Steel Pulse in Brooklyn

Summer is such a slow time for literary events.  Readings are nil, and book buyers are on their annual migration to warm beaches to enjoy a  guilty-pleasure paperback. So, during these sultry days dare we keep occupied with a quick glimpse at music?

Seems natural, lyrical short stories by Biggie, Bob Marley, Aretha Franklin filled with drama, love, blues, soul in syncopated rhythms tell the best tales. Music and literature are a natural fit. Plus, all things being equal summer concerts stump mudholes in staid book signings.

Now, I love my comfort zone like I love cooked food. I have a role and try hard to stay on course ––dedicated lit-mag publisher who’s taken a vow of poverty. And in this role I need to find ways to keep literature relevant while also keeping the attention of Wii heads and Lady Gaga fans. So on occasion we’ll insinuate a lyrical beat or performance onto the pages in the form of a photo essay, artist interview, or suggested reading.

Our first foray found Mosaic’s “Around Town” photog Marcia Wilson and I headed to check Steel Pulse in Prospect Park. Marcia, a yardie (via London), wanted to hear her favorite song, “Not King James Version,” which confronts the omission of Black people in the Bible. Of course they played every song but NKJV. But it did send me on quest to find reading material that could give the song some literary pylons.


Start Reading

Selected Writings and Speeches of Marcus Garvey
by Marcus Garvey and Bob Blaisdell
Dover Books

Canaan Land: A Religious History of African Americans (Religion in American Life)
by Albert J. Raboteau
Oxford University Press

The Kebra Negast: The Lost Bible of Rastafarian Wisdom and Faith from Ethiopia and Jamaica
Gerald Hausman (Editor)
St. Martin’s Press

Holy Bible, 1611 King James Version: 400th Anniversary Edition
Zondervan Bibles

Visit “Around Town” on for additional photo essays.