#35 – This Land by Gary Clark Jr.

I saw Gary Clark Jr. at Coachella a couple years ago, and was impressed both by his collection of classic guitars and his ability to captivate an audience of millenials at the man stage with a set of blues rock that would have seemed perfectly at home in the mid-‘70s.  Maybe I hadn’t paid close enough attention to that performance, but I was a little surprised when I started listening to This Land and heard the hip-hop vibes that pervade the early part of the album.  It suits the subject matter perfectly – racism and oppression are front and center – and really speaks to his versatility as an artist to create great guitar-driven beats.  We’re seeing so many artists using their platform to speak up about the atrocities being perpetrated by the police in this country and I’m sure the need for broad societal changes will continue to drive artistic expression for years to come.  Hopefully it won’t take too many more years, though, for something’s got to give.      

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