African arts showcase at UC Berkeley

The spirit of Africa was alive at the African Arts Society's "Showcase" on November 20 at UC Berkeley.

Ready to Learn Fun Fair

Children enjoyed face painting, legos and storytelling at the Ready to Learn Fun Fair at Peralta Elementary School in Oakland.

Occupy Oakland calls for West Coast Port Shutdown

Organizers say Port owners are "1%." Port begs to keep the Ports Open for 99% workers.

Oakland Labor Day BBQ hosts good time for 'fam bam'

The "I am Oakland" collective hosted the Labor Day Fam Bam BBQ at Mosswood Park on September 6.

Protest against censorship of Palestinian Children's Art

In response to censorship of Palestinian children's art by an Oakland art museum, dozens came out to protest in Oakland.

RIP Peabo Wellington

College of Alameda student Jepeabo Wellington was murdered days before the school year began.

Students gain college acceptance at Black College Fair

Hundreds of young people attended the third annual Black College Fair at Laney College, the second year the Oakland community college has hosted the event.

Rare Michael Jackson interview on Soul Beat TV (1979)

As the world mourns the death of Michael Jackson, rare jewels from his life are emerging. Recently, Joe Jackson's experiences in Oakland have emerged and are seen as part of a revolutionary influence on the young Jackson Five.

Check out this rare interview of Michael Jackson on Soul Beat. Year: 1979

Michael Jackson dead at 50

The King of Pop, "The World's Most Successful Entertainer" Michael Jackson was announced dead today after suffering from a heart attack. He was 50 years old.

Jackson is one of the most internationally recognizable faces, despite major facial transformations since he was first introduced to the world by the Jackson 5. Jackson has sold over 750 million records, has 13 Grammys, and is adored by hundreds of millions throughout the world.

The Black Hour would like to express our condolences to Michael's family.

But in celebration of Michael's Life, we want everyone to do the moonwalk tonight.

The Sealed Letter

A short film by an aspiring student filmmaker from Laney College, Sandra Smith, "The Sealed Letter" is the story of a decent, studious young man who is reaching a breaking point in his life due to the routine negativity of his West Oakland home.

When he receives an envelope addressed to him from a prospective college, he realizes he is teetering on the edge of a big change in his life and attitude.

Check out The Sealed Letter on Peralta TV.

Uptown Unveiled: Street Party Tonight in Downtown Oakland

Uptown Unveiled
In case you haven't heard, there will be a huge street fair in Downtown Oakland tonight from 5-10 p.m. Uptown Unveiled takes place Thursday, June 18, 2009 at 19th & Telegraph in Downtown Oakland. In fact, the fair will have three stages and take up six blocks.

The fair promises to "offer a glimpse into the hip, happening downtown neighborhood." Indeed, a decade ago, even five years ago, this area looked drastically different. (We'll save that for another post)

Check out tonight's line-up:

Uptown Stage
Telegraph Avenue near 20th Street
Sponsored by The Uptown Apartments5:00 - 5:20 Youth Movement Records (Various Genres)
5:20 - 5:40 Nu Dekades (Hip Hop)
5:40 - 6:00 Do Dat (Hip Hop)
6:05 - 6:25 Jimmie Reign Featuring the Live Band Z-Ro (R&B)
6:30 - 6:40 Ericka Nelani (Singer/Songwriter YMR)
6:50 - 7:35 Sekhou Senegal (World/African)
7:35 - 7:55 Ro Sham Bo (a cappella)
7:55 - 8:15 Los Rakas (Latin Hip Hop)
8:15 - 9:05 Fito Reinoso y Ritmo y Armonia (World/Cuban)
9:15 - 10:00 The Kev Choice Ensemble (R&B/Jazz/Hip Hop) with Special
Guest Appearance by Zumbi of Zion I

Van Kleef Stage
Telegraph Avenue near 16th Street
Sponsored by Oaksterdam University
5:00 - 5:40 Annie Sampson (Blues)
5:50 - 6:30 Blue Bone Express (New Orleans Jazz)
6:50 - 7:15 Damon & The Heathens (Oakland Punk/Soul)
7:20 - 7:35 Fogo Na Roupa (Brazilian Carnival Drum and Dance)
7:35 - 8:00 Damon & The Heathens (Oakland Punk/Soul)
8:20 - 8:35 Hot Pink Feathers Parade Core and The All-Star Marching
Band (World Cabaret/Samba Burlesque)
8:35 - 9:05 The Funkanauts (Oakland Funk)
9:15 - 10:00 Materialized featuring Steve Adams and Dan Lebowitz
of ALO (Rock)

Fox Square Stage
19th Street between Telegraph and San Pablo Avenues
Sponsored by the Friends of the Oakland Fox/California Capital Group
5:30 - 5:45 Destiny Arts
5:55 - 6:15 Oakland Public Conservatory of Music
6:20 - 6:45 Pop Lyfe
6:55 - 7:15 Miko Marks
7:20 - 7:50 Birth of the Cool
8:00 - 9:00 John Santos

The event accessible by any downtown Oakland AC Transit bus line.

Black Sci-Fi Film Festival in Oakland

This is for all you Black Futurists, original Sun people descendants.

Third Root Productions is hosting a Black Sci-Fi film Series in Oakland starting this Thursday, June 18. Show time is 8-10:30 p.m.

The series begins with a double feature and discussion.

The AfroFuture is now!

June 18 – Double Feature & Discussion : Sun RA: Space is the Place, 1974 and Last Angel of History, 1997.

July 16 – Brother from Another Planet, 1984. (directed by John Sayles, starring Joe Morton)

Aug 20th. – Born in Flames, 1984. (directed by Lizzie Borden, starring Honey and Flo Kennedy)

For advance tickets go to Brown Paper Tickets and there will be limited Tickets will also be available at the door.

The festival will take place at the Golden Bridge Lofts at 330 13th Street at Webster in Oakland from 8-10:30pm

For more information, visit Third Root.

TBH Videos: Summertime in the LBC, by Dove Shack

The Black Hour's (TBH) Throw Back Hiphop Video of the Week

Summertime in the LBC
The Dove Shack

Happy Birthday Tupac Shakur

Tupac Amaru Shakur, aka 2Pac was born June 16, 1971 and was died September 13, 1996. He would be 38 years old today.

We wanted to bring something out to honor Pac's life and came across a great post by our Brother Davey D. Check out Davey'd 1991 interview with Pac. It is before the ATL police officers, before rape case, before the shooting, before the so-called East Coast vs. West Coast beef, yet right after he was beat by Oakland Police. He was 20 years old, five years before his death.

Also, 25 Joints to get you through the Day, Tupac style.

Tupac's life means many things to different people. We want to know, what did Tupac's life mean to you? How do you remember him most?

Omali Yeshitela speaks in Oakland

'Why We Must Organize to Stop Police Terror Against the African Community '
From Oscar Grant to Lovelle Mixon

Omali Yeshitela, chairman of the African People’s Socialist Party, speaks June 14 at the Uhuru House in East Oakland.

Yeshitela is a fiery orator and courageous organizer who has worked for the liberation of African people for over forty years.

Omali spoke this Thursday at the Humanist Hall. Hear Yeshitela Sunday, June 14 from 4-6 p.m. at the Uhuru House at 7911 MacArthur Blvd in Oakland. For more information, visit

Davey D speaks at first Peralta Black Graduation

President Obama's Weekly Address (6/12/09)

Weekly Address: Health Care Reform, the Key to Our Fiscal Future

Watch the video or read the transcript.

The White House also has a "fact sheet" with more information on Mr. Obama's plan.

Juneteenth Festival in Berkeley

Juneteenth, a celebration of freedom, hope and change, is a reminder that the quest for freedom has been an ongoing, hard fought battle.

The Berkeley Juneteen Festival will be held Saturday, June 13 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m in South Berkeley.

"The Berkeley Juneteenth Festival highlights African American culture, and is an all American celebration with diverse attendance and participation by all Bay Area communities," event organizers said. "Juneteenth, a celebration of freedom, hope and change, is a reminder that the quest for freedom has been an ongoing, hard fought battle."

Last year's Berkeley Juneteenth celebration was cancelled. But the show must go on!

The festival is held on Adeline Blvd. near Alcatraz Avenue. Visit the website for more information.

The Berkeley Juneteenth Festival is accessible by AC Transit bus lines 9, 15, 18, 88 and F.

Throw Back Hip Hop: "I Used to Love H.E.R."

Throw Back Hip Hop Video of the Week:

I Used to Love H.E.R. by Common

Uptown Unveiled: Photo Slideshow

A New Petition: Delete the N-word

Ten-year old Jonathan E. McCoy presents his petition to "Delete the N-word" at a Baltimore church during Black History Month. This young man wants you to stop using the N-Word.

"Negro. African American. Noir. Nero. Mohagany. Ebony. Nubian. Black. All of these words have the same meaning. Negro is a spanish noun descending from the word, Niger, meaning Black. Somewhere in history, it was translated to the N-word by those who refer to use as economically, politically and social disenfranchised." he begins.

"Rather than obliterate this disrespectful phrase, we have adopted it. Let me dispell the myth. As a people we are neither economically, politically nor socially disenfranchised," McCoy said.

"It is implausible, that 40 years after the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. that we still use this word that has no worth in our lives and our future," he proclaims. "So I'm petitioning you to delete the N-word from our vocabulary."

He then ends his presentation with a new voice to the Negro National Anthem, "Lift E'ry Voice and Sing."
Check out his video online or support his petition.

Have you stopped using the N-word? How do you react when you hear people say it? Black folks? What about non-Black folks?

Throwback Hip Hop: Jazzy Belle, Outkast

Throwback Hip Hop Video of the Week

Jazzy Belle - Outkast

Free outdoor concert series in Oakland

Want to hear some free music in Downtown Oakland?

Tomorrow, Oakland's Summer Sounds Concert Series kicks off.

Beginning June 1, you can hear live music every Wednesday from noon to 1 p.m. at Oakland City Center, at the corner of 13th and Broadway. The series ends August 26.

There is an awesome, ecletic mix of bands and genres. Tomorrow features Pure Ecstasy, playing the sounds of Motown.

Here are some other dope shows to check out:

Check out the complete list of artists performing at the Summer Concert Series.

The Decline of Black Radio

The has been a lot of talk about Black Radio in recent weeks considering H.R. 848 and it's potential to kill Black radio. But some say it has long been dead.

Marc Anthony Neal of A New Black Man questioned the legitimacy of Radio One's Save Black Radio campaign and asked "Should Black Radio Die?" while Cedric Muhammad of Black Electorate also questions supporting Black Radio when for the longest, these companies have abandoned the needs of the people by promoting Wackness in the Name of Blackness.

It was asked by Nigerian activist Tolu Olorunda, Is Black Radio Worth Saving?" and to the recent journalist's roundtable "Who killed Black Radio?" on Jared Ball's Jazz & Justice.

But a few months ago, a trailer for a new documentary was posted about "Disappearing Voices: The Decline of Black Radio."

This video is a must see, particularly in times where Black "Talk Radio" seems to be hot garbage masquerading as gossip and more commonly, as "news."

What do you think about the state of Black Radio? What shows do you listen to? (if any). How could Black Radio improve to fit your needs?

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