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Apr 15 2022

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The Jolly Boys – A Current Juke Joint Band

I was watching Woke S01E08 and the song by the Jolly Boys – I Fought The Law (The Clash) came on.

Reading up on The Jolly Boys and looking at the album art has me thinking about what “current” Juke Joints look like and what people who play in them sound like.

A few central things stand out to me about the art I am trying to create.

1) I want to stay focused on underground music and community.

I am not interested in popular culture and the selling of Black artistic expression. I want to highlight the Black community that Black people create for ourselves specifically because White people do not want to be around us.

2) I want to highlight our persistence and drive to create in spite of the fact that we do not get wealthy or famous from it.

Black people keep walking forward, not always because of monetary compensation but often simply because we feel like we have to. And we express this drive through music and how we grow our chosen family.

3) I have great respect for our elders and the words of wisdom they impart – even if I am not always ready to hear what they are saying and specifically when I disagree with them.

I have always struggled with my conflict with the generation that came before me and their choices on how to survive with White racism. I have pushed back on plenty of lessons from my father, his siblings and their compatriots. Now that I am around their age, I see more clearly what they were saying and have plenty of respect for their vantage. This art is partly my way of paying homage to the struggles they went through and to thank them for all of their work – even if I still do not agree with their politics.

I am including some photos of the Jolly Boys. I see so much of my father’s family in the way they hold themselves. I want The Juke Joint to reflect and honor the difficult work of artists like The Jolly Boys.

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  1. The Juke Joint – Burning Man Submission – LBH Sound

    […] The Jolly Boys – A Current Juke Joint Band […]

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