May 8, 2018
The Matatu Film and Concert series is one of many dynamic film festivals that call the Bay their home, but its most unique quality is that it highlights filmmakers from Africa and the diaspora outside of the U.S., as well as covers subjects that are important to how we see ourselves, and how we see the world. Michael Orange, the Matatu curator, has exquisite taste in cinema. Here is our back-n-forth about what Matatu has in store for May.
April 1, 2018
We all love to spend money, but how many of us have learned how to effectivily save for a rainy day, college, a business or retirement? Many of us have spent more time watching TV in our lives than planning for our family’s financial future. Many of us don’t like to talk about these things because we’re embarrassed we don’t know much about financial literacy, investing and saving money properly. Check out financial advisor Kendra Willis in her own words.
February 21, 2018
Coogler’s “Panther” has a terrible counter-revolutionary message. It’s overall politic message tells you that since you cannot be the Black Panther character, king of Wakanda, you can be a CIA agent like T’Challa’s right hand man. But before I get into that, let me tell y’all what I think is great about this box office record breaking Disney-Marvel film. The cinematography is phenomenal. The costumes and the colors are on another level. The sets are beautiful.
June 12, 2017
Patrick Thomas’ short film “Cut My Hair, Barber” is a powerful portrayal of a father and son relationship that is disturbing and extremely dysfunctional, yet familiar. It is a story that many single Black mothers and Black young and old men, especially, could relate to in our communities. I got a chance to interview filmmaker Patrick Thomas about his cinematic creation, “Cut My Hair, Barber.” Check it out.
June 9, 2017
“Cocoa Butter” is a comedic short film by filmmaker Dominque Gilbert, where the main character, who is white, wants the benefits of being Black in society, but not the headaches, to get the attention of a girl. The main character uses the cream but forgets to read the whole label, which reads, “Once you go Black, you can never go back.” “Why in the world would you wanna be Black?” is the question the white mother asks her endarkened son.
June 8, 2017
“I Am Still Here” is one of the most disturbing must-see films in the San Francisco Black Film Festival. “I Am Still Here” describes the horrors of child sex trafficking through the eyes of Layla, an American child being trafficked in America. Although it is a work of cinematic fiction, it is based on real events, according to the filmmakers. I interviewed Mischa Marcus and Stephanie Bell about their feature length film, “I am Still Here,” and here is what they had to say.
May 21, 2017
When people mention horror, they may think of Alfred Hitchcock or Stephen King. Now we have Antwon Rollins, a Black man, whose mind is immersed in writing and shooting horror, but who is able to tell stories from a slightly different perspective: a common Black perspective. Check out “#Victim 505” at the San Francisco Black Film Fest, as well as check out the filmmaker Antwon Rollins as he talks to us about filmmaking and “#Victim 505.”
April 19, 2017
On the second weekend of June this year, the San Francisco Black Film Festival will be celebrating its 19th year by screening over 100 independent Black films in this annual four-day cinema marathon. San Francisco Black Film Festival director Kali O’Ray, son of founder Ave Montague, sits down to discuss how it feels for the festival to celebrate its 19th birthday, the importance of indie films, remaining in a city that was once a lot more chocolate but has been gentrified to 3 percent Black – and more.
August 14, 2016
Opesanwo Ifakorede is a local herbalist that was originally taught about the world of herbs by his grandmother a generation ago. He recently did an “Urban Practical Herbalism Workshop” at Deep Roots Urban Refuge in East Oakland. For those that did not get a chance to make it, I really want to whet your appetite for the subject. Check out Opesanwo Ifakorede in his own words.
August 1, 2016
BlockReportRadio.com interviews East Oakland’s Sistah Fa about her son, Omar Shakir, being locked up on trumped up charges of trying to murder a police officer on July 24, 2016. When the OPD raided her house, they did it with a robot and with the use of an undisclosed green substance that confused residents. Black people, welcome to the era of “Terminator” robot policing alongside the regular modus operandi of trumped up charges, police pimping, police murders, unwarranted raids and the use of undisclosed chemicals.
July 19, 2016
BlockReportRadio.com talks to Oakland-based housing activist Paula Beal, who is herself a displaced senior, about the lack of affordable housing, a crisis in Oakland. She talks about the struggles that homeless displaced people go through in this town, her recent demonstration at the door of Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf, and what people can do to assist displaced families and to support the fight for affordable housing in Oakland. Paula says: “Right now … it’s a housing crisis! … From 2010 to 2015, 50,000 people have been evicted,” 5,000 already this year, just in Oakland.
July 18, 2016
Oscar Grant’s Uncle Bobby, aka Cephus Johnson, speaks about the recent police execution of Alton Sterling in Baton Rouge and Phil Castile in Minneapolis. We talk about the role of new media in exposing these two cases. He also discusses Obama’s response to the police executions of Black and Brown people and his inaction. We also discuss the Dallas sniper killing a number of police officers last night in response to the rampant police terrorism plaguing the Black communities of the U.S.
July 14, 2016
BlockReportRadio.com interviews international peace activist Dr. Cynthia McKinney, live from Bangladesh, about the police executions of Alton Sterling and Phil Castile. We also talk about presidential candidates Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump. Dr. McKinney speaks on the Clintons’ history of corruption as well as Hillary’s role in the tragic situations in Haiti and Libya, where elected governments were overthrown, and Qaddafi was murdered. She also gives us her perspective on Brexit. The song at the end is by Mac Mall and M1 called “Killiminati.”
July 12, 2016
Public Enemy’s legendary Minister of Information Professor Griff speaks about mainstream media trying to link him to the alleged Black Afghan war vet sniper Micah Johnson. Although there is a photograph of Professor Griff with Micah at one of Griff’s many speaking events, Professor Griff tells us in his own voice that he doesn’t know Micah Johnson. Check out what Professor Griff has to say about the mainstream media’s character assassination attempt.
June 27, 2016
One of the dopest producers in the Bay that many have never heard of is Maki, known as one of the most serious and consistent beat makers. Maki just released a compilation album produced solely by him called “Kilo Hero,” and it features some of the hardest voices in Bay Area street music. Check out Maki of Sounddope Productions and Blahk Operah as he talks about the soon-to-be 2016 summer classic in the streets, “Kilo Hero.”
June 17, 2016
Oakland City Council President Lynette McElhaney discusses the most recent sex scandal sweeping OPD and other Bay Area law enforcement agencies, where over two dozen officers and agents had sex or inappropriate dealings with the same underage girl. Councilwoman McElhaney equates sex work with slavery. She also stresses the need for the community to help organizations that support women and girls who have been abused by the sex industry.
June 15, 2016
BlockReportRadio.com interviews the father of Gangsta Rap, Jalal “Lightening Rod” Nuriddin of the Last Poets, about his classic piece, “The Hustlers’ Convention.” He speaks all around the world, with some of his answers touching street knowledge, the history of the ‘60s poets, Rap history and more. “Hustlers’ Convention,” the documentary, screens Saturday, June 18, 6 p.m., at the African American Art and Culture Complex.
June 10, 2016
With the Sonoma and Napa Valley only an hour away from the big cities, Northern Cali is known for its exquisite wineries that are ranked right up there with the great wineries of France and Spain. Melody Fuller is the founding director of the Second Annual Oakland Wine Festival, which starts on July 16, 2016, and the Oakland Wine and Food Society. I spoke with her about her organization and the festival. Check her out in her own words.
June 7, 2016
Block Report Radio interviews Los Angeles anti-police-terror activist Wil B of the A14. He speaks on his conviction and upcoming sentencing date, June 8. He speaks on the police lying on the witness stand. He talks about what people can do to help and more. For the next couple of days until his sentencing on June 8, Wil is asking people to join a hashtag campaign – calling it either the “Free Wil B Campaign” or “Free the A14 Campaign.”
May 27, 2016
BlockReportRadio.com interviews former Black Panther political prisoner Albert Woodfox of the Angola 3 about his case, his over four decades in isolation, his life as a Panther political prisoner and his release. Finally, Albert Woodfox can join forces with other freedom fighters, here with Minister of Information JR and Arthur League at the Malcolm X JazzArts Festival in Oakland on May 21, 2016. To learn more about Albert Woodfox, visit the Angola 3 website, http://angola3.org/.