“Peace and love in the north, peace and love in the south, peace and love in the east, peace and love in the universe”
Please? Even if you’re suffering from idealism exhaustion, even if you’ve dismissed the concept of peace (world or local) as a childish pipe dream, you might still feel a little lifted up. Black Uhuru does that. It’s music for positive mobilization. Remember that peace is not an abstract concept; it’s built on simple things like freedom, justice and equality. So motivate yourself to fight for those things, piece by piece.
It sounds like a reggae party next door is pretty cool happenings even if you’re not invited to it. I mean, if I had Rasta neighbors who threw parties all night, I’d be pretty okay with it. And if you’re throwing your own reggae party, this is your jam, because Black Uhuru is the best party music. When it comes to classic reggae, they are among the very greatest, and about due for a revival, I think.
Here’s something we haven’t enjoyed in a while. Black Uhuru never gets old. Throughout the 80’s they really carried the torch for socially conscious reggae music, writing songs about everything from broad issues of social inequality to news items of the day, like the imprisonment of Nelson Mandela and the American crack epidemic. But they also knew the value of a simple mellow jam, and didn’t forget the love songs either. And getting high, of course. Hence the album Sinsemilla. Truly a classic if its time, for some reason not celebrated as it deserves to be.
Nothing better in the world than some good reggae. Of course, reggae is a great groove to relax and feel good; therein its worldwide popularity. But the best reggae is also thought provoking. Black Uhuru has always been one of the best reggae bands, both musically and lyrically. Their classic 1982 album Chill Out is a great place to start, for anyone whose reggae experience begins and ends with Legend. Seriously, though, if your working knowledge of reggae music begins and ends with Bob Marley’s Legend, I feel sorry for you and hope you can remedy yourself as soon as possible.
See, hating Mondays was a think long before Garfield hammered the joke into the ground. Why would Michael Rose, a reggae artist who presumably doesn’t have a day job, hate Mondays? Well, I guess he’s saying something about the neverending existential grind that’s far deeper than just clocking in on Monday morning. You don’t have to be an office drone to experience life as a cycle that resets itself every handful of days, and you learn to dread the day that you have to start it all over again.
I was just looking for the lyrics to this song, but they’re not online. I always do this and I should just give up, because I already know that Black Uhuru fans don’t have internet-literacy for some reason (um, because they’re old?) and almost none of their lyrics are available. Kind of a bummer, because Black Uhuru always has a great message to impart. The only problem is I don’t always catch the entirety of it, because accents. Enunciation is just not highly prized in the music world, I guess. Still, you can get the gist of Black Uhuru’s message easily enough; peace, love, justice, liberty, solidarity, good sinsemilla. And that’s just from the song titles. Also, they are very much one of those bands whose music is easy to enjoy even if you don’t speak a word of English, or you can enjoy it so much that whatever the words are doesn’t even matter.
I don’t know what kind of shape this blog would be in if I actually had any kind of a life at all. My pardons for very slack-assed posting yesterday and today – I had, like, stuff to do with people and stuff. I’ll put some of the blame on having some very long workdays lately back to back with social engagements. Otherwise I promise I’d have insightful things to say about songs I love.