This blog is written by Grey Armstrong – a Blues dance instructor, black person, and black history researcher.
He was born and raised in Ohio and at a very young age started learning about black culture. He often felt caught between black and white culture during his youth, as he was constantly switched between his home life and some social settings and school life and generally being black in America. Ironically it wasn’t until university that he realized his discomfort in parts of his life was not just because of social awkwardness, but differences in culture.
While earning his degree in communications (think psychology, not radio) He became deeply fascinated but these cultural differences and the lack of communication around race relations. Through his love of blues and blues dancing, he realized he could teach both cultures about each other, and themselves, through the lens of blues dancing. And so, Obsidian Tea was born!
Grey loves teaching, tea, blues and of course cats.
About the Site
Obsidian tea is a blog that was started in 2017 to help bridge the gap between Black and White Americans. Race and culture is almost a taboo topic and with feelings running high between the groups, it’s next to impossible to talk about.
Many white Americans have limited exposure and understanding of the other culture living in the same country as they are. With so many people getting their information from the media, It’s easy for people to get the information about black Americans wrong, or to project their values onto that culture.
Through the lens of blues music and dance, we explore black culture, history and race relations in an effort to bring awareness of the less sensationalized version of Blackness. We hope to help people interested in Black culture, in general, as dancers, as musicians or even just to get to know themselves better, gain a better understanding with wit, charm and a frank bluntness that brings you into the conversation no matter where you are starting.
If you are new to this site, We suggest you start with these posts to jump right into Obsidian Tea. Welcome!
The site is free due to our supporters. Check out the support page for more info. We hope that this blog will grow and change as it gets more support. The mission is simple: education. There is so much that has gotten lost by oral tradition and there is so much about Black culture that other cultures don’t know. This is a place to start fixing that.