Chuck D: “Fight The Power With Your Voice”
Chuck D, the front man and leader of the veteran hip-hop group Public Enemy, now 56, is showing no signs of slowing down.
Chuck’s deep, baritone, booming voice commanded attention as it rang out over the microphone on such hits as “Shut ‘Em Down” and “Black Steel In The Hour of Chaos.” It was that voice that truly brought the words of the 90’s hit song, “Fight The Power,” to life.
And it’s powerful statements about current life made to song that are even more relevant now.
“I didn’t start this out as an 18-year-old,” says Chuck. “I already was grown when I wrote the songs and I understood great songwriters of the past. So I knew if I was gonna write something I was gonna have to live with it when I wrote it at 27, 28, 29 and 30. I wrote Fear Of A Black Planet based on a theory from a psychologist, so I was writing every word to resonate. I learned that when traveling to another country early in my career that “Fight the Power” could actually be used by the Serbs and the Croats looking for the freedom between them two as former Yugoslavians. So the Public Enemy songs are always in effect. The key is it’s not a long period of time anyway.”
“Maybe in music terms, maybe in culture terms, but in real terms, 40, 50 years is not a long time. There’s been some significant changes; people are now at a 45-degree angle staring into their gadgets and phones and maybe that’s different. But it’s not a long period of time at all. So if they were pulling some bullshit in 1963, its effect could still be felt in 2016 in many ways. Many of the countries still have the same names and although it’s a different Bush, you have Bushes who are governors and ex-president Bushes that are still sitting around spewing their philosophies. As new Clintons come in and other ones watch over them.”
Chuck continues, “You can be an individual and create chaos like that one shooter did in Orlando or you can be an individual and change the future by doing some dumb, crazy bullshit. But making positive change is like going up a mountain that’s made out of grease wheel with a pair of roller skates; it requires like-minded collectives.”
By the way, Chuck is not just a rapper, he’s also an advocate for health.
Chuck, along with others from the hip hop community, launched the Hip Hop Health Summit in 2009. The goal was to inform the hip hop community about better ways to live a healthier, longer life.
Chuck D takes these health lessons to heart, particularly to protect one of his most valuable assets: his signature, baritone voice.
Here are some of Chuck’s tips:
1. Drink water to keep your body well hydrated, and avoid…