Story Behind the Song
I was inspired to write this poem turned song, Native Tongue, after watching the movie Marvel's Black Panther - released on my birthday - February 16. I first saw the previews to this black cast & black directed motion picture by Ryan Cooger, in November 2017 in the theatres. Both my husband and I took our youngest son, (age 13), with us to see the movie Black Panther. The look on my son's face right after the movie ended was incalculable. My son said, "Wow mom, a black superhero." I became speechless because I didn't realize the inspirational affects the movie had on my son.
Once we arrived home, I began to write - initially - my feelings and overjoyed thoughts of the success of the film. But my thoughts turned into a poem and began to grow from that point. I titled my poem, Native Tongue, to applaud the organic efforts made in the film to represent the great African heritage.
Short Description of the Song
The song, Native Tongue, opening lines expresses the celebration of the African culture and its dialect as it is displayed in the movie. Honor, courage, royalty, pride, and empowerment are deeply anchored into the straight forward lyrics to accentuate the unapologetic nature and mentality of a dignified body of people who happen to be African. The song ends with a petition to all in opposition asking its readers to spread acceptance over prejudices.
Long Description of the Song
Native Tongue is more than a statement but rather a testimony. No one can deny anyone their excellence regardless of race and together, Ryan Coogler's movie and my song stands firmly behind that concept. You cannot deny excellence. Excellence in terms of creation. God created us all - so what makes one race or culture less or more excellent than the other? Wealth? Education? Power? I disagree in part. I think opportunity and greed in addition to those other afore mentioned separates us from unifying in our excellence as we should or from helping one another as we aught to.
According to the movie, Black Panther, you are shown a nation in tact with wealth, mineral wealth, technology, intellect, and education and they are owning their identity as a colored male and female with the opportunities given to them. Things they didn't have, they created. Ideas they conceptualize, came into fruition.
Instead of division, these beautiful people illustrated for us how to utilize one another's gifts and talents in order to live the lives intended for them to live as Kings and Queens, as the lender and not the borrower, and as the royal priesthood in harmony. The ability to combine a courageous people, great wealth and technology with solidarity, unity or synthesis - is indeed - a voluminous testimony.
How Did the Poem Turn into a Song?
I'm a member of Broadjam U.S. based music community and I'm often presented - via email - with opportunities or contests to enter my original written songs or recordings. On March 29, 2018 I responded to an email seeking for Producers|Songwriters to showcase music for Record Label Executives and to perform songs to Major Label Execs from Atlantic Records, Dreamville Records, Warner Music Group and more.
I completed the application for the songwriter side of the competition. A couple of days later I received an email asking - if the poem I wrote - was a song. Of course I said no - I do not sing, except for at home. At any rate, the producer who emailed me was interested in hearing a different direction for the poem, Native Tongue. So, I tossed all caution to the wind and quickly recorded my self performing the poem into a spoken word/song piece on my phone, (Galaxy s8), and resubmitted my poem as a song entry.
Within days, I received emails from all types of producers, radio DJ's requesting me to upload my song to their showcase and I began to receive contests and event listings to perform my song. Talk about being pushed out of my comfort zone. I didn't win in the contests and I only made one appearance, of the many requested, to perform my song. However, I have and still am, receiving distinction and 5-Star ratings for the songs unique appeal from various producers and even my Broadjam peers.Yay.
How To Hear the Song, Native Tongue?
Click on the black image above, and you should be taken to the Youtube destination for the song's location. Enjoy. Be sure to leave a positive comment or feedback.
What Movie Inspired You to Write a Song or Poem?
Can you remember the last time you saw a motion picture so captivating it invoked all of your senses in the same moment? You should compose a poem or a song about your experience and email it to me for an entry into one of our poetry contests. Looking forward to hearing from you.