Tuesday, September 02, 2008

You Be Lorraine, I'll Be Nina


[My girl Nina, smoking a spliff]

It's a new dawn/it's a new day/it's a new life for me/oooooo/and I'm feeling good- Nina Simone.

My very playful friends Mike and Char pegged themselves as modern-day James Baldwins and Lorraine Hansberrys, respectively. When we three started to hang Senior year at HU Charreah, graciously, told me that I could be Nina Simone. It didn't just come out of nowhere since Baldwin and Hansberry were good friends of Nina and the three frequently inspired each other. Balwin convinced Simone to use her art to promote social change and Hansberry inspired one of Simone's best known songs, To Be Young, Black and Gifted (after Hansberry's book of the same title).

How fitting since I absolutely love the sounds of Simone and hope to one day write stirring sentences that penetrate souls the way her voice does. My favorite Nina song is, hands, down Feeling Good. It's simple, soulful, peaceful and beautiful, from the serene, a cappella opening to the ballsy, brassy, high-intensity ending. Listen:

Feeling Good - Nina Simone

4 comments:

Britt said...

Who am I???

CJ said...

LOL. Love it! "graciously"
So Nina. Her autobiography is so good. Guess up next is your Jewish boy who plays piano and is intoxicated with ya;)

Ananda said...

hi sistalove whitney. first let me say that i love your blog. i am home with bronchitis. i really wish i could go out and play in the great weather or at least see the two new movies i wanted to see this weekend, but couldn't: tyler's new one and the women featuring jada pinkett smith. anywho, i am home with lots of time to kill. i should be writing,but instead i am visiting different blogs like yours. i simply adore your wit and posts. this one on lorraine and nina made my afternoon. i love lorraine and nina too. feelin' good is one of my favorite songs. so thanks for posting it. it made a chocolate colored girl in dc feel better. i will post a link to your blog on bap living so other bap living members can read your blog. oh yeah i am howardite too. i found you on the new essence online community that charreah set up this weekend. best to you. peace, ananda

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