WHAT SHOULD I BE DOING INSTEAD OF THIS?
 
 

Louis Voilà!

Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra Music Director Louis Langrée on his debut concert, Cincinnati and LumenoCity's afterglow

0 Comments · Wednesday, November 6, 2013
 During our conversation (in French), it becomes clear that the CSO’s marketing blast, “Louis + CSO + You,” sums up Langrée’s vision for the orchestra and the community: He frequently uses partager, French for “to share.”  
by Andy Brownfield 07.25.2012
Posted In: News, Social Justice, Racism, Gun Violence at 05:14 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 
trayvon_martin_on_the_backseat_of_a_car copy

Trayvon Martin’s Parents Speak in Cincinnati

Maya Angelou, other activists encourage justice without hate

Panelists including the parents of slain Florida teenager Trayvon Martin talked about reconciliation and turning personal suffering into power at the National and Racial Healing Town Hall at the Duke Energy Convention Center on Wednesday during the Children’s Defense Fund National Conference. Tracy Martin, Trayvon’s father, broke down in tears as he told the story of how his son saved his life by dragging him out of their condo and calling 911 after Tracy had been badly burned in a grease fire. “My child is my hero,” Tracy Martin said. “He saved my life. Not to be there to save his is troublesome to me.” Trayvon Martin was shot and killed on Feb. 26 in Sanford, Fla. by neighborhood watch volunteer George Zimmerman.  Trayvon, who was black, was unarmed and shot by the white and Hispanic Zimmerman after Zimmerman pursued him in defiance of a request by a police dispatcher. Zimmerman claims the shooting was in self-defense. Zimmerman is out on $1 million bail while awaiting trial on a charge of second degree murder. “Nothing anyone can do will bring Trayvon back,” Tracy Martin said. “You have to take that negative and turn it into a positive. We chose to keep our son's name alive and not let his death be in vain.” The town hall-style meeting was kicked off by poet and author Maya Angelou. She urged the hundreds of people in attendance, mostly young and black, to demand justice for Trayvon — referring to Zimmerman as “the brute” — but “that means we don’t become poisoned by hate.” Angelou wasn’t the only one who urged against hate. Black historian and civil rights activist Vincent Harding, who celebrated his 81st birthday on Wednesday, issued a challenge to the youth in attendance: “Are you ready to fight for the healing of George Zimmerman and all the George Zimmermans of America? Are you up to that?” he asked. “This country has no chance unless they are healed.” The panel was made up of social activists, many of whom had lost friends and family to violence or bigotry, but whose pain prompted activism instead of retaliation — panelists such as The Rev. Ronald and Kim Odom, who lost a son to gun violence but volunteer in intervention and outreach programs; Clemmie Greenlee, a former prostitute and gang member who formed a peacemaking organization to work with gang members after her son was killed; and Ndume Olatushani, a former prisoner who was released in June after 19 years on death row after being falsely convicted of murdering a Tennessee shopkeeper. The younger members of the audience were encouraged to ask questions after the panel presentation. Teenagers and young adults from as far as Tennessee, North Carolina and Minnesota asked questions about dismantling the system of racial oppression, overcoming odds stacked against young minorities and having society see past an old felony conviction. The panelists all tried to offer encouragement, while urging the younger generation to continue to try to fight to make things better. “When you look at the odds, it’s so horrific for a young minority American, you say ‘why even try, why even bother?’ ” said Benjamin Crump, a civil rights attorney who is representing Trayvon’s mother Sabryna Fulton. “But the reason you try and you bother, there is so many examples where we beat the odds every day and nobody even know about it or talked about it.” “It goes back to you and saying, ‘I am going to make something of myself. I don’t care about the statistics, I don’t care about the odds.’ … You say, ‘well, if it’s one out of a million, I’m going to be that one.’”
 
 
by Mike Breen 03.13.2012
Posted In: Music History, Music Commentary at 09:30 AM | Permalink | Comments (2)
 
 
chef_dead

This Date in Music History: March 13

Scientology and 'South Park' kill Chef, plus Common's uncommon backlash

On this day in 1911, pulp fiction/sci-fi writer L. Ron Hubbard — who would go on to develop the self-help "Dianetics" program as well as found the Scientology religion — was born. Ninety five years later (to the day), one of his disciples, legendary Soul man Isaac Hayes, asked to be released from his contract with South Park (on which he brilliantly voiced the character Chef) following the cartoon's skewering of the Scientology movement. Hayes initially said he didn't mind the pair's satire of his religion, saying they were equal opportunity offenders, but someone from the "church" must've gotten to him, because he gradually shifted that position. Some reports emerged later that Hayes' announcement was written by someone else; essentially "someone quit for him," Fox News reported. Still, Hayes was granted his release immediately, though creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone brought him back for an episode (with cobbled together audio previously recorded for other shows), essentially to kill his character off. The episode aired a mere nine days after Hayes (or someone representing Hayes) quit the show.  Hayes passed away about two years later from complications from a stroke he suffered about six months after leaving South Park. Fortunately, Hayes' contribution to music was so large, the cartoon mess didn't impact his legacy too much. It still begs the question of what was worse for Hayes' career — Scientology or South Park? Last year, a former Scientologist revealed a memo he claimed was from a higher up in the church who was "investigating" Parker and Stone, allegedly spying on the duo and their associates to dig up dirt. According to the former church member, the memos also show that the church gave up its investigation after not finding any weaknesses to exploit. The Church of Scientology has been repeatedly accused of such intimidation factors involving critics and former members who talk about the religion. I, for one, have nothing against Scientology specifically, and wish all Scientologists the best of luck in reaching the highest level of their spirituality and one day meeting the church's alien overlords (or whatever it is they believe). So please don't start spying on me and digging through my garbage. You'll only find discarded debt collection notices, well-used Victoria Secret catalogs and empty beer cans, anyway. Heil, Hubbard!And let's all remember Hayes as one of the baddest muthas in Soul music history and not the celebrity who was guided/misguided by his chosen spiritual beliefs or that fat cartoon character who falls off a cliff to his gruesome death on South Park. (Though, you have to admit, that "Chocolate Salty Balls" song was the jam.) Here he is in all his glory:Click on for Born This Day, featuring Mike Stoller, Terence Blanchard and Common.

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