The Benefit

Session LA’s Mission

SESSIONS LA is a music writing, production, recording, & DJing program for youth and young adults in Los Angeles. Our mission is to promote youth development, nurture critical thinking, and foster community building through the process of creating music.

We currently have programming for High School students and young adults aged 15 to 20 on Mondays & Wednesdays from 5pm-8pm. We also have Middle School programming on Tuesdays & Thursdays from 4pm-5:30pm. Programming takes place at the SIPA (Search To Involve Pilipino Americans) Community Center, 3200 W. Temple Street in Historic Pilipinotown, Los Angeles, 90026.  Please contact us in advance for the most up to date scheduling information.

For more information, email us at

Sessions LA is a project of the Pasadena Arts Council’s EMERGE Fiscal Sponsorship Program.


Early 2005 – Michael Nailat, a community educator at SIPA, starts bringing his turntables to work so that he could practice.  At the same time, he begins to let SIPA kids like Laurent Goze try their luck.

Mid 2005 – Start of official DJ class.  The instructor was Chris Crisostomo.  It was done in tandem with the B-Boy practice sessions.

Late 2005 – DJ class taken over by Reyronald Pineda, who also taught video production class.

2006 – Michael meets Jeff Liang (aka Jekai SoulSpeak) and Lino Mansala (aka DJ Linotype) at a conference.  He asks them to take over the DJ class.  This is the first time “Sessions” is used to name the class. This is also the year that the CCPF (California Consumer Protection Fund) Technology Grant is awarded to SIPA and helps fund the program. Lino teaches djing and Jeff teaches beat making.

2007 – The release of the first Sessions mixtape. This is also the first year Sessions throws a concert.

Fall 2007 – Jeff leaves for China. Sessions recruits Alagy to teach production in Jeff’s absence.  Eventually, Lino leaves also and Alagy becomes sole instructor.

2007 to 2008 – Sessions goes on hiatus due to the absence of consistent instructors.

2008 – Patrick Huang (aka DJ Phatrick) moves to Los Angeles from Oakland, where he had co-founded the Bay Unity Music Project (BUMP), a digital music production & recording program for youth in the Bay Area.  At the same time, Jeff moves back to Los Angeles from China.  Patrick reforms Sessions with Jeff and Lino.  Laurent Goze (aka DJ Illogic), one of the first Sessions students, becomes an instructor.

2009 – Jeff moves to China (again).  Patrick, Lino, & Laurent along with guest instructors Raymond Ramirez (aka Piseas) and Paul Laughlin (aka DJ Spingineer) begin to recruit youth and start to create the roots of what eventually becomes the core Sessions curriculum.  By the Summer of 2009, Sessions releases its first body of work completely written, produced, & recorded by Sessions youth: The Project Respect EP.

2010 – Lino moves to Australia. Jaffar Osman (aka Jay Black), a Sessions graduate, becomes a Teaching Assistant.  Summer of 2010, Sessions releases its first album with completely original songs: Let’s Go!  At the end of 2010, Ali Bhai (aka DJ Wreckloose) joins as a DJ/Production instructor.

2011 – This is the last year Sessions is funded by the CCPF grant.  Gabe Moskoff (aka Trackstar The DJ) joins the list of instructors at the beginning of the year.  Los Angeles rapper & community organizer Bambu, representing the Youth Media Arts Project (YMAP), partners with Sessions to add a comprehensive social justice & media literacy component to the Sessions curriculum.  The result is the album, Bad Man’s World – a major milestone in the Sessions discography.  Bad Man’s World sheds light on the realities of life for a young person growing up in a Post-9/11 + Recession plagued Los Angeles.  During the making of Bad Man’s World, Lawrence Yeo (aka Trebles & Blues) joins as a production instructor.  By October, SIPA has received no new grants for the program and Sessions decides to run its own fundraising campaign, Save Sessions!


    Asian Pacific-Islander Heritage Month (APIHM) is hosted by the Asian Pacific Student Association at UCI and features various programs, workshops, and events that celebrate the APIA culture and address pertinent issues in the APIA community.

    Please refer to the tabs above for more details regarding each event.

  • Contact Us

    Any inquiries regarding Asian Pacific-Islander Heritage Month can be directed to Programming Coordinators, Siamrath (Sam) Boonsakul and Alison Tominaga, at

%d bloggers like this: