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Sunday, February 23, 2020
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Culture Currents

Cultural happenings in SF and beyond.

The Panther party for Tupac’s birthday

Tupac Shakur, a very talented rapper and actor who defined the aspirations and frustrations of a generation, was shot on Sept. 7, 1996, and died on Sept. 13. On June 16, Bobby Beats, the father of Digital Underground’s Money B and a former Black Panther, organized one of the biggest, most exciting and most meaningful Tupac birthday parties in history.

AB, ode to Amiri Baraka

I searched frantically for you at the end ... Of the Apollo’s Sekou Sundiata celebration; ... I jumped over a chair, just missing you, at ... The Harlem Stage tribute to Abbey Lincoln; ... Finally, caught you at the Schomburg’s ... Langston Hughes Auditorium, at the ... Fidel-Malcolm Meeting book talk ... Forgave you for slipping ... On Iceberg Slim, and ... Told you, “I LOVE YOU …”

In memory of John Maxwell

John Maxwell is one of those rare human beings, one of those rare souls, and one of those rare minds whose death leaves us naked. Bare. Smaller.

The mind that sees: The third eye of Eslanda Goode Robeson

Her name was Eslanda Cardozo Goode Robeson, and she was brilliant! But what is perturbing is that evidence of her enormous body of work as a photographer has vanished, as though she did not exist! But exist she very much did indeed! Eslanda Robeson lived and made an impact in the world. She was a writer, storyteller, intellectual, adventurer, scientist, anthropologist, political analyst, artist, anti-colonialist activist and a woman of principle.

A conversation with Sam King, author of ‘The African American’s Guide to Working from...

We need more business owners working from their apartments, vans or cars, vacant lots, and boarded up shops and storefronts. Keep in mind on your journey down the entrepreneur road, that wealth originates from within, first. To gain access to cash, sometimes you have to look to untraditional sources online which give artists and entrepreneurs a helping hand.

Wanda’s Picks for August 2015

The Third Annual Hon. Marcus Mosiah Garvey B’Earthday and Community Celebration is Saturday, Aug. 15, 2-5 p.m. Gather at the “Abundant Knowledge” mural at Marcus Books. Please bring your immense wisdom, families, original books by Garvey, red-black-green items and drums. And don’t forget to bring some funds – as each participant will receive a 10 percent discount on every item purchased that afternoon.

Introduction to ‘Colors: The Ancient African Connection to the Crips and Bloods’

With the recently released “Colors,” I’ve written a book that has potential to stem the tide of gang warfare between the Crips and Bloods and other street gangs identified by the colors red and blue. It’s a story linking present day Crips and Bloods with two ancient African warrior tribes called the Cuuzan and the Ikeely. These two African tribes worshiped the colors red and blue for religious and ritualistic reasons and believed they held supernatural powers.

New Nina Simone documentary: ‘What Happened, Miss Simone?’

“What Happened, Miss Simone?” is a beautiful and tragic look at the life of one of the women who made us proud to be Black. She helped us to transform our minds from the psychology of scared Colored Negroes into being proud Black Africans in America. The film documents some of her thoughts and includes a lot of archival interview footage and footage of her performing.

10 Black child geniuses you should know

If you only watched the evening news or depended on pop culture, you would probably think that the majority of Black youngsters were only ambitious about sports and music. The face of Black success isn’t limited to those fields. There are a multitude of young Blacks who are achieving at a high level in science, math, classical music, chess and other knowledge-based areas and preparing to change society.

Data Man: an innerview of rapper Do D.A.T

D.A.T. is one of those artist that have been bending the sound of what hip hop is in the Bay Area kind of like how Digital Underground, Hieroglyphics and Living Legends did in the ‘80s and ‘90s. D.A.T. is currently one of the most well liked performers and he hosts some of the dopest hip hop/live band parties where people are sure to be dancing, sweating and happy.

Shafia Monroe, founder of the International Center for Traditional Childbearing, seeks more Black midwives,...

Shafia Monroe speaks wit’ the Block Report about how to stay healthy during pregnancy and the need for more Black midwives and doulas in the nation. Blacks have by far the highest infant mortality rates, with 17 of every 1,000 Black babies dying in their first year, compared with 3-4 in other communities. Learn more and meet keynoter Erykah Badu – who herself is a doula – at the ninth annual International Black Midwives and Healers Conference Oct. 9-11 in Portland, Oregon.

Evangelist Sabarah Israel – an extraordinary life

Sabarah Israel was born Nada Marleane Swanson on Feb. 13, 1933, in Oakland, California. Also known as Nada Hall and Nada Tillman, her passing came on June 10, 2013, at age 80. She was a retired missionary and evangelist. An alumna of Berkeley High School, class of 1951, she later graduated from College of Alameda and attended U.C. Berkeley briefly in the School of Social Welfare.

Revolutionary stories: The POOR Press 2012 collection

To write with laughter, heart, fire and humility – to get those words down and draw the reader in – to make the reader warm with the fire of poetry, wet with the tears of memory, full with the soup of experience – leaving the reader satisfied and inspired to change the world – that is what the writer does.

‘Black Rage’ author Dr. Price Cobbs joins the ancestors

Internationally recognized psychiatrist, management consultant and author of the classic book “Black Rage,” “regarded as one of the most important books on blacks” by the New York Times, Dr. Price M. Cobbs passed on June 25, 2018, at the age of 89. York Times, Dr. Price M. Cobbs passed on June 25, 2018, at the age of 89. His book was the first book written that revealed the full dimensions of the inner conflicts of the desperation of Black life in the United States.

Wanda’s Picks for July-August 2018

The 50th Anniversary Conference of the Association of Black Psychologists (ABPsi) opened with a reverent and celebratory tribute to the ancestors and welcome to those present. Presented by Daktari Dance Medicine Collective, 50 dancers, drummers and cultural workers sprinkled medicine into the hearts and minds of those in the grand hall that night. From the welcome call, Fanga Alafia, to the “Invocation and Libation,” Diaspora dances Yanvalou, Parigol and Ogum and Spoken Medicine, the theme for the 50th Annual Conference “Building for Eternity,” June 27-July 1, 2018, was evoked, ratified and confirmed.

Hypnotic Brass Ensemble coming to SF Jazz on March 19

Hypnotic Brass Ensemble is one of the most riveting and exciting instrument-playing musical formations specializing in Jazz wit’ a splash of Hip Hop. I talked with trumpet player Gabriel “Huda” Hubert about touring extensively overseas, one of his brothers quitting the band, growing up in a polygamous household, the legalization of marijuana, their upcoming new album, “The Bad Boys of Jazz,” and more.

Author of ‘The Bay Area’s Brooklyn Bridge’ Chris the Fifth speaks from behind enemy...

Local rapper turned author Chris the Fifth is a prime example of how enigmatic and complex this city is. From behind bars, Chris the Fifth recently released his debut street lit novel, “The Bay Area’s Brooklyn Bridge,” which has been taking the streets of Oakland by storm. We are happy to say that we finally got a Q&A with one of the Bay Area’s most prolific writers and underground lyricists. Check Chris the Fifth in his own words ...

Brides of Funkenstein and Parliament Funkadelic member Dawn Silva talks about the 70’s

The People's Minister of Information JR interviews Dawn Silva of the Brides of Funkenstein, who also worked with the Black Panther Party, Sly and the Family Stone, Parliament Funkadelic, the Gap Band, and Ice Cube. We talk about her life transitioning from the Panthers to Sly to Parliament to the Brides to the Gap Band. She gives a lot of intimate not talked about history from the 70's. Tune in for more at BlockReportRadio.com.

Buy Black Wednesdays 9: Black is the new religion: Afrika closed until further notice

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.

‘Birth of Afrobeat’

“Birth of Afrobeat” is a masterfully configured story about the Pan African music genre that was born in Lagos but of parents from Nigeria and the U.S., since Max Roach, James Brown and the Black Panthers also had an influence on its birth.

Latest News

We need political courage on homelessness and recidivism

With the Democratic primary right around the corner, we mustn’t neglect the difficult topics of the rising rates of adult and youth homelessness and the persistent obstacles faced by individuals transitioning back into society after periods of incarceration.

A tribute to San Francisco’s first Black surgeon, Dr. Oscar Jackson

The most amazing person I ever met was Dr. Oscar Jackson, an eminent Black San Francisco surgeon, businessman, military officer, world traveler, explorer, philanthropist, fraternity brother, husband, father and remarkable storyteller.

The struggle to build housing when you are homeless

POOR and Homefulness have launched an effort to work with conscious legislators to exempt poor and homeless people from exorbitant building permit fees and requirements which make it impossible for homeless and poor people to manifest our own solutions and stay in our neighborhoods and communities.

The shocking death of Rwandan gospel singer and dissident Kizito Mihigo

“Kizito Mihigo had been persecuted for advocating compassion for all the victims of the genocide, Hutu, Tutsi and Twa, refusing to blame all Hutu people for the Rwandan Genocide. Kagame has become fiercely vengeful with dissident Tutsis because they are breaking up his constituency.” – Professor Joseph Bukeye

Bloomberg’s bigoted remarks: Black voters will decide 3/3 whether his apologies...

“We put all the cops in minority neighborhoods,” said Michael Bloomberg. “Why do we do it? Because that’s where all the crime is. … The way you get the guns out of the kids’ hands is to throw them against the wall and frisk them.”