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162 Segments




Race, Music, and Culture.

Greg Tate is an African-American journalist who writes for the Village Voice. Under the guise of writing about a single subject, often a musician or artist, Tate's essays branch out and explore culture, politics and economic issues. He's written about topics as diverse as African musician King Sunny Ade ("ah-DAY"), the crisis of the black intellectual, and the cultural significance of writer Don DeLillo. A collection of his essays is now available. It's called "Flyboy in the Buttermilk: Essays on Contemporary America." (Fireside/Simon & Schuster)


Writer and Critic Nelson George on the Diversity of African American Identities

George is one of this country's most prominent chroniclers of black music and culture. He was the black music editor at "Billboard" for seven years and is a regular columnist for the "Village Voice." His new book "Buppies, B-Boys, Baps and Bohos: Notes on Post-Soul Black Culture," is a collection of his writings about the last two decades in Black urban culture. George also edited the book, "Stop the Violence," a collaboration of top rappers working to end black-on-black violence.


Shaggy Transcends Novelty.

World music commentator Milo Miles reviews some dancehall reggae by Jamaican-born New Yorker, Shaggy. His debut album is "Pure Pleasure," (Virgin)


Rapper and Actor Ice-T.

Rapper and actor of the most popular of the "gangsta" rappers. Although he does not often get his songs played on the radio, all five of his albums have gone gold. Greg Knot of The Chicago Tribune has written that "Ice-T. is that rare gangster rapper who leads with his brain instead of his gun or his crotch." IIce-T.'s 1992 song "Cop Killer," landed him at the center of a controversy about gangsta rap--is it a legitimate form of expression or is it incendiary hate-mongering. Ice-T.


Performance Artist Maggie Estep.

Singer-songwriter-poet-performance artist Maggie Estep. Estep calls herself "an angry, sweaty girl." As a teenager, she settled in New York City, and she's been in rock bands since the age of 17. Her current back-up band is called "I love Everybody." She was the cover girl on the February 1994 issue of "High Times" magazine; the article inside called her "the leader of the spoken word pack." She recently had a sold-out one-woman show at the Nuyorican Poets Cafe in Manhattan's Lower East Side. Her debut album is called "No More Mr.


An Officer from the Projects On Policing His Old Neighborhood

Chicago police officer Eric Davis, known as "21" in the rap group the Slick Boys. Davis and two other officers founded the group in 1991 to provide positive role models for the inner-city kids they encountered on their jobs every day. The group has received national acclaim for their songs about the importance of getting an education and staying off of drugs and out of gangs. Davis grew up in the Cabrini-Green development of Chicago, where the three officers work.


Sugar Hills Records Launched the Rap Revolution

Fresh Air rock historian Ed Ward takes a look at the record label, which emerged as a subsidiary of All Platinum Records. It promoted rap music soon after it first emerged in New York nightclubs.


Comedian and Director Rusty Cundieff on What Scares Him

Writer, director and co-star of the new horror flick "Tales From The Hood," Rusty Cundieff. He has been featured in such diverse projects as Spike Lee's "School Daze," and the daytime soap opera "Days of Our Lives." He broke into filmmaking when he teamed up with friend Darin Scott to write and direct "Fear of a Black Cat."


Musician Prince Be.

From the hip-hop group, PM Dawn, Prince Be. The duo consists of Prince Be (Attrell Cordes) and his brother J.C. the Eternal (Jarrett Cordes). One reviewer writes of them, "the duo effortlessly blends disparate elements -- balladeering and rapping, samples and live orchestration -- into gorgeous, wide-screen tableaux of sound. They also write terrific songs, from galloping melodies. . . to exquisite forlorn ballads." Their new album is "Jesus Wept" (Gee Street, Island Records).


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