Ferguson #BlackLivesMatter Movement Takes Center Stage at the Grammys

Categories: Michael Brown

Screenshot via CBS
Beyonce's backup dancers perform the "Hands up; don't shoot" gesture during Bey's rendition of "Take My Hand, Precious Lord," from the Selma soundtrack.
The 57th Annual Grammy Awards came and went this weekend, and among the hobnobbing and gift-bag-grabbing and other general music-industry handjobbery -- not to mention that well-deserved award taken home by our local symphony -- were repeated references to Ferguson, the #BlackLivesMatter movement and the iconic "Hands up; don't shoot" gesture that has become its symbol.

See also: St. Louis Symphony Wins Grammy for City Noir, First Since 1991

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Camp Manitowa, Brothers Lazaroff Offer Camp Ferguson to Riverview Gardens Students

Micah Usher
Brothers Lazaroff and friends perform at the 2014 Hanukkah Hullabaloo at Create Space in University City. Proceeds went to Camp Manitowa's Camp Ferguson fund, and donations still are accepted here. See more Hullabaloo photos here.

Hanukkah is an eight-day celebration, but the young students who benefit from Camp Ferguson may end up remembering the Jewish holiday as a season of giving that continues months and years from now.

Students from the Riverview Gardens school district have the opportunity to attend a special summer camp in Camp Manitowa in Benton, Illinois, thanks to camp directors, local musicians Brothers Lazaroff and a host of community supporters. What began this fall as an idea to offer a camp for a handful of Ferguson students now may become a yearly event for an entire school district.

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Russell Simmons Says Miley Cyrus Will Join #BlackLivesMatter Movement, Internet Confused

Bryan Sutter
Miley Cyrus: the hero the world needs.

Hearts are heavy around the country right now, with protests happening in many cities in honor of Michael Brown, Eric Garner and other black men who have been killed by police. Plenty of musicians -- from Nelly to MC Hammer, from Tom Morello to Nickelback -- have spoken out through song and action against injustice, but more voices are needed.

Perhaps it's time for Miley Cyrus to step in.

LOLZ, no, we don't think so. But apparently Russell Simmons does. According to St. Louis American managing editor Chris King, the Def Jam cofounder claims that Hannah Montana will enter the #BlackLivesMatter fold:

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Ted Nugent Claims "Millions" of Black People Kill Each Other "Every Day"

Categories: Michael Brown

Mark C. Austin for Houston Press
Ted Nugent, wearing a Native American headdress for some goddamn reason.
Rocker/NRA board member/terror to all that is furry and mammalian Ted Nugent is once again speaking out about the situation in Ferguson. After penning an essay in October about the "Ferguson thugs" and "plague of black violence that has infested our inner cities," the Nuge doubled down last week following the announcement that Darren Wilson would not be indicted for the killing of Mike Brown.

See also: Ted Nugent Talks "Ferguson Thugs" and a "Plague of Black Violence" in Editorial Piece

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An Open Call To Local Musicians: Send Us Your Songs About Ferguson

Categories: Michael Brown

Photo by Theo Welling
Protesters marched up and down Grand Boulevard on Monday night following the grand jury's decision. View the full slideshow here.

The death of Michael Brown and subsequent unrest in Ferguson inspired music across the nation, and while we have songs from renowned acts like Nickelback and Tom Morello, we feel that local music is more vital than ever. Back in August, we shared responses from local artists and musicians, but that was just a small sample of what the community has to offer. This is an open call to local bands and musicians, regardless of genre, age or experience, to send RFT your music inspired by the recent events in Ferguson and the greater St. Louis region.

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Killer Mike Gives Searing, Tearful Speech in St. Louis Following Ferguson Grand Jury Decision

Michael Schmelling/Windish Agency
Killer Mike, one half of Run the Jewels.
Atlanta rapper Killer Mike, who has been outspoken about the police killing of Mike Brown by officer Darren Wilson since the early days, performed in St. Louis with his group Run the Jewels on the night the grand-jury decision was announced.

As the St. Louis and Ferguson areas descended into chaos with tear gas, arson, gunfire and looting, Mike and El-P took the stage at the Ready Room in the Grove, just a mile from the protest site at the intersection of Shaw Boulevard and Klemm Street. They had endured a breakdown of their tour van and nearly had to be picked up in a U-Haul cargo van just to make it to the show. "We have got to be some of the only people trying this hard to get IN to STL right now," El-P said in a tweet.

See also: Run the Jewels Talks Police Brutality and Cat Remixes

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Reader Reactions to Nickelback's Place in Ferguson Affairs: An Educational Dialogue

Screenshot from the video shown below.
Chad Kroeger of Nickelback is making that face because he's thinking really hard about Ferguson.

When browsing Teh Interwebz, it's important to adhere to the golden rule: DON'T READ THE COMMENTS. For real, people (including some of you and some of us) just go batshit insane when it comes to spouting their opinions regarding guns, UGG boots, burritos, kitten mittens, rain on a Monday, potholes, Gremlins 2: The New Batch or anything, ever. Trying to parse the logic behind the rhetoric simply rots the brain, so we do not recommend it.

We'll make an exception, though, when it comes to reading comments on stories about Nickelback. While we're still scratching our heads over why Chad Kroeger and friends felt compelled to weigh in on Ferguson issues, we're nonetheless grateful for the band's convictions. Otherwise, we might not have your insightful thoughts about music's place in activism and world affairs.

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Nickelback Writes Song Inspired By Ferguson Unrest, Finally

Categories: Michael Brown

Screenshot from the song's video, below.
Nickelback's Chad Kroeger, modern-day revolutionary.
At long last, the musical and political luminaries that comprise Nickelback have written a song inspired by the protests and unrest in Ferguson. We waited with bated breath as events unfolded in the St. Louis suburb, lacking direction in a world seemingly gone mad. But without guidance from the 'Back (I like to call 'em "the 'Back"), we onlookers bumbled about, unsure where to turn.

But no more.

See also: Ten Disturbingly Racist Things About St. Louis

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Governor Jay Nixon Quotes Tef Poe in Ferguson Speech

Press photo
On Tuesday, October 21, during a speech at Florissant Valley Community College, Governor Jay Nixon revealed his plan to create a "Ferguson Commission" to investigate the issues of socioeconomic and racial inequality in the St. Louis region that have been brought to light since the death of Mike Brown in Ferguson.

See also: "Ferguson Commission" Will Study St. Louis' Challenges in Wake of Michael Brown: Nixon

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Ted Nugent Talks "Ferguson Thugs" and a "Plague of Black Violence" in Editorial Piece

Categories: Michael Brown

Photo by Jim Bricker
These days, rocker Ted Nugent is probably as well known for his outspoken views on politics and nutty interviews as he is for his music. After taking heat earlier this year for calling President Obama a "subhuman mongrel," Nugent is now speaking out about the shooting of a police officer in Ferguson in late September. In an editorial on the site World Net Daily, he shares his thoughts in a rant about the "plague of black violence that has infested our inner cities."

See also: Ted Nugent's Outrageous Remarks at the NRA Conference: What the Videos Don't Show

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