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Our Centuries-Long Quest for ‘A Quiet Place’

The new film “A Quiet Place” is an edge-of-your-seat tale about a family struggling to avoid being heard by monsters with hypersensitive ears. Conditioned by fear, they know the slightest noise will provoke a violent response – and almost certain death. Audiences have come out in droves to dip their toes into its quiet terror,...

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Mavis Staples Confronts America’s Schism With A Hopeful Response

If All I Was Was Black unveils Mavis Staples’ sixteenth studio album and third collaboration with Wilco frontman, Jeff Tweedy as producer. It features twelve tracks, some of which are covered below for their ability to cement a convincing narrative, these are in fact fraught times but hope is not lost when we have solidarity...

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How the Death of the Hip-Hop DJ Spawned the Superstar Rapper

Since the inception of hip-hop culture, the DJ has been its cornerstone. The culture’s starting point is widely accepted as the birthday party Kool DJ Herc threw for his sister at 1520 Sedgwick Avenue, The Bronx on August 11, 1973. Kool Herc’s selection spanned the funk genre, and using two copies of the same record,...

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The 1960s Jazz Tribute to Malcolm X That Profoundly Expressed the Black Condition

By the late 1950s foremost musicians like Charlie Parker, Charles Mingus and John Coltrane explicitly introduced politics in their jazz, as the civil rights movement started gaining momentum in the US. Musician and author Gilad Atzmon explained it in a 2005 essay: Black Americans were calling for freedom, and jazz expressed it better than mere...