Many consider Maya Angelou (1928–2014) a U.S. national treasure. A writer, activist, filmmaker, actor, and lecturer well into her eighties, Angelou transcended her humble upbringing in deeply racist Arkansas to create a vast body of work that helped to change the landscape of American culture. After a traumatic childhood event that she would later chronicle in her game-changing memoir, I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings, Angelou became extraordinarily gifted in arts and literature and earned a scholarship to a San Francisco high school. As a teen, she became the first African-American female cable car conductor in San Francisco. She became a mom at sixteen and married a Greek aspiring musician, flouting the existing laws forbidding interracial marriage. Angelou studied dance with legendary choreographer Alvin Ailey and became a staple on the calypso music and dance scene as a performer. She also toured Europe with a production of the opera Porgy and Bess. After meeting novelist John Oliver Killens in 1959, she joined the Harlem Writers Guild and published her first written work. She became a civil rights activist and worked alongside Martin Luther King, Jr., and Malcolm X. Angelou would go on to write thirty-six books, earning the honor of both being on the banned books list and holding the record for the longest-running nonfiction book on The New York Times’ bestseller list.
In addition to roles in producing, writing, and directing film and television, Angelou became the first African-American woman to pen a screenplay that was actually made into a film, the Pulitzer Prize–nominated Georgia, Georgia. She won three Grammys for her spoken word albums, served on two presidential committees, and became the first female poet to compose and recite a poem for a presidential inauguration (President Bill Clinton’s in 1993). Showered with accolades at the end of her life, Angelou was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the highest civilian honor, by President Barack Obama in 2010. Angelou was fittingly recognized in her lifetime for her work that opened America’s hearts and minds.
The Queen has finally been crowned! Now let’s get a spoken word album underway so more shelf space can be cleared for her EGOT completion. Congratulations to the amazing, awe-inspiring force of nature that is: Viola Davis!
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. once said, “Life’s most persistent and urgent question is: ‘What are you doing for others?’”
Luther King Jr. was an inspiration and a key figure in civil rights
advancement in the United States and around the world as well. He was
born Michael King and his name remained as that until a few years later
when his father, also Michael King, changed his own name to Martin
Luther King Sr. to honor a great protestant reformer. His son’s name was
also changed to Martin Luther King Jr. M.L.K. Jr. was admitted to
Morehouse College at the age of 15 and graduated at the age of 19. He
received his Doctorate of Philosophy in Systematic Theology at the age
of 26 at Boston University. In addition to being an American pastor, he
was a humanitarian, activist and a prominent leader. Following the
teachings of Mahatma Gandhi, he consistently used nonviolent methods in
his lifetime. He married Coretta Scott on June 18, 1953 and settled in
Audrey Hepburn is one of only 12 people in the world who have won 4 major awards, being: an Emmy ( host of Gardens of the World with Audrey Hepburn), a Grammy (spoken word album Audrey Hepburn’s Enchanted Tales), an Oscar (best actress for Roman Holiday) and a Tony (best actress in Ondine).
holy shit how much longer are you going to have your fans wait for this new album? seriously its been over a year since you announced it. are you trying to break guns n roses record of longest awaited album?
the spoken word album has been delayed another three months because of this message
is there anything you can tell us about a new album?
it’s still being written.
i’m sorry it’s taking so long, i’ve just got a lot going on in my personal life as of lately, and i’d never want to put out anything i’m not 100% proud of.
it’ll sound more like new flatsound (you said okay) than old flatsound (anything off of sleep) in the sense that it’s much louder. that isn’t to say it’s a spoken word album, it’s just much more abrasive and desperate sounding.
it’s some of the most ambitious material i’ve ever written.
i spoke to someone earlier this week about setting up studio time in the spring.
Hey I saw on twitter you said something about spoken word making you sad and stuff, does that mean you are not doing any in the near future?
i’m still writing here and there, i just don’t have it in me to record any spoken word tracks right now. if i’m being honest, yeah, spoken word does make me sad.
i’m also afraid that when i release the spoken word album you guys are going to expect a lot of songs like you said okay and i really have no interest in doing that at the moment. not to sound dramatic, but recording you said okay hurt. it actually hurt a lot, both physically and emotionally. i wasn’t in a good place when i recorded that song, i wasn’t eating enough and between every take i’d have to stop recording because i’d start having a panic attack. for days after recording the song i walked around feeling like someone had beat the shit out of me, every little muscle between my ribs was sore from screaming. i hated it.
i guess i’m just not in the mood right now, i’ve got an EP about to come out and two full lengths that are like halfway recorded each. i’m trying to focus on those.