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Saturday, January 18, 2020
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The future of music: an interview wit’ musician Rico Pabón

Rico Pabón is one of the most talented, versatile, dedicated and well-informed artists that I know on the West Coast. At home in the studio or on the stage, the Afro-Puerto Rican bilingual musician known as Rico Pabón is a man of many genres. Although hip hop is the music of his generation, he is just as comfortable singing traditional Afro-Carribbean tunes with a live band.

The Oakland femcee Ms. B and her new mixtape, ‘Stix, Stonez,...

I have been rocking wit’ Ms. Be and her Gemstone camp for a couple of years, and I always told them, Ms. Balance from the group Nutritious needs to put out a solo album. She could rap, she’s pretty and she has an elegant, undoubtedly East Oakland swag about herself.

Poor Righteous Teachers: an interview wit’ Wise Intelligent

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.

The thrill is gone: a report from the rallies protesting Mehserle’s...

The lyrics to B.B. King’s classic “The Thrill is Gone” was the first thing that ran through my head when I showed up at both of the rallies that were held to “protest” the release from jail of Johannes Mehserle on Sunday, June 12. The speakers seemed to be a tad bit angry but not focused enough to do anything significant that would put police murders on the national radar. JUST ADDED: Minister of Information JR leads a full hour of debate on issues swirling around the murder of Oscar Grant by Johannes Mehserle broadcast on KPFA Wednesday morning.

The music game is to be sold and told: an interview...

Author Deeann Mathews has done something that the musicians in our community have needed to do for a long time en masse. She learned the ins and outs of the music business, then wrote a book about it, called “The Freedom Guide for Music Creators,” to share her wisdom.

‘Fly, Fresh, and Responsible,’ the mixtape: an interview wit MC/DJ Mike...

Many of y’all have seen Mike Flo at work with the rap group dead prez. Charismatic, eclectic, funny and good-natured - he has a mixtape that can be downloaded for free called “Fly, Fresh and Responsible” hosted by M1 of dead prez.

War on Libya is war on Africa

Gerald Perreira has lived and worked in Libya as an organizer and journalist and has been giving regular reports to Block Report Radio and the San Francisco Bay View newspaper. It is important to develop our own media and experts who can speak from an African perspective.

A letter to the late great Gil Scott Heron

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.

Class is in session: an interview wit’ rapper Professor A.L.I.

Professor A.L.I. has been making a name for himself over the last few years in the Bay Area’s indie and conscious rap scenes. A Muslim by faith, Sri Lankan by nationality, Professor A.L.I. is one of the brothas who is taking Bay Area sounding music to an international audience.

Straight outta Pittsburgh: an interview wit’ rapper Jasiri X

Jasiri X is one of the most famous up and coming conscious artists in the nation who has been making positive noise with his music. Straight out of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, Jasiri X has been working with Paradise of the legendary rap group XClan in a community coalition called One Hood.

‘I Mix What I Like’: an interview wit’ author Jared Ball,...

Emancipatory journalism aggressively argues that we need radical community-based journalism that, while professional, organized and researched, is clear about its bias in favor of oppressed communities and their political organizations and struggle.

Stic.man’s ‘The Workout’: Making health political – and fun

"It benefits the system to have a sick, weak and high mass population of apathy to govern over" says Stic.man, of the revolutionary rap group dead prez, speaking about his latest solo album, "The Workout," and how health and fitness is related to the political world we live in.

Fresh air at KPFA: an interview with KPFA interim Program Director...

I want us to do good radio. I want people to listen to us because we are doing dynamic programming. I want communities to feel that they can tune into the station and hear someone addressing the issues that are important to them.

Blues man: an interview wit’ Oakland’s Augusta Collins

"My latest release, 'In the Studio with Augusta Collins,' is produced by Emmy award-winning producer Anita S. Woodley. On this album, I am channeling Leadbelly. I am performing my music with something to say about each song." - Oakland blues man Augusta Collins

‘Block Reportin’’: Storytelling the African way

'Block Reportin' is a collection of captured conversations, continuing the rich African oral tradition, passing on stories and information to us in the format of an interactive dialogue. The next book signings are April 16, 4 p.m., at Marcus Books and April 22, 12:30 p.m., at Alexander Books, both in San Francisco.

‘War of the Bloods in My Veins’: an interview wit’ author...

"I been through it all, and I know what I don’t want anymore: the murders, the poverty and the depression. Because of what I’ve gone through, I know how to fight for the needs of my people." - Jiwe

‘Peace of the Puzzle’: an interview wit’ rap artists TKash and...

“Peace of the Puzzle” is in the tradition of actual harmony and structure that’s only derived from live instrumentation. In short, it’s real music, not just in figurative sense. This music is more relaxed and reflective about the elements of peace and humility.

Pierre Labossiere on welcoming Aristide home to Haiti

"I was at his (President Aristide's) house, we heard a roar of shouts of joy, and then over the walls people started coming in, pouring into the courtyard of the house when they saw the car. People were accompanying the car as many as three miles from the airport to his house," relates Pierre Labossiere of the jubilant welcome that greeted the Aristides on their return to Haiti ending seven long years of exile for them and brutal repression of the people they had to leave behind. Pierre tells the story of the Haitian people and how their never-say-die spirit continues to inspire the world.

‘52 Weeks’: an interview with author Darla Brown

How do you think that society should be better educated on the topic of domestic violence? By teaching our children in grade school, girls and boys, that it’s not ok to fight or hit anyone, for starters.

The art of rappin’ ‘in Black & White’: an interview wit’...

I have known the talented emcee Hasan Salaam for about half a decade, and I have always admired his style on the mic, his insightful lyrics and his deep recognizable vocal tone. He is one of the more humble rappers on the East Coast scene as well as one of the dopest.

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When the Panthers died

When the Panthers died, I cried, I tried to hold back my tears, While in my mother's womb, I was consumed with fear . . .

Poetry, prayers, protest against gentrification and displacement planned for MLK Day

On Martin Luther King Day, Monday, Jan. 20, 2020, at 10:00 a.m., noted Bay Area grassroots leaders will host a protest rally at the Oakland City Church to highlight the plight of the unhoused.

Voices of the California Progressive Alliance

“Support for Bernie Sanders is definitely one of the threads uniting most of those here today. The California Progressive Alliance voted to endorse him, and there’s tremendous support for him here in California.” – Whitney Leigh, California Progressive Alliance Steering Committee

The art of David Bruce Graves’ ‘Heaven and Earth’ – Artist...

At a time when ignoring the planet and its species hastens the end of life as we know it, Graves’s work poses options, some involving magical thinking. The artist illustrates across multiple compositions how powerful Black people are.

Give Dr. King the birthday present he wants: VOTE in Cali’s...

What would MLK think about our fractured and divisive country and world of today? He would be shocked by so many unhoused, hungry, suffering people, mass incarceration, children in cages, extreme poverty, the climate crisis, and trillions spent on the Pentagon, ongoing wars and now, nukes in space (Space Force), a new war for oil looming, and extreme income inequality. He would be upset by the lying fascists running and ruining our country.