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Learning to be Michelle Obama

Can any of us imagine what it must’ve been like to be Black and at an Ivy League school in 1981?  The following quote is from a worthwhile read on how that experience shaped Michelle: "Princeton was a real crossroads of identity for Michelle," said Harvard Law School professor Charles J. Ogletree, who was her […]

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Say it with me: "President Obama"

The new American power couple From Barack’s historic remarks last night: Sixteen months have passed since we first stood together on the steps of the Old State Capitol in Springfield, Illinois.  Thousands of miles have been traveled.  Millions of voices have been heard.  And because of what you said – because you decided that change […]

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NPR (and I) look at the legacy of Bo Diddley

I had the pleasure of being asked to be on NPR’s News and Notes with Farai Chideya today to talk about Bo Diddley’s impact on music.  Funny what you can (and can’t) get in inside of just over 8 minutes. One of the things that I really love about being involved in Black rock is […]

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Official Black Rock Coalition statement regarding Bo Diddley

BRC Director of Operations Darrell McNeill sent me this statement in the wake of the passing of rock ‘n’ roll pioneer Bo Diddley: The Black Rock Coalition bestows its utmost respect to Ellas Otha Bates McDaniel, known world over as “Bo Diddley.” Not only was he one of the early pioneers of this still-largely misunderstood […]

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Possibilities, and the fear thereof

Eloquence on the part of Michelle Obama about African Americans and the subconscious fear of greater possibilities that lurks in the back of our minds.  Food for thought, right? Let’s really think about this, so that we can be aware of when we’re letting fear guide our decisions instead of being guided by our hopes.  […]

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"Yes, We Can"–The video for Barack Obama

Of course, we can talk about change til we’re blue in the face, but tomorrow’s the day–Super Tuesday–when 22 or so states will have their primary voting.  So, it’s vitally important that those of us who can actually do go to the polls and pull a lever. For me, it comes down to this: We’re […]

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The New Black Imagination

Over the last year on these pages, I’ve written often about the cultural shift taking place, both within the African American community and the country at large.  Barack’s victory in Iowa is further indication of this shift.  Look at the enthusiasm that his candidacy has engendered.  Look at today’s New York Times, and you’ll get […]

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Quotable: Bob Lefsetz on growing audiences

Industry curmudgeon Bob Lefsetz has some advice everybody in the Black rock/Afropunk/Ghetto Metal/Urban alternative space should read: But in the aggregate, we can grow the music sphere. Once we realize that not only is it not controlled by Doug Morris and his major label brethren, but not radio either. Music is now controlled by the […]

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On excellence–part two, or making it matter in the marketplace

I feel like 2008 is going to be the year of making Black rock matter in the marketplace.  That is, it’s got to hold its own economically.  I’m going to do my part to help expand audiences for it, but I need your help.  So, let’s frame up the issue and see what headspace that […]

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On excellence–part one

So it’s mid-December and I’m just now posting this video from September’s BoldasLIVE.  What’s that about? you may ask.  Honestly, it came down to the fact that I didn’t feel that I did as good as job as I could’ve done in positioning the discussion on excellence.  Flubs that may seem minor to you, but […]

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