To cleanse the palate after a week’s worth of “N-word” talk, here’s another quick contest…
Click here to listen to this week’s mystery song. (No “N-words” in it. Quite the opposite, in fact.)
The first person to post the singer’s correct name in the comments section will win a prize. That prize is the new eighth edition of the Penguin Guide to Jazz Recordings. It’s fun to read and is indispensable for those who want to beef up their jazz collections.
But I warn you, this is a tough one.
UPDATE (03/17/07): We have a winner. Dougfp correctly identified the singer as Elaine Brown. She also wrote the song, titled “Very Black Man.” It appears on her 1969 LP “Seize the Time,” made while she was a junior officer of the Black Panther Party. She eventually became its chairman.
“Seize the Time” is a fascinating artifact of the Black Power movement. It’s as much propaganda as art. With music arranged by L.A. bandleader and activist Horace Tapscott, the album is worth listening to for its jazz/blues/gospel flavors alone. But there’s a quality to Brown’s voice and delivery that intrigues me.
“Seize the Time” has been reissued on CD. Brown also wrote a Black Panther memoir in 1992.
Elaine Brown is still active in far-left politics. She plans to seek the Green Party’s nomination for president of the United States. (Her website is here.)
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