Love the anarchy, the poetry, the radicalism, the anger, the refusal to compromise. These guys were the real deal. They were precursors to rap.
I love words. I love poetry to music. These guys predated Hip-Hop and Rap. They blew me away! They harnessed their anger into poetry and music. Brilliant!
The Last Poets
The Last Poets were a group of Black New York poets who put their highly political, Black consciousness poetry to music. The result was chilling. It had great power and the ability to move people. The poets changed but the message and music remained and the message was clear.
This was the early seventies with the Black Panther movement fresh in the memory, Black Power and Black Pride on the agenda. They didn’t pull the punches. They wanted fairness, justice and equality and knew that history proves that nobody gets to move forward without a struggle. The establishment do not relinquish an inch of ground without a fight. They were prepared for battle.
Their message was so strong, so strong in fact that the CIA pricked up their ears and started showing interest..
They might not have entered too much into the collective consciousness or bothered the charts to a great deal but these were the guys who were beacons to the later Hip-Hop and Rap scene. They set the pace and pointed the direction. NWA picked up the baton and ran with it.
The Last Poets epitomised the Black predicament in the seventies. They fought for change and in the process made some great sounds. There was much to admire.