No Song is Safe From Us

No Song Is Safe From Us - The NYFOS Blog
 |  Joshua Blue

Childish Gambino’s (Donald Glover) “This Is America” took the world by storm when it was released earlier this year. A look at years of American culture, packed tightly into an explosive 4 minute video, and portrayed through a series of overlapping scenes mostly relegated to the background of the music video. The video often shows you smiling faces, dancing, novelty, all while the background shows us burning cars, rioting, inactive bystanders, suicide, chaos.




 |  Joshua Blue

“You Grew Up” is a look at the outside pressures that affect children, and in this piece men in particular, and how these can skew their views as they grow older. The two examples that artist Oddisee focuses on in this work are those of a young white man who grew up with Oddisee (a black man), and a young Muslim man.




 |  Joshua Blue

“I’m Not Racist” is a debate between two diametrically opposed men, one white and one black, arguing over the state of race relations in America. It is a raw, uncensored look at the stereotypes and tropes that create the ever-expanding racial divide.




 |  Joshua Blue

“Immigrants (We Get the Job Done)” is from “The Hamilton Mixtape”, a collection of covers and re-imaginings of Lin-Manuel Miranda’s hit musical “Hamilton”. The piece speaks to the mistreatment of, and resentment towards immigrants in America, and the performers were handpicked by Miranda as people who he believed “represent all corners of the world, in line with the songs message”.




 |  Joshua Blue

“America” is from the 2017 album “Everybody” by rap artist Logic. This track explores what it means to be an American citizen in today’s society, and makes references to the Trump administration, Kanye West, the Flint water crisis, and white supremacy, among other things.




 |  nyfos

Artist of the Month features British-American tenor Joshua Blue. A current Masters degree student at The Juilliard School, Joshua received the Ellen Lopin Blair award for First Place in the Lyndon Woodside Oratorio-Solo Competition held annual by the Oratorio Society of New York last spring, as well as an Emerging Artist Award in the 2017 Opera Index Competition in New York City. A NYFOS Emerging Artist program alum, Mr. Blue will return to NYFOS at the end of the month in our Protest program in NYC and Hudson, NY.




 |  Joshua Blue

A remix of Beyonce, and Kendrick Lamar’s “Freedom” this piece is filled with references to the Black Lives Matter movement as well as actual video content from many of the murders and assaults on people of color from the past few years. The work is combined with Jesse Williams’ incredibly powerful BET Awards speech about cultural appropriation.




 |  Joshua Blue

Written under his “Blood Orange” moniker, Devonte Hynes wrote this piece as a collection of his thoughts, a delve into the life, and mind, of a person of color in the modern world. Racial profiling, murder, stereotyping, all things that people of color face daily. It is less of a song, and more of a stream of consciousness set to music.




 |  Joshua Blue

Finding himself deeply affected by the death of Freddie Gray (April 19, 2015 – Baltimore, Maryland), Prince wrote this tribute song. Mentioning both Michael Brown and Freddie Gray, the piece is a reflection on the violence that spread through the country in the past few years from unjust killings. The piece ends with a direct quote from Prince: “The system is broken. It’s going to take the young people to fix it this time. We need new ideas, new life…”




 |  Joshua Blue

Set to the tune of “My Favorite Things” from The Sound of Music, “Black Rage” was a reprisal, brought back shortly after the shooting of Michael Brown (August 9, 2014 – Ferguson, Missouri). The piece looks at the atrocities the African American community has faced for years and how this hatred can take us into dark places.