Get ready: here comes hip-hop history. FMC and Pitchfork Music Festival Present: It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back is the ONLY panel discussion at 2008’s Pitchfork Music Festival in Chicago, and it’s gonna be an exciting one. The event takes place in the Claudia Cassidy Theatre at the Chicago Cultural Center on Thursday, July 17.
When Public Enemy released It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back in 1988, it sounded like nothing else at the time. It Takes a Nation came frontloaded with sirens, squeals, and squawks that augmented the chaotic, collaged backing tracks over which frontman Chuck D laid his politically and poetically radical rhymes. Twenty years later, the album is still considered one of hip hop’s finest achievements. It Takes a Nation fused politics and music in unprecedented ways, creating a dense sound collage of rhythm, noise and the voices of 20th century black leaders.
On Thursday July 17 — one day before Public Enemy reunites to play It Takes A Nation in its entirety at the Pitchfork Festival — join us for a discussion that will explore the making of that album, as well as the cultural events that helped shape its message.
Hank Shocklee and Keith Shocklee — one half of Public Enemy’s production unit, the Bomb Squad — will discuss how they fashioned their powerful world of sound. Harry Allen, journalist, activist and PE Media Assassin, will join the members of the Bomb Squad in a lively discussion led by documentary filmmaker Kembrew McLeod (Copyright Criminals).
To RSVP, e-mail rsvp [at] pitchforkmusicfestival [dot] com.
It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back
Chicago Cultural Center, Claudia Cassidy Theatre
Thursday, July 17, 2008, 3 pm