It's been a really rough week for me. I've spent most of my free time participating in activism that has not went over well with most of my friends, I've felt hopeless, uninspired, and overall disgusted with our current state of affairs. All of that while attempting to smile through a long holiday weekend. And now, it's time to cram for final exams.
Needless to say, I've needed some medicine to get me through, and no - I don't mean beer.
I've been listening to Nahko and Medicine for the People for awhile now - I first heard Budding Trees around this time last year and fell fast in love. Their album Dark As Night has really resonated with me due to the events that have been unfolding since, and it's been something like a religious experience for me this weekend. I honestly can't count how many times I've played the record, and I really, really, encourage you all to check it out.
Some fast facts about Nahko: he refers to his fans as the #medicinetribe, he's from Portland, he's mixed race like myself, he may or may not be dating Shailene Woodley, and he was adopted. Also: that adorable African American boy hugging the cop? Totally part of the Medicine Tribe.
If I had to label the music, I'd call it folk to make things simple, but there's elements of rock n roll, reggae, and hip hop in there, as well. Something for everyone, especially you freedom fighters.
My favorites? Definitely Warrior People,
I will learn to be peaceful, but I keep my knife at my side. I will pray for compassion, but if war comes to my door you know I will be blasting, warrior mentality, my responsibility, bringing it to my people now, holler if you're feeling me.
and Black As Night,
I am no master, I know nothing. But I am a servant and I know something, yeah. I am no master, I know nothing, definitely still young. Built on hunger, so fucking stubborn, a lot of self-work undone - I am a witness.
I'm a little late with this proclamation of love for Nahko, as Dark As Night is actually a year old now. The lastest album is called On the Verge, and while I haven't totally dove into it yet, Manifesto has touched my soul a little bit already. Have a listen.