Talking Earth on 07/19/10

Talking Earth
Air date: 
Mon, 07/19/2010 - 10:00pm - 11:00pm
Short Description: 
Mic Crenshaw special

Acclaimed rapper, hip hop artist, poet, teacher and social activist Mic Crenshaw, who has just issued a new album, “Under the Sun,” takes to the airwaves on July 19, starting at 10:00 pm.  Barbara LaMorticella listens to and talks with  Mic  and with Mic’s collabator, singer and songwriter Jana Losey.

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Mic  moved to Portland in 1992 from Minneapolis,  where he was involved in  teaching and in high stakes organizing against the 1980’s rising tide of racist skinheads. For many years in Minneapolis  he participated in an underground, sometimes violent struggle against the

skinheads,   and was instrumental in the creation of the Anti Racist Action group and  the famous anti-racist skinhead crew The Baldies.  After years of pressure and violence, he moved to Portland to find a new beginning.   It was while working as a landscape gardener here that he turned to writing and music.  “I needed an outlet.  I felt that I could write and perform.  I had a lot of things to say,”  he told Portland Mercury’s Graham Berry.   Berry added:  “That comment right there could go down in history as one of the greatest understatements ever spoken, right up with ‘George W. Bush was a shitty president’ and ‘doughnuts are tasty.’”


Mic quickly became a prize-winning Slam Artist, and has been founder and driving force of a half a dozen  hip-hop bands, including Cleveland Steamers, and two of the most popular and influential Northwest bands, Suckapunch and Hungry Mob.  He’s released an astounding number of albums, most recently the critically acclaimed “Thinking Out Loud,”  and the newest, “Under the Sun.”  Mic’s  combination of strength that he can’t deny and sensitivity that he won’t deny  has led him to collaboration both in music and in social action.  He’s co-founder of Global fam (, has worked as a social worker in Portland, and is currently engaged in helping the City plan and set up the very first all-music high school, to be opened in 2011.

Survival isn’t a given for anyone in America;  if you’re a young black man, there are a hundred tracks leading straight to a coffin or oblivion.  If you’re a young black man growing up in the city, you are challenged on every front-- physical,  emotional and intellectual.  Mic has taken the challenges,  the combat and conflict,  the driving rhythms of the urban environment that he mainlined in youth,  and an integrity and  faithfulness to the honesty of his own being in all its contradictions,  and mixed them with the aim of  finding and communicating a survival path for his people, who are all people.   His rhythms compel.  His rhymes put to lie the idea that poetry is dead.  His music gets the blood pounding and the body, mind and spirit engaged


                                                                                        Barbara LaMorticella


Some Links: crenshaw










Teach It


No prevention nor protection no contraception

In the event of divine intervention

And immaculate conception

The answer to the question of what is my profession

I’m that cat using rap as a weapon

Blastin smashing the elaborate deception

And casting an accurate reflection

I’m sculpting your perception

With cultural connections

Aggressively creative for spiritual reasons

Survival of my people liberation and freedom

That’s why I’m leading discussions on

Money, greed and corruption

The seduction of lust and destruction

And how we don’t need this to function

The people are the means of production

Sufferin and me we need no introduction

The global power structure needs adjustment

Just as much as my seed needs love

And peace won’t see the light of day without justice

Why the f**k you think I'm bustin raps?

I'm not a lush pushin a plush luxury bus

Full of sluts and cushions in back

Not that’s not the facts

Hook:  It’s your language, use it speak it

Communication is a gift don’t keep it a secret

Articulation tweak it freak it

Let the people see it say it display it teach it

Transparency is needed apparently we need to have clarity

To see through the barbarity and evil used to deceive you

A message to the people don’t let em keep you asleep fool

I give a descriptive description of the resistance and friction

Persistence through all of existences

Struggles predicaments and positions

Complete with compromise

Traumatized by disease and addiction

Still I rise to my feet

Fighting to be free and defeat opposition


                        Mic Crenshaw from album “Thinking Out Loud,”




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