Martin Luther King

Music of the Civil Rights Movement

Jim and Greg mark the 50th anniversary of Martin Luther King Jr.'s“I Have a Dream Speech”with a discussion of the Music of the Civil Rights Movement.

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Music News

Robin Thicke and his producers Pharrell Williams and Clifford Harris Jr.(known to the rest of us as T.I.)—the team behind this summer's hit single Blurred Lines —have filed suit against the estate of Marvin Gaye and Bridgeport Music, rights holders to some of Funkadelic's compositions. The reason? Thicke and company claim that no, “Blurred Lines”sounds nothing like Gaye's Got to Give It Up or Funkadelic's Sexy Ways. (Members of the estate of Marvin Gaye, including his son, have claimed otherwise).

Chance the Rapper's mixtape Acid Rap (reviewed favorably on our show) has been selling well. The only problem is that Chance isn‘t the one selling it. Since Chance is lacking in a record deal, he isn’t covered by the protection of the RIAA, it's made the selling of his mixtape by a company called“Mtc”(for $14.83 a pop) all the more complicated. Still, Chance's manager Patrick Corcoran is looking on the bright side“This shows that there's a strong appetite for Chance in the marketplace,”he says. "How often does a bootleg hit a Billboard chart?"


Protest Songs

August 28, 2013 is the 50th anniversary of the historic March on Washington and Martin Luther King Jr.'s speech "I Have a Dream." And when Jim and Greg look back at that era, the music stands out as much as the marches and words. During this segment they talk about the role music played in the struggle for civil rights and how gospel and folk influences found their way into the pop charts. Jim and Greg also speak with legendary disc jockey Herb Kent about working at WVON (Voice of the Negro) during this time. Here are the protest songs Jim and Greg highlight:

  1. "Driva Man" by Max Roach & Oscar Brown Jr. featuring Abbey Lincoln, 1960
  2. "How I Got Over" performed by Mahalia Jackson at the March on Washington, 1963
  3. "In the Mississippi River" by the Freedom Singers, 1965
  4. "Mississippi Goddamn" performed by Nina Simone at Carnegie Hall, 1964
  5. "A Change is Gonna Come" by Sam Cooke, 1964
  6. "Keep On Pushing" by The Impressions, 1964
  7. "Freedom Highway" by The Staple Singers, 1965
  8. "Lift Every Voice and Sing" performed by Kim Weston at Wattstax, 1972

Featured Songs

  1. Goose Island Credit Music: Pure Sunray,“Caramel,”Pure Sunray, 2013
  2. Robin Thicke, Blurred Lines, Blurred Lines, Star Trak/Interscope, 2013
  3. Chance the Rapper, Acid Rain, Acid Rap, Freely Available Mixtape, 2013
  4. Martin Luther King Jr., I Have a Dream – March for Jobs – Washington, August 28, 1963, Speeches by Martin Luther King: The Ultimate Collection, BN Publishing, 2010
  5. Joan Baez and Bob Dylan,“When the Ship Comes In,”Live performance at the March on Washington, 1963
  6. Mahalia Jackson,“How I Got Over,”Live performance at the March on Washington, 1963
  7. Charles Mingus, Fables of Faubus, Mingus Ah Um, Columbia, 1959
  8. Max Roach ft. Abbey Lincoln, Driva Man, We Insist!, Candid, 1960
  9. Mahalia Jackson, We Shall Overcome, Let Freedom Sing! Music of the Civil Rights Movement, Time Life Entertainment, 2009
  10. Odetta, Spiritual Triology, Odetta Sings Ballads and Blue, Tradition, 1965
  11. The Freedom Singers, In the Mississippi River, Voices of the Civil Rights Movement: Black American Freedom Songs 1960-1966, Smithsonian Folkways Recordings, 1997
  12. Nina Simone, Mississippi Goddamn, Let Freedom Sing! Music of the Civil Rights Movement, Time Life Entertainment, 2009
  13. Herb Kent, Aircheck on WVON
  14. Grant Green, The Selma March, His Majesty King Funk, Verve, 1965
  15. Sam Cooke, A Change Is Gonna Come, Ain't That Good News, RCA Victor, 1964
  16. Sam Cooke, This Little Light of Mine, Sam Cooke At the Copa (Live), ABKCO Music & Records, Inc., 2003
  17. The Impressions, Keep On Pushing, Keep On Pushing, ABC-Paramount, 1964
  18. Martin Luther King Jr., Address Concluding the Selma to Montgomery - March 25, 1965, Speeches by Martin Luther King: The Ultimate Collection, BN Publishing, 2010
  19. The Staple Singers, Freedom Highway, Freedom Highway, Legacy/Columbia, 2004
  20. Kim Weston,“Lift Every Voice and Sing,”Live Performance at Wattstax, 1972
  21. The Beatles, Any Time at All, A Hard Day's Night, Parlophone, 1964
  22. Stevie Ray Vaughan and Dick Dale, Pipeline, Back to the Beach Soundtrack, CBS Records, 1987
  23. Link Wray & His Ray Men, Rumble, Rumble (Single), Cadence, 1958
  24. Jimi Hendrix,“The Star-Spangled Banner,”Live at Woodstock Festival, 1969
  25. Queens of the Stone Age, Mosquito Song, Songs for the Deaf, Interscope, 2002

Footnotes“Blurred Lines” Robin Thicke's lawsuit“Got to Give It Up”“Sexy Ways” The Gaye estate responds Sound Opinions reviews Acid Rap Acid Rap on the charts Herb Kent Bio