Saturday, May 30, 2009

God Bless the Funk, the Almighty Funk (Redux)

I guess this is the season for important anniversaries. My dad's birthday is Monday. Two years ago Tuesday I did some broom jumping with Missusknowitall. And one year ago today I started this blog. Honestly, it seems like a lot longer than that.

It has been a funky year indeed. In the past 12 months I have...
Along the way I've tried to keep posting on the regular, whenever I got an idea or saw something that was interesting, but it's been a struggle at times. The occasional love from people who read the blog has made it worth it though, so: Thank you.

By the way, don't be scurred, leave a comment!

And what's an anniversary post without a countdown list? Here are some of my favorites from the past year.

#5 The Negro Hulk

The Negro Hulk typifies everything Misstraknowitall aspires to be. He's big, funky, and can leap tall buildings in single bound. Plus, he's a G.

#4 George Clinton's Funky Drawers: Pedro Bell

Putting together the Funk Issue at Indiana Review was one of the most meaningful (and fun) projects I've ever been involved in. I learned a lot about the meaning (and possibilities) of funk, the way it mixes race, class, sexuality, blues, power, politics, humor, and rhythm. I also was kind of amazed at the way that visual artists, such as Pedro Bell, had such a profound influence on the way that Parliament-Funkadelic created their Cosmic Slop of Funk. I recently got to meet Pedro Bell and needless to say, dude is a genius and he laced me with some very funky game, which I will impart very soon.

#3 When 900 Years You Reach, Look as Good You Will Not

I think this was one of the first times that it really dawned on me that the game was about to change and that NeObama would be The One. Ever since I first heard about this brother with the funny name, I had been waiting for that other shoe to drop. In the back of my mind, I was thinking (and I know I wasn't alone) "These White folks is never going to let this brother in the White House. Never."
But after Neobama put Hill to bed, it became obvious that he actually had a legitimate shot to win and if They were going to take him out, They were going to have to use some real Rethuglican tactics. But after the primary was over, the sense of desperation emanating from the McCain campaign was palpable. They were weeks away from making their biggest misstep of the campaign (Palin), but McCain honestly didn't look like he knew what the heck he was going to do. Looking back, with all of the crisis we've had in the last 6 months, this country really dodged a bullet with McCain/Palin. *Can you imagine?*

#2 The Wisdom of Jericho Brown 1,2 and Tim Seibles: Ten Queries of Funk 1,2

I can't decide between the two and both of these guys are among the funkiest poets I know. They also contributed some awesome work to the Funk issue, so I got to show them love.

What's nice about their work is that it doesn't just dabble in the Funk mileu, it comes out of the Funk and it's always on The One. These Funk scholars are definitely dropping some funk knowledge.

#1 We Built It, Now We Live In It

I didn't envision this blog being explicitly confessional and, besides the occasional tidbit, I try to keep a lot of my personal stuff out, particularly about teaching. But I couldn't help but write about the experience of witnessing the next generation welcoming the age of NeObama.The ride has been a little rocky so far, but there's no taking away the sense of hope and possibility we shared that day, not only for our country, but for ourselves.


Anonymous said...

happy anniversary, knowitall

maynechik said...

keep 'em coming, abdel! i always look forward to stopping by and pondering with you :)

Dylan said...

Been looking over everything, and I have to say good blog. My favorite blog title has got to be "Du bois in the hood."

Although I know little about funk, I must say that I hope that can get to at least a Bill Wennington level of funk after reading all that your blog offers.

Jackson Brown said...

A funky year, indeed ... Happy Anniversary, Abdel!

And on the personal tip, don't forget about your other (well, uh, one of your many other) funky contribution to Indiana: MCing. Speaking of, we've gotta craft some more lyrics at some point.

Looking forward to year two of your "innervisions." :-)

Abdel Shakur said...

Tank you, tank you. Far to kind, far to kind.

You right. We need to re-form like Voltron.

Marcus Wicker said...

You know, the IR is hosting a fundraiser sometime next year. I could pull some strings; get Funk Attack on as a headliner. Yall say the word.

Jackson Brown said...

FA Reunion the Saturday after Ben and Cate's wedding???