One of Maya Angelou’s final projects before her death earlier this year was a collaborative hip hop album called “Caged Bird Songs”.
The newly released music video for ‘Harlem Hopscotch’ inspires and touches many, illustrating how black American culture is rooted in song — the song of poetry, the song of hip-hop, and the song of spoken word – all of which I am a fan of.
‘Harlem Hopscotch’ definitely gives new life to Angelou’s powerful work.
But more importantly, the combination of spoken-word poetry with hip-hop music demonstrates how black and African-American identity has been long been forged in the rhythmic lyrics of song.
Oh, and if you’re a fan of reality TV dance shows (Guilty!), then you’ll most definitely recognise the faces of the some of the dancers featured in the video including ‘So You Think You Can Dance’ and ‘America’s Best Dance Crew’.
The 13-track album features Angelou reciting her poetry, set to instrumentals by producers Shawn Rivera and RoccStar and is available now on iTunes and Spotify.