Maestro - Still Fresh
-- by Aaron “A*maze” Joseph, April 2006  

  Canadian hip-hop legend Maestro Fresh Wes celebrated his 38th birthday on March 30th, 2006 at the Crush lounge in Vancouver, B.C.

Maestro, whose birthday was actually March 31, decided to hold it early so that he could celebrate it with friends who also had their birthdays on or near the set date.

The man born Wesley Williams celebrated his birthday in Vancity, instead of home back east, because of its ties with the film industry. “Vancouver is known as ‘Hollywood North’ so I wanted to come up here and do my thing, you know,” said Williams. “I’m trying to become more solidified as an actor right now.” He is currently making a name for himself in the acting world, playing Darius Mills on the CTV series Instant Star, and small parts in other box office movies like Four Brothers and Honey.

The Rascalz – Vancouver emcees and fellow Juno Award winners – opened the evening, performing a roughly half-hour set. Maestro then took the stage, with b-boys in tow, performing songs that spanned nearly 20 years.

The celebration was advertised as a birthday party and media benefit, and a portion of the proceeds went to the African AIDS Angels, a charity Maestro said he was very excited to work with. “My man put me up on that, and I seen what Alicia Keys did with her AIDS campaign and I thought it was really dope,” said the rapper. “And because this society is based in B.C., I decided to become a part of it.”

Despite having fans worldwide and even getting props out in France when introduced on stage to fans by Chuck D (Public Enemy), Williams says that Canada is still where his heart is and where he gets the most love.

“A night like tonight means so much to me,” said Williams. “It solidifies a career. It solidifies an industry; not only an industry in Canada, but also Canadian talent. And I’m excited to have the Rascalz here celebrating with me, because I remember when they used to be known as the Ragamuffin Rascalz.”

After his performance, the rapper/actor made time to talk with fans and friends, signing autographs and posing for photos.

Williams told MVRemix that he would like to thank all those who came out to celebrate with him, as well as those who have shown and continue to show him support throughout the years. “It means so much to me to be here celebrating this festive night. God bless.”

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