Check It Out: Facts on Our Mean Streets

Whether you are Republican or Democrat or Green or somewhere in-between... time has come to face the facts on our mean streets. Dig what Damoninsky did with a speech by Bernie Sanders and the sounds of Cinematic Orchestra. It is a prayer and a jeremiad all at the same time in the spirit of Micah and Amos: WHAT does the Lord require but to DO justice, ACT with compassion and WALK with humility with your God.


Many people don't remember the old Chambers Brothers who began - and continue - as four brothers from Mississippi singing gospel. When they added a white boy drummer in 1965, they scored big with "People Get Ready," but their true mark on American society came in 1968 when the gave us "Time Has Come Today." This was a simple but prophetic musical
reminder that American society was broken 40 years ago - poverty, race hatred and international war were the signs - and for a moment it seemed as if we might take a step towards justice, compassion and humility.

I LOVE the Ramones remix of TIME because cuts to the chase and captures the heart of it all with a bit of self-deprecating humor thrown in for good measure - and they set it in a church, too, so you have to dig it.


Ok... now I'm on a jag and two more ESSENTIAL tunes come to mind: the first was a brilliant jazz jam shared by Les McCann and Eddie Harris at the Jazz Festival at Montrose that became "Compared to What?" a totally brilliant groove about real life in 1969. (There is precious little visual excitement here but sit back and take in all in, Jack!)



Which brings me to another forgotten and brilliant jazz/gospel prophet: Gil Scott-Heron. He just got out of prison for cocaine and man has that man paid his dues! He made it real with "The Revolution Will Not be Televised" but hit a home run with "B Movie" - and it sounds more real in 2008. This is rap at its best so sit back again and take it all in because in spite of brother Gil's wounds, he is speaking the truth.

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