Donald Trump will become the 45th president this morning. Let the artistic protests begin.
Phoenix Afrobeat Orchestra gets a party started like few other local bands. But listen to their lyrics and there's a creeping current of social consciousness flowing beneath the channel of afrobeat rhythms and horns that are the band's signature.
With the release of "Payaso" today, that
"I see you clown-face man, your mind before your soul / You have a funny face, but are we laughing, no!" singer Camille Sledge sings.
The song is filled with bright horns, unhinged instrumental solos, and percussion that could make even the most conservative wallflowers want to dance. After a break in the action during the six-minute, 34-second song, Sledge breaks into a speech, which essentially serves as a declaration of purpose for the band's next four years. Here's an excerpt:
"Times like these, you gotta laugh to keep from crying," she says, delivering the line with a subtle laugh of her own. "We're a nation of unafraid, un-abound, un-hands-tied, un-shackled, adult human beings with love in our hearts. This is our cry to you; this is our plea. Stand together in solidarity with us."
Listen to the full song below:
Keep Phoenix New Times Free... Since we started Phoenix New Times, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Phoenix, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Phoenix with no paywalls.