Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Great Nubian Musicians=Bright Moments

I have told people about this man Nubian and Non-Nubian. I always got a blank stare, like I was speaking some long, lost, ancient, dialect. I would insist the brotha' played three horns at once! We have entered a very different phase as a community. Yesterday a quote from Nelson George the great writer and music critic came to mind he basically said you can tell where the Black community is based on the music that is popular.

I agree with what he wrote. If that is the case there are some real opportunities to expose people to some of the real cool stuff that came before. Nubians are in fact a whole lot more than Ice-T and Soulja Boy......beefin' about what!?
This is a bio about Rahsaan Roland Kirk. It came from Wikipedia. I also have documented proof of said three hawn blowin' Check out the video below but read the story first.

Kirk was born Ronald Theodore Kirk in
Columbus, Ohio, but felt compelled by a dream to transpose two letters in his first name to make Rolannd. He went blind at an early age due to poor medical treatment. In 1970, Kirk added "Rahsaan" to his name after hearing it in a dream.
Preferring to lead his own groups, Kirk rarely performed as a sideman, although he did record with arranger
Quincy Jones, drummer Roy Haynes and had especially notable stints with bassist Charles Mingus. His best-known performance is probably the lead flute and solo on Jones' "Soul Bossa Nova", a 1964 hit song repopularized in the Austin Powers films (Jones 1964; McLeod et al. 1997).
His playing was generally rooted in
soul jazz or hard bop, but Kirk's knowledge of jazz history allowed him to draw on many elements of the music's past, from ragtime to swing and free jazz. Kirk also regularly explored classical and pop music by composers such as Smokey Robinson or Burt Bacharach as well as his beloved Duke Ellington, John Coltrane and the other classics of jazz. The live album Bright Moments (1973) is an example of one of his shows, including all these elements and more. His main instrument was the tenor saxophone, supplemented by other saxes, and contrasted with the lighter sound of the flute. At times he would play a number of these horns at once, harmonising with himself, or hold a note endlessly by using circular breathing, or play the flute through his nose. All this, plus the fact that many of instruments were exotic or even home-made gave him a reputation as a vaudeville showman but the music, even with two or three saxophones in his mouth at once, was intricate, powerful jazz with a strong feeling for the blues.
Kirk was also very political, using the stage to talk on black history, civil rights and other issues, which he was always capable of tipping over into high comedy.
In 1975, Kirk suffered a major
stroke which led to partial paralysis of one side of his body. Despite this, he continued to perform and record, modifying his instruments himself to enable him to play with only one arm. At a live performance at Ronnie Scott's club in London he even managed to play two instruments, and carried on to tour internationally and even appear on TV.
He died from a second stroke in 1977 after performing in the Frangipani Room of the Indiana University Student Union in
Bloomington, Indiana.


I am sure many of you can relate to this story. I had a job. They sold my bank to a European bank so I lost that job. I got another job with a major US bank. They gave me the NIGGA accounts and the treatment to go along with it. I knew from the very start this was the way it was gonna go, I was the first Brotha' hired in the seven year history of the unit. I was also one of the only Nubian males (less than five) in the whole complex in a position to make real money. All of us ended up being liquidated.

My highly developed seventh sense (Nubian Paranoia) continually told me this was a "colorblind" situation. My functional superior was blind to seeing people of color as deserving fair, equitable, ethical, morally upright, professional treatment. This Nubian seventh sense is the one that I have developed in response to years of experience in my professional and personal life. I have verified the reality of this seventh sense with other Nubians. Somethin' just ain't right. Somethin' just don't feel right.

I was started the same day as "the white guy" after being told that I was the only candidate being considered for the position (hmmm somethin' just don't feel right). He blew up immediately! He was a sales god! He was a genius! He was a smug smartass! He was close being a headline on the evening news! The black guy (me)struggled working twice as hard making half as much money (hmmm somethin' just don't feel right).

I looked for and found the evidence I needed to make my case for disparate treatment. He was assigned the best accounts. I was assigned the worst. When I confronted the situation of course some cosmetic changes were made, however I knew after my complaint to HR my days were numbered. My formal complaint to the EEOC resulted in nothing, the attorneys I consulted with acknowledged that I got dogged. The prevailing opinion was that I could win in court but It would cost more in fees than what I would win in a settlement.

I am making the effort to move past this experience. It has however left a very bitter taste in my mouth as I have not been fully employed in over a year. My unemployment has run out and the company I worked for had the nerve to try to fight me for that! I knocked they ass out on that one tho' So here I am, no money, no where to go, nothing to do. Nubian Blues. I have been posting my resume like a fiend 24/7 and no love WTF?!! I will continue to seek employment. I have no choice. I have been reading several blogs of late. I am impressed with what my folks are bringing to this medium it actually has helped me. I thank you. You have inspired me!

See ya on the other side!