• A passionate plea

    Jul 29 2012, 11h33 por musinum

    I am sending this out to all groups to which I belong. It is not about music, but it is about the world we all live in. It's aimed particularly at my American friends and co-members, but because of America's unique position in the world, it affects everyone and the kind of world we'll all be living in for a long time.

    Group leaders, it's up to you whether you treat this as spam, or post it. I try my best never to spam, but I feel so strongly about this that I'm willing to take the chance.

    I hope that as artists and appreciators of music and other arts, and as people who think and feel for themselves, the majority of us here can appreciate the historic importance of Barack Obama's election to the American Presidency, and the efforts he continues to make (against a very entrenched opposition who represent the interests of the rich and powerful) to make life more livable for the ordinary citizens of the United States and for the rest of the world as well.

    Perhaps some of us who cheered his election four years ago are disappointed that he has not been able to completely transform the world in the ways we had imagined, but as someone who has been involved in social causes for half a century, I can tell you that nothing comes quickly or easily. What is important is the fight and the day-to-day effort.

    I expect that a number of you see the world in exactly the opposite terms, and that an even larger number are not involved in politics and perhaps haen't given a lot of thought to the upsoming election. (I'm speaking primarily to the Americans among you here. Every country has its own issues and its own struggles, and there are brave and hard-working citizens in many countries fighting oppression that we Americans can scarcely imagine!) But what is at stake here is nothing less than the kind of country we will live in for many years to come.

    The message of the right is that if we take care of the rich and privileged, that the crumbs that fall from their table will eventually feed the rest of us. If that doesn't seem right to you, it may be because that particular social experiment was given an extensive trial thru the Reagan administration and thru Bush father and son. The result was disaster.

    What happened was exactly what you might expect when all the safeguards that were built into the system over the years to protect the rest of us from the abuses of money and power, and from greed and corruption, were systematically dismantled. The top tax rate is a small fraction of what it was fifty years ago, and we are being asked to lower it even further, at the price of cutting the services that most first-world countries take for granted: the social safety net, affordable health care, funds for education, care for the environment... the list goes on and on.

    The President has manged to get a good start at pulling this country back from the cliff it was about to fall over... but we are being asked to roll back all that progress and go back to the same things that got us in this mess in the first place. It is as if arsonists have set your house on fire, and then when the firemen are attempting to fight the flames with water, suggesting that we pour on gasoline instead!

    To those of my felliow Americans who feel as I do and want to help, I have set up a grassroots fundraising site with the ambitious goal of $5,000 for the Obama campaign. Any amount helps! My site is here:


    Thanks you,

    Tim Doyle
  • Timeline

    Fev 10 2008, 4h47 por TMoor

    A new Last.fm friend recently asked me my favorite songs of all time. I can't compile a list that narrow, but it did get me to thinking about the music I've listened to over the years.

    Like the first song I remember hearing: Hit the Road Jack by Ray Charles. I was 3.

    The first song I ever learned, my older brother taught me:

    It's a me
    It's a me Oh Lord
    Standin' in the need of prayer

    I grew up on Top 40 radio and remember first paying attention to rotation with Another Saturday Night by Sam Cooke. The concept of "crossover" music was years away for me.

    One year my older sister came back from summer vacation with a stack of albums that I quickly appropriated. Artists like Smokey Robinson & The Miracles, The Friends of Distinction, Junior Walker & the All-Stars. She also had a coupla things I just couldn't get with: A mopped female vocal quartet called The Beatle Buddies and a female country singer. All I remember about her was a cover of Bobbie Gentry's "Ode To Billie Joe." And then there were the two albums that I eventually would wear out by the newly renamed Diana Ross & The Supremes: Reflections and Love Child -- which began my fascination with the group and its troubling lead singer. Especially the latter collection and specifically the title tune. It answered important questions in my life that I didn't know how to pose at the time. And it was the first time a song's lyrics ever resonated with me.

    I started my own music collection (of 45 singles) with the 90-cent purchase of Laura Lee's Women's Love Rights.

    I was in junior high school when I was exposed to "Black radio." In heavy rotation at the time were gems such as Master Of Eyes (The Deepness Of Your Eyes) by Aretha Franklin, Midnight Train to Georgia by Gladys Knight & The Pips, Let's Get It On by Marvin Gaye.

    The first album I ever bought was Rags To Rufus by Rufus Featuring Chaka Khan.

    I was a college freshman studying in my dorm room. Normally I liked to study by the school (or one of the city) radio station's quiet-storm airings. This particular day one show ended and another began. No segue, no announcement -- just a sensual jazz guitar intro and even more sensual vocals: "You're so late getting home from the office./Did you miss your train?/Were you caught in the rain?" Nancy Wilson's Guess Who I Saw Today was my introduction to jazz. Years before, I'd seen Sarah Vaughan on a TV talk show. I didn't know who she was. The host made a big deal over the guest as did my mother. I wasn't impressed. Frankly, I thought she sounded like a man. It wasn't until college that I heard Key Largo and Gloomy Sunday and fell in love with that voice. My quote for years had been: Nancy Wilson turned me on to jazz, but Sarah Vaughan turned me out.

    Later on during my college years -- while I was seriously feelin' Patti LaBelle, Patti Austin, Chaka Khan, Luther Vandross, Roberta Flack, Natalie Cole, Gladys Knight, The Emotions and, of course, Aretha Franklin -- a friend lent me an album cassette called You Know How To Love Me, beginning a lifelong love affair with Phyllis Hyman.

    Sometime in the early '90s, I found that I'd begun liking fewer and fewer of the top Billboard titles until finally I recognized practically none. Ultimately I wound up a devotee of Grown Folks' music, largely smooth- jazz vocalists and instrumentalists. Some of the young'uns today consistently act like they got some musical sense: India.Arie, Chanté Moore, John Legend, Corinne Bailey Rae, Melinda Doolittle. And Janet Jackson. And despite everything, can't leave out Whitney Houston. (May she rest.) But especially India.Arie.

    At this point in my life, the music's gotta seriously come right or not at all.
  • One Hit Wonder @ the Blue LIght

    Nov 27 2010, 13h06 por BlindWilliam

    We're rolling this morning in the abundance that is Louis Armstrong, and we cannot help sharing. Head over to the blue light, and pick up something fine.

    P E A C E

  • [Gil Scott-Heron] 14 July 2010 @ Somerset Hs (London) w/ Mayer Hawthorne - Part…

    Jul 16 2010, 13h02 por IanAR

    14 July 2010: Gil Scott-Heron & Mayer Hawthorne @ Somerset House (London)

    I understand, from CaroleHarvey who saw Gil Scott-Heron & Mayer Hawthorne this week, that some of the songs played were as follows (w/ KantaJo1 (YouTube)'s videos interspersed):

    1. The Bottle
    2. Winter in America
    3. We Almost Lost Detroit
      Some chat on the origins of jazz

    4. Better Days Ahead
    5. Pieces of a Man

    Any updates in the set-list, Mayer Hawthorne's set or YouTubes available - most welcome! (Pls, comment.)

  • Can Tell

    Jan 14 2010, 11h43 por BlindWilliam

    As we go down the road, we pick up a stone every now and then. Sometimes it's just one that catches our eye. Sometimes it's a stone that commemorates an ancestor, or a soul's passing. Sometimes it's a stone that shows blue when you look at it in the light. It's hard to tell before we find them.

    When we come back to the crossroads, we put the stone into a small pile we been building since we can remember. The pile is not many things. It's not a map. It's not a painting. And it's not a path to the underground. It's a pile of stones at the crossroads.

    Here's the most recent. We found it walking past John Coltrane's house, but it was someone else's before he put it there.

    You will come by. We invite you. The gods of speed and travel, the loose and crazy saints that walk among us, they bring us to the crossroads from time to time. That's just what they do. So when you come by feel free to pick up a stone or two, and feel free to leave one, two. That's the all about it -- giving and taking, back and forth.

    We'll keep you at this address, now, too.

    *pours a little liquor on the ground*

    Updates (pls come by again):

    January 18, 2010. Body and Soul #2.

    January 24, 2010. Shrine.

    January 28, 2010. Quick thought on Quincy Jones.

    January 31, 2010. Body and Soul #3.

    February 27, 2010. Body and Soul #4.

    March 14, 2010. Our too lengthy thoughts on Betty Davis, along w/ a couple of bullets.

    March 20, 2010. Body and Soul #5.

    April 4, 2010. The beginning of an extended effort to work through Raekwon's Only Built 4 Cuban Links. Call it OB4CL #1.

    April 10, 2010. Body and Soul #6. We offer some respect for the redo.

    August 22, 2010. Back after a long hiatus w/ the business on brooms. Some Robert Johnson artifacts. Prospect for more,

    September 11, 2010. On the metaphysics of twins. Miles Davis vs. Wayne Shorter

    October 9, 2010. Eshu's paradox of homesickness. Brings home some Robert Johnson.

    P E A C E

  • Equal Rights

    Jun 9 2009, 20h21 por CountryPoet

    Everyone deserves equal rights
    In life
    In way of living
    In everything

    We are all equal
    While we are all different
    We are all the same
    We are all human beings
    We are all people
    Just the same

    If people would open their eyes
    If they would see
    What this world could be
    If we all united
    If we stopped the hate
    We could be united
    As one
    As one world
    As one place
    Where on one had to live in fear
    Where no one had to hide
    We could be united
    We could be one
  • Algiers festival to mark African "cultural renaissance"

    Abr 20 2009, 0h23 por simbad38

    African artists will showcase the diversity and creative heritage of their continent at the second Pan-African Festival, which will be held in Algiers from July 5th-20th under the theme "African Renaissance". For two weeks, the stirring rhythms of Africa will pulsate across Algeria.

    "Forty years after the famous PanAf of 1969, Algeria will once again celebrate Africa’s cultural renaissance. Algeria is back! And so is Africa!" Algerian Culture Minister Khalida Toumi proclaimed at an Algiers press conference held last month to detail plans for the historic celebration.

    Forty-four of the fifty-three member states of the African Union have already confirmed their participation in the festival. Absentees include Morocco, which is not a member of the AU. Other countries invited to attend PanAf 2009 include those with African Diaspora communities, such as Cuba, Venezuela, Brazil, and the United States.

    "We expect to receive around 8,000 artists, intellectuals, delegates, journalists, and official guests," Toumi said.

    Minister for African and Maghreb Affairs Abdelkader Messahel said he hoped PanAf 2009 would be a "starting-point for the revival of African cultural activity", one that would be based on "dynamic cooperation with partners from developed countries".

    Panaf 2009 will showcase the richness, beauty, and emotion that characterise the continent and focus on African creativity and genius in drama, music, dance, film, literature, cartoons, visual arts, and traditional crafts.

    The programme includes exhibitions of contemporary African art, design, photography, fashion design, architecture, and the Sahara. A dozen or so symposia and conferences will touch on subjects ranging from colonialism in Africa, the origins of the human race and zaouia tidjania to theatre and financing film productions in Africa.

    African literature will be in the spotlight, with an international youth literature forum and a writer-in-residence programme in Algiers for African authors and publishers. New editions of more than 200 major African works will also be issued to coincide with the event.

    An African film festival will screen recent productions, including a Liamine Merbah documentary portraying Algeria as a haven for African liberation movements. Major African directors, including Algerians Mohamed Lakhdar Hamina and Rachid Bouchareb, will contribute five-minute films to a unique montage addressing African development.

    Drama will also be a part of the festival. Some 27 theatre performances are planned, 14 of them Algerian.

    Staging the festival, however, will be an expensive operation. While Algeria is spending 55 million euros on the event, officials say this sum falls short of what is required.

    "We need another 5.5 million euros," Khalida Toumi said. "We’ll do everything we can to get hold of it. We’re in touch with sponsors and will publish the list of all partners once the contracts have been finalised. Africa is a continent of the future. Many large companies are interested in taking a high profile here."

    Most of the money will be spent on building an artists' residence in Zeralda (west of Algiers) with a capacity of 2,500 beds. The Village des Artistes, designed on the model of the Olympic villages, will feature 24 buildings.

    The ultimate goal of all the extraordinary preparations, festival communications officer Zouaoui Benhamadi said in an interview with Egyptian radio station Sawt El-Arab, is for PanAf 2009 to cement "a cultural, economic, political, and social union of all African countries".

    "It should become an institution," he added.
  • A New Left for a New Era: Socialism 2009

    Abr 14 2009, 23h06 por CandaceAlmighty

    Building a New Left for a New Era
    Socialism 2009
    Revolutionary politics, debate and entertainment
    June 18-21, Chicago
    July 2-5, San Francisco

    The world economic crisis has shattered the free-market consensus that has dominated politics for the last generation. Meanwhile, the end of the conservative era and the election of the first African American president have raised expectations among working people that long overdue change is coming. With capitalism in crisis, even some in the corporate media are admitting that Karl Marx was right.

    There has never been a better time for those who want to see fundamental change to get together to debate, to discuss and organize for a new society—a society based on the needs of the many instead of the whims of a few. In other words, there has never been a better time to organize a new socialist left to meet the challenge of this new era.

    That’s the purpose that Socialism 2009—expanded to two sites this year—has set for itself. Gather with activists from all over to take part in dozens of discussions about changing the world: How can we stop the economic madness? Can we end racism? What kind of organization do we need? What would a future socialist society look like?

    Yes we can organize for socialism in the 21st century! Si se puede!

    Featured Speakers:

    MICK ARMSTRONG, Socialist Alternative, Australia; ROSE AGUILAR, host, Your Call, KALW,
    91.7FM; IAN ANGUS, editor, Climate and Capitalism; DAVID BACON, author, Illegal People;
    NORA BARROWS-FRIEDMAN, co-host, Flashpoints Radio, KPFA; BARBARA BECNEL,
    director of Stan Tookie Williams Legacy Network; ROBERT BRENNER, author, The Economics
    of Global Turbulence; DENNIS BRUTUS, longtime anti-apartheid and global justice activist;
    PAUL D’AMATO, author of The Meaning of Marxism; NEIL DAVIDSON, University of
    Strathclyde, Scotland; MIKE DAVIS, author, In Praise of Barbarians; SAM FARBER, author,
    Origins of the Cuban Revolution; LAURA FLANDERS, host, GRITtv; JOEL GEIER, associate
    editor, International Socialist Review; TIKVA HONIG-PARNASS, co-author, Between the Lines;
    DR. JESS GHANNAM, Al-Awda Right of Return Coalition, Free Palestine Alliance; ANAND
    GOPAL, Kabul correspondent for the Christian Science Monitor; JAMES GREEN, author, Death
    in the Haymarket; DAHR JAMAIL, author, Beyond the Green Zone; BRIAN JONES, performing
    Howard Zinn’s play Marx in Soho; CLAUDIO KATZ, author, Las disyuntinvas de la izquierda en
    America Latina (the challenges of the Latin American Left); NATIVO LOPEZ, president, Mexican
    American Political Association; ALAN MAASS, editor, Socialist Worker; DAVID McNALLY, New
    Socialist Group, Canada; MARLENE MARTIN, Campaign to End the Death Penalty;
    ANURADHA MITTAL, director, the Oakland Institute; CHINA MIEVILLE, author, Un Lun Dun
    and Between Equal Rights: A Marxist Theory of International Law; DERREL MYERS, Campaign
    to End the Death Penalty and Murder Victims’ Families for Reconciliation; CHRISTIAN
    PARENTI, The Nation, on Afghanistan; JOHN RIDDELL, co-editor, Socialist Voice (Canada);
    HEATHER ROGERS, author of Gone Tomorrow: The Hidden Life of Garbage; JEFFREY ST.
    CLAIR, co-editor of CounterPunch.org and author of Been Brown So Long It Looked Green to
    Me: The Politics of Nature; MARTIN SANCHEZ, consul general of Venezuela, San Francisco;
    LANCE SELFA, author, The Democrats: A Critical History; AHMED SHAWKI, editor,
    International Socialist Review; CINDY SHEEHAN, founder, Gold Star Families for Peace;
    BARRY SHEPPARD, author of The Party: the Socialist Workers Party, 1960-1968; SHARON
    SMITH, author of Subterranean Fire and Women and Socialism; LEE SUSTAR, labor editor,
    Socialist Worker; SHERRY WOLF, author, Sexuality and Socialism; KEEANGA-YAMAHTTA
    TAYLOR, editorial board of International Socialist Review; DAVE ZIRIN, author, A People’s
    History of Sports; SOCIALISTS from France, Greece, Venezuela, Brazil, and many more!

    What you’ll find at Socialism 2009: More than 100 meetings, a bookfair, films, entertainment, and

    Check out http://www.socialismconference.org to register and for more information about
    schedule, housing, and childcare.

    Sponsored by:
    The Center for Economic Research and Social Change
    Publisher of the International Socialist Review and Haymarket Books.

    Co-sponsored by:
    The International Socialist Organization
    Publisher of Socialist Worker
  • The Lumpen: Black Panther Party Revolutionary Singing Group

    Fev 2 2009, 14h02 por OvalPea

    Hi, The lumpen is a band that formed and performed with members from the BPP, This following is the opening paragraph encase anyone's interested:

    Throughout history, oppressed people have used music as a means to not only document their struggle, but also to educate, motivate and inspire people to resistance. The Lumpen singing cadre grew out of that tradition. The purpose or mission of the Lumpen was "to educate the People…to use popular forms of music that the community could relate to and politicize it so it would function as another weapon in the struggle for liberation."

    The Lumpen page
    Does anyone know anything related to this band or where to get The Lumpen music?