Three musical giants give lyrical lessons on the state of the world as it was – then & now – and it’s up to us to listen…

1971: Marvin

I just want to ask a question…
Who really cares?
To save a world in despair.
There’ll come a time, when the world won’t be singin’.
Flowers won’t grow, bells won’t be ringin’.
Who really cares?
Who’s willing to try to save a world
That’s destined to die.

1977: Gil Scott Heron

It stands out on a highway
Like a creature from another time.
It inspires the babies’ questions,
“What’s that?”
For their mothers as they ride.
But no one stopped to think about the babies
Or how they would survive,
And we almost lost Detroit
This time.
How would we ever get over
Losing our minds?
Just thirty miles from Detroit
Stands a giant power station.
It ticks each night as the city sleeps
Seconds from annihilation.
But no-one stopped to think about the people
Or how they would survive,
And we almost lost Detroit
This time.
How would we ever get over
Over losing our minds?
The Sheriff of Monroe County had,
Sure enough disasters on his mind,
And what would Karen Silkwood say
If she was still alive?

That when it comes to people’s safety
Money wins…

1993: Q-Tip

My style is kinda fat reminiscent of a whale
Young girls desires for the females dreams
I be the Abstract Poetic representin’ from Queens
Socially I’m not a name, black and white got game,
If you came to the jam, well I’m glad you came,
See, nigga first was used back in the Deep South
Fallin’ out between the dome of the white man’s mouth.
It means that we will never grow, you know the word dummy,
Other niggas in the community think it’s crummy
But I don’t, neither does the youth cause we
embrace adversity, it goes right with the race,
And being that we use it as a term of endearment,
Niggas start to bug to the dome is where the fear went
Now the little shorties say it all of the time
And a whole bunch of niggas throw the word in they rhyme
Yo I start to flinch, as I try not to say it
But my lips is like the oowop as I start to spray it
My lips is like an oowop as I start to spray it…

 

 

 

 

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