Sunday, April 20, 2014
Trombone Shorty: "You and I (Outta This Place)"
I don't really like to post music that isn't accompanied by a kick-ass video. But I picked up this cd the other day and the second cut almost made me pull the car over so I could focus on the words.
Sometimes, when I'm trying to get through to people -- in a classroom, around a table in a restaurant, chilling with students at the library, standing around at a cocktail reception for a bunch of middle class writers and their upper class aficinados -- I look at the expressions on the faces around me and wonder how I wound up in this place. I don't mean Louisiana. I think I've figured that out. I mean this place where I seem to be speaking some language I brought with me from some former life or other planet. The troubled blankness in my listeners' eyes, the confused tilt of their heads as they try to decipher what the hell I could possibly be talking about, the wary caution of their demeanor if they happen to be Black around White people and I start doin' my thing -- I look from face to face to face and check the body language, all the time my mouth goin' a mile a minute while the oxygen leaves the room.
Then I read a post like Lindy West's or run across a film clip of a young Black woman owning her space or I hear a song like this one and I know for sure that I'm just one of millions of men and women of all body types and skin tones and nationalities and sexual orientations and religions (or lack of religion) that threaten the system by our very existence whether anybody gets us or not. Yeah.