No. 137: African American Music Appreciation Month

Thanks to Peter Bakke for the tip on June being African-American Music Appreciation Month.

To get you started, consider taking a listen to Robert Glasper’s new album, Everything’s Beautiful, where he samples a bunch of Miles Davis recordings.

I’ve been meaning to listen to more of Prince’s discography, so I’ll probably start working through that this month.

Other music on the list:

Mahalia Jackson

Duke Ellington

Andrae Crouch

Mississipi Mass Choir

Outkast

A Tribe Called Quest

Christian Scott

Jay-Z

Wayman Tisdale

Victor Wooten

Who’s on your list?

No. 70: President Obama is Going to Kenya: Dumb or Nah?

Witney Schneidman, Fellow at the Brookings Institution, wrote this rebuttal of Harvard professor Robert Rotberg’s Politico piece which panned President Obama’s upcoming trip to the country for the Global Entrepreneurship Summit as a bad idea.

Quick thoughts:

  • I’m not sure President Obama tacking on a trip to Ethiopia would go over well with Africa watchers, given the flap over Gayle Smith’s nomination for US AID administrator. Africa watchers…that’s a pretty bad tag line. Who coined it?
  • The parallel between this trip and President Kennedy’s trip to Ireland is a nice one. The country was experiencing violence of its own at the time and was still dealing with Britain not respecting its independence.
  • Professor Rotberg’s analysis of President Obama’s impact on ethnic tensions reinforces President Obama’s remarks last week during Start the Spark, an entrepreneurship initiative the Administration is launching: “And entrepreneurship breaks down barriers between cultures and between faiths at a time when we need more than ever the capacity to understand and work across borders.” Since President Obama is going to Kenya for the Global Entrepreneurship Summitt, this is an opportunity to highlight the breaking down of ethnic tensions.

I’m excited about President Obama going to Kenya. He can’t visit Africa enough in my book. His trip focusing on entrepreneurship at a global scale is really cool and it will be interesting to see African entrepreneurial stories within a global context rather than in something of a vacuum.