Let the Music Play

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  • Today, June 1, kicks off Black Music Month, and we’re celebrating it on the TJMS. I know what you’re probably thinking: The TJMS is a black radio show, and you play black music every day. Yeah, we do. But that doesn’t mean that we can’t take a month to look a little closer at something that means so much to us.

    Whether you’re like us and have been fortunate enough to have depended on black music for a living … or you simply don’t think you could live without black music, you’ll want to be a part of our month-long salute to a genre that has never truly gotten the props it deserves.

    We’re going to look at the impact black music has had on our lives personally, professionally and politically. We’re going to have fun reflecting on your favorite songs and what memories they bring, but we’re also going to go deep and take a look at every thing from the role black music has made in politics and the civil rights movement to what the future of black music will be – with so many hurdles it faces, with everything from the bad economy to the performance tax. Black radio, black record labels, black music publications and black music venues all are struggling to survive. But no matter how bad the business of black music gets, remarkably, the beat goes on.

    Whether black music is playing on your car radio, in your head or in your heart, somewhere, somehow, someone is enjoying it, and it is wrapped up in a kind of love and happiness that no one can take away from us.

    There’s nothing else like it or its longevity. From the Motown sound to P-Funk, to New Jack Swing, gangsta rap to go-go, hip-hop to neo-soul to the Motown sound all over again, musical memories are being made – and the hits keep on coming.

    Who’s making money and who isn’t? What’s new, and what upcoming methods are artists are using to get their music heard? What can we do to save black radio? All of these issues will be up for discussion as the month progresses.

    This morning, we’ll hit it lightly as our TJMS producers ask you to tell us about the one song that defines you or your life the most. What’s your theme song? If your life was a movie, what would the soundtrack be?

    “I Believe I Can Fly” might be a good for one for me. But if you can think of something better, call me or text me.

    In the meantime, enjoy the one thing that has brought us all here together this morning in the first place — the black music.

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