– THE MILITARY COUP –
“Stand your ground” is a combustible combination of words in the USA in 2019.
It is the phrase that gave its name to the law that was invoked after the shooting of black teenager Treyvon Martin in 2012.
Ever since (and long before, of course), the black community in America has been ‘standing its ground’ over countless issues – often related to police brutality – but with varying degrees of success.
Heroes are Gang Leaders understand the power of those words. The poet / essayist / playwright / activist Amiri Baraka also understood it. As does his wife, Amina Baraka.
The married duo’s words form the basis of the lyrics to Thomas Sayers Ellis and James Brandon Lewis (the two founding members of HAGL)’s new record The Amiri Baraka Sessions and those words are no more weaponised than on Land Back.
A meditation on themes of ownership (particularly as it pertains to land) and civil rights, the central mantra of ‘stand down, stand down, stand your ground’ two thirds of the way through highlights the track as being the album’s centre-point.
Powerful and poignant, Land Back is a statement of intent from some of the most pioneering voices in jazz.
The Amiri Baraka Sessions is out now.
MORE FROM THIS WEEK’S MIX:
You can find all of the tracks reviewed above in the 45 Revolutions per Minute playlist below or click to access the 45 RPM Playlist on Spotify itself.
If you like what you hear (or even if you don’t), please engage in dialogue with me @45rpm_Reviews on Twitter. And, if you’d like to receive updates weekly, please subscribe to the email list to get these recommendations sent to your inbox weekly.
– SV –