Adventures in the Art of Life: Music, Dance, Movies, Theater, Travel, Divinity, Dreams, Visuals, Philanthropy, Culture …
Run DMC’s “Rock Box” is and forever will be one of the hottest Hip Hop records EVER. This song changed my life and, while there weren’t many Black folks in it, the video was the first time I saw Hip Hop on MTV. I completely geeked out watching Run, DMC and Jam Master Jay! The sick guitar riff by Eddie Martinez was and still is mesmerizing. #LongLiveHipHop
“The Tanning of America”
Beginning tonight, February 24, 2014, VH1 presents “The Tanning Of America: One Nation Under Hip Hop,” a four-part series on how Hip Hop music and culture has influenced this country. Over the past 40 years, Hip Hop has been the dominant voice of Black and Brown youth culture and its force reaches far beyond music and fashion. From business, to academia, to politics to social issues, Hip Hop’s presence can be seen and felt in this country and around the globe. I’m glad to see that this documentary is being presented – particularly during the last week of “Black History Month” 2014 – and I’m hoping it will entertain, inform and empower. I’ll be tuning in for sure! “…and ya don’t stop!”
"I think the artists have a platform, they have a power, they have a gift - and by using that gift and that power and putting it in the service of those who are being ground out by inequity and by systems that are unjust, we begin to put a light and a new dynamic into what it is that’s going on with the poor, going on with those who are racially oppressed, sexually abused. And by doing this we have heightened the consciousness of people who are being constantly distracted from taking a deeper look at what goes on in our social issues. By asking the artist to look at the possibility in the use of their power, we find that - more often than not - society is rewarded." - Artist/Activist/Humanitarian Harry Belafonte speaking to Melissa Harris-Perry about the need for artists to become activists. To advance this call to action, Mr. Belafonte recently formed the Sankofa Justice and Equity Project. After more than six decades in the trenches, Mr. Belafonte continues to be a warrior for justice, and to demonstrate how artists - and all of us - can and should become active on social justice and other issues that effect us all.
Happy B’earthday D’Angelo! His sold-out show with Questlove at Brooklyn Bowl was one of the best concerts I attended in 2013. Check out the live set. I hope he tours again this year!
Remembering James “Jay Dee” Dewitt Yancey a.k.a. J. Dilla – one of his generation’s most prolific, influential and loved producers and musicians.
February 7, 1974 - February 10, 2006
The J Dilla Foundation was established “to fund inner-city music programs and provide scholarships to students attending schools that have progressive music curriculu.” To truly honor his music and continue his legacy, consider making a donation to this organization.
Thank you for the music, J Dilla!
"My life is only important if mi cyan help plenty people" - Artist/Activist/Humanitarian Bob Marley
February 6, 1945 - May 11, 1981
Marley’s music and mission were to unite people, alleviate suffering and spread peace, love and hope. The documentary “Marley” is a beautiful glimpse into his extraordinary life, art and work. Well done, Bob.