14 Nov 2017

Protest Song Of The Week: ‘What We’re Up Against’ By Worriers

Lauren Denitzio has long been a master of lived-in, personal-political songwriting. With Worriers, Denitzio creates melodic punk songs that weave stories and lessons out of hard-fought feminist wisdom. The stories are sometimes told through wordy, double-time sweet-sung verse, sometimes with a gruff deadpan that sounds weary but never cynical. Worriers

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01 Nov 2017

Protest Platforms: Music Streaming Cooperative Restores Agency To Artists

In the first of a three-part series, Liz Pelly explores how platforms can shape music and enable protest. She highlights streaming cooperative, Resonate.

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18 Oct 2017

Interview: Free Jazz Quintet Irreversible Entanglements On Making Revolutionary Music

The free jazz quintet Irreversible Entanglements released its first eponymous album last month. Recorded over one six-hour studio session in August 2015, the 43-minute album is made of largely improvised instrumentation and Camae Ayewa’s radical poetry on Black trauma, survival, and power. It is the product of five musicians meeting for the

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10 Oct 2017

Protest Song Of The Week: ‘Black Is’ by The Last Poets

The NFL commissioner and owners of NFL teams are moving at this hour to restrict and clamp down on football players, who are predominantly black, so they do not protest during the national anthem. This is happening as former coaches like Mike Ditka babble on about not knowing of any

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05 Oct 2017

Five Songs Of Resistance: Pure Disgust

From 2013 until when they disbanded earlier this month, the Washington, D.C., group, Pure Disgust, emerged as one of the city’s best punk bands. They used blistering eighties-style hardcore to write songs about police violence, respectability politics, and the realities of being young and black in America. “When will brown

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04 Oct 2017

Protest Song Of The Week: ‘The Last DJ’ by Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers

Singer and songwriter Tom Petty penned a quadruplet of songs on corporate consolidation, the greed of music industry executives, and its impact on artists and fans. Of the four, “The Last DJ” is the most enduring but each song had quite a bit of edge. Recorded in 2002, in the

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Charles Bradley performs at SXSW 2011. Photo by Ben Houdijk on Flickr.
27 Sep 2017

The Protest Songs Of Charles Bradley

The protest music of the late Charles Bradley explored moral corruption and turning to love to survive, because who knows when change will finally come.

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25 Sep 2017

Protest Song Of The Week: ‘Solidarity’ By Material Support

A live version of Material Support’s powerful “Know Your Rights,” was featured earlier this year. Its resonant refrain is equal parts punk song, protest anthem, and literal know-your-rights training. The song by the Queens, New York band offers advice on what to do if the cops show up: “Do you

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18 Sep 2017

Protest Song Of The Week: ‘Won’t Let It Go’ By La Neve

Joey La Neve DeFrancesco is a guitarist for Downtown Boys, the Providence group whose recent full-length Cost Of Living received widespread critical acclaim. The group was called “the most exciting punk band in America” and described as “rewriting the rules of punk rock.” Under the radar, earlier this year, DeFrancesco

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22 Aug 2017

Protest Song Of The Week: ‘Fracking Up The Planet’ By Buck Gooter

The duo, Buck Gooter, from Harrisonburg, Virginia, play raw, throbbing experimental rock that is alternatively brutal and bluesy. Drawing from aggressive noise, elemental post-punk, and narrative story-songs, Billy Brett and Terry Turtle make music that is oppositional through its disregard for sonic convention as well as its direct confrontation of

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