Thursday, December 15, 2011

Scat Man Crothers || Opening Credits to a 1975 Movie.

I as, Humble Uker, try to stay on the topic of music and musicians. This comes from 1975 and uses the "N" Word in a dramatic representation of hurt and racism in America. The use of The Word is in a context of suffering and is masterfully done by Scat Man Crothers. I know that this word is commonly used in some music but it still makes me uncomfortable. So I request that you and your personal sensibilities make a choice to watch or not because of the lyrics. You never see a ukulele but it is a fine performance.
"One of my early childhood heroes [ie: Scatman Crothers] playing the ukulele while singing 'Nigger Man.' The movie that this song was featured in was titled "Coonskin" and was directed By screen god/animation guru Ralph Bakshi [the director of such cool flicks as Wizards, Cool World, and the original animated versions of both the Hobbit and the Lord of the Rings]. Coonskin debuted in the spring of 1975, but only lasted in the theaters in New York City for less than a week before it was taken out of the cinemas and banned for its unabashed view and unflinching view on racism and the violence perpetuated behind stereotypes of people of a certain race/creed/nationality.

Since its banning, Coonskin was re-released in the late 80's/early 90's as VHS only and marketed under the new title 'Street Fight.' If you ever run across this movie, I urge you to get a copy. Yes, it is blatantly and unabashedly racist, but it was a testament of its time [the 70s in New York City - where race relations then were at an all time low]. And for all of the ugly contained within it and the propensity for violence in this half live-action/half animated movie, it was a vehemently ANTI-racist (film)."

1 comment:

  1. Fine performance to say the least. You'll have to look long and hard to find uking as intense as this, Jeff.

    Perhaps I'm the only uker to notice (from video evidence, anyway) the dearth of African Americans playing our instrument. Perhaps not. But I'll ask the question. What gives?