetsOfToronto: There’s so many of you, and you spend so much time together. How do you problem solve amongst yourselves?
North English: We’re still figuring it out. We have three different groupchats to keep it organized as much as possible and communicate.
StreetsOfToronto: What else do you see in STUHQ’s future?
Von: More women, it’s really male centered right now.
Deqwi: Entrepreneurs, creatives.
North English: Billionaires! More community work, I’m from Malvern I feel like I kinda strayed away from my community. You move from areas but they stick with you.
StreetsOfToronto: Any shout-outs? Dates to remember?
North English: Vern block! You already know!
Deqwi: June 16th the tasting party, June 17th Afro Ignorance.
FWDD Fridays can be found on Instagram @JussFwdd. All interviewees Instragrams are
North English: NorthEnglish