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Uhuru Radio: Malcolm X's Canadian Connection
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Broadcast: May 9, 2010
Length: 120:01 minutes
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Segment #1: El-Hajj Malik El-Shabazz (Malcolm X) would have celebrated his 85th birthday on May 19th. He was assassinated 45 years ago on Feb. 21, 1965. Ossie Davis referred to Malcolm X as "Our Black Shining Prince". Malcolm's mother and father met at a UNIA convention in Montreal. They were married in Montreal, Quebec, Canada 10 May 1919. His mother Louise Helen Norton was born in 1897 in La Digue, St. Andrew, Grenada and died in 1991 in Woodland, Michigan. She lived 26 years longer than her son. His father Earl Little was born in Reynolds, Georgia in July of 1890, and was assassinated in Lansing, Michigan on Sept. 28, 1931. Wilferd Littte, Malcolm’s oldest brother says, “The story of her life was an epic one. The epic began in Grenada, continued in Canada, and ended here in the states. In all three countries there are parts of her life waiting to be resurrected.” Malcolm visited Toronto before he was assassinated. He spent time at the home of writer Austin Clarke and his wife Betty. Jan Carew’s book, Ghosts in Our Blood (With Malcolm X in Africa,England and the Caribbean) is a great resource on Malcolm’s mother. http://www.brothermalcolm.net/family/eldeath.html
Segment #2: Spotlight on Faith Nolan. Faith Nolan is an artist who is also a community builder. She is presently the director of Sing Elementary Teacher of Toronto and is in the process of founding a music therapy course for women prisoner in an Ontario jail. She has founded three Toronto based choirs, Sistering Singers, Mandela Children¹s Choir, and Voices of Freedom. In the late eighties she founded and directed Kingston Women Prisoners Choir. In 2004 Faith was on the Board of Mayworks, Toronto. She created Joint Effort in 1991. She was a founding member of the Black Women¹s Collective 1984 and Our Lives Newspaper 1986, Sisters Café 1991, MWIC in 1983-present, WRPM record distribution in 1995, Camp SIS 1995- present. She was on the Board with Charlie King, Pete Seeger in 1987 of the PMN. She is a composer and guitarist whose style varies from blues and folk, to jazz, with a taste of funk and reggae, is a seasoned performer who has built a strong and faithful audience.
Segment #3: Tribute to Ron Banks, William "Wee Gee" Howard, Elbert Wilkins, Lenny Mayes and The Dramatics. Ron Banks' silky falsetto helped give the Dramatics one of the most enduring careers in R&B. The Northern High School graduate was the founder of the Detroit vocal group, which made a name in the mid-'60s and went on to play for avid audiences around North America. Aside from a short break in the mid-1980s, the group has worked continuously since. William "Wee Gee" Howard shared leads with Banks on "In The Rain," "Thank You For Your Love," "Fall In Love, Lady Love," and "Hey You! Get Off My Mountain." Actually, Howard dedicated "Hey You! Get Off My Mountain" to the Toronto police department, when his set of Dramatics performed in Toronto. He felt he was unjustly harassed by Toronto's finest. Howard and Elbert Wilkins left the Dramatics and had a second set for a number of years. Howard was replaced by L.J. Reynolds and Wilkins spot was taken by Lenny Mayes. http://uhurunews.com/story?resource_name=dramatics-founder-ron-banks-at-58