#298 – Price: Symphonies Nos. 1 & 4 by Florence Beatrice Price and Fort Smith Symphony

For the last night of Black History Month I wanted to choose a work by a pioneer in their field.  Florence Beatrice Price is recognized as the first Black woman to be considered a symphonic composer, and the first to have a composition performed by a major orchestra.  The Chicago Symphony Orchestra premiered her SymphonyContinue reading “#298 – Price: Symphonies Nos. 1 & 4 by Florence Beatrice Price and Fort Smith Symphony”

#297 – Berry Is On Top by Chuck Berry

What would a discussion about the influence of Black music without Chuck Berry? He clearly inspired a generation of guitarists and is probably as responsible for the rise of rock music as anyone. I would personally prefer it if fewer of these songs were about teenage girls, but I also recognize that they were writtenContinue reading “#297 – Berry Is On Top by Chuck Berry”

#295 – self-titled by Black Death

As we approach the end of Black History Month, I’m trying to get as many different genres of Black artists as possible.  Obviously, there is no shortage of soul, hip-hop, r&b, and funk albums to choose from, but now I want to take some deep dives into some more rare genres.  One of my favoritesContinue reading “#295 – self-titled by Black Death”

#294 – Tell ‘Em What Your Name Is by Black Joe Lewis & The Honeybears

These guys are like a modern version of James Brown’s high-energy soul, with more of a rock sensibility.  Lyrically, they deal unabashedly with the most oppressive issues facing the Black community in modern America, specifically systemic racism and the heavy-handed policing that typifies majority-Black communities.  There could not be a more fitting artist to provideContinue reading “#294 – Tell ‘Em What Your Name Is by Black Joe Lewis & The Honeybears”

#293 – God Knows I Tried by Junior Kimbrough

What would a celebration of Black music in America be without an excellent album by a less-than-well-known bluesman?  Junior Kimbrough’s music is characterized by his distinctive, hypnotic style of playing.  The influence of his style eventually made it to the mainstream through the work of Buddy Guy, John Lee Hooker and – much later –Continue reading “#293 – God Knows I Tried by Junior Kimbrough”

#292 – TRON: Legacy by Daft Punk

Once again, I must divert from the theme of Black History Month in recognition of today’s announcement of the breakup of Daft Punk.  There can be no dispute about the influence of this prolific duo, who are probably as responsible for the rise of EDM’s popularity as anyone.  For people around my age, they wereContinue reading “#292 – TRON: Legacy by Daft Punk”

#291 – Talk Dirty by Jason Derulo

Jason Derulo is one of those artists who I have never intentionally listened to very much, but have always been tangentially aware of.  This album alone features three songs that I know very well just because they were so ubiquitous in pop culture.  The guy is not only a great singer, but has also workedContinue reading “#291 – Talk Dirty by Jason Derulo”

#289 – Bigger Love by John Legend

Today I tried listening to my album selection earlier in the day than ever before.  I was done by about 10:30 this morning and it really made a huge difference in my mental state for the rest of the day.  It doesn’t hurt that John Legend’s latest offering is pretty excellent.  I ended up listeningContinue reading “#289 – Bigger Love by John Legend”