The Big City

”The more susbtantial an individual’s aesthetic experience is, the sounder his taste, the sharper his moral focus, the freer—though not necessarily the happier—he is.."

The Brooklyn Rail’s New Social Environment series of lunchtime conversations continues, and I’ll be back to host again, Wednesday, May 27, at 1pm. This week I’ll be talking with musicians and activists Jesse Paris Smith and Rebecca Foon and their Pathway to Paris foundation; music, climate change, politics, and more of the small stuff. It’s …

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May 22, 1914, that’s when America and the world got ahold of one Herman Blount—at least that’s what his parents thought his name was. Sun Ra and America are the essential combination: Ra’s mythos is an utterly logical response to the insanity of being an African-American, building much of the greatness of a nation that …

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