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MUSIC 15 Week 4. Radicals/Gangstas. Mid Term. Next Week 30 multiple choice questions Around half listening ID Some follow-ups to the listening IDs Some general questions. Black Nationalism. Formations based on racial definitions of community

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music 15 week 4

MUSIC 15 Week 4

Radicals/Gangstas

mid term
Mid Term
  • Next Week
  • 30 multiple choice questions
  • Around half listening ID
  • Some follow-ups to the listening IDs
  • Some general questions
black nationalism
Black Nationalism
  • Formations based on racial definitions of community
  • Strong emphasis on self-reliance, sometimes separatism
  • Sometimes framed religiously as in groups like the Moorish Science Temple, Nation of Islam
black nationalism1
Black Nationalism
  • Influential early 20th century version was Marcus Garvey’s UNIA
  • Became heavily intertwined with post-colonial liberation struggles in the mid 20th century
  • Malcolm X perhaps the most influential American figure
the nation of islam
The Nation of Islam
  • An indigenous American religion, not formally associated with mainstream Islam
  • Prophet figure is W.D. Fard
  • Creation stories of the races: blacks originals, whites “the devil”
  • First leader Elijah Muhammad
  • Most famous member Malcolm X, who left
  • Current leader and strongest influence on hip hop: Louis Farrakhan
the 5 percenters
The 5 Percenters
  • Nation of Gods and Earths
  • Splinter group of the Nation of Islam, started by Clarence 13X
  • A more informal version of the faith, based on oral practice
  • Strong on number and letter symbolism, like Kabbalah and other mystic traditions
  • Gnostic in orientation: godliness exists within man rather than without
x clan heed the word of the brother man
X Clan “Heed the Word of the Brother Man”
  • Politically-oriented nationalist group
  • Included the son of prominent radical leader Sonny Carson
  • Songs steps through the basics of their philosophy with strong Afrocentric imagery
  • Based on party songs: “Flashlight” by Parliament, “More Bounce” by Zapp and “the Smurf”
brand nubian wake up
Brand Nubian “Wake Up”
  • Brand Nubian were 5%ers
  • The song outlines the religion’s message and uses many of its particular linguistic turns
  • Similar general message to X Clan but expressed in religious terms
  • Based on Roy Ayers “Sunshine”
public enemy
Public Enemy
  • Came together in the suburbs of Long Island in the early 1980s via the Spectrum City club and at Adelphi University
  • From the beginning a collective of different characters with both musical and non-musical functions
  • Strongly political, drawing on various nationalist ideologies without being pinned down by any one
public enemy don t believe the hype
Public Enemy “Don’t Believe the Hype”
  • Production by the Bomb Squad (Hank Shocklee/Eric Sadler) is as radical as the words.
  • Used lots of very short samples
  • Used samples of non-musical sounds as well as breaks
  • The MC’s had deliberately contrasting personae (Chuck D serious, Flavor Flav as the “trickster”)
public enemy fight the power
Public Enemy “Fight the Power”
  • From the album “Fear of a Black Planet”
  • Generalized protest song rather than specific nationalist statement
  • Used by Spike Lee in “Do the Right Thing”
boogie down productions 9mm goes bang
Boogie Down Productions “9mm Goes Bang”
  • Duo of MC KRS One and DJ Scott la Rock
  • From the album “Criminal Minded” one of the first rap songs to glamorize criminal behavious
  • Bears a heavy influence of Jamaican dancehall
  • Scott la Rock was murdered shortly after the release of the album
boogie down productions my philosophy
Boogie Down Productions “My Philosophy”
  • KRS One responded to the murder of his partner by shifting his message to one of serious social comment and engagement
  • Didactic style (teachy if not a bit preachy)
  • Links the local (NYC) to the international (South Africa etc)
schooly d p s k
Schooly D “P.S.K.”
  • The first “gangsta” record
  • From Philadelphia, named for the “Park Side Killer” gang
  • Delivery is openly hostile and thuggish
  • Production is very stripped down with lots of echo
ice t 6 n the mornin
Ice T “6 ‘n the Mornin”
  • Basically a retread of Schooly D
  • Ice T was a break dancer and sometimes rapper who took this sound and finally parlayed it into career success
los angeles in the 1980s
Los Angeles in the 1980s
  • Rise of gangs which had began asserting their influence in the wake of the Watts riots
  • Crack. The influx of cheaper cocaine in the mid 1980s further entrenched the gangs while making them even more volatile
  • LAPD under Chief Daryl Gates pursued an almost complete militarization of daily life in some parts of LA
west coast gangsta rap
West Coast Gangsta Rap
  • Compton now takes on a mythic sense of place equivalent to the South Bronx
  • Gang violence and drug dealing is both an every day subject matter and a narrative frame for almost cinematic fantasies
eazy e boyz n the hood
Eazy E “Boyz n the Hood”
  • The first big Los Angeles rap hit
  • Independently produced by Dr Dre and famously sold out of trunks at the swap meet
  • Words by Ice Cube, rapping by Eazy E, a hustler who was initially just trying to launder money through the music business
n w a straight outta compton
N.W.A. “Straight Outta Compton”
  • After Boyz n the Hood, Eazy E hired music biz veteran Jerry Heller as a manager and formed NWA as a kind of super-group of the already existing scene
  • This song established Compton as a kind of symbol for urban dysfunction
n w a fuck the police
N.W.A. “Fuck the Police”
  • Much of the first N.W.A. records was explicitly about provocation. This is exhibit A
  • However, was also a direct if hardly subtle response to the situation in L.A. at the time, when police brutality (especially against minorities) was rampant
dj quik jus lyke compton
DJ Quik “Jus’ Lyke Compton”
  • DJ Quik was from Compton, and unlike N.W.A. was closer to the actual gang scene
  • Producer and rapper, mostly party records
  • Song describes leaving Compton, and then seeing the same problems repeated everywhere else
too short the ghetto
Too Short “The Ghetto”
  • Too Short was to Oakland as NWA were to Compton
  • Style is deeply rooted in toasts, especially the Rudy Ray Moore renditions.
  • More humorous than the L.A. music, though not so much in this case
dr dre featuring snoop dogg deep cover
Dr Dre (featuring Snoop Dogg) “Deep Cover”
  • One of Snoop’s first appearances on record
  • From the soundtrack of the film of the same name, directed by Bill Duke
  • The film was unique amongst the crop of films dealing with the drug trade at the time by focussing less on the streets and more on official corruption and complicity
geto boys mind playing tricks on me
Geto Boys “Mind Playing Tricks on Me”
  • From Houston, made their name by pushing the envelope in terms of shocking content
  • This song is more reflective, and one of the first gangsta tracks to deal with the personal and human cost of the criminal activity that was celebrated elsewhere
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