Every protest movement needs its anthems. Unfortunately, the first ones on offer surrounding the Occupy D.C. protests were, well, kind of lame.
Raheem DeVaughn‘s latest could change all that. The local R&B crooner was arrested last month protesting corporate greed outside the Supreme Court, and now he’s turned in an Occupy-themed mixtape, Freedom Fighter, which you can grab for free on Bandcamp. In the intro, he interviews an Occupy protester, and the mixtape sprinkles in speeches from Cornel West (who was arrested along with DeVaughn and 16 others), Martin Luther King, and Louis Farrakhan. Fine, so it seems to mostly collect previously released DeVaughn material. But distilling his socially conscious material isn’t a bad thing. If DeVaughn’s 2010 album, The Love & War MasterPeace, suffered, it was because of the love part.
So this is a good thing, if it has any bearing on DeVaughn’s creative trajectory: In recent years, has there been a more stirring shit is really fucked dirge than DeVaughn’s “Bulletproof?” I don’t think so.