Saturday, November 12, 2011

More Record Company (1968)

So we were looking at blaxploitation in one my classes last week and someone began questioning the "authenticity" of phrases such as "you dig it," "don't take no jive," "right on," etc. in Foxy Brown. The subtext here is that the director, Jack Hill, is white, so there was some off-the-cuff pondering of whether or not a white person can effectively write dialogue for black characters. Um yes, this is what grad school can be like, but unfortunately no, it's not like this every class. Usually there's a lotta more talk about Adorno and Benjamin and Kant and shit. I finally had to speak my piece, saying that yes, the dialogue may come off stilted (for a taste just listen to the language in the trailer), but that it certainly didn't strike me as unauthentic. That's probably because I had been listening to Eldridge Cleaver of Soul on Ice and Black Panther Party fame laying it down in this speech from 1968 just hours earlier. In his write-up on the back cover, Reginald Mayor states: "Speaking and writing in that eloquent all balls language understood by black people, Cleaver speaks to all people with the insistence that they chart their own destiny..." All balls indeed.

This has become one of my favorite labels this past year. I dig the silhouette image of Cleaver speaking and the high contrast black and white works for me. Plus I think the logo for More Record Company, which as far as I can tell only released this LP, is pretty snazzy. The black and white fill on the label is actually the reverse of how it appears on
the front cover.

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