Sunday, July 7, 2013
Academy of da Corner at Fillmore Jazz Festival, San Francisco, July 6-7, 2013
Wellness Coach Michael Bennett has taken upon himself to get Marvin X in shape. Lately, the poet has lightened up on Henny and drinks blender and juiced drinks of vegetables and fruits. He retreats to the Central Valley where he likes to take morning swims for exercise.
Marvin X with San Francisco's controversial Sheriff Ross Mirkarimi, posing with a copy of Marvin's pamphlet The Mythology of Pussy and Dick. We understand the Sheriff has reconciled with his wife after an alleged bout of domestic violence. Marvin X would like to visit the jails to speak with the brothers and sisters, especially those accused of partner violence. "Nobody owns nobody, we are not chattel (personal property), that ended with the emancipation proclamation."
After sitting with the poet at his booth, a friend named Abdul said no wonder Marvin X needs a little Henny after dealing with his customers. He noticed many appeared to suffer mental illness, whether white or black persons. A white man asked Marvin X who originated white supremacy? Marvin asked why are you asking me this question. Why don't you ask the white man. I didn't originate it. As Moses said, why are you questioning me, go question Pharaoh!
People came who seemed to want to share their war stories after looking at his books and DVDs, along with a small exhibit of the Drs. Nathan and Julia Hare archives, especially copies of the Black Scholar Magazine. Dr. Nathan Hare was founding publisher. He recruited Bob Chrisman as editor. The covers included pics of Angela Davis, prison movement messiah George Jackson, Frederick Douglas, Malcolm X, Stokely Carmichael. People took cell phone pictures of the display. Several were overheard saying "He didn't leave nobody out!"
On Sunday, Marvin X set up his booth on the corner of Fillmore and O'Farrel, near the site of his Black Educational Theatre, 1972, where he collaborated with legendary band leader/philosopher Sun Ra, who arranged the musical version of Marvin's play Flowers for the Trashman, retitled Take Care of Business. A fifty member cast of dancers, musicians and actors performed Take Care of Business in a five hour production, without intermission, at the Harding Theatre on Divisadero Street.
Marvin X and Sun Ra at the Black Educational Theatre on O'farrell Street, between Fillmore and Webster, 1972, both revolutionary artists were teaching in the Black Studies program at University of California, Berkeley.
The festival extends from lower Fillmore to upper Fillmore which is mostly white. Someone mentioned to Marvin that the jazz on upper Fillmore was entirely different from the music on lower Fillmore, like two different worlds.
We understand the Fillmore's main jazz venue Yoshi's is in foreclosure and black investors are attempting to buy the property. How ironic that whites bought Marcus Books in foreclosure and blacks are seeking to purchase Yoshi's. No matter what, the Fillmore will never be the same. Should we feel gratified that former Mayor Alioto apologized for destroying the cultural and economic vitality of the Fillmore District, Harlem of the West!