Harrison died on November 29, 2001, from lung cancer. He was 58 years old. He was cremated and his ashes were scattered in the Ganges and Yamuna rivers in India, in a private ceremony according to Hindu tradition. He left an estate of almost £100 million.
So, I went trotting off to my vinyl LP collection to see how I could honor him and came up with this vinyl gem, Sidney Poitier in Poetry of the Negro, which features Poitier reading poems of the American Negro. Reading with him is Doris Belack
who was an American character actress of stage, film and television.
She was born on February 26, 1926. She died on October 4, 2011. The
album was produced by her husband, Philip Rose, who died on May 31, 2011.
title of Hansberry’s play is taken from a Langston Hughes poem, called
“Harlem” in which the poet asks, “What happens to a dream deferred?/
does it dry up/ like a raisin in the sun?” In one critic’s words,
Hansberry wanted “to write a social drama about blacks that was good
art” (npr.org). Because the project was considered risky, investors were
scarce, but idealistic record executive Philip Rose was willing to take
a chance and produce the play. He knew he had an asset in the star
power of his friend, Sidney Poitier, Hollywood’s first black leading
man, whom he met after the actor’s phenomenal success as a young
juvenile delinquent in Blackboard Jungle (1955) which featured the song, Rock Around the Clock (link below).
Hansberry was born May 19, 1930, in Chicago, where her father was a prominent
real-estate broker and political activist who successfully challenged
the segregated city’s restrictive real estate covenants. These laws
denied equal housing to blacks, but Mr. Hansberry illegally moved his
family to a white neighborhood and then successfully challenged the laws
all the way to the Supreme Court. The Court stuck down the covenants in
Hansberry v. Lee, 1943. By the early 1950s, she was writing essays and
reviews for leftist journals and was one of an avant-garde circle of
black intellectuals. In 1953, she married a Jewish writer and activist,
Robert Nemiroff, whom she met on a picket line. At 26, disgusted with
the stereotyped portrayals of blacks on stage, she wrote A Raisin in the
Sun, produced in 1959. It was the first play by a black woman produced
on Broadway, and Hansberry was the first black author to win the New York Drama Critics’ Circle Award, defeating fellow nominees Eugene O’Neill, Archibald MacLeish and Tennessee Williams. Hansberry, erudite
and outspoken, wrote only two complete plays before her career was cut short when she died of cancer at 34.
A1 The Creation 4:15
A2 Mother To Son 2:00
A3 When Melinda Sings 3:06
A4 Debate Of Dark Brothers 1:06
A5 To John Keats, Poet At Springtime 3:15
A6 At Candle Lightin' Time 2:39
A7 Yet I Do Marvel 3:01
B1 An Ante - Bellum Sermon 4:36
B2 Ere Sleep Comes Down To Soothe The Weary Eyes 4:16
B3 I, Too 00:37
B4 When You Have Forgotten Sunday 1:55
B5 The Debt 00:52
B6 Epigram 00:43
B7 We Wear The Mask 1:08
B8 Blues At Dawn 00:35
B9 Lift Every Voice 2:25
Hoffman gave the order to gag Seale after he repeatedly shouted
accusations and insults at the judge and prosecution and disrupted the
court proceedings. In November, Seale’s conduct forced the judge to try
him separately. Seale was sentenced to 48 months in prison for 16 acts
of contempt. Seale was then charged with killing a Black Panther Party
informant in New Haven, Connecticut; the contempt charges were
eventually dismissed and the murder trial ended with a hung jury.
Bobby Seale and Huey P. Newton were heavily inspired by the teachings of human rights leader and activist Malcolm X, who was assassinated in 1965. The two joined together in October 1966 to create the Black Panther Party for Self-Defense, which adopted the slain activist's slogan "freedom by any means necessary" as their own.
Seale and Newton together wrote the doctrines "What We Want Now!" which
Seale said were intended to be "the practical, specific things we need
and that should exist" and "What We Believe," which outlines the
philosophical principles of the Black Panther Party in order to educate
the people and disseminate information about the specifics of the
party's platform. These writings were part of the party's Ten-Point Program,
also known as the "The Black Panther Party for Self-Defense Ten-Point
Platform and Program," a set of guidelines to the Black Panther Party's
ideals and ways of operation. Seale and Newton decided to name Newton
Minister of Defense and Seale became the Chairman of the party. During his time with the Panthers, he underwent surveillance by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) as part of its COINTELPRO program,
which conducted covert (and at times illegal) projects surveilling,
infiltrating, discrediting and disrupting domestic political
In 1968, Seale wrote, Seize the Time: The Story of the Black Panther Party and Huey P. Newton, published in 1970.
The book describes the evolution of the Black Panthers and the
continuous struggle for human liberation, and derives from tape
recordings made by Seale between 1968 and 1970. Its purpose was to give a
better insight into the Black Panthers, essentially providing an
understanding of what the party does, who is involved, and how they help
the freedom movement. It shows the chronological development of the
Panther Party while delivering a background on the oppression of
Afro-Americans in an unjust society.
Bobby Seale was one of the original "Chicago Eight" defendants charged with conspiracy and inciting a riot in the wake of the 1968 Democratic National Convention in Chicago.
Bobby Seale, while in prison, stated, "To be a Revolutionary is to be
an Enemy of the state. To be arrested for this struggle is to be a
The evidence against Seale was slim, as he was a last-minute replacement for activist Eldridge Cleaver and had been in Chicago for only two days of the convention.
On November 5, 1969, Judge Hoffman sentenced him to four years in prison for 16 counts of contempt,
each count for three months of his imprisonment because of his
outbursts during the trial, and eventually ordered Seale severed from
the case, leading to the proceedings against the remaining defendants
being renamed the "Chicago Seven". The trial of the "Chicago Eight" was depicted in the 1987 HBO television movie Conspiracy: The Trial of the Chicago 8, whose script relied heavily upon transcripts from the court proceedings.
While serving his four-year sentence, Seale was put on trial again in 1970 in the New Haven Black Panther trials. Several officers of the Panther organization had murdered a fellow Panther, Alex Rackley, who had confessed under torture to being a police informant. The leader of the murder plan, George Sams, Jr.,
turned state's evidence and testified that Seale, who had visited New
Haven only hours before the murder, had ordered him to kill Rackley. The
trials were accompanied by a large demonstration in New Haven on May Day, 1970, which coincided with the beginning of the American college student strike of 1970.
The jury was unable to reach a verdict in Seale's trial, and the
charges were eventually dropped. The government suspended his
convictions and Seale was released from prison in 1972.
The action of Judge Julius Hoffman to have Seale bound and gagged, was commemorated in the song Chicago written by Graham Nash and mentioned in the poem and song H2Ogate Blues by Gil Scott-Heron (eerily pertinent today). Memphis Slim also interpreted the event with his blues song, Chicago Seven (links to music on YouTube below).
Bobby Seale – Gagged And Chained (The Sentencing Of Bobby Seale For Contempt)
Label: Certron – CSS2-2001
Format: 2 × Vinyl, LP, Album
A1 Bobby Seale Speaks Live 2:33
A2 Beginning Of Trial 15:10
Side 2: Trial Of Bobby Seale
Side 3: Trial Of Bobby Seale
Side 4: Trial Of Bobby Seale
Manufactured By – Certron Corporation Music Division
Copyright (c) – Certron Corporation
Producer – Dennis F. Shanahan
Printed in U.S.A.
dramatic, historical re-enactment of the Chicago Conspiracy Trial,
November 5, 1969, as it relates to Bobby Seale and the sentencing of
Seale for contempt by Judge Julius Hoffman".
Barcode and Other Identifiers
Matrix / Runout (Stamped Side A ): CSS-22001-A-1
Matrix / Runout (Stamped Side B): CSS-22001-B-1
Matrix / Runout (Stamped Side C): CSS-22001-C-1
Matrix / Runout (Stamped Side D): CSS-22001-D-1
Other (Cat# Disc 1): CSS2-2001-1
Other (Cat# Disc 2): CSS2-2001-2