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Miscellaneous

Billie Holiday – Strange Fruit

Strange Fruit

What Is It?

The song Strange Fruit by the American Jazz & Swing singer Billie Holiday (Lady Day).

Strange Fruit

Here is how Wikipedia describes this song:

Strange Fruit” is a song written and composed by Lewis Allan and recorded by Billie Holiday in 1939. The lyrics were drawn from a poem by Meeropol published in 1937. The song protests the lynching of Black Americans with lyrics that compare the victims to the fruit of trees. Such lynchings had reached a peak in the Southern United States at the turn of the 20th century, and the great majority of victims were black.[2] The song has been called “a declaration” and “the beginning of the civil rights movement“.[3]

Meeropol set his lyrics to music with his wife and the singer Laura Duncan and performed it as a protest song in New York City venues in the late 1930s, including Madison Square Garden. Holiday’s version was inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame in 1978.[4] It was also included in the “Songs of the Century” list of the Recording Industry of America and the National Endowment for the Arts.[5]

In 2002, “Strange Fruit” was selected for preservation in the National Recording Registry by the Library of Congress[6] as being “culturally, historically or aesthetically significant”.

“Strange Fruit” originated as a poem written by the Jewish-American writer, teacher and songwriter Abel Meeropol, under his pseudonym Lewis Allan, as a protest against lynchings.[8][9][10] In the poem, Meeropol expressed his horror at lynchings, inspired by Lawrence Beitler‘s photograph of the 1930 lynching of Thomas Shipp and Abram Smith in Marion, Indiana.[9]

Meeropol published the poem under the title “Bitter Fruit” in January 1937 in The New York Teacher, a union magazine of the Teachers Union.[11][12] Though Meeropol had asked others (notably Earl Robinson) to set his poems to music, he set “Strange Fruit” to music himself. First performed by Meeropol’s wife and their friends in social contexts,[12] his protest song gained a certain success in and around New York. Meeropol, his wife, and the Black vocalist Laura Duncan performed it at Madison Square Garden.[13]

Here are the descriptions for the videos above:

Provided to YouTube by Universal Music Group

Strange Fruit · Billie Holiday

Lady Sings The Blues

℗ A Verve Label Group Release; ℗ 1956 UMG Recordings, Inc.

Released on: 1956-01-01

Producer, Associated Performer, Clarinet: Tony Scott
Associated Performer, Trumpet: Charlie Shavers
Associated Performer, Saxophone: Paul Quinichette
Associated Performer, Piano: Wynton Kelly
Associated Performer, Electric Guitar: Kenny Burrell
Associated Performer, Double Bass: Aaron Bell
Associated Performer, Drums: Lennie McBrowne
Orchestra: Tony Scott Orchestra
Composer Lyricist: Lewis Allan

Auto-generated by YouTube.

Provided to YouTube by Believe SAS

Strange Fruit · Billie Holliday · The Tony Scott Orchestra · Allan · Allan

Masters of Jazz: Billie Holiday & the Tony Scott Orchestra

℗ PCA Music

Released on: 2001-01-01

Auto-generated by YouTube.

Categories
Miscellaneous

Billie Holiday Vs The US Government – Extra History

Billie Holiday Vs The US Government – Extra History

What Is It?

The YouTube video Billie Holiday Vs The US Government – Extra History by the YouTube channel Extra Credits.

Here is the description for this video:

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Jazz singer Billie Holiday vs the US Government?! Her song Strange Fruit, written by Abel Meeropol about the treatment of African Americans in the community, is what started the whole altercation. Especially when Harry Anslinger, the Head of the Federal Bureau of Narcotics got involved, he set out to ensnare the Idol any way he could.

— The Harlem Renaissance —
https://youtu.be/8kZ0gZMCx9U

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Categories
Miscellaneous

I Have No Mouth And I Must Scream (Short Story)

I Have no Mouth and I Must Scream – Harlan Ellison (audiobook)

What Is It?

The video above is an audiobook version of the 1967 post-apocalyptic science fiction horror short story I Have No Mouth And I Must Scream by Harlan Ellison.

I Have No Mouth and I Must Scream – The End of the Apocalypse – Extra Sci Fi

This is how Wikipedia describes this short story:

In a dystopian future, the Cold War has degenerated into a brutal world war between the United States, the Soviet Union, and China, who have each built an “Allied Mastercomputer” (or AM) to manage their weapons and troops. One of the AMs eventually acquires self-awareness and, after assimilating the other two AMs, takes control of the conflict, giving way to a vast genocide operation that almost completely ends mankind. 109 years later, AM has left only four men and one woman alive and keeps them in captivity within an endless underground housing complex, the only habitable place left on Earth. AM derives its sole semblance of pleasure from torturing the group. To disallow the humans from escaping its torment, AM has rendered the humans virtually immortal and unable to commit suicide.

The machines are each referred to as “AM”, which originally stood for “Allied Mastercomputer”, but was changed to “Adaptive Manipulator” and later (after gaining sentience) “Aggressive Menace”. It finally refers to itself as purely “AM”, referring to the phrase “I think, therefore I am.”

Categories
Miscellaneous

Marcus Garvey – Black Moses – Extra History

Marcus Garvey – Black Moses – Extra History

What Is It?

The YouTube video Marcus Garvey – Black Moses – Extra History by the YouTube channel Extra Credits.

Marcus Garvey is an interesting and divisive figure in civil rights history. Influenced by the writings of Booker T Washington, he pushed back against the philosophy of the NAACP and W.E.B. Du Bois. On the one hand, he was a passionate and fierce leader who unified the community and worked to fight injustice. On the other hand, he was a separatist to the core, a philosophy that led to him reaching out to the Ku Klux Klan. And that’s never the best sentence to hear. But love him or hate him, there is no denying that he was extremely influential on figures like Malcolm X.

Categories
Miscellaneous

The Assassination Of Medgar Evers – A Hero Silenced – Extra History

The Assassination of Medgar Evers – A Hero Silenced – Extra History

What is it?

Here is the description for this video:

Medgar Evers was, like many who came after him, a civil rights leader who was murdered for speaking up. But while he might not be as well known as Martin Luther King Jr. or Malcolm X, he’s no less vital to the history of the civil rights movement and is especially noted for his work with the NAACP and tearing down segregation within schools. And his tragic death would expose how deep the corrupted root of racism went in the system, when his killer would not be brought to justice until 30 years later.