Compton Cricket Club

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Umbro photographs The Compton CC in South Central LA, February 2009

The Compton Cricket Club (CCC), or the "Homies and the Popz", is a cricket club based in Compton, Los Angeles County, California, USA. The CCC is the only all American-born exhibition cricket team. The CCC has toured to the UK 4 times (last time in 2001) and most recently to Australia in February 2011.

The night of the photo shoot for an ad campaign featuring the CCC modelling the new National English Soccer uniform in LA,[1][dead link] held on Super Bowl Sunday 2009, one of the team members was an innocent bystander in a drive-by shooting in Compton and died.[2][not in citation given] This Ad campaign featured in British GQ magazine on a 2-page spread in 2009. That same night the future manager for the team's historic February 2011 Australian tour was at the photoshoot meeting the team for the very first time.

Background and mission of the team[edit]

The badge and motto of the Compton Cricket Club

The team was originally called the Los Angeles Krickets. In the early nineties the club toured England where they played at Hambledon. Upon their return the Los Angeles Krickets took a new direction when Disney signed up all members of the team for a film project. The publicity garnered by the tour was unprecedented in American cricket circles and included coverage by BBC Four, KTLA, ITV, Sky News, The Australian, The Daily Telegraph and numerous local newspapers in England and Australia.

Compton Cricket Club was born at the Dome Village Homeless Community in Downtown Los Angeles in 1995, by US Homeless activist Ted Hayes and Hollywood Movie Producer Katy Haber,[citation needed] to combat the negative effects of poverty and homelessness. After a highly successful tour of Great Britain later that year, the LA Krickets expanded the team to include inner city Latino gang members from the City of Compton. The Compton Homies and the Popz (Compton Cricket Club) emerged in 1996 as the first All American Inner City Cricket Team. The club uses the ideals of sportsmanship, and the particular importance of etiquette and fair play in cricket, to help players develop respect for authority, a sense of self-esteem and self-discipline. The Compton Homies travelled to the UK in 1997, 1999, and 2001, joined LASCA (the Los Angeles Social Cricket Alliance) and won the British Cup twice.

The aim of playing cricket is to teach people how to respect themselves and respect authority so they stop killing each other

(Team Founder, Compton Cricket Club, Ted Hayes)

The 'Homies' mission is to:

  1. Curb the negative effects of gang activities amongst the youth of Compton.
  2. Addressing homelessness in the inner city through the principles and ethics of cricket.
  3. Encourage and promote civility, good and productive citizenship.

The team motto of 'Let the game begin again in America' harkens back to the former popularity of cricket in the United States during the 19th century.

The majority of the team is formed of the founding members and Hayes sees them as a "cross-generational village-like team".

Tour highlights[edit]

The LA KRICKETS tour of the UK, 1995, laid the ground rules for future tours, sponsorship and partners and resulted in a movie deal with Disney. Since then, the Compton Homes and the Popz (CCC) 1997, 1999 and 2001 tours included games against the Windsor Castle Staff cricket team, "Rap" session rapping for HRH Prince Edward at Windsor Castle, a visit with His Royal Highness at Buckingham Palace, and with the Rt Hon Mo Mowlam at Stormont Castle, a cricket bat presentation to Gerry Adams at Stormont, Belfast and a Hurling Stick to David Pringle, to help broker the peace accord in Northern Ireland.[3][not in citation given]

A 2001 Game against the legendary Lashings team, with Brian Lara playing on the CCC cricket Club side.

In 2003, Warwickshire cricketer Paul Smith spent three weeks helping train the CCC. The trip was a part of Smith's work with 'Cricket Without Boundaries', a charity that seeks to empower communities through cricket.[4]

Current activities and plans[edit]

CCC vs the Afghan national cricket team[edit]

A match with the Afghanistan national cricket team is being planned.[5] The original date for this groundbreaking cricket event had to be postponed due to lack of funding for the National Cricket team from Afghanistan to fly from their home camp to Los Angeles for the historical match.

This will be the first time that a cricket team from Afghanistan has toured America. The match will help raise money for an orphanage rebuilt by US marines in Afghanistan and continue the CCC's vital work around the world promoting greater peace through 'cricket diplomacy'.

Tour of Australia[edit]

The clubs hopes that their recent historic Australian tour January 31 – February 12, 2011 will continue their development into a world class competitive and exhibition cricket team and sporting club, while the publicity generated by the tour will be used to highlight other Australian non-profit organizations that deal with similar issues in their own communities. Touring Australia also aims to raise awareness of the CCC with key stakeholders to improve cricket opportunities between the USA and Australia.

The proposed tour and background to the Compton Cricket Club has recently (May 2007 – February 2010) received considerable attention in mainstream Australian and international media including CNN, Sky News, Channel 7, Sydney Morning Herald, ABC Radio National, Alpha magazine, Courier Mail, NT News, Ninemsn.com, ESPN.com, Dailynews.com, Dumbo Feather, pass it on magazine, Centralian advocate & the Big Issue magazine. They have also been publicized on KPFK (Radio) and KABC-TV in Los Angeles USA. Music publicity includes articles in Faster Louder (online) and 3D music magazine as well as Sky News UK, and SBS World News (Sam Ikin, Jan 3, 2008).

The CCC will utilise its high exposure to benefit other organizations in Australia attempting to deal with similar issues in their own community including:

  1. Credo Cricket, who provide recreational opportunities for disadvantaged
  2. Father Chris Rileys Youth off the Streets Program,
  3. Queensland premiers disaster relief fund, raising much needed support for victims of the devastating 2010–2011 Queensland floods.

Project Manager for their Australian Tour, Mr Hugh Snelgrove presented the team's story as well as what he has planned for their historic tour at The Pecha Kucha (Sydney Chapter) fundraising night for Haiti at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Sydney at the beginning of 2010.[6][not in citation given]

Cricket Rap outta compton: "Bullets" (3:51)[edit]

The club has recently released two tracks from raps 'Shots' and 'Bullets' that aim to document their transition from ex-gangsters to global stardom.[7] Their cricket raps have recently (November 2007) aired on FBI 94.5 FM & 93.7 FM Koori Radio programs respectively in Australia.

A music video along with a press release[8] about the Compton Cricket Club produced by current members plans to be presented to the public by the end of 2008.

In March 2009, SKY News released an article about the teams endeavors producing and publicising their inaugural Music TV video clip on their website.[9][dead link]

On March 13 Bullets was played at Los Angeles City Hall to cricket fans, diplomats, and members of local cricket organizations of Southern California a part of a solidarity rally, to protest the recent terrorist attack on the Sri Lankan national cricket team in Lahore, Pakistan.[10][dead link]

In March, MTV (UK) played 'Bullets' on their website a part of their 'show us what your made of' itdoesnthavetohappen.co.uk anti knife crime campaign on their website.[11]

In April, Neil Hannon blogging for The Guardian Newspaper (UK) called 'Bullets' a great song about cricket.[12] This was soon followed with another article in major Australian newspaper, The Age affirming 'Bullets' global appeal and critical acclaim.[13][not in citation given]

In May, Channel V – Australias premier music TV station chose Bullets to be played on its interactive music TV Show 'U Channel'.[14][dead link] On April 27,28 & 29 'Bullets' was voted No. 1 unsigned artist by Channel V's TV and web audience.

On May 9 Cloth & the Compton CC performed at the Hollywood Ashes celebrity Cricket tournament.

First Sydney fundraiser pre-tour promotion[edit]

In September 4 members of the CCC flew to Sydney to attend a fundraiser in their honor to raise much needed funds for their Australian tour. The fundraiser held on September 25 raised over $30,000 in cash & tour sponsorship. Cricket Australia, Nudie Juice, Cricket NSW, The Hughenden Hotel, Santavittoria, Otway estate wines, Curwoods lawyers, Kewarra resort Cairns & The Royals.

The club members airfares & Fundraiser was paid for & organised by Mr Hugh Snelgrove who is also the project manager of the Australian tour.

During their 10 days in Sydney they appeared on The TODAY Show, 2GB/Christian/koori Radio, The Age, Daily Telegraph & Thepunch.com.au.

Other highlights included: – meeting with youth from Father Chris Rileys youth off the streets charity in Merrylands, Sydney – A chance encounter with Brett Lee at the Sydney Cricket Ground during a private tour from Cricket NSW. He was training mentee Ellyse Perry (The only Australian sportswoman to play 2 codes of sport professionally for Australia).

– A beach cricket match against aboriginal charity A.I.M.E (Australian indigenous Mentoring Experience)

-A mural 'Cricket outta Compton' being painted on the famous Bondi graffiti promenade (By famous Australian street artists Mr Perso & Detch) which commemorated two club members who have since died (1 from a drive by, the other from a motorcycle accident).

– Playing laneway cricket against Credo Cricket & Cricket Victoria staff at the famous Hosier Lane

-A tour of the Melbourne Cricket Ground organised by Cricket Australia

-An indoor cricket match against Reclink (well known for their highly successful "Choir of Hard Knocks" reality TV program) in Melbourne

-Being invited to Urthboy's concert at The Factory in Sydney where we presented him during one of his sets with a 'Cricket outta Compton' T shirt

-A documentary night with the homies at Australia square hosted by the Australian tours honorary solicitors Curwoods lawyers of Sydney.

-Releasing their 3rd single 'Shots' with the catchy 'front foot, back foot, square cut or a hook' dance number

-A limited first run of 'Cricket outta Compton' Tshirts were released to the public.

-Australian tour website www.cricketouttacompton.com.au is launched.

Historic Australia Tour Jan 29 – Feb 12, 2011[edit]

Between Jan 29 -Feb 12, 2011 the Compton Cricket Club became the first all American born cricket club to tour to Australia. Highlights from the tour included:

Money raised: -Raising $1,500 for the QLD premiers flood relief appeal at ' A night with All the homies' catered by Australian celebrity Chef Bill Granger's, 'Bills'

Tour highlights: – launching their Australian tour with a press conference in the Long bar at the Sydney Cricket Ground

– 1st match played on Australian soil was against the University of Sydney

-The 1st Aboriginal side played was the Redfern All Blacks

– Meeting national Minister for Sport Mark Arbib at his chambers in Sydney City

– Meeting the deputy mayor of Sydney at Sydney Town Hall for morning Tea

– Hosted by Father Chris Riley's Youth off the Streets in Brighton for a gala lunch with over 60 teenagers

-Being personally invited to the National English Cricket teams private training session at the SCG

-Playing direct relatives of the 1st Australian cricket team to tour overseas' the all aboriginal 1868 touring side to the UK, in Harrow, Victoria

– Performing their first public performance of their world famous hip hop cricket rap ' Bullets' & 'Shots' at World Bar in Kings Cross Sydney

– One of the club members, Isaac Hayes having 'From gats to bats' with the image of a cricket bat over an AK-47 assault rifle tattooed on his right shoulder by renowned street artist Emit from Sydney

– Mr Perso painting 'cricket outta compton' mural in Camperdown

-Appearing on all major National TV stations: ABC, Ch7, CH9, Ch10 & HD1

-Playing Urbanseed's homeless cricket club, Australian Cricket Society [1], Johnny Mullugh XI, Redfern All Blacks, Sydney University

-Speaking & performing their hip hop cricket rap to high school students of Alexandria Park high school & Newington College

-A reunion with Barry Firebrace in Melbourne who was a team member from an all indigenous side that toured the UK and played against the CCC in 2001 is also being planned. The Indigenous Australian's tour in 2001 was commemorating the 1868 tour to the UK by a roving XI of Aboriginal players – the first Australian cricket team to tour to England (See Ashley Malletts The Black Lords of Summer: The Story of the 1868 Aboriginal Tour of England and Beyond, University of Queensland Press, 2002), ISBN 0-7022-3262-9.

AWARDS:

-News feature on Compton Cricket Club Australia tour voted #1 story on ABC TV's Stateline segment

-Kate Healy's photograph of a one-off match between Johnny Mullagh XI and American team Compton Homies and Popz at Harrow voted most outstanding single photograph or series of photographs relating to cricket in Victoria at the Cricket Victoria 2011 Media Awards on Monday

References[edit]

  1. ^ Compton CC photographed a part of global Advertising campaign for New English Soccer Jersey
  2. ^ Two men die in separate Compton shootings
  3. ^ Gibson, Joel (June 4, 2007). "How the googly turned youths from LA's gangs". Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 6 March 2013. 
  4. ^ BBC Sport Website – Spreading the cricket gospel
  5. ^ Compton Cricket Club – The Afghan Games
  6. ^ "Sydney No. 14 – PechaKucha Night". Pecha-kucha.org. Retrieved 2012-02-25. 
  7. ^ Compton Cricket Club – Compton Cricket Raps
  8. ^ Press release – American-born Cricketers Release First Ever Hip-Hop Cricket Rap Music Video
  9. ^ SKY News website – Legendary Cricketers' Rap Video
  10. ^ Cricket Fans in Los Angeles Unite to ‘Bat Against Terrorism’ Rally
  11. ^ MTV UK
  12. ^ Eleven great songs about cricket
  13. ^ Cricket is saving lives on the streets of LA
  14. ^ Bullets (3:51) chosen to be shown on Channel V's interactive music show 'U Channel' May 2009

External links[edit]

Radio

Web

Newspaper

Music publicity

YouTube