Beau of the Fifth Column reports that rightwingnuts are up in arms (figuratively and literally) over the latest film in the “Purge” franchise. As he describes it, the film is an allegory about a political uprising and attempt to overthrow the US government on January 6th. Rightwingnuts are lashing out about commercial entertainment being “woke” and adding political commentary, something BotFC addresses in the video.
The kicker is what BotFC says at the end about the film’s production, how life imitates art.
Except that it’s not limited to movies, it has been happening in music, and rightwingnuts don’t like it. They expect bands to shut up and play. They expect Black musicians to be “minstrels” with big, unthreatening smiles on their faces, only allowed in to entertain the whites, then go back to segregated neighborhoods.
In 2019, The Specials released a new album entitled “Encore”. The lead off single and instant classic song is called “B.L.M.” How did racists respond?
“Stop being political! Make music like you used to!”
Excuse me? The Specials’ and all the other Two Tone bands of the era were all political, all making social commentary and opposed racism. The very name Two Tone was about Black and white being together, an anti-racist statement in an era of Margaret Thatcher. Did they never once actually listen to or read the lyrics and the opinions of these groups?
More below the fold.
Fishbone are a US band heavily influenced by the UK’s Two Tone movement, and have always included social and political commentary within their music, on songs like “Slow Bus Movin’ (Howard Beach Party)”, about a white mob that murdered Michael Griffith in 1986.
In 2020, they announced they were recording a new album, and released the single “Estranged Fruit”, a title clearly referencing the Billie Holiday classic. Just like The Specials, Fishbone suffered a backlash from racists when they said the album would be political and comment on recent events.
Again, do the racist clowns not actually listen to music? Do they not know how to read? Fishbone and many other bands have always been political, always talked about racism.
And it wasn’t just Black artists. Anthrax released the album “Attack of the Killer B’s” (a B-sides collection) on June 25, 1991, thirty years ago. That is the album which contained the Rap/Metal masterpiece collaboration and cover of Public Enemy’s “Bring The Noise”, seen below.
Anthrax received a backlash from white supremacists over their collaboration and tour with Public Enemy. Band leader Scott Ian’s response was (paraphrasing him, I can’t find a source to quote), “F*** you, we don’t want you as our fans.” Ian and the other members of Anthrax were all rap fans, all opposed racism, and included that in their music. From the Anthrax song, “Indians”:
We all see in black and white When it comes to someone else's fight No one ever gets involved Apathy can never solve Forced out, brave and mighty Stolen land, they can't fight it Hold on to pride and tradition Even though they know How much their lives are really missing We're dissing them On reservations A hopeless situation Respect is something that you earn Our Indian brothers' getting burned Original American Turned into a second class citizen
Don’t worry about the “dead link” image, this will play “Bring The Noise” when you click it.