Paul Williams — Architect to the people

Although it takes an incredible combination of cognitive dissonance, myopia (and usually some chauvinism) to deny that Los Angeles can be characterized by its amazing architecture, it does happen. Ironically, most of the blame for this fact can be placed on the shoulders of the self-appointed boosters in Hollywood, whose idea of Utopia seems to … Continue reading Paul Williams — Architect to the people

Advertisements

Fear of a black galaxy — Black people in science-fiction

Photo by JD Hancock The other day I was listening to the podcast The Auteur Cast. In discussing The Empire strikes back, one of the hosts used the character of Lando Calrissian to question why there are so few black people in science-fiction. It’s not a new question. In 1976, on the album Bicentennial Nigger, Richard … Continue reading Fear of a black galaxy — Black people in science-fiction

Proto-rap — a look at black soul and jazz poetry for Black History Month

INTRODUCTION In my freshman year of college I remember being hipped to the Last Poets by LaRon Johnson, another temporary housing refugee. He basically told me that they were rap music before rap music. This was back in 1992, a year after CERN released the World-Wide Web and when most music was shared via cassette … Continue reading Proto-rap — a look at black soul and jazz poetry for Black History Month

Krazy Kat – One of the kolossal komics in the kontinuum debuted 13 October 1913

INTRO TO KRAZY KAT On 15 October, Google paid tribute to Winsor McCay's comic, Little Nemo in Slumberland, which debuted on that date in 1905. It was a beautiful tribute to one of the greatest comic strips of all time. Just two days earlier, though not celebrated by Google (I don't expect them to honor … Continue reading Krazy Kat – One of the kolossal komics in the kontinuum debuted 13 October 1913

No Enclave — An Overview of Black Los Angeles

Diversity has long been part of the fabric of Los Angeles and Southern California. Humans first arrived here at least 13,000 years ago and more than twenty Native American nations made their home here before the Spanish Conquest. The Spanish pueblo of Los Angeles was itself founded by people of Native, African, European, and mixed ancestries and … Continue reading No Enclave — An Overview of Black Los Angeles

A History of Black Cinema: 1915-1969

The Lincoln Motion Picture Company In most American silent films, minorities were generally played by white actors in make-up. When actual minorities were cast, roles were generally limited. Latinos in silent films usually played greasers and bandits; Asian-Americans played waiters, tongs and laundrymen; and blacks usually played bellboys, stable hands, maids or simple buffoons. Early … Continue reading A History of Black Cinema: 1915-1969

Ya Hoidz Me? – Talk About Bounce Music

For some reason, the Bounce scene, born nearly 20 years ago, seems to be undergoing a minor critical reassessment as it inspires curiosity in a new generation of fans amongst the young, the Euro, the old and new. I can only guess why. I suspect that part of it is a development of the ongoing, … Continue reading Ya Hoidz Me? – Talk About Bounce Music