Wynton Marsalis 

From the Plantation to the Penitentiary

Set up as a suite, but placing as much emphasis on hard-hitting lyrics as on musical depth, Marsalis' new album dissects and eviscerates the archcapitalist "pimp" mentality he cites as a core value of hip-hop. The bandleader orients us with a plangent opening lyric (From the plantation to the penitentiary/From the yassuh boss to the ghetto minstrelsy), sung with old-school panache by newbie jazz vocalist Jennifer Sanon, and ends by whacking us on the head with the rousing gospel number "Where Y'All At?" Some critics have called the closing track a "rap" song — probably in the Cornel West sense of the word — though in truth, it's more of a sermon. Recently interviewed on The Daily Show with Jon Stewart, Marsalis tried to deflect all allegations that he's just a grumbling OG who doesn't want the young people to do their thang. In truth, he isn't one to diss teenagers. He just thinks that any grown-ass man who still goes by a name like "P. Diddy" probably needs to check himself.

Latest in CD Reviews

Author Archives

  • Local Licks

    This week we review Dogcatcher, Pinched Nerve, Sleepy Sun, and Animal Party.
    • Oct 10, 2012
  • Local Licks

    This week we review Nashville Knives, Matt Bauer, The Eggplant Casino, and Hot Einstein.
    • Oct 3, 2012
  • More»

Blogs

Most Popular Stories

  • The Long Road

    3 Pairs of Boots hits the high trail in their new album, 'Long Rider'

Special Reports

The Beer Issue 2020

The Decade in Review

The events and trends that shaped the Teens.

Best of the East Bay

2020

© 2021 Telegraph Media    All Rights Reserved
Powered by Foundation