Amoeblog

Top Five State of the Union Songs

Posted by Billyjam, January 20, 2015 02:52pm | Post a Comment
At 9pm Eastern time and 6pm Pacific time today (Jan 20th, 2015) President Barack Obama is scheduled to give his State of the Union (SOTU) speech that can be viewed on various TV stations as well as via the White House website stream. His sixth SOTU address and his first State of the Union address since Republicans took control of Congress,  this evening's address is likely to touch on such topics as the rebounding economy, increased taxing of the wealthy, the latest developments with Cuba, and the recent subject of the push to make community colleges free for students - as well as references to the many specially invited citizen guests in the house.

For more SOTU info visit the White House SOTU website page or check out the video below of the interview Obama on what to expect tonight - "Behind The Scenes: Sit Down with President Obama" that was uploaded yesterday. But ahead of that video are the Top Five "State of the Union" video song list with lyric excerpts from each song to get take on where they're coming from that range from punk to classic rock to folk and dub.



Rise Against "State of the Union (Live)"


#1: Rise Against's "State of the Union" song, which was the opening track off the Chicago hardcore punk outfit's 2004 album Siren Song of the Counter Culture, was - as the intro to the live performance above indicates - a vehemently anti George W Bush and his war song; a fact further proven by such no holds barred song lyrics as: "Reads war torn country still a mess The words, power, death, and distorted truth Are read between the lines of the red, white, and blue Countdown to the very end Equality, an invitation that we wont extend Ready aim, pull the trigger now Its time you firmly secure your place in hell"

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MLK Jr Day Movie List

Posted by Billyjam, January 19, 2015 10:30am | Post a Comment

A good thing to do any day, but particularly appropriate MLK Jr. Day, is to view some Martin Luther King, Jr. and cicil rights related films and documentaries. There are many to recommend, beginning with Selma, which is the Ava DuVernay-directed dramatization of the Selma to Montgomery, Alabama voting rights marches of 1965 that were led by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Starring in an incredibly accurate performance of King, British actor David Oyelowo (pictured above) was famously snubbed by the Oscars in their recent 2015 nominations. Selma can be viewed in movie theaters today at no cost for students all over the Bay Area as well in other cities such as New Orleans, St. Louis, Baltimore, and Nashville. The free screenings, which have actually been taking place over the weekend at theaters including 11 in the Bay Area, are thanks to a fundraising drive by a nationwide movement called “Selma for Students.” This fundraising group believes that students (particularly African American) might not otherwise be fully informed about this moment in history captured in Selma and its parallels to the challenges that they face today. Bay Area theaters include Grand Lake Oakland, AMC Bay Street Emeryville, AMC Van Ness San Francisco, Century Hilltop Richmond, and Cinemark Daly City. Students just need to bring some form of ID to the theater in the cities participating in the program.

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Rest In Peace "Lord Of Garbage" Kim Fowley

Posted by Billyjam, January 15, 2015 09:30pm | Post a Comment

Kim Fowley: Garbage Man in A Vinyl Wonderland


Sad news surfaced earlier today that producer, musician, writer, manager, and music impressario extraordinaire Kim Fowley died as a result of bladder cancer. He was 75 years old. While he was a tireless artist and part of the music world for five decades with stacks of records credited to him in varying capacities, Kim Fowley will best be remembered as an integral part of the LA music scene of the sixties and seventies including, most notably, being the producer and promoter/ambassador of The Runaways.

The animated and passionate Fowley remained active right up until very recently, even working with Little Steven on his 

weekend Sirius XM satellite radio show Underground Garage until just last week. Two years ago his book Lord Of Garbage was published by Kicks Books. The engaging video above (Kim Fowley: Garbage Man in a Vinyl Wonderland) is the book's corresponding video in which the aging but never relenting rocker shares his inspiring insights, memories, and love of the grooves and music, citing his "favorite record of all time" as Jerry Lee Lewis' "High School Confidential," which "tied with" several others. The 43 minute low budget video includes Fowley going through his record collection (his own and others) and sharing insights on his life and his love of rock & roll (even his sales pitch to sell said records). It's really really good and worth watching for a sense of who Kim Fowley was.

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Hip-Hop History Tuesdays: Dave Paul's 1990 KCSF Hip-Hop Top 40

Posted by Billyjam, January 13, 2015 05:44pm | Post a Comment


Following my uncovering a 25 year old KCSF San Francisco hip-hop playlist (above) from David Paul I invited the longtime Bay Area DJ/promoter/label CEO/publisher to be a guest Amoeblogger this week for the Hip-Hop History Tuesdays segment and to bring us back, via his memories, to that time period (March 1990) in the genre that historically sat smack in the middle of the so-called Golden Era of hip-hop. Here is what Dave Paul had to share about his playlist from a quarter century ago - some songs with accompanying videos.

Wow, seeing this playlist brings back memories. This was when I did a Friday radio show at KCSF (City College of San Francisco) from 8am to 2am every week. It wasn’t on radio waves but rather broadcast on cable TV, Viacom 25. March 15th, 1990 was way before I launched The Bomb Hip-Hop Magazine (that wouldn't be until October 1991). First, I’ll start with the songs that I am now embarassed that I played and charted at that time: "Shake The House" by Misa: she was a white girl rapper, way before Iggy Azelea. I probably played it cause Big Ed (Sleeping Bag/Fresh Records Bay Area rep) and DJ EFX (Mind Motion’s brother) mixed it. Then there's "Somebody Farted" by Bobby Jimmy.  I probably just found it funny. I guess when you’re in your early 20’s this is hilarious. Then we have "U Can’t Touch This" by MC Hammer. I have no excuse other than he was local (same with Oaktown 357 except "Juicy Gotcha Crazy" was catchy). Now onto the tracks that I am proud I was playing back then. Here they are with accompanying videos:

"Buddy" by De La Soul - this needs no line up. Native Tongues in da house!

MLK Jr Day 2015 Events in the Bay and LA

Posted by Billyjam, January 12, 2015 05:14pm | Post a Comment

With this year being the 50th anniversary of the historic 1965 Selma to Montgomery freedom marches this year's MLK Jr Day 2015 events all over the country will take on extra importance. There are countless events happening all over the US and California. Here a handful of those taking place in LA and the Bay Area including a comic book event in San Francisco.

MLK Jr Day 2015 is day two of the Black Comix Arts Festival whose goal is to celebrate the creativity and subjectivity of African Americans in the comic arts and popular visual culture. Open to all ages, it will include a grand exposition, special guest artist presentations, film screening, and activities for kids. The event kicks off the day before (Sunday, January 18) and happens both days at the San Francisco Public Library's main library and at the Metreon. More information and times click here.

Day of service in Oakland. Something that's become increasingly popular over the years is inviting folks (with the day off work or school) to participate in a day of service - typically doing clean up work on public beaches or parks. Tapping into that theme is the MLK Day of Service 2015 at Shepherds Canyon, Oakland where the goal of the day is to transforming "a former dump into a place of natural beauty." Takes place on MLK Jr Day from 9am to 12:30pm. Volunteers should meet at the Escher Gate, 5881 Escher Drive, Oakland. More info.

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