Amoeblog

Decades Later In A Still Divided America, A Look Back At Martin Luther King Jr's "I Have A Dream" Speech + Top 5 MLK Tribute Tracks

Posted by Billyjam, January 21, 2019 01:14pm | Post a Comment

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr."I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal."

"I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character"


- Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

from his  "I Have A Dream" speech at The March On Washington" 1963






56 six years ago Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. gave his famous "I Have A Dream" speech  (scroll down for video excerpt) from the landmark March On Washington on August 28, 1963. The historic speech by the iconic American civil rights leader, who was assassinated at age 39 and whose legacy is celebrated today with a national holiday, is considered a watershed in modern American history. As such it is constantly quoted and referenced, along with other King speeches, as a defining point of change in American politics. Over the decades countless honorable references (and musical tributes - see music videos below with link to purchase albums from Amoeba) have been made to this MLK speech; one with a message that becomes even more profoundly pertinent in 2019.
 

In addition to the all the accurate references to "I Have A Dream" and to MLK's message, there have also been many instances of it been quoted but taken out of context only to be used as a cheap political talking point. The most recent and most egregious abuse/misuse of MLK's words were heard over the weekend when Vice President Mike Pence, in a surreal televised appearance to support his boss's border wall, referenced "I Have A Dream"  quoting the speech's "Now is the time to make real the promises for democracy." and even comparing Trump to MLK insisting that 45 is similarly using the legislative process to solve social problems. 

Not surprisingly since the VP made this surreal comparison on Face The Nation (CBS) yesterday morning there has been an outcry in the news and on social media by everyone from politicians to surviving 1960's American civil rights activists and even the son of MLK. Earlier today in Washington DC during a breakfast gathering honoring his father, who referenced him and his three siblings in his famous speech, Martin Luther King III strongly criticized the comparison of 45 to MLK. "Love, not hate, will make America great,'” said the community activist and human rights advocate who was only ten when his 39 year old father was assassinated in Memphis TN on April 4th 1968.

New Vinyl Hip-Hop Top 10 [inc. limited Record Store Day LPs] PRhyme, The Nonce, Common, Riff Raff, Prodigy, David Banner, Cypress Hill +

Posted by Billyjam, April 26, 2018 10:27pm | Post a Comment
Top Ten Hip-Hop Albums on Vinyl/LP April 26 2018


01: Common Can I Borrow A Dollar? [Record Store Day] (2LP + 7”) (Nature Sounds)

Due to a combination of factors, from overstocking to under-publicizing of specific titles, there are currently a limited number of leftover titles from last Saturday's big Record Store Day 2018; half of which make up this week's Top Ten Hip-Hop Albums on Vinyl/LP list. These include in the number position the special Record Store Day vinyl reissue of Common's Can I Borrow A Dollar? via Nature Sounds that is the artist's out of print first album as a 2LP set plus a bonus 7" inch single featuring the Common B-side track "Can I Bust" and an instrumental version of the single/album track "Breaker." Can I Borrow A Dollar?  is Common’s oft overlooked / well worth revisiting debut album from 1992, two years before the release of his breakout hit sophomore album Resurrection (feat. “I Used To Love H.E.R.”). The album also harks back to the Chicago artist's early years when he was still known as Common Sense but this new issue of the album, like all reissues post-1995, has his name on the cover adjusted to simply Common
 

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Amoeba San Francisco Platinum Anniversary Celebrated Via 20 Years of Hip-Hop Albums 1997-2017: from Company Flow to Wiki

Posted by Billyjam, November 18, 2017 04:23pm | Post a Comment

As you likely already know today is part-two of the two-day 20 year (Platinum) anniversary celebration of Amoeba San Francisco that opened back in November 1997. In-store happenings at the historic SF Haight-Ashbury District location, that formerly housed a bowling alley, include music spinning from DJs with Amoeba SF roots: J Boogie, DJ Rascue, DocFu, and Mike Bee and the Platinum party going strong
til 8pm this evening.  Full details on Amoeba SF Platinum Anniversary Celebration. In celebration of Amoeba SF's 20 years of  providing bottomless crates for DJs and hip-hop fans to dig from, below is a quick look back at select hip-hop album releases from the twenty years that Amoeba San Francisco has been open. Sure it’s a subjective list culled from the countless great albums released over these past two decades. But it is also a reminder of how quickly the time has flown since Amoeba Music opened on Haight Street back in November 1997. Note that the Hollywood store opened a few years later in November 2001 and that the Amoeba Music Berkeley store (the original) had already been open for seven years at this point. The photo above is from seven years ago, November 2010, during the 20 year anniversary celebration of Amoeba Berkeley. It pictures two of that day’s performers: former Amoeba employee and Anticon hero Adam "DoseoneDrucker along with Pam The Funkstress of The Coup. As posted on the Amoeblog two days ago the longtime Bay Area DJ, also known as Purple Pam, is currently in hospital and battling for her life. As of time of publishing this story on Saturday afternoon, no further updates on Pam’s health had been issued but once they have will be posted here on the Amoeblog. [UPDATE EDIT on Saturday Nov 18th a little after 7pm (Pacific time) good news posted on social media regarding Pam's status, stating that "she had a successful surgery and is on her way to recovery" and that she and her family, "want to thank everyone for their prayers and concern."]
Meantime below are 20 hip-hop albums from the past 20 years of Amoeba SF's existence at 1855 Haight St, San Francisco, California 94117 

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Renewed Relevancy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s Speeches & The Music They Inspired

Posted by Billyjam, January 16, 2017 02:11pm | Post a Comment
Martin Luther King Jr.
"I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character"
- MLK

"I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal." - MLK


These two above famous American history quotes, each from the same speech from 54 years ago, take on a renewed relevancy in January 2017 on this Martin Luther King Jr. holiday in the current uncertain political climate. No doubt the 1963 March On Washington, at which MLK gave his famous speech to a sea of peaceful protesters, will be in the minds of those participating in this weeks Women's March on Washington.

Taking place on Saturday January 21st 2017, the post inauguration day protest organizers announced that, due to the swelling number of confirmed participants, that they are now expecting 200,000 people at this weekend's march which is the same number that marched back in 1963 when MLK spoke. Similarly with the 1963 March on Washington, which King stressed was about equality for all, the message of the Women's March is about rights for all with the motto is "The RIse of the Woman = The Rise of the Nation."

At Amoeba's three stores you'll find various collections of speeches by Martin Luther King Jr. And / or visit the online store's Martin Luther King Jr. section where you'll find such collections as In Search Of Freedom (9 track CD includes "I Have A Dream" and "Police Brutality Will Backfire"), the Wisdom of Martin Luther King Jr.  2 CD set, and The Martin Luther King Jr Tapes that is another collection that includes the historic "I Have A Dream" speech from August 28th, 1963. Also found at Amoeba are artists who either dedicated music to the legacy of MLK or artists who sampled his speeches in their music. Besides the content of his speeches, as a great orator who spoke in perfect rhythm, makes for a perfect speechmaker to sample over beats.

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Hip-Hop And The 2016 Presidential Election

Posted by Billyjam, November 8, 2016 05:03am | Post a Comment
Nov. 8th: Following what has to go down as the most divisive, emotionally draining and drawn out, media saturated, presidential campaign in American history, we've finally arrived at November 8th, Election Day 2016. Polls are open 7am to 8pm today in California and from 6am to 9pm in New York. Vote for whomever you believe in, but be sure to get out and vote unless you are among the demographic of early voters who've already handled their business. 

In viewing this election process from a hip-hop perspective and judging what candidate has been most associated with the musical genre, the answer seems pretty clear, starting with who it is not. It sure wouldn't be the one whose racist rhetoric inspired one of the most popular party jams of this past summer: YG featuring Nipsey Hussle's "FDT (Fuck Donald Trump)" off YG's mid June released album Still Brazy (Def Jam). Indeed from early on hip-hop seemed unlikely to side with the candidate who had built his campaign upon the relentless, yet ultimately redundant, questioning of the legitimacy of the birth place of America's "first hip-hop president."

Further Trump's campaign appearing both anti-Hispanic and anti Black Lives Matter, sure didn't give him much chance of converting diehard hip-hop followers. Nor did the lawsuit-happy Orange one's long list of litigation threats that included one against popular rapper Mac Miller. Back in 2011 Mac Miller recorded the song called "Donald Trump" (making reference to riches, nothing political) for his Best Day Ever mixtape (avail on LP) that went on to become a platinum hit and to date racked up 117 million video views. At first Donald Trump said he liked the song. But later he flip-flopped and threatened to sue the rapper (he still has not) over use of his name in the hit song. Unimpressed but inspired to fire back, Mac Miller blasted Trump back at that time. Fast forward to last December, right before the televised Republican presidential debate, Mac Miller revived his counter attack via Trump's favorite fighting ground, Twitter, by posting to his 5.75 million followers: "Please just don't elect this m**therfucker man"

Of course Mac Miller isn't the only rapper to diss Trump. Many have done so in song, especially over the past year, including The Game in the track "El Chapo" with Skrillex, off his 2015 album The Documentary 2.5 Collectors Edition, on which he rapped: "knock Donald Trump out his toupee." However it should be noted that traditionally in the pre-political days of Trump, especially the early nineties when his image was just that of rich businessman, the Donald's countless rap song mentions, that even included A Tribe Called Quest and Digital Underground, were all highly complimentary with his name been utilized simply to symbolize wealth.

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