Natasha’s World Publishing

News & Reviews

Dwele @ Jazz Cafe 11/4/2011
As you know, I can't stay in my house every week! I need to find places to go! So after numerous BBM broadcast messages, I found myself at the last night of Dwele's European Tour! Yay me!

To be honest, i'm not a Dwele enthusiast, as I think all of his ishk sounds very similar and almost monotonous, but he did rock the crowd!
I didn't arrive early enough to catch the opening act, because, well... I couldn't be bothered! I got there just in time to catch the Grammy nominated star hit the stage... in the same outfit he wore the show promotion material! Haha!
I don't think he cared though, as he strutted through the crowd and onto the stage to Kayne West's Power.
After his second entrance, as he was not impressed with his first reception, he made sure that he conversed with the crowd, asked them their name, serenaded a lil'!

Admittedly, as good as he was, I was disappointed that he didn't perform Travellin' Girl or Weekend Love, because, to me, they were turning points in his career. Nonetheless, I was enthused by the energy that he and his band acquired throughout the show. His key player has to be the most eccentric, dread wearing and excitable keyboard player I have ever experienced in my 5 years of music journalism! I am so sure than if that keyboard was not attached to the stand, he would have been doing backflips and playing upside down. I'm sure I got a whiff of dread in my eye, and I was by the back, no need for HD!

He rocked the mic with favourites, I Think I Love You, Cheating and Find a Way. But also reminded us of what brought us to the venue in the first place. Namely in the acoustic arrangements in my personal favourite Open Your Eyes (original by Bobby Cadwell, and also used for the hook in Common's The Light), and his tributes to Frankie Beverly and the late Nate Dogg.

He also performed tracks from his current album W.ANTS. W.ORLD. W.OMEN (W.W.W). Namely his album consisting of his alter ego his world documenting and his love for Women, because we can't forget that "baby making, bubble bath and audio hallmark card type of music."

Now, you know me - I can't not get my piece in! In closing the show, he swooned through the audience, serenading the ladies. Naturally, he came in my path, and I managed to give Dwele a little dance while he performed What's Not To Love.

It wasn't as bad as the Chris Brown Fiasco in 2008, but let's not go there!

Tokio Hotel's Tom Kaulitz Overdoses... On Viagra
tokio hotelHistory has taught us that whenever a major rock star overdoses, it's usually a result of illicit substances. Heroin, cocaine, ham sandwiches -- the world of popular music has seen it all. Until now.

In a recent interview with a German newspaper, Tokio Hotel guitarist Tom Kaulitz admitted that he'd recently taken too many pills of Viagra while on tour in Asia, and claims that the medication left him ill and blurry-eyed for days. "I first asked the seller 'Do I look like someone who needs help with that?'" Kaulitz explains. "He said 'no' - but that I should nevertheless try it out. I popped one in." As MSNBC reports, Kaulitz reportedly took more pills when he got back to his hotel room. "I popped a few more pills, probably too many," he said. "The next morning my head was pounding and everything in front of my eyes was blurry. It wasn't fun any more. It was pretty bad."

And, as you can imagine, it was pretty embarrassing. "Unfortunately there were situations where it just wasn't appropriate," Kaulitz admits.

Elmer 'Geronimo' Pratt, a former Black Panther leader, dies in Tanzania

Elmer G. "Geronimo" Pratt, a former Los Angeles Black Panther Party leader who spent 27 years in prison for a murder he says he did not commit and whose case became a symbol of racial injustice during the turbulent 1960s, has died. He was 63.
Pratt died at his home in a small village in Tanzania, where he had been living with his wife and child, according to Stuart Hanlon, a San Francisco attorney who helped overturn Pratt's murder conviction.  Hanlon said he was informed of the death by Pratt's sister.

Pratt's case became a cause celebre for elected officials, Amnesty International, clergy and celebrities who believed he was framed by the government because he was African American and a member of the Black Panthers.

"Geronimo was a powerful leader," Hanlon told The Times. "For that reason he was targeted."

Pratt was convicted in 1972 and sentenced to life in prison for the 1968 fatal shooting of Caroline Olsen and the serious wounding of her husband, Kenneth, in a robbery that netted $18. The case was overturned in 1997 by an Orange County Superior Court judge who ruled that prosecutors at Pratt's murder trial had concealed evidence that could have led to his acquittal.

Pratt maintained that the FBI knew he was innocent because the agency had him under surveillance in Oakland when the murder was committed in Santa Monica.


L.A. Mayor Villaraigosa approves $6.9-billion budget

Man who sold whale meat to Santa Monica sushi restaurant pleads guilty

African American landmark building in West Adams named L.A. historical monument

— Robert J. Lopez

Twitter: @LAJourno

Photo: Geronimo Pratt, left, with defense attorney Johnny L. Cochran Jr. in Los Angeles in 1998. Credit: Nick Ut / Associated Press

The revolution was a change in thinking, people changing their hearts and minds. This country was at a crossroads and could have gone either way. But the people stopped taking whatever was being handed to them at face value; they stopped putting up with the status quo and started thinking for themselves. The revolution is a mental thing. You did not see it televised.


In 1970, the American poet and jazz musician Gil Scott-Heron, who has died aged 62 after returning from a trip to Europe, recorded a track that has come to be seen as a crucial forerunner of rap. To many it made him the "godfather" of the medium, though he was keener to view his song-like poetry as just another strand in the diverse world of black music.

The Revolution Will Not Be Televised came on his debut LP, Small Talk at 125th and Lenox, a collection of proselytising spoken-word pieces set to a sparse, funky tableau of percussion. It served as a militant manifesto urging black pride, and a blueprint for his life's work: in the album's sleeve notes, Scott-Heron described himself as "a Black man dedicated to expression; expression of the joy and pride of Blackness". He derided white America's complacency over inner-city inequality with mordant wit and social observation:

The revolution will not be right back after a message 'bout a white tornado, white lightning or white people.

You will not have to worry about a dove in your bedroom, a tiger in your tank or the giant in your toilet bowl. The revolution will not go better with Coke.
The revolution will not fight germs that may cause bad breath.
The revolution will put you in the driver's seat.

Throughout his 40-year career, Scott-Heron delivered a militant commentary not only on the African-American experience, but on wider social injustice and political hypocrisy. Born in Chicago, Illinois, he had a difficult, itinerant childhood. His father, Gilbert Heron, was a Jamaican-born soccer player who joined Celtic FC – as the Glasgow team's first black player – during Gil's infancy, and his mother, Bobbie Scott, was a librarian and keen singer. After their divorce, Scott-Heron moved to Lincoln, Tennessee, to live with his grandmother, Lily Scott, a civil rights activist and musician whose influence on him was indelible.

He recalled her in the track On Coming from a Broken Home on his 2010 comeback album I'm New Here as "absolutely not your mail-order, room-service, typecast black grandmother". She bought him his first piano from a local undertaker's and introduced him to the work of the Harlem Renaissance novelist and jazz poet Langston Hughes, whose influence would resonate throughout his entire career.

In the nearby Tigrett junior high school in 1962, Scott-Heron faced daily racial abuse as one of only three black children chosen to desegregate the institution. These experiences coincided with the completion of his first volume of unpublished poetry, when he was 12.

He then left Lincoln and moved to New York to live with his mother. Initially they stayed in the Bronx, where he witnessed the lot of African Americans in deprived housing projects. Later they lived in the more predominantly Hispanic neighbourhood of Chelsea. During his New York school years, Scott-Heron encountered the work of another leading black writer, LeRoi Jones, now known as Amiri Baraka.

While he was at DeWitt Clinton high school in the Bronx, Scott-Heron's precocious writing talent was recognised by an English teacher, and he was recommended for a place at the prestigious Fieldston school. From there he won a place to Lincoln University, Pennsylvania, where Hughes had also studied, and met the flute player Brian Jackson, who was to be a significant musical collaborator. During his second year at university, in 1968, Scott-Heron dropped out in order to write his first novel, a murder mystery titled The Vulture, set in the ghetto. When it was published, two years later, he decided to capitalise on the associated radio publicity by recording an LP.

The jazz producer Bob Thiele, who had worked with artists ranging from Louis Armstrong to John Coltrane, persuaded Scott-Heron to record a club performance of some of his poetry with backing by himself on piano and guitar. The line-up was completed by David Barnes on vocals and percussion, and Eddie Knowles and Charlie Saunders on congas, and Small Talk at 125th and Lenox was released on the Flying Dutchman label. Pieces of a Man (1971) showed Scott-Heron's talents off to a fuller extent, with songs such as the title track, a fuller version of The Revolution Will Not Be Televised, and Lady Day and John Coltrane, a soaring paean to the ability of soul and jazz to liberate the listener from the travails of everyday life.

The following year, his university-set novel, The Nigger Factory, was published and his final Flying Dutchman disc, Free Will, was released. Following a dispute with the label, Scott-Heron recorded Winter in America (1974) for Strata East, then moved to Clive Davis's Arista Records; he was the first artist signed by the newly formed company.

Arista steered Scott-Heron to chart success with the disco-tinged, yet brazenly polemic, anti-apartheid anthem Johannesburg, which reached No 29 in the R&B charts in 1975. The Midnight Band, led by Jackson on keyboards, was central to the success of Scott-Heron's first two albums for Arista – The First Minute of a New Day and From South Africa to South Carolina – the same year.

Jackson left the band as the producer Malcolm Cecil arrived. Cecil had helped the Isley Brothers and Stevie Wonder chart funkier waters earlier in the decade, and under his direction Scott-Heron achieved his biggest hit to date, Angel Dust (1978), which reached No 15 in the R&B charts. With its lyrical examination of addiction it became an ironic counterpoint to the cocaine abuse that dogged Scott-Heron's later years.

During the 1980s, producer Nile Rodgers of the disco group Chic also helped on production as the Reagan era provided Scott-Heron with new targets to attack. B Movie (1981), a thunderous, nine-minute critique of Reaganomics, stands out as the most representative track of this period. As he put it:

I remember what I said about Reagan... meant it. Acted like an actor... Hollyweird. Acted like a liberal. Acted like General Franco when he acted like governor of California, then he acted like a Republican. Then he acted like somebody was going to vote for him for president. And now we act like 26% of the registered voters is actually a mandate.

Scott-Heron made a practical impact on American public life in 1980, after Wonder released Hotter Than July, on which the track Happy Birthday demanded the commemoration of the birthday of civil rights leader Martin Luther King with a national holiday. Scott-Heron went on tour with Wonder, and in Washington they campaigned to support the black congressional caucus's proposal. Wonder and Scott-Heron fronted a petition signed by 6 million people, and in November 1983 Reagan signed the bill creating a federal holiday in January, the first falling in 1986. Scott-Heron told the US radio station NPR in 2008 that the holiday served as a "time for people to reflect on how far we have come, and how far we still have to go, in terms of being just people. Hopefully it will be a time for people to reflect on the folks that have done things to get us to where we are and where we're going."

He also eulogised the work of Fannie Lou Hamer, a black civil rights leader and voting activist, in his song 95 South (All of the Places We've Been), on the album Bridges (1977). However, though his work was often overtly political, he told the New Yorker magazine in 2010 that he sought to express more than simple sloganeering: "Your life has to consist of more than 'black people should unite'. You hope they do, but not 24 hours a day. If you aren't having no fun, die, because you're running a worthless programme, far as I'm concerned."

A sense of joyous, rhythmic exuberance comes through on tracks such as Racetrack in France (also from Bridges), where, moving away from his standard commentary, he describes a French audience erupting into a hand-clapping frenzy as his band performed.

Lightness of musical touch and tone were brilliantly fused in his 1980 single, Legend in His Own Mind, in which he mocks a nameless lothario over a shuffling beat and a loping jazz piano riff that somehow contrives to sound at once sardonic and gentle. The rhyming couplets, though, demolish his delusional victim over a descending slap bass sequence:

Well you hate to see him coming when you're grooving at your favourite bar
He's the death of the party and a self-proclaimed superstar
Got a permanent Jones to assure you he's been everywhere
A show-stopping, name-dropping answer to the ladies' prayers.

The Bottle (1974) resurfaced as an underground classic in the years following the British acid-house "summer of love" of 1988. Its incendiary rhythmic flow and compassionate lyrical exploration of the links between material poverty and the corresponding human response – a drive towards narcotic or alcoholic abandon – suited the spirit of those times perfectly and recruited a new generation of fans. Scott-Heron himself fell victim to the alcohol and substance abuse he had so long decried, and in 1985 he was dropped by Arista.

To the surprise of many, he returned to recording in 1994 with the album Spirits, on the TVT label. By then, hip-hop and rap had become the voice of young black America, and attention was again focused on his early role in the genre. In the Spirits track Message to the Messengers, Scott-Heron sent out a warning to young, nihilistic gangsta rappers and implored reflection and restraint: "Protect your community, and spread that respect around," he urged, and rejected their use of "four-letter words" and "four-syllable words" as evidence of shallow intellects. Meanwhile, he found fame of a more surreal, unexpected variety when he provided the voiceover for adverts for the British fizzy orange drink Tango, declaiming in stentorian tones: "You know when you've been Tangoed."

The republication of his novels by Payback Press, an imprint of the radical Scottish publishing house Canongate, added to a new sense of momentum. However, it was not to last, and his frequent live performances became tarnished by less-than-perfect renditions of his classic works.

Nonetheless, he could bring a packed Jazz Cafe in Camden Town, London, to a profound, meditative silence in the late 1990s as he performed songs such as Winter in America, and all his gigs sold out weeks in advance. His regular performances on Glastonbury's jazz stage through the 90s were also good-natured, well-attended events as a new generation rediscovered the roots of so much of the best music of that decade.

But in 1999 his partner Monique de Latour obtained a restraining order against him for assault, and in November 2001 he was arrested for possession of 1.2g of cocaine, sentenced to 18-24 months and ordered to attend rehab following that year's European tour. When he failed to appear in court after the tour finished, he was arrested and sent to prison. He was released in October 2002. He spent much of that fractured decade in and out of jail on drugs charges, and released no new work, favouring instead live performance and writing. His struggle with addiction continued, and in July 2006 he was again jailed after he broke the terms of a plea bargain deal on drug charges by leaving a rehab clinic.

He returned to the studio in 2007, and three years later released I'm New Here, produced by Richard Russell, on the British independent label XL Recordings, to wide critical acclaim. On it, he turned his lyrical contemplation inwards, commenting in confessional and haunting terms on his own loneliness, his upbringing, and repentant admissions of his own frailty: "If you gotta pay for things you done wrong, then I gotta big bill coming!"

Tracks such as Where Did the Night Go and New York Is Killing Me set his touchingly weathered baritone over minimalistic beats and production, completing the redemptive reinstatement of one of America's most rebellious and influential voices.

In 1978 Scott-Heron married the actor Brenda Sykes, with whom he had a daughter, Gia. He also had another daughter, Che, and a son, Rumal.

• Gil Scott-Heron, poet, musician and author, born 1 April 1949; died 27 May 2011


I have believed in my convictions

And have been convicted for my beliefs

Conned by the constitution

And harassed by the police.

I’ve been billed for the bill of rights

And been treated like I was wrong.

I have become a special amendment

For what included me all along.

Like “All men are created equal.”

(No amendment needed here)

I’ve contributed in every field including cotton

From Sunset Strip to Washington Square.

Back during the non-violent era.

I was the only non-violent one.

As a matter of fact there was no non-violence

’cause too many rednecks had guns.

There seems to have been this pattern

That a lot of folks failed to pick up on.

But all black leaders who dared stand up

Wuz in jail, in the courtroom or gone.

Picked up indiscriminately

By the shock troops of discrimination

To end up in jails or tied up in trails

While dirty tricks soured the nation.

I’ve been hoodwinked by professional hoods.

My ego has happened to me.

It’ll be alright, just keep things cool!”

“And take the people off the street.

We’ll settle all this at the conference table.

You just leave everything to me.”

Which gets me back to my convictions

And being convicted for my belief

’cause I believe these smiles

in three-piece suits

with gracious, liberal demeanor

took our movement off of the streets

and took us to the cleaners

In other words, we let up the pressure

And that was all part of their plan

And every day we allow to slip through our fingers

Is playing right into their hands



keeping the Dilla legacy alive!!

The Sound Strike Berlin Mix | The Sound Strike

The Sound Strike

The Sound Strike Berlin Mix

Migration is a world wide phenomenon. While many in America believe everyone comes to the US, migration to the US is only 3% of world migration. Whether fleeing poverty, hunger, violence, crime, corruption or political violence or rule, millions of people every week gather what they have and search for a better life. That is not wrong. It is called being a responsible parent, son, daughter, wife, or husband. We applaud the brothers and sisters in Germany who have formed Berlin Sound Strike and are raising awareness about intolerance and hatred in Germany. We also send our best wishes to Sound Strike Tokyo and hope those sisters and brothers are doing well.

Soundstrike mixtape 2011 by vernondgerman

Listen in and spread the word. More to come on how you can form a local Sound Strike committee or group.

Posted by
The Sound Strike


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