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This monthly podcast looks back at the pop culture of Generation X, from an African-American perspective.

Aug 2, 2018

Topics: Shirley Anita Chisholm, H. Rap Brown, Diana Ross, Al Green, Superfly, Sanford & Son, & Fat Albert. (Bonus Artist: hidingtobefound)


1.    1972 - A Transitional Year, New Directions, Politics and Pimpin
2.    News snapshots
3.    Nixon wins reelection
4.    Watergate: 5 dudes arrested for breaking into the DNC headquarters
5.    Vietnam War: year 17 of 19
6.    Deaths: 641 down from 2357 in 1971
7.    June29 - SCOTUS rules death penalty unconstitutional
8.    Economic snapshots
9.    Black unemployment is 9.9%. highest since great depression.
10.    31% black families headed by women
11.    Minimum wage: 
12.    Sports snapshots
13.    Super Bowl: Dallas def. Miami
14.    World Series: Oakland A's def. Cincinnati (4-3)
15.    NBA Championship: LA Lakers def. New York
16.    Science snapshots
17.    CAT scanning, compact disks, electronic mail, and Prozac are developed.
18.    Apollo XVII, the last manned moon landing to date
19.    Entertainment snapshots
20.    Time Inc. drops HBO, the first pay cable network.
21.    Atari breaks out Pong, the first arcade video game. (home version in 1974)
22.    Women dominate the Grammy Awards, grabbing the big 4. Carole King won Record, Album and Song of the Year, while Carly Simon won Best New Artist.
23.    Music (top selling albums): #3. Fragile by Yes, #2. American Pie by Don McLean, #1. Harvest by Neil Young / just an fyi, #13. Led Zeppelin IV
24.    Movies (top grossing): #3. What's up Doc, #2. The Poseidon Adventure, #1. The Godfather
25.    Television: #3. Hawaii Five-O, #2. Sanford and Son*, #1. All in the Family
26.    Black snapshots
27.    Mahalia Jackson and Jackie Robinson pass away
28.    NYC graffiti breaks out. it's one of the 4 pillars of hip-hop
29.    MJ (@14) goes solo: hits w/ Ben
30.    Cicely Tyson (@48) stars in Sounder: Box office hit. Proving that the black audience will take, a non 'super black' exploitation movie seriously.
31.    QUESTION: What pops out for you?
32.    Socio-political (1st major shift to a new direction, political power)
33.    Shirley Anita Chisholm, (@ 47): politician, educator, and author of "Unbought and Unbossed! -1970 autobiographies.
34.    in 1972, she became the first black person EVER to run for POTUS AND the first woman to run for the Democrats.
35.    Already, in 1968, she was the first black woman elected to Congress.
36.    Her campaign was underfunded, dismissed as a symbolic, & basically ignored by the power structure.
37.    And she was not instantly a heroine for black people.
38.    Of course, black male colleagues showed little love: "When I ran for the Congress, when I ran for president, I met more discrimination as a woman than for being black. Men are men.... They think I am trying to take power from them. The black man must step  
39.    forward, but that doesn't mean the black woman must step back."
40.    QUESTION: Is this the real reason more black women haven't run? (only other black woman was Carol Moseley Braun from Il in 2004)
41.    About her legacy, she said, “I want to be remembered as a woman … who dared to be a catalyst of change.” (Obama?)
42.    Famous Quotes:
43.    "Tremendous amounts of talent are lost to our society just because that talent wears a skirt."
44.    "The emotional, sexual, and psychological stereotyping of females begins when the doctor says, 'It's a girl'."
45.    "In the end, anti-black, anti-female, and all forms of discrimination are equivalent to the same thing - anti-humanism."
46.    Conclusion: In our lifetime we saw THE MOST successful path for black advancement. Politics. Only 36 years from Shirley to Obama.
47.    Shirley Chisholm was an underappreciated legend and icon.
48.    Other Comments?
49.    Meanwhile...the Black Power Movement is falling apart! (2nd major shift)
50.    1971-1972 the Panthers split into different camps. Huey vs Eldrigdge
51.    They went "Hatfield vs McCoy" and started retaliatory assassinations.
52.    H. Rap Brown (@ 29), is the latest high-profile BPM figure to fall.
53.    Others include: Angela Davis, Assata Shakur, Elaine Brown, Eldridge Cleaver, Fred Hampton, Huey P. Newton, Stokely Carmichael, and Bobby Seale
54.    H Rap Brown sentenced for an attack on a New York City bar?!?!
55.    Currently serving a life sentence for murder after shooting of two Sheriff's deputies in 2000.
56.    He was known for taking over SNCC after Stokely and his autobiography, Die Nigger Die!
57.    Probably most famous for saying, "violence is as American as cherry pie” -and- "If America don't come around, we're gonna burn it down."
58.    QUESTION: Was the decline of the BPM more internal (reliance on the gun and violence), external (black people lost interest) -OR- did black people choose to go the "integration" route?
59.    Conclusion: The BPM had a great message: Pride, Self-reliance, and education. But, I think they were too extreme.
60.    Other Comments:
61.    Music: 1972 Top Singles
#1 Roberta Flack    The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face
#2 Gilbert O’Sullivan    Alone Again (Naturally)
#3 Don McLean    American Pie
#4 Nilsson    Without You
#5 Sammy Davis Jr.    Candy Man
#6 Joe Tex    I Gotcha
#7 Bill Withers    Lean On Me
#8 Mac Davis    Baby Don’t Get Hooked On Me
#9 Melanie    Brand New Key
#10 Wayne Newton    Daddy Dont You Walk So Fast
#11 Al Green    Let’s Stay Together
#12 Looking Glass    Brandy (You’re A Fine Girl)
#13 Chi-Lites    Oh Girl
#14 Gallery    Nice To Be With You
#15 Chuck Berry    My Ding-A-Ling
#16 Luther Ingram    If Loving You Is Wrong I Don’t Want To Be Right
#17 Neil Young    Heart Of Gold
#18 Stylistics    Betcha By Golly, Wow
#19 Staple Singers    I’ll Take You There
#20 Michael Jackson    Ben
#21 Robert John    The Lion Sleeps Tonight
#22 Billy Preston    Outa-space
#23 War    Slippin’ Into Darkness
#24 Hollies    Long Cool Woman (In A Black Dress)
#25 Mouth and MacNeal    How Do You Do
#26 Neil Diamond    Song Sung Blue
#27 America    A Horse With No Name
#28 Hot Butter    Popcorn
#29 Main Ingredient    Everybody Plays The Fool
#30 Climax    Precious And Few
62.    Vote: Best Single, __________________________________
63.    1972 Albums
64.    Jan - There's a Riot Going' On - Sly & the Family Stone
65.    Jan - Black Moses - Isaac Hayes
66.    Mar - Solid Rock - The Temptations
67.    Mar - Let's Stay Together - Al Green
68.    May - First Take - Roberta Flack
69.    Jun - A Lonely Man - The Chi-Lites
70.    Jul - Still Bill - Bill Withers
71.    Oct - Super Fly Soundtrack - Curtis Mayfield
72.    Nov - All Directions - The Temptations
73.    Dec - I'm Still In Love With You - Al Green
74.    Vote: Best Album, __________________________________
75.    Key Artist - Diana Ross (@28): Singer, songwriter, actress, and record producer. Born and raised in Detroit.
76.    Became famous as the lead singer the Supremes, the best charting girl group in history. With twelve number-one hit singles. ("Where Did Our Love Go", "Baby Love", "Come See About Me", "Stop! In the Name of Love", "You Can't Hurry Love", "You Keep Me  
77.    Hangin' On", "Love Child", and "Someday We'll Be Together", etc...)
78.    The movie dream girls was inspired by the group
79.    She also did a few big films: Lady Sings the Blues, Mahogany, The Wiz, etc...
80.    Question: Here's my problem with The Boss. Mary Wilson was the heart and soul of the Supremes. Florence Ballard was the best singer. Diana was what?
81.    Conclusion: The Supremes were deliberately glamorous, because Gordy wanted all of Motown to be crossover artists. Beyonce has real game, I'm not convinced Diana wasn't just hyped up. 
82.    Other Comments:
83.    Key Artist - Al Green (@26): singer, songwriter and record produce. Born in AR, grew up in Michigan, discovered in Memphis.
84.    Kicked out of the house when his very religious daddy caught him listening to Jackie Wilson.
85.    Quote: "I also listened to Mahalia Jackson, all the great gospel singers. But the most important music to me was those hip-shaking’ boys: Wilson Pickett and Elvis Presley. I just loved Elvis Presley. Whatever he got, I went out and bought."
86.    Started out in 1967, flashed in 1971 with the album, "Al Green Gets Next to You", PEAKED in 1972 with 2 albums - "Let's Stay Together" & "I'm Still in Love with You", and capped 1973 with the lp "Call Me", a critically acclaimed "Masterpiece!"
87.    Basically, everything we love about Al was dropped in that 3-year window.
88.    1974 he was born again
89.    Soon after that his "girlfriend" dumped boiling grits on him in the bathtub before shooting and killing herself. (with his gun!?)
90.    By 1976, he was ready to go gospel.
91.    His longtime producer, Willie Mitchell (the guy who discovered him and crafted his music), passed on doing gospel music. (Bounced check story)
92.    1977, he dropped "The Belle Album", his 12th. Rolling Stone magazine said, "We may someday look back on The Belle Album as Al Green’s best"
93.    Question: Just an observation really. This is the 3rd major shift in 1972. Al didn't make political or activist music. Some said he was the last great "Soul Man". In 1971 Marvin asked, what's going on. During 1972, in the middle of war protests, Watergate, an  
94.    election, civil rights protests, the Panthers shooting up the streets, Al Green made LOVE ok again.
95.    Other Comments:
96.    Vote: Key Artists, ________________________________
97.    Movies
98.    Lady Sings the Blues: Based on Lady Sings the Blues by Billie Holiday
99.    Starring: Diana Ross (@28), Billy Dee Williams (@35), Richard Pryor (@32)
100.    Blacula: important because it was a successful black horror film
101.    Buck and the Preacher: important for casting blacks as leads in a western and was the first film Sidney Poitier directed
102.    Super Fly: 4th Major shift (The streets are talking)
103.    Priest is done with the clothes, the cars, the drugs, the money, and the white women.
104.    But, his partner, Eddie isn’t.
105.    Quote (Eddie talking to Priest): "You're gonna give all this up? 8-Track Stereo, color T.V. in every room, and can snort a half a piece of dope everyday? That's the American Dream, nigga! Well, ain't it? Ain't it?"
106.    Curtis Mayfield (@30) wrote and produced the AMAZING soundtrack.
107.    Starring: Ron O’Neal (@35), Carl Lee (@46), Sheila Frazier (@24)
108.    At the time of its release, lots of black folks didn't like what Super Fly was representing.
109.    Quote from the Hollywood NAACP branch: “we must insist that our children are not exposed to a steady diet of so-called black movies that glorify black males as pimps, dope pushers, gangsters, and super males.”
110.    The filmmakers (White producer / black director) say they wanted to show the negative and empty aspects of the drug subculture.
111.    Regardless, Super Fly landed BIG TIME with the "post-Civil Rights" generation.
112.    They thought Eddie spoke the gospel.
113.    Quote (Eddie talking to Priest): " I know it's a rotten game, but it's the only one The Man left us to play. That's the stone, cold truth."
114.    Question: Ultimately, what is the legacy of Superfly?
115.    Conclusion: I really enjoyed the movie. However, it blatantly dismissed the BPM, and spoke directly to the criminal elements in the black community. This movie, along with the "Urban" writers, Donald Goines and Iceberg Slim, helped spawn a generation  
116.    of criminals. That can't be a good thing.
117.    Other comments:
118.    Vote: Key movie, ____________________________________
119.    Television
120.    Jan - Sanford and Son debuts on NBC (6 seasons)
121.    Groundbreaking: 1st "Black" cast sit-com on the least 2yrs before: That's My Mama ('74), Good Times ('74), The Jeffersons ('75), and What's Happening!!('76)
122.    Theme music by Quincy Jones (@39)
123.    Starring: Redd Foxx (@50), and Demond Wilson (@26)
124.    Foxx was born in St. Louis, raised in Chicago, and ran the streets with pre-Muslim Malcolm X back in the day.
125.    He came up performing raunchy comedy and developed a cult following in the 50's and 60's.
126.    In 1970 he flashed in the comedy movie "Cotton Comes to Harlem" and the producer of All in the Family hit him up.
127.    Question: Is Lamont crazy? Quote: "MLK left black people hooked on economic dependence and Sanford and Son taught entrepreneurship"
128.    Conclusion: Undeniably funny. Redd had the respect and help from some of the best young comics in the business, black and white. Classic!
129.    Other Comments:
130.    Sep - Fat Albert and the Cosby Kids (8 seasons)
131.    Fat Albert first popped up in 1967 during Cosby's stand-up comedy routine "Buck Buck,"
132.    Starring: Bill Cosby (@35)
133.    Born and raised in Philly. High school drop-out. Got his G.E.D. and went to Temple Univ. on a scholarship. While bartending, he discovered his comedy talent.
134.    He dropped out of college and mastered crossover comedy in the early sixties.
135.    In 1965 he broke out in the hit tv series I-Spy and by 1970 he was America's top Black comic.
136.    He went back to college in 1970 and got involved with PBS and the Electric Company.
137.    During this time, he cooked up "Fat Albert and the Cosby Kids"
138.    It was based on his childhood friends and every show had an educational lesson in it.
139.    A lot of times the crew would end the show playing a song in the neighborhood junkyard.
140.    Question: Frankly, did the sex scandal undermine his whole career?
141.    Conclusion: I used to really like Bill.
142.    Other comments:
143.    Vote: Television, ___________________________________
144.    Vote: 1972 Biggest Shadow, __________________________