To commemorate Black History Month here is a playlist:
Max Richter – All Human Beings
David Lammy – When Will Black Lives Matter?
Nina Simone – Ain’t Got No – I Got Life
Kathleen Cleaver – Change It
Prince Riser – African Slaves Dub
Billie Holliday – Strange Fruit (Outsider Mix)
The Last Poets – Black Lives Matter
Dominique Fils-Aime – Strange Fruit
Huey Newton – The Black Panther Party Calls For
DJ Vadim – If Life Was A Thing
Stokely Carmichael – So Much Strength
Doctor T Meets The 18th Parallel – Fuel For Dub
Malcolm X – Standing & Fighting
Oku Onuora – If Not Now
Benjamin Zephaniah – Dis Policeman
Huey Newton – Power To The People
Ministry of Echology – Moving Forward (Kaseta Version)
Freddie McKay – I’m A Free Man
Bongo Isaac & Itekted Dread Benji – Perfect Love and Peace
David Lammy – Hang On A Minute
Times Gone By – LGBT History:
Jeanne Deckers aka The Singing Nun – 17 October 1933 – 29 March 1985
In 1963 Jeanne Deckers, a Dominican nun, recorded an LP. One song from the album, “Dominique”, sold over 1.5 million copies and was number 1 worldwide. Under the name Soeur Sourire (Sister Smile) she appeared on the legendary “Ed Sullivan Show” – a performance that made her an international superstar.
In 1964 she won a Grammy for Best Gospel Recording and in 1965 MGM produced a highly fictionalised movie of her life – “The Singing Nun” – starring Debbie Reynolds.
Having grown increasingly critical of Catholic doctrines – particularly the Church’s stand on artificial contraception – Jeanne left the order in 1967, and along with her companion of ten years, Annie Pescher, she opened a school for autistic children.
In the early 1980s the Belgian government claimed she owed $63,000 in back taxes for royalties from “Dominique”. Deckers countered that as all proceeds from the record’s sales were donated to the Convent no taxes were due; but the government would not relent and threatened to shut down the school. Citing financial difficulties, Jeanne Deckers and Annie Pescher died by suicide together through an overdose of barbiturates and alcohol on 29 March 1985. The note they left said simply “We hope God will welcome us. He saw us suffer.”
Laura Nyro – 18 October 1947 – 8 April 1997
It would be difficult to overstate Laura Nyro’s influence on late 20th-century popular music. A self-taught pianist, Nyro began composing songs as a child and sold her first song – “And When I Die” – at the age of 19.
Between 1968 and 1970 a number of her songs achieved significant success on the Billboard charts by The Fifth Dimension, Blood, Sweat, and Tears, Three Dog Night and Barbra Streisand.
Nyro’s evocative style mixed jazz and rhythm-and-blues with street pop, gospel and Broadway. A number of her songs – the antiwar “Save the Country”, the feminist “Women of the One World” and the environmentalist “Lite a Flame” – addressed social issues. Throughout her career Nyro maintained a very strong lesbian following.
She never publicly acknowledged her own sexuality, which included relationships with both men and women, privately referring to herself as “woman identified.” In 1977 Nyro met painter Maria Desiderio. The two women were together until Nyro’s death of ovarian cancer in 1997 at age 49.
Frances Kellor – 20 October 1873 – 4 January 1952
Frances Alice Kellor received her law degree from Cornell in 1897 and soon after entered the University Of Chicago to study criminal sociology. She eventually spent nearly two years in southern penitentiaries for African Americans. Her resultant book, “Experimental Sociology” (1901), helped launch the modern concept that environmental factors — such as disadvantaged childhoods and poor education – play a determining role in criminal behaviour.
After moving to New York City in 1903, Kellor undertook a subsequent study of the exploitation of domestic workers by employment agencies. The resulting book, “Out of Work” (1904), was among the first books to present unemployment as a government problem rather than simply a personal misfortune.
It was around this time that she fell in love with activist Mary Dreier. In 1906, Kellor was instrumental in organising the National League for the Protection Of Colored Women, which worked to find jobs and housing for African American women migrating north.
In 1908 Kellor was appointed to New York State Immigration Commission. Her research led to the creation of the Bureau of Industries and Immigration, which provided arbitration between workers and employers and produced leaflets in various languages warning immigrants to beware of exploitative practices. In 1912 Kellor began work with the Progressive Party, which believed in using the state for social reform. She headed the party’s National Service Committee, preparing official statements and research, making her instrumental in shaping Theodore Roosevelt’s campaign agenda. In this way Kellor became a key player in presidential politics before women even had the right to vote.
Continuing her work for the compassionate assimilation of immigrants, Kellor devised programmes that provided language and citizenship classes as well as vocational training. In 1926 she launched the American Arbitration Association and wrote “Arbitration in the New Industrial Society” (1934). Frances Kellor was still vice-president of the American Arbitration Association when she died in 1952 in the home she had shared with Drier since 1905. She was 78.
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2 thoughts on “Black History Month … Times Gone By … Rainbow Lottery”
Used to love Laura Nyro’s music
Good playlist Tony. Lots I don’t know. Don’t know how I’d access them,though, not being very techy. How about arranging a concert?
Btw, the comment button failed today for me, as on the previous occasion. Hence the email.
All the Best,
Sent from my iPad