Occasionally, something comes up and editorial plans must suddenly change. Tonight is one such occasion. I was going through Instagram and came across Consequence‘s account. They posted that a sad new item: The great soul and bluesman Syl Johnson died at 85.
Throughout the course of this month, I’ll be spending time paying tribute to Black artists across a wide and diverse array of genres and styles with the hope that these posts serve as an important reminder that the Black experience is the American experience, that Black culture is American culture — and importantly that Black lives and Black art matter.
1969’s Is It Because I’m Black is a necessary listen — for everyone. It’s as relevant and as important as Marvin Gaye‘s What’s Going On and sadly isn’t as well known. Plus, there’s an amazing cover of The Beatles‘ “Come Together” that everyone needs to know.
Rest easy, brother.