Keepers of Martin Luther King’s Spirit of Love

by on January 20, 2023 · 1 comment

in Civil Rights, From the Soul, San Diego

Terence Blanchard

by Ernie McCray

Two people kept Martin Luther King’s
spirit of love
for me
on MLK Day,
Steve Phillips,”
writer and founder of Democracy in Color,
and Grammy Award winning jazz trumpeter
and film score composer,
Terence Blanchard.

Steve Phillips

Mr. Phillips,

earlier in the day,

spoke at San Diego’s

All People’s Celebration,

echoing the call he’s made to progressives

in his books,

“Brown is the New White”

and “How We Win the Civil War,”

to embrace the love in us

that’s necessary

to build the power

needed to secure a multiracial democracy

and end White supremacy

and poverty

and, later in the evening,

I listened to Mr. Blanchard,

as he was being interviewed

by my friend, Cecil Lytle,

concert pianist of renown,

for UCSD-TV,

a discussion that,

when analyzed,

fit the main theme

of Martin’s dream,

people getting along

bettering themselves

as loving human beings,

highlighting how he,

at age 18

was accepted in the band

of legendary vibraphonist,

Lionel Hampton,

and then went on to play

in the bands of other

musical greats

like drummer Art Blakey,

all the while growing

as a musician and a man,

learning how to relate

with both Black and White

music makers

and coming to understand

that we’re all on the planet together

and should learn to get along

like a well-constructed

jazz song

and the next night

he and his band,

the E Collective,

performed with the

Turtle Island Quartet,

featuring a mixture of ethnicities

in a tribute to a man,

Wayne Shorter,

who, like him, blowing a trumpet,

is a genius on the saxophone,

a man, who by age, alone,

had come along

before his own

talents were discovered and honed,

keeping alive what

a man whose nickname

is “Mr. Gone,”

has soulfully

given to society

for oh-so long

in a spirit of love.


And acting out of love

is basically what

Martin asked of us

if we, as our country’s citizenry

are to survive

the racial disharmony

in our collective lives.

And those mentioned here

have kept that

spirit alive.

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Thomas L Gayton January 27, 2023 at 9:46 am

MLK, the greatest American Civil Rights leader in the 20th century. VIVA!


Leave a Comment

Older Article:

Newer Article: