July 31, 2014
Chris Zamani, founder of the Hapo Zamani Za Kale clothing line, is a t-shirt designer who is on the pioneering front of trying to politicize the consciousness in the Black community through changing the kinds of people and messages on the t-shirts we are wearing. He started a line of t-shirts which immortalizes and commemorates revolutionary heroes and sheroes from the African continent, people like Nkrumah, Lumumba, Machel, Nehanda, Asantewaa, Mugabe and more.
June 24, 2014
Kev seemed almost immortal to me. Two weeks before he passed, I went to hang out with him at his house. I could see the sickness visibly eating at him, but when he opened the door, his eyes lit up, and he smiled like in the old days. I believe wholeheartedly that Lateefah’s love kept his immune system intact as long as it was. I had to write this so his family could know the giant that Kevin Weston was to me. Salute to one of the greatest editors that I know. Salute also to Lateefah for giving Kev a love he’d never seen before and for showing that there is still such a thing as Black love.
February 2, 2014
If you take a little Theolonius Monk, mix it with Yasiin Bey aka Mos Def, with a little twist of some Lauryn Hill and Curtis Mayfield and put it on an Oakland soundscape, you’ll get what bandleader and pianist Kev Choice cooked up on his newly released, soon to be classic album, “Oakland Riviera.” By far this is one of the best sounding, most creative and most political albums to come out of Oakland’s Hip Hop scene in the last few years.
January 30, 2014
“Emmitt Till” does more than call attention to how Till’s death ignited the U.S. Civil Rights Movement in the ‘50s and ‘60s. It points to the quiet heroism of Mamie Till Mobley in the face of unspeakable horror and unrelieved terrorism. Come see this dynamic and inspirational play by Tavia Percia and the Tavia Percia Theatre Company: Saturday, Feb. 1, 7 and 9 p.m., and Sunday, Feb. 2, 3 and 5 p.m., at the Eastside Arts Alliance, 2277 International Blvd, Oakland.
November 20, 2013
Ty-Licia Hooker was a recent winner at the Black Girls Rock! awards ceremony, which aired on BET, for her work with the Stockton based non-profit that she co-founded for under-achieving students, called the Summer Success and Leadership Academy. Still in her early 20s, this dynamic young leader is on the rise and getting ready to take her project national.
June 2, 2013
Money B has been a Hip Hop legend for over 20 years wit’ the funk-heavy rap group Digital Underground. And I wanted to do this interview with him to talk about his friend, comrade and band mate, the late Tupac Shakur. This year, just like most years, the Bay is having a Tupac Shakur Birthday Party. This year it will be at Yoshi’s in San Francisco, on June 16.
May 30, 2013
In the spirit of young freedom fighters like Lil’ Bobby Hutton, Young Malcolm will live forever in the hearts and minds of oppressed people who want to be free, especially those incarcerated in jail cells and in Amerikkkan ghettos. We love you and we will never forget you. We will make sure that the young people of today and tomorrow use your life as an example to keep up the fight that so many have given their lives for over time. Long live Hajj Malcolm Latif Shabazz! May you rest in peace with the other warriors from our movement.
April 16, 2013
Six term congresswoman, ‘08 Green Party presidential candidate and international peace activist Cynthia McKinney has been willing to risk her life to represent for Black people, fearlessly investigating such hot issues as Katrina, Haiti, the Congo, Libya and more. Currently she is writing her Ph.D. dissertation on President Hugo Chavez and attended his recent funeral in Caracas. Meet this warm and courageous woman at Bay View fundraisers Wednesday, April 24, at the Laney College Forum, 900 Fallon St., Oakland, at 6:30 p.m., and on Thursday, April 25, at the Arlene Francis Center, 99 Sixth St., Santa Rosa, at 7 p.m.
November 25, 2012
Terry Collins, co-founder of KPOO 89.5FM, and Willie Ratcliff, publisher of the San Francisco Bay View, blessed the airwaves last Tuesday afternoon with a warm and revealing discussion of life and resistance and the upcoming Black Media Appreciation Night, honoring the champions of independent Black media. Black Media Appreciation Night is this Monday, Nov. 26, 8 p.m., at Yoshi’s, 510 Embarcadero West, Jack London Square, Oakland. For tickets and more information, go to http://www.yoshis.com/oakland/jazzclub/artist/show/3104.
June 22, 2012
Jamal Joseph’s “Panther Baby: A Life of Rebellion and Reinvention” is a story of love, revolution, rage and redemption. Joseph’s brilliant, honest, insightful narrative of his coming of age in New York City in the late 1960s at the height of the Black Power movement is so riveting that I had a hard time putting it down, even to sleep. And when I did, it invaded my dreams.”
December 26, 2011
Afrika! Black people! Afrikans! Let’s do like China did and put the whole continent on lockdown by closing our doors to the rest of the world until we’re ready to come back out again as a superpower.
September 25, 2011
Oakland has never had a dominant rapper who’s a woman in its long rap history. Today, the Sobrante Park bred Silence the Violence activist and rapper Queen Deelah is the one who is turning heads from the Town all the way to Austin, Texas. Recently while I was in Austin, I ran into Deelah, the transplant who had taken over the sleepy Texas city in a matter of months.
June 13, 2011
The Poor Righteous Teachers appealed to young people trying to find themselves and their Blackness, like me. It was an honor for me to interview Wise Intelligent because of how much I gained from his conscious lyrics.
June 4, 2011
Ever since I became aware of your music and revolutionary message, your work has moved me. Spiritually, you had the gift to make us experience what you were experiencing. It was like you could put the movie you were singing about on the projectors of our minds.
November 13, 2010
The Frisco native and conscious rapper Sellassie has to be one of the hardest working men in independent Bay Area rap music. He has been a big promoter of unifying the Bay Area’s rappers and he has started a campaign against “house nigga” rap. He also hosts a regional up and coming artists’ showcase called “We All We Got.”
October 29, 2010
Hard Knock Radio is a must-listen show broadcast weekdays on KPFA 94.1 FM at 4-5 p.m. On Oct. 26, the show kicked off with this historic conversation between host Davey D, Minister of Information JR and Malcolm Shabazz, grandson of Malcolm X.
February 16, 2010
An old school relentless plantation-style colonialism governs the country currently through mostly white non-governmental organizations just as well as through armies like those of the U.S. and U.N. that control the flow of resources. – MULTIMEDIA BONUS: Listen to Davey D’s interview with Minister of Information JR immediately after his return from Haiti.
October 23, 2009
Kev Choice is one of the the dopest young musicians I know in Oakland. And I would have to say that L-Boogie aka Lauryn Hill agrees with me, since she hired this dude to be her band leader. Kev Choice tickles the keys like Herbie, emcees like Posdonous and is a band leader like Duke Ellington. The Kev Choice Ensemble out at Yoshi’s in Oakland on Monday, Oct. 26, at 8 p.m.
October 21, 2009
Gil Scott Heron is one of the greatest legends that Black music has breathing in this country. To many, his music is the soundtrack to different eras, the ‘60s, ‘70s and ‘80s. This piano player, songwriting and composing poet, has set the bar very high when it comes to passionately expressing a wide array of emotions. He is also a beast at getting a political message across through song, right next to people like Fela Kuti, Peter Tosh, Nina Simone and the likes. This is Part 3 of a four-part interview. Here’s Gil Scott Heron in his own words …
October 10, 2009
There are a lot of artists in the Bay that I like for different reasons, but I have to say Mac Mall is one of my favorite all around artists. He was 16 years old when “Illegal Business” was released, his debut on Young Black Brotha Records out of Vallejo, who also brought the Mack, Mac Dre, Ray Luv and Young Lay to the world. Actually, this is the record company that put Vallejo on the Bay Area hip hop map. The lyricism and swagger of the young teenage Mac Mall on songs like “Illegal Business,” “Sic Wid Tis,” “Ghetto Theme” and “My Opinion” made him a legendary rapper out the gate.