About the Breath of Life

  A Sharing and Discussion of Black Music 

All humans make music. Black music (meaning music produced or heavily influenced by people of African descent) is one of the main forces in popular music of the 20th and 21st centuries.

Even though Black music is ultimately a reflection and expression of the experiences of people of African descent, Black music is not an exclusively racial product. People from diverse backgrounds all over the world produce rap, jazz, blues, gospel, funk and many other forms of Black music. Additionally, from classical music to what is humorously called “hick hop” (rap influenced country music), Black music has directly affected all major forms of music in the world today.

This website is a celebration of Black music. We update every Sunday and offer three selections each week: a classic (music that is a major example of a specific genre or style), a contemporary (music produced within the last decade or so), and a cover (previously recorded music that is given a new or different interpretation).

We request and desire your comments and feedback.


         About the Authors        

Kalamu ya Salaam

New Orleans writer/filmmaker Kalamu ya Salaam is founder of Nommo Literary Society, a Black writers workshop; co-founder of Runagate Multimedia; leader of the WordBand, a poetry performance ensemble; and moderator of e-Drum, a listserv for Black writers and diverse supporters of their literature. His latest book is The Magic of Juju: An Appreciation of the Black Arts Movement (Third World Press). Kalamu’s latest spoken word cd is My Story, My Song. An extensive collection of his writings, plus a feature-length interview are available online at Chicken Bones (http://nathanielturner.com/kystable.htm). Kalamu produces five hours of live radio weekly, beginning at 10pm (cst) on Thursdays on wwoz 90.7fm and www.wwoz.org). Kalamu can be reached at kalamu@aol.com.


Mtume ya Salaam

Mtume ya Salaam is a published writer, voracious reader, dedicated father, professional truck driver and degenerate poker player whose homeowner’s insurance policy has a separate rider for ‘music CDs,’ ‘vinyl record albums,’ and ‘stereo equipment.’ He lives in New Orleans and can be reached at mtume_s@yahoo.com.