I forgot to post this, but I bought Nina Simone’s ‘Protest Anthology’ album from iTunes just the other day. The album is an incredible collection of bootleg and rare recordings such as Mississippi Goddamn, Four Women, Strange Fruit, and Backlash Blues with short audio interviews preceding each song. It comes with an eight minute video of live performances of Revolution and Strange Fruit as well as a video interview with Simone about her ideas of art, artists, and how they interact with social change. Some of the sound quality is pretty bad; the recording of ‘Why The King Of Love Is Dead’ is inaudible at some places and sounds as though someone placed a microphone by a wind tunnel, but its included in this anthology for the simple reason that its overwhelmingly powerful and vulnerable.
Nina Simone has been an incredible influence on both my musical tastes and personal identity. The deep colors of voice, and the humble voyeuristic emotions about her musical activism resonate so much throughout my adolescence. Her version of ‘Feelin Good’ was with me when I was coming out, and today it still makes me skin electric just to hear her build up that particular joy of emergence thats so reflective of her life.
I’m so happy this LP was released. It provides an intimate listen and discussion with a woman who infused her artistic abilities with the rage and grace of the timely politics going on around her. The many frustrations and inequalities within the world only moved her to make something beautiful from it. That is her voice; distinct, crass and always with a smoky elegance.
Jon Stewart teases out the bullshit and calls out Clinton’s campaign for what it’s actually become: hilarious and dangerous.
Here’s my point: my friend, a grad student at OSU’s political science college, and Clinton regional activist, recently responded to the PA primary by saying, “if someone tells you you ought to quit, it’s because they’re afraid you won’t and if someone tells you you can’t win – it’s because they know you can.” I think that’s pretty much the sentiment Bush attaches to our Iraq ‘strategy’ these days.
Rush Limbaugh can see through the shit, too:
“We’re the only ones in charge of our affairs…We don’t farm out our defense, unless we elect Democrats. We don’t farm out our protection against attack and national security, unless we elect Democrats. We don’t farm out our economy and tear it up in the name of a hoax called global warming, unless we elect Democrats. Riots in Denver at the Democrat convention would see to it we don’t elect Democrats – and that’s the best damn thing could happen for this country as far as anything I can think: Don’t elect Democrats!”
Discovered this map thanks to a co-worker who showed me Strange Maps (I love working in a library with other nerds!). It’s a visual representation of Ludacris’s song ‘Area Codes’ (Click for full-sized version). The designer, Stephanie Gray, speaks about it below:
“In this song, Ludacris brags about the area codes where he knows women, whom he refers to as ‘hoes,'” says Ms Gray, who plotted out all the area codes mentioned in this song on a map of the United States. She arrived at some interesting conclusions as to the locations of this rapper’s preferred female companionship:
“Ludacris heavily favors the East Coast to the West, save for Seattle, San Francisco, Sacramento, and Las Vegas.”
“Ludacris travels frequently along the Boswash corridor.”
“There is a ‘ho belt‘ phenomenon nearly synonymous with the ‘Bible Belt’.”
“Ludacris has hoes in the entire state of Maryland.”
“Ludacris has a disproportionate ho-zone in rural Nebraska. He might favor white women as much as he does black women, or perhaps, girls who farm.”
“Ludacris’s ideal ‘ho-highway’ would be I-95.”
“Ludacris has hoes in the Midway and Wake Islands. Only scientists are allowed to inhabit the Midway Islands, and only military personnel may inhabit the Wake Islands. Draw your own conclusion.”
The Ho-Highway reminds me of that skanky Maxim Roadtrip bus that’s been parked in front of Oxford’s abandoned Wal-Mart for the past few months. And who ever said rap music can’t be educational?