The imagery in this single by Grateful Dead is post-apocalyptic, as if the forces sung about conspire to wreck us all.
Commissars and pinstripe bosses roll the dice.
Any way they fall, guess who gets to pay the price?
Money green, or proletarian gray,
Selling guns instead of food today.
So the kids they dance and shake their bones,
And the politicians throwing stones,
Singing ashes, ashes, all fall down
Ashes, ashes, all fall down.
So I hear this song the day after watching the documentary 13th, a treatment of the problem of prison and racis. Here’s a powerful acoustic performance
You came here in shackles.
Picked the cotton in chains.
That’s the sin of my people,
And I carry that shame.
God knows you must be weary.
You’ve been dreaming so long.
You built this country,
So march on, march on.
Michael Duff, lead singer for Chalk Farm, belts a rocker bemoaning the state of affairs in 1996, the racial and religious separations. Could be singing the same song this year.
And I think it will take us more than legislation
I think it will take us more than filling graves
And I say that you can not force appreciation
Lie on lie
A sparrow bellies briefly
in a snow drift still in shade,
Scoots into soggy fall leaf litter.
Scavenges on the first day of spring.
The breeze, the air, the sun,
Transform the calendar note,
Convince me to lift my face
Into the hope of a new season.
The federal government was much too slwo responding to Hurricane Katrina. Point of view for this song by Allen Watty? A rooftop survivor trying to stay alive. In August of 2005 Hurricane Katrina clobbered the New Orleans area, and the death toll was estimated at 1,800. The black community was hit hard. Watty tune mourns and protests.
Then it hit me.
Ain’t nobody coming to get me.
Nobody feels my pain.
Once again the clor of my skin
Reminds me ain’t nothing changed.
Sage, Kesha and Chika sing for the video “The Most Vicious Cycle,” a disturbing look at the cyclical way tragedies happen, we respond with sorrow and resolve, the world keeps turning and the same thing happens again and again. It’s a sobering look at a reality in our lives.
In a mad man’s world, happens every day
I don’t understand why the rules can’t change
I don’t wanna be a moment of silence
I don’t wanna be an early grave
When I’m walking through the halls
I don’t wanna be brave, I just wanna be safe
Old Sol burns through morning lace and mist
Somehow placed to coax a blue-pearl world,
And we live.
Our star, our firmament
were birthed in a collosal throe
Far from any memory
From an unimaginable,
Sol, its worlds, our eyes
watch red shifts as sun, earth
Careen from other celestial bodies.
Ages later, a future generation,
Perhaps, may see a turn to blue,
As sun, maybe, and globe, maybe
And, maybe, we
Face the possiblity
of starting again.
Sun’s end, creation’s pause,
Return to smash,
Fill imagination, trouble dreams
And, we live.
[Thoughts on a morning walk after reading cosmology.]
Listen up. There are some important names called out in Angie Stone’s tune.
People, my people, keep striving.
There’s a greater master plan.
We need to know our history.
We were kings and queens of the greatest dynasty.
Willie Jones released this anthem in January of 2021. He’s country but his own kind of country.
Proud to be a Black man,
Livin’ in the land of the brave and the free.
Yeah I’m all-American,
And that American dream ain’t cheap.
We’ve come a long way,
Still got a long way to go,
When you’re livin’ as a Black man,
It’s a different kinda ‘merican dream
I love the imagery in these impertinent observations by The War Against Drugs, getting at things a little sideways.
Let me tell you, your arms are like boulders,
And your shoulders are cliffs.
But your head keeps rolling off,
And your spine, it is weak
From the weight on your shoulders
And from difference of opinion.