What Happened Miss Simone? Thoughts On The Nina Simone Documentary


There is no way to watch this documentary and not have your heart broken.. its just not possible..
When you understand the time and place in which she was born and grew to womanhood.. when you hear the things she had to endure, not all of which are talked about in this film.. dealing with all those things artists have to deal with on a daily, and for her, being the first black or the first woman or the first black woman.. add to that, racial inequality.. the fire that burned in her to rail against the hatred we were facing at that time.. there is a moment in the film when she is on stage singing a song dedicated to MLK the day after he was killed, and she stops in the middle and says.. "they're leaving us.. they are all leaving us.. Martin.. Lorraine Hansberry, she was good friend of mine. Langston.. And they're beating us.. you might get beaten" .. Not her exact words, but.. you can hear the pain in her voice.. the bewilderment.. your heart just breaks.. she basically took a left turn in her career because she didn't want to write or sing about anything else but civil rights while her peope were fighting for their lives.. and when you realize that this is a portait of a woman.. an artist among many, fighting racial inequality, political injustice, police brutality, blacks murdered, churches burning in the 1960's.. and the most devastating part? Here we are today... ‪#‎still‬ fighting.. ‪#‎mississippigoddamn‬ ‪#‎southcarolinagoddamn‬ ‪#‎baltimoregoddamn‬ ‪#‎statenisland‬
‪#‎floridagoddamn‬ ‪#‎northcarolinagoddamn‬ ‪#‎churchesburning‬ ‪#‎andonandon‬

You can see why so many of our greatest artists were blue...
Knowing they were our voices.. our only hope.. they had to be..
You can understand how so many died.. some very young..
Why they were willing to die trying to affect change.
Anyone who was a part of the civil rights movement and lived to talk about is a goddamn hero..
But you can always feel their blues..
‪#‎heroes‬ ‪#‎sheroes‬ ‪#‎ninasimone‬ ‪#‎littlegirlblue‬

It's strange and sad that the song Strange Fruit, orginally written in 1937 and recorded by Billie Holiday in 1939, was again recorded by Nina Simone in 1965, nearly 30 years later.. expressing the same outrage at the inequality of the time that more than likely prompted Billie Holiday to sing the song in the first place.. and here it is a full 50 years after Miss Simones recording of the song, and we are yet again experiencing one of the most brutal periods of violence toward black citizens in our history..

Last month, 9 prominent blacks, leaders of their community, were gunned down in a church in SC.. 2 days later, confederate flag sales went up 2300 percent on Amazon..
2300 PERCENT.. That is a statement.
In the 3 weeks that followed 7 more black churches have burned down.
America is this really the legacy we want to leave behind?‪#‎whatwouldbilliethinkaboutthissongstillbeingsorelevanttoday‬
‪#‎whatwouldninathink‬

December 18th, 2015 is the 150th anniversary of the abolition of slavery in the United States..
Let's just think about this for a time.. comtemplate it.. dwell on it..
‪#‎iwishiknewhowitfelttobefree‬ ‪#‎somedaywellallbefree‬ ‪#‎iknowwhythecagedbirdsings‬ ‪#‎whathappenedmisssimone‬