Music Reflects Our Present and Recounts Our Past. Let’s Take Hold of Our Future.

Music To Wake The People Up! @trommelkopf on

I went to a coffee shop to pick up a chai latte and the song coming through the speakers was “Inner City Blues” by Marvin Gaye. I’m very familiar so I was enjoying it, singing along, as I have many times.

But today, I was struck by the timelessness of the song.

This song is from Marvin Gaye’s “What’s Going On” album, which dropped in 1971. I don’t mean to be cliché, but why is this song still valid in 2019?

Even though Marvin Gaye was a celebrity, he sings this song as black man plagued by the same social problems that continue to plague black people today.

Check out the first few lyrics of this song:

Rockets, moon shots
Spend it on the have nots
Money, we make it
Fore we see it you take it
Oh, make you wanna holler
The way they do my life
Make me wanna holler
The way they do my life
This ain’t livin’, this ain’t livin’
No, no baby, this ain’t livin’

Bush defunded NASA, so we are not seeing rockets to the moon anymore, but that money isn’t being spent on those who need it. It’s spent on tax subsidies for mega corporations, who lobby for the attention of a congressman, like a prostitute trying to get a date for an hour. The only problem is that corporations are a bigger temptation, because they’re pedaling money, not sex.

The money is also spent on the bloated defense budget, funneling money into the military industrial complex. The government spends over a trillion dollars on a F-35 that has never flown, but they have the nerve to cut the food stamps of a retiree to $59 a month.

And I know that I’m not the only one alive who has experienced the phenomenon of being broke as soon as you get paid. You barely have enough money to treat yourself with, because everything is so goddamn high.

Inflation no chance
To increase finance
Bills pile up sky high
Send that boy off to die
Make me wanna holler
The way they do my life
Make me wanna holler
The way…

The Wicked Orchard by Sidra Owens