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Blog Entries tagged 'art'

Flower. Power.

July 25th, 2009

Me on Michael Jackson, from The Root

July 7th, 2009

Anna Wintour: The September Issue

July 6th, 2009

Before Hip-Hop Was Hip-Hop

I keep coming across old essays I wrote that seem to have disappeared off the face of the planet--this one was for a high-school textbook. Glad to see it's holding its own.

Tell me what you think:

BEFORE HIP-HOP WAS HIP-HOP
by Rebecca Walker
© Prentice Hall Literature Textbook

If you ask most kids today about hip-hop, they’ll spit out the names of recording artists they see on TV: Eminem, P. Diddy, J. L o, Beyonce. They’ll tell you about the songs they like and the clothes they want to buy. They’ll tell you about the indisputable zones of hip-hop like “EO” (East Orange, New Jersey), the “ATL” (Atlanta, Georgia), and the “West Side” (Los Angeles, California), neighborhoods they feel they know because they’ve seen them in all the glossiest, “flossiest” music videos. Hip-hop is natural to these kids, like air or water, just there, a part of the digital landscape that streams through their lives.

I watch this cultural sea change with fascination. It astounds me that hip-hop has grown into a global industry, a force that dominates youth culture from Paris to Prague, Tokyo to Timbuktu. I can’t believe that in small, all-white towns like Lincoln, Nebraska, high school boys wear their clothes in the latest “steelo”: pants sagging off their waists, sports jerseys hanging to their knees, baseball hats cocked to one side. Even in the pueblos of Mexico, where mariachi bands and old school crooners still rule, it is hip-hop that sells cars, sodas, and children’s toys on TV.

The vast empire of hip-hop amazes me because I knew hip-hop before it was hip-hop. I was there when it all began.

More
July 5th, 2009

Michael Jackson: What About Him?

I remember meeting him, and how lonely he seemed. And shy. And fragile. I'm not sure there is much to say. I've been playing his music, and reflecting on the price of fame and celebrity. The way public people often mask a horrific private reality. The toll of it all. The way we consume the gifted ones, exalt them, imprison them. Why I think Angelina and Brad take the kids to Kmart. If they don't try to live outside of it, they will grow up trapped in the gilded cage.

Of course, "Rock with You" provided the soundtrack for my first kiss, alongside all the other MJ moments. But the cost! I could have lived without the songs. I think Michael could have, too. 

When I listen to this song, to the refrain, What about us? I have to ask the question--What about him? 

July 2nd, 2009

I'd pick it up.

So of course I'm always looking at books. The copy on the jacket, the blurbs, trim-size, and overall design. Though I'm not completely sold on the color combo, I'd definitely pick this one up.

Would you?

June 29th, 2009

Writing in Paradise

Happy Sunday!

Last week's workshop was AMAZING. Students beautiful, Banyan house beautiful, all of it, just gorgeous. A dream.

Thank you writers, for your trust and hard work.

Resting a bit, and then...getting ready for the second of three Maui workshops.

SIx spots left for August 15-22.

Come write your heart out...and then go wade in the ocean blue.

Register. 

xo

June 22nd, 2009

Charles and Ray Eames debut their lounge chair, on NBC

Inspired to look for some video on these two after a meeting in the Time Life building yesterday. Mid-century modern is a little later than Time Life, but still...

Love the note about the successful man and woman "helper." And then Ray's smart responses. 



Arlene Francis is classic.
May 29th, 2009

Story Time with Barack: Where The Wild Things Are

LOVE.

May 25th, 2009

The Art of Memoir on Maui

Happy Sunday!

Just a few spots left for the writing retreat. 

Come write your heart out...and then go wade in the ocean blue.

Register. 

May 24th, 2009