We Ain't Got Enough. Le musiche dei diritti civili da Marian Anderson a John Legend (e Kamasi Washington)


  • Franco Minganti




American literature, civil rights movement


Given that “the civil rights movement without its music would have been like a bird without its wings”, music is more and more often acknowledged for being the backbone to the struggles for the civil rights in the US, from the mid-fifties through the mid-sixties. The essay points to the mix of Black music styles – spirituals from the Black Church, union folk songs, soul hits, popular music and even jingles – that often crossed over into each other, offering a complex body of music that often defied an ill-perceived color line. Some examples are offered that provide new food for thought about the folk revival style of African American singer-songwriters like Len Chandler and Jim Collier, about Aretha Franklin’s 1967 recording session at Fame Studios in Muscle Shoals, about the overlooked Wattstax event (and film) that took place at the Los Angeles Coliseum in 1972 (featuring Reverend Jesse Jackson, a roster of Stax artists and blaxploitation icons like Isaac Hayes and Melvin Van Peebles), and about the debated transformations in the singing of the national anthem.


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