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“well c’mon clap damnit” August 2, 2007

Posted by KG in music, race.

nina simone – four women / 1965 / antibes jazz festival

if there’s anything as powerful as the song itself, it’s nina simone’s sheer presence.

“‘Four Women’: in this self-written and composed song Simone weaves the monologues together of four African-American women, each reflecting a common stereotype. They are: hard working but never appreciated Aunty Sarah, mixed-raced Saffronia, the prostitute Sweet Thing, and finally the angry and bitter Peaches, who is enraged because of her enslaved ancestory and wants to strike out. Upon its release the song was sometimes misunderstood, some black radio stations even refused to play it because they found it racist. It became one of Simone’s standards, and has later been covered by Reflection Eternal.”

“At her first piano recital at the Lanier Library in Tryon, NC, an unfortunate incident occurred which would scar Nina Simone for the rest of her life. As she described in numerous interviews, her parents were asked to give up their front -row seats at the recital, as a white couple had requested those chairs. Although there are conflicting reports on what occurred next, legend has it that the 10-year old refused to perform until her parents were returned to their original seats.”

kweli and hi-tek’s version:

both are masterpieces. kweli adds a hip-hop sensibility but stays true to the spirit of the song.



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