Couple of videos from Brother Ali’s Mourning in America and Dreaming in Color. I posted a new track that won’t be appearing on the release a few weeks ago, happy to see the Brother Ali/Jake One combo is still very solid on the tracks that are appearing on the album. The title track in particular can be seen as controversial to some considering how heavy the material he is covering here, particularly with lines such as “It’s a very thin line between a soldier and a terrorist”. Ali posted an insightful explanation of some of these lyrics and the song over on Rap Genius. If you do have a problem with the song on the first listen, I would strongly suggest listening to him explain what he is talking about. Brother Ali does not hate this country or our people, he is only critical to the way in which violence and corruption is consuming both our own society and the rest of the world. This is largely a result of our leaders failing us each and every day. In the spoiler below you can read another explanation of the song that can be found on the video’s description on Youtube.
Brother Ali on Mourning in America and Dreaming in Color: This is the title track to my new album, Mourning in America and Dreaming in Color. The first half of the album highlights and critiques the dire situation in which we live. The second half outlines the tremendous opportunity we have to re-imagine and reform our society. This song is an observation and a critique of our culture of death and murder. From actual war zones around the world to our own inner cities where this summer’s death rates rival war zones. I also address our national hypocrisy regarding violence. We have a zero tolerance policy of violence committed against us, but we’re a lot more lenient and patient when it comes to the violence we commit. “A life is a life and a killer is a killer”. -Brother Ali
After watching the video I was curious as to what Brother Ali’s thoughts on Obama’s first term were. Back in 2008 Ali was happy to hear that Obama was going to be our President. Four years later and all the talk of hope and change seem to have faded away. We are still at war, continuing to kill innocent civilians in the Middle East. Gitmo is still open and can now lock up whoever they like, whether they are stolen away from their native country or the USA. The Patriot Act has not been removed, but instead extended. Our economy is still in the shitter. Many people, including myself fail to see the difference between Bush-era politics and those of President Obama.
Brother Ali was recently interviewed by Vibe on this subject and he seems to be mixed on whether or not blame should be placed on Obama for the continued injustices by our government. I appreciate that he’s willing to at least see the point of view and consider it, but I feel that he should be more vocal on the subject if he wishes to remain consistent with the messages that he has continued to present to listeners in his music. I do agree with him that voting isn’t going to get it at this point, that there is no impact when both candidates will continue to give us the same exact thing. Going out there and making your own impact is a good thought from Ali.
The video for Only Life I Know also came out today. This one is a lot less heavy than the first video, but it’s still a great reflection of the times many Americans are going through these days. A video with an explanation for this song can be seen here.
Mourning in America and Dreaming of Color is sounding like it will be a fantastic release. The album drops on September 18th, this is one I think I’m going to have to grab day one.