Text by Joe Yanosik
Copyright of image: The Plastic People of the Universe
The Plastic who of the what? Never heard of them and I’ve been playing music for decades, you might say. Well, it’s not your fault. Even on the other side of the Atlantic Ocean where they’re from, the Plastic People (actually from Czechoslovakia, not the Universe) remained obscure. In America, fans of alternative music may simply know them as a cult band who made weird, experimental music. In fact, the Plastic People of the Universe were one of the greatest rock groups to emerge from Central Europe during the Communist era and their incredible history should be known far and wide by everyone who plays music for a living.
Formed in Czechoslovakia in 1968 shortly after the Warsaw Pact Invasion in which Soviet tanks and troops crushed the liberal period known as the Prague Spring, the Plastic People of the Universe endured two decades of persecution from the Communist regime simply because they refused to conform to the Soviet “normalization”. Since the era of Stalin, the Communists knew the importance of controlling the art in a society and they used art as propaganda to promote their own fake reality. They were fully aware of the power of music and art and couldn’t let it be created freely for fear that the truth would escape.
A musical legend, Aretha Franklin has been called to her final rest…
Photo courtesy of by the bright scoop
Text by Dawoud Kringle
The news of Aretha Franklin’s passing came as no shock. It was common knowledge she had been gravely ill for a long time. Just days before her passing, news of her severe illness made international news. Nonetheless, it’s impossible to hear of the passing of this giant without sadness.
Text by Dawoud Kringle (with Ken Hatfield)
The U.S. House of Representatives embraced music licensing reform, and supported the efforts to update the US’ antiquated copyright laws.
The new Senate bill combines three separate pieces of legislation:
1. The Music Modernization Act of 2018 (S.2334, introduced by Senator Orrin Hatch (R-UT) and Senator Lamar Alexander (R-TN) in January, which updates licensing and royalties as pertains to streaming).
2. The CLASSICS Act (or Compensating Legacy Artists for their Songs, Service, & Important Contributions to Society Act, introduced in February by Chris Coons (D-DE) and John Kennedy (R-LA) to ensure that songwriters and artists receive royalties on pre-1972 songs).
3. The AMP Act (or Allocation for Music Producers Act, introduced in March by Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley (R-LA) and ranking committee member Dianne Feinstein (D-CA.) with the support of and Senators Bob Corker (R-TN) and Kamala Harris (D-CA).
ALJO…The Power of Activism and Jazz: Resisting an Oppressive National Political Culture
On Wednesday May 9, Arturo O’Farrill and the Afro Latin Jazz Orchestra kicked off a special five-city tour of California celebrating the power of activism and jazz in resistance to the oppressive national political culture currently taking shape in America..
Arturo O’Farrill and ALJO invited diverse communities throughout California to partake in their revolutionary musical movement propelled by the orchestra’s fiery big band compositions. Beginning on May 9, Stanford Live presented the West Coast debut of O’Farrill’s The Cornel West Concerto at Stanford University featuring Dr. Cornel West alongside ALJO. On May 12, O’Farrill headlined Radio-Active Resistance: A Benefit for KPFA FM and DACA Support Services with opening acts Bobi Céspedes Band and the Son Jarocho All Stars at UC Theatre in Berkeley, CA. Additional ALJO performances included concerts at Mondavi Center for the Performing Arts (May 11), UC Santa Barbara Arts & Lectures @ Campbell Hall (May 17), and a rare Afro Latin Jazz Ensemble (octet) performance at Bach Dynamite & Dancing Society in Half Moon Bay (May 13). ALJO concluded its California tour with a live recording on the San Diego – Tijuana border on location at the Fandango Fronterizo Festival, joining together with noted Son Jarocho artists from Veracruz, México, and other special guest artists drawing from various countries and musical genres.
The Alt-Right Creates More Chaos in the Music Business
By Dawoud Kringle
As reported n a recent DooBeeDoo article examining the music of the alt-right, young alt-rightists / white supremacists plagiarized 80s Synthwave, and use it to promote their political agenda.