Larry Mantle |

Grooving to the sounds of Black affirmation

If you’ve been listening to AirTalk for even a few months, you’ve probably heard me talk about my love of jazz and soul.  When you combine either with creative political commentary -- so much the better.

Wednesday morning, I spoke with music writer Denise Sullivan about her new book, Keep on Pushing:  Black Power Music from Blues to Hip-Hop.  It was so much fun to play excerpts from great songs of the 60s and 70s.  From Curtis Mayfield to Sam Cooke, Odetta to Nina Simone, we have no shortage of creative giants to consider.

My favorites such recordings would have to include Curtis Mayfield’s (Don’t Worry) If There’s a Hell Down Below (which begins its long version with a string of racial epithets), Choice of Colors, and  People Get Ready, along with Marvin Gaye’s What’s Going On, and Bobby Womack’s Across 110th Street

I’d like your input about what you consider the greatest social commentary, or explicitly political, songs on the late-20th and early-21st centuries.