#guitarmonday: Restore Sight to These Blind.
Hello, June. In with a bang in a plague year, I see.
Your song today's by Fishbone - an iconic black punk band writing protest songs since they started. I had the SUPREME PLEASURE of seeing and photographing their live performance at Muddy Roots Music festival last summer.
They had some sound issues, but I was still in heaven - it was FISHBONE and I was THERE. I never thought I'd ever get a chance to see a live performance of theirs, and it's possible I never will again.
I was right up there by the stage, and at one point Angelo pushed the mic in my face and I *maybe* squeaked out "Everyday ... Sunshine ..." during the song because I was so startled and not used to audience participation.
And all the feelings of a generation fed with anger
Make all the choices for a future where all nightmares come true
I choose to fight for youth, to fight for truth, to fight for justice
I choose to heal the wounds of sacrifice made by the children
--- Fishbone, "Fight the Youth"
At one point in the show, Angelo unfurled and waved the "Fuck Racism" banner, and I was too close to get a good shot of that - because I shoot with prime lenses and not with zooms. But Paul Meacham made a great photo of it (my little blue head is even in the frame on the bottom left) and you can see that HERE ON INSTAGRAM (Seriously, go look! I'm not embedding it because fuck that, make a clicky and go show a photog some love).
So why am I blogging about Fishbone today? Because Fuck Racism, that's why. Because black people have been dying in the USA for a really long time and we have not been doing a damn thing about it. Or should I say, we have we have not been doing ENOUGH. We have not listened to their cries for help. We don't live in the blissful bountiful land of freedom that we teach our children about, and even our (white) dystopia is so very, very far from the daily struggle they experience in our country.
If you, like me, love music like blues and rock n' roll and punk music, you love music that originated in black lived experience.
I didn't come to this blog post today to rant and rave and lecture and preach. I came here to say that Black Lives Matter and Punk Rock Photography is committed to a path of Anti-Racism. It's going to be very, very uncomfortable. The comfortable are about to get afflicted, y'all. And while we have the burden to do this work, please remember that it's not about us.
I encourage everyone to join me.
You can even start at home if not in the streets. Here's some links to resources.
What White People Can Do for Racial Justice (but hey, feel free to read through the list even if you're not 100% white)
Seek out the writings of James Baldwin. Angela Davis. Ta-Nehisi Coates. Ibram X. Kendi. Ijeoma Oluo. Don't buy them from Amazon, though, if you can help it - buy them from independent bookstores or borrow from your library (yes, sometimes it's faster to get the ebook for Kindle or the Kindle app - but there are plenty of articles you can read online for free without spending a dime).
Support black-owned businesses in your community.
LISTEN to the voices of black people and start examining your internal assumptions (we've all got them).
Listen to some Fishbone and be excellent to each other this week. Even more so than usual. Please.