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soul power

January 18, 2010

In honor of Martin Luther King Jr. Day here are a few of my favorite songs for change. Nothing particularly obscure or unknown here, but it’s good to be reminded of some of the great classics every once in awhile….

“If I Had a Hammer” Peter, Paul, & Mary from the 1963 March on Washington

Fabulous anyway but somehow even more treasured now that we’ve lost the amazing voice and force of Mary Travers.

“We Shall Overcome” Joan Baez from Woodstock, 1969

Something so powerful about this version, sung by a very pregnant Joan Baez at Woodstock.

“What’s Going On” Marvin Gaye from the Midnight Special, 1977


Lost Prophet: The Life and Times of Bayard Rustin by John D’Emilio

This book should bLost Prophet: The Life and Times of Bayard Rustine required reading for every high school child in America. Despite being one of the preeminent minds of the Civil Rights Movement and one of Dr. King’s most trusted advisors Bayard Rustin has been more or less completely written out of popular history. This excellently written, heartbreaking book chronicles Rustin’s great achievements and explores how his homosexuality impacted both his work and his legacy.

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