It is February! You know what that means? I’m not talking about a certain holiday that looks like red and pink puke attacked the country. I’m talking about a celebration of an oppressed group that lasts all month long. Not an average month, of course. The celebration I speak of is Black History Month. A recognition cultivated out of Negro History Week, which began in 1926. However, by the 1960's, Negro History Week had grown to be Black History Month at many colleges before President Gerald Ford made it official in 1976.
Despite the month being recognized officially, it is still so unrecognized. It often takes a backseat to the holiday that is all about spreading love and being romantic (which you should honestly do all the time, not just one day out of the year).
Anyways, the irony of the celebration is in a month of love is that African Americans still don’t get any love. I mean, people still say things such as, “Why don’t we have a white history month?” To that, I would say: “You do... It is 11 months of the whole year. Get over yourself.”
In the light of the rise of the Black Lives Matter Movement, music has become integral to the Black Movement. A means of an expression to say what words cannot. These songs not only incorporate sounds with African roots but also from the modern day; as if to unify the two as one. Artists such as Kendrick Lamar and Solange have vividly captured what it means to be Black in America and what we as a people experience every day of our lives. For example, police brutality, discrimination and the hypocrisy from those around them.
To do African Americans justice, I have decided to put a pause on my Greek Life segment and speak on an issue that is dear to my heart. To get you in the mood, here are some songs that will fully equip you to be an active supporter of African American justice and rights. A playlist that will, in fact, keep you “woke”.
Your Woke Anthems
1. “Don’t Touch My Hair” by: Solange
2. “Mad” by: Lil Wayne, Solange (Let’s be honest, the whole album, A Seat at the Table, really)
3. “Formation” by: Beyonce
4. “The Blacker the Berry” by: Kendrick Lamar
5. “Alright” by: Kendrick Lamar
6. “Glory” by: Common, John Legend
7. “Rise Up” by: Andra Day
8. “Bo$$” by: Fifth Harmony
9. “Conqueror” by: Estelle, Jussie Smollett
10. “Almost There” by: Anika Noni Rose
11. “Powerful” by: Alicia Keys, Empire Cast, Jussie Smollett
12. “Get Up, Stand Up” by: The Wailers
13. “Not My President” by: Oshun
14. “Black Sheep” by: Mick Jenkins
15. “Fight the Power” by: Public Enemy
16. “People Get Ready” by: The Impressions
17. “Blacks and Browns” by: Sad Boy, YG
18. “Blk Girl Soldier” by: Jamila Woods
19. “Vry Blk” by: Jamila Woods
20. “Ku Klux Klan” by: Steel Pulse
21. “Forgive Them Father” by: Lauryn Hill
22. “Optimistic” by: Sounds of Blackness
23. “Keep Ya Head Up” by: 2Pac
24. “All Black Everything” by: Lupe Fiasco
25. “My Petition” by: Jill Scott